I’m Moving To Houston, TX

Hey everyone, I know my blog has been kind of quiet lately, it’s because I’ve been having some technical difficulties and I’ve also been very busy. Let me explain what happened really quickly and then after that, I’ll get to the moving story.

About two months back, my MacBook Pro of 5 years died and I had to get it replaced. I thought everything was fine because I backed up my computer twice a month, but when I got my new computer, I found out my new computer was not recognizing the external hard drive I’d used to store my backups. This means I lost a lot of content. I lost all the photos from my study abroad trip/travel trips and I lost a lot of documents. I was able to go into the hard drive and retrieve some photos, mostly the photos of my deceased father, but after that, the files became corrupted. So, if it wasn’t stored in the iCloud, on a flash drive, or in Google Drive, I don’t have it anymore. So that’s what happened, that’s why the content stopped because I became very focused on trying to retrieve my lost content, plus I have two and a half jobs and I’m planning an interstate move.

But anyway, moving on…

I’m moving to Houston, Texas. It literally took me a year to decide to do this. Last year when I graduated from college, my mom and my cousin tried to convince me to move to Houston. They both wanted me to change states because of the lack of opportunities in St. Louis but I didn’t want to move or, more accurately, I wasn’t ready to move. Leaving home never bothered me, as long as I can talk to my family, homesickness never sets in, but I just wasn’t ready to leave. So, I created reasons to stay. At first, it was graduate school. I told myself I wanted to go to graduate school but the way my bank account is set up, I needed to get a well-paying job first before embarking on that path because student loans are not fun. But then a few months went by and I still couldn’t find work, and the dream of going to graduate school started to fade. I’m not saying it’s never going to happen, I’m just saying it’s not happening in the next two years.

At that point, I returned to my old job, working part-time but I was still looking for full-time work. I tried a few side hustles and pick up a few extra skills, such as website design, photography, editing video and photos but I never stopped looking for full-time work. Back in January, I got really close to getting a full-time job making $37,000 a year (in St. Louis without any children, that would have made me middle class) but I didn’t get it. I was one of the final candidates but someone with more experience most likely got the job. The experience didn’t make me bitter, it did the opposite, it gave me hope. For a while, I thought I was just un-hirable. I thought I didn’t have enough skills to get a decent job but after that, I knew it was just because St. Louis is small and our economy sucks. Just to give you an example to back up my statement, during my year of looking for full-time work, I tried to get a job with the City of St. Louis. When I went to the website, there were only 27 job openings for official St. Louis City workers. St. Louis City has a population of 311, 404 (2016). I rest my case.

This is when I called my cousin who lives in Houston and asked him if his offer still stood and he asked me when I wanted to move.

For those that are wondering, why Houston? Houston is the fourth biggest city in the U.S. and it has a booming economy.

 

What Offer?

Our families are close yet distant. He’s my cousin on my mother’s side of the family. My mom took care of his mom when his mom had breast cancer. And his mom was my mom’s oldest sister and she literally helped my grandma raise my mom. So, we’ve always been connected. After he moved out of St. Louis, we became distant but I knew he still cared about us. He would check in on us, send us presents or money for Christmas, etc. He even gave me a vacation when I graduated from high school.

When I graduated from college he offered to help me transition into adulthood. He offered to help me move, give me a place to live until I could afford my own place and he gave me a car to get around in. He wants to help me foster an environment where I can focus on growing my photography business and writing my screenplays and novels without the fear of failing and not having enough money to live off of. In our family, we believe in paying it forward. If you’re at a point in your life where you can afford to help others, you help them. I am so thankful for this opportunity and I can’t wait until I can help someone else in this manner. I’m excited for this next chapter in my life.

I move to Houston on July 18, 2018.

Times Are A Changin Pt 2

So, I think I’m going to make the “Times Are A Changin” a serialized post. It will be used to update you all about changes to the website and general life updates.

The Website

So, have you looked at the website lately? Take a look around. Click on some things. Check out the homepage, about section, contact form, and the company page. Did you look? All the photographs used for the featured images are photographs I took. How cool? But anyway, the website also has a new URL and domain name because I finally own it. There has also been some cosmetic changes to my previous posts and the addition of the category cloud, to make searching for posts simpler. And a Facebook page has been created for the blog to help it get more exposure. You can find a link to the Facebook page at the bottom of the screen. Just click on the Facebook icon and you’ll be sent to the Facebook page. This is all part of my rebranding efforts because I finally figured out what I want to do with the website. Having some direction is a wonderful thing.

Traveling Thursdays

You may have noticed a few posts that have been tagged “Traveling Thursdays” and wondered what they meant. Well, I’m here to tell you that Traveling Thursdays will be serialized posts about travel and things related to travel. Traveling Thursdays are only posted on Thursdays and will become a mixture of photo-assignments and articles over time. This is my attempt to live up to my tagline: live, write, travel because there has been plenty of living but not enough traveling or writing.

Graduate School or Nah?

So, I think I’m going back to school. Not this fall, but next fall. The only problem is that it’s really expensive. Like, although the program is only one year it costs more than two years of my undergraduate education. The reason the program is so expensive is because of the amount of traveling involved and the fact that you’re doing internships and shadowing as well. Plus, it’s a graduate program so the expenses are a little bit higher.

I have to figure out a way to get the money and it probably won’t be a Go Fund Me because it’s just way too expensive to even try it that way. I’m currently looking for full-time employment that does tuition reimbursement. I’m looking for scholarships and grants to apply to and I’m looking for grant writers. And yes, I’ve finally come to terms with the fact that I’ll probably still end up taking out loans but at least it won’t be as much as I previously thought. I have a network—a community that wants to see me succeed and they’re really helping me out.

Writing

I am currently developing a sci-fi trilogy in book form and I’ll probably even do a screenplay for the first book to see if it’ll sell. Now that I’m not in school, I can finally work on book ideas that have been building up over the past four years and it’s wonderful. I’m going to do a longer post about the trilogy soon, I just need to get some other content out first because I’m terribly backlogged and I can’t even figure out why. I guess these summer days are just slipping away from me.

Which reminds me, what have you been up to this summer?