Twenty-eighteen in a nutshell

Happy 2019! How is everyone doing? Hope you had a wonderful mince-pie-and-turkey-filled Christmas and a relaxing start to 2019. If Christmas isn’t your favourite time of the year, then I’m sending a big ol’ hug over to you.

For me, the Christmas period was spent mostly seeing family but also trying to see as many friends as possible whilst in England, before heading up to the very beautiful (and if I’m honest utterly freezing) Lake District for a New Years getaway. Watch this space for a post coming up on some of the (many) walks we did and coffee/pub recommendations (there were many of these too!).

A post I’ve seen popping up time and time again is a look back at 2018, reflecting on the highs and the lows. For someone who is not the best at keeping new years resolutions (drinking more water and keeping house plants alive has featured on my resolutions list for the last 5 years now) I thought this would be a good way of seeing what’s changed and documenting some travel and lifestyle highlights.

January

A snowy landscape with a girl taking a picture in front
A staycation in snowy Peebles, Scotland

The beginning of twenty-eighteen was not the happiest one for me with quite a few lows cropping up whilst also trying to adjust to a new lifestyle and home up in Edinburgh. A year on and things could not be more different. Saying this, there were some highlights, including a wonderful winter staycation to Peebles (have a read here), a trip to Alnwick. I also rekindled my love of film photography, which inspired one of my favourite series on Edits of Jo, A Month on film.

February

February passed in a bit of a blur but is always one of my favourite months despite the inevitable cold spells. I turned the grand old age of twenty-four, perfected my pancake making skills, visited friends and family in Surrey and started getting into a work groove and feeling much more settled in my then new(ish) home.

March

Who can forget the Beast from the East?! This month was partly spent indoors, essentially hibernating from the blanket of snow Edinburgh was frequently under for a good two weeks. We also managed to squeeze in a trip away to Glencoe and climbed the Pap of Glencoe – one of my favourite walks of 2018 (read more here). We stayed in a cottage in the middle of nowhere and it was so peaceful and very, very beautiful.

April

A group of my uni friends came to visit and we spent a long weekend drinking copious amounts of wine, baking Camembert in a bread loaf and seeing the Edinburgh sights (read more here). It also kicked off my love of Queer Eye and Jonathon, who is quite frankly everything. (Instagram users – give him a follow here, he never fails to make me smile on a Monday morning or any morning in fact).

May

May was a month of family visits which was the loveliest. My (not so little) brother came to visit as well as my parents on May bank holiday and we spent the weekend exploring some of Edinburgh’s best sights and eating out in some of my favourite restaurants and coffee shops. We FINALLY had a breakthrough with the weather and got to enjoy Edinburgh in the sunshine.

June and July

A picture of one of the lochs in Mull
Basking in the sunshine on the Isle of Mull

These months have merged into one for me but it was a time of evening drinks in the sunshine, watching the World Cup and a trip to the beautiful Isle of Mull. Despite only being a couple of hours away from Edinburgh, it was a complete and utter haven and so far removed from the hustle and bustle of city life. We were utterly blessed with the weather and even managed to go for a swim, can you believe? One of my favourite trips of the year and one I’ll remember for many years to come.

August

As this was my first month living in Edinburgh during the Fringe, I fully immersed myself in Fringe life, seeing around 15 (both weird and wonderful) shows with friends and cousins. Despite the busyness, I loved the buzz around Edinburgh and the diversity of things to see and do. One of my besties talked me into doing a Silent Disco around the city (turned out to be hilarious), we visited the Edinburgh International Book Festival where I picked up one of my favourite books of the year, Everything I Know About Love, which then got me into the High Low podcast and kick-started my love for the fabulous Dolly Alderton, like every other millennial out there. I also roped my mum into dressing up as Harry Potter and going around the Harry Potter Studios, London with me (she loved it).

September

Looking out over Sintra from a viewpoint
Taking in those gorgeous Sintra views

Another busy month with trips back to Surrey and to the very beautiful Lisbon, Portugal. We went for a week away and were again utterly blessed with the weather which was over 30 degrees all week. We spent the time exploring Lisbon and it’s surrounding areas, discovered the joy of Pasteis de Natas, forgot all the essentials for a beach day and made some wonderful memories. Another year highlight.

October and November

St Andrews Cathedral reflection in a puddle
St Andrews Cathedral ruins in the rain

Another two months that have somewhat blurred into one another. In October, we explored the very much up-and-coming city of Dundee – including the new V&A Museum and I popped back down to London for a friends 25th birthday and embarked on a little indie book-shop hop of London. November was much busier with some lovely walks in the Scottish borders, a trip to Alnwick and a trip to Dublin, which was another highlight of the year. We had pizza on a bus and it was honestly one of the best, funniest meals of 2018. The month finished in the historic, picturesque town of St Andrews, which was a lovely little romantic trip away. It also marked my one year anniversary in Edinburgh, where has that time gone?!

December

A frosty landscape of trees and hills in the Lake District
Winter walk in the Lake District

This was one of the happiest months of my life to date, with lots of surprises and of course the build up to Christmas, which is always a highlight of the year for me. It was also incredibly busy and filled with experiences like the Santa Fun Run and the Edinburgh Botanics Light Display. The last two weeks of December were spent with loved ones and was just the perfect end to a busy and happy year.

And that brings us right up to January 2019. I’ve loved looking back at the last year and would highly, highly recommend you taking a look back at your past year too – sometimes it’s lovely to take a bit of time out to reminisce before looking ahead to the new year.

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