17th December 2014

Diary of 2014

Abi Art leaflet - small picYes, I’m feeling in a bit of a reflective mood. It’s that end of the year feeling where you look back at what’s been and assess it… was it a good year? Was it a bad one? Globally, I think it’s been pretty rubbish, worrying and desperately sad. But this is not the place…

So instead, here’s my frivolous summary – a year in the life of this Burlingham woman who is currently sat in pjs being twinkled at by the fairy lights on her Xmas tree and wondering when she can open the Celebrations!

The most eventful thing that happened in January was that I got caught in a hail storm to end all hail storms. It was so bad that it nearly dislodged one of my contact lenses! However (there’s always a however) I did buy some funky things from a wonderful and huge antique shop, so it was worth almost having a hailstone embedded in my eye!

Went to a 50th do and had a good boogy and discovered that my joints weren’t quite as supple as they had once been. Also discovered that my cholesterol was higher than I wanted it to be. Definitely a month for feeling old and decrepit!

A birthday – mine – always something to celebrate in my opinion. I spent a good wedge of it in a nearby café (one of my very favourite places)
Me in Vintage Tea Rooms, ChesterfieldApril
I was forced to suffer a GCSE moderation meeting which made me want to stick pins in my eyes. The only thing that stopped me was that all pins had been removed from the premises beforehand!

I went to Southsea and Portsmouth for the first time and went on HMS Warrior which was absolutely amazing, so moving and like stepping into another world. There was a tangible presence of the lives who had inhabited it. Definitely one of my 2014 highlights.
HMS Warrior 1June
I had a pamper day (highlight) – I really needed it, especially given that I spent most of the rest of the month re-painting the kitchen units (lowlight) but they did look fab once finished (highlight) Crikey, life is such a rollercoaster! 😉

After years of dabbling with paints, I made the decision to start taking it all a bit more seriously. I spent the Summer painting with a vengeance and produced a couple of A2 sized canvases, one of which, ‘The Walk’, found a buyer the day I put it on my Facebook author/artist page here. Definitely a huge highlight to my year and one which kick-started my new venture.

The Walk

Read Jessie Burton’s ‘The Miniaturist’ – a wonderful and captivating book that I heartily recommend. It has a stunning cover too! I also had a riding lesson – I hadn’t ridden since my teens on holiday. It was AMAZING and well worth walking round for a week afterwards as if I had an invisible fitness ball between my legs!

North Wales! Deserted beaches! A graffiti ship! Pub food! What more can I say? Oh, and I sold another painting – whoop whoop! Lowlight was a bunch of rejections for my last children’s novel and a near miss with an agent that made me weep big pear-drop tears.
Duke of Lancaster 3

Started my Etsy shop: AbiBurlinghamArtist – here. A hectic and brain-mashing time getting prints done and cards made and working out postage and the best ways to package stuff. The usual mix of excitement and anxiety that comes with a new venture, and a few tears and groans of ‘I can’t do it’ along the way. But guess what? I did! AND, I got a commission for a painting of flowers and butterflies, which was fab!

My tween became a teen and we celebrated with a pizza night and shopping and other tweens/teens taking over the Burlingham Residence for the night. I was laid up with a flipping awful bug for 2 weeks that became 3 weeks and nearly 4 weeks before I reclaimed my mojo! Ooh, and I got taken on as a tutor to run story-telling/activity/creative writing workshops to commence in Jan 2015.

All things Christmassy – shopping, hot chocolate in front of the fire at my fave café. Even managed to decorate the spare bedroom and clear out and re-organise my art cupboard. I also have more paintings at the printers about to be made into prints and cards.

So, what am I hoping for for 2015? Well, it would be lovely to sell more paintings and prints and get more commissions. I’m also hoping to get my cards into one or two card shops. It would also be fab if my children’s manuscript got taken up by an agent or publisher. But mainly, I’d love to see a more peaceful, harmonious world, one where people are kinder to each other (and to animals too) and one which is more tolerant, less bitter and angry, more willing to celebrate our differences. That really would be something to look forward to.

What was your highlight of 2014 and what do you most want for 2015? 


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