My 2018 Goals // Business, Life, & More

I know, I know. I'm a little late in sharing this. I usually like to have my goal post up by the beginning of the new year, but I'm kind of struggling a bit I guess. I've tried putting this post together a few times but my mind goes blank. 

*Update as of 1/7/17: I think I'm finally ready to write this post! I spent my Sunday researching all about goal-setting and have a hearty list that I'm ready to share. In fact, now I'm a little overwhelmed (but the good kind) because now I have to get *clap* to *clap* work.

My 2018 Goals // Business, Life, & More - rightathomeshop.com/blog

This year I formatted my goals a little differently. Instead of writing a ton of goals down on paper I wrote a few major ones and split them into smaller, more specific steps. 

  • Grow my YouTube channel
    • Hit 1,000 subscribers! (which I plan to achieve by...)
    • Post more how to's and project videos
    • Organize videos into playlists
    • Experiment with creative video ideas (I have a specific one up my sleeve...let's see if I muster up the courage to execute it)
  • Re-do my website
    • Edit blog categories
    • Make my Idea Gallery more accessible
    • Organize stamping guides onto a specific page
    • Add policy pages and information
    • Organize my additional products page
  • Host 3 Pop-Up Shops + Meet-Ups
    • "RAH on the Road" ?!
    • Summer 2018
    • Classes, make & takes, etc

I hosted one this past October in York, PA and it was a hit! Take a peek here.

  • Collaborate with other brands
    • Complimentary products
    • Show versatility and how to mix & match

Which brands should I reach out to? Comment below!

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I hope to talk about my more personal life goals in another post. I also want to share my word for the year. Since I haven't even created a draft for that post yet I think I'll leave you with a meme I saw on Facebook the other day...

I've decided my 2018 will start on February 1st, January is a free trial month.

I'd be lying if I said I hadn't already decided this in December.

Anyways, here's to new goals! Oh, and leave me one of your goals for the year in the comments. That way I can keep you accountable. *wink wink*

Nicole

What I Accomplished This Year // 2017 Year In Review

Hello, 2018! 

I can't believe another year has passed...now that I'm getting older I understand what people mean when they say "time flies". This past year was filled with experiences I will never forget and growth both personally and professionally.

Writing these posts make me both anxious and excited. I despise looking back on what I've accomplished for fear of feeling like I didn't do "enough", but I also know I will look back on them and be so thankful I took the time to document this journey. I've been writing these posts every six months since I began my small business so I am not stopping now!

What I Accomplished This Year // 2017 Year In Review - rightathomeshop.com/blog

July 8th - 9th, 2017 - Attended the Stamp Scrap Art Tour in Raleigh, North Carolina with my mom. Oh my. One thing I can remember vividly is that is was h.o.t. But otherwise it was a great show and I met lots of crafters. Bummed I missed seeing Catherine Pooler in her home state though! Next time. 

Oh I almost forgot! It was on this trip that I visited the most stunning sunflower field I have ever seen! Take a peek at what I saw here. 

July 17th, 2017 - Welcomed Jill Hawkins and Stephanie Gold as guest designers for the month. I've always admired both of their styles so I was thrilled they agreed to join my team.

July 18th, 2017 - The first Right at Home print feature hit newsstands today! If you happened to pick up the Autumn 2017 issue of CardMaker magazine, flip to page #8 for a little review of my product. I went to Joann Fabrics and saw it in person on the shelf. Unfortunately, no one asked me for my autograph when I told them that was my product. Ugh. 

July 25th, 2017 - Took a huge risk and rented a gorgeous home in Providence, Rhode Island to act as the backdrop for my upcoming release videos. I was so inspired by this release and wanted to make it oh so special. I feel like this was a turning point for me...I knew I had to make the investment count and I'm so proud I didn't get overwhelmed and give up because of how much work there was to be done. The content turned out looking amazing and I feel like I set a new bar for how I present new releases, etc. The photo above was actually taken during this trip. You can see all the videos I'm talking about on my YouTube channel here. 

July 27th, 2017 - All the content created during the aforementioned trip was in preparation for my July release! WOW, was this a release. I was completely blown away and surprised by the reaction to these items. I thought I knew what was going to sell well and I was completely wrong (to my delight as it was one of my favorite items that you all seemed to love to!). A few of the items in this release have become staples in my collection and some of my most popular sellers. You can take a peek at the full collection in this post. 

August 11th - 13th, 2017 - Drove alllllll the way to Cincinnati, Ohio for Stampaway USA. I got to meet up with a few friends that I met earlier in the year at Simon Says CREATE. We even snapped a few polaroids that I will cherish forever and ever. And I finally got to put my sunflower photo prop to use!

