Tag Archives: New Year

Happy new year!

I’ll have to try and think of interesting things to write now I’m not doing the daily photo thing 🙂

We saw our niece being baptised today, that was a lovely start to the year.

And now I can feel my first zit of the year coming, that’s not so lovely. I’m far too old for that sort of thing.

I have some resolutions – professional ones (get a research job, get published etc) and of course the usuals, which basically boil down to eat less and exercise more. I’d like to explore a bit more and have some adventures. And we could do with finding a church to settle in.

I’m thinking about doing a short photography course too (an Open Uni one, as I get my fees waived).

I think that will do. Let adventures commence 🙂

2011 Project365 (days363-365)

I can’t believe I’ve managed it (well, with 2 or 3 days I forgot but made up). This is it for now 🙂

31st December:

31st December 2011

Here we are, with less than an hour to go! Happy new year!

(as an aside, I have no idea what is happening with my hairline, I’m sure I didn’t have that much forehead!).

30th December:

30th December 2011

This is the Christmas tree we have inherited from my mum and dad. They bought it for their first Christmas as a married couple, in 1966, so this is my childhood tree, I’m so excited!

29th December:

29th December 2011

We spent our anniversary driving down south to see family. We stopped at the Llama Karma Kafe on the way for lunch, and found Santa running away from a hungry llama.

New Year not-resolutions

Rather than do either a. a scary list of things I aim to do this year which then make me feel inadequate because I will fail to live up to them or b. a long rambling screed of streams of consciousness over why I want to achieve the unachievable anyway, I’m just going to put up here, for my reference as much as anything else (so it won’t be the great writing you’ve come to expect from this blog 😉 ), a kind of combination of the two which hopefully will be neither scary nor rambling, but more a kind of wish-list or stuff I’d like to see happen but not stuff I’ll get too obsessive about. We’ll see.

To get the elephant (or in my case perhaps more accurately hippo) in the room out of the way first, I’ll at least mention weight loss. I’m aiming for about 1lb a week, which will hopefully see me lose about a stone by Easter. There are a few reasons why I want to lose weight, none of which I particularly want to go into here, but I want to end the year feeling better physically, and feeling better about myself physically, than I have started it.

I want my PhD to be over and done with this year. And get back to writing for the fun of it (yes academic writing can be fun).

I’d love to have cleared my debts this year. I should have one card cleared in the next couple of months; the other one will take longer but I have just increased my payment so hopefully I’ll start making a dent in that soon and get onto the parental debts too. That would be good.

I don’t really want to end the year in health visiting if I can help it. Though at the moment that’s a bit out of my hands – while I’m paying off debts and HD is in temporary work I’m not going to give up permanent work. Whether or not I’m still in health visiting, by the time I finish the PhD (hopefully in the summer) I want to be starting a course which will get me qualified in the area of nursing I want to go into (more of which later if it actually happens). If I do manage to leave this current job, maybe I’ll try and do some more OU tutoring if I can.

I want to get back more into my faith, and what it means for my life. I was very challenged by conversations with HD’s sister and brother-in-law over the holidays, and although their vision is not mine particularly, their heart and commitment is something to which I aspire (and from which I’m still a long way away).

I want to be a better wife. HD says he’s happy with the one he’s got (he’s very lovely like that), and I don’t mean total personality transplant or anything, but I think I can aim to be less selfish and more loving without causing him too much consternation 🙂

Creatively, I’d like to get to know my shiny new camera better and maybe start another photo project as I think my Glasgow blog is running out of steam a bit and the Sibiu blog is running out of photos! And I’d like to draw a couple of pictures at some point as well, it’s been ages (over a year) since I last drew anything.

There’s other stuff as well, like wanting to know where we’ll be living and for HD to have a permanent job and for us to be together all the time and all that sort of thing, but at the moment that’s all a bit out of our hands. I can start to do some of the stuff above though.

I feel pretty good about 2010, all told 🙂

Happy New Year

A few days late, but I am now back in Glasgow after a lovely week away down south visiting family, and gearing up to returning to work tomorrow (today is a bank holiday this side of the border, but before you jump up and down, we don’t get the August bank holiday – I think with the various changes it still all works out the same over the year).

