2012 Highlights

It’s been a pretty full on year. I am sure all my friends have said the Same thing about this year, it’s gone by really quickly but so much has happened this year.

I cannot grumble though as I have been incredibly lucky and had some wonderful adventures throughout 2012, here’s my favourites:

Hot air balloon ride

Ready for takeoff
Ready for takeoff

My Christmas present from Richard last year and one that took several attempts to get off the ground.

This is one experience I will not forget. It was so lovely to simply drift up above the trees and to watch the world (or rather Essex), float by beneath us. Breath taking. And I was lucky enough to fly on one of the nicest days of the year.

The running, all the running!

2012 was the year I defied the odds, my hatred of exercise and my general sneering at joggers and became a runner.

Run Boy Run
Run Boy Run

Whether it was an epiphany, a mid-life crisis or a genuine want to get fitter it has been transformative. The second half of this year has been a steep learning curve and I have gone from walking to running 10k in around an hour with relative ease.

My new toned body
My new toned body

I’ve raised £1,800 sponsorship for Alzheimer’s Society and my local hospital whilst enjoying my new hobby and used it to clear my mind and tone up my body.

I’m on a bit of a running sabbatical until we get past Christmas but I am eager to sign up for more races and get back on the road in 2013.

The MoRun 10k in Greenwich park is an event I won’t forget in a hurry. Thanks again to Enda for signing me up and Janice for the in-race coaching (Dude!).

Godfather part II
Richards youngest sister gave birth to Freya May earlier this year and Richard and I were honoured with becoming her God Fathers. As you can see we are both incredibly proud to have been bestowed such a title.

Freya is a bubbly, energetic bundle of joy and we have enjoyed watching her grow up through 2012 (mainly through social media though as we live a couple hundred miles away).

6 years of martial bliss

Call it a Civil Partnership, call it Marriage, whatever it is – Richard and I tied the knot 6 years ago and I have never been happier.

We were both surprised and touched when a friend of ours (thanks Dave), found a video of our vows and uploaded it on You Tube on our anniversary. We have some wonderful friends…

In the rain but not getting wet

Visiting the Rain Room at The Barbican in London during November reminded me why I like London and what I am grateful for.

Paul and I mesmerised by the rain

This is a fantastic exhibition where you walk through a room where it rains but you don’t get wet. Considering the rain in the UK this year, this is truly remarkable.

The visit was also made memorable as I went with good friends Paul and Em. I have some truly wonderful friends and they have been an absolute rock to me this year. I am honoured to know such great people and to be able to call them my friends.

The combination of such great events and such wonderful people has made this year unforgettable.

Major Events in the UK

It really has been the best time to be in the UK. Regardless of the travel chaos, the crap weather and all the tabloid scepticism, the UK has globally been the centre of attention this year and rightly so.

First we celebrated the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty the Queen then we had the summer full of the Olympics.

Olympic Montage
Olympic Montage

Both events brought about a new-found national sense of pride and it feels that both events have gone a long way to reinvigorate the United Kingdom.

I don’t think anyone will be able to forget the Olympics and the Jubilee for a long time.

Anto's Jubilee Jubilations (one of my most liked photos of the year)
Anto’s Jubilee Jubilations (one of my most liked photos of the year)

And of course, well done to Team GB – you did us proud!

Breaks away

We have been away a couple of times this year and although we did our usual trip to Spain in April, our other trips stood out this year.

Bikes from the canal
Bikes from the canal

Richard gave me a surprise trip to Amsterdam for my birthday. We had to postpone it a couple of months due to the snow in February but we had a lovely day wandering around the canals. We visited the Foam Photography gallery, enjoyed a boat trip along the canals and had a very bohemian lunch.

Richard enjoying the local sites in Cyprus
Richard enjoying the local sites in Cyprus

We decided to break from our traditional holiday destination this year and went to Cyprus for an all-inclusive holiday in an adult only hotel.

Me relaxing in the pool, Cyprus
Me relaxing in the pool, Cyprus

It’s safe to say we both got into the relaxed atmosphere of the holiday pretty quickly and we spent our days lounging by the pool and soaking up the local culture.

Essex and Suffolk

We are both very much enjoying our move to Essex in 2011 and I am sure we can say we have made the most of living on the border of two such beautiful counties.


We have capitalised on the wonderful countryside and coastal areas as much as we could this year whether just enjoying a stroll of an evening or weekend, or introducing our friends to the natural wonders of this part of the UK.

It’s been a lovely, packed year as you can see. Lets hope this continues throughout 2013.


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