I am feeling slightly confused about the fact that 2019 is coming to an end. Part of me is all like ‘where did the year go, stop life happening so fast’, while the other part of me feels so distanced from the me of 12 months ago. It’s been a big year, and once again I find myself having clocked another year of sharing my life on the internet.
That’s right, on the 13th of December 2014 – 5 years ago today – I began this blog. Although it didn’t really look anything like it does now, and it had a completely different name, but still that is when it all began. Right there on the floor of my apartment when I nervously pressed publish on my very first post with zero idea of what I was actually doing, but deciding to give it a try anyway.
It didn’t feel that significant at the time, but now I know that it was the beginning of a whole new chapter in my life.
I shared a similar post to this last year, and while it feels a little silly celebrating this milestone as an important life anniversary, I feel it’s also really important to acknowledge the time and energy (and tears and tantrums) that have gone into making this website what it is today. It is the thing that I spend the most time and energy on, it consumes my thoughts constantly (some may call this obsession) and I love it so much that I can’t even imagine stopping.
I am proud of what I have created here, so yeah, I am going to take a minute to celebrate the last 5 years.
Since starting this blog, I have gained so much more than I could have ever expected. Firstly, I credit this website with giving me the confidence and skills to take a chance on a new industry which ultimately led me to an amazing job. It has helped me learn how to communicate better and has encouraged me to keep learning and challenging myself with new skills. It has opened me up to a world of creativity through food and photography – something I can’t even imagine my life existing without. And it has also opened me up to so many different people, from those like you who read my posts, to others within blogging groups who have been so willing to share advice and help when needed.
For all of this, I am so very grateful to this website.
And when I say this website has evolved a lot over the past 5 years, I really mean it.
In 2015 I published whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted with no purpose or direction.
In 2016 I moved to a self-hosted blog with WordPress and read countless other blog posts telling me what I should and shouldn’t be doing and I listened to them. I also bought my first ever camera and the photography journey began.
In 2017 I got fed up with trying to fit into what others said I should be doing with my blog, and I searched for my own voice. I also changed the name of my blog which as scary but also felt like exactly what I was supposed to do.
2018 was the year of the epiphany. It was when I discovered my true love was food, and I dedicated every spare moment to learning how to photograph it.
And as for 2019, it was the year I dedicated to producing the best quality content I could.
So where does that leave us for 2020? I am really bad at setting long term goals, but over the next 12 months I want to make sure I continue to focus completely on producing the best quality content I can for you, my readers, but also content that I can stand behind and be truly proud of.
Also, I haven’t had a theme update in over two years, so obviously it’s time to change up how things look around here. I also want to make sure my posts are easy to find so there is a bit of work to do in the background on restructuring things and improving the usability of the site.
But overall, I want 2020 to be the year that I stop worrying so much about the little things, and focus in on the real reason I am showing up here each day. That reason is why I started blogging and why I still do it today, and is the one thing that has remained constant over the past 5 years. It is simply because I really love it. It’s creative, it’s challenging and it brings me joy to share and put these posts out into the world.
And if it wasn’t for you reading this, then I probably wouldn’t have the motivation to keep putting in the work so a thousand times thank you.
I realised recently that I have a tendency to focus on what could be done better, or looking for learnings so that next time it can be improved. And while I am sure this is positive, it has meant that my focus on moving forward has prevented me from taking a moment to celebrate and acknowledge what was done well or celebrate a win.
So that’s really the focus of this post. I wanted to celebrate the last 5 years and take a moment to appreciate the journey and all that I have achieved in this time, even if sometimes I feel like there is so much still to go.
And I also what to encourage you to start that thing that is in the back of your head. To put faith in your ability to work towards something your are truly passionate about. They always say, the best time to start is right now.
PS. The photos in this post are totally random because as usual, I have nothing appropriate for these types of posts. Maybe that should be one of my goals for 2020!