2013 in review

For my new blog here on WordPress, it makes sense to look back at the last year, with some links to past posts on my old blog, to set the scene for 2014 here on WordPress.

2012 ended exactly as 2013 did, with a New years eve party in a local restaurant. Last night was as much fun as a year ago, and a good way to kick off the year. Next that followed was a mad few days of mega amounts of work, in order to do the financial close for the year that was. I have that madness to look forward to starting tomorrow. Woman-Stressed-Out-Computer

At least the madness is short lived. January 2013 brought otherwise a lot of snow and freezing weather, something that at present is not to be seen here in Frankfurt. I was planning the launch of my interior design business – something that never got off the ground unfortunately. I guess it was mainly due to too much work with the main job this year, and not having the right contacts here in Germany to really go for it.

I did manage a job for a friend though, in March, and he was very happy with the results. Plus it was fun. In 2014 I think I will be focusing on doing a bit more where I live, as we want to move out later in the year, but more on that later.

automat im waldIn February the main event was a trip to Bremen with my oldest daughter to check out the art college there.  Click on the picture for a link to the post.  My eldest was hoping to get in there in order to study art. Bremen is in the north of Germany and a very nice, quiet town. It reminded me a bit of Thun in Switzerland. Unfortunately she did not get in to the college, despite putting together a decent portfolio. The competition was just too big. But all is not lost, as she is now studying architecture and interior design at degree level in Darmstadt. These two subjects are dear to my heart, so I am very happy for her.

March was a busy month. I did a blogging course which was great fun. March is audit month where I work, so I had a trip to Bern as well as a trip to Copenhagen to deal with the audits. I love both those cities. Bern because I lived there so long, and Copenhagen because it is such a lovely city, with great design as well.

I wrote several posts about Copenhagen at the time, and you can check them out on my blog if you wish. One of them was about using the public transport, during a snowstorm. Not sure I will do that again. winter_2

We also heard the pitter patter of tiny feet above our heads, which we suspect was squirrels, or pine martins, moving in from the cold. It certainly got our cats interested, but fortunately since that time we have heard nothing more.

And then we went skiing – just for a weekend, in Austria, and I decided that was the time to hang up my skis. But actually, last night at the party, our friends were telling us about a resort they go to where it is really really easy skiing – so maybe I will give it one more go 😉

April is my birthday month, as well as that of my youngest daughter. I love birthdays. My youngest was 18, so now I have two adult children at home. I was somewhat older, but age is just a number, and I try not to let it bother me.

yellow3Plus Spring came to our part of Germany. I love Spring too. It means I can ditch all the heavy clothing, and get out on my bike more often.  I even did a fitness challenge in April, something sporty every day. It was my own personal challenge, and a lot easier to do these things when there are more hours of daylight, and it is not freezing cold. The whole year however was marked with regular yoga classes and trips to the gym, as well as riding my bike to work, in the summer, so I reckon I have not done bad.

In May we had some bank holidays and managed a few trips. I went to Paris to meet with my boss – now that was an adventure. I went to England to see friends for a long weekend with my husband, and we went to Strasbourg on another weekend. There was the night at the museums in Frankfurt which we went along to and saw a few museums we would otherwise not have seen.

And then at the end of May, I used a further bank holiday to visit Berlin with Laura, which was a super trip. Berlin is another great city complete with the biggest chocolate shop in the world. which is a reason to visit all in itself.

In June the news broke about excessive Spying and Edward Snowden, a case followed with big interest here in Germany.

lion

we had a weekend in Dusseldorf meeting with a blog buddy and her daughter. Click on the picture for the link. And a drive down to Miltenberg which is a very pretty town. Piccies under this link

July is the high point of Summer, but we do not take our main holidays then. I let the staff members with younger children take that time. Instead we did some small trips, one of which was coincident with a business trip to the Uk, so I could visit my brother who lives by the sea. Living by the sea is a dream of mine, so I do envy him, and now also my other brother who has moved to Cornwall in 2013. They are so lucky. Click on the picture of his dog below for a link to the post.

jake

In July I also lost a member of staff, as she left to live with her boyfriend in Vienna. In August the remaining staff member also left, for a permanent job with a chocolate company – who can blame her? So I was left with temps, and one of those went AWOL. It was not an easy time. But August did also mark my 9th anniversary with the company which is a cause for celebration.

Mazda I also got myself my cabriolet; something I have been wanting for a very long time. I love that car and it has been great fun to drive in. I could even use it with the top down into October, it was so mild here. I agonized over what to do with it in winter, but in the end I bought a good cover, and it is fine. I am still driving it almost daily, although not sure what I will do when the snow finally arrives.

In September I had my holiday, a week in Portugal doing Yoga. It was bliss. I very much enjoyed it, and will probably do it again this year. Link on the tram-

lisbon tram

in October we went to Vienna for a few days to visit my ex employee in part. I could not persuade her to return, but that is understandable 🙂

November was back to Switzerland, for audit again. It is always fun going back, as I see my friends and in November can also help out at the church Bazaar, an annual event.

And then we are back to December, a month of mega amounts of work trying to get ready for year end. This year having temps, added to the workload quite a lot, as they need a lot of support. However I was super organised when it came to being ready for Christmas. I do not think I have ever been so organised before. I guess the day itself though was a bit quiet. My husband was working part of it, and so our meal times were all over the place. I had wanted to visit my brother in Cornwall over the Christmas break, but my boss had said no. The weather in the UK turned out to be so bad, I was rather glad she did.

And now we have gone full circle, and 2014 has begun. This year we will downsize the house, and my eldest will move out as soon as we can find her a student pad to be proud of. My youngest will finish school and maybe go traveling, and my husband has been offered an IT related job. So maybe things will be different after all.

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