Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

Good Grief

Good Grief

In 2016, once a month [or so], Happy Bungalow will be pulling back the curtain on the wood shop to show what life is really like owning a small / family / crafty / handmade / diy / maker / struggling / mom&pop business (further referred to as SFCHDMSMP business).

Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

I have been struggling to write this article for months.  My life and family’s life was turned upside down this year.  Ultimately it was a good thing, but oh man was it a HARD year.  So hard that everything suffered, including my business.  I won’t go into the details because apparently I can’t get it all straight and on paper.

However, I’m not sure if I’ll continue this whole behind the scenes business.  I really want to, but I’m struggling to make it interesting and honest.  Especially this previously mentioned article.  It’s a mental weight I’m going to put aside now.  I’ll focus on writing the fun and silly articles.

I want to say this though – for the small business, the one-man shop, and honestly any living person: Read more

The Hare Hair Stylist - A Silly Pun-Filled Story by Don Clark-Happy Bungalow

The Hare Hair Stylist

The Hare Hair Stylist

The Hare Hair Stylist - A Silly Pun-Filled Story by Don Clark-Happy Bungalow

It used to be that journalists had just one job. For instance, a fashion reporter, style reporter, or the offbeat / quirky news specialist. Never was one person called upon to do all four jobs.But times are tough; People just aren’t reading magazines like they used to. Unfortunately many people lost their jobs. Most eventually found new jobs; some even started up their own companies.

But for those left with a job, their blessings were mixed. Yes, they still had a job, but now it had become jobs. Plural. So fashion / style / offbeat beat came to be handled by one person.

Melanie McKay was such a person. This is the time she found herself on the niche interview of her life.
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Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin

Archibald Penguin No. 3

 

Continuing Our New Serial!

Who Ate All the Fish?

featuring

Archibald Penguin, Our Bird,
The Famed Detective.
The Cheeky Penguin who
Loves Fish as Almost as Much as
He Loves Fighting Crime!

Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin

 

The Players:

Polar Bear —  A Hungry Mammal
The Walrus —  A Certain Tusked Mammal
Seal —  A Happy Fellow
Pelican —  A Bird with a Large Mouth
Archibald Penguin —  Our Bird
Henrietta Puffin —  Penguin’s Ever-Present Companion
Shark —  A Miracle of Evolution
Killer Whale —  Poster-Fish for the Misunderstood

Chapter 3

 

We find Archibald Penguin, Our Bird, on the ice and snow-covered land of the Southern-Most Continent, with his ever-present companion, Henrietta Puffin. The two are investigating the disappearance of the fish from their cove-sheltering water. At the scene of the crime they discovered three sets of footprints: a bear, seal, and walrus. Having turned up empty interrogating the Walrus, they turned to the Seal. Highly suspicious, doggedly averse to answers, and jittery, Our Bird and Ms. Puffin are on the razor’s edge of extracting the truth from the mammal.

Seal looked at the pair, clearly undone by the situation. “Okay! All right! I can’t hide it any longer. I took –“ Seal made one more nervous scan around his surroundings and lowered his voice. “I took a correspondence course.”

A correspondence course?!” Henrietta Puffin was clearly taken by surprise at his answer as evidenced by the high pitch of her voice. “A correspondence course! A course for what?”
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Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

Selling at Craft Shows is Easy

Selling at Craft Shows is Easy

Earning Money at it is a Bit Harder

Doing it Without Breaking a Sweat May Be Impossible

 

In 2016, once a month, Happy Bungalow will be pulling back the curtain on the wood shop to show what life is really like owning a small / family / crafty / handmade / diy / maker / struggling / mom&pop business (further referred to as SFCHDMSMP business).

 

Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

 

IT’S EASY TO SELL STUFF AT CRAFT SHOWS

Craft shows span the spectrum from the elementary school fundraiser to the High Brow Art Faire. From the 2 hour church bazaar to the hip pop-up shop in the old hat factory. From the corporate office employee-only “farmers market” to the Crafty / Craftin’ / Handmade / Rebel / Outlaw / Misc. Profanity / Etc. Indie Art Show.

