My final (and first!) blog of 2015!  What an eventful year it’s been …

There have been a couple of firsts that I would never have predicted if you’d asked me this time last year.  In April I jumped out of a plane at 13,000 feet and landed on my knees, as you do!  Then last month I appeared on TV on the legendary programme that is Countdown (which I’m sure you probably already know seeing as I milked it for all it was worth!)

The sky dive was a very surreal experience; I don’t think I processed the fact that I’d done it for several days afterwards.  The bruises on my calves were evidence that I must have gone through with it though!  6,000 feet down and my tandem guy suggests we practice the landing (we did practice on the ground but it seemed so much easier when you weren’t strapped into a harness tightly and had full use of your arms to pull your knees up to your chest).  So at 6,000 feet I’m desperately trying to raise my legs up but they just wouldn’t do what I wanted them to!  Mild panic set in at that point whilst still trying to enjoy the view and the 360s he was doing, then as we approached the landing I did my utmost to move my legs into position.  But I failed miserably and landed rather inelegantly, legs akimbo!  Certainly an experience I will never forget and, surprisingly, would recommend to you all.

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Countdown happened rather quickly as I didn’t actually apply until August.  I’d had the application form for a while and on a particularly productive day I completed and sent it.  Within a couple of weeks I had passed a telephone audition, and was soon invited up to Manchester’s Media City in October to record the show.  I cannot recommend the experience enough, I absolutely loved it from start to finish.  And for all the men (and women!) out there with a crush, Rachel Riley is as gorgeous in person as she seems on the TV; and friendly too.  When she spoke to me it was the only time that I couldn’t seem to get my words out, I was in awe!  Quite embarrassing really, sorry Rachel!  Unfortunately I lost to the brilliant Matthew Tassier, however he made it to the Final which makes me feel much better (and was only beaten by 4 points!)  He was absolutely amazing to be honest, and a lovely guy too.  I did say beforehand that I’d rather lose to someone good than win against someone terrible!

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Anyway, I know I haven’t tweeted for a really long time until recently, or blogged for that matter.  But when you are self-employed and busy working for everyone else, your work always seems to come last on the list.  I’m sure a lot of you know the feeling.  My New Year’s Resolution for 2016 is to attempt to be more consistent at keeping in touch via social media, so watch this space and do give me a nudge if you think I’m slacking!  I have some plans in the pipeline to produce some training videos and offer more services online which is rather exciting.  I just have to make them happen!

One little computer tip for you (can’t resist – and to make it worthwhile reading this far) is that when I’m training I notice a lot of people using the minimise button many times to get back to their Desktop.  So, my quickest recommendation is to useWindows M which is the equivalent of clicking the Show Desktop button in the bottom right of your screen next to the clock.  Or alternatively just add all of your software icons to your Task Bar at the bottom of the screen (by dragging and dropping them from your desktop) and then you won’t need to go back to your Desktop in order to open one of your other software packages.

Finally, I do hope that you’ve also had an eventful and enjoyable 2015.  At this time of year I always get excited about the following year, wondering what it will bring.  Every year seems to surprise me in some way. So enjoy your Christmas holidays and I look forward to more tweeting and blogging in 2016.

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