Twenty Facts About Me

Wednesday 21st September 2016

I was nominated by the lovely Naomi of Not a Perfect Parent Blog to write twenty facts about me.

Well, here goes …

1). My first (and probably most fun) job was working as a chambermaid at the Holiday Inn when I was sixteen. I worked weekends while at school and during the week in the school holidays. Many a time I turned up hung over (uh-hum again sorry mam). Not an ideal state for clearing the remnants of a stag do in a hotel room. Bah. I worked there with a couple of friends which certainly made it entertaining.

2). I’m terrified of wasps. ’nuff said.

Missuswolf Wasps

3). I have two tattoos – a faded Tinkerbell on my right (I couldn’t even remember which side so I’ve just had to look) shoulder, which I had done when I was nineteen. Obvs I regret it now and I’m looking to get it inked over (any recommendations of what to get/where to go are welcome). I also have the word’s ‘A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes’ on the left-hand side of my ribs.

4). I got to the final of the Newround’s Press Packers Journalism competitions – twice. (Cheeky blog post plug – read all about it and look at embarrassing photos here). I sadly didn’t win but got a trip to London and the Blue Peter Gardens (which were soooo much smaller in real life) out of it. Score!

5). I was the Princess of the Keel Row Shopping Centre in Blyth when I was about ten years old. Crrrriiiiinge!! I had to open shops and walk down the shopping mall with Santa Claus. I was a moody ten-year old and ungrateful for the opportunity.  I had a face like a smacked arse when I had the privilege of walking next to Santa. Ooooof!

6). I was part of a girl group at the age of eight called ‘The Disco Dancers’. We used to dance to 2 Unlimited’s ‘Get Ready For This’ on our front driveways. We used to wear (inappropriately) our crop tops and cycling shorts. We even sold tickets to people in the nearby streets to come and see us. Tickets which I typed up on my Typewriter (I was super excited by this). Strangely enough people actually bought them. But once the ‘rents found out we had to return all the money and cancel the show. hmmmph!

7). Although I’m on Maternity Leave and my love for my child is unquestionable – it’s the hardest and most mind-fucking job I’ve ever had to do. I’m an impatient workaholic and this mixed with child-rearing does not bode well. I clash with babies (you’d never guess it from previous blog posts?)

8). I love to swim. My dad taught me and my sister’s from a young age and we all love the water. I remember pulling that trump card out when I went swimming with my hubby for the first time. It was many years ago. He didn’t know and thought I would be shit like I am at most sports. But I beat him. Winning!

9). I have odd-shaped ears. One is shaped like an elf ear – my pixie ear. I could have easily been cast in Lord of The Rings and there wouldn’t have been any need for prosthetics.

Missuswolf Cadbury's Easter Eggs10). When I was pregnant, my biggest and most unforgiving craving was Cadbury’s Dairy Milk. My third trimester clashed with the Easter build-up. You know – that build up where the supermarkets have a seemingly endless supply of those little eggs (pictured). The ones that are about a quid, with a Freddo or a creme egg to accompany them. Those one’s that are cleverly displayed at the front of the shop for greedy cows like me. I used to nip in for milk or a loaf and come away with two easter eggs and a cake. All for me. Fatty Boom Boom!

11). I’ve been to Vegas three times and it’s def an Adult’s Playground. I want to go next year for our ten-year anniversary. Hubby doesn’t  and wants a family holiday. Suppose I should stop being selfish and succumb to the family holiday.

12). I’ve been to Mexico where I was a Bridesmaid for my best friends wedding. It was an unbelievable holiday and again somewhere I’d love to go back to. Eventually (prob when I’m fifty now – groan).

Missuswolf Mexico

Aaaah Mexico

13). I’ve been with my hubby sixteen years and we’ll have been married ten next year.

14). We were one of the latter couples in our friendship group to have kids. We kept putting it off in favour of holidays and getting everything out of our system (pissed). I’m so pleased we did. It’s bloody hard work parenting and anyone who has a baby to save a relationship is mad. It’s the one thing that tests your relationship – even a one that’s sixteen years old.

15). I love Jazz music. Strangely I went to a psychic about six years ago who not only told me to write but that there was a black jazz musician spirit following me around. Spooky.

Missuswolf Radler's

16). I have seasonal alcoholic drinks. I drink white wine and Radler’s (Foster’s and cloudy lemonade) in the summer and red wine and Bailey’s in the winter. Obvs not mixed together though. Yak.

Missuwolf red wine R

17). I love cigars. I’m like a bloke from the fifties – cigars and bourbon. I went to Cuba three years ago where this was very acceptable. I love a good ‘ladygar’ and often buy one when I’m going to a wedding. Yup – I’m that classy. I smoke one at the night-time do. Last time I did it was just before I fell pregnant. I stood outside with some of the girls at a wedding; rather like a scene from high school – puff puff give.

