2016 year in review

Hey all.

I know, you probably thought I’d given up on this blog.  Kind of?  I know I’ve been really bad about doing any posts.  Hopefully that will change next year.  But while I’m still sort of limping along, it’s time to review 2016.

Let’s be honest – 2016 has been a really s**t year.  I think this is possibly why, especially this second half of the year, I haven’t been able to post much.  You know the old mantra – if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all?  Well, I haven’t felt like I can say much nice stuff lately.  So I’ve kept silent.

It started out awesome – D and I did some amazing tramping trips in NZ – Rabbit Pass, Lochnagar and Ice Lake were the highlights.  We went to America for 3 weeks and did Las Vegas, The Grand Canyon, Bryce, Zion, Arches National Park, and the Valley of Fire State Park all before heading to MN for about 10 days to celebrate our wedding.

Then in May, we moved to Australia.  But settling in over here hasn’t exactly been a breeze.

So in all seriousness, this has been a s**t year.  Celebrity deaths (I’m looking at you, David Bowie, Alan Rickman and Prince).  Brexit.  Trump.  Sometimes it’s quite difficult to stay positive about the future.  Jobs that used to be prestigious and ‘safe’ are no longer.  Especially if you, like me, hang out a lot with intellectual types who discuss economics, politics and solve all the worlds problems whenever they get together.  The constant discussion of automation, disappearing  jobs and therefore disappearing middle class, the need for a universal basic income (which will probably never happen), climate change.  Sometimes, the future looks really bleak.  This has been one of those years – where everything seems uncertain.  I haven’t mentioned it here before, but D has been unemployed since we moved over to Oz.  Luckily, he has just had an offer so 2017 is definitely looking up, but we’ve been living on one income for most of the year – it certainly hasn’t been ideal.

I have friends and family who I know have had an equally disruptive and tough or tougher year too (all of my siblings have shifted house this year – including one other who shifted countries as well – apart from one!).  I have friends who have, despite multiple emails and messages sent by me – just don’t respond – because they are dealing with their own problems.  It’s getting increasingly difficult for me to maintain relationships with my friends overseas (now in two countries, not just one!).

Suffice to say that here in Australia, I’ve felt more isolated than ever.

But back to reviewing the goals I set out for 2016.

  1. Sew more (start using up my fabric stash!).  Sew at least 1 swimsuit from scratch.  Do at least one “how to sew something” blog post.  Yes!  I have actually sewn a ton this year – including 1 swimsuit from scratch.  No, I haven’t done any posts on any of it, much less a “how to sew something” post.
  2. Cook more vegetarian meals (institute meatless Monday!). Yes!  I’ve been primarily eating vegetarian lunches.  Mmmm….  tofu.
  3. Read more journal articles – start with 1 a week. Nope, fail.
  4. Have at least $5k in savings by the end of the year. Did you see the paragraph above about D being unemployed?  Yep, super fail.
  5. Read at least 3 non-fiction books. YES!!  I read Edurance: Shackelton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing, and I loved it so much, I read another Antarctic book about Sir Douglas Mawson’s AAE, and D and I listened to an audiobook called Destiny of the Republic: A tale of madness, medicine and the murder of a president by Candice Millard AND we also listened to Over the edge of the world: Magellan’s terrifying circumnavigation of the Globe by Laurence Bergreen.  If you only read one non-fiction book in your entire life, read Edurance: Shackelton’s Incredible Voyage.
  6. Be able to do 5 pull-ups. No – still can’t seem to get past the 2-3 mark.
  7. Get my tattoo removed  (Melbourne, here I come!).  Nope – I looked into though and even did a test patch.
  8. Start cycling to work?!  Do more (any!) cycling…  I think.  Actually YES!  Out of all the goals, this is the one I’ve done best on.  D was actually incredibly surprised and impressed at how often I’ve been biking to work.  
  9. Do at least 1 touristy trip in Australia. Nope.  We did go to Fiji in September though.  Unfortunately, I had food poisoning for half the trip.   Also, Fiji is ridiculously expensive.
  10. Move towards a minimalist lifestyle.  Kind of?  Our home in Australia is pretty sparse if that counts?  That could just be because we’re poor.

Other, less specific goals:

  • Blog more – focus more on fashion.  Maybe even Melbourne street fashion?  Epic fail.  I’ve barely blogged at all.
  • Buy less make-up.  Get better at using the make-up I have. Nope.  Still bought some more make-up this year.
  • Skype my MN friends and family more often. Nope.  Pretty much as useless as ever.

Part of the reason I’ve been really bad at taking outfit photos the second half of this year is because I’ve been cycling to work pretty regularly since October.  This means I shower and get dressed at work, which doesn’t leave much time to take outfit photos.  Hopefully this will change in 2017!

The other unexpected thing that happened was we adopted a 2 year old cat from the local animal shelter in October.  He’s an absolute furry little monster, but I’m glad we’re able to give him a home.  We’ve named him Quill, after Peter Quill from Guardians of the Galaxy, and Lake Quill, the source of Sutherland Falls in Fiordland (New Zealand).


So that’s how 2016 went.  How did you do for your goals this past year?


4 thoughts on “2016 year in review

  1. A blog post!! A post!!!!! OK, grrrrrrl 5 pull-ups?? Way to set the [actual] bar high! I mean, 2 pull-ups is pretty dang amazing imo. I think you need to give yourself more credit. Yay biking! Boo not saving money! Your kitty is adorable (although gassy?)!

    I just claim other’s achievements as my own. Chickens laid two eggs today? Go me! My son said something adorable? My doing. Husband cleaned the kitchen? Nagging worked, nailed it. 2 y/o slept through the night after being sick for a week? Probably because I sang lullabies so hard.

    I’ve been fantasizing coming to Australia lately and cuddling some wallabies. Can’t wait to see some weird and awesome Melbourne fashion.

    • Haha, I know I know.

      Listen, I am just amazed you have time to look after chickens and kids and still do crafts, etc! I get exhausted thinking about your life. ;D

      OOh yes you SHOULD come to Australia!! Melbourne is pretty fun, I promise we would show you guys a fun time. There’s lot of fun people here, and we could go on some walks to look at waterfalls, or go to the beach (surfing lessons, anyone?). Let me know if you have dates in mind!!!

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