Friday 5 January 2018

Hello 2018!

Happy New Year! I hope you had a lovely Christmas and are ready to tackle 2018. Minus a nasty flu, I had such a relaxing time and was spoiled by Santa. It's good to be back after a little blogging break though and I thought I'd use this 2017 summary / welcome 2018 article to give a little life update and also explain why in general I've been blogging less last year.

I can't complain, 2017 has been a positive year with the following highlights which have been blogged about:


My favourite food/meals of the year in Dublin were had at my regular spots: The Pepper Pot, Brother Hubbard, 147 Deli. I had great experiences in Forest and Marcy, Craft, RichmondThe Greenhouse and The Muddlers Club in Belfast (blog to follow!).


In terms of personal trips I over indulged in Portland (Oregon) and I've been dying to go back ever since. I enjoyed a foodie weekend in Belfast, a staycation in Brooklodge, a visit to my parents in the Dordogne Valley, a lovely week in Donegal and a delicious trip to Seville. Thanks to you and the blog, great things happened like a dreamy press trip to Paris and a decadent stay at the Glenlo Abbey Hotel.


I was delighted that some of you thought I deserved an award and was awarded 'Food Influencer of the Year 2017' by public vote at the SHEmazing Awards on the year FFID turned 5.  I worked with Bord Bia and the Irish Writers Centre again this year, once again opportunities that came through this blog and that I can't thank you enough for.


In 2017, you may have noticed I've been blogging less. It wasn't really a conscious decision but more of a natural outcome. Blogging isn't my job and I don't want it to be. I turned down quite a few brand collaborations last year because I don't want the blog to be about promoting things that I don't love. I've also had a little bit of social media fatigue too I have to admit, there was lots of blogger bashing and negativity (or begrudgery?) towards blogging and influencers and while it was not aimed at me, I was put off by it from time to time, especially Twitter. I was standing back a little more... focusing on real life. 

For the last two years I've been juggling a part-time job as a marketing manager and running my Delicious Dublin Tours at the same time. Last summer, the tours got much busier and I realised that if I wanted to give Delicious Dublin Tours a proper chance to grow I had to 100% focus on it at some stage. Then in July I found out about a new part-time Masters in Gastronomy and Food Studies which sounded like the studies of my dreams. Without realising it I found myself starting college in September and have been enjoying the academic challenge for the last few months. It's tough going and I had to make financial and personal sacrifices for it but so far I'm so glad I embarked on this. It has been challenging my perception on all things food related but in a good way. I swapped the blog and social media for books, journal articles and essays and as geeky as it may sound I love it.

In December I left my part-time marketing manager job to focus on Delicious Dublin Tours on a full-time basis in 2018. I had a blast running tours for 16 different nationalities in the last 12 months and met so many wonderful people that it hardly felt like work. The year ended with the tours being mentioned in the American edition of National Geographic Traveller and I was just over the moon. I'm excited and terrified about the year ahead but sure, you don't make things happen by playing it safe. While the blog has slowed down in the last year it isn't going away as I still enjoy updating this little corner of the Internet whenever I get a chance. It might evolve into something different at some stage, we'll see.

No resolutions for 2018 but rather goals that involve growing my business, surviving the second semester of my masters, running a half marathon in Paris, a few nice trips already planned and of course, sharing my food adventures on here from time to time.

Thanks for still reading my blog after 5 years and for your support in 2017. 

Love, FFID.

"No amount of security is worth the suffering of a mediocre life chained to a routine that has killed your dreams” - Maya Mendoza