Changes afoot and looking ahead for Simple Bites

“To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.” – Henri Bergson, French philosopher.

Friends, if you have a few minutes to spare today, I’d love to share with you the new route this blog is taking and a few changes I’m implementing along the way.

When Tsh and I launched Simple Bites back in 2010, we figuratively had a handful of road maps stuffed in the glove box and a few pit stops picked out, but that was about it. I never imagined the sights I’d see and the exceptional people I’d meet along the way. For the last four years, this blog has been in drive and we have covered a lot of miles.

I’m not saying the journey is over – nothing like that – but for a long time I have felt like it is time to take an exit off the freeway and travel the country roads for a change. (And now I’m looking for the runaway ramp on this whole road trip analogy.)

Simply put, it’s time for a change. Why? To keep things exciting, to challenge myself, to evolve, to slow down in some ways, to speed up in others. To do what is right for me personally and not necessarily what the experts say food blogging should look like. I can’t quite explain it in words, but I’ve been feeling a change coming on for some time.

work zone | Simple Bites

First up, and by far the most difficult decision, is that the era of contributors writing weekly for Simple Bites has come to a close. Moving forward, I will be the sole writer of the blog. Here’s one of the reasons why: I love writing here for you. Each week I have about six different directions I could take a post; I’m constantly full of words, ideas and stories. I have much to share and it makes sense to tailor the content of the blog to my niche:  whole food for the family table – with a little urban homesteading in the mix.

I have been most fortunate to work with an incredible group of bloggers over the years and they have brought their talents to this space and shared their expertise, post after post. I’ve been most blessed to have them as contributors and they will be missed. Fortunately, they all have blogs of their own and here is how to find them and stalk them regularly:

Also, their posts in the Simple Bites archives are not going anywhere. You can access your favourite recipes anytime, such as Jan’s asparagus galette, Marisa’s home canned Marinara sauce, Shaina’s honey wheat sandwich bread and so many more.

Now is probably a good time to mention that my husband, Danny, is staying on as a contributing writer and will continue to bring his down-to-earth wisdom for urban homesteading and cooking from a man’s perspective.

Clara in garden

Over the years, this blog has evolved into much more than recipes and tutorials; it’s also a deeply personal space where I can share a story about a ‘special’ brunch or a birthday celebration for two. Intermingled with the recipes and tips, I’ve shared about winning and losing, milestones and dreams come true; thanks for sticking around for those details too.

More recently you’ve obliged me when I introduced my hens and chimed in to talk about family table manners. I appreciate it so much! This is a glimpse of the direction we’re headed. More canning tutorials and favourite family recipes, but an open look at my life as an urban homesteader, too. Kids in the kitchen is another topic we’re going to run with, because, frankly, my children are very much into cooking, so why not share how we are learning?

You can expect to see very few sponsored posts and even less giveaways. Oh, and there’s a real recipe index being built as we speak. Three cheers for improvements, slowly but surely.

Articles from here on out may be a little rough around the edges, with the occasional iPhone photo, because I’m blogging real life, unscripted. (Much like this pickle post.) This is going to keep things much more interesting for both of us.

Photography has never been my passion in the way that cooking and writing are, but I do enjoy the challenge. Will I let a sub-par photo get in the way of posting a favourite new recipe or inspiring story? Not in the least. And I’ll try to stop apologizing; thanks Kimberly for the pep talk.

BEJJ photos

How about that cookbook? Brown Eggs and Jam Jars: Recipes from My Urban Homestead Kitchen is in that deliciously mysterious place called a publishing house where it is being transformed from hundreds of Word documents and photographs and a handful of original illustrations into a real live book due out in March, 2015.

Posts will be a little less frequent, but why not stay in touch on social media?  I’m having so much fun with Instagram these days, and am thinking about posting more micro recipes on my feed. Think smoothie combinations, cocktails, quick and easy summer lunch ideas, that sort of thing. Sound interesting? Find me there @aimeebourque.

Things are so quiet over on the Simple Bites Facebook page. I’m often popping in there to chat during the day, so drop in and keep me company once in a while, will you?

Lastly, Twitter is still fun for a quick convo. Find me there as @simplebites.

Now, I’d love for you to help me out a little. In the comments below, please let me know what you think of this bend in the road for Simple Bites. Any suggestions or feedback is most welcome. Got a question for me? Ask away!

New readers? What brought you here and what has kept you around? Longtime readers, what has stuck with you the most over the last four years? Was it a particular recipe? An article? A kitchen tip? Or perhaps a story?

Thank you so much for reading and for being here.

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites. Her first book, Brown Eggs and Jam Jars - Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites, was published in February 2015.

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  1. Hooray! I love blogs without contributors! I miss them. I feel like it becomes more like a newspaper at that point and less like a blog. In the same vein, I love the contributions from the contributors and have discovered their blogs from this one. But I am so glad you will be the voice here.

    I have enjoyed learning about how you implement all of this in real life, in your home, so please keep those posts coming. Info about your chickens (the whole process), gathering family around the table, teaching your children to cook, hosting family and friends and using what you grow or don’t grow is interesting.

    Congratulations on all the newness to come and all the goodness that has been. High five!

  2. Aimee I’m excited for your new approach and the new level of authenticity that comes with it. I hope that it feels liberating. I’m looking forward to all of the stories to come.

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