Friday, 29 November 2013

"After you Sir"

Happy Friday Everyone

So, It has been a WHOLE month of moustache wearing antics and I can quite happily state (as I have before) I do not like facial hair. Moustaches are certainly not mean for women. Particularly fake ones. I actually think it would have been nicer if i could have grown my own one! Fake moustaches are VERY high maintenance. 

Here is my Moustache For Women 101:


  1. If you are planning to wear a fake moustache for a prolonged amount of time make sure you purchase plenty of eyelash glue (boots own brand are recommended)
  2. When choosing your moustache, do your market research. Many on amazon are wiry and not designed to fit well around the mouth / chin area to allow for continual wear. I suggest something soft and fluffy. Not only are they more comfortable and appealing to look at, EVERYONE wants to touch them. Great conversation starter ;)
  3. Once you have chosen your moustache prepare your meals accordingly. You will no longer be able to open your mouth wide enough for a spoon, or eat anything overly chewy or with a high topping or salads. I advise sandwiches (with minimal filling) and chocolate. I would suggest buying some stretchy pants and getting a gym membership for when you end your moustache wearing challenge.
  4. This also applies to drink. Straws are a no-no as pursing of the lips causes the moustache to wrinkle and fall off. Frozen daiquiris and most other cocktails served in wide rim glasses are also troublesome. I would suggest beer or wine in a small glass. Teas and coffees are other available drinks to moustache wearers.
  5. Beware of extreme temperatures! -  This is especially a problem for London Commuters. Eyelash glue is surprisingly affected by extreme cold termperatues and warming skin. This may cause moustaches to fall off unexpectedly (in waitrose, while asleep on trains, at christmas markets among others).
  6. ALWAYS have a back-up moustache (for above situations - suggested is the "Emergency Moustaches" sold in Cards Galore). You never know when a moustache will let you down, fall off or fall apart to embarrass you beyond belief*.
  7. Ladies, be prepared for increased male attention. Apparently fake facial hair IS a turn on for men (even if they won't admit it). From personal experience I have had all good reactions from the male sex and quote "it turns out it makes you hotter?!". Ladies don't take offence if you are told facial hair suits you. It's a compliment. Always a compliment.
  8. Do not surround yourself with humorous people. Fake moustaches reduce the ability to move your top lip. This impairs smiling, laughing and looking anything other than a little bit creepy. 
  9. BEWARE - Moustaches are a choking hazard. Referring to point 1 that a fluffy moustache is better. Fluff from said moustache MAY fly off and get lodged in your throat causing you to choke for a good 20 minutes. This can happen at any time, most likely to be while on the phone to the insurance company.

So, Ladies. I hope this has helped you for future fake moustache wearing. As much as it has had it's ups and downs it has been interesting. Also, more importantly it has got people talking. Most people realise it is for Movember but others have asked me what on EARTH I am doing. This has given me a chance to explain what I am doing this year and what shocked me the most is the amount of men that actually have never heard of movember or "can't be bothered" to take part. This only concretes any statement ever made that men are useless. You are. I am sorry but you are. You are all lovely but useless :) But I am happy to say I have helped you males a little bit this year by raising a grand total of £300. Half of this will go to Autism Trust and half to Movember.





Now, for a few anecdotes form my month of moustache wearing…


  • Now, previously I have mentioned the difference in peoples' reactions. I have had stares, nods and outright "MOUSTACHE!!!" (one of the more obvious ones!). I wasn't expecting being flashed at. Ok, that sounds a little more crude than it actually is….. I was sitting on a very crowded train (in the middle of those 6 seaters) with a very pleasant looking lady opposite me. She smiled at me, I smiled (kind of - as much as the moustache would let me) back. 5 minutes later *FLASH*. The poor woman had tried to sneak a photo of me without realising she had the flash on. Bless her, she was soooo embarrassed which is ironic seeing as she wasn't sitting there with a moustache on. She then finally got over her embarrassment and asked if she could take a better one to tweet. I obviously said yes and gave her my card. So, train lady, if you are reading… WHY DIDN"T YOU DONATE??!?!?!?! HUH!?!?!?
  • I was in covent garden with some friends. One of the barmaids suddenly rushed up to me and then said "oh thank god it's fake". She genuinely thought i had a terrible problem with facial hair.  Then she seemed so relieved that it was fake I felt I should be a little bit offended. What if it was real?? man she would have been screwed!
  • My favourite "shout out" was in Farringdon. Walking along with a colleague when from within a small sandwich shop came "OI OI OI!!!!!" I turned back just to see a young guy pointing at his lip and shouting "MOUSTACHE!". He seemed so pleased with himself for spotting it.
  • As I have mentioned with the male attention, one morning I got off the train, minding my own business, when I get a tap on the shoulder from a gentleman. He puts a piece of paper in my hand, says "great job. Read that when you get a moment". I open the note and it reads "Monring Pretty Woman. Would you like lunch sometime? Robert" with his number. Now this has never happened to me before. BUt slap on a moustache and BAM I am irresistible! I have had more men come up to me and talk to me / smile at me in one month with facial hair than I have at any other time of the year!
Now, I will tell you a story. I don't get embarrassed very easily (hence I am willing to wear a moustache for a month and I am doing all this silly things) BUT my moustache has let me down. So I won't tell the entire story but I will cut it down for you….
Scene setting….. Me and two friends at dinner in covent garden…. hot waiter…. I am wearing a moustache. Cutting to near the end of the story, I am chatting / flirting (ish) with said waiter and he asks for my number. He walks away and I of course write it down for him. On his return he requests that he gets to see what I look like without the facial hair. So, I grab the edge of my moustache, and peel it off, presenting my face in the big reveal…. when my friend sitting opposite me bursts out laughing and the guy gives me a funny look. I look down at the piece of fluff in my hand and it is missing the sticky tape that kept it on my face. The sticky tape had remained attached to my top lip. I panic and try desperately to get it off and fail miserably. it literally WOULD NOT BUDGE! it was stuck fast! the guy looked embarrassed for me and said "it's ok, I will come back later". My friends are in fits at my situation and I laugh because otherwise I would have cried. I finally get the tape off of my face. And once I had pulled myself together and my cheeks had lost the purple colouring he returned and still took my number. I mean, he is pretty brave to have taken my number still after not only see me with a moustache, then fail to remove it and then fall apart into a cackling mess! brave… or stupid. 

