This post was updated & republished on
Oh, January. The month when we set the highest expectations for ourselves (#NewYearNewMe) and yet are purportedly likely to be the most miserable.
I’ve mentioned before that I view September as more of a ‘fresh start’ than January, and I don’t entirely believe in setting resolutions.
Having said that, I am (ever the contrarian) setting myself some goals this year.
Fig & Fennel
I launched my food photography business Fig & Fennel at the end of 2018, but I’ve been sort of waiting (procrastinating) until the new year to start working on it in earnest.
Salad & Chips
I got all excited last year when I started work on my food book, Salad & Chips, but inevitably, things cropped up, excuses were made, everything took longer than expected, and delays happened.
It’s not the end of the world and I am still working on the project. Hopefully, the book will be launched for pre-order before the end of Q1 2019.
I love reading.
Besides food and my husband, reading is probably my biggest love.
I started setting reading goals the year before last, as a way to focus on taking the time to do something just for me (which is why I’ve kept content about books and reading away from this blog – I need a pastime that has absolutely zero to do with follower counts or career goals).
In 2017 I leaped into the challenge and just managed 52 books (despite planning a wedding and buying a house).
Last year I only managed 36, which says to me that I spent too much time chasing my tail and worrying, and not enough time relaxing with a good book.
This year I am, once again, setting myself the book-a-week challenge (that’s 52 books for the year because some days I barely get chance to turn the page before falling asleep at night, but I’ve also been known to devour 12 books on a weeklong holiday).
My mantra this year
On the 1st January, I posted a kind of ‘mantra’ (for want of a better word) for the year on Instagram:
View this post on Instagram
Hello 2019 🎉 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ This year is all about: • Being a beacon of positivity & gratitude 👌 (because my life is pretty great really & I’m sick of hearing my depressed ass whine about nothing) • Getting my shit together 📅 (because I’mma be 30 next year so I gotta get organised & start acting like an adult) • Staying in my lane 💡 (because I lost count of the number of projects I started and didn’t finish last year & it’ll be wayy easier to be positive & get my shit together if I just FOCUS on one thing at a time) ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ That seems like a lot of words for someone who doesn’t really believe in resolutions but, but whatcha gonna do 🤷♀️ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Snapped: Meanwood Park on a traditional New Years Day family dog walk 🌳
If you didn’t catch that, 2019 is going to be all about:
- Being a beacon of positivity & gratitude (because my life is pretty great really, and I’m sick of hearing my depressed ass whine about nothing. In 2018 I took a CBT class and got onto a dose of antidepressants that seems to be working for me, so I want to keep up a positive attitude and continue to take care of my mental health in 2019)
- Getting my shit together (I’m going to be 30 next year so I should really get organised, start acting like an adult and stop spending all my money on late fees)
- Staying in my lane (I have honestly lost count of the number of projects I started and didn’t finish last year. It’ll be far easier to be positive & get my shit together if I just focus on one thing at a time).
An alternative to resolutions
My sister was in Scotland for the new year, but on new years eve she sent a message around to my family:
So on new years eve, as well as making a list of new years resolutions (basically a list of things to do better next year) I thought of something positive that everyone can do!
So, everyone lists their achievements that they are most proud for the year. It can be anything from climbing Mount Everest to something as small as just being kinder to the people around you this year.
I want to hear what personal achievement you’re all proudest of this year #SpreadThePositivity
I thought it was a lovely sentiment, and the more I thought about it, the more it made me realise that small actions do add up to big changes.
So, January. A time for grey weather, grand plans and (hopefully) a bit of peace and quiet after the hype of Christmas & NYE.
What’s in season in January?
- Blood Orange
- Bramley Apple
- Passion Fruit
- Brussels sprouts
- Spring Onion
- Sweet potato
- Pak Choi
Also in season in January
- Brazil Nuts
What to cook in January
- Hedgerow blackberry & apple jam [apples]
- Apple & almond overnight oats [apples, almonds]
- Purple cabbage stirfry [cabbage, chestnuts]
- Winter squash & kale curry [kale]
- Beetroot & fennel hummous [beetroot]
- Lemon & thyme hummous [lemon]
- Orange & almond salad [oranges, almonds]
- Black bean, broccoli & sweet potato bowl [sweet potato]
- Orange, tomato & sunflower seed salad [oranges]
- Pink berry & almond smoothie [banana, kale, almonds]