Don’t worry, I won’t mention the dreaded words or numbers. This is just a look back on some highlights of the blog and some personal highlights – there have been a few – especially in the latter months.
2021 started with me getting hooked on Netflix. I used to love reading before I fell asleep but I don’t seem to be able to concentrate very well on books, so I’m binge watching shows on Netflix – and have a repetitive strain injury to show for it! I rest on my left shoulder watching the tablet, and I’ve damaged it. The shows are worth it though, it’s a complete break from reality.
I’ve been busy painting, I try to paint for an hour most days, I find it very relaxing – mostly. I’ve had a couple of art exhibitions and raised over €1000 in total for animal charities from the sale of the paintings. I was delighted when Wildlife West Rescue named a rescued cub after me, and even more delighted when I got to help release her back into the wild.
My favourite days have been out and about exploring. I haven’t been to as many places I as normally would, between the year we are in and Puggly being ill, but I loved the days out I did have. I had a day trip to Donegal which was epic and you can read about it here. I also loved exploring Castlerea. In Mayo I visited the oldest shop in Ireland, Louisburgh and Moore Hall (which I still have to write about). Me and Lucy also had a wonderful day trip to Bundoran, the few hours we spent there was like a holiday, and the weather was amazing too: https://magnumlady.com/2021/07/23/blissful-bundoran/
I’ve kept myself busy on social media, I promoted Sligo and the surrounding counties and was delighted to win a Sockies – National Social Media award, this was completely unexpected and I was thrilled and surprised. This wasn’t the only award this year as I went on to win the Spirit of Sligo award in the Cathaoirleach’s awards – just before I won this I got a letter from Sligo County Council congratulating me of the Sockies award. It really made my year to get these awards, they really mean a lot to me.
The blog has continued to do well, this year it’s had 90,000 views, it’s been higher other years but then I haven’t done as much this year. The most popular posts have been about:
Dock 84 https://magnumlady.com/2021/10/09/sligos-newest-cafe-opens/
From the Ground Up 2020: https://magnumlady.com/2021/01/15/sligos-first-refill-station-opens/
Things to do in Sligo: https://magnumlady.com/2021/06/16/things-to-do-in-sligo/
The Sligo Gift Guide: https://magnumlady.com/2021/11/14/the-sligo-gift-guide-part-1/
Sligo is certainly the most popular topic on the blog.
I said farewell to my radio show on BCRFM. I was very grateful for the chance to fulfil a bucket list dream, but with me not going out I found it hard to think of things to talk about so it was time to say goodbye. Some of the previous shows are on my blog and the most popular one is the one from January 2021, I play some of my favourite songs and talk about some of my favourite places. You can listen back here: https://magnumlady.com/2021/01/03/bcrfm-radio-show-january-3rd/ Jono was a brilliant help editing the shows, I wouldn’t have been able to do them without him.
Lucy got engaged to Laurence, this was another highlight, and we are delighted to welcome Laurence to the family, although he was very much part of it already.
I’ve been busy at work and I’m blessed to have such an interesting and varied job. One of my favourite projects was Outpace – all about pop culture tourism – and I loved researching and writing about pop culture in our region. https://www.popculturetourism.eu/
I joined the Women’s Inspire Network. Although I don’t have a business it’s great to have a support network, especially as so much time has been spent at home. It’s also a great way to connect with people. I’ve found it difficult to connect with people in real life, so this network has certainly helped. https://www.womensinspirenetwork.com/
It’s over a year since I said goodbye to Sligo Hub. I miss it at times. There’s lots of times I go to share things to the hub and then I remember it’s not mine anymore. I’ve started a Love Sligo Facebook group so share any things of interest there.
I did a few art classes. I always love the idea of them but in reality my attention span isn’t great and I get bored quite easily, and then I feel like a failure because I don’t stick with them. I would love to learn how to paint properly but I think in a class setting I’m restricted to painting pictures that I don’t really want to paint, so it takes some of the joy out of it. I’ve seen another class advertised locally and I’m half thinking about it, but I’ll decide nearer the time.
Being on The Sligo Show was another highlight. I went along and had a chat with Brendan Tierney, who hosts the show. I was very nervous but Brendan is great at what he does and I ended up being really relaxed and very much enjoyed the interview.
I think that’s about it for my 2021 highlights. I have no plans for 2022, no diary, no dates made on the calendar. The only thing I’d like is maybe a little family celebration for my birthday. I bought my own cake in 2021 and we were in lockdown so it was really a non-event. Mind you it’s in February so not the best time for a birthday. Maybe I’ll be like the queen and have two.
Wishing you all a happy, and above all else a healthy New Year and thank you, as always, for reading my blog.
Val? wishing you and your family a happy and healthy new year.
You’ve certainly packed a lot in, you go from strength to strength which is so good to see and read about.