Let’s take a little trip in the “Way Back Machine” to January 2008, when I was working as a writer for a textbook publishing company…
I was writing everything from quizzes to case studies for marketing and business textbooks. It was great because I was able to work from home, which was important to me as a mom.
But at the beginning of ’08 I was feeling restless. Itching to try something new. I wanted to write about a topic that would be a little more “fun” for a change.
So, on a cold January morning seven years ago, I wrote in my journal, “I’m hooked on houses, so maybe I could blog about that.”
I started Hooked on Houses that day but had no idea what I was doing. And no idea what I was getting myself into.
This week in my newsletter I’m talking about how that New Year’s Resolution to start a blog changed my life, and some of the challenges that came with it along the way.
But I just had to take a moment here to thank all of my readers — past and present, loyal subscribers and casual, drop-by readers — for making the past 7 years a great-big, crazy-fun adventure. I never would’ve kept that New Year’s Resolution for so long without you!
Alie B says
Congratulations, on making a wonderful career move, Julia. Your creativity, kindness, and diplomacy shine through each time you write a blog entry and respond to your readers. Please don’t get “itchy” again. I suppose I could live without my daily dose of Hooked on Houses, but I wouldn’t like it much! 🙂
You’re so sweet, Alie. Readers like you keep me going, that’s for sure. Thanks! 🙂
Marianne in Mo. says
Happy Anniversary! I sometimes wonder why I can’t lock on one interest. I have many things that excite me, but if I had to focus on just one, I couldn’t do it. Believe me, I’ve tried! Congrats to you!
I can totally relate to that, Marianne. That’s always been my problem, too. I love learning about (and writing about) all sorts of subjects. The hardest part was probably choosing one to focus on and blog about. I do have another blog where I can write about other things but I never seem to find much time for it! Maybe I’ll work on it more this year. 🙂
Congratulations! I started my blog near the end of February 2008, so I’ll reach 8 years very soon. After spending 3 weeks in Bratislava helping with newborn granddaughter #2, my BA flight from Vienna to Chicago via Heathrow was canceled. When Austrian Airlines rebooked me to London, my bags were tagged for London rather than ORD; and once at Heathrow there was no time to retrieve my bags. I gently coerced AA into extending my visit by 3 days and then enjoyed an unscheduled 3 days in London all on my own. After scrawling notes and thoughts on every available scrap of paper, I realized I needed a place to gather my impressions and thoughts, and to document my adventures. Thus began my first blog post. I write for myself, and for my family.
Loved hearing your story, Marielle! Happy 7th blogging anniversary to you this year, too! 🙂
I’m so happy you went with your passion and changed your life! And, you gave many interesting and entertaining posts to us readers over the years. Congratulations and I’m very proud of you!
Thanks for all your encouragement and support over the years, Mom! You’re the best. xox
I’m just going to say, Congratulations! Keep up the great work! I love what you’re doing! 🙂
Thanks, Sherry! I appreciate that. 🙂
You have been my inspiration – thanks for a fun and very readable blog…I hope to do the same (Blog started October 2014…guess I have a long way to go…my theme is finding magic everyday…it does take me a bit all over the map, but I try to come back to the theme…I’m learning…again, thanks for the inspiration)!
Looks like you’re off to a great start with yours, Jeanne! Best of luck with it! 🙂
I look forward to your blogs every morning, Julia. Congratulations on your anniversary!
Imre Zat says
Thanks for that New Year’s Resolution, because this blog makes my mornings more enjoyable 🙂 Congratulations and I love what you’re doing. Imre
Thanks, Imre! 🙂
Happy ‘Blogging’ Anniversary, Julia. I look forward to your blog every day. Most of all, I really enjoy the diversity of your posts. Thank you for providing me a little “dream time” in my daily routine.
*champagne cork pop* CHEERS!
Woohoo! *Pours a glass* Thanks, Jennah! 🙂
Your office space is beautiful. It could be a feature, I’m sure, on your own blog.
I wrote about my home office a couple years ago and showed all the different “looks” it’s gone through since we’ve lived here if you want to see:
I’m still loving these teal-blue walls, so they might actually stay like this for a while. Thanks, Jennah! 🙂
Ruth McArthur says
I celebrate this anniversary with you, Julia. And I celebrate you! I read your blog more than any other. It is terrific! I appreciate you so much for sharing your passion with me (and your other readers) as houses are also a passion of mine. What a lovely contribution this blog has been to my life! Thank you! Wishing you a wonderful new year with this blog and with all your life’s passions!
Well, if that’s not the nicest comment ever — thanks, Ruth! 🙂
Julia, Congratulations for having the motivation and tenacity to begin your wonderful blog! I can’t believe you were a textbook writer in your previous life, so was I!! I have a law degree and was what they called a “Legal Editor”. I worked for a large textbook publisher, and was responsible for their Tax Course textbook aimed at undergraduate business majors. When the new tax law came down, we had to study the new laws and regulations and then rewrite the word problems and edit the text to reflect the new law. I actuality enjoyed it, but I too am secretly Hooked on Houses. Funny how both sides of our brains need to be nourished!
