Looking Back And Moving Forward

Blog Review,  Blog Rewind, Looking Back And Moving Forward, Goals for the new year

With the start of a new year, I just wanted to reflect on some of my favorite posts and things from last year and talk where the blog is headed. While many bloggers have gone the way of Instagram, I remain steadfastly committed to blogging and long form content. While blogging has its high and lows, I feel like Instagram lacks depth and authenticity and I also have concerns about their lax privacy policies. Looking back it seemed that some of the posts I most enjoyed writing were also some of the ones that resonated most with readers which actually came as a bit of a surprise since I tend to have strong opinions when it comes to certain  topics that might just go against the mainstream.

20 Things You Can Throw Away
Studies have shown that living with clutter can create stress and negative health effects and we all have things we can probably toss. I compiled a list of 20 items that you can get throw away, donate or recycle that you won't miss these at all once they're gone.

Thoughts On Blogging
Some personal takes on the state of blogging including why I still do it, staying real and how it compares to Instagram.

Defining Luxury
We all define luxury differently and anything that makes it easier to enjoy one's life can be a luxury. Luxury doesn't necessarily have a price point and in some cases can be truly priceless.

What Happens When You Use Expired Makeup
I know some people don't mind using makeup that is years old but there are some very valid reasons why you shouldn't do that.

10 Ways To Make Your Wardrobe More Sustainable
Outlining some simple habit shifts that anyone can easily do which can go a long way to creating a positive impact on the environment as well as our wallets.

We Don't All Like The Same Things And That's Okay
Just as much our personalities, our likes and dislikes make us unique. If someone doesn't like the same thing as you, you shouldn't take it personally. It's not an insult against you and it doesn't mean they don't like you, it just means they don't feel the same way for a certain person/thing as you do. FWIW if I based my friendships on common likes, I probably wouldn't have any friends.

The Problem With Instagram And Influencers
I always say that if it weren't for this blog, I probably wouldn't even be on social media. I have a real issue with the fakery, narcissism, lack of integrity, ethics, shame and basic decency which Instagram in particular perpetuates. It also takes away from in depth quality content and individuality.

Thoughts On Marriage
As someone who has been married for almost 18 years, I have some strong thoughts on the subject as well as some practical advice to share.

My goal when it comes to this blog as always is to continue putting out genuine, meaningful and useful content. I'm grateful that people continue to read and for anyone that reaches out to let me know when something I've written has struck a chord, just say to say hello or even ask a question or for advice. And I love when people try something I've talked about here and it makes a difference.

Happy New Year! Wishing you all a 2020 filled with infinite happiness, good health and good fortune!


Shireen L. Platt said...

I enjoy your more thought-provoking posts the most, Rowena and I think it's because we share some same values and other time, you open my eyes to another side of the story that I would not see otherwise. I have long been a fan of your blog and will continue to do so for years to come. Happy New Year to you and hubby, I hope 2020 will be a fabulous year for you.

Diva In Me said...

Happy New Year Rowena. I've always love good blogger and someone who influence with integrity. You're definitely one that I can trust when it comes to opinion. I hope that you'll continue to do so and the world need people like you.
2018 was the year I started to live with less and slowly but surely, I'm heading towards that direction. It's doable when one have the intention and act on it.
I wish the very best in 2020.

Jackie Harrison said...

Great tips to take in consideration. I also will not be in Instagram if it wasn't for my blog. I'm not on facebook just because I work have an extreme schedule to be in every media. Happy New Year may it filled you and yours with blessings.

Doctor Anne said...

I enjoy reading post by people with a strong opinion, even if I don´t share it. It is what makes life interesting in a world of people mindlessly repeating what others said.
I think there is an editing glitch though: The second post has the headline "Thoughts on Blogging", but you talk about your favorite ways to fight off a cold in the description.

May the New Year bring you health, love and happiness.

Ivana Split said...

I've read and loved all of these posts Rowena. Your tips about marriage are spot on and I love what you said about luxury. I also prefer blogging to other social media and share some of your concerns about privacy issues with Instagram and some other social media as well as the whole influencer sphere. There are a few influencers I follow and am inspired by but there are a lot of fakes in that world. I don't think they're affecting us much in our age group, but I'm worried for the very young population (kids, teens) as they seem to be the target of some shady influencers. Happy 2020!

