Thursday, December 15, 2016

A New Slideshow

For everyone who loves slideshows, we have a new one in the blog ... and to hear it you have to click on the speaker that shows under the slideshow (I know, it changes all the time)....
Look to your right and down ... drag your mouse across the picture and the bottom will open up, and to the left side of that space is the speaker.  Enjoy!

The Giving Time of the Year

This is definitely the time of the year most donations are sought and most donations are given. We are in a "feel good" time ... and sad stories touch our hearts.

I spend a lot of time at my computer, because of my Etsy shop.  I always have t.v. on "in the background" but at this time of year I, who LOVE animals, am hit time and time again with very sad and touching commercials asking for donations to the nation's largest "saviors of dogs". These sound bites break my heart, and I've always ignored them as best I could because I knew the administration receive salaries. Little did I know how much! Today I looked up the salaries. It is a LONG list, but let me say just this -- five directors each receive $87,140 per year. That's about a half million dollars.  And THAT is just to the directors. Many , many other volunteers are actually employees.  Our donations pay them.  Their salaries are also listed.

I prefer to know that when I donate, my money is going 100% for the animals. I'm sure I could research and find many animal shelters across the United States run strictly by volunteers, no pay necessary or accepted. In Nebraska, I don't have to look very far and 10% of everything I sell in my shop goes to Hearts United for Animals in Auburn, Nebraska. No animal is EVER "put down" there. The animals live out their lives at HUA, should they not be lucky enough to be adopted.  No animal is ever euthanized.  NO ONE at HUA receives pay. Not one cent. NO one.

When you see commercials on television about dogs, cats, and other animals who need support, find out if their directors are paid. See if their employees are paid. See if they give up on "unadoptable" animals and euthanize them.  THEN go read about Hearts United for Animals .... before you go there grab a cup of coffee or tea or whatever because you will be there for a while :+) http://www.hua.org.  And no I have nothing to do with this organization except my donations.  I was "signed up" to become a volunteer and then a month later was diagnosed with cancer ... and I've been pretty busy for the last two years running to  the doctors.  So I've never met any of these people .... only through emails and in phone conversations.  I'm sure you can also find other completely volunteer organizations such as HUA by googling "pet shelters with 100% volunteer staff and directors".



Wednesday, December 14, 2016


IS EVERYONE READY FOR THE HOLIDAYS?  I ask this as I sit surrounded by mounds of gifts to be wrapped ... AND we haven't put up our Christmas tree (Sandy's and my tree for here in the blog) yet this year and I'm running out of time.  PLUS it's been so long since I wrote in here, I'm going to have to review to see how to put up a picture :+)

As our followers know already, we returned to Etsy, and are so glad we did.  Leaving "home" certainly made us want to go BACK home.

Friend, Linda, had told me we were going shopping this coming Saturday. I said "are you nuts?" and she denied it even though I knew I was right. SHE went with me last Saturday and bought ONE thing,  while I did nearly all of my Christmas shopping. Now she wants ME to got with HER the last Saturday (technically) before Christmas. NO WAY.  I will finish wrapping on Saturday ... and knowing Linda she will wrap all day on Christmas Eve :+)

This was a different year for us, buying for grandkids. Our oldest grandson is in college, on a football scholarship, and not here in our city. SOOOO what does he need, want?  He's either practicing, training, or studying (I hope in the reverse order). I called my daughter, his mom, and she said she, too, was having trouble with buying for him this year. SO we ended up with a plan. We are both buying him lots of gift certificates for food places (and if they happen to be fast food, well the cholesterol and fat will get run out of him during training and practice) and for the "his mind is dead" time, she's buying him some PlayStation certificates.  What more could a college kid want :+)   And his "little" sister will graduate this next Spring and be off to college so things for her room are no longer needed, she's not ready for the fridge for the dorm room or anything like that ... so SHE is getting lots of gift certificates too.  Hubby and I spent the morning driving from one place to another and I THINK we are ready --- what's this "we" thing. HE is ready, I am the one who has all the packages to wrap!!!

I HOPE I'll be able to remember how to put up the tree in here, but if I don't get around to it or go totally blank trying to put it up, just know that you are wished a wonderful holiday season from Ann and Sandy!!!

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

WHAT Happened?

OK ... I would imagine some of you have noticed something's different :+)  For a while you saw posts from us and received emails from us as we were "leaving Etsy" and "moving to our stand alone shop".  Now you see annswhimsey posts on google plus, twitter, pinterest, and from Hugs and Holidays, and from Craft Stuff Depot.  So what DID happen?  The answer:  "We got educated".  AND we hope what we found out might help at least one person who is thinking of doing what we tried.

We moved to Shopify and built our inventory to over 1000 items --- i.e., we worked our butts off :+)  We promoted and we had sales. However, every web host site has its warts ... be it Etsy, Wix, Shopify, GoDaddy -- you name it, you'll find a few warts. It was very nice not to have all of the Etsy rules to follow and not to have the platform we were on change on an almost weekly basis. But the basic fee grew and grew (if you wanted to really promote and get your shop to work).  SO with our tails dragging we've come back to Etsy ... and are glad tobe "home".

What I want to share with other sellers is the turning point for us ... something for you to think about should you be considering a move.  MANY years ago I owned and ran a resume' development, job placement firm. While we were working on our new stand alone, I "bumped into" one of my former resume' clients who got a job with google.   SO I asked him to look at our shop and tell me what else we could do to promote it.

As many of you know, we use all the categories allowed by Etsy.  We are a mini-mall, a mini department store. Let's call my former client "Joe".  Joe looked at it and asked me if I knew of other Shopify stores. Yes I did. They are hard to find since they are all privately owned, BUT they do have question/answer forums on Shopify, so I would click on the names of those shop owners to find their shops. Joe asked if I noticed anything. I told him yes -- they are all niche shops -- ALL of them that I'd found. He said "And therein lies your problem".

