Welcome to all of my new friends from Sheepishly Me!
I started writing this in an email, but decided instead to make a new blog post so it can live on my website. A quick story time for everyone...
November is always my busiest month of the year. Not only is the weather changing and people want to cozy up inside with candles, but it's also gift giving season. Because of that (and coupled with the fact that I'm notoriously last-minute) I'm always swamped this time of year.
My number of retailers has grown throughout the year (yay!!), and this year I signed up for more markets than usual as well. I did the Big Brothers Big Sisters Show and Sale which went SO well that I had to pour tons to be prepared for Shale Ridge the following weekend. So there I am at Shale Ridge, enjoying the second day of their beautiful Holiday Sip and Shop, which again was going so well that I was worrying about my dwindling inventory heading into One of a Kind Show the following week. I had emailed all of you to say I'd be away, and to expect longer than normal fulfillment times.
Around 10am my website started blowing up with sales. At first I thought, okay it must be my customers who just received that email, getting their order in the queue before I leave. But it just kept going and going. I opened a few of them and saw they were all to the US. Now I was REALLY confused. I rarely ship to the US. I opened Instagram to see if someone had tagged me there, but nope! At that point I texted my friend Laurel from Ysebaert Acres and she said the same thing was happening to her! Shortly after that, I saw a lovely DM from someone saying they were sent to my page from Sandi Brock aka Sheepishly Me and that they were excited to try my candles.
It turns out Sandi (who has over 1m YouTube subscribers) had purchased my holiday candles from Laurel's store, and just out of the kindness of her and Jess' hearts, decided to talk about them on their vlog, and link everyone to my website. I had to wait all day until I was back at home to watch the video (while wicking jars with my husband) and it brought me to tears. I've cried about it many times since then as well.
That Sunday alone, I received over 100 new orders, and the orders have continued since then. Some customers have already re-ordered. Holy cow. Or holy sheep I should say!!
Last night I packed up an order for Sandi and Jess, because I wanted to send them a few things to say thank you. To them, it may not seem like a grand gesture to just speak authentically about products they enjoy so much, knowing that their viewers would enjoy them as well. But to me, it was an unexpected act of kindness at a time when I needed some reassurance that I'm where I'm supposed to be.
2023 was a really tough year for so many small businesses. I can't even begin to count how many of my small biz friends have closed their doors this year. It has felt like the love and support we received during the pandemic had all but disappeared. It's understandable that people would turn back to big box retailers when so many people can't afford to spend the way they used to. Zero judgment from me, I promise, but it doesn't make it any less disheartening.
The orders, the messages, the kind reviews and comments from the people sent my way from Sandi are a true testament to the people she has attracted to her life. I truly feel that kind people attract kind people, and I'm committed to taking care of my customers in the same way.
Thank you all for being here, and please know that every order, every little note in the orders, every comment, every DM, every product review makes my day.
with love, Nicki
PS check out Sandi's vlog here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbSmUdHGjjk. My candles are featured around 17 minutes in.