What I'm Thankful For
This year has been a year of growth and change. From the new studio space, to improving the Bramble Berry warehouse processes to handle the influx of new crafters, to having a 1st grader, to reconnecting with some of the artisan crafts I loved in my late teens/early twenties, it’s been a full year. I’m grateful for such a full and colorful life. As I've been reflecting on the past year, here are five of the things I am most thankful for:
The Passage of Time
Watching children grow and change is one of the most obvious markers of time. It is a paradox that the older you get, the faster time accelerates. Watching your children take on skills (learn to read, ride a bike, use a knife, and clean their rooms) is like watching the fulfilment of time’s greatest value. For adults, it feels like time is a treadmill of to-do lists, meetings, and "shoulds." It’s comforting and fun to watch the graceful, gentle passage of time through my children’s eyes.
Every year that passes, I am thankful or those that surround me in their kindness and intellect. Not only is Bellingham a just-small-enough town, but I am blessed to have a wide support network. It ranges from friends that I can call to just grab a quick cup of coffee, my kind and thoughtful husband and parents, to hiking buddies, to my Mastermind Group that is invaluable for thoughtful business discussion. Community is what makes life sweet, in between the rush rush rush of the season, the natural self-centeredness of our daily lives and the confusion of balancing present with future planning.
Space to Explore
I have longed for a creative space of my own, and, for a while, I had it. The Soap Queen studios were a refuge in the chaos of business—a place for me to push my creative boundaries and connect with customers in a meaningful way. Slowly, the Soap Queen studios got a little more crowded as we moved product testing there, took on blog assistants and expanded content creation. So that meant things like my desire to deeply immerse in the art of fermentation needed to take a back seat. Now, with a big, beautiful studio, I have my creative space back, and 2018 is shaping up to be a year of dabbling. I couldn’t be more excited.
Technology Seamlessly Connects
There is always a double edged sword with technology: I am never away from work, but it allows me to travel, to work, to explore and to still be connected with the team, my work and the Bramble Berry community at large. This year, my Mom and I went to the Galapagos Islands for 10 days. When I first started Bramble Berry, technology just wasn’t advanced enough for me to ever consider taking 10 days to go away. Technology is a barrier crusher; the barriers to entry are lower than ever to start a business and technology allows me to stay connected.
Innovation and Courage
One of Bramble Berry’s values is "growth requires our innovation and courage." This year has been one of growth for the entire team. I am so thankful to have a group of courageous innovators to work with. This year, we expanded Bramble Berry’s sandbox to be a partner with you on your entire creative journey and rolled out a new way to communicate with customers and friends across diverse social media platforms. Each and every one of you inspire me every day as well and I am thankful for customers, for makers, and for indies all over the world. Happy (American) Thanksgiving!