Well, it is official. Schoolgirl Style is 1 year old TODAY! Whew! What a year!
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think that this would be my life. I always thought that I would be a teacher FOREVER. It is funny how life changes in such a short period of time.
When I had the idea about this blog, I kept it quiet and told only a few close friends and family. To be honest, my parents thought I was crazy. My husband didn’t understand it. But, you know what? I didn’t care. I knew I HAD to do this. In my heart, it felt right. Teachers needed this! So, I forged ahead and didn’t look back.
My biggest obstacle was learning to be myself when it came time to write a post. I felt extremely uncomfortable putting my thoughts and feelings out there for the world to read. What if I offended someone? What if someone doesn’t like me? I am learning to let all of that go and just write. Maybe it is the result of getting older, but my confidence is growing.
As my numbers grew, my decision to do this blog became validated. In only one year, I have almost 6,000 followers, I’ve sold 9,000 products, and have 200,000 hits on my site each month. AMAZING!!! I am so grateful for all of the support that I have received. I feel like I need to pinch myself on a daily basis. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
My biggest highlight of the year came when Creative Teaching Press called me. Talk about SHOCK!!! Creative Teaching Press has always been my favorite teaching supply company, so I felt honored and humbled that they loved what I was doing. I can remember being so nervous on the phone, I could barely talk! I was actually hyperventilating into the phone, but at the same time, I was trying to act cool and calm about it all. Seriously, I was a wreck, but so excited too! We would eventually form a partnership, which created another big change in my life…
If you follow my blog, you know that I also made the decision to leave teaching this year. Creative Teaching Press asked me to partner with them, my blog was growing rapidly, I was staging rooms, designing décor and I was trying to teach 27 first graders full time. Oh…and lets throw in three kids and a husband…talk about sleep deprived and drained!
It was such an emotional decision. It is still hard for me to talk about it. After 15 years of teaching, I decided to take a leap of faith and just throw myself into Schoolgirl Style and never look back! How’s that for gutsy?!?
This year has also brought about new friendships! I have some of the BEST supporters and followers out there. Do you know that I read every message? Some of you have sent me the kindest, sweetest emails. Sometimes the emails are so heartfelt and touching, they make me speechless or bring tears to my eyes. Your support and beautiful messages keep me going. I may not be in a classroom teaching anymore, but I hope I can stay connected to the profession through YOU.
I also love my new Creative Teaching Press family. What a great group of people to be working with! I am so thankful for the opportunity to impact the teaching community. Being a part of their Back-to-School catalog was an unbelievable experience. Seeing the catalog for the first time with MY styling in the first few pages was surreal. I can’t even explain how grateful I am for the opportunity.
Another big highlight of the year was expanding my Schoolgirl Style Shop. In addition to printable décor, I decided to start selling poms, daisies, and lanterns. This decision compounded the craziness in my household, but I believe it was a necessary step. There have been some hiccups while taking on this big endeavor and I certainly wasn’t equipped for the volume of products being shipped out. I am learning along the way and committed to providing excellent customer service to all of you!
Overall, it has been one crazy, fulfilling, happy, emotional, mind blowing year! I have learned so much and feel more fulfilled than I ever have in my entire life. My parents no longer think I am crazy. My husband finally “gets it” and together, they are my biggest supporters! I am learning to not worry about what I write and just speak from the heart. I am becoming stronger and more confident in who I am and who I was meant to be.
A birthday wouldn’t be complete without PRESENTS! To celebrate my first year, I am having a HUGE birthday GIVEAWAY!!! Three people will win an entire theme of their choice PLUS poms, lanterns, or daisies to coordinate with your theme!
Please use the widget below for an easy entry!
THANK YOU FOR A GREAT FIRST YEAR!