No kidding?? That’s so funny, Sherri! I don’t meet a lot of people who’ve done that kind of work, so I’m always having to try to explain what it was I did exactly. I definitely learned a lot writing for textbooks because, like you said, you have to become an instant expert on all kinds of topics when you research and write about them. It was a great job for me because I love doing the researching and learning new things. I wouldn’t mind taking on those kinds of projects again if I had the time! 🙂
I’m one of your fans. I’ve already told you that your blog is fantastic and unique. You must feel very proud of it.
I enjoy all your posts, those with the “Before/After”, those about series and films…I find all of them so interesting.
Oh! Speaking about films, I was watching “The Bridges of Madison County” again some days ago and I thought about you admiring that old simple kitchen, I found it so cossy…May be a post in the future? or I haven’t found it?
A big hug and congratulations again!!
From Argentina, with love,
Hi Silvina! I haven’t seen “Bridges of Madison County” in years. I do remember that lovely, old-fashioned kitchen she had now that you mention it, though. I haven’t written about it but maybe I should. Thanks for the suggestion! Always nice to hear from you. 🙂
Kelly - Talk of the House says
Holey Moley…7 years! That’s like a VERY long time in blogland. Love your site, and it is nice to know that those of us who have house addictions are in such good company. Keep up the great work!
It IS. I’m, like, ancient in blog years. Ha. And to put it in further perspective, my son was a 7th grader and my daughter was a kindergartner when I started. Now he’s in college and she’s the 7th grader! Wow. Time flies when you’re having fun… 🙂
Yay! Congrats. Here’s to many more years of HoH awesomeness.
We should be thanking you Julia! I’ve been coming to your blog for I don’t know how many years and I visit just about every day. I don’t comment as much as I used to, but I still look to see what you have to show. I love the diversity and your comments (and your blog has a good vibe.) It’s great to be in like-minded company when your passionate about houses. 🙂
Here’s to many more years!
Thanks, Dean! I truly appreciate long-time readers and commenters like you who have stuck with me over these many years. 🙂
Congratulations Julia!!!..Thank you for your amazing blog:)I think it would have been at least 6 years ago that I can across your blog being mentioned in Vogue(maybe) & couldn’t wait to take a look, quickly took your quiz &… Yes! I too am Hooked on Houses, something I had suspected:) I look forward to your posts & read all of them..You have become my go-to site for houses I’ve seen on TV & in films & when something catches my eye & cant help but wonder if “Julia has seen this House”..Have you seen the house in the 4th Bourne movie (The Bourne Identity)??.Its stunning…You where the first person I thought of..If you have blogged about this house I must have totally missed it..I agree with Alie B..I hope you don’t get itchy feet again for a long time. Thank You once again for providing the perfect escape & a little dream time every day..Big Hugs from Amanda ( & the rest of the House lovers in Australia) xxxx
Hi Amanda! I don’t think I’ve seen that movie, or if I have, I don’t remember the house. That sounds like one my husband would have watched, so I’ll have to ask him about it! Ha.
I have so many great readers in Australia who have been reading my blog pretty much since the beginning. Thanks for being one of them! 🙂
I echo all of the comments…love your blog but love too your kind and lovely vibe. You are a class act, the best.
Wishing you continued success!
Ruth McArthur says
Hi Julia! I forgot to add my P.S. to my comment above: I love the picture of your home office! What a gorgeous and inspiring space you have created for yourself! I think your whole house is lovely and it is especially great fun to see where you are creating your blog! Thanks!
Thanks, Ruth! 🙂
Congratulations on your blog anniversary.
I read it every day and can’t wait to see what house is featured.
Also love seeing pictures of Maisie.
Oh my, seven years? I remember reading your blog right after you started! I’ve enjoyed so many posts. Thanks for staying with it.
Time flies, doesn’t it? 🙂 Thanks, Melinda!
Larry @ Ocean State Home says
Congratulations! I really enjoy reading your blog and having a private showing into the many styles of homes that you write about. It’s a great way to get ideas.
Happy Anniversary! I’m so glad you started your blog. It’s one of my favorites.
best new year’s resolution i did not have to make and live up to:)!
thanks, julia, for seven years worth of wonderful posts, pictures, great info and entertaining comments! here’s to seven more!!
Julie B.[Holland] says
Its been a pleasure to have found your blog and enjoy like many others the fun and information you have shared with us. Thanks Julia 😉 Happy New Year!
Your story is inspirational. I love hearing and reading this things. Thank you!
Love your blog, Julia. I’ve been reading for years and I really appreciate all that you do for us “house-voyeurs” here!
And I think I discovered your blog a month or so after you started. Besides the topic (houses, yay!), I immediately noticed your writing. When you revealed you were a professional writer, I wasn’t surprised at all. Happy blogging anniversary, Julia.
Yes, I think you’ve been with me since the beginning, Bonnie! So glad you’ve stuck with me all this time. Thank you!! 🙂