So first off let me start by saying I am no super woman. My business always comes first and my occasional blogging hit the back burner when things got busy. When I first started my blog I wanted it to have meaning, even if that meaning was just to inspire you to go out and look at the clouds differently. Inspiration strikes when I least expect it. Inspiration to share my story struck on the way home from Waco while listening to the book Chip Gaines, Capital Gaines. (side note: that was a year ago and just found this typed up on my phone...oops) I found myself nodding along to all his words as if it were a call to action.

My story starts in 2015, I had just graduated college and faced the huge question , "now what?" Society tells us to go out and get that job and suck it up until retirement. Literally the first day of my "big girl" job the senior employees griped about how many years they had left. But I'm getting ahead of myself. I did a lot of metalsmithing classes in college and really found my passion for that as well as painting. So when I saw a job opening at a jewelry story I jumped on it because I had that background passion for that business. During this time I was engaged so on my first day of work I go in bright eyed exclaiming my wedding date was 5 months away. To my surprise the manager straight face told me I may have to work that morning because it was one of their big sale days (I got married in September...huge month for buying jewelry??? no..) I took it as a joke though and carried on my training. It was this next part of my training period that taught me a very important lesson on customer service, compassion. . . my manager did not have that. A young man came in dragging his feet with his previous purchase in engagement ring. My first instinct was to just listen and make the return. My manager however told him he needed to keep it, try again, and began to show agitation with him when he had to tell her for the 5th time that she said no and it wasn't happening. 

I knew then that was NOT the company for me. I never wanted to lose sight of the actual emotion behind each piece. In my business I create pieces honoring family members passing, mementos of generational homes being sold or torn down, and share joy in new beginnings starting with babies and marriages. Customers have always been the very heart of my business and I don't want to overlook that just to make a sale.

Next chapter: Art teacher. I was so excited for this opportunity thinking it would just be perfect. I love children and I always loved taking art growing up. I jumped right into this job thinking this was where I was being called and I was. God just didnt see me there long. I had this passion for art and love for kids that I was bringing to the table, but I simply did not have that passion for teaching. I sat at my desk after school thinking "I was made to DO art, not track down glue sticks hourly" I am by no means knocking teaching, it is a noble profession and it takes a heck of a lot of patience but it was not for me. I spent the next few months crying (like really ugly crying) on the way to work because I disliked it so much. I was split between two schools and the teachers viewed art class as babysitting time during their day while the students confused it with recess. I was miserable. I prayed for it to get better and God to make me a better teacher. All during this time my new husband was my rock. When I came to him at the end of December saying I didn't want to go back, he trusted me completely. He always told me I believe in you and your talent and if you can make it work financially, do it! So January rolls around and fresh out of the gate I started The Chelsea Collection with my whole heart in it. By God's grace I met my goal that month and the next month it increased. Every time I let doubt creep in (creative people are seriously their own worst critics) God showed up and sent someone to shut that fear up. I finally felt like I was where I was supposed to be. For the first time in months I felt peace. 

It's funny how the pieces don't always make sense until looking back at it, but God's timing is always perfect. I was terrified to quit this job that everyone looked to so highly upon. I was going agianst what society told me to do and not having an actual job title freaks people out I guess. 

What I'm getting at is, follow that dream. Do what you have to do to make it happen. For me that was getting a part time job so I could have some sort of steadiness while my business took a leap of faith. God knew what he was doing there too, because now I still get to love on sweet kiddos and I gained knowlege to rock the mom game one day. Every step of my journey has been written by God. Trusting His provision has blessed my business and marriage. For the average person, you will spend 90,360 hours working. Shouldn't you spend those hours doing something you enjoy?

So if no one has told you, I believe in you. I know the defeat of doing something mediocre and believe everyone should have the chance to chase a dream. I think Chip Gaines says it best:

"big difference between your work and your job. A job is a task                 

done for an agreed-upon price, and work is the effort directed toward accomplishing a goal. See what I mean? A job is something you do for money. Your life's work is done for a bigger purpose, to fulfill a calling or a dream. And when you manage to find that work--that's when it starts feeling like play. I want that for you and for me too. Don't allow yourself to get stuck grinding away on the job piece and lose sight of the work piece, the one that truly matters. There's nothing admirable or respectable about laying yourself down, day in an day out for a job you hate. I understand that there are extenuating circumstances that can prevent you from being able to take that leap. But if you are sticking it out because of fear or passivity, there's nothing heroic about that. Do work that matters . . . to you." 

Chip Gaines, Capital Gaines: Smart Things I Learned Doing Stupid Stuff