We reach another year-end so it’s time when I take a quick peek at what has happened over the last 12 months.
After some sorrow and stress in 2018, I had high hopes for 2019.
Let’s just say, it didn’t start out that well but as I look back over the year, I’m able to appreciate the high points even if there weren’t that many.
Out and About
So, we didn’t get out much this year. But here’s a few things we managed:
Early in the year I went back to England to visit family and spent time playing boardgames with my brother.
I am now adding Pandemic to my fave games ever.
Boardgame nights are one of the big things I miss since we moved.
Most people just aren’t into these types of games and even the places you can go, they are only in the bigger cities and they can be a little cliquey.
We visited a park and ended up in a hedge maze, that we were rubbish at.
We ended up further away from the middle than when we started.
By the end, we were getting cold but refused to be defeated by the maze! Eventually we managed to get through and here is our victory photo above the hedges.
In October we went to a Pumpkin fest, it was a little disappointing but the day before had apparently been the better day.
We did have a grand time walking around and getting giddy.
We saw very few pumpkins, but I did find this elusive barrow of several and snapped a photo to prove there were ACTUALLY pumpkins at the fest.
I also had the enjoyment of getting stuck in the mud because they made us all park on a hilly field and when I tried to drive back up, the tyres just spun due to all the wet grass and mud. I think we’ll skip this next year.
We did our usual, visiting the local parks to feed the ducks and swans.
I took way too many photos of lakes, rivers and pools, like the one above.
I have a thing for water so I am always taking photos of the sea and rivers etc.
Next time, I’ll try and take some photos of the wildlife too! 🙂
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The big home life change, was my partner and I bought our first home together.
The process seemed to take forever, but finally, in February after waiting months, we completed the sale and got our keys.
We totally love the house. It is warm and cosy and very solid so you don’t hear much from the neighbours.
I also LOVE that it has an open fire, which is lovely in winter and great to sit and read in front of (the cats love it too!)
We have yet to make toast on it, but that will definitely be done next year.
The first time we lit it, we just sat in silence for like 3 hours, staring at it.
I also LOVE that we have a front and back garden. A garden was always a must when we rented houses. I need that little piece of nature close by.
And now, because this is our house, these are our gardens, we can do what we want.
Currently, we have just trimmed the hedges, cut the grass, added a washing line and a bird feeder. We are giving it a year so we can see what we have growing, which areas have sun etc
While the loss of my cats from 2017 and 2018 was still raw, we were made aware of an elderly cat whose owner had died and the man’s wife had dumped their four cats in the street.
I had some choice swear words when I heard that. The cats were left as strays before being found and rescued.
The other 3 cats were rehomed, but this one, was considered “not as handsome” as the others. (We think he is very handsome).
He had never been to the vet in his whole life, so ended up with all but 3 teeth being removed. He also has a pretty dodgy digestive system. Despite all this, he is super cute, super loving and we were happy to give him a forever home.
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The year started badly with me being rushed to the emergency room several times in January.
To their credit, the A&E doctors and nurses were brilliant, they took good care of me.
My partner also did a wonderful job of keeping my through-the-roof anxiety from skyrocketing any higer.
I also got to ride in an ambulance which was fun… even if I was partially out of it on painkillers.
However, with all the drips and blood draws, my arms were so sore and bruised by the end of the month.
By May, I ended up with serious burn-out and had to take the whole of May off to recover and rebalance myself.
The year then ended with me suffering from SAD Syndrome. Ahh yes, a year for being kicked in the gut healthwise, it seems. But I’m managing it okay, for the most part.
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Sadly, in April, our family member who had been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer the previous year passed away.
We are truly grateful that they were no longer in pain but as with all death, this passing filled us with sorrow.
I was invited to participate in a fantasy Anthology with the theme of Magic and Supernatural Beings.
I agreed and wrote my first real short story (not counting Flash Fiction) called The Locksmith.
The anthology, From Ashes to Magic, was published on the 2nd December which was awesome.
We have received wonderful feedback and lots of positive reviews which has been a real boost!
Big thanks to all my followers who encouraged me and who bought the book! I truly hope you enjoy it.
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With this year’s stresses and family emergencies, my novels took more of a back seat than I had hoped.
I made the hard decision to put Dark Hart on the back burner and focused more on my fantasy, The Blessed.
I have made significant progress on The Blessed, and yet still not nearly enough as I wanted.
I have big plans for getting much more done, writing-wise, next year. So stay tuned for that! 🙂
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I failed miserably on the 85K Challenge.
It probably didn’t help that I spent several days in the hospital during January, moved house in February then went back to England in March.
However, I never let that get me down and I’ll be jumping into the 85K challenge again next year.
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I gave my website a bit of a make-over with a new theme and structure.
Later in the year, I eased off doing Monday and Sunday blog posts and finally made the decision to end Wednesday guest posts, at least for the time being.
I was, once again, ranked as being one of the Top 10 UK Writing Blogs by Feedspot.
Looking back, I can see the things that went well and I am heartened by them. This was a tough year, but I try not to let those tough times get me down.
Instead, I like to learn from them and see if there’s anything I can do next year to make things easier/better (at least, in the things I have control over).
So, how was your 2019?