Joe said that when people are shopping for, for example, specialty teas, they would end up at a tea shop, a niche shop.  T-shirts, same thing.  Golf supplies, same thing.  AND those (niche shops) are easy to find as they have just one brand to promote. However, WE, with our many "departments" in our shop, were competing against on-line malls, the places people go to shop for Christmas or birthday gifts, or for office supplies ... anything they want in one place. SO WE were competing against three major "malls" .... Amazon, Etsy, and Ebay. He said that in order to compete, we could expect to spend tens of thousands of dollars on Google, and tens of thousands of dollars in more products. Even then, it would take years and years to become known and we would still be competing with bigger (and richer) shopping sites.

And thus, we returned to Etsy. Yes, it has its warts ... but at least we know we can sell there and we don't have to take out second mortgages to fund it :+)  SO you will once again find us on Etsy ... at annswhimsey, Craft Stuff Depot, and Hugs and Holidays.  We are moving our inventory BACK and it will take weeks but this was as much an educational experience as our college years were!  AND I hope this has helped at least one person decide whether or not to try to "go it alone".

PS --- And yes, you can click on the shop names to see how we're doing with our move back. :+)


Thursday, September 29, 2016

We Who Love Furballs


I never refer to our (shhhh "dog") as a (shhhh "dog').  He doesn't know he is one. He is a furry little person and much more kind than half of the humans I know :+) If you love a pet, you know exactly what I mean.  They don't judge us.  Their love is unconditional.  They are part of our families, completely and totally.

Losing a pet is losing part of ourselves.  We had a 19 year old poodle we had to have put to sleep and it nearly killed both of us.  He could no longer see, he could no longer run, he could no longer walk without pain. So out of our deep love for him we let him go.  The following year, our 15 year old Bichon was in heart failure when we made that dreaded trip to the veterinarian's office. We swore, "never again".  It hurt too much.

Our veterinarian is in a small town outside of Lincoln ... about a 10 minute drive.  When we left her office, my husband said "never again" and I said "yes, never again".  We drove to the highway (about two minutes away) and hubby said "well, maybe someday".  About five minutes down the highway I said "yes maybe someday".  When we got home we walked into a very empty house. It's amazing how much life a little white furball gave the house ... just by his "being".  We were both in tears of course.

About ten minutes after being in the oh so quiet and empty house my husband said, "Did you see the pictures of the Bichons at the rescue center?"  I told him yes I had .... and "maybe someday".  He said, "you know they get adopted quickly".  And so I picked up the phone and called them.  Within two weeks Beacon had joined our family.  WE are like everyone who loves their pets ... we love them so much that the idea of being without them is impossible.

Our two who left us a year apart (Spooky and Spunky) are in their little boxes on our dressers but I kept a few ashes for myself and wear them on a bracelet.  That is also when I began selling "pet urn" jewelry.   I put a few ashes from their cremains into these and got a bracelet for them.  it is amazing how much comfort I get from this. People who don't love pets probably think I'm crazy but I'd rather be a crazy dog (or cat) lady than not have a heart big enough to love animals!

 Always in My Heart Paw Prints

Now this is the little guy who runs our house ... Beacon, whom I mentioned before.  And the look on his face?  This is the first furball I've met who despises having his picture taken :+)


Beacon (you can call me SIR) :+)




Tuesday, September 27, 2016

SANDY EXPLAINS PARTNERSHIP AND FRIENDSHIP


SANDY CLEARS THE AIR
I was asked “why did I go into a partnership with another vendor instead of just keeping my own shop”?
I guess that I could have just given a curt answer of “because I wanted to”, but that is petty and unprofessional, and it really doesn’t answer the question intelligently.
Ann and I have a very special relationship.  Until a few years ago we never knew that each other existed.  We believe that the Good Lord put us together.  I live in Georgia and she lives in Nebraska.  I am truly a Southerner and she is truly a Mid-Western Yankee.  I am African and Irish, and she is German.  She is a fast-pace-adventurous-fearless little lady, and I am more the take-time-think-about-it lady, and I haven’t been tiny in 27 years.  How many opposites do you need in this list?
If you have ever heard the old saying that opposites attract, well I guess we are living proof.  We are exactly alike, yet nothing alike . . . get it?  So now you are really scratching your head and wondering where this is going.
We both have the same goals and are on the same page with each other and with our shop.  Ann is heavy into antiques, vintage, and art.  I am totally handmade in fabric and paper.  Together Ann and I have sold 5,365 items from our inventory just on Etsy.  We have both sold on Ebay, and I have numerous local sales.  
The glue that holds us together as friends and as business partners is respect for our differences and honestly with the good, bad, and ugly.  We have a special kind of love for each other.  We feel like sisters and sometimes we fuss at each other like sisters.  We don’t always agree on how to do something, but we never fail to get it done in a manner that pleases and benefits both of us.

I couldn’t ask for a better person coming into my life.  She is the first person that I talk to each morning (after the cats) and I am the last person she says goodnight to every night.  (If you are saying no, it’s her husband, it is not; he is already asleep) . . . AND . . . we have never met each other face to face.  
A note from Ann.  I had NO idea Sandy was writing this unti lit arrived in my email box this morning.  I am so humbled by her sharing our friendship with everyone, a friendship I thank God for each day of my life!  Thank you, my dear friend, for writing this, for being my friend, and yes yes yes for being my business partner!!!!  

