A look back at my five year journey to becoming a full time food blogger and a thank you letter to my loyal readers.
Dear Loyal Readers,
Believe it or not, The Lemon Bowl turns FIVE today! In honor of the occasion, I wanted to take a moment to reflect over the years and tell you a bit more about how this incredible blogging adventure came to be.
While it was never my intention, I am truly living my dream and am honored to call myself a full time food blogger. Not a day goes by that I don’t count my blessings. This entire journey is a gift that simply wouldn’t be possible if it weren’t for all of you: my devoted readers who come back week after week.
When I wrote my first post, Beets and Wheat Berries Make Me Happy, I had no intention of turning this blog into a career. In fact, I didn’t even know it was possible at the time.
Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the places this blog would take me. I had no idea I would be able to earn a living to help support my family simply by sharing the meals I was cooking at home. It took me two years to earn my first $100 in advertising income but getting that first check in the mail was eye-opening, exhilarating and humbling.
When I studied Hospitality Administration & Marketing Management at Boston University, I knew I would find success doing something but I had a feeling that “something” didn’t exist yet. Culinary school and the restaurant business was intriguing but I knew the hours wouldn’t suit my ultimate desire of becoming a mother.
The travel industry gave me a lot of satisfaction for many years but when I was laid off from my hotel sales job in 2008, it was a blessing in disguise. Within 24 hour of being let go, I was given the opportunity to become an entrepreneur by helping to drive tourism and conventions into the beautiful state of Michigan. As a result, Liz Della Croce LLC was born and I was officially self employed
While some might be scared or intimidated, I found being my own boss to be exhilarating. Given the number of self-motivated, driven entrepreneurs in my family, it only made sense that I would follow in the footsteps of my successful father, grand fathers, aunts, uncles, cousins and more.
After a couple of years doing part-time freelance work, I decided to take the ultimate risk and put in my two weeks notice with my day job. I told my boss the news on a Friday afternoon. Saturday morning, less than 12 hours later, I discovered I was pregnant with our second child. It was a sign and I knew right then and there that The Lemon Bowl was my destiny.
People often ask if I get lonely working from home or if I miss working out of an office with coworkers. Believe it or not, I’ve never had more friends in my entire life and much of that is due to this blog. The blogging industry is a relatively new and unchartered field of work. As a result, I owe much of my success to the tight-knit food blogging community. Since we all work from home by ourselves, we rely on one another for help and advice running our businesses.
As such, I’ve made it a goal to get out from behind the computer and travel to as many conferences and events as possible to foster these precious relationships. I am immensely grateful for any opportunity to spend time face time with the bloggers and clients I now consider dear friends.
There is no way I could have ever anticipated the friendships I would gain from starting this blog five years ago but when I look back over the years, these relationships are by far the greatest unexpected gift of blogging.
To each and every one of you who visits The Lemon Bowl day after day, week after week, month after month: thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for allowing me to live my dream. Cooking, traveling and developing recipes for the brands I love while staying home to raise my children is more than I could have ever hoped for and I am ever so grateful.
I promise never to take a single minute for granted. Not a single second.
Thank you for being here.