Archive for the ‘General’ Category

The Thrill of the Sale

Well, we made two sales this week and somehow it seems like we won a prize. Woo Hoo!! Hopefully we’ll get that same feeling even when we are having trouble keeping up with the sales.

Sorta Green Buttons sold two sets to one customer.










And Sorta Green Stuff sold some old records. 

One interesting though unimportant note was that the buyers were on opposite coasts. One in New York and the other in California. Wow, we’re national distributors!

Owning and operating your own business should be fun. When it is no longer fun it is time to move on to something else. We have a friend who is a brilliant musician and used to really enjoy playing the keyboard. But he ran a recording studio for many years and for years afterword played only rarely. He simply got burned out on something he loved. In recent years he has found a way to rekindle his joy through teaching others.

The old adage that says “Find a way to get paid for doing something you love and you’ll never work another day in your life” only goes so far. You have to remember to take joy in what you do every day as well as to take time out for other things. I love ice cream but if that was all I ever ate even I would eventually get tired of it.

Part of the remedy for us is that we currently have several things that we are working with and hope to add more in the future. Paula really enjoys working on her sewing projects and dreaming up new ones, I really enjoy trying to find new things to turn into buttons or new ways of using old materials. We both enjoy sorting through our “stuff” finding things we think someone else might like to have. (and would be willing to pay for. 🙂 )We are preparing to branch out into the craft supply business, and other ideas are brewing.

But even with that we have to be careful not to spread ourselves too thin. If you get too many things going you will not excel at any of them and most of them will be mediocre at best. One of the keys to happiness as a business owner is to concentrate on a few things you really enjoy while not neglecting the other areas of your life. I have seen too many people over the years who are very successful in business while the rest of their lives are a mess.

We have to keep our priorities straight. Running a successful business is an acceptable goal but family and friends are much more important.


Why Sorta Green?

Shoovey Hugging a Tree in My Favorite Skort Outfit

Twenty years ago I might have called myself VERY green.  I was a bit of a tree hugger and quite obsessed with saving mother earth.  I felt quite guilty for using resources of any sort.  It killed me to throw away anything that might be of use within the next 100 years and I thought everyone should take cold showers and walk or bike wherever they went.  While in college I studied environmental engineering in hopes of making a meaningful contribution to the whole environmental movement.  Also, while in college I got saved, yes the real come-to-Jesus, surrender-my-life sort of “saved”.  I no longer worshiped the earth but the one true God.  In doing so I eventually became more balanced in my approach to the environment.  While I did learn that God wanted us to be good stewards of the world that He blessed us with, I also learned that we were made in God’s image and that He’d made it for us to use and enjoy.  People are ultimately more important than the planet.

The name Sorta Green came to me when pondering the fact that our products have a “green” eco-friendly aspect to them, but ultimately our goal is not to save mother earth but to glorify God.  Todd’s buttons are much more natural than those  found in stores but he does use electricity when he fires the ceramics and when he drills holes in the rocks or shells.  When making my skort outfits I start with second-hand shirts and shorts.  Because I choose those in the best condition, I’m not likely saving them from a landfill, but by buying second-hand I’m not adding to the demand for new factory made items either.

Our lifestyle is  “sorta green” as well.  While we are not “off grid”, we live in a fairly small house which minimizes energy waste, we burn wood to heat, have a small organic garden, and bike when possible for transportation.  We support local merchants with weekly purchases and only make bigger shopping trips to bigger merchants every three  months or so.  We use cloth diapers, we compost food scraps,  and burn paper waste in order to minimize trips to the dump.  At the same time we enjoy life and enjoy the bounty that the Lord has blessed us with without guilt.

Another final twist to the Sorta Green name that I only thought of recently is the fact that we are “sorta green” (very green is probably more appropriate at this time) when it comes to trying to establish a small home business.  Prior to this we’d never set up a shop online and we’d never created a blog.  We’re having fun as we continue to climb the steep learning curve in this realm but hopefully one day we won’t be quite so green at least in this sense.


This is the Sorta Green Team (Paula, Todd, Teshuvah, Tiveria, Tikvah, and Tevya)

Welcome to our blog.  Sorta Green is the name that we have given our small home business that we began while my husband recovered from  falling off a roof.  Thus far it consists of three different shops on Etsy.  They are Sorta Green Buttons (, Sorta Green Kids (, and Sorta Green Stuff (  We’ll talk more about each one of these in future blogs.

We thought it would be fun to journal about our experiences throughout our small business journey and so was born this blog.  My goal is to journal weekly (preferably on Fridays) about the progress of our business, lessons learned, and more.  We think it will be interesting  simply as family history, but it may also provide help to those down the road who undertake similar endeavors and start out as “green” as we are.  We hope you enjoy.