2015 In Review


I started 2015 in a new home, which I was really excited about, but it was also pretty stressful and tiring.  I was disoriented by being in a neighbourhood I didn't know, surrounded by a load of stuff that needed to be unpacked and sorted.  I was also really miserable at work, which I had hoped would pass, but it was getting worse every single day.  Frustrated with not being able to fix my work situation and completely overwhelmed by the house move, I spent a lot of January asleep on the sofa.


With a week away from my job, my energy picked up a little, and so I managed to make plans with friends I hadn't seen for a while.  I worked theatre hours for a long time, and since starting to work 9-5, I've found it really difficult to keep up with my pals.  The new flat was in a much less overwhelming state, and so we could get back to having fun at the weekends. I also started a round of CBT, which made me realise I didn't really need therapy, I just needed a new job.


I'd been singing in a choir for a couple of months, and in March we had a little concert.  I also did some work with a kids choir, and helped with some concerts for them.  Mo and I were at one or other of the Tate Museums every weekend, the Alexandra Palace antique fair, and The Photography Show in Birmingham. While some elements of my job were getting better, it was mostly horrendous and I handed in my notice with nowhere to go. 


I worked the first two days of April, before going to Barcelona for a week!  Although Barcelona was brilliant, going on holiday immediately after leaving my job wasn't easy for my brain to process and it took a while to get into serious job-hunting mode. In between job interviews and temping, I went to the V&A Dolls House study day, and took Cunie to the pet groomer for her annual haircut.


By May, I had picked up some music teaching work, which I alternated with some more office temping.  I started following Whole30, which made me feel incredible.  I was sleeping well, had loads of energy, and was also breathing deeply for the first time in ages!  We had major works in our building, which meant scaffolding went up around our windows - about a foot up from the bottom of our windows.  We couldn't open any windows in the flat, for the next ten weeks. 


Mo went in San Fransisco for work for a while, which made sticking to Whole 30 really easy.  There was a lot of batch cooking and avocado, and eggs - endless eggs. I started writing Morning Pages a la Julia Cameron and felt like I was taking really good care of myself.  I visited one of my sisters, in Newcastle for a weekend, we went to the Affordable Art Fair in Hampstead, had a visit from my parents, and saw Blur in Hyde Park. Hoping to avoid taking another awful job, I took a course to be a Certified Agile Project Management Practitioner.


We went to see Will Gregory Moog Ensemble at the Barbican. I took the first of four workshops at the London Centre for Book Arts: Introduction to Bookbinding. I auditioned for a local amateur choir, and didn't get in.  That was pretty mortifying at the time, but I'd forgotten about it until now! I got a new job, a new walk to work, a new routine, and July was pretty good! (obviously apart from having all the windows clamped shut for the hottest month of the year...)


A visit to the BFI to see 808, a visit to the Albert Hall for Prom 35: Story of Swing, more bookbinding with Intro to Letterpress and Intro to Foil Blocking.  Two trips to the theatre, the first to see HAMLET (yes, with Benedict Cumberbatch) at the Barbican, the second for Three Days in The Country at the National. For the bank holiday we took a trip to Geneva and Lausanne, which was so so beautiful.  


I went to the V&A for 'Fred and Ginger study day', which other people seemed to be enjoying, but I fell asleep during the morning talks and cut my losses at the lunch break. Mo and I went for literally one run (maybe we'll have another one in 2016), the new windows went in (though the scaffolding stayed up for another couple of weeks). For Open House weekend we visited Tower 42 and the Trellick Tower.  I got a new dentist and a new iPhone, and we went to London transport Museum Depot (which only opens twice a year!).


Spent about 15 minutes at Blythecon (it was fun, but pretty small).  We took a visit to Rhyl to see family, and stayed the weekend in Chester. Monty Python and the Holy Grail was in the cinemas for one-day-only, and we also saw Spectre. I took my fourth LCBA workshop: Round-back Case Binding, my first dinner at Mildred's, and we had a day out at the seaside in Southend.


On the 13th we went to Paris, specifically to visit Paris Photo on the Friday.  In the evening I wasn't feeling well, so we went back to the hotel and I had a nap.  Mo woke me up to tell me about the news of the attacks, which was still unfolding.  We tried to make the most of the weekend, but it was incredibly sad and quiet, and almost everything was closed. The next weekend we went to Rome with our friends who are from the city.  Being shown a city by natives is a great experience - I don't think I made a decision for four days! We saw Derren Brown at the Palace Theatre, and The Lady in the Van at the cinema. 


My Great Grannie turned 100 years old, and we went to my hometown to be at her birthday party. We took the sleeper train up to Glasgow just as the north of England started to flood.  Our train was four hours late, but we were still on time for the party! We spent the rest of the weekend wandering around in Edinburgh. I was reunited with a friend I hadn't seen for two years, and I will be making sure it doesn't go so long again in 2016.  We saw Star Wars on Christmas Eve, had Christmas in London, and New Year in Wales.