Pieces of Me

Kidspot Voices of 2014

There is good reason you should always check your spam folder. Sitting at breakfast in the Sunrise hotel in Hoi An mindlessly scrolling through my Facebook feed with one hand and holding my Vietnamese coffee with the other. I received a text from my sister “any emails from Kidspot?” Breakfast was our time to chat, while I took advantage of the free wi-fi at the hotel. “Nope, why?”

“Seems like their blog competition is running again, you sure you don’t have an email?” I was in holiday mode and emails were the last thing on my mind. “Nope, nothing in my inbox.”
“Maybe check your spam?” Sitting in the abyss of my spam folder was an email from Kidspot. “Oh cool I’ve been nominated! Lucky I checked – there is a form I have to fill out and return by the end of the week.”

“What for?” And with that I read my email a little more carefully.
“Oh my goodness, I have made the Top 100.”
Her text back “just quietly, that is a little bit awesome.”


That is how my journey in Kidspot’s Voices of 2014 started, in Vietnam overlooking the South China Sea. Of course I felt excited. I also felt complete disbelief and had to re-read the email over and over again. It felt like my heart had skipped a beat and yet at the same time like I was being weighed down with something far greater than I had anticipated. Here I was praying to the Universe to stay open to all possibility and possibility had gone and landed right in my lap – or better still, my spam folder.


A whirlwind trip to Sydney over the weekend saw me attend the Voices Master Class and the launch cocktail party. Oh what a weekend! I would need thousands of words to describe all that went through my mind as I met so many people and breathed in the motivation of so many bloggers all working hard to follow their dreams.

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In my mind, I wrote and re-wrote the words that I would post today; the inspiration, the knowledge, the thoughts that I gained from my experience. Yet, it was reading a post from a dear online friend and the disappointment she felt finding out that she was not one of the nominated blogs that gave me the greatest sense of purpose about Voices of 2014. My response to her I wanted to share with you:

Zanni, I feel disappointed in myself all the time. Almost daily. Another pitch rejected. Another blog post that could have been written better. Another competition failed to be part of. We all seek validation, it is human nature, we all seek guidance in what we do and validation is often mistaken for guidance. Perhaps you are sitting there thinking “easier for her to say” but honestly, even being in the nominated few, I feel more scared than I did last year when I wasn’t nominated. I think the key is perspective. In its simplicity and its difficulty. I need to find gratitude and happiness in what I have right now. I’m trying and you know what, it is harder some days than others. Zanni sit with the disappointment, let it wash over you and once it passes just remember that your words will outlast any competition and any judge of merit. The community you have here is testament to that and I love being part of your little space. So please don’t change, just grow and keep taking us on this journey with you xx


Perhaps I need to listen to my own words of wisdom. While I am terribly humbled by the journey that I am on for Voices of 2014 I must not forget that blog or no blog, nomination or no nomination, we all have a voice. That voice is taking each of us on our own journey. In all of our differences, we need to remember that at the heart of it all, we are all exactly the same.


If you missed my post over the weekend on The Confucius Cup, please take a moment to read it here.



  • Beautifully said Josefa, and, congratulations. You are very deserving of this recognition. “…we all have a voice. That voice is taking each of us on our own journey. In all of our differences, we need to remember that at the heart of it all, we are all exactly the same.” I hope everyone reads your words. Most of us will never receive recognition of our voices, and I hope that doesn’t silence us. Those who do, I hope remember “we are all exactly the same”. Wishing you success wherever this leads you! xx

    • Thank you so much Kate, our voice is so important, with or without the recognition xx

  • It is so hard when it comes to awards, I think. I didn’t even know the nominations were open until after they were closed and I got an email about being nominated? It’s funny how you never care about awards until you are nominated for one! But then I thought “Gosh who would nominate ME? My blog is terrible!” and I immediately became my own worst critic! I know several blogs which weren’t nominated that most certainly deserved to be. At the end of the day, I think our readers validate us far more than any award. After all, none of us do this for the awards, do we? In saying all that, I am truly happy for you and believe 100% you deserve to go all the way! xo

    • Your blog is not terrible Aroha! Far from it! I wholeheartedly think that no one does this purely for the awards, gosh can you imagine? ALL this work just for an award! The community, the readers, the stories – they keep me going x

  • You always write so beautifully and your nomination was so truly deserved. I only wish that I had taken the chance to say hello to you on Saturday. Next time :))))

  • Congratulations Josefa, and good luck! Lovely post – Zanni’s post was beautiful, and so is this one. There just aren’t enough places for everyone to get the pat on the back, but all the voices are important. x

    • I think we need to get better at patting ourselves on the back, something many of us forget to do xx

  • It was so lovely to meet you on Saturday, Josefa! Loved this post x

    • Loved meeting you! I quite liked how fate threw us four ladies together, meant to be x

  • Congratulations!! I am notoriously bad for checking my spam folder as I only really look at emails on my phone and can’t get my junk mail on there. I almost missed my sons first soccer training day as I hadn’t checked in ages!!

