Zazzle.com Collection: We've Moved New Address Labels

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Get Better Results From Your Online Business

You are probably well aware that there are many entrepreneurs sharing and promoting the same kind of business and products as you. While promoting your company you have likely seen many of your own networking colleagues tweeting out similar items or content to yours. Most are offering the same services, similar designs, blogging about their shops, offering tips and so forth. Building an online business is hard work, I know that first hand. Keeping up and realizing all of the changes that seem to come faster than lightning is a tough reality. 

You've probably heard this before, I know it's nothing new but there are still many perks and freedom that come from running your own online business. I mean seriously, being able to work from anywhere in the world is a huge deal. If you're traveling you can work while your away.  A new setting or funky cafe that you find yourself in can do wonders to inspire and give you fresh ideas to work with. Making money passively while you sleep and travel is pretty awesome. 

Be authentic, those that come to buy from you want to know the real you. Customers buy from someone they like or feel they can trust. Let your own style and personality come through, people are  drawn to authenticity.

Get as specific as you can with your target audience. This will make your marketing a lot easier. Create a clear and concise brand and market it to the best of your ability. 

Websites can get cluttered and jumbled pretty quickly when you start adding widgets and plugins. This can be confusing for many people and can make them leave your site without giving it fair game. Create a solid foundation and build your site so customers can navigate through it with ease. 

Entrepreneurs know that there is never an end in sight as far as building and marketing your business. Every day is a new day, a fresh start to keep working hard as you promote your business in a professional way. Always keep working your goals. Perseverance is necessary in the online world. Everything takes patience and as you build your business you will need an abundance of it. Don't give up, keep learning, educating yourself and stay focused. Good things will come. 




Saturday, September 30, 2017

Online Business Interview With Bebop's Place

It's great to learn and share with other business owner's. Today I am sharing with you an online Q and A interview with another Zazzle designer. She does beautiful photography work for her shop. I am sure you will find it inspiring. Interviews are a nice way to see how other artists or entrepreneurs conduct their business. 


1.What is the name of your business? 

Bebop’s Place   https://www.zazzle.com/bebops

2. What inspired you to start your own business?
            I am a passionate amateur photographer. Mostly I photograph the wild natural beauty of rural upstate New York where I live.  I wanted to share my work and it seemed that offering my images on Zazzle products would be a good platform.

3. Can you provide me with a description of your business?
            I have a print-on-demand shop on the Zazzle website.  I fit my images to the huge variety of products offered by Zazzle.

4. What are the advantages of this form of business ownership?
            I love the idea that I am free to create the images and that Zazzle does the actual manufacturing and distribution.

5. How do your customers find your products? 
            I wish I knew!  I assume that they search the Zazzle website directly or through search engines.

6.  Where do you get your motivation when things are slow?
            Slow sales can be discouraging but my motivation really comes from the creative process and that keeps me going.
7. Is there anyone that you look up to for business advice?
            The Zazzle Forum is really my only source for help and advice.  We all share our knowledge and encourage each other.

8. Do you do marketing for your business? 
            I do have several blogs that I post my products to but that is really all.

9. What will you be focusing on for the upcoming holiday season?  
            Probably my favorite product line is my calendars.  I truly enjoy curating my work into specific thematic material.  I am hoping they will be popular this year.  Here is a link to my 2018 collection of 12 page calendars:  https://www.zazzle.com/collections/12_page_calendars_2018-119215454579432527
 Here are a couple of products that I like from Bebop's Place






Monday, September 18, 2017

A Touch of Glitter Never Hurt Anyone

It's been proven that glitter is the perfect accent for any wedding or black tie event. There are ways to use a touch of glitter either in small understated ways or if you desire in big elegant ways and really make your celebration feel designer. Take some inspiration for those designer celebrity weddings. Adding some shiny sparkle can really make a reception or event extra special. 

Perhaps you might choose this look for your invitations and stationary items and then just add a touch of it to your wedding decor. Glitter comes in almost every color under the rainbow so you can choose to use traditional colors like gold or silver or find a totally different shade that you love. 

I've been trying to figure out how to create designs using glitter and sparkles for awhile now and I just figured out a way that I could make these backgrounds and use them on my store products.  So you guessed it, I've been busy creating all kinds of glitter images for wedding products like invitations, RSVP cards, champagne or wine labels, wedding stickers and other unique items that I thought looked really elegant with the faux glitter images.  I've also been playing with different shades and colors to make gorgeous products for you. My most favorite color so far is rose gold which also happens to be an on trend wedding color right now and can be paired nicely with a bolder color as well. It also looks amazing with Pantone's color of the year is 'greenery'.  You'll find this new shade of green popping up in everything from wedding bouquets to bridesmaid dresses. 

