Tuesday, Apr. 04, 2006
Giving Us The Business
Busy busy busy...
You know, just when you least expect it, the sky opens and dumps everything in your lap. This isn't always necessarily a bad thing. It's just frantic.
I think we're finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel with regard to the creeping crud that's invaded the community. Mother Nature has promised to throw at least one more wintry fit this week with rain and cold (though thankfully, no snow in the forecast this far down in elevation.) After that, thank goodness, we should be looking at warming temperatures and sunshine. My lungs will be eternally grateful.
The moisture is still needed, of course. For every drop of rain/snow that falls, the risk of catastrophic wildfire recedes, so we'll take it. But dang... it sure wreaks havoc on my immune system!
Ast the business end of things, our former hosting service just went out of business. We inherited several of their accounts. More, in fact, than we had the capacity to accept under our original server lease. We've been talking about going to another service anyway, and as it turns out, looks like timing may be everything. We were looking at a system that's consistently top rated, and they just cut their price by about half. We like them because we know people who use them and said they've had exactly one, VERY short-term outage in two years' time. I hate the admin system but for the reliability factor? Yeah, we're probably there.
With the folks we inherited, we don't need multiple complaints every time there's a micro-outage where we're sitting now. They are thankfully short-lived, but it's annoying when the site's down for sixty seconds. It seems more like an hour when you're working on something and you're on a tight schedule.
Thanks to all of this, I've been busy setting up domain hosting for the past two days, in addition to my regular job. MC is working from the other end, trying to resolve a problem on the government account for which we won the bid. I have an order in to request business certification info, so we can start bidding on more broad-scale government projects. We can be pretty darned competitive and still come out in good shape. I have three potential employees I can peg with a single phone call, all of whom I trust to do excellent work.
You know... We've talked about advertising, but at the moment we can't afford to advertise, simply from the standpoint of not being able to keep up with the business. I mean, I'd hoped eventually to make this a full-time business. I just didn't anticipate it taking off to this degree, this quickly.
I still need to file the paperwork to make us an LLC, which hopefully I'll be able to do in the immediate future. It's not terribly expensive but it IS important from a legal standpoint, the more so if we will be bidding on more government jobs. I've already gotten a lead on another one locally. I did file the paperwork to get our EIN, under sole proprietorship for the moment. Eventually I hope to move us to full-fledged corporation.
We also talked with some local artisans, two who already send their work to galleries nationwide. With MC's additional connections to the art and antiques world, we figure to pick up a few more accounts.
Can we say, "snowball?"
Not that I'm complaining. I would dearly love to hire 00 asap. We really need someone who can handle the office stuff; bookkeeping, billing, etc. Even with the software that does most of the work for you, it takes time. Plus between MC and I, we could teach her how to do the building and the site admin to set up accounts, which we also need. She said she loathes her existing job, which gives her a whopping 20 hours a week, no benefits, and $6.75 an hour. That's not enough to even pay her basic survival bills, much less get ahead.
And we're finally starting to see money coming in. It's obviously not a fortune, but it's sure enough to help. I just opened the business checking account and an IRA. Gee... at this rate I might feel like a NORMAL person one of these days. What a concept!
We know we've got some significant bills coming up in the next year or so, things related to MC's situation. We're going to hire a lawyer to address the biggest part of them, for a whole list of reasons. We don't want grief over his ex, and from what I know of her, she's the kind who would create havoc just because she could. MC wants to retrieve some of his things from (literally) all over the world, which also isn't likely to be cheap. He's got a collection of antique toy trains in Europe, several pieces of art in a gallery in San Francisco, and several things in storage in another town here in Arizona.
The stuff here in Arizona we can retrieve with my truck on a weekend. We can have the items shipped from San Francisco, insured, at a reasonable rate. But the stuff from Europe is a whole 'nother ball game.
And MC wants eventually to buy a home, so we'll need to save toward that too, though it'll probably be a while at best. Maybe between now and then the housing market and the income bracket will come into a little more realistic alignment. (Hey, a girl can dream, can't she?)
Before - After
In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )