My 2016 & #ShareYourYear Linky

Welcome to Share Your Year for 2016! Every year I host it as a way for people to share the past year, posts in any format are welcome as long as it includes a recap of your 2016 in some format. It could be personal memories, blogging related, or anything else! It could be a what you read, listened to or watched, or even the favourite things you cooked! I just do a monthly recap for each month in one post, linking to my favourite posts, reviews and days out. I love to look back at my previous years and this is my sixth recap and every year when I’m writing my posts I go back and read the previous years for a bit of a jaunt down memory lane! It’s so crazy to think that when I started my blog I wasn’t married, had no kids, worked full time and ate out a lot! Oh how things change!

You can read my past yearly recaps here: 2011 (being proposed to) 2012 (getting married, but I seem to have deleted it!) and 2013 (Having Athena and moving) 2014 (turning 30) and 2015 (Arlo arrived)


We had a really quiet start to the year, Sam was still working hard at his new position at work but we went on our first holiday abroad to Morzine in the French Alps. Looking back I actually didn’t blog about it, I think I meant to but for some reason it just never happened! We had a great time, Sam did a lot of snowboarding, the rest of us did a lot of playing in snow and having fun in telecabins. The views were amazing, and we loved Avoriaz, which was so snowy you had to ski, use a ski buggy or a horse and cart to get about! I turned 32 on holiday too! February was mostly spent starting to pack our old home up as half way through the month we finally got a completion date on our new home purchase! Sam had his birthday and turned 28 in February, and I went back to work after maternity leave. I started back at a new hotel closer to home, where Sam works but thankfully just one day or two days week! In March Arlo turned one! I also reached new lows of tiredness as he was still sleeping badly, I was stressed about the house move and just getting next to no sleep at all [things have only just got better on that front!] At the start of March we got the keys to the new place, and spent a couple of weeks painting and DIYing ready to move in towards the end of the month.

My most viewed reviews were: BabyBjorn One Carrier, Kozi Kidz Parka, Bobux Blaze kids shoes

Posts I loved writing were: Athenaisms, Keeping a toddler happy on a plane


In April I spent my first two evenings out without Arlo, which still seems crazy looking back but I was so paranoid he’d not sleep without me as he never took a bottle. Anyway, the freedom was immense! We spent a lot of family time together, and Sams sister ‘Aunty E’ came to stay for a long weekend too. In May we had a lovely time at Chessington as the first guests at their Explore Glamping campsite! It was a lot of fun and we discovered Athena is a bit of a thrill seeker as she loved all the fast rides! April saw us head up to London for the premier of the new Thomas and Friends movie, which was a lot of fun and the rest of the month was spent trying to get all the boxes unpacked and get things in the right places! June was the month that Athena turned three! She also stopped going to nursery for the summer as it was nearer to our old house and a bot of a trek. She had a Frozen themed birthday party, and we had a day out at a local open air museum, and bought ourselves an annual pass, it has a steam train and lots of vintage buses and fire engines! Oh! How could I forget the chicken pox… Athena got her first spot on her birthday, and was spotty for a week, then we had just over a weeks break before Arlo got it! Thankfully living so close to the beach we spent a lot of our ‘quarantine’ time there!

Posts I loved writing: Reflections on a year of being a mum of two (or, for fucks sake!) Glamping at Chessington, A Frozen themed party

Popular reviews: Frugi Sun Suit, The Nosiboo ‘Snot Sucker’ [still love this thing!] Charmworks Charm bracelet


Most of us were pretty ill in July, tonsillitis, conjunctivitis, colds, you name and one of us would have had it! We spent a lot more time at the beach and had a really nice family day out at Drusillas, on the hottest day of the year, so the splash pads were very welcome! We also had a day out in London, taking a trip along the river on a cruise boat and then saw Michael Rosen performing live on South Bank, which was awesome! We also spent the August Bank Holiday camping in the New Forest with friends, our first time going since having kids but it was actually lovely! We also carried on doing bits and bobs around the house, and I think I spent most of the summer obsessively watching The Good Wife, the moved swiftly on to Gilmore Girls! In the first week of September we took a road trip (here’s the video) taking us up to the Lake District via oxfordshire, Drayton Manor and Blackpool! We stayed in four different hotels and spent a lot of time in and out of the car. We visited two different Stick Man trails and generally had a really great time apart from Athena have a little mini seizure after falling over and banging her head. Thankfully all the tests were fine and she’s been fine since! The day after we got home Athena started her new preschool, settling in really well considering she missed the first week as we were away. Arlo started at the child minders too, it took a lot longer for him to settle there but he loves going now!

