Well, the month of March is nearly coming to a close and by golly it’s been a busy one! Firstly, remind me to never put in black and white that “There have been so many nasty bugs about which luckily I have avoided”. Someone up there was watching as the minute I published my blog I was struck down by a nasty virus that lasted 3 weeks! I don’t know whether it’s because I’m getting older or the virus’ are getting nastier but it really did knock me for six. Lying in bed I was fretting about all the things I should have been doing to keep my family happily ticking along. Need I have worried? No! I came crawling downstairs one evening to realise that whilst I was doing this
my big boy (Mr H) and my smaller ones were having a lovely time without me, doing this!!!
Loving the North
This month I am celebrating the North! Despite my lurgies I have managed to do quite a bit of travelling about and it has affirmed my love of the North. Where to start? There’s ‘hip and happening’ Newcastle with Fenwicks new swanky food hall, there are the golden beaches of the Northumberland coast, there’s the history of Hadrian’s Wall… and that’s just within an hour’s drive. I’ve also made two trips to the Lakes and one to York – all gorgeous. The scenery of the Lakes never ceases to blow me away and you can’t help but feel alive being surrounded by such magnificence.
I was alarmed however at how quiet it was and the damages following storm Desmond seem to be taking their tole on local businesses. The Lakes are so easy to get to from Northumberland so we need to go and support them. More mini breaks here we come! A great place to stop ‘en route’ is the Rheged centre which is great for adults and kids alike. It has a mix of fab foody places, a 3D cinema, toy shop, cookery school, a great ‘outdoory’ shop which sells wonderful books with titles such as ‘Cabin Porn’! Move over ’50 Shades of Grey’ ‘Cabin Porn’ is far more exciting! I’m actually not kidding! I’ve put it on my birthday list!
Anyway, I digress! (I AM turning into my mother!) Back to the North. I’ve lived ‘up North’ for over 15 years now and couldn’t see myself anywhere else. There are so many things I love about it up here. I love that everyone says “good morning” to each other when they are up and at ’em early in the day. I have first hand experience of this not happening elsewhere and have been met with strange, slightly uneasy looks from people I have said “good morning” to as I’ve passed them on my early morning jog. Maybe it’s the mass of sweaty lycra coming towards them that renders them unable to reply?! I’m not entirely convinced! I still feel that people ‘up North’ are generally a really friendly bunch.
Another wonderful ‘northern’ thing that happened to me this month was being given 2 (dead) pheasants by your neighbour (thank you lovely Brian) of an evening. Luckily Mr H confessed immediately that we have no idea how to pluck a pheasant. I certainly didn’t want to witness the plucking of the pheasants (glad I’m typing this and not trying to say it!) so lovely Brian promptly whisked them away and did the deed and Mr H whipped up a delightful dish of roast pheasant with cabbage, bacon and cream which was extremely pleasant!
Being an Essex girl I am unable to say this…but I would if I could!
Networking, networking, it’s all about networking!!
This month I’ve also been putting myself about a bit (so to speak!). I’ve been to some great networking events and have met some really lovely people. Whilst getting up in front of a room full of people and telling them about what I do isn’t my favourite thing, these meetings are really great for someone like myself who is a one man band. I’ve been really touched by how willing people are to help and give advice (Must say a particular thank you Michelle Rose of Custard & Bear Marketing).
The Inspire Network (other great networking groups are available) not only offers great meetings but also a wealth of help and advice through its facebook group. I posted a quick message to ask if anyone knew of a good, affordable designer and within seconds I’d received a whole host of recommendations – brilliant! I now have a fabulous designer (Hollie Ellis) who I can thoroughly recommend! So thank you to everyone I’ve met, messaged etc!
Weddings, romance and car parts!
I’ve been busily promoting the ‘wedding’ side of my business where I offer entertainment to children at weddings. I have exhibited at two wedding fairs and it was lovely to get such positive feedback. The first was the Elite Wedding Show at the Sage, Gateshead which was a ‘biggy’ (incredibly well organised by Dawn Marie) and the second was the Hexham Wedding Fair at the Abbey, which was a smaller affair but equally as great. I love exhibiting and chatting to all the brides and grooms to be. There is such an air of excitement and I’m a sucker for romance! I did realise that it is really important to phrase what you say carefully. Asking people “Are you having children?” and forgetting to add the “at your wedding” bit on the end left me with a few bewildered looks! I was also having a lovely chat to an incredibly beautiful couple who were getting married in a couple of months and I said it was great that they were leaving it all to the last minute “as it’s better in case you change your mind”!!! In my head I was referring to changing your mind about the choice of dress , flowers etc for the wedding. The bride and groom however, obviously thought I meant about each other!!! and both gave me a rather strange look and uneasy laugh! Yep, it’s all in the delivery!
Talking of romance and delivery I have from time to time mentioned to Mr H how there is definitely room on my finger for an eternity ring (preferably encrusted with diamonds!). I think I first mentioned it after giving birth to our first child (and by gum did I deserve it!). I may have also mentioned it after the birth of our second son (this time, it probably didn’t warrant as many diamonds as was a much easier affair). Well, having kids is an expensive business so no eternity ring! Not that I go on about stuff, but I think I may have mentioned it again on the run up to our 10 year wedding anniversary last summer!! I know what you’re thinking… how lovely, she finally got her ring. In fact, and wait for this as it’s a corker,…I got a clutch – a car clutch! It’s a long story and I won’t bore you with it but basically we had to pay a small fortune to a French garage last summer when our car broke down quite impressively. So that was the end of the eternity ring!
Anyway, getting back to the reason why I started this tale (it’s true, I am turning into my mother!) (sorry mum x), I was recently talking to my friend about how I got a ‘clutch’ for my 10th wedding anniversary and I couldn’t understand why she thought this was a great present when we realised she thought I meant a clutch as in a beautifully formed designer evening bag! No, alas it was a greasy, metallic box (actually I have no idea what a clutch looks like so I’m making it up!) for our car.
I’ve not given up hope and maybe that is why it is called an eternity ring – as it takes an eternity to get one!!!!!! (only kidding Mr H!)
Well, I shall bring my musings to a close and say goodbye. Happy Easter to you all and may the Easter bunny adorn us all with huge amounts of choccie!!