Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I think I've figured it out

Lately I've been trying to figure out why it's so hard to get caught up on orders. My turnaround time these days is around 3 weeks, which I hate. I'd love to be able to get things to people much more quickly, but orders have been steadily coming in on pretty much a daily basis. The carving list is long and I can only carve so many stamps in a day. Still...I can't help feeling like I should be getting more done each day. Sometimes eight hours pass and I'll only have 3 or 4 stamps to show for it. What happened?

So..I started paying closer attention to things that happen throughout the day. Here are a few recent days - none of which are particularly out of the ordinary in my life;

Saturday - got up early (Jim had to work), fed the dogs, had breakfast, put finished orders out in the mail. Headed to my "office" (corner of bedroom I've overtaken) and began carving. Answered various convos (Etsy messages) as they came in, while still working on carvings. Took a shower. Upon exiting the shower, noticed 3 of my 4 dogs were acting sort of weird. They all had that "somebody did something bad but it wasn't me" expression on their faces. I walked into the livingroom to find the dog in question (Lucy, our rehabilitated, formerly dog-aggressive corgi) standing over a half-eaten rabbit on the sofa. She was showing her teeth to any other dog that tried to come near her and the room smelled like blood. I had to pick the poor disemboweled thing up with a plastic bag, bring it outside and bury it. Then back inside to finish the post-shower activities that were interrupted by the rabbit killing (finish dressing, dry hair, etc..). Then it was off to the store to get a few necessities. By the time I got home it was 4pm and I'd gotten maybe two stamps done. Then I got a phone call about a family member who has been a constant source of worry and stress for months now - with the news that they've made yet another stupid, self-destructive decision. This phone call of course went on for a while and I then had to tell Jim about it. More time wasted. Then Jim came home and we had dinner. By then I was too wiped out to carve any more stamps.

Monday - Didn't get up as early as I'd hoped thanks to the next-door neighbors blasting hideous Mexican dance club music til rather late (requiring a call to the local police to shut it down) the night before. They apparently had a wedding. In the yard. In the pouring rain. On a Sunday night - who cares if other people work early Monday morning and need to sleep? So..got up, fed the dogs, fed myself, put orders in the mail and rushed to complete one more before the mailman arrived. When the mail did arrive it contained a distressing letter from our mortgage company (the same one dragging this loan modification out for over a year now) requiring a phone call to figure out what the hell was going on. Then came another phone call about the aforementioned family member. Then I realized that some ink I ordered STILL hadn't been shipped - more phone calls to find out what was going on with that. Back to trying to carve. Phone call from someone I'm buying a vacuum cleaner from - they're ready for me to pick it up. So..shower, off to the bank, pick up the vacuum. Once home, I HAVE to try out the vacuum, so I clean the entire couch, blinds in the kitchen, and floors in two rooms. By then Jim gets home, followed shortly by an unexpected drop in by a friend who wants some stamps made. That turned into a visit that lasted an hour or so. Then dinner. Then exhaustion. I think I got maybe 3 stamps carved that day.

Today - up early, off to a good start. Fed dogs, fed self, put orders in mail, got another one carved before the mailman came. Back to carving - and answering a large influx of convos on Etsy (surprise - many of them from people wondering where their stamps are). Then a phone call from my doctor to schedule the surgery to finally fix my broken nose (thanks again, Molly). Then another phone call about The Family Member. Grabbed some lunch. Lucy comes sauntering into the bedroom as I'm eating, with a bunny in her mouth. She plops it down on the floor (instantly attracting the attention of the other 3 dogs of course) and settles in as though she thinks I'm going to just let her eat it there on the carpet. I rush over and get her away from it - she immediately begins to fight with the nearest dog, who is attempting to sniff the bunny. I grab Lucy's collar, and she slips out of it. A three-dog fight begins, and I have to bodily tackle Lucy to put a stop to it - while using my hula hoop to whack at the other dogs, who are over by the bunny. Meanwhile, the bunny, who looked very dead upon arrival, gets up and starts to toddle across the floor, toward my bed. I quickly muzzle Lucy and grab the rabbit, praying it doesn't bite me and if so, at least isn't rabid. I put the rabbit in the side yard where it recovers with miraculous speed. Now adrenaline is racing through my veins and my hands are shaking. Can't carve. Took a shower. Now the daughter is home from school and is distraught about something. And we need to go to the store.
Hmmm.....I can't understand why I don't get more stamps carved in a day.....
Another of life's great mysteries.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Giveaway Alert!

Sorry I've not been posting regularly - I've been too busy carving! I'm really excited that the shop is so busy, but feeling guilty for making people wait for their stamps. I wish I could carve them faster.
Anyway, I just wanted to share a really nice blog interview by Meg of Paper Jot. Check it out - if you leave a comment, you'll be entered into a drawing for a free stamp! :)
Oh - I've also listed the first in a series of one of a kind sugar skull stamps, as pictured above. I'm testing the waters, if this sells quickly I'll keep releasing them.
Back to our regularly scheduled program...

About Me

Hippieville, CA, United States
This is the story of life after losing the "real" job and the house, trying to find the middle ground between making a living and actually living.