On My Mind: Reflection on 2013
As I recover from one of the nastiest flu viruses I’ve had in the while, I think about 2013 and what our plans are for the future. This last year was so full of wonderful memories, it’s hard to remember it all. Last December I remember feeling homesick a lot. We weren’t really in the holiday spirit without our family and friends around. Still we kept busy, went on a few trips to Milwaukee, and anxiously waited until we could take Zero home. On Christmas Day, we woke up to a white Christmas, which made me a little too giddy. Jeremy and I did our “Jewish” tradition by making a trip to China Town for dim sum and going to a movie. We took Zero home early February, and our lives as we knew them had ended and something beautiful took it’s place. We became a family. Every day was an adventure and every day we learned something new about him or about ourselves. As the months went on, we explored new places with Zero, we ate more great food and enjoyed having family come visit. In between those moments, we worked a lot. Jeremy finished semester two and three of his grad school program and I continued to design for Sears.
Jeremy’s thesis project from the beginning promised to be a difficult project. After being paired up with a terrible partner, then going at it alone and having to play catch-up, and finally having so many people back out and things falling through, it’s enough for anyone to want to throw in the towel. But he never did. He successfully funded his kickstarter campaign, he locked down his department heads and the locations he needed, and he adapted to all the monkey wrenches that were thrown his way. I’m so proud of him.
I took my advice from last year, which was to work less and play more. I didn’t take many freelance clients this year, instead focusing on educating myself. I went to a few conferences, took a bunch of skillshare classes, and accomplished many of my goals for 2013.
Some things I’m proud of:
- I revamped Jeremy’s site, combining his portfolio site and his blog into one. We moved from using Adobe Muse to a WordPress platform with a pre made theme. Jeremy can now update his own site and blog, leaving me free to work on other things.
- I re-launched my website, with my own custom WordPress, designed by myself and coded by the ever talented Zoe Rooney.
- At Sears, I contributed to the re-launch design of SearsStyle and designed countless creative for the articles, homepage, and social channels.
- I am now in the process of designing my second WordPress theme for Creatively Driven which will also be coded by Zoe Rooney. You can expect a theme change some time in April.
It feels like we finally just got comfortable here in Chicago. We have a winter and two summers under our belt, Zero is fully trained and we’ve gotten familiar with a lot of the neighborhoods. We have less than 3 months and we move back to San Francisco. I’ve started to get anxious, but in a good way.
Goals for 2014
- Re-establish my network in San Francisco: This means participating in AIGA events, getting coffee with my colleagues and catching up.
- Work towards a full-time freelance career: Gain more clients, raise my rates to what they should be.
- Get a small office space for myself: Working from home is too distracting. I need a place where I can work for hours at a time without any distractions.
- Re work some of my “half-finished” projects: Beef up my portfolio with UI/UX projects Including Cal’s Corgis and Moolah app.
- Continue to Exercise and lose 10 more pounds.
- Write better content for Creatively Driven.