It’s easy to forget how far you’ve come, what you’ve achieved and how you’ve changed – until you look at where it all began. As I spend the last few days of 2015 reminiscing about the year, there’s one thing I know for certain – 2015 was a year of milestones.
It was a big year of weddings, of major changes, of our engagement, of relief, of tears and excitement. My partner got a permanent job at a great company, after a year of uncertainty. I attended four weddings where my best friends got married, and friends had babies, filling me of joy and happiness. We started looking for a house, finally being in a stable position to do so. And finally, after 10 years of being together, we got engaged.
Great Ocean Road – Twelve Apostles (Yes there’s not actually 12)
We travelled a lot this year, with lots of weekend getaways. We spent Easter in Sydney, watching a family member’s netball championship, meeting other bloggers and basically eating and shopping. I went to Townsville in July for work, to check out the triathlon there. In October, we spent a long weekend at Gold Coast with family, and went paddle boarding.
In November, we attended our 3rd PAX Australia in Melbourne and had lots of geeky gaming times checking out Fallout 4 and playing tabletop games with friends. We visited the Great Ocean Road in Melbourne, where we drove over 800 kilometres but it never felt too long. The twelve apostles were one of the most beautiful sights I’ve ever seen.
December, we went to Daydream Island to celebrate our 10 year anniversary and got engaged there. We also went snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef, where we swam amongst coral reefs and tropical fish.
The mermaids at Daydream Island
With so many highlights this year, I think it’s appropriate to pay homage to the lowlights. There were times when I let the pressure, stress and anxiety get to me, but I never look back at these moments with regret. I look back at these moments thinking, these are the moments that shape who I am. I will never be ashamed of what I feel, because to appreciate the good, you have to experience the bad. And only after experiencing that, will you become stronger.
My biggest lesson of the year is to look after myself. It’s okay to have a demanding schedule, it’s okay to be doing things every hour of the day, but if I don’t set myself some time to rest and relax, then I’m not going to be able to recharge the batteries. There were so many times during the year where I ran myself to the ground, that I became so worked up and anxious about all the things “I needed to do” that I forgot to look after the most important thing – my health.
Thank you so much to my amazing friends, family, people and readers for your ongoing love and support!
- My biggest highlight of the year is welcoming my lovely co-bloggers, Jenna and Aila to Happy Indulgence! We’ve had so much fun together already, chatting, fangirling and blogging together. I couldn’t have asked for better co-bloggers.
- I also started a Youtube channel for Happy Indulgence, which currently has 144 subscribers! It’s been so much fun sharing my opinion with you all on books and movies through a different channel.
- I met some amazing authors this year – my favourite author, Sarah J Maas who recognised me from Twitter! I also got the opportunity to interview Cassandra Clare and Holly Black one-on-one which was an amazing (and nerve wracking experience).
- It was another fantastic year of bookish events, attending Supanova, PTALive, BTCYA night with HarperCollins, and Brisbane Writers Festival where I met so many fellow YA lovers, readers and book bloggers!
- Reaching 2200+ followers on Twitter, 1793 bloglovin/email subscribers, 1500+ on Instagram, 600+ on Facebook, 180+ on Tumblr and 1780+ on Goodreads.
And because I’m a big fan of photos, here’s some spam of some great times during the year:
Meeting Sydney Bloggers
Sarah J Maas Signing at Supanova
Blogges at Brisbane Writer’s Festival
For the year coming, I want to shift the focus away from ARCs and stats just focus on reading and blogging for enjoyment.
- read more backlist books
- take the time to appreciate books for what they are, without reviewing everything I read
- read more books outside of my comfort zone
- finish and pick up series I’ve been meaning to for ages, like The Raven Cycle, Mara Dyer, Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Chaos Walking, Mistborn
- less hoarding and requesting books
- discover new blogs
- more fun collaborations and discussions with Aila and Jenna
- improve my basic design skills
- think of more fun things for Aussie YA Bloggers Group on Facebook and Goodreads.
Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2016 is the year where all your dreams will come true!