August 26th - 27th, 2017 - Headed back out on the road (but this time more local) to Hamburg, New York. This was an exciting show for me as I got to meet (read hug) Sharon from Buffalo Stamps and Stuff in person. She is a retailer of my product line so I am forever thankful for her and her support. Also got to chat with sweet Janelle who works at Sharon's shop! Make sure to pop in if you're ever in upstate NY! 

August 29th, 2017 - Debuted the first post of guest designer Zinia of Abstract Inspiration. A few weeks prior I packed up a few of my stamp sets and mailed them all the way to her in Greece. It's amazing this what social media has done for us crafters. We get to connect and share our talents even if we're thousands of miles away from each other. 

September 5th, 2017 - Hosted a collaboration blog hop with My Sweet Petunia's and the Right at Home design team. It's easily one of my most favorite cards I've ever made. You could say that I got my inspiration from the sunflower field I visited in North Carolina. Oh, and there's a video tutorial! 

September 6th, 2017 - Between my post the day before and today's post by May Park it was turning out to be a sunflower type of week. It was surreal to have May (i.e. a crafty genius) use my products on a card. Definitely a *pinch me* moment. 

September 7th, 2017 - I welcomed another crafty icon onto the blog today. This time around Brandi Kincaid shared a handful of stamped envelopes perfect for sending your handmade cards in. These designs are just perfection. 

September 11th, 2017 - Announced my first Stamp Junkies x Right at Home Meet-Up + Pop-Up Shop in collaboration with Marci Snee of Stamp Junkies and Holly Endress of the Right at Home design team. We hoped to get 20 RSVP's. We got that many within the first day of registration. #gulp

I guess today was just one big party because I had another announcement: the uber talented Michelle Murray would be guest designing for me! 

September 13th, 2017 - The most magical set of cards went live on the blog today thanks to another new guest designer, Carly Tee Minner. I guess it was the year of guest designers, huh?!

September 15th, 2017 - I joined my partner-in-coffee-loving-friend Amy Tsuruta for her seasonal Coffee Lovers Blog Hop. Two words about my project: pumpkin spice. 

September 17th, 2017 - Guest posted on the Eighteen25 blog for their Spooktacular September post series. I created some DIY Halloween Gift Card Tags that were too cute to spook. 

September 18th, 2017 - Was featured as the Boss Lady of the Week on the Sweet Water Decor blog! You can head over there to read a little bit about me. 

September 26th, 2017 - I always try to show the versatility of my designs for projects that go beyond cardmaking. Lindsey Lanning of Lindsey Decor on YouTube helped me do just that with her series of bible journaling videos. Her first post went live today. 

September 29th, 2017 - This week's new guest designer introduction went to Christy Reuling of Christy Gets Crafty on YouTube! Take a peek at her post where she’s sharing how to use my Anemone set to create beautiful red poppies.

October 4th, 2017 - Calling on Floridians! On this day I announced that Whim So Doodle in St. Petersburg, Florida would be carrying my line of stamps and dies! I always hear great things about this store so I am beyond thrilled to be apart it. 

October 5th, 2017 - Released my Fall and Holiday Right at Home stamps and dies! I remember feeling so proud of the items in this release as I feel they are different than anything in my collection. Take a peek at the bundle here. 

October 6th, 2017 - Over the summer I took a risk and put together a box of stamps and dies along with a few samples and sent them to different retail stores nationwide. I had no expectations of hearing back from any of them. Expect, today I did. Thrilled that Ann of Impress Rubber Stamps decided to take the jump and become a retailer of Right at Home. I now have retailers in three of the four corners of the USA...anyone in CA interested?! 

October 13th, 2017 - Hosted the best meet-up and pop-up shop that was ever thrown with my girls Marci and Holly! Oh, what a weekend it has been. Definitely one for the books. We had a great turnout and are still in awe over the generosity of our sponsors. There’s nothing quite like being in a room with dozens of crafty gals, munching away on the most delicious pizzas ever, all while giggling and snapping photos. I wish I could have bottled all the excited, positive energy that was in the room that night. 

October 16th, 2017 - Hip hip HOORAY! Today I had another new guest designer for October posting on the blog using my newest release. Any guesses who it was? She’s sweet as pie, has a signature color palette, and has a word in her blog name that rhymes with candy? It was Melissa Bickford of Just Dandy Studio!

October 17th, 2017 - Received a message from a little shop in Marshall, Michigan about carrying some of my products. If you're from the area, head over to Paper & I to shop select Right at Home items! Thanks for reaching out Audrey!

