One year ago, I helped Joe open HWE Stationery. I had always had dreams of owning my own shop, but never would have imagined that it could happen. Joe always wanted to own a business, and is a person who gets things done. The first year of building our business has been full of challenges, and accomplishments.
HWE is our baby in so many ways, it has taken all our spare time and most of our spare money. The business is the reason date nights are more rare than they used to be. When we do get the occasional date night, the business is the topic we are not allowed to discuss through dinner. It consumes our free time, keeps us up at night, wakes us up early, and its accomplishments fill us with pride.
It has been a joy packaging orders and reading the emails and reviews of people who have appreciated and enjoyed what we sent them. Alana has a growing interest in the shop, and will help us when she can. I love that she is able to watch us build something from idea to a reality. I love that she can help us build that reality. I love that she sees the struggles we have and watches us persevere.
As I reflect on the past year, I am grateful for how the business has kept Joe and I close. It allows us to connect, when life tries to pull us in opposite directions. Even more than that, I am grateful for how this business has challenged me and forced me to grow. Writing my blog posts has been terrifying for me. I feel like I am putting my most vulnerable self out into the world without protection. Taking pictures for instagram has challenged me to look at things in a new way, and to have patience and faith that I can do something new. Most recently, creating videos for youtube has really put me in a position where I am truly uncomfortable. I am incredibly shy and do not like having my picture taken, let alone speak in front of a camera for anyone to see. Meeting these challenges is making me a stronger person. Each time I am able to conquer a fear, try something new, and do it with grace and strength. I have become a woman that I am more proud of, a woman that I am glad my daughter gets to look up to.
I want to end with a thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am so grateful for the support I have been given throughout this year. I am both nervous and excited to see what’s next and am looking forward to sharing them here with you.