So am I the only one who is still a little bit shell-shocked over the fact that we are somehow in 2019 already? To be honest, I’m not even sure what happened to December. Or really, most of the entire year. It went by so fast, even if some individual days were slow. I figured it would be a good idea to do a brief recap of 2018 to share some of my personal highs and lows for the 365 days that blew by. I’d love if you shared some of yours in the comments at the end too or a link to your own recap of 2018!
Let’s get the few less-than-stellar moments out of the way in this recap of 2018. You know, the bad news first, good news last sort of thing. I have a huge amount of privilege and joy in saying that there honestly weren’t too many lows which was a nice change. It was not a perfect year but nothing horrible really happened either. For that, I am extremely grateful.
I didn’t blog much.
I don’t do a yearly recap all the time but part of the reason that I felt I needed to do one this time around was because I frankly didn’t blog a whole lot. See, I do use Facebook (way too much probably) so I post a lot of things over there but it’s much easier to pull up a blog and peek at the archives to see a snapshot of what your year was like. I do regret the lack of blogging, it’s something I’ve always loved to do. One of my goals or resolutions is to spend a little less time on social media – especially the putzing around and scrolling and refreshing that serves no purpose – and more time on things I love. Like this blog!
We didn’t go anywhere.
We don’t take big extravagant vacations anyway but I do wish we had gone away one long weekend or even overnight. This is a beautiful province and there are still parts we haven’t even seen yet. We did have some plans to spend a week in Cape Breton with a friend and his family but the timing just didn’t work out. Hopefully summer of 2019 will find me up at that cabin with no wifi where we can all just disconnect for awhile, and the only reason I’ll bring my phone out at all will be to take photos.
My in-laws didn’t make it out here.
I realize that for some people this would be a high and not a low. I get along great with my in-laws though and look forward to seeing them every summer. Due to some renovations they didn’t make it out to Halifax this summer much to our sadness. I always take one of my vacation weeks during the time they’ll be here and although I enjoyed my time off regardless, it was a little hollow and empty without them. I miss them.
There are so many highs. I am so lucky that so many amazing things happened and these are just the ones that crossed my mind as I wrote. There are undoubtedly many that I didn’t even think of that were small but incredible. But here are some highlights in my recap of 2018.
I set a goal to read 22 books and finished 31.
I know, it probably seems a little silly or frivolous but I have been a reader my whole life. Somehow I had let it slip away and most of my “reading” was on Facebook, Twitter, and random posted articles. Not quite the same as diving into a book. I read more ebooks than physical books so I signed up for the Overdrive app to borrow ebooks from the library and got cracking on my reading. I blew my goal out of the water. This year I set my goal for 30 right off the bat. It’s January 3rd and I’ve already finished my first book of the year. (You can keep up with with my reading progress by following/friending me on Goodreads if you’d like!)
I started a new blog.
Despite the fact that I slacked off on blogging here, I did start a new blog about something that I love talking about. Yes, I have a zombie blog. I had registered the domain a few years ago but in 2018 I finally launched The Zombie Lifestyle where I can share tongue-in-cheek posts about zombie culture and zombie apocalypse survival. If you spend way too much time taking The Walking Dead far too seriously, then you should pop over to visit. (Stay tuned for something new over there this year as well! I think it’s high time I try out podcasting!)
My sister and her family moved back to Halifax.
My sister moved to Fredericton, New Brunswick when my brother-in-law was transferred there. They hoped to come back here some day but they didn’t expect it quite so quickly. I was VERY happy to hear they were moving back this past summer (like tears happy) and it was exciting to celebrate our second round of Christmas at their new house!
I re-discovered a love of thinking about photography for fun.
Instagram is a great place but it had kind of dampened my spirits and interest in taking photos for awhile. A snarky post about the bookstagram community (a group of folks on Instagram who post a lot of fun book-related photos and talk about what they’re reading, etc) sparked my interest and I did a photo just to roll my eyes at the person who basically called bookstagrammers lame. From there I was inspired me to do more book photos of my own and I started having fun again. I’m worrying less about themes and aethetics and more about taking a good shot and enjoying myself. I mean, I even carried books in my purse just to take photos of them in the woods in the snow. (You can follow me on Instagram over here!)
I sold my treadmill and made a friend.
Let me tell you, I have sold things painlessly on Kijiji in the past. When I finally came to terms with the fact that my love affair with running is over (and even if it’s not, it’s done to the point that I no longer needed or wanted an enormous treadmill in my bedroom taking up space), I decided to try unloading it via the Facebook local buy and sell groups. Oh my LORD. What a pain in the ass that was. Lots of weirdos and lots of demanding people (“I’m coming to see it on Tuesday at 2 pm!” Um, no you’re not because I work, and how about you ask if that’s convenient rather than telling me when you are going to show up at my doorstep buddy?).
Then along came one woman who was not only sane, she was hilarious. It took almost a week between her inquiry and the day her husband could actually come get it, and during that time we exchanged funny GIFs (such as Ross yelling PIVOT when she wondered if it would be complicated to get it downstairs) and stories about ourselves. On the day of the pickup she was home with her kids and her husband was coming to get it. I said it felt like a rip off and she said she felt like the whole thing was anti-climatic. So we friended each other on Facebook and hopefully we’ll get a chance to go grab a coffee one weekend morning. You just never know who you’ll meet or where.
I started a new job.
This would be hands-down the biggest of my highlights for sure. I knew that I needed a change so badly but after seven years it was comfortable and easy to go to my old job – even if I was unhappy and directionless. One of my best friends had been trying to get me to apply where she works for a couple of years and I always put it off out of fear of the unknown. But I finally did apply she said there was an opening that would be a perfect fit. I applied, I interviewed over the phone, I did my in-person interview, and I tried not to get my hopes up too much.
And then they offered it to me, I said goodbye to all the co-workers that I loved spending my days with, and took a deep breath to walk through a new set of doors. It was the best decision I could have made, one hundred percent. I am so happy there, and I am glad I didn’t let my comfort zone keep me in a place that was no longer right for me.
I started working from home.
This goes hand-in-hand with the new job. After three weeks of training, and then one week of working in the office, I packed up my stuff and brought it home. It was never a big secret that I really wanted to work from home and this job gave me that exact opportunity. There are occasional times that I need to go in for part of the day, and once winter is over it would be nice to go in once in awhile to see everyone face to face, but this has been even better for me than I initially thought it would be.
There have been so many advantages – I called in sick ONCE in six months because most times even if I felt under the weather I could make it through the day since I didn’t have to leave the house (and could stay in my PJs if I felt really blah). I was home when the kids were home. If they didn’t have school I could sleep in until half an hour before my shift started. I have zero commute and save so much money. The summer of 2018 was the hottest since we moved to Halifax in 2011, and there were many times where I was able to finish work and hop right in the car to go for a quick swim at the lake. It has been incredible and I have NO regrets whatsoever.
So as you can see, I definitely enjoyed more things in 2018 than not. Some of it was luck and happenstance but some of it was me taking steps forward. Choosing to read more, choosing to seek out the fun in photography again, choosing to be a little silly and start a zombie blog even if it might make some people roll their eyes, and choosing to take a huge chance on a new opportunity. Often we can learn a lot from the challenges we face, but I have learned a lot from the good things too.
All I can do is hope that the momentum pushes forward for 2019 and that I enjoy another epic year with more good than bad.
How was your 2018? What was your absolute brightest moment? What did you learn about yourself?