So that is my month of moustache in a very looooong summary :)

Next month it is a little more low key. I am recruiting my friends to help me do bag packing in Marks and Spencers in Bromley on 7th December. We will of course be wearing ridiculous wigs so if you are in the area we won't be hard to spot!

I will keep you updated with plans for the new year. 
If I don't get to ramble at you all before the big day, I wish you all a VERY Merry Christmas and the best New Year you could hope for. 2014. It's going to be interesting :)


Hope….. Out

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Thursday, 14 November 2013

It IS a man's world!

Now, I have never wanted to be anything other than a woman. We get a wider choice of clothes, get to have long hair without being judged, when we dress up we REALLY dress up rather than just put on a shirt, we get to drink fruity cocktails again without being judged, we can have multiple orgasms, we get to fancy hotties like Ryan Gosling and Liam Hemsworth… the list could go on FOREVER!

The only thing I have ever been jealous of men for, well two things, are the fact that they usually have pretty good upper body strength and more importantly they usually (not including the bum fluffers) can grow facial hair in styles however they like! I mean, most guys could probably have a newly designed facial accessory every few weeks or so, or a month minimum! This seems a wasted opportunity to me for all those men who aren't doing Movember! What's more is that I am SHOCKED at how many men have never even HEARD of Movember! It's FOR MEN! I love men and I wouldn't have a world without them but my oh my are they useless!

I am thoroughly enjoying MY moustache. I have "upped my tash" recently and I am enjoying it more than the last. It is a little longer and therefore perfect for stroking. However, it is a little darker and therefore DEFINITELY more noticeable!


I think it is VERY 70s Porn Star, and I have found one for you to compare. His name… Dick Fisk. I am a big fan. Ok, he was in Gay porn and it was the 70s so I doubt many of you have heard of him (although perhaps some of you have so I won't rule that out!).
Here he is in his full glory…

Dick Fisk…. You can see the similarities right…!
Anyway, moving swiftly away from porn (I don't want to be picked up by the police!), I have had some interesting looks and plenty of "the nod". The very nice man (Dan) at Movember sent me this… 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaCnGd_DnXE

I enjoyed it greatly. I did manage to catch someone out the other day… I was minding my own business on a very packed train from Victoria the other night… When *FLASH*! the lady across from me had tried very sneakily to get a picture of me. Little did she know (I assume she wasn't a big iPhone buff) that her flash was still on. Caught in the act. She was soooo embarrassed which is ironic seeing as I was the one wearing a moustache in public! She was very apologetic and then asked if she could take a better one :) I of course obliged as she wanted to tweet it!

I should probably be tweeting too. I still don't quite get twitter. What do people tweet about? (or as my Swiss colleague called it twit - bless him!). I figured it is a less exciting Facebook? telling people what you are doing but rather than just bugging your friends you can bug thousands more people (assuming you have that many followers!). Well, I think I might give it a go. It seems people are using it for a reason. Maybe I will ask some of the teenage girls that get on my train to assist? Although I will also be wary, anyone looking like a 70s porn star approaching young girls is suspicious!?

So an update on the fundraising… I have raised about £120 so far but this is not enough! It is NEVER enough!
So here is my plea in the form of a limerick:

There once was a girl called Hope
She didn't mind looking a dope
So she donned a moustache
With porn star panache
But needs more donations to cope

Ok, so it needs some work but you get the idea!

www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference

Hope….. Out






Thursday, 7 November 2013

A wee bit tickly

Well, I am back!

