Standing by our hotel bedroom’s window in Jakarta, waiting for the clock to strike midnight on 31 December 2012 and the fireworks to start, I found myself reminiscing of the year that was. A friend of mine asked these 3 simple questions, so I’m going to take a leaf out of her book and use it to base my reflection.

Highlight(s) of 2012

Definitely one of my most prominent highlights of 2012 was the career move I made from an office environment to a school-based one. I had been warned by a few experienced people, including the Principal of the College I was going in to, to be aware of the change of dynamic and pace from office to school. It was a warning I heeded very seriously, but as with everything, until you actually experienced it, you couldn’t fully fathom the scope of the change.

One of the most fundamental changes I notice straight away was the enormity of work to be done during term time. For someone who was looking for a bit of a slower-paced work, the new job turned out to be more full-on than what I was doing in the office. Whilst I was no stranger to working past my normal knock-off time, or bringing work home to meet deadlines, this job brought these two aspects to a whole new level.

In the seven months since I started this job, I have led several sub-committee meetings. My creativity has been stretched to new heights, writing articles for local newspapers on what’s been happening at the College to digitally creating Yearbook pages. Being a ‘Facilities’ Coordinator also meant that I have to find and grow my assertiveness in spades! From getting up in front of all staff to remind them about the correct way to use and care for the College facilities, to voicing my disappointment to the cleaners because the College isn’t being cleaned to our satisfaction; from coordinating disgruntled groundsmen to help me move heavy things for a College event to ordering new furnitures for new staff/workspace, I could count on one hand the amount of times I could actually sit back and relax for a minute.

It was a full-on job, and not one I had originally expected. But having at least 10 weeks of the year off was definitely a major attraction to the job, and one that, once tasted, I would never trade again.

2012 also saw a bobcat ripped through our front and back garden. It’s been a long time coming, but in October this year, the landscaping of the garden we’ve always wanted was finally underway. Instead of a long-winded side island with overgrown weed, we put a formal steppers pathway and grass instead. What used to be a sloped corner island at the back of the house became a great-looking retainer wall feature. What used to be one MASSIVE backyard became two parts, with the back of the house being turned to a dog’s retreat.

Old landscape being ripped off

Old landscape being ripped off

Side of the house steppers

Side of the house steppers

 

 

Formal steppers' pathway and Sir Walter grass

Formal steppers’ pathway and Sir Walter grass

Front of the house - after

Front of the house – after

 

 

 

The pink picket fence for the dog's retreat

The pink picket fence for the dog’s retreat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Retainer Wall on back corner of house.

Retainer Wall on back corner of house.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moment(s) of 2012 I wish didn’t happen

To tell you honestly, 2012 has been a pretty good year for me. Perhaps the only ‘downer’ I could think of was the keyhole laparoscopy surgery I had to have in March to fix my ‘womanly bits’. This turned out to be a highly effective procedure, though, so I couldn’t complain too much, some soreness and scars shortly afterwards notwithstanding.

What I’m Looking Forward in 2013

Now that I sort of know what to expect in the not-so-new job, I plan to work better, work smarter, delegate more and anticipate earlier. I plan to reduce the amount of days I’d be working back/continue working at night from home to meet deadlines. I also plan to get back to some kind of regular writing again, including on this blog.

Also, now that the landscaping of our house is done, both my husband and I are looking forward to do some serious entertaining. It’s going to be the year we catch up with those we hold dear to us; to rekindle old friendships and reaffirm the current ones.