As regular readers will know, Stuart and I began this year by fixing the date for our wedding. Two years after losing my Dad so very unexpectedly, I made a decision at the start of 2012 to take up the reins of my life again ... I knew Dad would have told me, 'life is for the living Paula', so we went ahead, booked the date, told our families and with the much needed help of our 'Planning Committee' members, launched head first into months of wedding preparation.
Our Planning Committee
Before wedding work started in earnest, my daughter surprised me with tickets to see 'Phantom of the Opera' in Her Majesty's Theatre in London and we shared a very special mum/daughter day up in town together.
Stuart and I took a brief break half way through the year with the intention of recharging our batteries before the wedding but unfortunately, temperatures soared so high in Crete, we wilted and couldn't wait to come home again!
In June we squeezed in a fun Wormshill village picnic with my sister's family, to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee ...
Closely followed by my lovely niece's 21st birthday party.
We also managed to fit in a couple of trips to Portchester to catch up with my sister Tina and her family ...
Tina then travelled back to Kent for a 'pre-wedding' photo shoot at the Archbishop's Palace to help me iron out my looming bridal photo nerves.
And once that was done and dusted, we enjoyed a lovely relaxed 'sisters' afternoon, nattering and walking, at Leed's Castle.
Only 48 hours before our wedding day, we received a 5am call to tell us Stuart's new Granddaughter was on her way and our services were needed to take the expectant mum to hospital. Thankfully, Stuart's new granddaughter arrived speedily and healthily!
Stuart meeting his new granddaughter for the first time
Our big day dawned on the 16th September 2012 and what a fabulous day it was! Such a happy, fun, family wedding ... we absolutely loved it. It was a a truly wonderful start to married life.
A few weeks later we returned to a favourite haunt for our honeymoon and had a super time clomping through Cornwall's woodland, cliff paths and beaches in the glorious late autumn sunshine.
And in November I was absolutely thrilled to become 'Great Auntie Paula' for the very first time! Thank you so much Leah and welcome to the world baby Ella xxx
Stuart and I wound up 2012 in our capacity as grandparents, by taking a trip to London with a very excited grandson yesterday, to see the 'Walking with dinosaurs' spectacular at the O2.
And after such a hectic year, I think we're beginning to feel a little like old dinosaurs ourselves!
So that was 2012 in a nutshell ... I wonder what 2013 will bring?!