Another year over; 2015 has flown by.
This has been a year of change, a year of freedom, and a year of hitting a significant milestone. I left a job that had subjected me to a five hour daily commute, and eventually ended up working freelance doing what I love. I returned to some of my favourite places, and discovered brand new locations that will forever have a place in my heart. We welcomed our puppy, Evie, into our home. I turned 30 in a manor house in the Lake District with my boyfriend, best friends and new friends; wandering through meadows, paddling in icy streams, and singing at the top of our voices to one of my favourite songs of the year on top of a hill.
Here are my favourite photographic memories of the past year.
January - March
The year began with a flurry of snow and an ambition to hike at least once a week (which I failed miserably to keep up). We wandered over hills and along paths, fresh snow fall crunching underfoot, leaping across frozen streams and rolling snowballs down slopes to see which one could gather the most snow. Explorations took us to unusual film locations, across stepping stones, inside caves and up mountains. My most memorable hike of the entire year was climbing Ingleborough with the sun beaming down on my right arm, whilst snow fell on my left and wind whipped my hair. My favourite local art gallery, the Whitworth reopened; at the opening party we admired the art and sipped prosecco. I visited my closest friend in Brighton and we wandered the lanes, ate seafood and ran down to the water's edge to let the salty breeze blow our hair into tangles. I then ventured further north, for a friend's birthday gathering in a country cottage, complete with clifftop walks, amazing food and hugging a baby lamb.
Places explored: Dovestone, Doveholes, Ingleborough, Brighton, Silverdale, Gressingham.
April - June
At the end of March, I left my old job of over four years for pastures new. By July, I was making money by writing; something that I had only ever dreamed of doing. I was my own boss, and gave myself the summer off to explore and to soak up the sun. April began with a surreal experience DJing at the closing party of a Manchester institution, The Cornerhouse. I then traveled to my all-time favourite city, Berlin with a group of friends. We cycled everywhere, discovered hidden streets, lazed by the canal, drank Cava-Mate's in the sunshine, and spent as much time as possible relaxing on the feld. Almost immediately after Berlin, I headed to Scotland, which you can read about here.
Places explored: Berlin, Glasgow, The Highlands, Skye.
July - September
July was spent swimming in local lakes, lazing in local parks, and enjoying my time off work. August arrived, and with it my 30th birthday. Pre-birthday, I made another trip to Brighton, where it was warm enough to swim in the sea and laze on the beach all day. My birthday itself was spent with my boyfriend, best friends and new friends in the north Lake District. Highlights included sitting on top of a hill surrounded by my nearest and dearest, and pulling benches out into the courtyard to eat my birthday meal al fresco, warmed by the fire. A busy month concluded with Greenman festival, a London trip, and starting a new part-time job. September brought autumnal walks and a second birthday weekend away, this time for friends; hiking, eating delicious food and laying on the road watching for shooting stars.
Places explored: Brighton, Delamere, Caldbeck, Brecon Beacons, London, Luds Church, Morland.
October - December
Autumn passed in the blink of an eye, the leaves changing from green to rust and falling to the floor in a few short weeks. We spent a weekend in Bristol, admiring the views and the graffiti and sleeping in the back of our van in the middle of nowhere. We spent a weekend in Brighton, visiting best friends, huddling up under blankets on the beach and watching torchlight processions in neighbouring villages. Our Jackapoo puppy, Evie, joined our tiny family at the end of October, so small that I could fit her into my pocket. Life was suddenly a blur of furry cuddles, training sessions and exciting first walks. Inspired by my trip last November, we spent several days exploring Copenhagen (which you can read about here and here). Christmas arrived before I knew it; we decorated the house, purchased gifts and embarked on a month of festive cheese nights, yuletide celebrations and family gatherings.
With the end of an old years comes reflections of time passed, and anticipation of things to come. Bring on 2016!
Places explored: Bristol, Brighton, Copenhagen.
All photos, my own.