2016 Year in Review
What a crazy year it has been. So many things have happened this year as far as my career path and lifestyle, it sort of blows my mind. The changes have all worked out wonderfully though and I am so happy about all the decisions I made about my career and passions. So join me as I do a year in review and head back to January when all the craziness began…
January: Etsy Shop & Moving
Last summer, I was laid off from my web design job so I started to look for graphic design jobs in Houston. I didn't have much luck with the job search, but web design company asked me to be a freelance designer for them. I continued to look for a full-time job in Houston, but found out in November that the company my husband works for was moving him. In January, my husband, Ryan, and I moved to Angleton, TX. The freelance job I was good, but I wanted another income stream and an outlet for my design work that wasn’t for clients. In researching opening and marketing an Etsy shop, I stumbled upon a blog called Elegance & Enchantment by Michelle Hickey. Her blog and printable Etsy shop inspired me to open my own Etsy shop and later my blog.
On January 20, I opened my Etsy shop, RayeAllisonCreations, with 10 listings.
April: Starting my Blog
My Etsy shop had been doing well and I was working to add more listings. For last few months, I had been toying with the idea of starting a blog. So in March, I bought a domain name and hosting and started designing my blog site, rayeallisoncreations.com. I launched my blog with its first post about steps to becoming a graphic designer on April 18th.
May: Becoming a Youth Director
About a month later, a friend at church asked if I would like to help with the youth. My first thought was that it was a volunteer thing and I was definitely interested. I met with our pastor to find out that they didn’t just want a volunteer, they wanted to hire me. Add in job #3 and it is only May. I hit the ground running with the youth teaching Sunday School and taking charge of youth group on Sunday nights.
July: Youth Event Month & Vacation
July was probably the busiest month of the year. I lived half the month out of a suitcase doing youth events so I ended up taking most of the month off from blogging. First, I spent a week at church camp as a counselor which was amazing. Then it was a week off. Then it was a week on mission trip which was another great trip. The next week was our church’s Vacation Bible School week. At this point I was exhausted and ready for a vacation that we had perfectly timed to be that next week before I had been hired as youth director. Yes! At the end of July, my husband and I jetted off to Las Vegas for a wonderful trip seeing the Strip and a few of our friends from college and we had so much fun!
August-December: Great End to the Year
The rest of the year was pretty tame after the craziness of July. We got to see some college friends that live nearby a few times. I settled into my youth director job. My blog restarted in August with some scheduling changes to accommodate for the new youth job. Ryan and I also got to go to a couple Aggie games. And now it is December, Christmas and the new year only a few weeks away. Crazy. With the holidays coming up, this will actually be my penultimate post of the year (there will be a new printable on Wednesday).
Coming in 2017
The new year will bring a few changes to Raye Allison Creations. During the break, I will be making some changes to this site and to my blogging niche a bit. When I started this blog, I was trying to do graphic design posts and printable posts, but those weren’t attracting the same audience. In October, I decided to sign up for Kayla Hollatz’s Crickets to Community course and it really helped me figure out the focus I want to have on my blog starting in January. Instead of trying to do both graphic design teaching and printables, my Monday blog topics will shift toward supporting my weekly Printable Creations and printable Etsy shop. If you aren’t signed up for my Printable Creations emails (a new free printable emailed to you every Wednesday!) you can subscribe to get those here.
Thanks to all of you who subscribed and have supported me from the beginning. I am excited about this shift and the changes I will be implementing to kick off 2017. For now, I will be taking a break from blogging and will return in January so hope you have a great holiday season, a very Merry Christmas, and a happy new year. See you in 2017!