I really must update my blog.

I have been very remiss about keeping my blog up to date. I love live stream and I do live stream most evenings with an update of the shenanigans in my life. However, it occurred to me that some people might prefer to read rather than view although personally, I am an audio-visual learner.

I have a 30-year teaching background and really loved my teaching career. That is until the end, the last year was not much fun. A job that I had joined as a vocation, became merely a way of paying the bills. To me, that was very sad and that is why I threw in the towel before retirement age. During my 30 years of teaching, I ran my own nursery school for 21 years. I have some very fond memories of those 21 years and the many children that passed through. We had such fun. They were like little sponges lapping up knowledge daily. We also used to produce two shows a year and when I live stream on a regular basis, many of those memories come flooding back and I recount them to my audience. Just the other day, and one of my 10 pm Broadcasts, I recounted how I dressed as a ragdoll when we put on a performance of “When the clock strikes midnight” (it was the story of the toys coming to life)

Although I say I had a 30-year teaching career, I have not actually stopped teaching. However, my pupils are no longer little people. I now help bigger people to raise awareness of their businesses, their events or the charities.

 

I have learned so much from my youngest son, Tristan and I am so glad that I didn’t squash that entrepreneurial spirit that he showed at age 12. I had chosen to send him to a private school and he saw a gap in the market. I think it was the sum of 5 pounds that set up his tuck shop. His headmaster was less than impressed and I got summoned to his office. Tristan reminds me that I’m leaving the premise he’s headmaster was less than impressed and I got summoned to his office. Tristan reminds me that I’m leaving The headmasters office, even before we got out of the school grounds, I turned to Tristan and said: “you are going to do it again aren’t you?” To which he had no hesitation in assuring me that he had no intention of closing his business. My answer was “just don’t get caught next time” How different our lives would have been if I had chastised him and put an end to that entrepreneurial spirit. As a 67-year-old, I am loving sitting in the digital space and learning and upskilling every day. I live stream daily, I manage social media accounts for local businesses and I help to raise the visibility of events and local charities as well as my beautiful Isle of Wight. I want to share it with the world. After all, how can I help the local businesses if the tourists don’t come?

And now I am going to attempt to blog regularly. Thanks to Tristan, this has become a much more manageable task as he has taught me to use voice to text. I am part of the social media Mentors Global group that he runs under his brand it’s Nomad9 . I pop in and out of that group on a regular basis as part of my upskilling but also lap up

podcasts and YouTube videos to make sure I don’t miss any vital information. I also run a network group, wightbuzz which I set up in 2010. I never set out to make money from it. It was more about connecting people together and networking that would help my home-based businesses. I did have a small membership fee back then but have now dispensed with that. For me, it is more about connecting the community with the businesses for the greater good. So my network meetings are open to local business owners, local event organizers, charity fundraisers and Charity organisers  and just for good measure anyone else who wants to join in and know what is going on in the community. There is one rule. You have to be nice. I added that rule because sadly in the past I had people within the group who tried to pull me down. Little did they know I was made of sterner stuff and although I might’ve been bashed along the way I’m like a Weeble, I wobble but I don’t fall down.

So, these days I like to inspire educate and entertain. I have my dad’s wicked sense of humour and I am sure he watches down on me with mild amusement. He would be proud of my live streams. He encouraged me and my siblings to learn public speaking at an early age. This is something I have passed on to Tristan who now speaks at many events, passing on his fount of knowledge.

At an age when I should have long since retired, I’m having way too much fun to sit in my rocking chair knitting. Although I do have a recliner and I do a lot of knitting as I now knit for charity. I love knitting the fun stuff like apples and pears and some flowers and pizzas and hotdogs etc. currently I am busy click clicking away with the needles as I am putting some entries into the new Arcticulture tent at the county show. The theme is fruit and veg, time for tea, and in bloom. It gives me plenty of scope for something I love. However, my ambitions are way beyond the time I have to finalize my entries. Once the show is over, all the entries will be sold for charity. They will support different charities on the island and in fact, some people have already ordered some of the items that will actually be seen in the county show. They are aware that they will have to wait until after 8 July. I have a very understanding audience. Which is just as well when things go wrong like they did last night. I was doing my usual 10 PM broadcast and I moved the camera to show my Computer screen and for some reason, it went a little bit Crazy. And when I put it down it had turned me on its side. Unable to correct it while I was broadcasting, I did the broadcast lying on my side on my desk much to the amusement of my audience. Mission accomplished as I always try to entertain. I had some wonderful compliments. One viewer nearly ran out of tissues. She assured me it was through laughter and not tears of sadness. Someone else came and said they had a wonderful evening and another viewer said I had really cheered him up. I am just so glad that I ignored the criticism of a naysayer years ago, who told me I was the laughing stock. What he didn’t realize these people are laughing with me and not at me. Together we are building a wonderful community of supportive people. They help me as much as I help them and so I’m not going to stop live-streaming or clowning about anytime soon. Now I must get back to the click-clacking of the knitting needles as time is of the essence.

