Isn't it funny that the dreams we had when we were about to graduate high school aren't always the way things turn out? When I was 18 I was sure I was going to complete 4 years of college and do something in the psychology field. I wanted to help others figure out their problems and give them direction in their lives.
Well that didn't happen. One year into college I decided I would rather get married and be an Army wife. During that 5 years I worked a couple of odd jobs, and I even sold Tupperware. I became a manager (though I never earned the "van"), but did accumulate a bunch of containers. I always joked I was my own best customer. I found I didn't love selling and in the military people tend to come and go, and the 'locals' as we referred to them by were not always open to the military wives.
After almost 5 years of marriage and 2 little boys, my ex-husband decided he was done and found an older 'model' with 2 older boys and we got divorced. This is when my Dad who was an insurance salesman at the time hired me part-time to work in his office. It was a perfect job as I could work part-time and still be able to afford child care.
During this time I met my husband that I am married to now, had another child, a daughter and worked for my Dad for 8 years full-time. While I worked for him I secured my auto/home/health and life insurance licenses which helped bring in some extra money. It was always stressful for me. If I wasn't home thinking about what I might have possibly forgotten to do while at work I was going in early or staying late. I tried to take over his office but the headquarters after interviewing me said I didn't have big enough goals. I felt I was being reasonable, but they felt differently. When the new agent interviewed me he didn't want to pay me what I felt I was worth since I could run the office by myself if needed, so I decided to leave upon my Dad retiring. That was back at the end of 2002.
My husband was running a Family Daycare out of our home which enabled him to be home with the kids before our youngest started school and when the boys came home from school. It was a perfect set up and I thought if I got my daycare license we could expand into a Group Home Daycare which would allow more children in his care. What I found was although I do love kids, I didn't love doing daycare. I dreaded each day when the kids would show up or wonder when the parents would get done with work and show up. So during this time I decided to try my hand at a business out of our home.
My sister had a brick and mortar storefront with country decor and wanted a website. So I thought I can teach myself how to do that. So I would sit at her computer for hours on end coding in html a website for the items she offered. Looking back it was so amateurish but it worked and did what she wanted it to do. She started selling wholesale and that was when I realized what if I could make soybean candles as a business. She actually didn't purchase from me at first because she wanted to make sure they burned like they should and so on. Then my prices were "too high" as once again I wasn't looking at the big picture.
There came a time that I gave up on making candles and gave her my candle business for her to make and sell. Then she decided to close the storefront and offered me her business online and all of her supplies. The catch was I had to pay her something like $3-5K and I did. But it was a lesson learned in giving up too easily. I made soybean candles, tarts, molded candles, potpourri and the list goes on, from our home. Pretty soon I had built the wholesale business up to where I had customers outside of the country ordering. During that 5 years I decided to start hosting other people's websites and had started my own blog called What U Talking Bout Willis.
The problem I ran into was eventually it was like the candles and those items were not 'needs' but wants and business started to diminish. I had built up the hosting business, and was starting to see a bit of return on my blog so I decided to get out of the candle business. I was tired of the overhead, the shipping and it always seemed like I was running out of a scents etc. It wasn't making money is an easy way to put it.
So while hosting other people's websites and my blog, I started to teach myself some design. This led to learning more coding and how to fix people's wordpress blogs when they were hacked or made a mistake. Hosting became harder and harder as I had people in different timezones and would get a Facebook ding in the middle of the night that their blog was down. So once again I reassesd my situation and decided it was time to end that, which took me over a year because some had paid an annual amount up front.