Confetti Weekend: Vending Woes and Triumphs

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Top of the morning to you! I had a great weekend filled with vending at two different events. One was the Colonial Park UMC Fall Arts & Crafts Festival and the other was the 4th Annual Purple Meets Pink Affair (for Domestic Violence Survivors & Breast Cancer Survivors). Let’s get the WOES out of the way, shall we?

The Woes: I was affected by the storm and tornado that came through on Monday morning of last week. My power was out until FRIDAY evening and I had my entire week planned to finish up and prepare for both events. I had to crochet in the day and go to my parents in the evening and return home at night. It was cold at night and I have Rheumatoid Disease. I layered my quilts. I eventually got a hotel room Thursday night until Saturday morning. I crocheted all Friday night and slept for 4 hours and did the event. In the midst of this I finalized the ending of a relationship after seeing something with my own eyes. This person was also suppose to help me with both shows. I had no idea how I was going to do all of this. I was incredibly STRESSED and in so much pain. My daughter called me from college Friday and said “Mom, my classmate is coming home and I am going to ride to come and help you with your events.” She had no idea about the power being out, nor the break up. I did not want to concern her with those things because she should be focused on her classes. I was exhausted before she ever arrived. I did tell her once she got here. She was a HUGE help as she has been my helper as long as she could walk and talk lol. Anyways, I made it through both events and the last one I had to do all by myself, but she helped load everything into the car before she returned to school on Sunday. I had two very supportive phone calls from one stranger during that week about the break up, depression and anxiety. She is an in your face truth kind of person. I needed that. Plus, I realize Mercury is in Scorpio and this is the season of BOLD TRUTH AND BRUTAL HONESTY. Boy did I get a HEAP (as my granny would say) of that at the end of this relationship. A HEAP (just had to say it again).

Now on to TRIUMPH!

The rain slowed the crowd down at the Arts and Crafts festival that morning. But then as I suspected and prayed for, all of us vendors in my area were praying, the rain slacked and the people came in like a flood! I sold so much of my crocheted items and even a piece of art! I met numerous vendors, received great advice and made many connections. I also learned of more places I could vend and sell. I also learned how to get into the fairs that come to our city. I learned about a huge event in St. Louis. It was a great Saturday although I was tired, in pain, and I slept like a log when I did get home. I put on my smiling face and greeted every customer.

Sunday I was ready to go to the second event. The event itself was inspiring and once again I met some great business owners. I shopped with them and they with me. I did very well at this event for it to me a small crowd. The people there were very supportive and so were the vendors.

Here are some photos of the other amazing and gifted vendors from both events. Plus, the things I purchased!

This is my haul from the events. It’s important to support other vendors!

~Nikki

Thinking Bigger

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I’ve been thinking bigger. I am just as great as Oprah, Tyler, James Patterson, Stephen King, Ferragamo, Louis Vuitton, Jay Renee etc. I see their methods. They have laid out their blueprints. And you know what, it’s all about determination, belief in your self, shutting out the critics, focus, never giving up (faith), drive, being prepared for the opportunities, going against the grain, walking away when it wasn’t right for them, taking risks and learning from it all. I love to hear Stephen King on interviews about his writing and career. He gives inspiring advice and so does James Patterson. Yes, I know sometimes as an AA it’s harder for us. Some people can get a deal on mediocre content based on their skin color and who they know (But I know somebody, too! ). But that doesn’t stop my flow or kill my vibe. It doesn’t put my fire out. Some want to help, some want to hinder, all I need is discernment and to trust my gut. This year, I am going to give it all I got and let my Creator and Angels do the rest. I’m going to push the envelope pertaining to my beliefs. #44Presidential

Crocheted Vacay Shawls: Officially Known as Travel Shawls

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Well, the shawl epidemic all started when a package arrived for me from Italy. It was yarn my cousin sent to me as she is stationed there are is a knitter. She had no idea turquoise was my favorite color. It took me a while to figure out what you make and by the time I got around to it Summer showed up and skipped Spring here in Memphis, TN. I decided to make a shawl for the beach. The colors were appropriate! It reminded me of the ocean.

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I completed it and was delighted. I then was ask to make another one. The inspiration was a poster board I had and I decided to name this one Sunrise.

The one below reminds me of Spring. Eclectic Spring. I like to name my inspirations! These are great for travel in the Spring and Summer because they are breathable shawls yet, they are able to keep you cozy and stylish on a plane, train, or automobile. Cool mornings or late nights on a breezy beach or lake.

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I do make these to sale and yes, I do ship!

~Nikki

Just Keep Writing/Creating/Dreaming

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As a writer and an author, if I were to be honest with you (which I choose to do because why not?), being a babe in this industry can be frustrating, confusing, challenging, discouraging, and frightening. Literally, for those of us who are starving artists and care more about the art than being fed at times, until you hear the growl in your belly or notice the negative sign in your bank account. We work, we hustle, we do whatever we can to produce the best work possible. Many of us don’t have big bank accounts to match our big dreams. At least, not yet. However, we will save, we will sell, we will do whatever it takes to see the pieces of works manifest.

I have two novels I need edited. I have learned the hard way, the hard headed way, I cannot edit my own books. So as I vet our editors, I also vet out pricing. In average I need about $350 per book for the editorial services I desire. I do some soft editing, writers organization and consulting, book formations (manuscripting) and etc. for a heavily discounted price. I’m like the blue collar consultant (lol). Right now my two novels are on soft release on amazon. Before I go full fledge promotion, I want them to be the best they can be grammatically. I have received amazing feedback and I know I have the gift.

