Rest and Recovery

So many artists and crafters forget the world around them when they work.  I’m very guilty of this.  In the past I’ve forgotten to eat, sleep, and to give myself time to rest.  This became a serious problem before I tore the ligament in my wrist.  I would cease my work when my husband came out of the bedroom at 4am and tell me to stop and go to bed.  I fell ill because I would forge to eat.

For three years I couldn’t make jewelry, draw, write, and typing was extremely painful.  I could quilt, but only when wearing a brace.  Our previous home had no air conditioning, and in the winter my sewing room would get so cold I could see my breath.  Those conditions of extreme heat and cold were what limited how much I worked.  Oh, yes, and the pain.

After surgery in 2016 it took months for me to regain full use of my wrist.  Only in the past two months have I started making jewelry again.  It’s wonderful!  I do, however, still have pain my wrist and likely always will.  It only shows up if I overwork it though.  That means frequent breaks throughout the day, as well as taking a three day no-creating period every week.  Work for three days, rest for three days.  I also cease my work at 7pm to allow time for dinner, take my medications, and then prepare for sleep.  I’m usually a sleep before 10pm due to the side effects of my seizure medication.

It’s been wonderful working like a person instead of getting so lost I require my husband to pull me up into reality again.

To my fellow artists, writers, and crafters: set up an alarm system on your phone that will tell you when to stop.  In fact, set up SEVERAL alarms.  Stop at least every four to six hours to eat and take care of yourself.  I know many you are night-owls, but do remember to sleep.  Ironically enough I’m not a night person at all.  I do my best work from 8am to 4pm, and am usually up by 6:30am.  My cats are an excellent alarm clock.  The morning “feed me” combined with a full night’s sleep is a good mix.  It’d be nice to sleep in to 8am sometimes, but alas I’m not tired enough to go back to sleep.

When is your best time to work?  Do you take breaks?  How often do you give yourself time to rest and recover?

P.S. The kitty in the picture is my alarm clock.  Her name is Cacoa (Kay-Koh) and I love her to bits.

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Finished Commissions

Yesterday I finished two commissions and now have those checked off my list.  Yay!

The rainbow choker is for a customer on Simbi and the chakra anklet is for a customer on deviantArt.  The anklet shipped this afternoon.  I’ll ship the choker once I receive payment.

If you’re interested in commissioning me for jewelry now is a great time.  We’re less than three months away from the insanity of the holiday season.  I’ve found it’s much better to get the gift shopping (or making) out of the way early on.  It makes for a far less stressful holiday season.  Then again there are those who enjoy combat shopping…

Through the month of October I’ll have free domestic shipping available in my Etsy shop on orders of $50 or more.  It’s not a difficult number to reach, and you’ll save money with the free shipping.  This deal also applies to commissions!

I don’t offer gift wrapping due to being terrible at it.  My family has made it an annual joke, referring to my gift wrapping skills.  Many years ago when I worked in retail (I can no longer “work” due to being disabled) I worked at a large toy store during the peak of holiday shopping.  My manager put me at the gift wrapping table because apparently it’s a woman’s job.  Not even an hour later they put me back at the register.  Needless to say a few people found it hilarious.

Besides the commissions I’ve also made a few low-budget items.  I can make custom versions of these.  I make them using scraps from larger pieces, and thus end up wasting a lot less material.  If you’re interested head over to my shop.  There’s a button on the left side (you may have to scroll a bit) that says “Request Custom Order”.

Typically I finish these in less than an hour.  These and keychain decorations are often the free gift I include with purchases.  At least, that is if I have any of these little things left of course.

I’ll be taking a break today and will continue making jewelry tomorrow.  I’ve found working on these every other day works best for my wrist.  Plus the cats feel today is a good day for snuggling.  It’s been getting cold here, and we had our first hard frost overnight.  We’re expecting colder temperatures tonight.

 

Yay for items selling!

This week has been eventful, but the good kind.

We got our final payment from our fire claims adjuster.  It’s not nearly enough money to really make a punch in the debt we’ve acquired due to the house fire, but it’s something.  I wish the adjuster hadn’t given us a wildly large number for what we may receive.  That was rather heartbreaking.

But two items selling has improved the mood in our home.

I Dream of Elephants sold earlier this week and has since arrived at its destination.  I await the review on Etsy.

I squealed and did a happy dance when I saw it had been purchased.  My husband thinks it’s rather hilarious that I refer to the sale as an “adoption”.

Dancing in the Moonlight sold yesterday and was shipped off today.

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I don’t know if there enough words to describe how thrilled I was to see this had sold.  It’s so encouraging to see my beautiful creations sell so well and feels like a sort of confirmation that it’s all worth the work.  I hope the buyer loves the choker as much I loved making it.

You can purchase my work from my Etsy shop.  From October 1st to October 31st shipping will be free on orders $50 or more.

