Hello everyone, and hello to 2021!
Happy New Year and I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and are safe and well.
I’ve enjoyed my little break from the blog. 2020 was a lot to take on board so to lighten the load for a little while and kind of tell myself I was on a summer staycation was well and truly worthwhile.
When I did my Hello 2020 post around this time last year, I was unaware of the global pandemic to come. We were however already quite traumatised by the dreadful bushfire situation here in Australia. Thankfully this year there are no bushfires!
Before we get into 2021 ….
Here’s a wrap up of 2020 on the blog here at Write of the Middle
I said Hello to 2020. I fostered my first litter of kittens from the RSPCA. I posted the final post as part of my Gorgeous 50’s series – ‘Just Do It’. I got a bit nostalgic with another I REMEMBER WHEN post about When Romper Room’s Magic Mirror didn’t see me. I posted an update on my first foster kitten litter and introduced my second two!
There was so much bad news – drought, bushfires, flooding, and Coronavirus was now a thing! I wrote a post on Self Care Tips for when there’s ongoing traumatic news. I posted an update on my foster kittens and introduced my third foster litter. I was obviously very much craving a holiday because I wrote a post on 7 signs you need a relaxing holiday.
Coronavirus had hit Australian shores and we were in lockdown. My anxiety was extremely elevated and I wrote Coronavirus: Anxiety Trigger Overload. I posted an update on my third litter of foster kittens. All the bad news, fears and anxieties of the year resulted in me having a Missing Mojo. I wrote my first quarterly Taking Stock post for 2020 during lockdown in a global pandemic. Life seemed quite surreal.
Since the pandemic was dominating the news and life as we knew it, I decided to start documenting it through my eyes here in Brisbane, Australia and published the first Corona Chronicles post. With the stress and worry of the pandemic, when it came time to return my foster kittens for adoption I had great concern as to what might become of them. I didn’t know if people would adopt during a pandemic and after raising Amaya and Axel from 2 weeks of age, my emotions were running high. The family as a whole decided to ‘foster fail‘ which basically means, we adopted them. I also decided to take a break from fostering as we adapted to having two cats, in addition to our dog, in the house and also due to the fact that I needed to protect my health (physically and mentally) so I could be strong and well for the days ahead.
I published my second Corona Chronicles post and then decided to get my mind off the pandemic and catch up on some travel posts. So I posted about my October 2017 trip to Perth City and Perth’s Elizabeth Quay. There are still so many travel posts (including more from our trip to WA) to yet publish. Hopefully I’ll catch up on those during 2021. I posted about an online film premiere called ‘Same Kind of Different as Me‘ starring Renee Zellweger. I had started dabbling in painting with watercolours and shared a little of what I’d learnt in this post – Painting with Watercolours – A Beginner’s Guide to Starting Out.
I published a guest post – Gem of Zen #34 for my Zen Tip Tuesday series – The Biggest Benefits of Yoga for Anxiety. I posted about A Half Day Trip & Another Birthday and I published another Corona Chronicles post. I did one of those rambling on kinda posts in Ideas that go poof in the night and other ramblings, and I published my second quarterly Taking Stock post.
Time for a bit of nostalgia again with I REMEMBER WHEN you could buy a bag of lollies for 20 cents. Restrictions here in Brisbane had eased so I announced I was ‘Off on a winter getaway‘. I’d purchased a couple of cosmetics that I really liked so decided to share them in this post ‘Two game changer cosmetics for midlife women‘. I shared Part 1 of our winter getaway (the stop offs on the drive there) – Southern Downs and Granite Belt: Warwick. I have yet to post on our actual getaway due to issues getting photos off my phone!
Another Corona Chronicles #4 update as things were escalating in Melbourne particularly. I decided to take some time away from the blog – Taking time out for spiritual maintenance. All the events of the year, the constant bad news, and more were taking a toll on me and I knew I needed to step back and take care of myself.
After a month away from the blog, I published a Checking In post and of course I posted my third quarterly Taking Stock post when it was due.
Time for some feel good nostalgia with I REMEMBER WHEN you were either team ABBA or team Bay City Rollers. I was getting inundated with emails about guest posting on the blog – but not the type I wanted. It was becoming overwhelming so I wrote a post that I hoped would help clarify what kind of guest posts I would consider: Guest Posts – the what, why & when. I wrote about The 50’s Deep Shift.
With all the beautiful Jacaranda trees in bloom I was inspired to write November Feels. I published Corona Chronicles #5 with some positive news for a change. My twin boys turned 28, the age I was when I had them, and so I wrote Twenty-Eight. I wrote about The Humble Egg, and Xmas gift ideas for the men in your life.
I was starting to wind down but still managed to write Shopping, Summer & Christmas Spirit and my final quarterly Taking Stock post also containing Merry Christmas wishes. And that concluded my posts for 2020!