October 18th, 2017 - Just a few days later Katie Gehring had her debut on the blog with a card showcasing her expert use of Distress Inks...and my Cozy Cardinal set of course! 

October 23rd, 2017 - On this day at 10:19 pm I received the most amazing/exhilarating/totally-unbelievable message on Instagram which prompted this post. It’s okay to grow slow.

October 25th, 2017 - Was stunned to log on to YouTube and see that Kelly Latevola created a video using some of my products for Simon Says Stamp. It was an amazing surprise and even more amazing set of cards. 

October 27th, 2017 - The layers and texture of today's card by guest designer Jeanne Jachna had me swooning. I was thrilled to have Jeanne as a guest designer for the month as her bright and fun style has always inspired me.

Later today I checked my email and noticed something super special was waiting for me. Honestly I don't know how I didn't pass out right then. It was in this moment that this whole business thing became just a bit too real.

November 2nd, 2017 - In hindsight, I'm even more glad I asked Lisa Stein to guest design for me. Throughout the month she shared unique projects featuring popular techniques. Here's her partial die-cut card and her trio of alcohol ink backgrounds. 

November 10th, 2017 - For all my pocket-letter-loving friends, Nathalie of An Ounce of Creativity shared the sweetest fall spread perfect for celebrating the season. This was her first post as a guest designer for the month. Her last post went live on Thanksgiving and it featured hand-stitching. Sometimes I get these crazy project ideas in my head but I know I won’t do them justice…so I ask my talented crafty friends to make them.

November 18th, 2017 - Remember that message I received back in October? Yeah, that was from Carly of Ellen Hutson asking if they could carry my line. Ummm, HECK YES!! To celebrate the day I guest posted on the CLASSroom blog with a festive holiday front door card. 

A few days before a few of my items were featured in Carly's color trend post. I just couldn't even. 

November 19th, 2017 - The features just kept on coming this week! Today my Sunflower stamp was featured in Jennifer McGuire's My Favorite Crafty Things 2017: Stamps video series. Such an honor!

November 25th, 2017 - Announced my Small Business Saturday / Thanksgiving Weekend Sale where I was giving away Let's Get Crafty pouches. I just love creating little branded products that bring a smile to my face. From the response I received I think you all loved it too. 

November 27th, 2017 - Participated in the annual 25 Days of Christmas Tags hosted by Tracey McNeely. I created these cute wreath tags for some gift jars filled with a yummy snack mix.

November 30th, 2017 - I'm so honored that Crystal Thompson reached out to me to guest design and she created some of the most elegant projects to ever hit the Right at Home blog. Just take this golden beauty for example. 

December 1st, 2017 - Kicked off my month-long giveaway series on my Instagram page. Each week I put together a special gift package featuring a sampling of my stamps and dies along with a few of my favorite things to use with them. I received an amazing response so I hope to do more giveaways in the future!

December 14th, 2017 - Sent out my annual Christmas postcards to all who shopped with me this past year. I sent out about 250 this year and my hand still hurts. 

December 18th, 2017 - The Right at Home product line of stamps and dies went live on the Scrapbook.com website! *cue the confetti* This was the message I was referring to when I said things just got way too real. Scrapbook.com is like...huge. Like, they know about me. A little college girl from North Attleboro, MA. Like, WHAT?! 

December 19th, 2017 - Guest posted on the Simon Says Stamp blog. I showed how to use my Sunflower set to create a more winter appropriate flower. 

December 24th, 2017 - The fact that my crafty icons even know who I am is so unreal to me I can't stand it. Imagine how I react when I find out they use my stamps in their projects?! Today, Carissa Wiley used my (peaceful)cult-favorite Peace Love Joy set on her Christmas thank you notes. 

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2017, I thank you for all you've brought me. After three years of following this path (and after three years of hustling/praying/crying/believing) it’s all starting to happen. This will always be the year that things started to click. 

I can't wait to see what happens in 2018. 

Let me know what goals you accomplished in the comments! Thank you for reading and following along with my creative business journey. 

Nicole

Half Year Progress Check In // July 2017

Morning, friends. 

If you've been following along with my blog for awhile you may remember that I periodically check in with my goals and assess my accomplishments thus far. I'll be honest...I've been putting off doing this post for about a month now because I just haven't felt great about where I'm at in my business journey. However, I know that this is all part of the process which I am so grateful to even have the ability to experience. 

If you'd like to read about what I've accomplished since the beginning of the year, continue reading below.

