Year Four.

How did we even get here? Seriously.

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It kind of blows my mind that exactly four years ago today I figured out how start a free blog in WordPress – which is a feat in itself since I barely know how to upload an attachment to my email. Four years ago, I actually created three blogs: each aptly named a different James Taylor song. Why I stuck with “how sweet it is” is still beyond me, but it probably had something to do with a current chocolate craving and the fact that it didn’t sound quite as depressing as “like everyone she knows.” Mid-twenties drama. You know it.

Doing stuff (so professional, I know) on this blog yanked me out of that quarter-life crisis (which wasn’t too much of a crisis, but um, have we met?) and completely changed my life. So cliche. But so true. It’s kind of odd and crazy and awe-inspiring when what you’re doing as a hobby turns into a dream job. And while it isn’t exactly my dream job, it has led me even closer to my actual dream job and let’s be real: it’s pretty dreamy.

I don’t take for granted one second that I am lucky enough to do this as “work,” and yes, even though it brings in an income for me, it is not at all why I do what I do. Four years ago, I started posting recipes at 7am every morning. I didn’t make a dime for a loooong time. And four years later, I still do the same. Because I freaking love it. I freaking love YOU. I cannot thank you enough for stopping by here every day and reading the obnoxious and often inappropriate and sometimes embarrassing and possibly even offensive sentences that I spew on this little space on the internet. I am so insanely grateful that some of you have been here since the days when my pictures looked like this and that some of you may be landing here today, for the first time. As weird as it may seem (and trust me, if I was reading this as a nonblogger, it would be weird, like get-a-real-life weird), blogging is a whirlwind and it’s hectic and it’s easy to get caught up in what it all means. But at the end of the day, it’s the real life stuff that counts. It’s why I treasure every single one of you and the relationships (too much?) we’ve built and this nutso community that we’ve created out of our invisible internet friendship. It means the world to me that we can bond over sprinkles or denim vests or neon nail polish and things that are way too immature for us  – and that we can even respectfully disagree on things and be honest and real. It warms my soul that you actually read large walls of text like the one I just wrote.

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I appreciate you so, so much. Beyond comprehension. I appreciate every single comment you leave or every tweet you tweet. (twit?)

Four years ago, I was in my twenties and well, now… I’m not. Four years ago I was pretty lost and heck, even two years ago I was still kind of lost. Something inside of me demanded that I remain true to myself, be only myself, whether it wasn’t cool or hip or accepted or as popular as others or even understood. Whether it was annoying or brutally honest or transparent or unbelievable. Sure am glad I did that though. You know the real me. Minus the occasional meltdown.

THANK YOU. Hearts

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164 Responses to “Year Four.”

  1. #
    51
    Lisa | With Style and Grace — September 14, 2013 @ 1:34 pm

    and I’m sooooo thankful you do what you do (& that you love it)! xo

    Reply

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    Fayne — September 14, 2013 @ 1:38 pm

    “Something inside of me demanded that I remain true to myself, be only myself” this phrase made an impact in me when I read it, because today I am lost. But I’m finding my way to my happiness. I’m on my way on creating a food and travel blog. :D Hopefully it’ll be a success. Thank you for inspiring me. Happy Anniversary! ^-^

    Reply

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    Christina Gathright — September 14, 2013 @ 1:48 pm

    Happy Blog-iversary Jessica! Your recipes totally rock my socks! And your beauty favorites have definitely challenged me to be more adventurous with color. Thanks for being awesome!

    Reply

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    Janey — September 14, 2013 @ 2:33 pm

    I’ve tried probably around ten of your recipes and we (my family and I) have not been disappointed once, and some recipes become “best I’ve ever had” recipes. That’s the most I’ve tried from one blog, those are pretty good odds, and now you are my go-to recipe blog! Thanks for your beautiful pics and delicious food. Keep it up!

    Reply

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    Natasha — September 14, 2013 @ 2:46 pm

    Happy 4 year Anniversary! Your blog – along with tv gossip websites – is the first website I check when I get home after work. Thank you for your fantastic recipes, great photos and laugh out loud messages :) Here’s to another 4 amazing years!!

