And so it’s New Year’s Eve and what have I done?

By | December 31, 2013

It’s the last day of 2013, a time for reflecting, to look back on how the last 12 months have gone and to look forward with aspirations.

I read my post from 31 December last year this morning and feel as optimistic as I did then, tinged with sadness.

2012 closed with a funeral close to Christmas and 2014 will commence with another funeral, it is with additional reflection that I think about just how my year has gone.

I have been tagged in by Kate at and she has posed some interesting questions, ones that I will answer as well as including some additional bits of my own.

So, here goes:

1. What was your happiest event?

We have had some lovely family days out this year but I think my happiest times are our “Cinema Sundays”. We all close the curtains, turn off the lights, choose a DVD and watch it snuggled on the sofa with bowls of popcorn.

There are none of the pressures that a cinema trip would normally present for T and D and if anyone feels like a dance during it or singing along, that is fine.

2. What was the saddest thing to happen?

This would undoubtedly be the death of Hubbie’s mum 4 days before Christmas, understandably it made for a muted Christmas and the children opening their cards which she’d handmade was sad to see.

3. What was the most unlikely thing to happen that actually went ahead and did?

There is a little badge on my blog which mentions that I was shortlisted in the Brilliance In Blogging Awards, I was totally amazed by that and it really lifted my spirits. I went no further and when I saw the finalists listed, I totally understood why but for me, that shortlisting was an achievement.

4. Who let you down?

T’s school disappointed me, he had a challenging start to the school year and his official autism diagnosis wasn’t recognised or acknowledged.. He has a high-functioning diagnosis which means that his symptoms and traits can be masked but it would have been helpful if the school took this into account.

There are people who I should be close to but I’m not. Their refusal to accept my children for the lovely (mostly) happy individuals they are has meant that I don’t want to be brought down anymore. I need to remain happy in my own skin and relatively sane for my children and Hubbie, he needs my support more now than ever.

5. Who supported you?

One word – Hubbie. He is always telling me how proud he is of what I’m trying to achieve through blogging and constantly mentions my website to his customers.

It was a pure quirk of fate that we met 13 years ago and two children later, 5 pets and our home, I’m so grateful for that quirk.

6. Tell us what you learned

That even though times can be tough and never-ending, there is an end to those hard times.

That help is available if you have the courage to ask for it.

7. Tell us what made you laugh

Our family days out at Thorpe Park and Legoland. I’m not comfortable with heights at all but, because the children wanted to go on the high rides, so did I. I might have had my eyes closed (there was no might about it!!) but I did it and it was over quickly.

Our summer days in the garden, especially in the frame pool. Lots of splashing, tons of fun. Happy memories.

8. Tell us the things that made you cry

Uncertainty and insecurity. I had a few panic attacks in March and thankfully none since then, they were not nice but the trick was to stay calm and recognise it would pass.

The realisation that my MIL won’t see her grandchildren become the young adults they are growing into.

9. Tell us three things your child or children did to make you feel proud

T will be heading off to secondary school in September 2014, we don’t know which one yet but hopefully it will be first choice. He did well on the visits to prospective schools and we were able to have a pro’s and cons chat with him.

The way he has coped with his diagnosis has made us proud.

D has met challenges, daily tablets and yucky fortnightly injections head-on, sometimes very head-on. She resisted it all at first, at times violently but we are reaching compromises and establishing timescales.

10. Tell us the things that made you proud of yourself

Getting onto those high rides at the theme park.

Challenging decisions that I don’t feel are appropriate or correct

After a not-very-good time with a blogging platform, I moved back to WordPress and self-hosting. I don’t like doing technical things on it but I’m forcing myself too. Even things like badges cause me grief but I made one!!

11. Tell us the challenges you overcame

2013 has been a tough year from start to finish, I’m glad to be tap-tap-tapping away.

12. Tell us the things you would like to change about your life in 2014

To see T have a successful transition to secondary school

To feel happier within myself

To get to a blogging event

Those were the questions from Kate and they were really thought-provoking to answer.

I did some interesting product reviews in 2013, here were my favourites:

1stFone – such a great idea for SN children and the elderly

I’m very proud to be a family blogger for Kurio and we reviewed a Kurio 4S Touch – a safe and user-friendly children’s tablet.

Squease deep pressure vests – I could see the immediate benefits for D and must get around to ordering one.

Wishing everyone a wonderful 2014, let’s hope it’s a fruitful one for all.

Facebook Comments


celebratingmums on 31st December 2013 at 6:33 pm.

Really enjoyed reading this. That moment with the cards must have been so heart-breaking and poignant. You are a strong family – that shines through and that is a very big high in itself. Thanks for taking the time to do this so quickly – gold sticker and all that. Let’s see how we fare next year. Wishing you a very Happy and well-deserved peaceful New Year @kateonthinice


Jeannette on 1st January 2014 at 5:12 pm.

Thanks Kate, you too. So many families struggled last year, lets hope it’s a better one for all.


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