April 1, 2018

Joyeux Anniversaire, Fleur de St. Louis! (Celebrating 1 Year)

March 31, 2018

Il y avait un an. A year ago today I chose to commence and started Fleur de St. Louis. The name is a play on the fleur de lis, an iconic symbol of France and St. Louis, Missouri, my hometown and a city with much French heritage. In French, St. Louis is pronounced "san lou-ee". With this pronunciation in mind Fleur de St. Louis rolled right off of my tongue. As I began writing, the meaning behind the name developed. I came to think of myself as the flower of St. Louis, this blog a part of my blooming process. I developed the subtitle: where wellness, learning and creativity flourish (with a little French flair), and this blog became a place of continued growth and opportunity.  

Click the image for a link to its source.

Today I have enjoyed looking back on the letter I wrote exactly one year ago. In it I pay homage to one of my biggest sources of inspiration, Shannon Ables of the Simply Luxurious Life. While I am budding, Shannon is in full bloom (and becoming more vibrant each day). Learning from her journey, I went back to her archives to find one of her very first "blogiversary" posts.  The post, celebrating her second year, is over 6 years old. In the post she writes:
"I can say with all certainty that by being true to what I love... I have created a better and most fulfilling life for myself that excites me as I move forward. This, dear readers, is what I wish for you as well." 
Shannon's blog is still going strong. She has 12.8k Instagram followers, an incredible podcast, a published book (that is also available in audio), a vodcast in the works, and more. It is people like Shannon that continue to inspire me along this growth journey.

So how have I flourished over the course of this year? Fleur de St. Louis has over 100 published posts and over 25,000 page views. I can only hope that those clicks have left readers feeling inspired to nurture their very own growth journeys. 

A year ago I was getting back to my French language studies. Today I am nearly half way done with the 18 credit hours I needed to complete my French BA. A year ago I was hoping to connect with francophiles close to home like Rebecca Plotnick of Every Day Parisian. This coming weekend I finally get the chance to meet her at an event in Chicago. A year ago I was hoping to travel in France. Today I remember this past summer in Paris and am making plans to be back in a country that so inspires me. In being true to what I love, I too am creating a life that fulfills and excites me. 

Some of my favorite posts from this first year:

A Très Chic Morning Routine - This most read post featuring New Zealand francophile, author and blogger Fiona Ferris got me my first shout out. Merci, Fiona, for spreading the Fleur de St. Louis love on your beautiful blog, How to be Chic

Follow Your Dreams and Doors Will Open

Absolument, Oui! - It's impossible to celebrate this year without mentioning my Parisian engagement to my best friend. It was so fun to have this space as a place to share this milestone in our journey of growth together. 

This year I have learned so much about myself. I have learned that I can only take on so much at once, and that I truly value quality over quantity. In the spirit of the flower and being organic, I have learned to be better about letting things flow and trusting the journey. This journey has already taken me places I never imagined, and I can't wait to see what this next year has in store. It might involve taking a leap of faith just as I took in starting this blog, but as I wrote in my 50th post, what may seem overwhelming or "scary" at first might end up being the best thing I've ever done. Only time will tell.

Merci de tout mon coeur, thank you with all of my heart for being a part of this journey with me. As has become my signature send off, warm wishes from me to you. ♥ Let the next chapter begin! 


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