Today, the first time in the history of Applie’s Place, I am interviewing someone. I know, shocking, but I like the product she sells well enough to interview her.
What do I get out of this? Nothing, Nada, Noodle. When you get all the way to the end of this interview and place your order (and you will), please tell her Applie sent you.
1. Stand, raise your right hand, and put your left hand on the Bible. State your name.
My name is Harriet Moon Gazer Wolfenschnitzel
2. Oh, that is nice. Perhaps you shouldn’t have put your hand on the Bible. So how did you become Not Inadequate?
Not Inadequate is a running joke in my house. After college, I got a job working as an estimator at a construction company. It was one of those I-took-the-first-job-I-was-offered jobs out of the panic that after 5 years of school I still had no marketable skills, just a big old pile of student loans. It was the most boring job I have ever had. I got stuck in a teeny office in the back corner with a ruler and a big set of drawings. After a few weeks, I asked my boss how I was doing. After a brief pause, he gave me the best answer ever, “You’re not inadequate.”
It probably goes without saying that I got sacked.
So now, of course, whenever my husband and I ask each other things like How Was Dinner or What Do You Think of These Shoes, you can guess what answer comes back.
3. How long have you been homeschooling?
I started homeschooling when Big was 4 (he’ll be 9 soon), in a giant, over-achieving fit of over-achieverness. In retrospect, I should have saved my energy for 3rd grade.
4. Do you enjoy it?
I don’t know if ENJOY is the right word, exactly. It’s more like it gives me a great sense of satisfaction, and I am passionate about it and this lifestyle. The day to day can be wearing, as it is in anything.
5. What is your favorite part?
My favorite part is…can I say my favorite part is when everyone is in bed and I can watch The Real Housewives? No? I have lots of favorite parts, one being that we are not slaves to someone else’s schedule. Another being that the kids have great stretches of time when they can do whatever they want. Playing, thinking, daydreaming… I see value in those.
6. Homeschooling is hard, but very worth it. Between homeschooling your kids and watching The Real Housewives, you must have gotten some extraordinary advice from experienced homeschool moms. Moms like me who obviously rock this homeschool thing…if only in our dreams. Did the encouragement help you want to help other homeschool parents?
I HAVE gotten a LOT of excellent homeschooling advice from you and other more experienced homeschool moms. I am often very grateful for the support I get from my imaginary internet friends; if you all knew how much I adored you, you’d collectively take out a restraining orders. I like to help other moms too, but that might just be because I am bossy. Or awesome. One of those.
7. What do you do to bring in income and help homeschoolers deal with their pencil obsessions?
Is this where I smoothly segue into the Best Pencil Sharpener Ever?
For a while I have been trying to figure out what I could do to develop another income stream for our family without having to get a job. I’ve been fired a lot. I feel like that is a clue I should work for myself. Plus I really believe in our product, The Best Pencil Sharpener Ever.
8. How fascinating! Did you know that I have not one, but TWO of those sharpeners? One is in our home. We keep one in our camper, because we all know homeschoolers can travel anywhere any time and still get homework done.
I DID know that! How do you like them?
I love them. My girls love them. My friends love them. In fact, we have teachers standing in line to use The Best Pencil Sharpener Ever instead of the electric kind, during our group testing.
9. Why do you like The Best Pencil Sharpener Ever so much that you wanted to sell them?
I went through a bunch of truly awful sharpeners when we started homeschooling. They were loud and they didn’t DO anything, they just chewed up the pencils. It was annoying. I don’t like being annoyed. When I discovered The Best Pencil Sharpener Ever, I was so happy! And then I started telling other homeschool-y friends about them, and they had no idea about these great sharpeners. They were still trapped in the Buy-One-Every-Year cycle. And I realized that homeschoolers were a great, untapped market for the sharpeners. If anyone needs a good sharpener, it’s homeschoolers. I told the guy I bought mine from that homeschoolers would fall on these sharpeners like ravenous hyenas, but he wasn’t interested. So I asked him if he’d let us try, and Here We Are.
Oh so we are ravenous hyenas? I resemble that statement often.
10. Does it sharpen crayons? No. Lipstick? No. That’s a shame.
11. Does it come in red? Check. Fantastic! In case you didn’t know, red is my favorite color. Green? Check. Purple? No. And no one is sadder about that than my daughter.
My daughter is also sad that purple is not available. Black? Coming soon. Ooo, a manly color. I can see all the husbands wanting one for the garage now.
12. Explain the Carl Bungu Ryodo sharpener? Why is it different?
I would say if you were purchasing a sharpener for an artist, the Carl Bungu Ryodo is the better sharpener. You can control the sharpness of the pencil, which is a useful feature. The Ryodo also has padded grips that draw the pencils into the mechanism. If you buy very expensive or specialty pencils, such as Blackwings, it will not mar the surface at all. Best Pencil Sharpener Ever is the only place in the U.S. selling Carl Bungu Ryodo – we import them especially from Japan. They are the Rolls Royce of sharpeners. Plus they do offer a very sleek and cool look.
15. Tell us about the Retro Sharpeners?
If you are purchasing a sharpener that needs to withstand the abuse kids can dish out, then I would recommend a Retro Sharpener. The Retro has metal grips that draw the pencil into the mechanism, and they will leave little dents in your pencil. This does not bother me, since my kids are just using regular Ticonderoga pencils to do their math (or Black Warriors if I am feeling generous). They’ve carried their car sharpener and their Retro sharpener around for 4 years, banging them and dropping them and in general being not-very-careful, and they are still working like champs. I just sharpened a dozen pencils yesterday and got the same perfect point I got the first day I used it.
16. Between the Carl Bungu Ryodo and the Retro sharpener, which one would you suggest a homeschooler purchase?
I’d say it depends on what pencils you plan to sharpen, who will be using it, and how much you care about keeping your pencil barrels blemish-free.
17. This might be off topic but, do you like it when I post about insects?
I like it when you post about insects. I’m less enthusiastic when you post about guts. But overall, I like you plenty.
19. Great! Now where can people buy this Best Pencil Sharpener Ever?
Cool. Very cool.
Friends go get thyself the Best Pencil Sharpener Ever. Tell them Applie sent you. After that go tell all your friends about this awesome product.