Reflecting on 2019

How have we reached the point where I'm writing my 2019 round-up already? Like, seriously where has this year gone?! It feels like it was only a couple of months ago that I was sitting down to write 2018's post and dearly wishing for the year to end. Things couldn't be anymore different in 2019 and I'm sad to see this year coming to an end but unlike last year, I'm excited for the future. I have a spark in me that's so ready and motivated to make 2020 absolutely frikkin' amazing!


I started 2019 feeling very out of sorts, after a terrible 2018 I really wasn't sure what would be in store. I'd learnt not to plan, to not get my hopes up. I'd been left with a fear that things would crumble again but with each passing month this year those fears have slowly started to fade, they haven't gone and I think it's going to take a long time to ever feel like things aren't going to go wrong. But I'm getting there. 2019 could not have been more different to the previous year and even life now is so much different to what it was at the start of the year. In some respects 2019 was a quiet year but it's what I needed, it was my year to get back on track and to heal and I think I've more than achieved that and I'm ready to make 2020 the best year yet. Grab a cuppa or a glass of wine and get comfy because like always with these posts, this look back at 2019 is a big one!

What made 2019 great

1. We made a start on renovating our kitchen. There's still lots I'd like to do but with our wedding approaching and the fact that we prefer to spend our money on adventures not home stuff then renovations always take a back seat. We now have a beautiful tiled floor though and a stunning handmade breakfast bar and wine rack that was made by Josh and his dad and I'm so happy that our kitchen is starting to look better.

2. We began to plan our wedding and now somehow our wedding date is only 8 months away! Wedding planning stressed me out until I realised I was planning a crazy costing wedding because that's what's been drilled into us as being normal. We've stripped it right back and we're having a super small and simple wedding on a very low budget. Sure I could spend years saving but a wedding is one day, a marriage is for life and I just want to be married to my best friend and get on with this adventure that is life together. I got lots done for the wedding, all the big stuff is booked and I've even bought my wedding dress and ring!

3. Josh turned 30 this year and to celebrate I whisked us off to Liverpool and booked us onto the The Beatles Childhood Homes Tour. It was such a great experience and I was so happy that I was able to book it for Josh as it's something he's always wanted to do. 

4. I created a wedding blog and Instagram. I didn't want to fill my Instagram with wedding stuff and I was already looking to niche down on this blog so it made sense to move all wedding stuff over to a brand new blog. I'll be honest things have been quiet on there the last few months but I do plan on bringing it back in the New Year. The wedding Instagram grew like crazy and lots of people seem interested in just how we're having such a low budget wedding. I love being able to help people cut back the cost of their wedding. It makes my money saving heart so happy!

5. I ran the 5k Bubble Rush for Barnsley Hospice. I actually started running in public in the run up to the 5k which was a really big deal for me but when it was over I just stopped. I am vowing right here and now that I need to take up running again and get my body moving.

6. This year was the year of mini adventures. We haven't been able to have a holiday abroad with saving for the wedding and also my passport expired earlier in the year and I refuse to pay for a new one when I'll be changing my name in August. However we've managed to do loads of great things in the U.K. from days out in York, a trip to Liverpool, a summer trip to Little Hampton, Brighton Pride and London, a day in Liverpool to see the Christmas lights and a festive break in London

7. Blog work picked up a lot this year. I am in no way earning even a part time wage from my blog but that little extra money each month has helped like you wouldn't believe. I've actually been really sensible with any money I've earned from my blog and I've kept it in a separate account so I could use it for Christmas presents. I've also been able to treat myself for the first time in a very long time so I definitely don't take any of this for granted. I've actually invested a little money back into my blog towards the end of the year too, to both help with blogging and educate myself a little bit to make sure I'm in the best blogging position I can be in for 2020. It feels super scary to put that money back in to something I started as a hobby almost 9 years ago but I have found my passion and I really want to build on it.

8. Josh and I became and Uncle and Auntie again, this time to a nephew. We already have two nieces so it's great to have a nephew and buy boy Disney clothes now!

9. I got a new tattoo. It had been 2 years since my last tattoo and I'd been itching for a new one for the longest time. When I saw the cutest Halloween Stitch tattoo by the artist I knew I wanted my next tattoo from I just had to book it. I'm so happy with it and I'm already busy planning what my next one will be!

10. Back to home makeovers to end the year, we decided to give our living room a mini makeover. The living room was the first room to get decorated when we bought the house so it had been the same for 3 years. We painted our feature wall a completely different colour, added some new cushion and a new lamp and finally bought a rug. I'll be doing a blog post about the budget makeover in the new year.

Goals

In my 2018 post I said I'd made the decision not to write down any goals because 2018 had taught me that life doesn't always go to plan. A little while after that though, I did decide to write some things down in notes on my phone. Not things I definitely needed to check off to make the year great but things to maybe work towards. They weren't detailed goals as I just wanted to see what happened but looking back at those goals now I did actually managed to make a big dint in all of them. So here are the goals I wrote down for 2019
Travel somewhere new - I went to Brighton
Increase paid blog work - I managed to make some extra money each month
Wedding planning - I've pretty much completed that one!
Sort the house (specifically the kitchen) - the kitchen had a big makeover and the living room had a mini makeover

I do have some goals for 2020 that I've wrote on my phone so we'll see how I do with those! I also have some blogging goals that I will be sharing in a post very soon.

To end this very long post I'm going to do the usual round-up of my favourite posts of 2019 from my blog.

How was 2019 for you? Let me know in the comments.

Calling all blogging babes! I've created a Facebook group where we can all come together and discuss all things blogging, money saving and everything inbetween. It would be great to see you over there. So to be a part of a super friendly and supportive community, hop on over to Facebook and join us!

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