It’s that time of year again: on comes my blogging hat and out comes my inner-spewing AKA my annual end-of-year review. I really relish this Twixmas period: a time for over-indulgence, eating, sequins, reflection, drinking, family, drinking some more, and generally getting my life in order. And while everyone said the first year of marriage would be the hardest, for me, it’s been one of the best of my relationship. Here’s what Year One as Mrs Harris-Spencer has done for me:
What did you do in 2017 that you’d never done before?
Walked over 30,000 steps in one day. I’ve been really into walking – undertaking Fitbit ‘step-off’ challenges with friends around the world, city ‘sploring and even jogging on the spot to get my step count up. Due to excessive travel (more on that later) I haven’t been able to go to the gym anywhere near as often as I did last year while I was on full must-fit-into-my-wedding-dress mode, so walking has been my go-to fitness alternative.
Oh, and finished my first novel. Result.
Where did you begin 2017?
In our beloved local The Kings Arms, with our lovely friends Monica and Lynette, playing Cards Against Humanity. Again.
Did you keep your New Year’s Resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I’d forgotten my NYRs until I re-read last year’s blog post: “This year I intend to maintain strength, physically and mentally”. I can’t say I’ve been 100% successful at this. For 2018, I’d like to get back in the gym again; all my travel this year has made it preventative.
What was your status by Valentine’s Day?
Happily married lady.
Did anyone close to you give birth?
My lovely bestie Emily had Annabelle. I’m sure there are more, but she’s my most memorable bubba this year!
Did anyone close to you die?
Nobody close to me, thankfully.
Were you in school?
Same answer as last year and the year before: School of Sony.
What countries did you visit?
*Deep breath*: Japan, US, Spain, China, Japan, Bulgaria, Japan, US, France, Thailand (for an amazing anniversary break), Japan, US. Yes, that’s FOUR trips to the land of the rising sun. I’ve been on TWENTY flights this year. Vomit. But my air miles are insane and they bumped me up to Silver, so every cloud…
What would you like to have in 2018 that you lacked in 2017?
Fewer flights please.
What moments from 2017 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Swimming in my own private infinity pool in Thailand. Climbing the Great Wall of China. Singing my heart out at Japanese karaoke. Singing my heart out at Moulin Rouge Secret Cinema and acting like teenagers with my naughty sister-in-law Holly. Singing…in the car? That happens a lot, too.
What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Work and career-wise, I’ve been the most stretched I’ve ever been in my life. I’d say just getting through it all, leading a huge project and (very soon!) seeing the fruits of my labour.
What was your biggest failure?
Did you have to go to the hospital?
What was the best thing you bought?
On my most recent trip to the US, I found some amazing Givenchy earrings in the sale that almost replicate the gorgeous Swarovski earrings that I got for my 30th birthday (and then lost).
Where did most of your money go?
On clothes for myself. Post-wedding savings have been a bit wah-wah.
What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Worldly life adventures with G – past, present and future.
What song(s) will always remind you of 2017?
On a truly out-of-character impulse, I booked to join G at Primavera Sound in Barcelona: my first proper festival. Needless to say that both myself and everyone around me thought I’d die, but I managed to party like an animal and stay out later than some of G’s Spanish friends! My most memorable moment was dancing to The Weekend’s I Can’t Feel My Face at 6am as the sun was rising across the festival stage by the sea.
What concerts/shows did you go to?
Primavera Sound! And the Harry Potter play. Both were outstandingly good.
Compared to this time last year, are you:
I. happier or sadder? Happier.
II. thinner or fatter? Probably about the same as this exact time last year, but definitely more than the skinny minnie I was on my wedding day! I don’t even know how I weighed that little!
III. richer or poorer? Richer. Because I didn’t have to pay for a wedding, obvs.
What do you wish you’d done more of?
Writing. I finished the first draft of my novel, but it still needs editing. And my blog has been disappointingly sporadic. I’ve just been so swamped with work stuff…next year should offer more writing opportunities though.
What do you wish you’d done less of?
Flying. Seriously, it sucks. The best bit about it is numbing the turbulence with free wine and watching musicals/Disney films on repeat until you fall asleep.
How will you be spending Christmas?
As usual, with our respective fams. We have a wedding in Wales to attend on NYE, which will be nice.
What was your favourite TV programme?
I LOVED both Margaret Atwood adaptations: The Handmaid’s Tale and Alias Grace. Dark, dystopian, feminist stories with a twist: that’s right up my street.
What was the best book you read?
A bit late to the party, but I thought Naomi Alderman’s The Power was one of the best feminist dystopian books I’d read since Atwood.
What were your greatest musical discoveries?
As usual, I rely on G for all my new music. So far loving Confidence Man. And more of Sufjan Stevens please.
What did you want and get?
An amazing first year of marriage with my bestie, career satisfaction, and to travel the world. I basically lived out of my suitcase this year.
What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
For my 32nd birthday, G and I went to a spa and then to the cinema to see Beauty and the Beast (you can’t go wrong with that sentence), in which Emma Watson was surprisingly not wooden and a pretty decent feminist role model. She’s growing on me.
What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
To have had the time and headspace to have exercised more and generally led a healthier lifestyle. Travelling on average once a month made that impossible.
How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2017?
Same motto as last year: More is more. I have particularly enjoyed lace, sequins, sparkles, satin, florals, velvet, scalloped edges, frills and ruffles. Dramatic and feminine is my jam.
What kept you sane?
Same as last year: Man and cat.
Who did you miss?
Man and cat while on different continents.
Who was the best new person you met?
We met some very cool people at a Bulgarian wedding and on our Thailanniversary.
Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2017:
Good things come to those who wait.
Did you move anywhere?
What’s something you thought you would never do but did in 2017?
Go to a music festival. I’m not a very festivaly kind of girl so my attendance was a revelation…for both me and G.
What was your best month?
Tricky one…December’s been pretty strong. New York City pre-Christmas is just magical and it was so great to hang with all our US people. And our Christmas this year has been immeasurably better than last year.
I’ve had a few. But then again, too few to mention…(as I have sung many times at Japanese karaoke)…
Overall, how would you rate this year?
It’s been a great first year of marriage. However, I’ve probably burned the candle a little bit too much, partying like a teenager and working like an ox. I’ll give it a strong 8, but hoping next year will be a little calmer and allow me to focus on future life goals without the mad work schedule I’ve experienced over the past twelve months.
What did you like most about 2017?
Being a lady-wife.
Other than home, where did you spend most of your time?
Japan and the US with my Sony family.
Change your hairstyle?
My mermaid extensions are back, and they’re fit. I keep flipping my hair back and forth like an absolute queen.
Get a new job?
Continued with some of the maddest and most demanding projects I’ve ever worked on in my life…but in the same job.
Do anything embarrassing?
Vomited on my knees after too much Bulgarian vodka. Luckily not too many people saw…
Get married or divorced?
ICYMI, that was last year. And if you missed it, then we’ve never met.
Did you get sick this year?
Only hungover. They seem to get worse and worse.
Start a new hobby?
No, but next year I’d like to get back into Zumba and writing.
Are you happy to see 2017 go?
Not ‘happy’ per se, but I’m ready for new adventures in 2018.
What are you wishing for in 2018?
Last year I asked for exciting married adventures with man and cat, which definitely happened. This year I’m wishing for more of the same, but bigger and better. 2018 promises great things and I cannot wait to get cracking with it.