Thursday, 31 December 2015

Last Word

Maria A Smith

Determined to make the most of the last few days of 2015, I'm pleased to report I've been out and about enjoying the company of friends, socialising, walking, and I've even managed to take a few last snaps with my camera.

Can you believe the weather we've been experiencing? December has been the warmest since records began, but also one of the wettest too. We've seen a series of storms and devastating flooding up in the north of England, Scotland and over in Wales.  We've been very lucky here in middle England.

It isn't normal, and according to the experts it's just a blip. The last time temperatures were high was back in 1934. So we've had years like this before, when things go awry, and no doubt we'll have them again.

That got me to thinking - this last year was a blip for me too. It didn't go to plan and I found myself starting the new year flat on my back literally. It was incredibly difficult until May when I got my mobility back. Everything I'd planned to do in the first half of the year went on hold. The second half was spent recovering.

I didn't complete my novel, in fact when I did start editing, I realised it needed a complete rewrite. I made a new plan and have mostly been trying to sort things out. But it isn't anywhere near finished.

I didn't lose that stone either. But I did lose eleven and a half pounds, so I was close. I also made a lot of new friends at my Slimming World Group.

I did achieve things, I took up pilates, and invested a lot of time in my health by upping my fitness levels. I tried different types of exercise and found out I like boxing! And I'm not keen on HIT (High Intensity Training) but it works, so I may have to learn to like it.

Patsy Collins and I started #writingchat on Twitter, and after a few months enlisted the help of Carol Bevitt, I'm amazed how it's developed. We've become a small community in less than a year, we're real writers on Twitter, and we meet on Wednesday evenings at 8pm - 9pm for friendly chatter on writing related topics. Do join us.

I got out and about, visited Wales, Derbyshire, London and more besides. I attended two good writing events, and caught up with my writing buddies regularly.

I had a great reading year, thanks to Audible. I listened to many interesting podcasts too. I want to do more of that in 2016.

Losing a friend to cancer in the last quarter of the year made me realise how fragile life is, and how lucky I am, and that we must all grasp every opportunity in life. And making time for family and friends is vitally important.

So as I say goodbye to 2015, it hasn't all been bad, and I'm looking forward to telling you all about my plans for next year. Watch out for my post tomorrow.

Maria A Smith


  1. All the best for 2016 - look forward to your next post. Love the picture (both of them!)

    1. Thanks Lindsay, normal service will be resumed very soon. The holiday season has sent a lot of blogs out of sync.
      Happy New Year!

  2. Hi Maria - lovely photo .. and yes haven't we had strange weather, but from what I can gather it's no change to the state of weather over the centuries ...

    I'm just thankful for not being flooded out - or likely to be .. but feel for many and am glad you can look forward ....

    HPN - over to next post ... cheers Hilary

    1. I really hope people affected by flooding are helped as soon as possible to bring some normality back to their lives.

  3. I Hope 2016 is a much better year for you. Happy New year !


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