Often found in front of a computer, loom or sewing machine.
Two and a half years ago I started tweeting extracts from Mum's diary to the @30yearsagotoday twitter account. This was the selfish part of the storyline project. This was for me. To keep a bit of Mum's "voice" current in my life. I follow the twitter account, obviously, but I also had it set to text me. So, for the past 2.5 years every evening at 9pm I got a text from my Mum. Curated by me, but originally written by her.
About a week ago I got a text message from vodafone telling me that they were no longer providing a shortcode service for twitter. I hoped they meant that I wouldn't be able to text them, but that I'd still get notifications. Sadly this wasn't the case.
And I missed it. The fact that this little bit of Mum's voice appears as a text message has become really important to me. It makes it feel less automatic and forced, and more natural.
I like text messages as a communication method. I don't like making phone calls - I have to work up to making them. But text messages are generally delightful. I can send a friend a text message and know that they can pick it up and read and/or respond in their own timeframe. It gives choice. And they're small which means I distill what I'm saying into 320 characters (I admit I rarely distill into 160!)
So, to me, text messages are good things. I don't have many alert text messages set up. So I don't dread getting them. And having a tweet from my Mum arrive on my phone is a delight. If I'm out and about and I receive one in company I usually refer to it as a message from my Mum. It makes me feel more connected to her.
One of the things for me about coping with dementia is dealing with the loss of the person who was my Mum. For many years I didn't engage with her as much as I could or should because I was scared of losing the precious memories of who she was. I didn't want to replace them with memories of the transition period when she was angry, sad or depressed. Since Dad died I have started to learn to accept her as she is now. I enjoy spending time with her again. And I think I connect to her by the methods that are open to her - music, touch etc. But those daily text messages have become a bridge between the two different realities.
It felt a bit like Mum had lost her voice again.
I then remembered IFTTT (and so did Clive when I tweeted about Mum losing her voice - thanks Clive!). I have now got a recipe set up so that Mum's tweets, and only Mum's tweets arrive as text messages again. Thanks IFTTT. You've helped me rebuild a bridge. And given Mum her voice back.
On Friday I attended UX Brighton 2014: Practical Philosophy.
And then on Tuesday I attended Meaning .
In days gone by I'd have written up my notes here. But instead I've written them in evernote. All I've done is:
- taken the abstracts from the conference website
- added any photos I took of the slides/speakers
- added photos of my hand-scrawled notes
- added in any related links
They are primarily for myself, but I figured I'd share them anyway.
- taken the abstracts from the conference website
I've just received my 6th set of postcards for Mum. As with previous sets I rely on these blog posts to prevent duplicates. So here goes with this set.
Top: Me and Mum on Brighton sea front circa 2001
2nd Row: Mum, Gran and I with Gran's 80th birthday tea, Mum watching me get made up on my wedding day, Mum and I on the Norfolk coast
3rd Row: Mum, me and Richard at Virginia Water, Hilary and Mum, Mum and the flowers in our back garden
4th Row: family at Christmas in the late 90s, Mum and I peeping out from behind the Magna Carta monument, Me and Mum at my wedding
Top: Family at my wedding
2nd row: Richard, Mum and me and my first car, Mum and other MU members at a church Christmas fayre, Mum
3rd row: Mum and I in Norfolk, Mum, Mum and her trophy winning netball team
4th row: Dad, me and Mum Christmas 1975, Mum and me with Anne and Simon in Scotland 1978, Mum at a school reunion
Ever since Dad died I've been using an analogue diary with a week view and blank page. In it I've generally made a note about the best thing of the day. Sometimes the negatives. But I'm usually a positive person. It has been good to be able to reflect on my week and take some ownership over my time.
I've also been using AddShareDo as a to do list. This has worked well for the past few years. And still has a lot of shared to do list items on it.
And I'd been using IDoneThis for work to help me get a feeling of satisfaction at the end of the day. It emails me every afternoon to ask what I've been doing. I quite like the trigger.
But the BulletJournal intrigued me. And I love stationery. This seemed like a great opportunity. So on the 1st August I started Bullet Journalling using the standard layout. I liked what I experienced. But, the monthly view didn't work for me. I realised that I don't actually do much monthly reviewing. But I do look at things on a weekly basis. So my main deviation is that I have a weekly view. One of the great things about the Bullet Journal is the flexibility. If an aspect doesn't work, then the system won't break if I choose not to use it.
I am using a Leuchtturm 1917 pocket book with dotted paper. I love Leuchtturm 1917 books as the paper can withstand my fountain pen inks. Something that Moleskine doesn't. Also they come in multiple colours. And even better, they have become the official manufacturer for the Kickstarter campaign. I'm looking forward to getting my Special Edition version next January!
I spent Saturday at The Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexandra Palace. Like last year I had a list of things to look for or at. And like last year I stayed on plan and didn't behave too much like a child in a sweet store. When we arrived at around midday the show seemed busy, but the crowds soon thinned out.
The other collection of things I bought was fabrics. The top left batch of greys and grey with flowers are to be the lining for the Doni's Deli bag I mentioned earlier. I bought the yellow piece at the bottom left to be the reverse of a cushion cover. But I'm not completely sure that the colour is right so I'll take a proper look at the weekend. And finally I bought a collection of fabrics at the top right that I plan to use together in a quilt. I don't know what the pattern of the quilt will be. But I want it to match the Rothko inspired cushion, and the chair back cushion.
And finally I bought a couple of odds and ends. I almost bought an entire floor lamp but sense got the better of me. My craft space isn't well lit at present. And I'd been considering buying a lamp. But it occurred to me that changing the bulb in the normal light fitting might make a significant difference. Time will tell. The other oddity I bought was a ball of size 40 crochet thread. The plan is to use this for Tenerife Lace. A friend bought me a kit for my birthday and I've almost used up the thread that it came with (although I have no outputs worth sharing yet)
All in all a grand day out.