On Simplifying and Saying Goodbye.

I started vinegar & vanilla on my birthday in 2009. That would be 10 years ago in December. That’s a very long time ago, and so much has transpired in the decade since.

My son was just 4, my daughter just 8 – she is now legally an adult and will be graduating from high school in just a few months’ time!

My mom was still alive in 2009, as was my marriage. Both have, mercifully, passed on to another plane.

I miss my mom still. And I am grateful every day that I am no longer in that painful, damaging marriage, although I am still negatively affected by it.

In the last 10 years I have had so many great ideas and tried on many hats/hobbies/careers:

  • I taught English and PE
  • I coached track
  • I worked as a freelance writer (twice)
  • I wrote and self-published a book (that one STILL blows my mind!)
  • I’ve been a legal secretary for the DAs office (and learned that my grandmother also worked for a district attorney, which was kinda cool)
  • I studied social-emotional learning and mindfulness for kids
  • I have studied Equine Guided Education
  • I have gone on several retreats
  • I have offered writing groups and even tried to create an online one (RIP Rose Write Along!)
  • I started a French re-sale shop on eBay (La Boutique FrenCHIC)
  • I took French lessons
  • I created websites and social media accounts for all of my grand ideas like JessicaJanisJohnson; Dreams In French; and woman.writer.poet.
  • and more…

Whew! I’m tired just remembering all those endeavors.

What’s Next?

Obviously, I have been negligent here, on this blog, for a while now. And I think the time has come to put vinegar and vanilla on ice. At least for now.

Let’s be honest. I’m a writer at heart. I always will be. But I’m not going to be Liz Gilbert, or Anne Lamott. I’m not going to become some social media influencer and make a million dollars online.

Or even a hundred.

I’m likely not going to write the sequel to my book. I’ll consider myself extremely fortunate if I ever convince someone to publish a chapbook (a thin, small volume) of my poetry. I probably won’t even get around to the memoir I’ve been talking about forever.

Just not likely anymore.

bare tree branch in winter

Instead, I will continue to write short poems because I love to and because I remain moved by small things like hummingbirds and want to share moments that feel perfect, no matter how fleeting.

But other than that? I have no more big plans.

My plans now are small. To simplify. Simplify my life’s possessions and obligations. To let go of all the things I thought I would be, could be, should be, and focus on what I am and what brings me contentment like:

  • Enjoying my coffee.
  • Paying attention to my loved ones, without distraction [I need more practice here, I think we all do.]
  • Moving more and not always quickly.
  • Savoring the sun, the rain, and everything in between.

Part of this letting go and simplifying involves letting go of these failed endeavors that haunt me and remind me of my lack of “stick-to-it-iveness” as well as other “failures” – both real and imagined.

woman mopping kitchen floor

So, I want to take this opportunity to thank you, dear reader, for reading my posts over the last decade.

Thank you for subscribing. Thank you for sharing. Thank you for commenting and encouraging me.

I deeply appreciate each and every one of you.

3 glasses of wine toasting

with love,

women laying on track after race

If you want to stay in touch I’ll be here and here (at least for a while).

One thought on “On Simplifying and Saying Goodbye.

  1. Awww…well that was lovely and thank you for sharing it.

    It is hard to let go of things, unless it’s time. Simplifying sounds nice to me! I’m glad I found you here and I hope we can meet IRL.



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