Nightmares At The Theatre

Over the past couple of months I’ve seen a couple of theatre shows which are in complete contrast to each other – one a dramatic play (A Monster Calls), the other an interactive comedy (Knightmare Live). Yet both feature monsters and scary situations in their own way. So as I’ve only had the chance to write about them now, I thought I’d put them together in one post, because they’re so different.

So I hope you like reading about them. They’ve both finished their runs at their respective venues, but they may well appear elsewhere. So I recommend keeping an eye out for them, as I did enjoy them both. And if this post does entertain you, please consider sponsoring my upcoming charity abseil – that will be a bit scary for me, but I’m very excited about it too!

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March 2018 Favourites

Well, that’s an early Easter out of the way for this year, and I hope everyone had a great time. We had the typical bank holiday weather here in the UK – i.e. wet – but on the plus side we also had lots of treats to indulge on as well, so it’s been like another Christmas in that sense. Indeed, with the wintery weather still hanging around, you’d be forgiven for not realising it was spring yet. Still, just like February, once again the weather hasn’t stopped me from having another very successful month.

But before I get on to the details, I just want to very quickly mention a free event I’m attending in April that you might also be interested in. I’m not being paid to mention it, but I am one of their voluntary social media ambassadors. And regardless of that, I’m genuinely intrigued by the whole thing anyway, having never heard of it before, so it deserves a mention in any case. And I don’t want to bury it at the bottom of the post where nobody will see it.

So to quote them directly:

Naidex is Europe’s most exciting event dedicated to the disability, independent living and healthcare professional sectors. Taking place at the NEC Birmingham on the 25th and 26th April, this esteemed event provides cutting-edge exhibitors, world-class CPD accredited seminars, live demos, 1-2-1 advice and unparalleled networking opportunities, over two unforgettable days. And it’s absolutely free to attend! Register for your FREE ticket on naidex.co.uk!

There are bold claims there, I know, but in all fairness I’ve looked through the show guide listing the exhibitors, speakers and events, and it really is very exciting. PLus it is their 44th year, so they know what they’re doing. I’ll be there both days and will have no problem filling the time, and I will of course tell you all about it. But I recommend going too if you can – it’s free, so you just have to be able to get to Birmingham on at least one of those days, and you need to register for tickets on their website in advance. If you’re a fellow blogger who’s also going, and you want to say hello there or collaborate in some way in relation to it, you’re welcome to get in touch. And if you know others who might want to go, pass it on!

Ok, that’s all I have to say about it, I just felt it deserved a plug. Now let’s crack on with my latest favourites post and video, so you can see what I’ve been up to. I hope you enjoy it!

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Growing Up With Sight Loss

When I started my blog and Youtube channel, I assumed that the only talking I’d be doing for people about my disability was purely from the comfort of my own home, reaching people through their computers and smart devices. But then, last year, I ended up giving my first ever public talk to adults at the Nystagmus Network Open Day, about building my new social network. It was a complete surprise and a completely new experience for me, and one that I assumed was going to be a one-off.

However, earlier this month I had the opportunity to give another talk, this time for a very different audience – primary school children, around 9 to 11 years old.  I won’t name the school or the people involved – they’re awesome and know who they are anyway – but what I want to do here is give you an overview of what I said. I wanted to take the time to write it down for posterity anyway, as I went over it in my head beforehand rather than writing a script.

So I figured you might find it interesting to read as well (or watch my video if you prefer), as it gives another perspective on my journey through life to date.

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Rare Disease Day Photo Challenge

Update (March 1st) I won the challenge, much to my surprise! Thank you so much to Rare Disease UK! It was great fun being involved, because I loved the theme of the campaign, and I really enjoyed seeing other people’s photos. So very well done to all involved. We can all be proud of our efforts to raise awareness during the month! 🙂

Happy Rare Disease Day! 🙂

Today is a wonderful international opportunity to raise awareness of rare diseases, conditions, disabilities, etc, to educate people and highlight the need for greater funding and research. Here in the UK, it’s led by Rare Disease UK. But there are events taking place worldwide, so there will be related organisations in many countries.

