I know it might sound crazy, but on my way home from the Salute to the Arts Day yesterday afternoon, it occurred to me that beading for a living is hard work. Now, don't get me wrong - I almost feel guilty when I need to make time in my schedule to sit down and work on a beading project, mainly because I love beading so much and I find it so relaxing (most of the time) that it just doesn't feel like "work".
But after the beading is finished, there are other things that need to be done...
Photographs need to be taken, uploaded to the computer, cropped and adjustments for light and color levels need to be done. If the piece is for sale, I need to list it on Etsy. If it's a project or tutorial for About.com, then I need to include that on my work list for the week. If it's for a magazine or pattern that I intend to teach or sell, there are directions that need to be written and diagrams drawn.
There are the shows and markets where I sell my work. That's a lot of physical activity - hauling around a 65 pound tent and setting up and breaking down all require a lot of energy. If I'm lucky and it's a busy day, I will be on my feet most of the day talking to customers and handling transactions. Then when I get home, there's the time it takes to process the credit card payments and preparing the bank deposits. There are taxes to be filed and paid. Inventory needs to be taken periodically so that I don't run out of important things like business cards, boxes and bags. (And beads, of course!)
Back in 2008, I had a great re-design done of my website, a beautiful portfolio created and new business cards done by Stellar Marketing Solutions. But since I've sort of changed my focus from the glass work and the beadwork to just the beadwork, I think a new set of designs should be done this winter. Since I can't afford to hire the wonderful folks at Stellar Marketing again (it was part of a business mentoring program that I am involved in), I'll be doing that this winter as well.
So there's a lot more to it than just sitting around making pretty things all day. Of course, in between everything else, there are diapers to change, dishes to wash and laundry to be done. And with Colden running around, some days, things just get put off until we can't put them off any longer. (Like getting and installing a new dishwasher.)
That said, I wouldn't trade this job for anything in the world. I love being able to stay home with Colden, even if my days are a little more stressful than they used to be, and I love what I'm doing now to earn my income. I wouldn't change it a bit!