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Did I Give Up on Art? (Summer Update)

Good morning, friends!

Summer is here and it’s been a HOT minute since I’ve shared a blog post with you guys! For the longest time, I had never missed a post, even through holidays, but lately, I’ve been having a hard time keeping still and posting regularly! Things change with the seasons, I guess!

I’ve been away for various reasons: military, family events, and other things that are out of my control. This week, however, I’m back to my normal routine, for the most part. I am in my new studio and am still trying to make sense of the big change! Some of you may recall that I announced near the end of May that I was going to be a little less focused on my art for the summer due to many varying reasons. I thought I’d write a post about it so we’re all on the same page here and so that you can possibly see where I’m coming from.

Firstly, I live in a state where we get decent weather for less than half of the year. The summer months are our time to tackle various home projects, work on our homestead, and enjoy the beauty of nature. When it’s nice outside, I have a hard time staying cooped up inside the house or studio. It’s hard enough having freezing temps half the year so I try to get out and enjoy the sun while I can.

Secondly, I have a new studio space! In the end it will be bigger and better, but for now, it’s a little rough. I’m in an unfinished basement fro the most part and don’t have very many of my things easily accessible. We’re hoping to finish the basement (TONS OF WORK) before winter hits us again!

Lastly, I have been on a roll with my Young Living oils business! You guys know from my IG that I have been into essential oils since January. I’m climbing the ranks and am starting to make a really reliable income through it. By focusing on my oily endeavors and business, I’m creating a sustainable income that will help tremendously since I have been self-employed for the past several months! As you all know, art income is extremely inconsistent. By building a business with such a solid income, I’m able to freely continue painting and doing what I love without the stress and pressure of selling and making money off of it.

I know a lot of people have thought that I’m “quitting” my art and that I’m giving up on painting. That couldn’t be further from the truth. I’m still going to be creating art and bringing new content forward. I’m simply taking some of the business stress and focus off of my art, hence allowing me to be more free and consistent in my work. Creating art feels a whole lot more different when you start forcing it to make income. I still have a show this fall and am hoping to have a few new pieces to share with you until that moment comes.

As far as announcements go, life has been crazy busy! I’m sure it’s the same for you guys as well! Summer just comes and goes so fast and we’re trying to catch it before it’s gone again!

I think that about sums it all up for now. I do have a garden that needs some watering.

I’ll catch up with you guys again soon. ♡

XOXO,

Q

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From Skepticism to Getting Paid – My Personal Struggle with Money

You guys, I’m so happy I could cry right now. Seriously. I’m almost in tears.

Today I got my first decent paycheck from Young Living and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Honestly, when I first decided to join and say ‘yes’, I truly had no idea if I would be able to make any money from it. I had done network marketing in the past and never made a dime (granted I did quit early on and didn’t have my heart in it as I do with Young Living). I felt God’s hand leading me in this direction and I followed. I took a leap of faith and after checking my bank account and seeing the money added in just now, I couldn’t be happier that I did it.

Since I’m just getting started out in this business, it really isn’t a lot compared to how much my leaders are currently making. Not even close. It may not be able to supplement income just yet, and you may think it’s not much at all. That’s beside the point, though. It’s a lot to me and it is something I am so thankful for and really helps us out this month. It was a boost that I have been needing.

I really want to share something with you guys and it’s very personal. This whole post is personal, but it needs to be shared. I want you guys to know and feel my authenticity through the screen. When I first heard about Young Living, I was interested in the toxin-free products and their versatility. I had used oils in the past but for nothing other than diffusing and thinking that “they smell nice.” I had no idea you could ingest them, use them in place of cleaners, or even that you could opt for them instead of certain over the counter drugs and medications. I didn’t know they could be as powerful and potent as they actually are.

One day, I stumbled across a friend of mine posting all about Young Living on Instagram. We were never really close. Acquaintances, in fact. We were in basic training for the military together many years ago and I wish we had been able to get to know eachother better back then because she’s a real gem. She talked about the products and how they were helping her around her home as a mom of two little children. She talked about the health implications of “normal” products that we often buy in stores without realizing. She diffused oils, cleaned with this magical “Thieves” cleaner that I kept hearing about and lastly, I saw her grow and she talked about her promotions and how she was changing her family’s lives with the income she was making through the business opportunity with Young Living.

I’m always skeptical of mlms and people’s success stories with them and always thought they just “got lucky” and that it was all some scam. I think that is a very natural assumption in this day and age, but that topic is for a whole other post. Actually, I did a blog about network marketing and will link it here if you’re interested in that. Anyway, I was happy for her and that she was doing so well, but every time I would stumble across her feed, I would stop and wonder “what if?” and it was a feeling that tugged on my heartstrings for weeks before I decided to actually message her.

