Intentions | Heather Bullard

in·ten·tion:   /inˈten(t)SH(ə)n/    a thing intended; an aim or plan.

We’ve turned the corner on another year and I have to say I’m feeling very optimistic about the possibilities that come with a bright new set of 365 days. My mind has been traipsing in and out of thoughts on how to make it more meaningful both personally and professionally. For years my husband and I have sat down on the 1st and written out our yearly goals as a couple. They’ve included things we hope to accomplish together like building a house, financial projections, vacation plans, and personal ones of more time spent together doing this or that. Our small annual “board” meeting helps guide the ship as we touch on them every month or so to get a sense of where we’re headed.

The last month or so I’ve really focused on the direction of my business. Most of you may not know this but I have been self employed since 1995. It didn’t dawn on me until a friend recently celebrated being in business for 20 years and it made me reflect on my -now going on 22. I’m terrible at celebrating my own milestones and usually let them slip by without fanfare. Maybe that needs to change going forward. Anyway, all of this babble brings me to my actual topic – reflections and intentions for the year ahead.

I still love this little space on the interwebs. Though the reality is it’s been severely neglected (only 10 posts in 2016!) my intention is to reconnect with you here and return to a way of posting I used to enjoy. And for that I’ll need to tap into my dinosaur blogging roots circa 2007. Back then, posts were much more casual and I loved the no-pressure aspect. They were simpler, less fussy with little to no production involved. Every post didn’t have the weighted measure of bringing something “of value” to the reader or sponsor. And yet, people still loved them and found connections with one another by way of common interests or aspirations.

So that’s my plan. Candid posts with perhaps less polish. Maybe shorter ones too. And I’ll toss in a few elaborate posts for good measure (and practice). I don’t know….I think I’m winging it at this point but it doesn’t sound half bad from my perspective. Nor overwhelming. Let’s just roll with it shall we? I’m feeling invigorated!

I hope you’ll stick around this year and we can get to know each other. For me, one of the best parts about this blog is chatting with you in the comments. Within them we’ve shared recipes, shopping finds, travel tips, other blogs we find inspiring, family memories and traditions, all kinds of wonderful topics that help us connect as a community. Which in the end, is what it’s all about.

Here’s to 2017….may it be bright and beautiful for us all.
xo, H

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  • Our French Oasis

    Sounds like a great plan, I love your boardroom meeting between yourself and your husband, as both my husband and I are self employed working from home too I think we shall adopt this idea, seems like a very sensible start to the New Year. I shall schedule it for the end of the week when the children are back at school! Hope maybe if you come to France this year I might get to meet you, your trip last year looked like so much fun. Wishing you a very happy and healthy 2017 x

    January 2, 2017 at 2:45 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      We’ve both found our annual meeting to be very helpful throughout the years. We don’t always accomplish every goal but do finish quite a bit of them. It’s good to feel like a team!
      I’ll be in France from the end of May to mid June….maybe we can meet up! Happy New Year!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:13 am Reply
  • Lisa at celebrate creativity

    Happy New Year, Heather! Love your board meeting idea with hubby. How sweet and productive.

    I had to chuckle a bit at the thought of digging into dinosaur roots. I have similar dinosaur blog bones from about the same time period. Blogging has certainly changed through the “ages”, hasn’t it?

    I admire the idea of taking it down a notch and sharing posts that are perhaps more candid and not necessarily as polished or styled as we’ve now grown accustomed to (or even feel heavy pressure to deliver).

    Of course, there’s beauty in that “old fashioned” simpler approach that drew us all to blogging in the first place. Good luck finding just the right balance. I know you’ll pull it off beautifully.

    I look forward to reading more posts from this lovely space. Whether it’s 10 posts a year or more, you’re always in inspiration.

    All the best for a wonderful 2017.

