Inspirational Friday

October 19, 2018

Recognition is nice, but don’t just do work just for it.  I’ve learned a few things in life watching award shows, attending award events, seeing people work for a prize: only a few come out with the “trophy”.  Guess what, that doesn’t mean any of the others were undeserving of that same reward.  And guys 99% of the time award giving is so subjective.

As an introvert with very high standards who doesn’t make waves or standout in any way I’ve seen myself passed over time and again for awards, recognition, and what not.  When I was a senior in high school I got really upset when I was over looked for an award.  It was then that I realized I was never going to be the outgoing person who made waves and stood out–like the student who did get the award.  Somewhere between freshman and senior year of college I stopped caring about trying to stand out.

To this day I’ve done everything (starting a business, teaching, taking on projects and other responsibilities, being in charge of projects…) because I wanted to.  Because it’s made me happy.  Because I knew I could make a positive difference.


September 12 in 12

September 30, 2018

September…yup not sure where you went, but here we are already at the end of the month.  This month was CRAZY! I was a soap making robot (so to speak).  I finished ALL my winter soaps and most of my standard restocks.  And then moved on to restocking/stocking up on bath products.  *Trying* to get ahead of things so maybe life isn’t quite as crazy in November ;).

September 2, 2018: Friends ❤

MY friend from Australia flew in Saturday night to visit me for a week (on the first part of her Vacation).  And what do I do? I drag her to a farmers market the next morning and put her to work.  I know, I know ;).

September 5, 2018: Winter Soaps

Winter soaps are WELL underway.  This was a cut of my Santa’s Belt.

And that same day I made mummy soaps for Halloween. 😀

September 7, 2018: Reindeer Poo is back!

I love this soap. It cracks me up and it’s SOOOOO colorful (and we know me and color).  Can I also say this soap is so much work to make!  Oh those embeds!

September 11, 2018: Misspelled words. *arg*

At least I caught it before I labeled all the soaps.  But still!  I’ve never misspelled this word and today I decide to misspell it and not run spellcheck? Oh Jennifer!

September 12, 2018: Foot Scrubs

While making lots and lots of soap I’ve also been stocking up on my bath products.  I was almost out of foot scrubs so that was first up for the day.

September 13, 2018: Lip Scrubs

The next day it was lip scrubs and lip balms.

September 14, 2018: Frosty!

Oh my word I am in love.  These are NOT easy to make (the time it took to make these!!), but they came out so cute.

September 16, 2018: Skates…multiple variations

The prep work…umm yeah they were not easy to cookie cut out.

The first idea didn’t come out as planned. The blue was supposed to be this light ice blue (which I know is super hard to get in soap).

Next to the other soaps they don’t look too bad, but I really wasn’t happy.

Take 2: Ying-Yang Design

September 18, 2018: Frosty Labels

Version A or B? That is the questions. Ha!










September 21, 2018: New Packaging

After having the bubble scoops constantly squished, despite a sign saying don’t squeeze I finally broke down and changed the packaging.

September 22, 2018: Label Redesign

I’ve been slowly working on updating the look of all my labels.  Before I head into a marathon week of bath bomb making next week I updated the labels.

September 30, 2018: The Cure Rack

And here is the cure rack at the end of September.  Pretty much all my soaps for the rest of the year are made. The winter soaps are done.  And most of my standards are restocked.  From here on out it will be mostly making bath products. What soaps I have I have and hopefully it’s enough to get through December! (It should be ;)…I’ve been doing it long enough now I think I’ve got a pretty good handle on it).

Inspirational Friday

September 14, 2018

Make a list of all the things you’ve done that you never thought you “could”.  When you feel down or frustrated or defeated look at that list and let it be your inspiration.  You can do it!

August 12 in 12

August 31, 2018

Sometimes keeping up with everything is a challenge.  August has been crazy busy with events and markets and either insanely hot weather or rain and thunderstorms making it a challenging month.  My rule is to take two weeks off the end of August to 1) give me a break before September comes and show season gives me no breaks and 2) to have some dedicated time in the studio to work on winter soaps and stocking up product.  Somehow this year I manage to cut my time off down to 6 days. *sigh*  I’ve worked in some free days here and there and with a friend visiting I’ll take some time off in September in the middle of one week…but I really need to make sure I give myself time off next year! So, what’s August been like for me?

August 1, 2018: Three Way Funnel Pour

I saw this go around on one of the soap making groups I follow–using a sink strainer to make a funnel pour. I thought it would be fun to try.  It was a fun. It was also a lot of work.  And it also made a mess and a lot of clean up time.  But it’s cool!

August 2, 2018: My new Nephew

Isn’t he just precious?  And BIG! This guy was almost 11 lbs when he was welcomed into this world!

August 3, 2018: Craft Fair Bingo

I saw this and laughed and laughed.  You have to have a sense of humor in this line of business and you have to be able to joke and laugh or the bad days will get to you.  I need to pull this up on those days for a good chuckle.

August 4, 2018: Mermaid Soaps

I feel like I’m constantly making mermaids!  That’s not a bad thing. I’m glad they’ve been so popular.

August 6, 2018: Hand Balms

Restocking on hand balms and waiting for my back ordered tubes to come in so I can make more!

August 8, 2018: Heat. So much heat.

