{I did it! I did it!}

Ya’ll, I have a soul-bursting announcement…

I have put in my 2-weeks notice at my day job,
and in 14 days I’ll be working exclusively on Gussy!!!

Can you believe it?

I’m not sure if I believe it’s REALLY here — that it’s REALLY time to be sharing this, making this public. Now you’re probably wondering, What is the Family Goal for?

Well… that is another surprise and I think it will be revealed in exactly 2 weeks. Can you wait two weeks? Please say yes.

The most exciting part has just begun: Monday, May 17 is my first day as an exclusive Gussy girl.

But… also in two weeks I have some advice to share and tips to reveal on how Zack and I were able to get to this amazing, exciting, LIFE-CHANGING goal.

Yep — Zack was and is a big part of it all :]

OK. I’m going to step away from the computer and let this soak in some more. My brain is just a little, tiny bit tired. Keeping secrets is hard, you know. Tee he he.

I did it! I did it! Yeowwwwwwwwww!

And ya’ll helped :]
Thank you!

My heart is just sooo happy…

[All photos credit of www.weheartit.com].

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{Featured Artist :: Uniquely E Jewelry}

This giveaway is now closed!

Here at Gussy has a lot to say {and sew} we love to look at all things beautiful. Beautiful fabrics, beautiful colors, beautiful stories about finding joy and inner creativity.

Today marks week #21 of my series on Featured Artists, which is a bi-monthly event showcasing fun and sassy handmade shops! I love searching for new wares to show the Gussy community. You can read all back Featured Artist posts by clicking here.

Please join me in welcoming Erika at Uniquely E Jewelry.


What inspires you?

There are so many things that I cannot even begin to list them out in a short answer. To sum it up I’ll say that everything from hardware to gemstones… I love it all.

Where do you call home? Are you from there originally?

I live in beautiful San Diego, CA and will never willingly live anywhere else! I was born here and have lived in Denver, CO twice — both times I came running back to this place I proudly call home!

Name something unique to where you live.

We are home to the one and only world famous San Diego Zoo!

How did you come up with your shop name?

My name is Erika and I wanted to incorporate that into a business name somehow… My designs are my own blood, sweat, and tears and I like to think of them as uniquely mine — hence the name Uniquely E!

Share a little bit about yourself.

I’m a Christian, wife, mother, student, jewelry designer with a million things running through my head at any given time. I adore my husband, cherish my son, love my dog, and lock my keys in the car more times then anyone I know.

If you had to describe yourself in a word, what would that word be?


What made you decide to open up shop?

I love creating jewelry and started making ludicrous amounts of it. I realized that in order to fund my hobby I needed to sell some pieces… my friends and family reacted so positively that I decided to try and make a go of selling online… So far so good!

Name your favorite thing about selling handmade.

I genuinely love the opportunity my shop gives me to be a stay-at-home mom. Above and beyond that anything is an added bonus but I’d have to say that I love the connection I get to make with each customer. People who buy handmade are searching for that “something special” that can only be found through handmade products. I enjoy all of the tiny details of packaging up my items; from the item itself, to the pillow boxes I spent hours designing and making, down to the tiny handmade thank you notes I write to each customer. I love knowing someone will open their package in the mail and smile.

Do you have a day job or sell on Etsy full-time?

I am a stay-at-home mom of a 3-year-old little boy, full-time student pursuing my BA in Psychology, and wife attempting to transition my jewelry designs from “way too much to be called a hobby” into a “genuine business”. If only I could figure out how to grow a few extra sets of hands…

Give us a little glimpse into what a typical day in your life looks like.

My day begins the night before when I try and psych myself up to get up earlier the next day. I set an alarm for a totally unrealistic time and give myself a little pep talk that it will be good for me to get an early start….


Then reality hits and the night has already passed too quickly. I usually enjoy my coffee with a toddler in my lap and my computer being smeared with whatever is for breakfast (shhhh, don’t tell my computer technician husband).

I try and get some admin work done while my little guy has some playtime. My Etsy shop usually gets some renewing, listing, convo answering attention and I stalk all of my favorite twitter tweeps for a little while.

Then it’s errands, housework, and other mommy/wifely duties for a few hours.

Naptime is my time and I thank God everyday for the blessing of a good napper! My son typically sleeps for 2 ½-3 hours in the afternoon so I try and cram as much as I can into that window of time. Usually this is the time I get some photography in as the light is good, then it’s on to creating and designing, and more twitter stalking and distractions.

Hubby gets home and then it is dinner and family time, bath and bedtime for the little guy and some one-on-one time with my incredible husband. Typically I have schoolwork and other Etsy related things to work on in the evening. I tend to create things in waves. I go a few days without making anything and then two days in a row I’m like a lunatic who can’t be pulled away from my desk. Usually massive amounts of coffee and Ben and Jerry’s peanut butter cup ice cream are consumed on those days…

Share with us a favorite Etsy purchase or shop.

