Monday, August 8, 2016

A letter to you

Dear Readers,

I know, this is a little hokey. But I just got home from another Haven Conference and there was a lot of reminiscing going on about the old days. I'm feeling all hokey and nostalgic today. I reconnected with a lot of "old" bloggers as well as new and it was so fun to talk about the path we have traveled with this blog thing.

When I started a blog for friends and family more than eight years ago I could never ever have imagined that this would be blessing my life like it does. Never. Back then I had an 18-month-old and had quit my professional marketing career. I was decorating other people's homes part time and then when some of you started finding me…I was hooked.

I fell into this but have never lost sight of how incredible it is. Now look at blogging -- it has EXPLODED. It's mind boggling, right? You can find a blog for just about anything now. Us old blogging fogies do miss the days of crazy intense traffic and hundreds of comments on a post with two pictures on it. We laugh about how every one of us used a flash and ALL of our photos were taken at night. OH, and all of our houses were dark brown, gold and red. (Look back, it's pretty funny.)

Things have changed a lot, as they should. I do feel like I need to be a little more professional now, even in the way I write. It's not as casual as it used to be, but still I refuse to get too serious with this. Blogging turned into a career so I've tried to get some control of my excessive use of smiley faces and explanation points. ;) !! But I hope above anything and everything that you feel at home here, enjoy yourself and get inspired. I want you to leave this blog in a better mood than you came to it -- just like if you were walking into my home.

More than anything, anything, I've done in the years of blogging, I cherish the connections I've made with you and other bloggers most. It has rocked my world that such a big Internet can feel so intimate and close.

I don't feel like I thank you enough so that's what I'm doing today. I am thankful for each one of you. Thankful to those that have followed along through my spray-paint-everything-black phases or when I was an idiot and had a gaping hole in my house or when we paid off $125K in debt and you were all so amazing. You have added so much joy to my life and I really can't thank you enough.

I don't change up what I blog about much, but I have decided to bring back some posts on blogging. I have gotten away from that and I'm not sure why -- I guess I want to appeal to the masses. But I know SO many of you are interested in blogging so I want to share more of what I've learned along the way. But otherwise I am content with what I share here. Every post isn't going to blow your mind but the in between stuff is what I believe builds the most connections.

So there you go…a thank you from me. Didn't mean to go all syrupy on you this Monday but this was on my my mind and in my heart. I'm thankful and I appreciate that you come back.

Love always,
Sarah


P.S. I'll be back this week with some DIY for you. ;) (!!)

40 comments:

  1. It's surely been fun to watch you take off and while I lurve 😊 seeing what you've been up to my favorite thing to watch is you be you! It couldn't have been easy to see some of the others take off or sell out but you stayed the course and gave us you, unique you and sweet lady that is your best share! 😘

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  2. Sarah,

    thank you for taking the time each week to inspire ME! I've read your blog for 5+ years now. You've inspired me to try out the color blue (and love it) with decorating. You've inspired me to take Dave Ramsey more seriously. You've inspired me in more ways than you know. THANK YOU, for sharing your time, talents and passion with us!

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  3. Awww not syrupy - just right. :) Thank YOU!

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  4. Sarah, I want to that YOU for inspiring ME to jump into the blogging life. Your blog was one of the first ones I discovered, and I was so inspired, not only by your projects, but by the idea that I COULD DO THIS! And here I am, six years later, still trucking, and lucky enough to have met you in person, visit you, and call you friend. If you told me years ago that I would be where I am now, I would never have believed you. Blogging has changed my life - literally! Thank YOU! :-)

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  5. I've been reading your blog for a long while and have always loved and appreciated how REAL(istic) and relatable you have been. Thanks for many years of inspiration!

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  6. Your blog is the first thing I check every morning. Your home is beautiful. You have such a talent and you have a way of making your reader (me!) feel like your friend. Thanks for inspiring so many of us. I'm always referring to your house as the one I want to live in! Keep blogging and I'll keep reading!

