A year ago today I left for Bali, but my journey towards Delicious Momster and where I am today began way before then…
It was 2017 and I was living in Shanghai, in between jobs, feeling incredibly lost and desperate to find my place and purpose in the world. After bingeing MasterChef Australia for a week in my pajamas on the couch, I decided to rename the blog I’d started when first arriving in Shanghai (Lotuses + Lanehouses) and turn it into a food content consultancy, Delicious Monster.
3 years later, after two more major moves, a divorce, and finding love again, I self-published my first recipe ebook (The Isolated Kitchen) 3 weeks into the hard COVID lockdown. That’s where things really started moving and taking shape. I kicked things into overdrive and opened an online shop, curated a collection of edible things to sell, developed a range of small-batch chocolate sauces, and started creating content for more brands.
I found my groove and felt like I was finally getting somewhere with something I’d invested a lot of time and effort into. Something that was mine.
The next year my 2.5 year relationship ended very suddenly, leaving me incredibly heartbroken. After a month of mourning the loss of what I thought was it, I picked myself up again and forged ahead, throwing myself into my job, creative work, new home, fitness, dating, and planning for a future that looked very different from what I’d previously imagined.
In February 2022 my estranged biological father passed away, which changed my outlook on many things. Out of the pain endured and perspective gained since the previous year, came some of the best work I’d ever created. What also came out of it was an insatiable desire to take more risks and live a fuller life without regrets.
I made the decision to move to Bali, packed up my life in South Africa for the second time, and landed in a place that would change me forever.
Before I left South Africa I took 5 weeks to wrap things up after I left my job and moved out of my apartment, just to make 100% sure that I was making the right decision. A week out of that time was spent camping on the banks of the Orange River, cut off from the outside world. It was on the second or third night while sitting underneath the stars and staring at the Milky Way, that it suddenly hit me like a freight train.
Through floods of silent tears, I closed my eyes and made a wish. I had no idea at the time or think it would happen as quickly or in the way that it did, but the Universe had something up its sleeve for me…
Just after 8 am on 8 March 2023, I was given the most incredible gift I’ve ever received: Frances. She made me a mother and has already taught me so much more about myself and the world around me. After years of struggling to find my place and feeling an incredible void that I unsuccessfully tried so hard to fill with undeserving and meaningless things, there is a sense of peace and a feeling like a part of me has been returned to where it belongs.
With all of the change and new beginnings, I’d been tinkering with the idea that it was about time for another rebrand, something that would allow me to creatively branch out beyond food. A very smart and dear friend of mine planted the Momster seed a few weeks ago when she shared a recipe with me and jokingly called me “Delicious Momster”, which I took as a sign that the timing was right.
I’d been thinking a lot about what direction Delicious Monster was going in and was having a bit of an identity crisis. How could I take the parts of me that I’d built up for so long and combine them with my new role as a mom? How could I still keep those parts of me intact without losing them completely? How would it make sense that I now wanted to share things in relation to having a child? Who am I now?
I believe this is something that all new moms who’ve had lives and careers before their children struggle with.
For years I’ve expressed myself creatively, sharing my love for food and being incredibly open and honest about things that I’ve struggled with. I truly embodied the Delicious and the Monster. Becoming a mom has added an entirely new dynamic into the mix, and because Delicious Monster has been such a big part of my life and who I am, and what I’m known for, I had to bring it all together.
And so Delicious Momster came to be.
Delicious Momster: Food, Recipes, Real Life, Parenting & Everything In Between.
If you’re wondering what happened to Delicious Monster, I could never part with that which has given me so much motivation and inspiration, helped me to grow personally and professionally, led to meeting some of the most fantastic people and the best friendships, allowed me to travel and given me the opportunity to build a very special online community.
It still exists (@delishmonster) and is the new home of a few food-related projects I’ll be working on in the upcoming months.
Before I sign off I also wanted to take a moment to say a very heartfelt THANK YOU to all of my family, friends, and followers for their support and for cheering me on over the years. I hope you stick around for the next chapter.
It hasn’t been easy, but it’s been so so worth it. Always remember, we can do hard things.