 Purple Faux Glitter Wedding Set


 Rose Gold Faux Glitter Wedding Set
 I'll be working on some more designs for the Christmas season. It's good to be designing holiday items so that they are ready to sell a few months ahead as many people begin to shop earlier and earlier every year. So let the designing continue... 

Friday, September 15, 2017

Small Business Interview with Tanya Draws

Interviews are a great way to learn about people and their businesses. I don't know about you but I get inspired by those that are creative and work hard to have their own business.  Every couple of weeks I will strive to have a guest interview on my blog featuring either an artist or someone with an inspiring online business. Hearing how others conduct their company or design their work can give us ideas and help motivate us during those tough times. 

Today I am sharing an interview with you from a talented designer. 

1. What is the name of your business?
Tanya Draws

2. What was your motivation to start your own business?

I started this as a way to motivate myself to create more art, and to teach myself new skills in design. I had been pursuing freelance graphic design at the time, and thought designing the products at the print on demand Zazzle could be a great creative outlet. When people started buying my work, I knew it could be something more! I’ve been designing patterns and drawing ever since.

3. Can you provide me with a description of your business? 
I design cute, quirky and decorative patterns and illustrations for clothing, home decor and stationery. I create gifts that can be enjoyed by people of all ages - from animal puns, to decorative patterns that look great in the home. 

4. What are the advantages of this form of business ownership 
What I love about this form of business ownership is that I can focus on designing and do not have to worry about shipping products or stock levels. Its also purely online so I can really work on my shop at any time, anywhere.

5. How do your customers find your products? 
My art can be found at the online print on demand marketplaces Zazzle, RedBubble and DesignByHumans under the shop name Tanya Draws.

6. Where do you get your motivation when things are slow? 
When I’m slowing down creatively, what helps me is to go shopping! It sounds weird, but browsing a retail store to see what items they have in stock and what kind of colours, styles and designs are popular for the season is inspiring.

7. Is there anyone you look up to for business advice? 
One person I really look up to for business advice is my sister! She is younger than me…  but she goes shopping way more than me, and always knows what is popular. :) Her great eye for style and her love of awkward humour has definitely impacted my shop!

8. Do you do marketing for your business? 
I do mainly social media marketing for my business. I can be found on twitter and Instagram! I also have a blog to showcase my work. 

9.What will you be focusing on for the upcoming holidays? 
For the holidays, I’m working on building up a collection of Holiday themed stationery & photo greeting cards! I’ve also got a bunch of holiday themed patterns in the works that I hope to add to my shop in the next few weeks. 

10. Is there anything that you struggle with in your business? 
My biggest struggle has always been keeping my self doubt in check and maintaining a balance between being critical of my work, and striving to improve. I know that I’ve grown so much as a graphic designer and artist in the past 3 years and part of that is because I see things I could have done better in my work… however sometimes I can forget this and be too critical! As creatives, I think this happens a lot. Its important to see where you can improve but its equally important to keep the things you like about your work in mind, too.

I hope you enjoyed learning about Tanya Draws. This is one of my favorite patterns that she has created. You can find it on many different products in her shop. 






Thursday, September 7, 2017

Reasons to Love Fall

The leaves are beginning to change colors and subtle hints of the fall season are starting to appear. Fall is by far my favorite season of the year for so many reasons.  The spring season is not far behind but during the fall months I revel in the crisp fresh air as I take walks and feel the crunch of fallen leaves beneath my feet or feel the gentle wind on my face as I take a bike ride. Autumn has a particular beauty to enjoy. 

I find this season to be one of fresh beginnings, letting go of the lazier days of summer and setting new goals and getting back into more structured days. The evening sets in sooner and it feels okay to go to bed a little earlier when it's dark outside.  

Another one of my favorite things about the fall season is everything Pumpkin. I know, but seriously I love pumpkin pie. My husband and I have to limit ourselves to one a month or we would find ourselves eating it every weekend and that would definitely blow the health goals. Tis' the season of pumpkin loaves, muffins, pumpkin lattes and even pumpkin scented candles. 

Fall is also the season of cozy over sized sweaters and boots of course.  No more sweaty summer days of melting makeup and flat hair. Pretty fall colored clothing and makeup can give you a new sense of freshness. 