Saturday, September 17, 2016

IT'S A GAME .... ANNNNDDDD All of YOU are "It"


OKAY, Sandy and I were talking today about how much you, our followers, mean to us. We have made so many friends through this blog ... we are definitely blessed.

THEN we were talking about the shop and how we want people to visit us there and BINGO we came up with a game!  We hope you'll all "play" (many times)!!!

Three steps ... first go to our shop and create an account.  https://twobroadsandashop.com  (AND while you're there you can -- but are not required to -- look around :+)

Second: After you have signed up, refer your friends, your relatives, your co-workers -- anyone -- to our shop.  And be SURE to email us each time you refer someone ... giving us their name (just their name, no email needed).  Send the referrals to us at twobroadsandashop@gmail.com.

Third:  IF your referrals come to see our shop AND sign in (create an account) you get a point.   And be sure to tell those you refer that if THEY refer THEIR friends, they should do the same thing ... email us with names.

The rest is easy --- whomever gets the most points wins and we will make sure your efforts are rewarded with a nice "prize".  Have FUN with this ... and I bet you'll be surprised at how many people you know!  OH and share this post on google plus so everyone can play!   1-2-3 GO!!!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

THE ADVANTAGES OF DEPARTMENT STORES BY OUR RESIDENT HERMIT!


Ann here -- and yes our resident hermit wants to share Two Broads And A Shop with you .... so here it is, from Sandy!!

Do you enjoy SHOPPING?  Shopping, as in going to a department store to see “what's new”, or going to a store to buy something in particular and then find yourself wandering from department to department looking at all the merchandise?  I will run to Target for just a birthday card and then roam
around the departments with all the kitchen stuff, toys, and craft supplies. Then I usually come home with something I'd forgotten I needed or with a great Christmas gift for someone on my list.

Gordman's is next to heaven for my granddaughter and me.  We first go in for the clothes she must have and then we end up spending an hour or two looking at all the neat things for the house and for her bedroom in the Home Department. AND if, time permitting, we go to Nordstrom's or Dillard's for clothes, we MUST stop by the Bridal Shop so she can dream (and I can dream with her).

Shopping is a hobby, shopping is a treasure hunt ... and shopping is what you will find at Two Broads and A Shop.  You may come in looking for a picture for your daughter's room and leave with it, but along with a gift for your cousin's wedding!  You might decide to get some vintage hankies for framing and find a counted cross stitch kit that you know you can finish in time for giving as a Christmas gift.

Perhaps you also have a granddaughter who loves to look at wedding accessories while you look at antiques. That's where Two Broads and a Shop comes in. We have a variety of departments ... which are being filled with more merchandise daily,  growing larger every day.  Our Art Department offers an almost endless supply of prints to cover any topic you can imagine, including the perfect print that reminds you of someone, or brings back a precious memory of days gone by, or is a silly print for a silly, adorable friend.

We also carry a great selection of fabric gift wrap bags in our Handmade Department to make your gift become “a gift wrapped in a gift”. You might find a handmade gift in Handmade that is absolutely PERFECT and while you're there, get a handmade gift bag for it.

Two Broads and A Shop is a great place to start your day, browsing while you're having that first cup of coffee -- and it's  just as great a place to relax and wind down at the end of the day. I'm sure no employers are reading this (wink), so I can also say it's a fun place to go on break
wile you're at work ... unless your employer has extra eyes on you and your computer!

We also have a NO Department . . . no traffic, no parking, no stop and get some gas, no closed hours, no muggers, and no taxes. Nope you don't have to fight traffic, and you can shop at night without having to put your life at risk finding your car in the parking lot!

Visit us at:

https://twobroadsandashop.com and we’ll leave the lights on.

Our Customers Create The Most Beautiful Things!


What a wonderful way to start my day .... with an email from one of my shoppers showing me what she did with two of the art prints she purchased from our shop!  Linda Bennett has got to be one of the most creative people I've had the pleasure of meeting.  Take a look at her wall space here .... it makes me want to go start on my walls, but I doubt she'd make the trip to Nebraska to help me :+)



Linda is a woman of my own heart!  Not many people think of putting prints in their baths -- I think just Linda and I  :+)  Isn't this wonderful??? She purchased the upper right hand and lower left hand prints from my shop ... and then added three other wonderful (and so appropriate) prints with them and THEN used the old metal and wood to set everything off.  It's just stunning and genius!  THANK you, Linda, for sharing!!!

https://twobroadsandashop.com

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

A NEW SLIDE SHOW at "Two Broads"

Grab a cup of coffee (or whatever) and come see how new slide show ... parts of it you've seen in the past, and much of it is new ... introducing "Two Broads and A Shop"  :+)

Sunday, September 4, 2016

TIPS FOR ONLINE BUYERS



TIPS NOW FOR ON-LINE BUYERS

I've now written a couple of articles to help sellers SELL ... now it's time to write one to help buyers BUY. AND buy SAFELY. 


For every 50 honest sellers, you are going to run into a scam artist.  They are usually easy to spot, but if you shop on line a lot (and more and more people ARE shopping on line more often, each day), don't become complacent.  Enjoy shopping and browsing, but be alert. 

One of the first things to look for are shops that are selling items WAY below what you expect to pay.  A deal?  Not usually.  It is very easy for someone to set up a shop, steal pictures and descriptions from anyplace on line, from magazines ... nothing is off limits to them. THEN they shout out to everyone "GREAT SAVINGS", "MARKED DOWN", "SAVE HERE" ... and draw in those looking for a bargain.  And they can stay in business for quite some time ... you will receive answers to your queries of "when will my item arrive" with very nice emails telling you they are sorry "but it's back ordered and we expect it no later than two weeks".  (That's them buying time).  They can put you off until you ask for your money back and then tell you they will gladly refund the money and they are sorry they weren't able to help you.  After you've written several times, threatened at least twice --- well by that time they have changed the name of their shop.  You can no longer find them.  Neither can your credit card company. 

