17 good things from 2017

Sometimes it can seem like a year is nothing but bad, and 2017 was a bit of a difficult one in many ways, not just for me but for many around me. So I took some time to reflect on my year and make a list of 17 things that were good about 2017. I was delighted to find that there were more than 17 but here are my top ones:

  1. We visited Whitby Folk Festival for the first time and I rekindled my love for folk music. I particularly enjoyed listening to The Melrose Quartet and heard them again in Nottingham later in the year.
  2. I managed to practice more yoga, including on our trips abroad: I’m very grateful to my lovely teachers especially as the breathing  techniques helped me get through a gastroscopy procedure.
  3. We went on a lovely relaxing trip to Greece. It took a long time to get to Papa Nero on the Pelion peninsula, but it was beautiful and tranquil once there, with lots of swimmTwoPeoniesfeatureding in the sea.
  4. We visited Morocco for the first time – a beautiful country where we stayed in a Kasbah (castle) among other lovely places. (And Agadir, where I also had a swim in the sea!)
  5. I danced in three countries: I feel privileged to know the strong and supportive women in my circle dance group.
  6. I spent many lovely evenings with a group of good friends I’ve known for years, including meals out and activities including making jewellery and painting pottery: and joyfully celebrated some 60th birthdays.
  7. A friend got married and I went to my first hen party (a couple of days at a spa)!
  8. I enjoyed stage performances: Tommy and Bluestockings, and danced with Peter Kay at the Dance for Life.
  9. I’ve had many great conversations, online and in person, with my wonderful sisters, and saw a lot of my Dad.
  10. A relative was able to take advantage of a new surgical technique and was treated successfully for cancer.
  11. I won or nearly won some online card challenges with my handmade cards and enjoyed making cards whenever I could spare the time!
  12. I went to a lovely Chinese brush painting workshop organised at work: what a fabulous event at which to spend an work afternoon! I created a painting of peonies (I couldn’t reproduce it again without the wonderful teacher (Jack) Jiang Hongsheng though…).
  13. I work with a great group of knowledgeable and talented learning technologists: it’s great to have a team to help solve problems and we have fun together too!
  14. I attended and presented at the Association for Learning Technology Conference in September. It’s always good to get a chance to be inspired by others’ work and ideas.
  15. I had a lot of fun with educational escape games during the year, including creating the one to teach online marking and one as an icebreaker for a group of medical researchers.
  16. I was involved in some meaningful learning projects including a new course on Liberating Slaves, and one on Dementia.
  17. My online facilitation courses (“Becoming an Online Facilitator” and “Online Facilitation and Designing for Engagement”) were very popular this year and I taught several for staff and some for students too.

There are lots of things here that remind me what makes me happy. I must remember to make sure they feature again in 2018!

And I haven’t included my own family, who provide me with happiness every year (soppy but true).

This will be a great list to revisit when I’m feeling down. If you have moments like that – make your own list!