    Reply

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    Sarena (The Non Dairy Queen) — September 14, 2013 @ 2:50 pm

    I am so glad you took that leap of faith and got through that quarter life crisis through blogging. You are an amazing woman and I’m happy to have been around watching you grow and create! I’m so happy for you friend!

    Reply

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    Rebecca — September 14, 2013 @ 2:52 pm

    Thank you so much for the work you put into this site! I love your recipes and photos. Everything I’ve made based on your recipes has turned out great!

    Reply

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    Katie — September 14, 2013 @ 3:04 pm

    I love you so.

    Reply

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    Amanda — September 14, 2013 @ 4:36 pm

    Thank you for making an entertaining, beautiful blog with such delicious recipes! From your 7 layer Greek dip, to your cashew chicken, your BBQ salmon burgers, and you aweso e chopped salads, my husband and I enjoy your food on a weekly basis! Happy anniversary!

    Reply

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    Paula @ Vintage Kitchen Notes — September 14, 2013 @ 4:36 pm

    Thanks to you for being real and crazy sweet. Your dedication shows and you’ve inspired me to be a part of this food world. happy 4!

    Reply

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    Catherine @ foodiecology — September 14, 2013 @ 4:54 pm

    Happy 4 years. I don’t comment frequently on your blog, but yours is one of the first food blogs I started paying attention to–which ultimately led me to experimenting more in the kitchen and starting my own blog. I hope one day I have a similar blogging story.

    Thanks for your creativity, hard work, and entertainment! :-)

    Reply

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    Averie @ Averie Cooks — September 14, 2013 @ 4:57 pm

    Bravo!!!! LOVE THIS POST!

    I think I have read every single post you’ve ever written and commented on 99% of them. I remember when you were working a day job and posting at 7am and had a boss and were baking all night and it was just nuts. It still is now, but in a different way. And yes, blogging changed your life as it has mine. And it’s lovely to read that you’re insanely grateful for your readers and that you value them (that comes through!)

    Congrats on 4 amazing years. I started my blog in May of 2009 and have always loved knowing that you started yours right around mine. You have done AMAZING THINGS in those 4 years. Congrats xoxox

    Reply

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    Pepper — September 14, 2013 @ 5:14 pm

    Most perfect blog ever….you are fantastic! Thank you for being such an inspiration!

    Reply

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    64
    Debbie — September 14, 2013 @ 6:26 pm

    Happy Blogaversary!
    Thank you for making my kitchen more fun!

    Reply

  15. #
    65
    Stephanie @ PlainChicken — September 14, 2013 @ 6:48 pm

    Congrats on 4 years!

    Reply

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    Natasha — September 14, 2013 @ 7:05 pm

    Congrats on 4 years!! You are hands down my favorite blogger – I love your recipes and pictures! Keep up the great work :)

    Reply

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    Renee @ Awesome on $20 — September 14, 2013 @ 7:26 pm

    Congratulations! I love your blog. It’s a huge inspiration to me. I’ve been reading for a couple years now, and it’s one of my favorites. Thanks for the hard work you put in to sharing such great recipes and stories.

    Reply

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    Sophia(loves.to.bake) — September 14, 2013 @ 8:00 pm

    Congrats! I read your blog literally everyday, and you’re my absolute fave. So funny and witty, and everything you make makes me drool all over my keyboard! Hehe. Today is my four year anniversary with my boyfriend too! :D Funny coincidence. Keep posting delicious things with your great stories. You make us all so happy to read!

    Reply

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    Evan Thomas — September 14, 2013 @ 8:27 pm

    Congratulations! Crazy seeing how much each blogger grows over time. Congrats on all your passion and success. Can’t wait for the next 4 years.