Missuswolf Cuba Cigar

Gotta love a ladygar (sorry mam). Oh to be that thin and carefree again!

18). I love Girls Aloud. They were the soundtrack to my twenties. My friends and I would pester the DJ (sorry Liam) in the Travs at Crammie (RIP Travs) to play them. So we could dance and twirl around like twats  amongst the punches and chair throwing. Good times.

19). I also love Beyonce. Pure girl-crush for this lady. She’s so empowering – works hard and a very good example to her little woman.

20). I’m obsessed with the word Empowered. Since bearing a child I’ve gone all #whoruntheworld and in constant #warrior mode. I don’t know whether this work ethic is to set a good example for Ella or a subconscious effort to escape the daily parenting job …

So now you’ve realised I’m a crazy cigar-smoking-easter-egg-eating elf, I now nominate:

The Sparkle Spy

Elementary V Watson

Hartlepool Family

Book And Brew

The Sweet Guide

 

Love Missuswolf xxx

Images – a mixture of my own and from Pexel

 

What Have I Been Up To?

WEDNESDAY 02nd JULY 2014

Now that Book A Day UK has ceased, I’m at a loss as to what do with my blogging self. Editing1

So I thought I’d give you a little snippet as to what I’ve been up to the past couple of weeks.

You may recall a blog post where I dared to share my vulnerable side at my frustrations in trying to better myself in my day job.

Well, perseverance, hard work and trying your damn hardest to remain positive  – even when you have reached the lowest point in your life – eventually does pay off.

Last week, I psyched myself up for yet another couple of interviews, with a presentation thrown in one of them just to keep me on my toes. I researched, prepped and planned as best I could. I even went as far as listening to some positive meditating videos on You Tube (yeah, it came to that).

I went in with the mind-set that it was my time to shine; the main role required a skill I was well experienced in (project management)  and I had the relevant evidence to prove my ability.

And you know what?

It worked.

I was successful at the Project Manager role – a role that I nearly didn’t go for as I had lost all confidence in myself.

But someone else really believed in me.

And they gave me a chance.

Project

Image is a Regram from Instagram

The role is a secondment in a high-profile project and will provide me with invaluable experience. It’s also a break from shift work – back to the normality of Mon-Fri. I will be able to have a much more structured approach to my life and work on my writing in my spare time.

My current writing project is ghost-writing a historic novel. I’m also freelancing as a Sales Executive for the fab new Engage Magazine.

So life, once again, is good.

I feel like I’m right where I belong.

It took it’s time.

But the sweet is never as sweet without the sour.

Love Missuswolf xxx

Tales of a Jobseeker – Feeling Lost

THURSDAY 24th APRIL 2014

Jobseeking

Today’s blog post deviates away from my usual writing escapades and prying into the lives of other authors.

It’s more from the heart.

I read an interesting article recently on LinkedIn (my new obsession which has currently replaced Facebook) that was a pep talk for candidates who had attended interviews and been unsuccessful. Given that in the last three years I have attended eleven interviews alone for the organisation I work for, with a couple thrown in for good measure from external organisations, I felt this article had been written for me alone.

It suggests that maybe, just maybe – it’s them and not you.

It got me thinking.

After three years of making a continuous effort to change my job, mainly within the organisation that I work for, that it really is all them. I’m a hard worker who is normally so positive and enthusiastic, so maybe that’s my downfall as the department I work in probably won’t want to loose that.

There’s only so long you can work as a frustrated robot with no mental stimulation; a robot who constantly puts herself forward for development schemes and projects that get acknowledged, but never actioned.

It really does have me questioning myself. Three years ago, I was working in projects and performance in a job that had provided me opportunities to gain a PRINCE2 foundation and work on strategic projects with Senior Manager’s. I was flourishing, I was happy.

Now, I feel like that flower has had all her petals ripped from her and merely exists.

It’s so hard to stay positive all the time – exhausting to be truthful. What employer wouldn’t want a hard worker who comes in, does the job and goes home, with no hassles or issues.

I’m the first to admit my interviews may not be the best as I find it hard to sell myself, but I’ve tried, I’m getting better in fact. The last one I gave it my best shot. However, I was up against stiff competition and I didn’t have the high level evidence to support the role – mainly because I’m not given a chance to develop where I am.

As a result of this tunnel vision, I’ve come to the conclusion that perhaps I have been looking in the wrong places, applying for the wrong jobs.

Freelance cover

I’m a creative person, I love to read and write, paint furniture and design plans for our house and garden. Maybe I’m not the person for managing teams. I asked a friend to look at my LinkedIn profile and her advice struck a chord; she suggested I display more of my creative side. I’ve written a children’s book, I blog, I write novels and now I’m in the process of setting up my own freelance writing business GL Wilford Freelance Writer.

