In June My Babylog and My Weddinglog were featured in Mags4Dorset in an interview with Janine Pulford.
The magazine ran a competition alongside the article and we are pleased to confirm the winner.
Jaqueline de Trafford met up recently with our MD Barbara Fowler, who presented the My Babylog Memory Chest in Jaqueline’s choice of colour – blue and cream – along with a “My 1st Heartbeat” recorder and an “Inkless Hand and Foot print kit” too.
The chest will be on it’s way to Kent, arriving in plenty of time for her nephew Stuart and his wife Karen, who are expecting their second child next month.
Read about more winners and events at Mags4Dorset (Aug 2015)
One of my many dreams was to own a small Hotel by the sea… I realised this dream some years back when David and I bought a run down Hotel in Southbourne- Bournemouth. The Hotel was on it’s last legs and had had all the blood sucked out of it – the only thing it had going for it was it’s Location…Location… Location…with wonderful sea Views a stones throw from the Hotel.
I believed in my dream and went for it 100% by doing one full year at Catering and Business Management at Bournemouth University so that we could hit the ground running with a full hotel on the May Bank Holiday weekend.
I did all the cooking – with an average of 26/28 covers for dinner bed and breakfast – I also did all the laundry late into the night. Of course I had staff but I was very hands on – I had to be – as David was still running the family business. David was brilliant – he would walk through the door with his briefcase – put it down and I would hand him soup plates – he would just turn round and walk into the dining room – besides this he also did all the accounts etc…The entire hotel needed gutting… but I knew given the opportunity I could turn it round. All ten rooms had to be gutted and all ten bathroom/en suites had to be replaced… so quite apart from having a teenager at this time – also trying to gut the hotel out of season and pay back huge commercial loans was a big eye opener.
I have written a book about this experience which I may try to get published when time allows…The best thing about this hotel was and always will be the Location – get that right – then it’s just hard work after that.
Throughout the winter months with rain flooding from balconies into the dining room – we took Pilots from F.R.A at Bournemouth Airport – I don’t think we would have survived without them
Thanks Guys – and for the wonderful memories.
So, as you can tell from the above I am not afraid of hard work and never have been.
I’m a good person and have great compassion – and I’m a good friend with great loyalty. And here we are at another crossroads in life – still with the fire in my belly and the internal motivation as strong as ever.
Siobhan is happily married with a son of her own. David’s Business hit the skids because of the death of the high street… but he’s happy to be out of the rat race. Now we have the time and contacts and money to focus on my dreams. I helped David for thirty years in his business and was always there for him – apart from the hotel years – now its pay back time … which seems fair.
Our Initial Concept.
The logistics of taking the dream from the initial stages and getting help with the design – then having it manufactured in China… this was a huge step and fraught with many, many problems from importing to storage and from marketing to selling.
We made some serious mistakes along the way… but hey… they make you stronger for the second round. If you cannot learn from these mistakes then you should not be in business in the first place.
The cost to date has been heavy in pain and tears and time. We even had to fold the company once and begin all over again because we allowed the wrong person to become involved as a partner.
Now we are on the threshold of a new dream and we are free of any third parties promising what they cannot fulfil.
Everything is now in place to take this to a whole new level… and this time we are ready.
To quote a song that has great meaning…
I can see clearly now the pain has gone…
Let the journey begin…
Earlier this year I managed to get from over 1000 candidates in London – down to the final four in the Baby and Toy category in Maidstone Kent. This was for the recently BBC 1 programme of the same name ‘High Street Dreams’
I have have found a wonderful Designer called Christine – fresh from |Bournemouth University…followed by my brilliant PR & Marketing friend Darren… We also have the best Graphic Designer in Bournemouth- in my eyes – and that is Tamsin- we have two Web Designers…Social Media Guru & lots of strong contacts to help drive this dream forward by creating a ‘Brand’
Since then – an Investor (Angel) has come forward and some amazing contacts who can help create the branding and drive my dream forward.
Little Miss Dynamite…
I have also set up my own group of very talented people… we meet once a month to help each other – one stands out from the rest including me… and she is Sheila… she reminds me of Brenda Lee… in that – what did they used to call her? Yes… ‘Little Miss Dynamite’ and this is what she is… Dynamite.
A sentence or question or problem has not even completed its time before Sheila has the answer … she thinks on her feet and is a problem solver – with her helping me on this journey oh boy…we will no longer be on foot… coach…or train… but we will be flying high through cloudless blue skies – and much more down to earth… but still flying… we will be on the first page of Google because she is a true professional in Social Media and… well just follow our journey and watch this space. I’m both proud and pleased to call Sheila a friend.
I have kissed the Blarney stone three times… so I will always have something to say. BFN.
Presently we are waiting for a Prototype to be make in the UK – this we will then send to China… by doing things this way we will avoid some of the problems which we had last time when we went into production in China i.e. wrong colour etc… this time if we have to go to China ourselves then so be it… just to make sure that we tick all of the boxes this timew round – we cannot afford any more expensive mistakes.
Earls Court BabyShow
We went up to the Baby Show last Friday the 22nd of October – mainly to do research and to make some strong contacts. The most important one which I made was with the Charity Bliss. My plan is to help them when the timing is right.
For if Dreams die
Life is a broken winged bird…
That cannot fly.
Let me tell you a little about my journey so far…
I come from Dublin – and my heart is green without a doubt. You know the old saying… ‘You can take the child out of Ireland – but you can never take Ireland out of the child’ that’s me and very proud of it. I sometimes spell my name Barbragh instead of Barbara.
The reason I left at the age of sixteen was because I came from an extremely dysfunctional family – which in later years became even more toxic – so the emotional intelligence kicked in at a very early age at around 7 years of age when I planned on leaving the family I was born into. I dreamed of living in England and to marry a well educated respectable man – who would not feel ashamed to push a baby in a pram… something that back in the sixties no man would be seen dead doing… in Dublin anyway. I never ran away from Ireland…just the family.
My plan was also to also live in Switzerland and Canada… what makes you think I like the snow!
I worked as a Nanny in Toronto Canada but prior to this I worked in Switzerland as a barmaid cum disc jockey for a winter season in Leysin… Wow! Now there’s a story all by itself. You see the young man who I fell in love with – and still hold very fond memories of today is Alex. I did not know who he was. We worked in the bar at nights together and skied during the day. He kept his identity from me – hoping I would love him for himself and not because his father was the Lord Mayor of Bern. He became the successful lawyer which was always his dream to follow in his father’s footsteps and now he too is the Mayor of Berne – Capital of Switzerland.
Coming from a family of eight the ‘flight factor’ kicked in pretty early as a means of survival and here began my real journey. – See more at: http://www.mybabylog.co.uk/mybabylog/blog-and-news/?start=20#sthash.8Quh60sJ.dpuf