Getting to know you.

 

Tania over at A Larger Family has opened up linky for us all to join in, the question asked is , list ten things we don’t know about you.

Here I go…

  1. I’m scared of clowns

  2. I have 8 tattoos and I am planning more.

  3. I’m allergic to mushrooms, big time

  4. I love notebooks of any kind and have a collection of them which i will use one day.

  5. I hate cooking, I’ve tried but i just cannot find any joy in the kitchen

  6. I hate gossip, and when people talk behind others back. If you have something to say, say it, if not stay quiet.

  7. I cannot stand different sauces on my plate, ie egg and beans, they have to be separated and the idea of beans and ketchup together makes me ill.

  8. My favorite food at the moment is a nice bacon sandwich.

  9. I can’t stand anyone messing with my hair, I put my poor hairdresser through hell.

  10. I am passionate about fighting to end discrimination, poverty and slavery worldwide.

My Britmums Live Experience – Take 2

So now for the real reason behind my weekend success – the people , the amazing, kind, funny and down right just wonderful people who crossed my path over the last few days.

Firstly I have to mention Her Melness, now Mel is what I was call blogging royalty even if she denies it, her blog is honest, open and at times downright sarcastic and I love it.

Now Mel in her alter ego The Gift of Words  actually sponsored me to attend Britmums live and I was so looking forward to personally thanking her. What I didn’t expect was to find this amazing, warm, loving lady who made me feel so special as she opened her arms with friendship. Mel has this way of  making you feel like you could tell her anything. Mel and I had some lovely chats over the weekend (I’m missing them already) and those fireworks they were meant just for us.

Of course I can’t mention Mel without sending out a big hug to her best friend Angie.  One fantastic lady and I especially loved watching the banter between her and Mel it was obvious to see they were lifelong friends. 

I did get to meet and chat with so many over the weekend but two other people who have crossed the blogger threshold into the friendship one are Kate from Two cats, youngling and Me and Tinuke from Circus Moms. I’m so excited to get to know them more and looking forward to our next get together. 

As you can see we had some fun….

 

To be honest It would be easy to fill this page and many more with the many people I enjoyed chatting to over the weekend. I totally stepped out of my comfort zone and said Hi to many of the writers I admire. Nickie from Typecast, Katie Davis Holmes from  Kate On Thin ice, Michelle from Mummy from the heart and many many more.

 I got to meet some of the fantastic ladies who I was short listed with in the inspire Category  , Alex from “Doing it all for Aleyna. Clare from A Boy with Aspergers, Steph from “Was this in the Plan” Hayley from “Downs side up” Kylie from “Not even a bag of sugar and of course Lisa from “Mummy Whisper” who went on to win our category final,all incredible woman who inspire and change people’s perceptions. I love them!  I was gutted that Kathryn from ”Crystal Jigsaw” didn’t attend as I have been following her blog for a long time and would have loved the chance to say hi.

 I was lucky enough to get say hello to many people whose blogs I have admired and read for a long time but also got to meet many new people whose blogs I am now reading and enjoying.

 It fact Britmums Live for me was totally about the people. Yes I found the workshops informative and helpful but it was the conversations I had with others that made my weekend.

 As I was on the train home on Sunday, I was excited by the new people following me on twitter and the new people I have started following on twitter.

 I was also so touched by peoples reactions to my comments in the Sod the Stats, Blogging for Happiness workshop.

 In simple I was blessed.

 Thank you to all  those who made this nervous blogger feel welcome this weekend.

Oh and  Susanna it was wonderful to finally get to say Hi, it was an awesome weekend, well done to you and Jennifer and all at Brit mums.

 

 

.

My experiences at BritMums- Take 1.

Well where do I start, how can I try and describe my weekend at BritMums live in one blog post, I can’t so this is going to be one of a many (ok a few). The weekend has held so many layers that it’s going to take me time to slowly peel them back and digest all that I have experienced, all that I have learned and all those amazing people I have met.

To be perfectly honest on Friday morning I was ready to just turn back and go home, after reaching London and finding the buses on strike I realised I had to face the underground. Now for this claustrophobic lady that was enough to send my heart into a panic.

But you know what I didn’t, I gave myself a quick kick up the butt and using my daughters words I “manned up”. The crazy thing is after making the ticket guy giggle I made it to Old street station with no issues. Then thankfully down to the kindness of Geek mummy I left by the right exit and reached the hotel in five minutes woo hoo,way to go me.

A quick wash and change I was ready to hit Britmums Live.

Friday to be honest was a bit of a blur I think my nerves regarding the Bibs awards were getting to me, I seriously couldn’t relax, it’s not that I seriously expected to win but of course I secretly wanted too ( whoops not very secret anymore).