It’s been a HOT August.  Like excessively hot for New England.  We’ve had about 10 days over 90 and many many more in the high 80s.  Then if it wasn’t hot it was raining…like torrential downpours. *sigh*

August 10, 2018: Mermaids (again)

I did mention I’ve been making mermaids like crazy, right? 😉

August 14, 2018: Snowmen

Any guesses how many snow men I have here? So many embeds! Winter soaps are officially underway!

August 15, 2018: Swirl Tops

I can stare this all day long! Isn’t it pretty!

August 16, 2018: Fall Soaps

I was very pleased with myself this year. I got my fall soaps made in July and they are packaged and ready to go out on September 1st!  This doesn’t usually happen ha!

August 20, 2018: Grinch

The first of many many many batches are made! Yip!

August 21, 2018: Winter Soap Labels

I did a redesign of my soap labels this summer, which meant I had to update my winter soap labels (didn’t do them with the initial update).  I really like the redesigned labels.  And it’s one less thing I have to worry about later.


Inspirational Friday

August 17, 2018

As I’m sure most of you know by now I am a writer.  I love to tell stories.  One of the biggest rules we lived by in grad school and critiquing was: cut, cut, cut.  If it doesn’t move the story forward you don’t need it.  I can’t tell you how many times I (figuratively) wept over cut scenes.  It was hard letting go of them, but when I got over the lost I would realize how much better my story flowed.

We can apply the same theory to our business.  How many of us do or offer *too much* …whether it’s types of soap, the number of products, events we’ll participate in…?

I am totally guilty of this.  I’ve gotten better. It took  couple years, but I realized there are products I make that just don’t sell well enough.  Or I was trying to make too many different product type to reach as wide a customer base as I could (which in the long run wasn’t really helping me). One of my 2018 goals was: less is more.  On many fronts I’m working on making “less” actually be “more”.

These words of advice aren’t just for writing!  I ask you this: What is one thing you could remove or not do from your business?  Now try it!  See what happens.  Are sales negatively (or positively) affect?  Do you have more (save) time?  Could you reduce your expenses?  Try it.  See what happens.

July 12 in 12

July 31, 2018

I’m exhausted. July has been busy. There was soap (lots and lots of making of soap).  Had to get the fall scents made so they’d be ready for September.  Then there was two trips to Philly. One to meet my new nephew.  He’s the cutest!  Came into this world on July 4th (four days late)!  The kid wanted a special birthday. The second trip was for his baptism. Then there were cape shows, Boston shows, and my usual farmers markets.  Then there was life.  And let me tell you life is challenging me at the moment. I can’t wait until the end of August comes and I get a little vacation…or at least a break from everything. I need some time to recharge!  Anyway, without further ado here’s a peak into my July.

July 1, 2018: Reverse Impressions

I haven’t done a reverse imprint in ages!  Thought I’d add squiggly lines to the top of this Seaweed Soap batch.

July 2, 2018: Record Keeping

I’ve reached a point where I think I can start drawing conclusion on my testing.  I’m going to keep recording until at least week 18 (which will be three months), but I’ve definitely gathered enough information at this point to finish writing my research paper.

July 11, 2018: Falmouth, MA

This was my second cape show of the month.  It’s one of the few shows where I get some help as my mom comes down with me.  It’s SOOO nice having help unloading and loading and being able to take a bathroom break ha!

July 12, 2018: Mermaid Soaps

They’ve been popular, so popular that I’ve been busy making more batches.

July 16, 2018: Mica Swirls

I got to the end of June and thought I’m doing good…I’m pretty caught up. And then the beginning of July happened and suddenly I was like I have a million soaps to make and I HAVE to start on my fall soaps!  Between restocks and fall soaps by the time I reached the end of the month I’d made over 230 lbs of soap!

July 17, 2018: Embeds

I tried to purposely avoid embeds in my fall soaps since I used so many in my summer designs and they take so much more time to make, but I couldn’t avoid them completely! 🙂

July 18, 2018: Mermaid Tails

I ran out of mermaid tails and had to stop making my mermaid bars.  Made about 80 tails today! Now I can get back to making more bars.

July 20, 2018: French Vanilla

I know this soap is going to discolor to a dark brown.  Already you can see the vanilla changing the white to yellow. I think as the vanilla does its work and the soap gets darker it will be a striking contrast between the white and brown.

July 21, 2018: Pumpkins Galore!

Now that the pumpkins are made I can make my pumpkin patch soap!

July 24, 2018: Soap Challenge

I put forth the challenge to my fellow New England Soap makers (in our local chapter) to make a soap this month that was inspired from one of their favorite movies/TV shows/ or books. I tried to create a soap that represented the TV show Haven. It didn’t go as planned, but I still think the soap is cute and it was a fun challenge!

July 26, 2018: Fall Soaps

The fall soaps are almost done. I have three more batches to make and then that’s a wrap. I’ll give myself a couple weeks break (and catch up on some bath products and other things) and then I start on the winter soaps!


July 28, 2018: Dry Rack

There are a couple more batches to cut still that will get added to this, but here’s my dry rack at the end of July.  Standards are restocked. Fall soaps are made. There’s a lot of soap there.  And the winter soaps will be joining them soon!


Inspirational Friday

July 20, 2018

A little different from my standard Inspirational Fridays.  I hope all of you have a best friend or two out there who you can share this sentiment with!  It’s important to have friends that make you laugh, smile, encourage you, and are always there for you.  I’m thankful for the friends in my life.  You all make it special!