My Personal Journey to Entrepreneurship
Episode #01 | MY JOURNEY + HOW EMMA ROSE COMPANY CAME TO BE
I'm so excited to be here today talking to you guys about my journey and how this podcast really came about. I want you to be to feel you know me, beyond the stuff that I share on social media. I'm really excited about this online space to share more of me in way that is more conversational and easier to just talk and to let it all out!
I was born in Seattle Washington. My parents are amazing. I'm very close with all my siblings, I’m one of five. We all live in Washington state so we get to see each other more than we have in the past since we moved out the house, got married, started families and all that good stuff!
We moved from Seattle to Wenatchee, Washington when I was in the fourth grade. My dad is a gastroenterologist and was offered a position in Wenatchee. Fourth grade was a good time to move for me personally. Everyone was really nice and welcoming and I loved my elementary School.
My sister directly above me is one of my best friends, we’re only 13 months apart and we've always been thick as thieves. There's a seven year gap between the five of us… kind of crazy!
So kind of put that in perspective how close we are!
I ended up going to Central Washington University right after high school but found myself home every weekend. It was silly. I was even coming home sometimes on the weekdays after class because it was such a quick drive, I feel like I missed out on that college experience, which was my own doing and ultimately ended up moving back to Wenatchee to finish my transfer degree at Wenatchee Valley College. That ended up being the right route for me. I wasn't quite ready for the four-year University just yet. Then my best friend's talked me into applying to Washington State University. I was accepted, Go Cougs!
And that’s where I met my now husband, Shaun.
My roommates and I hosted a Christmas party with a bunch of our friends before the long holiday break, it was amazing. I was dressed as a cardboard Christmas tree and everybody else was dressed to the tee in their own creative outfits... it was so fun.
After dinner we went out to go dancing and that’s where I met Shaun. I saw this tall handsome guy over on the side wearing a long sleeve Nike t-shirt and we just caught each other's eye and like quite literally gravitated toward one another and started talking.
He was the only guy there that actually liked my Christmas tree. Everybody else thought it was in the way of dancing! We hit it off right away and I found out later that he looked at my Facebook and saw that I holding a fish that I'd caught outside of my cabin, and so he claims that's why texted me the following day. But anyway, long story short, he picked me up for a movie and our first date was to go see The Blind Side. We were just together from that point on. Obviously, we experienced the highs lows of college but I knew he was my guy and the person I would eventually marry. My mom always told me that you'll know when you meet that person and I definitely knew that when I met him.
We graduated college and moved to Eastern Washington. He got a job and in Quincy Washington, it's out in the Columbia Basin. He had wonderful job and at that time, I graduated with my bachelor's degree in human development. My plan was to focus on social service. I wanted to be a school counselor but I wasn't sure. I hated that I really didn't have a plan. I jumped around jobs and at one point, I actually worked at a juvenile detention center. That was interesting!
Throughout my whole journey, you're going to find out pretty quickly that I dabble. I've always tried new things and if they didn’t work out, I’d move on if they did work, I’d run with it! I got a job at a bank because it hit me at one point that maybe I want to go into finance. I worked at the bank for a while and then I got a job across the street at an accounting firm in Quincy and I loved that job. I really enjoyed learning and the work itself. I was working closely with small business owners and loved bookkeeping. I’m not a CPA, but I did learn a lot from that job about the things that I implement within my own business and what I know is important and areas to focus on, which I think has helped me a lot. Then I ended up getting pregnant in 2014.
When I had our daughter, Riley, I did not go back to work. I wasn't super happy but I did really enjoy the people I was working with but couldn't see myself doing it long term, especially after experiencing my first tax season and the crazy hours that came with it. So there I was, back at square one with a new baby and uncertainty on what the heck I wanted to do with my life.
Then life really just took over and between a mortgage, bills and me not working, it quickly became overwhelming. Shaun and I had always had drunken conversations about moving to South Bend to be part of his family’s business of cattle ranching (and we’ll chat more about this in later episodes) but it always ended there. It wasn’t until Riley came around that we got serious about the idea and what we wanted for our life and our future as a family.
South Bend Washington sits on The Willapa Bay and we're smack in the middle (two and half hours both directions) between Portland and Seattle. We are the southwestern most tip of Washington State. When dating and visiting the ranch, fell in love with it instantly. It's just beautiful area. I just knew in my heart that this is where we were going to end up someday. We called his parents to hash it all out and figure out the logistics. Slowly but surely we made the transition. We sold our house, packed up, and moved to South Bend. This could be an episode of its own because at first, I hated it.
We were living with my in-laws in their basement which fine. We were so grateful that they took us in, especially while we were trying figure out our next steps. It was just tough. We had a six-month-old, I'm still learning how to be mom, breast feed, and simply didn’t have a lot of privacy. This wasn’t something I was used to. Our first week there, it rained 11 inches. If you aren't familiar with the Washington coast, it's like really wet and dreary, a LOT of the time!