If you didn't know I have been away, enjoying paradise in Bali. Now, if you haven't been or haven't even considered going you BLOODY SHOULD! It is THE most amazing place and you are all lucky I even came back!


So, on my return I have thrown myself into my next challenge. I am 7 days in and I have come to 2 conclusions….


1) London commuters are the LEAST aware people I have ever encountered. Honestly I think I could walk around with nipple holes cut into my top (and lets face it when it is THIS cold they would be quite obvious!) and I honestly don't think anyone would notice!


2) Fake eyelash glue is not particularly adhesive and I would suggest never to use it for glueing anything of importance like a bookshelf


So, I have been wearing my tash for 6 days and I am now getting used to it. Well, as used to having a moustache as I am going to get. I have found that I am restricted on smiling, talking and eating while wearing it, although this is mostly due to the glue… I haven't quite found the best ratio of glue to stash yet. Too little and it quite quickly peels off which just looks plain stupid! :P too much and the bottom half of my face is frozen. I reckon i will have it worked out just before I have to then change my moustache and the stash:glue ratio is then a problem aaaaaaaall over again!


So, really, other than wearing my moustache and smiling a little awkwardly there isn't MUCH more I can do to get people to donate. It turns out people don't aren't very chatty on the commute and often choose to ignore the fact that I am a female with a moustache?! so, I think I am going to have to bake some more cookies… As you know I am now queen of mass production of cookies and seeing as when I got back from holiday and opened the fridge only to find that i still have 8 blocks of butter I might as well get baking! :) Especially as the wonderful guys at Movember have provided me with some new cookie cutters! :D


So the first day I got back from holiday I donned my stash that morning and headed to the gym...



Getting better at selfies. It's the power of the stash!

So, off I trotted, thinking perhaps my new more masculine facial accessory might get me pumped, give me that little bit of OOMPH! I was wrong. Apparently eyelash glue is NOT sweat resistant and I was about half a set into my kettle bell swings and slowly but surely the right hand side of my cookie duster (by the way my new challenge is also to find as many new words for moustache as possible!) slid quite elegantly down onto my lip. The left hand side was soon to follow. SO unless I resort to superglue, which I am not so keen on, I think that the gym may have to be a moustache no go for the moment. I almost lost it on the victoria line yesterday! I don't think i let the glue dry for long enough!


However, I have my mo-bro Dale to pick up the slack in the gym. He has manned up (well he did after he stopped complaining about the itching!) and is joining me. So between the two of us we are now kind of in competition. Obviously I can't grow mine naturally (THANK GOD!) and am relying on the generosity of the wonderful public to grow mine!


What I would really love is for people to start looking out for me. If you have read my blog and get the same train as me or are passing me in the street then please stop me, take a picture, instagram, Facebook and all other possible social network postings!

If anyone wants to see me in particular (even if you are just checking that I am in fact wearing my stash) I am out at Club49 in Soho on Friday night. I will be donning my PARTY STASH! oh yeeeeeaaaaah! Assuming I can keep it on my face that is and it doesn't sweat off! or worse fall off into my cocktail! 

Now, I am not convinced but my mum thinks that this wearing a moustache is a great way to meet men. I am sceptical. I don't profess to be a know-it-all on what men like and don't like but I am pretty sure facial hair usually isn't on the top of their list of "what men look for in a woman"… well not according to Cosmo! I suppose it is a good talking point but as someone else mentioned… "has anyone been BRAVE enough to chat you up?". yes. brave! I did then mention to him that I rarely get chatted up without facial hair, I think if I was trying to improve my chances I would try chicken fillets and a nice dress BEFORE I try facial hair…

Also, I am not sure how I would fancy trying to kiss anyone with a tash. I KNOW it would give me the giggles like nobody's business! But still, as much as I don't think a moustache will improve my chances I am ALWAYS happy to be proven wrong. I will keep you updated ;)


Ola. My name, you ask?…… I am Hulio. 

Anyway, back to more exciting news……!

I was in a Cards Galore on Baker Street (bit of free advertising here for them!) and to my sheer delight! I came across this: 



That's right… EMERGENCY MOUSTACHES! amazing no!? and they are way better than my original Zorro stash. Plus the one I have chosen pretty much matches my hair colour so it looks soooooo natural! AND because it stays on so well I can leave it on ALL day and evening! no having to have breaks to let my lip cool down. I am growing VERY attached to it. I am concerned I won't want to take it off at the end of November! Perhaps I can have a Christmas Stash OR even go for beardecember? can we make that a thing?! I think it might catch on…..



So fuzzy! Now I know why men want a stash to stroke to think!
So here is where I remind you all why I am doing this challenge.. This month it is not only for The Autism Trust but also for Movember charity, who raise vital funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer as well as mental health. I love our men. The world wouldn't be the same without them so I am just as passionate about raising money for them as I am for the Autism Trust.