In more than four years of business I haven’t set up toy shop at every type of show, but I’ve done most of them. I’ve been out in the baking sun, in back hallways where the scant crowd didn’t even know I was there, out in the cold spring day that unexpectedly turned rain-storm, and at those beautiful shows where people are almost throwing money at me.
Read more

Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin

Archibald Penguin No. 2

 

Continuing Our New Serial!

Who Ate All the Fish?

featuring

Archibald Penguin, Our Bird,
The Famed Detective.
The Cheeky Penguin who
Loves Fish as Almost as Much as
He Loves Fighting Crime!

Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin

 

The Players:

Polar Bear —  A Hungry Mammal
The Walrus —  A Certain Tusked Mammal
Seal —  A Happy Fellow
Pelican —  A Bird with a Large Mouth
Archibald Penguin —  Our Bird
Henrietta Puffin —  Penguin’s Ever-Present Companion
Shark —  A Miracle of Evolution
Killer Whale —  Poster-Fish for the Misunderstood

Chapter 2

 

We find Archibald Penguin, Our Bird, on the ice and snow-covered land of the Southern-Most Continent, with his ever-present companion, Henrietta Puffin. The two are investigating the disappearance of the fish from their cove-sheltered water. At the scene of the crime they discovered three sets of footprints: a bear, seal, and walrus. Having followed the trail of the Walrus, they interrogated the animal, skillfully bringing him to the brink of confession. We rejoin the group now. On the cusp of the truth?

“Enough games then!” Archibald gesticulated. “What have you been chewing on Walrus? What are you hiding from us? Is it the fish?!”

Walrus gulped and with a clear voice thundered. “No!”

Archibald felt he was on the verge of confession. “Have you eaten all the fish? Are you choking down the last of the cove’s supply?”

“No. I’m only chewing on my tongue.”

“Chewing on your tongue?!” Ms. Puffin said with disdain only possible from a school teacher. “Is that the best you have?”
Read more

DIY Home Spring Maintenance Tips

Home Maintenance Tips for Spring

Gnome Gnews – Spring Cleaning Edition

5 Spring Maintenance Tips that are Charmingly Easy

 

Life is beautiful when it’s well maintained.
Practical Home and Garden Maintenance Tips from the Idyllic Gnome Glades.

 

Spring Maintenance Tips for the Home

 

Clean Vegetation Around Your Air Conditioner(AC) Condenser.

Problem: Do you live outside the perfect Gnome Glades where temperatures rise above the comfortable? Oh dear, we’re sorry to hear that, but taking proper care of your air-cooling machine can be a snap! You only need to clear away the vegetation that has grown up around your air conditioner condenser.
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Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin by Don Clark

Archibald Penguin No. 1

 

Introducing Our New Serial!

Who Ate All the Fish?

featuring

Archibald Penguin, Our Bird,
The Famed Detective.
The Cheeky Penguin who
Loves Fish as Almost as Much as
He Loves Fighting Crime!

 

Detective Serial featuring Archibald the Penguin by Don Clark

 

The Players:

Polar Bear —  A Hungry Mammal
The Walrus —  A Certain Tusked Mammal
Seal —  A Happy Fellow
Pelican —  A Bird with a Large Mouth
Archibald Penguin —  Our Bird
Henrietta Puffin —  Penguin’s Ever-Present Companion
Shark —  A Miracle of Evolution
Killer Whale —  Poster-Fish for the Misunderstood

Chapter 1

 

We find Archibald Penguin, Our Bird, on the ice and snow-covered shores of the Southern-Most Continent. He stands near the edge of the water, the cold gray sea continually washing against the frozen ground. His ever-present companion, Henrietta Puffin, is with him. Together they look out towards the sea where there is water in great abundance.

“But there is one thing missing Ms. Puffin.”“Indeed Penguin. Indeed. What do you suppose is the cause of this?”

