Looking back over 2018

It honestly feels like it wasn’t that long ago I was wrapping up 2017, it is certainly true that as you get older time starts to fly by. Over the past year I have learnt a lot about myself and what I want in life, this blog has become such a huge part of me, it has transformed my life. It has taught me and shown me what I am capable of achieving.

Rules for a better life

Last year one of my new year goals was to find love, I found it and lost it, and even now it still hurts to think about. I overthink the situation too much, the relationship broke down due to the distance between us and emotional baggage he had. He was mid divorce with a toddler, was starting a new career, he was learning how to start a new chapter in his life whilst battling personal demons such as grief so yeah you can understand why it didn’t last between us, it was simply the wrong time. I have remained single since, not through choice, I have dated but unsuccessfully.

I found new friends and strengthened relationships with old friends, which was another goal of mine for 2018. My social anxiety has left me leading a rather lonely life, so I have tried so so hard to battle that to reconnect with old friends and form new friendships. This year I met Char, well I had ran into her at previous blog events but it was this year that I formed a new friendship and also discovered an incredible blogger, please check out Memoir Musings

I reconnected with friends such as Sarah, who travelled with me to Petworth to stay at The Old Railway hotel , we had such a wonderful time and already in discussions to plan our next trip. Unfortunately until I have paid off my trip to Disneyland I have vowed to not book anymore trips!

My friend Helen has had a turbulent year moving away from home to Nottingham, but in the year we still managed to get away twice. We had a mini break to visit her family in Medina Sidonia , we were both in need for a sunshine break! And then in November we went to Disneyland Paris for three days, just as we headed out to Disneyland she also completed on her new home! Her move in date was the day after we got home! I am incredibly proud of Helen for taking that leap and achieving her goals, its been a very difficult year for her but she can proudly go into 2019 as a home owner in Nottingham.

Abi in medina

Another friendship of mine that has continued in strength is with Tanya , Tanya has nailed it this year after a turbulent 2017 but I am incredibly proud of her for her take over of The Live Review, a London review site which it’s previous owner was unable to keep going and has handed the baton over to Tanya. Since she has taken the reigns, she has not stopped being a total bad ass boss. She has kindly shared her opportunities with me and occasionally I have attended press reviews on her behalf. 2019 is going to be a killer year for Tanya as she transforms The Live Review whilst keeping Glam Glitz Gloss growing strength to strength.

Abigail Kathleen and Tanya Glam Glitz Gloss

This year I have been fortunate enough to have a steady flow of collaborations, with press reviews with The Live Review to a fashion collaboration with Debenhams. My collaboration with Debenhams taught me a lot, I spent my own money, hours shooting outfits, hours editing photos and hours writing the post, and the thanks I got in return? Demands and a request to hide the fact they had gifted me a gift card (in which I had to purchase a hand bag and outfit, so it wasn’t at my leisure to spend on just anything) after I declined their request as I do everything I can to run an honest blog, plus I legally have to declare that I was compensated in some form for the post. Unfortunately the conversation between myself and Debenhams PR team became sour and I refused to waste any more of my time. They abused my small blogger status, they wanted to hide that they had approached my blog for content and that is not on. I work my arse off around my full time work to build this blog and deliver quality content, I will not allow any brand, big or small, belittle my work. I am extremely proud of the work I done for that post so I have left it up.

Another amazing collaboration I had this year was with Pandora and their launch of their new Reflexions range, I got to attend their London launch party and was gifted a Reflexions bracelet in return for my coverage. I feel so so lucky to have been able to work with so many incredible brands in 2018, I ‘m super excited to carry on my work and to see what 2019 brings.

Abigail Kathleen Debenhams Collab

Pandora Reflexions

I ticked off another goal this year to get on the road, so in the summer I re-started my driving lessons and hopefully will have my license by March 2019! That’s if my instructor gets back to me regarding lessons for January! The last thing I need is to hunt for a new instructor. I have set my heart on getting a Mini, in honesty I have wanted a mini since I first started my lessons 11 years ago! Once I am on the road, the travel possibilities are endless and I’ll be able to move out of the London area. I currently live with my mother as a one bed flat to rent here is the equivalent of my monthly wage and to rent a room some where is around 50-60% of my wage which would restrict me from saving so needs must, as with majority of my age in this area, still live at home.

Work has been a manic year for me but it has also taken me from strength to strength. I have managed teams in an area I have no expertise or knowledge, but I aced it and eventually had my work load halved and now I get to focus on social media and marketing in interiors, it’s my dream job! I designed and published my first leaflet design and billboard, I’ve had vans branded and I have transformed their social media into a crucial marketing tool. My work bestie Jordan welcomed into the world beautiful twins! She was my right arm at work, without her support I probably would have ended up in the local mental hospital and I have missed her greatly but motherhood also suits her! I’m looking forward to making plans to see her and the bubs in the new year.

Abi at work

In the AK family we had to heartbreakingly bid farewell to our rescue staffie Diesel. I know it has been heavily featured this year that you should rescue dogs rather than buy, but from my experience with Diesel it’s not always a happy story. Diesel was rescued from a dog rescue in Maidstone, he was brought to us, after my Tuscan passed, I believe my mum thought she would be able to handle him. Personally I believed diesel came to us too soon after Tuscan’s passing, Diesel was a beautiful force of nature. We had no idea what his background and history was like but he was extremely mischievous and was always up to something, he saved our home from two attempted break ins and he was never short of love, he really did love a cuddle. Unfortunately, outside of the house on his walks, Diesel was aggressive, even towards children, we contacted several dog trainers in the area and no one would help us. The situation was put to us, if Diesel escaped and a child approached him, it was guaranteed he would have killed that child so an agreement was made between my mum and the vets, that Diesel was to be put down. It broke our heart as in the house he was a teddy bear, but our options were he lived 24/7 in a muzzle (which we informed was cruelty) or we do a kindness and put him down. It wasn’t an easy decision.

Abigail Kathleen and Diesel the staffie

Once we had grieved for our boy, in August my Nan bought my mum Poppy, a little Chihuahua to keep her company, she is the cutest thing but also a little feisty madam! She will certainly get on well in our family! Has been keeping us on our toes, she’s attended puppy school, but we pulled her out as the classes where more for larger dogs, she just wouldn’t budge or do anything, it was a waste of money really. Fortunately Chihuahuas do not require large amount of exercise and walking so training her on the lead isn’t really required, mum does take her out but she’d be lucky if poppy moves an inch!

2018 was a great year for me I grew as a blogger, I levelled up at work, I got to travel and explore more of what my home tome of London has to offer.

Thank you to my followers and readers for your continued support, I do hope you follow me into 2019 where I have exciting plans for more, regular content!

Wishing you all an incredible New Year!

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