The autumn season also lends itself to comfort food. Time to make some hearty lentil soup and enjoy warm muffins with a hot cup of coffee.  Things that can be made in the crock pot like tasty chili's also make me think of fall days.  Last night I made one of our favorite recipes and this one is super easy.  It's called Zesty Bean Dip and this recipe only uses 4 ingredients and whips up in no time. If you want to try this recipe just click on the link. It's so yummy. 



If you decide to make this recipe leave me a comment and let me know how you liked it. 

Time to get busy and work on some new designs for the upcoming holidays. I hope you take time to enjoy some of the many great things about the fall season. 

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Designs By Shell Interview

Ever heard of giving yourself an interview? I thought this was interesting in that it would answer many questions and perhaps help me to continue to work on and create new goals for my business. In doing so it may inspire and shed some light on how you conduct your own business and why you are in the place you find yourself. 

Let's Begin:

Designs by Shell - Digital Designer 

What was your motivation to start your own business? 

I have always been interested in art and drawing since I can remember. Always doodling on scrap paper when I had the chance and I loved to color as a child too!  This was probably the beginning of my inspiration. 

I had always talked about being able to work from home, although this business came after my children were all grown. 

One day my husband came home from work and handed me a 'Wired' magazine and said "there's a company in here called Zazzle that does Print on Demand and you might enjoy designing on their products." 

I did some research and looked into the company and decided to open an online shop and try my hand at designing and to see if working from home might be an option for me

What is your business about?  

My store's name is Designs by Shell.  I create designs for stationary items, gift items and apparel. I began using a paint program on my Samsung tablet and this is where I draw and create my designs. You may notice I also have photography images on many items and these are all my own pictures as well.  I draw many whimsical items but also like to create chic stylish designs for birthdays and weddings as well. 

Where is your business based?

The company Zazzle is based in San Hose, California. I personally live near Vancouver, B.C.

Tell us About Zazzle, the Print on Demand Company?

This company is a huge online marketplace for designers to sell their art. As a designer you publish your products on any of thousands of products that are available and set your royalty rate. All of the processing, payments and shipping are done by Zazzle. This allows artists to focus simply on designing and leaves them free of inventory. 

What has been the most effective way of customers finding your products? 

Social media and through several of my own websites has so far been the most successful method of sharing my products and designs.  Driving traffic to my website is still challenging and something I work on everyday. 


How do you stay motivated through the tough times? 

I love to be active so usually a good bike ride or fitness walk gets me rejuvenated and ready to work again. 

Can you offer any advice for other entrepreneurs? 

Stay the course. Be a 'fearless' learner. This was some great advice given to me and has helped me dive in when I felt like I didn't have the expertise or knowledge on hand but found out that I could learn. You will make mistakes but that's okay, shake it off and keep moving forward. 

What are the advantages of this form of business ownership? 

Flexibility for sure. Setting your own hours. 

What is the most challenging part of your business? 

I would have to say the marketing is the hardest part. SEO is challenging as Google is always changing the way sites are ranked. Marketing takes a consistent effort and time.

Well I hope you find this interesting and perhaps motivating too! When you have drive it's amazing what you can do! 




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Saturday, August 12, 2017

Just for the Fun of It Phrase Origins

Have you ever given any thought to some of the funny quotes and phrases we use and where they originated from. We were talking about this with some friends last night and it got me to wondering about some of the sayings that we tend to use and may not really know the origin of how they came about. So just for the fun of it I thought I'd look a few of them and share my findings. 

Let's start with a popular one:

"You're pulling my leg"  - means to tease someone or mislead them.  It was rooted in the criminal world when thieves would trip or pull people down by their leg in order to rob them. This is one of the more common story versions that is shared or believed about this quote. 

Never look a gift horse in the mouth - As horses age their gums recede and it makes their teeth appear longer.  Checking a horses mouth before buying it was a common practice, perhaps it still is but this is where the phrase comes from. Although this was considered offensive just like now if you received a gift from someone you wouldn't ask them how much they payed for it. 


                                  Maybe it goes for Zebra's too! 

Mind your P's and Q's -  There are a few different thoughts on this one but the most common seems to be referring to minding your pints and quarts. A British saying that perhaps started in English pubs meaning to chalk up your tally of drinks on the slate. A bar tender may have used this to say to a patron if they were getting loud and considered to be drinking too much. 

