Friday, December 23, 2011

y o u    a r e   w h e r e    y o u    b e l o n g

I have been writing and rewriting this post in my head for a while. I didn't really know where to start, and truth is, I don't talk that much about myself here on this blog. Yes, every once in while, I will let it be known that I had a crazy week and I took on too much. But I don't share with you all my extreme joy, worries, frustration, and sometimes envy. So I am going to let it all out in one post. 

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 To be honest, I just don't always feel comfortable talking about myself, and I think, am I going to want to delete this post tomorrow? 

I will start with my feelings on the blog. 
I am so appreciative of the readers that consistently read this blog. I look back on a year ago and this little blog has come a long way. The readers, comments, and sweet emails really keep me going and want to continue with this everyday. 
There is also a hard part {maybe just for me} to having a blog. Is it just me or does it seem like the "big bloggers" all seem to know each other? I get envious of this. I am not sure why. Truth is, I use this blog to connect with you and as a way to show my work. I do not have sponsors, nor do I have the time to devote to doing a unique blog post everyday. I am trying to just to keep up with my everyday life and my painting. So when these little thoughts creep in and get me down, I have to think to myself, "I am given only what I can handle and I am given a lot, so get over your negative thoughts Alison!"
With that, it will be fun to see where this little blog goes over the next year. Even if it is just to see how many different times I rearrange my living room in 2012.

Now my business. 
I sort of fell into this business. It really has always been a passion of mine to paint furniture. 
A few years ago, I went back to work. I felt it was time, the kids were three and six, and I had an opportunity at the agency I worked at pre-kids. It was great to get up everyday, wear something other than yoga pants, commute with my husband, and have extra income. 
But I was really sad working outside of my home. I hated getting the kids up early and bringing them to daycare in the dark.  I worked an hour away from home, and I never got to go to school events. But once I went back to work, I felt stuck. We needed my income. 
Then about two years ago I had an accident. I cut the top of my foot on a glass hurricane {I dropped it on my foot},  ended up with two types of infection, and I cut through a ligament. I spent three days in the hospital, came close to losing my foot {or even leg}, a month in physical therapy to use my foot again, and two months of IV antibiotic treatment daily at the hospital. During all of this I had to give up working. If it wasn't for the accident I would still be working outside of the home, maybe not at that job but some job. The accident let me be honest with myself and my husband. I hated working so far from my kids. 
But I need to work. My family needs my income. It is really hard to live on one salary these days. I painted a few pieces and sold them, and thought "I can do this!" So I started The Modern Cottage Company.
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I started selling right out of my living room. Keeping my house clean for people coming over was too hard, so I set up shop in my studio. This was working fine except I was growing and needed more work space and space to store inventory. That is when I considered selling at an antique store. The day I was going to go sign the lease on my booth I got a call from Spaceworks Tacoma, the day! Spaceworks is an organization that gives artists and small businesses a six month, rent free lease on a space to fill empty store fronts. It helps the artists and it helps the city from having empty storefronts. I applied for this a year before I got the call, and I actually forgot about my application.

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So I have six months to see if I can make this little business work outside my home. Can I actually do this? I am about to find out.
It is really really scary because, other than custom pieces I haven't made any money in the last two months while stockpiling for shop. I haven't posted or sold anything for sale since mid-October. I am hoping {and I  do lots of praying} that I can pull off running a shop, I have six months to try! I believe I was planted here and I need to give my best shot.

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Looking back every turn in my life has led me to something good, even when it didn't seem like it at the time. So going forward I know that even if this doesn't work out, it will lead me to where I need to be.

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I hope you all have a wonderful holiday.