Big Life and Business Changes in 2018

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for months, but I wanted to wait until everything is settled before I give you an update.

My husband, Jake, and I spent a lot of time in 2017 talking about work-life balance, starting a family, and finding purpose in our daily work. These conversations eventually led to possibly moving to Cambodia, where I lived between the ages of 10 and 18 and where my parents still live.

Up until September, it was just an option. You see, it’s a little more complicated for a green card holder to move outside the US than just buying a plane ticket and packing up her life.

In October, we sent in my US Citizenship application.

In November, we started going through every corner of our apartment, donating things, selling things, and packing things up.

In December, we received an appointment notice for an interview on January 4th. We got excited that things are falling into places so we purchased our one-way tickets.

The week before Christmas, we moved into my in-laws’ house to transition.

On January 3rd, I got a phone call from the USCIS office saying they will be closed on the 4th due to a snow storm but I had the option to come down on the 3rd for my interview and oath.

I passed my interview and test but we encountered some technical difficulties and I had to come back on a different day for the oath of allegiance.

On January 8th, I took the oath and became an American citizen.

But I didn’t get to change my name from Hailun Xia to Helen Xia McVety as requested because a judge wasn’t present at the rescheduled appointment.

Here’s the problem, the name I used to purchase my ticket was Helen Xia McVety.

We didn’t want to risk not getting my name changed and getting a new passport in time for our February 11 flight, so we spent the last 2 weeks working with Expedia to get my name on the plane tickets changed to my current legal name.

It’s been a stressful month and it’s been a month since I last posted on social media. I feel so bad that I’ve just disappeared online but this social media hiatus has been so good for my soul. I simply haven’t had the mental capacity to create new content…

So why am I writing this post now? Well, as of this Monday, everything is squared away for our big move in February!!

How is Letter + Adore changing in 2018 with our move?

1) What Letter + Adore will be offering from 2018 forward

Since I will be spending the majority of each year in Cambodia, shipping hand painted signs from the other side of the world won’t really work. However, I have found ways to offer my custom hand lettered designs as printed signs, acrylic signs, wood signs, and fabric signs. The options are still endless!

I have recruited an amazing friend here in South Portland, Maine, to handle shipping. You can be rest assured that everything will still be made in the USA to ensure quality and reasonable turnaround time.

A full list of services and pricing coming soon!

2) I am taking on a limited number of weddings this year.

Although my main focus for 2018 is to spend more quiet time with God, explore Southeast Asia with Jake, and getting my body ready to carry a baby, I still want to serve my brides and serve them well. Thus, I will be taking on a limited number of weddings this year. If you’re interested in custom invitations, signage suites, day-of paper woods, be sure to fill out this inquiry form to secure your spot as early as possible.

Image by Silverbell Photography

3) Letter + Adore is going digital!

I’ve been mulling over this idea for years now and this international move is pushing me over the edge to finally open a digital shop. Of course, this is a huge undertaking and probably won’t be ready to launch until the end of 2018, but I want to give you a rough idea of what will be offered. In the Letter + Adore digital shop, you’ll be able to purchase original calligraphy cut files, printables, and calligraphy workbooks. More info to come on this!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you. It’s my heart’s desire that by making these changes, it will allow me to serve you in a more focused and creative manner.

I’m so excited about all the changes coming to Letter & Adore as well as my personal life in 2018! I’ll be spending the next month working on updating the website to reflect all the changes. In the mean time, you can follow along our journey on Instagram and/or Facebook.

Enough about me, tell me something exciting happening in your life in 2018! I’d love to hear and share your excitement 😃


  1. Andrea McVety

    We are so excited for you as you prepare for this wonderful new chapter in your lives. We will look forward to hearing all about the wonderful new adventures, both personally and professionally. Our exciting news is awaiting the arrival of Sammie and Dan’s baby in July. Our hearts are filled with so much love and gratitude for our 3rd grandchild! God is so GOOD! Love you both.

    January 24, 2018 Reply
    1. Helen

      Thank you Aunt Andrea! We can’t wait to explore Southeast Asia and document our new adventures. We are so excited to Dan and Sammie! The McVety family is growing so fast!! Love to you all <3

      January 26, 2018 Reply
  2. How exciting Helen! I’m glad you persevered and saw God deliver all the details and administrative hoops required for you to make this move. I’m glad you’ll be taking more time unplugged but more refocused on how you’ll serve your customers. I’m also thinking about how to serve the online world vs. my live face to face workshops, due to possibilities of future moving. I pray God will lead you forward in ways that allow you experience him more fully.

    January 25, 2018 Reply
    1. Helen

      Thank you Justine, I so value your words of encouragement. Excited to follow along your journey as you continue to grow It Just Flows. You have such a big heart to serve. I pray that God will show you how to best serve your online audience as well as your local workshop students as you continue to seek him.

      January 26, 2018 Reply
  3. Jordan

    Helen, I am so excited for you and Jake.This is going to be such a special time in your lives. I am praying for safe travels and for all that is to come in 2018. My Jake and I are also hoping to start a family in 2018 and I’m hoping to also grow my photography business this year.

    January 25, 2018 Reply
    1. Helen

      Thank you so much Jordan! God has been so faithful in this whole journey. I’m thankful we connected before the holidays and will continue to follow along your creative journey. You’re super talented and I have no doubt your photography business will grow in big ways! Excited for you and Jake as you plan to start a family, we can’t wait to see the next wave of Eastpoint babies!!

      January 26, 2018 Reply

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