Once in a Blue Moon - You may be know that a blue moon is referred to as the second full moon in a single calendar month and it's super rare.  Thus the saying 'once in a blue moon' refers to something that doesn't happen very often. 

Sleep Tight - dates back to the time when mattresses where made with ropes and each night before bed the ropes needed to be pulled tight to ensure a good sleep. 

Crocodile Tears - When someone is crying superficially or falsely they are said to be crying crocodile tears. The myth dates back to the 14th century when it was believed that crocodiles would shed tears when they killed their prey. 


There's some food for thought. Interesting to look into some of the common phrases that we toss around so easily. 


Wednesday, August 2, 2017

You Can Always Do More Than You Think You Can

Have you heard this slogan before? You can always do more than you think. This can apply to many areas of life such as our business or work, learning new skills, reaching diet and fitness goals or perhaps training for something.  

Recently on a little cycling holiday with my husband this became a motto that played on my thoughts as I climbed high hills and rode long, long stretches on my bike. Words from my husband 'you can always do more than you think you can', he was right! ( I know, right!) 

The first two days of riding we spent in Marysville, U.S. biking the Centennial Trail, perhaps you've heard of it?  This was pretty easy riding, mostly flat paved trails that weaved  through lots of trees and greenery, an Art Walk and places to stop for a coffee or lunch break. We rode the trail in two parts, day one we rode 59 km and day two we cycled 69 km. Had lunch at a unique old garage style eatery with the best old fashioned milkshakes ever. We came across a festival at Lake Stevens and stopped for coffee's and a short walk out on the dock. 





On our relax day, we drove about an hour and caught the Whidbey Island ferry to Langley, Whidbey! We arrived at our AirBnB around 2pm and once we got settled we took a stroll into the little town of Langley and bought a few groceries at an organic market for our place. A quaint little studio room. The perfect size with a lovely deck to relax on in comfy Adrirondack chairs. 

Day four was a long bike ride around a section of the Island called the Langley Loop. One in particular hill called French Hill, was pretty long. Many rolling hills and scenic glimpses of the ocean as we rode along. A total of 53 km this day. Harder than the first two days. 

Day five we loaded up our gear and bikes and drove to the other end of Whidbey Island. Oak Harbor, where there is a Naval Base situated. We began cycling around this area going up and down hills and windy roads. We stopped at a beautiful beach area and sat looking out at the ocean as we ate our lunch and refueled for more cycling. The longest hill of our journey came up at Strawberry Point Rd. Repeat 'slogan'! I just kept pedaling and made it to the top without stopping or whining! lol! All together we finished off our ride doing 35 km for a grand total of 220 km for our cycling vacation!  Feeling fit and happy we made it back home! 

So whenever you think you can't do something just keep pedaling so to speak, you can always do more than you think you can! 



Monday, July 3, 2017

Keep it Together

 Cherry Cupcake Birthday Collection
Cherry Cupcake Birthday Party Collection

When online shopping do you ever find it frustrating when you've found an item you want and know that there are other items that match or go with it but have an impossible time trying to locate it. Well that's why Collection pages where introduced at Zazzle. To keep your products organized and easier for customers to find, you can now group them by collection pages.  There are several different ways to do this. 

Store owners can set up pages that display Zazzle products by themes that share a common design like a sunflower garden collection or pink cupcake birthday collection. Another way to display products in a collection is to showcase the same product types like, blue tooth speakers, throw pillows or medical appointment cards. Collection pages can also be set up by Occasions like Baby Showers, Mother's Day or Christmas. So there are lots of ways to use Collections to make shopping easier for your customers. 


Sunflower Garden Patch  Home Collection







Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Apps That Motivate You

Apps or applications as they're called can be both fun and practical. An app is a small software program that is downloaded onto a mobile device such as a tablet, iPhone or computer.  These apps can help you perform tasks and motivate you or your team to work harder. Many of them are designed for fun and games too. 

Over the last few years apps have become extremely popular and new ones are being offered all the time. If you can dream it there is probably an app that has been made for it or someone is working on it.  

You may not even be aware of all of the different types of Apps that are available to you. 

Lifestyle Apps are ones that define your lifestyle.  Fitness, music, travel and food fit into this category.  These are designed to make it easy for you to find that restaurant or look up a song, etc. 

Social Media Apps are a huge business. These include apps like FB, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and so forth. These apps have given people the ability to share everything in their day to day lives if they want too and as we know some do share way too much! 

