Tag Archives: Devon

Global Student Forum 2011 – Dying for Life

Earlier this month my daughter Devon told me that she was one of ten students selected from her school to attend the National Conference of the 2011 Global Student Forum (GSF 2011).

The Mission of Global Student Forum is to enable school students to critically explore contemporary development issues and their role as global citizens. 

The conference is called Dying for Life: Save the mothers, save the world.

The idea behind GSF 2011 is to “inspire and equip your sixth formers with the knowledge and skills to educate their peers about the greatest health inequity in the world today – the fact that 99% of all pregnancy related deaths occur in the developing world.

There are four learning objectives

1.  Why does a mother die from pregnancy-related complications nearly every minute? 

2.  Why is maternal health so important to families and communities?

3.  What are the barriers to achieving the fifth Millennium Development Goal (MDG5)?

4. How can we act globally and locally towards MDG5? 

The conference is sponsored by The Department for International Development and it’s featured charity is The White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood.





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My son, Thomas, has started a new job just recently at our local Aldi superstore and as a treat for his dad, he brought me home some bottles of real ale at the weekend.

I’m a big real ale fan and love trying new beers, so I was well impressed with his choice of a bottle of Hobgoblin ale.

Devon took one look at the bottle and suggested it had been brewed at Hogwarts! In fact the name of the brewery is even better than that, its brewed at Wychwood Brewery!

The beer itself is a Ruby Beer, with a chocolate & toffee flavour. Looking at the notes on their website, the hops used are Fuggles & Stryians, which sound like charaacters from Harry Potter as well!


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Glee? That’s not what I feel!

I’m sat typing this while Thomas & Devon watch the latest episode of Glee. Am I the only person in the country who doesn’t like Glee?

Being a music lover, it just annoys me when classic songs, old and new, are ruined. And it’s not just Glee, there’s programmes like X Factor and Pop Idol, where contestants come up with inferior versions of well loved standards.

Don’t know about you, but I’d much rather hear an up and coming artist perform either their own material or that of an up and coming songwriter.

Is it me? Is it an age thing?

Anyway, talking of up and coming artists, can I draw your attention to Mishara Music? This is a company that encourages and promotes new singer songwriters.

There’s some great artists on there, and they give you an opportunity to download some free tracks as well.

Never mind Glee, check these artists out!


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A – Z Blogging Challenge – Day 08

So we’re on to H on the A – Z Blogging Challenge, and there could only one choice for H bearing in mind the musical Thomas is taking place in.

It’s the Gainsborough Amateur Operatic Society’s performance of Hot Mikado. If you’ve got a minute or two to spare, take a look at their blog, the G.A.O.S has been going strong now for 100 years.

As you’ve probably gathered, it’s based on Gilbert & Sullivan’s Mikado.

I’m taking Devon to see it on Saturday, so I’ll let you know what it’s like when I post on Sunday, but for now
H is for Hot Mikado


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A – Z Blogging Challenge – Day 07

If it’s the 11th, it must be Day 09 of the A – Z Blogging Challenge, but as I’m lagging behind this is my Day 07. We’re on the letter G, now for this I’m spoilt for choice. I could have had:

G for Genesis – my favourite band of all time

G for Glastonbury – the music festival to end all festivals! Only two a bit more months to go

G for Gainsborough – my home town in good old Lincolnshire

But instead of all these, having just ventured out my patio doors and surveyed my vast estate and the mess it’s in, I’ve decided that G is for Garden! A garden in dire need of attention, but amidst all the carnage there are still bits of it to admire, such as my Cherry Blossom Tree (not being a gardener I’ve no idea whether that’s it’s proper name!).

As the days progress, I’ll be posting a few more shots of my garden, in a before and after type of way, but I thought we’d start on a high!

Meanwhile, the performers in the house have both got shows on this week. Devon and some of her classmates are showcasing their Mamma Mia & Grease extracts they did for their Dance exam at school, while Thomas is performing in Hot Mikado for the Gainsborough Amateur Operatic Society. His first show is tomorrow evening, with performances every night for the rest of the week.

