Tuesday, 29 June 2010

The Gallery...... Emotions

It would have been too easy to take a self portrait of myself looking haggered and worn for this weeks The Gallery..... but I would at least like to portray an outward image of serenity and calm for you all even if I am playing the opposite game inside.
This weeks prompt as all you Gallery regulars will know is a joint effort from Tara and the equally fab Josie from Sleep is for the Weak (who incidentally will both be at my CyberMummy conference on Saturday).

I have been a mum for nearly twenty years. This year I will be thirty eight. My whole adult life has been defined by my children.

I learnt the hard way that you should NEVER take any relationship for granted. My life and soul was ripped apart when my little boy was taken from me. We relished every minute together.

When I'd stopped looking it engulfed me.

For the first time in my life.

Sonny.... the second chance at being a mum that I truly thought I would never get.
The first pink wash.
A baby girl... named after the famous swinging 60's boutique, Biba. That's model girl to you all....
The shining light that nearly never was.... but is my Babetsta and your FunnyGirl
I yell (a lot), I'm grumpy (a lot), I'm stressed (a lot), I work (a lot), I'm bad ass at arcade Tekken and Space Invaders, I have to win at (everything). I love @byYanTo, my children, Cheryl, my manky dog Purdy, Blythe dolls and the fact that I have met some amazing people through blogging who I know will be my true friends forever.
I hate....
Well I said I was going to be positive - so I will save that for another day.
Be happy..... by Biba. xx

Friday, 25 June 2010

What will I be wearing to CyberMummy?????

It's been an odd old week in the dare I call it 'mummy' blogging 'community'.....

Still, I tell myself chin up, breathe in and smile....

Apart from all the negativity - today's good news has still managed to shine through. My hubby.... the very talented Yan To has just had his collection order through from Harrods. Nothing like going in at the top is there?
I am so proud of him and I hope that this gives him affirmation in his abilities that will make him soar.

So to CyberMummy I will be wearing these trousers (as ordered by Harrods...)
Though not with the heels or the skinny tummy......

And.... this Christoper Kane T shirt.

About sums my week up really!

The CyberMummy Gallery Update

Afternoon people......

I have been getting lots of emails from people trying to make sure that I got their CyberMummy Gallery photos..... lots of emails!!!!
So I have put together a list of all of the images that I have. If you sent yours and it isn't on the list please leave me a comment and send it again.
Seeing all of these pics in print is going to be awesome. A very big thank you to Photobox.com for sponsoring and an even bigger thank you to the totally fab Tara @ Sticky Fingers for hosting the comp.
See you all at CyberMummy!

1. Glowstars
2. Rosie Scribble
3. Susan Mann
4. Paris Ankara
5. Chicks in the nest
6. Heartful Motherhood
7. Booperfunk
8. Julesey10
9. New day new lesson
10. Mumra
11. The Good, the bad, the ugly
12. Mother of all adventures
13. Not such a yummy mummy
14. Dawnie Brown
15. A small hand in mine
16. Gingerbread house
17. Parklover
18. A mothers Ramblings
19. Greenie01
20. Some Vague Eutopia
21. Nappy Valley Girl
22. Violet Posy
23. Mummy's Shoes
24. Red Ted Art
25. I'm Counting U Foz
27. Mschelles
28. Cheshire Mum
29. The Bush Babies
30. Slim Lens
31. Living with Kids
32. Mummy Limited
33. All Baby Advice
34. How I Like my Coffee
35. Tilly and Jas
36. Michell Oui
37. Is there a plan B
38. CafeBebe
39. baby Genie
40. Younger and Younger
41. Bumbling Along
42. Muliebrity
43. Live otherwise
44. Transatlantic Blonde
45. Mum Talk
46. Eggs Cream and Honey
47. Yummy Mummy Flabby Tummy
48. Tales from the Village
49. My Mummy Wrote this for me
50. Sunflower71
51. Rude Mummy
52. BubbleBoo
53. Kailexness
54. What did you do today mama
55. Califlorna
56. Kelloggsville
57. And then all I thought about was you
58. Pants with names
59. Do snails need doulas
60. You found Kel's hiding place
61. Deer Baby
62. It's a small world after all
63. jfb57
64. Becky Willoughby
65. Potty Diaries
66. Mums gone to
67. Mummy's little Monkey
68. The Mad House
69. Sandy Calico
70. Bumbling Along
71. London City Mum
72. New Mummy
73. Frugal Family

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

The Gallery Week 16...

