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Sunday, 13 June 2010

What would you do if your child received 48kg of chocolate in the post?

I'm not taking the piss at Omar Shah's mother because she was reluctant at her son's decision to take part in a competition run by the Jeddah Hilton to win some chocolate. Well, how did he end up with his own weight in chocolate being delivered at home then? Quite simply the competition was to guess what a 2.5 metre chocolate camel weighed.

I think once I got that phone call to say we'd be getting 48 kg of chocolate, I'd start writing out a list of people I could send chocolate boxes. Or, check the expiry and save them as Christmas gifts? Selfish, stingy? Ok, what would you do?

You can read the full article here.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Want to Live Long? Eat Chocolate

Photo:Josephine Tesauro

I just read an article about a 100 year old who credits chocolate for keeping her going. Her daughter says that Edna Hoover, her mother eats some chocolate everyday and up to 2 pounds a week! If you're thinking what I'm going to say next is go ye and do likewise then my answer is no.

I think life is all about balance. And I'm sure Edna eats a balanced diet or did or might not at all and is just lucky to have a strong body. My maternal grandmother died at 92 and enjoyed her chocolates regularly. However, I remember she ate very balanced meals and always had breakfast fit for a queen. She may not always have though.

I am a stickler for balance and I hate regret. I am committed to doing what is right as much as I can especially if it's in my power to do so. Eat some chocolate - preferably some with a decent amount of cocoa and enjoy it but also try to do what's recommended - 5 fruit and veg a day etc. I can't say I'm there yet but I do try.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

What every business can learn from LinkedIn

I've recently become more of a LinkedIn addict simply because the profiling is more detailed so I really know who I'm connecting with (to an extent). One thing I have noticed in the last one month is the amount of changes that take place on LinkedIn almost everyday.

I've just logged in this evening to find that the way my inbox is configured has changed and I like it. Only last night I was looking for a message from a new contact and found it difficult to identify because I couldn't remember her exact name but I knew she had recently sent me an invitation to connect.

Well, today as I logged in I saw that LinkedIn had separated the invitations from the messages. How useful is that! And I say that as opposed to Facebook's new 'Like' Ok...I thought that was what being a fan meant?' or Twitter's 'Retweets' that can't be edited'. As a business, it's important to keep innovating but I think considering how useful it will be to the end user should be priority.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Love Your Chocolate and Lose Baby Weight

I am several months post natal and have decided it's time to shed the baby weight. I was however happy to see two celebrity Mums who have just had babies as well talk about their diets but not as if it's a do or die affair.

I read in the US Magazine that Kendra Wilkinson recently visited a chocolate factory not quite 3 months after giving birth, then had a chilli hotdog and even joked about it saying she's on a chocolate and hotdog diet.

Zoe Ball also confesses to eating some chocolate in the evening while watching TV. Yet, she has lost 2 stone already!

Credit:Isaac Brekken/

I think it's important to decide to diet but not kill yourself if you via off or have to eat something you shouldn't. If you're dieting it should be for your own good and benefit not for your Mum's best friend's niece who lost the 3 stone she gained a month after giving birth.

We all can't be Tess Daly in a bikini 10 weeks after. We're all different. I can only promise to do my best and be happy with my results. Wish me good luck :)

Not for Zoe: Tess Daly was back in a bikini ten weeks after giving birth

Friday, 5 March 2010

Making the best of follow friday

If you're on Twitter, you might have found that it's quite easy to get distracted by Follow Friday as you get mentioned several times. Maybe you are ignoring it altogether as some sort of popularity contest that you cant trust or just dont have time for. However, you can make the best of every Follow Friday if you keep your goals and objectives in mind on Friday. Even if you don't tag people on Fridays, as your followers start tagging stay focused by asking yourself:

1. Who are the people I need to connect with that will make my time on Twitter worthwhile? Use Follow Friday to find these people. If you've followed a few good contacts watch out for who they hash tag with a follow Friday. Check out their profiles and decide if they're worth a follow.
2. Can I relax now? Yes and No. Yes because you are now using Follow Fridays to do the right thing - find new followers which will shortly bring you new ones as well. No because you have to be consistent. You dont have to do it every week but do make it part of your Twitter strategy. 

