Wednesday, 26 February 2014

You know you live in a digital world when...

Yep...you know that we are well and truly in the midst of a social media revolution when today's kids are now engraving their instagram address's onto picnic benches...!!


I'm not kidding, I spotted this today ironically at a service station on my way back home from a meeting related to the world of social media...The irony wasn't lost on me, so much so that I felt compelled to take a quick picture of it...although you can imagine the confused looks I received from my fellow travellers, wondering why I was taking a photo of a random picnic bench!!

You see my life feels as though it is suddenly consumed by social media. For those of you that have been following my blog over the last few months, you will know that I am a Project Manager for a company that designs and produces beauty and lifestyle products. We own the license for many well-known brands and mostly produce cosmetic and toiletry gifting products in partnership with these brands. We also work with a few well known celebrities to create their beauty story. However, in the last few months we have started looking to the world of social media for potential collaborations. Anybody in the know will understand the focus on this new revolution that is currently underway. You see to Generation Y the you tube vloggers of today ARE the new celebrities. For today's teenagers these vloggers are there for them at a click of their smart phones and tablets. They share their highs, low's and everything in between. They help them to deal with the confusing and complex world of being a teenager, ranging from the aesthetic application of applying make-up, right through to dealing with the serious issues of bullying and anxiety. Their power is instant, real and very powerful....and don't forget they get all this for free!!

Then of course there is my little blog...my own tiny little space in this new social media world. Of course my blog is aimed at a very different demographic, but I have nonetheless succumbed to this new digital world ...and this from a girl who didn't own her first mobile until she was 25!!! It is incredible to think that in the fifteen years that have passed I am now in a very small way part of this new world with my blog, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest accounts!!

So the boring motorway journey home started me thinking about what lies ahead of us....If I have witnessed such amazing technological advances in the last fifteen years, what would my son's world be like in fifteen year’s time? Who know's how he will be communicating with his old mam when he is all grown up and living away from home...the mind boggles!! I am already horrified and at the same time amazed that his tiny little fingers can swipe through the pages of my I Pad, and that he knows how to switch on his Disney Cars movie and is able to move swiftly from one app to another...and he has literally just turned two!

It is a future that is exciting and scary at the same time....and of course if you are reading this then you are also a fully paid up member of the social media community..!!

On a final note...Whilst I am in no way condoning vandalism, I am curious as to how much additional traffic Theo has managed to amass through the ingenious advertising of his Instagram account...go Theo..!!

Thanks for reading

Rhiannon xx

 
 

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Wednesday, 19 February 2014

The downside of being a working mum...

There seems to be alot on-line at the moment about the whole working mum versus stay at home mum debate. In fact only a few days ago I read a blog post that is currently doing the facebook rounds called letter from a working mother to a stay at home mother and vice versa, on the Healthy Doctors website... http://carolynee.net/category/blog/
Personally I think it's a little over done and cheesy for my taste but it's worth a read no matter which side of the fence you sit on...

I have always believed in my decision to return to work, knowing it was the right thing to do for my sanity. I love my son to the ends of the earth, but I just know that I am not the type of mum that could be at home 24/7 with my child. I have every respect for mums that do decide to stay at home and make looking after their children their full time job, but I knew that this wouldn't work for me.

You see I didn't even enjoy my maternity leave that much. I know it's not really the done thing to admit that, as I know of plenty of women who loved their time off work and were nothing but depressed at the thought of returning to work. But not me, I found the whole experience for the most part a little dull, uninspiring and pretty lonely. It probably didn't help that the summer of 2012 was pretty shocking, and I spent a fair proportion of my maternity leave stuck indoors watching the rain come down. I would sometimes spend all day looking forward to my husband coming home just so I had some grown up conversation. Don't get me wrong, I would love to have more time at home with my little boy now, as he is almost two and on the whole is a real joy to be around, but a young baby that doesn't do a whole lot of anything didn't really challenge and fulfil my days the ways perhaps I thought it might.

In fact after seven months I was so ready to go back to work that my husband and I decided to swap roles, and he took advantage of the new paternity law and took three months off and I returned to work. For me it was a win, win situation... my husband wanted to spend more time with Evan, I wanted to return to work, and it meant that we could delay putting Evan into nursery for a few more months as I was worried that seven months would be a bit early. This way I could go back to work knowing that for the first few months at least Evan would be looked after by his dad...perfect..

And so that's how it went. I returned to work, Evan finally went into nursery at eleven months and things have remained that way for the last year.