Me, I’m playing the role of proud parent!


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A – Z Blogging Challenge – Day 04

Ok, it’s Day 4 of this A – Z Blogging Challenge and the letter is D. My original idea was D for Devon, but that a firm No! from Devon herself. She suggested Dr Who or Dalek, but I’ve gone for none of them.

Instead I’ve cast my mind back to my visit to New York, when I went to the BB King Blues Club to see the one and only Dionne Warwick. So today it’s D for Dionne Warwick.

I’ve searched youtube and managed to locate this clip from the show I saw:

I’m afraid D is also for Dropping Off! I’m typing this on my laptop whilst in bed, struggling to stay awake, hence the short post, but I’m sure I’ll be revisiting Dionne Warwick & New York!

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A – Z Blogging Challenge – Day 03 revisited

Whoops! Guess who didn’t read the instructions for the A – Z Blogging Challenge? You’ve got it, yours truly!

It does say quite clearly that the challenge entails blogging everyday throughout April, except sundays, which leaves 26 days. One for each letter of the alphabet, it’s not rocket science is it? But in my enthusiasm I posted my Day 03 yesterday!

So for those new visitors,my Day 03 posting was C is for Coors!

For those who popped by yesterday, I’m open to suggestions as to what my Day 04 subject should be. My original idea was D is for Devon, my daughter, but she’s vetoed that idea! Her suggestion is Dr Who, as she’s a huge fan and the new series is due to start in 19 days (not that she’s counting!)

Talking of the letter D, one of my favourite bloggers, Dark Star Burning, made a welcome return to the blogosphere over the weekend, take a look at her site, it’s well cool, especially if you like chickens!

Update, latest suggestion from Devon, D is for Dalek!


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A – Z Blogging Challenge – Day 2 – Boiler Breakdown!

What a week! I came home from work last Friday to a boiler that had conked out, which meant no hot water and no central heating. Needless to say, I couldn’t get hold of a plumber over the weekend, so it was Monday evening when the plumber turned up to assess the boiler.

His verdict – It needed condemning and replacing! And after he showed me the deterioration behind the external casing, I couldn’t argue. Mind you it’s served me nearly 20 years, so I can’t complain.

The boiler was finally up and running yesterday, and I’m about £2k poorer! I’ve spent the best part of today catching up on my laundry and gettig rid of all the dust which has been created over the past week.

So for todays A – Z Blogging Challenge, B is for Boiler Breakdown!

Enough of the domestic troubles, on the workfront, over the past few weeks I’ve been doing an Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) course, which culminated in me having to do a presentation this last thursday. A bit nerve wracking, but I think it went well!

Yesterday, my son Thomas had a job interview, which seemed to go well, as he’s been invited back for a second working interview. That was his good news, the bad news being that he’d split up from his girlfriend. Although he appeared flippant about it, I think he was quite upset as he’d been seeing her for a few months now, which for Thomas is a long time!

As for my daughter Devon, she’s turning into a bit of a “rock chick”,following her Taylor Swift gig last week, she went with her friends to see Katy Perry at Nottingham on Wednesday. Mind you, as she’s one of those people who needs her sleep, it caught up on her earlier today…

And for those of you looking for the 30 Day Music Challenge, I’ve moved that to my other blog, myrockdatediary, as that seemed a more appropriate place


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I need sleep!

What a week, in the past week I’ve been to three gigs, two of which were over the past two nights.

On Tuesday night, I took my daughter to see Taylor Swift at the LG Arena at Birmingham, which is about 90 miles from where I live, so we got home around 1:00am. As my daughter Devon was at school the following morning, we were up and about at 7:00am that morning.

Last night, I went to see Peter Gabriel and The New Blood Orchestra at the Hammersmith Apollo in London. Getting there entailed a 150 mile car journey, followed by an hour on the underground. The concert finished at 11:00pm, so I got back to my car around midnight and made it home for 4:30am.

Unfortunately I’ve had to work today, so I was up for 7:00am, which means, by my calculations, I’ve had 7 and 1/2hrs sleep in the last two nights.

I need sleep!


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