I wanted to encourage some writers, artists, creators today because I had that tiny feeling that “things are not going my way as easily as I had planned! Not as quickly as I want them to!” When deep down inside you know this is like the artist “right of passage.” Your initiation into the creative world.

JUST KEEP CREATING! JUST KEEP SAVING YOUR COINS! JUST KEEP WRITING! KEEP COOKING! KEEP PAINTING! AND NOW I SHALL BREAK OUT INTO THE CHORUS: “DON’T STOP!…BELIEVIN! DON’T STOP! BELIEVIN!” #JOURNEY Sing along everybody!!!

 

~Nikki

Creative Comrades: ON YOUR MARKS

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It’s the quiet thought that floats around in the back of your mind as you create your work of art, your book, or your music. I don’t know where you may have gotten it from, television, some disparaging soul, or authority figure. You know “You can’t make a living being an artist” some doubtful person poured into your subconscious. When I hear some sort of doubt rise in the back of my mind about being creative as an artists or writer, I always think about if I am being creative ONLY for an income. No, I am not. I am being creative because its who I am and I can not separate that from my being.

If you have hidden your creativity and stuffed it somewhere in the closet  of your heart, because of what someone thought or of a bad experience, you are not as happy as you are pretending to be. So, I am here to encourage you today with the TRUTH and that is “YOU DO NOT NEED ANYBODY’S PERMISSION TO LIVE A CREATIVE LIFE”- ELIZABETH GILBERT

Confidence Seed. Take Root.

 

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Where there is smoke, there is fire.
Where there is fear, there is a lack of confidence. You’ve got the gift or gifts but, what’s holding you back? Is it the thought that you can’t do it? Maybe you sorta kinda feel that you can but, you just don’t know.

Confidence is more than saying I can do it. Confidence is a strong conviction that you CAN do it. It has to take ROOT in your core being. But how? For those of us that lack self confidence. I’m writing this via the spirit, on the fly, given to me as I type. So, here we go in no order or logic to my knowledge:

Some of us never had confidence so to speak (I believe you are born with it but, many times it needs to be nurtured as a child. Hence, confidence building. Then there are others that just have it). If you were a child brought up in an environment that tore your confidence down daily, you may not have been fortunate enough to have had the mental fortitude to survive that. On the other hand, some of you in that environment held on to that voice on the inside telling you  “you can do it” but, you’re still lacking the confidence. Illnesses, accidents, tragedies, huge setbacks, have a way of merely destroying our confidence. If you allow it and let’s be honest, some of us have allowed it. No guilt.

Confidence comes from knowing that you’re already equip with some knowledge of how to manifest your gift and knowing that whatever you don’t know will come to you via research, another person that has already paved the way, or stumbling upon a method through trial and error. Call it divine intervention or instructions. “Something” told me to…I just so happen to be at…
Confidence is strengthened by trial and error. You gain the “how to” through the “don’t do.”-Nicole Jackson. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Mistakes are teachers. Thank the teacher. Accept the answer and move forward.
Confidence is planted by action. You’ve got confidence. You’ve been SAYING IT, THINKING IT but have you been DOING IT? IMAGINE a seed 🌱 in your hand. And you look at it and say “I can plant it. I will plant it. I am planting it.” You lay down and you “think about planting it. See yourself planting it” but you’re still holding the seed in your hand! When you ACTUALLY take  ACTION is when the seed will get planted. The more you do your gift, the more confidence grows and deepens its ROOT in your soul. In your psyche. Doing your gift is the watering, sunlight, weeding.
You want your confidence to take root? Don’t mind the weather. Don’t mind the naysayers and the negative thoughts that come to you discourage you. If you do, you’ll be digging up the confidence seed. Bonus: Confidence also can be planted in any season.
This is all the Holy Spirit gave me and I have shared it with you!

do-your-best

~Nikki

What’s the Occasion?

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Sunday Morning Coffee Musings

I don’t know the specifics of the occasion but, I do know it’s time to rise to it. It takes strength to rise. It takes courage to rise. Think about all the muscles at work when you rise from a seated position. Think about how much more strength when you’re weak and you have to rise. Some of us will need a little more strength. Some of us may need a hand.

I myself, need the the courage to rise to the occasion in my life. It’s time for me to be brave. I must confess, I’m not feeling very brave. I’m a little timid about rising to my call in my life. That’s my occasion. Why are you afraid Nikki? Well, I’m afraid I might do the wrong thing. I’m afraid I might mess it up. I’m afraid I might not do it the way others think I should and they will talk about me. It’s not just fear. It’s a paralyzing fear stemming from childhood.

So here we are. Some searching for strength and others for courage. Perhaps, both. We don’t have to search too far because it’s already in us. What we need is a made up mind to rise… No matter the outcome. What we need is knowing that it will all work out and we will learn along the way and this will help us to build more strength and courage to keep going forward. We can’t be afraid of trial and error. We can’t be ashamed if we make a mistake. We’ve been taught these things are bad things. All of our mistakes and failures in school, in life, on the job, by family friends and strangers are often HIGHLIGHTED. Don’t we do the same to others?

Sigh. Yet, it’s still time. The occasion is knocking gently at your door. Patiently, waiting on you to gather the strength and the courage to rise.

~Nikki