Taking Stock – December 2018

December 20, 2018
the grotto, great ocean road, victoria, australia

Collage, Melbourne, Saint Kilda, Victoria, Australia, Zen Tip Tuesday, Coffee, The Great Ocean Road, Geelong, Friends, Toy Poodle, Wine, Food, Coffee,

It’s that time again!  Time for my fourth and final ‘Taking Stock’ post for 2018!  The first was in March, the second in June, and the third was in September.

2018 hasn’t been an easy year but I think I’ve managed it ok, considering.  It’s the first year of my life that my Dad has not been here.  I know that I am incredibly lucky to have had him with me for 53 1/2 whole years but no matter how old you are or how old they are, the finality of the loss of a loved one is a very hard thing to come to terms with. 

This year was a year of some quite confronting firsts and it’s the year where grief became a part of my life and I’ve been learning to ride the waves of it and live with it.  My birthday in May was surprisingly upsetting.  I hadn’t expected to feel as I did on that day.  I was beyond sad that I did not hear my Dad’s voice on the end of the telephone saying “many happy returns love” as he has always done, and of course he was not at the family birthday get together.  In September, it was the first Father’s Day without him.  On 1 November it was the first of his birthdays that he wasn’t here.  On 1 December it was Mum and Dad’s wedding anniversary (would’ve been the 56th) and then on 2 December, the first anniversary of his death.  And now, we approach Christmas – the second without him.  This time last year we were all in shock, not sleeping well, and basically traumatised for Christmas – the first one without him.  This year we are all in better shape, but gee we will miss him very much.

Ok, onwards.  Here we go!

Making: Plans to switch off as much as possible from screens and social media during the Christmas to New Year break and just float around in my pool and read books.
Cooking: Is something I like to do sometimes but other times I would like someone to cook for me please!
Drinking: Too much coffee most likely!
Listening to: Podcasts – not my usual thing but I have discovered a few that have really sucked me in and I enjoy listening to them!
Reading: Still have three more (of nine) stories to read of my friend Rita’s writing group’s Twisted Fairytales Box Set – read about Rita’s novella and the other eight here.
Next read: All of the books published by my bloggy mate Jo Tracey.  I’ve purchased and downloaded the lot!
Wanting: Just peace of mind really. Everyone to be safe and happy.
Looking: Forward to my new Zen Tip Tuesday series.  Send me an email if you’d like to be part of it!  Next time slot available to have a post published as part of #ZTT is Tuesday 9 April 2019.
Playing: With Rudi (my fur nephew) quite a bit when he stayed with us recently. He just loves having the tennis ball thrown for him. Over … and over … and over … and over again!
Deciding: What to get people for Christmas seems to get harder the older I get or is it the older they get?
Wishing: Wishing so many things but wishing gets you nowhere really does it?
Enjoying: Oh boy – did I enjoy some delicious food in Melbourne and along the Great Ocean Road.  Favourite food was experienced at L’Edera at Port Fairy.  So yum!
Waiting:  Eagerly for the first session as part of the Bupa Influencer Program – in late January – in Melbourne again!
Liking: The fact that I can tick the Great Ocean Road off my ‘Bucket List’ after my recent trip.  Keep watch for a series of posts and photographs of the trip to come.  The first covering the initial two nights in Melbourne can be read here.
Wondering: Where will I go next?  I like to go to at least one place every year that I have not been to before.
Loving: My first ever time flying in a helicopter and it was at The 12 Apostles on the Great Ocean Road.  Here’s a quick video of take off.