The Island Radio on Sunday afternoon

On a Sunday afternoon I love listening to my dear friend Tina Hyde on The Island Radio . She hosts the Easy Listening Show. Her guest on this show is another good friend of mine – dear Donna Jones MBE  – do join with me for some easy listening. Donna talks about how she missed going to listen to the Wight Hot Pipes and ended up bashed and bruise. She has such a wicked sense of humour – so this is well worth a listen. Find out why what she calls her dogs and why they are banished. Hear too what happened to her bacon sandwich. Such fun :)

Laughter all the way

Blog post 2 of the 30 day blog challenge run by Sarah Arrow – so far so good!

Laughter all the way? Indeed – I was just deciding what to write for todays blog post and thought I might write about the good things from 2015. I was looking back through the periscopes I had done for some ideas and I came across this one! That was it – I had to blog about the Giggly Grannies and in particular the last three Christmases.

it bought tears to my eyes and I hope is gives you a little amusement too.

For those of you who don’t know, Julie and I met at Ryde Methodist church about three and a half years ago and we just clicked from day one. I don’t know what it is but we just giggle a lot when we are together and soon earned the name of The Giggly Grannies There is always laughter when we are together -it just happens and Julie’s motto is leave ‘em laughing

We put our skills together and started fundraising first for the Open Arms project for feeding the hungry and homeless of Ryde and then for other things including Macmillan nurses and local Ryde charities.

Julie likes everything pink as you might pick up from the videos and I like all things purple.

In December 2013 – Julie set her heart on heart shaped crumpets – pardon the pun. Now many of you will think what a simple present for Christmas – easy peasy no problem there then as Asda were promoting them well on TV which is how Julie knew about them.

Ah easy peasy for those of you living on the big north Isle (as we call the mainland) but for those of us living on the Isle of Wight – not so easy as we don’t have an Asda. She tried to get folks to get her some but it was all to no avail. There was little laughter on this occasion.  How could I let Christmas pass without my friend enjoying the one thing she had set her heart on? It was 23rd December – I had put a few feelers out but had to be careful as Julie uses facebook but she is not a twitter fan – I got as near as someone going across the pond on Boxing day which seemed to be the best I might manage. I rang my daughter who was coming down to the Island over Christmas and her husband had just left Asda and there was no way he was going back!!!! I left a message on my brother’s phone – he was coming on Christmas eve – but hey ho he only picked the message up once he was on the Island. I left my sister a message as she was coming over from Bournemouth and I knew there was an Asda there. Finally it looked like I was in luck. As she doesn’t have a car but was willing to go on Christmas eve before coming to us – I suggested she call the store – great idea as they didn’t have many but she reserved some. She almost left them behind at her house but phewie she just remembered. I then had to sort of divert Julie to my mum’s house before she went to her sons house for Christmas.

After much cloak and dagger stuff – I managed to get Julie to agree to pop in for mums houses for tea – she then spent at least five minutes telling us how good she had been all year and all she wanted were crumpets but she was sad as it wasn’t go to happen.

 

Christmas 2014 also provided a lot of laughter as you will see.

I hope I have made you laugh a little or even a lot – Julie is amazing – she lives with an illness that would make most people cry but she loves to make people laugh – Leave them laughing is her motto.

 

We have even been told off for laughing but hey ho – do you think we are going to stop anytime soon?

 

 

 

The Ryde Slide

The Ryde Slide

Wayne Whittle, deputy chair of Ryde Business Association , introduced the idea of a Ryde Slide a long time ago having been told about the Bristol Screamer. When he saw pictures of the Screamer, he realised it looked just like Union Street in Ryde and so why shouldn’t he arrange a giant water slide to raise money for charity. The idea was born and gathered momentum until finally on July 12th 2015 the day arrived. The roads were closed, the Ryde slide was set up and much fun was had by all. Julie and I (aka the Giggly Grannies) had no intention of riding – that was for others not for us – it would be too fast and scare the living daylights out of us. However, it appeared, on the day,  that The Ryde Slide was not as fast as we feared so we set off , raised about £60 in sponsorship for the Ryde Slide Trust  there and then and took to the slide. I hadn’t bought any spare clothes – good job I was offered a lift home :) Would we do it again? You bet!

