Thursday 28 December 2023

The Highs and Lows of 2023.

For the last few years I have done this tag on recapping the last year! I think I originally got it from Woman on Thin Ice at the end of 2017. It is a great way to remember and recap the year. 

1. What was your happiest event?
My family and I have had a year filled with happiness when I think back over it. Ellie leaving school and settling in well at college, Becky having such lovely friends, Stu getting a pay rise and lots of praise at work and me just plodding along happily.

The happiest part of my year was our holiday back up to the North East. It all didn't go to plan and it was pretty stressful when I was planning it with all the train strikes but thankfully the break away went to plan and was wonderful. We spent a couple of days in Newcastle. If you look back over my blog posts in September most of them are about our little holiday. The whole reason we went away was to go to a family wedding. Stu's niece was getting married and it was so nice to see family and have a good catch up. It was also amazing to go back to Amble, our happy place! The wedding was of course a beautiful event and such a special day. I was pretty nervous about seeing some of Stu's family as when we left Northumberland we didn't leave things with them on the best of terms but we've all had things to deal with that have made us realise life is too short for silly squabbles. I spent a good few hours talking non-stop to a person who I didn't like because I thought she always judged me and looked down on me. Over the last few years a lot has gone on in her life and maybe it has changed her and I have become more confident and that has changed me. 

The Tyne Bridge

2. What was the saddest thing to happen?
I can't think of anything really sad to happen over this past year which of course is a good thing. There hasn't been one time I can pinpoint me sitting down and sobbing like past years. I have of course cried at TV shows, TikToks and silly things like that but I am glad to report my year seems to have been filled with happiness.

3. What was the most unlikely thing to happen that actually went ahead and did?
Ellie happened!! Everything about Ellie has surprised me this year. She has gone from being a tom boy to being such a girly girl loving dresses, make up and false nails. She even wore a dress for her prom when she left secondary school. She went on to cope amazingly with her GCSE exams and passed way more than I would have imagined a few years ago. Ellie was upset that she didn't pass maths but a couple of weeks after results day we got a phone call from Ellie's old maths teacher from school saying her maths GCSE papers had been sent off to be re-marked as she was so close to getting a pass. They came back and she got quite a few extra points and the pass that she wanted. She has gone from never catching a bus alone to being pretty amazing on public transport, her confidence has grown and she has turned into a beautiful, thoughtful, kind and sensible young lady!

My youngest dressed for prom

4. Who let you down?
I was going to say that I can't think of anyone but then I thought the only person to annoy me and make my life difficult is Hyacinth our next door neighbour. That's not her real name, I just call her that because she is like that woman of the 90's tv show Keeping Up Appearances Hyacinth Bucket. lol She has let me down because I expect better from someone her age.

5. Who supported you?
My dad of course, he is always there for us. It's the little things like helping with jobs around the house, giving us lifts places we would struggle to get to using public transport, offering advice and wise words and his endless supply of DIY stuff is a great help. (Yes, this answer is the same as last year but my dad is always there for us).

6. Tell us what you learned?
My girls are not girls anymore, they are young women. (Although I will still call them my girls.). My girls keep surprising me with how mature they can be. Ellie had boy issues and made some decisions which made me realise she has a good head on her shoulders for knowing who should and shouldn't be in her life and I am not going to say much about Becky but she has been so mature and sensible about things over the last year. They are needing me less and less which makes me sad but I am proud of the people that they are becoming.

7. Tell us what made you laugh?
The person to make me laugh the most this year has probably been my brother. The conversations I've had with him make me laugh and then retelling the conversations to Stu make me laugh all over again. He is a funny guy. My girls love him and think he is the funniest person ever! There isn't one conversation that I can think of as an example he is just funny even in the most serious situations. The girls say I am the sensible sibling and he's the funny one. lol

8. Tell us the things that made you cry?
There hasn't been much to make me cry in sadness this year. I cried on the phone to the landlord when we had a wasps nest in October. I think it was more our of frustration and tiredness as I had a cold and hadn't had much sleep. It got my point across and it was sorted within a couple of hours. I cried when I was trying to sort train tickets with upcoming strikes for our break away and I cried at Stu's nieces wedding as it was so beautiful.

9. Tell us three things your child or children did to make you feel proud. Please miss this question out if you are not a parent.

Ellie smashed her GCSE's, is working hard at college and is learning to manage her own money.

Becky works so hard and is still loving being on permeant night shifts, she is managing her money better and I love how she is there for her friends.

10. Tell us the things that made you proud of yourself.
This is a lot like last years answer. I have stepped up and out of my comfort zone doing things I wouldn't do if I had someone else to do them for me like making phone calls, dealing with our nightmare neighbour and budgeting our money well, 

11. Tell us the challenges you overcame?
Again the challenge is finding time together as a family. I encouraged Becky to change her sleeping habits so she can eat with us on an evening, I have made a point of us seeing my dad more and spending time with him as he's not getting any younger and I have tried to have more one on one time with my girls.

12. Tell us the things you would like to change about your life in 2024.
I would like to increase our savings more and I would also like to make time to read and do some crafty things.

Happy new year! Wishing you all the best for 2024.


  1. All in all it does sound like a pretty fabulous year! Wishing you and your family the best for 2024 as well!

  2. Sounds like an amazing year! I have loved reading along and hearing about some of the things your lovely family get up to. I love reading your blog and it’s one of my favourites because you are always so genuine. I also love your sense of humour and I often have a giggle. I’m so glad this year has been a good one without any tears. Here’s to a wonderful 2024! Xxx

  3. Sounds like a good year. I like this tag - I mght have to remember it for next year.