End of year...Always another time of reflection and gratitude, and I am deeply appreciative of all you, my loyal customers who keep my lil enterprise going and have for 30 years now (<--as of Feb. 2024)! Gosh, that sounds like I'm an old lady! Duh, apparently I AM an old lady! LOL!
My business started on a wing and a prayer, at the encouragement of friends and family who received soap as gifts one Christmas in the early 90's because we were too financially-stressed at the time to give much of anything else. And the surprise was, they all came back asking to "buy" more! I had been perfecting a recipe to suit my own highly sensitive skin and had an abundance of soap laying around, more than we could use at the time, so gifts they became! So back then, PRE-INTERNET days, I began trying to sell it by shlepping my case full of soap & samples, and three very young children along with me, boutique to boutique, on weekends or off hours because I still had a day job working as a surgical nurse. Then POW, the internet happened which opened up global e-commerce--it felt like stepping through a magic portal! I was one of just a dozen other handmade soapmakers on the World Wide Web....a craft from days of old gaining exciting new notice (now there are literally hundreds/thousands of soapmakers on the 'net!)! With it came the daunting task of learning to code a website. When I mastered that feat, I patted myself on the back as Queen of the World! But stepping through that portal and being one of so few in this industry brought more business than I could even handle! Our home was covered with soap, I needed more space. I was getting offers to expand, franchise!
But as I looked deeper, and interviewed some of my few predecessors intensively, I discovered that sometimes growing your business exponentially can also bring new issues you didn't anticipate and should consider carefully: loss of control of product, employee issues; you may be making more money, but have a lot more expenses and headaches to deal with as well. Did I want that? So much to swirl around in my decision-making. As if The Universe knew I was dilemmina-ing over it all, a neighbor (and soap customer) just up the street from us told me he was selling his house...and it had a custom-built workshop on the property. Did I want to take a look at it? We did, and before we even saw the house, just the workshop, we said YES, let's do this! It answered a lot of issues, and felt right. I didn't want to be away from my kids all day working in a rented warehouse. And here the business has remained, and has felt right, "for me".
Since then there have been national economic crises, pandemics, ingredient price spikes due to global weather changes, and all manner of issues that can affect a business. But the bottom line, for me, is so many of you have stuck with me, supporting my business through thick and thin. And I will never forget that, will always be grateful!
Some people shop for any goods they seek and just look for the cheapest price they can find, and I understand that budgets must be adhered to. But when you support a small business like mine, you are supporting so much more than "the cheapest deal" from some local or overseas nameless entity, possibly with questionable labor ethics or dedication to quality and sustainability. You allow a mom to be home raising her kids herself (if that is what she chooses/wants to do, and I did). You are supporting a commitment to well-researched quality, sustainable eco-friendly ingredients, not whatever is available CHEAP but performs poorly. You are supporting non-slave, non-child labor (although my own children often volunteered to help me of their own accord, as family support). You are supporting rigorous experimentation and human volunteer testing, not tested on animals or anyone unwilling. And not just our soap, but when you've purchased my painted art, fiber, and other crafts, you are supporting imagination and the arts--someone's dream and expression! Whether you purchase directly from me, or via some of the many boutiques and shops our crafts are in, you are keeping small business and traditional arts alive and well in the USA. I THANK YOU!!!
Wishing you all Happy Holidays and Happiest of New Years! There are so many holidays during this time in the calendar. When I say Happy Holidays, it is not because I am afraid to say Merry Christmas, or Happy Hannukkah, etc...it is because I'm trying to be respectful of ALL the holidays, not knowing which you celebrate! Whichever you DO celebrate, make it great and find your peace! BE THE PEACE!
As usual this time of year, I have an abundance of White Elephant Soap Scraps taking up space in the workshop! A great opportunity to get perfectly great soap at a discount, sold in 1 lb. bags/$15, (and my lb.'s are BIG!)--COME GET 'EM!
Also, check out our very popular new Practical Magic Soap Collection half-bar set! These have been flying out the door since first introduced!
And as an end of the year thank you, you can use code thankyou15 (<--case sensitive) in your online check-out cart in the "discount box" to receive 15% off your order from now till 12/31/2023!
I am on break now as Christmas approaches at our house and I need to do some of my own preparing! There are, after all, two wee grandlings to prepare for! So orders from now till the end of the year may not get shipped till after Jan. 1rst., but if time permits, I will try to get as many out as possible, no guarantees though. Order with that in-mind, thanks!
Love & Peace,
"BE THE PEACE"