Pondering:  Which room of the house to paint next.
Considering:  Getting in the pool for the first time this summer.  Just waiting for a nice sunny day!
Buying:  This time of year … Christmas presents!
Watching: Nothing much lately (been reading and listening to Podcasts more instead) BUT saw Bohemian Rhapsody at the movies when in Melbourne and it was fantastic!  Have you seen it?
Next watch:  I’d really like to see ‘A Star is Born’ at the movies.  Anyone want to come with me?
For a happy, fulfilling and inspiring 2019 ahead.  
Marvelling:  At the beautiful sights mother nature provides as experienced along the Great Ocean Road.   
Cringing:  At how many things are on my ‘To Do’ list, many of which have been on there for many, many, many months!
Needing:  A PA to organise me. I used to be the Queen of multi-tasking and organisation. What has happened to me?  Mid-life and perimenopausal brain is what!
Questioning:  This, that and everything! Sigh!
Smelling:  Is something I can’t do. If you’re a regular reader you’d already know. My Pilates mate Liza on the other hand has a nose like a blood hound. She picks up any scent within a 5km radius. I kid you not!
Wearing:  Warmer clothes while in Melbourne was a blast considering it was shorts and t-shirt weather back home.  I love the cooler climate.  Did you know that?!  Crazy thing is that Melbourne had a heat wave the week after we got home!  Glad it wasn’t while we were there!
Following: Quite a few Podcasts of late!
Worrying: Is something that is part of my DNA but I’m working on it!
Noticing: That all my crochet projects have been on hold for some time. I’m a typical Gemini. I get bored easy and have many projects on the go at one time, jumping from one to another as the mood takes me.
Knowing: That I was very lucky to be a finalist in the Bupa Blog Awards this year. I don’t know how that happened but it was most definitely a highlight of my year!
Thinking: Too much at night when in bed. It stops me from sleeping!
Admiring:  So many of the bloggers that I met at the Bupa Blog Awards – so much passion, creativity, and talent in the industry!
Sorting:  Through my linen cupboard was finally done during November 2018 and lots of linen and some clothes went off with Nina from Himalayan Connection to Nepal to those in need and I’m so grateful to her for what she does!
Getting: Ready for Christmas Day. 
Bookmarking: Recipes. I feel the need to add some new ones to my repertoire!
Coveting: Peace of mind. Happiness. Harmony. Balance. Zen.
Disliking: That it’s been over a year now that I have lived without seeing my Dad’s face or hugging him.
Opening: Gifts on Christmas Day is always enjoyable but I enjoy watching the receiving more.
Giggling: At the antics of Rudi & Ava when they were together during Rudi’s stay with us.
Feeling: Hopeful that 2019 will be a good year.
Snacking: Has got to stop during 2019.  It’s the year to get a grip on snacking.
Hearing: Birds chirping. Ava snoring!

The ‘Taking Stock’ concept is the brainchild of Pip from Meet Me at Mikes.  You can go HERE to grab a blank list of the word prompts to copy & paste and take stock yourself if you’d like to!

Taking Stock posts will be quarterly again during 2019 – so in March, June, September and December.

Apart from a couple of Skin Care Saturday posts (on 22 & 29 December), this will be the last post here at WOTM until Thursday 10 January 2019 as I’d like to try to practice what I preach by having a bit of digital detox and enjoy a break.  Until then I wish you and your family a very safe, fun and Merry Christmas and send you all the very best of wishes for a happy and fulfilling 2019 to come!

Ciao for now,



Link up here at WOTM or with another of us in the Lovin’ Life Linky team:
Leanne of Deep Fried Fruit |  Kathy of 50 Shades of Age |
Deborah of Debbish |  Jo of And Anyways
It doesn’t matter where you link up as it will magically appear on all five blogs.


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  • Reply Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit December 20, 2018 at 6:55 am

    Grief is weird – and you just never know how it’s going to feel, when it’s going to reappear and how it’s going to impact. I thought I knew what grief was losing grandparents and aunts. But never did I imagine the intensity of it until we lost Chelsea. For me it’s a fog. I’m just so damned tired. I can’t get out of bed. I need pills to help me sleep. It’s crazy. I’m just so freaking sad.

    Well done to you for still managing to have an incredible year. I love that first photo collage on your post. It’s so inviting, exciting and adventurous.

    Big love and hugs to you this Christmas Min!

