Here we are again!
I had a very pleasant New Year's Eve, enjoying my own company. One of my presents to myself was a copy of Terry Pratchett's 'A Slip of the Keyboard', so I ran a hot bath, and lay in the overflowing bubbles, laughing at the wonderfully-written, funny anecdotes, until the cooling water reminded me that I had better get out and dressed (in new, snuggly pyjamas and gown). A growling tummy also reminded me that I hadn't had dinner, and couldn't be bothered to make anything much. I eventually settled for a jacket potato, baked beans and a strange salad of lettuce and beetroot, with the remains of a bottle of wine. I watched possibly my favourite Bond film, Goldeneye - the tank chase scene in St Petersburg has me in stitches every time. I cuddled up with the cats on the sofa and tinkered with a few knitted leaves while I enjoyed the London fireworks at midnight. (You get a much better view courtesy of the BBC - if I'd been there, I'd probably have been watching other people's backs and heads most of the time.)
Some may think this is very sad; the lonely, spinsterish existence of a Jilly-no-mates who should have been out partying with friends, scarfing down various little canapés while swigging fizzy wine, and singing Auld Lang Syne while sentimentally sloshed. Then, considering that you can't go anywhere around here without driving, a sleepover, rising late and in urgent need of a hangover cure the next day.
However, there's no need to pity me, as I really didn't feel sad or left out at all. Instead I felt grateful that I could have some quiet fun, had enough in the cupboard to slap a meal together, TV to watch, my cats, house and home and myriad other blessings.
I kept 'More' as my key word for 2014, and looking back, I wondered what I had achieved.
I managed to negotiate my way through a corporate tax return and company closure for the Community Interest Company in which I'd been involved. The dancing and teaching bit was fun; the company accounts and paperwork were not, but I like to think we made a difference in some people's lives - in fact, I know we did.
I applied for a few jobs (but only got one reply, and that was a no. Oh well. Some things aren't meant to be).
I dusted off and refreshed some of my existing knowledge to gain my ECDL and qualifications in text/word processing.
I made foot and knee physiotherapy exercises part of my daily life and started going to yoga classes.
I had my first sale on Zazzle.
I had my hair cut short, after years of wearing it long (the last time I had more than a couple of inches cut off was when I moved to Wales full time, 12 years ago!)
I learned how to knit socks and was astonished to find I had made 11.5 pairs (the half a pair was the frogged 'Origami' sock).
I introduced myself to lace knitting and learned new techniques for knitting and crochet.
I've extended my knowledge of belly dance, created choreographies and performed them. Class members resurrected the performance group for a brilliant performance at the Cardigan Belly Dance Festival.
I found my sewing mojo again, even if I am finding it difficult to hang onto it.
So, what is the word for 2015? Well, it's going to be a year of changes, the first of which is to find a new home! Yes, I have been bought out of the farm, and although all the properties I'd earmarked while waiting for the transfer to go ahead have gone, I feel hopeful that there will be something with capability out there for me.
So the word is 'Change'. Change is scary, demanding, exciting, necessary. Change is transformation. One of my friends bought me a little silver butterfly pendant as a Christmas gift and I am wearing it to remind myself to embrace the changes to come. Who knows, I might even throw a party this year!