The ups and downs of 2013.

I have just read my 2012 post and I had totally forgotten half of the things I did that year. That's the great thing about blogging, it helps me to keep track of what we have done and how much my children have grown up. It also helps me to understand that university has been pretty tough all the way through!

We started 2013 with our first ever trip to a Youth Hostel, this one was in the Lake District and, I will be honest, I went with very low expectations, but we were so impressed that we went to different Youth Hostels in Arnside in June and  National Forest in October. I started last January back at university with trepidation. I was scared. I didn't know anything about economics and I was really struggling with my exams. I planned my year more productively and it was a little easier. Although I still don't understand economics. 

In February I went with a small group of bloggers to Westminster, to meet with Elizabeth Truss, who was proposing childcare reforms, which were subsequently scrapped. It was a fabulous experience to go and put forward opinions on proposed changes. The visit to Wesminster also took me on a trip down memory lane. It was where I had my first ever job and where I met my husband when I was 17. We saw a lot of snow in the spring. I have pictures of it on the hills well into April. It made life difficult. Commutes were harder, travelling was a nightmare, but it was great fun sledging and warming up with hot chocolate when we got home!

March saw my baby girl turn two, my baby boy turn four, I made an amazing Nemo cake and a little too much information about my big bottom. In April Margaret Thatcher died and I wrote about how she had impacted on my life. I was a young girl when she was Prime Minister and I even have a letter from her at home. I was inspired by a leader being a woman, although I was too young to know what her policies were and the impact they were having. The month passed in a bit of a blur. We visited family in London and Oxford and took a trip to London zoo.

I started a detox in April which was incredibly tough. You can read my Clean 9 detox review if you fancy trying it. I will be doing another in January this year. My daughter won her first ever first prize in the local horticulture show, my Grandma was very proud! I took my son to see Cats in Bradford and he adored it. We are going to see the Lion King in the theatre in 2014 and I am already excited! I entered the top 100 of the Tots100 in April, which I was very proud of. I love my blog, writing and keeping a diary of our lives, so it feels great to achieve that.

May came along with exams. Scary ones. I was really nervous, but I revised hard. It was also a month where I questioned what I would do if either of my children are gay, a topic which seemed to bring a lot of controversy. I also questioned if we share too much online? Ironically, this was also the month when I started doing more vlogging!

June saw the end of my exams. Then I just had the long wait until mid July to find out if I had passed. I went to Cybher for the second year running and I took my Sonny Angel around London. It also gave me the chance to meet up with some old work friends, which was a great laugh! We went with friends to Disability Rocks in Ilkley which was a wonderful day out. I got a bit emotional in June, with posts about my Dad, my Grandma, and saying goodbye to a friend

I got my exam results in July, which were a pleasant surprise! I had a bit of a tough start to the month though after my wisdom teeth were removed and my daughter was ill. July saw my son finish pre-school which was rather sad. He made some wonderful friends though and had such a fabulous year there. Luckily before he left he managed to win all his races at sports day. I also gave him a little more independence, which didn't go down well with some people! I did a lot of DIY in July, including turning our downstairs toilet into a library.

We went on holiday to my aunt's house in France in August which was great except my husband was poorly. I wrote about my son's newborn tongue tie and what you can do about it. We went for a week away in the Brecon Beacons at my mum's house, which was really relaxing. In September I examined my son's button phobia, posted my favourite funny cat videos, posted a selfie, my top ten potty training tips and about the time I was fired for having a miscarriage.  My son started school which was a huge thing. I didn't think I would be emotional about it, but I did shed a tear once I got home on the first day!

October signalled my return to university for my final year. I seem to be frustratingly petrified about my final year. I thought it would pass, but after the first term I am still scared! We went away in half term and the boys had their first ever weekend away without the girls. In November I went to Mumsnet Blogfest, which was absolutely fantastic and surpassed all my expectations. I got freaked out about the power of a song and then went incredibly quiet as essay stress took its toll!

In December, on her eighty-fourth birthday, my Grandma was given the awful news that she has terminal bowl cancer which has spread to her liver. I wrote about how I don't want to be brave. She has had a procedure since she found out and was rather unwell over Christmas. It has all been very upsetting and I totally adore her. We are waiting for a prognosis at the moment but all the doctors seem to be preparing us for the worst. So 2014 is going to be a tough year. I have to somehow get through the final six months at university and work out what I am going to do with my life! 

I wish you all a very happy 2014. Bring it on. Whatever it has to throw at us!