A love of numbers

It started with a love of numbers

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How (or maybe it should be WHY) does someone choose a career that revolves around numbers and bookkeeping?

Day 2 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge.  Today’s suggested topic is to let people know how you got started in your niche or market.

I thought I’d start with something “catchy” ….. so here goes.

Nancy is my name, numbers are my game 🙂

Just because I love numbers - I'm not Medusa!

When I meet someone for the first time, and they ask what I do for a living and I tell them that:

I teach handmade & creative business owners how to handle their bookkeeping and other “behind the scenes STUFF” with confidence!

They look at me like I’m Medusa or something and have snakes crawling out of my head, say OH, and then just walk away.

Maybe I need to work on that elevator pitch!

But I know what they’re thinking as they walk away – they’re wondering WHY would anyone want to deal with numbers and bookkeeping!

It all started with a love of numbers

Why I love numbers

If I were looking to place blame somewhere (and I’m really not), I guess I would blame my Dad.

He could add up a column of numbers on a piece of paper without using a calculator!

When I was a kid (before going to elementary school) he taught me to count and love numbers by playing dominoes.  By the time I started elementary school I already new multiplication (well the 6’s anyway).  I loved numbers and I loved my Dad.

Numbers just seemed to click…

My first job was working in a hardware store and I got a taste of Inventory and Accounts Receivable!  All done by hand, mind you.

I also got my first real taste of working with a computer, when they bought a huge computerized cash register that handled inventory and billing for you!  OH ya, I thought that was the BEST THING EVER!

By the time I hit high school, I was definitely a numbers kinda gal.

I signed up for all the Bookkeeping & Accounting classes.  I just loved those neatly aligned columns of numbers, especially when they all added up and balanced out!

In the 80’s, I worked for a dentist.  Handled all the insurance billing.

The woman that did our bookkeeping, took me under her wing and taught me about bookkeeping and payroll.  And then she started sending me bookkeeping clients!

By 1990 I had my own bookkeeping business (it was called The Mobile Office) and by then most of my clients were construction contractors.  I was a full-charge bookkeeper for 30 businesses, getting their bookkeeping systems in order and then teaching them how to handle their own bookkeeping needs.

It wasn’t until the mid-90’s that I went to college to get an Associates Degree in Accounting.  I’ll tell you that was a hard transition.  Bookkeeping and Accounting theory seldom aligns with things that happen in the real world.

Now you’re probably wondering how I went from working with contractors to handmade or creative business owners!

In reality, contractors and handmade or creative business owners aren’t all that different – they both build/make things and they both have a lot of parts and pieces that they need to keep track of so they know what it cost them to make the finished product and determine a profitable selling price.

Good bookkeeping practices are essential – whether you’re building a bridge or making a shawl.

My career started with a love of numbers 🙂

About Nancy Smyth, The YarnyBookkeeper

Hi, I'm Nancy. Yarn addict, career bookkeeper, and handmade business owner. I get the same feeling of joy when working with yummy yarns as I do when working with a column of numbers that all add up correctly. Bookkeeping for your handmade or creative business doesn't need to be scary. I can help you learn to handle your bookkeeping and other behind the scenes STUFF with confidence!


  1. Interesting to read how you get into numbers Nancy!

  2. Enjoyed your numbers story!

  3. I love this story. And this service is so needed for people like me who are scared of numbers but want to make a living doing what they love. If you ever want to run a new elevator pitch by me, I’m happy to give you some tips.

  4. When I was growing up, my mother was a math professor at our local black university. I think it is safe to say that she loved numbers, too. I, on the other hand, don’t. Except in little ways. I love my odd birthdays more than the even ones, for instance. And I love it when the time on the clock adds up, like if it says, “7:34,” etc. I think it’s sweet that your love of numbers is connected to your love for your father!

  5. They also all bitch and moan that their cost of goods is drastically affected by their inventory. (They believe once bought, once deducted all the time. NOT!!!)

    1. LOL don’t I know it! That’s also more common with handmade or creative business owners – there are a lot of well meaning “do gooders” out there (who have NO business offering bookkeeping advice) who insinuate that’s how it’s done! It’s crap like that that spurred me to start this site…..

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment 🙂

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