SOOO how do you stay away from these places?  One of THE best ways to know you are shopping on a legitimate site (but it's still not a guarantee) is if the URL (address) to their shop is NOT http but rather https.  The "s" stands for security and that shop holds a security certificate --- like our shop (oh good I get to get some advertising in right here!! :+)  https://twobroadsandashop.com .  If you see http without the "s" (which stands for secured) -- that does not MEAN the merchant is not honest, but https is a much better 'part of town' :+).  Those merchants have built their site with a host that is protected.  It's nearly impossible for a hacker to get into a secured site and grab your information AND most not so honest shop owners don't bother with the cost of the security. 

NOW if you find a site where everything is VERY inexpensive (cheap) compared to other shops, pay attention to the writing. Are there misspellings?  Is the grammar very poor?  The shop can have an address that SAYS it's from the good old USA or Canada or the UK --- but that doesn't mean that's where they are.  SO if the grammar is terrible, find the "About Us" page. If there isn't one, that's another red flag. AND if there IS one, again, what's the grammar and spelling like??  It could be that you are in a 'one night stand' (well six  months stand) shop OR it could mean you are dealing with a counterfeiter especially if the spelling of the items they sell is incorrect.

Another thing you will sometimes find with "cheap" sellers is that they are undercutting others who sell the same thing. A good merchant cannot stay in business long using this method. Your chances of possibly being the last buyer ever in that store are pretty high (especially if they aren't advertising a sale or going out of business sale). So you may or may not receive your item, and if you need to return it, they won't be there. 

If you really really want to buy from a shop after you've noticed it just doesn't seem to "look good", the grammar is really really bad, and the pictures aren't the greatest either, WRITE to them. A good and honest shop owner will be glad to answer "where are you from?", "how long have you sold on line" and other questions along those lines.  AND you should be able to find those answers in their "about me" section of their shop.  Even then, you can still write them and ask those questions just to be sure you DO feel at ease buying from them.  AND if you make a purchase, use a credit card that offers liability if you order something which you never receive, or use Pay Pal which is also safe and looks out for its users.

One other warning:  Don't EVER shop from public computers .. the library, a study center at a college ... shop only from your own computer.  Information can remain on public computers (like credit card numbers, phone numbers etc). 

The VAST majority of on line sellers are honest.  I encourage friends who have never shopped on line to DO it.  AND I have purchased from two shops which I was a bit leery about, after writing them first, and they were wonderful.   So use common sense and, as my son likes to say, "listen to your gut".

TIME TO SHOW OFF A LITTLE!!



OKAY ... we want to show you a few of the new items in our Two Broads and a Shop -- AND we have also redesigned the front page with a new menu ... AND the hardest thing to do on blogspot is position photos --- so they may not look neatly placed but they are NEAT items!



 

 Linda makes the bows, Sandy makes the tags, and Ann (that's me) just spends lots of times at estate sales :+)


Thursday, September 1, 2016


YOU CAN ONLY TRUST YOURSELF

OK another tip. If you're with Etsy or some other "shop hosting" entity, they might SAY they submit your shop to Google. Hmmm with shops numbering in the millions, ya THINK??? No doubt it is submitted but by a robot ... it is a LOT more certain the google bots will find you if you put your OWN URL into their site.  It's quite easy. Just go here.  Takes all of one minute.  

https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/submit-url

AND a PS .. we would appreciate you looking BELOW our posts and clicking on "like" if you like and can use the information we are sharing. Otherwise, as I used to say to Sandy when we were kids, "I won't play with you anymore"   :+) 


BASIC RULES FOR LISTING ITEMS IN YOUR SHOP


Well hello from our new shop, Two Broads and A Shop.  FIRST I want to tell you that Sandy and I have maintained a small presence on Etsy ... annswhimsey is still open with all of the art prints I've always sold and Craft Stuff Depot will soon be open with crafting supplies.  Other than that, we are gone, and we invite you to come visit us at Two Broads (link above).

NOW FOR THE THINGS WE'VE LEARNED ... and this should help all sellers who own their own shops outside of Etsy AND I think all of this can be implemented on Etsy as well.  And a big thank you to Marsha Muller who gave us this information to work with .. she markets our shop for us (and she does this for many Etsy shops as well).  Here are some guidelines to get into google.

1.  TITLES: Your titles must be NO LONGER than 70 characters.  I know Etsy allows only "x" amount of characters but if it is MORE than 70, STOP at 70. (I can't remember what they have their's set for). Titles that are too long can be blacklisted by boots/spiders crawling sites and will not show up in search engines queries.  Titles MUST be rich in keywords.  Luckily in our new shop we are allowed as many as we want, BUT, I put the most important at the beginning (and remember, in Etsy you have to do it backwards since you want the most important one to be FIRST) 

2. TITLE PUNCTUATION: Do not use punctuation. Some punctuation marks are actually code for other things and your title will be ignored. The title may look a little dumb without quotes around a title or commas where needed but you aren't writing your title for the customer, but rather for the search engines. 

3. DESCRIPTIONS: Spiders crawl descriptions BUT they only pick up the first 115 characters of your description.  Google suggests you REPEAT the title as the first sentence of your description (just copy and paste it as the first sentence). Again, you are not writing for the shopper, but for the SEARCH ENGINES.  From there you CAN write for the shopper -- going into more detail about the item you are selling. 