In case anyone is wondering how it will work, the donations I get through my just giving page will be split between the two charities for this month. So please get sharing and get as many people you can to read about what I am doing and to donate if they can! I understand that it is getting closer and closer to christmas and people are busy going out and buying presents but even £5, £2 anything! will be GREATLY appreciated! 


The money I have raised so far is already being well spent and I hope this is just the beginning! :)


www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference


Hope (and tash)…… Out 




















Friday, 18 October 2013

I MOUSTACHE you a question

Hey hey everybody!!!

So it's half way through October which only means ONE THING..... Yep, I know you've guessed it and you are excited... It's close to the next challenge... And boy this one is a good one! 

Before I tell you about it I am gonna have a little ramble. Tell you what I've been up to. I won't go on about work or my increasingly ridiculous love life or lack of, but I will tell you about how I spent a WHOLE DAY baking cookies. It turns out I'm not bad at this baking malarkey, and once I get into it it's quite relaxing. Theraputic some would say and I definitely think baking is going to be my chosen hobby for retirement. Yes, I am aware it's a while off but I am already quite looking forward to it. I think I will spend time baking for my grandchildren, maybe the local rotary club (still not sure what they do but I think it's something to do with old people and charity, both of which I am a huge fan of!). 

Anyway, so I made a LOT of cookies (296 to be precise - not including the ones I droppedand/or broke) and then bagged them, ribboned them and spent an afternoon (which turned out to only be an hour due to shopping needs and the rain!) of walking around knocking on doors selling cookies like a stereotypical American Girl Scout :) It was not easy! Turns out the most likely to buy cookies are old people and mums with begging children... Just a thought if you ever do the same. It was harder than I thought and I didn't quite think it through when I decided to do it at 4pm on a Sunday. A LOT of people have roast dinner! I am quite glad that it is still a tradition in many homes (at least in swanley it is!). I mean I am not personally a bit roast dinner fan (gasp!) but I am glad families are still making time for this very English tradition! :) However, I made a bit of money and while telling people about my year to make a difference slowly came to the realisation that a lot of these lovely people probably then went back in to their families and imagine the conversation went like this.. "who was at the door dear?".... "Oh just some crazy girl with a moustache..." (see below)

Sightly concerned a moustache suits me in a old time gentleman way?!


Anyway I suppose I should get back to the original purpose of my ramble today. So, the reason you are getting this blog so early is because I am off on holiday tomorrow for two weeks.... I REALLY want to boast and tell you all about it because I am off to Bali for two weeks to spend girly time with two of my besties in paradise....but I won't do that because there is more important things to be doing... So, November. The challenge....

Moustache For A Month

Yep. That's right. I, Hope Anscomb am pledging to wear a moustache for a MONTH to raise money in aid of The Autism Trust. Now, I know a lot of you are probably familiar with Movember and because I kind of stole the idea from them I will be making a donation to their cause at the end of November and to make this worthwhile, my friend Dale will be doing the "man thing" and growing an "actua"l moustache for Movember. So this month we will be a hairy team and both charities will get our support!

Now, the good bit! 

I am in fact wearing a moustache for the WHOLE month and it will be worn at ALL times. That means on the tube, the train, the work, in the gym, to the pub. You name it, moustache will be present AND IF YOU SEE ME PLEASE SAY HELLO / TAKE A PICTURE! kind of like a where's Wally! :) I know, you are thinking one of two things,...
1. She won't keep it on, she will be too embarrassed
2. She is Stupid

I can tell you that you are wrong on both counts. Although if you are thinking insane rather than stupid you might be slightly correct. 

Now the AWESOME bit for you people. I am not only wearing a moustache but I am varying my moustache. I will start wearing my moustache on 1st November AS LONG AS I get to £1300 on my just giving page before then... It's on £1260 now. So that's £40 I need before I start (and I know you can drum that money up!).
Now it gets better (yes, it IS possible!). So each moustache I have (and there are 5 different ones) will require me hitting a target to wear it. Believe me you are going to want to share my blog and get the money rolling it to "Up-my-Stash". These are the following moustache stages...

£1300 - this starts me off with a gangsta style thin moustache. Quite understated but still noticeable (I am a girl wearing a moustache. ANY facial hair would be noticeable!)
£1400 - this will get me to thick and bushy. I would say this is a Tom Selleck style stash
£1500 - now we are getting a bit more serious with an Ali-G goatee... 
£1600 - this makes me Mexican!! with a fabulous gringo lip tickler
£1700 - the grand finale.... drum roll.... The Holy Grail of facial hair.... Mutton chops and boy do I WANT to get to this stage! 

Evolution of 'Stash

YOU, the lovely public are in charge of my facial hair. YOU have the power to make my chops to be as bushy as you wish. 

