It’s that time of year when everyone looks back at the year that was, the highs and the lows, the happiness and the heart break. I fully believe it’s a good time to congratulate yourself on any achievements (big or small), to try to let go of things that didn’t work out or to leave behind a piece of any sadness.
It’s hard not to start a post on 2016 without referring to the fact that on a world scale the last 12 months haven’t been the best, there have been some horrible tragedies and huge political changes. It’s important to be aware of what’s going on and do what we can for the good and the values we believe in, but we also need to cherish the positivies and be thankful for the things we have.
For me personally, 2016 was quite a good year overall but it zoomed by far too quickly. We had seven weddings, each lovely and special in their own ways, four fun hen dos, a handful of 30ths, a 60th and a 90th. On top of unforgetable trips to Costa Rica and Iceland. Whilst I often craved a bit more time for what I called a ‘normal social life’ and sometimes worried about my finances, I can’t complain and have managed to end up in a better financial position than this time last year.
You might remember I did a 2016 Wishlist, I really enjoyed having a list of fun things I didn’t feel emotionally committed to as it was a useful way to make sure I did some things I really wanted to do without any pressure. I thought it would be fun to see what I managed to squeeze in and what I might need take into 2017.
Starting with what I managed…
Duck and Waffle was surprisingly easy to organise as Lucinda also wanted to go, so we agreed early on to book a table for her birthday. I’d happily go back as it’s a great place to take visitors.
The Little Taperia made for a pretty great date night. It’s always nice to be able to walk home after dinner.
I was so keen to try Yolkin’s Ice Cream Macarons we ended up eating them in February.
Cambridge made for a lovely day out for my birthday. Now that I’ve discovered the city’s charms I’m sure I’ll be back there in 2017, I’d love to see it in spring or autumn. That said, I’m thinking a return to Oxford will be on next year’s list as my last visit was so long ago.
I didn’t manage a proper trip to Norfolk as we were only there for a wedding but I did squeeze in a walk near James’ dad’s house. I’ll give myself half marks and hope we’ll manage a proper trip next year.
Vanessa and I managed a catch up and a wander around Hampstead Heath just at the beginning of September, whilst this isn’t technically a summer month I reckon I can count it here.
Victoria Park was perfect for a Sunday stroll and a bacon roll in spring.
I got tickets for the TfL hidden tour for Clapham South all the way back in March for the tour in March next year. The tours are so popular (I didn’t manage to get into Aldgate which was my first choice) it’s best to sign up to their newsletter if you want to be in with a chance of tickets.
Last but one on my list was Christmas carols at the Royal Albert Hall. I got the tickets pretty late so I almost didn’t make it and unfortunately a lot of my friends couldn’t go at short notice. But I’m so happy just three of us still decided to go (there’s a few more pictures in my previous post.) I really enjoyed it as a Christmas activity and I’m definitely adding it to the yearly traditions and vowing to be more organised next year.
With limited free weekends, there was inevitably a few things on the list I didn’t manage…
- Sketch for Afternoon Tea. I just didn’t seem to find the time or the right occasion to justify the treat. Next year I might just have afternoon tea on the list as it has been sooo long since I last enjoyed one, I’ll just have to hope Sketch makes the cut.
- Dishoom for the bacon naan and bottomless chai. I can’t believe I still haven’t had the infamous bacon naan. I’m carrying this one forward.
- The Rumpus Room at the Mondrian Hotel for cocktails. Another one that will have to go on next year’s list.
- Druid Street Market for Saturday lunch. I took James to Maltby Street Market but sadly didn’t make it as far as Druid Street.
- Bread Ahead Bakery School for the Introduction to French Baking, Doughnut or Pizza Workshops. I really wanted to do this with James but between his exams and all the weddings it just didn’t work out. I’m still hoping to do this next year.
- An autumn wander at Winkworth Arboretum. On the autumn weekend I thought this would work I realised that the route there was actually quite long and involved a 2 mile walk from the station just to the entrance. I wasn’t really in the mood for such a long journey so chose Kew Gardens instead and I was so so happy with my choice. We will hopefully have a car next year which should help tick this off the list.
- Book tickets for the Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House for me and my sister. I think I need to spend time working out which performance we’d most enjoy and get organised to book reasonably priced tickets before they sell out. I would love any top tips on your experiences of the Royal Opera House.
So overall I managed 8.5 out of 16. I would have liked to have reached 10 out of 16, but with all the events that happened last year I’m impressed I managed what I did.
I’m really looking forward to 2017 as it’s currently looking less chaotic from a social perspective. I’m hoping I’ll be able to focus on what feels like a bit more of a balanced life. So look out for the next wishlist!
You might notice I haven’t looked at the personal goals I added to last year’s post, I think I’m going to come back to these alongside some for the year ahead in a whole other post, once I’ve got my head around it all. (I’m still getting used to the idea of us being on the brink of a whole new 365 days.)
Happy New Year!!! See you in 2017!!