The End…(not really)

31 Days of Blogging – Day 31

sometimes

 

So it is day 31 and, well, I would like to say that I have achieved my goal to blog everyday this month, but I didn’t.  It started out well, but two weeks in the wheels fell off.  Maybe I was too ambitious or maybe I was just ill-prepared, but for whatever reason, I failed.  I feel a little bad about it, but in the grand scheme of life, it is not all that important.  Although I failed to achieve my goal, I did learn a whole heck of a lot along the way.

  1. Blogging everyday is hard – I’m not an overly chatty person to begin with, but I have a very robust inner monologue and I thought that would be enough to get me through…it wasn’t.
  2. Quality beats quantity – Sure I could write down everything that goes on in my head, but there is a reason it stays in my head and doesn’t come out my mouth…internal filters.  Not everything that my inner self says should be broadcast to the world…most of it is crap
  3. Be prepared – It takes a lot of organisation and a reasonable amount of time to write a blog post – well to try to write one that is worth reading.  I wasn’t prepared for the amount of time that it took to write and edit and post.
  4. You need to be in the right head space – there were some days that my brain was so overwhelmed with the things going on in my day to day life that there was just no more room for anything else.

So at the end of 31 days I can say that I did enjoy writing the posts I published, but maybe I was a bit ambitious.  My husband and I run two cafes and are trying to get a cold brew business off the ground as well, so maybe blogging every day was asking a bit too much.  I’m glad I started it, I’m glad for what it has taught me about myself.  And I intend to keep writing it…just not everyday.

The End 🙂

31 Days of Blogging – Days 19, 20 & 21

I know I haven’t blogged for a couple of days, I really don’t have an excuse except to say that I have been so totally exhausted that I haven’t had the brain capacity to blog.

This time last year we were preparing to go on our first ever overseas holiday…a cruise.  We went for 7 days and visited Lifou & Vanuatu.  We were meant to stop in New Calendonia as well, but due to an unfolding series of events, our departure was delayed by eight hours and we had to give it a miss.  We had planned to go again this year, but our son got married (yay!) so we have post-poned it.

But anyway, since it is nearly a year since we went, here are some photos for you to peruse…

the-deck

 

mohito

 

openocean

 

elephant

 

sunset

 

lifou

 

vanuatu

 

vanuatu2

 

Ahh…well that was a nice little day dream…here’s hoping the next holiday won’t be too far away!

Building a Dream

31 Days of Blogging – Day 18

dreams

 

I feel so bad…I didn’t blog yesterday.  The day just seemed to get away from me and then by the time I remembered, I was already in bed and far too tired to do anything about it!  So I am going to blog twice today to make up for it.

I sometimes feel that I am being spied on and although I have a very active imagination, this is not a paranoia thing.  It is actually like someone can read my mind or overhear my conversations. I am really getting sick of it.

I have always said that I am an ideas person…I am always coming up with ideas for new things to do.  My dad was the same.  I remember as a kid having a discussion with him about how to go about making an airbed out of the bladders used for cask wine.  He had it all worked out, the only drawback was the noise.  Anyway, that is a bit off track.  My problem is not with coming up with the ideas, just ask my husband, I am always chewing off his ear with an ideas.  No the problem I have is making them a reality.

When I get an idea, the finished product is very clear, what isn’t clear are the steps to bring it to fruition.  I can get quite obsessed about something, like this time I came up with an idea for an iphone app.  I created a working excel spreadsheet (that I use all the time for work) that I want to make into an app so that it is at my fingertips, but the whole process of creating an app eludes me.  I have googled it, but haven’t found much to help me and to pay to have it made is really expensive…so how do I make it happen?  I don’t know and so it sits on the backburner.

But again, I am off track.  What has this got to do with thinking that I am being spied on?  Well, it’s like this…I come up with an idea for a new menu item at work and before I know it, I see an ad on TV and they have stolen my idea.  Don’t laugh, this has happened to me too numerous times to think of it as coincidence.  And there are other things too, like my idea for the Big Pineapple.

The Big Pineapple is a local tourist attraction that went into receivership and subsequently closed.  It sat unused and unloved for a really long time, the site for sale.  I had a stroke of genius to reopen it as a local market.  Here is my idea that I wrote down so I could prove it was my idea first – The Future of the Big Pineapple. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the money to make this a reality but someone else did.  The Big Pineapple is now a market…not quite the way I imagined it, but none the less, someone made my dream a reality before I could.  I am really over this happening to me.

Last night, it happened again.  Gav & I have been cultivating a boutique range of cold brew coffee.  As you can see in previous posts, we make it and bottle it ourselves and then sell it in our shops.  We have been looking at ways to expand and were thinking of doing a market stall.  Last night I received a text from a friend showing me someone who has just started selling cold brew at the markets.  ARGH!  That was my idea and someone stole it!

So, you tell me, am I being spied on and my secrets being sold to the highest bidder?  I just want to know, when will it be my turn to build my dream?  I have some really brilliant ideas, but due to lack of funds/knowledge/time I never get to make them a reality…I really want to make them a reality.  I really need an investor, someone who has the things I lack to make my dreams come true.  Anybody out there willing to invest in a middle aged mother who is just trying to have a go?