Just Google how many inches of rain you get each year where you live. We get 90 inches of rain per year on average and typically more.
Anyway, I knew then that I needed to do something in order to keep me home with Riley. Because of where we live it was either make the business work or I’d need to find a job. For me personally, I simply knew that I didn’t want to do that and the thought of working for someone else again made me very uneasy.
This is really when my photography journey exploded and I dove right in to learn everything I possibly could about business and marketing!
After outsourcing my first website design project, I became obsessed with learning that, too. I’d finally found what I was good at and what lit me on fire. Everything else before that time always felt unnatural and not anything I wanted to pursue for the rest of my life. It hit me that this is what I’m meant to do and this is how I’m going to do it! Living in such a tiny town, I’ve had to learn how to find my ideal client and navigate that piece of it which has been a very interesting part of the journey that I cannot wait to dive into more on this podcast!
I’m proud to say that I’ve learned everything I know on my own and yes of course, people have helped me along the way but it’s really fun to say out loud that it is possible to do whatever the heck you want to do no matter where you live!
Over and over again I was asked, “Emma, when will you host an event?!” I took Shaun to dinner and pitched the idea. I was scared - of course. I didn’t know what would happen but all I knew was that it’s something I had to do. Shaun was on board and ready to help me make it a reality. The workshop filled quickly and it was truly incredible, you can see it all right here on this blog post!
Hosting a workshop was a huge learning curve, for sure. However, it lit a spark in me to continue the Dream Chasers Workshop because not only was the event so much fun, the friendships I made out of it all has been absolutely life-giving.
The truth is though, 2017 was a really rough year for me personally and professionally. It all looked really pretty online but behind the scenes, I was a mess. I was physically and mentally unwell and falling apart at the seams. It all came crashing down on me in the winter time and I finally had my wake up call over Thanksgiving to get my act together.
I started working out on December 4, 2017 and proud to tell you that as of today, over a year later, I’ve lost (and kept off), over 50 pounds. I found two other women in our community looking to improve their own health and wellness so we started showing up for each other, nearly every day for 8 months.
We came into each other’s lives for a purpose and for me, it was accountability. We’ll talk so much more about this later but the three of us were a beautiful combination because we could workout together but not at all compare ourselves to each other whatsoever. We each had our own goals we wanted to accomplish and we were truly there to support and encourage one another.
I learned how to love myself again, it had been a really long time.
I started slowing things down in my business, saying no to things, and focusing on my health and making exercise a priority. 2018 was incredible. I discovered what being truly happy feels like. My journey has always been up and down and I’ve learned how to embrace a whole new lifestyle. This journey has showed me how it’s so much more than a number on a scale but how it has truly impacted every single area of my life for the positive.
We’re going to wrap up with chatting a little bit about my little one, Riley Mae! If you’ve followed me on social media you know that she’s with me all the time. She’s a mamas girl to the core and quite literally obsessed with me. It’s wonderful! Being a mom is simply the best. She’s the reason I picked up a camera, the reason for me finding my true passions, creativity and more. She’s hilarious and I hope to interview here on the podcast so you can get to know her better, too!
As a family, we’ve definitely had to learn how to make this business of mine continue to grow with working from home and being with her majority of the time but it’s something I’m passionate about sharing because it is possible! So we’re now in 2019 and my annual Dream Chasers Workshop planning is in full swing! We’re headed to sunny California in November for a 4-day event and I cannot wait! The workshop sold out in one month, which was beyond incredible and overwhelming all at the same time. For more workshop details, you can find them right here! Right now I don’t have future workshops in the works as I’m totally focused on making the 2019 event truly special to love on my attendees and make some amazing memories together. My mom is coming, Riley’s coming, and my assistant is coming, too! So yes - things are busy, but it’s a really good kind of busy!
So there’s a lot going on right now and I simply can’t wait to share more with you all here on the new podcast, At Home With Emma Rose. We’re going to dive into it all, my friends. Marriage, parenting, entrepreneurship, balance, and so much more!
I wanted you to get a feel for how it all started and why I’m here with you today. My business and life finally reached a point where I needed a better space to serve my people better and also reach more listeners and readers! I’m ready to dive into the things I’m asked all the time but don’t always have the time to bring it to life through a blog post but all that is going to change with this podcast and the show notes that will be included with each episode!
Thank you for listening and reading! The fun has really just begun, and I'm so excited that you are here.
Ps. Official Launch Day for the At Home with Emma Rose Podcast is just one week away which means it’s giveaway time! StompSoftware is offering listeners a chance to win a copy of BlogStomp + AlbumStomp!
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Emma Rose is a Squarespace website designer and photographer based out of the Pacific Northwest. She helps photographers not only stand out online, but dig deep to find the why in what they do. She strives to work with like-minded entrepreneurs who want to grow an audience, start and thrive their online business and change the freakin' world. She aims to help people create not only meaningful businesses but lives. For more about Emma, click here!