Leaving, changing, starting, springing

Despite the date on this summary, I am writing it a month after it should have been written (I have been very busy, mostly with voluntary work for a community group), so I will attempt the briefest summary I have written yet for the Week 11 posts. I hope our authors don’t mind – the posts are all worth reading – but if I write about them all, it could take till Christmas to catch up with March and April’s posts. I shall try simply grouping together posts under headings.

The most unexpected post of the week was Karen Hart’s (do take time to read it and see the lovely picture that brought a tear to my eye).

Thank you very much to all who contributed posts. If you feel inspired by any of these posts, our About page tells you what you need to know about becoming a contributor. We also value our members who read, share posts with others, Like, and comment.

The healthcare posts

The Vocational Rehabilitation Journey in Scotland: Reflections from an AHP Consultant by  Jean McQueen on the AHPScotBlog (Allied Health Professionals Scotland) blog.

Simply the Best: Teach Me How by Susan Munro.

Clinical Informatics and service redesign, the HEAT is on by Mark Fleming on the Ayrshirehealth blog.

Relating to communications and public relations

My eight must-reads for 2014  by Ross Wigham.

Social Media Can’t Be Your Only Tool  by Kenny McDonald.

Thoughts on leaving local government by Ian Curwen.

“Launching an Imperfect Service”. An unlikely conversation at the cashpoint (ATM) by Chris Bolton.

Miscellaneous

My 6th Favourite Video Game of All Time by Karl S Green.

Cosplay by Karen Hart.

Is it Spring yet? by Diane Sims.

Pictures – old and new

American Girl  by Richard Overy.

3 pink anemones in an oriental vase by Janet Davis.

Thanks for reading. More backlog summaries on their way!

Janet

Janet E Davis

Frank Sidebottom, 150 Swedish tax inspectors and some physio

Thanks very much to everyone who contributed Week 10 posts – and apologies for my tardiness in writing the Week 10 summary. There was a strong health theme to the posts, not least since we had more healthcare professionals than usual contributing posts this week.

In #Physiotalk meets #PhysioDementia, Elaine Hunter wrote about an online discussion that she and her colleague Lynn Flannigan were hosting on the role of physiotherapy in the care of people with dementia. Susan Munro wrote about some of the best things about her week at work in mental health in Simply the Best: Nurture: helping someone to communicate, working with a student on placement, and helping a group of people to gain skills and be self-reliant.

Samantha McEwan wrote about putting the people requiring mental health care at the centre of their care, asking them what they think about medicine and safety issues, in Reflections of an Improvement Advisor on the Ayrshirehealth blog. Gordon Hay, writing Education and Revalidation for the dghealth (Dumfries and Galloway Health) blog, explained his role as an NES (NHS Education for Scotland) Practice Educator, and the strengthening of CPD (Continuing Professional Development) for nurses and midwives.

Health benefits were the first of Carol Woolley’s The three best things about walking. She also shared some lovely pictures of a specific walk she had enjoyed, exploring her local area. How well do you know your local area? I still find places I haven’t walked in the city after years of living in it. We have some lovely green spaces, and part of the community work I’m doing will include, over the next year or two, encouraging others to get involved with improving specific open and green spaces. I read with interest Dyfrig Williams’s Public Engagement in Audit on the Good Practice Exchange at the Welsh Audit Office blog (and he mentioned My Healthy Town as a nice example of jargon-free consultation). Making connections and encouraging people to participate in things that affect their community or their families is not particularly easy so I am always interested to read about how others do it.

Karen Hart wrote about making unexpected connections, including of the romantic kind at a Frank Sidebottom gig, and community participation (including guerrilla gardening and a Headless Chicken) in Ron Finley, Frank Sidebottom & a Headless Chicken …. I am now wondering if we could possibly get funds for a project in our area that reflects the community’s varied thoughts in a physical form for all to see.

Chris Bolton looked at the assertion that 150 is the maximum number you can have in a stable community: 150 Swedish Tax Inspectors, The Monkeysphere and Stable Work Groups. Things start getting unstable with more than 150 in a group, apparently. I can’t help but wonder if the instability caused by having more can be a benefit, particularly if it sparks off creativity or helps to foster it?

A lot of modern creativity has gone into creating video games, and Karl Green is doing a series of posts on his top favourite games. In My 7th Favourite Video Game of All Time, he reviews a game which has a central character that most of us would recognise (even if not necessarily name) as it has become so popular.

Diane Sims had some lovely illustrations in her post, Not putting away childish things. What are your earliest memories of books? How do you think they influenced you? Diane’s post certainly made me think (see the comments underneath her post).

It was good to read that Kate Bentham is Back to Blog on her own account. I’m always delighted when she offers to look after Weekly Blog Club and to write the weekly summary, but I also have missed her posts on her own blog. I do understand that hers is a job that makes blogging, even on a personal blog, quite difficult. I think she has been doing a great job in getting her content and tone right.