    • Reply Min December 20, 2018 at 7:36 am

      Leanne, how I wish I could give you a big squishy hug and just sit and cry and laugh and talk with you. You are where I was this time last year. What you described is how I was. I needed pills to sleep. I was in a constant fog. I was very, very sad and crying every day. I could be ok and washing up at the sink one minute and the next minute I’d be doubled over barely able to breath as sobs and sounds came from me that shocked me. It would hit at any time and I never knew when. What you’re experiencing is all normal and you’ll be ok. Just ride the waves, let it come, let it out and be kind to yourself. I still have moments like I described above but the space between them is longer now, and I’ve become a bit better at surfing the grief. The loss of your Chelsea is a terribly sad and tragic one. It breaks my heart for her, for Lola, for all of you. I know this will be a very sad Christmas for all of you, but I also know that you’re one to look for positives and the love and support of your family and friends is most definitely a positive and a strength to hold on to at this time. Big love and hugs back at you this Christmas Leanne! xoxo

  • Reply Natalie December 20, 2018 at 8:28 am

    You’ve done very well with your year, Min, despite the sadness that you’ve felt. I wish you and your family a peaceful and joyful Christmas, and a healthy and happy New Year 2019. Be kind to yourself and enjoy every minute of your break.

    • Reply Min December 20, 2018 at 2:54 pm

      Thank you Natalie. I hope you and your family have a peaceful and joyful Christmas too! Hope you get a break also and I look forward to reading about more of your travels in the new year! 🙂

  • Reply Joanne Tracey December 20, 2018 at 8:49 am

    A great taking stock Min, and a really thoughtful wrap-up of your year – I can’t imagine how tough it must have been for you with all of those first times. Thanks for your support of my book babies & I truly hope you enjoy them. Wishing you and yours all the joy and feeling of the season.

    • Reply Min December 20, 2018 at 2:56 pm

      Thanks Jo! I’m very much looking forward to reading your book babies and I have no doubt I will thoroughly enjoy them! I’m not as prolific a reader as I used to be but I will get to them, particularly with the Christmas/New Year break coming up as I tend to give myself permission to be a bit lazy and indulge in pool and reading time at this time of year! Merry Christmas to you – hope you have a fabulous one with your family! xo

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl December 20, 2018 at 11:36 am

    The helicopter ride! What an amazing experience to cap of the year!


    • Reply Min December 20, 2018 at 2:57 pm

      Oh my gosh – that helicopter ride was such a thrill. I had no idea I would love it so much! I wanna do it again, and again, and again! haha Merry Christmas SSG! xo

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au December 20, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    I always love these type of posts Min – they are a snapshot of the life of a blogger and it makes us more real. Yours are always more “full” because you have 3 months worth to cram in and so there’s always lots of interesting stuff to share.
    Have a great Christmas and thanks so much for your friendship and support this year – and congrats again on the Bupa nomination and the journey that still lies ahead as an influencer. xx

    • Reply Min December 21, 2018 at 9:12 am

      Thanks so much Leanne! This was a hard Taking Stock to do I found. Lots has happened, this year and over the last few months. I don’t think I quite covered it all but did my best. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and I’m very excited to hear I may be meeting you in person in the new year! Yippee! I’ve enjoyed getting to know you over the year and your friendship and support has been so very much appreciated. xo

  • Reply Sanch @ Sanch Writes December 21, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    Grief is tough Min and it does hit you especially hard at times like Christmas, birthdays and other significant events. I do hope 2019 is a wonderful year for you and you get to detox in this Christmas period. It’s a lovely taking stock post. Looking forward to your posts in the new year. Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas! x

    • Reply Min December 26, 2018 at 5:46 pm

      Thanks so much Sanch. Christmas has been a good one. Hope it has for you too! I look forward to reading about your 2019 adventures too! Enjoy the Christmas/New Year break – hope you’re having at least a bit of a holiday! 🙂 xo

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