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Sunday, July 26, 2009

BIG NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, I finally have a date set for the relaunch of Gifts, Etc. On August 1, I will reopen my shop with a ton of new cards, gift tags, and more goodies!! To celebrate the reopening, I will be having a week-long sale! Also, each day I will be having a fun giveaway!! More details about the sale and giveaway will be available closer to Saturday. Be sure to add me on Twitter for even more savings next week!!

http://Twitter.com/ellaofthecinder

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

My son...a dancing fool!!

This past weekend, my cousin, Gabe, (finally!) married his girlfriend of 5 years, Jenn. It was such a beautiful wedding, it was outside and the weather was perfect. The reception hall was amazing and the food was delicious! It was also my 2 year old son's first wedding!! And he was fantastic!! After dinner, there was no one on the dance floor so Evan decided to go out there and start dancing...by himself! It was hilarious!! Obviously, everyone started dancing after that and Evan stayed out on the dance floor for 2 hours!! I got a video of him dancing and had to share it with everyone. I can't wait to take him to his next wedding!! Enjoy the video!


video















Sunday, March 29, 2009

BnR Madness...revisited

Lately, I have a few people as me, "What is a BnR?" Well, I think it's time I revisit a piece I wrote for my blog about 9 months ago. It's called "BnR Madness". I've reworked the piece a little bit to make it a little more current, but all the basics are still in there. I hope this will give new Etsy sellers some answers to their questions about BnRs.
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Have you browsed through the Promotions Forum lately? If you have, then the term BnR has surely been integrated into your Etsy vocabulary. Many people are not sure what this simple, 3 letter term means. As an Etsy seller, a BnR is a fabulous way to get some sales, make new friends, and have a ton of fun! To cut to the chase, BnR stands for “Buy and Replace”. Basically, you make a purchase from any of the shops on the BnR list, and your shop replaces their shop. Once you are on the list, someone can make a purchase from you. It’s that simple. Usually there is just one listmaster who updates the list when a purchase is made.

Now, you may be asking yourself, “Why should I make a purchase just to get one?” That’s what I was asking myself when I first joined Etsy. I just didn’t see the point. Well, one day I decided to see what the hoopla was all about. I made a small purchase from a wonderful little shop I’d never seen before and within a day, someone had made a purchase from me! My “heart views” had also gone up quite a bit and I had more people “heart” my store. I realized that not only did I get a sale, I got traffic to my shop, which in turn leads to more sales.

There are many benefits to participating in BnRs. The most obvious is that you can get some sales. And who doesn’t like getting a sale? J Another one is that you are introduced to many shops you probably wouldn’t have seen had it not been for the BnR. That is especially true in my case. For example, I found a shop in my BnR that sold the cutest little purses. I had to have one…and then another…and then another! I have made 5 purchases from her total and her work is amazing!! .

Another benefit is the chance to interact and connect with such amazingly, talented people. I have made so many Etsy friends in the past few months. I look forward to getting online everyday to talk to all my Etsy pals. We talk about our everyday lives, our newest creations, and even give suggestions to each other for new items.

Of course, as with everything in life, there are a couple of cons with BnRs. Sometimes, you don’t get bought from right away and may be on the list for a while before someone will buy from you. It can be frustrating waiting for a sale, but in the meantime you can chat with the other shops on the list. Another thing is that sometimes the listmaster will be discouraged by lack of sales that they’ll just abandon the list altogether. This is why it is so important that if you buy onto a list that you help promote it. By participating in the thread, you are also getting your shop out there for potential buyers to see.

Something fun that most BnRs do is get a Treasury or Treasury West. Not only do you get the benefit of being in the forum thread, but you also get exposure with a treasury. This also brings in more sales for the BnR. My latest treasury for my BnR actually generated 3 sales in less than 30 minutes!

Speaking of my BnR, I am actually the listmaster for the Rockin’ BnR. I started the BnR on January 1, 2008. Today, the BnR is still going very strong with almost 1000 sales. There are quite a handful of amazing shops that get online everyday to chat in our thread. Some days we are more talkative than others. We have all sorts of fun too. We’ve had special “Happy Hour” promotions, “Guess the Shop” game, and even a scavenger hunt.

Being the listmaster can be hard work (keeping all those shops in line, lol) but I have found it to be truly rewarding. It is just remarkable to see how many sales we’ve had in 14 months. Our total sales average out to be 70 sales a month!! I am soo proud of all the work my fellow Etsians have put into this BnR, making it such a success.

So, if you are a newbie or in need of a few sales, why not take a moment to stop by a BnR. There’s a plethora of them in the Promotions Forum right now. Take a chance with a BnR. You’ll be amazed with what you find. And remember, we would always love to have you come chat with us in the Rockin’ BnR. We totally rock! And you can too! If you'd like to participate in my Rockin' BnR, here is the link! We look forward to "meeting" your shop!

http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6097296

Friday, March 13, 2009

WICKED!!!!!!

