Looking back at 2018

So, as we come to the end of another year I am continuing the tradition I started last year (with 2017:  What a year!) and looking back at what’s happened and what I’ve achieved.  Once again, the following would not have been possible without the support of my husband, family, gym family, friends, and colleagues – you are all amazing.

In 2018 I have:

  • Been diagnosed with severe anxiety and mild depression
  • Gotten help for my mental health and improved out of sight (though I still have a long way to go I am proud of my progress – taking it one day at a time)
  • Had an ankle reconstruction in February and bounced back quite quickly
  • Had to relearn how to speak and sing (I’m still working on this)
  • Sung at most of the Vespers Services at Nazareth Lutheran Church, Woolloongabba
  • Read 70 books, a total of 10 more than my Goodreads goal of 60 (at the time of publishing this post – who knows! I may read 10 more before December 31st… HA!)
  • Started back at university with a Master of Education (Educational Research) at Charles Sturt University
  • Been awarded the Innovator Bravo Bonaventure Award for Term 4 – this means that I was recognised within the community at Mount Alvernia College as an Innovator and I am very humbled to have been awarded this.
  • Created and launched Phenomenal Females at Mount Alvernia College
  • Headed up the STEAM Professional Learning Team at school and…
    • Hosted an event for students interested in all things STEM called STEM-A-Con (you can read my write up of it here!)
    • Assisted at the It takes a Spark, STEAM Conference hosted by Mount Alvernia College on the Ekka Wednesday
    • Applied for and been granted money from the Mount Alvernia Parents & Friends Association for a state-of-the-art makerspace called MakeHerSpace
    • Launched “Breaking the Mould” with the Women in STEM panel event as part of STEM-A-Con
  • Competed at the QLD GPC Push/Pull in December after coming back from my ankle reconstruction and came 3rd
  • Hosted 4 major competitions at VALHALLA Strength – South Brisbane this year:
    1. Australian Strongman Alliance (ASA) Nationals in June
    2. Pretty & Powerful in October
    3. Brisbane’s Strongest Man and Women in November
    4. ASA Qualifier (not a major competition but the last chance for competitors to qualify!)
  • Continued to Critique Read for Lynette Noni (and STILL held my tongue)
  • Helped coordinate the launch of Graevale in February
  • Met the following authors:
    1. Veronica Roth (!!)
    2. Jodi McAlister (author of Valentine and a kickass academic)
    3. Samantha Wheeler
    4. Raymond E. Feist
  • Organised and ran the Mount A: Book in a Day competition during Literacy Week
  • Attended year 9 camp with Adventure Alternatives in October
  • Have been asked by 3 girls in year 9 to coach them through the Conrad Challenge for 2018/2019! You can watch their video submission here!
  • Experimented with my year 9 geography teaching:
    • Created a new draft checklist for use with the report – check out my blog Drafting Checklists for a full explanation of how I did it.
    • Trialed Augmented Reality as an alternative Multimodal Assessment task – see my blog post Augmented Reality in year 9 geography for more information on that.
  • Coordinated the following book clubs:
    1. Readers Cup Team from Mount Alvernia
    2. Joint Padua and Mount Alvernia Book Clubs for 9/10 and 11/12
  • Been part of the very first Special Olympics Powerlifting Competition in QLD called the Flying Kiwi Cup – See my blog for more information on that!
  • Learnt how to crochet!
  • Had to say goodbye to one beautiful dog but welcomed two more to the family
  • Started a book club for the ladies at my gym called Valkyries Book Club (read about it here!)
  • Developed and maintained the VALHALLA Strength – South Brisbane website (which I am very proud of and wrote a blog about, check it out here!)
  • Traveled to:
    1. Noosa (for a holiday)
    2. Melbourne (for a wedding)
  • Dressed up for…
    • Literacy Week: Love is in the Air – I came as Geekerella
    • Cultural Festival: Year of Youth – I came as something Harry Potter related to reflect my childhood (how could I not?!)
    • Halloween – I wore my Minnie Mouse ears
    • Geek Fridays – I got to wear a different “geeky” shirt every Friday! Cannot wait to continue this tradition into next year as I’ve now got quite a collection and I’m adding to it regularly!

It’s been a very busy year and looking back I can’t quite understand how I managed to achieve so much. My goal for next year is “simplicity.” I’m going to continue working hard for my students but with a focus on keeping my own workload within the boundaries of not-so-stressful. Everything I do it always for my students, but I’m also learning that I need to focus on me too.

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