jan_andrea: (wow)
... and bought the next Janome Memory Craft model. It's been out for a couple of years, and for a couple of years, I've been vacillating over whether to pick it up or not. I put it off for a long time, since my 6500 was pretty new when the 6600 came out, but now I wish I'd gotten it sooner! It's an amazing machine -- everything my 6500 has, plus a number of other great features, not least of which is a built-in walking foot. I've sewn a couple of thick slings with it now, and it makes a *huge* difference. It's really quiet, too. Shiny all around. I kept my 6500 rather than trading it in -- they offer only 10% of the purchase price for trades no matter what kind of machine you're trading in, and the 6500 is worth way more than that. So I'm thinking that if [livejournal.com profile] brunahildm wants to, she can sew for me on the 6500 while I sew on the 6600, and I'll be able to take more orders, which would make my potential customers happy!

The 6600 isn't inexpensive by any means -- I paid $1149 for it at my local sewing machine store -- but I figured it's an investment in my business. It's already saving me time, too: you can reprogram the stitches (something I *really* wanted on the 6500!) and since I was constantly changing between stitches and having to adjust them each time, it should cut at least 5 minutes from my sewing each day. Doesn't sound like much, but sometimes 5 minutes is the difference between comfortably finishing by 11am and having to rush down to get Sophia. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who does a lot of sewing! It's an incredible machine, and a big step from the 6500.
jan_andrea: (clear)
Yay! I just upgraded the pages on my site to actually use PHP. I had changed the pages to .php extensions earlier, to allow the page to query my database and see how many "points" were left, but that was all. Then I redid the page layout and such of SlingRings.com and all their pages had been previously redone to use PHP in a more meaningful way -- to whit, to actually build the pages using PHP. I had been getting really annoyed with my pages, because every once in a while, my cart hiccups and an option which is in stock will show as out of stock, forever, unless I duplicate the option and change the product to use the duplicate instead of the original. Annoying when it's one option on one product, but when it was the points -- which are used in *every* product and which needs to be queried by the page -- it was disastrous, because the way I had set my pages up previously, I had to re-upload the ENTIRE site when I changed the cell being queried. Okay, that's a lot of technical sounding stuff, but really, it was just obnoxious because I had to re-upload every file whenever this hiccup happened with the points. Now, it's one file that says "query the points" and so, if the points hiccup (which they had done this week), I can easily change what I need to change and be done with it.

I also just changed the links that I have on my journal -- it has been at least two years, I'm guessing, because I no longer visited at least a couple, and the link to my own site was broken (due to the .html to .php changeover). So now there are links to the other blogs I actually visit on a daily basis (besides my LJ friends, of course), as well as to my new business blog, which I still need to tweak. But, I'll work on that later. Now, I need to get to bed!
jan_andrea: (wow)
As I was showering, I was composing in my head the entry I wanted to write -- how I had just read the book "Zen Shorts" (click and read the reviews) to the kids and it had really moved me, in a way that makes me think either I need to become a Buddhist (an atheist Buddhist?) or that my period is coming really soon -- but that's not what I'm writing right now.

Instead, I'm going to moan and kvetch for just a bit. I've been trying to grab the domain sleepingbaby.com for six years now, ever since I started my little business. This week, I thought I was finally going to get it. The previous registrar hadn't done *anything* with it (you'd get a blank screen if you typed it in), and the expiration date was moved to 27 September 2006. I have domain monitoring and backordering set up with GoDaddy for it, so when it became available, it would finally be MINE! But, of course, that's not how it went down. One of those wretched bulk registrars snapped it up, and is holding it hostage for YET ANOTHER YEAR. It's not like people stumbling on the content they now have at www.sleepingbaby.com is going to fool anyone looking for *my* site into buying crap about solving their baby's sleep problems -- people going to sleepingbaby.com looking for slings will (I hope) just try other versions of the name. So I wrote an angry letter to the address that comes up at the bottom, explaining my ire and frustration, and then went to the site of the bulk registrar, swallowed my indignation, and "bid" on what should be my own damn name to the tune of about $250 once all the fees are added up, assuming the a$$wipes who snagged it will play ball for such a small token, which they probably won't >:(

This just really ticks me off. I *loathe* those bulk registrars, soaking small businesses who can ill afford it, and in general making the web browsing experience a more difficult and frustrating one for people trying to find the right site. AAAARRRRRGGGGGHHHHHH!

But, this was really supposed to be about "Zen Shorts". And the most important lesson that I took away from the book is to let go of what you can't change.

So. I've had my little anger session about the $&%*$& domain name theives, and it's time for me to accept that either they will sell it to me, or I will simply let it go and be content with sleepingbaby.net. Which is not easy for me. Really really.

Paraphrasing the parable: two monks were walking through the countryside, when they happened upon a well-dressed woman being carried by her two servants. She was stuck up on her platform; the road was covered with water and mud, and her servants could not carry her because there was no place to put down her baggage and thus, herself. So they stood in the rain while she berated them. The older monk took her from the platform, carried her across the muddy road to her house, and without even a thank you, she went inside in a huff. The younger monk watched in silence. As they continued their walk, he brooded about the shabby way his teacher had been treated by the rich woman. Finally, after several hours had passed, he asked his teacher, "Why did you not say anything to the woman? You did a good deed for her, and she did not even thank you!" His teacher replied, "I put her down hours ago. Why are you still carrying her?"

That really gets me. Why am I still carrying so much? It's not as though I even have that much to carry, honestly; I've had a great life, but still brood on past events like that. And, for what? Why am I still carrying them?

And then, though, the cynic raises her head and says, "Well, sure -- with that kind of attitude, why bother voting, or speaking out against injustice at all? Isn't that also just carrying the woman?"

So I need some help here. I probably have a very warped, Westernized view of Buddhism -- existence is suffering, and all that. But there must be a balance between letting go, and making change, right? Existence may *sometimes* be suffering, but if you *can* change it, you *should*, right? Not that I'm looking for rules -- I'd never stop, say, making donations, or trying to do things in person to help others, or voting -- but where is the balance? Do you put down the personal, while keeping the global? Or am I just overthinking this with the zeal of someone who's just "discovered" something new?

Oy vey

Jul. 11th, 2006 03:56 pm
jan_andrea: (faucet)
There's no adequate atheist equivalent expression for "dear god in heaven", but, dear god in heaven, USPS is so friggin' slow today!!! I use Click n' Ship for my labels, because you get free delivery confirmation and sort of tracking, but it's taken more than 40 minutes to get my 5 labels processed. I'm seeing at least 3 minutes between each page. I would just write them out by hand, but I really like having the DC and tracking, so I'll just whine instead.

Plus I've caught up with all my LJ friends' journals, and  the one forum I go to is being awfully quiet, so there isn't even anything for me to read while I wait. (pout)

Charities

May. 1st, 2006 05:50 pm
jan_andrea: (happy sgl)
Just did my monthly charitable giving -- 10% of my gross sales. Man, that feels good! It was such a busy month (and I mean busy -- I had 99 paid orders in April!!!) that I was able to give $320. That's almost $1000 ($955 to be exact) for the year to date!

Yes, I'm bragging about my charitable giving :) I never said I was humble, did I?

Anyway. Back to your regularly scheduled Friends page (or blog, if you're just reading mine).

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