Cool apps that we like to use for short periods of time might be a Weather app, appointment reminders, the calculator app or simply make use of the flashlight app.  The list goes on. 

The gaming industry has a super large base of app users. So many people like to play games on their mobile devices. It's become a pass time for many when waiting at appointments, standing in lines and just feeling the urge to do something to fill their time. Avid game app users come back time and again to use these apps and the developers love this, so more and more games and entertainment apps are created. 

Apps can be used to help companies run their businesses better. Onenote, Docs, Wallet, are just a small sample of apps that a businesses may use. 


One of my favorite apps that I've recently started using over the last month is a fitness app called Strava.  This is a running and cycling app. I use it to keep track of my cycling work outs. 

The app tracks your activities via GPS marking your starting point to the end of your run or bike ride. A map shows you the exact route that you traveled and shows you stats like your time, meters climbed, how many calories you burned.  It also allows you to compare your stats with others in your network. These can be friends or it will also show the stats of people that you don't know but that may have done the same route as you. It also highlights trophies for you when you repeat a route or section of a run or ride and beat your previous time. This gives you incentive and can motivate you to put in that extra effort. You can share your ride with others and see how you ranked on segments marked by other riders.  I think it's a great motivator and can help push you to do your personal best. Great for those with a little competitive edge.  

There are lots of cool cycling apps to choose from but Strava seems to have most tools that one needs or wants, if you haven't tried a biking app yet and you need a little push to get off that couch this could help boost your fitness and give you the motivation you need to keep moving.  

Here is a sample of one of my bike rides using Strava to track it. 




Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Upcycle and Use Your Creativity

Upcycling is a term that means turning your unwanted or unused items into products of better quality. The goal of upcycling is to prevent wasting potentially useful materials by making use of them. This reduces the consumption of new raw materials when creating new products. It's essentially re-purposing an old or unused item into something useful again.  

Developing countries around the world having been doing this for years. They use old wrappings from packaging in new ways. They reuse clothing for other purposes and find interesting uses for many natural resources around them. 

With sites like Etsy and Pinterest we can see that 'upcycling' and 'repurposing' are terms that are used constantly with DIYers and home decorators. After all it is fun to take an old piece or unused item that you may have just sent to a second hand store be turned into a something useful again. 

Onto my little project. Years ago when I was into tole painting, I painted this wooden box that I used to keep loose photographs in. It was an old cutlery box to begin with. The inside is all padded. I had stained it and painted the top with a pretty floral picture.  Recently as I was cleaning out a few things I came across the box and thought I might repaint it and give it a more modern look. I left the stain on it and just taped off some lines and spray painted it with black and then silver stripes, nothing fancy just a little more mod. I can still use it to hold pictures if I like or I could use it to keep some of my  jewelry organized. That sounds like a good idea for it.  Here is the before and after pictures. 




Well maybe this will inspire you to think of another use for something before you decide to get rid of it. Why not, little projects are fun to do.  Stay creative! :-)


Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Travel Moment Treasures

If you are blessed to be able to travel a few times a year or more for pleasure I'm sure that you have taken plenty of pictures to capture those special travel moments. With so many of us having mobile phones with the camera at our fingertips along with endless storage to take and save hundreds of pictures it's the easiest thing to do these days. However, most people just let those pictures sit on there phone or eventually dump them onto their computer and hardly ever view or share them with others. This is kind of sad. 




There are some great ways to display or share those great travel pictures that you've taken and I'll tell you a few right here. 

When my husband and I go on a big trip which we have been doing for the last six or so years, once I am home, I sort through our trip pictures and create a book of each trip online. I choose pictures from those that I have taken as well as my husbands pictures. It's a lot of fun placing and arranging the photos and coming up with captions for them. Once I am happy with how each page looks I then have the book printed as a hard copy. It's great because you can choose the pictures that you love and use the one's that represent things you really want to share or remember from your trip. These make fabulous coffee table books and are easy to show your friends and family without over whelming them with your hundreds of pictures. There are lots of online sites where you can create these travel books. You can choose from a variety of book sizes too. I believe I used Photobook for these ones. 






Another way to display your photos are to have one or two of your favorites printed and framed. You can choose the size you want for a picture frame, canvas print, posters or calendars or even have them put on coffee mugs. I think they make great gifts too! So many fun ideas and you'll love to be reminded of your trips this way.  

