Hi Friends!! Happy Friday 🙂 I spent the day yesterday with two girls who have become VITAL to the smooth operations of Pure Joy Home. It still sounds CRAZY to me to say that I have a team working with me but at this point I have no idea what I would do without them. They help me SO much with backend stuff i.e. content planning, scheduling, emails, working with brands, finding sales, dissecting analytics, pictures, brainstorming, the whole nine. Blogging as a job is really hard to describe to people and I still always get the confused face response when I tell people what I do for a living 🤔 but it is actually a full time job and then some. It took me a LOOOOONG time to get it here, about 9 years actually (!!), and when the realization came that this blog that I love SO much could work out as a career, I wanted to take it and RUN with it.
Some things you might be wondering:
How did it take you NINE years? Oh Sisters. You have no idea. I opened up a notebook the other night to jot down some notes that I wanted to cover during our team meeting yesterday and literally could see where my head was at nine years ago. I had notes from when I first started in there. Back in 2009, I was MISERABLE with the career decision I had made after college. I was in HR and hated it. It was really boring to me and I knew it wasn’t what I was supposed to be doing but the paychecks were nice and I needed them to live obviously so I felt stuck. I started a blog called Shorely Chic (a blog about beach house living) that I wrote at night and on weekends. When I think back and reflect about this random topic I decided to cover, I think it was really because I was sitting behind a desk under fluorescent lights everyday and in my head I was escaping to a pretty beach house, lol. I love interior design and gravitate towards the whole beach culture so it’s definitely my style, but still, a whole blog about that Liz?? Anyway, I did that for almost 4 years, and it was really fun. Blogging was just starting out (this was pre-pinterest, pre-instagram, etc…) so no matter what you were writing about, if it was decent, you got traffic. After having Brian I turned it into Pure Joy Home. I was home with him and wanted to document my new life as a mom. Oh, and after having Brian there was no way in hell I was going to go back to HR so I needed so make something else work. At the time, there was no income to be made on my new Pure Joy Home so I put the graphic design skills I had learned from Shorely Chic onto paper and started Pure Joy Paperie. I created prints and wedding invitations. I loved it, it was such a great outlet for me and I was able to contribute to our family with my earnings. After Grace was born, I had a really hard time keeping up with delivering in a timely fashion. Both Brian and Grace were with me full time, and the brides were literally chasing me down to get their invitations on time, so I started to wind that down. This is when I picked up Pure Joy Home and I’ve been here ever since! I got into fashion because it was something tangible people could take from me and have for themselves and I have kept at it since. I LOVE where I am now and feel like, wow, it’s finally here. The creative outlet I started nine years ago is thriving and most importantly, it’s FUN.
SIDENOTE: In my notebook I also read about the pro’s and con’s of different teaching schools because apparently I thought I wanted to be a teacher, pricing on brick-and-mortar leases because I thought I wanted to open a store, I did interior design for about a year and even had clients that trusted me to make sound decisions in their gorgeous homes 🙈. I did all of this on the side of working full-time, in HR. My boss was a godsend and actually supported me on all my ventures. Virginia, if you’re reading this, I love you and can’t thank you enough for your support, I’m sure I was a nightmare of an employee!! I’ll never forget the time the IT Director came into my office, closed the door, and said “we need to talk, your internet usage if off the charts.”
Okay that was really long-winded, jumping back into hiring people now…
About six months ago, I realized I wasn’t able to be both a mom and blogger full time. My work load was increasing as more opportunities started opening up, and I wanted to keep going full steam ahead, but I was falling behind BADLY, on everything. I had no content planned, I was not able to respond to emails, I had to turn down lots of sponsorships, I basically just couldn’t keep up even though I wanted to so badly. I also had Brian and Grace with me pretty much full time and was starting to feel like a shitty mom. I didn’t want to be the mom constantly distracted, working on her phone with her kids somewhere in the background and that’s who I was becoming. I put a couple feelers out and miraculously found TWO amazing girls who now kick ass behind the scenes. We talk daily, Kelly (who is local) and I meet twice per week and sit around my dining room table and crush. Kate works from her home on the Jersey Shore and manages my partnerships, newsletter, and anything else we need. I LOVE having a team. It’s a lonely world when you’re doing everything yourself and this decision has made me a better person all around. I’m a better mom, a better wife, a better daughter, sister and friend. I got a piece of my life back when I let some pieces of the business go into their caring hands and I’m SO grateful for them!
A little background on my girls!
Kate! Kate graduated from St. Bonaventure with a degree in Marketing. She has 5 kids, her very own blog, A Happimess Life, and a background in Fashion working at Lucky Brand and Free People. Her style is just like mine and she is the sweetest! I don’t know how she does it with 5 kids but she’s really laid back and somehow gets it done.
Kelly! Kelly graduated from University of Arizona with a dancing degree, worked in finance and just left her full-time job to have a more flexible schedule with her 7-month old daughter, Harper. She just started a business, Behind the Blog, a service to help other bloggers like me!
Also, I want you to know that just because they are helping me, I’m still the one who you’re hearing from and interacting with on the daily. I make the final decisions on everything from which brands we work with, which clothes we feature, the recipes I make, everything.
K, you can all get back to your lives now. Thank you for reading!!