I can still remember sitting down to write this post for 2016. This year has travelled by at lightning speed but when you settle down to reflect on your year, June can seem a lifetime ago. During the No such thing as a fish podcast live, they recapped on 2017. Highlights I could scarcely believe took place this year. It is really amazing what can change in a year.
This year began the best way possible, dancing in my friends now kitchen, (then empty extension) until 4 am and then pushing our cars out of her and her partners field the next morning, (nothing like team building to start the new year on). It still makes me laugh now. I hoped the happiness I felt in those 12 hours celebrating 2016 was a good omen for the year ahead.
- Launching Todhpurs – the year got off on the best foot it could when finally after two years of planning our riding boots arrived. Todhpurs is a company I set up with my two sisters designing and selling riding boots for toddlers and young children. The boots didn’t arrive in time for Christmas, we were apprehensive about launching a new brand in January when spending money is the least of our priorities especially on an unknown product. Fast forward 12 months we are in a position I had hoped we would be but there was so much of me that couldn’t allow myself to dream we would have got this far. We are by no means in a position where we could leave our 9-5s and truly I am happy with that. I absolutely love my full-time job but I am unbelievably proud of what the three of us have been able to achieve. Especially as within our first year we have added two new colours and begun looking at other children’s equestrian apparel to the collection. Fingers crossed 2018 follows suit.
- My first holiday this year was an impromptu one with the girls to Prague. We were so lucky with the weather and the location of our Airbnb. We had the best time exploring the city, drinking mojitos and taking nonchalant photos. I can’t wait to book another city break with these girls next year.
- Seeing the sights of London from the sky – This year I was lucky enough to tick off so many tourist spots in London. We often become so obsessed with travelling to other cities, countries, continents we forget what is on our doorstep. Seeing London from the Shard and Sky Gardens this year was incredible, I would fully recommend both of this next time you are in London.
- We toured around the British Countryside with Todhpurs. promoting and selling the boots at various country shows and polo matches. It was a massive learning curve, we met some fantastic people along the way. I will forever be grateful for 2017 and the opportunities it brought us.
- In August I booked a spontaneous trip to Portugal with Sarah and Lucy. Where we enjoyed the most relaxing week eating and sleeping all day long, learning we are really too old to be mixing alcohol.
- I celebrated the marriages of some of the most wonderful couples, in the most beautiful settings. Watching friends marry their best friend is something I will forever love.
- I had another year of making memories with the most amazing people. Always grateful for the direction my life takes me and the people I am lucky enough to spend it with.
- I finally took the leap and had my braces fitted. After years of worrying about life with braces whilst hating my teeth, I plucked up some courage and booked my appointment for the fitting. Since then I have never looked back, it was the best decision I made this year.
- After my visit down to Cardiff August 2016, a year to the day Amy came up for a few days to see me. It was so nice to have a good few days together despite the rain. For someone who I have only known for 7 years (saying that sounds crazy) she means the absolute world to me, Beyond excited to see her turn into a Mrs next year.
- My Grandads Ashes were scattered in his own orchard at my Mum’s farm as he wanted to always be with the horses. The majority of the trees were planted 15 years ago so in the spring and summer it is absolutely beautiful in there. This summer we spent many lazy afternoons and evenings in there as a family. From paddling pools and picnics to birthday parties and bbqs. It is such a tranquil little space I feel as though Grandad is there joining in and watching us all which means the absolute world. I can’t wait for the parties next year.
- It may not be the most exotic of travel destinations this year but through all the work and the saving, I have managed to make the most of utilising the trips and time in various cities the UK. Some tied in with work others for days out with friends. Throughout the year I have spent days in Cirencester, Newcastle, Oxford, Cardiff, Dublin, London, Chester, Prague, Portugal, Birmingham. Our cities have so much history and culture to explore I have loved slow weekends experiencing new places.
- My birthday surprise to Brancaster beach was my favourite day of the summer. Some of my favourite people and dogs in one of the most beautiful parts of England, followed by fish and chips in a pub garden. I definitely want to do it again for my birthday next year.
- I cheered along at many Rugby games alongside my Dad at Welford Road. Having only missed two games this season I feel like a true Tigers regular. I finally am beginning to understand the ins and outs of the games as much as a spectator can. I love the crowd we sit with. Our rugby traditions of pre-match chips. But most of all I love the atmosphere and finding a love for a sport which means so much to my dad. So much so I bought my first tigers jumper.
- This year I have been treated to some incredible meals at restaurants, John’s House is a personal favourite for my birthday in June, along with Chiltern Fire House in December. They haven’t just been 5 stars, Chick n Sours is still mentioned on a near weekly basis amongst my family, despite visiting in February. The Curzon arms for being the cosiest pub in Leicestershire, Black Iron at Winstanley hotel because it is absolutely fantastic. The list could go on. It is safe to say I am one well fed, lucky girl.
- At the beginning of November, I was asked to be my friend’s chief bridesmaid. A best friend is not something I throw around because there are girls in my life who mean so much to me in their own ways. We have so many influential females in our life it would be difficult to pinpoint one to say they have the biggest effect on my life. Catherine, however, is in her own league, we have been through so much together, I would class her far more as a sister than a friend, we have argued like sisters, been there for each other and supported each other as sisters do. So when she asked me to be her chief bridesmaid I was literally speechless. I can’t wait to see her marry Beth next year.
These were my 15 favourites from 2017. I have loved nearly every second of this year, I can’t remember a year where I wasn’t excited for the next to begin, eager for a fresh start. This year, however, I would happily stay in 2017 for a few more months. We have lost some of our beloved family pets this year, our labrador Holly and our mare Dusty. Both reached an old age and I know they lived the happiest and most spoilt lives, and are dearly missed but despite the goodbyes and the heartbreak owning animals comes with this year has been rather special, I only hope 2018 continues to be as good.