Yes I'm being a bit indulgent this week but hey... what would you do if your dog was stolen? Annabel Karmel is my friend. My girls model for her and I advise on her PR on a project basis but aside from that we are friends.
She loves her dog, Hamilton - just as I love my kitty, Cheryl and she is devastated that he has been taken. Please spread the word.... he is a beautiful Samoyed. He's not a puppy, he is a big dog and if a family turns up with a fully grown dog like Hamilton I urge you to let us know. Annabel has put up a substantial reward for information that will lead to his safe return, so if you know anything.... please do get in touch with me, the police, or through Annabel's site.

And so to my pic for this weeks The Gallery.
I took this a couple of weeks ago. Cheryl loves to drink fresh water from the tap and I love this picture. I actually think that it's the best photograph that I have ever taken. I love the clarity of the water and the depth of field.
Proud Mummy-Tips!

A huge thank you to everyone who took part in last week's motherhood theme for CyberMummy. If you would like your photograph in the exhibition at the CyberMummy conference on 3rd July I need a high resolution version of your entry. Please see this post for info. I need pics by 24/6/10.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

The Gallery... please help

I'm turning my entry into this weeks The Gallery in to a plea to help my friend Annabel Karmel.
Annabel's beautiful Samoyed dog, Hamilton was stolen yesterday in Christchurch Hill, Hampstead, North West London. Another dog, a Pug called Winston was also taken.
Hamilton is not a small puppy - he is a big dog and he is a much loved pet.
A £4000 reward is being offered for any information which leads to the recovery of Hamilton and Winston. If you have any information please contact 07764 202553.
Please spread this information.

Monday, 21 June 2010

What are you wearing and other dilema's....

I just about gave myself a heart attack when after popping by the CyberMummy blog I spotted that there are only 11 days to go....
We still have lots of jobs to do behind the scenes but I am starting to get slightly obsessed by what I will be wearing, fueled by all you bloggers who are sharing the very same obsession.
So I'm handing this one out to you all.
I'm going to come back with some ideas later - but feel free to share using the Linky Blog Hop below.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

The CyberMummy Gallery Get your pics in....

I've spent a cheeky couple of hours with my buddies on Twitter tonight.... which has been fab. I have to say that I have missed all of you guys. But there I was minding my own business when I realised that I really needed to get around to contacting all of the amazing entries into this weeks very special CyberMummy The Gallery.
There have been some truly amazing and inspirational entries but in order to make Tara's virtual gallery into the real life CyberMummy exhibition I need high res copies of your pics.
You don't have to submit if you don't want to..... and you don't have to be coming to CyberMummy to enter.
But if you do want to take part you need to email me with your pic. Please use the email link at the top of the page and be sure to include the following information.

Your Name
Your Blog Name
Your blog URL
Will you be at CyberMummy?

And that's it..... Last stipulation is that I need all of this info by Thursday 24/6/10.
Thank you so much for taking part.... I can't wait to see the real exhibition - and if you missed mine.. it is here..... and also here...
If you have any problems emailing - or have any questions please just leave a comment and I'll come back to you.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

See you at CyberMummy

Carly over at Mummy's Shoes has a little CyberMummy meet and greet party going on - so here's me....

Name : Sian
Twitter : @mummytips
Height : 5' 5"
Hair : Blonde
Eyes : Blue
Likes : Vintage shopping, Blythe dolls, Japanese pose dolls, fashion, my new ipad, food & red wine.

CyberMummy ticket... we have a winner...

Two weeks from now it will all just about be over.........
What am I talking about?
CyberMummy of course.........

Tickets sold out this week and I know that there are still lots of you out there who didn't manage to get a ticket for one reason or another.

I blogged a couple of weeks ago about the secret donation fund to help get one more blogger to the conference and well we have a winner....
I know that this mummy has entered every competition going with the hope of bagging a ticket... well now she has.... Susan Mann...... it's you!

