Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Mrs.EagerHands on Etsying & Mothering

"Having a side business at home is not worth it if I neglect my little ones." --Lora, of EagerHands

How do you juggle family & Etsy?
I've got to be honest - it's a challenge! Day by day, I am easing into more of a routine with all that I have to do - from taking care of the children, being a happy and attentive wife to my husband, keeping the house clean, cooking meals, doing laundry, and all my Etsy shop work (ie. shopping, washing fabric, cutting fabric, photographing items, listing items on shop, networking, ironing/packing orders, and shipping). It's a lot of work! I try to keep it all balanced. Having a side business at home is not worth it if I neglect my little ones.

My family has to be my first priority! I try to work on my shop while my kids are napping or asleep at night. If they are playing happily in the kitchen, I can use that time to iron fabric and pack up orders. My "studio" is in my dining room in the center of the house so I can cut fabric, take pictures, or sew while my kids are playing and still be with them. I try to take little breaks and not work for super-long stretches at a time, too. That helps all of us to not get too overwhelmed.

What do your kids think about Etsy?
They don't really know about Etsy. They just know that mommy is "working on her fabric" so that we can have money to buy the things we need. My kiddos are all so young - they haven't totally figured it out. They appreciate what I do when I take them to the thrift store with me and they get to pick out a book or video, though! They are also excited when I make a sale - I've got my own cheering section. It's so sweet.

To what extent do you rely upon the TV to keep the kiddos occupied while you work on Etsy?
This is another area that I am growing in as a mom. We don't have TV, but it's so tempting to put in video after video and let that "babysit" my children while I do other things. I confess that there have been days where this has been the case. I am trying to make more of an effort to use videos/dvds only in situations when it's the absolute last resort. They can be really helpful, though, during the time when I am cooking dinner, or when I have to pack up that last minute order before the mail comes. I really try to do my work while the children are sleeping or happily playing and don't need my help. My two older boys really love to play together and build train tracks, towers, etc., so that works out great when I have to get some work done while the two younger ones are having their morning nap.

What is your favorite family fun activity?
We love to go to this Latin-American mall up the road and eat some amazing authentic Mexican food and listen to the live bands that play incredible music. This place also has a gigantic play area and fun arcade, too. It's a great afternoon for all six of us when we go.

If money were no object, what Etsy item would you buy for your children?
I think my kids would love this play kitchen from Imagine That Wood Shop and would have so much fun playing together with this.

Thank you again, Lora, for a refreshing look at running an Etsy business from home with little ones underfoot. Your answers are inspiring, which is exactly why I started this blog, because I know there are so many lovely Etsy moms out there with so much experience to offer that we can all learn from. I love how you mentioned being a happy wife. Some days it can be such a challenge not to be a grumpy wife! I look forward to the next section of our interview where we cover some of your oganizational tips.

1 comment:

  1. you young moms are so encouraging as I read these interviews... great job!