After a quiet but lovely Christmas we headed down south on Boxing Day and spent a couple of nights at my parents’ place. I managed to do the bulk of my chapter 3 (which will later become chapter 4 as I rejig things) revision, and we had a walk through a park I used to play in as a child which was a bit bracing but nice to have a few minutes out. Then we headed slightly further south and spent a couple of nights at HD’s parents (where his sister, brother-in-law and nieces were also staying, so it was a bit noisier there). I used their broadband to email off the chapter revisions, and then was able to relax a bit. We went to the Milton Keynes shopping centre as I was after a new camera, this turned out to be a big mistake (MK shopping centre is HUGE, but has no specialist camera shop! Outrageous! Plus the rest of the county and beyond had the same idea, and it was absolutely heaving there). Anyway after all that we headed off to Herefordshire to stay with HD’s sister and family (the same lot who were at the outlaws – it was great to be able to spend so much time with them). Very excitingly, we went into Hereford on New Year’s Eve and I managed to buy a camera from a specialist (rather than a chain) and beat the VAT rise, and so I am now the proud owner of a second-hand one of these. It’s very shiny! (and was a bargain) 😀

For new year we all piled down to Somerset, and spent the night at some friends of HD’s sister’s family (whom HD also knew though they’d not seen each other since we got married so it was the first time I’d met them). We played Wii Samba which was fun, I played with the camera, and we had a lovely time. After returning we just chilled out, built a wardrobe, chilled out some more, and then we headed back up north yesterday. HD is now back in his digs and back to work today (his contract has been extended until the end-ish of March, which is good from the work/money point of view though not ideal from the living-in-the-same-place-as-his-wife-ie-me point of view), and I finally got home about 7.30 yesterday evening. It is very cold here, and icy, so I’m a bit nervous about driving to work tomorrow. We’ll see.

Rather upsettingly, when I got home I found that my key to the front (communal) door didn’t fit the lock, so I thought that it had been changed. The neighbour let me in, and it turns out that it is the same lock, but someone broke in last week by picking the lock and it is now really difficult to use – it’s always been a bit stiff, but I can now only get my key about half-way in. Even worse, they had broken into my neighbour’s place by pretty much kicking the door in, and had stolen quite a lot of stuff. The rest of the flats weren’t touched, but it is still worrying. Hopefully seeing the burglar alarm put them off. And in the meantime, we are finding it really hard to get in, and relying on neighbours who are already in to buzz us in. This morning I was woken up hearing someone trying unsuccessfully to open the door, it was absolutely freezing out there so I couldn’t ignore it so I let my upstairs neighbour in (at 7am – the poor guy looked frozen solid!), and we will have to phone the factors (management company) tomorrow when they get back to work as I think it will have to have a new lock. So I have to say I’m feeling rather Daily Mail-ish about whoever it was who did it, and it’s brought back some not-at-all pleasant memories of the two burglaries I had in London.

I have new year resolution-type-things to think about and other stuff, but it’s 1pm so I probably ought to get out of bed 😀 (if it’s any consolation, despite being in bed and the heating on, my fingers are still blue from the cold – according to the BBC weather, the daytime maximum temperature in Glasgow today will be -1, and at night the minimum temperature will be -8. Looks like the scraper will be getting plenty of use! Anyway – happy new year to you all, and I hope 2010 is happy, healthy and generally good to you.

And another one!

I knew there was a resolution I’d forgotten!  But as I faced temptation today I remembered I’d better list it too!

* No non-work related internet during work hours.

I managed to procrastinate today by tidying up my bookshelves in the office and putting them into some kind of order (in my defence, it’s needed doing for ages!).  But apart from a large pile of articles that need filing, I think that will be the end of that particular procrastinatory exercise, and then I’m going to have to get down to some work as I’ll have no more excuses. I can’t even mark any more essays, as no more late ones have come in (this is unheard of, and probably why it is snowing throughout much of the UK – though not here (yet), ironically).

This week I shall mostly be doing some reading and preparation for a study day we are hosting on Friday for one of the special interest groups of the Association of People Who Study My Sort of Thing – I am co-facilitating one of the sessions and am feeling woefully underprepared.  With good reason, I really am woefully underprepared.  I shall also be making a start on turning my paper from last month’s conference in Helsinki into an article as they are wanting to publish a selection of papers from the conference and I think it would do me good to get into the habit of writing for publication.  I think that’s the main reason why I’m tidying the office though – I’ll be fine once I start, but it’s just the starting that’s so traumatic!

New Year

IMGP6379 We had a really lovely new year which we spent with some friends in York. After an amazing meal cooked by one friend we walked up to York Minster with a bottle of champagne and saw in the New Year with several thousand drunk people! One of our friends there is a bell ringer who has rung before at the Minster for New Year, so she was really looking forward to hearing the bells, but once the first “Bong” of midnight sounded the cheering and whatnot was so loud you couldn’t hear a thing!