2021 so far
On New Year’s Eve we had family here for a BBQ dinner with potato bake and glorious salads. My sister made a delicious cheesecake for dessert. There was swimming in the pool and a glass or two or three of bubbles or beer.
The first days of 2021 for me were spent by the pool and reading with a few domestic chores thrown in now and then. I’m pleased to report that I finished a half read book, completed a whole new book, and am finishing off another half read book. My concentration is a lot better since taking a herbal concoction prescribed by my Naturopath! It also helps putting myself into ‘holiday’ mode by swimming and lying by the pool etc.
So far this year has been more of the same when it comes to the pandemic. There’s been outbreaks in Sydney and a lockdown in its Northern Beaches, and more cases here and there around Australia. At the time of typing this, Brisbane is in a 3 day lockdown as a precaution due to the fact a cleaner working in a quarantine hotel for returned overseas travellers had contracted the 70% more contagious UK strain of the virus and been wandering around in the community for 5 days. Things are far worse though overseas. All hope now is on the roll out of vaccinations and hopefully by the end of this year, the situation worldwide will be far better than it is now. I won’t go into further detail on the pandemic. I’ll save that for the next Corona Chronicles post. Meanwhile, I’m sure most of you would have seen this meme circulating?
I personally am holding on to HOPE that the year will improve. Vaccinations will get rolled out and the numbers will decline and things will get better. Positive thinking can do wonders!
A word for 2021?
I don’t do the word for the year thing. I have nothing against it and I used to do it once but it doesn’t seem to work for me. I also don’t make new year’s resolutions. In recent years I basically have a continual theme of:
- Being open and curious
- Always Learning
- Self Investment (self care, self love, self acceptance)
- Seeking ways to achieve a feeling of balance in mind, body & spirit (aka ‘zen’)
- Striving to be the best version of myself that I can be
and that is the path I will continue along. I struggle in some of those areas, particularly around self love and self acceptance, but I will keep trying to find ways in which I can improve these areas. I also have a restlessness that needs attention. I feel unfulfilled and restless – unsure of what I am meant to be doing with my days. I would like to feel more fulfilled and happy within myself so will continue to dig deep and see if I can find some answers there!
2021 on the blog
I’d like to catch up on some overdue travel posts. I would love to see more Gems of Zen as part of my Zen Tip Tuesday series. There will be more I REMEMBER WHEN posts and Corona Chronicles and I hope to have more posts around nutrition, and who knows what else. Once I’m back in full swing I will have a bit of a brainstorming day and get a bit of a plan for 2021 happening and we shall see!
How have you spent the first days of 2021? I hope you’re feeling positive and hopeful that this year will turn out to be a better year than 2020. Fingers crossed!
Ciao for now,
2029 was definitely a worrying year and I’m happy it’s gone. I’m not so sure that 2021 will be much better but we just have to get on with it and hope for the best. We had a very relaxing and quiet new year as we weren’t able to catch up with family. Looking forward to your posts in 2021 #lifethisweek
I know you meant 2020 Jennifer LOL (2029) but yes it was a very worrying year. I think the first half of 2021 will be more of the same but I am very optimistic and hopeful that by the second half things will be improving. Stay safe and well and I look forward to your 2021 posts as well! xo
What a year for all of us. I’m glad that you were still able to write some travel-related posts during the pandemic. I sort of lost my mojo for a while there and wasn’t sure what to do. I know the situation was vastly different over here in America as opposed to Australia, so I guess that probably helped you. I didn’t want to encourage travel, and I certainly wasn’t doing any of it myself so I was mostly just waiting it out. Here’s to a better 2021!
Hi Katherine – I feel for you over there in America as I know the pandemic is far worse over there! I only wrote a couple of travel posts – trying to catch up. Of course they are all travel from way before the pandemic began. I tried to catch up on some and post them as a distraction from all the bad news we are constantly fed. It’s so bad for our mental health isn’t it? I do hope things improve for you and the world soon. Take care and stay safe! xo
Hi Min, Glad to hear you had a nice start to the new year 2021. I look forward to your posts. I just started hosting the Weekend Coffee Share blog link up. It’s on every Friday. You’re welcome to join in any week. #lifethisweek
Hi Natalie – thank you and I hope you’ve had a good start to 2021 too. Great to hear of your new linkup. I will definitely keep it in mind for when I’m properly back into the bloggy swing of things! xo
Hi Min, 2020 was such a difficult year and I loved seeing your relaxing by the pool post as a way to start 2021. I also enjoy Cathy Kelly so will put the book you are reading on the list. I just couldn’t do a monthly reflection for 2020. I was fortunate for most of the year but of course with Luisa passing suddenly at the end of October the last couple of months in 2020, I just shut myself away from the world. I’m slowly coming back and look forward to reading your 2021 posts. Take care #lifethisweek
Hi Sue, it sure was a difficult year last year wasn’t it? It takes so much energy from us – the constant bad news, the anxiety and fear it causes, etc. I am hopeful that 2021 will be better. I know it was a particularly hard year for you after the loss of your MIL Luisa and I very much understand your need for time out for a while. That Cathy Kelly book you see there … I started reading it YEARS ago! LOL It’s one of a few books left only partially read. I’m on a mission to complete them all and I can’t start a new book till they are all read. I’m getting there! BTW – I’ll be on the Gold Coast in mid-late Feb so maybe we might get a chance to catch up! Take care, and keep up the slowly easing back into things. I plan to do the same. xo
I remain hopeful for this year. I haven’t, however, landed on where I want to take the blog. I know things need to change but, well…heavy sighs. I love the 7 day trial meme too. Here’s to hope.