 

 

All this time I have looked at management, HR and performance roles. My skills are all transferable, in fact I have an array of them. But you’re not encouraged to look at what you do in your spare time for the role’s I have gone for. I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to look at what I can do and focus on that.

dresser

My parent’s dresser that I have painted, sanded and replaced the knobs (hand painted cups of tea bought off eBay) and painted in Autentico Almond (bought from French Grey Tales in Bedlington)

As I listen to Sixpence None the Richer – Kiss Me – it takes me back to being sixteen. How I wish I could shake that person and give her some career advice. I wish I had gone to University to continue with English or study media. But hindsight’s a wonderful thing.

It’s awful to think back to the blank canvas you have as a child and the promise that you can do anything and be anyone. Life seems to suck you in and before you know it you’re stuck in a work rut just to pay bills.

Unfortunately what I love doing doesn’t pay bills – yet. My writing has been purely for pleasure. But time’s are changing and I need to believe in what I do and use the gift that I was given.

Turning thirty has really made me think about my life and what I want out of it. And it’s not what I have right now. I work shifts; unsociable hours for a sociable person makes even the happiest of us lonely and depressed. I’m becoming institutionalised, I’ve lost who I am and the feeling that there is no way out is unbearable.

So from here, the only way is up.

I pick myself up, dust myself down and open LinkedIn; a world of opportunity out there at the click of a button.

I won’t give up – and that’s my advice to anyone who can relate to this post. Look at your strengths, whether it’s in the workplace or not.

 

 

An empowering person I follow on LinkedIn is Richard Branson. He really is a remarkable and inspiring man.

Richard Branson

 

If you have experienced this, I’d love for you to get in touch and advise how you dealt with it. Sharing a problem really is halving it and I already feel better for getting all these words out of my head and down on here.

Don’t worry, I will be back to my usual posts next week.

Love Missuswolf xxx

 

 

Missuswolf’s StoryLand – dreams really do come true

MONDAY 7th OCTOBER 2013

After being absent for nearly four months, I now write my first ever blog post from my perfect little study. It’s a room that I have always dreamed of (well, apart from a dressie up walk in wardrobe) and finally Missuswolf’s StoryLand is a reality.

There has been good reason for my absence, although I am regretful that I have kept away so long. My Study2last blog post was dated 24th June and four days later we finally moved house! After eight years snuggled in our one bedroom flat, the other half and I managed to snag ourselves a quirky townhouse.

There was the upheaval of the move, a lovely friend’s wedding and then a fabulous holiday that we had planned prior to securing our new house. Since then, It has been project house and despite it being the smallest (and probably what may be classed by some as the ‘least important room in the house’) the study was the first room I decorated.

I finally have my desk perched in front of a window, very Carrie Bradshaw-esque, and if I lean far enough to the left, I can glimpse the sea. Perfection. Although it is painted, one wall is still to be wallpapered with a bookcase theme. A wicker chair is also required to replace the wooden one and my draping net curtain is yet to be hung. Most importantly, I am lacking the essential – a real life bookcase to house those that are currently imprisoned in my work locker, that try to make good their escape every time I open it.

A glimpse into Missuswolf's StoryLand ...

A glimpse into Missuswolf’s StoryLand …

In my mind of perfection, I wanted everything completed before making myself comfortable and writing again. Time and money, as precious as they both are, there never seems to be enough. The pictures went up this weekend and gave me the well deserved kick up the backside to sit down and write.

First steps first; catch up with my blog – hence the post.

Study3Secondly, get editing the first ten chapter’s that have returned back from my editor, Jenny. Yes – that exciting event also happened over the summer – my chick-lit novel, currently titled Little Miss Pooshoe, has returned home after her first solo trip away into the big wide world. And I am yet to get stuck into her.

The clocks go back soon and I am very much a winter home bird, therefore a bit of a seasonal writer. I feel guilty at being inside in the summer when it’s nice and sadly my writing is the first thing to be neglected.

I now have my very own Missuswolf’s StoryLand that will provide the perfect writing sanctuary to retreat to and hibernate in this winter.

Love Missuswolf xxx

Liebster Award

MONDAY 24th DECEMBER 2012

Happy Christmas Eve!

I have been chosen by the amazing Andrea Buginsky over on Andi’s Realm to receive the fabulous Liebster Award! So thank you very much Andrea!

This is an award bloggers give to introduce blogs you might not have found already that we think are completely awesome. Here’s how it works. You post the picture of the award to your blog:

You give 11 random facts about yourself and answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you. Then you think up 11 new questions and nominate 11 new blogs – and you can’t nominate the blogger who nominated you.

Here are 11 random facts you may not know about me:

Newsround1) I was once a Press Packer with BBC’s Newsround

2) As a Press Packer, I was a runner up in a competition where I had to audition in the Blue Peter Garden for a News Feature – Twice

3) I love Jazz music. I listen to it when I write (as I am now)

4) I love mice pies and have been through about six boxes since November (gulp!)