4.  TAGS/KEYWORDS: Think like a shopper. If YOU were looking for something you sell, what would be the first word you would put into a search?  An example: You are selling a silk scarf.  Maybe a buyer thinks "I want to find a neat scarf".  START your keywords with scarf. THEN silk scarf. Then women's accessory. Then if it's a well known name brand put the name of the brand ending with scarf. Put women's scarf. Handmade scarf if it is.  Vintage scarf if it is.   Pattern as in "paisley scarf" if it is. And continue till you've hit your limit. (I love not having a limit but you MUST prioritize them in the order you think a potential buyer would search). 

If you want to find Marsha just google "My Texas Treasures + Bonanza".  She comes up right at the top! AND to visit us just click on the name of our shop in paragraph one.  I hope this helps you on-line sellers! 


Monday, August 22, 2016

ANOTHER NEW SHOP


We've been so busy, I forgot to tell you all something yesterday.  First I have the address of another Etsy seller who has left Etsy and opened her own shop.  I hope you'll all give her a visit.  Her new shop is KJoannRussell and she has the most beautiful art in her shop ... all done by her.

AND I would like to invite anyone who has sold ON Etsy and has now begun their own shop, to get in touch with me at twobroadsandashop@gmail and I'll be glad to announce your shop in our blog as well. I will also make a list of the new shops that have sprung up from Etsy here in the blog (when I get a few extra minutes!)

Everyone have a great day!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

We're Feeling at Home

We are all three settled in our new home, Two Broads and a Shop --- I know the name is misleading but we ended up three instead of two.

Autumn is moving in here in Nebraska. This week our nights are to get down into the 50s and 60s ... I so love fall.  This was always my grandma's favorite time of the year and I miss her more (if that's possible) in autumn, than the rest of the year.  When I was young, come this time of year, I would help her in the garden and orchard, and then as she canned and froze vegetables and fruit, Grandad would have to watch me "so she doesn't end up getting burned" my grandma would tell him, as she stood over steaming kettles.  After I married and we moved away from our little home town, each Fall I would drive out to see her at least once a week, and take her for a drive out in the country where she so enjoyed the beautiful colors, and watching the farmers harvest.  Those were such wonderful times.

THIS Fall, I'll probably be either cleaning or working in the new shop but the last couple of weeks, I've stayed with the shop so I could sit and work and watch the Olympics.  Such fun "games".

I want to thank my former Etsy shoppers for following us to our new shop ... and for your input.  This has been one bad year in Etsy, and for those of you who aren't aware, be alert when you are shopping there. They have been double charging our shoppers.  Check your credit card statement and Pay Pal account carefully. It has been happening less and less BUT IS still happening.  And if you can't find the store you are looking for, hopefully you have a business card with their email on it, as many, many of the vendors have left for new 'homes'.  That way you can email them and find out where they now are.

It doesn't seem possibly that soon Labor Day will be here. AND for everyone who crafts for Christmas, you'd better be busy OR you'd BETTER get started!  Labor Day has always been the unofficial end of summer --- so next thing you know, we will be planning Thanksgiving and Christmas!  Linda and I were at Hobby Lobby yesterday and of course, THERE, it already IS Christmas .. all the decorations and trees are out on display.

Here are a couple of ideas for gifts for upcoming holidays ....

This would be a wonderful print to mat and frame for your BFF



And if you have a nurse in your life, what better gift?  :+)


Happy new week to all!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

AFTER FOUR YEARS, AN INTRODUCTION


So many of you have been following our blog for years ... and we are very grateful for that.  Many of you have become friends, friendships we treasure. For the most part you've seen us share treasuries, put up slide shows, and you've watched me give Sandy a hard time :+)  (That will never stop!)  BUT the other day I was writing our "About Us" for our new shop ... and it hit me that I've never really told all of you, whom we have known for quite sometime, about us!  SOOO here's what our shoppers see when the come into our shop https://twobroadsandashop (can't forget to put THAT in)   :+)

ABOUT US ...
I was thinking today about how  sometimes I used to hesitate at buying from a little store on the internet.  Most of us head for bigger places where the sellers are held to some sort of standard (or we THINK they are -- little do we know).  With little, independent shops, we DON'T know the people who run them. Are they honest?  Are they selling exactly what I see in their shop?  Where are they from?  Could they just pack up and leave?  
Well first of all, anyone in any place, big or small, could be dishonest --- out to make a quick dollar or thousand and then disappear.  AND we three have personally found out that the bigger the site, the better your chances are of getting scammed. People can disappear off a BIG site in the blink of an eye -- and if they live on the other side of the world there's no way you are protected. Sure, that can happen with a small site, but small site owners have worked their tails off to build a shop on their own, grow an inventory on their own, and then establish themselves, on their own.  We really want you to know us --- and know you can trust us and that we aren't going to disappear. So a little closer look at us ...
Ann (that's me) is from Lincoln, Nebraska (and yes Lincoln, not Omaha, IS the state capital).  I have been married for 50 (yes five zero) years to my hubby, Ron. We both grew up in a little town about 35 miles outside of Lincoln called ... get ready to laugh ... Beaver Crossing, Nebraska.  We have three grown and married children, and five grandchildren.  In addition to this shop, I also am a medical transcriptionist. I work from my home with that job too, and am down to now transcribing three days a week, leaving me plenty of time to work on our shop. For 20 years, I also owned a resume' writing and job placement company (a one woman business) and loved doing that.  I sold on Etsy for four years and hubby and I sold for many years on ebay, right from its start-up.  When it got really huge and really expensive to sell there,  we decided "no more".  He stuck to it. Obviously, I didn't. 
Sandy ... oh the stories I can tell you about Sandy -- but she swears me to secrecy :+)  Sandy lives in Decatur, Georgia, near Atlanta.  She has one daughter, who recently presented her with a son-in-law and now she's planning on grandchildren.  (Her daughter and son-in-law don't know just how MUCH she's cheering for them to have a baby).  Sandy and I met while selling on Etsy.  She befriended me and helped me learn the ropes at Etsy and we became close friends. She has sold on line for at least 15 years (selling on ebay before Etsy), plus she also sells to community groups in Georgia, Florida, and other places "out east" and "down south".  She managed her husband's multi-facility veterinary practice for umpteen years and she also worked for the school board in Decatur for many years before her retirement.     
And then there's Linda.  She is from Waverly, Nebraska which is about six miles from Lincoln, but she and her husband live in the country, so she's probably four miles from my house.  Linda and I met through Linda's husband when he sold my husband and me a car (selling runs in Linda's family).  As it turned out, he and I are cousins (distant) so we visited throughout the purchase ... and he kept saying "I can't BELIEVE how much alike you and my wife are" (over and over again).  About the fifth time he said it he added "you have GOT to meet my wife" and, after repeating that a dozen times, he gave me her telephone number.  A couple of weeks later I called her and as they say, the rest is history.  Linda as you might guess, is married, and they have three children and six grandchildren. Linda is newer to on line selling, but with Sandy and me as her guide dogs, she has learned very quickly.
I do hope you can see us as just down home, every day people who are here, not only to help you find just the right item, but who also will get to know you over the years to come.  I know lots of our shoppers from Etsy who became friends after we met over their first long distance purchase ... and that's one of the things all three of us love most about selling on line in a not so big store!  We know people from everywhere!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

