What are YOU thankful for today? My 5 things of thanks this week

This week whizzed by again, I can’t remember what happened yesterday let alone back to Monday in most cases. Yet, I am thankful for a wide array of topics none-the-less.

I am thankful for:

1. Modern Medicine – as I type, my sister is in surgery. Without modern medicine, there wouldn’t be these kinds of opportunities to fix a body’s aliments. Looking forward to the phone call in a few hours saying all is well.

2. My husband’s talents – Although his specialty is Architecture, he’s got a load of skills and talents and this fabulous ability to apply them in many areas. I boss him around a lot because I hate to see the brilliance put aside for frustration, but deep down, I wish I were half as smart as he is with half the potential he has.

3. My garden time – On Sunday, Mother’s day I dragged the entire family to Home Depot to gather up a few gardening supplies as well as a handful of new perennials for the year. I actually came home and planted everything rather than my typical – leave it on the porch and forget to water it. The rabbit’s haven’t nibbled anything yet!

4. My children learn something every day – dispite the complaints and issues that seem to arise every year with the public school system, I am thankful we have the opportunity to send our children to school. They have teachers that care about them and they learn something every day.. I just wish the kids would tell me what they learned.

5. I’m presenting at Affiliate Summit in New York this August – I just received word late last night that a presentation a group of us submitted has been approved – woot! We will be speaking about “Getting Noticed FAST” on a panel with  Trisha Lyn Fawver, Stephanie Lichtenstein and Michael Buechele. I’m also excited that Lisa Picarille will be our moderator. It’s a fantastic group of people and a really fun topic!

I think today is a good day to treat yourself – I’m sure you’ve earned it!

Strawberry ice cream sundae cartoon by JGoode
Strawberry ice cream sundae cartoon by JGoode

What are YOU thankful for today?

What are you thankful for today?

Coming to the end of a week that seriously flew by – I’m not even finished thinking of what I needed to do this week and now it’s Friday. The weather was great for a few days and today, once again, its cold and foggy… I miss the sun already!

Rainy Day Penguin by JGoode

However, there’s always plenty to be thankful for – even in the midst of the drizzle.

1. Chatted with a friend I rarely see. I don’t often catch up with friends face to face. I tend to hide out at home working and keeping busy. This week I had the opportunity to sit and chat with a friend mid-week that I haven’t talked with in quite a while. Our kids get along great.. so play time for them was super fun too.

2. Had some good talk time with my husband. The schedule this time of year gets so crazy for our family – we don’t often have a chance to catch up with each other. We had some good brainstorming talks.. figuring out “where to go from here” with all the economic changes and family goals, etc. I think I come across as bossy so much, due to being the family coordinator – it’s nice to have a chance to just share thoughts.

3. My oldest had a super great baseball game last weekend. He was given the opportunity to pitch – after weeks of practicing and hoping for the chance – and he did an outstanding job! The benefit of this, I am seeing, is he’s taking all that positive feedback and put it into his effort and is just doing great all around. It’s neat to watch the attitude change.

4. I’m surrounded by amazing people. I realize every day that I have been so blessed to be surrounded by fabulous people, in every aspect of my life. I don’t know how that happened, but I can’t say thank you enough to the people karama Gods.

5. Shared my thoughts on TheSpew yesterday. I had the opportunity to chat with some brilliant women in the online marketing world yesterday – I was so excited when I was invited to participate in the podcast, and delighted it was a topic I knew something about. Was a great time.

Thank You penguin by JGoode

What are you Thankful for Today?

I am thankful…
the week is over.
I have a network of great people to brainstorm with, even when times get tough.
I’m capable of controlling my own happiness.

Sunset by JGoode

This week has been one of the hardest for me for a long time.
Monday I learned of a business change with my primary product provider that would affect an enormous amount of people, yet these people wouldn’t find out until Wednesday. I’ve been riding an emotional roller-coaster as if I had out of control pregnant hormones. I spent Wednesday around the web, chatting, emailing, twittering…  and on the phone talking with quite a few of these people affected by this – not a one having the ability to say “Hey, this is gonna be great!”.We’ve built businesses based on another company’s business model and they’ve changed the pricing structure. Many are angry – many are leaving – Incomes are dropping by an average of 50% without having formulated a backup plan yet and at a time when so many households have already been dealing with salary cuts and layoffs – it’s very scary.

I’m in this boat with angry, sad, scared and and sometimes just plain numb people.  I’m trying to find the positive, because there always is positive. I am sure I have a paddle, I just need to grab hold of it better. Having surrounded myself a group of level-headed, thought provoking personalities. There are many people in this situation with me that are thinking this through and working on plans – we’re helping each other make it through.

I’ve spent this week arguing with my own “What next” thoughts and every hour is a new set of ideas, questions and inspirations. Ultimately, my decision is to keep moving forward. Take change in as if it were a new found friend and work with it to create something positive come from it. The benefit here is that I have warning the change is coming.pricing doesn’t actually go into effect until June 1 and my income won’t see the change until after that.

