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Many people moan that January is the worst month of the year. Perhaps because I am an eternal optimist, I do not see it that way. In my eyes January is a cosy, snuggly time to hunker down in your home and just soak in what you have. I think my gratitude list for the first couple of weeks of this month reflects that:
Last weekend Sam and I celebrated our ten year anniversary. Ten years ago, after a Christmas holiday spent obsessing over the gorgeous boy I had snuggled up to watching a Margaret Thatcher documentary at the end of Michaelmas term 2005 (yes, we were destined to be!) I returned to Oxford and within a day we admitted to one another we had already fallen in love.
My life changed that day, and although there have been the inevitable ups and downs that come with growing up with the other half your heart, I am so, so thankful to have found the person who completes me so early in my life and to have already shared so many milestones - including Finals, my Call to the Bar and his MA graduation, to name but a few - with him.
As it is also our five year wedding anniversary this year, we decided to have a low key celebration and took a day trip to Camber Sands; a beautiful stretch of sandy beach in Kent. It being January in the UK, the British weather did as it does, but that did not deter us. We had a windswept but beautiful walk along a beach we shared with a few other humans and one very enthusiastic spaniel, followed by a delicious meal at the Gallivant (a restaurant we have been meaning to visit for years.
Delicious fish, sand in my hair and Sam by my side. Happy 10 years of us indeed.
Christmas 2015 marks the second year we have hosted both our families (Sam's parents and my Dad and my Uncle) at the Tombs house, and two years of spending Christmas as one family we can officially say we have fledgling traditions. I love this, as it feels like the beginning of many, many happy years where many, many more customs will become second nature.
For now, the traditions I cherish are these:
I have very obviously neglected this blog in the latter half of 2015. The reason is, I hope, a good one. I began my new job as an Associate Barrister at a City law firm in June 2015 and the whole process was a big adjustment; from working in an office of 8 people I began working in an office over 400, with all the associated systems and working practices. I found that in committing fully to becoming embedded at work, I simply didn't have time to blog meaningfully, exercise and enjoy time with family and friends. I am happy to report however, that I have now been taken on as a permanent employee and feel genuinely settled at work; I truly love my challenging job as well as the life it allows me to have outside it when I manage my time efficiently. And, having got used to it all, I now have enough time to blog about that life too!!
It seems only right that the first post of 2016 is about goals. As I have already reported on this blog ,goals are something I am passionate about; without a clearly defined goal it is impossible to fulfil one's potential and in my view life is about being the best you you can be. With that in mind on 31 December 2015 I sat down with my http://www.emilyley.com Simplified Planner and road mapped my goals for 2016. My practice is to divide my goal setting into different areas of my life e.g. career, family, financial and set goals within these categories. As per last year I will be breaking my goals down into monthly 'do-able' chunks to maximise my ability to achieve them.
I also have two words that I aim to focus on throughout the year, particularly when I am in a difficult situation. Last year those words were BALANCED and GRACIOUS. This year, the are GIVE and LOVE.
January 2016 goals