Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Bonanzle Feed back continued

Ok I am most intrigued by Bonanzle site! Thanks Roseworksjewelry once again! I just joined it and am playing around on it. Will share notes with my sweet Ruthie as I play around. I did find an interview with the creater of the site on Blog Talk Radio if anyon cares to listen to it! One thing I really LOVED that he shared was that you CAN advertise and mention any other site you are selling on in your booth/store/! That is really awesome!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Selling Venues - Bonanzle Write up by RoseworksJewelry

I read this amazing write up and review about Bonanzle on Roseworks Jewelry blog. Roseworks is an amazing writer and always shares great information!

Go check out this review! It is very informative and what is more awesome is Roseworks Jewelry is planning to do write ups for other online selling venues as well. Stay tuned to her blog and educate yourself!

If you want to see some of her other writings, check out her blog Ajedi's Musings

Friday, December 26, 2008

Communicate Better in A Visual Medium Article by SolSisters Studio

Go check out this most helpful Article written by SolSisters Studio titled Communicate Better in a Visual Medium

This article was really helpful to me because it give a clear explanations and visual sample images on how to effectively group data!

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

How To Fight So Everybody Wins

Do all things without complaining.

He comes home flustered. "Honey, I'm late for a meeting and all my shirts are dirty!" Now, he believes he asked reasonably for a clean shirt. But she, hearing herself criticised, fires back, "If you'd fixed the washing machine like you promised, you'd have a cupboard full of clean shirts!" "I only asked for a shirt," he says. "You didn't ask, you complained!" she replies. Did he?

We complain, imagining we're asking reasonably that our partner change something we're upset about, then we're frustrated when it backfires. Why not adopt the Biblical principle, "You do not have because you do not ask" (James 4:2 NKJV). You'll be amazed how much you'll get once you learn to ask, instead of assuming, demanding or complaining.

Therapist and author Bill O'Hanlon calls this 'turning your complaints into action requests'. Instead of telling your husband or wife what you don't like about their actions, ask graciously and clearly for what you'd like them to do. Be solution-focused, action-oriented, concrete and specific. Instead of, "John, we've got guests in thirty minutes and you're still watching TV!" try, "John, they'll be here soon. Would you mind bathing the children while I finish cooking?" No complaint, just a request. Instead of, "Nobody lifts a finger around here but me," try, "Sweetheart, I'm really exhausted, would you help me clear up the dishes?" Accept responsibility for turning your complaints into action requests, then make them concrete and specific. Saying "I need you to be considerate" is much too vague. Ask yourself, "If he or she were being considerate, what would they be doing?" Then kindly request that behaviour - and always show gratitude when you get it!

Written by "The Vine"


Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Your Habits




Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Friday, December 19, 2008

Why Blog?

Well we all know that blogging is quite subjective. People blog for different reasons so I am just asking you Why do you blog or perhaps a better posed question is what is the focus of your blog?

I have learned never ask someone to do something you won’t or have not done so below is why I blog and I shared a little (well maybe more than a little) about how it is evolving! NOTE that I said “evolving”. The best is yet to come! Give me about a year! LOL!

One thing I learned from the Block Head Rod Talk show was that I needed to sit down and make a plan for how I intended to use my blog? How do I want it to look? Funny thing is I initially I did NOT do this. I created my blog in order to be a part of the Etsybloggers team. I did start to enjoy it once I got started but my purpose and focus have evolved since I started blogging.

With all that said I took my mentor Rod’s words to heart because the fact is I felt quite aimless the months of October and November. Not knowing what I was doing and why, joining everything under the sun with no sense of purpose though everything I joined had the potential to serve to advance my business.

So where did I go from there?

Well first things first. I needed to be a student and so I took Rod’s advice. As my blog and focus have evolved, I not only established my focus/intent but as a result created this new blog I am writing on now. I realized I had two niches I wanted to work through and focus on. One being - promotions and sales (both of my shop items and others) and the other being tips/training/ and just my random thoughts!