Thank you to the very kind people that put their hands in their pockets to help - you know who you are.

Susan - see you in London!

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

The CyberMummy Gallery...

I'm so happy that I managed to pull this off - with big thanks of course to Tara at StickyFingers who kindly lent us this week's The Gallery and also to Photobox who are printing all of the lovely images to create a real life Gallery at CyberMummy on Saturday 3rd July.
I can't wait to see all of your images in print.

The moment I became a mother for the fourth time.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Want to win a ticket to CyberMummy?

It's seriously only 18 days till the CyberMummy conference. I don't really know where the time has gone since BlogHer last July when I suggested to Jennifer that we brought a conference like this to the UK. It feels like time has been speeding past us and we are still beavering away behind the scenes to make it all happen. I just hope that I'm not a nervous wreck come July 3rd.....

I know that there are lots of bloggers out there who really want to come but can't justify the cost of a ticket.... If this is you then take a look at this chance to bag a free pass.
Arthritis Research UK are currently trying to raise awareness of Juvenile idiopathic arthritis. This is actually a group or illnesses which share similar symptoms.

Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (or JIA) is arthritis with no known cause and, as with adult arthritis, it causes inflammation, pain and swelling in the joints.

It sadly affects 1 in 1000 children but most children will have no lasting affect from it and doesn’t necessarily mean that it will develop into adult arthritis.

To help raise awareness of this illness, Arthritis Research UK are offering the chance for one lucky blogger to attend the CyberMummy conference. All you have to do to enter, is become of a follower of @ArthritisRUK on Twitter and retweet the competition message-easy as that! Good luck.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010


It has been a pretty full on emotional day here... Yan was in  London and I managed to eat myself to bits trying to get my head around the racism that had tainted my day.
When he arrived home, the first thing he said was that he had read my post and that he had a reply and would I post it?
So this is racism through his eyes.... and in his words....
Your comments as always are greatly appreciated.


I have lived in-spite of racism for all of my life. I came to the United Kingdom when I was two years old. Just a baby really with the naivety that comes from a lack of life experience. At that time there were a lot less ethnic minorities than is the case now. It was not unusual for me to be the only one in the various schools I went to as my parents relocated several times due to my fathers studies (He has a PhD in Physics). For as long as I can remember I have faced taunts, be it in the form of the "Chinese, Japanese" rhyme, Chinky or other things I don't feel right to share. Most of the time they were said when I had my back to the taunters but that was not always the case. I have been spat on and threatened. Imagine a small boy of five. A boy that looked different from other boys. A boy that just wanted to fit in as most kids do. I tried to teach myself how to make myself small and almost invisible in my mind. The truth is that it only made me stand out more as they now saw me as the timid, soft target, Chinese boy. I confess I was ashamed and angry to be Chinese and wished I could be like everyone else.

As I grew older I learned how to avoid groups of people but inevitably in life there are occasions when it is inevitable. This may sound really stupid but I started smoking because of this. I always lit a cigarette before walking past a group of kids just to show them how tough I was. Face facing the pavement, cigarette in hand and fast walking.

When I went to University  I worked in the bar of a hotel called the Last Drop Village in Bolton. The manager used to call me Mister King. Why? Because he could then add various christian names like Fu and Wan to this. I endured this for three years. Most of my colleagues thought it was very funny when he would call out his name for me in front of customers. In fact some of them joined in. You may ask yourself why did I work there for so long? In truth I was so used to name calling that I didn't think that other places would be any different. I also needed the money. There is also the Chinese way, which means minimal fuss.

So how has this affected me. Ask yourself how would this affect you or your child? I find groups of Anglo Saxons intimidating, be it in a pub, street or recently at a car boot sale. Every time I walk past a group of kids, I expect to be taunted. I think it didn't help that my parents did not integrate me with other Chinese kids, so I had no shared experiences or anything that would have changed my path to what it is today. Chinky is a word which makes me feel sick. People round here use that word to describe a Chinese takeaway. That word has been used in my presence and in conversation without consideration to how I might feel. My mistake is that I accept that and wait for the subject to be changed like a good subservient boy.