I used to make pretty decent money when I was working as a server. Earning tips made all the difference and I was so used to always having loads of cash on me. It may not have been enough to where I wasn’t budgeting and simply buying anything I wanted; I wasn’t rich, but we never had to worry about having the lights shut off. Money was good but I HATED my job and how it was affecting every aspect of my life. I knew God created me to do something more than something that made me completely miserable every day. I knew this because I knew I couldn’t effectively serve Him while my mind and body was in that state. He created me for a purpose and that just wasn’t it.

When I decided to start listening to Him and had gotten fed up with the way things were, I decided to start my own business using my brand, QuinDu Creations that I had started back in 2015, about 3 years prior to this moment. I decided it was time to turn my life around and wanted to run at my dream career of being an artist. That’s when I started my self-employment journey. I started this blog, started learning how to design and edit my website, started a YouTube channel, and started consistently posting to social media and began sharing my journey with the world and everyone I knew.

Obviously, getting started with any business is tough as you are starting out and I made almost nothing since I began this journey about 7 months ago. Yep. I said it & there it is, so you can stop wondering now. I’ve worked tirelessly, almost daily, for almost no profit. I’ve had a few sales here and there, but not enough ever count on a monthly basis and not enough to cover even half of my minimum wage paychecks that I used to think of as “bonus money.” This wasn’t surprising though. I knew it would be this way until I got my feet on the ground and I knew it would be hard. We cut back in a LOT of areas to make up for the change in household income and I’ve learned to live minimally. There hasn’t been any extra willy nilly spending and I don’t buy things just because I want them anymore. It’s been bare necessities and we’ve pretty much cut out any extra curricular activities from our calendar. Eating out had become a rare luxury and even certain food items have become a luxury that we would only get every once and a while as a treat. Hello, vegan-labeled snack foods.

I’m not telling you guys all of this to make you feel bad for me or to admit that I had made a mistake in leaving my old job. I want to tell you the exact opposite. The career change has been an amazing thing for my family and has taught us humility and how to budget our money. I’ve also learned a thing or two about minimalism and have found that having less and buying less actually makes me happier. Happiness doesn’t pay the bills, however, and that’s the cold hard truth. There were many times where I thought about getting another part-time job to contribute more, but that would have been like going back in the other direction I had just turned away from.

So why exactly am I telling you this? It’s because I want you to see where I’m coming from. After hearing Beka’s testimony, I had found myself thinking about Young Living and the business more and more. What was holding me back? Money. Skepticism. The fact that I had failed participating in my other network marketing business in the past. Originally, I just wanted to start a journey to a cleaner life and start using the oils and products. I had no interest in pursuing it as a business, but now that was all I could think about. I am so passionate about my work as an artist. I love painting and creating and it will always be my dream-but what if this was a way I could start a cleaner, healthier lifestyle while also earning some extra income to put into my bills AND my business?That was when the gears really started turning and I had finally decided to reach out and message her.

Fast-forward 3 months and you will find that my world has completely changed. Most of my household items are being swapped out for ones where I know and understand all of the ingredients listed. I’ve been introduced to so many different products I now swear by and order on a regular basis. I have been using my creativity to decorate the house with oils and all sorts of Young Living displays (its more fun than it sounds). I have fun making DIY versions of my old beauty products and perfumes. I also enjoy that I now make even less trips to the store-a MAJOR plus when you work from home and live 30 minutes from a decent shopping center. Another bonus point for less impulse buying at stores like Target (though, Target, I do love you). I have also been able to start sharing my Young Living journey with my family and friends and have shared all my amazing experiences with one of my oldest and closest friends who now works this business alongside me.

It all may not seem like much to you, but to me and my family, IT IS EVERYTHING. I share this with you today because I know the misconception of mlms and I know they have a VERY bad reputation. I’m sharing today from my heart as a woman that has been struggling with money but still had the guts to start her own business despite all of the negativity and the nasty stigma put against her. Not all mlms are “scams” and not all people treat the people they interact with as mere dollar signs. We do benefit, but that is a mutual interaction.

If you can relate with my story today, I truly hope you reach out to me. Not because I will gain something from you, but because I want to help you. Genuinely. I’ve shared what this business has done for me and my family so far and I am only going up from here through God’s grace and blessing. If you want to learn more, check out my other blogs or privately message me on my Instagram oils account.

Thank you for reading and God bless.

Xoxo,

Q