    Reply

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    Monique @ Ambitious Kitchen — September 14, 2013 @ 9:19 pm

    Happy 4th year, Jessica! Know that you inspire others and I so appreciate your creative recipes. :)

    Reply

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    Mel — September 14, 2013 @ 9:25 pm

    I’m so proud of how far you’ve come, Jessica! Not only are your recipes amazing, your photography fantastic and your writing style hilarious and clever, but you have done exactly as you set out to do and remained true to yourself. Your blog stands out from the other millions out there because you are you and you don’t change that. I’ve been reading since the beginning (or nearly so) and like I said, I’m just so amazed at what you’ve accomplished. Happy four years!

    Reply

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    Gina_AcuteDesigns — September 14, 2013 @ 9:36 pm

    love this post so much and love your blog! you make me laugh and hungry on a weekly basis :).

    Reply

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    Jade Sheldon-Burnsed — September 14, 2013 @ 9:38 pm

    Happiest of anniversaries my dear!!

    Reply

  24. #
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    Amanda — September 14, 2013 @ 9:43 pm

    Congratulations on 4 years! I love your blog!

    Reply

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    Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner — September 14, 2013 @ 10:10 pm

    Congratulations! Your blog is a pleasure to read.

    Reply

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    Katie — September 14, 2013 @ 10:35 pm

    I absolutely love your blog and your recipes. I have tried so many of them, I love your combinations, but I also really love your writing. I look forward to reading your blog every day. Happy 4 years!

    Reply

  27. #
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    Zainab @ Blahnik Baker — September 15, 2013 @ 12:31 am

    I’m so thankful you love what you do so much to inspire us daily :)

    Reply

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    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com — September 15, 2013 @ 1:34 am

    Congrats Jessica!! You are so inspirational and I’m thankful to have came across your blog which puts a smile on my face, every time :)

    Reply

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    carduelis — September 15, 2013 @ 3:05 am

    I want to thank you too! The whipped feta has seriously changed my life! I want ALL of your salads! Oh, and the chocolate chip cookie kaluha sundae? You are a genius. Keep up the good stuff!

    Reply

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    Alison — September 15, 2013 @ 5:20 am

    Happy 4 years!! Love being one of your many invisible internet friends:-D

    Reply

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    Liz S. — September 15, 2013 @ 6:20 am

    I blogged for 4 years – it was a special, fun time. I hope to see your blog continue on for more than 4 years though :) Cheers, Jessica! So glad I “met” you in the blog world.

    Reply

  32. #
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    Gen — September 15, 2013 @ 7:10 am

    Let me just tell you that sometimes the best part of my day is at 7am when I pull out my iPhone, and check out the blog. Doesn’t matter if for some reason I can’t eat the food (mushrooms – shudder), it’s kind of bumping into an old friend and having tons to say. Thank you for finding your bliss! The rest of us benefit tremendously!

    Reply

  33. #
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    stephanie schandler — September 15, 2013 @ 7:50 am

    I just found you this past summer, and I love You! You remind me of another blogger who writes under MFAMB (My favorite and my best). She is a little fresh like you, probably more, and since I am too, I really appreciate that you keep it real!

    I have to have another job, but I write for the Examiner, and make basically no money and there are some technical constraints writing that way. I totally can relate to the blog thing taking over, and I love how you weave your life and your food together. If my head were not so filled with gunk, I would have been doing the same for the past 6 years.

    Here’s to you! Thank you for making it to my email box every day- I actually read and look forward to your emails. Keep them coming! :)

    Reply

  34. #
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    Bonny neiman — September 15, 2013 @ 7:54 am

    Happy blogversary? Thank you for the laugh snorts and great info! You are an inspiration. Xo

    Reply

  35. #
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    Aggie — September 15, 2013 @ 8:06 am

    Congrats on year 4!! I love reading your blog and look forward to your crazy recipes!! You have such talent and I look forward to all of the recipes to come!

    Reply

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    Victoria — September 15, 2013 @ 8:21 am

    Happy 4 years!, Jessica!