I will of course document my moustached journey which will in fact start in Bali, assuming we can raise the first £40 before I get back.... In fact I would love to return as Tom Selleck. If I step off the plane and 20 middle aged women faint after mistaking me for the moustached heart throb I will be a happy woman! So that's the aim and the game folks... So all that's left to say is get sharing, get spending and make me HAIRY.!.!.!

Now you should all know the link by now but if you don't here it is.... www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference

I will see you in two weeks.... And I hope to see you as my new Gangsta Alter Ego 
Don Candy Russo

So today I leave you to get to work to get me moustached! Happy rest of October!

Hope.... Out













Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Can't get enough of your love

Well well well.... What can I say. To be honest I think I am still in shock. I have never felt so lucky and I know it sounds corny but totally and utterly blessed. This weekend was tough, I mean it was also tonnes of fun, but it was definitely tough. I can say hand on my heart, I couldn't have done it without the amazing people that I have to support me. Friends and family and friends that I would count as family all rallied round me and got me through a hula hooping torture!



Every time I looked like I might give up they were there. They were there early and late to help me set up our cake sale, to pack away and generally keep my spirits up. Now hula hooping might not seem like too tough a challenge but try it for an hour or so and you will understand a tiny bit of what I  feel like now. I am totally convinced I have internal bruising!

To see photos from my weekend please have a peek at https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/106453083218567702157/albums/5932291224704391329

But! Now this is a huge but!!! It was worth it! My god was it worth it! With all contributions from sponsors and cake sales we made just over £1000 this weekend! I am absolutely gobsmacked! The generosity was insane and we met so many parents with children who have been diagnosed with autism or as refers. We were so surprised at the number of parents that also did not know about the Autism Mothers page that was set up by the Autism Trust to support and help mothers with autistic children. It is such a fantastic resource where worried parents can share heir problems and get answers from mothers who have experienced the same things. So not only have we raised a lot of money but we have helped numerous families connect and find support they didn't know existed! I don't know who reads this blog, or if anyone bothers reading it at all, but if you are reading this and you have a family member who is autistic and you are struggling please seek out Autism Mothers on Facebook. They can and will help! https://www.facebook.com/AutismMothers

This is the reason I want to do this year of fundraising for this particular charity. To raise awareness. There are so many children diagnosed with autism and these children grow up into adults with autism. Autism is incurable. It can be improved with a lot of time and patience and the correct professional experience but this is lacking in the UK and can be expensive. The Autism Trust focuses on taking these young adults and assisting them in finding their place in the world...


  • Only 15% of adults with autism in the UK are in full time employment.
  • Nearly two-thirds of adults with Autism in the UK do not have enough support
  • At least one in three adults with autism are experiencing sever mental health problems due to a lack of support


These facts are what I want to help change. To make a difference. The money I have raised so far is already going to help!!

The centre in Ascot, Polly's Place, will soon be the proud owner of a new gorgeous arts and crafts table as well as craft supplies for their visitors that come weekly. This area is also used for coffee mornings for mums to get support and discuss issues they are having.

The money is also giving towards helping someone in particular... Alain. He is my age, and dreams of being a video editor. One day his dad walked past Polly's Place and went in in desperation. His son, Alain, cannot get a job. His autism holds him back. His dad didn't know what to do. The Autism Trust took on his challenges without hesitation. This money will go towards assisting him with support from Emily from the Trust to get some experience, a portfolio together and eventually a job, some independence and his dad, peace of mind knowing he did his best to help his son realise his dream. Alain will hopefully be creating a lovely video montage of my photos. As soon as it's ready I will share it with you :)


So, I suppose you all want to know what's next... Well, you are in for a treat!! And all those who haven't donated yet, save your money. You are going to want to save it for my next challenge! ;)

I'm not going to give it all away today, want to keep you in suspense..... But I'm not a cruel person so I will give you a little teaser...... Ready?!



I think you may have guessed!

I will give you more of a clue soon but until then...

Hope.... Out



Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Hoping my hips are up to it

If I could make a nervous sound via typing then I would... But I can't so you will just have to imagine a pained expression upon my face

This said, I am super excited! I think this is going to be an amazing weekend of memories and I think we are going to raise a lot! Probably mostly due to the amazing cakes on their way from friends and family rather than my ability to continuously hula hoop :S but either way it will be raising awareness and money so I don't mind why it's coming as long as it's coming!

I have had THE most amazing response and I tell you there is nothing more humbling than when you have the support that I have got from friends and family. In fact I am not embarrassed to admit that I am pretty much attempting to type this through happy tears right now just because I feel so lucky that I have all these amazing people around me following me in my insane endeavours!

On the other hand those same supportive lovely people do keep dropping in the "you are CRAZY!" Which to be honest I totally understand and I have been thinking the same thing but I have managed to shout down those voices with even bigger ones that all chorus in with "you can do it! Even if your arms fall off and your hips disintegrate you can DO IT!". I, grateful for these voices, even if they are slightly upside down in their support!

