I know that some of you are family, friends or have been following my blog for awhile, but others are new to Lama Works so this is for you. In particular, this is for a new team I just joined called Etsy Project Embrace. Hello to my new team!!
I am by trade a biomedical engineer from Milwaukee, WI. I have a bachelors and masters degree from Marquette University. I spent a few years designing artificial elbow, wrist and shoulder joint parts and surgical instruments to go with them. During grad school I worked with stroke survivors. I worked with a team of physical therapists to design a low cost joystick gaming device that could be used to regain arm function and work on strengthening and controlling movements.
After grad school I moved to Chicago and started working with the rehabilitation department at a Children's hospital. I worked with children with cerebral palsy, spina bifida and clubfoot that all had problems walking. I watched them walk with special cameras that are frequently used to make animated movies and video games. Our movies were used to help physicians break down how they walked and figure out how to fix any problems they might have.
Life brings changes along the way and while I loved what I did, other opportunities came around. After I got married a year and a half ago I found myself rather bored and picked up my crafting hobbies again. I have a very short attention span so that included knitting, quilting and scrapbooking. Well, one can only knit so many hats for herself ... A friend of mine opened me up to Etsy and the rest is history!
One sale brought on a second and a third. Before I knew it I had more sales than I could keep up with on the nights and weekends. Right around the same time my husband was offered a fantastic job in his home town of Quincy, IL. I took the leap and now I'm running Lama Works full time.
What's with the name?? My brilliant mother-in-law came up with that one! La are the first two letters of my first name, and Ma are the first two letters of my last name ... put them together and you have Lama! Not the animal ... not the Dalai ... just me :)
And what's with the donations?? A good friend of mine, Matt Wessel, has been singing, writing music and performing for years to raise money for the American Cancer Society. You can find out more about his music here. At his concert this past March, he challenged us all to make a difference. He wants to show that if a large group of people band together to make just small donations, it can have a large impact. One person can make a difference. So he challenged each of us to get creative and see if we could raise $100 by the time his next show came around next March.
What better way to be creative than to use my store! It not only gave me a cause to be passionate about, but it also gave me some sales goals. I wanted to grow the store of course, but have never really sat down and said, "OK I want to have 1 sale a week".
So there it started and I am so happy to be a part of this project and now part of Etsy Project Embrace. Many of the team members donate part of all of their profits directly to the American Cancer Society to raise money for cancer research. How great is that? You can find out more information about the team and a list of members here.
So go out and check out the team and help them support the ACS!
Until the next time ...
The girl behind the lama