Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Awareness, Understanding & Inclusion...

I am very privileged to have been mentioned in the Britmums SEN round-up this month.  The article is currently edited by Hayley Goleniowska a fellow blogger and mum to Mia and Natty (who has Down's Syndrome).  Her blog Down Side Up can be found here.

This months chosen blogs and articles come under the headings Awareness, Understanding and Inclusion.  You can find 'A Different View' mentioned under Inclusion.  The blog post I wrote about the M&S Christmas ad campaign is what gave me the honour of being included.

Happy Tuesday xx

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Christmas come early...

Sunday was probably one of the last nice days of the year.  Blue skies, sunshine, crisp air - lots of layers needed.  Ella spent some time in her new wellies playing with the fallen leaves in the garden and watching with amusement as Granny and I kicked them up in the air....

And as the leaves fall, evenings darken earlier and the weather cools it can only mean one thing... 

...Christmas is on its way!

You may have noticed that the Christmas adverts have already begun to fill the commercial breaks and the shops are full of Christmas fayre.  And this may have passed you by (and that's kind of the point) but this year one retailer is demonstrating inclusion at it's best.  

Marks and Spencer have included 4 year old Seb White in their Christmas ad campaign.  He is not singled out, used as a clever marketing ploy by M & S or given extra camera time - in fact - blink and you miss him.  

He is cool, one of the gang, seriously gorgeous and just happens to have Down's Syndrome....

Seb's picture is also being used in 300 M & S stores so have a look for him next time you're in there.  

Using a child with Down's syndrome in such a high profile campaign may not seem like a big deal to some people, but it is. I don't know Seb but I feel incredibly proud and emotional whenever I see the ad on TV.  He is representing a whole community of children with all sorts of disabilities and showing the nation that he is more alike other children than different.  Perhaps the first step in breaking down the misconceptions held by so many.

It's not the first time Down's syndrome (or other disabilities) has been portrayed in advertising, but for Seb to feature in such a high profile Christmas campaign (in place of Marks and Spencer's usual celebrity filled festive adverts) for such a well known company is pretty much unheard of.

Through the use of social networking sites, blogging, the media, support groups, charities and more the Down's Syndrome community is thriving.  Parents and advocates everywhere are raising awareness, promoting positivity and telling their stories.  And the message that this advert is helping to convey is that our children deserve the same chances as other children. 

To be seen 
To be heard 
To be understood
To be included...
...in every part of our society.  There is still a long way to go but it's a great start by Seb, his mum and Marks and Spencers.   

Thanks to Seb, for those of us with someone in our lives who has that extra special something (whatever that may be), Christmas has most certainly come a little early this year.

Happy Tuesday everyone xx

Seb's mum Caroline has a Facebook page where you can keep up-to-date with his success!
Down's Syndrome - Raising Awareness and Shifting Attitudes

Thursday, 18 October 2012

The Oscars...

You may remember me mentioning that the blog had been nominated and short listed for a Blog North Award...  

We attended the (not quite the oscars!) awards ceremony at the Deaf Institute last night and were very pleasantly surprised when it was announced that 'A Different View' was runner up in the 'best personal blog' category. 

Thank you to everyone who reads the blog and for your support with the public voting for the awards.  The category was a tough one and I am chuffed to bits that I made it so far.  

You can find all the results and links to the winning blogs on the Blog North Awards website.

I am off for a(nother) celebratory glass of wine! xx 

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Miss Polly

Baby girl loves her dolls and she would play with them all day if I let her.  And not just at home... We have major meltdown every week at playgroup when we have to put the dolls away at tidy up time.  

I love watching her in her imaginative world of play... she already has all those motherly, nurturing instincts and more than that she knows exactly what to do with them... She tries to feed her dolls, undresses and tries to redress them, wraps them in blankets.  She puts them to sleep on the floor with a pat, an 'aaaah', a wave and 'ni-ni' (night night).

And to tie in with the baby theme, her favourite nursery rhyme at the moment is 'Miss Polly had a dolly' - complete with actions...



I also keep finding her in the hall, having a chat on the phone.  She even says 'aye' (bye) before putting the phone down...

Still no nearer walking, but she is practising her standing up....

Lots of bottom wiggling as she gets her feet in position

She manages to stand for about 5 seconds

Happy Tuesday everyone xx

Thursday, 4 October 2012

All in a weeks work

I am incredibly lucky to be able to work part time.  I work a mix of shifts - earlies, lates and nights - including weekends.  There is, however some certainty in my ever changing rota and the chaos that is ward work. Due to the days Ella is in nursery I always have Mondays and Tuesdays as days off.  

I say 'days off' - they are generally my busiest days with play dates, grocery shopping, seeing friends, appointments, play groups, running errands.  You get the idea!

My days with Ella are a special part of the week for me.  I realise that she is growing up very quickly and the time I get to spend with her is precious.  Just the two of us. Tuesday evening comes around all too quickly and like any other working mum, I can't help wishing that I could have more time with her.  

She's getting more independent and mischievous by the week...

For now, I am looking forward to lots of autumn fun with her - carving her first pumpkin,  celebrating her 2nd birthday and the magic of Christmas.  Eagerly awaiting cold mornings, fall colours, winter knits, comfort food, fireworks and festive recipes.

Happy weekend everyone xx

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