Why I Hope 2014 Will Be Better Than 2013

If I’m being honest, 2013 wasn’t the greatest, especially if I compared it with 2012. There were good moments, for sure, like traveling to Amsterdam and Paris, celebrating our wedding in the U.S., and holding our third annual Thanksgiving in Spain. I made friends, met new people, and had a lot of fun.

Kaley Amsterdam Canals

New Friends

But 2013 was, for the most part, a difficult year. Mario’s job kept him constantly away from home. I felt lost in a big city like Madrid and found myself missing my Spanish home.

I’ve become a little disillusioned with blogging and with the world surrounding it. I’m not sure that it’s for me, at least in the way I’ve been approaching it. I remember when blogging was fun, when I didn’t feel pressure to have pageviews or comments, and when I wrote for myself (and my parents, maybe). I read those posts and hear a voice I feel has been lost lately. I’m not sure how to get that back.

That being said, I do know that I am incredibly lucky to have found my media naranja, and together we will overcome the obstacles before us. One step at a time!

Anniversary Kaley Mario

Royal Gardens Madrid Spain

Here’s to 2014!

21 thoughts on “Why I Hope 2014 Will Be Better Than 2013

  1. Oh I love this! I love that you are so honest and that is why I enjoy reading what you write. I hope you continue blogging and that you truly enjoy it again. Your posts have made me feel connected to a country I love, but because my family is firmly rooted in the US, I rarely get to visit. Thank you for sharing your life and Spanish culture through your posts with those of us who want to know more about it. <3

    1. This is exactly my reaction. Kaley, you have such an honest and compelling voice. I would be so sad if I could no longer read what you write. I do hope that you enjoy it again soon.

      Happy New Year!

  2. I’m also happy to say good-bye to 2013 and welcome a new year! Reading blogs is one of my favorite escapes from all the craziness. I rarely leave comments, but please know I always enjoy what you have to share! Best wishes for 2014!

  3. Hey Kaley! I’m sorry that 2013 was such an off year for you, but I hope 2013 will be better!

    In terms of blogging, I’d say — don’t worry so much about the page views or comments. Sometimes, I think worrying about them is what keeps them from happening, at least for some of us. I think the most important thing is to write about things you care about and not care so much about how we’re receiving it. You’ll always find people who want to read what you say, especially when you’re writing in an authentic tone about things you really enjoy. If it helps, go back to thinking about writing for your friends and family instead. Let that guide you!

    Anyway, I have enjoyed reading your blog throughout the years and I hope you continue with it. But just write about what you want to write about and the rest of that stuff will happen. No need to force. Happy New Year! :)

  4. One thing I’ve always enjoyed about your blog, Kaley, is that you’re so honest with us about things—whether it’s your love for Zamora, Spanish home cooking, and your husband, or whether it’s your dislike for Madrid and the sponsored-post-and-free-stuff world of blogging. Some travel blogs may be superficial or everything-is-amazing!!! but you always keep it real :) Here’s to a new year! ¡Feliz año nuevo!

  5. Happy New Year! I hope your 2014 is better (and mine too!). I enjoy reading your blog and hope you stick around. :-)

  6. Happy New Year, Kaley! Discovered your wonderful blog from “Molly in Granada” blog and really appreciate your positive, non-jaded/or snarky comments on so many aspects of your life in Spain as well as U.S., specifically Indiana. Having grown up next door in KY I think I understand a bit of what you are writing about as you acclimate to where you are living right now vs. ‘home’.
    Having realized (in 2013) a dream of studying/living in Salamanca and Granada after a long ago trip to Spain (during Franco era) I can really relate to your writing about your love for Zamora (next visit I MUST go there), Salamanca and other pueblos where one can meet and get to know real Spaniards and everyday life in Spain. Reading of those ladies in their fur coats strolling nightly in the Plaza Mayor,’pasapalabra’ and its host ( watched every night with my host families) and other subjects in your posts brought back lots of great memories and a few laughs and tears. I am so grateful I had the opportunity to step off the tourist track and get a taste of the real Spain-as tough as it is there right now for everyone it still is such a special place. You really convey that in your writings! Muchas gracias and I hope you will continue sharing your talent in writing of your experiences. Abrazos!

    1. Thank you! I am really happy to read that :)

      I am super glad my enthusiasm for Zamora has been “translated” through my blog posts.

  7. I’ve come to the realization that I don’t want to blog full-time, either. Writing is my creative outlet, and always has been, and it’s beginning to open more doors for me, and THAT is exactly what I want. I’m excited for the big projects I’ve got in the works for the year, and while 2013 was good to me, I’m always optimistic that each year will be better. Happy 2014!

  8. Since I’m a newbie to the world of blogging, your blog has been a great inspiration for me this year! I hope that you find that positive energy you’re looking for in 2014. Happy New Year!

  9. ¡Feliz Año! 2013 wasn’t the best for me either, so I’m right there with you, hoping that 2014 is an improvement. For completely selfish reasons, I’m going to ask you to please continue blogging! You have such a clear, genuine voice that I feel like I’ve truly gotten to know you through your writing. It’s so refreshing to see honest (and unsponsored) thoughts and opinions, and unfortunately, it’s becoming so rare. Besitos and best wishes!

  10. I feel you, girl. 2013 was a terrible year for me. I lost two of my grandparents and I’ve been experiencing something of a mid-twenties crisis. Not sure where my life is going to take me but I am wishing for a brighter 2014. I wish the same for you! I do hope that you continue to blog, too. Your blog makes me feel connected to Spain :)

  11. 2013 was not the greatest year for me either, and there is a lot of uncertainty about what will happen in the next months. At least I too have a media naranja that makes it all better.
    Keep your head up, here´s to 2014!

  12. Kaley, I totally get it about the blogging thing. I’ve struggled with it off and on. Some days I have so many things to say but never get around to writing, other times I feel pressure that I “should” and that’s never a good thing.
    Hope you can find your reasons to write again without feeling pressure from the “blogging world.” At the end of the day, you have to write for you. Before you can write for others, at least that’s my opinion.

    here’s to you finding your writing voice again in 2014!

  13. MY voice includes a lot of curse words, maybe try that?

    No but seriously, I hope you are adjusting to big city life and continue to blog, I enjoy reading! Happy new year.

  14. In all honesty, I don’t know anyone who has lived in Madrid at least one other Spanish city who prefers Madrid. NO ONE. I’m from Chicago, one of my Madrid buddies is from NYC (well, originally from Spain, but lived most of his life in NY), we’re both eh on Madrid too. I think I will grow to like it *more*, but if I could live in Seville again, I would.

  15. I so feel you on the blogging thing – that’s definitely been an issue for me in the last half of the year. There are so many not-fun things about the blogging world, and the more I struggle with mastering them the more I lose out on the actual fun part of blogging.

    Sorry 2013 has been tough, and here’s hoping 2014 will be better! (And btw, you are totally lucky to have found your media naranja – sometimes it feels like dating is a punishment for something really awful you did in a past life! :) )

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