Ryan Taylor considers the last year to have been the best of his career, with life on and off the field at Newcastle United about as good as it gets.
Taylor found himself facing up to an uncertain future 12 months ago, with a lack of first-team opportunities believed to be edging him towards the exits.
A year on and the versatile 27-year-old is looking back on the most productive campaign of his St James' Park stint, with games and goals endearing him to the Tyneside natives.
"It's been a great 12 months in my career," Taylor told the Shields Gazette. "It's probably been the best 12 months I've had, on and off the field.
"My little boy's not far from being one year old now, so everything's going so well.
"I signed a new contract last season and played a lot of games.
"The last 12 months have probably been the best so far. It's been great."
Taylor has no intention of resting on his laurels, though, with domestic and European competition in 2012/13 set to test Newcastle's squad to the fullest.
"I'm not going to get carried away and say I'll start this season and play every game," he added.
"Who knows? There are a few new lads coming in, and everyone's got to keep their head down and show the manager they want to play.
"I'm no different to any of the other lads."