Finally, my own post was about the progress of a still life painting: Half a kiwi and a halved fig. It is very odd to step back from something I have created and to see something that I would not have expected. I think it’s good to surprise or even unsettle myself (and it is oddly very unsettling to see a painting in colours that I had not envisaged I’d use), but I was very glad of the positive response to the painting on social media.

If you want to have a go a writing a blog, then you can find out how on our About page. ‘Weekly’ is an aspiration, not an obligation.

Thank you very much to all who read, retweeted, Liked and commented on the posts this week. Your participation makes you valued members of Weekly Blog Club too.

Janet

Janet E Davis

Summary of week 10 posts

Simply the Best: Nurture by Susan D Munro.
My 7th Favourite Video Game of All Time by Karl S Green.
Public Engagement in Audit by Dyfrig Williams for Good Practice Exchange at the Welsh Audit Office.
150 Swedish Tax Inspectors, The Monkeysphere and Stable Work Groups by Chris Bolton.
#Physiotalk meets #PhysioDementia by Elaine Hunter.
Reflections of an Improvement Advisor by Samantha McEwan on the Ayrshirehealth blog.
The three best things about walking by Carol Woolley.
Ron Finley, Frank Sidebottom & a Headless Chicken … by Karen JK Hart.
Education and Revalidation by Gordon Hay on the dghealth (Dumfries and Galloway Health) blog.
Back to Blog by Kate Bentham.
Half a kiwi and a halved fig by Janet E Davis.
Not putting away childish things by Diane Sims.

Churchill, Lemons, Lists and Sunshine

Well, well, well, you have been busy this week. What a bumper crop of blogs you’ve kindly submitted for the rest of the world to enjoy, it’s really rather kind of you. Thanks.

A couple of our bloggers took up the [entirely optional] theme of colour this week, first was Carol Woolley with Bring me sunshine…  I am holding Carol entirely responsible for the lovely weather we had at the weekend. I think the lovely sunny bag she crafted called to the sun. I hope Carol can blog about similar sunny projects for the next 6 months. Karen Hart also blogged about colour in the wonderful post  Lists, writing and memory Karen writes about how Ray Bradbury used lists to spark off creative thinking through word association. Karen uses this technique to share with us some highlights and memories around the colour blue.

I’m delighted to see that Janet E Davis is painting again, and that she shares the various stages of her work with us through her blogs. This latest painting One and a half lemons and a pepper  has some amazing colours in it, so vibrant and bright, a very cheerful picture, but as Janet explains there were some difficulties getting the colours right, and the danger of running out of paint trying to mix colours. I look forward to reading about and seeing more of Janet’s paintings as they develop.

More food in the post submitted by Diane Sims  in Feeling blue  in which we see a photo of some Salad Blue potatoes which she used in a recipe for potato salad. Although the potatoes might look a little unusual the dish was enjoyed by all who tried it. The colour and texture of the potatoes resonated with the way Diane was feeling when she wrote the blog. 

Another classic photo from Richard Overy of a lost image found at a car boot sale and now preserved digitally for us all to enjoy. The two women in this photo show the fashion of the time, standing in front of a very fancy looking car. I really enjoy looking at these images and Two Ladies and a Vintage Car is one of my favourite.

A brilliant post from Chris Bolton this week who shares with us how Winston Churchill’s famous speech might have been received differently if he’d have used PowerPoint and pie charts. Chris is encouraging us all to deliver big messages face to face, or through video, so that the audience can not only be clear about the message but also see the passion and emotion with which it should be delivered. Winston Churchill and the ‘fight them on the beaches’ Pie Chart  is a very enjoyable read. 

Also looking at communication and getting messages through to the audience is Ross Wigham In Shotgun wedding   Ross, who was larking about in the countryside dressed in tweed, shooting at clay pigeons, reflects on a time when some PR campaigns might have taken a scatter gun approach to hitting the target but now, with reduced budgets and increased data on potential audiences, PR professionals are now making sure the message is getting through to its intended recipient.

Phil Jewitt explains that it can be tricky working for the local authority in which you live. Contributing to discussion and debate as a resident about plans of your employer sometimes needs clarifying so there is no doubt as to which hat (personal or professional) one is wearing. Tonight Matthew, I’m going to be… looks at this potentially confusing subject for individuals contributing as well as the colleagues hosting.  

It’s hard to think that there are many good novels about local government but to celebrate Happy World Book Day, Dawn Reeves blogs about one of her favourite novels which surprisingly has local government at the heart of its plot. The story looks at communities, public/private schemes, flood plains and budget cuts – and was written over 80 years ago. Dawn challenges you to find other examples of novels where local government is key to the storyline.

Mark Braggins is Introducing Hampshire Hub, which is a collaboration of partners including local authorities, police, fire, armed forces and others to be open by default and that any information shared will be available under open licence. The hub is currently involved in various projects including hackathons, aerial photography, open data communities, alongside looking at developing a datastore. A really interesting blog, and project, which will be worth following over the coming months.

A blog from Anne Marshall on the Dumfries and Galloway health blog looks at how to overcome the discrepancy between wanting to deliver a five star service on a one star budget. Anne suggests that we still want to see the best treatment and care for patients but is has to be within reasonable and sustainable limits – and this might lead to having to say ‘No’ and set some Boundaries . . .

