I’ve really enjoyed blogging this year – thanks so much to those of you who read it on a regular basis.

As 2016 wraps up, I wanted to showcase my favourite five posts of 2016 and reflect on some of the memories they evoked. Which one will be top?

Thanks again and see you in the New Year!

5. Friends Forever

It was so special spending New Year with our great friends Helen and Ed from Windsor. (Indeed, we were meant to do the same this year but sickness in our household has put pay to that plan). Despite the distance between our houses, the two girls Sophie and Emily are the best of friends and this was an amazing chance to see their friendship in action. Lots of cuddles, lots of charging around together, lots of sharing their Christmas presents. It was such a special holiday and one we plan to replicate many times over the coming months and years.

4. Derby defeat

This year I’ve had some notable Blackburn Rovers blog posts, mainly bemoaning the state of my team, and this post was no different. Conditioned to dislike Preston North End, Blackburn’s proud unbeaten record against them was shattered when North End came from behind to beat them at Ewood Park. Sadly, that was a long way from being the nadir of this annus horribilis and 2017 promises little better in the form of a (probably) doomed battle against relegation.

3. Rebecca Jeffery on The Apprentice

We have enjoyed watching The Apprentice for many years but the 2016 edition was greatly enhanced by the appearance of our good friend Rebecca Jeffery. Her effervescent personality carried her through the gruelling interview stages of the application process and suddenly she wound up on the programme. Having your friend on the show meant a lot of watching from behind the sofa and grimacing with angst and her failure to win a task – until the final! – was not her proudest moment, but we were so proud of her and still think she should have won…perhaps we’re biased. Go, Becs!

2. Dear Jeremy

Amidst all the furore over Brexit and the lack of strategy and structure from the government, everyone’s least favourite health politician has sidled into the shadows recently. No doubt he’ll be back all too soon, with a grand masterplan to rip up doctors’ working hours, destroy patient safety and ultimately privatise the NHS. This letter back in February outlined some of my concerns. Did I get a response? What do you think…

1. Sophie and the New Baby

I went for this over the story of Harry’s arrival purely because of how lovely it was to tell Sophie the secret we’d been harbouring for a couple of months. Letting her know that she was going to be a big sister was a real privilege and her typically calm response of “That’s fine” will go down in the family annals. The book we bought proved useful in preparing her for the baby and helping her understand what life might be like. So far, she’s coped pretty well. Long may that continue.

Favourite memories of the year which didn’t quite make the top 5 include:
A Latvian Adventure with Mike and Ilze
The Surprise of a 30th Birthday Party
Grandad’s thoughts on Center Parcs

Thanks to everyone who has made 2016 such a special year for Daddy Joe Blogs.