1 in 17 people have a rare disease, meaning it’s a lot more common than you might think. So even if you don’t have one yourself, chances are you know somebody who does. And if you do have a rare condition, you’re certainly not alone.

There are over 6,000 rare diseases, affecting over 300 million people worldwide (including 30 million in Europe). That’s a huge number! So this is a day for all of us unusual rarities to get together, along with anyone and everyone who supports us and the cause in any way.

This year, the theme is “Show your rare, show you care”, and everyone can get involved, regardless of whether or they you have a rare disease. So that includes patients, families, carers, medical professionals, policy makers and members of the public.

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50 Random Facts About Me

This is an idea I’ve seen elsewhere that I thought might be fun to do, so you can find out a bit more about me. A few of these facts you’ll know from elsewhere in my blog, but most I’ve never mentioned here before.

Since posting this, I’ve also made a video, which contains some of the same information as this post, but also some different facts as well, so do check it out:

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The VIP Daily Living Tag

There’s a new Visually Impaired Persons Tag doing the rounds at the moment, initiated by My Blurred World and Life of a Blind Girl, and Fashioneyesta has also responded to it at the time of writing. They’re all superb posts by superb bloggers, so they’re worth checking out. Although I’ve not been tagged myself, I’m going to jump on the bandwagon and join in anyway, as I do think they’re great questions. So hopefully nobody will mind. 🙂

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Growing In Confidence

A summary of this post was featured in Scope’s blog for Anti-Bullying Week.

Today I wanted to look back at how my confidence has developed over the years, after a difficult start. At home it’s never been a problem – my parents are both visually impaired, so they and my relatives have always been understanding and supportive from the outset. But away from the family, it hasn’t always been as easy. I’ve also made a video about my school days which relates closely to this post.

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Journal – June 2005

February 2021 Introduction:

This is a very busy month to look back at. At the end of May I’d been invited to spend a week with a couple of friends of mine in Exeter, while I was taking a bit of well-earned holiday from work. So that’s where we start off here, and there’s lots to mention about the various ways we enjoyed ourselves. I’ve anonymised my friend’s names and edited out other little details to respect their privacy of course. Then there’s the usual mix of job updates, entertainment and other bits and bobs as well. So I hope you enjoy looking through it all!

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Video Journal – Guernsey – July 2001

2020 Introduction:

This is a quick post to share a bit of footage I recorded during a trip to the beautiful island of Guernsey, a place I’ve visited quite a few times, because I have an old school friend who lives there. The videos are on my travel playlist as well. They’re not audio described, but if you are able to see them then I hope you enjoy them.

The first video shows some of the beautiful scenery in Guernsey and the nearby island of Sark, while the other shows us taking a walk around an interesting sculpture park. Both videos replace the original soundtrack with music, as I didn’t want to feature my friend or his family without their consent, and there isn’t much of interest to hear anyway to be honest, it’s the visuals that count.

Those are the last videos I shot using my old S-VHS camcorder, which I’d also used for holidays in America and London. Fortunately I was able to use an adaptor to watch the tapes in a regular VCR. Which in turn meant that when I got a dual VHS & DVD recorder some years later, I was able to copy those videos on to DVD, and from there I was able to create digital copies that I’ve kept on my computer ever since.

So I’m very glad I’ve been able to keep all of these videos, as they’re wonderful souvenirs. And I hope you like them too!

Video Journal – London & France – August 2000

2020 Introduction:

When I was young my family and I used to visit London a few times a year to spend time with our relatives, during Easter, summer and Christmas when I was on holiday from school, college and university.

So naturally we would often go out to see the sights. And once I’d bought a camcorder for my America trip in the spring of 2000, it was only natural to take it with me to London that year to get some footage of the city, along with a few other locations that we visited on day trips.

So in this post I’m going to share some of those clips, which are also in my travel playlist. They’re not audio described, but if you are able to see them then I hope you enjoy them!

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