Another health related blog this week is from Susan Munro who reminds herself why she started her blog – to highlight the work of a speech and language therapist working in the field of adult mental health. In this blog Susan highlights three best things about her working week, which includes a great success story of a client who hadn’t spoken for 10 years who is now very talkative. Simply the Best  is a very positive read.

When preparing for a new job, as Chief Executive of NHS Scotland, Paul Gray  visited a number of NHS Boards to meet staff and patients. He was inspired by what he found. Then a few days before starting, tragedy hit so many when a helicopter crashed into the roof of a Glasgow pub. Paul then spent time with paramedics and medical staff who assisted during this awful time and was impressed by their dedication, care and humility. Not quite the preparation he had planned but helped him see more than ever that First impressions count.

Someone else making a good first impression is Sarah at Participation Cymru who blogs about her experience of being on the radio for the first time. In Our radio debut!   the team share how they were asked to take part is Diverse Cardiff, a radio show which goes out on the community station Radio Cardiff. With some preparation beforehand, Sarah found that the interview was really just a chat about who Participation Cymru are, the work they do and how others can get involved – and what’s to fear about that?

Nic Davies Uley tells us this week that meningitis kills more under 5s that any other infectious disease, and which on average kills 2 children a week, yet there is a vaccine available. Nic has joined a campaign by Meningitis Now to lobby the health secretary so that the vaccine is available on the NHS. In Bring in the meningitis b vaccine Nic shares how you can join in this worthwhile campaign too.

Charlotte Gibbons recently took part in Sleep Easy organised by the YMCA, to raise awareness and much needed funds for this charity which supports young homeless people in accessing temporary and permanent accommodation. In Living In A Box Charlotte writes about how she spent one evening trying to get some sleep outside. The howling wind, noise and cardboard box for a bed made it virtually impossible, very miserable and appreciative of home comforts.

So that’s your mighty fine lot. They are all worth a read, a like, a share or a comment.  If you want to have a go a writing a blog for week 10, then you can find out how on our About page. I’m going to set you an [entirely optional] theme this week based on Susan Munros post and go with ‘The three best things about…’ and this can be anything, the three best things about your job, your hobby, the sunshine, a slice of cake. You can even share three photos showing that a blog doesn’t have to be lots of text.

If you want to have a go at being the Weekly Blog Club host and curator for a week, and let’s face it, why wouldn’t you, there’s an easy step by step guide on how to on our Admin info page. Go on, give it a go.

Until next time, take care of yourself and keep blogging

Kate x

Kate Bentham

  1.  Lists, writing and memory by Karen Hart
  2. Boundaries . . . by Anne Marshall on the Dumfries and Galloway health blog
  3. Winston Churchill and the ‘fight them on the beaches’ Pie Chart  by Chris Bolton
  4. Happy World Book Day by Dawn Reeves
  5. Our radio debut!  by Participation Cymru
  6. Bring in the meningitis b vaccine by Nic Davies Uley
  7. One and a half lemons and a pepper by Janet E Davis
  8. Feeling blue by Diane Sims
  9. Bring me sunshine… by Carol Woolley
  10. Two Ladies and a Vintage Car by Richard Overy
  11. Tonight Matthew, I’m going to be… by Phil Jewitt
  12. First impressions count by Paul Gray on the Ayrshire Health blog
  13. Introducing Hampshire Hub by Mark Braggins
  14. Living In A Box by Charlotte Gibbons
  15. Simply the Best  by Susan Munro
  16. Shotgun wedding  by Ross Wigham

Lists, writing and memory

A wonderful post from Karen Hart this week, who writes about how Ray Bradbury used lists to spark off creative thinking through word association. Karen uses this technique and the [entirely optional] theme of colour to share with us some highlights and memories around the colour blue.

Lists, writing and memory by Karen Hart

Boundaries . . .

A blog from Anne Marshall this week who looks at how to overcome the discrepancy between wanting to deliver a five star service on a one star budget. Anne suggests that we still want to see the best treatment and care for patients but is has to be within reasonable and sustainable limits – and this might lead to having to say ‘No’ and set some boundaries. 

Boundaries . . . by Anne Marshall on the Dumfries and Galloway health blog

Winston Churchill and the ‘fight them on the beaches’ Pie Chart

A brilliant post from Chris Bolton this week who shares with us how Winston Churchill’s famous speech might have been received differently if he’d have used PowerPoint and pie charts. Chris is encouraging us all to deliver big messages face to face, or through video, so that the audience can not only be clear about the message but also see the passion and emotion with which is should be delivered.

Winston Churchill and the ‘fight them on the beaches’ Pie Chart  by Chris Bolton

Happy World Book Day

To celebrate World Book Day, Dawn Reeves blogs about one of her favourite novels which surprisingly has local government at the heart of its plot. The story looks at communities, public/private schemes, flood plains and budget cuts – and was written over 80 years ago. Dawn challenges you to find other examples of novels where local government is key to the storyline.

Happy World Book Day by Dawn Reeves