Well I hope this inspires you to do something fun with your travel pictures, make memories to share and remember often. 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Top Five Things To Do in Kona Hawaii

Well I just got home from a wonderful holiday in Kona, Hawaii! If you need relaxation, love exploring and awesome adventures then this is a place you'll want to visit. This was the first time my husband and I traveled and stayed in an AirBNB with friends. We all got along great, shared some fun experiences together and created memories that will last a lifetime.  

Here are my top 5 things you should plan on doing if you visit the Island of Kona, Hawaii.

1) Bike tour through the lava fields. In our group there was about 12 of us. We were shuttled in a van to the starting point to get fitted on our bikes and test them out by our driver named 'Pretty' and our tour guide Mikey! We rode in total 15 miles. We rode up and down hills and stopped at a scenic spot high above the ocean where we ate lunch that was provided by the tour. We got to walk through a lava tube and take some great pictures along the way.  If you enjoy biking and the outdoors and want to see the lava craters this is a fun way to do it. 




2) Kayaking with a guide. We did a 2 hour kayaking tour on the ocean with our guide named Happy. He told us his Hawaiian name too but it was a little harder to say. A beautiful way to see some interesting sites along the ocean shore. Caves to explore if the ocean swells are cooperating if not you will just stop in front of them and the guide will tell you some interesting stories. It was a bit of a workout as we encountered white caps and big waves that we had to work our way through. Our guide just let us take it easy and go at whatever pace worked for us. All in all it was a fun experience. 




3) Coffee Roasting Tour at Ueshima Coffee Company. If you love coffee you've got to do this. We learned how coffee is roasted to make the various strengths and types. My husband and I made French Roast and Italian Roast. Our friends made 'Full City and French Roast. This was a hands on experience and we each received 2 packages of coffee with our own personalized label and photo on it. Makes a great gift or just something special for yourself.  I definitely recommend this for a fun experience. The roast master was a very sweet lady and explained everything very well. 



4) Snorkeling, body boarding and wave jumping are all a lot of fun if you love to play in the warm ocean. Body boarding wasn't quite for me as the first time I tried I got thrown off rather violently by the waves, my friend and I decided we would just jump and play in the waves and it was just as much fun.  We saw all kinds of fish and even sea turtles. The beach and sun were very hot so we were in the ocean a lot.  





5) Botanical Gardens are amazing to visit. A great landscape of tropical plants, trees and flowers. A unique variety that you don't see everyday. Lots of walking and picturing taking.  





Well that's my list of 5 great things to do in Kona, Hawaii! We also
spent lots of time eating delicious food and visiting some great outdoor markets as well as unique shops and galleries. No lack of things to do here. 

Aloha! 




Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Quick Tips For Starting a Business


Everyone at some time or other likely has dreams of starting a business, working from home and being your own boss. Sounds pretty good, right. Actually it is no free ride, you still have to work hard, put in the time and hours necessary to keep things flowing and you become very creative at juggling and learning how to grow your business. Once you've decided you're willing to put in that time and energy and have a passion for what you're doing then it's time to get things rolling. 
Hopefully you've done all your prep work and market research at this point and have set up a game plan. There are few businesses that can be started without effort and money. So be sure you have a budget set up for start up costs, even a small will get you going! So now assuming you've done all your paperwork and are working hard at your business there are a few things that you'll always be doing to propel your business into the future and stay on top of things. 

1) Continual market research

2) Revisit your business plan often

3) Revise goals, small and large

4) Be prepared for bumps in the road but find ways to overcome them (entrepreneurs weren't built in a day)

5) You'll need a url and website, business whether brick and mortar or online really can't survive without one

6) Sell, sell and sell some more

7) Try new marketing techniques and methods as what may work for some businesses may not work for others

8) Business cards still work, always have them ready to give out

    Baking Theme Business Card Collection, Ready to Customize








Saturday, April 8, 2017

How To Get Targeted Traffic To Your Websites

Everyone wants to find reliable sites that can bring that targeted traffic to your own website. I know there are a lot of websites that claim to send free targeted traffic to your page but I also know from past experience that to get the right targeted traffic you're going to need to invest some money. Now I'm not talking about thousands or even hundreds of dollars here but if you can put aside even a small amount for your marketing budget, even as low as $50 is a good place to start. 

I want to share with you two traffic sites that I am using and believe that they are working to bring the right traffic to my site.  

The first one is called 'Rebrandable Traffic'  

1. Add a Campaign, create a destination url, enter the visit limiter (when to shut off your campaign) enter keywords, click type of traffic you want to view your site, click save campaign. (very simple process)

2. Purchase credits through 'Credit Store', follow the prompts through Paypal, in minutes they show up in your account and you can then apply them to a campaign. 