IMGP6381

A couple of days later we headed further south, firstly to see my parents and then to see HD’s parents and pick up the last of our stuff. My mum is recovering really well from her op – she showed me her war wounds and they are healing really nicely. We got back to Glasgow yesterday, and today the early alarm so that I could get a good amount of work done at work was a bit of a shock to the system, though not as bad as it could have been I guess (I’m expecting it to get cumulatively worse as the week progresses.  Groan). One of my New Year’s resolutions is to try to do at least a 9-5 day Monday to Friday at work as I really need to get my act together for a much more important resolution, which is to finish the thesis in 2009! I arrived at work at exactly the same time as the guy who shares my office (well, I suppose I should say I share his office as he was there before me!), it turns out that we have exactly the same resolution! (the 9-5 one anyway, he’s still got 3 years of his PhD to go). He reckons he’ll last till Wednesday, I’m at least giving myself till the end of the week!

Talking of resolutions, my various ones this year are (in no particular order):

* Finish and submit my thesis in 2009.
* 9-5 Monday to Friday working (at least) in order to achieve that.
* Lose weight. Having weighed myself this morning I am the heaviest I have ever been in my whole life, and I want to lose 24kg. Which is mathematically rather handy, as that makes 2kg a month (or about a pound a week in old money). I intend to do this through not snacking between meals, not buying chocolate (though I’m not going to be precious and if anyone gives me chocolate I’m not going to refuse it or make a big deal of it), having smaller portions and no seconds, and only having a glass of wine with a meal (usually if we have wine I tend to have 2 glasses). I reckon that will at least arrest the upward (and outward!) direction of the weight, and if I have to do more then it won’t be too difficult. I’ll also try to go to the gym a couple of times a week.
* Read the Bible daily. I don’t think there’s any point saying “Have a daily quiet time” as that just won’t happen, but having gone through (still am there really) a really dry patch I think that daily reading will at least be a step in the right direction.
* Try to reduce my overdraft and not spend money frivolously.

We’ll see. I think most of these are reasonably manageable.

Anyway – happy new year everyone!

Happy New – ooh, shiny!

Thanks everybody for your lovely comments while I’ve been away. I’m finally back at the Stately Pile after just over a week away, and was relieved to get back and find the flat still intact (I’ve done this since I was a little girl, but whenever I go away, I always turn the corner into my street and expect to see a giant crater where my flat/house used to be. As usual, everything was exactly where I left it, including sadly the pile of essays which are still waiting to be marked. Sigh – I wouldn’t have minded them disappearing down a giant crater).

It’s been a busy old week – to my mum and dad’s for Christmas Day, then to HD’s parents for Boxing Day (I survived – yay, in the end I decided against the blowtorch idea), then back to my parents for the day after. It was the big Meeting-The-Parents-For-The-First-Time thing for both of us (well, obviously we’d met our own parents before, but you know what I mean), and a fair few members of my extended family all called in to check him out wish us a happy Christmas. The next day it was up to Manchester as at the end of last week we were going to a wedding of friends I know from Scotland (amongst other places) (was that discreet enough?!) which was fabulous. Lots of kilts, ceilidh, wine, great people, and food (not necessarily in that order). On Saturday we called in to see a friend of mine from school who now lives in Manchester, where I caught up with her husband and older son (now 7 – I last saw them when he was 4) and met her 2 year old twin boys for the first time. Having been used to nieces (1 of mine and 3 of HD’s) it felt like a bit of an adjustment suddenly watching boys playing and generally not being girly, but it was brilliant to catch up with R again. After that we headed on over to York, where we were spending New Year, and picked up this: Ooh, shiny!

😀 At some point I might lose the goofy grin. But not just yet 😀

York was great. We saw in the new year standing outside the Minster, with fake champagne and plastic shot glasses (a last minute purchase, so we weren’t able to stretch to plastic champagne flutes, but it was much better than swigging from the bottle which was the other alternative). 5 minutes after midnight we amazingly managed to spot the friends we were meant to be meeting (it was very crowded indeed!), and we went for lunch at theirs (and supper too, rather cheekily) later in the day. I think I have a good photo of the Minster, but I haven’t downloaded my photos yet, so I might post that one tomorrow.

Anyway. Happy New Year to you all – thanks for reading my witterings, and I look forward to everybody’s comments and news in 2007. May it be a peaceful and happy year for you all.

