February 25, 2011

Married + Owning a Business = ?

Okay, no more waxing poetic.  What is going on with me this week?  Well last Friday Jess was laid off - again.  We have gone through this song and dance at least a 1/2 dozen times over the last 4 years.  It's getting old. 

The first time it was scary and Jess found a new job within days.  Relief.  But after the 3rd time he found himself unemployed due to cut backs in his field, cheaper labor available and companies no longer hiring employees but rather contract labor, we decided to try having Jess work for me.  And it did work for a time.  But after a few months I asked Jess to go find work again, it was too stressful for me to carry the whole load and quite frankly back then my business wasn't what it is today.   
But this time it is different.  It's no longer scary to face unemployment.  Our faith allows us to trust that we are provided for no matter what the circumstances.  My business is in a different place and I have been out-earning Jess for the last year.  None of his jobs have offered health insurance, so no loss there.

More importantly this lay-off has given us time to pause.  You see Jess is an artist.  Like a super-way-more-talented-than-me kind of artist.  And I have let him slink away from his dreams of living a creative life.  Instead of helping him face his fears about selling his work I have relied on the false security of his day job. 

It's time to make our way together as artists.  Jess will be helping me a few days a week with getting orders out the door and working on some administrative stuff that will free up some of my time.  But a few times a week Jess will be working on his own projects.  We are still trying to decide if I will sell them in my Etsy shop or if we will keep his shop.  Or we may decide to start a new shop.  Lots of things to work through over the next few weeks. 

I can tell you though, it's already like a heavy weight has been lifted off our necks.   We are facing each day light-hearted, working happily side by side.  I'm looking forward to seeing Jess make his way as an artist, getting back in touch with his most authentic self.  It's exciting times, I will tell you that!

We've claimed Friday as a play day in the studio.  Today Jess has been making these teeny-tiny charms.  Next up we will paint them.  They are so sweet!

Wish us luck, keep us in our prayers and look forward to getting to know Jess more as he dips his toe in the world of online social media.  He's such a charming and clever guy - I know you are just going to love him and his creations!

31 comments:

cjvierow said...

Heather--will keep you in my prayers. Would love to live in San Antonio! Cornerstone Church is there with Pastor John Hagee, a church we've been able to visit in person a couple of times and watch every Sunday over the internet.

Question for you--do you make little hedgehog beads any more? My sis loves them.

Thanks, CJ

Jenni C said...

Good luck with your new venture together.
Jess, I can already see you have a load of talent there.
It will be a wonderful opportunity to work side by side in a creative environment.You are very lucky to be able to do this.
Jenni

Courtney said...

So exciting! I am very excited for both of you. Congrats.

Krys Mann said...

Wonderful for both of you! And now you are putting your whole hearts into his creativity the sky is the limit! You'll be amazed and he'll grow so much being able to feed that creative spirit! Congratulations!!!

Alice said...

Lucky you to be working alongside your hubby, bouncing ideas with each other, being supportive in each other's work, and serving as one more source of inspiration.

I'm so sorry Jess was laid off, but when one door closes.....

Looking forward to seeing the results of your journey in this creative partnership.

sandi m said...

I wish you and Jess lots of good fortune in your new creative venture together. Who knows where this will take you...maybe that dream you wrote about the other day.

TesoriTrovati said...

That photo of you two makes my heart melt. One day I will meet you Jess! I just know it!
I am so SO excited for this new journey together. I can tell that you are both in the right place and heading in the right direction. This is that door that is opening for you both. I am super excited to see what Jess is creating. I just know I am going to want some of whatever it is! Count me in your corner should you need it. SO happy for you! You will do it!

Enjoy the day!
Erin xox

somethingunique said...

what a positive attitude,good things will come your way, i'm new to your blog what does your Jess create? All the best to your family.:)

peacockfairy said...

Looking forward to hearing about this new chapter in your lives! Wishing you all the best!

Malin de Koning said...

Your blog has been given the Awesome Blog Award!

Read about it here:
http://beadingbymalindekoning.blogspot.com/2011/02/awesome-blog-award.html

lisbonlioness said...

This sounds very exciting. And if he is any more talented than you, he must be some sort of one- off genius, because you are pretty much the most awesome(st!) gal I can imagine!
I know how hard it can be to be the provider on a low and unsteady wage. My man is quite the artist himself, but due to sickness, he genuinely can't put himself out there. It's the worlds' loss, I tell you.
It is wonderful to see such a lovely couple venturing out there, taking on the world one bite at a time.
Soldier on!

KJ said...

Life changes are exciting and stressful but best when seen as an opportunity for growth. I hope your journey is smooth and you find balance in all you do. It seems to me you are starting with the right attitude.

Best of luck to both of you.

Janet said...

When I looked at yalls pic I right away saw Love! How lovely to be so happy with your Soul mate Heather. Youve done so very well I am sure with your business Bless you and I wish you all the very best for a bright sunny future. And may Jess' art dance and explode.
Jan xx

Mellisa said...

Very cool that you are in a position to take this on together! I wish all the best of success with your work partnership (the other partnership aspect is clearly working) :)

Evie's Tool Emporium said...

So many, many rewards when you take risks! Stay focused on your dreams!
Michelle-

sundownbeaddesigns said...