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  7. I wish I could have attended this past weekend, as it is in my backyard! But, life seems to always have other plans. I appreciate your blog so much. You always do "you" and it is much appreciated in this day and age of "showing off" "excess" and "oneupmanship". I love that you, and bloggers like Rhoda take the time to connect with those of us with "small" blogs who are just in it for fun, like most of you were in the beginning, but who appreciate the content you bring. Keep doing what you are doing!!

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  8. It's been great following along with you these past few years. As your house has progressed over the years, so has mine, and I'm sure a lot of your followers. I hate that I missed Haven this weekend, but I'm looking forward to going next year. Hopefully my blog will be up and running by then. HA
    Vee

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  9. You were my introduction to blogs over 6 years ago and my sister and I have been obsessed with you ever since, lol. I love every post you do and most of all, I love that you're real, you pay for it, there aren't 25 sponsored posts a week, and that we can all do what you're doing! Thank you!

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  10. I've been reading your blog for about 5 years and you are a big reason why I started blogging myself. You inspired me to try to make and do things myself, instead of just buying it at a store. I love reading your blog, your personality just cracks me up. Don't change anything, we love you just the way you are!

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  11. Hi Sarah, I have been following you since 2007 and I feel like I KNOW you. I look forward to each of your blog posts, and you've helped me through many many moves to make each house I've lived in a home. You are awesome!!xoxo

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  12. I found and got hooked into your blog probably 3 or 4 years ago. Probably right at the climax of the blogging community boom (before Instagram took over). I always enjoy your posts and you show things that any one could tackle with a little time and money. That's why I keep coming back. I'll never forget the year you posted that home-made advent calendar out of a piece of wood. I recreated that almost the same way you did and I use it every year. Those are my most favorite kinds of posts. I am glad you are going to share some of your knowledge and insight into blogging for those of us who still have a day job but dream of doing this for a living.

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  13. I started reading your blog only about a year ago and got hooked. I check in each morning to see what's new and love getting ideas from your blog. I read a few and yours has always been my favorite. Your ideas are fresh and your tutorials are always easy to follow. All projects I have wanted to start in my home you've tackled and you are always up to date with new trends while keeping a classic look. My big next to do is a plank wall and you've given me the confidence that it is DIY friendly. Thanks again!

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  14. I've seen so many blogs in the past couple of years but your home is still one of my favorites!!!! And by the way, I don't think I'll ever stop using a billion exclamation points....or smiley faces! :)

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  15. Absolutely love your blog and have been following for a very long time. Your kitchen, and many other rooms, inspire me! Appreciate that your projects don't reach completion overnight and that you plan and contemplate before jumping in. Thanks!

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  16. Hi Sarah - your blog has always been one of my favorites. You have inspired me over the years with your beautiful projects and your friendly writing style...It was also a pleasure meeting you at Haven! I am looking forward to reading all about your future projects. Cheers to the next chapter!
    Shelley

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  17. Sarah, you are so genuine in your posts. Every day when I check you site, I feel like I'm checking in on a friend. Plus I love your grit and determination. You tackle so much yourself and it's inspiring! We are purchasing a new townhome and I was showing my husband your kitchen island and he said "she's a good carpenter!". I agree!
    On top of all that, you have great style. I am probably going to copy the majority of your kitchen when we reno in the new townhome we're buying.
    So like others have said - THANK YOU! You are a very appreciated addition to my daily life.

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  18. Hey Sarah. I'm not much of a commenter on blogs. I don't write one either but I'd like to some day if I could find the courage to give it a try. I find you so genuine and your projects are in my wheelhouse along with your style. I look forward to each and every post. Eagerly awaiting the reveal of the craft room.

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  19. Sarah, your blog is my all time favorite. I've enjoyed every single post for the last 5 years. I always look forward to catching up with you on Mondays, Wednesday's and Fridays. I almost feel like you're a good friend since I am basically in your home each week. Thank you

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  20. I've been a reader forever but never commented. You are one of my favorite bloggers. I enjoy your easy conversational style that makes me feel like I'm visiting a friend with each post. And I love your style, too! Thanks for being you! :)

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  21. I almost never comment on blogs. However, I wanted to let you know that I appreciate how you show us the real you all the time. I like that you let us know that your house isn't always picture perfect. I also love that you put so much thought into your projects. I take FOREVER to make a decorating decision, but then I have always LOVED what we have chosen.

