Monday, December 16, 2019

It's chilly today!

But not too bad. Mostly wet with sprinkling rain and it's driving me nuts. HE is driving me crazy. The car broke down back on last Sunday, sort of. Didn't know quite what was wrong with it. Put a bunch of oil in but the light for low oil and the oil lamp wouldn't go off and stay there. HE had a one-day job Monday so I stayed up and took him to the meetup in town at the shop for his job, came home, and was ready for bed. But nope. Lights still on. Check the dipstick on a hot engine, as in so hot I had turned the car off less than two minutes before. Despite all the oil HE put in the day before, the dipstick was reading add oil. Oh, dear. So I called our landlord/the car lot guy I'm getting the car from and talked to him. By the time everything was said and done, I had to call out of work that night, or try to cut chicken on two hours sleep. Not happening. The car guy got me a loaner until they can come out to get mine and get it fixed. Been driving that all week. It's a nice car, but sheesh. I want mine back. Darn oil pump!

So ...

The rest of the week went pretty much as usual, but I decided early on that with all that Etsy has been pushing on us US sellers and those who sell into the US for that free shipping, and how bad my traffic has been since I opted in to see what happened, plus a review I got on a freakin' candle, I'm done. I'm moving to Shopify. I'll use their paused site plan until I can get everything moved over and edited and the rebrand done, which will take a few months, but worth it. I can leave Etsy rolling and let everything gradually expire there while I shift things. The import of my Etsy products went fine, but apparently, Etsy's export product thing doesn't work quite as well as it should, because it didn't export my SKUs, and half my products are missing completely. Really, Etsy??? The Pattern site will stay up until everything that is in Pattern only has been shifted and then it's poof, bye bye Pattern bill. With any luck, I'll have that done well before the Etsy only stuff has all expired as well.

With Shopify, there's a ton of apps I can install as well. My POD suppliers all integrate into Shopify, making creating new products and pushing the orders through to them for fulfillment rather easy. There's also an affiliate app that I'm setting up, so people can promote my products for me and make a little money if they get me any sales. AND there's a crap ton of shopping channels where I can push my products to, so they can show up and sell THERE. Several are completely free, including the Facebook page app to shift my shop to a page on my FB business page. And everything integrates with Shopify for tracking inventory and the whole shot. So that's going to be busy-making and kind of exciting. I'll still do free shipping with the cost rolled into the product prices, but there aren't a lot of people who buy a half a dozen items at once, which is where it would hurt them. Considering that all my POD suppliers have their own shipping costs and don't include them in their pricing that pushes to the shop, I either have to have a zillion different shipping profiles set up, OR I can include shipping costs in the final price and go from there. I'm taking the easy way out.

Oh, that review? A lady ordered one of my small candle tins off Etsy. Left me two stars because she expected it to be a SHAPED candle, even though the listing is titled as a candle tin, and the word tin is in the description several times. Size is mentioned, and she complained it was "tiny." Just how big do you think a candle that's described as 7/8 x 1 1/2 inches is going to BE, lady? Those were my thoughts. She never contacted me to ask if it was shaped or anything. So I ended up locking the thing in by rebutting her in a response, and so my basically perfect Etsy stars record is shot. Guess I'll never become a top Etsy seller then, because that's nuts.

I may keep Etsy going for just digital files, but that is up in the air right now. At least those, folks can't say they didn't get their order with instant download, and I wouldn't have to do refunds because that's against Etsy policy on digital products. Overall, though, Etsy and I are done.

Got chores done today barring putting up the laundry. I'll do that later if HE wakes up from his nap. He's been napping for about four hours. I'll make dinner in a couple hours for me, HE can eat if HE wakes up for it. Considering we have to be out of the house by 8AM or just after tomorrow (well, today, actually, looking at the time) for HIS revocation hearing on HIS probation, and who knows how long that will take, I probably won't get much done today. Tomorrow night will make up for it, though, because I used my last vacation day for tomorrow, since court could go all day.

