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6 Weeks in Review + Changes

The H-Cat is back!

I’ve been gone a little longer than I expected to be. To tell the truth, I’ve really been enjoying my time away. I’ve been internet detoxing, spending most of my internet time on my work email and reading the news.

And I did, as I expected I would, need the time away from my blog to get my master’s thesis done. It’s a little hard to remember what I did in my 6 weeks off, partly because I did so much, but I’ll share the highlights for a little Week in Review.

In mid-April, I gave a reading of one of the essays in my thesis. It’s an honor that my university gives to each graduate student in creative writing during his or her last year.

My parents came to Colorado for the reading and I took a little time off from work to spend with them.We went hiking, did a smidgen of shopping, and tried out a few local restaurants. The last few weeks of April were mostly grading and writing, grading and writing. I may or may not have totally spaced off an assignment for one of my classes. Oops. It was the day before I had to submit my thesis to my committee.

Also in April, I got a job offer! I’ll be teaching composition full time at CSU next year. Four sections. *Gulp.*

This summer, I’ll be developing an online creative nonfiction course for undergraduate students, which I’ll likely get to teach in the spring! I do enjoy teaching composition, but I’m excited to teach the subject I studied.

Throughout April and May, my metabolism has been as high as ever. I kept up the work I started with my dietitian back in March. The dietitian thought it might be good for me to gain some weight. No difference there so far, at least that I’ve noticed without getting on a scale. But I still guess (and hope) that the increased calories and nutrients will help get my hormones back in order and increase my bone density.

Still hungry…

Early in May, I defended the ding dang thesis. I passed. Now I just have to get the graduate school to approve my formatting on the thing.

Shortly after my defense, I packed up to fly to Kansas and spend time with family.

Mom and I went for the rose garden for Mother’s Day……and on a few bike rides. Hence an accidental tattoo.

Bike chain “tattoo”

My grandpa came up for a few days and we went to the lake for some fishing and kayaking.Finally, my two grandmas have both stayed with my family to attend my cousin’s high school graduation party, which was a great opportunity to catch up with them.

My time away from the H-Cat has made me conscious–not necessary more conscious, but differently conscious–of what I most enjoy about this blog and what I’d like to change about it. I’ve come to realize that, despite the nature of this post, I’m not enjoying the Week in Reviews and similar life-y posts the way I used to. I still love your link-up, Meg, and I love reading other bloggers who write so beautifully about day-to-day life, but I personally have wanted this blog to be a bit less…well, personal.

I’m not quite sure yet how this change will manifest itself. I imagine I’ll still write about aspects of my personal life if it pertains to my subject matter or if there’s something I’m really excited to share. But what I’d like to focus my energy on, now that I’m out of graduate school, are recipe posts, thoughts on recovery and diet culture, and thoughts on IBS. I also may cut down to posting more like two times a week, but I’m not 100% on that one yet.

Thanks to all of you who have stuck with the H-Cat. I understand that some may drift away as my style starts to change a bit; if that’s you, happy trails! I also hope some of you will stay with me through the transition.


Have you ever made a significant change to your blogging style?

Have you ever done a detox from spending time on the internet?

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  1. Well welcome back and perhaps au bientot at the same time. I think a blogging detox is always a good thing. Taking a step back gives us a new perspective, allows us time to do another life things (hello thesis) and rekindles our joy for blogging. I think you need to follow where ever your heart leads you and if that’s less personal posts and more recipes I say go for it.

    I’m happy you got to spend quality time with your family, and congratulations on defending the thesis and the job. Great news all around.

    1. Joyce says:

      I’ll miss being part of your linkup, Meg! Still love reading them, and especially yours. They’re the sassiest!

  2. Kaylee says:

    AHHH!! So glad you’re back!! But also happy that you were able to take a break and come to the realization that you needed to. Whatever the blog’s future is, I am just excited to keep reading what you have to share.

    Also, congrats all around–the job! the thesis! the reading! the keeping up with the dietician!

    This is the oldest excuse in the book but as much as I want to take an internet/social media detox, I just can’t imagine how to. Being connected to the web is too ingrained in my life that giving it up is so daunting. 🙁 And I hate the fact that that’s so.

    1. Joyce says:

      Thanks so much, Kaylee! And I totally know what you mean about the web detox thing. I was able to have that discipline mostly because I was so incredibly swamped with work!

  3. Welcome back and I’m so happy to hear that everything went well with your thesis! 😀 Being in the social media/blogging world is great but so very draining. Can’t wait to see what changes you make!

    1. Joyce says:

      Thanks so much, Heather!

  4. Cora says:

    Holyyyy geeeeebuz.

    Congrats on the job! The TWO jobs!!! That is mightily impressive Joyce and just goes to show how dang talented – and recognized – you are in your field. You’re like, a real grown up now. Let me know what it’s like eh?…

    In general, just congrats all around. The time away from the blog was obviously a very smart choice. I’m glad you are back, and if you continue to enjoy this space, I do hope you continue. However if it’s not feeling right you have all the reason to change up your style or not write as much or, heck, not continue at all. You said a number of months ago you were wanting to write more specific recovery/IBS related posts so obviously that is still where your heart is leading you. I get the personal blog vs “writing” blog thing. I went back and forth and then somehow found myself on the more personal side. Meh. I just go where it takes me in the moment, as should you.

    ….just means I’ll have to probe you about the personal gossip through email 🙂

    1. Joyce says:

      Thanks so much for the encouraging words, Cora. You are so kind, as always. And you can always probe me about personal gossip through email. 🙂
      When I know what it feels like to be an adult, I’ll let you know. I have a hard time imagining I’ll feel that way any time soon. 😛

  5. Sorry for being this late in commenting [I’ve been a bit off lately] but: major congratulations on finishing and defending your thesis! I bet you felt huge relief after being done. Congratulations all around here,really. A job offer right there – that’s amazing. You worked hard to get to this point in life so it’s great to see all this paying off for you.
    While I have posted personal things on my blog before I hold back a lot so I can understand your decision to change your focus. Maybe we can get back to emailing so there’s still an option for staying updated on each other’s lives?

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