    Thank you so much for being true to yourself–not only has it created such a beautiful form of art that is your blog, but it also inspires us, your devoted readers, to cook DELICIOUS food, bake THE BEST desserts ever, enjoy even the tiniest of life’s pleasures, and be true to ourselves in return. You bring joy to our lives every single day doing what you love, and if that’s not the best way to live, I don’t know what is.

    Keep up the great work, and I look forward to doing more amazing recipes from How Sweet It Is (and having your cookbook in the near future!).

    Love you!
    Victoria

    Reply

  37. #
    87
    Barbara — September 15, 2013 @ 8:36 am

    Happy Anniversary!

    Reply

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    barb — September 15, 2013 @ 8:43 am

    Thank you for being you! Your humor and writing is just terrific. Your blog is always my go-to blog for fun, delicious meals for my family and entertaining. I could lust my top ten favorites, but three are the cast iron pizza, homemade funfetti sprinkle cake, & the caprese dip. Cheers to many more years in yoyr blogging journey!

    Reply

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    Elizabeth @ The Bare Midriff — September 15, 2013 @ 8:46 am

    Congrats on all your success – you absolutely deserve it!! Anyone can tell how hard you work and the hours you put into your blog. Well done!!

    Reply

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    JoAnn C. — September 15, 2013 @ 9:02 am

    Thanking you and wishing many more years of blogging.

    Reply

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    AliSue — September 15, 2013 @ 9:25 am

    Congrats! You do an amazing job on your blog, and always have interest post. I personally LOVE the end of the month beauty reviews. I always try to get a couple items off your list.

    Reply

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    Kim — September 15, 2013 @ 9:30 am

    Happy four year anniversary! your blog is one of the first things I read each morning! You start my day with a smile and lots of times I even laugh out loud! You are very blessed to have found your “dream job” at your age. May you continue having fun knowing you are are bring joy to others also.

    Reply

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    Kathryne — September 15, 2013 @ 9:48 am

    Congratulations, Jessica! I’m sure glad you’re blogging. I love what you do here. I’m happy we both found this crazy thing called food blogging! Sounds like we share the similar sentiments about it. And four years! Give yourself a big pat on the back… or a giant glass of bourbon. :)

    Reply

  44. #
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    Cathy DiPietro — September 15, 2013 @ 9:58 am

    Congratulations Jess on four years of blogging. I read your blog every morning and look forward to it! I have made several of your recipes as your photos are so amazing you can’t help but want to create them in your own kitchen! Wishing you continued success!

    Reply

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    Brittany — September 15, 2013 @ 10:04 am

    Has it really already been 4 years?!? Time flies. I definitely remember reading your blog in the beginning! :) I admire your ability to post such amazingly delicious (and beautifully photographed) recipes day after day. You’re definitely an inspiration! Plus, your posts continously make me smile. Xoxo

    Reply

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    Gina — September 15, 2013 @ 10:07 am

    Thank you for working so hard for us, your wonderful recipes and gorgeous photos! I love your honest blog and that you love what you do! Don’t stop movin on!

    Reply

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    Katie — September 15, 2013 @ 10:08 am

    Just wanted to say a thank you right back – I love your blog, your recipes, your crazy run-on sentences, your bacon obsession (the fact that I read this blog religiously despite being vegan says a lot!). Thanks for creating such an awesome little corner of the internet and sharing your culinary adventures :)

    Reply

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    Heather S — September 15, 2013 @ 10:14 am

    Jessica-congrats!!! Keep staying true to who you are—because that’s why we heart you too! I look forward to many more Tuesday things and your food photos….well….they make me drool!

    Reply

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    Barb | Creative Culinary — September 15, 2013 @ 10:27 am

    This is a VERY special day! Of course I know you will understand if my thinking so had a LOT to do with giving birth to my daughter Lauren about this very time 30 years ago. After that it’s all about you!!

    You are a character and I like characters…sprinkles, drama and all. Here’s to many more years!!

    Reply

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    Laura — September 15, 2013 @ 10:30 am

    Happy Blogiversary! Thank you for continuing to share with us all. I’ve made so many delicious dinners from your blog over the years.

    Reply

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