Hey there! A lot has happened for me over the past five years, so I’ll start where it all began. 🙂
Young & In Love
Back in 2012, I got married to my high school sweetheart, Nick. We were living in Austin, TX, USA at the time and had fully planned on having a fairly settled and a relatively “normal” life.
But about 6 months into being married, we started to get a little restless. Nick had an idea to travel around the states in a camper van. At first I was like “hell no! No toilet? No shower? Whaaaat?” But he eventually convinced me. We built our camper van from scratch using what used to be a plumbers van. We finished out the lease on our apartment in Austin and then went full time to living in our home-brew camper van.
About 3 months into living in the van, we started running into some major transmission issues. We found out it would cost us thousands of dollars to fix (money we definitely didn’t have at the time), so we decided to be a little more stationary and spend more time with our van in Austin.
Because of this decision, we also started investigating traveling internationally. We figured since we didn’t have rent and didn’t have much stuff, we could probably leave the van sitting for a few weeks to take a trip!
We took a 3 week trip to Europe in early 2014 and had an amazing time. That trip really showed us that it was possible to work while on the road and that we didn’t have to stay in the USA if we didn’t want to.
We were essentially hooked after that because only a few months later we headed off to China to volunteer at a foster home for two months. Our trip to China was a big turning point for us actually. We were really intrigued by the idea of traveling more and thought it was so cool that we could still work while traveling. Something about spending extended time away from home really solidified that for us though. After that trip to China, we basically just kept traveling!
Since 2014, Nick and I have continued to travel. It’s been an amazing journey, full of lots of ups and downs. I’m incredibly grateful for the experiences I’ve had while traveling.
The age-old question: “So, what do you do?”
As for the work side of things, I’ve done sooo many things over the past few years. When we were living in the van, I started making handmade jewelry and sold my creations on Etsy. I had a couple pieces that really took off, so it was a great additional income for us for a while.
Making jewelry while abroad didn’t really work well, so once we started traveling internationally I made the switch to web design. I was pretty new to the field, so I really worked my butt off to learn and get my first freelancing jobs. I was determined to make it work, and I’m very happy to say that I definitely “made it” with my freelancing so far! Since I started freelancing as a web designer, I’ve also learned more graphic design, logo design, and branding. I’ve been able to get a fairly consistent 100% Top Rated score on Upwork and am pretty much never out of work.
These days, I’m taking a short break from freelance design work to build a couple courses, building businesses with friends, and focusing more on giving back to the freelance and digital nomad communities through Youtube videos and blog posts.