I’m thankful I still have my skills. I’m thankful I still have control of my own business. I may not be in control of the pricing I receive for the products I sell and I may not be in control of the availability of production or anything else dealing with tangible goods – but unless I plan on manufacturing every aspect of every product I offer, this kind of control is never entirely mine. I’m glad I’m experiencing this now, rather than aftering having invested thousands of dollars with no networking of “colleagues” in the business.

I will be expanding my business to reach other areas – branch out into new product offerings, and as with any good business model, have better backups for the hiccups that come along with tangible goods.

My thoughts go out to all the wonderful people this change is touching.

Watch for new great things –

What are YOU thankful for today?

If you have been affected by the Cafepress marketplace change, I have an calculator available to help you figure out your income change, so you can plan for the future of your business.

What are you Thankful for Today?

This week went by way too quickly. With the weather changing drastically from snow to tshirt weather within days or even hours, it was hard to keep up with what day it was. Until today I was pretty sure it was Wednesday… all week.

Five things I am thankful for today

I have friends that care even when I don’t take as much time as I should. Life gets busy and I don’t always stop to let people know I am thinking about them, but I have friends who understand. Between us we take turns touching base with each other.

Tomorrow is always another day with more hours, more time to get things done and more opportunities to do what it was I wanted to do today.

My oldest son made the right decision without any prodding or bribing or threatening from me. It’s so rewarding to go through years of “teaching”, hoping they get it right, and then finally they do; All on their own.

I made a new series of jewelry pieces featuring my own art. I didn’t have a chance to ask ahead of time – but when I made an unexpected stop to show the retail shop owner I work with, she loved them.

My husband keeps coming back regardless how cranky or bossy or snotty I get. I don’t intend to be this grumpy snitty gal, but I find myself getting more naggy and demanding. He listens and sometimes responds – but most importantly, he keeps coming home at the end of the day. I’m pretty sure it’s not because he loves my cooking.

flower and spider by JGoode

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion.  ~Dalai Lama

What are you thankful for today?

This week has been one of those busy weeks where I’m sure I knocked piles of things off my list, but looking in the rear-view mirror today, I can’t remember what.

Despite the whirlwind of activity, there is so much to be thankful for

snow day

My Top 5 Thanks this week

1. A little extra time with my kids. My oldest was enjoying spring break while my 6 year old’s school was in session. This allowed my oldest to have some “me” time of his own and hang out with mom. We also took a little trip to the Denver Zoo which is always a favorite activity. It’s hard to say if a teenager likes time with mom, but I enjoyed the extra time with him.

2. Nearly finished our taxes. I procrastinated gathering all my business papers, which is regularly our hold up. Yet I was able to whip through it quickly this year – I had saved all online receipts as pdfs in a single folder and all retail paper in a big shoebox, so finding everything was quicker than usual. Next goal is to actually use the Quickbooks software I bought last year.

3. Nothing exploded. I started the grill and cooked small steaks all by myself – no husband supervising nor helping – he wasn’t even home yet AND my picky eater ate it without any threats. I think my long time fear of exploding BBQs is finally being conquered… almost.

4. Enjoyed the flowers for a day. We had enough of a warning that a big snow was coming that I was able to walk around and take a few photos of at all my budding tulips before the weather turned. Now of course there are no flowers to be seen…they’re covered with 6″ of fresh powder.  They’re hardy and they’ll be back in a week or so. Bonus: now the kids have a new bit of entertainment for a few days… oh the magic of snow.

5. Ease of internet chatter. The social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter have opened up easy communication lines that allow more than just marketing chatter or silly small talk. My friend Judi Moore has been able to us all informed on how her husband, Dave is doing. I’m so glad to hear the news – he’s holding strong, and I’m going to stand in line with Judi’s laser focused thinking – happy thoughts and prayers are shared!

flower pot in the snow photo by jgoode

What are YOU thankful for today?

Top 5 Thanks

Every night at dinner we sit around and talk and eat, sometimes argue or even zone out if the TV is on. But no matter what else is happening or what went on with everyone’s day, we all stop for a few moments to ask “what are you thankful for today?”. We take turns asking each other, and as the “rules” state… you can be thankful for anything. often times my 6 year old will be thankful for playing with friends or watching some show or my oldest will be glad he was able to reach a new level on his video game. That’s all ok, you just have to be thankful.

So now what I would like to try to do, starting this week… I’d like to list the top 5 things I am thankful for, for the week. I’d love it if you joined in! The rules are… you can be thankful for anything, you just have to be thankful. That’s it.

photo by JGoode
photo by JGoode

So here’s my first “Top 5 Thanks“…

1. I feel productive. I always judge myself on how much I was able to do with the catch that they don’t count until I have something to show for what I’ve done. This week I was able to accomplish a little more work than usual, many items are things I can look at and say “see, I did that”. I don’t feel like there was anything that I wish I had had more time to do.

