I’m here to share my journey with you as I work to be the best version of me I can be, but ohmygoodness where do I even start?!
I graduated from the University of Wisconsin in spring of 2011 with a degree in Human Development & Family Studies and a minor in Criminal Justice. The plan was to be a School Counselor and the secondary level, but unfortunately, grad school was not in the plan as I was a little burnt out.
Fortunately, I was offered the BEST job I could ever ask for at Noah’s Ark Waterpark (yup..you know…the largest water park in America); the same place I spent my summers in college. This time around, things would be different as I’d work year round, full time and be the right-hand-lady to the Director(s) of Operations…two people I looked up to more than anybody in the world. I thought I’d be there forever!
The first year went well! I instructed, trained, & certified all 250 lifeguards and went on to supervise them and 11 other seasonal managers. This was my sweet spot. The off-season was relaxed, but managing this group of people to be sure things ran efficiently was my forte…not to mention it’s what I enjoyed the most.
I even was promoted in June to Operations Manager (which included a nice raise). I thrived in this crazy environment, loved the stress in a really weird way, and can honestly admit I didn’t hate the 16 hour days and often cramming 80 hour work weeks into 5 days (and of course coming in on days off when needed). And, duh. I got a sweet farmer’s tan!
Winter of 2012-2013 had plans of their own when my boyfriend proposed, we got married, then moved for Southern California for his job! So much for that forever gig… (and the cold winters)!
We love our life here! It turned out to be an incredible blessing that just took a while to get started for me. I was unemployed, didn’t have any friends, and was planning a wedding from 2,000 miles away (we were legally marred at this time; but were still throwing the party for our family and friends that last winter). I was a little lost, lacked routine, and sometimes lonely.
(At least I got to do this all just a few miles from the beach. Right?)
I decided it was time to grab the reigns in one area of my life I could control: my fitness. Through what I know was complete divine intervention, I met a nice blonde at a cafe, signed-up to participate in her fitness accountability group that was 60 days long, and I’ve never looked back. My results were amazing! I lost that college flub, 11 inches overall, dropped roughly 8% body fat, and my wedding dress practically fell down for my autumn fitting, even though it was extremely tight when I bought it in the spring. If ONLY I’d listened to her and actually snapped before & after photos to share with you. Needless to say, I stayed in close touch with that community.
I started working as an Office Manager for a non-profit organization. My co-workers were wonderful & I loved being around the kids. I took care of the business in the office for the organization, which is important, but I found I missed managing the employees I had before. After all, that’s what I was good at and enjoyed most. I wanted another outlet, and to provide more, financially, for our family. About 8 months into my stint there, I felt as though I wasn’t being fully challenged not to mention I wasn’t paid nearly what I had been since college (and that doesn’t even include the Midwest-to-SoCal cost of living difference).
Remember that community I stayed in close contact with? Well, I decided it was my turn to facilitate & guide others on their journey the same way the “Cafe Girl” did for me. I jumped on her team and have never looked back! It was like having a second job, but better. I made my own hours, worked when I could, and got out of it what I put into it.
I knew it would be financially rewarding, but I had NO idea it would SO internally gratifying. In no capacity did I realize the impact my challengers would have on me. I never would have guessed I’d be leading a team of successful entrepreneurs. I couldn’t have ever imagined the empowering community and the solid friendships I’ve built because of this business. Six months after jumping on board, my husband and I decided it was time for me to walk away from my full-time job and invest in all my time in this business. I’ve never looked back.
The freedom this opportunity is creating is exhilarating! I am now able to stay home with our future family, while still contributing financially to this household. I make my own hours, can travel when I’d like to, and entertain guests on their schedule, not mine.
Remember how the best thing about the “best” job I would ever have was the whole “managing people” part? That has transpired into a “leading people” on this TEAM and I couldn’t ask for anything more.
This coming spring marks 4 years since my story above began. That’s my journey and how I got to where I am today. I’m excited to continue down this path to be the version of me I can be, and am glad you’re here to join me through the DIY projects, a few cooking experiments, the adventures I seek out, and anything else to come.