So much is happening. In the interest of not spending too much time blogging when I have a lot of work to do, here's a brief rundown. We just got back from our annual camping trip in the Sierras. It was a perfect trip. No time to elaborate now, but it was just perfect.
Meanwhile, back at the homestead, we discovered that Jim's job is being moved even further away - meaning his current commute of an hour each way will become two hours each way. Four hours in traffic, plus eight hours at a job he doesn't like..yeah, not a happy prospect. The other option, which we had a week to decide upon, is a voluntary separation package. Jim can leave the company, it would basically be the same as a layoff. There would be some severence money and six months of benefits. That would give him some time and startup money to start a business of his own. We have an idea of what that's going to be, but I'll hold off on writing about it until (if) it happens. Well...the practical thing to do would be to keep the job with the reliable pay and benefits. Unfortunately, we're human and the prospect of Jim doing that commute - the money spent on gas, the wear on the vehicle, the wear on his SOUL...it just isn't a reasonable option. We can't move closer for various reasons (daughter in school..shared custody with her dad - can't move her away, upside down on our home, no credit with which to purchase or rent a new one...). SO...he's taking the plunge and leaving the company. More on that as it develops.
Meanwhile - a bit of news regarding my rubber stamps. I've had four of my more popular designs reproduced as red rubber. The goal is to eventually convert most of my stamps over to red rubber. I'll be able to ship them as soon as they're ordered and offer them for lower prices. This will save me time and hopefully increase the volume of sales in the shop. It's exciting and I hope it's the begining of a lot of growth for this business. Here's a picture of the first one to be listed!
The peacock plume is probably my most popular stamp - and also one of the most time-consuming to carve. Since it's often used for wedding related projects, the wait time was becoming an issue as well. So now buyers can still have the same hand carved images, but in red rubber form, available immediately! I'm excited. Things are definitely changing, but I think this time it's for the better.