WE HAVE BEEN BUSY!



We've been busy in our new shop ...  and it's such a change.  It's like going from renting an apartment (Etsy) to owning your own home.  No one says "you can't do that" or "you must do that", and there is no pop up directing shoppers to other shops or drop downs saying  "you might also be interested in" as there was in our former home.   We've been busy adding new products, and below are three from me.  Sandy and Linda will show off some of their's later --- I think they're both still in bed :+) My favorite of these it the one on the right --- an elephant tie just in time for the November elections, if you happen to know someone who is going to the polls that day and wants to tell the world who he's voting for!


 Vintage Paper Doll

AND I don't think I've ever put our new shop address in our blog so here it is!!! :::

https://twobroadsandashop.com



 

SOOO come visit us!  AND you can always email us at twobroadsandashop@gmail.com



Sunday, August 14, 2016

SANDY IS HERE TO STRAIGHTEN THIS OUT -- OUR NEW SHOP TWO BROADS AND A SHOP

From Ann:  OK I've tried twice today ... thank you God for my absolutely wonderful friend, Sandy ... to everyone ... I have been very sick today and tried to announce our new shop --- then all I had to do was write Sandy saying "help" and she did --- here is the

FORMAL ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE OPENING
OF TWO BROADS AND A SHOP BY SANDY

Hi, this is Sandy, the Old Broad in the middle . . . the one in the yellow gown with the fur throw around her neck . . . the sexy one.  LOL, LOL yeah, and if you really believe that is me, I have some riverside land in the Sahara to sell to you.

I never thought I could get excited about a Monday.  It always meant that the weekend was over and I needed to turn the 5:00 a.m. alarm back on.

Well, THIS MONDAY is different!  Ann, Linda, and I are opening our independent website store!!!  We have stepped out on our faith and we all know . . . God bless the child who got its own . . . Two Broads and A Shop.  Ok, we can count.  One Broad + One Broad + One Broad = A Shop.  Don’t worry . . . you’ll figure it out.

We will see each of you tomorrow and we will be there when we get there!   By the way, our first 3 customers will get a little something extra tucked into their shopping bag.  Also, all customers for the first week will go into a drawing for something really sweet.

We intend to have a lot of month-to-month fun throughout the years.  We are opening with approximately 1000 items in 4 main categories, Vintage / Antique, Handmade, Supplies and Art.

Since we are senior citizens, we can’t tell you a time when the fun will end.  LOL, LOL.  The shop will be “first come, first served” and our products may be just like each of us, “the only one that we have” and our store will be open 24 hours just like us, “living one blessed day at a time”.  
Thank You, ~ Sandy, and I’ll leave the light on.


Thursday, August 11, 2016

CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT


I worked till 3:00 A.M. so at noon am just getting up.  AND the first email I read from an Etsy seller who had taken our advice to "get out of Etsy" reinforced to us that our decision to leave Etsy was 100% accurate.  A class action lawsuit has been filed against Etsy.



Sunday, August 7, 2016


EIGHT DAYS, BUT WHO'S COUNTING?

A week from tomorrow we open the doors to our new shop ... I think if Sandy and I had our way we'd open it tonight!!! BUT right now we have over a thousand MORE items to put in, and while they certainly won't all be IN the shop when we open, there are already PLENTY there now ... and we hope to add to it in the next eight days!

Today Sandy and I were talking and I said "well I suppose I'd best get back to work .... yeah work, if you can call it that".  She responded "Yes you're right, we should call it something like "Intense Playing" or "The Game That Never Ends" or "What Happens Next" :+)  AND you know it is SO neat to be "working" at something we love. I am still working three days a week at my medical transcription job, but at least I do that from home.  I can just imagine someone saying to me, "OK, you are hired, and we want you to be here at 8:00 A.M. every day."  "YOU WANT ME TO WHAT???" And we close the office at 5:00.  "YOU GOTTA BE KIDDING ME".  "Oh and you don't have to REALLY dress up.  You can wear flats instead of heels with your dress."  "PEOPLE STILL WEAR DRESSES?" I have worked from my home for 30 years ... and have done so grudgingly the last four or so years ... SO now that we can rely on our on algorithm and set up our own marketing, I fully hope to be a ONE JOB person soon!

