Dear Hope Street Cards,
Happy 1st Birthday to you!!! Hooray!
You have ‘officially’ existed in the world for 1 entire year, however we know that you were conceived a long, long time before that.
You are not at all what we expected you to be like. In one year, you have become much, much larger and have travelled much, much further than we ever envisioned. Places like the United Kingdom and Japan. And the United States and China. And Wyalong and Rapid Creek. And you can be found in so many places. On the Internet and in shops. And in magazines and online stories. It blows us away.
In just 365 days you have achieved so much. You span 23 greeting cards. Covering 4 ranges. Compliment cards. 75 blog posts. 1 social experiment into compliment bombing. 27 letters of the emotional wellbeing dictionary defined. Made the newspaper on 4 occasions. A glossy magazine once. 2 radio interviews. A podcast. And 13 online articles have been written – just about you.
In your short existence you have made so many wonderful connections. Thousands upon thousands of people have come to visit you at your website! On Facebook you have so many ‘friends’ and on Instagram all these peeps ‘follow’ what you are up to. This is very impressive relationship building.
But rather than glorify all of the friends you have managed to make, we should really honour all the fabulous people who have helped to nurture and encourage you. Because as the saying goes, it really does take a village to raise a small business. You could not exist if it wasn’t for the community of family and friends who continually offer advice, support and encouragement. The mother who ensures strict quality control is met and is meticulous at folding and packaging cards. The father who provides efficient edits to blog posts and reminders about the correct placement of apostrophes. The friend who picks up power tools to make card displays. The friend who comes over to discuss marketing and retail strategies. The friend who edits and makes the media releases better. The person who offers business advice. The people who are continually networking for you. The people who continually believe in you and what you might be capable of. The people who never stop saying “keep going, this is amazing”. The people we’ve never met who send copious amounts of email encouragement and kind words. The people who want to work and collaborate with you. All these very special people who keep you going.
In one little year you have taught us all sorts of things. Like what might be an appropriate tax deduction. And time management skills. And setting realistic goals. And delegating. But its also taught us things about working with family members. And how much we really, really like each other. You’ve taught us about the joy of taking risks. About the need to be flexible and let opportunity run free. The ability to feel fear and do things anyway. To start before you feel ready. To understand that mistakes will happen and recovery is best fast. And you’ve given us hope. Hope that with passion, belief and creativity you might just get to where you want to be.
At times over the past year we have felt that we have let you down. We can see how much potential you have and what you might be capable of. There are ideas and activities and dreams in you that are just bursting to get out. But at times, our focus has been elsewhere. On our 9-5 jobs. Or on our other relationships. Or on our own needs. This always disappoints us. When we can’t achieve what we all set out to do when we wanted to. We’re sorry if this has disappointed you also.
And now that you have grown up a bit, it’s time to be brutally honest with you. Before you arrived we thought we’d reconsider your existence when you turned one. We thought that maybe we would have had enough of you. That maybe it wouldn’t have worked out between us. That perhaps the connection and passion would have fizzled and died. But in a year you have shown us your strength and your power. And we know that you have so much more left to give, so there’s no way we could let you go. Not yet.
Happy Birthday Hope Street Cards. Our wish for you is that you continue your mission to create connections between people when times are tough. We’re both so proud of what you have achieved thus far and we can’t wait to see what the next part of your adventure has in store for us all.
With love and hope,
Sam and Trudy xoxo