It is difficult to pick highlights from 2015 as it was such a busy year. An early note to self was that it was too busy. I have resisted the glorification of being busy for some years now but in 2015 I lost my way a wee bit. I took on too many projects and, while I am satisfied that I delivered them all, the sheer number of them became the source of exhaustion.
That said, we did have some fun along the way. We were blessed to have Molly and her boyfriend Scott with us for much of the year. They took up residence in our holiday cottage and it was just such a special time. They both took off down south again come the autumn to take up Masters places at Lincoln and Nottingham.
The community project Eco Savvy took more and more of my time which culminated in a wonderful show in the autumn. All summer a creative team worked on costumes, props and decorations to make the show the success it was and I was privileged to be part of it.
I had a visit from a very dear friend in the autumn which rather made up for my lack of ability to travel these days. My illness continued to take a tighter grip on my life which has recently led to some major changes – more later.
I took part in the island Open Studio event for the very first time exhibiting fibre bowls made on the sewing machine and I was thrilled with the reception. Venturing into the world of art was a major step but a life long ambition so my 50th year seemed an appropriate time.
The children all continued to grow and develop into lovely human beings. Harry began an apprenticeship in plastering with a master plasterer and began to feel more settled about his future. George and Max achieved their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh award and began work on their silver and Molly settled into her masters course with considerable ease.
The big change comes as we tip from 2015 to 2016 as Scottish island mum begins a new challenge where she will walk everyday for a year in an attempt to make an intervention into her failing health. The premise is that increased fitness will increase a feeling of balance and wellbeing and that, in turn, will enhance my health. We shall see. You can learn more about the project on her new dedicated website Walking for Wellbeing. There are lots of ways you can get involved.
So it is important to learn the lessons from 2015. My diary going forward is surprisingly empty and that is the way it will stay. I am thinking of it as another sabbatical, this time lasting a year. I took a three month sabbatical in 2013 where I cleared my diary towards a healthy outcome. The emphasis going forward is improving my health which has meant that I have had to let lots of things go for a while. I believe this to be sensible though.
As always the company and support from all of you has made Scottish island mum what she continues to be. A place where we might usefully reflect on a unique perspective on life that never claims to be right or better. It is just the way I choose to live my life. Wishing you all a truly wonderful 2016.