Happy New Year, friends!

Wow, it really feels bittersweet, in a way, to be cosied up here penning a ‘hello 2022’ post when part of me still has that ‘new decade’ optimism tucked away somewhere. How was your Betwixmas? Are you ready to embrace the New Year start?

Mine was dreamy. I spent Christmas Eve with my boyfriend, before testing negative and driving to bring my brother home for Christmas and our usual Chai siblings’ dessert-prepping and hot chocolate competition bonanza. Our Christmas Day was perfectly slow and relaxed – just how our family likes it. We ate, napped, laughed and then I got to see my beloved cousins for a cosy Betwixmas dinner.

New Year’s Eve ended up looking a lot differently than we’d planned, so I had a cosy one at home making my infamous spaghetti bolognese and playing Animal Crossing, just the way I like it. (I’m definitely continuing this mood with fresh loungewear while I work from home later in the week…) All in all, I feel refreshed and recharged, ready to take on 2022.

Last month, I spent a lot of time ruminating what I wanted to do with Daisybutter this year. After all, we celebrate 12 years of this blog next week, which is an extraordinary amount of time to have devoted to anything. And yet I really feel like I’m at a bit of a crossroads in terms of being online. Just a few weeks ago, I wrote a whole post saying a sad goodbye to the blog! … But, long story short, I deleted that post. I simply can’t bear to wave any sort of farewell to this space just yet. I haven’t quite run out of writing steam (being a writer by trade helps with that!), but I am finding it difficult to carve out the time, I suppose.

The person that started this blog, procrastinating from assignments in her first year of Uni, isn’t who I am anymore. I can hardly believe I’ve regularly posted here throughout full-time jobs, an international move (and back!), setting up small businesses, writing a book, and beyond. It’s meant a lot of personal time sacrificed and LOTS of gentle understanding from my loved ones around me. Somewhere along the line, I lost the balance and lost a lot of the living time that comes around writing a lifestyle blog. And I want to prioritise living.

With all of this in mind, I am going to scale back posts on here a little. Perhaps I’ll only check in for Sundaze updates, and they’ll take on a different format. Perhaps I’ll share longer pieces every couple of weeks. Essentially, I really want to fully enjoy offline life first and share it second (or third). Does that make sense?

One of my main focuses for the year will be to refine my book proposal and hopefully finally secure literary representation. In 2020, I started writing a book and last year I hit my pre-representation word count! (See, this is another reason I need to draw back a little from the blog.) I got really close to being signed a few times last year, but I’ve realised I really need to sharpen my focus and get serious if I want to achieve this dream of being published. To discover more about my first book-in-progress and support me as I write, you can head over to my Ko-fi page.

Like I said, another focus is to live. To fully embrace real life and not having my mind or judgement clouded by the lens of online audiences and social media. I can sit and pretend I always stayed in my own lane, but there’s always a small element of having to keep up with the crowds. In my journey towards buying a home, I even realised that I don’t quite have a grasp of what I want from a home or from my décor or… You get the gist. 2021 was full of self-growth, and now I want to continue that offline.

In happier news, I of course plan to continue sharing my usual Sundaze series, a couple of ‘Open-hearted joys’ and some other cosy content. I really want to share more behind-the-scenes of & Chai (if I get the time), some beginner Cricut craft tutorials, and some monthly journaling prompts. And maybe I’ll check in once in a while with a long-form piece here and there. Less but more. I’ll still be on Instagram and Twitter but probably in a less polished capacity, and it’ll be the best way to keep in touch. I always reply to my comments and DMs, so we can continue to exchange little stories and share our petite joys.

Me being me, I’ve got a few posts scheduled for January that I’ve been excited to share. But, overall, we’ll be dialling back down to more personal posts and lo-fi content. I can’t wait. 2022, I’m so excited for what’s in store.

Love,

Michelle x

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