Aug 21, 2014

A long winded explanation as to why I am closing my shop - 
I warn you, there are probably 20+ run on sentences, lots of exclamations points  
 and a paragraph or two where I get on my soapbox...proceed with caution. ;-p 
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A couple weeks back Jesse [my husband, for those of you who don't know who he is] and myself received some information from our church regarding our adoption process. Since January we had been gathering paper work, taking classes, filling out questionnaires, all for the hopes of being able to adopt. 

The last big step before putting yourself out there is to have a home inspection.  A month ago when it was finally time for our home inspection we got called into our church's family services offices and were told the sad news that they wouldn't be able to help place us with a baby due to my student debt being so high, and the debt to income ratio worried them. Needless to say, both Jesse and I were shocked, devastated and surprised. Surprised because I had been making my $1,200 + payments every month for two years straight and that didn't show for anything?

For the past 2 years we have been trying to get pregnant. Jesse is 30 and I am 33...  Many friends close to me have asked in the two years if I have seen an infertility specialist, and the answer is no...not yet, I will be now though. I'm sure many of you have thought me not going to see a specialist is the stupidest thing ever. However, if you were in my shoes maybe you would understand where I am coming from... having student debt of $204,000 [that does not included a masters] hanging over your head every day is pretty depressing.. especially since right now, all my payments do is pay off interest... even more depressing...and so... the last thing I want to do is accrue any more debt. Would you??

For me..the thought of going to a doctor and trying to figure out what is wrong with my body just brings up dollar signs. It's the fear of the unknown...BUT that unknown could be something as simple as getting on chlomid and getting pregnant swiftly... or it could be the other case and having tons of tests/procedures etc.  For this reason, that is why Jesse and I chose to look into adoption through our church. They have a flat fee of 10% of your income which caps at 10K but a minimum payment of 4k. And if you do your homework and research, you can end up getting a lot of that money back from taxes. So it was a win win situation for us... Our "plan" was to try to adopt, hopefully get placed with a baby and then save a bunch of money to look into infertility. So much for planning... you know that quote by John Lennon "life happens when your busy making plans"....well that has sure been true for us. :-p

Now, Jesse and I could easily be annoyed at my church [we are of the L.D.S. faith]  for not helping us with our situation...but the weird part about all of this is, that since getting denied this opportunity [for now] it has actually brought us even closer. :] So, Jesse decided to take a couple days off work so we could process everything together and figure out our next step towards starting a family.  
Seeing an infertility specialist is something that we are now ready to pursue - there will be a cap of how much we will spend obviously from the above mentioned... and hopefully, there's nothing wrong with me...and it will all be easily nailed.  x fingers crossed x :]

OKAY, so the reason for why I've decided to close my shop.  S T R E S S ! This is thee biggest and consistent issue I deal with. I have a retarded thyroid condition [Hashimotos] which makes it harder to get pregnant, AND i'm constantly stressed. So with having those two factors always working against me, it's no wonder that my body is having a hard time conceiving.  After the news of our adoption process being denied I just kept thinking over and over that I need to alleviate as much stress as possible.  Jesse and I then made a list of what basically brought me anxiety.  And that was simply running a business.

I am NOT a business woman. Entrepreneur, YES...but business..numbers, finances, legal stuff... it is so above and beyond me, and honestly...it's not anything that I even care or want to learn. Then there is marketing and advertising, taxes, payroll, making sure customers are happy, making sure you're not stepping on anyone's toes, managing people, managing personalities, keeping it together, trying to come up with new designs all while managing the other stuff...and this is just the tip of the ice berg. 

The last two years though I have learned a lot. When starting a business, especially if it is does well, you will learn who your true friends are, who really wants to see you succeed and who would honestly love to see you fail. That's a bold statement huh! but it is the truth... it's totally hurtful, knowing that what you're doing or creating is getting a lot of positive attention but yet so many people around you can't handle that, they look inside themselves and start to compare and feel less than...it's like  that quote "comparison is the thief of joy" and on a daily basis comparison is robbing people of feeling joy and true happiness for others successes, be it something as simple as cooking a yummy dinner, wearing a cute outfit, completing a marathon, having a nice yard, or like myself, running a successful small business. Please don't mistake what I just said for feeling sorry for myself, NOT THE CASE... I am only bringing up an issue that rarely gets addressed if at all.  Ever wonder if you're this type of person? If you're the type of person who withholds compliments or withholds inquiring because it clearly won't build you up, but instead it's going to build the other person up...and why on earth would you want to do that? Especially if that person you're withholding from receives compliments ALL THE TIME... he or she doesn't need anymore, right? hahahahaha lol wrong. It has nothing to do with the other person, it has everything to do with you, it's the truest test of what type of person you are. Are you someone who can see others succeed when you feel like nothing is happening for you..or so you think?