Posts I loved writing: Why don’t I shout about my blog? Camping in the New Forest, Sleep Deprivation, the weird and wonderful

Popular reviews: Drusillas Zoo & Park, Smart Trike, Bright Beats Boogie dance mat


Arlo hit 18 months in October, and in November we stopped breastfeeding, doing it cold turkey. Thankfully he is still really cuddly and affectionate, something I worried about losing. Gradually he stopped waking up so much in the night and in December we moved his cot from my side of the bed to Sams, put it against the wall with a bed guard and he has actually slept right through a few times now! Praise the Lord! I am starting to get more than 3 hours sleep in one go now! I feel so much better already for it! I also feel so much more freedom in terms of being able to go out at bedtime, or even stay somewhere overnight if I fancy! In October Arlo went up to two days a week at the Childminder as I secured a job doing social media management and outreach for two fab baby brands, which I am doing alongside my job doing one or two management shifts at the hotel, which I quite like doing as it gets me out of the house!

In October my friend Nick was visiting from Australia, so he and I took the kids on the i360. I know a lot of Brightoners hate it but I absolutely loved it, and its great for the economy too! The views were awesome! Sam went away for a long weekend snowboarding and I managed to survive four days of solo parenting just about! I did manage to paint the bureau Sam had bought me a few months back, but as I write this at the end of December I still don’t actually work at it yet! I did lots of extra hours in October at the hotel to cover sickness, so Sam and I hardly saw each other as if I am work he’s home with the kids and vice versa!  In November we celebrated our fourth wedding anniversary, Sam got a new job (he starts in January) and I begrudgingly had to stop wearing flip flops. We went to a fireworks display which was fun! Oh, I also spruced the blog up with a whole new design! December has been pretty chilled out, apart from a big clear out of toys, clothes and clutter so we can hopefully start the new year a bit more tidily! We had new carpets in the living room, hall and playroom this past week, finally no more sludge brown carpets! We’ve got a quiet Christmas planned, i’ll be switching off from the blog for a bit too to cram a few more books in to 2016!

Posts I loved writing: Reasons I fail at being an Adult, Would I terminate a baby with Down Syndrome, Blog goals for 2017

Popular reviews: Monochrome Picture Wall,  Mini Micro Scooters review/comparison, Vileda windomatic (it’s actually life-changing, I shit you not!)

I’ve been keeping track of the books I read in 2016 too, as I do every year. I set a target of 50 and failed miserably, I didn’t even make it to 40 like I did last year, but you can see what I read here. I also managed to do a whole year of Me & Mine family photos, and a year of Siblings photos too! I’ve also started paying more attention to my Youtube channel, though you won’t find us daily vlogging anytime soon!

So, that was my 2016! I’d love to read about yours!


#ShareYourYear linky – How to join in

• Add your post url below
• Pick a few posts to read and comment on (including this one if you fancy) letting them know you arrived via #ShareYourYear. It’s a great way to find new blogs and people to follow too, and perfect for nosy people who like to get to know more about the people behind the blog!
• If you tweet your link to me @belledubrighton using #ShareYourYear I’ll be RTing and will of course read and comment on all the posts myself and share some on my Facebook page.

Share Your Year will be open from now up to January 20th for you to link up any relevant posts, as I know a lot of people take a blogging break over the festive season.

Share your 2016 - Belle du Brighton



11 thoughts on “My 2016 & #ShareYourYear Linky

  1. Wow what a busy year you’ve had, with lots of changes and quite a bit of illness (it’s so hard to bounce back from things when you’re so run down from busy periods and not enough sleep, isn’t it?) Congratulations on the new role in social media management!

  2. thanks for hosting the linky – was hoping that you would again! Busy year that you’ve had – how do you find the time to read so many books?! I really want to read more. Have a fab Christmas and New Year

  3. Oooo – I am so excited to join this linky. It’s always so nice to discover new blogs and there’s already so many of your posts I want to go and check out! We LOVE Morzine and Avoriaz, we were nearby in the French northern Alps in April and will be going back again this year. Thanks for hosting x

  4. Gosh you certainly have experienced/achieved a lot in your lifetime as a blogger! Why is it everyone gets ill during the summer months? Madness. We have a chalet in Les Gets so go to Morzine and Avoriaz a lot. Such a beautiful part of the world but not always as snowy as you experienced (no snow here at the moment lol!). Sounds like a fabulous year for you all 🙂

  5. Although I read all your posts – it’s always so lovely to read back on what you got up to (it reminds me of the places I need to add to my list!).

    Thank you for sharing what you’ve been up to, there really are some wonderful photos!!

    I hope you’ve all had a lovely Christmas, and I hope 2017 brings you more fun and frolics.


  6. It seems we have something in common our birthday age and month. It’s also interesting to read that you visited Oxfordshire a region I am familiar with. May you have many more adventures in 2017. #shareyouryear

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