An, er, interesting end to 2005

Having already written off 2005 as far from being my best, and looking forward to starting again with 2006, I spent New Year’s Eve day studiously painting undercoat on the hall woodwork – ie skirting boards, picture rail thingy but with more wood on it that goes right up to the ceiling and is ever so high, door frames and six doors that all needed to not be lilac any more – then thought I’d make the best of spending NYE by myself by cracking open a bottle of wine. I already knew that I wouldn’t be watching Jools Holland as, despite my best attempts, for some reason my TV absolutely refuses to be tuned (I’ve tried it with an internal aerial and the external one with absolutely no luck). So imagine my joy when I picked up the corkscrew and it fell apart in my hands. It’s one of those Pentecostal corkscrews (I’m sure you know what I mean!), but sadly was utterly beyond redemption, so I sought out the emergency corkscrew.

Once I’d attached it to the cork I remembered why it was the emergency corkscrew. It’s one of those which just has the metal bit and a handle which you basically just have to tug. Anyway, I tugged and tugged but the cork didn’t give even a mm, so I burst into tears and went to bed at 10.

I’m in a considerably better mood today, probably because I got a good night’s sleep! The woodwork has been top-coated, and I’ll do the walls tomorrow. For those of you dying to know my colour scheme (who ever would have thought I was such a style icon!) the walls will be Homebase’s “Warm Yellow”. I needed something light but warm, as the hall is the only room with no natural light. And to pre-empt further enquiries, the bedroom when it is (hopefully) done next week will be Homebase’s “Pale Green”. I did try a couple of squares of more yellow-greenish paint, but in the early morning they looked too dark.

I suspect blogging will be a bit limited next week as I await the First Inspection by the Parents. A fuller review of 2005 might well follow at some point, as well as lots of links now I’ve finally got some of my photos online and been reunited with my handy cut-and-paste bit of code for links. Hooray!

So, here’s to a 2006 that is considerably better than 2005 for all of us (even if your 2005 was already a good one!). Wishing you all joy, health, happiness, peace and blessings in abundance, and a reality even wilder than our wildest dreams!

New Year’s Resolutions

Yes, I know it’s a bit early (and hooray, I got broadband yesterday, by the way!!!!!), but my new year plans have changed a little bit and so there may well not be much time for blogging before the new year. Not that I’m doing anything exciting at all, I’m not – all my friends in Scotland are otherwise engaged (mostly away) and I couldn’t get hold of my nearest friends in the north of England so I shall be here – but the essay marking has suddenly become very turgid and although the end is in sight these last 10 or 15 are taking forever (not helped by the most recent one being over 4 TIMES over the word limit and being so full of pseudo-intellectualese I’ve absolutely no idea what it is talking about and gave up after page 1 – I shall return to the next 18 pages tomorrow! argh), and all the while I’m doing this knowing that I’m going to have to prepare for the invasion of the parents next week. Actually I’m really excited about this and have already broken the news to my dad that he’s going to teach me how to put up wallpaper (in the bedroom) but even still I’m going to have to do a bit of tidying up and cleaning, and I’ve decided that as I’m at a loose end this weekend and need a few days of non-intellectual activity it would be the ideal time to decorate the hall. I know it doesn’t sound that exciting, but as new year this year isn’t going to be exciting anyway I thought I might as well achieve something with it. And it does mean that by the end of next week I should only have the kitchen and bathroom still to decorate, which is rather exciting (to me, anyway).

Anyway, I’m digressing somewhat. New Year’s Resolutions. I haven’t given this a huge amount of thought, but, in no particular order, I aim to:

* lose weight (actually very important. I got weighed the other week at my new doctor’s, and have put on a stone and a half (eek) since coming to Scotland, ie every last ounce that I lost detoxing earlier in the year, and a bit more besides). My blood pressure was really high (not dangerously high, but high enough for the nurse to comment) and my heart rate was outrageous, so that has galvanised me into getting back into being healthy as opposed to pretending I’m healthy when really I’m a bit of a blob.

* join a dating agency. Actually I’ll wait until after I’ve lost weight – not because I’m superficial (no, really!), but because last time I was in a dating agency, whilst it was often hilarious it also had its soul-destroying moments, so I think I need to feel a lot better about myself first – but anyway it’s a plan, and if I get round to it then hopefully it should provide some memorable blogging moments (honestly the things I do for you!).

* get into more of a pattern of prayer and devotions. I’m not going to say daily, because I’d be setting myself up to fail, but I want “regular” to mean more than “once a week”.

* get my act together and sign up with an agency do some more nursing.

* work harder at my own study and not get totally caught up in my teaching/marking.

I think that’ll do. All achievable, most not too painful, some potentially brilliant. We’ll see. I can’t wait to see the back of this year and start again.

Anyway – happy new year, all. See you in ’06!