Highlights of 2022
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Highlights of 2022 | Blogmas 2022

Highlights of 2022 | Blogmas 2022

As we bid goodbye to 2022 and welcome to 2023, it’s my favourite time of year. A chance to look back at the highlights of the year and remember the good times.

2022 was a difficult year, on top of an already difficult 2021. This year we lost a few loved ones, and had the stress of health, weddings, feuds and careers, on top of the cost of living crisis and the shocking political climate of the UK and the world.

However, enough of the bad, this post is a chance to celebrate the good.

Here are the highlights of my 2022.

Highlights of 2022

My Sister’s Wedding 2.0

In February 2022, my sister and brother-in-law had a wedding re-do after previously getting married in 2020. Whilst their original wedding was lovely, it was wonderful to get the chance to celebrate their relationship with everyone in their respective lives. Including most of my family and loved ones. We had a blast and the ceremony was particularly cheerful, filled with little surprises.

Secret Cinema Bridgerton Ball with Hannah and Sammy

This spring, with my friends Hannah and Sammy, I went for a promenade at the Secret Cinema Briderton Ball. It was a joy! One of my all-time favourite events of the year. We got to dress up in our regency-style finest, drink prosecco, eat delicious food and dance to our heart’s content. There was flirting, joking with new friends, failed attempts to meet the Queen, and a very silly drink afterwards at a Sports Bar in Baker Street, still in our regency clothes.

Seeing new West End shows

In early 2022 I finally saw Hamilton on the West End. After a two-year delay due to COVID, my parents and I saw the show in-person. It was great, and I loved seeing all the dancing and staging after only listening to the album for 4+ years. I also went to see Come From Away with my dad and family friends, and I’ve got to admit that I think I enjoyed it more than Hamilton. *Gasp!* I know! Shocking. It was just hilarious and incredibly moving, and the songs are so catchy and brilliantly performed. Simplicity mixed with cleverness makes for a really strong show.

My Cousin’s Wedding

2022 was the Year of Weddings for me, and in Spring 2022 I got to see my wonderful cousin get married to my new cousin (she was always my cousin, to me!). The wedding was so joyful and it was great to catch up with family we hadn’t seen in 2+ years. I also got a lot of cuddles with my tiny cousins, who are adorable and growing up too quickly.

Starting a new job at Bonnier

In June 2022, I left HarperCollins for Bonnier as their Head of Fiction Marketing and it’s been brilliant. The team were incredibly welcoming and everyone across the board has been lovely. I’ve worked on books by Michael Ball, Robert Peston, T.M. Logan, Liz Hyder and many mother authors in the last six months and it’s been a delight. I can’t wait to share what we’ve got planned for 2023! It’s going to be a great year.

ABBA Voyage

In May, my parents, sister and I headed to see ABBA Voyage on the second day after it opened. It’s a show using only digital avatars and insanely clever lighting to put on a concert. You honestly forget that it isn’t ABBA performing at all. Highly recommend it to all ABBA and Mamma Mia fans, the live band are brilliant and the songs are perfect.

Disneyland Paris

Finally, after 2.5 years, I and my friends made it to Disneyland Paris for my birthday! It was supposed to be for my 25th but turned out to be for my 27th instead. Apart from getting painfully sunburnt, we had a blast. A solid way to spend a birthday.

Highlights of 2022

Dinner and Drinks with Hannah and Sammy

Sometimes the smallest things are the most delightful. After leaving HarperCollins I’ve tried very hard – although it’s been easy! – to stay in touch with my friends from the company. On one such evening, Hannah, Sammy and I met up for dinner and decided to head out for drinks on the Southbank. We ended up at an All Bar One and were there until closing on a Thursday as we were having too much fun! Always fun to shut down the bar, unplanned.

YALC with Angelize

After a few years’ break, I headed back to YALC – or the Young Adult Literary Convention – with my friend Angelize. We were there on the last day, the Sunday, and mingled with authors like Jacqueline Wilson and Alice Oseman – though the signings were sold out prior to the event – and bought books. We also headed down to the Comic Con area and saw great Cosplayers and bought some merchandise. And as we were leaving, we ran into Joseph Quinn from Stranger Things. To say we lost our shit is an understatement. Looking forward to 2023!

Saw Manila Luzon at Heaven with Hannah and Sammy

Another night out with Hannah and Sammy! Honesty, we have too much fun sometimes! We planned a night out at Heaven in London and ended up attending on a night that Manila Luzon of Drag Race Season 2, All-Stars 1 and 5 fame, was performing. It was worth staying until 2 am just to see her walk across the stage. And we had a lot of fun dancing and pre-drinking at brunch beforehand.

Seeing my friends at their new home

Another simple but happy day. It was great to head out of London to visit my friend Rob and his girlfriend and see their new home. I can’t believe I’m at the point in my life where friends are actually buying houses! Next up weddings – although that’s also begun! – and kids. Madness. But lovely, and a great chance to catch up.

Shit-Faced Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet with Angelize, Freyja and Nini

Another West-End show, this time off-West End. It was the return of the Shit-Faced Shakespeare performances, and they did my favourite: Romeo and Juliet. I actually saw the show twice in quick succession and both times the same actress/character was drunk: Juliet.

But each show, as the title suggests, was very different. The first time around Juliet was more interested in the real-life vicar in the audience, who she brought to marry her and Romeo. The second time around, she was more interested in killing everyone, so the ending of the show is very different to Shakespeare’s original edit. But both shows were hilarious.

The first time I went with my friend Angelize, we happened to run into Matt Smith and Milly Alcock coming out of the Hippodrome Casino. Honestly, whenever I’m with Angelize we run into someone famous.

Cat-Sitting Tinkerbell and Dorian

In September,  I cat-sat for my friend Freyja. Once again, Tinkerbell and Dorian came to stay at Hotel Ellie for a week and it was lovely. They’re both so cuddly and adorable. Yes, Tinkerbell doesn’t like me sleeping at 4 am, but I didn’t care. The cuddles and company were worth it.

I met Michael Ball at the audiobook studio and he hit No. 3 in the Sunday Times 

After getting my new job at Bonnier I was delighted to find out that I would be part of the team publishing Michael Ball’s debut novel The EmpireIt is a massive book for us and an excellent read! I highly recommend it. Plus Michael is one of my all-time fave West End performers, having first seen him as Caracactus Potts in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang when I was 6 years old!

I was delighted to meet him while he was narrating his book in the audiobook studio. He’s a lovely guy, with lots of energy and highly professional. It was great to work with him. And the cherry on top was getting his debut to No. 3 in the Sunday Times chart.

Halloween Boat Party

This year for Halloween I did something a bit different. To celebrate my friend, Sammy’s, birthday and Halloween, she, Hannah and I went on a boat party up and down the Thames! And, despite running – though the boat didn’t leave for an hour! – in heels, we had a great time. We made friends with some fellow party-goers, danced until midnight and got to see London from an entirely new view at night. It was great fun!

Weekend in Devon

Pre-Christmas, The Fun People – a group of family and friends – headed to Devon for a week, for a bit of pre-Christmas fun. We stayed in a lovely farmhouse with a private swimming pool and explored the local area including Dartmouth, Plymouth and Exeter. To keep ourselves entertained we had themed nights, from Christmas Dinner to Children’s Party and a Quiz Night – I came second. A lovely relaxing break.

What were your highlights of 2022? Let me know in the comments below. I hope you had a good year!

Love Ellie x

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Highlights of 2022

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