Rejuvenation in Renovation

I went to a craft fair to sell my wares yesterday and I feel rejuvenated!

It isn’t just because I sold 2 tiny bottles of fairy dust and a fairy door. Seeing a little girl mesmerised by my fairy doors was wonderful. I’d only received a cursory glance at them from hubby so I didn’t know how they would be received in public.

It isn’t just because I saw a school friend I haven’t seen for 33 years, although it was wonderful that she came to the craft fair to see me and The Ugly House produce.

It isn’t just because a very dear friend also came to the craft fair bearing the most gorgeous gift she’d had commissioned for me. It is a beautiful wire hummingbird to hang in the garden. It made me cry… a lot! Hummingbirds were frequent visitors to my garden when I lived in Sugarland, Texas. I miss them and I miss my Texan Times. I miss my ‘life less ordinary’.  I have struggled to come to terms with the sense of loss. This week in particular I have been trying to work out what happened to the friends I had in Texas. The hummingbird gift was thoughtful and kind and gave me the affirmation that I so sorely needed that true and honest friends are always there when you need them.

I also feel rejuvenated by a wonderful lady who came to the craft fair because she heard that The Ugly House was going to be there. I’m a tiny bit infamous! She had discovered my website a while ago when she searched ‘renovations’. She had been thrilled to see the renovation, rejuvenation and transformation of The Ugly House on line. I had no idea I had been searched for and discovered. It made me feel of value. That’s a great way to feel when you are trying to find value and meaning in the things that you do.

Her discovery of The Ugly House was before I set up the shop on line. It was before I was told there was too much clutter on my website and I needed to simplify it and strip all the clutter away. It was before I spent weeks and weeks trying to boost ‘SEO’ (search engine optimisation) so that I would feature in a google search for lavender bags and bunting. It was before I even knew what SEO was. It was, however, at a time when I did feature in google searches… for home renovation. It was when the ‘clutter’ was why I set up the website – the story: the good; the bad and the ugly tales and advice gleaned from my experiences of renovation. It was when the ‘shop’ was a sideline to the main focus of the website. The shop was to share things I had found or made that I thought were lovely, and make them available to you.

I am no Philip Green. There are too many people who are too good at selling and at e-commerce for me to ever try to compete. I never meant to. My promise of never selling anything that I wouldn’t have in my own home is something I hold very dear. I really am no Philip Green or Gerald Ratner (who famously went bankrupt because he declared his produce to be ‘crap’). I love the things I sell in the shop. That’s why they are there. I love the shop but I set up the site as a vehicle to continue writing. I forgot that when someone told me to de-clutter! I loved writing my blog on my ex-pat experiences and I had so many stories to share about the build! That was my original purpose.  Hopefully it isn’t too late to tell them retrospectively. It isn’t too late to put The Ugly House back at the heart of the website. Time to renovate! If the site gets a little cluttered and untidy – it will reflect my beautiful house and ugly mind (or the other way round) perfectly …and if I sell some of my crap in the process then it will be a bonus!

Time to refocus! Time to rejuvenate! Time to find my voice again!

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