How do I intend to use my Unique Commodities blog for promotions and sales?

Promote other sites with the first priority being to my Etsybloggers Team members.

Goal: Driver bloggers to my blogsite and then to my Etsy Store hopefully to make a purchase.

Allow other artist (Etsy or not) to advertise on my site. I am a little green at this so this is still a work in progress.

Share my personal life – I want the readers/bloggers to see that I am a real person with struggles and joys just like the rest of the world. I want to be personable.Post pics of my items as I create them. Allows the customer to see my creative process and know that it truly is hand made and to see that I work hard to develop a quality product. Besides I know people are quite visual!

Post actual side bar sales items on my shop – Now UNTIL Rod mentioned this I SERIOUSLY never thought about it. I think I was more intimidated by the thought of figuring out how to do it than anything. Rod posted the instructions on his Block Head Radio blog.

CONSISTENTLY BLOG– I know that the more I blog, the more exposure I will get and hopefully the more sales I will get!Networking with other Bloggers – Use my blog by whatever means to meet other bloggers and creative artist to learn from, share experiences and ideas with. I am confident this will help my sales and build upon my blog exposure!

How do I intend to effectively use my Indiscriminate Musings blog for tips, training and all the etcetera?

Well I decided to survey other blogs that I LOVED and see what other bloggers were searching for? I also decided I did not have any intention of ‘reinventing the wheel’ if you will by blogging about the EXACT same thing as other bloggers (not intentionally anyway).

What would be my edge ?

As I Twitter, I follow another mentor, Crafty Coaches approach who ask you when you follow him on Twitter, “How can I help you?” I know him doing that when I followed him IMMEDIATELY caught my attention and I went straight to his blog! Plus he reminded many of us that we were using Twitter to pimp Etsy. If you want to know more about that thought (bet you do LOL), check out his article "The Wrong Way to use Twitter".

Now when someone follows me on Twitter, I say “Thanks for following me! What would you like more tips/training/information on?" With that said, both on my own and when someone tells me what they want more information on, I either write about it if I have the knowledge OR I survey other blogs to find the information as I have absolutely no intention of 'reinventing the wheel'! If I write about it then I let my follower know that I wrote the article and provide the link. If I find a source that answers their question just as effectively if not more effectively then I can, I simply backlink to the source's blog and let my follower know where they can find the information they are looking for. I in turn let the blog owner know “Hey just backlinked to your blog!” Now ain’t that TWO for the price of one?!

BOGO in the HOUSE!

I now have a satisfied follower on Twitter, who just might continue reading my articles AND I might have a NEW follower from the blog I backlinked to! After all, who does not want free exposure?!?

So there you have it..phew I was rather long winded wasn’t I? YOUR TURN! Why do YOU Blog?

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Does Google know who you are?


Want to know if Google recognizes your site? Do a google search by typing in your shop/blog/website name and see if it shows up? If it does, then google recognizes your site and good for you! If it doesn't, consistently use links to point to your shop/blogs/websites! Google Loves links!

Want to learn more? Check out Timothy Adam Designs blog Article titled Google Page Rank Boost

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Value of Mentorship/Coaches

The word mentor derives from Greek mythology. Mentor was Odysseus' trusted elderly counselor in The Odyssey by Homer. Mentorship refers to a developmental relationship in which a more experienced person helps a less experienced person, referred to as a protégé, apprentice, mentee, or (person) being mentored, develop in a specified capacity.


Having a mentor or coach is as old as the history of civilization," says Sheila Wellington, former Catalyst president and author of Be Your Own Mentor: Strategies from Top Women on the Secrets of Success.

