reinvention – my biggest luxury

by Sharon Santoni

Reinvention – my biggest luxury… is that a strange thing to say? If you have read me for a while, you probably know that this blog, and all the other stuff we have going on here, came to be because I was getting dangerously close to boredom.

Having raised my four children as a very active and hands-on mum, it came as a shock when they started to leave home and didn’t need me as much as before. Of course, I should have seen it coming, but somehow I simply wasn’t prepared for this new stage in my life, with more time on my hands.

At midnight on New Year’s Eve 2009, I raised my glass of champagne and announced to the world (although only the dogs were listening) that this would be the year I’d reinvent myself. I had no idea what I was going to do. I started a blog in February 2010, wondering if anyone would even read me, and I got very lucky.

For the next couple of years, I published on my blog every day, and I gradually found a truly wonderful readership, to whom I’ll always be so grateful.

Starting the blog and finding readers around the world opened my horizons in a way I could never have anticipated. The publisher Gibbs Smith contacted me and offered me a book contract. Then, I started my tours. In 2017, I launched the MFCH subscription box, and finally, in January 2019, MFCH Magazine.

I am not listing these things because I want to show off or brag. I’m simply saying that I had no idea that any of these amazing doors would open to me, and every day I’m aware of how lucky I am to be busy and happy in my work.

But none of this would have come about if I hadn’t made the decision to take that first step. Because taking the first step is sometimes all that is needed to bring about some major changes.

And because I know that the need for reinvention, for a fresh start, for new horizons, is something that so many of us feel, I thought you may like us to chat about it together.

From the beginning of May, I’ll be starting a series of regular Instagram Live conversations with guests to chat about their own reinvention experience. I’ll let you know well ahead of time who my next guest will be and invite you to send in questions beforehand.

My very first guest to kick off these chats will be my good friend Vicki Archer. Vicki and I met via our respective blogs many years ago, and even as confinement stops us from meeting up, we regularly chat.

Vicki and I will be talking together via Instagram Live on Sunday, May 2nd, at 6pm French time, 5pm London time, 9am PST and mid-day EST. To send in your questions for us, you can either write us an email, leave a comment below, or send us messages via Instagram (@sharonsantoni and @vickiarcher). We’ll also take questions live during our talk!

So if you are on the brink of something but don’t know how to take that first step, or if you have a tale of reinvention that you’d like to share, or if you’re just looking for some lively conversation that may help you get your own ideas straightened out, then be sure to come and join us!

23 comments

Pam April 22, 2021 - 10:44 pm

Hi Sharon!!

This sounds so exciting. I look forward to dropping in on May 3rd. Another new chapter that sounds amazing. All the best!!

Take care
Pam S
xoxโ€

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Sharon Santoni April 23, 2021 - 6:46 pm

Thank you Pam, see you there!

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Linda Cobb April 22, 2021 - 11:11 pm

You are always ahead of ur time Sharon. I will be there

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Sharon Santoni April 23, 2021 - 6:46 pm

Wonderful! Be sure to send us any questions you may have ๐Ÿ™‚

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Catherine Taylor April 22, 2021 - 11:15 pm

Sounds exciting…. everyone could use a little inspiration

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Renae April 22, 2021 - 11:27 pm

You are incredible! Iโ€™m reinventing myself as well. I have been an interior designer for many years and I owned my French Country boutique. Due to Covid, I have had to reinvent myself at 55 years old. I started blogging in November 2020 and I am having a blast. I open my online store in May. You are such an inspiration to me and I thoroughly enjoy your blog.
Blessings to you.
My blog is:PeacockRidgeFarm.com

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:20 am

Well done Renae, I think that Covid has encouraged a lot of people to take an unexpected step in a new direction

Sharon
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Gray April 23, 2021 - 2:43 am

How interesting! I am starting my own blog about that very thing! Reinvention, renewal, etc. at this stage of life. It is taking me forever to do it, as I am doing it myself and am self taught web designer. (Thank God for Squarespace.) I love your magazine and following along via emails too. I didn’t know your original blog, but I wish I had. I have wanted to do this, for 5-6 years, but was sidelined by some tragedy. You give me renewed energy!