Often my only retreat is in myself, so yes I am self reflective. I am introverted. I was nervous of what people will say. I have been accused on many occasions of not being a people person but in truth, how can I be. I am very guarded because it would shock you all to hear where racism exists.

But having said all of that, I am the luckiest person alive. I have a beautiful wife and family who I love beyond measure. I am now a full on fashion designer. I no longer give a damn about being different. Funnily, one of the reasons I love fashion is that it is the only place where I am accepted totally for what I am. The fashion world with all its eccentricities is the only place I have ever felt at home.

So now it has touched my children. Now I am supposed to accept that the world has not got any better?

I don't expect you to understand racism unless you have faced it yourself. You cannot know what it is really like and how it affects the psyche. What I would appreciate is a moment of reflection on how you would feel if your child was made to feel worthless and a freak. I live in hope that there will be a world where differences are celebrated and not used to humiliate.

I have never spoke of this before.

"THEY CAME FIRST for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

THEN THEY CAME for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

THEN THEY CAME for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

and by that time no one was left to speak up."

 Martin Niemöller (1892–1984)

Shocked to the core

A couple of weeks ago, when we were out as a family something happened that I fear has changed my children's view of the world forever and as this chain of events unfolds I become more shocked and sickened by the attitudes of the people around us who have been masquerading as our friends.

It started out as a regular Sunday but as soon as we arrived at the boot sale my husband was being trailed by a gang of teenagers who were hurling racial abuse and insults at him. Being Chinese, this is something that he has had to deal with since he was a child. He is 'expected' to take it on the chin, rise above it, laugh it off. For him, this is a fact of life.

In the car on the way home came shock number two as six year old FunnyGirl said....
"Mummy, I've just realised that when my friends at school sing those horrible songs about me being Chinese and pull their eyes, that they are being really mean to me - just like those boys were being to daddy - and I don't like it."

It transpires that the main culprits are two of her 'best' friends and as I would class their mums as my good friends I saw no issue in speaking to them about it.
Mum 1. Perfect response. We spoke about it, she spoke to her daughter. She explained to her that things you say can be hurtful to people, even if you aren't trying to be mean and she asked me to let her know straight away if it happened again.
She handled the situation respectfully.

Mum 2. Took what I said to her as a personal attack - which was far from the truth. I explained that I didn't want my children to be ashamed of their Chinese heritage.
"But they are beautiful, stunning children - why would they be?" she replied.
Beauty it seems is only skin deep as I was then told that it is perhaps a good thing that they get used to this now...... if they are going to have to deal with it for the rest of their lives.
Children are not born racists. They take on the attitudes and views of the people close to them who mold and shape them. And it was at that moment that I realised how little you actually know the people you call friends.

For the first time, I have questioned if having mixed race children was a selfish decision and that makes me really angry with myself. Our family was created out of love and race or colour was never once mentioned yet it seems that my beautiful children will be defined by it forever.

I know that the six year old girls involved didn't say those things in the same deliberate manner as the teenage boys but it all starts somewhere.
"We can't change the world.." the mum said.
Tell that to Nelson Mandella.

After reading all of the comments to this post I would like to thank every one of you for your support. I needed it today. FACT.
I have an appointment with the teachers at school in the morning - and I will update you to their reaction..... because did you know??? Our school has a zero tolerance to bullying policy.

In addition to this please read this amazing, sad, angry, thought provoking post from my husband.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Pushchair reviews needed....

I'm working with a fab new site called Pushchair Trader that will be launching next week. It's packed full of advice and info on all makes and model of stroller and where to buy them.
It also has a fab marketplace where you can buy and sell the many strollers that you no longer use or have fallen out of love with... and without the expensive fees that you get landed with after an ebay sale.

We need your help....
Would you like to write a review of your current pushchair for us to feature? Full credit will be given with a link back to your blog.
Please leave a comment if you would like to get involved.... 

You can follow Pushchair Trader on Twitter, Facebook and over at their blog.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

The Gallery Still Life

This week The Gallery has really sneaked up on me. Perhaps my travels have had something to do with it but luckily I took this pic when I was in Oslo last week.


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