SO a week from tomorrow I hope you'll all break down the doors at the new shop -- we will be announcing it again in here -- and it's okay if you DO literally break down the doors --- we built our shop on solid ground and they will fix it :+)

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

WE'RE IN THE COUNTDOWN!!


We've reached the countdown!!!  I hope you'll all wish us well as we leave Etsy for our own shop ... and remember that we've changed the name of the blog to twobroadsandashop.blogspot.com!  AND of course we hope you will come visit us once we are in the new shop.

AND as you know from my last post, Sandy did decide to join us ... Linda and I were soooo happy. There was only one TINY problem.  You see, our Sandy is a thinker (Linda and I have never been accused of that :+)  SO she thought things over ... and while Sandy was thinking, Linda and I were planning and I was busy setting up the shop. AND I was also ordering business cards ... 1500 of them to be exact.  In fact, I already had them in my office when Sandy stopped thinking and decided it WAS time to move.

Now what to do with 1500 rather expensive cards?  Linda came up with the first idea.  "Just put a note at the top of our shop explaining we can't count".  THEN, leave it to Sandy. SHE had the answer. She said "I'll be the shop".  NOW that makes perfect sense to me --- so we are still Two Broads and A Shop (until we have our first 1500 sales and then ... well THEN we'll STILL be Two Broads and A Shop because we do NOT want to change names again) :+)

SO what you may see in your wanderings around the internet:  Lilly's Ambrosia (Linda's shop) will be closed. Those Broads From Etsy (the shop the belonged to the three of us) will remain on vacation and so will annswhimsey until we KNOW we won't need any of the inventory that still sits in the shops.  When we have everything moved we want to move, we will probably go off vacation and close the Etsy shops. Sandy's Hugs and Holidays will probably be on a very long vacation as well. One shop will be left, and that will be  the shop Sandy started, and one that I also sell in, Craft Stuff Depot.  There you can buy supplies for crafting and scrapbooking but don't be surprised if that one eventually closes as well.

To all of our shoppers who follow us here, you will know when the new store is officially open ... we'll be sending out emails with the address to you.  AND for others who follow us -- you can be certain we will make a huge announcement here -- and it is happening THIS MONTH!!!

Hugs to all! Ann

Sunday, July 10, 2016

GREAT NEWS .. WONDERFUL NEWS!!!


We are still going to be THREE, as in Sandy, Linda, and Ann, in our new shop!!!  Sandy has been hit hard by the changes in Etsy, as have about 99% of us, and she has decided to move her Hugs and Holidays store into our new shop.  We are thrilled!!

NOW of course we had already ordered our "Two Broads and A Shop" cards, so we will still use that name ... we love it as a takeoff of Two Men and a Truck --- AND so our excuse will be we can't count (Sandy's idea)  :+)

We are moving inventory like crazy but for all of you thinking of making the move we did, believe me, it's worth it. One of the biggest things to remember is to get your mailing list made, to change your Pinterest, google plus, facebook, twitter accounts --- anything that might still attach you to the old store. I have a list to which I'm ALWAYS adding!!!

OHHH and we aren't just taking our inventory from our existing shops -- there will be LOTS of new things when we open!!! SO watch for more messages!!!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

A NEW HOME FOR US - From The Former "Those Broads From Etsy"


Morning everyone!  Today I'm updating my last post and explaining why our shops are disappearing at the top of the page :+)  We have purchased our own website and will be leaving Etsy hopefully by no later than the end of July.  I hope everyone will add this, our new blog, to their favorites and dismiss "Those Broads From Etsy" from the favorites.

I will say only briefly, we have first outgrown the need for Etsy thanks to our wonderful shoppers and the support of many friends from other shops (most of whom are also leaving).  As sellers know, things have not been good in Etsy for a long time, but it progressively has gotten worse. It started as a wonderful idea ... handmade items by artisans ... and expanded to include vintage items.  It was still a wonderful place to buy and sell.  Now the site is full of manufactured abroad products, and the search no longer works the way it did.  So many of my shoppers have written to tell me they can no longer even find annswhimsey or thosebroadsfrometsy when they come in.

SO Linda and I will be leaving (my shop only has a few items left in it) and we have become Two Broads and a Shop.  I will give you the "address" as soon as we open. Our new site is wonderful and right now we are just trying to decide on what options to use AND get our final merchandise moved.  POSSIBLY (depending upon our choices) you will be able to log in and pay using Amazon, purchase from our Twitter feed, or purchase our items on Pinterest as well as shopping right in our shop as you did when we were on Etsy. We also will have a new page on facebook (but we have decided NOT to sell from facebook which is another option).  With facebook, I feel that people come to facebook to relax, catch up with friends, possibly  play games .... it's a place to wind down and enjoy.  You MAY see our ads on facebook but not our shop.  However, we DO hope, when we have our shop page finished, you will all follow us there, and on twitter, and pinterest. (All of those will be added to our blog when we are ready to open the new shop).

Sandy will be staying with Etsy, at least for the time being. Don't forget .. her shops are Hugs and Holidays and Craft Stuff Depot.  THOSE you might want to bookmark in order to be able to still find her!! And yes that's me and my "furball" in the picture with Sandy ... which she will probably have to take down :+(

We will keep our blog going, and we hope you'll check back in with us.  Some of you might find it more interesting than just the treasuries we posted here.  I've been a nationally published writer for almost 50 years (giving my age away!!) so we'll touch on many topics -- but selling on line will definitely be one of them!!!  AND to our shoppers, you will be receiving an email when we open our new store.  If you sellers want to receive an email, just send us an email at:
twobroadsandashop@gmail.com



Tuesday, May 31, 2016

A NEW TREASURY BY "OUR" SANDY ---- THANK YOU SANDY!

