Saturday, August 11, 2012

Identifying the source of busy

Have you been watching any of the Olympics lately? I have it on the TV all the time and run out into the living room throughout the day to watch items of interest. My favorite parts so far have been the Individual Dressage Finals and all of the races run by Oscar Pistorius (You've heard about him, right? What an inspiration!).

Other than a few bits of calm while I watch the Olympics, it has been crazy busy around here and I have been running in circles as usual. The other day I was thinking about how busy things have been, despite having my awesome babysitter here 20 hours a week to help me with Lachlan and with packaging things. And then my mother-in-law and two nieces were here for a bit and helped out, and now my mom is here and working at a feverish pace to help me. But I'm still super busy with Paper and Present and I feel like not only am I not getting ahead, I am slipping further behind, especially with my plans for my other shops.

So the other day I looked at the shop stats in Etsy for Paper and Present. It's a fairly new feature that lets you look at your orders, revenue, shop views, etc. over specific periods of time. When I looked at the number of orders for this year alone, I almost fell off my chair. This one simple chart explains everything:

From January through April I was holding steady at about 100 orders per month. Most of them were on the small side, just a few items. In May, it went to 173 orders, and I started getting orders with many items. In June it went to 214 orders, and in July I hit a record of 290 orders! And I am already working at a pace this month that will make August even busier. In fact, I just got an order from one woman in London who ordered an overwhelming 63 items!

I have had some level of anxiety over how I will manage this pace mostly by myself once my babysitter starts school again on August 20. And when I think about what will happen in October and November with the holiday rush, I want to curl up in the fetal position in a dark room! So I continue to work as fast as I can to pre-package as much stuff for Christmas as possible and just take one order at at time. And as I work I think in the back of my brain about what to do next, and whether I need to hire an official assistant.

As I work through all of this, I will probably be here a bit less often than usual, which I realize hasn't been very often lately... But if you can hang in here with me for a bit, and check in on occasion to say hi, it would make my day! And when it comes time for the holidays, I promise it will be worth your time to stop in and see what's going on around here. :)


  1. Wow! I'm here! Something wonderful happened tonight and my computer is letting me leave a comment ... for the first time in months. Yipee! That graph is insane! How are you doing this with an 18 month old??? (Even if you do have a part-time babysitter.) Most Moms would have a tough enough time just trying to keep up with the kid and keep the household chores (barely) done. You are amaaaaaaazing!

  2. Wow, look at that graph! You've found a niche that needed filling; how exciting! Yep, you'll be needing a full-time assistant - just wish I lived closer. :)

  3. Aloha, Roz!! It is insane! The way I do it with a little one is to work like a maniac during naps and bedtime. And about the household chores... Uh.... Um... ;)

    Ann, I wish you lived closer, too! Especially because it would mean I'd finally have no excuse not to try quilling! :)

  4. Great Guns! Can you get a high school student or two to help volunteer??


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