I cannot honestly say that there is one shop that is my favorite. I’ve made some really amazing connections through the Labrats Team on Etsy (woot woot) and have to say that there are some incredibly talented sellers out there. I love way, way, way too many to list… or even hope to choose just one.

List a few of your most favorite pastimes.

I truly just adore spending time with my husband and son. We spend so much time just being together, whether it’s a planned outing or designated “relaxation” days, it’s always a blessing to witness God’s work in our little family. We’re incredibly laid back and value spontaneity. Often times we are content with just “being” at home together. We can each be doing our own thing but there is comfort in the companionship under the same roof.

Read any good books lately?

I can’t remember if I know how to read… what does free time to read a book feel like?

What is your most prized possession?

I’m going to go with my hard drive… All of our family photos and memories are saved on that bad boy… If the house is burning, hubby grabs the little guy and I grab the dog and the hard drive.

What are three of your favorite foods?

Peanut butter, blueberry bagels with cream cheese, and deli-sliced ham (I know, totally appetizing all stated together aren’t they?)

What would you like to learn to do?

Precious metal clay. I love to work with polymer clay, so PMC seems like a great next step… who wants to buy me a kiln???

What are you listening to right now?

Absolute blissful silence… It only happens at this time of night (midnight).

Name one place you must visit in your lifetime and why.

Europe, hands down. Because there is nothing more romantic to me then the idea of kissing my husband in front of the Eiffel Tower after traipsing across historic places in Italy, Spain, and France. I know that is painfully cliché and totally unoriginal — but I’ve always wanted to see all it, so there!


The Giveaway Goods:

Erika is giving away this necklace:

To enter:

Leave a comment sharing where you’d wear it!

For extra entries {leave a comment for each}:
  • Tweet about this: Enter to win some sassy jewelry from @uniquelyejwlry via @GussySews http://u.nu/2aiu8
  • Blog about it

  • The giveaway will close Sunday, May 2 at 10 pm CST, and the winner will be announced the following day
  • An email address must be listed on your blog profile or in the comment you leave


Please check back Friday, May 14 for another Featured Artist post!

Additional links for Uniquely E Jewerly:

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{we are all interconnected}



Yesterday I put out on the table that I was having a little bit of a rough day. Nothing “serious” — normal life things — but it was still rough. Stress, headaches, tension, nerves, doubt, guilt. Oh, should I stop now?! Just life in general… it wears on me if I don’t take enough time for myself. In fact, I’m noticing it wears on us all if we don’t take enough time for ourselves.

Know what I’m sayin’?

{Apparently at least 14 of you do because last I checked there were 14 comments on this post: {breathing space} :] }

Today is much better though. Zack and I had a lovely dinner {I even wore an apron while cooking because HELLO! white shirt + lasagna = a hott mess.} Then we caught up on some TV shows, ate some popcorn, smooched. It was really great. Very relaxing, no pressure or deadlines on my mind tonight.

As the evening winded down I said to Zack, Ya know, I’m really glad I have some great mentors in my life. People that are like 5-10 years +/- than me… they hear my little Gussy cries and just come running to share their wisdom. Totally love that!

Then Zack said, Oh, like me? I’m like 5-10 months older than you. And I come running when you cry.

Yes, 5 months, Z. But you’re right, you do come running to me…


But as I was saying… there is such joy in this community. I love it. And to everyone that commented, didn’t comment, read my post and is yet to read my post — I’m praying for ya’ll!!!

We can accomplish so much more when we realize we aren’t alone.

So tell me, how are things for you today? Are they better?

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{breathing space}

Things are a lot crazy {I was going to write “a little,” but who am I kidding?!} over here in Gussy land. I need to remember that a lot of the crud is coming from the devil. God will bring us all glory — He does bring us all glory. It’s important I have my eyes open so I can see it. Some times we need a little breathing space so we can find the clarity again.


This post was originally published January 2010:

There are times, and I admit more times than I’d like to admit, that I feel like the devil is trying to bring me down. Trying to take away my energy to sew. Trying to tell me my work isn’t good enough or that no one wants to own a Gussy. Other times I don’t hear from the devil at all, but from God.

Showing me to keep doing what I’ve been doing. Blessing me with 299 sales {yeow!}. Blessing me with the funds to attend Blissdom 2010 in a blink of the eye.

But then, when it’s been too good for too long, it seems like I hear from the d. again. Yes. He’s so pitiful I couldn’t even type his name. That darn devil. Trying to sneak in and ruin my evening.

Telling me to be jealous of others achievements, and other ridiculous things that I don’t even want to think about anymore now that thinking about them :]

Be gone.

Shoo away.

You aint welcome here.

I don’t need to feel like that. I shouldn’t let those thoughts linger. I need to be reading my Bible more and feeding myself with the Word. I need to let God into my Gussy head more so I can do what he wants me to do. Like cook, sew, and talk.

I feel a need to incorporate a good Bible verse into my Sweat Shop

For now, this one is a good one to focus on:

Matthew 6:34
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

…each day has a ton of blessings that I need to be seeing :]

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