  • Rita

    Congratulations Josefa on a very well deserved nomination. Best of luck for the rest of the competition!

  • Lucy @ Bake Play Smile

    Congratulations again! I love reading your blog each week! PS. on a side note… how lovely is the Sunrise Hoi An hotel! We stayed there last year and it was just lovely xx

    • Oh I just LOVED that hotel! I would love to jet back there with my boys for a week of sun and ocean xx

  • Thank you for sharing Josefa. I am hugely happy for you and you totally deserve to be selected for Voices. I have followed your passion and intention with interest over the last couple of years, and know how much this means to you. Your voice certainly flourishes here. xxx

    • Your post rang true to me more so that many things I had read over the weekend, especially about #voicesof2014, thank you for sharing your words x

  • Congratulations and well done. Your blog is beautiful. The one thing I love most about the Kidspot Voices is the chance to find new and inspiring blogs that I never new existed. I think I may just have to have my own hall of fame on my blog as there are so many I love …… yours included. I am totally inspired by so many including the amazing Zanni, which I have only just discovered as well. Keep up the fabulous work. x

    • Thank you, yes I think we all could put together our own Hall of Fame! How cool would that be x

  • Kathy www.yinyangmother.com

    Lovely post and point about everyone having a voice. Yours is always beautiful and often inspiring and congratulations again. You know I think what I love about blogging is how our voices, all individual, can sound even more beautiful when harmonised in the chorus of connection through blogging.

    • I think the connection we have – with each other – with our readers – even with strangers across the internet is the most precious thing we have and that needs no justification x

  • Michaela Fox

    Congratulations. A nomination truly earned! I’ll be watching with interest but whatever happens in Voice 2014 I’ll still be reading your words. Best of luck xx

  • I think sometimes we just want some recognition rather than validation, and the kind of recognition we seek is different for everyone. Congratulations and enjoy the ride. x

  • Desire Empire

    Exciting way to find out. Congratulations on your Top 30 that is so great and good luck in the comp. I love the way you have presented the speakers quotes too.

    • Thank you, I couldn’t possibly leave the quotes out – so this was my sneaky way of putting them in x

  • I’m so excited for you lovely and not surprised at all to learn of your success. You are one of the good guys, and on your way to the top. I can’t wait to say I knew her when she was just starting out… lovely message to Zanni by the way x

  • Lisa@tomfo

    Congrats Josefa, well deserved. As usual, I love your words.
    A friend sent me this quote the other day by Ella Fitzgerald… “Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.” Best of luck… (not needed) you are already there! xx

    • I absolutely love this quote, thank you for sharing, might keep on sharing it 😉 xx

  • Congratulations on being in the top 100! I agree with Jodi. Blogging is hard work and you always share and put out more than you may get back. But it is rewarding when all the hard work pays off. xx

  • lifeatno2

    I read Zanni’s post and she wrote it beautifully and I could see exactly where she was coming from, your response was equally beautiful! When I saw the list I was so proud you and a few others were on there, the people I ‘know’ and I was inspired, I said to myself that I would work my tail off and try and make the list next year….. after this though I want to ask myself why? Not sure when I will come to the answer, but this post has given me a little more to ponder.
    Once again big congrats x

    • I think one of the greatest joys I have, is when people tell me that I have given them something to think about, that really means so much to me, thank you xx

  • Beautiful words and congratulations again! It is super exciting and yes, I can imagine you feel a smidge of pressure now as a finalist. Just go with your voice. Be true to that and there will be no losses xx

    • In the whirlwind, I think that is the only thing that I know is true – always go with my voice, nothing more and nothing less, thank you xx

  • Congratulations to you! I can’t imagine how exciting it must be for you! As I posted on Zanni’s blog, I experienced all those feelings too at being “overlooked” … but then I remembered that I blog because I love it, NOT to win awards or kudos though if they come I wouldn’t say no 😉 …so I picked myself up, brushed myself off and am getting on with what I love doing.

    Visiting today from #teamIBOT xxx

    • You are gorgeous Janet, I think we are very lucky that we can do what we love doing xx

  • The kids Menu

    Congrats – love your work.