It may be Friday but still keep your business antennas tuned for the few minutes you'll spend tweeting. How do you use Follow Friday or is it a distraction?

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Could you survive in Oprah's studio?

oprahchoc.jpg Oprah Winfrey's has recently re-built parts of her talk show studio with Godiva Chocolate Bars. Yum Yum. How long could you stay in there without eating up the set? It could take me weeks in all sincerity with over 10,000 bites to take. According to Toronto life the set consisted of a grandfather clock, table, books, chess set, fireplace and a vase of flowers (all made of chocolate) and was created with 7,000 Godiva bars and 2,400 truffles over the course of 1,400 hours. There was also a chocolate chandelier made from 1,500 pieces of chocolate.

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Racism? I never use that word or should I?

 As I work outside home part-time and my 16 month old is finding home too restrictive, I decided to find a child minder. This was my preferred choice as I thought she may feel lost in a nursery surrounded by so many kids so suddenly.

She has always been at home with me. I stayed home with her for 11 months, then my Mum for about a month, then with my In-laws, who came from abroad to see her for the first time, for 4 months.

So, I educated myself on how to get one. I called the council got a list of registered child minders, checked OFSTED reports and chose one with an outstanding report.

Alas! It started off nicely but after two weeks she calls one evening and says " I don't think you trust me". After 30 minutes of trying to convince her on the phone, she sends a text 1 hour later saying "I still don't think it's working."

Did I hide a camera in the bag? Check on 16 month old every five minutes by text? Did I do a 'Sherlock Holmes or Nancy Drew' during my lunch break and get caught eavesdropping at the door? Did I do worse? No. No. No. I rest my case.

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Miss you Linea Nigra, Miss you pre-preggo tummy

While dressing up today, I discovered my Linea Nigra had disappeared, you know the dark line that runs from under the chest to below the navel in mostly dark skinned pregnant women. I had been a bit concerned it was still there especially since DD is now well over 1 year old.

Well, I now kind of miss it as it's been with me now for over a year and had become a part of me. Yes, I was sad to see it had disappeared now leaving me with my pot post-preggo belly. So, recently I've been reading on how to get rid of it and found the most helpful tips in the Parenting magazine.

I really like the one that says to avoid foods that bloat like broccoli and contain lots of salt which can cause water retention. The 'do' bit which I'd like to try is to eat more water-rich fruits and vegetables, like oranges, tomatoes, asparagus, and celery, which act as gentle, natural diuretics. I'm not sure about celery and asparagus though ;( Any ideas on how to become a celery eating Captain Vegetable (a la Sesame Street) ?

Saturday, 2 January 2010

Eggstreme? Easter chocolates on supermarket shelves

I posted an article link on Twitter regarding supermarkets like Tesco who are already stocking Easter Eggs and have had very interesting responses. Certain feel it's ok but more people feel it's wrong especially so soon after Christmas. However, according to a report by The Telegraph, Tesco is only stocking them in response to consumer demand.

Realistically, we wouldn't expect them to be folding their arms at this time of year as concerns Easter, yet in a way I believe they could be a bit more strategic, maybe stocking them in mid-January. At least, Easter is celebrated at the same time everywhere. Who are these consumers stocking eggs that are not half-priced on New Year's Day? In defence, Tesco noted though that they would be launching their own Easter range nearer the season.

See full size image

It's easy to criticise Tesco but how about all the Fashion stores who have launched their Spring collection? We are not even sure it wont snow in Spring. I think Tesco's timing is wrong but they are certainly not alone in this Early Bird competition. I have already started designing Mother's Day wrappers and plan to upload our designs before the month's end. It's all about planning ahead for me I cant speak on behalf of others.

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