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Five Brothers, Three Continents, One Race.

My husband wrote this post over on his LinkedIn page the other week and rather than tell you about the amazing adventure he has ahead of him I thought I would add his here..

In just under 12 months’ time I will be facing arguably the toughest physical and mental challenge of my life. It’s something that I've been motivated to do for some time but for various reasons, or should I say excuses, have put it off and off and off.

Early this year my beautiful Gran passed away, (fondly known as Granny Cus with her blue rinse bouffant) which was a catalyst for myself and my brother James to re-assess our priorities and we decided to make a firm commitment to this challenge in her memory. With full support from my wife, the challenge was amped and three of our closest friends were invited. These three friends are also my brothers.

In 2016, five brothers, from three continents will come together to race the toughest foot race in the world: the Marathon Des Sable (or simply known as the MDS). The MDS is a grueling, multistage adventure equivalent to five and half marathons in six days. A total distance of some 251 km (156 miles), it runs through a formidable landscape in one of the world’s most inhospitable climates – the Sahara desert. On top of all that, only water and shelter are provided. Everything else the competitors have to carry with them from start to finish.

One of our cultural tenants here at LinkedIn is to take intelligent risks and it is also our main business theme for 2015. The reason why it is an ‘intelligent’ risk and not just risk is that it comes with a formula: Evaluate upside to downside; consider expected outcome relative to cost; and seek balance.
Evaluate upside to downside: Upside: Competing in the toughest foot race on the planet. Downside: Compulsory equipment includes a rescue flare and an anti-venom pump. Need I say more!
Consider expected outcome relative to cost: It is an expensive race both monetary and the investment of time, but the enduring story we five brothers will be able to share, for me is priceless.
Seek Balance: This will be part of my personal journey, to understand balance and what it means to me.

The next 12 months will be a journey of a life time, where individually and as a collective we’ll test our mental resolve, our physical strength and our enduring bond. We will learn how to train together despite the distance and time, look to understand each other’s motivations to help maintain focus and use it as a time to reconnect, to listen and be inspired by to one another’s stories. One thing that won’t be in short supply during the race will be time.

We all have a Sahara Desert to conquer. It might not involve 5 1/2 days of sand running, but every challenge has its own special meaning to each of us. From how we start it and if we start it, to how we prepare for it and ultimately how we face and hopefully conquer it.

Over the next year I’ll be writing a number of articles on my journey and I’d like to invite you along with me and my band of brothers - to become part of our extended support crew.

For now, I will begin by asking you: what is your ‘intelligent risk’ this year?

You can follow my boys journey or give him a thumbs up because he would love that just here 

Look who has joined the DTLL Team

Really I don't need to sling praise at our newest recruit as everyone I know adores her already and she is a perfect person for DTLL.

We sadly had to say Goodbye to Cherie (she will be back next year sometime we hope) as she needs some time to attend to family needs over those of her creative Mumma needs. Cherie was heartbroken, as were we, but her heartbreak was two fold.. leaving the family and also having to hand over her babies. Handing over the communities she hung out in with us and letting someone else be that voice.

I have taken over part of her role but we needed someone new for Instagram as quite frankly I cannot look after any more than the 3 I have and I just opened one for my daughters new little venture too!!

I knew immediately who I wanted to ask but had no idea if they would be interested. I like to keep my team tight and employ people I already know and love as it just makes things smooth. Some might say it is risky but my friendships are not like that. I don't have many but the ones I do are very open and honest.

I had Sonia ring her and do a hypothetical 'Um, if DTLL were looking would you want your name in the ring? sorta, kinda, maybe?'.. this was met with 'OMG I would LOVE that' and some excited chatter so the very next day I asked her and she said 'YES'.

I messaged Cherie and said I have found your replacement but want to see if you approve.. Lets just say she has a big personality, you know her as a massive Insta fan and she is a really rad Mum.

JAYDE she messaged back with huge exclamation marks, a million smiley faces and thumbs up icons. I was happy, she was happy and JAYDE is happy..

JAYDE as in Jayde, wife of amazing Steve, the gorgeous Iggy and Mint and the co owner of Little Paper Lane.

This Jayde..

So if you don't know Jayde already you can find her on our Instagram here  on her personal Insta here   and sometimes in her shop here .

Jayde is a ridiculously community driven person, she adores small business and is passionate about supporting lovely people so we are very honoured to have her join us and excited to have her radness part of our family..

One a side note and because that picture above is very mature.. this is what Sonia, Jayde and I look like out to dinner together ... bad photo, late at night with maybe a little too much champagne but you get the idea :)

Welcome to the team Jayde, its gonna be fun :)

Happy Anniversary My Love..

There is a reason two people stay together, they give each other something nobody else can 

My husband is not your average bloke.

He is handy around the house, he can capably play Mum when needed, he knows everything about me and still loves me.

Truly if I was forced to find something to moan about it would only be that he works too hard and this leads to far too much sleeping on the weekend.. AND the reason I get grumpy about the sleeping on the weekend is because I am jealous he gets in first so I stay awake in case the kids do something stupid!.

Today is our 18th Year together with 13 of them as a married couple.

We have shared everything from almost day dot, we were living together within a few weeks of dating, renting within a few months and bought our first flat in under a year from first date.

We have grown together and changed each other over the years, we have invested together and built businesses with each others support. Money has been a challenge a few times over but what I have known during all those times is that we would always be ok.

The family unit we are is my absolute ideal and there is no one I can thank for that other than my husband so today I am writing to you Marcus White. Happy Anniversary. I love you x

As we grow..

I am realising as I grow that I need very little in my life.

I have a beautiful family, I have a husband that is always there for me and I love our home, school and neighbours.

I have a few really close friends I adore like they were siblings, I have a few more not so close but just as fabulous individuals that I love being around and my extended on line buddies are just rocking people that make me smile every day.

I don't have oodles of cash, I very much still have to think about if we can afford things, I work long hours and my birth family and in laws are in the UK so life is not perfect but I really do have all that I need.

I don't need designer items.
I don't need to eat out at fancy restaurants.
I don't need flash cars.
I don't need more than I have....

As we grow I think, I hope, we all realise that happiness is not made up of material items it is made up of quality of life.

Are you happy with what you have? 
Do you want for more?

Life Lately..

Has been very much all work..  My beautiful Cherie has taken extended leave from DTLL for family matters and as I don't hire staff easily or by conventional channels my work load has shifted just a tad.
Not that I am moaning as it is really fun to be back in the social media zone again for work.. its a fun and pretty homely place to inhabit..
On my other work projects Kate and I launched our website for The Cult List  we will still be releasing our collections to those signed up to our list before anyone else but once they have made their orders it will be on the website open to all..

Kitty made a cute as a button necklace whilst we were over at Kate's place for lunch and and she had access to the Uber collections.. it started a new little project in our life. We are opening up a little on line store where she can sell her creations and then give 50% of the profits to charity with 50% for her bank account.. details to come but we will be opening up the offer to other kids also (quality assessed of course)

Other than that I have just been hanging with my kids and working on some new projects for DTLL.. small people grow so fast that I decided to have a term off after school activities so that between work and homework we can actually have some time left over for just hanging out..

What have you been up too? Do you have lots of after school stuff happening?