2012: My Year in Review

I don't care what anyone says. There is something so absolutely magical about New Years Eve and being able to 'reset' and start fresh come January 1st. I am living proof of this very thing. 2011 was a hard year for me. For the first time in my life I felt lost and unsure of myself. I was in a serious funk and didn't even realize it. I slept through New Years (another first for me) but when I woke up on that first day of 2012 I really did feel like I had hit the reset button. I knew I wasn't happy with where my life was at the moment and I knew I was the only one who would be able to change it. So I did. It didn't happen over night, but slowly I started to change. 2012 really was a fabulous year, full of growth and self exploration. I'm so grateful for that. So in keeping up with tradition, here is a look back on my 2012. (See my other 'year in review' posts here: 2004 | 2005 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011.)

And because I also love words and (lots) of details, if you're so inclined, you can read more below.
  • Right off the bat in 2012 I announced that I would be switching things up a bit and working under Stephanie Creekmur and not Paisley Card Co. Although I had made a change before, this one finally fit and has been, hands down, the best decision I could have made. (I also shared that my word for the year was confidence. I'm proud to say that I knocked that one out and am ready to tackle 2013's word, but more on that tomorrow!

  • Shortly after announcing my news, I revealed the new look. While, I don't hate the look, it is so not me. I love bright, vibrant colors and the muted pallet and lack of pattern just wasn't going to work. I've since been really evaluating myself and business and am so thrilled with where my brand is going. I can't wait to share everything, oh so soon!

  • In January I debuted the first 9 Southern Saying prints available. The collection has now grown to a total of 20 and I love every single one and they have provided lots of opportunities for this little business of mine.

  • I gave the 'monthly goals' post a good college try and only did it for January. I really want to do better in 2013 because it really does help me to see my goals and when I put them out into the universe I seem to have a better completion rate!

  • In February we (Christie Jenkins and I) began accepting pre-orders for our book, My Animal Alphabet. I am still completely amazed that a book I illustrated is available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Wow.

  • I attended the first Amber Housley Inspired workshop here in Nashville and I wholeheartedly believe that is where things began to change in me and with my business. I owe Amber and the other ladies so much for what has happened this year. I am forever grateful for their wisdom and eagerness to share and nurture other growing entrepreneurs.

  • My golden birthday. I turned 26 on March 26th. I just new it was going to be a great year. And I was right!

  • A handful of my favorite people on this planet drove down here to Tennessee to surprise me for my birthday. It was hands down the best birthday ever and I am still completely shocked they were able to pull it off. I am never completely surprised!

  • In June I revealed the final look for Stephanie Creekmur. I finally felt like I was on the right track. Working under my name just felt right and the multicolor logo can not be anymore me.

  • In the summer my dad took my sisters and I to Disney World. I had waited 26 years for this. I was so excited and I'm so thankful that we got to experience that trip together.

  • November was such an exciting month for SC. I was published in print for the first time, not once, but twice! First in the Atlanta Journal Constitution and (here is the online link) then in Southern Weddings Magazine Volume 5. My work for Pizzazzerie was also featured on the Huffington Post's website! Pinch me!

  • I steadily increased my sales each month. It is so fulfilling to see that the extra time you put into something is well worth it. When I got to my last few orders of the year I started tearing up while packing the orders. I was seeing my products being shipped all over the country and I finally started to see that my dream is so possible and I know that I will make it happen.

  • I took a little break starting before Christmas and until the new year to relax, refocus, and spend time doing what matters. The time with my family was much needed and so appreciated. So thankful for them and thankful that I was able to take a break!
And now I'll leave you with one of my favorite quotes from the movie New Years Eve. Hillary Swank's character is doing a news conference because the ball has stopped midway on it's journey to the top and I just love everything she says.
"As you all can see the ball has stopped half way to its perch. It's suspended there to remind us before we pop the champagne and celebrate the New Year, to stop and reflect on the year that has gone by. To remember both our triumphs and our missteps, our promises made and broken. The times we opened ourselves up to great adventures or closed ourselves down for fear of getting hurt. Cause that's what New Year's is all about, getting another chance. The chance to forgive, to do better, to do more, to give more, to love more. And stop worrying about what if and start embracing what will be. So when that ball drops at midnight, and it will drop, let's remember to be nice to each other, kind to each other. And not just tonight, but all year long."
So there you have it, folks. 2012 has come and gone and tomorrow when we wake up a new year will be upon us. I wish you all the luck in the new year and hope that you don't frown on resolutions but always strive to reach higher and dream bigger. And always remember - It will never happen if you never try.

Happy New Year, Y'all! God bless! :)