The numbers don’t always add up. The business sometimes has such a thin margin, Eryn Lynum wonders if it is worth the heartache.
Rationality – practicality – may seem to push her toward making another choice, but Eryn won’t stop chasing this dream. CAN’T stop chasing this dream.
She launched Skapa Box earlier this year after an inspirational moment with her three little boys.
In their living room sits a dresser full of craft supplies for her boys to create with at will. Or, at least, it is supposed to be full of craft supplies.
“I found all of some torn scratch paper and a broken Popsicle stick,” she recalled from the day back in January when she went to retrieve some supplies. Being the modern craft mama she is, she immediately ordered different items through Amazon.
“A couple of days later, (the order) showed up on our doorstep, and the boys and I were thrilled to fig through them,” she said. “That got me thinking, what if children received a box like that every single month, full of new, open-ended materials to encourage their imagination?”
Skapa Box was born. “Skapa” means “create” in Swedish, the ancestry of her husband.
The idea behind it is simple: for a subscription fee, children receive a box of 18 to 24 craft items each month, and every month is different and a complete surprise. Kids never know what is coming, which is where the fun is.
“I just love seeing posts on Facebook of kids digging into the boxes, and seeing what they come up with,” she said. “It is amazing to see the vast range of ideas from the same box of materials.”
This is the “absolute greatest piece of running Skapa Box,” she said.
But those numbers.
New businesses are hard. Eryn is no stranger to entrepreneurship and building a dream from the ground up. Skapa Box is one of three gigs she has on her plate. She also runs a web design and marketing business with her husband, and is a blogger and author of the forthcoming 936 Pennies (Bethany House, early 2018).
Skapa Box, though, is close to her heart.
“My most discouraging moments have been when I have wondered if we can really turn a profit on this to make the time worth it,” she admitted. “But then I glance up from my calculator and see my boys crazy-focused on their Skapa Box creations, and I remember why we are doing this.”
She also remembers the vision for Skapa Box’s future.
“Our goal and vision from the beginning has been that Skapa Box could be used to financially assist families adopting children,” she said. “We would love for the profits to be used in that manner.”
For now, she focuses on the next step forward. The next task on the list. And, of course, the fun to be had.
“I really think God has just let me have fun with this one. I tend to take myself too seriously,” she said. “I have had to allow myself to enjoy this venture and not care if it is as lucrative (yet) as the others, because it’s fun. And having fun at work is incredibly important to my family.”
Her advice to struggling dreamers stems from this perspective.
“It’s okay to have fun,” she emphasized. “Yes, our ventures need to produce profit and make sense. But really, our goal needs to be that we are proud of our work and enjoy it. Profit takes time and diligence to grow, and sometimes we need to go easy on ourselves and come back to why we do what we do.”
I cannot think of a better way to conclude the summer series spotlighting the stories of my fellow dream chasers than with Eryn’s inspiring message. If you want even more encouragement to find the courage to pursue you dream, order a copy of my new book Uncage My Brave: Pray Brave, Fly Free.
Sign up for my monthly newsletter and get the first pages free.