3. Turn on your Campaign. When it runs out of credits it will automatically turn off. 

Sounds pretty easy, hey! With Rebrandable Traffic you can track you campaigns and there is also an option to resell your traffic. Another little perk you might enjoy.  The traffic packages often go on sale and this is the best time to purchase them to get the most value for your money. I have bought 1000 credits for as low as $2.50 so watch for the deals. Join Rebrandable Traffic here and start seeing your business grow. 

The second Traffic Website is called 'Kris Clicks' 

This site is just over a week old so still in the early stages. I just signed up yesterday and began using it to drive traffic to my shop.  This site is different in that it places your banner ads on already established partner traffic sites and networks to bring visitors to your website.  They over a great 25% commission on referrals. Adding another way for you to increase your earnings. For a time, first time users receive 100 free credits to get started but I'm not sure how long this promo is on. Go here to sign up and start sending visitors to your website now. Without targeted visitors your site can't grow and you cannot make the money you deserve. 



Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Travelling in the Spring

Spring is here and I don't know about you but I can't wait to travel to a sunny destination. The rainy weather and late snowfalls have made the winter drag on and on and I am so ready for the sun to shine at least for a few days in a row! Thankfully my husband and I have a Hawaii trip coming up this month. White sand, warm water, snorkeling, paddling and lots of adventures that we will pack into just over a week on the Big Island!  

Getting ready for a trip can sometimes be daunting as there are so many details to think about, Obviously booking your flights and place to stay are the big ones here but also smaller details like what to buy before hand, what to pack and take on the plane with you too.  I like to make lists and each time you travel it gets a little easier to know what you want to bring and what you can leave behind.  

Here is a set I put together to help with some ideas for you ladies to think about bringing in your carry on, on the plane. I like to be prepared so I thought these things were all fairly important.  You can also add a change of clothes to this, 



  Things I've learned when you are preparing to go on an airplane or long flight. 

Eat lightly the day before your travel.  Avoid all fast food! Grease is not your friend! Think about eating protein like chicken, fish or turkey as this will keep you satiated and is easier to digest. Fruits and non gaseous vegetables are fine to consume as well, just not too much.

On the flight bring snacks like bananas, nuts, veggie sticks and bottled water. You need to stay hydrated so drink plenty of water or light fruit juices even if it means more trips to the washroom.

Keep items like tums, antacids and something for stomach cramping in your carry-on. Gravol can be useful to keep nausea away. I like the Gravol with ginger and the one that is non-drowsy. I don't like to be lethargic or out of it on the flight. Mints are better than gum as chewing gum can cause indigestion because you swallow air as you chew. 

Well hope these tips help you and I hope you get to enjoy some sunshine wherever you travel. 




Thursday, March 9, 2017

Put Those Dental Fears Behind You

When you were a child do you remember being afraid of going to the dentist or were you one of the brave and happy kids that had no aversion to visiting a dental office?  I remember quite well being terrified of visiting the dentist. I think it had something to do with all of the dental tools, the 'big' chair and the guy in the mask, lol, I mean the dentist.  Many children and adults have convinced themselves that a dental office is a place to fear. Sometimes the adults actually pass this fear on to their children. Kids tend to get anxious and nervous about going to the dentist probably because they don't really know what to expect and it just seems scary to them. 

We are all well aware that consistent dental visits at least once a year but preferably twice is what most dentists recommend. There are many ways that dentists can help ease a child's anxiety over their visits. 

First off creating a playful, relaxed atmosphere and mood in the office can go a long way. Rooms with bright walls and colorful posters can help a child feel calm. A pediatric dental office is specially designed to make children feel welcome but if you can find a regular dentist that you feel is the right fit for your kids then that is perfectly fine. 

Offering each child a small toy, dental stickers along with a toothbrush and toothpaste at the end of the visit can help make the child feel special and promote good feelings for the next time they return. 

I love designing products for dental offices. Whimsical and unique designs to make an office a calm and relaxing place for people. 

Dental Office Products - find a variety of items to dress up your office. 

Here are a few items that I'm selling to dental offices. 







Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Not Just For Breakfast Anymore

Well today March 7th, is known as National Cereal Day. Did you know this? Cereal has become one of the most popular breakfast foods in America. Not only do people consume cereal for their morning meal but often as a quick dinner option and readily as a bedtime snack. It is loved equally by children and adults. 