5) When I was little I had an imaginary friend (some say it may have been a ghost) called Jenny, with black hair in pigtails

6) I became an Auntie for the first time this year wohoo and I love my lil nephew to pieces

7) I LOVE pizza – especially Asda create your own pizzaPizza

8) I have two tattoos

9) I once went quad biking

10) I once went white water rafting

11) Re the above two – done once – don’t really fancy doing again

Andrea asked me the following questions

The Hunger Games1) What is your favorite book?

The Hunger Games. It was the first book in a long time which I could not put down. The idea and concept behind really fascinated me, yet actually frightened me at the same time. The book has a lot of elements of your own fears inside and what it would truly feel like to fight for survival.

 2) What kind of books did you originally want to write?

I always knew I wanted to write a Chick-Lit novel of some sort but my burning passion since I was a child has been to write adventure stories – born from my reading of The Famous Five, The Secret Seven and Nancy Drew. The Ruby of Egypt has been my starting block in that area which I intend to vastly expand throughout my writing career

 3) Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Total plotter. I am the Queen of lists and plans in my everyday life to the point of OCD therefore it was bound to trickle through into my writing.
 4) Do you listen to music while you write?

As mentioned in my fact list, I certainly do. I listen to Jazz music which I find comforting, soothing and relaxing – putting me in the right frame of mind to escape and write.
 5) If yes, what kind?

I either listen to Jazz FM through the Sky Radio Channels or Jazz 24 online

6) What is your favorite comfort food?

Pizza!

 7) Who is your favorite author?Marian Keyes

It would have to be Marian Keyes. She has the right balance of humour in her novels as she tackles some pretty serious and sensitive issues in her novels, but they are dealt with sensitively and with the right about of light-heartedness that they make for great reads. Genuine laugh out louds and sob your heart out books all in one.
 8) What is your favorite movie?

Ohh I’m not really much of a movie buff, I loved Lord of The Rings and the Hobbit, but then I love Christmas themed films like The Holiday, Elf, Love Actually. Can’t pick a favourite.
famous-five-01-19919) What was your favorite book as a child?

The Famous Five. I had to pick this particular book cover image as this is the one that I had and  it brings back so many memories. I loved the adventures that they got up to.
10) What is your favorite holiday?

In terms of holiday period – definitely Christmas. In going abroad, I have loved every holiday but will most definitely be returning to Florida again. Loved it.

11) What is your favourite colour?

Purple

As a recipient it is my honor to nominate the following 11 bloggers:

Author Michelle Betham

Author Kerry Richardson

Blogger A  Mummys View

Author Sylvia Stein

Author Jim Cantwell

Author Denise Stanley

Author S.I Hayes

Author Joyce Strand

Author Lee-Ann Griff-Vinson

Author Sheila Deeth

Blogger Book Reviewer Heather Cranmer

I think all of your blogs are excellent, and you highly deserve this award! As my nominees, these bloggers will share 11 fun facts about themselves on their blogs, as I’ve done above.

They will also answer the following 11 questions:

1) What inspired you to start writing/blogging?

2) What is your new year’s resolution?

3) If you could be in someone elses shoes for one day, who would that be and why?

4) What is your favourite season?

5) Where has been your favourite holiday destination?

6) Where do you see yourself this time next year?

7) What has been the highlight of your writing/blogging experience so far?

8) Do you prefer coffee or tea?

9) What is your favourite song?

10) What has been the most influential book you have read, that has really caught your attention and made you think?

11) What has been your highlight of 2012?

Thanks again to Andrea for nominating me.

Xmas Men

Have a wonderful Christmas

Love Missuswolf xxx

Welcome to missuswolf’s world!

Hi (or Hola as I keep saying after spending the past couple of weeks holidaying in Mexico. Yep, it’s a hard life)

Speaking of attempting to use the local language when holidaying, it is a hard habit to get out of once touched down in the rather cooler climate of the UK. In my local the afternoon after I had landed (somethings never change, a drink in the local to prolong that holiday feeling) I found my self nearly saying ‘Hola Seniorita’ to the barMAN and then having to bite my tongue to say ‘Gracias!’

Oh dear.

Plus, having to pay a fiver for a Baileys and Amaretto (a must have pool time refreshment habit that was picked up) after throwing them down my neck free on All Inclusive for two weeks nearly had me comotosed before a drop of alcohol had touched my lips.

Anywho, I would like to wish you a very warm welcome to missuswolf’s world, a place where I can really get in touch with my creative writing side! I am new to all this blogging so you will have to bare with me. I am using this blog as a way of exploring and developing my writing; a place to discuss what I am currently reading and to eventually showcase my own writing.

Happy Reading little wolves!

Love Missuswolf xxx