comments 26

Another Year Over

So, that was May and what an interesting month it was. A month that I had set aside and cleared to allow myself the space to figure out what I do next, and to sort my life out a little bit. I cleared every single weekend except one. I need to do it more often.

Head cleared and getting back in shape, life is starting to feel quite good again, instead of just chaotic and a little crazy. I was trying to do too much, and it was all getting a little silly. When I wrote that post about the major downside of being a food writer, I had reached as far as I was willing to go (actually much further). It was time to change things. I wanted my life and my body back.

I started to think about this past year. It was great in many respects. My first book, Comfort & Spice, was published by Quadrille. It was an intense period writing it. My body took a battering for it, and my head a little bit too. I am proud of that little book though, it was worth it, and I have learned a lot about how to do the next one (not commissioned yet but working on ideas before you ask :)

When I finished, I needed to get out of my flat and out of London, so I went to Argentina for a month, and kick started almost a year of reasonably intense travel. I won the OFM Blog of the Year Award, was short listed for the Red Hot Women Award. Recently, I was short listed for the Guild of Food Writers Blog Award (hearty congratulations to Poires au Chocolat who won last night). Absolutely wonderful and so flattering, there were a few tears.

It was a really good year but I worked very hard and I got so tired. I have written this blog for over 5 years without a single break. So I have decided that I am going to take one, and come back refreshed and energised.

Not just yet, as I have a few things that I want to share with you, but I won’t be blogging as often as before, just for a little while, and then I am going to take a break. Maybe for a month, I need to think about it. I want to love writing here again and enjoy every post as I write it, and I want to feel inspired by what is around me.

I will still be running my cooking classes, which I really enjoy doing. I hope to see some of you there. There are still places available for all of them. People assume they book out immediately but there are always places so, come along, and join in the fun.

For now, I am off to celebrate my birthday. Just a little, as despite the queen trying to steal my thunder with her big jubilee celebrations, I will celebrate properly over the weekend with friends. Of course I haven’t organised it properly yet, it is all a bit last minute. There will be no procession of gold boats going down the Thames for me, but I do have lots of lovely drinks and lovely people to share them with too. There may be some food.

Older, not much wiser, and hugely looking forward to it. Have a lovely day, people. Thank you, as always, for reading.

PS. that bird that was keeping me awake in my recent post? Well, one morning I didn’t wake at 5 and thought, great, I must be used to them! I plodded about waking slowly while inhaling coffee. Later on I went out into the garden, only to be greeted by a traumatised bird corpse. A local cat or similar had killed it. I felt terrible. I only wanted them to be a little quieter, I never wanted something to kill them. Poor birds. The cheeping now is less frequent, and sounds lonelier.

PPS. Voting has opened for the OFM Awards again. Vote for all your favourites, and don’t forget the little blog category in there too :)



Filed under: Random


Cooking and travelling, and sharing it all with you.


  1. SallyC says

    Hope you come back refreshed and full of renewed enthusiasm in due course, your blog is great and will be missed whilst you’re away. Have a really happy birthday and a happy year ahead.

  2. Helen says

    I second what Sally said! Happy Birthday Niamh, and enjoy your break – I think we all need some proper down-time sometimes, and it does the world of good :-)

    • I feel like a new woman already from just a little down time. I also need to catch up with my friends after much furious apologising for disappearing :)

      Thanks so much for your comment.

  3. serenam says

    I am sorry we are going to read you less, but you deserve a break! Can’t wait to meet you at the cooking class- greetings from Dubai (for the last day;)

    • It is only temporary – I promise! And hopefully will be working on a new book too. Look forward to meeting. Enjoy the sunshine, there isn’t much here ;)


      • serenam says

        Here there’s too much :D it’s air conditioned all the way- good news is I use indoor time to write for my blog…

  4. Roisin Coleman says

    Hi Niamh, you are one gal who well deserves a break. I have your book to keep me going!

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  6. Happy Birthday Niamh – love reading your blog and adore Comfort & Spice :) Have a good break, recharge your batteries and we’ll all be waiting for you!

  7. Pauline Randall says

    Happy birthday Niamh! Love reading your blog and adore Comfort & Spice. Enjoy your break, recharge your batteries and we look forward to your return :)

  8. congratulations on another brilliant year, I love your blog and your awards a truly well deserved x

    • Thanks Cara! Bizarrely, since I wrote that I am really inspired to write. That is a good thing BUT I still need and will take a break :)

  9. I have only just started reading your blog but am already hooked and inspired. I’m sure you have written plenty to keep me occupied while you are taking your well deserved break :)

Over to you! Your comments - I would love to hear from you :)