Desktop Activity

Working for myself has its advantages, but one of (arguably lesser) disadvantages is the fact no-one gets to see how cool my desk-toys are.

I’ve worked in two communal offices in my work career, both of which has limited appreciation for my desk toys – which is perhaps why I value them so much now. I’d say my office is about 75% toys and 25% other stuff. And although I work with LEGO, I’d say there is a significant portion of it that is personal collection rather than stock. Kinda.

But the truth is that if I don’t have things to occupy my procrastination sessions then, well, I might just get too much work done. My latest obsession, LEGO aside, is Disney Tsum Tsums. Which are essentially all manor of Disney characters from various films and shows all re-shaped into pill-type rubber miniatures. What started as my daughters’ interest has become a bit of a hobby for me too. And while she is happy to have just about any of the characters from anywhere (although Frozen ones do top the list), I have a shopping list of Tsum Tsums that I intend to scatter around my desk. As you can see from the photo for this post – I’m starting with Disney’s Inside Out Characters. But I digress.

A lot of serious stuff that happens in business. A lot. And it would be very easy to remove all the fun from it and leave all the functionality. But that’s just not the way I see my work, my business or my anything ever going. The cool, fun, nerdy stuff that makes me, me needs to be evident. Otherwise I’d find myself just being a hypocrite. And if that fun side of me presents itself in the form of cool desktop toys today. Then today will be all about desktop toys.

Aren’t you amazed that this post barely mentions LEGO? Truth is, that is the ultimate desktop toy. But I could write about that forever, so I have spared your reading time that one.

And so concludes week 5 of 52.

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Hypocrite!

Nothing like an insult and exclamation mark to drive home a post title, eh? The title could relate to any number of people or things. Like the fact that this blog post is nearly a week late for week 4 of my 52 week blog journey. I mean that’s slack by anyone’s standards, and only the fourth week – wow! But, no, this post is about something a bit more close-to-home…

I wrote a blog post last week about the way in which the new US President, Donald Trump as been ‘welcomed’ into office by outraged social network users and media agencies alike. Not brilliantly. And while I could draw similarities between the title of this post and the said media agencies *cough* BBC *cough*, this post isn’t even about that.

It’s about the very notion of hypocrisy. The definition of the word hypocrite, according to dictionary.com, is “a person who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, especially one whose private life, opinions, or statements belie his or her public statements.”

And in the light of that definition, I think I need to make something quite clear. I am, by no means or measure perfect. This will come as no shock whatsoever to anyone who knows me. But I wonder if I dare suggest something grander, we all suffer from imperfection. The classic line whenever we mess up to excuse ourselves: ‘nobody’s perfect!’ comes to mind. And while flippantly used here and there in our daily lives – it’s actually a really truth that we should pay attention to every now and again.

So at the risk of beating a dead horse (a physical action I would highly advise against, but in analogy’s sake…), I revisit the Trump debate. Since my last post, there have been several actions of the new President that have been wildly unpopular amongst the louder-voiced of the Western World (dare-I-say, making their point seem more universal than it actually is). But it’s debates like this one that bring out the best and worst in people.

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Top Trumps

Yesterday was my birthday! And it will come as no surprise to anyone who knows me that I love birthdays. So much so, that I take two weeks off to celebrate every year. I’m sure I’ll go into more detail on how and why that works another time. But first, I want to talk about something else. Something that I couldn’t avoid whilst checking my lovely HB messages on Facebook yesterday. The Trump card.

Now, we live in a modern democracy. Modern in the sense of sophistication. Modern in the sense that times have changed. And as a democratic society, I think it’s safe to assume we can agree on one thing. There is a lot that divides us as people and, it seems, increasingly less that unites us. If its belief, sexuality, gender, political conviction, sports team or favourite ice cream flavour; it seems that the divisions in our modern society are far louder than our united causes. It would be easy for me to sit and point the finger here, but I’m as guilty as most. I just hear the name Trump and I’m automatically on my high-horse, ready to defend the 45th President. Perhaps a reaction to hot-topics is only natural, but since the introduction of social media as a steady source of global news, it’s amazing how much opinions and facts get mixed up. And with the US Presidents’ inauguration ceremony two days ago, my social media timeline has been a minefield of political opinion and speculative statements towards this issue.

