Saturday, January 29, 2011

Etsy, Starbucks, and a Shiny New Job!

Well. It's been an unexpectedly interesting few days around here. I interviewed, got, and negotiated a higher pay for a new part-time job and gave my two-weeks notice at Starbucks in the last 48 hours. It's a perfect job for me right now: double the pay, 20 hours a week, flexible scheduling, and weekends, holidays, and summers off.  Plus, it's at a high school, so it lines up nicely with my experience thus far.

I'm sad to leave my fun coworkers and endless supply of delicious beverages, but I am excited for this new adventure! It's really an amazing find - in my 'field,' fits around my schedule, and only 20 hours a week. I'll still have time to pursue my creative endeavors - which are keeping me fairly busy right now. I'm designing four blogs, two wedding invitations, two custom greeting card orders, and have booked my first photography gig, a trash the dress session! I'm so, so excited, you guys.

Since I had a little job update, I figured I'd answer some of the job-related questions I got from this post.
I want to know more about your Starbucks job and how you like working and being a full time mommy too. I bring my 3 month old to work with me so most days I think I have the best of both worlds but some days are harder than others.
Starbucks isn't a bad job for a mom, since I can plan my schedule around Mike's availability - which makes child care an non-issue. I have a lot to say about the job itself - the good, bad, and the ridiculous. That will be a post on its own. Bottom line: It's a fun job and involves a lot of caffeine. But also, some demanding customers. Being a part-time working mom is a great balance for me. I have something to do and contribute to outside of motherhood, but still spend most of my time with Gabe. I absolutely love it.
tell the truth: with all the talk about budgets and frugal living and working for little pay at starbucks, i'd be curious to know if you guys are getting financial help from your parents.
At first, I was quite offended by this question. Mike and I worked so hard to save money last year, and make a lot of sacrifices to be able to work less now that we have Gabe. I don't just talk about living simply on my blog because it upholds some sort of image I want to project. Living simply is far from glamourous, actually. It involves more cooking and less eating out; more staying home and less meeting friends for dinner. We have one car. We don't have cable. Or even Netflix (except this free trial. Woo!) We don't have smartphones. We can't purchase many non-essential items at Target anymore. We can't buy Gabe every cute toy and outfit we'd like. We end up eating beans and rice at the end of the month.

I don't say all of this because I want sympathy or to feel proud of what we've given up. It's just that I'd hate for anyone to get the impression that I'm touting living with less as some sort of fun and exciting fad. Though, for all that we can't do, there is so much that we can. And that is why, for us, we'd rather work less and live more.

We haven't asked for any help from our parents at all, to answer your question. Though, we certainly wouldn't be in this position without our parents' generosity - we both were able to go to college with help from our parents, and my parents provide our (free!) childcare when we need it. Not to mention the wonderful gifts we recieved from them this year. We are blessed with wonderful parents, but parents who know that we are responsible with money and are financially independent adults.
For how long do you plan to work at Starbucks - a year, two years, three years?
I had no plan, which tends to be the way I navigate my life. When I first took the job, I wasn't sure if I'd be there for a month or several years - my career has been fluid and changing as opportunities come along. I wasn't looking for another job, but something came along!
Do you make enough money doing etsy transactions to make it worth your while? I'm a mom of two (the youngest is exactly Gabe's age I think!) and am thinking of starting an etsy shop. I knit and craft banners and things but am wondering if it's realistic
A great question! I opened my Etsy shop since November of 2008, and it's been such a joy to create for it. I've enjoyed a fairly steady stream of business, but it's definitely on a small scale and I probably am guilty of underpricing my goods. For me, I enjoy it enough to keep it open, despite the fact that I don't earn a viable income from it. I love how I can explore my ideas and create new products to sell, especially because most of the products I designed. (Like my thank you cards, hobo bag, makeup pouches, coffee sleeves, and coasters - they were all created because I wanted them for myself!) I've mentioned before that I'm always busy with a million different creative pursuits, so my little shop might be abandoned some day in favor of more time to photograph or design, but for now? I'll happily sew and make jewelry for my little audience. (If you want to discuss exact numbers, I'd be happy to talk to you via email! Etsy also has lots of great resources for getting started. Go for it!) 
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