Four years ago, as a newlywed working from home in an admin position, I decided to release my creative side and start a food blog that would focus on my new husband’s (also my first and only husband) picky pallet. It was called Hil’s Kitchen. But that domain was taken so it was called hilskitchenblog.wordpress.com. I shared recipes that were simple and easy on the budget. It was fun and quirky and a small number of you have been following me even from those days. And YOU are the real MVP for sticking with my amateur recipes and typing that whole address into your browser.
In 2014 our first daughter was born and everything I knew to be important in life changed. We almost lost Jane the first few days of her existence. Her life was spared, but through her traumatic journey of epliepsy she lost her mobility, vision and cognitive function. After such an experience, how could I write about grilled cheese sandwiches any longer?
A whole new audience started listening as Hil’s Kitchen began to focus less on the food on the table and more on the deep conversations that take place around the table. Conversations about expectations, disappointment, hope and life. And of course laughter too because who am I without it.
Soon, my inbox would notify me of comments my posts had received from people I had never met who were finding hope and healing through our stories of Jane. A mom from the Philippines reaching out for epliepsy education. A parent of a special needs child up in the night thanking me that they had finally found something they could identify with. And most recently, after a post about feeding tubes, a mom who had been told that same week that her son also needed a tube, and the blog was helping her process the emotions. Such an honor and privilege to find solidarity with such strong, resilient strangers.
After 10,000 visitors and reaching 28 countries it was clear that Hil’s Kitchen had outgrown its purpose. The story of Jane, and how we live life was greater than my husband’s picky palate, and he even eats sushi now so, mission accomplished. And so, after much nudging and great help from dear friends, hilaryharris.org has been birthed.
I am taking my vulnerability to a whole other level by naming an entire website after myself. But it only made sense. This is the journey and the tellings of Hilary Harris. How she lived a normal, mostly pretty life and then suddenly encountered an unexpected life event. How her daughter changed her world and the worlds of thousands of others. And the .org is a prophetic statement. That one day, through the stories, writings and teachings of Hilary, thousands more could find hope, healing and resources for their own unexpected journeys. Also .com was taken. Because that was definitely my first pick. But I would like to thank that random Hilary Harris who took the .com domain, because we are open to something so much greater, that only a .org can encompass.
Thank you for following along. Be sure to subscribe for updates. Thank you for praying. Thank you for looking at my big face on this home page. Please share with anyone else who has ever been disappointed or sideswiped by the unplanned. You can send them to hilaryharris.org now, not the previous 16 word website I started 5 years ago. I look forward to moving forward with you all.
Thank you ElvaRae designs for my beautiful website and making this happen.
Thank you AriFaye Photography for our lovely photos.
To the countless others that have sowed their money, prayers and love into our family. Thank you.