It is so WONDERFUL to have "our Sandy" back and working in her shops .... we missed you, lady, while you were getting your daughter married!  SO here is Sandy's treasury ... and I know you all will love it.  And after you've enjoyed it, please visit Sandy's shops ... they are wonderful ... and you can get to them by simply clicking on their names:   hugs and holidays   and  craft stuff depot .   So enjoy and then enjoy those shops!

Make A Statement

There is a special life meaning that can be attached to each of these beautiful items. I selected Blue and Black to evoke these wonderful memories. Love on each other, and spread the love. Have a great day. ~Sandy :)
Pin Collection, Needle Book, Stick Pin, Needles and Pins, Collection Display, Stick Pin Accessory, Stick Pin Case, Needle Case, Pin Cushion
$27.00
Rain Girls Art Print, mother and daughter paintings, rain paintings, umbrellas, mom and daughter, little girl, wall art, Vickie Wade Art
$26.00
Crystal Drawer Knobs - Furniture Knobs with Black Glass Crystals (MK113) in Silver
$8.25
Black Lace Choker - Vamp choker - victorian inspired choker - Burlesque choker
$24.99
Gray and Blue Statement Beaded Necklace Scarf with Lazurite Flowers, Beading Holiday Necklace, Fashion jewelry, Womens Gift, Gift for Her
$130.00
Vintage Hankie, Stunning and Large, Blue With Red Iris for Collecting, Framing, Sewing, Crafts, Collage  F18
$8.75
Wedding, Sola wood Bouquet, Burlap Bouquet, Grey Bouquet, Alternative Bouquet,  Bridal Bouquet, Sola flowers, Wood Bouquet
$110.00
Clothespin apron, retro apron, handmade apron, floral apron, apron, half apron, gathering apron, harvest apron, farm apron, blue rose apron,
$20.00
Miniature Chess Set, handcraft chess board, only 17 x 17  millimeter, chess lovers
$420.00
Monogram Graduation Invitation, Black and Gold Graduation Invitation, Class of 2016, Monogram Invitation, DIY Printable
$14.00
Black and Silver Victorian Style Beaded Purse, Knit Purse, Victorian Purse, Coin Purse, Black Evening Bag
$52.00
Black/white Cat Necklace Mod Black Cat, steampunk Art pendant, Pet Necklace, Cute Black Cat Jewellery Love Cat Necklace Resin Animal Jewelry
$11.30
Blue Batik Table Runner Interlocking Squares Cheerful Winter Handmade Quilted
$78.00
Cobalt Blue Soap Dish - Pottery Soap Dish - Sushi Plate - Spoon Rest - Ceramic Soap Dish - Ring Holder - Mandala Plate
$18.00
Assemblage Floral Necklace Hand made, One of a Kind, Nature theme, Great Gift for her, Flower necklace , Assemblage jewelry , Nature lover
$65.00
Black and Royal Blue Fur Felt Medium Brim  Hat for Women,
$285.00

Monday, May 30, 2016

THANK YOU, MARGARET --- LOVE Your Beautiful Treasuries!!

Many thanks to Margaret for this wonderful treasury. Thank you for including me in it.  Please everyone, after you've enjoyed the treasury, go enjoy Margaret's shop at fireflygirl777 (just click on the name and you're there).

"All the diversity, all the charm, all the beauty of life..

are made up of light and shadow." ~ Leo Tolstoy
Mexican Fine Art Print Frida Kahlo Diego Rivera Lovers from Original Oil Painting A Moment in Time by k Madison Moore
$19.00
Western Decor, Fine Art Photography, Rustic, Ghost Town, Wagon Wheel, Bodie, Southwestern, Black and White, Sepia, Mojave
$29.00
Cardinal Family Art Print, cardinal paintings, red birds, winter birds, snow birds, cardinals wall art, Christmas birds, Vickie Wade art
$20.00
The Graduate, Restored Art Print, Beautiful Print for Graduation Day - Gift Table Decor, Gift for Graduate #115
$12.00
Roses - "Sedona Sunset"- An Original Watercolor Painting by Linda Henry - 5"x 7" - Ready to Frame with a free White Mat (Rose #25)
$35.00
Quicksilver Recycled Record Album Cover Book
$10.00
Sting Recycled Record Album Cover Book
$10.00
Handmade card, greetings card, ancient map, illustration, butterfly, birthday card, congratulations card
£3.00
SALE Original Mixed Media Painting, Art, Raven Silhouettes over Vintage Book Pages 20 x 16"
$75.00
Orange Appeal, Pop Art, Old Rusted Can, Selective Color, Rust, Color photography print, signed.
$29.00
BJD eyes available in 12/14/16/18/20/22/24mm Cinnabar Smoke made to order
£9.50
Fall Colors Forest Jewelry Photo Pendant, Art Jewelry, Nature Photography, Silver Plated, Stocking Stuffer Nature Lover Gift Orange Necklace
$35.00
Original Art  Print, Bowie Portrait on Brick Wall, London Cafe at Night from Original Painting Dare to Be Different - by k Madison Moore
$19.00
Peach  tunic , peach tank , peach mini dress , salmon color tunic, salmon color tank ,  salmon color mini dress , On sale
$50.00
Figurine Baby Nursery Ceramic Roman Style Communion 1950's Shower Gift Toddler Christening Baptism Gift Figure Boy Pre School Children
$30.00
Bird and Moon Photograph Full Moon and Trees 8x10 Fine Art Photo Collage Nature Modern Wall Decor Contemporary Art
$28.00