    January 2, 2017 at 4:37 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Those of us who have been around can remember a time when it didn’t feel so pressured. That’s the part I miss. I don’t always have time to set up and style a big production and finally decided….why do I have to?
      I’ve always loved blogs that were posted in real time; meaning what they did over the weekend or something they baked for a neighbor. Simple ones. So that’s the direction I want to head.
      But really, my only goal is to post more than 10 times in 2017. Setting the bar low so it can easily be accomplished! 😉
      Wishing you a very happy and healthy New Year!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:26 am Reply
      • Laura

        Love the post and these replies and so agree. Although I haven’t blogged as long, just seeing the changes and trying to create my own and feel ‘relevant’. Always a fan of yours and look forward to more.

        January 6, 2017 at 9:01 am Reply
  • katey

    congratulations on 22 years! i love your idea and look forward to being here more often. fyi i made your granola for the umpteen time for christmas gifts to friends & co workers. it’s the best! happy new year!

    January 2, 2017 at 4:54 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Yay! What a great gift…homemade and so, so good!
      Thanks for continuing to drop by and connect! Wishing you all the best in the coming year!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:16 am Reply
  • Claudia

    Happy New Year! I like the sound of your plan (was worried for a sec you were going to say goodbye to blogging). My issue with blogging is that I don’t get a lot of comments, though I do from some very loyal and faithful readers, who do take time to comment. When I begin to feel like I’m posting to thin air and no one cares, it gets to me and I think about quitting blogging. But then I may get a lovely reader tell me how much she enjoys my blog, the recipes I share, my decorating style … and it all feels worthwhile again. My goal for 2017 is to also increase the amount of posts, and to put less pressure on myself to make them perfect. I’ve been pleased for the most part with my photography, and I love to shoot food. I wish I could take part in your seminar in France (my mom’s heritage is French; I’ve only been once) … maybe another year!
    I enjoy your blog very much, especially the photos of your gorgeous home. Would love to see more posts of it and of the area where you live. Here’s to a great year ahead!

    January 2, 2017 at 5:04 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      I understand how it can feel depleting when you spend time on a post and there aren’t any or only a few comments. When I started blogging there were practically none. Then blogs caught on and there would be hundreds. Then social media took off and blogs took a back seat and commenting went down drastically. I’ve rode the wave with all of them. I think the key is to connect with your readers. No matter how few or how many there are. Blogging is actually a conversation. Your post opens up the dialogue and it’s between you and the readers to continue the journey.
      I’m glad you have the same goal as I do…to post a bit more in 2017. Maybe it will help us both by taking the pressure of being perfect off and we can enjoy it! I’ll try to add more of our home and area…thanks for the suggestion!
      Wishing you all the best in the New Year!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:36 am Reply
      • Heather Bullard

        Hi again Claudia! I just tried to leave a comment on your Boeuf Bourguignon recipe but it didn’t go through. You may need to check your comment settings with your blog? It could be hindering others from leaving one as well. Just wanted to let you know. 🙂

        January 2, 2017 at 7:53 am Reply
        • Claudia

          Oh no, thank you for making me aware. This is odd. I’ve been getting comments on the previous posts. I just now turned off word recognition, which I had enabled when I began getting more spam comments. Perhaps you could try again and see if it works? Thanks!

          January 2, 2017 at 7:57 am Reply
          • Heather Bullard

            Tried again but no go? Sorry! Looks like it’s an issue with your blogger platform? Good luck…hope you’re able to fix it soon!

            January 2, 2017 at 8:08 am
          • Claudia

            Thanks for your comment, Heather, on my boeuf bourguignon post. I did come through! Now I’m wondering why it appeared to you that the comment did not go through. I sent a test comment and saw the statement “Your comment will be visible after approval.” Anyway, it worked, and thank you SO MUCH for your comment. I appreciate it.

            January 2, 2017 at 8:12 am
        • Heather Bullard

          Yay! So glad it’s working for you!

