Well, 2018 went by like a flash didn’t it? I enjoy writing a ‘year in review’ post, it reminds me of exciting things that happened throughout the year, both in my work, blog, and personal life. So here is what happened in my 2018.
In January I took my usual New Year trip to visit my Dad in Portugal. No surfing for me at that point due to injury, but it didn’t stop me from admiring the awesome power of the waves. Winter is ‘Big Wave’ season in Nazare, and this photo is just a tiny glimpse of what you can experience there! As you can see, I lucked out with the weather, notoriously unpredictable on the Atlantic Coast.
All I remember from this month is my knee surgery. A second attempt to ease the chondromalacia patella I’ve been suffering from. The surgery was simple, and although not quite successful, I was back teaching after 2 weeks despite still needing a crutch to walk around. But February wasn’t all bad, right at the end of the month, I was treated to my first ever hotel stay as a blogger! I got to test out the wellness experience Apex Hotels has to offer in beautiful Bath. A very slow walk around the city was all my knee could handle, but I enjoyed it nonetheless, and will be back again one day.
March brought the delivery (with the help of my friend and his car) of my new Decathlon bike! Still unable to cycle properly post-knee surgery, I set myself up with a turbo-trainer to start strengthening my legs again.
My birthday month! I celebrated 32 with my lovely friends at God’s Own Junkyard in North London, a sea of neon signs as far as the eye can see. I also went ‘swinging’ with my bestie at Swingers, the new crazy golf venue in town!! At the end of the month, I took part in Swimathon to raise money for Cancer Research UK, and was proud to swim 1.5k just 10 weeks post-surgery.
The beautiful weather arrived in May, and everyone started enjoying the great outdoors. I went on long walks along the river, through my local parks, and spent a warm afternoon at the rugby with my Mum. A weekend of thunderstorms ended the month, and with that I went through a major down patch….and got a new tattoo.
Despite starting the month heartbroken and on a complete low, June turned out to be pretty epic. It started with a much needed escape back to Portugal, with gorgeous weather, and time spent surfing, fast becoming my favourite hobby. The real highlight of June however, was my trip to the Alps with Decathlon. The biggest and most exciting thing I’ve ever done in association with this little blog, I couldn’t believe my luck. I fell in love with the mountains, the fresh air, and the great outdoors. I re-found my smile, and still look back on that trip with fond memories.
My epic summer continued into July, with another escape, this time to the Devonshire Coast on the most glorious weekend of the summer so far. In temperatures nearing 30 degrees, we surfed, SUP’d, hiked, yoga’d and relaxed for the weekend. July was also the month where everyone became football mad, myself included! Who knew I’d end up watching the World Cup Semi-Final in a busy central London pub with a beer in my hand?!
Another month, another escape (I told you it was an epic summer)! This time to the South Coast, Shoreham to be exact, with some lovely old friends. We laughed, drank prosecco, and danced on the beach, what more could you want? I also found myself in a giant ball pit with unlimited pizza and bubbly in August, celebrating my bestie’s birthday at Ballie Ballerson, so much fun.
SeptemberI’d been looking forward to this since my birthday in April….F.R.I.E.N.D.S Fest!!! Who else to spend this day with, but my bestie; Laura. We share an obsession with the 90s TV show, and she got me tickets for my birthday. And yes, there was yet another trip abroad, this one was also going to be a work trip, photographing a surf and yoga retreat in Portugal, but it wasn’t quite as organised as originally hoped, so I ended up spending more time exploring. I discovered Berlengas Island, a stunning archipelago just a 25 minute power boat from Peniche on the Atlantic Coast.
October was the saddest, most heart breaking month of all, as I lost my gorgeous cat Charlie. He had a very short fight with cancer during October and I had to make the very tough decision to put him to rest. I adopted him when he was 5, and he was by my side for 6 years. RIP Charlie, the best cat I could have ever asked for.
As the weather turned chilly, a wintery photoshoot with fellow blogger Elle started the month. A lucky competition win from non-other than Laura resulted in us enjoying an intimate Ed Sheehan gig! I also moved into my new home, which as you will have seen on instagram, had an awesome spiral staircase in the living room!
With the festive season finally upon us, I made the decision to hang up my grippy socks, give my body a break, and stop teaching group classes. With the diagnosis of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, and a year that (although I’ve not mentioned it in this post) featured pain almost every day, it seemed like the sensible choice. What better way to signify the end of an eventful year, than with a gorgeous sunset, shot from Barrecore’s Headquarters as I trained for my new role as Studio Manager.
Thanks for journeying through my 2018 with me!! Here’s to a wonderful 2019 full of even more adventures.