Forgive and forget

#354: Share a story where it was very difficult for you to forgive the perpetrator for wronging you, but you did it — you forgave them.

I think any “so called” perpetrators I have encountered in my lifetime have been ex’s – and I’ve, in general, just not stayed friends with my ex’s as I strongly believe in the clean break. I do forgive them eventually though as nothing is worth holding grudges over.

To catch up on yesterday’s post (day 353) – it was the last working day of 2014, so was the office xmas do (a medieval, somewhat tacky, banquet… don’t ask!), but when I got home I was engrossed in present wrapping, completely forgetting I hadn’t written my blog entry. Oops!

A random act of kindness – Tell us about the time when you performed a secret random act of kindness — where the recipient of your kindness never found out about your good deed. How did the deed go down?

This is going to sound so appaulling but I actually can’t think of a time where the recipient of my good deed didn’t know it was me – not to say that I’ve always made sure that they knew it was me, a sort of egotistical thing, but I’ve just never thought of secret good deeds. Thinking about it though, it does sound like a lovely thing to do and I’d love to give it a go!

365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion: Sneak preview!

It’s my first day back in the office after having a relaxing week off, so I don’t really have enough time to write a proper story as the prompt requests, which is a shame. So, instead, I thought I’d share an (incredibly flattering) sneak preview of what will be published next Monday aka Dragons Day! I’ll also be posting and sharing the links and videos on here if anyone wants to find out how I ended up in Norway… in, effectively, a onesie, crash hat and goggles… you’ll be able to here!

Have a great day!Nat Geo Voss Vind  (2)

Image: Kjersti Veel Krauss

Change of plan

Today’s post is to go a little off-piste so to speak… slightly wayward! I wasn’t inspired by the suggested prompt so I’ve decided to do my own thing this evening.

Fireworks.

Does anyone else think they’re overrated? Or is it just me? Call me a grouch or even an old fuddy-duddy if you will, but I just don’t understand why anyone would want to stand outside in the freezing cold, to basically be left with their ears ringing for the rest of the night?! Plus, they surely can’t be very environmentally friendly, right? And not that I’ve bought any myself, but they can’t be that cheap if you’re doing a display either – you might as well just watch your money burn instead… Although, don’t get me wrong, I completely understand the symbolic nature of the night, that’s been a firm tradition in this country since 1606 (we did a comic in the magazine about Guy Fawkes, which I fact checked to the ends of the Earth!), but there has been fireworks going off here most nights now since Diwali (22nd October) and I’m just ready for a firework free night.

What do you think fellow bloggers?

365 Days of Writing Prompts Rebellion: Trykk tur!

AKA… ‘Press trip’ in Norwegian! I had a think about todays prompt, but I just couldn’t get my head into gear to adopt my favourite authors style in order to complete it. The reason being – I’M GOING TO NORWAY! I’ve been invited to attend a super cool press trip for a famous kids film that involves Vikings (not allowed to disclose just yet) and I’m so unbelievably excited. I’ll be leaving early Thursday morning on an 8am flight (ouch!) but will be taking part in so many fantastic activities… one includes a wind tunnel experience to give us the sense of flying on a mythical, fire-breathing, creature. I’m quite frankly ready to burst with excitement and I can’t wait to tell you all about it when I get back!

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Image: wallpaper-download.net

365 Days of Writing Prompts Rebellion: Papaoutai

Let me first start with, you’re very welcome! This amazing video was only published last week but I’m absolutely addicted to their cover version of Belgian singers Stromae’s song Papoutai. Admittedly, I haven’t got a clue what it’s about (the only bit I think I understand is in the chorus – ‘where are you Papa?’) but there’s just something about it that is so endearing. So, I thought why not share it!

I haven’t quite managed to learn all of the words yet because it’s just so fast… although I know that I will have mastered it before this month is out, that’s for sure!

I hope you enjoy watching their amazing video and do let me know what you think!

365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion: Pentatonix!

I’ve decided to rebel against todays blog prompt, as I don’t have enough time to think of a story (be it fiction or non-fiction) that ends in a clever twist. So instead, I thought I’d share this fantabulous new song, which has now become an obsession… I loved Disclosure’s Latch when it first came out last year and I adore Pentatonix, so to have the two combined is a match made in heaven! 

Comprised of five members (Kirstie Maldonado, Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Avi Kaplan and Kevin Olusola), Pentatonix are an acapella group who create their amazing music using only their vocal chords. My brother introduced me to this group back at the beginning of 2012 with their amazing cover of Gotye’s Somebody That I Used To Know… immense! Pentatonix then became champions (of course) of NBC’s The Sing Off in 2011, which launched them into further success and they began touring last year. I have now seen them perform live twice and both times they were absolute perfection!

As well as creating La La Latch, the following covers and mashups are amongst my favourites, and seriously if you haven’t heard any of their songs before, listen to them now! You can thank me later.

* Problem – Arianna Grande

* Daft Punk mashup

* Happy – Pharrell Williams

* Say Something – A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera

* Evolution of Music mashup

* We Are Ninjas – Inspired by the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie

365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion: Nerf Zombie night!

As of this moment in time, I can’t choose a favourite blog in order to complete today’s prompt. So, instead, I thought I’d share my account of the mysterious event I went to, where I got to shoot zombies for a couple of hours! As a side note and to set the scene a little, as well as working for NG Kids, I also freelance for Souper Media who publish SPLAT!, the best interactive iPad magazine for boys. I hope you enjoy it and the video will be uploaded during the week!

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When SPLAT! was invited to an action-packed Nerf launch night, which involved a secret mission, live actors and lots of surprises… how could we say no!