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:21 am

Thank you Gray, and congratulations on your blog! My original blog still continues on these pages, and I’m happy to have had the opportunities to grow other aspects of a business from that small start.

Sharon

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Donna France April 23, 2021 - 10:55 pm

I turned 57 last month. I’m asking God for clarity as I navigate this next chapter of my life. I have sooo many ideas dancing about in my mind! ๐Ÿ™‚ Looking forward to your reinvention Insta series!

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:22 am

Wonderful! Be sure to tune in Donna, and if you want to send in questions before the live, don’t be shy!

Sharon
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judy H April 24, 2021 - 10:12 am

Your timing is perfect Sharon! I am 51, and like you have spent the past 20 years raising my children. I loved every minute, but now I want to find a new direction, and create something I can call my own. I have so many questions for you! Can I send them to you by email?

Thank you from Houston

Judy

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:23 am

Of course Judy, just write to me at [email protected], and title your email ‘Reinvention Quesions’.

Best
Sharon
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mary Ann wells April 24, 2021 - 10:13 am

I really enjoyed the talk between you and Vicki last year, and I look forward to listening to you both again. I love that you are both very down to earth, and say it like it is ๐Ÿ™‚

Mary Ann Wells

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jenny wright April 24, 2021 - 10:15 am

I really want to reinvent myself right now! I have an idea for a small business here in my local town. But I am SCARED!! I worry about how a new direction would affect my husband and my family. Please can you talk about this in your chat with Vicki.

Thank you

Jennifer

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:24 am

Great question Jenny! We will definitely address that notion of feeling scared and how to get past it

Sharon
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annie F April 24, 2021 - 10:18 am

Sharon, I loved your reinvention Q&A last year, and was so grateful that you replied to the question that I sent in to you. Your words made me feel more serene and more brave, and thanks to you I made that leap and am now having a ball in a small local floristry business, providing fresh cut flowers to all sorts of people. Thank you for giving me that courage that I needed.

Annie Fleetwood

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Sharon Santoni April 24, 2021 - 10:24 am

YAY Annie! I am so glad that I was able to help in some small way

Best

Sharon

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Kate Granado April 24, 2021 - 6:15 pm

Sharon, you and Vicki are my ‘most’ favorite bloggers. When I re-launched my blog, my primary motivation was to write. I have a memoir in one back pocket and a fictional story in the other. And, Sharon, you are my inspiration. Beginning with your first short story released on the blog, which I so enjoyed. The story you released gave me the courage to go ahead a push publish for the first and second chapters of the memoir and the first chapter of fiction. So, thank you for the nudge to reinvent as a writer…xok

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Sharon Santoni April 25, 2021 - 11:48 pm

Thank you for your message Kate. I love the image of a memoir in one pocket and a story in the other! We have to always be creative!

Sharon
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Martha Vera April 24, 2021 - 7:42 pm

Dear Sharon,
Lucky for all of us all over the world, you started your blog. I have enjoyed watching your dream grow. Your posts, newsletter and magazine take me to France. What a joy in my busy schedule! I wish you continued success!
Martha Vera
Honorary Consul of Spain in El Paso, Texas

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Sharon Santoni April 25, 2021 - 11:49 pm

Thank you Martha! I’m so happy to have brought you some French inspiration!

Sharon

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Mary Ziegler April 24, 2021 - 8:27 pm

Congratulations Sharon on starting Instagram Live โ€˜chatsโ€™ with creatives! I am sure it will continue to inspire and motivate individuals to use their positive energies to transform this lovely earth of ours. I too am blessed to have reached a wonderful season in my life where I get to write a blog (https://awakeningwonders.wordpress.com/) about what I love, and share it with the world. I know I should write more, but my time/space is full of so many curious things I must explore!
Cheers to you Sharon for sharing your good life with us all!

Mary Ziegler

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