Half Year Progress Check In // July 2017 - rightathomeshop.com/blog

January 2nd, 2017 - Collaborated with the ladies over at A Blog Named Hero and their design team for the entire month of January. They shared dozens of card ideas using my stamps that I would release within the next few days...

January 5th, 2017 - Started the year off right with the release of two java-tastic stamps: Cup of Joy and How Have You Bean?. All the caffeine-addicted crafters like myself were way to excited for these. 

January 19th, 2017 - Introduced another three items to my collection. This time, Valentine's Day themed. Be Mine, Folded Sweetheart Die Set, and Watercolor Background gave me all the heart eyes and were constantly being used throughout the month. 

February 2nd, 2017 - Opened registration for my Valentine's Day Happy Mail Swap. This time around I challenged the participants to only send flat-items that could fit into an envelope. Definitely difficult, but oh so much fun!

February 4th, 2017 - Happy birthday to ME! I announced my special birthday promotion that I was giving a free Let's Get Crafty tote to a qualifying purchase on my shop. So glad that my customers helped me celebrate. 

February 6th, 2017 - Received an exciting email from Simon Says Stamp about a sponsorship opportunity. It was the best birthday present ever. 

February 17th, 2017 - My Handmade by Me stamp set was featured in Jennifer McGuire's Introduction to Distress Oxide Inks video. #craftersgonnacraft

February 20th - 24th, 2017 - Where you lead, I will follow. This week my DT and I hosted a Gilmore Girls Inspired Post Week where everyday one of us shared a project inspired by the heartwarming show. This series was one of my most favoritest things ever. 

March 14th, 2017 - Baby chicks were chirping and daffodils were blooming which meant my spring release was available for purchase. I added two new stamp sets, Bunny Hugs and His Love, to my collection as well as a coordinating die set, Script Greetings Die Set. 

March 24th, 2017 - Participated in the Spring Coffee Lovers Blog Hop hosted by Amy T. I love celebrating my love for coffee and crafts each season with this blog hop. Thanks so much Amy for always inviting me!

March 30th, 2017 - Speaking of celebrating our love for crafting, my DT and I hosted a blog hop in honor of National Craft Month! We had over a dozen different designers participate using a stamp set that I released the same day to celebrate the special occasion: Make Something Beautiful. It was awesome to see everyone's interpretation of the set...we all have our own unique style which makes crafting so fun. 

April 10th - 14th, 2017 - My DT and I were super busy this spring with tons of post series...this week we held on called Homemade with Love where each day one of us shared a different DIY gift idea. From burlap banners to felt flower frames there is something that is sure to make you smile. P.S. I held this same post series the year before so I now have tons of DIY project posts available to view. Happy crafting! 

April 17th, 2017 - Testing, testing! Today my podcast interview with Suzanne Moore went live on her website. This was an incredible opportunity that I am so thankful to have been given. It was so nerve-wracking for me but I'm glad I pushed myself. (Pssst...Can I tell you something? I actually haven't listened to it myself. I just can't. Keep my secret, k?)

April 28th - 29th, 2017 - Attended Simon Says CREATE in Columbus, Ohio. It was an amazing experience that I can not thank Heidi enough for. I got to tour the Simon warehouse and meet all the crafters that I admire on the internet. I also got to spend the weekend crafting away with happy stampers from all over the world. Fingers crossed I get invited next year! 

May 22nd, 2017 - My Script Greetings stamp set was featured in a video by Yana Smakula. She used the bold sentiments to finish off her baryered backgrounds. Such a fun and simple technique! 

June 3rd - 4th, 2017 - Attended the Heirloom Productions Rubber Stamp & Paper Arts Festival in W. Springfield, MA. I had attended the year before with my stamps (we were a brand new company at that point) and it was exciting to see how much I had grown since then. I was also able to meet some of my crafty friends in person including those from the Stamp Junkies group. It was great to meet you ladies!

June 8th, 2017 - Added the Abstract Florals Die Set to my shop for purchase. I always received questions about when this die would be available so I was thrilled to be able to finally offer it to you! 

June 23rd, 2017 - Sponsored the Summer Coffee Lovers Blog Hop but wasn't able to make a project myself. *Insert sad face* I did share a ton of different coffee themed cards over on my Instagram the day of to celebrate though. Swipe through them here. All use my Cup of Joy and How Have You Bean? stamp sets so I thought they were perfect for the occasion. 

July 8th, 2017 - Released two more coordinating die sets. This time for Banner Alphabet and Let Love Grow. I can tell from this post that the past six months have been all about die sets!

And that's it so far. I'm looking forward to seeing what I can do with the rest of 2017. 

Have you accomplished any of your goals this year? Share them with me below!

Nicole