A Nice Easter Break

It’s back-to-work for many after the Easter holidays today and, as always, I have an enormous sense of relief that I didn’t have to drag myself out of bed.

The Bloke took a few weeks off work to coincide with the holidays, so I took a break away from the blog. I still maintained my Pinterest and Twitter social media management and my Facebook group, but decided not to write any posts until I actually had something to say. Continue reading

Ghosts of Students Past

Yesterday I received a Facebook message from a friend that I haven’t spoken to in a while. We met through a project – the school that I worked at did an annual concert with an orchestra and he was the composer for the music that we performed.

He now works for my former University that is currently moving to a new building. When he was cleaning out some of the cupboards, he found this:

Continue reading

Justice for Brad’s Wife

Every so often, something on the internet really takes off, and as per usual, I am one of the last ones to hear about it.

Over the last few days, I have been following the saga surrounding Cracker Barrel in the US, a man named Brad and his wife.

Brad was incensed after his wife was allegedly fired from her job at a branch of Cracker Barrel after being told that she ‘wasn’t working out,’ despite the fact that she had worked there for eleven years. He took to his own Facebook page at the end of February after contacting the company for an explanation and received no response, which quickly went viral when he posted a similar thing on Cracker Barrel’s Facebook page. Continue reading

How to Stop Being a Doormat

How to stop being a doormat

It’s nice to be nice. It’s nice to do nice things for others. However, when nicety is unreciprocated, taken for granted or turns into an excuse for others to be dismissive of you as a human being, then it becomes a problem.

It occurred to me a few years ago that I was held in a very different regard by others to what I had always assumed. Activities and meet-ups often involved multiple changes that would inevitably make it more inconvenient and expensive for me. I spent hours waiting for people to turn up. I was repeatedly interrupted. I was owed money. It wasn’t uncommon for me to receive messages or have conversations that began with a phrase that I have come to loathe:

Can I ask a favour?

The favour. The seemingly easy and straight-forward request that would always turn into a complicated mess and leave me feeling stressed and resentful, particularly when there was no acknowledgement or thanks afterwards. And yet, the one time I remember needing help which would have meant someone having to go out of their way, not a single person responded. Not one. Continue reading

Moving Forward

imageIt’s been an emotional week for so many and even though I’m a Brit, I could empathise with the uncertainty that a number of my American friends felt, regardless of who they voted for, particularly in the fact that the whole Brexit fiasco is still nowhere near to being resolved here. It’s the start of a new era, and even though that things aren’t going in the direction that I would have necessarily chosen, it’s clear that there are changes ahead. I’ve seen many inspiring and motivational messages over the last few days and, above all, I hope that unity and tolerance prevails. There’s only one direction in which we can travel – forwards – and I hope that we all, both over here and in America can do it together. Continue reading

No Day But Today

No Day But TodayA little while ago I was invited to see a production of RENT at The Old Rep in Birmingham. I’ve always been a fan of the music, having performed a number of the songs as part of a choir when I was at college, but had never seen the musical itself.

Since then, it has become a minor obsession. We watched (and enjoyed) the musical live on the Tuesday, then rented the film on the Wednesday, watched it again on the Thursday and then I went out and bought the DVD on the Saturday, and we promptly watched it again. I’ve owned the soundtrack with the original Broadway cast for years, so we have listened to it in the car, and there hasn’t been a morning over the last few weeks where I haven’t woken up with part of at least one of the songs going around my head in a loop. Despite the fact that I can’t relate personally to many of the themes in the show, there’s just that something about it that both The Bloke and I have connected with. It has become our thing, even though it finished on Broadway years ago. Continue reading

It Smells Like Summer

SummerIt smells like summer this morning.

Despite having a bad night’s sleep, I woke up in a disgustingly good mood. The current heatwave we are experiencing means that it’s already beautifully warm, even at 8.00am, and when I stood outside the scent in the air somehow reminded me of foreign holidays I have been on. My Facebook feed is littered with complaints from hot and uncomfortable friends, and The Bloke, who can’t handle any sort of weather except temperate, clear and dry is struggling, but I love it – after what has seemed like an age of living in the cold and dark, it’s nice to feel some real sun on my face.

I did my last bit of freelance work yesterday for the summer, which means I now have two months off. Two months. I can’t believe how quickly this academic year has gone, and the fact that I have remained reasonably financially stable throughout. There were so many worries and anxieties that accompanied last summer, but I’ve been able to prepare for this one over the last year, and I know that as long as I don’t go out and blow all my money on cocktails (which is always a temptation), I should be fine until Christmas at least. I’ve been enjoying the last few weeks and for the first time ever I haven’t felt like I have counted down the days or desperately wished my life away just to have a break. How lucky I am. Continue reading

#TrigglyPuff

I awoke at 4am to find the hashtag #TrigglyPuff trending.

Students at the University of Massachusetts were protesting and heckling during a discussion and forum on the use of political correctness on campus.

However, it’s one person that has sparked the attention of social media, who have awarded her with the name of #TrigglyPuff, and, despite Twitter’s best efforts to censor the hashtag, it seems to be quickly gaining in popularity. Continue reading

A Saturday Night In…

saturday-night-out-kidding-in-my-jammiesIt’s Saturday night, and I’ve got myself into a highly comfortable position on the couch, snuggled up in my jammies and fluffy blankets. It’s the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, it’s St. George’s Day and if any day was the day to don my England shirt and go to the pub, it would be today, but I’m having my own little personal celebration at home instead. I’ve got my headphones in as I’m listening to Steve’s Talk About Pop Music radio show, while The Bloke watches a random film with the ever lovely Jason Statham, and the cats are still snoring after stuffing their face with fresh chicken earlier in the day. I’ve made myself an Amaretto Sours too! Actually, that’s a lie – I’ve poured a load of amaretto in a pint glass, shoved some lemon juice and lemonade on top, and then tipped lots of cocktail cherries in to finish it off. The cherries are now sitting on the bottom, I’ve forgotten to put the egg white in and I can’t be bothered to get up again to sort it out, so I’m making do – it still tastes yummy regardless! I would show you a picture, but it looks like I’ve urinated into a glass… Continue reading

Notes From My Phone…

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My phone goes everywhere with me, to the point where it has almost (however pathetic it sounds) become an extension of myself. I use the note section almost on a daily basis, mainly to record potential blog ideas for a later date.

I was doing a huge update on it the other day, and as I was transferring lots of data onto my laptop I came across a whole bunch of these ideas that had been written down and then promptly forgotten. I can’t actually recall writing some of them, but I can certainly relate to the point of my life in which I must have written them:

Are students getting worse?

When me becomes we.

There’s an enormously comforting feeling in my home on a Friday night. It’s a warm and cosy evening, followed by two days of uninterrupted time. 

I know him! (Friends who have become famous and/or hugely successful). Continue reading