So what is the benefit and focus of having a mentor/coach?:

  • The focus of a mentor/coach is to guide you and offer constructive ideas or criticism about how you might do things. One key is that the mentor should not take the role of “leader” – YOU are the leader; however, the mentor should help you to evaluate your goals, adjust them and offer you strategies to help overcome obstacles.
  • Encouragement of knowing that someone else has “been there and done that”. Having a mentor/coach allows you access to information you may not currently have or now how to access. No need to reinvent the wheel!
  • A mentor/coach should help you have that “stick and Stay” mentality and spirit. Many times I have wanted to give up on endeavors but having a mentor/coach has helped me on more than one occasion to “stay the course”! I am most grateful!
  • A mentor/coach should offer you encouragement and let you know it is OK to mess up! That is right I said it! It is ok to mess up! What do we learn from most? You got it! OUR MISTAKES! Even with a mentor, we will make mistakes! I have heard it said that “There are no Mistakes – just lessons” Learn from them! Grow from them and then PAY IT FORWARD!

Think about some of those famous mentor relationships like…………………………….

Tiger Woods or Donald Trump whose mentors/coaches were their fathers!

Madonna was a mentor to Gwyneth Paltrow

Maya Angelou (poet, writer, inspiration Bio) was a mentor to Oprah Winfrey

Oprah Winfrey in turn paying it forward was a mentor to "Dr. Phil" McGraw

There is much more I can share about the benefit of having a mentor but I hope I have given you a good foundation.

All successful people need to learn how to be successful and none of us can learn how to do this by ourselves! So what are you waiting for? Find a mentor/coach and begin your journey of success!


Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Friday, December 12, 2008

Incredible Article from Crafty Coach

Check out this article from Crafty Coach! It was most helpful to me!

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Check out my Unique Commodities Blog

Providing Excellent Customer Service

I was looking at a stream of communication among some Etsians to discuss what is good customer service. Is it important to quickly respond when a buyer makes a purchase from your shop? How much follow up? When? To be honest I was a bit alarmed by some of the responses. Some said "Well customers on Etsy understand that most Etsians work full time jobs and do this on a part time basis so its ok to not send a quick follow up to say. "Got your order and will get it shipped by xxx date" NOT!

Communication is a major KEY to excellent customer service! It really bothers me when I get no communication acknowledging my order and then a week later I get my item in the mail and no follow up whatsoever afterward. All I want to say on the feed back is "Thanks" or "Item as described". I state very specifically in my shop policies my standards for Customer service and my goal to the customer. Below is the process I follow when someone buys from me.

1. When someone orders from me, I respond with the below standard statement within 48 hours of the order (usually it is the same day) My subject is "Your Order" I am not specific in stating the item ordered. Use the customers real first name! It is more personal and shows your customer you have taken time to at least review the details of their Invoice/order:
**************Order Received Acknowledgment and statement of process!**************
Hi ______,
Your item will be shipped within 5 days. Once you receive your item, please leave positive feed back. I pride myself in having great customer service and a feedback rating that shows it! If for some reason you are not satisfied with your purchase, please contact me before leaving neutral or negative feedback so I may rectify the problem. And hey–thanks for choosing to shop with Uniquecommodities! :)

****When I ship the item I put "Tracking number - 9101 XX XX XXXXX in the subject line****
Your item has been shipped! Once you receive your item, please leave positive feed back. I pride myself in having great customer service and a feedback rating that shows it! If for some reason you are not satisfied with your purchase, please contact me before leaving neutral or negative feedback so I may rectify the problem. And hey–thanks again for choosing to shop with Uniquecommodities! :)

**********Follow up if no feed back is left within 7 days of verified receipt of item**********
Hi ____I see that you received your item on _____! I hope it was to your satisfaction. If so, please leave positive feed back. If for some reason you are not satisfied with your purchase, please contact me before leaving neutral or negative feedback so I may rectify the problem. Take care!

After this I leave it alone and Notice that I have feed back for almost EVERY item I have sold (about 98%)..because I follow up and not in a nagging way. I have never had a complaint and I believe it is because I state my focus and intent from the start and follow through accordingly!


Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Tagged – I feel loved!

The totally sweet and encouraging Tiltcreations tagged me! Now I get to share 7 things to tell you about myself.

Tag Rules:

~ Link to your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
~ Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
~ Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their name as well as links to their blog.
~ Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

...and I am adding one more :) Given the Holiday season & the busyness of so many, I grant you absolution from having to pass it on...but it'd be great if you'd still give up some fun things about yourself (or your work) and direct us towards some of your favorite blogs

So here are my Seven:
1. My first online business was selling on Ebay! I used to go to yard sales, find neat items and sell them! The items I sold and made the most money from was a large box of college medical books that I paid $5 for (yes the whole box of about 15 books was only $5) and I made about $1,000 off of all of those books I sold! Oh the days of profit on Ebay!

2. My favorite color is Red. I generally love all bright colors but red is my absolute favorite because it is bright, bold and vibrant and representative of my personality.

3. I was born breech. BUTT first in fact with my right leg flipped up and over my left shoulder and my arms wrapped around that leg. My mom has over 100 stitches giving birth to me! Poor mommy!

4. I am the single mother of two young adults ages 21 and 19 and the grandmother of a beautiful granddaughter 13 months old!

5. I love to play games – Spades, Phase 10, Monopoly (my all time favorite)!

6. My dream was to graduate high school, become a Broad Cast Journalist and move to California! Never happened but I dreamed anyway..LOL

7. My favorite shows are CSI, Forensic Files, Dr. G Medical Examiner and HGTV with HGTV being my all time favorite!

Tag YOU are it




Fluttering Designs





Simply a random musing........


Feeling a tear at my spirit and not sure how to deal with it.

No doubt pulled by the emotions of the chance at devotion.

Yet at the same time I see that it very well might be no chance for us to be a pair unless one of us dare sacrifice our strongest reluctance or desire.

What makes one sacrifice – surrender one desire for another? Giving up one thing to get the other. Is it the compelling draw? the sheer magnetism of having the chance to be devoted to one in which you find encouragement and attraction? How is it that fate would have you find - someone you are uniquely drawn to even though by doing so you feel like you have crossed some imaginary line?

Then what do you do with the excitement and fear? The intrigue and panic. All these thoughts and emotions enough to make one manic. So you let go and wait. If it returns it is yours. If it doesn’t then stop trying to walk through closed doors. Pray for wisdom and insight, know that with surrender God just might - give you what you pray for…a chance.

Written by me!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Words from the Blog of Lenox Knits

So I have thought about doing Craft Shows in 2009. I was out in the Etsy forums and found this awesome blog article titled What I learned About Craft Shows from Lenox Knits.

Thanks for Sharing Lenox Knits!

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Quote for the day!

Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success.

~Stephen A. Brennan~

Check out my Unique Commodities Blog

Steps to help you Accomplish your goals

Well I talked about Mission and yes I may jump around a bit but I wanted to share a bit about some steps the help you accomplish your goals. I will always refer back to what I learned from being a Mary Kay Consultant for 3 years because it truly laid the foundation for the basis of my knowledge about running a business. Below are some steps shared with me years ago that can help any one to accomplish their goals. Doesn't matter if the goal is personal or professional! These are all very useful!

