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A year in review: 2018

Wow, I cannot believe it’s the 6th January today. I can already tell that this year is going to go by as fast or faster than last year, but I am so excited to see what we accomplish during this bright and shiny new year.

Last year was a tough one, for a lot of us, it seems. So, in order to put it all into perspective, I want to review 2018 and talk about something positive, magical or wonderful that happened during every month of year (with the help from Facebook Memories, since mine isn’t the greatest).

P.S. The images were all captured on my phone, meaning they are not the greatest of quality. However, they capture 2018 perfectly as they were taken spur of the moment.

Here goes:

Nessie making an appearance.

January: Not only did Jeanne and I ring in the new year surrounded by friends and family in Scotland at the good ol‘ Bowling Club my grandparents still play at today, but we got to travel up to Loch Ness for a few nights where we spotted Nessie and enjoyed our first holiday for the year. Being in the UK also meant I got to spend time with my gorgeous pooch, Chester, and my grandparents and, as well all get older, every moments with them counts more and more.

February: Jeanne and I spent an evening surrounded by friends watching the Derby World Cup. Derby has taught me and given me so much but, the one thing I am super grateful for above all, is the friends I made along the way.

Little Lara on the phone to the Popo.

March: Wow, March was a huge month for me. We had the opportunity to look after our beautiful niece, Lara, who changed my perspective regarding having children. It was an eyeopening experience that taught me so much about kids, myself and Jeanne and my relationship. I experienced team work with Jeanne like never before, learned how to deal with so many situations (including how to change a nappy and deal with tantrums), and enjoyed every second of it. I will always be forever grateful for the three weeks she spent with us.

April: I finally levelled up at derby from Fresh Meat to Rookie. This was a big deal for me, simply because when I started derby it was all about the exercise and nothing to do with climbing the ranks. Equally, I wasn’t very keen on contact, I was just there to get fit and enjoy a different way of getting my weekly exercise without running on a treadmill. But I did it, I levelled up, started contact and enjoyed it so very much!

Jeanne with Jena.

June: In 2018 we got to meet some incredible people. One of these people included Jena, an incredible woman who works at Facebook head office in the states. It was incredible to hear her talk so passionately about what she does, have the opportunity to soak up all of her knowledge and to learn about the platform and its safety features (the topic of the seminar).

Jeanne and Aunty Yvonne.

July: We spent more time in Fish Hoek with our extended family. Not only do I love the picturesque drive from Blouberg to Fish Hoek – I gawk at the views every single time we drive out there like I am seeing it for the first time – but creating new relationships with our extended family in 2018 was a very important thing for us. Every single moment with those you love is a gift, and I will never forget any of them.

Little Liam and I.

August: Jeanne and I had the opportunity to surprise her cousin, Cameron, for his 21st birthday. This also means I had the opportunity to visit my childhood home and spend some time with my dad and Eulodie, as well as Jeanne’s huge family who we don’t get to see very often. This was also the first time we got to meet our new nephew, Liam.

Jeanne and Max.

September: We spent lots more time at the stables where Jeanne conquered incredible milestones I didn’t think she would reach for another year or so. She amazed me every single time I had the chance to go to the stables and watch her lesson with her new skills and moves. These are very proud moments for me, very, very proud moments.

Myself, my mum and Jeanne at the V&A Waterfront during her visit.

October: Three significant things happened in October 1. Jeanne and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary, 2. we finally went on our mini-moon to Sun City, and 3. my mum, sister and friend, Julie, visited from the UK for my birthday.

Jeanne and Zeke.

November: Jeanne and Zeke completed the One Plan Muddy Puppy 5km obstacle course! Since being diagnosed with epilepsy, we don’t part take in much strenuous exercise but, in the deadly heat, Jeanne completed a 5km obstacle course with little Zeke – victory! This was a huge milestone for both myself and Jeanne. I saw that Jeanne was okay and could conquer something really strenuous by herself and without her health acting up. I was (and still am) incredibly proud of her (well, both of them).

Jeanne demonstrating how much bigger out boot is now compared to our little Chevrolet Spark’s boot.

December: This is the hardest month of all for both Jeanne and I. My gran and grampa passed away during December (in differen years) and Jeanne has also had many family members and friends who have passed away in December. We also got some really bad news and spent time visiting hospitals during December 2018, so it’s always really hard to push all of that hurt aside. However, one pretty amazing thing happened – Jeanne and I finally traded in our Chevrolet Spark and got a new car! A VW Polo Vivo, to be exact. We work really hard and I am really proud of this achievement making it a great way to end the year.

In addition to the above I have realised, while going through all of my memories on Facebook, that so much more happened that I am so grateful for. Including:

Jemma and Jeremy came to visit and we climbed Table Mountain, I was asked to head a pretty incredible program at work, we started eating really healthy (a feat for a sugar and carb addict like me), we grabbed every opportunity to walk on the beach with both hands, I received some incredible press drops (Samsung microwave, Lindt chocolate and so much more) and we had the chance to eat at some incredible places, I cooked up a storm with ‘Like A Chef‘ and a room full of bloggers I admire, as well as travel to some pretty special places (Tokara, Bonnivale Wines, Waverly Hills and more) thanks to my blog.

Maybe 2018 wasn’t that bad a year after all and, this year, I am going to try and not let the really shitty moments overshadow the really great ones and I hope you do, too!

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