So 2011 has gone. Time to look back in summary and see what was learned, experienced and acheived.
I was very lazy with blogging in 2011, and also photography with my Canon camera. I did still take a lot of photographs, but for that 2011 was the year of Instagram. What a magic iPhone App! I’m not going to bust into a review, so in short it is one of the few apps to earn a place on my homescreen that I use just about on a daily basis. The effects are amazing, yielding different results on different flavours of photograph and sharing over all my social network and sites is a complete breeze. That said I still adore my Canon and was lucky enough to be bought a zoom lens by my Dad when we were in South Africa (more on that later). I’ve only used it a couple of times but it’s a great lens and look forward to summer and getting outside with it some more.
I have also been practically none existent on Livejournal. It used to be a daily essential but other things seemed to have crept in and nudged it over. News feeds being the main one. I do miss reading what is happening in the lives of my few friends over there, I must make an effort to read it regularly again.
I also took up a few other creative hobbies. Nail art being a favourite. I can’t get enough of painting my nails in creative ways. I’m still a beginner, but am getting way better thanks to youtubers sharing their ideas.
Scrapbooking is another new one for me. I’ve always kept small tokens from holidays and outings, tickets and things, and figured scrapbooking would be a nice simple way to keep them together in a creative way, and also get to print and use some of the photos I take. I thought I’d start very simple but the lush papers, embelishments, stamps and tools soon had me in love and inspired. I’ve only done a few pages to date (Skyrim took over a couple of months ago), but I’m sure this is going to be a life-long hobby. I can get stuck into the spare room and just stay there all day thinking up ideas for a layout and choosing and placing embelishments. The amount of things you can do is never ending!
Over Easter Weekend Becky and I went up to Berwick-upon-Tweed. It’s where my mother was born, and some of my family still lives, including Becky’s sister (my cousin) Emma. It’s up north on the East coast just on the English side of the Scotland border. We took a girls road trip up (Fun!) and stayed with Emma and her family for the weekend. What a gorgeous little town. The beach is beautiful (despite the freezing waters!), and the view of the town and it’s 3 bridges from the river mouth is quite a sight. It was lovely to finally go there and see where my Mum is originally from, and especially with Becky. We had a great time.
btw: Another great iPhone app is Pano. I used it to make the above panoramas. It’s dreamy.
We did quite a bit of traveling in 2011. Of course we brought in the year in New York, then in June Pete turned 30 so I took him to Amsterdam for the weekend where we were joined by his sister and her GF. We stayed on a houseboat in the heart of the city and took in sights and experiences of the city with youthful abandon 🙂
In July Pete was also lucky enough to travel to Sweden for a family holiday with his parents and sister. Unfortunately I didn’t have any leave available to join them, but it was lovely for them to have a family holiday with just the 4 of them. Looking at Pete’s photos upon his return really made me want to go there one day. It looks so picturesque and peaceful. Very beautiful.
Then in September we were off to South Africa again. My ticket was a treat from my Parents so that I could be there for Macayla’s 1st Birthday. We also used the time to get as much wedding planning done as possible as, being there exactly the same time as our wedding in 2012, we could pick things like the flowers and such. We got LOADS done and only have a few things left to sort out. We also had a family photo shoot with the wonderful Adrian Shields, who is to be out wedding photographer too. In June my parents celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary and Mark and I booked a family photo shoot for us all to go on as their gift. Those were by far my favourite 2 weeks of the whole year. Seeing my gourgous neice, Macayla, for the 1st time was fantastic. She really is a magical little gift in the family 🙂
My only body modification in 2011 was my Sternum Microdermal. I had wanted one for quite a while and decided to go for it when visiting my friend Beth in Brighton in April. I loved it! Unfortunately by October it was obviously slowly rejecting so I decided to remove it. I’m tempted to get it done again as it was one of my favourite piercings ever but I was always worrying about accidentally catching it, and the freedom from that constant worry once it was removed was a relief. It’s by far the prettiest piercings I have ever gotten but also the most worrisome 🙁
Another big change for me in 2011 was I changed jobs! After working in Accounts & Payroll at the plant hire conpany for 5 years I was more than ready to move on. A position opened for a Test Analyst in the team Pete works with, so I applied and got the job. It’s been a massive change from what I am used to. I’ve never worked for a massive corporation before, or part of such a large team, but I’m really enjoying it. I feel like I’ve turned my brain on for the first time in years. It took me a while to settle in to the new environment and job but I’m finally getting there, and it’s great to work on such a young, relaxed, fun & dynamic team. I actually like working with Pete too 🙂
So all in all 2011 was a fantastic year, and I’m definitely looking forward to 2012 and OUR WEDDING!