The mystery night began when the SPLAT! team were driven across London, to a secret (and sinisterly quiet) location in pitch black darkness. We were instructed to suit up with our I.D. badges, bullet proof vests and fully loaded ammunition belts ready for the battle to begin at any time… except, at this point, we were still weaponless!

When we pulled up, the building we were heading towards seemed to be an unused, abandoned warehouse. Boy, were we wrong! As soon as we entered, we were greeted by an army major and had our unique I.D. numbers written on our arm in UV pen. We then progressed to a gated room, where we were covered in decontamination spray… it tasted weird! (*WARNING: keep mouth closed at all times during the decontamination process). Once we had passed the medical, we were led to the debriefing room. This is where we were given our mission.

“You are currently locked, *ahem* situated, in a secret medical facility. You do not know where you are and neither does anyone you know, so we are counting on you to succeed… no one else can do it for you. Unfortunately, some of our medical trials have gone slightly wrong and well, to put it bluntly – the zombies have managed to escape and we can’t let them run riot in London, as this would mean the end of the world as you know it! We’ve brought you here as the best of the best, to eradicate these breakouts, so get a move on before they get you.”

Hmmm. No pressure then!

First, we were introduced to some zombies who were still contained, just so we knew what we were up against. Once we’d been terrified by the task ahead, we began our intense training… foot stepping through tyres, climbing over huge walls, crawling in the mud under mesh nets. It wasn’t easy. Finally, it was time to bring out the weapons!

Throughout the event, whilst we tried to clear the facility of all zombie lifeforms, we were treated to a whole host of Nerf weaponry! We began with the Nerf Zombie Strike Hammershot Blaster, which allowed us to shoot five darts one after the other, avoiding having to constantly reload. In the next room, we collected our Nerf Zombie Strike Sledgefire Blasters, launching a powerful triple strike, firing three darts at the same time… this took zombies longer to recover, giving us more time to reload the canister ready for the second round! Progressing to the next floor, we were given Nerf Zombie Strike Sidestrike Blasters, which came with a handy holster that we could clip onto our belts. We had these whilst we manoeuvred through the zombie maze – they were everywhere, but we all made it through! Just when we thought we’d managed to get them all, we’d completely missed an entire floor. Heading back with caution, we grabbed our Nerf Zombie Strike Crossfire Bows, jumped into action and saved the planet!

The Crossfire Bow was by far my favourite as I used to love participating in archery when I was a kid. When I got home, I even searched for venues in London where I could take up archery again. Alas, My search was unsuccessful. I’d never taken part in any sort of paintball/zombie shooting game before (except from obviously via games consoles), but I found the experience great fun and I even won a trophy!

My birthday – oodles of cake, achey legs & sunny weather!

So, todays prompt topic didn’t appeal to me as it is, but my rebellion is primarily due to two outside, yet incredibly influential factors – today is press day, so it’s all systems go in the office, combined with the fact that I’ve been meaning to write up my birthday shenanigans whilst we’re still in the month of March!

ImageDuring my week off, I wanted to go inside St Paul’s Cathedral. I’m not sure why but ever since visiting Sagrada Familia, Barcelona, a few years back, I’ve developed a great love and appreciation for these magnificent works of art. However, this place should come with a warning sign. Don’t get me wrong, the Whispering Gallery is absolutely incredible and I’m so pleased that I reached the very top to the Golden Gallery… but they neglected to mention before I began my ascent, that I’d be climbing 1,161 steps that spiralled and also grew narrower the higher you got! This climb, for me, will be one of the things in life that I’m glad to have done but will never be doing again. Once is more than enough!

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ImageAfter giving my legs a good workout, my Mum and I headed to Bea’s of Bloomsbury for Afternoon Tea and what an absolute delight! We were treated to freshly made baguettes, an endless supply of tea (I chose peppermint – my favourite, since it is the only tea I drink), meringues, brownies, blondies, killer brownies, marshmallows, cupcakes and beautifully baked scones with lashings of jam and cream! I thoroughly enjoyed it even though we had to take the cupcakes home with us, as we’d turned slightly green by the end of it due to how full we felt. The only thing that let it down ever so slightly, was the missing feet at the top of the cake stand – never mind!

ImageWe then proceeded to waddle, I mean wander around the shops so that we (well, mostly I) didn’t doze off somewhere thanks to Bea’s tasty treats.

Also, during my birthday week off, I started my running training (ahead of the Sport Relief run… I use the term ‘run’ very loosely), I visited my favourite Mexican eaterie, Las Iguanas, for delicious fajitas, went to the hairdressers, joined my local Gym, had a meal from my favourite Indian restaurant and of course, no birthday would be complete without visiting the one and only, Choccywoccydoodah! (Check out my Blondie… which I devoured!)

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365 Days of Writing Prompts rebellion!

Dolphins

Today’s prompt of writing my own eulogy, was one that I didn’t fancy completing, so instead I thought I’d lighten the mood by sharing ten fascinating facts about dolphins. Enjoy!

– Did you know, newborn dolphins have a tiny patch if hair on their chins!
– If a dolphin becomes sick, other dolphins will take turns pushing it to the surface so that it can breathe.
– Some wild dolphins play catch with coconuts.
– Dolphins can swim up to seven times faster than the fastest swimming human!
– Dolphins have between 80 and 100 teeth.
– Fifty million years ago, whale and dolphin ancestors walked on land. They are the distant relatives of hoofed animals such as deer, hippos and bison!
– Killer whales are actually dolphins!
– A dolphin’s beak-like snout is called a rostrum.
– Dolphins have two stomachs; one is used to store food and the other is used to digest it.
– A dolphin’s eyeballs move independently of each other. One eye can look straight ahead whilst the other looks straight up!

Image: Chicago Zoological Society