Best wishes to you and Jess! It's so nice that you have the opportunity to work together.

Kate said...

I'll be praying for you guys as I know it's an uncertain time but am glad you are able to use this as an opportunity to get together and as artists...so for that I I applaud your attitude and courage! I'll be following along as you update us on your journey :)

Claire Maunsell said...

You suddenly look so happy that you look like a different person (not that I've seen many photos of you, but still...) so this is wonderful news and it shows! Have fun, enjoy each other, make (more) wonderful work, see the kids, eat meals togther - and so on, but make more and more wonderful stuff! Bon chance!

sasha and max said...

I sense that a life time commitment to each other is also going to bring a fabulous creative collaboration - good on you both for taking this step and may it bring much happiness - sounds like Jess will be much happier having some creative time too instead of worrying about lay offs. Congrats and best wishes! Vicki

indigo heart said...

this is sooo awesome! exciting, scary, and wonderful. congratulations and good luck to you both.

Erin said...

Heather, I wish you and Jess the best of luck with everything! It sounds like you are in a good place and everything will work out for the best! So excited for you on this new turn in your lives! I so looking forward to your book and now with Jess around more, you will have the time to make the most of it when it's released!

I'm sorry I've been a little out-of-touch lately. Working hard on our book. I've never worked so hard on anything in my entire life! But, I know you know all about that, now don't you. :)

Bits of Fiber said...

I figure things happen for a reason. It sounds like the hard way by being laid off 4 times but go with the flow and what feels right. You might face some hard times but as long as you're happy doing what you do that's what matters the most and in the end you guys will be happy with your decision. Cheers!

flyingbeader said...

Oh Heather, I'm so sorry to hear about your husband. We've been in the same boat for going on 6 years when my husband lost his job to outsourcing. He too I think is more talented in the arts than I, but he's too shy to display his work. I've signed him up to be a vendor at a upcoming show here in town.

It is hard to work with your loved one especially when he makes comments about what I think a piece should look like...alas he's usually right. Good luck though & play play play

Lupe Meter said...

So sorry to hear about your hubby not being able to find work. I believe the Lord opens and closes doors for a reason. I will certainly keep you both in my prayers. Much success! I love those little charms...can't wait to see them painted!

Georgene Lockwood said...

This is so exciting! It truly sounds like an opportunity and that you and Jess recognize it for what it is.
My husband and I both make our living doing the creative things we love. We are not solely dependent on our work for all our expenses, but it provides an important part of our income. He is a successful leather artist and I'm a published author who is just now moving into jewelry design as an adjunct to my writing. Our studios are next to each other and although our businesses are totally separate, we help each other and feed each others creativity all the time. I think you'll be very happy with the new path you've chosen!

Heather Powers said...

Thank you for the bottom of my heart. Each message has been a point of light in this journey. Jess and I read them together last night and we are both so thankful for the kind words and well wishes.

Send hugs and good thoughts to each and every one of you!

Heather Powers said...

CJ - you can find the baby hedgies here: http://humblebeads.com/baby_hedgies.html

Genea said...

Heather, I am so excited to hear about Jess joining you in creating his art for his job! So exciting for you both! I look forward to seeing what he creates.

If you have not already read
"The Alchemist" bay Paulo Coelho, I believe now is the perfect time! It's such an uplifting book! It really changed our lives! http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_1_29?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=the+alchemist+by+paulo+coelho&sprefix=the+alchemist+by+paulo+coelho

Keeping you both in our thoughts and prayers!

Much love to you both!

Genea

Jenny said...

You know what they say..."do what you love and the money will follow." Look at it this way: if Jess tries making his living with his art, and later decides to get a "paying job", he'll go back to work knowing that for whatever reason, it's not in the cards for him to be a professional artist. Facing the ol' grind will be much easier. He may also find out he wants to work for money, and have art as a refuge. Or he may realize he was meant to make art all along, and wonder what took him so long to figure that out! There are important questions here, and there's only one way to get meaningful answers for them. Sounds like he's on the right road. When people are at the end of their lives looking back, they more often regret what they didn't do, than what they did. Here's to adventure!

Katie (thebearwoman2004@yahoo.com) said...

I don't have a blog but on my "beading table" I have loads of beads (of course) but the actual "table" is an old desk from an attorney's office. The beads and mail are interwoven on top of it along with the computer monitor and keyboard. I usually have one cat and one weenie dog on my lap so when I have to move to get more supplies, I have to also move the cat and the weenie dog. They mutter at me, crabbing about being disturbed. When I sit down again, back into my lap they jump! As a crafter and beader, I don't believe anything on the beading table is crazy - I also eat there and just put the plate on top of whatever is being worked on at the time.

Cherrie Fick of La Lumie're said...

Heather, I read your story and I can identify. After 32 years we lost our family business in this economy. That was 2 years ago and after much pain and our faith being tested we have come to the other side and I am growing my business, and got my first piece published and more to come. Many artists in this industry have been so encouraging and my husband is starting a fine art photography business. He was a photographer years ago and we feel the Lord has brought us to this and though it is a struggle to keep it all together we feel we are being lead to great things. Best of luck to you and Jesse. Faith is a wonderful thing.