  • Renee at Mummy, Wife, Me

    Josefa, you are so wise 🙂 Whenever I read your beautiful words I nod my head and smile. They make perfect sense. I look forward to reading them for a very long time to come. I am so stoked to hear that you are a top 100 blogger. It is well deserved. Congratulations xx

    • I love reading a post and nodding along in acknowledgment and understand, so glad that happens here too sometimes xx

  • I love what you said, that we all have a voice.
    In some ways I think I feel more for those of you that did make it, than the rest of us, because no one is picking over us thinking we deserved it or not. (And of course you did!) The reality is that everyone deserves to have their voice acknowledged. Everyone needs to be heard. And good on these competitions for extending that privilege to all of us.

    • You are a beautiful soul Jess and yes, we all have a voice, whether we blog it, sing it, shout it or otherwise – each of us has a story to be told and it is so important that we do xx

  • TeganMC

    Congratulations on making the top 100! You have a beautiful voice that has often made my day that much better. I love reading your take on the world and the eloquent way you bring the words together.

    • Now that is one of the nicest things someone has ever said about my little space, you have made me feel fuzzy all over, so glad that sometimes I make your day a little better xx

  • Pinky Poinker

    Congratulations! And I can’t say I’m surprised my lovely!

  • The Plumbette

    Well done Josefa. I check in on your blog each week and you have a beautiful voice on your blog. But I read about the disappointment from other bloggers, Zanni included and I understand because I have experienced disappointment from not being acknowledged in the past and it was a HUGE surprise to me to see my little blog up in the Top 30. But this disappointment from others, while it is understandable, can also make a little blogger like me feel I don’t deserve to be there and that other bloggers feel they are more worthy than me.
    I don’t blog for awards. I blog to inspire and educate readers on my passions and what I know. The award is a bonus on the side, an unexpected one at that, but it has proved to be a big sign to me that I am on the right track when it comes to my blogging. I love our blogging community but everyone has a voice and each voice is valuable, nominated or not.

    • Oh lovely lady, your honesty in this comment is very much appreciated. It seems that having a voice is more important than ever. For while we can assume how someone is feeling we can never really know. And these feelings of self doubt and critic seem to be something all of us share, nominated or not, that speaks volumes in itself. May your journey in #voicesof2014 only keep leading you to success xx

  • I can’t believe this is the first year you were nominated. I feel for Zanni too, I’m right there with her. I was looking forward to the kidspot one for the writing challenge. I guess theres always next year.

  • Congrats and so lovely meeting you on Saturday x

    • So lovely to meet you! and thank you for stopping by this little space of mine xx

  • Zita @ It’s time…

    Congrats on making the list! I love the pics that you have created for this post and the quotes on them! 🙂

  • Grace

    Wise words, Josefa and how very kind of you to give Zanni such wonderful encouragement. I’m sure she’ll be there next year. For sure. Lovely to have finally met you! x

    • Oh I think it is only a matter of time before we see Zanni right up there, lovely to meet you over the weekend xx

  • Loree

    Congratulations and best of luck.

  • Congratulations! How exciting. It looks like the launch in Sydney was lovely.

  • Huge congrats lovely. I wish I could have met you over the weekend.. What a whirlwind trying to match faces to blog names and then actually spend time chatting with all the amazing people in attendance! Such a great reminder of the privilege that it is to have a voice, however big or small!

    • Oh I felt like I was looking at everyone’s boobs for half the night -trying to read name tags! I love the idea that having a voice is a privilege, now you have given me something to think about xx

  • I am so happy for you Josefa! The weekend must have been awesome. xo

  • Wow, Josefa – you’ve shared two very valid and honest points of view beautifully. It was so lovely to be one of the lucky few to attend both the masterclass and cocktail party – and was absolutely awe inspired to meet so many passionate and awesome bloggers.

    • Thank you lovely, I think while we can get caught up in the excitement, it is hard not to acknowledge the disappointment so many must be feeling. Loved meeting you over the weekend, I hope the #voicesof2014 journey for you only keeps getting better xx

  • Good on you lovely… and yes, wise words to the beautiful Zanni. She works so hard… wise words for her and everyone else for that matter x

  • Congratulations Josefa, very well deserved nomination xxx

  • A huge congrats to you Josefa. I wish I could have been there to meet you in person lovely xx

  • Josie@ Two Little Jays

    Congratulations Josefa…..I am only new to reading blogs (yes how slow am I). I love reading your insights into life and this one reminds me to be less critical of myself and be grateful for the opportunities that come my way.

  • Emma Fahy Davis

    Happy bloggy birthday! I love your new look! Strangely enough, of all the weekends, Oct 18 I *will* actually be in Melbourne and I’d love to join you for lunch 🙂

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