Ryde slide

 

Shipwreck Isle

Shipwreck Isle

 

poster - ship wreck isleWhat a fun weekend. As chair of the Ryde Business association, I had the opportunity to promote Shipwreck Isle in Barclays Bank in Ryde two days before the event!

image

It it was a fun day but not sure I’ll be invited back after holding up the bank manager

image  And staff – held to ransom for their pieces of 8 :)

image

Barclays UK responded to my son’s tweet and commented on the fun we have in Ryde!

I also promoted the pirate day after the Mardi Gras as the town was packed with happy people many of whom had not heard about Shipwreck Isle coming to Ryde. Look who I met on my travels.

Jack sparrow lookalike Graham Stevens

Sunday arrived and Ryde was awash with swashbuckling Buccaneers

lots of prates

 

 

 

providing fantastic free family entertainment on Appley Beach all day with stalls to buy pirate items and fruit both very well supported . There were many Jack Sparrow lookalikes who happily posed for all those wishing to take photographs.

imageThe girls danced and the Samba band played

 

imageLots of fun was had by all

image

 

and there were a lot of Jack Sparrow lookalikes who were happy to pose for photographs.

Lyn with two Jack sparrows

During the day it was estimated there were between 3000 and 4000 people and here Neil Southwell of Southwell photography‘s  picture shows many  of them . The event lasted from 11 until 6 .

 

southwell photography

Members of the Ryde Business association organised a pirate spotting competition in the town

image

and Rhiannon of Costa coffee executed it. They also ran pirate activities to keep thje children amused.

Thanks to Costa coffee , Quakers about crafts, Kollective Gifts for donating prizes .

The event was organised by Visit Isle of Wight who did a marvellous job. It truly was a fun family day .

Thanks to Graham Reading for all the wonderful pictures and thank you to Masqueryde for my super duper pirate outfit.

 

And finally thank you to Graham Stevens – Jack Sparrow lookalike who gave the following testimonial when he noticed how much tweeting I had done to promote the Shipwreck Isle.

 

To say I had a fun day would be an understatement. So many things happening in Ryde. Ryde rocks :)

The Pirates are coming

 The Pirates are coming

That’s right I said the pirates are coming and I am taking my role as the Chair of Ryde Business Association quite seriously as you can see.. Shipwreck Isle if on 28th June and the pirates are coming so I thought it only right that I ought to be prepared. I have been to see Sally at Masqueryde, to order my pirate costume but thought I’d pop in and see Emma and Stuart at the Tourist Information Point in their shop, Kollective Gifts to see what “pirate” goodies they had.

the pirates are comingAs we looked around the shop we found quite a few “pirate” items.  We found flags

pirate flags

we found a pirate ship

pirate ship

cutlasses and hats and pirate buckets and spades. In the absence of eye patches, Stuart got creative and cut up a black piece of rubber to do the job. We planned a pirate spotting competition around the town with the help of Laura, Julie and Rhianon (manager of Costa coffee. There will be a lot of fun as we celebrate Shipwreck Isle as the pirates gather on Appley Beach 

poster - ship wreck isle

 

 

So as the chair of Ryde Business Association, I urge you all to come and enjoy yourself. For those of you across the water  board your ship and join us for what promises to be a very fun filled swashbuckling day with music, competitions, storytelling,renactment music, fun and laughter.

You arggggggh going to have a good time !  and what’s more its FREE.

 

 

 

 

Giggly Grannies do world book day

Some of you will know I wear many hats. Today, it is World Book day

 

WBD2015_yellow_rightup

and I will be wearing my Giggly Granny hat – well actually more like a tiara. My wonderful friend Julie Jordan and I are known as the Giggly Grannies. We put the FUN into FUNDraising and get up to all sorts of mischief in the community. At Christmas, Rhiannon, the manager of Costa Coffee in Ryde, asked if we would do some story telling in the store to children.

 

costa coffee and ohoto frame We both have a background in child care so for us this was not a problem. So today – we are working on a pirates and princess theme and will be entertaining the troops after school. I’ll let you know how we get on. Now shiver me timbers it’s time for me to get going or I’ll be late. world book day 2015Why not follow us on twitter too @gigglygrannies and see how the Giggly Grannies do World Book day.

 

 

 

 

Doing Something Funny For Money

 

 

DOING something funny for money

When I opened a new bank account with Barclays Bank recently, I had no idea of the fun that lay ahead. I love to have fun while working my business and as a self employed work from home mum and grandmum, this is so easy. For most of my working life, I have been self employed and so I set the rules. I enjoy what I do and having fun whilst doing it makes it even nicer. No boss to relate to. No boss to set my hours. I work as and when I want to. I work hard but I also play hard.

