2016 MAY HAVE BEEN MY MOST HECTIC YEAR TO DATE.
Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that so much could be crammed into twelve short months; excitement, new friends, personal upheaval and more than a few a laughs. 2016 has been the foundation on which I will build lifelong friendships, create a new home and move forward with blogosphere domination – mmmmmwwwwahahahahahaha!!
As we move into a brand new year, I wanted to reflect on a few high and low points of 2016, most of which were unexpected in a ‘that will never happen to me’ kind of way. Well, they did.
The UK Blog Awards 2016
The year got off to an incredible start when I found out in January that I had been shortlisted for a UK Blog Award. I didn’t win, but it was such a brilliant experience and I did get to wear the most sparkly rose gold dress!
I was nominated again this year, but I simply didn’t get enough votes to get through. I was up against over 500 blogs, some of them with huge readerships in the Lifestyle Category though – The Blog Awards are getting bigger every year people!
I can’t say that I’m not disappointed, but it’s made me even more determined to work my little socks off on this blog of mine.
I have two very good friends who were lucky enough to be shortlisted; Catherine (Not Dressed As Lamb) and Nikki (Midlife Chic). They are both 40 plus bloggers which is a brilliant move forward for the mature bloggers out there.
I am hoping to go to the awards with them and cheer my head off if either of them wins! And, of course, it’s an awesome excuse to buy another dress.
The Big Move
2016 was the year we decided that our hearts really did belong in the land of song. Yorkshire is a very beautiful county and it has definitely stolen a piece of my soul, but I cannot tell you how much I yearned to move back to Wales.
The move was stressful, I miss my house in Yorkshire (thats it in the pics), we ended up living on our boat for a few months and we still haven’t found our ‘home’. Yet not a day goes by that I don’t feel happy with the decision we made.
At the moment we are living in one of our ex rental houses which needs complete renovation. Our days are now filled with DIY plans. Not that we’ve started yet mind, but we’re getting ever so fluent in talking DIY 😉
Well I say we haven’t started, but the conservatory is filled with white goods in readiness for the new kitchen. Not that we’ve ordered a new kitchen yet, but it’s a step in the right direction.
I did say that I’d do a video walk through for you and, if I can ever get enough space to actually film, I’m still planning to do it. What can I say, each room runneth over with crap!
Pushing My Own Limits
I wouldn’t be the woman I am today without pushing my own limits, of that I am positive. It took a lot of work to become the woman I was meant to be, but that doesn’t mean that I can now rest on my laurels. I am a firm believer in evolving as a person, and that means I have to continue pushing forward.
They say (whoever they are), “Do something every day that scares you.” And that has been my mantra for many, many years. I like to break through my own comfort zones, annihilate any doubt I have in my own ability and live life to the absolute full.
So when the opportunity arose to not only experience aerobatics in a jet, but to actually take the controls and throw a few moves myself, I can’t say that I jumped with joy. I didn’t turn down the opportunity, let’s face it I’d be mad to walk away from such an experience, but to say I was hesitant would be an understatement.
My aim is to have an adventurous midlife and beyond, and this ticked all the boxes.
You can see the video that was made of me pulling some pretty nifty aerobatics here.
Starting To Vlog
Talking about pushing my own limits, I would never have dreamed that not only would I start vlogging, but that I would actually really enjoy it. For a woman who used to hate having her photograph taken, I now seem to have a camera or video camera permanently stuck in my face!
There’s something decidedly satisfying about not only sharing the randomness that is my life with you in words and pictures, but also via the medium of video.
I have quite a few plans for 2017 as far as my Youtube channel is concerned. Quite a few of you have asked if I will be sharing beauty tips, etc and that is certainly a road I will be travelling. I simply need to find a bit of space in the mayhem of this house in which to film.
Not that I am claiming in any way to be an expert when it comes to beauty – just because I’ve been slapping makeup on my face for 35 years doesn’t mean I know it all. After all, I’ve been breathing for 52 years and I’m still no better at it 😂
But I’m certainly up for the challenge, so don’t forget to subscribe to my channel if you want to catch my latest attempts at the old Youtubing. Which, as you can see from the below pics, I’m still getting the hang of!
The Joy Of New Friendships
Without a shadow of a doubt, one of the biggest highlights of the year was meeting the other ladies of The Over 40 Collective.
Don’t know what The Collective is? It all started when I met six other mature bloggers at The Blognix Retreat, found out we had masses in common and became firm friends with each and every one of them.
Through that friendship a seed of an idea took root and began to blossom. After many meetings (both physical and digital) we found a way to move forward, to work together as a collective – The Over 40 Collective.
But the real bright, shiny gift that The Collective has given me is friendship. I am blessed to call these six wonderful women my friends – and for that, 2016, I give you a big thumbs up!
Of course there’s been the turbulence of everyday life, the laughter mixed with tears, the joy mixed with sadness, the pride in my achievements mixed with the disappointment in my cockups. But that is life, that is living and that was one hell of a year!
And that is how we move forward. By looking back and reflecting on both our high and low points of 2016 we can assess where we are, decide what’s working and keep pushing to live a life that we love. So, as we move into the New Year, do reflect on the old one – but don’t dwell on any mistakes you have made. As I always say: the only thing you’ll get from constantly looking back at your life is a crick in your neck!
What were your highlights, of 2016?
PS you may have noticed a change in the way The Barefaced Chic looks. If you did, you observant little minx, it’s because I’ve given the old blog a bit of a makeover. Well, a fresh new year seemed to call for a fresh new look. I’m still ironing out the creases so please excuse the dust. Do let me know what you think of it in the comments.