I remain hopeful too Jo! What is there if there isn’t hope? I also am not sure on what direction I want to take my blog in. I’m in a bit of a quandary but hoping for an epiphany! xo
Hi Min – a great overview of your year. I actually didn’t find 2020 all that hard to deal with once we all got our head around covid. I’m very grateful to live where I do and to have had so little exposure. I wasn’t keen on the idea of a new, almost untried vaccine, but I think it will become inevitable if we want to live mask-free and for those who want to travel again. In the meantime, I’ll be continuing to chill and allow life to happen as it chooses. I’ve certainly learnt that you can’t force change – especially when things around us are in flux. Looking forward to sharing 2021 with you. x
Hi Leanne, you’ve been pretty lucky (Covid wise) over there in WA! I feel quite confident about the vaccine. It may seem to have been developed a lot quicker than usual but there have been many many expert minds world wide 100% devoted to the development of these vaccines which has not ever been seen before. We’ve been reassured that the usual process and procedures have all been followed and there’s been no corners cut along the way so I have faith and trust in the scientists and health professionals … and besides … we have no option really as this is the only way to end this madness and get back to like as normal (or as close to normal as possible). I look forward to sharing 2021 with you too – starting with your upcoming scooter post! 😉 xo
You’re not alone in needing a break from blogging in 2020. It was hard to stay positive with everything going on. A break does you the world of good and spurs your creativity on.
It was hard to stay positive and it was DRAINING. I felt a great drain of my energy – so much worry, trauma, anxiety, fear, bad news 24/7 etc etc. I had a bit of a break mid year because of this reason and then of course my more recent break. I am sure I wasn’t alone. It’s been tough times. A break does a world of good. Time to re-energise, review, re-evaluate, recharge, etc etc. xo
Great to read your wrap-up post Min! It really was a year and a half wasn’t it? I’m glad you are managing to get back into reading, I know a lot of my friends who haven’t been able to concentrate, but I have to say your poolside reading area is just the best!!! Wishing you well for 2021 and I laughed at that meme!! #lifethisweek
Thanks Deb! Yes – I don’t recall ever having a year like 2020 ever before in my life! Not being able to concentrate to read has been so frustrating for me because I LOVE TO READ! Before this problem set in I would read So.Many.Books! I’m not back to how I was. I have to take regular breaks but I can get through a chapter or two before I need to walk away for a bit. It’s progress and progress is great! Wishing you all the best for 2021! xo
Your start to 2021 looks nice but yes…. little seems to have changed in the outside world.
I’m not a ‘word of the year’ person either. I don’t set goals or anything. For yonks I did the resolutions thing but they never stuck and instead I just felt worse. I suspect it can go unsaid that I want to be healthier, fitter, more tolerant, more financially secure etc etc… #rinserepeat
I’m hopeful that by the second half of 2021 things will be much better WORLD WIDE. I believe in hope and positive thinking and things are going to get better. I’m with you on the healthier, fitter, more tolerant, financial security etc etc LOL – love the #rinserepeat !
Happy 2021 Min! Hah, the start of this year has pretty much been the same as the end of the last one. I for one, am still cynical things will change until much later in the year. I do love your intentions for every year – I think it’s perfect. I hope the year ahead if a good one for you!
Happy 2021 to you too Sanch. Yes, more of the same plus some so far but I’m still holding on to hope. I do believe that by the end of this year the world will be in a better position. Hope it’s a good year ahead for us all! xo
Isn’t it interesting that you might think “well it was COVID and I didn’t do much” and then you do a year’s wrap up and you came up with all kinds of things to write about and consider.
I think we had to become creative about how to use our time in more isolation at home rather than complain about what we missed. I know it helped me to make a stay at home morning routine that worked after my few years of going out every day.
Love the word curious in your intentions. Really interested to see where blogging takes you in 2021.
Thank you for linking up for Life This Week. Next week the optional prompt is Back To. 3/51 #LifeThisWeek 18 Jan. I hope to see you there. Denyse.
Hi Denyse, I must admit that I didn’t feel particularly productive or creative during 2020 so the wrap up was an interesting exercise resulting in seeing that I guess I did produce a little more than I thought! It certainly will be interesting to see where 2021 takes us! xo