7 Of The Best Things That Happened In 2018
Every single year without fail I do a blog post like this and they really are my favourite to write. There is something so undeniably cathartic about rounding up the year into words and 2018 has been a weird year for me, in so many ways it’s been brilliant but then in others, it’s just felt a little odd and quite difficult in places. Either way, I’m so grateful that for another year I’m walking around with my health, a lovely home, a job that gives me so much more than just a pay-check, wonderful family and friends, a partner that I couldn’t be without and of course my two beloved little hounds. So here are all the highlights of 2018 and here’s to 2019, hopefully, there are a brilliant 12 months on the horizon.
Without a doubt, the best thing that not only happened to me but to my little family is the arrival of Edie, the little blue whippet. We’d been desperate to get another dog for a long time as Josie who we got in the summer of 2017 is so much happier in the company of her fellow hounds and we knew she would love a speedy companion. So the long search began for another dog, and one Friday morning we stumbled across Edie, she was only 11 weeks old and found herself needing a new forever home after her first one, unfortunately, hadn’t quite worked out through no fault of her own. We all immediately got in the car and drove up to Manchester to see her and within an hour we were headed home with a little blue bundle of joy. Not only has she completed our family but she’s made Josie the happiest hound out there, seeing them run around together is something that makes me beam from ear to ear every single day. I always worried that having two dogs would be really hard but for us, it’s easier than one, the fact that they are always there to keep each other company is something that works so well for us.
This was something that I mentioned in a somewhat recent blog post as 2018 has very much been a year of plodding along for me and just getting on with things. It’s not really been a year of new things or pushing the boundaries and I think that’s ok as the years like that are what keep us going. Sometimes I wonder if we’re all burnt out on being told to try and reach our goals constantly as some things take a long time to achieve and that’s ok. Getting things done and paying the bills are the most important things to me, and I do truly believe that is something that should be celebrated more as those are things that hold great value. Because if we don't have the months of just plodding along then we wouldn't be able to push the boundaries and try new things.
RENOVATING THE BATHROOM
One of the biggest things that happened this year is that we finally got our bathroom renovated, now we didn’t have the easiest start and got let down by our original contractor but we got there in the end. The old bathroom was quite frankly revolting and I was thrilled to see it smashed to pieces and the tiled kingdom come to life. Renovations are difficult and expensive but there really are worth it in the end and the finished result is everything that we wanted and more. Now I thoroughly enjoy going and getting in the bath after a long day instead of laying there thinking about how I have no idea how tiles can get so grubby. We’re not in a rush to do any more renovations at the moment but when we do I’ll be sure to document them as I so enjoyed sharing the progress of the bathroom.
FINDING OUT WHERE I WANT TO GO
Whilst this year has very much been a year of plodding along and not really pushing myself something that has enabled me to do is figure out what I want to do. Which is something that I’ve found incredibly hard, I’ve never been all that career driven which has subsequently made me feel like a massive failure but what you do to make a living isn’t the be all and end all of life. Now that I know where I want direction to head in it means that I can start putting things in place to work towards it, which is something that I’m very much looking forward to as for so long whilst I’ve not been 100% sure on where I want to be. One thing that I am sure that I don’t want to do is to put any time constraints on my goals, general timescales are great but setting something set in stone isn’t something I find in any joy in doing.
A NEW SENSE OF CONFIDENCE
If there is one word I could use to describe myself it’s certainly not confident, I’m quite shy and reserved but this year I’ve really pushed myself to come out of my shell to try and boost my confidence more and more. It all began when I started going fresh-faced when walking the dogs when I’d usually want to put makeup on as that is something that undeniably makes me feel much more confident. And now not wearing makeup is something that is very much normal for me, I no longer worry that I’ve not got a full face on which is something that I never thought would happen. As well as feeling much more confident without my usual full face on something that I’ve really worked on is feeling a lot more comfortable with talking to others and I have the dogs to thank for this. Now I can safely say good morning to the majority of people I see and it’s a wonderful feeling to have. It's all the little things that have made the biggest difference to my confidence levels, saying hello to someone might seem small but for someone who wants to be a wallflower, it's a big thing.
When I first moved in with my boyfriend last year something that I wasn’t expecting to feel was such bad homesickness because I’ve only moved less than 10 miles away from my dad's house and I see him most days so I can walk Josie & Edie with Bella. But I really did struggle for a while which is certainly not something I was expecting, a completely new routine is not something that I thought I was going to find so hard and it’s taken me until this year to feel truly settled and it’s something that I appreciate so much now. A big change isn’t something that I cope with amazingly well but I know that life is full of them so I need to get much better with them. I always wonder how many of us feel homesick when we move away from our parents but we bury that feeling deep inside because we're expected to be thrilled with our new lives.
taking time off
Something that I did this year was I took nearly a month off from posting on this blog which isn’t something that I’ve done in over 6 years and it was well overdue. I’m no stranger to creative burn out but it’s something that I absolutely hate and now I’m very conscious of avoiding it at all costs. Taking that much time off isn’t something that I took lightly, this is my job after all and there aren’t many jobs where you can take that much time off. I was so scared that by doing this I would really damage my career but thankfully I didn’t and it was a break that I desperately needed. Since that point I’ve also stopped posting daily as it wasn’t a schedule that I could keep up with at all, I honestly felt like I was hamster on a wheel and I couldn’t keep on running anymore. Having such an intense posting schedule left me no room to work on anything else and I never think it’s a good idea to put all your eggs in one basket. Now I have a much healthier approach to work and it's something that I'm so pleased to have.