Wednesday, 11 November 2015

How to Host a Successful Birthday Party in Five Easy Steps

While the message of the popular hit song, ‘it’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to’ resonates for its humour and truth, the fact of the matter is that most of us throwing a birthday party do not want to be putting on such displays of emotion in front of their closest friends and family. 

So, the question is, how do you go about throwing an awesome party that everyone gets a kick out of and talks about years down the road?

Step 1: Have friends

It is seriously hard to throw a good party if you have no one to invite. This does not mean you have to be the most popular kid in your school, or the funniest man in the workplace. You can put together a small, intimate gathering, or throw a massive pool party inviting everyone you know. Figure out what you want, and what you think would be make for a fun time.

Step 2: Invite them when they can come

If you figure out a perfect date that only works for you, and your friends and family cannot make it, then what kind of party will you have? An empty one, that’s what. You might as well spend your time alone playing new bingo sites 2016.

Step 3: Cater to their/your preferences

Chances are you and your friends and family have mutual interests, so get creative with fun activities that everyone can enjoy. This might simply mean getting wasted and dancing your booty off until the sun comes up, a fairly generic (but perfectly valid) way of partying. Alternatively, if you are into singing, why not host a karaoke-themed fiesta. Along the same lines, theatre buffs would probably get a kick out of a murder mystery event, a kind of live role-playing game ofCluedo.

Step 4: Find ways to introduce people if they don’t know each other

If you have a diverse group of friends who don’t necessarily know each other, finding activities to break the ice can help make things go smoother. This can be simply serving copious amounts of liquid courage aka alcohol, or it can mean playing group games where you ask questions about each other to get past the awkward stages.

Step 5: Find a killer spot to host it at

For the perfect party, you will need enough space and amenities. Consider asking a friend to use his house for the evening, or even shop around to rent out a healthy space. If you want to go old school and are on a budget, perhaps your parents’ basement will suffice, but make sure to dress it up nicely with colourful lights and decorations.



Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries Partnership!

When I was a child I was always on my bike. We lived on a "modern" estate which was very soulless, but was actually great for children to grow up on. There was hardly any traffic so we could easily play tennis and football in the road, and I rode around on my bike from a very young age all on my own. I discovered pathways and short cuts, raced my friends, explored and best of all, got a shed load of exercise. These days, I am ashamed to say I cannot remember the last time I got on a bike - I seem to be fearful of traffic, in a way I never used to be. Which is a shame, and something I am at pains to work on, as I would really like the boys to become more confident cyclists. 

I was quite excited then, to learn that     Yorkshire Bank has partnered with Cycle Yorkshire to launch the Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries initiative across Yorkshire (where I live!).          Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries is a 3 year joint project (from December 2014) with Welcome to Yorkshire’s cycling initiative, Cycle Yorkshire.     The aim is to make cycling more accessible in Yorkshire by providing communities with bike libraries! What a cool idea! Very London/New York.          People are encouraged to amnesty their old bikes and drop them off at the designated donation stations, the donated bikes will make up the Yorkshire Bank Bike Libraries and be available to individuals, local enterprises and community groups to borrow, so more people, young and old, can enjoy the benefits of cycling! Genius!

So far Yorkshire's bike libraries are located at:-

o   Streetbikes CIC, Huddersfield
o   BeCycling, Bradford
o   Bradford Trident
o   Yorkshire Children’s Centre, Huddersfield
o   Get Cycling, York
o   Club Doncaster, Doncaster
o   ReVolution
o   Fearnville Centre, Leeds

However donation stations are located here and bike libraries can also be seen here.

Fore more information on the whole project, please click here.

Personally I think this is a really exciting idea and something I am behind 100%. The idea of borrowing a bike in a very similar way to borrowing a book is a wonderful idea, especially as new bikes can be really expensive. We actually bought a mountain bike for our 7 year old and it is WAY too heavy for him to ride, so we could just go along to a bike library and borrow something far more suitable. Win/Win!


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