I'm Amanda. An individual on the path right along with you trying to discover what God has in store for the future. My family and loved ones are my constants in life. Over the past few years I have been digging deep into the following questions:
- Who I am?
- What are my gifts?
- How I can serve the world with my talents?
I feel that these questions have shaped my story and has helped me feel more authentic to who I am at the core.
The concept for Amanda Nygaard Designs has been on my mind for years but to be honest, I was scared of putting myself out there. In my teen years and early twenties I wanted to fit in and do what I felt like society was telling me to do. Be good, go to college, get good grades, get a job, and then life would only go up from there. Along the way I met the most fabulous guy who is now my husband and we are so excited to be expecting our third child. But the past few years my heart was heavy feeling like a change had to be made in my work life in order to make me whole again.
After I graduated from North Dakota State University with a teaching degree, I took my first job as the Family and Conumser Science teacher at Morris Area High School. I loved the content I was able to teach (life skills varying from child development, pregnancy, sewing, nutrition, and cooking), the freedom to design my own curriculum, and the challenge to create, plan, and teach hands on learning experiences for teenagers. At first, I loved it. But as time went on I knew it wasn't the right path for me.
The summer of 2016 while I was on maternity leave with our second child I overheard conversation of a local craft fair that really peaked my interest. I thought it sounded like a safe and fun environment to get back to creating again. While growing up I loved making things, but the past few years with teaching I felt like it sucked all the creative energy from me. At the time we were in the early stages of home ownership so I was already making a few pieces to display in our home to help save money by going the DIY route. I thought that I could recreate a few items to sell at the local craft fair. Fast forward a year and I was specializing in custom hand painted signs. I enjoyed the creative process from building the signs to painting the letters.
As time went on I was all of a sudden drawn to floral design and wanted to give it a try since I have always had a love for weddings (my favorite movie since I was 12 years old was 'The Wedding Planner' with Jennifer Lopez!). Wedding day floral design allows me to mesh my organization skills, wedding obsession, love for hands on design, and passion for helping people.
At this point in my story I was feeling a strong pull on my heart to pivot and change directions in my career life. I had just completed my fifth year of teaching and knew God was telling me it was time for a change. Read more about my decision to leave teaching here.
In the back of my mind I have always thought Architecture would be a suitable career for my talents. I grew up seeing my dad's role as a general contractor and thought it would be so fun to meet with clients to help design the space to meet their needs. So my first [of four] declared majors at NDSU was Architecture but for whatever reason during that first semester of freshman year, it didn't feel like the right fit at the right time in my life. Nearly ten years later I still felt like home design was the direction I needed to be taking. I explored my options and ultimately decided on Hennepin Technical College's online Architectural Technology program. I committed myself to two years of school while also working part-time, being a wife and mom to two little ones, and a small business owner. I'm so excited for the next chapter in my life as I explore the residential drafting world and how I can help people design living spaces that meets their wants and needs.