[Photo by Tom Joy]

2016 has been a funny old year. On a personal level, it’s been as great as any other. We bought and mostly renovated our first house, which allowed us to welcome so many of my favourite people to Leeds for weekends, and let me indulge my greatest passion of hosting (and feeding) friends and family. We have already had so many wonderful times in our new house, and I’m sure there are many more to come in 2017. I have been happy this year, content in my life and satisfied with where I am. Which is totally at odds with how the world at large feels; I’m sure I don’t have to rehash the events that have made us all feel worried, scared and concerned for the future this year. I think we’ll all be glad when 2017 rolls around; yes, it is an arbitrary marker of time but a fresh start is always welcome. But for now, I want to have a little look back at what I’ve been up to this year… 

Bought our first house

Lived without a kitchen for two months… not something I want to repeat! 

Spent our weekends doing DIY

Learnt how to strip wallpaper and sand skirting boards. 

Indulged my inner fan girl at The Cursed Child

Hosted Christmas Day for the first time. 

Celebrated with friends at two weddings. 

Ran a slightly faster Abbey Dash time than last year. 

Crocheted my first cuddly toy (a bunny!). 

Ate our weight in French food to celebrate our first wedding anniversary

Read 120 books. A personal best, and one that is unlikely to be repeated! 

Fell in love with romance novels. 

Helped choose two wedding dresses and started to fulfil my first ever bridesmaid duties. 

Threw a big Friendsgiving party – the first of many, hopefully! 

Bought my first real Christmas tree

Moved my sister into University halls. 

Went apple picking

Felt very inspired by Hillary Clinton, regardless of the outcome. 

Relaxed at the spa on my very first spa weekend! 

Attended three surprise parties. 

Discovered loads of great new podcasts (Oh, Witch Please and All Killa No Filla were particular favourites). 

Started (and maybe finished) a new book blog. 

Blogged a lot less than I would like – something to sort in 2017! 

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  • I am happy that someone else is on the stripping/ sandpapering bandwagon. With both my parents being builders and spending the first half of my life living in a house under construction those are my jams! There is a picture of my wallpaper stripping at the age of about three…