Today is a Continuance from yesterday

After spending the large part of yesterday with the farmer planting trees, driving a tractor, cutting the tree packets and planting them I have decided the living with a  C is difficult and interesting (I’m not talking about the country bumpkin by the way). There is one in every household and sometime togetherness is sooooo over rated.

Still struggling with my ruptured Achilles, I have limited up and down motion, you know the motion most required when you need it to walk and the tractor seat sits high so my foot dangles, so after an hour it was hurting me. Not only that planting trees is an art. We get “trees for Life” to grow natives for us, which they do and once we get them we plant them, this involves cutting the black plastic around them and planting them. He did put the seat down so that it didn’t dangle but the pain had already set in.

Here is where the fun begins, it is hard work and tempers fray, one can drive too fast, drive too slow, the trees may be too dry so they disintegrate when planted, the tree planter (him) has made up a seat which can hold the boxes of trees and it is on the back of the tractor. As we move along the ground ripped or furrows made prior need to be followed otherwise the dirt can clump underneath and lift the seat higher than necessary. Here is where whistling, finger-pointing and yelling occurs, one must be able to keep driving the tractor (me) lift the seat up, follow the track and then put the seat down whilst keeping to the same speed and pathway. It is as complicated as it sounds.

Spending the largest part of the day doing this leaves little time to do anything else. I determined that regardless of the make up of the household, there is a C in every house regardless of the population of the house, time of day or year. You can find these in the kitchen, office, bedroom and occasionally the toilet. They like to dictate what you do, when you need to do it and can not be changed without numerous consultation.

They bring good and bad news to people and will involve many others without them even knowing they are included in the C’s sights. I struggle with them and I notice them as soon as I get to others houses, it is hard not to look at the C without taking note of what it is doing or saying. The C can change how you view people as there might come a time when you clash, this can be unpleasant and awkward. Regardless, I don’t base my feelings or friendship on this but at this time of the year I can start to be overloaded.

Please if anyone has anything else they would like to add to my calendar, email me, as it’s filling up fast. 🙂 .


Functions, numbers and payments

I am still amazed in this day & age with face book & twitter that more functions managers & venue’s have not embraced this media and made more of an effort to connect with their clients, potential attendees and interested parties. I have spent the good part of the last couple of years fund raising for the Keith hospital and have found this medium great to work with.

There are web sites that offer group text’s at small costs so that your personnel phone number is not bombarded with messages. This gives the recipient time to find out about your event, time to think about a response and the opportunity to reply without feeling obligated. There is also fantastic sites that are for free that you can set up your newsletters to go out to the email addresses that allow people to unsubscribe. Function venues have great opportunities to gather this information and create databases for people.

I have one, I protect mine fiercely, I do not give out any of my contacts without seeking permission first. I have been asked numerous times for my database but have never released it. I have spent years cultivating it and maintaining in to a professional level that I find it laughable when i am actually asked for it. Though functions is not my profession I have just learnt over the years the value of assisting others and in a manner assisting myself.In the planning of the events I hold, I factor in the time to text message, the time to email and the time to call. I want to confirm for the venue the numbers, if someone tells me they are coming I make another list and from 1 month before hand I will follow up and even in the final week I will make calls at my own expense to ensure the numbers. We all know if you book a function for 150 and 120 turn up you have to pay for them, the venue has ensured there is enough food etc to cater for that seat. This means that the cost is taken out of your profit, it is not the venues place there were no shows. It is in fact yours.

This is why I try and pre-plan as much as I can to the nearest seat and budget for the no shows, I have in recent days and it is my fault, I said yes then was unable to attend. I was sent the invoice before I knew I could not attend and did not pay it. I also didn’t let the organiser know but sadly here is where their systems fall down. It is evident by the receipt of an email today

“We are obliged to provide final numbers 3-5 days before such events and we are then charged against that number.

 Even though you didn’t attend we still had to pay hence we expect to also be paid.”

I was not sent a reminder email, follow up call, shout out on twitter or face book (I was a follower of their accounts) that payments were due. There was messages on these pages it was sold out, no more seats and a waiting list (hmmmm) so in light of the fact there was no one in charge 3 to 5 days before they had to give final numbers to check up that all booked attendees had paid and that those on the ‘waiting list’ could fill their seats. In my dealings with venues there are numerous calls & emails leading to this final cut off date so that I have chased people and then called an end to numbers. There really is no such thing as walk ins for these type of functions.

I am annoyed at myself for not letting them know but really annoyed at the association who obviously likes empty seats and no policy or person in place to spend half a day ensuing numbers and acceptances. As this function was at the Adelaide Convention Centre the organisation would have been confident in the layout that they could have spent time doing this, I now have a $170 invoice which I am obliged to pay. I will pay it and lesson learned. It is interesting I supplied 2 tickets to them for the Keith Hospital High tea and was sent an email 4 days after informing me they would not be attending and there was not an offer to pay for these tickets, they were not free either….

my Grey Streak

I am putting it out there, I have a grey streak that has appeared in my fringe. It stares back at me every time I look in the mirror. I have watched it ‘grow’ over the last couple of years. Some days it is not noticeable depending upon how much I inspect my face, others in the sunlight tell me, it is “a grey streak”. No I didn’t put it there it just appeared.

I was at my daughters yesterday helping her and my husband, do some tree clearing and gardening. When we come down from the farm we try to get to her place to give her a hand, my husband is great like this, he will do and take the thanks as payment. He noticed my streak and laughed, I asked should I start colouring my hair? I haven’t put a colour in it for over 10 years and he stated don’t (he is completely white) as he liked the ‘salt and pepper’ that is appearing in my hair but I have about 10 yrs to  go to catch up to him.

There are so many things in this world one can not change but work towards, there are so many things on CAN change and will do so willingly. Here is my streak I now have options, I can choose to change or leave. I look at it with a critical eye in the mirror, it is me, it is who I am and I quite like it. It represents a few years (as if I was going to tell you all my age) of my life I think it started when I turned 40. I didn’t want to turn 40, it was a really hard birthday for me, it scared me into thinking about my bucket list, my future and past. Some things I didn’t like but others I wanted to come back. I thought of friendships I have lost and those that I have gained. I thought of past loves and regret along with current loves and the way forward, my daughter was 20 the year I was 40 and this was difficult, I hope when she is 40 I am a healthy 60 but part of that will be how I live my life.

My streak is me and I have settled into myself, I know I have many things in life left to do and have started my bucket list. I have married for the first time (after 40), I have relocated to the country, I have become a volunteer Keith Hospital but mostly I have become me. I like who I am and though others may not, I have changed and my streak has been there as a reminder.

I have a dear friend who is suffering from early onset dementia, she is a beautiful person and I am honoured to call her my friend. She is now the subject of ‘unintentional talking behind her back” she is a beautiful blogger and this is keeping her mind active. I have told her that people who talk behind one’s back as an adult “KNOW” this is mean, go and read her, she is deserving of medals, praise and love but I think what she would value most is more time before this awful disease takes her memory.My streak shall stay and my bucket list continue to be ticked off for if that is all I suffer at my age I am blessed. Click on the link and head over to read Kate Swaffer