When I was a young student at Teachers Training College many years ago, I was looking for a way to make some extra pocket money. We had made a few simple hand puppets to use as story aids in the classroom and I decided to offer puppet shows at children’s parties. The response was amazing – and every weekend I would spend my time entertaining children with my puppets.
When I look back now at the props I was using I want to cringe! They were so basic – my theatre was a cardboard box balanced on a folding table – but it worked and the children were enthralled!
From the party shows I saw an opportunity to do educational shows in schools and this was the beginning of Puppet World. All the puppets and props are handmade and I have been very fortunate to have family and friends who have been happy to help in various ways over the years. My daughter, Jane, joined me in the business several years ago and she does most of the local shows while I travel to schools around the country.
As a Christian I always knew that God was in control and as the years went by, I learnt to trust Him more and more. Our business has done really well over the years but there have certainly been times when I wondered how we would get through the month. But I can honestly say that God has always met our every need, and more! There was a time when both our children were at private boarding schools and my husband’s health was not good. For a whole year he did not work – which could have been a real strain on us financially. Miraculously we survived – and it turned out to be a real blessing for us as a couple. Dave was able to travel with me on my trips and we had the most wonderful year. A couple of years later I lost my precious husband and will be forever grateful for that special time we had together. God does always know best.
Being a single parent, with a business to run, I relied more and more on God. I found myself chattering away to the Lord, sharing my thoughts and dreams with Him that I would previously have shared with my husband. And God has continued to look after us in our business – we now employ four other people and have trained many puppeteers and assistants over the years.
Now in the midst of this Covid 19 pandemic God is providing for us yet again. We were approached by a school to video our Easter show so they could share it online with their children. So, we embarked on the process of a home video – I don’t recommend this under normal circumstances! But it was a tremendous success and in this really scary time God seems to be opening doors for us to do much more online. There appear to be many opportunities for us and we at Puppet World can only say “Thank you, Lord!”
Through this time of lockdown I have constantly been reminded of the promise in Psalm 84:11: “ For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favour and honour; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is upright.”
I want to share this as an encouragement to others – many successful businesses have started from simple ideas, hobbies and interests. It certainly takes hard work and perseverance, but if it’s God’s plan for you and you put your trust in Him, you will succeed!