Tub on the Run


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2017: Not my year

I suppose I should start with my (normal-for-2017) opener of “long time, no see”… Well – hi! Yes, it’s been a while (again/still?) but I thought, where better to start a better blogging routine for 2018 than a review of 2017!  While they may be a little cliche, I actually really enjoy reading other peoples’ years in review.

I have tried to write this blog about 16 times, but each time I do, it feels like I’m having a massive pity party. That’s not what I want, but by the same token, I won’t lie – 2017 has been a stinker. Very briefly, home has been tough – Dad left my Mum at the end of last year, so we’re all trying to muddle our way through a new family dynamic, and we haven’t been the healthiest bunch to boot. Naturally that has been stressful, but by far, work has been the biggest source of stress, anxiety and frustration. A change is on the cards in this area of my life.

On the plus side, while I have no doubt that I have been a monumental pain in the bum to live/converse/put up with, I am so lucky to be part of the family I have. Matt has been the shiny star of 2017 and really tried his hardest to look after me and reassure me that I am not completely crazy/useless/hopeless/worthless. Unfortunately, we haven’t really spent as much time together as we would have liked this year, but have some fun things to look forward to in 2018.

Rather than waffling any more about how utterly shit this year has been, here are some of the things I’ve really enjoyed:

Our National Trust Membership

In 2016, we managed to get out and about a little more than we have this year, but I really loved getting over to our local property – Killerton House. It was so lovely to go for some walks and see the changes in the seasons. In the spring, Matt and I saw the crocuses and snowdrops bloom.

Then in the summer, despite Mum’s need for a new knee becoming more and more pronounced, my sister, Matt and I walked on foot while Mum hired a “tramper” (an off road mobility scooter) while we went in search of Lost Killerton. I think it’s really great of the National Trust to provide these scooters – it’s meant we could enjoy a nice day out with Mum which we wouldn’t have been able to otherwise.

Rugby

Rugby has been a large feature of 2017 for us. Our local team is the Exeter Chiefs, who are based about 10 minutes down the road from us. We have been lucky enough to make most of the home games this year. Matt and I also ticked a game off our rugby bucket list and watched the Army v Navy game at Twickenham.

2018 will continue to be rugby filled, with tickets already bought for the Aviva Premiership final (fingers crossed for a Chiefs game), and Wales vs France for 6 Nations, not to mention the home games at Sandy Park.

Our garden

We still have a lot of work to do in the garden, but made some real headway with it this year where we redefined (and re-gravelled) our little patio area. We then bought an outdoor furniture set and enjoyed our first BBQ at home. I also took the opportunity to have an al fresco lunch on the couple of times I have been able to work from home for the day.

Next year, we have some borders to rediscover and things to plant, plus many more BBQs to enjoy! We also took some time to do a good declutter in the house too. I plan on doing quite a bit more of that too in the coming months.

Other random things

Some of the other random things that have brought smiles to my face have been things like our girl’s break away (posted here), and time with Matt, watching him do what he loves at Brands Hatch (posted here). I’ve also tried a new yoga studio out, and while I don’t attend the regular classes (work has been prohibitive in that respect), I have really enjoyed the yoga nidra classes that I’ve been able to make. My crochet game continues to be strong – I’ve literally just finished a square a day blanket, which I might do a blog post on another day. This is on top of two other blankets that I’ve made. From a weight loss point of view, 2017 has been a non-starter. I joined the gym, used it religiously for about a month and then I got side tracked, made it back in April and then got side tracked again. I had intended to get back on a Whole 30 or even a Whole 100, but that also didn’t happen. On the plus side, I don’t think I have put any weight on, but I also haven’t lost anything. It sounds a little irresponsible, but I really haven’t cared about it this year.

So yeah. That was my 2017, mostly pants, with some fun bits added in. I can’t wait for 2018!

How was 2017 for you? What was your highlight?

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Ultimate Coffee Date 2016 #1

I haven’t done an Ultimate Coffee Date in absolutely ages, and I have been trying to think of a way to sum up the last few weeks in a structured way, rather than a brain fart of “here-is-everything-that-I-have-done”.

First up, over coffee, I would probably say sorry – it’s been a while! I ended up having an unintended break from most things digital over December. I stopped weighing in too which had a knock on effect on the blog. Again, that wasn’t intentional, I just kept forgetting to get on the scales in the morning.

Early in December, we celebrated a significant birthday for mother-in-law. We had an absolutely amazing meal at Il Michaelangelo in Weston-Super-Mare. I won’t lie, my expectations of most things in Weston have been suitably pared back, but this restaurant was absolutely lovely. I had crab cakes to start and a king prawn tagliatelle for mains. Matt and I will definitely be back – I can imagine it’ll be even lovelier in the summer sunshine on their little terrace.

The following week, Matt, my parents and I went to Exeter Cathedral for the Night of 1,000 Voices, which is a carol service with various choirs. The same weekend, Matt, my sister and I were meant to run the Weston Christmas Cracker 10k. Once again I signed myself up (and Matt this time) in the summer when the entries opened, with the best of intentions. The run supports the Weston Hospice which looked after Matt’s grandad until his death earlier this year, so we thought it would be a nice thing to do. My sister has been running relatively consistently with one of her friends this year, while Matt and I have been very consistently not running. We agreed that we’d go at our own speeds, walking if we had to. My sister completed it in 1 hour 24, and Matt was 1 hour 44. I pulled out as my ankle started to give me hassle on the sand. I was (and am) so proud of both of them for completing the course. The marshals were really lovely, despite the awful wind and rain and cheered everyone on to the last. It’s such a friendly race, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a festive run.

Early December

After that, there were some Christmas parties to plough on through before the break for Christmas.

If we were having coffee, I would say happy New Year! I hope you have had a nice time over the Christmas period. We celebrated our first Christmas in our own home, though went to Mum and Dad’s for Christmas day itself. I have really enjoyed the break, and must make sure that I space my holidays out more consistently this year so I can get some proper rest.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I wish my sister lived a bit closer. She came home for Christmas, and it was really lovely to spend time with her. On Tuesday this week just gone, we went exploring along Tiverton canal. We haven’t walked there since we were little. It was the perfect day to go out for a walk and blow away the cobwebs. There were quite a lot of people out with the same idea.

Tiverton Canal

Lastly, over coffee (and surely cake by now), I would tell you that I love our little town that we moved to at the end of summer. I had some reservations about moving out to mid-Devon, but regret nothing now I am actually here. The Christmas lights have lit the town up, the church has had the scaffolding removed and we’ve now been in – the carol service was probably the best that I have been to.

Cully at Christmas

What’s your news from December? 

Ultimate Coffee Date is hosted by Lynda at Fitness Mom Wine Country, Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner, and Coco at Running with Perserverance, and takes place on the first Saturday of each month. Some of the blogs that I have added into my reader have come courtesy of link ups, and I think they’re a great way to get introduced to new people.  The point of the Ultimate Coffee Date is to take 5 minutes once a month for a bit of a catch up.