Yes, that was me getting on my soapbox just now, but I felt it needed to be said since for the past two years i've kept pretty quite about my observations. I've often pretended like I don't notice or it doesn't hurt my feelings...but I do notice, and I have had hurt feelings and this is something that has only added to the stress... :/

For me, closing my business means that I will be able to spend more time with those that I love, spend more time on my talents and developing new ones, as well as finally having time to pursue my dream of illustrating childrens books.  Closing my shop does not mean that I will stop designing, on the contrary! I will actually be designing more, which you will get to see through my blog if interested.  I am now pursuing companies that would be interested in licensing my designs, so perhaps in the future you will see larger brands representing some Roxy Marj designs! yay! :-[)

It is my hope that taking this new path will hopefully lead Jesse and I to starting a family much sooner, yes I will be making a lot less money but having a more peaceful/private life and laughing a hell of a lot more with those we love is priceless in my book. 

* So as a THANK YOU to all the wonderful customers and crazy amazing Roxy Marj supporters I have decided that all orders over $75 will receive a free "So Brave So Strong" tote back! From now till Dec. 31st.  Or if you would rather save your money [YEAH, I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND] then you can purchase the tote for only $10. 

I will have an official goodbye/thank you blog post come December. :)




May 9, 2014

With Mothers Day approaching soon, I wanted to create something special to give away to you all.

I made 4 different colored 8.5 x 11" prints for anyone in need of a Mother's Day gift.  I hope they come in handy.... they are free for the taking. Feel free to share them on your blog, instagram, facebook etc.  if you do, please give credit. :) 

My inspiration for this illustration: 

I think most every woman on this planet would agree that the book and movie Little Women is indeed hands down a classic story that is loved by all!

Louisa May Alcott is someone I would have FOR SURE wanted to be friends with in the late 1800's. I think it's safe to say that she was probably a woman many people admired... and this is usually the thought that comes to mind when Mother's Day approaches. It's about honoring your moms and all the things you admire about her. To add to that, if you are someone who wasn't raised by your mom or didn't/doesn't necessarily have the best relationship with your mom, but perhaps there was another female figure in your life growing up who made a huge impact on your life [I can name 4!] then why not honor them as well.

I really love this quote by Louisa May Alcott...to me, it epitomizes what I hope to be someday as a mom, someone who is strong and brave and takes life's challenges head on while still maintaining composure and safety throughout the home. Remember Marmee [Mrs. March] and how she handled all the dramatic events of that time period with such composure and grace? What an example of the kind of mother we should all strive to be like.

Happy Mother's Day soon. xo

click on image - then click on it again with the magnifying glass, then drag to desktop  :)

Dec 28, 2013

Today I am giving away three paintings... here is the first :

To win this painting, answer these two questions: 

1. what is the name of the song playing in this video?

2. What is the name of the man with the flowy white scarf in this video?

Dec 27, 2013

I'm behind on my painting giveaways...but I plan on catching up! :-[) 

Today's painting that is up for grabs is this fella....

the question:

Name ONE of the movies these photos are from... 
if you can name both.... gosh you're good!!!  First person to answer correctly on my instagram wins! :-[)

Dec 19, 2013

This lil painting here is up for grabs.... 

how to score this.... answer these 3 questions: 

1. What is the name of the artist that did this painting?

2. what movie made this song popular?


3. Who said this quote:


Today's painting giveaway question is this: 

Name the movie that was filmed mostly in this building pictured below and has
this song [video underneath building pic] at the very end of the movie...
hint: I was about 9 or 10 when it came out...and it's one of my very favorite movies ever! 

First person to answer correctly on Instagram wins my buffalo portrait... 

Dec 14, 2013

Feeling "off " with my painting today.... those days happen though... :] 

Here she is, I imagine she's walking through a blizzard carrying warm baked potatoes that warm her body...

To win this painting, tell who the name of this group is pictured below,
 first person with the correct answer on my instagram wins... :) 

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