          January 2, 2017 at 8:59 am Reply
  • Sarah of "Thyme" blog

    What a coincidence that I read this at this point. My husband and I were sitting down this morning having the same discussion. I am on the fence about whether or not to keeping so much energy and time into my food & travel blog. After 5 years, I am struggling to find the umph to continue creating. I helped to see that other bloggers that I admire are grappling with somewhat similar issues. Good luck to you this 2017…your work is beautiful and I always love visiting this space.

    January 2, 2017 at 6:14 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      The blogging mojo comes and goes. Over the years I’ve allowed myself to take breaks…sometimes very long ones. The fact that I don’t rely on the blog for income makes this luxury possible. But I always come back to it because I truly enjoy sharing and connecting with readers and I find that blogging allows that in a way that isn’t possible with social media.
      I hope you find your balance, whether it be continuing with your blog, taking a break, scaling it back, or calling it quits. The only right answer is the one that’s best for you! 🙂
      Wishing you a happy and healthy 2017!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:44 am Reply
  • Rhonda

    Heather, your posts are always amazing. Your photography captures such beauty in your life. I love that you still blog when others are simply fading away. Rhonda

    January 2, 2017 at 6:49 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thank you, Rhonda. I really appreciate your encouragement and kind words.
      Happy New Year to you and yours!

      January 2, 2017 at 7:47 am Reply
  • Garden, Home and Party

    Happy New Year! I always enjoy your posts and look forward to whatever your publish, casual or not. 🙂 I personally have unofficially retired my blog, but haven’t been able to remove it. It feels right for me, and gives me more free time to pursue other interests.

    January 2, 2017 at 8:00 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Hi Karen!
      I think I unofficially retired mine last year. 😉 But it feels right to pick things back up again in 2017.
      I’m glad you’re finding the time to pursue other things that interest you. Time is our most valuable commodity!
      Wishing you all the best in the coming New Year!

      January 2, 2017 at 8:11 am Reply
  • Gina

    This sounds like a great plan!! I will read and enjoy any post of yours!! I agree that everything doesn’t have to be polished, edited, perfect. Just a thought or a snippet of your life and home(and lovely projects here and there would be fab!! Keeping up to date in your instagram may be the way to go too. 😀

    January 2, 2017 at 11:27 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thanks for the encouragement, Gina! I’m going to try and do just that! Feels good to be dipping my toes back in the blogging waters.
      Wishing you the very best in 2017! Happy New Year!

      January 2, 2017 at 11:37 am Reply
  • Barb

    Intention is a great word for 2017! Keep those blogging fires stoked!! Congratulations on your 22 years of self-led employment! That is something to celebrate! 🙂 Happy New Year to you, Heather! Cheers!!!

    January 2, 2017 at 3:02 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thanks, Barb! Maybe I’ll celebrate my 25th!
      Happy, happy New Year! Cheers to 2017!

      January 2, 2017 at 3:55 pm Reply
  • Carmella

    This is good new, indeed, Heather! Looking forward to more blog posts from you this year! Yay!

    January 2, 2017 at 3:46 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thank you, Carmella. Your blog has been part of my inspiration for moving forward in this direction. 🙂
      Wishing you and your men all the best in 2017!

      January 2, 2017 at 3:57 pm Reply
  • Shirley @Housepitality Designs

    I so enjoyed reading this post and your lovely attitude for moving forward in 2017. You have indeed been an inspiration to so many of us. Happy New Year!!!

    January 2, 2017 at 6:56 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thank you, Shirley. I’ve always enjoyed sharing and connecting here. Looking forward to engaging more in 2017. Happy New Year to you as well!

      January 3, 2017 at 7:07 am Reply
  • Deb

    Thank you for sharing. Interestingly the word “Intention “is my word I chose for January. I really enjoy reading your blog!

    January 2, 2017 at 7:27 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      It’s such a great word for a yearly pursuit/focus. Wishing you all the best as you live your intention in 2017! Happy New Year!

      January 3, 2017 at 7:09 am Reply
  • Erin

    Heather I’m so happy to read this post. I am sure you will find that everyone will be just fine with the new less formal format.

