All about ... 2011: Year in Review

What did you do in 2011 that you’ve never done before? I started this blog.  I’d been dipping in and out of lots of blogs for a few months, mainly to do with card marking, but kept pushing any thoughts of having my own blog to the back of my mind, classified as ‘something I couldn’t do!’  In the end I pulled myself together and started this blog as a place to join in the online card making challenges but didn’t actually do any because I got sidetracked by all the other amazing things going on in ‘blog land’. Starting this blog was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, leading to new friends, new interests and the reawakening of my love of photography.

Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions and will you make more for next year?  I don’t bother with the usual ‘lose weight, get healthy’ sort of resolutions and have always thought in terms of what I want to achieve during the year.  However, I didn’t plan anything for 2011 and as expected I haven’t achieved that much!  2012 will be different as I plan to do 52 things that I’ve never done before – really excited about getting started on this.

Did anyone close to you give birth? My nephew and his wife had their second daughter, Wriggle, at the end of July.

Did anyone close to you die? There were no deaths in the family, thank goodness.  John (my friend’s step dad) and Dave (the Musical Director of the Youth Band) both died of the same illness within a few weeks of each other.

What countries did you visit? I didn’t travel at all this year.

What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011? I can’t really think of anything. Although I can come up with a whole list of things I will probably get at some stage (iPad, smart phone, new kitchen, etc) they are just possessions and I don’t feel I lacked anything that’s truly important. Family and friends are alive and well (or in three cases, as well as can be expected) and I hope I can say the same thing at the end of 2012.

What date from 2011 will remain etched in your memory and why? Wriggle was born in the early hours of July 30th.

What was your biggest achievement of the year? Managing to keep teaching whilst still looking after Ced. The motor neurone disease has definitely progressed and he needs assistance to manage every aspect of his life.

What was your biggest failure? My failure to lose weight and start an effective exercise regime.

Did you suffer illness or injury? No major illnesses or injuries this year but I have developed digestive problems which will need further investigation if things don’t settle down.  A few coughs and colds and I still have hypertension.

What was the best thing you bought? It was actually a gift from Ced - my new Nikon D3100 camera kit.

Where did most of your money go? On bills and paying off the bank loan.  I also bought a load of crafting supplies to start up my own card making business.

What did you get really, really, really excited about? I’m not sure that I got really excited about anything, but I have reawakened my enthusiasm for photography.

Compared to this time last year are you:
  • Happier or sadder? About the same as last year. Most days I’m happy but there’s always an underlying sadness that the clock is ticking away so quickly for Ced.
  • Thinner or fatter? Slightly thinner.
  • Richer or poorer? I’m ever so slightly richer because I’ve reduced the amount outstanding on the last remaining bank loan.
What do you wish you’d done more of? I would have liked to have done more crafting but in the big scheme of things that’s not important.

What do you wish you’d done less of? Nothing really.

How did you spend Christmas? At home with Ced. 

Did you fall in love in 2011? I was already in love, and stayed in love, with Ced.

What was your favourite TV show? I really enjoyed Downton Abbey, Kirstie Allsopp’s ‘homemade’ series, Lewis and Doctor Who.

What was the best book you read? I’ve read so many this year ... I really enjoyed the Agatha Raisin series of books but I wouldn’t say they were the best.  It was probably ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time’ by Mark Haddon, which is the book that stands out, mainly because it was so different from the books I usually read.

What was your greatest musical discovery of 2011? We discovered Andre Rieu and have been watching his concerts on Sky Arts 2.

What did you want and get? Another year with Ced.  He said a couple of days ago that he hadn’t expected to survive the year.

What did you want and not get? I wanted an iPad but didn’t get one. Maybe in 2012 ...

What was your favourite film this year? The final Harry Potter films.

What did you do on your birthday? Spent the evening at home with Ced.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? I miss playing in a band and singing with a choir so being able to take part in either of those would have been lovely.  However, it’s not possible at present as my carer responsibilities mean that I can’t commit to the numerous performances.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011? I have never followed fashion trends, always going for colours and clothes that I like and feel comfortable in. 

What kept you sane? The support of my family and friends, lots of reading and photography.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? No, can’t think of anyone.

What political issue stirred you the most? The problems with the economy have made me take stock of my life. 

Who did you miss? My mum.

Who was the best new person you met? All of the people I’ve met through this blog.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011. Make the effort to enjoy the ‘now’ and don’t waste time worrying about things that are out of your control.

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.  ‘You’re Still the One’ by Shania Twain.


  1. This is lovely, really enjoyed reading it and might get around to copying it. xx

  2. i loved reading your review of 2011 Eileen and can't wait to see what you achieve with your 52 things (just had a read quite a comprehensive list!)if i can help with any of them let me know and as always looking forward to seeing your photos this year
    wishing you and Ced a happy new year
    tracy x

  3. I will be pinching this for my own blog tomorrow - what a great way to sum up this past year!

    I'm sorry to hear about your caring responsibilities that have meant you can't take part in your band or choir activities. I became ill about two years ago and for the firs time in 33 years I was unable to blow my cornet. It was like losing a limb being cut off from such a huge part of my life - friends, social life, competitions, rehearsals, jobs, conducting... - the list goes on. I was the principal cornet as well so you can imagine the gap it left in my life. I wish you all the best for 2012 and the best life you can have with Ced while you can. I have learned that banding will always be there for me if/when I want to go back to it when I'm well again.

    I look forward to seeing how things turn out for you next year.

    Best wishes, Pam


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