As we approach the end of another year, I always have a look back and see what’s happened over the year. Once again 2021, has been another strange year due to the pandemic and my health.

I’ve only been to two gigs this year which is unheard of, but have managed to hold a couple of get- togethers with our gigging friends at our house. It was so nice to see people in the flesh and actually have hugs and proper conversations.

Although we’ve not had a holiday as such, we have managed to get a couple of weekends away in the UK which has been lovely.  I just love to be by the seaside no matter what the weather, and there’s always new street art to explore in our coastal destinations. I’ve loved spotting all the colourful crocheted post box toppers around the UK too, and sharing my photos of them on my Instagram accounts.

I think travel abroad is going to be challenging for the foreseeable future but who knows what’s around the corner.

My health has been an ongoing problem for more than three years now, but I’m hopeful that I’m on a better path to managing it thanks to various physios, oesteopaths, and the pain management team. Sadly, I’ve had to give up two of my physical jobs due to the pain, and have had to be mindful of how much work I do sitting. That has been devastating to accept mentally, but I am trying to think of the year ahead as a health sabatical. I’m throwing myself into mindfullness, meditation, yoga, specific exercise and movement, and have lots of new blog posts on the go to keep my mind active.

On a more positive note, I’ve loved my garden more this year, and continue to go out walking daily. Through my love of reading, I discovered the book fairies who leave pre-loved books out and about for the next booklover to find. I’ve started doing this which has given me a good feeling, although my husband has been highly embarrassed 😂.

Blogwise, I actually published 39  blog posts in 2021 which has suprised me. I’ve had double the amount of traffic to last  year, and a couple of posts in particular have had thousands of views. Although my blog is mostly for “fun”, it’s satisfying to see that people are reading it and hopefully enjoying what I’ve written.


graph showing blog views for Tea and cake for the soul for years 2015 - 2021 increasing each year to 85,000 in 2021
2021 stats for Tea & Cake for the Soul



I read a lot and have smashed my Goodreads challenge to read over 100 books this year. Once again it was my favourite authors that got my vote for top reads of 2021. You can read my reviews of them on the clickable links below:

Kristen Bailey – How Much Wine Will Fix my Broken Heart?
Veronica Henry – Christmas at the Beach Hut
Ali McNamara – Hope and Happiness at Bluebell Woods
Kirsty Greenwood – Love Will Save the Day
Bella Osborne – The Promise of Summer
Hazel Prior – Call of the Penguins
Lindsey Kelk – On a Night Like This
Shari Low – The Story of Our Secrets


This year I have also ventured out of my comfort zone by reading loads of psychological thrillers. I absolutely loved them. These were my favourites in no particular order:

Lucinda Berry – The Secrets of Us
Keri Beevis – Dying to Tell
Minka Kent – The Thinnest Air
Tina Seskis – Home Truths
TM Logan – 29 Seconds
Claire McGowan – The Other Wife
Mark Edwards – Here to Stay
Mark Edwards – The House Guest


Health depending, I’m hoping to share lots more “free and cheap things to do”, some health tips, ideas for UK travel including art, gardens, and hotels, and more promoting of small businesses, especially those that promote an eco-friendly lifestyle.

Thanks for reading and supporting Tea and Cake for the Soul again this year. It is very much appreciated. If you’re not already, it is best to sign up to the WordPress email subscription service. You will then get notified every time I publish a new post.

I’ll sign off for now and wish everyone a safe, happy and healthy 2022.


14 thoughts on “Reflection

  1. Wishing you all the best in 2022. It has been a tough year and we take what we can, but it is tough when there are health issues as well. I pray that your treatments help with your pain. Happy New Year,


  2. I’m sorry it’s still not what you would have liked, but I’m glad you’ve at least had those two gigs, some get togethers and some time away in the UK. You’ve already done far more than me; the most I’ve done is supermarkets, GPs and hospitals 😂 Let’s hope 2022 is a lot less Covid-y!!

    I’m sorry you’ve had to give up two physical jobs because of pain. It’s heartbreaking and devastating and can hit you a lot harder than you realise at the time. But you also need to do what’s right for you and what you can physically actually manage. I think seeing 2022 as more of a time for looking after yourself is a great idea. Hopefully there’ll be some nicer weather on the horizon so you can get back out in the garden more. I love that you’re a book fairy by the way, that’s so awesome!

    As for your blogging accomplishments, wow. That’s fantastic, you should be very proud.

    Wishing you a very Happy New Year, Jo! Xx


  3. Hello. I’m new to your blog and I see your mention of health issues. I don’t know what your issues are but 2021 has also dealt me a health blow. I spent two weeks in the hospital in Sept/Oct for covid and found out at that time that I am also diabetic. Trying to adjust to that going into the holiday season has not been fun! And trying to accept that this is my life now, it’s not going away, is a huge mental struggle.

    I’m happy to have found your blog. Seems casual blogs are going the way of the dinosaur these days! lol

    Have a great day and a great new year!


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