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Change is in the Air

Don't you just love January? Of course, living in Florida, as I do, has something to do with it. Yes, the weather is ideal most days but what I like about January is the newness, if that's a word. Anything seems possible. I've never been one to make resolutions, however, I do like to make changes. But you knew that didn't you? I always like to say, everything is subject to change, except my marriage! Speaking of marriages, oftentimes I don't recognize how special our relationship is until I hear tales of other marriages. Whew! There are some mighty unhappy married folks out there. I'm ever so grateful I'm not one of them.

So what am I changing now? Lots.
  • First, my hair. I've had my hair highlighted since I was about seventeen and it's time for a change. What's wrong with brown anyway? Furthermore, I'm going to do my best to let my bangs grow out. That's another thing I've done for most of my life, starting with the time in elementary school when my friend cut my bangs with fingernail scissors. Can you imagine? My mother would never let me have them, saying my forehead was too narrow. When I think about it, I've no clue how I had the nerve to defy her wishes! Bring on the headbands!
  •  I've bought an electric kettle. One of the most fascinating things about Tom was his approach to the kitchen, or more specifically, food preparation. Very scientific. The error of my ways was gently pointed out--making a proper cup of tea requires an electric kettle. Yesterday morning I did a little experiment, filling both the kettle, and my regular stove kettle, with enough water to make a cup of tea. Kettle won hands down. Nancy will recognize my little spoon rest from one of the cool little shops in DeLand.
  •  One of the biggest changes I am making is my prints. Monday I spent more than three hours at Rogers house figuring it all out. I am going to regular mats with lustre paper. There, I've said it. The time just seemed right to step things up a bit, although, with my decreased sales last year, I'm not sure where I got the idea to spend more on my product, but hey, you only live once! He made two images with both the matte paper and lustre for comparison. Both Bruce and Angela voted for lustre after inspecting them. What did I think? It's a go! As such, I had a BOGO sale last week, and will do so again this Sunday, to clear out as much inventory as possible. The remaining prints will be donated to Habitat for Humanity, or friends if they'd like them. Lisa and Nancy got their share on Sunday.
  • While at Hobby Lobby on my birthday we finally found some new baskets that match my tablecloth. No small feat I'll tell you. Looking for months, I'd never found four baskets that matched before so when we saw these we didn't hesitate.
  • My prices. For nearly three years I've kept my prices the same, however, with the changes I'm making, I am raising them slightly to help cover my costs. We'll see how that affects my sales. Last year I sold nearly $7,000 less than the previous year. Pretty significant wouldn't you say? January makes me hopeful that this year I'll see an improvement.
  • One thing about selling at the same location is that keeping things fresh definitely helps keep people looking. As such, I'm having Roger make lots of new images, keeping only the perennial favorites. It's not like I don't have others to try! One thing I've learned is that you never really know what will capture people's attention; almost all of my big sellers are surprises to me. Maybe this new batch will have a few, however, that remains to be seen.
That's my list so far. Subject to change...

I've got a great link for you courtesy of Matt:
Estate LivingSeeing those faces and reading their stories was wonderful. I was fascinated that the interviewer asked them their original hair color. Plus, I liked how they gazed at the camera rather than smiled. Most of us don't spend our days smiling so they felt more natural. You probably already know that the introduction of the Brownie camera was the dawn of forced smiles in photographs. I like to smile as much as the next person, just not so much on cue!

Bruce spent much of the holidays working from home, but he's on the road again now. I stayed up WAY too late finishing this novel, Father of the Rain
It was one of those novels that are compelling while reading, but upon completion, makes you wonder why you bothered.

If you've ever wondered if you should spring for Amazon gift wrapping, here's what it looks like:
While reading the card I wasn't sure if it was my quilting book or not, but it was. Speaking of Jonathan, he still has no job, but he has been through two interviews at the Apple store. Waiting for a call now. It's a start!

Finally, here's a little cutie for you:

While shopping I can never resist cute little things like this to photograph. Thunder and lightening woke me several times during the night with the rain continuing this morning. Guess that means I'll be staying in to finish my year end bookkeeping, a dreaded task if ever there was one.

P.S. Forgive me for the excessive use of exclamation points please.

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