HonestlyLucy – Hitting the Market?

baking, blog, career, childline, cookies, cooking, cupcakes, doughnuts, festivals, lifestyle, naughtiness, naughty recipes, nottingham, wellbeing

Recently I’ve been having a think about my career, and whether or not I’m on the path I want to be on. Not headache inducing at all, she says, words dripping with the thickest sarcasm known to man. The thing is I do enjoy my job. I like the team I work with and I’m pretty lucky to be given some quite cool opportunities. I’ve been working in my role for about 2 years and I like to think I’m pretty damn good at it. It’s taught me an awful lot about working in an office and at events, the importance of details and the art of juggling professionalism with a ‘quirky’ personality; and I’m really grateful for all of that. The thing is, as much as all of those statements are true, my job is largely an admin role, and it’s not really what I did my degree for. At uni I studied Psychology with English Literature, whilst volunteering as a counsellor at Childline and an assistant at The Stroke Association’s weekly group meetings; whilst also being a programme rep for both the Psychology department and the English department. It was hectic but I really, really loved it. I’m used to having a billion and one things to juggle, and right now I only have a couple, and it’s starting to make me itch. So it’s time for a new challenge.

The idea of selling the things I bake has been loitering around the jumble sale that is the back of my mind for months now. I’ve even got a food standards agency certificate for my kitchen to prove it – 5 stars I’ll have you know! I just haven’t known where to start. The closest I’ve ever got to studying business is watching The Apprentice, and I’m fairly confident that Sir Alan has no interest in my cookie topped brownies. I’ve had fleeting thoughts about maybe applying for a stall at Summer food festivals, which I’ve then shooed away. I’ve attended enough of those to know that they get busy as all hell, and I don’t know that I’m quite ready for that yet.

I’ve worked enough manically hectic Christmases in a discount store to know how to handle a queue of customers – I ain’t scared! The retail side of things I can solidly say, I have down – references upon request. It’s more the production I’m concerned about. How much of everything do I need to bake? Do I buy boxes to put customer’s stuff in, or are bags better? Do I need an adapter for my phone so I can take card payments? I have been knocking around good old planet Earth for long enough now to know that these are the kinds of questions that can only be answered with experience. I’ve also picked up and dropped enough hobbies to know that it’s all too easy to end up severely out of pocket with not a great deal to show for it if you move too fast, too soon. And hello, I’m a broke millennial, I ain’t got time for that!

When I first moved to Nottingham, Andy discovered a company called Phat Doughnuts (which swiftly changed to The Nottingham Doughnut Company after a few name related legal implications). Their premise was essentially: doughnuts on delivery. We ordered from them for my birthday one year and fell in love. In addition to the delivery service, they traded at local markets. That company eventually grew into a pretty massive business success story. Within about 18 months, they went from delivering doughnuts by hand, to running a hugely successful store and having several employees. These days I am 100% convinced that they are the sole reason I will never be a size 8. Seriously. If you’re ever in Nottingham you absolutely NEED to track them down and try one. Anyway, I find their story really inspiring. They really did start from nothing and build what has the potential to be an empire. Far be it for me to assume that every story will be as successful as theirs – this much I have learned from Sir Alan. But it certainly gives me food for thought – no pun intended. Ok, pun definitely intended.

So I had a think about the local markets they used to trade at, and paid a visit to the vegan version of Sneinton market which takes place on the first Saturday every month. I imagine the vegan market is a bit smaller than the regular market, but visiting helped me to realise that it’s not out of my reach. With all of that in mind, I’ve just submitted my application to trade there, which feels very bizarre. I’ll have to wait to hear back of course – maybe they have no use for yet another baked goods stand? But if they do, I shall be sure to blog about it.

 

 

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Teen Suicide & Childline

childline, depression, Health, mental health, nspcc

I’m writing this post because I want more people to encourage their children to contact Childline. Today the body of Amber Peat, a 13 year old girl from Mansfield was found. She died from hanging. I can’t justify with words how sick this makes me feel. I’ve always been a very empathic person, but I don’t think it takes that much empathy for this kind of story to attack your heart.

I can’t help but question what the hell was going on in her life and mind that she felt that suicide was her only option. My imagination plays out. I wonder if she ever spoke to anybody about how she was feeling or what was going on. I used to be a counsellor at Childline, which for anybody who doesn’t know, is a free service for children and young people who need to talk. They operate via telephone chat, instant messenger and email. This is exactly what I used to explain to any contacts I took at Childline:

Childline is a completely confidential service unless:

  • Your life is in immediate danger
  • You are hurting other young people
  • You are telling Childline about somebody who is hurting you, who is in a position of authority (i.e, a teacher, a priest, a policeman/woman)

This means that unless you are abusing your child to the point that their life is in immediate danger, you 100% will not find social services or the police at your door under Childline’s direction. I say that because I want you to understand that you do not have to be afraid of your kid contacting Childline. I know when I was a preteen, I’d sometimes threaten to call Childline, like it was a sure fire way to get my parents in trouble, in an attempt to get what I wanted. It’s just not how it works.

I don’t know if anybody reads this blog, or if any of you that do have kids. But I urge you to encourage your kids to use Childline. Please be aware that there are probably going to be circumstances in your kids life that they just don’t want/feel able to talk to you about, no matter how open you encourage them to be. It’s not your fault, but you have to accept this is a very real possibility. The issues kids go through are vastly more complex now than they were as little as ten years ago. Kids will often feel like they don’t want to upset their parents, that their parents will be ashamed of them, or they will get into trouble – regardless of how much you tell them otherwise. Childline can ensure that they have a safe, understanding voice to turn to at times like this. They don’t give advice, they just listen; so you don’t have to worry about anybody from Childline steering them in a way you don’t deem appropriate. You don’t have to be afraid of your kid using the service.

Childline can be contacted on

0800 111 111

http://www.childline.org.uk