And so another year begins. I hope you all had a happy (and safe!!!) New Year's Eve?
I say to people "I just have no idea where last year went!" but looking back through my diary the other day, I realised that 2014 has possibly been my busiest year ever. It wasn't the best year on record- though I'm not sure which year would be the best year on record- but it wasn't 2014. It also wasn't the worst year on record- I'm about 90% certain that dubious accolade would go to 2008- but it was tough, and I'm proud to have made my way through it in pretty much one piece.
I learned a lot last year. I did a lot last year. And it has been good. Really good. And now I'm just hoping that in 2015 I'll have just as much fun as I did last year.
But before I get too carried away with hopes and plans for the year in front of me- here are fourteen amazing things from 2014:
1. My little brother and his long term girlfriend getting engaged
2. Moving jobs and cities. Twice. I lived with nine different people in 2014. I'm kind of hoping that 2015 is a liiiiittle bit quieter on this front...
3. Making and developing some incredible friendships. There are a group of girls- who hopefully all know who they are- whom I have met through this space, and I am so grateful to have them in my life.
4. Developing my korfball skills. I'm still pants, but I'm less pants than I was!
5. Being brave enough and knowing myself well enough to go and get help when I needed it
6. Making my first wedding cake. Bonus points for having a guest say to me "You know, we could do with a beautiful young chef to make cakes for us in Colorado...." (I was very tempted. Shame he was joking)
7. Going to Barcelona with Mama- her first trip abroad in seven years
8. Celebrating my aunt's wedding in September with my family
9. Being really well thought of at work. It sounds cocky- but it turns out, people seem to like me and think I'm good at what I do.
10. Following my heart, and telling people how I feel- drunkenly, soberly, in ways people liked, in ways people didn't. I may not have been massively careful with my own heart- or perhaps other people's- but I have been honest. I know I did things that hurt people last year, but my own heart didn't spend as much time hurting in 2014 as it has done in previous years.
11. Reconnecting with my childhood bestie. Z, you're awesome.
12. Celebrating my Grandad's 80th birthday. He's one of my favourite, favourite people and I love that I was able to celebrate with him.
13. Many, many weekend visits with and to see friends. I went to Kent, Norfolk, Devon, Dorset, Cornwall, Wales, had people to see me in London... it was all magical.
14. Starting to feel a little bit like an actual grown up. Not completely- but I'm starting to feel a little bit in control of my own destiny. Maybe I'll get a bit further with this in the coming year...
And because January is sometimes thought to be named for Janus, the Roman god of beginnings and transitions, who has two faces (one facing forward and one facing backwards), I'll look forward too. Here fifteen things to look forward to in 2015:
1. My brother's wedding! Honestly, it's come around so soon and I am SO excited. Expect many posts about it in the run up, okay?
2. My 25th birthday in just a few days! I have no plans at all but that's okay. I'm mostly just looking forward to ticking the 25-34 box on multiple choice forms for the next nine years.
3. Celebrating my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary in November. I hope I get to love someone as long as that.
4. Job hunting. My current contract is only until August, and at the moment I have no idea what will happen at that point. I'm not convinced that job hunting will actually be enjoyable, and the thought of leaving my current job is kind of breaking my heart already- but new adventures are always exciting, right?
5. Taking a trip abroad somewhere. I have no idea where, and no idea when, and no idea who with- but I WILL be taking a little trip at some point in 2015.
6. Getting into super awesome shape. I have weddings to attend and people I want to look great for- so exercise and healthy eating is GO. This includes getting really into running. I do love it already- but I'm really hoping that 2015 will be the year I actually run races and run regularly all year.
7. Scoring a goal in a korfball game. It has happened in training games but not in actual ones just yet. In 2015, this WILL HAPPEN.
8. Exploring more of London. I've not done as much exploring yet as I could have, so I'm excited to do more.
9. Really pushing myself with baking. My oven is slightly dodgy, so it isn't the easiest thing in the world, but I'm excited to try out some new bakes. My work colleagues are excited too...
10. New work successes. I have no idea what they'll be, but I've decided I'll be having some. Gotta keep up that reputation, eh?!
11. Hopefully vlogging more! I'm keen to try some new creative mediums, and vlogging seems to be a nice new one to try.
12. Spending more time with my favourites. Weekend trips, leisurely brunches, quick coffee dates, and wine-fuelled suppers- come at me.
13. Spring mornings and long summer evenings, Easter and birthdays, 3am conversations and laughing down the phone. And (I'll say it quietly) Christmas. Just the everyday, actually.
14. Reading more. I feel like I kind of lost my reading mojo in 2014, but now my mental health is getting back on track, my focus is much better and I can settle to a book. So if you have any great recommendations, please send then my way!
15. Getting to know myself even better. I feel like I grew an awful lot in 2014. So in 2015, I want to carry on with this personal growth and learn even more about myself. I now know that I'm stronger than I thought I was, braver than anyone thought I was, reckless and silly and loving and kind and sarcastic and so many things. At the moment I'm just Alice- I'm not known as somebody's girlfriend or "his sister" or "her daughter", and I love that. I'm so interested to see what I learn about myself next year.
What about you? What were your favourite things about 2014? What are you looking forward to in 2015?