I loved listening to Ruby Wax she has an amazing way of viewing the world and made me giggle. Her battle against depression inspired me and her words rang true and deep for me. I have suffered depression following the onset of my illness and could seriously relate to what she spoke about. For a long time I felt such a failure, my Iife was controlled by panic attacks and irrational fears. I felt so useless as a mother, as a wife. My life had changed so dramatically, I was so lost, but thankfully with help from medication and support from my incredible husband I found my way again and found my new pathway and now for over 4 years I haven’t been on medication and have been ok. Though I’m not going to tempt fate and say I’m cured, I still have really low days but thankfully they are few and far between and does depression every really go away? Maybe a topic for different blog post.

I attended the Friday workshop, Crossing the Chasm and really enjoyed listening to advice of some awesome bloggers. It’s great to hear different opinions on what they see as crossing the chasm. For some it’s stats, for others it’s different. The blogging world is so vast and I love it.

Then the day got really exciting we had that awesome Bibs party, with free wine and half naked men what more could I ask for, It was funny and it was awesome.

Following the laughter we had the Bibs and I didn’t win boo hoo, no seriously it was a great night and my category ‘inspire’ was won by a lovely lady who is an amazing blogger ‘Mummy Whisper‘. What I also did take away from the evening was the fact that there are some amazing blogs out there that I had no idea about. I can see many hours being spend reading from now on.

I’m not going to bore you with all the details of the workshops I attended over the weekend to be honest i still haven’t digested all the information i have taken in ,but I do want to mention the fantastic Blogging for happiness one, as you know if you read this blog I write from my heart, what you see here is what’s in my head. This workshop reinforced this for me. That the reason we blog matters, the words that we share should be authentic. Blogging should be about finding our voices and letting them be heard through our words. Nobody can do you better than you.

The weekend has been an amazing experience and all at Brit mums should be feeling chuffed with themselves for putting on a fantastic event.

The whole thing was great from start to finish, ok maybe the food wasn’t awesome but hey I’m a picky bugger.

I loved chatting with the brands, they were all so friendly, I fell in love with the guys from Panasonic and their dual microwave oven, unfortunately it wouldn’t fit in my handbag to bring home and I didn’t get a taste of their fresh bread but I will forgive them as they were so awesome. The beautiful ladies at Bananagrams were so lovely and I can’t wait to play the game when I get home with my girls. Seriously though they were all great, though I do have to mention the Badgers beer tasting event, someone could have warned me that we were supposed to smell and look at the beer before downing it, felt like such a lush standing there with an empty cup. Like any self respecting beer drinker I grabbed myself another to join in, I mean I did have to appreciate the smell and texture didn’t I.

The conference was ended by the keynote speeches I laughed, I cried and I laughed again. An inspiring collection of wonderful posts that moved and inspired me.

Yes all in all it was an amazing weekend and I had a ball, really looking forward to next year. Date is already in the diary, ok in my iPhone calendar but hey it’s the same thing.

My Brit mums experienced doesn’t stop here, I have so much more to share,as they say on all the t.v programmes to be continued…..

P.S A Big thank you to The Gift of Words for sponsoring me allowing me to attend this awesome event.

And now I have a train to catch xx

I’m on my way to Brit Mums Live

Right as I’m typing this I’m on the train to Brit mums Live. I’m so nervous and so excited all in one go.

I’m really looking forward to meeting everyone and turning my virtual hugs into real ones.

The agenda is fully packed and I’m really looking forward to some of the workshops and listening to some of the guest speakers.

Of course it’s always nice to meet up with some of the brands and learn about what they offer what they do.

So all being well and if I don’t get lost on the way to the hotel, this afternoon I will be at Brit mums Live.

See you later…..

Believing in myself

Today one of my daughters told me off. I was moaning about how nervous I was for this weekends Brit mums live when she told me straight.

 

“mom if you don’t believe in yourself how do you expect others too.”

 

Bang, right in my face!

 

How true , here I am harping on about my nerves probably making you all think I’m some kind of sloppy wimp.

 

When the fact is that’s not true.

 

Ok I’m not an overly outgoing person but I can and do generally chat to anyone, anywhere.

 

I have spoken in public numerous times on different subjects and do actually really enjoy it.

 

I also liaise with professionals from all walks of life on a weekly if not daily basis.

 

I am the co-founder of a charity  Livvy’s Smile which is growing fantastically and have hosted and organised numerous events.

 

I’m also a writer both here and in other places including the Compassion UK Blog and fostering publications.

I’m also a mom to four incredible girls and a foster mom to one young man.

