Keep calm and try again

This post is about my experiences with fundraisers.

I have participated in fundraisers as a Vendor only about 4 times in the past 3 years.

Not a lot.

The first fundraiser I did was extremely successful, more than I had EVER expected actually and I was over-the-moon thrilled!

This is good and bad.

Good, because I gained the confidence I needed to start my own in-home business.  Judging by my sales that night, people really liked what I had to offer.

Bad however, because it raised the bar extremely high for any future shows I participated in.

The next 3 weren’t nearly as successful.

So I try my hardest not to have any expectations when I do a fundraiser.

{via Pinterest}

But the work involved in preparing for such an event is demanding to say the least.

I am very much a perfectionist when it comes to my products; the construction, the tagging, the presentation, all of it.

My products are all hand-made by me, therefore are a direct reflection of me, and I take that very seriously.

Now don’t get me wrong, I DON’T agree to do these fundraisers just for me.

My heart is always in the right place, focusing on the cause and the reason for the fundraiser.

I always enjoy donating my products and have a real passion for giving back.

{sometimes to a fault as a business owner, but if that’s a fault, I’ll own it}

Donating is something I do year-round, to many causes and foundations.

And I am very happy to do so.

In fact, I feel so blessed that I am able to.

Well, just about 2 weeks ago I committed to do a local fundraiser sponsored by the Susan G. Koman foundation here in my town.

When I was asked, my first inclination was to say “no”, because I didn’t have much in terms of inventory and the thought of making enough things to fill a table seemed very taxing.

However, I decided to push myself and get it done for such a wonderful cause.

{via Pinterest}

Unaware of course that I would end up with a terrible cold that just won’t seem to go away!

I managed to make plenty of items in the 2 weeks, working most days and into the evenings when my kids were fast asleep and the house was quiet.

I made pillows, hand-stamped items, tutu’s and key fobs.

I didn’t make hand bags since they are more time-consuming and I was focusing on volume.

My Mom and eldest daughter came to help me set-up my table.

And even though it was my Mom’s birthday, she was so eager to be there with me, she is always one of my biggest supporters ~ thanks Mom.

My Dad picked my Mom up before the show was over, but my little girl wanted to stay with me until the end ~ 9:00 p.m., which is a big deal on a school night!

The night was a bit slow in terms of customers, not sure why??

I didn’t sell too many things, but did get a lot of compliments and handed out my business cards to those who asked.

Elle was just so darn cute, she looked at me with a look of concern on her face and said “Mom, I’m sorry, are you sad that people aren’t buying all of your stuff??”

I would answer with “No honey, it’s not that they don’t like my things, it’s just that they don’t need them or maybe it’s just not their thing”.

She seemed happy with my answer.

I hope that through this experience and through example, my little girl will learn to never give up on a dream.

That determination and perseverance is key when you are passionate about something you love, especially when it involves helping others.

When the show was over, we packed up our stuff and loaded it into our SUV.

Our chins were high.

As were our spirits.

We had some good, quality time together.

Grandmother, Mother and daughter.

We met many sweet and talented ladies.

We ate some delicious food and Elle even had Ginger Ale.

And we gave back, as little as it may have been.

But it felt good just the same.

As we were driving home Elle said to me “Mom, someday when I’m big, I am going to do a fundraiser and you are going to come AND I am going to bring my daughter along too”.

**sigh**

So, will I participate as a Vendor at any more fundraisers ???

Absolutely.

Thanks for stopping by and remember, I LOVE comments and will answer each one!

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