    January 2, 2017 at 9:07 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thanks, Erin. I was hoping that others like me, were ready for a more relaxed style of blogging. Looking forward to touching base with you here in the coming year.

      January 3, 2017 at 7:11 am Reply
  • julie - eab designs

    Happy New Year Heather! Years ago, your blog was the first one I fell in love with introducing me to the world of blogging. It has since remained a favorite for the very reasons you mention in today’s post. It remains a true gem in the overly promoted blogs of today. Thank you for the years of inspiration. Looking forward to 2017! – Julie

    January 3, 2017 at 5:08 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Happy New Year to you Julie! Thank you for the kind words. It’s indeed been a long journey but I’ve always held a special place for this little corner of the www. I feel like I can talk to friends with the many of same interests and we can share ideas and encouragement. I suppose that’s why I’ve never let it go. Looking forward to being here more in the coming year!

      January 3, 2017 at 7:16 am Reply
  • stadtgarten

    I can 100% sign what you say about blogging and I am looking forward many interesting blogposts and exchange.
    In one of your comments I read theat you will be in France at the end of May to mid June. If you have a chance, come to Provence in mid-June. On the Plateau de Valensole the lavender fields will be already in bloom, but it will not be so crowded as in July when all the tourists come.
    Happy New Year and greetings from Provence (which in winter is as beautiful as in summer – but much more relaxing….), Monika

    January 3, 2017 at 9:31 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      I’ve been to Provence but missed seeing the lavender fields. Would love to go when they’re in bloom! And I spent several weeks in the Dordogne during the Christmas season and it was so peaceful and very memorable. You live in a gorgeous country! Bonne Année!

      January 3, 2017 at 3:01 pm Reply
  • Brenda Hodges

    Sounds perfect to me! Looking forward to ‘getting to know you’

    January 3, 2017 at 4:34 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Cheers to our year ahead! Happy 2017!

      January 5, 2017 at 9:22 am Reply
  • Jeannine

    I adore this! Your blog is gorgeous, but I really enjoy getting to know people through the every day posts too. This is something I struggle with. My blog is really just a baby and will never be a money maker, but I feel like I let myself down when I plan to share life but let “being perfect” get in the way. 10 posts or 2, I’ll take what I can get of your impeccable style!

    January 5, 2017 at 2:29 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      I think we all struggle with the pursuit of perfection. And yet, it’s an unattainable goal. Hopefully this will be the year of giving ourselves a break and letting real life come through a bit more. We’re in this together!

      January 5, 2017 at 9:25 am Reply
  • Dianne Ballentine

    I like your thinking! I really enjoy every post and Instagram!
    Thank you for all your hard work! You are very talented. Dianne Ballentine

    January 7, 2017 at 12:12 pm Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Thanks so much, Dianne! 🙂

      January 10, 2017 at 9:00 am Reply
  • Amanda Marshall

    I love that! I can’t wait to read all of your upcoming posts. I have felt inspired by every post I’ve ever read from you in some form or another 🙂 My husband and I also regularly dream outloud together and talk through our goals and aspirations as a couple and as parents, but I like that you sit down and have a “meeting” on Jan 1! That’s awesome. I hope you had a beautiful Christmas season! May God bless you in every way this upcoming year! Amanda 🙂

    January 9, 2017 at 3:42 am Reply
    • Heather Bullard

      Hi Amanda!
      I’ve always loved our planning & dreaming “meetings”. It helps build a vision for our little team of two. Highly recommend!
      Wishing you a spectacular 2017 as you welcome your new baby! xo, H

      January 10, 2017 at 9:06 am Reply
  • gabrielle mader

    I for one miss all your posts, you are so awesome with design and when I met you in person years ago at the Rose Bowls an awesome human being. I for one will look forward to every post no matter and grand or small. Cheers to 2017!

    January 13, 2017 at 12:37 pm Reply
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