We’re extremely tight on money due to the house fire.  We had to seek a new home because the previous one was uninhabitable, and that meant making a safety deposit and paying first month’s rent right away.  We also had to replace all our food as well as several things that were lost in the fire.  The money I make from my sales goes directly to the credit card to help pay it off.

I’m accepting jewelry commissions right now, and have more information here for you to check out regarding them.  Feel free to share this link with others.  I can take up to ten commissions at a time, but expect a bit of a wait if I’m working on more than five at a time.  I can usually finish a piece in one day, but right now I’m working one day on, one day off, etc.  It keeps me from hurting my wrist.

Contact me if you’re serious about commissioning me.

Commission Progress!

It’s so refreshing to have commissions again!  Here’s progress thus far

  1. Rainbow choker with mushroom pendant (from Simbi) – 50%
  2. Owl variegated cobalt hemp simple necklace (from Simbi) – 100% and shipped
  3. Gothic choker (still waiting for info) (from DevArt) – 0%
  4. Chakra wave pattern anklet (from DevArt) – 0%
  5. Sodalite simple necklace (still waiting for info) (from DevArt) – 0%
  6. Amethyst and quartz MedicAlert bracelet (still waiting on plaque) (from Tumblr) – 0%

I’ll be working on these every other day instead of three days on and three days off.

Commissions are still open.

Commission Status

I have several commission lined up!

  1. Rainbow choker with mushroom pendant (from Simbi) – 0%
  2. Owl variegated cobalt hemp simple necklace (from Simbi) – 50%
  3. Gothic choker (still waiting for info) (from DevArt) – 0%
  4. Chakra wave pattern anklet (from DevArt) – 0%
  5. Sodalite simple necklace (still waiting for info) (from DevArt) – 0%
  6. Amethyst and quartz MedicAlert bracelet (still waiting on plaque) (from Tumblr) – 0%

These will take me roughly a week to finish, that’s including my three day break for my wrist to recover.  It may take longer for a few because I’m waiting on information and materials.

If you’re interested in commissioning me just ask.  I have Pay What You Want still active and will continue to have it set as such until further notice.  You give me your budget and I’ll tell you want I can make within that budget.

If you’re serious about commissioning me please contact me.

October Shipping Sale

From October 1st to October 31st I will have free US domestic shipping on all purchases of $50 or more.

This includes commissions!

I won’t be reserving anything for you unless it’s something you commissioned me for.  No lay-away or anything similar.

No coupon code is necessary.  The free shipping discount will be applied when you check-out.

 

House Fire Update

I meant to give y’all an update about this awhile ago, but I’ve been way too stressed out to make any posts regarding it.

We lost more than we thought we did to the fire.  All our food was destroyed, as was our ionizer, tower fan, several kitchen appliances, and various other things.  We spent over $400 replacing all our food and a few appliances.  Some of our furniture was damaged in the move but the movers made the repairs because they caused the damage.  My bicycle’s seat was melted off, the basket destroyed, and the handles are damaged.  Several of my coffee/tea mugs were crushed and broken in the fire.

The housing agency hasn’t sent our adjuster their invoice…and it’s been over a month.  The movers/cleaners sent their yesterday.  Our adjuster rarely answers my calls and never calls me back when I leave a message.  He hasn’t responded to emails either.  I understand he’s incredibly busy right now, but we’re losing our patience and completely broke.

We’ve maxed out the credit card, owe my parents money for helping us, we have bills that need to be paid, etc.  We really need that money.  ASAP.  I hope it’s enough to pay off the credit card.  After we get our money we’re going to the insurance company’s local office and having our policy moved to our new home and increasing the coverage as well.  We’re in fire country and really don’t want to deal with a total loss and not enough money to cover it all.

Needless to say we’re incredibly stressed out and it’s wearing us down.

August 6th I had the worst seizure in over a decade.  It was a tonic-clonic, lasted over a minute, and I wasn’t breathing when it was over.  My husband said my face turned blue and then purple.  Thankfully he has CPR and First Aid training.  He saved my life.  It took almost a month to recover from it.  That very day I had seen the neurologist and had my medication dosage raised 50mg.  I took the medicine right after recovering enough to swallow my pills.  I had been in survival mode since the fire, and on August 6th we finally got into our new home.  My brain deemed it safe to finally let loose and threw me into a seizure.  I have a very low seizure threshold; it doesn’t take much to set them off.  Our current situation is making it very likely I’ll have another seizure, though hopefully not as severe.  BTW epilepsy is deadly if untreated.  People die because of their seizures.

We’re unable to do our laundry (Thursday is laundry day) because we have no money to spare.  We go to a laundromat because we don’t have a washer or dryer.  My husband is going to work in dirty work clothes.  Thankfully he works in a kitchen, and the smell from his clothes goes largely unnoticed.  He feels very disgusting though, and when he comes home the smell is unbelievable.

I have new items available in my Etsy shop, and I ship worldwide.  Please consider making a purchase.  We need every dollar we can get.