Archive for July, 2016

PeKu Is 8! How Can That Be?

Monday, July 18th, 2016

birthday-cake-380178_640After the blur of June, it’s not a surprise that a lot of July has been discombobulated. The first full week was abbreviated after the 3-day holiday weekend. While last week was my first normal workweek in quite some time, it also meant that there was some catching up and reconnecting to be done. Starting my second normal workweek feels good, and I’m *almost* certain what today’s date is.

Even outside of the craziness of my life, there still is a shocking aspect to PeKu’s birthday. Eight. Years. Old. This startup that I built in 2008, after deciding to leave my first career as an elementary school teacher, has been active for eight years. It’s changed in so many ways, far too many to write about here, but still is a thriving publishing company.

What does PeKu look like at 8?

  • 14 articles published each week
  • 3 unique publications staying vibrant
  • 6 team members writing articles
  • 2 team members doing engineering & design work
  • 1 team member managing social media
  • 1 mascot cheering us on

Other fun facts:

  • All team members have been with PeKu for a minimum of 3 years.
  • This was the fifth year that PeKu gave a scholarship to a graduating senior in my hometown.
  • Over the past year we created an account for Your Parenting Info on Instagram, bringing our total to three accounts.
  • We also created Flipboard magazines for all three publications.

Although we’re a couple weeks late, I wanted to take today to celebrate PeKu and all of the growth its made. (Be sure to return to Editorially Yours next week to see what I personally have learned. It’s bound to be exciting!)

Putting It All in Perspective

Monday, July 11th, 2016

hospital-834152_640PeKu Publications turned eight on July 1st. Ten days later I haven’t written my annual post describing what we’ve accomplished and how we’ve changed over the past year. I’m also not writing that column today; I’m saving it for next week. Today there are more pressing topics to cover.

It’s been a challenging time for me, personally and professionally, over the last six weeks. When I published my last Editorially Yours, I didn’t realize all of the change that was about to come. At that point I was preparing for a high school graduation, PeKu’s birthday, and the beginning of summer. All of those events have occurred, but an even larger event took precedence.

Six weeks ago, I wrote that Editorially Yours column while I sat in a hospital room with my little brother. Diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer in February 2015, he had been through 15 months of fairly successful chemo treatments. But on Sunday, June 6th he was admitted to the hospital with some difficulty breathing and pain in his midsection. Although I knew that the prognosis wasn’t good, I didn’t realize that the next three weeks would be spent with him in a hospital, hoping for the best but knowing that time was getting shorter every day.

Thankfully because of the nature of my roles as Editor-in-Chief at PeKu and Dean of Content and Instruction at WV Academy, I was able to be with my brother almost daily. I would work while he slept or late at night when I got home. Of course, this meant that I wasn’t working a full schedule, and work items were prioritized. Articles were published; student assignments were reviewed; payments were sent; projects were assigned; courses were launched. However, nothing new or innovative was rolled out.

I kept my boards and advisors abreast of these work decisions, and they were supportive. I made sure that everything kept moving forward on the work front, but creative projects were tabled temporarily. Two weeks ago I eulogized my little brother; it was a challenging task, but one that I embraced heartily. I couldn’t have him back, but I certainly could help to reinforce memories of him.

In the past two weeks I have endeavored to return to the normal pace of work and home, while at the same time remaining a support to my sister-in-law and nephews. I can honestly say that I’m not back to 100% work form, but I am close. There are a few creative projects on the list for this week; I have moved from treading water to actually swimming.

These last six weeks have shown me that there are more hours in the day than we fully use, that it is possible to do more than you think you can. Most importantly it has validated my belief that the importance of human contact is immeasurable. Although the month of June was devoid of creativity, it was filled with connectivity. And I wouldn’t change that for the world.

Inspire. Inform. Engage.