A belated Happy New Year! I hope you had a great break full of family, friends and fun. I’ve been consumed with finding a flat for my fifth move (!!!) in London since 2015 started so it feels a little late for the first post of the year. But after a holiday involving plenty of rest, films galore, losing pitifully at Monopoly but doing OK at my new favourite app Heads Up, I feel ready to get stuck into a new year and fancied sharing my thoughts and plans.
2014 was a pretty good year for me. I was looking at the post I wrote about this time last year and although I lost a bit of the focus I was aiming for, I still motivated myself to get out and enjoy what London has to offer. I achieved more balance and better finances. I made a couple of trips to the seaside and countryside. I also made a few trips overseas to Bruges, Sardinia and Guernsey.
So what does 2015 have in store?! Well after five years of living in the capital and now three years of writing a blog, I’ve had to think hard about what my plans for this year are as I’ve ticked so many London things off the list. I’m also turning thirty this year so there’s some pressure to see the last few months of my twenties out in style!
With a city still full of places to discover, and a world of opportunities, here’s what I think my 2015 could look like …
Booking at least one cookery class – I’d love to be able to whip up tasty dishes and treats at the drop of a hat but I don’t have the time or patience to research and practice the skills needed. I’ve decided that cookery classes seem like a fun and quicker way to up-skill myself and work towards at least nailing a few ‘signature’ dishes. I mentioned Edible Experiences a few weeks ago and I think their courses are reasonably priced. I’ve also got my eye on the next round of Bread Ahead’s Doughnut Masterclass.
Buying more from authentic food stores – London is full of stores offering authentic produce, be that grown within a few miles of the city or at the hands of its inhabitants from around the world. So whilst I’m aiming to get better in the kitchen, I’m hoping to get to know a few well-stocked stores too.
Enjoying great city views – I love gazing across the crazy city we live in and there’s still more city views to enjoy. Next on my visit list is ArcelorMittal Orbit and the Tower Bridge glass walkway. Over the summer I’m going to keep an eye out for all of the best rooftop bars too.
Getting value for money on city services– London is expensive, as we know, and I’ve spent far too much time and money on hairdressers, beauty treatments, dry cleaning, and the like, and at times not being all that satisfied. So this year I’m going to spend some time reading reviews carefully fine tuning the services that offer good value for money.
Exploring the UK – I’d like to do a few day trips and discover more of the UK in 2015. I’ve only got Cambridge on my list at the moment so if you’ve done anything that’s within a decent train ride of London, please share below!
Discovering more overseas – I have a long list of places around the world to work through and I have to regularly remind myself that I’ve got a lifetime to visit them. Another Guernsey trip is guaranteed and I’m looking forward to spending more time exploring the island. The main holiday needs some research but I’ve recently heard good things about Bosnia Hercegovina and wonder if this might be worth visiting. After winning a Mr & Mrs Smith voucher last year I’m also going to squeeze in a city break too.
Enjoying local long walks – My mum loved walking but when I was younger I never got the purpose of ‘just walking around’. After years of city life (and maybe as I get older, eek!) I’ve really started to appreciate the beauty of the countryside. In 2014 I discovered the delights of Westerham in Kent (which I’ll be sharing with you soon) and it made me realise how much the Garden of England has to offer. I’d like to take a closer look at the Churchill’s house (Chartwell) and explore Scotney Castle (which I recently discovered via the National Trust Instagram).
Sipping the finest cocktails hours – Whilst I enjoyed my fair share of cocktails in 2014, I don’t feel like I discovered all that many new standout cocktail bars or cocktails so I’m getting back into my research for established favourites and new openings.
Nothing wildly crazy or ambitious but I think it’ll keep me busy for the year 🙂
What are your plans for 2015? Do you have any recommendations which might fit into these plans?
As a little gift to anyone reading and looking to get the year off to an organised start, I’ve put together my own printable 2015 calendar. It’s a bit amateur and not perfect so I’ve not made a big feature of it, but you can download it here. All you need to do is print it out on A4 sheets and cut in half. To make your own, you can find the template I used here.