Friday, 29 December 2017

Happy Old Year

Have you ever noticed how sometimes life seems to be a competition?  One thing which has struck me this year is how eager people seem to be to compare and compete on levels of misery - "I work longer hours than you do", "I had less sleep than you did", "I'm more stressed than you are" - and being happy and relaxed can feel like a bit of a crime, as if you're not doing something properly.

Someone once said to me that they "wish they had a stress free life" like we did - well I hate to shatter that illusion but although we don't work the regular 9-5pm we really are incredibly busy and there are plenty of times when we are very stressed - usually when another book deadline is approaching, and we have two of them in the next 12 weeks - eek!

On the upside there are many, many times when we're incredibly busy and not stressed at all - I love the fact that we get to work together and spend lots of time together exploring the outdoors - for me that's what life is all about.  I would absolutely hate a life where we both went off to different offices 5 days a week, enduing a long commute and only seeing each other at evenings and weekends when we'd most likely be tired and snappy - there's no job title or salary that can compensate for spending time with Steve and having fun.  (Of course I do drive him nuts on many occasions and he's probably quite pleased to see the back of me when I head off on one of my work trips to the far end of the country!)

So, here's my round up of this year's adventures - it's not a competition at all but if it were I absolutely and sincerely hope that you have had a 2017 that was happier and more fun than ours and that 2018 is lined up to be even better.  As Helen Keller said "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all"


Beautiful afternoon in the Langdale valley

Tarn Hows looking stunning

Slightly ethereal Grizedale Forest


Getting grubby in Leighton Moss

Getting the cover shot for 50 Gems of Cumbria
Work trip to Edinburgh


Discovered the finest picnic bench in Cumbria

First Delores trip of the year - Whitely Bay

Finding fabulous footpaths in Foxfield

Pretty buildings in Cambridge
Perfect day for one of our favourite walks - High Cup Nick

First visit of the year to Dunbar


Dune jumping at Sandscale
Plotting adventures on Scout Scar

Solo trip to New England Bay to get some writing done!
Fell in love with the Falkirk Wheel
First visit to Aaron
Celebrating my big 5-0 at my favourite distillery

Gorgeous evening swimming & BBQing at Easedale Tarn

Our first attempt at Kayaking - didn't all in!  Result!
(Steve pointed out the typo in the caption above, but I told him there was no F in fall... 😉 )

Another swim & BBQ - this time Grizedale


Surprise view looking predictably gorgeous

Breathtaking hike around Ennerdale

My favourite discovery - the village of Wreay

Day 1 of our Spirit Trail hike - before the rains set in...
Magnificent view...

Wordsworth's House, Cockermouth
Back to Dunbar for a work assigment

Blackpool illuminations

Cycling fun around Thirlmere

Work trip to Liverpool

Exploring Grizedale by electric bike

Great Gable service of remembrance


Exploring the Lune Valley

Home made Christmas Wreath
(thanks to Crumble Cottages!)

Finding solitude after a busy Christmas

HAPPY 2018 from both of us!