And to top it all off I’m also in the Brilliance in Blogging Inspire category final with Brit Mums, how about that.

 

So come on girl pull yourself together. 

 

One gigantic kick up the bum coming my way.

 

So from now on I’m stepping forward with a new attitude.

 

I’m going to start believing in myself more.

 

And in the words of  Babe Ruth

 

Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back. – Babe Ruth

 

 

Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen

Sixteen years ago I became a mom for the first time. After an eventful labour I was presented with a beautiful baby girl.

 

You were so cute, so chunky and looked like a boxer, it was easy to see  in your spirit that you were going to take on the world.

Sixteen years later you are a beautiful young lady, so determined and strong. You see what you want and you go for it so whole heartily.

 

This year especially has been one where you have really grown both in height (finally) and strength.

You have made me so proud the way you have studied hard for your GCSE’s preparing yourself,  devising your own study timetable and canceling nights out. So grown up, so incredible. Whatever the results I am so proud of you. 

 

Watching you change and find your own personality has been a blessing for me. 

 

Your voice is amazing and every time I hear you sing I get goosepumps, never stop using your voice it a gift that needs to be shared.

 

 

 

Sometimes I miss the days when you were little you were my shadow and I loved it. I’m slowly learning to let go a little at a time. Hey I’m even getting used to the fact you have a boyfriend!

 

You may be celebrating your 16th today, but never forget you will always be my baby. My first born, my KK.

 

Happy Birthday sweet sixteen Kennedy.

 

 

Wishing you a life time full of love and happiness and never give up on your dreams as Dad and I are right behind you all the way.

 

http://youtu.be/Q7sgdR9Oxs8

 

 

 

P.S When did i get old enough to have a sixteen year old daughter.

Brit mums prompt – Revelation

 

This weekend I’m packing my suitcase and heading off to London for the fantastic Brit Mums Live. It’s going to be packed event with lots of things happening.

The things is I’m going alone, I haven’t arranged to meet up with anyone, share a room with anyone, I’m completely on my lonesome.

My revelation is this, I’m looking forward to it.

At first I was really nervous about going on my own but now I’m really looking forward to it. I have no obligations, I can chat to who I want to chat to, eat with who I want to eat and not worry who likes who.

I am really looking forward to a weekend of meeting new people that I have chatted to or tweeted with.

A chance to make new friends is always a great opportunity and this is one I’m seriously excited about.

 

Shocking and so very wrong

Somedays this world breaks me.

The cruelty, the lost of innocence, the evil.

Today is one of those days.

How can this be allowed to happen in what we call a civilised world?

Chinese woman forced abortion – Huffington Post

How ?

Why?

My heart breaks for this woman and the many who face this. My heart breaks for this world.

Today all I can do is search for hope.

Today all will do is pray.

Please join me.

Do not click this second link if you are reading with children as it is truly terrifying and heartbreaking as it shows an image of a 7 month old aborted child.

This should never happen.

I was a brave mommy

I kept my promise, I didn’t let the tears fall until the coach turned the corner. I was a brave mommy and she was a brave daughter.

 

Brave mommy & Daughter

I could only smile sweetly to the other parents as I walked to car, no words would form on my lips.

 

I know it’s silly, it’s a school trip for goodness sake. A chance for fun laughter and adventure. I hope it’s filled with all of these and so much more and friendships that will bind for a lifetime, but I’m going to miss her like crazy.

 

She isn’t my baby anymore, at 11 she is nearing those teenage years but like her sisters before her, she will always be my baby, they all are.

Growing up

 

Yet this sweet one is my last born, no more rocking newborns through the night.

 

No more sweet toddler kisses.

 

She is growing up and way to soon for this mommy’s heart.

 

This school term is her final at primary, September will see her join her big sisters in the world of senior school. She is nervously excited, I am nervously sick.

 

She is now an ocean away, out of this country out of my reach.

 

I know it’s only five days, but right now it’s five days to many.

 

I’ve sat here watching the Disney channel, laughing at Austin and Ally pretending she is on the sofa next to me.

 

Crazy isn’t it. Sad, well maybe a little.

 

Her big sisters are offering extra hugs partly to ease my pain and partly due their missing of their little sister.

 

At times she drives them insane but they are so protective over her. They are missing her dry humour but not her tell tales.

 

I am fighting not to wish the week away, to enjoy the events I have planned but it’s hard.

 

I’m  a typical mother hen needing her brood around her, I hate it when they go away but still I want them all to experience all the adventures that life has to offer.

 

So for Brodie I am praying she has an amazing time in France, enjoys the adventure sports and the sunshine but for myself I am praying for a week that flies by. Staying busy and staying occupied and maybe that means more Disney channel.