From my Etsy Shop...

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Big Changes for 2009

Well... what can I say? The first month of the new year isn't even over yet, and I'm already in for some big changes ahead.

Two days before Christmas, my sweet little kitty, Ms. Moe (Elmo), passed away. She was my companion for a little over 17 years and a big part of my life. From the start she was "my" cat... she had tagged me as hers. (The cat people out there will get what I mean.) As a little kitten, she would hunt me down and crawl up in my lap no matter where I was or what I was doing. Of course this became the norm. If I was sitting or laying down, she was too, right there on me. She would sleep with me every single night, laying right on my hip. If it was a restless night for me, she would roll as I rolled and turn as I turned. If it was a cold night, she would root her way under the covers and curl up against my stomach. She was the most precious and sweet cat... and the biggest pig.

She loved food... human food. Her first experience, (well... sort of), was one day, when my son was little, he was sitting in the floor eating a chicken wing. Moe took off running towards him and without stopping at all, she snatched that chicken wing right out of his hand and kept on running. It was hilarious, but unfortunately (for her), my husband (at the time), got a hold of her and took the wing away. All I could do was laugh, but he was pretty mad at her. From then on, where ever the food was, she was. Always meowing and whining, wanting food and getting under your feet or in your face to get it. She weighed all of 4.5 lbs... she was a tiny cat, but man, she could eat like nobody's business.

I could go on and on about her, but I won't. I'll just say that Moe was the best cat ever... sweet, comical, loving, and didn't have issues when we brought other cats home. She holds a very special place in my heart and I will never ever forget her.

Rest In Peace sweet Moe!

The second change came about by way of needing to organize my work area. I've been using my kitchen table as my work area for a long time. We have two, so it wasn't the kitchen-kitchen table... the one we eat at. That was all the space I had, but with a few accessories, I was able to make the space work by adding shelves to the back to put things on and by using cork board on the wall to hang my finished pieces on. That lasted about a year until this past Christmas when I just couldn't take it anymore. I didn't have anymore room because I had too much stuff and it was taking over. It was almost impossible to keep the table clean to give me enough room to make maille, so Ted brought home a credenza from his office for me to spread out on. I have before and after pictures to show the difference... and what a wonderful difference it is. The before is REALLY bad, but please know that it only got this bad because I hadn't been doing any maille for the last few weeks of the year, I was preparing for tax time and the things I got for Christmas were just laying there (not put up). I am a VERY organized person normally, so I'm pretty ashamed of these pictures.

These are BC (before credenza):

My space... all of it (YUCK!) Everything is everywhere, and with no place to put my lap top, I had all of a about 1-1/2 feet back to work on. My supplies were very organized... clasps, earwires and beads are in the containers on the shelves (there are two more behind the laptop) and rings, wire, cords and "special beads" are in the little stacking containers on the left side. Tools and other packaging supplies are in the rolling bin under the table.

Everything is just kinda crammed everywhere. There's no easy access to anything because you have to move things out of the way to reach something.

My cork board to hang finished piece on. I loved this idea as it keeps everything right there within reach. It also reminds me to promote, promote, promote, because it's a visual reminder of what I need to sell. LOL

My printer-on-a-crate. LOL I didn't have anywhere else to put it, so Ted brought in the crate for me to sit it on. Of course it was always in the way and I was always hitting my knee either on it or the rolling bin on the left side.

Behind the printer was where I stashed all of my shipping boxes. It wasn't the ideal place for them because I couldn't ever see what I was grabbing.

Ok... here are the after pictures:

Now, I have plenty of work space. I can keep my laptop pushed back when I want to do maille or I can slide it up when I need to use it. My original bins are still on the left and I added one more big one and one more smaller one to the right to separate ring types (precious metals on the left, others on the right). My photography lamps are in the corners, within easy reach and easily slideable when I need them. My timer is on the right, so I can keep track of how much time is spent on whatever maille I'm working on.

The Sun on the left is one of my favorite things. It's a Story People piece by Brian Andreas. I have a few of his poems/prints throughout the house and plan on getting more. My hooks on the door stayed put. They hold my headphones and my Story People bag that I got for my birthday.

