blog, shop

There’s No Such Thing As Free Lunch Or Free Shipping. But It Sounds Awesome!

Hi, pen&thimble friends!

I want to let you behind-the-scenes of some very recent price changes in my shop!

Etsy Increased Seller Fees So I’m Lowering My Prices? Yup!

The Boring Part: Etsy has changed its seller fee structure so that their cut of my sales includes the item price (same old) AND shipping price (new). And on top of that, they are increasing seller fees. Some people are pretty upset, but to me, it’s no big deal. Fees are an expected part of selling on an online marketplace.

pen&thimble handmade accessories for children

What That Means for YOU Shopping pen&thimble On Etsy:

1) FREE SHIPPING ON EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME! Now that Etsy is taking a cut out of my shipping costs too, it makes sense to offer free shipping! Yay!! We all love free shipping!

2) TOTAL ITEM COST GOING DOWN, NOT UP. WHAAT? Yes!

For example, previously, a $12 placemat cost $3.11 to ship. That was $15.11 total. 

Now that same placemat is $13 with free shipping!

Previously, a $15 pouch with $3.11 shipping was $18.11 at checkout.

Now, the price, including shipping, is $16!

I’m so excited to offer free shipping, while keeping prices low, so that I may continue making quality and sustainable items accessible to you!

But Real Talk, There’s No Such Thing As A Free Lunch… Or Free Shipping.

Yes, there is always a catch! My decision to offer free shipping and to offer lower prices overall means that sitewide sales and promotions are going to be nonexistent, or at best SUPER RARE — like an eclipse. I’d rather have items more affordable all year round than offer sales continually.

But! Email subscribers! You will still get those special coupons each month! Click HERE to subscribe if you aren’t already a pen&thimble insider!

affordable handmade with pen&thimble

Recap:

Etsy seller fees going up. Just fees on my end! But my prices are going down. This means WAY less public site-wide sales and promotions moving forward. But email subscribers are still getting freebies and exclusive sales each month! Sounds like we’re all winning, right?

Check out the new prices and free shipping on Etsy! Just in time for your back-to-school zero-waste/waste-free lunch needs — so many reusable placemats, napkins, utensil bags, and snack pouches to choose from! Yay!

 

blog, shop

Kind of Like A Norman Rockwell

There was a moment last weekend, when things were nearly picture perfect. Like a Norman Rockwell illustration — real, a bit silly, a hint of chaos emerging or recently visited.

And having it come on the heels of a bit of a stressful week — starring visits from a few plumbers, sick kids, and a few additions to our house “need-to-get-done-ASAP” list — it was impossible not to feel so much joy and thanks for a nearly idyllic scene.

I had built a roaring fire, with the help of a YouTube tutorial. And at some point, before dinner but after the 50th plea for the 30th snack of the afternoon, I found myself sitting on the couch facing the fire reading (A Dragonfly in Amber), with my husband sitting beside me relaxing with his iPad, and our two girls playing independently on the floor in front of us. Our oldest was playing a very exciting game with seven DC Superhero figurines and a Fisher Price castle, and our youngest was putting George Pig to sleep inside of a bed she had built from Duplos.

I nudged my husband and we shared a smile at this rare and exciting scene — four humans happily pursuing their interests, independently but together near the active fireplace. It was excitingly peaceful. It was nice.

And, in all honesty, our full immersion in our individual pursuits didn’t last long. Maybe I read one more page after that shared smile and silent giggle of excitement.

And that was fine because I love the way my oldest squeezes between me and my husband for maximum snuggles. And I adore the way my youngest narrates her play to us to keep us in the loop!

And this is what I’m thankful for this week as Thanksgiving approaches. I’m so thankful, with an enormous heart, for my little immediate family. They are good and kind and silly and brighten my day.

And you shouldn’t listen to what I say when I’m tired and drained, I wouldn’t want to spend a single day or night without them right next to me!

20993301_10213907687512526_990035461_o.jpg

What are you thankful for? I know that blog comments are clumsy with having to prove you aren’t a robot and all that. So let me know on Instagram or my pen&thimble Facebook Page. I want to know! 