Well, on the day I  opened the new account, my new Barclays manager, Wayne Child,  told me about the back to business scheme that Barclays run. The managers are encouraged to go out with a client and spend a day with them in their business. Wayne asked me if I would like to participate in the scheme and I was very keen to take part. When I set the date, I had a client who wanted a video made so thought this might be quite interesting for Wayne to watch. After all, he had told me he didn’t want a boring day in the home office. Unfortunately, my client had to postpone my appointment with her but I decided to keep the date with Wayne.

When I set the date, I hadn’t realised it was Comic relief day. However, it soon occured to me that this was a day that could be a lot of fun and during the day we could do something funny for money. Why ever not?

I checked with Wayne to see if he was prepared for a fun day and he had absolutely no problem with it – in fact he sounded as though it was right “up his street”.

I am, very much a community person and I love to fundraise and encourage my Wightbuzz members to do the same. I spotted an opportunity and ran with it.

I sent out a letter to my Wightbuzz members and was offered raffle prizes. Jade Thornton of Petticoats and Frills offered us a box of red nose cup cakes. She even dressed in red to deliver them to the Wightbuzz office. She was truly embracing the “doing something funny for money” theme.

Cupcakes from Petticoats and Frills

Doing something funny for money - fun cup cakes

Michael of the Dorset House, offered us a Sunday lunch for 2

Dorset House raffle prize

Michael, of the Dorset House, donates Sunday lunch for 2

Susan Revell, also a Wightbuzz member, donated a free first aid course and Jayne Read of Island Memories, donated a family ticket for the VE celebrations being held in May. Claire and Ann of Attraction, a lovely gift shop in Cross Street Ryde, donated a jewellery set. I am very grateful to all these ovely people.

With all these lovely prizes, I knew my super Wightbuzz members would be happy to part with their money.

Before my bank manager came to pick me up, I uploaded a video clip to you tube,

 

My bank manager turned up to pick me up at 9. We needed to decorate the collecting tin and Wayne even obliged with this!

Then, after a quick coffee we were off on the start of our very exciting day. First stop – Jo of Wightcakes

who supplied us with coffee and

scrummy cake! It was going to be one of THOSE days :)

We then popped along to Missy J cafe  where Janine insisted on tweaking my nose before parting with her money – well the theme was doing something funny for money!

Next stop - Wightsight for a quick laugh and joke with Mandy and Adrian who also bought raffle tickets

then a few doors along to Attraction to see Claire, one of the raffle prize donators.

We just HAD to stop at Barclays in Ryde. Well it would be sily not to as I was with my Barclays manager!!

a few more stops in Ryde then we zoomed over to Sandown and to the lovely gift shop Che-Sands

then we popped across to Rapaunui where we also met the lovely Emma from Island Voucher where there was time for a very quick photo call!

then over to recruit Wendy of Deeva into Wightbuzz before selling her raffle tickets too

by the time we got to the wightbuzz office we were really beginning to flag but Liz supplied us with coffee to keep us going

and it was here we stopped to make a couple of video clips about our day.

 

 

and

 

Our final stop was with Julie Jones Evans of Dragonfly i Nodehill – (my fellow shock cash mobber )

We rounded off the day with a lovely sit down and chat with Julie and more coffee and cake!

 

We had a brilliant day – it was manic, it was fun and we did something funny for money. We raised about £75 for comic relief and my Barclays bank manager and I now know each other much better! It truly was a fun day. (I spent the weekend chilling as I was quite exhausted!!)

I did pop in to see Wayne’s boss on Monday to report on what an excellent experience it was! Praise where praise is due. I have had friends, who bank at other banks,  who don’t even know if they have a bank manager, let alone know his name!

I made a you tube clip of the day

Do you have stories to relate about your bank manager? Have you had a fun day out with yours? Pop your comments below :)

 

 

 

 

Through every nook and every cranny the wind blew in on poor old Granny

Eco granny

I am now an eco granny – having given up my van  and I’m now using public transport – complete with bus pass in hand. As I prepared to go out I could hear the wind howling. It reminded me of a poem by Spike Milligan, that I learnt many years ago. It still brings a smile to my face now, even more so because I am now a granny myself.

I googled it to remind myself and found it at Spike Milligan’s Page 

Granny

 

 

 

 

 

Through every nook and every cranny

The wind blew in on poor old granny

Around her knees, into each ear

(and up her nose as well I fear)

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