  • Envision a clear picture of what you desire! Claim that as your goal!
  • State your goal, telling people who will support you and encourage you!
  • Write affirmations - an example of a weight loss affirmation that is use is "I am a lean mean work out machine" Read them aloud! I even sing that in the shower sometimes! Go figure! LOL!
  • Hang a goal poster and place motivating pictures in your surroundings (Here is mine for now!)
  • Devise a course of action to accomplish your goal! (unsure? Call your mentor!)
  • Listen to and read motivational material daily!
  • Develop a consuming and burning desire to reach your goal! A "Not to be denied" attitude!
  • Seek and offer a cooperative spirit. Learn from those who can help and advise you.
  • Control your emotions. Do not fret, worry, complain or talk negatively, preventing anyone or anything from stealing your dream! Be about the business of bringing your mission and goals to life! One of my favorite quotes from John Rohn is "Learn to discipline your disappointments"! It has helped me so much because we all know disappointments will come!
  • Develop the courage and belief to keep going. Focus on efforts, not results! (Make sure the efforts are Income Producing Activities (we will talk about IPA's in another blog) and you will have the results!
  • Focus on giving, not getting! - Blockheadrod and Huckleberry Arts are amazing examples of this! They strive to PAY IT FORWARD and are rewarded as a result!
  • Treat people the way you want to be treated! Nothing like following the Golden Rule! We do tend to reap what we sow don't we?
  • Pray for wisdom, guidance and trust.
  • Put on a happy face each day, creating time for laughter. Be Happy!
Let's get to goal setting!

Indiscriminate and Random Musings!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Continued sharing of Mission Statements - Day 3

Remember if you like feel free to go the extra mile and take a look at their shop/Website/Blog and see how their mission statement lines up with or is reflected in what is represented in their shop/Website/Blog. Maybe even ask yourself what picture does this mission statement paint to me about the entity? Is it clear to me and or well represented? Does it make me want to come back or even learn from them?

Geekdetails shared “The goal when opening my store was to make geeky items for a home and make money while doing so. My husband is in the military and we move a lot. It makes it difficult to get a job and it makes it difficult to decorate my home. So I started doing my own thing and found I had a knack for it.”

Liz Plummer shared "My motivation is best taken from my profile. Rushing hither and thither in our daily lives, there are so many little details we miss. The glistening raindrop on a branch, the way a leaf hangs, sparkling streets after rain. I try and capture some of those moments in my artwork: the wonder of the beautiful world all around us, little vignettes into eternity."


Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Friday, December 5, 2008

Continued sharing of Mission Statements - Day 2

Continued sharing of mission statements....

Remember if you like feel free to go the extra mile and take a look at their shop/Website/Blog and see how their mission statement lines up with or is reflected in what is represented in their shop/Website/Blog. Maybe even ask yourself what picture does this mission statement paint to me about the entity? Is it clear to me and or well represented? Does it make me want to come back or even learn from them?

Sassalynne shared "My mission is to get totally unique, one of a kind yarns out to the world! They can then be used to create totally unique, one of a kind items. I've already seen some that have been created, and it's a bit like being a proud mother!"

Check Out Sassalynne's two blogs!


The Lone Beader shared "My mission is to employ the power of beadwork to educate, inspire, and unify people across the globe=:)"

Check out The Lone Beader's additional sites:
Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Mission Statements – To be (utilized) or not to be that is the question

I posted in the forums to ask Etsy sellers what the focus of their blog or Etsy business was. In all honesty, I was a little surprised as I did not get as much feed back as I thought I would and some of the responses I did receive was along the lines of “hmmm… never thought about it maybe I should consider it”. So let’s be honest here. If we don’t know where we are trying to go, how will we ever get there? And if by some chance we do arrive i.e. have success (or get somewhere positive or lucrative if you will), then how do we measure it so we can maintain it or repeat it if we had no Mission statement or planned goals in place? No doubt success is relative and subjective but either way it is measurable at least partly based on the mission and goals set by the individual. Remember too that the Mission Statement not only reflects why you started your business/blog but it helps others to know exactly what you and your business stand for and what it is all about. What would people/potential customers say about you?

So I decided, for those that did share their mission statements, I would post some of them on Random Musings for the next few days and let you look see what some of them had to say. And hey if you like feel free to go the extra mile and take a look at their shop/Website/Blog and see how their mission statement lines up with or is reflected in what is represented in their shop/Website/Blog. Maybe even ask yourself what picture does this mission statement paint to me about the entity? Is it clear to me and or well represented? Does it make me want to come back or even learn from them?