So I am not going to plug the event any more today because I think you all get it and of course know what and where and why so I am going to tell you about my trip down to the autism trust on Saturday. Now it started off as a reasonably simple trip. My partner is crime, Jen, and I set off at 12:30 heading for Ascot. Thinking 2pm latest we will be there. Lovely jubbly.... Oh how wrong we were! Now I have been on a motorway before and seen the traffic that stretches miles on he other side of the road and thought "you poor sods! You don't know how long this goes on for and you literally have no choice but to sit and wait..... But HAHAHAHA I am on the other freely moving side..."
Karma. Believe in it people. It gets you eventually.
Jen and I sat in traffic for over 3 and half hours!!! It took 4 and half to get to Ascot. And I know Jen won't mind me saying but there was a detour for the two of us to the side of the road so Jen could pee.  Don't worry, she kept it classy and hid herself in the bushes! We aren't animals!

Anyway after a horrific journey down there we finally arrived at the charming little village of Sunningdale. Gorgeous place. And nestled within it is Polly's Place. This lovely little shop is where they sell handmade gifts and paintings on behalf of autistic artists. This shop supports people with autism all over the UK and in fact world. One boy who's painting hangs on the wall ready to be sold has sent his painting all the way from the USA with the big dream for his art to make it to Paris. It is half way there just waiting for someone to buy it and take it to France :)

It's a charming shop full of charming people. I met Polly Tommey, founder of The Austism Trust. An incredible woman and an inspiration to many and I am sure she won't mind me saying, bolshy, which quite frankly I loved. The centre was filled with gorgeous gifts and paintings, and on the floor Emily sitting packing orders from the online shop going to Sweden!

We had a wonderful time there and before leaving I had to buy myself a cute little bracelet made by one of the autism mothers. With, very wonderfully, a Hope pendant dangling from a pretty rope chain.

So Saturday and Sunday, when I am crippled by bruises and my arms are stinging I will remember all the faces of the kids and adults that Polly's Place is already helping and imagine the silhouettes of those it is yet to help. It will get me through, those thoughts and all the support the lovely people that will be there with me, visiting me and donating!

Thank you all so far and stay tuned because once this is over, it only gets more ridiculous!

So one last reminder.
Saturday and Sunday
8am til 8pm
Pavilion Leisure Centre Bromley
24 hours of hula hooping!
www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference

So wish me luck!!
Hope....... Out

Monday, 23 September 2013

Here we go loop-di-loop

So the countdown has begun!

2 weeks until I attempt 24 hours of hula hooping.

Now, I have to admit I haven't been practising as much as I probably should have. My hula hoop has been taunting me from the end of my bed. The first day I was so good at it I figured I would be fine....! The second time I went to do iti had just worked out my shoulders so keeping my arms up was tough! Third time I tried I found something new out..... Now those who know me know that I am somewhat pear shaped.... (They don't call me white beyonce for nothin')

Jen giving it her all!
This, it turns out, is half advantage, half terrible terrible disadvantage. If I keep the hula hoop above my bum, on a small part of me (probably the smallest) I can keep it going for ages. As soon as it hits my bum it all goes haywire and the hoop heads straight for the floor! It means I am constantly in fear of my own behind!!!

No idea where to put my arms! 

Leith shakin it a goodun

As for my arms and keeping those elevated I am definitely considering designing some sort of ceiling suspended slings?! Although I am afraid of typing "suspended arm sling" into google. I don't think I am looking for what might crop up!

Anyway, this blog is to bring everything back to the reason I am taking on all these ridiculous things... The Autism Trust.
Now I hope you have all ventured onto their website (www.theautismtrust.com) and seen what I am talking about. But I understand you are all busy people and the likes of twitter and daily mail are usually more entertaining commute reads... So I am going to tell you all about it here...

The Autism Trust was set up by a lady called Polly Tommey whose son has autism. She set up Polly's Place where young adults can feel safe and be in an environment where the people there all understand what it is like to love or work with or even have autism.
Autism is a spectrum disorder which means that no two people that have it are the same. It cannot be cured, it can take all forms and is something that families have to deal with 24/7 for their entire lives.
The thing is, everyone reading this blog probably knows someone with autism or someone who has a family member with autism.

Children and adults with autism don't look any different and so they are easy to overlook. But their autism means that many of them have to have 24 hour support. Autism affects each person differently but it seems to affect all people in one unanimous way which is their ability to interact socially.

This means that a lot of young adults find it hard to get jobs and lead a normal adult life. Especially as once children with autism reach the age of 19 there is no support. There are smaller organisations that are able to take on young adults but these are few and far between with long waiting lists. Meaning all support comes down to the families.

Polly's Place gives young adults the opportunity to practice simple skills like using a till, or computers or interacting with customers. Polly's Place helps these young adults gain a certificate proving they have these valuable skills and give them a chance of leading lives where employment is a part of it.