What my dear Puffin?” Our bird spun on his webbed feet to look indland. “Or more precisely who?” The pair looked down at four sets of footprints leading inland. “This cove is normally teeming with fish, but there are none to be seen. What is to be seen, however, are three sets of footprints.”

“Yes,” Ms. Puffin added, “If I’m correct, the tracks of the Walrus, Seal, and Polar Bear.”

“ I concur. I purpose we follow the trail of the Walrus. The trail looks particularly heavy.”

“Laden with a multitude of fish?”

“Perhaps that is so. Let us go and find out Ms. Puffin.”
Read more

Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

I’m a Work at Home Dad

I’m a Work at Home Dad

No, I Don’t Wear Pajamas All Day!

I Work at Home!!

I Don’t Stay at Home!!!

!!&$@+!@=!#!

 

In 2016, once a month, Happy Bungalow will be pulling back the curtain on the wood shop to show what life is really like owning a small / family / crafty / handmade / diy / maker / struggling / mom&pop business (further referred to as SFCHDMSMP business).

 

Inside the Small Maker DIY Mom and Pop Struggling Business by Happy Bungalow

 

Hi, I’m Don; I’m a father and I have job. Conveniently my job is based in my home. I’m a Work at Home Dad. And while I stay at home to work, I’m not a stay at home dad.

Confused? You’re not alone.

Most people who know me personally – I believe – don’t believe I have a real job. It’s possible some, perhaps most, believe I don’t even work. Let me explain, I believe this because –
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The Buffalo and the American Reaper Company-Happy Bungalow

The Bison: Nomadic Wanderer

The Bison.  Noble Ungulate wanderer traveling across continents.

Originally from Europe, the Old Country, the bison arrived in the New Country millennia before it was known as America (1). In the great open land where, one day, meritocracy would throw off the shackles of European aristocracy. For in this new land it did not matter what station in life you were born to, it only mattered what station in life you desired to achieve.

 

The Buffalo and the American Reaper Company-Happy Bungalow

 

Here there was a new continent with fields aplenty. Vast tracts of untrodden lands to be tamed – a continent to be cultivated and prepared for a great outpouring of human ingenuity that would change the world.

Here in the new world, so much was new that, many immigrants changed their names (2). Some dropped a syllable, other re-arranged some letters. A few changed their names entirely. The Stag became the Buck. The Elk became the Moose. The Bison became the Buffalo.

THE BUFFALO

The Old World, small ancient land that it is, had been tamed and tidied ages ago. Compact little towns hugged cozy farm lands. Tidy rivers ran along beautiful, but small, open spaces. Every inch of earth was ordered and claimed; there was no room for expansion.

This was not so in the New World.

The Buffalo arrived with a strong back prepared to clear the vast tracts of the American West. But there would be no need for the agrarian scythe – not with the Buffalo!
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Serial Fun Office Fiction Riley Justice by Don Clark

Riley Justice, Another Day at the Office

The Daring Adventures of Riley Justice!

Riley Justice, the hard-working (or is it hardly working) accounts-receivable cog helping to keep the corporate machine grinding on, while occasionally foiling Corporate Raider’s sinister plots.

Serial Fun Office Fiction Riley Justice by Don Clark

Riley Justice, Another Day at the Office

Where Riley Justice Attempts to Stop an Activist Investor’s Slashing Attack on the Bottom Line

 

Accounts Receivable is as seemingly endless as the cosmos itself. Walking its maze of corridors, filing rooms, and cubicles one could only theorize what lies at it’s perimeter. If the last lonely desk is found, does the junior accountant there fold in upon himself? Just as light is bent by the overwhelming gravity of a black hole, do the laws of finance bend upon a budget surplus?

Accounts Payable, on the other hand, has known boundaries. It’s like a small city state of medieval times. Too small to do anything of note, too insignificant even for it’s surrounding larger rivals to bother with. The head of Accounts Payable is well aware of his little fiefdom’s shortcomings. His stunted staff works tirelessly in the fields of past-due invoices.
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