Archive for the ‘Rambling’ Category

A few months ago I shut down my Etsy shop pretty much out of the blue. Truthfully, something came up which required my full attention, so dealing with my shop in addition to that would have caused a lot of stress.

To be honest, I was already feeling that stress before shutting it down. Sometime during the winter season I hit a wall, especially when it came to sales/orders. It got to the point where they were beginning to cause physical anxiety, which is bizarre because that’s never really happened before. I feel bad for even mentioning that. I am, and have always been, incredibly grateful for the interest in my work. ❤

Anyway, having an excuse to close it for a while instead of hemming and hawing and stressing even longer turned out to be a really good thing.

There were a number of different reasons behind the way I was feeling in general – it wasn't just hobby/sales/etc related stuff. I haven't been open about it here, instead trying to keep an upbeat or neutral tone in my posts. (Should I be? Or is it too much? I never know. :/)

Today, I'm still not 100% but I'm much, much better. It's normal for me to go through periods of depression and anxiety. This time was a bit different though. Usually being creative and focusing on my hobbies is a way to cope. It's extremely discouraging when it's contributing to it instead. 😦

Taking a break helped. I got some pieces done that I've been wanting to make, but never had time for. I even managed to take a few days off of work, which hasn't happened in a couple years, and that helped TONS too.
I went to the bison range to look for animals and was not disappointed…

National Bison Range - Bison

National Bison Range - Pronghorn Antelope

National Bison Range - Turtle Rock

National Bison Range - Bison

And I went up to Glacier National Park.

Glacier - Lake McDonald

Glacier - Lake McDonald

I have every intention of going back to both. (is there any interest in those kinds of posts? I know it’s my blog and I can post whatever I want but…?)
It kind of hit me just how fortunate I am to live in such a beautiful place, and I really don’t want to take it for granted. I forgive you, Montana, for the 6 months of winter. Please don’t burn to the ground again this summer, k?

Montana has finally decided that’s it’s Spring/Summer now, so everything is GREEN and it’s WARM and my mood has lifted considerably. Work’s better. I don’t feel quite as sad. I’ve been getting back in church nearly every weekend and that’s helping too.

Soooo… now what?

I’m not DONE with my Etsy shop. I have slowly been working on sales pieces, and managed to complete a batch of western pads which I’ve listed today:

I like making sales pieces, and I think that’s because there’s freedom in making them.

But I have also decided that I won’t be making things to order, or take on any custom orders for the time being. There’s a certain amount of fear behind that, and I am afraid that I’m going to disappoint or let people down. But the very idea of taking on any more is bringing that anxiety up again, and until I get that sorted -if I can get it sorted- I figure it’s best to put orders on the back burner for now. I’ve put a lot of pressure on myself in regards to my shop… and there’s this other fear that if I can’t get x, y & z done by such and such time, or if I can’t dedicate so much time every day to work on stuff that I know people have been waiting for, I’ll be a total FAILURE. I know (I hope?) it’s all a lie but it’s still there bothering me.

I don’t know what I’m trying to say anymore, but for the last few weeks I’ve felt like I needed to say something. Also… if there are any artists/tack-makers/creatives that can relate, please leave a comment… I’ve allowed anonymous comments again. They were closed because of trolls. 😛

It seems like creativity and depression often go hand in hand and I’m not sure why that is. Or maybe I’m just weird, haha.

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We are two weeks into the new year and I’m already struggling with my resolutions. (no surprise there!) I’m also struggling with bad back pain from work. What is with my body lately? I swear something is always hurting enough to cause problems. :/
Sooo I’ve been trying to sort out the cause of that as well as focus on what makes me feel better, like stretching and heat and not standing and… anyway…

As far as hobby stuff goes, it’s been really helpful for me to set small goals to complete by the end of the day. I’ve found that it gives a nice feeling of accomplishment. So even with stupid pain, I’m still getting stuff done, yay!

First, I completed another trio of foal blankets:

These will be going up on my Etsy shop (which is re-open) sometime in the near future, so keep an eye out if you’re interested.

I’ve gotten a few saddle pad orders done, including an updated Hogwarts-inspired one:

I also managed to solve the “I-have-no-room-cause-I-have-too-many-horses” problem, (for the time being) by switching the hobby closet of doom’s shelf with a big plastic one, leaving the small one free for moar ponies.

My goal of making a piece of tack every month isn’t going well at all, but that’s because I can’t decide what to make. I’ve got two and a half weeks left, aghhhh!

But I am working on a few new blog posts, the first of which is very wordy so it’s been taking a while. Also, last month I started putting together a hobby resources page, which I made visible around the new year. I’m still adding to it so if you have any suggestions, feel free to mention them!

I think that’s it. Now I’ll go clear off my desk and try to figure out what tack piece to make. Maybe.

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A brand new year is right around the corner. I don’t know about you, but 2017 went by incredibly fast. It wasn’t a bad year, but I’m finding it hard to look back or reflect on it. Perhaps that means I should just focus on looking ahead?

Every January I like to come up with a list of goals or resolutions to keep throughout the year. Actually keeping them is a different story, but I do try, and that must count for something.

Personal resolutions are well, personal, but hobby goals? Let’s see, what were they last year again…?

Last year I wanted to “strictly limit new herd members” and that turned out to be a spectacular FAIL, especially in the last few months.

“They followed me home – can I keep them??”

Managing my time better and staying on top of bookkeeping was another goal that also didn’t go according to plan. Now I have a big mess to go through before tax season, YAY! Good job, Nichelle.

However, I did make a lot of tack this year, (and made a small dent in my hardware stash!) which is always a hobby goal. A lot of the motivation for that came from participating in NMTM in April, where I put together an in-hand set for my Woodbridge resin.

That led to several bridles and halters in addition to sewn pieces like saddle pads and blankets.

I did manage to keep up with the weekly-ish blogging, put together several tutorials and started a massive barn project.

Stall in progress

So I guess the goals I managed to keep balanced out the ones I didn’t. Maybe?

Now that 2018 is almost here, I’ve been trying to come up with some new ones.

The first is to focus more on my Etsy shop. I’ve been toying with the idea of releasing some patterns + instructions for some pieces I don’t sell often, like saddlebags. Would there be any interest in that?

Another is to try and complete one tack project, like a bridle or saddle or anything involving leather, per month.

Or maybe FINISH THIS THING

And, as always, keep blogging!

What about you? Do you have any goals or hobby resolutions for the new year?

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