2010 was such a great year. I was lucky enough to travel the world to many places I’ve never visited before, and the year culminated in our fantastic wedding; a perfect day made even better by the visit of family and friends we haven’t seen since we emigrated. So maybe it shouldn’t be such a surprise that to provide balance, 2011 would turn out to be shite!

The other day I was trying to think of something I’ve achieved during 2011, some objective completed for which I can be proud. I struggled to come up with anything. In retrospect I’m glad I didn’t make any new year’s resolutions last year as they would be a big, fat failure.

At least I can be proud of Lauren. She turned 10 this year and I think we’ve done a fine job of raising her even if I do say so myself. There’s always the danger with a single child that she’ll be a selfish, spoilt little brat. I may be biased or blinkered (what parent isn’t?), but I certainly don’t see any sign of that in Lauren.

The main setbacks for me personally this year have been my health. I somehow managed to get kidney stones and gallstones at the same time, which took an age to properly diagnose and resulted in multiple trips to A&E, and eventually led to the removal of my gall bladder. When your health goes south everything else tends to take a back-burner. So much of this year was a write-off.

At least 2011 was a great year to be a spectator. For a news junkie like me, 2011 will go down in history as a remarkable year, what with the Arab Spring; earthquake in Japan and Fukishima disaster; deaths of Osama Bin Laden, Steve Jobs, and Kim Jong-Il; Brisbane floods; UK riots; Wikileaks cables; phone-hacking scandal and the closure of the News of the World, etc.

On the business front, all the stats are looking great for IPChitChat, certainly compared to 2010 and taking into account everyone was bracing for a global economic meltdown. I can’t take much credit for this. Michael, my business partner in the UK, has done a stellar job improving revenue and profit, and I’m hoping I can do more to contribute in 2012. We had a couple of other web projects that I was going to launch in 2011 which didn’t happen. I’m planning to get at least one of these off the ground early this year.

Professionally, I’m still enjoying the day job and I’m hoping I can pick up some interesting work in 2012. There’s certainly no signs of IT Security work taking a slump!

At least the year ended with a nice relaxing Christmas. I still can't get used to seeing fake snow on the front lawns of gardens in the middle of summer but I'm slowly getting more adjusted to the Aussie xmas. This christmas day was spent like many others since we arrived in Brisbane - nice long christmas lunch interspersed with dips in the pool. It may not be traditional but sitting in the pool with a glass of wine isn't a bad way to spend christmas day!

Oh well, onwards and upwards. I have high hopes for 2012. The flights are booked for our first trip back to the UK since emigrating in 2007, in what could turn out to be an epic month. Our draft itinerary already includes Singapore, London, Venice, Paris and Hong Kong. The problem is, the amount of time we're likely to spend in Doncaster and Worksop seems to grow less and less as we discover more places we want to visit around Europe (can you blame us?).