I am going to be working at our church's preschool as Dashiell attends. While it would be more fun to drop him off and come home to sew, staying and working is really the most practical decision for our family. I made the same decision five years ago when Annaliese started preschool, too. I enjoy working with the staff and being near my preschooler.
So for the 2012-13 school year I will not accept orders from the public. If a request comes from someone I don't know, my answer will automatically be NO. And I'm going to be limited/choosy about what I do say yes to from my dear friends and past customers. Please feel free to ask, but also don't be offended or surprised if I say no. :)
In conjunction with this I'm also scaling back my online presence. I LOVE the online embroidery community. Even though I'm not active there any longer, I am so grateful for Sew Forum and all the wonderful women that helped me out when I first got started. I was introduced to my favorite digitizers, downloaded lots of free designs to start my stash, received tips and inspiration from so many people... Honestly there are very few original ideas here on my blog. In recent years I've been an active participant in several groups/pages/forums which I have loved. BUT I have to take a break. As I reflect back on my spring/summer I had too much on my plate and wasn't as good of a mommy as I should have been... my mind was always somewhere else. I'm facing the fact that at the moment I have a self-control issue.
A majority of it is because I genuinely enjoy helping others. I can't repay the God-given talents I inherited from my mom, nor the generosity of my mother-in-law, nor all the help/inspiration I received from strangers at the beginning, so I choose to pay it forward. I love sharing tips and promoting the digitizers who make my projects possible.
But if I'm honest with myself... part of it is my pride, too. I like being the one who can identify the unknown font first, or point you to the perfect applique design for your project. I have caught myself telling my kids to wait a second while I look something up to answer a posted question. Or I'll check in via my phone while I'm supposed to be playing superheroes, etc. It finally dawned on me one day, no -- her embroidery project is NOT more important to me than this perceived immediate need of my child. My kids are my priority, not a bunch of women I've never met. Well, DUH! That sounds so obvious when I type it out. But I found it quite easy to slip into volunteer roles (which I really enjoy) that overtake my free time and more.
So I have left all forums and groups except one. I mean, I need at least ONE outlet and connection to the applique world. But I'm setting some boundaries for myself -- I won't be popping in as frequently as before.
I will still be working closely with a few digitizers -- those relationships are SO important to me, and they are my longest-standing commitments. I won't back away from those roles unless I have to pack up my machines for good!
Have no fear, I'm not giving up my blog! I acknowledge that it's been pretty neglected in 2012 and probably will continue to be so for a while... there will be fewer projects to show off! But it has been with me from the beginning. I do still consider it my online scrapbook and I want to continue documenting every project.
Whew, are you still with me? I guess I had a lot to get off my chest. :) Now for my questions!!
800 is the number of the day not only because it's my 800th blog post, but because very recently I also surpassed 800 fans on my Facebook page. That is crazy to me, as well!
- I want to know who you are! Who is reading my blog? Are you a friend or family member that simply enjoys looking at my projects? Are you a customer that I don't know personally? Are you a gift recipient of an item Stitched by Janay? Are you a fellow embroiderer? Are you a digitizer? If you wouldn't mind, please leave a comment! I get lots of blog hits a day, but not a lot of interaction, so I'm curious who is actually reading.
- How did you find me? Why did you come back? And what do you want to see more of? Just pretty pictures and less words? ;) More tutorials and how-to's? If so, what specifically? I'm making no promises of course, but I'll keep your suggestions in mind.