Also, in lieu of the typical holiday sales that roll around after Thanksgiving, I’ll be offering FREE SHIPPING IN THE US when you spend $40 or more November 20 – December 1 at pen&thimble on Etsy. No gimmicks, no coupon needed. My way of saying “thank you so much,” for being a customer and thank you for your support! I’ll be around –making and posting and chatting on social media — but I wanted to wish you very Happy Holidays now, before the overwhelm and hype starts.

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Holidays!!!

 

blog, shop

Hands, Faces, Bottoms, and Green Yachting Parties

Have I talked about the new napkins in my shop? They are my favorite and my most-used item that I sell now that my youngest has grown out of drool bibs.

fullsizeoutput_2c

(Sob! Why do they grow so fast? When did my baby suddenly become a not-baby? She’s turning two in 2 months! Real talk, if I had a dollar for every time I wished my littlest was out of the baby stage, well I wouldn’t need to have this shop or blog or anything. I’d be sailing around Turks and Caicos on my yacht named “Hey Buoys”)

So all this talking to myself and tropical dreaming aside, these napkins are my favorite because…

  • At 7×7 they are perfect size for little hands, lunch boxes, bento boxes, and diaper bags
  • My little kids feel like big kids using them
  • They are tiny but backed with soft and absorbent paper towel-like fabric
  • I use them and reuse them and I feel awesome because they’re eco-friendly
  • They are useful and fun and I love useful and fun things the most of all
    • Use them for wiping hands and mouths after a meal
    • Use them for wiping tabletops before settling to eat
    • Use them to clean up crumbs and spills
    • Use a damp one for wiping baby’s bottom during a change
    • Use them as cocktail napkins or coasters during your yacht party
    • Use them for fancy tea parties on the living room floor

So what are you waiting for? Go grab some for your family!

img_3528fullsizeoutput_b8fullsizeoutput_b5 fullsizeoutput_b2

 

 

blog

Parenting: My Perfect Children Are Perfect

Parents in my neck of the woods, and I’m sure yours too, are pressured to be able to do it all with minimal help and a smile on our faces. And we ARE doing it! ALL! Perfectly. With smiles on our faces, always! And tweeting about it (follow me @penandthimble)!

As I write this at 3:38 in the afternoon, I’m totally showered (nope), makeup on (what is a makeup?), dressed in clothes I could answer the door in (nope), and not at all nursing my 19 month-old while she does some painful boob twisting acrobatics thing (whyyy?). Doing it all!

Since I’m so perfect, and so are you, it is no surprise that our children are perfectly perfect in all the things.

My perfect children are happy and polite always. My 19-month old has never cried because she wanted a different water bottle. Neither has my 4yo. Not once! They love all bottles equally!

img_0790
img_0797
My perfect little perfectionists started reading at 12mo. To themselves. Their favorite books are It by Stephen King and any lift-the-flap books they can get her hands on.

img_0783
She *read* the merchandizing plan, naturally.

My perfect-y perfect delights love balanced whole-grain, home-cooked meals three times a day (with one healthy snack at 4). I know this is how it is in my house. I could never imagine a life wherein my kid only eats french fries and cookies all day. And snacks all day long. And we never eat take-out. Ever. Real talk, my kids have never eaten a french fry in their life.

img_0795-1

img_0788

My sweet babies of perfection take no interest in screen time because TV is gross and my kids are sacred jewels who hate the idea of TV and screens.

img_0796
My perfectly perfect children are in bed by 7pm and awake by 7am dressed, hair in a bow, teeth brushed, ready to start the day with a smile–that’s just how she wakes up! Yours too, right?
img_0791

img_0787-2

Since I have been #blessed with self-regulating, non-snacking, reading-on-their-own toddlers, I try to fill my long days to myself with long bubble baths, journaling, naps, and just being, well…perfect! Which I’ll tell you all about in another blog post some day!

Spoilers:

img_0789

PS. Want to get your little bundles of perfection something extra? Help them clean up with a FREE reusable napkin with every $15+ purchase in my Etsy shop now through Thanksgiving!