The Best of 2015

Monday, January 4, 2016

Last year I wrote that I wanted to travel in 2015 and I did travel quite a bit! In 2015 I visited four countries (Belgium, Ireland, France, and Spain), I travelled to Scotland on my own, and I saw a whole lot more of the English Countryside. 

This year there will be even more travel in my future as I hope to visit Germany, Northern Ireland, and Finland and see even more new places within the UK before I make my BIG MOVE back to The States later this year.  

Overachieved My Reading Goals

I was struggling at times to keep up with the Beautiful Mess book club in 2014, so I set an achievable goal of reading 15 books in 2015...and I ended up reading 47 books! I followed along with the Beautiful Mess Book Club until it puttered out, and then I went on to read several books that I hadn't yet read on my home bookshelves, and some other recommended reads. 

Top Five Reads of 2015
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy

What I Made in 2015
2015 will best be known as the year I got re-focused on drawing and painting. Over the summer I joined up with not one, not two, but three different local Urban Sketching groups (and then I joined another in the fall) that get together at a designated location once a month to draw. I also continued to work on Virtual Paintout drawings and I started doing some acrylic paintings. One of my friends from high school challenged me to an art exchange in the fall and I went mental with it! 

I also did a bit of knitting this year, although not as much as in previous years. I knit 5 bears for the Mother Bear Project, I sent some knitted bunnies to the Woolen Woods Project at Radcliffe County Park in Notthinghamshire, and I knit a few Christmas presents for my family, friends and myself.

Early in 2015 I learned about the Thread of Life cross-stitch project hosted by Sharon Mossbeck and I was able to stitch up a piece that was shown at Bank Street Arts in Sheffield in November and will be shown again at Cromford Mills in April 2016. 

Top Five Music Posts

Top Five Funny Posts

Top Nine on Instagram

Ho Hum
  • Exercise- I was off to a great start with sticking to my fitness goals in 2015 by blocking off some time to exercise after work each day. But as my workload increased (as well as multiple incidents of me forgetting to pack my gym clothes), working out at the gym was replaced with reading/ vegging out at the library. I might give this goal another go in 2016.
  • Capsule Wardrobes- I spent a lot of time de-cluttering at the start of 2015 and I had a lot of fun creating hypothetical "capsule wardrobes," but I had a hard time sticking with them because a) I didn't sew or knit as much as I planned/ wanted to. b) I found it hard to limit my daily clothing choices when there's so much to choose from. 
          I did take away some good lessons from building capsule wardrobes. I do plan to continue making capsule wardrobes on Pinterest to focus my clothing shopping/ making, and I'll continue to focus on quality over quantity by shopping for higher end and vintage pieces instead of High Street/Fast Fashion.

Happy New Year!
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