Perfect Touch shared “I'm all about having purpose and a mission statement. The mission of my store is to introduce people to the lovely world of vintage and antiques. I’m passionate about this uber chic way to recycle, and enjoy sharing my passions with others. My purpose is to brighten someone's day, whether it's a luminously colored piece of vintage glassware, or a sparkling brooch from a bygone era; I'm here to help :)”

Indiscriminate and Random Musings

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Learning, Doing and Teaching

"Learning is finding out what you already know,
Doing is demonstrating that you know it,
Teaching is reminding others that they know it as well as you do.
We are all learners, doers and teachers!

~Richard David Bach~

Monday, December 1, 2008

Mission – Why do you do what you do?

Firstly lets define what a mission statement is and why it is important.

“A general statement of a vision in word form. It is important to have a rich representation of the vision in all the senses. Then the mission statement can be written in language which allows all parties to it to derive meaning from it, yet be precise enough to guide them towards achieving it.”
~Merriam Webster~

I have always been a dreamer and entrepreneur at heart. All of my most impactful mentors always advised me that is was critical to have a mission statement or a focused goal or series of goals. Whether that goal is associated with blogging, professional life or personal life, it is important to know your goals and your Why! What is the reason you ask? Your mission/goals help you to as I like to say it to “keep the main thing - the main thing”! Your why keeps you motivated when you don’t see the result or hope of your goal(s) in sight.

When I used to sell Mary Kay, my director had us to write out our mission statement and to write out our “WHY” i.e the reason we are selling Mary Kay products. Initially I did not understand why and thought it was a waste of time and paper. Just let me sell I thought. Then when things got tough and I slacked off and wasn’t consistent in my daily activity, my director would pull out my mission statement and my why and say to me “Terronda have you reached your mission, your goal?” I would say “no but…..” She would let me whine and when I finished she brought me right back to my why and then helped me to refocus on my mission/goal sometimes revamping those goals into smaller bite sized chunks so that I could see progress. After all of that she would have me to read aloud my mission statement and my WHY. She reminded me to keep the main thing the main thing i.e. consistent daily mission/goal oriented activity (that is another blog….. perhaps I will talk on that another time) and to keep repeating my why. I even had my mission and why posted around my house to keep me moving!

So know that whether your goal is small or large, it is crucial to 1) have a mission/goal and 2) to have a “work out partner/Mentor” to help keep you on track, to encourage you and to keep you moving in the direction of your goals.

I encourage and urge you to take the time to determine what your goals are. If it is all about blogging, then great. What is the goal of your blog? Venting, make money, making friends…whatever it may be. Then write out your mission statement.

Below is the mission statement I wrote about 4 years ago! Guess what? I am MUCH CLOSER to my goal! I am $2,000 away from being DEBT free! It has taken me 4 years to get here but I am indeed reaching my goals! By next year this time, I will be debt free! So go ahead…take the next step and write that mission statement and your why!

Feel free to share thoughts, ask questions and even share your mission statement if you have one. If you post your mission statement on your blog, let me know and I will link to it to my blog.

MISSION STATEMENT:So much of my life I have struggled financially and emotionally as a result. I see so many others I love deeply with the same struggles and financial and emotional strife. My mom at retirement age is still feverishly working and trying to “just keep her head above water”. It aches my heart that after raising us and working hard to meet our needs that she still does not have even some of her most basic needs met. God made me to be a dreamer, a visionary, a goal setter, a woman of unyielding determination. I want to use the strengths and talents he gave me to get out of debt, live with financial abundance and to motivate and teach as many that are willing how to do it for themselves. “Give a man a fish – feed him for a day! Teach a man to fish and feed him for a LIFETIME!”. I am about helping myself first and through my experiences (good and bad) share with those who desire - how to reach their business, personal and financial goals.

Note: I also have another blog called Unique Commodities that is all about my Etsy shop and other Etsy Artist!