Happy Christmas?

I work in the courier industry and although I’m not out there doing the deliveries but dealing with the bigger spending customers as an account manager it’s still Hell. I know many of my friends have been both clients and colleagues so we know what I’m talking about right?

Even though Christmas day falls on the same day every year there are still plenty of people who leave everything to the last minute. There’s nothing wrong with that if you’re up for a mad dash round your nearest shopping centre on Christmas Eve  but please believe me when I say that retailers who offer guaranteed next day delivery if you buy something on December 23rd are…

  1. Lying
  2. Happy to take your money but don’t give a toss if it gets there or not, after all they’ll be closed by lunchtime on the 24th – speak to the courier it’s their problem.
  3. Crossing their fingers for no traffic, no delays and no snow
  4. Deluded
  5. Any of the above.

It makes no difference which courier company we’re talking about, generally speaking unless we’re talking about an unexpected deluge of Snow the couriers warn their customers if there are likely to be any delays but they don’t always pass that valuable information on to the consumers and even if it all looks good….

Do you want to risk little Johnny’s Christmas present not being there on the day because you didn’t order in time? 

Give us a few days, please. It’s a busy time of year even the big guy struggles and he has elves and a magic Sleigh – we just have vans!


Online shopping is great, I will do most (if not all) of my pressie shopping online this year – again but here’s a few tips for a Happy Christmas (delivery) from someone who’s at the coal face.

  1. Order in plenty of time – no matter how good the delivery service is the white stuff still causes delays.
  2. If you must buy something on Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Tired Of This Tuesday then please don’t order it for next day delivery unless you actually need it for the next day. If it’s a Christmas present take advantage of the discount and the free/reduced delivery options for deliveries that take a few days longer. It saves you money and us stress.
  3. Give us you telephone number when you order – if we can’t find your property it really helps if we can call you.
  4. If we can leave it with a neighbour/in a safe (emphasis on safe here) if you’re not in when we deliver – tell us – also helps us to get it to you.

Happy Shopping and Happy Black Friday

Kind Regards

The Grinch :)

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Giving It All Away

That title may have been a little over dramatic.

I should clarify. I am (still) trying to declutter my life, physically, mentally and emotionally and that means getting rid of more stuff. I would like to add a disclaimer at this point.

I will never be a minimalist and that’s not my objective. I like stuff, I will always hoard and I will always keep a few things that have no real use or value but they remind me of someone or somewhere or of happy times.

So, I bought a book about tidying – it was recommended by my friend Natasha (aka Candy Pop) and I was curious so I bought it. (Yes – you really did just read that – I bought a book about tidying!)

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying: A simple, effective way to banish clutter forever

I’m not going to follow all the advice (but you should see my sock draw now – folding is the way forward) but the one thing that has really stuck with me is the idea that when deciding if you should keep something or not ask yourself “does it bring you joy?”

If not – chances are you don’t really need it anymore. I am very guilty of keeping things just because I feel I should, because XYZ gave it to me, I won it as a prize, or it belonged to [insert person from my past here] or because it may come in useful one day.

So… Time to give it away – if it doesn’t bring me joy and I haven’t found a use for it yet then it goes. My aim is to give away (or sell) 50 things before the end of the 2015. I hate waste so Freegle and the local Charity shops will be the first port of call and I may even try my luck on eBay for a few things.

Lets kick off with some seasonal goodies. Christmas Cards. I rarely send cards (sorry friends) not because I’m tight but because it’s such a waste of resource and money. Instead I choose to donate the money that I probably would have spent on sending cards to all my friends (£20-£40) to a charity at Christmas. With social media, email, even the old fashioned phone/face to face visit, it’s so easy to say Happy Christmas. Instead of spending money on something that will gather dust in a home for a week or so spend it doing something that really helps someone or an animal charity – whatever drives your passion.

With that in mind these have been in a box through several house moves and I haven’t used them yet so time to let them go to someone who will.