My rolling bin is still there, it's just a lot less cluttered and a lot more organized. Tools on top, tags, and bags in the middle and glues, torch and butane in the bottom. I even have room on the table now for my coffee warmer. =)

There's nothing on the right side of my chair for me to hit anymore... everything has a place and is within easy reach. My make-shift light box is easily gettable and usable without having to move anything. And I have my little foot rest back too. =)

Here's the credenza all neatly organized with everything having a space. I moved the shelf that was behind my laptop over to the center opening and am still using it to hold my supplies. I keep my beading and cutting boards on the very top and use the shelf itself as a divider to seperate printer supplies on the left and my AR/AP file, receipt book and cost notebook on the right. I purchased the little blue baskets (2 for $1.00) at Walmart and they're great for keeping packaging tape, files, my jewelry tags and hole punches in.

We purchased a (put it together yourself) two drawer unit ($25.00 at Target) to keep my packaging tins and tissue paper in. The little baskets on top ($2.00 each at Walmart) are for my leather tools and supplies. Mailing boxes and tin filler are beside the drawer unit, putting everything I need to ship orders right within reach.

My printer is now off the floor (finally) and is sitting on the back corner of the credenza. All of the supplies for it are below it on the left side of the shelves.

I now have room on top for my Hex Cats from ChatNoirStudios, my SevenBot from TofuNutLoaf, Marvin The Martian and other little doodads that I like.

Whew!!! That was alot of work. LOL But it was all worth it. Now I just have to not buy any big supplies that'll take up more room. Pfffth... yeah right! I'll probably outgrow this in another year or so.

Now, on to the last big change so far this year (I'm sure it won't be the last though).

As of today, I have been unemployed for a week. My employer laid me off last week after 12 years of service. It's been hard to deal with, but I'm coming to terms with it, realizing that it was probably for the best. Part of my mind was ready for a change before the lay-off, but the other part just didn't want to accept it, so I held on as long as I could. I've been doing administrative work since I was 18 years old... I even took classes for it in high school. I did enjoy it, but it just got so boring and mind numbing. Our business had slowed down tremendously, so I'm really surprised they kept me on as long as they did.

What now, you ask??? I have no clue. LOL I do know that I'll take full advantage of being at home for a while... at least a few weeks... to work on my jewelry business. I won't be able to draw unemployment for another 5 weeks because of the severance package I received. I have to figure out the insurance part too. That's up at the end of January and I can't go without it because of my asthma. I have looked in the paper for other adminstrative jobs, but so far there hasn't been much. This past Sunday, there were only 3 part time jobs listed. Not a whole heck of alot to choose from. LOL I've been on several websites looking, but I just can't seem to wrap my mind around staying in the same field. I want to do something different now... something fun and interesting... something that'll keep me from sitting on my butt 8 hours a day. Welding maybe, but I would have to take classes unless someones willing to hire me as an apprentice. Retail??? Hmmm, that's a possibility if I could find the right type of shop. I've thought about construction and landscaping too. It's all coming back to me doing things with my hands. That, I think, is what would keep me happy... working with my hands.

One door closes and another door opens, right? Hopefully the universe will show me that other door pretty soon. In the meantime, I'll do what I can to keep my sanity, to stay busy and to stay happy.
Until next time...

Love, Peace and Happy Mailling!


My name is Julia :-) said...

Oh Chris, I didn't know about sweet Moe. I'm a dog person but I so understand your loss & sadness. I also know how important is is to celebrate a life that meant so much to yours.

As for rest, everything will fall into place & you'll be ready. Perhaps that's why you felt the need to organize your workspace... the universe needs your full attention.


Anonymous said...

So sorry about your beautiful Moe!

Your new workspace looks great ~ I see many hours of jewelry making there!

AltheaP said...

Ah, Moe was what my family calls a velcro pet . . . they just seem to be physically attached to you. So sorry.

Your space looks great. I want to see a pic in six months to see how you're doing.

It's been so freeing for me to leave the corporate world. I hated admin work for 35 years. It sure is hard to find anything else, though, once you've had that title. Good luck!

The Beading Gem said...

Chris, you have the right attitude! Things happen for a reason. I'm sure something will turn up for you sooner or later.

I'm a cat person too so I really can relate to losing your cat. It's amazing you had her as long as you did. Pearl