2. My husband’s 40th birthday party was a big success. Friends from all different facets of his life came, and a number of people showed up that he hasn’t seen in years. It was a lot of fun watching everyone get together again, celebrating just being together after all this time and different directions.

3. My kids are all healthy and mostly happy; despite the fact they are stuck together more than they’d like, they still get along and love each other… they even act like it from time to time.

4. I am actually reading three different books. Maybe only a page a day from any given book, yet the fact that I have a single tangible book is amazing. Now I have 3 I am interested in and geniunely trying to take the time to stop and read a bit. Being the mom bus and being stuck in the car while waiting for whatever activity to end helps too.

5. Girl power is indeed a reality. I ran into the garage door today – not drastically crashing. The door wasn’t completely open and I didn’t realize it until I had already knocked it off the track, dented it and scratched up the top of my car – plus the little sprayer nozzle for the car back window is now busted off and missing. I thought I’d have to wait for the hubby to get home to fix it, but two neighbor women came over and between the 3 of us we fixed it up all properly like. I’d love to take credit, but really I just helped hold the door still.

Later another friend called to make sure the door was ok — see, I’m glad to have such great girlfriends!

I'm grateful to you that I have this job

I just got hit with a bit whammy WOW moment… I don’t say thank you enough. I don’t think I could possibly say thank you enough, so expect more and hopefully you won’t get tired of my saying it.

My mom just sent me an email with info about gift cards. Many companies are closing their doors entirely or cutting back a great deal due to the economy and lack of shopping these days. I looked through this list and couldn’t help but think… wow, I am so thankful for the support and interest you all have for my work. I am not closing my doors, not only do I still have a job, I still have a business – and it is definitely because YOU are fantastic! Thank you so very much.

I know I’ve said it before, but it really is a magnificent feeling – It’s truly amazing to me that I can spend my day doing what I love… creating. While it also helps to support my family. I feel that although I’d like to continue to grow and expand my designs, this is really what happiness is all about. I think happiness is success.

Back to the idea of the gift cards… Yes, and you can buy gift cards for JGoode Designs, however that isn’t the thought that started this commentary. The following is the WOW moment for today…

Watch those store money cards and gift cards and credit slips!
Stores that informed the Security Exchange of closing plans between
October 2008 and January 2009.

If you have gift cards to any of the following locations, you should consider using them sooner than later so you don’t end up with a useless gift card. (I have not verified all of these locations/infos, so please make sure to confirm yourself).

  • Circuit City stores… most recent (? how many)
  • Ann Taylor- 117 stores nationwide are to be shuttered
  • Lane Bryant,, Fashion Bug ,and Catherine’s to close 150 store nationwide
  • Eddie Bauer to close stores 27 stores and more after January
  • Cache will close all stores
  • Talbots closing down all stores
  • J. Jill closing all stores
  • GAP closing 85 stores
  • Footlocker closing 140 stores more to close after January
  • Wickes Furniture closing down
  • Levitz closing down remaining stores
  • Bombay closing remaining stores
  • Zales closing down 82 stores and 105 after January.
  • Whitehall closing all stores
  • Piercing Pagoda closing all stores
  • Disney closing 98 stores and will close more after January. – Where will Mickey be now?
  • Home Depot closing 15 stores 1 in NJ (New Brunswick)
    Macys to close 9 stores after January
  • Linens and Things closing all stores – maybe they should have approved more affiliate marketer
  • Movie Galley Closing all stores
  • Pacific Sunware closing stores
  • Pep Boys Closing 33 stores
  • Sprint/ Nextel closing 133 stores
  • JC Penney closing a number of stores after January
  • Ethan Allen closing down 12 stores.
  • Wilson Leather closing down all stores – one of my first jobs in high school
  • Sharper Image closing down all stores – this amazes me, where do we do now for our unique gadgets?
  • K B Toys closing 356 stores – WOW what is santa doing for toys this year?
  • Loews to close down some stores – they just built a brand new location down the road this year
  • Dillard’s to close some stores.
  • AOL Money also has additional store closings. Kirkland, Sacs
    Friedman?s Jewelers, Comp USA, Dell, Pier 1

Look at that list… I’m nearly speachless. Not only are the stores closing a sad event, but think of all the jobs that just disappeared because of company preservation. So scary and frustrating and nerve racking. There has got to be something to help turn it all around.

Here’s another thought on the topic – all of these stores closing, I wonder how many considered really pushing for an online market. The process goes like this… close the retail venues to save on overhead then turn to focus on web based sales. Hire a staff to manage the site, the live customer service, shipping, etc. and then spend the marketing dollars on traffic building. How many of the above companies have changed their focus and how many are simply shutting down? I don’t know, I just stopped long enough to ponder it out loud.