Cold cereals are the most popular. The choices and varieties are endless from sugary sweet types to healthier flakes and grains.  It can also be made into breakfast bars and used in recipes for squares and cookies too.  Example: Rice Krispie Squares

In 1863 the first cold cereal called Granula was invented by James Caleb Jackson. Cereals now are enriched with vitamins and minerals. Many contain iron, thiamine, niacin and riboflavin and a high fiber content. Protein is there when milk is added. 

Cereal is known as a staple crop and provides more food energy than any other type of crop. All cereals fall into the category of cereals or grains. These include rice, brown rice, barley, wheat, millet, oats, maize, sorghum, rye and buckwheat to name several. 

Support this day by having a healthy bowl of cereal! 









Monday, February 27, 2017

Change Your Routines and Get Unstuck

Everybody has days or sometimes weeks when they feel completely stuck. By stuck I mean unable to move forward or gain ground in something. It might be a relationship for you, it may be in your fitness workouts, in your job, or perhaps you're simply in a creative rut. One can be stuck in big or small ways. Whatever it is you feel stuck in, it can make you feel very unsettled and anxious. 

One of the best ways to pull oneself out of a rut is to completely change up what you're doing. I mean if your sleeping in, get up earlier, if you're going to the gym in the afternoons switch your workout to mornings or evenings. If you're super strict with your eating give yourself a break and have a treat or if it's the other way around stopping eating so much junk food and substitute that for healthy snacks.  The idea is that you break the routines that might be making you stuck and gain some momentum by changing things up. 

Like today for instance, my plan was to head to the gym at 10 am but the weather (snowing again) changed those plans. Thanks to gym equipment at home and some motivational youtube clips I had a great workout this morning. No, it wasn't my usual gym workout but it was good to do a different workout using different muscle groups while do exercises that are a change from my normal gym routine. 

We can often become so focused on the situation or circumstance that we feel stuck in or are trying to get out of that we forget that we have choices and some control. It might be a negative attitude, a fear we hold, something that someone has said about us that might be playing a role in where we find ourselves. It may also be because our life pace is just to busy, making you feel tired and over worked. If we are always all about routines we will eventually find ourselves stuck. 

We are meant to continually learn and grow and try new things in this life. Limiting ourselves is something that comes from within and we can retrain our brains to change things up. So whether it is something small and simple like changing your gym routine, working different hours, spending more time with your kids or adding some traveling to your life. Go for it, break your routines once in awhile and you'll get unstuck. 



Thursday, February 16, 2017

Change and Challenges

Have you ever set yourself a goal that really challenges you? The month of January starting Jan. 1st I challenged myself to go without sugar for the entire month. Sugar was something I'd been reading and researching a lot about and had been wanting to cut back on for awhile. So it was a month of change and challenge for me. I do love chocolate and my husband has a big sweet tooth as well so he was often eating his treats while I ate a piece of fruit or nibbled on a few dates.  Now by not eating sugar for this time, I mean I had no desserts, no chocolate not even a mint during the month. I did not eliminate what is called hidden sugars, sugars that are found in things like maple syrup which I only had a couple of tablespoons of but I don't eat a lot of prepackaged or processed food anyway so this wasn't too big of an issue for me. 

I really only experienced a handful of days where I had strong cravings for chocolate but I did not cave in and powered through. I found if I changed up my routines and did things a little differently I could avoid thinking about what I was missing. 

As I wrote about the addiction to sugar in my last post this is kind of a continuation to let you know I survived the month. I found doing this really lets you take a step back and think about what you are feeding your body on a daily bases, I really consider now my choices for what I want to put in my body. I am eating way more fruit, nuts and seeds now in place of the sweets. Now that I know that I can handle leaving many of the sugar things out of my diet I feel so much better.  My gym workouts are better, I have more energy throughout my day.  It was a great challenge and I encourage you to give it a try if you want to boost your health and create a healthier lifestyle for yourself. 

List of Healthy Snacks to Replace Sweet Ones

- cut up fruit like apples, pineapple (my favorite) cantaloupe or whatever you like
- 1/4 cup of peanuts or walnuts
- pumpkin seeds
- 4 or 5 naturally sweetened dates
- a 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt, add your own fruit like blueberries or strawberries
- 1/4 cup of cooked oatmeal 

I hope this inspires you and challenges you to make a change in your own life. It can be whatever works for you.