Just before the 2008 recession and 3 days before her wedding, Tammilee Tillison walked into her VP’s office only to learn that she was being let go. “I had 13 years of executive management and a master’s in business,” she recalls. “But once the recession hit, I couldn’t find another job and the unemployment office told me to be a fish processor on a boat in Alaska – not exactly the perfect fit for a vegetarian.” The transition from working 60+ hours a week to nothing was difficult for Tammilee, and exacerbated by friends and family always asking about her job status. “Rather than answering questions all the time, I started just writing on blogger and sending the link to my family,” she says. And Tammilee Tips was born.
Tammilee began writing about her newfound hobbies of cooking and DIY home improvement. “I shared how I taught myself to bake bread because it was cheaper than buying it. How I tore apart the bathroom trying to DIY re-do it,” she recalls. “My husband told me that I need to keep typing so I’d stop tearing the house apart.” Within a few months, Tammilee garnered an audience beyond her family members. “I remember the day that 25 people were viewing the site on Google Analytics - I had a panic attack,” she says. Soon enough in 2011, TLC reached out to her to be featured in the first season of extreme couponing, “that immediately grew my audience and this became more of a hobby.”