The End of a Decade

Holy Crow! We’ve almost made it yet another year around the Sun, another DECADE in fact, as we approach 2020 with a mix of clarity, exhaustion and hell fucking yeah. Can you believe it?

Is it just me, or is the passing of time always something that feels a little surreal in hindsight?

I started 2019 with one word in mind (as most people are doing now-a-days) a theme, if you will. That word was INTENTION.

I can remember my themes for the last few years in fact because they all feel like a few chapters from the same book titled “Manifesting My Dreams.”

2017 was, in hindsight, The Year of the Arrow. A tough year, full of realizations, heartache, depression, anger, and self-exploration.

2018 then, was The Year of the Arrow, a year in which ACTION was my word. And boy did I take a lot of it. Too much of it, actually. But the benefits far out-weighed the cons.

Then 2019… a year of intention, indeed. Continuing to take action… but rather, intentional action.

And so I always like to take a moment to look back, and reflect on all of the good and bad that challenged me and grew me over the year. And as per usual, I love to share these musings with you. So here we go! In 2019…

  • I started a monthly newsletter for my Creative Studio, and kept up with sending a monthly blast.
  • I helped my partner in life develop graphics and digital assets for his now-popular video game stream.
  • I spent a lot of time dedicated to my artwork/studio practice, resulting in many new works of art.
  • I made some new friends and took more time to enjoy life with old ones.
  • I leaned into my fear of networking and made it out to more than a few events.
  • I led multiple calls on leadership, making a career transition, and my work.
  • Aprendi Espanol! Not fluently, pero yo hablo mucho Espanol! Und Deutsch!
  • I got spiritual.
  • I saw a therapist, and learned to take better care of myself.
  • I learned how to really deal with anger.
  • I went to a couple of really awesome art shows!
  • I went to AIGA’s Emerging Designers Portfolio Day and gathered a wealth of knowledge that helped me move forward as an artist and designer, and in my career.
  • I learned how to pause.
  • I drank my way through a Game of Thrones bar crawl with my bestest people, AND we won the trivia contest!
  • And speaking on GOT, Game of Thrones ended and I threw a lovely little feast in its honor.
  • Celebrated my BFF’s birthday with a 90’s throwback PJ party (yes we’re almost 30, yes we’re waving our hands in the air because we just don’t care).
  • We drove to Chicago for my cousin’s beautiful wedding, my second time visiting the city, and my first time renting an AirBnB 😛
  • After all of the hard work I put into growing my portfolio and developing as an artist and designer I finally landed my first real job in the art world!
  • We took a long weekend and went to our favorite little cabin in the mountains of Tennessee – our dog Sky’s first out-of-state vacation!
  • I spent a Friday afternoon with my girls at King’s Island like it was 2004 – blue ice cream, sweltering heat and all.
  • I turned 29 and celebrated as per usual with my people at the Ohio Renaissance Festival!
  • I paid a visit to the Cincinnati Art Museum – I hadn’t been in years!
  • And the Cincinnati Museum Center, but we go there kind of a lot 😛
  • I spent Halloween in good company at a costume required brunch.
  • My BFF took me GLASSBLOWING, it was the coolest (and hottest) experience!
  • Two pieces of my work were shown and purchased at a big charity event called Secret Artworks, and the night of the show was such a spectacular event! I felt so fancy.
  • I cooked another Thanksgiving dinner for the whole family.
  • We grew our little family from three to FOUR and finally got a puppy!! Her name is Ella. She’s a lab/mountain cur mix. There is a photo at the bottom because you NEED it.
  • I enjoyed a long Christmas holiday thanks to being pretty freaking sick with a cold… that I still have as I write this, the day after Christmas. And now, I’m off until the New Year!


I’d venture to say it’s been a pretty good year but alas, all good things must come to an end. As they say, when one door closes, another opens… and the next door has a big ol’ 2020 stamped on the wood.

And I’m excited.

Keeping with my track record of Yearly Words/Themes, I’ve decided that 2020 is going to be my year. I’ll be turning 30, and I plan to make every minute count. And my word? FOCUS.

Similar to intention, this coming year my one goal is simply to focus on the values and goals and dreams that matter to me the most.

Family. Health. Friends. Art.

Simple. Less.

And gratitude, always gratitude.

Signing off until then…



Ladies and gentlemen…. Ella Rose:



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