(In case you missed them, start with Part 1 and Part 2!)
The adventure continues...
So what is next for JSS? As I type this right now, we have a team of 10 women AND.... Wes! (who joined us part-time about 4 months ago... he continues to work as an RN a few days a week and then manages our wood shop a few days a week), and a few other wonderful guys who help us out in the wood shop as well. Our team consists of my mother-in-law Linda (shipping queen), one of my best lifelong friends Staci, my sister-in-law Emily, three cousins- Nicci, Laura, and Gretchen, some long-time friends- Bonnie and Becky, and Heather, Crystal, and LeAnn who have grown into friends as well.
(A team photo, taken during our Christmas 2017 shopping day)
Though it is an incredible joy to work with women that I love so much, AND get to go to work with my husband a few days a week!, it doesn't mean that growing a business is all rainbows and butterflies.
(Wes and I, on our first day of work TOGETHER!)
There was the time that our lettering paint stopped sticking to the boards. There was the first time that we sold 100 signs in a single day and had NO idea how we were going to be able to get them all sent out on time. There was the time that we painted about 100 cutout words for orders and half of them got their paint jobs messed up before we could get them sent out. The list of "yikes, now what?!" situations could go on and on. But I'm proud to say that none of the set backs have deterred me from the mission of charging forward and overcoming... I'd like to think that this attitude of perseverance has transferred to my life in other ways, and I truly hope that our kids are quietly (or let's be real... loudly) watching and learning this resolve as well.
Besides, the joys have far outweighed any of the setbacks. One of the major highlights of our journey up until this point would have to include road tripping to Waco, TX with our two daughters to deliver a load of signs to be sold at The Findery. Wes had met the owner when he and I were vacationing in Austin/Waco, and through that connection we ended up with the opportunity to wholesale some of our signs to them! The Findery is a BEAUTIFUL shop located just a block from the famous Magnolia Market and Silos! The 36 hour roundtrip truck ride provided a great time to connect with our two daughters, and the entire experience was just such a fun blessing.
(Making memories on our road trip to Waco!)
(The Findery in Waco, TX)
(The load we delivered to The Findery!)
Also right at the top of the highlights has been working alongside my dad; he actually rents some space in the same building that we are in where he operates his little antique business called Objects. We get to help each other out and check out each other's customers when one of us isn't there. The opportunity to work right alongside so many family members is such a sweet life experience, and getting to connect with my dad in this way is truly special. We might have butted heads a few times as we were both setting up shop, but things have worked themselves out and now I wouldn't trade it ;).
Although I'm pretty sure I scared the pants off of my parents when I quit my school job, I think that they are proud of the growth and determination that they have seen us have. My little sister Erin has been a wonderful support to JSS, as she has shared our business with the fans of her blog, Living in Yellow; that has been a resource I'll forever be grateful for as well.
(My little sister Erin and I... one of my favorite people in the whole world!)
The possibilities and ideas I have for JSS excite me every day. Apparently I was built with a creative soul (and maybe we all are really... maybe it just looks different in each of us), and it seems to thrive in this type of work. For a time, I felt guilty that I wasn't more excited about my "helping profession" as a counselor... I was convinced that growing a business must be a selfish endeavor. However, I am slowly learning and seeing the beauty in operating out of my gifts and passions, and that God built me this way for a reason. I'd like to think that the signs we create are impacting homes, that the women I work with are able to experience joy and growth through working in our environment, and ultimately maybe I can inspire or encourage others to trust God and pursue the gifts that and talents that He has given each of us. My mother-in-law, Linda, likes to say that working at JSS feels a lot like working in a flower shop and I would have to agree. Every time a sign ships out of our doors, or gets hand selected by an in-store customer, it is our great honor to feel that we are spreading a little joy to the walls and hearts of one more home.
("May our walls know joy"... one of our best-selling signs to date!)
If you have made it to the end of this story... and even if you haven't... THANK YOU! Thank you for following us through social media, subscribing to our emails, or stopping by our shop. We long to serve our customers well, as we realize that it is only because of you that we get to do this work that we love! As I reflect over the first two years of our growing business, my heart is so full. Full of a greater understanding of God's love for me and His design for my life, full of gratitude at the amazing hearts of the customers, employees, and community members (locally and online) who have opened their hands, hearts, and yes, their wallets, to support us. Cheers to the next two years and beyond at JSS... we have some exciting new products and features in the works, and above all, we can't wait to see what God unfolds next!
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