Places like this are so important not only for the children but also for the parents and families. To have a community of other families that know what it's like to live with autism and to have the chance to have a couple of hours of respite where they know their children are safe and are learning skills that will increase their independence.

Polly's Place also helps in other ways. There is a shop and online store that sells pieces created by the children and young adults as well as those who love and support them. Beautiful handmade products created by talented people. The profits from pieces sold go to funding this fabulous haven and supporting the families who need it so much.

 There will be more on stories coming from this wonderful place to come. but for now please look at their website! And on the weekend I am attempting this foolish challenge we will have a selection of bits and pieces from the shop available and hopefully some of the lovely volunteers from Polly's Place will join us.

So everyone, please come and support me and my wonderful team on the weekend of 5th and 6th October at Pavilion Leisure Centre Bromley (You can access through the shopping centre - by Debenhams - or behind the leisure Centre - turn right at boots in the high street).

We will need all your support and cheering and someone MAY have to hold my arms up for a while! And even if none of this tempts you, I am going to look a fool so it may even just be worth a picture! :)

Me and Jen plan to practice a little more this weekend so hold fire for more fun! and hopefully better pics!

Remember: www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference

Hope.... Out




Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Not sure I've thought this through....

Hello all you lovely people

So after the HUGELY successful mobile kissing booth I am upping my game! I mean at the time it seemed pretty crazy but considering what I am about to embark on it was kinda lame!! Standing in a pub kissing willing men for charity seems kinda easy now.... I mean it WAS ridiculous... the sandwich board made peeing REALLY difficult although I suppose it is good practise for when someone insane enough decides to marry me.... Anyway, off topic, as usual!

So this challenge (and challenge is definitely the correct word to use!) is going to be 24 hours of hula hooping. Now those of you sniggering at that being a challenge.... Stop. Think. When did you last hula  hoop?! Me, probably under the age of 11....!!

So I decided on this as my next challenge without really thinking about it but am following through!! And a couple of weekends ago I thought, well, I should probably look at getting a hula hoop, which lead to me trying out multiple hoops in a very small shop in Camden (oddballs if anyone is looking for a hula hoop!). Turns out I am not thaaaat bad but then I was restrained by time due to the fact that other customers wanted to get into the shop.... So I picked my hula hoop and that is due to arrive on Thursday (queue having to get it home on the tube and many evil evil stares!)

So I suppose I should explain what is actually going on with this whole hula hoop marathon!

I will be hula hooping for 12 hours, going home and sitting in a bath of deep heat, and then coming back and doing it all over again for another 12 hours! I am obviously allowed to break for peeing, eating, if I cramp up.. at which point one of my wonderful team will hopefully step in (I have warned them to get practising!).

So fact and figures. Keeping it simple....

Date: 5th and 6th October
Location: The Pavilion Leisure Centre, Bromley
Time: 8am til 8pm and then again 8am til 8pm
Challenge: 24 hours hula hooping


Maybe the gym will erect this of me when I complete my challenge!! 




Now I won't only be hula hooping (as if that isn't enough!) we will also be having a cake sale. Lots of lovely homemade cakes with all proceeds also going to our charity, Autism Trust.
We will have some hula hoops available for kids to join in and have a go! Let's face it, I am going to need the moral support! Although if a child can do it better than me, parents will have to donate double ;)

As well as all this going on, the leisure centre itself has a cafe, ten pin bowling, restaurant, kids soft play area, swimming pool and gym so even when you are bored of my hip swinging hula-ing there is plenty to hang around for!
http://www.mytimeactive.co.uk/leisure/leisure-centres/pavilion-leisure-centre/

Also..... Now pay attention to this bit, especially anyone who has always wanted to get their own back or just generally embarrass me....

I am accepting additional challenges..... If you want to challenge me to do something in particular WHILE I hula you are welcome to. There is a minimum donation of £10 for this. But the sillier the better. Although this has limits!
No nudity
No animal involvement
No risk of me breaking a limb
No fire
You get the picture.....

But if you want to see me try and eat an ice cream or paint a mug while hula hooping then bring it on!!!

I will update you on my progress and practice - queue some long evenings and bubble wrapping all the china at home! 

So until then please read, share, the usual. Get practising your hula hooping and I shall speak to you all very soon! :)

And please don't forget my donation page www.justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference

Hope...... Out
x







Sunday, 1 September 2013

Bathing in the glow

£294.96

That's how much we made in ONE evening. I was gonna build up the suspense and get you all excited and eager for it but I am so darned excited and proud that I had to let it out!

So in one short evening we managed to raise almost £300 for a VERY good cause and this is just the beginning.... I promise there is ALOT more to come!

So I suppose you all want to know what happened, all the juicy gossip, the details, the photos.... Well you have come to the right place!

It all started at our house. Jen (partner in crime), Kels (creative director), Ellise (PR Manager) and I (idiot) spent the afternoon on our hands and knees, covered in paint, glitter, felt and glue singing along to what can only be described as the BEST PLAYLIST EVER CREATED, making my sandwich board.

