This year I am NOT excited. Here’s why.

This week in the Duck Pond, on my first live call for 2022, we will be chatting about our word of the year.

Choosing a word of the year is like selecting your own little guiding star, a bright point to guide you through the travails of the coming year.

Choosing a word makes me feel hopeful, engaged. Less insecure than usual. My magic word is something I put a lot of thought into— and always look forward to selecting.

However, can I admit something shameful?

By December 2021 I had FORGOTTEN what word I chose way back in January!

Clearly, I didn’t touch base with my guiding star often enough. I didn’t record my word anywhere logical either (the toilet door would have been ideal) so there was no point sifting through diaries and journals. I have too many anyway, a last minute search would have been futile.

Suffice to say, this year I have resolved to DO BETTER.

My word of the year for 2022?


There it is. Trapped in cyberspace for all time. Lest I forget…

But simplify is not what this blog post is about.

This post is about EXCITED.




People reckon the word awesome is the most overused, misunderstood and misplaced word in our modern vernacular.

And, yeah, it is.

Can’t argue with that, dear reader. (Guilty as charged. I use awesome way too much…)

But nipping on the heels of awesome is EXCITED.

I am so tired of excited.

Of saying I’m excited.

Of convincing others to be excited.

Of chasing excitement.

My first memory of being excited was when aged four, I hosted my own birthday party. And vomited Pepsi down the front of my blouse.

Too much excitement, my mother said sagely.

I took that comment to heart and forevermore I’ve been exceedingly wary of excitement.

And yet…

I am often EXCITED!

Do you know how exciting it is to have the same hairdo as a Beatrice Alemagna character???

I have the privilege of doing a job I adore. Writing and creating children’s books really is beyond freakin’ exciting! I don’t think I say this enough. I LOVE what I do. Even when I’m weary and whinging I am always grateful. Always stunned by my good fortune.

Not only but also, building, nurturing and inspiring the girl&duck community is sooo exciting there are days when I think I might go POP!

I’m like Miles Finch.

Psyched outta my mind!

Gawd, look at that awful punctuation. Come on, meme people!

And yet.

Once upon a time, I threw up my Pepsi because I was so excited.

And that was not a good look.


Tickled pink.





These are just some of the synonyms Aunty Google offers.

I guess they all have their place.

But just like Pepsi they are all sugar, no coke.

And they make me slightly nauseous.

Dear reader, I don’t know how or even if I can go through an entire year without using the word excited. But journaling about it here, with you by my side, has given me hope.

Maybe there is a calmer, more gracious, less aggressive way of talking about those things we love. Those things we are eager, thrilled, intoxicated to share.

If there is, if I do find a more elegant way to share all that I love without squawking to the world about my EXCITEMENT, you will be first to hear of it.

In the meantime, may your New Year be bright, creative and productive.

If you are seeking calm, may your days be calm.

If you are seeking excitement — avoid Pepsi.

Warmest blessings, dear reader, as stride out once again into the scary, beautiful world together.

Jen xo

If you would like to work more closely with me this year and join the Duck Pond, (OMG, wouldn’t THAT be brilliant?) you’re in luck!
The shop is currently OPEN!
Pretty cool, hey?

2 Replies to “This year I am NOT excited. Here’s why.”

  1. I love your honesty Jen! I had to look up my word for 2021. It was ‘Ebb and Flow.’ Learning to manage the high and low tides of creativity. Perfect for a year filled with lockdowns and dubious emotions. I’m looking forward to 2022 in the Duck Pond. I’m very grateful for the community you have created.

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