We went into the artisan jewelry business - Lady Lilleigh's Little Luxuries - as a part-time supplement to our income and a way for me to stay at home with the kids and still afford the bills.
Demand for our little luxuries was high at the conventions we attended, and we often ran out of our popular items. Despite my business being a small part-time affair, I gained a great amount of satisfaction in seeing the smiles on my customers' faces as they went home with their little treasures, and even more so when I'd see the familiar faces returning convention after convention, bringing friends and family to meet me. And so it went through the following three years.
Early 2013, our fifth (and last) baby was born and unexpectedly spent two weeks in the NICU with breathing problems.
This was extremely difficult on both of us as we tried to juggle hospital visits, taking care of our other 4 children and trying to keep Lady Lilleigh going. When my husband returned to work after his parental leave, he found his department had had its hours cut back to a worrying degree. Between that and other issues we began to have with my ex-husband's increasingly unreliable child support payments, we found it difficult to rely on two part-time incomes. We decided to take Lady Lilleigh full time.
It went well at first, but soon various financial difficulties and the lack of child support sent us spiralling into a more difficult financial situation than we had anticipated. It's only through the generosity of friends and family that we were able to get this far.
When you add the challenges of raising two teenagers, a special-needs child, a pre-schooler and a toddler (yup, that's five kids, folks), it makes keeping a small business afloat difficult at best. My husband was recently diagnosed with depression, a condition that began with our son's hospitalization and continued to grow as the difficulties mounted. And although the child support issues have recently been resolved by the lawyers, we haven't seen a cent of it yet, and the case left us with another bill we cannot afford to pay.
We're asking for help. Help keeping Lady Lilleigh afloat and able to provide affordable luxuries to you, our fans. Help to continue our dream of becoming self-sufficient and to keep bringing those smiles to your faces. Help to make it through the quiet Winter until convention season begins again in March. Any amount would be hugely appreciated. Every dollar makes a difference.
Your donation will allow us not only to restock and keep our prices affordable, but will help to keep our family fed and warm through the winter. We'll be able to start paying off our debts and move forward with confidence and hope.
Thank you for helping us to keep Lady Lilleigh alive!
(me with our 5 kids in 2013)
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