Your Name: Leisa Waldron
Business Name: Sunshine Native
Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you from? Family? Pets? Hobbies? Etc.
I am from Northern California. My husband and I got married young at 19 and 22 years old, and have now been married for 17 years! I am a mother to four awesome and crazy kiddos. We have accidentally created a zoo… on top of the 4 kids we have 1 dog, 2 cats, 2 mice, and 2 guinea pigs. We also bird sit a Macaw. I really don’t know how it happened!
Hobbies I have are of course jewelry making. 😉 I also love to paint, and anything I can craft with my hands I always love. I would say busy work is a hobby too, I love things like organizing, staining wood fences, cleaning out our pool. I know it sounds weird but those things help me think through problems!
Tell us about your business. How did you start your business and why? What do you do? Would you go back and do anything differently?
I started my business when we had just 2 kids, our little girls. My husband is in finance and it has always been a very busy industry with late hours during the week. The time from the kids bedtime to when he got home was always a few hours and I started making jewelry to fill in that time. In about 2 months I was already making a website and selling jewelry along with my artwork at local fairs!
When Instagram first popped up I jumped on board and that introduced me to hundreds of other small business owners like me. I have made so many great friends on that platform and if I hadn’t had my jewelry business I feel like I would have missed out on not only keeping my sanity with a hobby I love, but also being introduced to so many amazing people!
Has it been a smooth road? Have you encountered struggles that you could share?
There have of course been struggles. Growing pains are something I hate, and with this business growing so fast I had to learn to delegate and find people I trust. I am a bit of a control freak, not because I feel like I can do it better, but weirdly because I hate asking people for help and feel bad. Realizing that there are people who are great at things that I don’t like doing and want to help has been hard for me but also great. I am still learning delegation.
Trying to juggle it all has been hard with the kids and business, but once again the delegation is key. Even my kids have been involved helping me with jewelry tasks!
I also tend to do the things I enjoy first, which leaves me with a laundry list of things that I am always getting done last minute or just in time. I should do it the other way around so that the things I love are waiting for me when I am done with the chores!
What do enjoy the most about what you do? What do you enjoy the least?
I love seeing people wear things that make them smile. I love working with my hands. I love creating new things. I love packing up pretty packages. I could seriously do what I do all day every day.
I really hate email. I don’t know why, but sometimes just replying to an email is so hard for me, let alone when there are 20 or 30! I hate when technology doesn’t work for no reason it absolutely ruins my whole day but I am learning patience.
What inspires you?
My family, my religion, beautiful images and scenery, special quotes. The list is endless really. I am definitely more inspired when I am happy and have less stress.
What is your farewell piece of advice for someone interested in starting their own business?
I would say JUST DO IT! You won’t regret it – you will learn something from it. You will meet new people and be surprised by yourself and what you are capable of. With so many things free and accessible now, it hardly costs anything to get started, so ask yourself what is holding you back?
What is your favorite Candy Bar?
What is your favorite Childhood Memory?
It’s hard to narrow down, but many of them are when I was between 8 and 12. Our family owned a video and pizza store in a small town. Although we didn’t have an extravagant life, we worked hard and played hard. I learned how to use a cash register at 10, how to make pizza the way it was ordered, how to take inventory and I loved all of it. My favorite memory is kind of like all the memories are combined into one. Making a place to snuggle on the ground with blankets and pillows, eating the pizza we just made and laughing though a movie with my parents and siblings at the store after it closed.
You are a new addition to the crayon box. What color would you be?
Oooh let’s go with Ombre Sunset