The Dainty Dolls House said...

I love Instagram but, I would never just give up on my blog, because I love blogging too. You can express so much more than a simple post on Instagram. No one reads your words really there, it's just insta like and move on. Blogs are better expressions. I feel it's more real and this instant whatever that's on just now, I really hope it goes away to be honest. x

merel said...

These tips are great! Thanks for sharing :)

Happiest wishes for 2020!

X Merel

Jenny said...

I'ts hard to keep up with blogging and Instagram but I'm glad people like you keep at it, as I do enjoy reading content with more depth, which is hard on social media. I feel you on the shallowness/fakeness on Instagram, but I don't think all hope is lost as I've met some truly amazing and genuine people on there. Likewise there are crappy bloggers out there too, so I just try my best to avoid them on all platforms. Wishing you a happy 2020!

♥︎ Geeky Posh

sonia // daring coco said...

I loved your post about influencers. I'm not sure I had been as vocal as what I have been since reading that post. It was such a relief to realise I wasn't alone in my own perceptions. I definitely prefer blogging to social media. I hopped off the Insta train more than a year and a half ago and haven't looked back since. I do feel a slight pressure to get back on, like you said majority of bloggers are now Insta focused and there's so many amazing friends I have made that I don't want to lose touch with. But I need to find a way that I can share photos that I am proud of, in a way that makes me feel authentic and artistic rather than "showy" and obnoxious. More importantly to find a way to not let numbers and expectations get the better of me either. That is what sucks the creativity and joy from this most of all. Blogging is so much more rewarding, your blog and your honesty is what inspires me to keep going with my own. Which has sadly been non-existent of late. I do hope to get back to it, I miss the strong sense of community and support this platform brings.

I also want to wish you all the very best for 2020. May it be filled with success, love and happiness for you Rowena

Evi Erlinda said...

I read almost all of those thought and they are very impressive.
I like about the marriage and luxury the most.

Happy New Year!

Emmylou said...

Happy New Year, chingu! What a great recap to 2019. As Sonia said, your Instagram post about influencers is also one of my fave and resonated personally. I gave up Instagram years ago and have never returned. It's sad that some of the blogs I used to read a lot totally went this way, but I understand it's their choice to make. I much prefer the interaction in an actual blog myself but I guess people like the ease of doing Insta posts....sigh....Anyhoo, also the 20 Things You Can Throw Away because minimizing is a lifetime goal:)
Here's to a great 2020! Not going too well for me as you know, but hoping for better news soon.


Happy New Year, Rowena. It’s a shame that many blogs that I used to love to read and follow, now only use Instagram. I still love blogging and even though my life is quite busier than it used to be, blogging and engaging with comments are my favourite. As a person who typically writes longer posts, I much prefer them to shorter posts, and authenticity is essential not just on the blog. Wish you lovely start to 2020! xx/Madison

Ivana Split said...

Have a lovely weekend!

Sakuranko said...

Happy New Year Dear, I enjoyed most of your posts from the year under way. I like that you are a blogger that maintains its essence and that is still here. I particularly enjoy reading long posts and that's why I enjoy your posts so much.

Mica said...

Such a nice way to look back on the year! I agree, blogging will always be the thing I spend more time with. i do like Instagram, but blogging is my fave! :)

Happy new year! Hope that you have a lovely weekend ahead of you! :) We will be having a quiet one.

Away From Blue

Lilli said...

Happy New Year my dear Rowena, I wish a 2020 full of happiness, fortune, health and love, to you and your husband!
I agree with you, I just enjoy being on IG as a simple app of photo sharing as it was when started. Blogging is just another thing and always be my choice. And if I havent had it, I wouldnt have any social media either. With them, people are losing individuality and integrity. Hugs! xo

The Exclusive Beauty Diary said...

Happy New Year, dear! You wrote such an amazing posts and I like all of them.

New Post - http://www.exclusivebeautydiary.com/2020/01/elizabeth-arden-sparkle-on-holiday_4.html

Dressed With Soul said...

Dear Rowena, for you it is the same as for me: I'm not on Instagram and I don't miss it and like you I think I won't be on Social Media if I wouldn't have my blog :) Thanks for all the wonderful posts you shared in 2019. I really love to read your thoughts and appreciate your opinion. Keep it up!
xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena

Kinga K. said...

I always love your thoughts:)