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Finding zoo birds pets book

Any parent will tell you how wonderful the gift of television is. Sure it’s probably frowned upon. Yes we’re supposed to limit the amount they watch. But have you SEEN how happy it makes them to see their favourite characters on screen? It’s sheer joy. It also helps that you get a moments’ peace to collect your thoughts. Does this make me a bad parent? I hope not. I love parenting. My girls are literally my joy.

As a result, I have seen a lovely selection of kids movies over the last year or so. And I have to say – some are a lot better than others – as my kids will attest…

Let’s go…

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When the stars align or Procrastination Constellation

It seems a little late to wish everyone Happy New Year, perhaps that’s because things are moving so fast. Not surprisingly, then, that we have nearly reached the end of the first week of 2017. Crazy.

It’s usually about this point that I give up on my New Years’ Resolutions. In fact – that’s the main reason that I gave up on them. To quote my instagram post from New Years’ Eve 2015:

“The only thing that will change for certain tonight is the date. Everything else remains as unchanged as you want it to. This year I’m making daily choices, not one-off resolutions”

And it’s true, resolutions can give the inaccurate illusion that by publishing dramatic lifestyle changes to social media – that you have actually achieved it. When, in actual fact, the resolution is probably a lot more involved than a quick decision on December 31st. And then, when most probably, it doesn’t happen – you end up feeling worse than when you first began.

But here’s the thing. There’s another side to it too. For me, at least, it’s so easy to not make any drastic decisions for the year ahead. But then forget to make the little ones daily too. And decisions and actions for change can be a really good thing. Even if they are uncomfortable at times.

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Crowns

I haven’t had much time to write over the last few months… But in the meantime, there have been so many blog posts I have wanted to write, but just haven’t been able to put fingers to keys. My hope is that, unless the momentum dies out from those stories, they will be told in the coming weeks and months.

But while there are but a few hours remaining for 2016, there is one post that I wanted to get out there before all of the others. As with all of my posts, this is primarily for my own sake and sanity, but I welcome anyone who wants to read along for the fun of it.

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Order Overload

It’s been too long. And for those of you who know me, you’ll know why. Things have been crazy busy at sholdstock towers over the last few weeks as our LEGO Minifigure Caricature business received its biggest ever boom in the build-up to Christmas (pun intended!). We’re thrilled at the volume of orders and as much as I’d love to write more about it, time doesn’t permit on this occasion as the orders are literally waiting for me in my next browser tab…

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Sharers and Archivers

Social Media. It’s been called many things. Solved many problems. Created just as many. But one thing’s for sure, it’s not going anywhere. It popped up not to long ago and doesn’t look like it’s going to loose momentum in my lifetime.

I think it’s only been recently that I have become aware of a split in users. It comes down to the way in which we use social media, and perhaps, defines the quantity and style of the updates that we post.

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Spooked out by my EQ

As the night draws to a close, Halloween concludes for another year. The kids return home to stock-take their loot from trick-or-treating, the elderly finally breathe a sigh of relief and the supermarkets start reducing their massively over-stocked Halloween aisle to make room for Christmas bumph and fireworks stands. And after a day of resolving myself that I will *finally* get around to writing a blog post about this particular ‘holiday’, here it is.

I say finally, because often I will hope to post something. I’ll have the concept, the passion and desire to write it. But time just slips away. And that happens a lot for this blog. And actually, just about every Halloween. So here I am, perhaps a few hours too late, but I’m determined to finish this one. And here’s how this post is going to start, and end. I hate halloween…

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