A look back at 2018

Today is the first day of 2019 back at my computer, but before I start sharing with you my next new favourite London restaurant or travel destination, I thought I would take one last look at 2018. This past year has been CHALLENGING. I went through so much change, so many highs but also so many lows. I would describe 2018 at the year of learning, and here is what it has consisted of:

The blog

I started this blog as a creative outlet back in the summer of 2016 and in 2018 it became a massive part of my life. From a little platform I was telling no one about to an extensive professional and creative portfolio, this year I stopped shying away from the fact that I LOVE blogging and it paid off!

I became an active member of the blogging community and met amazing people in the process, many in face to face. I attended great bloggers events like Kristabel’s #YouCanSitWithUsLDN. I even got a first brand collaboration! I now feel like I truly belong to this community.

Kristabel and Claire - #youcansitwithusLDN

This blog started as my secret little corner of the internet but this year it had broadened my world more than I could have ever thought. So thank you so much for reading and coming back, without you guys’ feedback and engagement I wouldn’t be where I am today!

Work

I took the biggest risk of my career in 2018, quitting a perfectly fine and stable job in the search of a more meaningful life. It has been extremely challenging to say the least and part of me is glad I went into it so naively as if I had known how hard it would get I would have probably chickened out.

It is still not smooth sailing just yet, but months of hard work and at time real struggle made me a stronger person and a more knowledgeable one. This experience has pushed me very far (far, far, farfarfar) away from my comfort zone and taught me skills I would have never had a chance to learn by sticking to my safe (and boring) life.

Claire Imaginarium Christmas

Now here is to hoping that 2019 is the year where things settle a bit and I can feel a tiny bit safe again.

Travel

2018 travelling went almost according to plan! I had mentioned last December that we wanted to go to Mexico, Iceland and Sweden, and plan a few weekends breaks in between.

Claire Imaginarium Barbados

Iceland very much happened and it was EPIC. We also had a couple of escapes to the countryside, including a lovely Spring gateway to Shakespeare Country. We had unexpected opportunities to travel and went to Brussels and Bruges thanks to one of my cousins. We went to France and Ireland for family events as almost every single year.

What didn’t happen was Mexico and Sweden due to a combination of cost and life getting in the way. However, we did have an amazing week in Barbados, so I really cannot complain at all, 2018 was a great travelling year.

The house

We have made good progress on the house, ending the year with our biggest DIY project so far, redecorating our staircase.

I have also started doing room tours videos! I find them so helpful to give a better feel for the space and I love watching them on Youtube, so I thought: why not join the party?

Claire Imaginarium

We have a few bits and bobs to still sort out and I have more interior videos and posts coming your way in 2019. After that, I guess we will have to start thinking about what is next for us, a new house? Maybe!

Talking about me and showing my face

This has been another big change in 2018, I finally started to show my face on my Instagram account and in the blog posts. I am camera shy but I felt like it was time for me to “get over myself” so we could properly meet.

I have also taken the very uncomfortable step to start filming myself and engaging more with you guys on Youtube. The first time I filmed an intro for a video I did 28 takes (yep.), today I am down to about 4, so it shows that you can get better even at things you don’t like.

Claire Imaginarium Iceland

Last but certainly not least, I opened up about my journey with anxiety. 99% of the people will struggle with some sort of mental health issue at some point in their life, so I thought it was important to tell people that 1) they were not alone and 2) it was okay not to feel okay.

*****

This was my last look back at 2018. After many ups and downs, I am ready to move on to what I hope will be the year of growth. 2019 I am so ready for you!

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