I am not sure if I have ever mentioned this before, but I really love to read the monthly roundup/gratitude posts by the bloggers I follow. For several reasons really, but most importantly because I feel like it’s through these posts that I actually get to know the person behind the blogger, and it helps me connect with them more. Moreover, it’s almost like the virtual equivalent of catching up with a friend over coffee, finding out how they are doing, and bringing them up to speed with what’s going on in your life.
And so naturally I’ve wanted to start writing these posts on my blog as well (though for very different reasons). But in the past whenever the end of the month rolled by and I attempted to write a monthly round up/gratitude post, there was not much I could recollect – it all seemed to be a blur of sorts.
Which is why this time I started jotting down things in the Notes app on my phone, as and when they happened during the course of the month, so I did not have to rely on my (really terrible) memory for that. However, interestingly, my notes this month happened to serve as much more than mere reminders of the highlights of the month gone by, they actually managed to change how I perceived the month.
And I know this because at first I tried drafting this post without referring the notes I had made on my phone, just to see how much I recollected. And as I should have expected, I still seemed to be in dire need of memory pills, because I couldn’t remember much of what had happened (with one exception) during the past month.
I mean of-course I had a general idea, I felt like overall January had been an okay-ish month, where I got stuff done, but nothing out of the ordinary. But I was wrong. January was not an okay-ish month, it had been a fantastic one, on many accounts.
Launching The Love of Spice
Of-course the biggest highlight of the month was finally launching my food blog, after years (and years) of wanting to do it. And so clearly this was the exception mentioned above. It was the one thing I remembered about the month when I tried drafting this post without referring my notes.
But then of-course I would remember it, because it’s kinda big and hard to forget, and more importantly this only went live on the 30th of the month. So if I had forgotten about this within a few days, I would have needed more than just memory pills. 🙂
Speaking of The Love of Spice, the site still needs some work on the back-end, but it’s at-least completely functional on the user end, so I’m glad that I pushed through my excuses to get it live last month. Especially because the response has been amazing, gratifying and overwhelming all at the same time. And for that I have to thank all of you, my readers, friends, and fellow bloggers for cheering me on and always being there for me. I don’t think I can fully express how much your support and encouragement means to me.
The Day Designer Life
Okay, so I do realize that in my excitement for the new blog, I have skipped through most of the month, and gone straight to the final days, so let me back up a bit here, because January has been wonderful to me in so many different areas, that I don’t want to gloss over the other things.
However, keeping first things first (ah the irony!) – on the very first day of the month I got myself a brand new planner, which by the way I absolutely adore. Over the years I have tried many different planners (even though I only began using them on a daily basis last year), but I have to say that so far The Day Designer is clearly the winner in terms of function (for me). I took the relatively inexpensive one without the fancy custom made art etc (though there are many different options if you are so inclined) but I couldn’t have been happier with my purchase.
FMS Photo a Day Challenge
In January, I participated in the FMS Photo a Day Challenge on Instagram, which I know is not a big deal for many of you, but for someone who can’t even take a decent selfie to save their life, committing to a photo a day wasn’t necessarily the easiest thing to do.
Also, I had seen this challenge around, and while I enjoyed looking at the photos and cheering for other people, I felt like I did not have the mental bandwidth to deal with one more thing on my task list. Especially something I was terrible at.
Nonetheless, I took the plunge in Jan, and somehow even managed to successfully complete the challenge (even though on some days, I might have taken liberties with what a photo meant). And the best part was that it wasn’t even that big a deal to accommodate this challenge with the other things I needed to do. I guess sometimes it’s just a mental block.
Impromptu Ski Trip
Then sometime during the middle of the month we went to visit my cousins in West Virginia, and explored Skiing. Okay fine, in the interest of full disclosure it was my husband and son who learnt to ski, while I was mostly posing (and falling even while posing), but then I am counting both those things under exploring, so you see..
Anyway, on a more serious note, it was a fun experience, and even when I was not skiing (fine, posing!) I got to spend a lot of quality time with my favorite aunt, which was kinda amazing, so win-win.
Catching up on Home Projects
Around the middle of the month, we also finally got the custom closets for our master bedroom done. This has been on our list for a long time, but there was always something more urgent or important that needed to be done, and so it kept getting procrastinated, but now that it’s finally done, I couldn’t be happier. I’ve yet to organize it, but oh well, there are only so many hours in a day, even if I wished there were more.
Acing Quarterly Goals
And finally (and this is something I’m the most excited about), I seem to be completely acing my Quarterly Goals this time, because not only I am getting most of the things on there done, but going above and beyond, and doing so much more!
I am especially happy with how well I am doing on my fitness goals, and it’s gratifying to see real results. But even blogging wise this year has started on a great note. I mean of-course there’s the launch of the food blog (which I clearly can’t stop talking about), but this is not only about that.
This excitement is mostly springing from something that I’ve started working on for Shanaya Tales. It’s still work-in-progress, so I’ll talk more about it when things are closer to completion, but essentially what I’m working on is revamping this blog to better align it with my vision for it.
It’s something that I’ve wanted to do since a long time, but had to put on the back-burner last year to deal with more pressing things on the home and health front. But now that everything else seems to going great, I am really excited to work on this pet project of mine.
And lastly (I promise this is the last thing), I seem to be crushing my reading goals so far this year. I typically read 2-4 books a month, but in January, I managed to read 6 books (and have already gotten through 4 more in Feb). But here’s the even better part, I am finally on track to conquer my pending review backlog. I don’t think I’ve ever been able to honestly say that in the past three years.
So you see, unlike what I thought at first, January wasn’t an okay-ish month, it was a really great one, and an amazing beginning for the new year. Now if all the other months are even near as good, I think 2018 will turn out to be a fantastic year.
That’s all from my end folks. I would love to hear from you. How did your January go? What is the one thing you are most looking forward to doing in February? Do share!
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