   
With a quick break for some non-smelly food for lunch (isn't it funny how when you are told you can't have something - in my case garlic - that's all you want!) and then some scrubbing down and glamming up, it slowly started to dawn on me.... What the HELL have I done?!

But I drank my gin and to nice and, once we got the glitter safely out of the house, I manned up and we set off into Bromley... A this point I would like to thank all owe that beeped, waved or "whooped" at us, but next time.... STOP AND DONATE! :)



Obviously, to make the most of our evening we got there nice and early, perhaps a little too early... We walked in and it was like out of a western movie.... All heads turned towards me, it was tense... Well, until my team (Team Pucker Up as they are formally known) then started the "Kiss for charity!"... "It's for a good cause!".... "She's a good kisser!" (My personal favourite) and the donations started coming in and the kissing started.... Now I won't take you kiss by kiss throughout the evening because as you may have guessed from the amount if money I raised I gave out quite a few kisses..... ;)


TEAM PUCKER UP

But I can safely say everyone at O'Neils last night was fab! Great crowd! Great music! Generous generous people! We met some characters that's for sure! Some great girls that are also big fundraisers, an Irish couple that just gave for the pleasure of giving, birthday boys, locals and all in between!




We finished the night on a huge high and couldn't believe how much we raised! I was expecting £100 not almost £300! And a quick big thanks to O'Neils and The Chaps for their support!

This has spurred me on and I am already planning my next event..... I can't confirm yet but when I do, you lovelies will be the first to know so keep reading, keep sharing and keep in mind Autism Trust.

http://www.theautismtrust.com/ 






I hope you all as good a weekend as I had and a wonderful week to come! 


Goodnight


Hope...... Out 





Friday, 30 August 2013

Kiss me...... QUICK

Well hello again.... And so soon!




So, this blog (not going to get used to saying that for a while. Feels too modern and cool!), is about the start of this fundraising challenge I have set myself. To prove that I am not talking out of my backside it is starting this weekend. Tomorrow in fact!


I have decided to start with my original idea of a walking, talking, probably giggling, mobile kissing booth (I.e. me and a sandwich board).


So originally tomorrow evening was Girls Night. Which generally involves cocktails, talking about boys, laughing too much, eating popcorn and then when we are good and tipsy (not drunk, it's a pretty big hill to walk up from our place!) then we head out and wreak havoc on the town of Bromley. This is still the plan.... HOWEVER, the wonderful guys at O'Neils in Bromley have agreed to let me parade myself around their pub selling my lips for a good cause! Fabulous!


So my saturday has taken a slightly new turn.....



The plan.......
My wonderful partner in crime Jen is going to assist me in making a sandwich board. This will start tomorrow afternoon. There will be paints, glitter, drawing, more glitter, maybe some wine (for us), crayons, a little bit more glitter, sequins and just because.... MORE GLITTER!!!! I love an arts and crafts afternoon! 

So once the sandwich board has been constructed (with a price list of course), I get a little bit of dutch courage... (I may be shameless but i dont know what or who I might find myself kissing), having avoided all smelly foods during the day, we will be marching off to O'Neils in Bromley for an evening of god knows what! 

I am hoping my girlfriends will assist in the regulation of kissing. I am slightly concerned I will get limpeted onto by an over zealous pensioner but I suppose it all makes for a good story (and that's what I will keep telling myself!) on the other hand I could find myself attached to a dreamboat.... This is the outcome I want you to all keep your fingers crossed for! For this reason I may have to make some of the pricing "negotiable" ;)


Anyway, have gone slightly off script. 

What I need to tell you all is that I also now have a just giving page. 

Justgiving.com/ayeartomakeadifference


Here is where all you lovely people can support me in all my silliness and fun!


Assuming you are all hip and happening and joined the 21st century ages ago you probably all have Instagram.... Well if you do this is where a photo diary of my adventures will be viewable to all who has any mild interest in my life... I like to keep it simple plus I after checking Facebook (which I think is a pretty good indication) I am pretty sure I am the only Hope Anscomb in the world so you have guessed it, my Instagram is........ *drum roll* hopeanscomb


I know. Don't judge me. I was feeling particularly non creative that day.


So now you have all the information there is only one thing for you to do... Well actually I lied, you really have two options.....

1. Get your arse down to O'Neils and give me a smooch (or watch from a safe distance, don't want to make you feel awkward!)
2. Donate if you can't make it

Even if you don't want to kiss me then you should still pop down. A band called The Chaps are playing and boy are they good! I think it is a testament to how good they are that this is the SEVENTH time I am seeing them! Look them up http://www.youtube.com/user/TheChapsBand





So in conclusion, I hope to see you there, if not don't worry. There will be plenty more opportunities to join in! And throw me any ideas! All still welcome! I can't do the activities and think of new ones all by myself!


Hope....... Out