Wednesday, December 31, 2014

My Year in 2014

So, the end of another year, and time for another end-of-year round-up. As I said last year, these actually get easier to write each time, as the headings are largely the same and it becomes mostly a matter of comparison with what went before.

The major take-away from 2014 is that it was a much better year than 2013 in all sorts of ways. It started well, and although there was never really a high-point as such, the whole thing was generally satisfying. So, I'm happy with that.

My Year in... Work

Work has been hard this year, but it has also been quite successful. My annual report was fairly stellar, which is always nice, and I've been kept busy with fairly interesting challenges. There was no trip to the US, or indeed anywhere else, this year, which is something of a shame, but otherwise it's been good.

My Year in... Health

My health has been generally good in 2014. There have been a couple of IBS flare-ups, including one that was very nasty, but that's just life now. The only other thing of note was that after the car crash in October my neck was once again painful. That's not hugely surprising, and it's much better now, but it was still less than ideal.

Oh, and my aim to lose weight this year failed utterly. That will need to be addressed again in the new year.

My Year in... Gaming

2014 was a somewhat disappointing year for gaming, mostly because I had not one but two games collapse on me: "Star Wars: Imperial Fist" came to a fairly abrupt end when one of my players dropped out, while my 5e test game failed to attract many players to begin with and so was wrapped up early as well.

Likewise, I didn't get far with running one-shots: both "A Lament for Lustivan" and "Ultraviolet: 2XS" failed to attract a quorum. That said, the Christmas game went very well, meaning that the year ended on a high note.

On the playing side, I was involved in two sessions of "Numenera" and one of "GUMSHOE", all of which were very enjoyable. The "Numenera" game still has one session to run, though it's not clear when, or even if, this will happen.

The other noteworthy thing was the release of the new edition of D&D, which has impressed, and Firefly which looks really good.

My hope for 2015 is to run a number of episodes of "Firefly" - essentially a sort-of campaign built from the pre-published adventures for the system, but with a potentially rotating cast of players. I'm not planning a 'full' campaign of any sort, nor do I have any other one-shots in the pipeline.

My Year in... Band

Band has been extremely mixed this year. Basically, the competition season sucked, and (probably as a result of that) I had some real problems dealing with the pipe major. On the other hand, the teaching I've been doing has been very enjoyable, and ever since the band has resumed after the AGM things have been much calmer.

It would be nice to think 2015 will carry on in the same vein as the past two months, but I think I'll believe that when I see it. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like the Development Band will be resumed, so that part of the plan is a non-starter.

My Year in... Resolutions

I've posted about my goals already, and am fairly happy with those.

My Year in... Travel

I've been rather remiss in updating my blog about our trips this year, to put it mildly.

LC and I took three trips this year. In April we spent a few days in Belfast to celebrate our second wedding anniversary. This was a fun, quiet trip. We saw the Titanic museum, went on a day trip out to the Giant's Causeway, and took the bus tour of the city.

In July, we took our long-awaited 'real' holiday to Barcelona. Which was lovely, but soooo hot. We spent a full week there, seeing lots of sights and generally having a fun, relaxed time.

And, finally, we spent a few days in Cardiff. Unfortunately, due to school timetables, we had to go the week before the "Doctor Who Experience" re-opened, which probably means we've missed it - it's not worth doing there for that alone, and I think we've now mostly 'done' Cardiff. Still, it was a good trip for all that.

I'm not at all sure what 2015 might bring as far as travel goes. I guess we'll see - it's an adventure!

My Year in... Faith

This year saw me put right one of my niggling issues, which was that for a long time I didn't have any clear pattern of Bible reading. I had read the whole Bible before, of course, finally finishing it back in Part Two when I was living in Yeovil. Since then, however, I hadn't really been in the habit of daily readings - I find it hard to re-read things I have already read, especially things I've already read recently.

This year, I embarked on a second read-through of the whole Bible, following Don Carson's "For the Love of God" (which in turn uses Robert Murray M'Cheyne daily pattern). This has meant reading a few chapters a day, and saw me read the whole of the Bible once, and the Psalms and the New Testament twice, over the course of the year.

This was a useful experience, I think, although I have decided not to repeat it next year, because of what I said before - I've now read it all recently, so it's too soon to revisit it once more. Perhaps for 2016 I'll get volume two of DC's work and start again.

Otherwise, there's not much to tell. Things are proceeding much as they have done this last age.

My Year in... Love

2014 was a marked improvement over 2013. LC completed her probation year, and then found herself a long-term supply job. She's now finished this and starting another job in January, which will run through the year. This has represented huge progress, and I was very proud with the results of the two interviews she had just before Christmas, which resulted in not one but two offers.

The major downside of 2014 was the sad passing of our little hamster Eowyn, who had to be put down due to suffering several small tumours. This was a sad occasion, and left the living room decidedly less squeaky.

Apart from that there's not a lot to say. 2014 has been our most successful year as a couple, but it's hard to express exactly why in words. So: Awesome; that is all.

My Year... Overall

2014 has been an extremely blessed year all around, although not without its hardships. I can therefore look back on it a lot more favourably than 2013, and can look to 2015 with significant hope. I just hope it lives up to it!

Anyway, this will be my last post of this year (I'll post new goals tomorrow), so I'll end off by wishing anyone who still reads my nonsense a very happy New Year, and all the best for 2015.

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