#1 Christmas Cards

Christmas Cards

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Suicide Season

Originally posted on The Renegade Press:

‘Ignoring your passion is slow suicide. Never ignore what your heart pumps for.’

  • Kevin Claiborne

Let’s play a game of Russian Roulette.

You and I are seated at a table in a smoke filled room; there’s an old six shooter positioned perfectly between us with a single round floating in one of its chambers. The heavy aromas of mildew and fear cling to your skin causing you to perspire. We’re alone. There’s no one here to save us; the only entrance to the cell is destined to remain locked until only one of us remains. You’re scared. So am I. Our lives have been reduced to this moment where we’ll play a game of chance to see who survives. Nothing else matters right now. It’s just you and I.

There’s a coin beside the gun. We’ll flip to see who shoots first. I pick it up and use my thumb…

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R & R

I’m back again after a slight (cough) blogging break.

There never seems enough hours in the day/week/life to do all the things I set myself to do (which is a whole different blog post waiting to be written) and one of the things that I’ve let slip is getting lost in a good book. I read all the time, news, blog posts, (I love Pocket for saving things to read later, Flipboard and Freshly Pressed are great sources for interesting reads) but I never seem to find the time anymore to finish a book. I’ve got a pile gathering dust on the bedside table so it’s not for a lack of wanting to read, just making the time to. I intend to do something about that, starting today.

Whilst on the subject of reading this article in the Guardian caught my eye. There are lots of lists of ‘books you must read’ and I’m not going to set myself the goal of reading them all because that will never happen (I’ve tried Ulysses and I just can’t – I admit defeat). There are a few on the list that I’ve read when I was younger but would like to revisit and there are a few that I’ve got copies of but have never read and I need to put that right.

In case you’re in need of some literary inspiration here’s the article.

After two years of careful consideration, Robert McCrum has reached a verdict on his selection of the 100 greatest novels written in English. Take a look at his list (source – The Guardian.com)

Dust Off.

To restore something to use: The mechanic dusted off that old engine and sold it. 

dusted off last year’s winter coat and put it on. (http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/dust+off)

Hello Blog *get’s out the yellow duster that lives under the sink and an old strange smelling bottle of polish and gives the blog a squirt and a shine*

It’s been a while, sorry. I know I’ve said that before and I’m sure I’ll say it again but anyway – sorry.

What’s been happening this year so far? Lots and nothing all at the same time. I’m not trying to be cryptic but I always find the first few months of a new year to be a bit of a challenge. First up, January. Let’s be honest here, it’s not a good month. It’s cold, it’s got 31 days, the gainfully employed amongst us all got paid early in December and spent it weeks ago, it’s grey, it’s cold and even with a few Birthdays to look forward to it’s a depressing month. Then we have February, it’s the shortest month of the year so at least it’s over quickly. If we’re lucky there will be some snow, not too much, just enough for a few crisp, pretty days and a couple of photographs. My birthday is in February, I’m lucky that it’s after the January pay day and most of my friends are starting to come out of hibernation so there’s usually a few people around willing to raise a glass or two and help me celebrate.

This year there was a Wedding and gig on my Birthday and I was lucky enough to be given a photography pass for Gaz Coombes at the O2 so after taking some photo’s for our friends Sami and David at their wedding we headed into the O2 in Oxford to see Gaz Coombes. there were photo’s, dancing and drinking and all in all a pretty damn good day.


Speaking of Weddings and Live music. I took the photographs at my managers wedding at the end of February (no pressure!) The groom is the drummer with Leicester legends [The] Splitters who played a brilliant set at the reception. If you want to have a listen head over to the Bandcamp page and for an added bonus Ed Rome and Bella Edmunds were guests – another great British Ska band.

Claire and Fez

Even though it’s been a great start to the year it still feels a bit like I’m coming out of hibernation. I love the signs of Spring, the lighter mornings and longer days. Flowers, life and a promise of sunshine (fingers crossed) Here’s looking forward to spring.