Looking back at 2012

December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!  Tomorrow 2013 will be here.  I can’t believe it’s been a year already.  In January I started working on Jennifer’s Handmade Soap as a full time business.  I’ve worked my tail off this year.  More often than not I worked seven days a week and quite often ten hour plus days.  I’ve loved every moment of it.  I’ve learned a lot this year…from packaging, consignment, wholesale, markets and fairs, materials, and teaching.  I go into the new year with a plan (and a list a mile long) of what to improve upon this year.  These changes will ultimately make less work for me and make me more efficient. (Without affecting the quality of the product I make).

I’ve also been hard at work working on new designs and new fragrances to introduce this year.  The standard classics will all be coming back, but look for some new soaps to come your way in 2013!

Biggest Accomplishment: My webpage!  It took a while to get it all together (and it will be seeing some updates to improve some things), but ultimately it really came out beyond my expectations.

Biggest Lesson Learned: Consignment stores are not all made equal.  My goal was to be in ten stores this year.  Which by May I was well on my way to doing.  I’m now only in three.  I’ve realized that just because you go into a store doesn’t mean it’s going to be a “fit” and it’s okay to part ways when you don’t fit.  I’ve also learned that I want to pursue wholesale next year.  I’ve got a plan to work on that this year!

Fun Memory: Amy’s soap challenges.  I love it when I’m pushed to try something new or stretch my mind creatively.  Her challenges introduced me to landscape soaps which I never thought I’d do, but now love!

Best Moment: All of you!  I’m not really a “people” person (if you ask most of my friends they’ll tell you this), but this year with markets and fairs and facebook I’ve come out of my shell a bit.  It’s been so much fun meeting people and getting to know regulars who come back to see me and restock.  It always brings a smile to my face when I see a familiar face come into my booth or an email address I recognize.  Thank you everyone for helping make my first year successful!  Here’s to a another good year!

Happy New Year!


Favorite Christmas Songs: #1

December 18, 2012

And we’ve made it all the way to my (two) number one favorite Christmas songs!  I hope you’ve enjoyed listening to them with me! And I’ve loved you all sharing your favorites with me!  Without further ado:

Traditional #1: Carol of Bells, David Foster
Of all the versions of this song I’ve heard over the years (and I’ve heard many good ones) this is still by far my most favorite.

Nontraditional #1: Take a Walk Through Bethlehem, Tricia Yearwood
I first heard this song a couple years ago when I borrowed my parents CD of it.  (I “borrowed” many cds that Christmas ha!)  I was looking for some new music to add to my collection.  This song just spoke to me.  It’s everything that Christmas should be about.  I wish this song was played day after day (unlike some of the other Christmas songs they play) on the radio.  This is my favorite Christmas song without a doubt.

Merry Christmas Everyone!  I hope you have a blessed holiday with family and friends.

Favorite Christmas Songs: #2

December 14, 2012

Traditional #2: Christmas in Killarny, Anne Murray
This version is from Bing Crosby.  I like it but I like the Anne Murray version better (I couldn’t find it on YouTube though).  Anne Murray’s version is actually combined with another song too.  I’m Irish and I think this song really pulls the Irish out of me!  Oh my word whenever I hear this song I start singing along at the top of my lungs.  As the Irish say: “If you don’t sing well, sing loud!”

Nontraditional #2: This is Your Gift, John Tesh
Listen and fall in love!  Oh just love this song.

Here we go the last coupon code of the month (next week’s post will be right before Christmas!)  From now through Christmas all winter soaps will be 10% off!  Prices are all marked down.  All you have to do is go add them to your cart!


December 12, 2012

13 more days until Christmas! Crazy!!

Bramble Berry announced the winners of the Givemember month they had in November!  You can check out the winners here: WINNERS

There is still time to place orders (you’ve got about 10 days more).  I’ve been selling out of a lot of the winter soaps!  Cedar & Balsam, Apple Pie, Cranberry Spice and Fresh Snow are all gone!  There are still a lot of great winter soaps available though still.  Check them out HERE.

All orders placed today through Christmas Eve will receive a free sampler pack!  It’ll include a sample sugar scrub, sample foot balm, lip balm and sample soap!!  If you’ve been wanting to try these things out before buying the larger packs now’s a great chance!  Also, I’ve extended free shipping on all order over $40 through the entire month of December!

Favorite Christmas Songs: #3

December 7, 2012

Traditional #3: Emmanuel, Amy Grant
Love her version. Love the song.

(and this version leads right into Little Town so I’ve included the link for it too 😀 because part of why I love this version is the fact that this song is kind of a part of it.)

Nontraditional #3: The Peace Carol, John Denver and the Muppets
Technically this probably doesn’t qualify as nontraditional.  It’s actually sung at my church in the music before mass, but you don’t hear this on the radio nor is it commonly found on other Christmas CDs so I’m considering it nontraditional!  LOVE LOVE LOVE this song and it’s message.

This week’s Deal! Free Lip Balm with every order!  Just tell me what flavor you want (in the comments section when you check out)!  If you don’t care which one and want to be surprised I’ll pick a flavor for you!  Get them now!  This deal goes from December 7 to December 13.

Favorite Christmas Songs: #4

December 1, 2012

Traditional #4: We Three Kings, St. Peter’s Choir
I don’t think I’ve come across a version I don’t like of this song.  Some of my favorites are Michael Smith, Anne Murray, Mannheim Steamroller…too many great versions to pick one from!

I couldn’t find a version from St. Peter’s Choir, but this another really pretty one from the choir of Kings College, Cambridge.

Nontraditional #4: A Soldier’s King, Kenny Rogers

This weeks deal
: Spend $20 or more and get a free bar of soap.  In the comments section leave me a comment with which bar you’d like.  You can chose from ANY soap bar in the store!  This deal is good from December 1 through December 6!