A Fresh Start & a Look Back

Well, hello there friends. And happy New Year!

It's been quite a while, but I'm happy to be back. I took a hiatus not only from this blog, but from all social media and it was a great refresh for my mind and my soul. At times, in blogging and in life, I can feel like the Wizard of Oz - a for-show personality that is at odds with the real person behind the curtain. In some ways that's wholly natural and good, to keep some parts of yourself away from the harshness of unnecessary judgment/criticism and to want to put your best face forward to the world, but it can also create a tension and a disconnect within your inner and outer worlds. And so I took some time to focus on myself. 

Here I am now, refreshed and excited for a new year and a fresh start. There are so many great books to read, new characters and worlds to fall in love with. And of course there are so many blog posts I'm excited to write and I hope there are new friends and experiences to be hand in this wonderful online book community.

 2015 was a hard year, but it also gave me new strength and clarity. I was motivated to start this blog and to give my interests space to grow and flourish. Even though I took a break fairly soon after inaugurating In The Leaves, I can still look back on three months of productive and invigorating creation that this blog gave me as one of the best things about 2015. It is such a blessing to be able to create something and to feel that sense of fulfilment that comes from that creative spirit. 

Last year I didn't keep any reading stats or set any reading statistics for myself. I don't know how many books I read, but I know I did read a lot and found a lot of joy in it. As other areas of my life saw darkness or hardship, my reading life continued to be a source of comfort. This isn't the place for a highlight of my 2015 reading (that is forthcoming), but I must say that experiencing the online book community did make my reading life so much richer and more fun. And of course I'm looking forward to an even more exciting and fun year ahead.

This is a fresh start for me and my little blog. Even though, of course, I am still in the leaves of the same story as well as many new ones - and I hope to share it all with you in the months to come!

Here's to fresh starts and new stories! I'm ready for you, 2016.