    I appreciate that your blog is so easy to read and that there aren't advertising pop-ups every time you move your cursor. I refuse to read blogs that have advertising pop-ups (especially on each picture); it is very annoying to me.

    Please keep up the great work and continue being yourself! That is what we all love about this blog.

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    Replies
    1. I agree--no horrible pop ups that leave you reading in between all the ads!!

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  22. I am a DYI voyer and love what you have done to beef up a suburban home giving it class and making it homey. I enjoy your organizing tips and gadget recommendations. I bought the scissors that cut open plastic sealed products and the daylight light bulbs. You are like a newsy interesting friend. Thank you for your blog.

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  23. That's what Haven does, makes us all super syrupy ;) Thank YOU for being an inspiration and blogging role model for so many of us, I know yours was one of the first I followed and made me fall in love with the blogging world too. <3

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  24. I check your blog daily ~ you just keep being you!!

    xo

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  25. I have followed you off and on for several years--the off being when I have just too much to read and eliminate it all. I come back because you are REAL. You keep your décor and tips REAL!! I think--for as beautiful and amazing as some blogs are--they aren't real. You don't try to pose all pretty in your photos arranging the flowers. You don't catch readers by sharing your life's worst drama. You don't use all the free furniture and cruises to build your posts. I LOVE THAT! You are so good that I even read your update on the washers!;) THAT good! I LOVE the tips you give for home improvement large and small. Thank you for being down to earth and (yes, I'll say it again) REAL!

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  26. I love the color and can't wait to see the finished product! I would love to repaint the interior of our laundry room door a fun color. I'd visit #2994 in Georgetown, SC.

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  27. You are amazing, talented and always inspire me.
    Thank you for this wonderful "friendship."

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  28. I've been a longtime follower but rarely if ever comment but want that to change for the blogs I feel the most connected to. I noticed you don't use "lurve" and "squeezies" like you used to :) but I love that your voice is still so personal and genuine! Thanks thanks for sharing all that you do - I love your blog!!!

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  29. Sarah, you've blessed my life immeasurably through your blog. When I built my home with HFH 10 years ago, I was done aching ... and painting for a few years. Then a friend shared a link to a wreath of some kind abot 6 years ago that led me to you. I decided to take a leap of faith and start making my house reflect me because you made me believe I could. Now I own a sliding compound miter saw and other tools, know how to use them, am totally familiar with where things are at Home Depot and, at 61, still going strong with diy projects. The only thing I've found I should not do is lift an 80 lb bag of cement! �� Well ... it looked small lol

    You're welcome, but thank you, too!

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  30. The gaping hole post is when you hooked me! I've been loyal ever since;). I love your style and your real life blogging. You are amazing!

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  31. So, so glad that you were my mentor at Haven!! Loved hanging out with you and learning from all the girls.

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  32. Great post. I always buy my Sherwin Williams paint at store
    #1623
    El Paso, TX on North Mesa

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  33. Store #1129 Milford,OH. Oh the things I would paint!!! Love reading your blog!

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  34. Store #1129 Milford,OH. Oh the things I would paint!!! Love reading your blog!

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  35. Your blog has been and always will be one of the BEST! Thank you for continuing to share your ideas and inspire us readers while keeping it "real".:)

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  36. Thank you for all of your hard work, amazing talent and inspiration. I'm not a blogger, just a typical homeowner that doesn't have a creative gene in her body so turns to people like you and you're one of the best. I look forward to each and every post you're willing to share with us.

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  37. What they all said! My favorite blog for home inspiration ideas on paint colors, decorating and even laundry room appliance choices. You are the best!

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  38. Yours was the very first blog I ever followed and I have been a regular for many years. You even featured a burlap project of mine on the blog many years ago. You have been an inspiration and I am so happy for your career success. I always look forward to seeing what you do around the house. Blessings to you! crystalbrew@twc.com

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I LOVE your comments, thank you! (I read every single one.)

If you have a specific question I will do my best to answer you back here! Be sure to check out the FAQs tab at the top of the site and my Projects page for paint colors and DIY projects as well.

THANKS so much for reading!