However, yesterday I picked Evan up from nursery and started my usual little chat with his primary carer to talk through the usual topics of conversation....sleep, food, activities, you working mums know the drill. All was going well until she said that Evan had a tummy ache in the afternoon, and was clearly in a little pain as he was lying on the floor holding his tummy, crying and repeatedly calling for his mummy. Well she just as well had stabbed me in the heart with a blunt instrument, because in that split second that is what it felt like. Guilt really is a horrible emotion, and whilst I rationalised it all out that evening, it really brought it home to me what being a working mum sometimes comes down to...and that is knowing that there will be times when your child is in pain or feeling sad or maybe just wants to be with his mam, and you're not there in that very moment that he wants or needs you...and no matter which way you look at it that really sucks....

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Friday, 14 February 2014

You're off, By God!

I remember a few months into my relationship with Scott we were having a leisurely mooch around town on a Saturday afternoon in early February…(you remember those pre child Saturday afternoons don’t you???)

Anyway, I hadn’t even noticed that town was littered with valentine’s parafonelia...heart balloons, teddy bears claiming their love for you, chocolates, flowers…you know the drill. Scott out of the blue tentatively asked for my opinion on valentine’s day…clearly trying to figure out whether he was going to have to endure the annual misery that most men have to go through every year with the pointless purchasing of cards, flowers, meals out. All at the most ridiculously inflated prices.

I toyed with the idea of winding him up for a while and telling him that I thought it was the most romantic time of the year and a time for a man to show his true feelings. But I just couldn’t do it…even my desire for a good wind up couldn’t make me say the words out loud that I love Valentine’s day.

For me a sign of true love is when Scott takes our little boy downstairs at 7am on a weekend and lets me sleep in an extra few hours when I have been out on the vino the previous night! I certainly don’t need a card and a bunch of flowers on a specific day to prove that love. But I know that’s just my opinion and I fully appreciate that I am often in the minority, and that some couples love to take the opportunity of Valentines days to show the world and each other how much they care…but it’s not for me thanks…

However, every now and then I see or read something that makes me feel the full force of what passion and love is and really moves me…and recently I read a letter sent from Richard Burton to Elizabeth Taylor on the breakup of their marriage. Not a very romantic subject on valentine’s day I hear you say, but have a read of the below letter. I might be bias as he was a truly great Welsh man, but for me it just oozes love and passion and the last few words of the first paragraph literally made my heart skip a beat.

Anyway, whatever you are doing today I hope you have a good one…Me…I am having a night in with my husband, a curry and a DVD....Did I mention that his best mate Gary is also joining us…very cosy!!!





Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton were both already married when they fell in love on the set of Cleopatra in 1962; in 1964, with divorces finalised, they wed and became one of the most bankable couples in Hollywood history. Nine years later, as their extravagant and famously tempestuous relationship crumbled, Taylor gave Burton his marching orders—the following letter was his response.

A year after he wrote it, they divorced; 16 months after that, they wed each other again. Their second marriage lasted just 9 months.
(Source: Debbie Moore; Image: Taylor and Burton, via.)
June 25, 1973

So My Lumps,

You're off, by God!

I can barely believe it since I am so unaccustomed to anybody leaving me. But reflectively I wonder why nobody did so before. All I care about—honest to God—is that you are happy and I don't much care who you'll find happiness with. I mean as long as he's a friendly bloke and treats you nice and kind. If he doesn't I'll come at him with a hammer and clinker. God's eye may be on the sparrow but my eye will always be on you. Never forget your strange virtues. Never forget that underneath that veneer of raucous language is a remarkable and puritanical LADY. I am a smashing bore and why you've stuck by me so long is an indication of your loyalty. I shall miss you with passion and wild regret.

You may rest assured that I will not have affairs with any other female. I shall gloom a lot and stare morosely into unimaginable distances and act a bit—probably on the stage—to keep me in booze and butter, but chiefly and above all I shall write. Not about you, I hasten to add. No Millerinski Me, with a double M. There are many other and ludicrous and human comedies to constitute my shroud.

I'll leave it to you to announce the parting of the ways while I shall never say or write one word except this valedictory note to you. Try and look after yourself. Much love. Don't forget that you are probably the greatest actress in the world. I wish I could borrow a minute portion of your passion and commitment, but there you are—cold is cold as ice is ice.


                           
You can buy the Letters of Note book from all major book stores and on-line from the usual places...its a bit pricey but a great book to keep and dip into whenever you feel like a great read...
Let me know what you think about Valentines day...am I being an old Grump or do you guys also think it is a bit of commercial nonsense..?




Thanks for reading..

Rhiannon xx

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