December 31st, 2018


Photos at Padley Gorge!

What a fantastic way to see out 2018 - a photoshoot with my family and my sister Kate's boys. We went to Padley Gorge, in the Peak District near to Grindleford, and the boys loved it - loads of tree to climb, water to paddle in, places to get lost in!

As always, Claire did a fab job of capturing the essence of us all... Click here to see all our photo shoots since 2008, with our talented photographer Claire!

And here are my shots, of her shots, and the "behind-the-scenes" shots...

Livejournal Review of 2018

It's quite simple: the first sentence of the first entry for each month in 2018. Here's what my livejournal world looked like in 2018.
There are lots of posts which I wanted to write, but which I never did.
Some might belatedly appear!

I need a fresh start.
Feb: Way back when (aka 2008/2009) I wrote a list of my 100 Favourite Things.
Mar: Results for first 2 months of the year are in....
Apr: Easter Sunday this year fell on April Fool's Day, so thanks to an idea from a colleague at work, the boys and I disguised grapes to look like chocolate eggs - Alan did his bit and played along.
May: And somehow, a third of the year has whooshed by....
June: -
This was the previous list! I've now consolidated it all into an even bigger list.
Aug: So it's been decided - we're staying here in Switzerland for our 2 week family holiday.
Sep: We've all survived the first 2 weeks back at school and work!
Oct: Portugal
I've done this before ( in 2012 and 2015) and blogging every day for a month is definitely do-able but also challenging enough.
Dec: So, i'm doing my own Advent challenge! Getting Active and Get Writing!

List of books read in 2018 (76)

Books read in 2018: 76

The Knitting Circle: Ann Hood
Mount: Jilly Cooper
The Four - The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google: Scott Galloway
Talk Like TED: Carmine Gallo
The Picture of Dorian Gray: Oscar Wilde
Radical Candour: Kim Malone Scott
Battlestar Surburbia: Chris McCudden
Rest: Alex Soojung-Kim Pang
Evening class: Maeve Binchy
Why we Sleep: Matthew Walker
Jonathan Livingston Seagull: Richard Bach
The Forgotten Guide to Happiness: Sophie Jenkins
The Art of the Good Life: Rolf Dobelli
Lose it Right: James Fell
Beyond Toddlerdom: Dr Christopher Green
The Return Journey: Maeve Binchy
Run Fat Bitch Run: Ruth Field
168 Hours: Laura Vanderkam
Satzfetzen: Isobel Morf
Sexy Little Numbers: Lindsay Gordon
Cut the Crap: Ruth Field
The Inimitable Jeeves: PG Wodehouse</a>
Minding Frankie: Maeve Binchy
Lords & Ladies: Terry Pratchett
The Code of the Woosters: PG Wodehouse
Searching for Schindler: Thomas Keneally
The Winter of our Disconect: Susan Maushart
Thank You Jeeves: PG Wodehouse
Quentins: Maeve Binchy
The Anna Karenina Fix: Life Lessons from Russian Literature: Viv Groskop:
Prudence: Jilly Cooper
You talkin' to me?: Sam Leith
Tara Road: Maeve Binchy
The Glass Lake: Maeve Binchy
Option B: Sheryl Sandberg
Victorians Undone: Kathryn Hughes
The Checklist: Atul Gawande
Oh my God What a Complete Aisling: Emer Mclysaght & Sarah Breen
Past Secrets: Cathy Kelly
Slow Train to Switzerland: Diccon Bewes
The Other Side of the Wall : Andrea Mara
In the Unlikely Event : Judy Blume
Confessions of a Conjuror : Derren Brown
Circle of Friends : Maeve Binchy
Still Me : Jojo Moyes
After You : Jojo Moyes
Happy: Derren Brown
Balancing Act: Joanna Trollope
This Charming Man: Marian Keyes
Harry Potter and the order of the Phoenix
The Diet Myth: Tim Spector
Light a penny candle: Maeve Binchy
The holiday home: Fern Britton
The Cotswolds Cookery Club: Alice Ross
Act Like a Leader: Herminia Ibarra
In Praise of Slow: Carl Honore
Anybody out there: Marian Keyes
A higher loyalty: James Comey
Those other Women: Nicola Moriarty
History of the World: Andrew Marr
Swiss Watching: Diccon Bewes
Schrottreif: Isabel Morf
Me Before You: Jojo Moyes
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: J.K.Rowling read with Markus
Keeping the Wolf from the Door: Bella Robertson
Focus in the Age of Distraction: Jane Piper
Lisa Jewell: The Girl
The Self Care Revolution: Suzy Reading
Tired of Thinking about Drinking: Bella Robertson
Jonathan Safran Foer: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Tracy Chevalier: Remarkable Creatures
Catherine Gray: The Unexpected Joy of being sober
David M. Barnett: Major Tom
Marian Keyes: The Break
Lotta Dann: Mrs D is going within
Clare Pooley: The Sober Diaries

Resolutions Update 2018

1. No alcohol: Did not drink all year - anxiety levels are down, sleep is up, weight unchanged, but most importantly I like myself again!

2. Running: This didn't really happen this year, was quite good at getting my 10'000 steps in, but running didn't take off. Did lots of physio, had lots of massages, setting myself up for success in 2019 :-) my iron levels were rubbish all year, which probably didn't help....

3. Blog daily: Didn't blog daily, but I did catch up with quite a lot of writing. Renewed focus on this in 2019...

4. Read 100 book: I'm calling this green - I read 76 and had a really good reading year, plus bought myself a comfy reading chair. I know that reading keeps me sane - need to do more of this in 2019!

2018 in pictures

2018 has been busy! Patrick left kindergarten and started school. Markus is in 3rd class and has a huge gang of friends. Both boys love playing football and Markus has joined a rubgy team. Alan is still at Educa, running a massive IT education project, and I am still at CS.

We spent our summer holiday in Switzerland and the boys and I had a camping trip with the Palmer gang in Derbyshire. In the autumn school holidays we got some sun and sea with a lovely family holiday in Portugal.

This advent Patrick and I took the steam train into the forest to find Santa.. Markus ran on his own for the first time in the Silvesterlauf though the old town., Patrick and I ran together.

1st row, left to right
Jan: Old Sofa
Jan: New Sofa
Feb: Sledging
Apr: Easter with the Swetes

2nd row, left to right
Apr: Boys with the Böög! (Sechseluute)
May: Helen, Mags, Sal, Amit in the Reichstag (Berlin)
June: Aunty Sharon pays a flying visit
July: Rugby Boys

3rd row, left to right
July: World Cup Fever
July: Camping in UK
August: Family holiday in Tessin
August: Patrick starts School

4th row, left to right
October: Portugal
November: Sal visits, trip to Rigi
Dec. Samichlaus & Steam Train
Dec: Silvesterlauf

2018 in Snapshots

Life is good, enjoy the little things. Someday you will look back and realize they were the big things.

I try very hard to be mindful, to appreciate my life and the blessings I have. This is not always easier in my self induced panic and rush and stress. But when I look back at my daily snapshots, I appreciate the little things :-) And I remember how much love, beauty and fun surrounds me each day!

Snapshots 2007 - 2018