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Time to Reflect - 2017 remembered

It's been quite a year for me.

There has been good and bad as always. Challenges to be addressed. Changes to accept and adapt to.

Diabetes Diagnosis

Early in the my first major challenge was being diagnosed with diabetes.

It was quite a shock as I didn't think my diet was too bad and while I was slightly overweight, my BMI was only 26, one point above the ideal range. My job wasn't sedentary, working with Autistic Adults, I was out walking and swimming on a regular basis.

A slimmer me showing off my crochet.

The results were bad enough however, that I embarked on a drastic change of diet - reducing carbs to just 100g per day and getting even more exercise. Over the next three months I lost 3 stone in weight and can honestly say I've never felt better. Not only that, but cutting out sugar stopped my IBS symptoms at a stroke. It's easy to change your diet when the benefits are instantly obvious.

Bucket List Breakthrough

At the end of April, for the first time in my life, I flew on a plane. It has been on my bucket list for quite some time and I find the experience a pleasure. I loved looking down on the clouds as they glowed in the setting sun.

First ever flight :-)

The destination was Riga in Latvia and we arrived at almost midnight, greeted by a Russian taxi driver. Communication was a little difficult be arrived safely at our hotel. The Old City of Riga was interesting and lively but the evidence of earlier communist rule was not far away off the beaten track. April may be a little too early in the year to take full advantage of all Latvia has to offer.

Moving Away

In the middle of the year my eldest daughter moved to South Wales. This has been the hardest change for me to adapt to as I can no longer visit once a fortnight as I could when she was just under 2 hours away.

Grandma and Granddaughter.

In September she gave birth to her second daughter on whom her older sister dotes. Reducing my work commitments has meant I've been able to visit for extended periods rather than just a day or afternoon. Just one way of adapting to a changing life.

Change of Perspective and Perseverance

Over the last few months I have been concentrating on my creative outlets. I am determined more than I have ever been to forge a career out of my art. Trying to sell has always filled me with trepidation but this time I'm determined to learn all the necessary skills to make it happen. There has been both progress and setbacks but now I am seeing the reasons and coming up with solutions rather than succumbing to anxiety and fear.

Part of that has been to create this website and blog. The website is almost there now I think. I'd love some feedback on it - all constructive criticism welcome :-)

So what of 2018?

For the new year I want to be learn how to sell art well and I want to share that knowledge with as many creatives as will listen. Eventually I'd like to be part of a group of like minded people who all want to earn a living from their craft and are prepare to join together to make it happen for everyone.

I also want to get out with my camera more , photographing interesting places and sharing on here. In particular I want to show just how great a place Wales is, particularly it's coast, mountains and lakes.

Lake Vyrnwy

At the very least, by the end of the year I want to be able to give up the day job completely.

What are your thoughts as 2017 slips away? What ambitions do you have for the new year?

You can share in the comments below :-)

Is there anything in particular I can include in this blog that would be of value? Why not share that too.

Finally I'd like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and may all your dreams for the New Year come true.

Merry Christmas

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