Don’t Forget the Why

31 Days of Blogging – Day 16

love-letter

Today I spent about nine hours trying to rebuild one of my websites…it was very disheartening.  While I was searching through files, I came across the above quote and it made me stop.  I have been feeling very overwhelmed lately by all the “behind the scenes” aspects of our businesses and had forgotten why I was doing what I was doing.  This quote made me think about the reasons I wanted to own my own business and the reasons that I get up at 3am to bake cakes and make cold brew.  I had lost sight of the why.

Knowing the why doesn’t relieve the workload, but it does make it feel like it’s not for nothing.  My day today felt like a complete waste of time…I am not all that much closer to having my website back up than I was this time yesterday, but reading through these points gives me the motivation to keep going.

One of the reasons I wanted to own a business was that I wanted to be able help people.  Owning a cafe may not seem like a very good way to help people but it does.  We are in a position to employ people, give young people an opportunity to learn a new skill and an income while they’re at university.  We have a tip jar in each cafe that supports a sponsor child (for each cafe) and I like to think that we can bring a smile to our customers day.  We also dispense a legal drug (caffeine)  which helps to make peoples days better.  But I want to do more.

Worldbuilders is an organisation set up by one of my favourite authors, Patrick Rothfuss.  This is an example of what I would like to achieve with my businesses…we are not there yet and I’m not really sure how to get where I want to go, but today has reminded me of why I do what I do

 

Computer says no

31 Days of Blogging – Day 15

IT

 

Living in the age we do, we have all experienced computer issues.  I used to work on an IT Help desk, so I have dealt with a lot of problems in the past (some user error, some not) and I have also had my own issues (insert here 3 months of no internet due to an ISP error and countless calls to an off-shore call centre).  We rely so heavily on the technology that it can be so frustrating when it doesn’t work…well have I got a doozy for you!

I found out yesterday that the server where three of my business websites and another website that I had a hand in building are hosted had a major data failure and everything was lost…e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g.  This means that currently my websites are blank pages and I am now going to have to rebuild them…from scratch.

You are probably thinking that I have all the files saved, why can’t I just reload them?  Well, the easy answer is, it is not that easy.  I use a platform called Dot Net Nuke, the latest version of this platform is 7 (which is what my host will be installing) but all my files are from version 5 & 6 so they are not compatible.  There is hours and hours and hours of work involved and “ain’t nobody got time for that”.

I am not really angry…these things happen.  My hosting provider is being very helpful and is very apologetic.  I think the scope of the work involved has me a bit floored, but hey, it’s a good opportunity to update my sites.

So, that’s my day.  Probably not very exciting, but I needed to tell someone 🙂

 

The Book Thief

31 Days of Blogging – Day 14

The Book Thief

 

Tonight I went to see “The Book Thief” at the cinema.  Before I say anymore about it, I have to preface it by saying that I have not read the book (shock horror) and I actually didn’t know anything about the story-line (I hadn’t read a review or even a plot synopsis).  I will try not to give anything away in what I say, but just in case, if you don’t want to know anything about it before seeing it, then you should probably stop reading.

The Book Thief is a story about a girl called Liesel who is sent to live with a foster family in 1938 Germany.  She learns to read and write and develops a deep love for books and words while the world around her deteriorates into war.  She is plagued by loss, but manages to endure and bloom in an otherwise bleak environment.

Cinematically, this movie is beautifully shot.  The scenery and camera angles are stunning and give the movie a vulnerability and softness that ease the viewer through the harsh aspects of the story.  The actress, Sophie Nélisse, is lovely to watch and Jeffery Rush is impeccable.

I came away from this movie with a lot to think about, and in some respects I am still processing what I saw.  Having not read the book, I did wonder, throughout the film, if it was missing some key elements.  At times the pace was a bit slow, but I wonder whether that was more to do with me than the film.  It is certainly not a movie that I would normally watch – I tend to avoid sad, true to life films, but having said that, I did enjoy it.  It made me think and question and wonder.

A recurring thought I had during the film was that we have not learnt from our past mistakes.  The holocaust had to be one of humanities lowest points, and yet we learnt nothing from it.  There is still persecution in the world, there is still racism and hatred.  World War II was long and bloody and a waste of life, and yet we still send our sons and daughters, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters out to kill someone else’s sons and daughters, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters.  There have been wars as long as there have been people and yet we still have not learnt from them, we still feel the need to flex our muscles and intimidate those smaller or weaker than us or just different from us. It is not the despots and tyrannical leaders that suffer, it is the innocents, those sent to war because they love and want to serve their country and those non-combatants that get caught in the crossfire.

I was also struck with the cruelty of humans and not just on the larger scale of world wars, but in our everyday lives.  The little things we do that show such disregard and lack of respect for another living thing.  We see atrocities committed daily- from bullying and ostracization to beatings and murder.  These things perpetrated on our fellow man simply because they do not measure up to what we believe to be the ideal or because we feel threatened and insecure.  We see ourselves as being an evolved species and yet we continue to behave worse than animals.

Wars bring destruction not only of life, but also of society.  The things we create, that make up the individuality of our lives, the history and art and beauty are lost when bombs are dropped.  I can’t bear to think of the works of art and literature that have been lost forever in the Middle East because of the wars that have been constantly fought.  The treasures lost forever all over the world because of greed and a thirst for power.  Seeing how this young girl rescues a book from a fire reminds me that there are things in this world that need to be rescued and protected and cherished.

This films begins with the concept that life is finite, we do not live forever. I think we sometimes forget how precious life is – both ours and those around us who are different.  All life is tenuous and each one of us has something to contribute to our society, we should never lose sight of that.