When I first launched madmumof7 on New Year's Day, 2013 my youngest was a pre-schooler. Now he's at secondary school. My long blonde hair is now short and grey. The children are all taller, most of them tower above me but I still love nothing more than cramming round our dining table with my beloved husband, all of our children and "plus ones" Peter, Scott and Lucinda. Especially if there is gin.
Blogging has been very different this year with almost no brand events or restaurant reviews to do. Luckily I have been able to earn some money at least in between supervising home school and trying not to overeat too much and getting over my hatred of meeting friends via a screen. Don't even start me on lockdown quizzes. Although the one organised by Sally from Flea Ents was fun - my team made it to the finals before being narrowly beaten by the other team's superior knowledge of Christmas pudding ingredients.
I have very much embraced online shopping and subscription deliveries and have attempted to make our household more eco-friendly with most of our household and bathroom products from shampoo bars to toilet cleaners now arrive via post.
I've finally found a mask which doesn't irritate every fibre of my being and render me effectively blind as I peer through my steamed up varifocal glasses. Sadly they are not as pretty as many I have tried and abandoned but much like my footwear nowadays I mostly favour comfort over style.
We have frequently wondered what our dear friend Adrian would have made of the pandemic. After his tragic death late in 2019 we started 2020 saying goodbye to him in a packed church. We have missed him every day since whilst rejoicing in the birth of the beautiful baby daughter he never got to meet.
We managed to get in a visit to my mum at her Cyprus home in February before Coronavirus hit our shores in earnest and have no idea when we will be able to see her in person again. We missed out on a holiday in Cheddar with the YHA and the 2020 Cornbury Festival but we did manage a short camping trip in Malvern in between lockdowns.
We optimistically booked a May 2021 trip to Venice with friends at the point Boris was promising this would all be history by Christmas. We are not so sure that will be possible now but shouldn't lose any money if we have to cancel.
So here we go into 2021. Here in Tier 4 there's not much to do but devour the last of the mince pies and hope for better days in the not too distant future.
Wherever you are and if you are in the UK, whatever tier you are in I wish you a happy healthy New Year and thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading, sharing and supporting this madmumof7.