Today is THE DAY!!! I will be seeing "Wicked" live on stage in approximately 17 hours!!! I was in college as a theatre major when "Wicked" debuted on Broadway, so obviously we all went nuts over it. I've read the book and it is amazing!! I have every lyric to every song memorized and I know several people who have seen it live in New York. Now, it is on tour and is playing for 3 weeks just 45 minutes north of me. My mom surprised me with 2 tickets for Christmas so I'm taking my little sister with me and we're going to see it. I'm sooo excited...I feel like a kid in a candy shop!! All week, my CD player has been playing nothing but "Wicked". I'm soo crazy about it that I even changed my blog layout and added the soundtrack, so I hope you enjoy listening to it. :-) Anyways, I'd better be headed to bed...I'll post details and pics this weekend!!

"Something has changed within me
Something is not the same
I'm through with playing by the rules
Of someone else's game
Too late for second-guessing
Too late to go back to sleep
It's time to trust my instincts
Close my eyes: and leap!

It's time to try Defying gravity
I think I'll try Defying gravity
And you can't pull me down!"



Sunday, March 8, 2009

Top 16...Clock Items!!

It's been a while since I've done a "Top 16..." list, so I figured it was about time to do one. With the time change occurring today, I thought a "Top 16...Clock Items" would be totally appropriate.

To get to each item, just click the link below.


1st row:


2nd row:
3rd row:
4th row:




Thursday, March 5, 2009

Destash, destash...and more destash!

That's right, I've got a TON of destash listed right now. In Gifts, Etc., I have some stickers listed that I either overbought or just changed my mind about. I've also deactivated all the listings in my Gifts, Etc. shop for the time being while I am getting ready for my grand re-launch. More details coming soon!

In Skincandy, I've listed almost all my jewelry supplies. I'm closing up this shop, so I've got a lot to sell. There's still plenty I need to photograph and list, so keep on checking back.

Here are the links to my shops. Happy shopping!

http://GiftsEtc.etsy.com

http://Skincandy.etsy.com

Sunday, February 22, 2009

It's almost March!??!?!

I cannot believe how fast February has flown by!! This has been one heck of a month for me. lol I'm in the process of completing reorganizing my craft area and plan on making new items for Gifts, Etc. in the next couple weeks. I've also been photographing my jewelry destash to list starting next month in my Skincandy shop. I'm sad to see it go for now, but I just don't have the time and energy to run 2 shops at the moment.

As far as my personal life goes, can we say woah?? lol Long story short, my boyfriend, Ryan, and I met January 6 and officially got together on January 22. Today is actually our 1 month anniversary! Yippee!! Problem is, he lives in Canada and is going back up there next week. He's asked me and my son to move up there with him and I'm all conflicted now. Should I follow my heart and move to a totally new country where I only know a few people...to a place that has something called seasons and snow...to a place where I can't drive 20 minutes and end up at my sister's house? Or should I stay here and not disappoint my parents by moving their only grandchild far away from them? Somedays I just wish I could wake up 5 years from now so I know what the answers I need today are. I have so much going on in my head that I can't sleep at night. I pray to God that somehow He will give me the answer I need...what do I do?

Anyways, while I rack my brain and stare at the clock counting down the minutes till work is over, I hope you enjoy these pictures. The first is Ryan and me on Valentine's Day and the others are my son, Evan's, 2nd birthday pictures. Enjoy!















Sunday, February 8, 2009

A New Year...A New Beginning

There comes a point in everyone's life where nothing seems to go right. Your whole world seems as if it is crumbling down right around you and there is nothing you can do to stop it. That is what happened to me the past couple months. It wasn't just one thing, it was a whole lotta things. I'm not going to bore you with the details (they are also personal things I'd rather not discuss through my blog) but I will tell you what I have learned.

I ended 2008 on a somewhat sore note. I knew things were crappy in my life and knew I needed to change things and fast. My New Year's Resolution to myself...to be happy. In general, I am a happy person, yes, but with myself, no. I had decided that 2009 was going to be my year. I was finally going to budget my money, feel good about myself and the way I look and stop worrying about finding the perfect man. I told myself to "Let go, let God" because only He knows what will happen. The obstacles He gave me at the end of last year have made me stronger and helped me to believe in myself. I entered 2009 with a smile on my face and a sigh of relief that I will let my past be the past and move forward. And have I moved forward :-)

On January 6, I met him. His name is Ryan and I know I have found the one for me. It is hard to explain, but when you know, you know...you know what I mean? Every day so far this year has been better than I have expected and I never thought I'd start off the year finding the perfect guy for me. We have spent everyday together (except for the 2 last week when I had a nasty stomach virus). We even took my son to Disney World for his 2 year old birthday. Oh yea, my son also turned 2 a couple weeks ago!!

Things are definitely starting to look up for me. From here on out, I will face each day with my head held high and thank God for the challenges I faced last year. Without them, I wouldn't be able to appreciate the gifts I now have.

Another thing I will be improving on this year are my two Etsy shops. I have a whole slew of new items I will be introducing in March. Gifts, Etc. will be undergoing a complete re-haul later this month. However, I have decided to temporarily close my Skincandy store. I just don't have the time and energy for 2 shops right now. I will be selling a whole lotta destash starting in the next few weeks, so be sure to keep an eye out on some great deals. If ever you are interested in a jewelry piece I have in the store now, feel free to email me and I can do a custom order now or in the future.

I am highly looking forward to what God has planned out for me this year. If its anything like the year I've been having so far...then I can't wait. :-)