Friday, March 8, 2013

keep the faith

today has been... wow. as you know, i've been working on starting up my own dog walking business. i've been working on it for weeks and had everything in place. the last step was getting my marketing materials ordered and into people's hands. thankfully, when i tried ordering my business cards and postcards last night the website failed, cause it turns out i won't be needing them after all...

you may remember i worked for a place at the end of last year called BH North America that sells fitness equipment. i did graphic design for their marketing department and i loved it there. it was one of the best working experiences i have had (next to working at The Press, of course!) well today, i was going about my business and i got a message on facebook from both of the people i worked with at BH saying that they tried my phone number and couldn't reach me so to call them asap. i did and my old boss, Julie, offered me a full-time job! i was floored. i immediately started crying tears of joy and disbelief. i worked with Julie and Sean from the beginning October till the end of December and leaving was such a sad day. Julie (who fought right up until the end to keep me) assured me that if anything ever came up she would call me right away. i knew she was good for her word, but i didn't expect anything with the economy the way it is. well lo and behold, she came through. 

for i know the plans i have for you, declares the Lord. plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. - jeremiah 29:11

honestly, i'm still in shock over the whole thing. i had completely given up on full-time work, i just regarded it as a thing of the past and i was going to have to make my own future. so now, here i am with a business in the works and an offer for full-time employment. what to do? take the job, of course! 

i have to admit though, i'm a little sad that i won't be walking dogs anymore, i really did enjoy it. and it's been fun getting a business going, but at least i didn't have many clients yet (thank you, Daphne for being so understanding when i had to cancel your walks!) and now, i feel i'll have a confidence i didn't have before because i know that if things go south, i can make it on my own. i started a business, i have that skill now and if need be, i can do it again.

so, today proves to me, never give up, never lose faith. i make it a point to keep my posts on facebook positive, but it's been a rough year and a half.  i've spent a lot of time down in the dumps. my supportive, loving husband can attest to that. being out of work and not knowing where my next paycheck was coming from was rough and stressful, but i tried everything i could. i've baked cupcakes, i've done freelance graphics, i've walked dogs, no one can accuse me of being lazy or not trying. i'm just so thankful that i can feel like a productive member of our family again. God is good and prayers are answered. have a blessed night everyone.

edit - a few days before i was supposed to start i received a call saying my start date was going to be moved back a week. by the time that week was over i was told i wouldn't be working there after all. it's business, i can't take it personally, the budget just wouldn't allow it. it is disappointing, definitely, but life goes on. that wasn't the place for me after all. my time will come. i've grateful for them trying to hire me back at all.

Friday, March 1, 2013

yikes! yay!

i'm doing it, i'm starting a business! after doing graphics for 20 years, i've decided i need a change. i've been waking dogs for a company for a couple of months now and i absolutely love it! the dog walking part anyway, the company i'm working for, not so much. i've run into a lot of disorganization, misplaced keys, lack of information and the worst part, i'm hardly given any clients. am i really expected to live on $18 a week? so, as one of my favorite quotes says...
"if you don't like something, change it. if you can't change it, change your attitude." ~ maya angelou 
well, turns out i can change it! i can work for myself! i realize it's going to be tough to get clients at first, but i believe if i'm willing to put in the work, the clients will come. i'm going to give myself a year to become successful. if at that point i'm a failure, i can re-evaluate. but, we're going to think positively and say it will be awesome!

ever wondered what goes into starting a local, home based business in california? here are the steps i've been taking:

  1. check the database of fictitious business names (fbn) to see if what you want is available and if it is, file an fbn with the county. i went with OC Pet Services. once you file, you then have to publish it in a local newspaper for 4 consecutive weeks. it is then good for 5 years. - for my newspaper friends, i have my own legal! i went from proofreading them back in the day to actually publishing one... i've come full circle.
  2. get licensing through the city. this is a flat rate for your first year of business. i think after the first year, it is based on your business profits.
  3. get insurance and bonding. insurance is obvious, but bonding is basically a way to protect yourself if say a piece of jewelry comes up missing at a house you've entered. it makes it so that the client has to prove that you were the one that took it, not just that you happened to be in the house and it came up missing so you must have taken it. since my business requires me to be in homes without supervision, i opted for bonding. it looks professional on your stationery and website, too
  4. get a logo, website and hosting for your website. i'm lucky in that i am a (former) graphic designer and my husband is a web designer, so these were not difficult for me to get. i did decide to save my hubby some time, though and purchased a wordpress template that i can just update with my information. (website tk)
  5. purchase software to keep all of your financial records, purchases and profits in order.
  6. get business cards, postcards, flyers and get them in people's hands!
so, wish me luck! i'm off with checks in hand to finalize everything and get started. it's so exciting and downright terrifying at the same time. but, i think i'm just tough enough (or is it stubborn enough?) to do it! thank you in advance for all your prayers, crossed fingers, good mojo and whatever positive vibes you can throw my way :)