Getting started at thoughts and designs, and figuring out where to start your website or design project for business from home

Thoughts & Designs provides you with thoughts and tips for living a productive life. You’ll find designs and tools for living a more productive life.

I write from my own work from home experiences as well as helping other entrepreneurs.

This site has over ten years of content I’ve curated on it. I’ve created this page to help you get your bearings a bit easier.

How I’ve Learned to Get More Done with Less Effort

I used to enjoy the rush that came from always rushing around with something to do, even if I never left my house to do it.

I had a dizzying list of things I liked to do each day, including cooking, baking, reading, and so forth. Being busy is not the same thing as being productive and working towards your goals and purpose in life.

The lesson was a hard one to learn. I figured out that being busy is not the same thing as being productive.  I learned how to work towards my  goals and purpose in life.  

Helping others on this road is thrilling!

Not Enough Time?

“Not enough time” was always one of the most frustrating parts of life for me.  There doesn’t seem to be enough time in each day to do what I want to do or feel like I need to do.

The simple fact is, no one has the time to do everything they would like to do.

We don’t need more hours in our day. We need to focus more on what is really important to us and to walk away from what isn’t.

Here are 8 Steps to focusing on what is really important to you.

Finding a Planner System that Works for me

Part of my method for greater productivity is figuring out a planner system that works best for me. After trying every planner under the sun, I finally realized that simple works better. I use a combination of Evernote, Google Keep, and Google Calendar to keep my life organized. The best part? The paper clutter is gone. No more little notes everywhere. Yay!

Although I love paper menus and calendars, digital works best for me. I’ve even taken to organizing my recipes and menus with a combination of Google Keep and Calendar. Life is so much easier with all that stored for easy reference. I am even able to share recipes with friends when asked.

If you love paper calendars, I have created some great free calendars and free menu planners for you to use.

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How to Create Residual Income as a Designer on Zazzle

I’m also pretty passionate about design and entrepreneurship. I’ve been a serial entrepreneur since I first found out that such a thing was even possible.

As a result, I’ve written many posts geared towards home business.

I have been selling my own custom designs on Zazzle for a few years now. I’m excited as a stream of residual income has grown. I originally started selling on Zazzle during a year-long Side-Hustle experiment. I didn’t make much money.

Nearly a year after I set up my Zazzle store (and gave up), Zazzle one day clicked for me. Suddenly, one of my products went viral without me doing anything. Before I knew it, I had achieved Pro Seller status.

What is Zazzle?

Zazzle is a Print on Demand company. This means they print up products with designs on them only when ordered. This lets designers sell custom designed products with no money up front.  Designers don’t have to pay to create a huge inventory of products.

I also do market research using print on demand like Zazzle.  It lets me test out product designs to see what works and what doesn’t.

What kind of products do I sell on Zazzle?

There are some products that sell better than others on Zazzle.

The products that seem to sell the best fall into three categories for me:

  1. Any product that can be personalized by the customer ordering it. My most popular product is a set of Kitchen Labels, and in second would be my Bookplate designs.
  2. Clever Tshirts are also popular. This is understandable. As you can tell from my Pinterest board of the same title, I have a T-shirt addiction. I’d have gotten married in a Hoodie or T-shirt if my mom hadn’t disapproved.
  3. I’ve also been making some great shopping bags and tote bags which seem to do well.

My Zazzle Designs

I try to post my different Zazzle Designs on this website over here, My Zazzle Designs.

Take a look at the Thoughts and Designs Zazzle storefront over here to see all designs I have available. I’m always adding new content to my Zazzle store, so bookmark it and check back often.

By the way, there is ALWAYS something on sale over at Zazzle.

Check out the current sales and coupon codes at the Zazzle store by looking at the top of the website. I also try to share the current Zazzle Coupon codes and sales on my Twitter feed. 

My WordPress Packages for Entrepreneurs

Are you an entrepreneur or creative considering a website or blog? Are you unsure of where you should even begin when considering getting a website for your hustle?

 

Potential website owners need help sorting through the mountains of information available. I help with laying a great foundation from the start of their website project.

Too Much Information?

There’s plenty of information available on the web. Unfortunately, most of it is not written with the non-techie in mind.

I want to change that. I’ll make your website project easily understandable from the start. I save you time, frustration, and money by helping you sort through the noise. I’ll help you understand the best practices for your website project from the start. I want to educate my clients instead of just taking your money and handing you a website design.

You can find information on starting or managing a website here.

WordPress Packages to the Rescue

I designed my WordPress Packages with entrepreneurs like you in mind. WordPress makes having a website easy for everyone. WordPress is super user-friendly.

You can use WordPress for many different kinds of websites.

WordPress is not just for bloggers. It is a powerful content management system that works for any kind of website.

Although easy to use, WordPress can be overwhelming when you first start. That’s where my WordPress packages come in.

I have packages for any need of your WordPress needs. Each of my packages includes:

  • Personal Consultation to understand your project’s needs
  • Installation and Configuration of WordPress
  • Selecting and Installing a Theme
  • Finding and Using Plug-Ins
  • Basic Training for Using WordPress
  • and More.

You can read more about my WordPress Packages here. If you have any Questions, ask away.

Things to Consider When Having a Logo Designed

As a designer, my favorite kind of project is logo design.

You may be wondering, “What is a Logo?” The most basic definition is a mark that identifies a brand at a glance. The best examples of this include Nike and Starbucks. You instantly know what company the logo is for without any words.

I used to work at a print shop where we called it a logo if we typed the name in one of seven fonts and added a clip art next to it. Ugh. THAT is NOT a logo. 

Sometimes, people confuse the words “Logo”, “Branding”, and “Identity”. I‘ve written more about the difference between Logos, Identity, and Branding in another post.

Say No to Sweat Shop Logo Design

When you’re hiring someone to develop a logo for your business, you’re not just paying for the picture. 

A logo is not a thing that you buy, as you would a bag of chips or a bottle of soda.

This is the business model of those logo design sweatshops that clog up the front page of Google. It’s not a good idea.

Design, including Logo Design, is a service, and it takes time. Good design is so much more than the end product you receive when the project is over.

I love a great bargain. But a great price shouldn’t be your primary consideration when hiring a logo designer.

I’ve written more about what makes a Logo great over here.

I’d Love to Work with You to Bring Your Project to Life

I love creating logos for small businesses and organizations.  Many work from home moms and other entrepreneurs have worked with my logo design services or WordPress configuration. When I create your logoI have my own process that I follow, which I have written more about here.

A lesson from a professor continues to stick with me about logo design. He taught about the need for any logo to work both in Black and White as well as in whatever brand colors we choose. As my professor from college used to say, “If a Logo doesn’t work in black and what, it doesn’t work.” 

If you’d like more information on how I can help bring your project to life, visit my hire me page.