A couple of weeks ago, I went back into the workforce. I’m still writing at home and still pursuing a couple of small business opportunities online. But I’m at a point that I need some guaranteed income each month.
There is a local embroidery shop here in Whitehall that provides custom orders for embroidery work, as well as heat transfers. The woman who owns the shop also does manufacturing sewing for military items and some other businesses, like Laundry Loops.
She pays her employees well, starting well above minimum wage and increasing pay shortly after a probationary period. I like to sew and like the creative process and I figured this would be a good chance to earn some money doing something other than a service job.
I started the week following Memorial Day and my first couple of days involved a pretty stiff learning curve. I made plenty of mistakes but I also learned some great new skills. And I really enjoyed the atmosphere of the ‘warehouse’.
There were only three of us working for most of the week, each with something different to do. The first couple of days, I spent most of my time sewing small pieces that were to be sewed to other pieces. It was monotonous, tedious work, but I felt good about the work I did. The rest of the week, I spent my time doing heat transfers and embroidering hats. The owner wants to train me to do most of the work up front; the embroidery and heat transfers. That way, she can focus on doing assembly work in the back of the shop.
She is working on a multi year contract with a state university. If it materializes, she will have permanent, full-time work in the front of the shop, which will probably be where I do most of my work. And I wouldn’t mind that at all. It’s fun watching the embroidery machines do their thing. And while they are sewing, I can be assembling small pieces for laundry loops or doing heat transfer work.
The part I like most about this job is that there are lots of options. And every day is a different task. I like that there aren’t a lot of walk-in customers to deal with. They need to speak with the owner. So, I can just go to work, do my job, and go home at the end of the day feeling like I accomplished something.
Going to work each day means that I don’t have as much time for my writing or sewing or other projects at home. I’m hopeful that after a few months, I may be able to change my work schedule and do four tens. Ideally, I’d like to do three twelves and a half day. Then have the rest of the week to devote to home-based work. But we’ll have to see if anything like that is possible.
I’m grateful for the work, especially after this past year of a ruined economy and so many businesses being forced to shutter permanently. I’ve known the owner for several years. When I was athletic director at the school, she did many of our sports wear jobs. So, I feel comfortable with her. And so far, the other women who work there are people I already know or are easy to spend the days with.
At this point in my life, I figured I would be making enough money writing that I wouldn’t have to worry about a ‘real’ job again. I’m still hopeful that will be possible in the near future. But I need the income from this job. And I need to get out of the house. I’m feeing like a hermit lately, and this job will force me to get up, shower, and be around other people each day.
Whether I stay there a few months or a few years, I intend to be the best employee I can be. I learn quickly, and I’m willing to learn from mistakes and put my time I wherever I’m needed. She told me that some of ‘the girls’ don’t like doing the embroidery work. But I figure, if that’s where I can be the most good, that’s where I’ll work. After all, she’s the boss.
It feels good to be back at a regular job again. On a regular schedule. Feeling productive. I’m hopeful that this will lead to added prosperity and good luck in the future.