Well, it's been a while since I've written much on here, partly due to the fact it's been such a big year and while I feel like a lot has happened, I haven't always necessarily felt overly inspired to share on here.
However, as I tend to do - and don't judge me on this, I went and read through my old blog posts to inspire me. Sometimes I really do forget that it was me who wrote some of the things on there! When I go back through and read my old posts, I feel like I'm learning something from myself. In this case I came across last year's blog post about my "Top 40" memories for the year of 2020 and it inspired me to do it again. In a time where a lot is going on in the world, I thought it would be a great idea to reflect on all of my favourite memories from this year. I would encourage you to do the same if you are feeling a bit like "what the hell did I do this year?!".
So here it is, my Top 40 favourite memories for 2021 (in no particular order):
1. Getting my very first dog Winnie in April. She is a dream come true and makes me so happy.
2. Going on a road trip to Seventeen Seventy with Michael and Winnie and experiencing a holiday through a new lens travelling with a dog!
3. My sister finally moving back from Melbourne after a long 5+ years without her in Queensland.
4. Moving in to my very first house with Michael and making it a home.
5. Hearing the news that my brother and his wife have finally fallen pregnant after a long process of trying. This will be the first time I am an Aunty and I could not be more excited.
6. Witnessing my sister really find her feet and herself in her role as a hairdresser. After a long career in varying types of salons, I'm so grateful to see her somewhere she can really thrive and be rewarded at.
7. Seeing my relationship with a (now) close friend change from someone I barely spoke to, to someone I now can't go without speaking to!
8. Sitting around a table with my Aunties and Uncles from my Dad's side and listening to stories about their childhood and watching them all laugh and interact with each other like they're kids again. You can't buy experiences like that.
9. Finding out that my cousin is not only engaged, but also having a baby. Two huge exciting pieces of news from her this year.
10. Starting my dog sitting side-business which brings me so much joy in my spare time.
11. Witnessing Michael become a 'dog Dad' and seeing how loving he is with my girl Winnie.
12. The simple pleasure of using a communal shower while on my road trip to Seventeen Seventy - believe it or not I happen to love communal amenities! They make me feel a part of something bigger than just my little world and comfort zone.
13. Enjoying photography when on my road trip - for a year that didn't have a lot of travel in it, this made me very happy to take photos on the road again.
14. Setting up my pop-up picnic business - while this continues to just be something I do on the side, I'm proud of the belief I have in myself and that is the biggest lesson I have learned out of this.
15. Attending the most beautiful dinner party at my sister's house with my closest girlfriends. We bonded and laughed like I hadn't done in such a long time.
16. Continuing to find my spark again in what was a pretty uninspiring year as far as travel and new experiences. It is always within me; I just have to reignite it sometimes.
17. Finding my voice in situations I would normally remain silent.
18. Continuing to work on myself despite how difficult and confronting it can be to acknowledge the darkest sides of yourself sometimes.
19. The various trips to Palm Beach Dog Beach with Winnie, it's such a beautiful spot and I've loved the days I spent there.
20. Getting closer with new friends and following through on my intentions with them (not just letting it be a drunken "omg let's be friends" conversation in the toilet at a party).
21. Speaking of parties - my friend's birthday party in Palm Beach was the most fun I'd had in a while and I will never forget that night.
22. Going Christmas light looking with my friends and sharing pizza at the top of Mt Gravatt.
23. Joining a new gym and being consistent with it - I feel great and it's genuinely such a safe place for me to take a load off and relax.
24. My birthday night out. Everyone was in such a silly mood and it's like time stood still that night, we had so much fun.
25. Celebrating my family dog's 21st birthday (yes you read that correctly), I'm so grateful we had a party for her as she passed away not too long after.
26. Putting Winnie through puppy pre-school was just the funnest time ever.
27. Going and having cocktails and getting tattooed with my sister. I got "who cares" tattooed on my arm as a reminder not to take things too seriously.
28. I got my new car and my dream number plates. Finally gaining some independence after a few years of not having a car after returning from Canada.
29. Bonding with close friends as we discussed our 'love languages' with each other and learned a lot about how they like to be loved and give love.
30. Having childish fun at an arcade and bowling alley with my sisters and friends. We all carried on like kids that night and I just remember feeling so great afterwards.
31. Putting in a lot of hard work to create a beautiful yard with Michael, I haven't done that much manual labour in a while but it was so rewarding.
32. Getting asked to write a few words for a company about my time and experience in Canada. Although they are yet to post it (I'll let you know if they ever do) - I am always grateful to talk about my time there.
33. Splashing out and buying myself a really expensive camera lens because I wanted to develop my photography skills.
34. Continuing to create new merchandise and prints for my Acutt Airlines dreamers <3
35. Getting Billie Eilish tickets from my close friend for my birthday (yes, I cried).
36. Putting myself and my mental health first when I really needed to.
37. Celebrating Michael and I's six-year anniversary in our new home, in the exact same way and exactly where we celebrated our first anniversary when he first bought the place.
38. Being a part of the visa application for my sister and her boyfriend who is from England. It felt great to be a part of their fight for their love story in Australia.
39. Spending one on one time with my Mum and talking so much we didn't even turn the TV on (very unlike us, the TV part that is). I always adore this time with my Mum, no distractions and just flowing conversation. I always feel like I get to know her more and more each time.
40. Learning (and continuing to try) to not sweat the small stuff.
Well, there it is everyone! If you made it this far, I hope I've inspired you to maybe go and write your own list. I can tell you right now, I feel super grateful after writing that and had forgotten how many great and significant things happened this year.
I wish you all a special 2022 filled with travel and wonder <3