Thursday, June 30, 2011


I've been reading a lot about supporting local economies lately... I'm still working out my thoughts, but here are some great articles.

Support Your Local Business - Invest In It

Lessons from BALLE in Bellingham

And this article about the top trends of 2011
Top 10 Trends for 2011

I would really like to get involved in some kind of community business group or city planning committee. I am completely fascinated by it all!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I've Got Confidence

I'm trying something new... I read this article at of an interview with former Yahoo executive Tim Sanders. He has written a book called Today We Are Rich. He spent a period of his life in what he calls "sideways years." He wasn't necessarily moving backward in his career but he certainly wasn't moving forward.

He has some good advice in the article and I'm definitely curious to read his whole book. I think we all find ourselves lacking confidence from time to time. Especially as entreprenuers. There are so many things to deal with and it can be difficult when you feel it's just you against the world, fighting for your spot in the market.

Sanders suggests that you give more, in a charitable manner, in order to boost your sense of well being. He even gets a little bit scientific about why it's such a good thing. But the advice I'm going to try out, because it seems such a simple thing, is about media intake.

He explains that the internet is pretty much full of garbage and we should be careful about what we are filling our brains up with every day because it might have a lasting effect on our confidence and ultimately our success. His suggestion: no internet, news, facebook, twitter, email, etc. for the first 30 minutes of your day.

This is exactly what my morning is. Wake up. Grab phone. Check email. Facebook. Twitter. Repeat if necessary.

So, today I tried something new. Actually got out of bed when my alarm went off! Turned on some lovely music (Fleet Foxes). Did some yoga. Ate breakfast. Then checked my email. I definitely feel more calm and collected than usual. It's also sunny today so that might have something to do with it. Either way, I plan to try this for at least the next few weeks and see how it goes. Let me know if you do the same!

Monday, June 20, 2011

How to Decide

Sometimes I find myself sitting in my chair staring blankly into space, trying to figure out what to do next... why are decisions so hard to make? Especially those little ones like when it's 7pm and I'm starving and just staring at my open refrigerator and I end up deciding to just go watch tv instead of eating something. It makes no sense.

Let me make a decision for you, read this article. It contains 5 tips on daily decision making. The tips are surprisingly interesting and useful. Don't overthink it.

Friday, June 17, 2011


I've decided to bring this blog back to life! So let's get started...

Do you know how well your website is doing? I have to admit, sometimes I stay up until midnight just so I can check my stats on Google Analytics (is it sad that it might be one of the most exciting parts of my day?). I'm slowly figuring out how the whole thing works, but I've been curious about the "bounce rate."

So, in a short explanation, the bounce rate is a percentage number given to you to show how many people leave your page after only visiting the main page. The lower the number, the better. Why does it matter? Because the lower your number, the higher your google search ranking and we all know that higher google ranking equals more money in your pocket. Also, the bounce rate really seems to reflect the quality of your website. If people find your site confusing and aren't sure where to go next... they probably give up.

I like to think about it in terms of a retail store or restaurant. You probably have something in mind that you are looking for when you walk through the doors. What is it? Once you're inside, do you know where to look?

I often go searching for pretty random things that sometimes can only be found in those evil big box stores... after wandering for what seems like hours sometimes, I often give up. That's what you want to avoid on your website. On my site, Queen B Quilts, people are most likely searching for t-shirt quilting services and what do they want to know? How much is this gonna cost me? So rather than hide that little detail I have the link listed at the top of the page and along the side. Don't make people go through some song and dance to get what they really want.

Gonzoblog has some tips on how to improve your bounce rate. It's good for business and it will probably greatly improve the design of your website as well! Do not overdesign - personal pet peeve of mine!