HE hasn't been doing his probation requirements for fourteen months, mostly the job and thus, not paying on his fines, so HE's liable to go away for at least six months in county, if not straight out to prison for half or more of HIS thirteen-year original sentence. Fine with me. HE has been a complete butthead for months now, and come pretty close to me calling the cops and having HIM removed for yelling at me several times. Oh, did I mention that "no inappropriate contact" with me is part of HIS probation as well? It amounts to HE can't get drunk or high, since drugs were what got HIM into this mess, and HE can't get into fights with me, either. That apparently includes yelling. Oops. I'm going to HIS hearing because one, the car is mine, even if it's a loaner, and I don't want to have to try to fetch it out of impound or somethimg, and two, I've already let the prosector's office know I'll be there if they want to ask me anything. I'm not trying to send HIM to jail or prison, HE's doing a pretty good job of that on HIS own, but I'm not going to try to help keep him out of there anymore, either. So there's that in the morning to goodness only knows when in the afternoon.

HE thinks HE is just going to get a slap on the wrist and be sent home with a chewing out by the judge. If HE had a job, probably. No job, not too likely. HE lied to HIS public defender last week, too, "Oh, yeah, I've got a part-time job!" No, HE doesn't. HE had a job for ONE DAY. That does not bode well for him.

So anyhow, for now, I'm off to cuddle Stars, and then I have to get some serious work done on the shop some more. Go me?

Sunday, December 8, 2019

I (well, the farm) won an award!

How do you like that? Bountiful Farm somehow won an award of "Best of Green Forest Awards" in the Farms category. Despite the fact that right now, the "farm" itself is a stagnant idea. Huh.

This is the press release that they did up automatically for me over it. The award itself (plaque and crystal award thing) is $230!!!!

Press Release
Bountiful Farm Receives 2019 Best of Green Forest Award
Green Forest Award Program Honors the Achievement
GREEN FOREST December 1, 2019 -- Bountiful Farm has been selected for the 2019 Best of Green Forest Award in the Farms category by the Green Forest Award Program.
Each year, the Green Forest Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Green Forest area a great place to live, work and play.
Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2019 Green Forest Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Green Forest Award Program and data provided by third parties.
About Green Forest Award Program
The Green Forest Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Green Forest area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.
The Green Forest Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in our community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to recognize the small business community's contributions to the U.S. economy.
SOURCE: Green Forest Award Program

Green Forest Award Program

Saturday, December 7, 2019

New week, long last week, new page

It's sort of the start of a new week, in about fifteen minutes, lol. The whole second shift thing really throws your life off kilter on time frame for when a day starts and ends. Officially, by the time I finish typing this post, it will be a new week. Unofficially, because my Saturday hasn't really ended for me, it will not start until I go to sleep and get up tomorrow.

Last week at the Just Over Broke was long. Nearly 47 hours again. But I had an interview for a lead job in another department I would really like to get. I'm one of only two, I think, people who put in for it, and I really, really want it. It would mean a minor schedule change, in that I'd start and end earlier, and a slight pay drop back to what I was making before the pay raise, so not really any different pay wise.

The shop is coming along. Nearly 500 products right now, and looking to hit that by the time I go to bed tomorrow night. I'm adding pretty much anything I can, because who knows what people will buy? It makes me not a niche shop but a general merchandise shop, though the only things I'll be making myself being the candles and the last of my handmade jewelry and mini ornaments. The great majority of products are Print On Demand, so I don't have to fuss with making anything. The candles are a lot of fun to make and take next to no time to do, but the handmade jewelry is getting time consuming. Once that stuff is sold out, I'm done making it. It's fun, but not that much fun. I can't scale up easily with it. I CAN with candles and POD products. Especially the POD products, because I don't have to make anything, just push the orders through to the supplier, pay them for the items in question, and then let them do the work and packing and shipping. Already sold a coffee mug this last week, so progress!

As to the "new page" bit, I'm getting back into something I did years ago for extra pocket change. Paid To Read Emails. Only thing is, I'm using the cash and points from them for advertising the shop instead of cashing out now, leading to more traffic. It takes time to do things in the programs, but not a ton, and if you limit yourself to a handful of programs, you can do pretty well for yourself. Check out the page in the top bar links!

As for HIM, he has court on the 16th, and I can only hope that he goes away. He's been really cranky lately and I'm tired of it all. Unfortunately, that may end up being a slap on the wrist for him, because his P.O. found someone who needs an extra pair of hands for building fences in their business. Nobody thinks he'll last because his record this past year has not been good. The last job of packing eggs lasted four days basically, and he quit/walked out/whatever you want to call it after his back gave out on him. Like my best friend says, and she has known him longer than I have, if he can't handle packing eggs, building fences is going to have him keeling over and face planting in the dirt. We shall see.

But for now, Bandit wants to play tug rope and I'm going to have a little fun getting my arms yanked out of my sockets. Talk to you next time!