Top Five Social Media Moments of 2012

Social media has become such an integrated part of society it has become hard to separate it from daily life. Yet it has been involved with the biggest stories in the news and has even been making the headlines itself. Here are the top five social media moments from 2012.
1. Kony 2012
2012 had to be the year social media took on a whole new level within society. A short video produced by Invisible Children Inc. set off a social media storm unlike any we had previously seen before. Although released in March it hit different countries, regions and even communities at intervals but it was not long before everyone was talking about Kony 2012. Despite your opinion on this particular campaign you cannot deny how it highlighted the power of social media.
2. American Presidential Election
The showdown between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney turned into something of a popularity contest earlier this year. Celebrities such as Beyonce, Ne-Yo and Mariah Carey made their opinion clear and so did the rest of America by sharing Instagram photos of their voting ballets. Both took to social media to argue their side. One of the most famous arguments must have been Clint Eastwood’s “Invisible Obama” speech and of course the President’s causal yet assertive reply via Twitter made his message clear: “this seat is taken”. And when indeed President Obama proved his seat definitely was taken with his tweet of ‘four more years’ proved to be the most popular tweet of the year with 810,000 retweets.
3. Royal exposure 
The royal family has always been involved in the media, whether willingly or not, but this year we literally saw more of the royals than ever before. Of course there were those pictures of Price Harry stripping off to a game of strip billiards, as you do. While the British press had to fight for these photos we already saw and shared them thanks to the internet and of course social media networks. And let’s not forget the controversial images of Kate’s, umm, privacy being invaded. If the royal family keep stripping off at this rate we’ll have to bring out a bingo card, surely it will only be a matter of time before we get a full house.
4. Consequences with Twitter 
This year saw some Tweeters showing their mean streak but the most noteworthy part was people fighting back.  The infamous and unkind tweets regarding Tom Daley’s father during the Olympics was met with a karmic storm from his loyal fans and from Twitter itself.  More recently Lord McAlpine got caught up in the Jimmy Savile scandal. When tweeters got carried away the former Tory treasurer took it personally and threatened to sue all those involved. But he did give a chance for tweeters to redeem themselves by offering an alternative: apologise and pay only £5 and he would forgive and forget. It definitely made us think twice on tweeting opinions so openly.
5. The Future of Social Media 
MySpace made a supposed come up this year but it hasn’t yet managed to keep its place alongside the modern social media giants and 2013 doesn’t look to be its year either. More recently we saw an old friendship go sour with Twitter and Instagram. While Twitter had plans to buy the photo sharing service Mark Zuckerberg beat them to it. Not to be outdone Twitter is said to have several changes to compensate for this loss by focusing heavily on image sharing. However changes to Instragram’s policy saw a decrease in users over the Christmas period. This new policy will come into effect from the 16th January 2013 unless users delete their account before this time. If not they can sell your photos to be used for TV adverts, websites and even brochures with nothing going towards the photographer, this includes your beautiful photos of lunch and landscapes but also family members and children. Think twice before your next Instagram upload.

Top Ten Ways to Keep Warm For Students (and Other Poor Sods)

We’ve all been there, cold student halls or not being able to afford the heating in the middle of winter. Sat around the house fully clothed and in your bed? Well here are some tips on how to survive the winter months without breaking your bank.
1. There is nothing worse than waking up in the middle of the night because of the cold. Make sure your bed is warm. Curl up with a hot water bottle. Try and put one in your bed roughly half an hour before you go to sleep. Also put a blanket over your bedding, it keeps heat in better than just a duvet.
2. Get out – can’t afford to keep the heating on then go somewhere warm. Go to the library after all there is a chance you’re meant to be there already. Study free? Then go to a shop or café you like. If there is a group of you then go to one person’s place and all chip in for the heating bill.
3. Use your laptop as a heater by having it on your knees or on your bed before you go to sleep. Either way it will keep you toasty and warm as well as entertained.
4. Exercise – work out to a fitness DVD and get fit and healthy at the same time as working up a sweat.
5. Have a hot shower or bath. Just make sure you wrap up warm afterwards and lock in that heat, don’t let it escape no matter how warm you feel at the time.
6. Have a hot drink and try warming yourself from the inside out.
7. Use your hair-dryer to blow warm air all over your body. In my university halls it was so cold my flatmate and I used to get both our hairdryers on full blast and use them instead of fan heaters.
8. Curl up with someone on the sofa under a thick blanket – after all another person is better than a hot water bottle. If that fails put a DVD on to try and distract yourself.
9. Make sure your house and room are as well insulated as possible. I’m not talking about double glazing more like stuffing scarfs along window frames if you feel a draft.
10. Cook – being in a kitchen with the oven and hobs on is one of the cosiest places to be even if it is just oven chips and chicken nuggets. Even boiling the kettle adds in some extra heat.
Don’t forget the basics; keep doors closed to keep the heat in and curtains and blinds also help with this to a certain degree. If you’re really struggling with your heating bill then make sure you chose the cheapest and best deals out there. E.ON and N-Power are some of the cheapest. Pick the most effective time of the day to put the heating on – first thing in the morning and the evening is usually best.

New Year Resolutions

New Year resolutions. They always spark debate…and jokes.

More and more comedians are bringing up this age old tradition of changing or improving yourself.

And my online CV is one of my resolutions along with writing more on all fronts.

Hope you like the new look and keep updated on all my work.

Have a happy 2013!

 

Sarah Turnbull:

Add your thoughts here… (optional)

Originally posted on FEROCITY:

It used to be that I was one of the few people to have seen this short documentary  but now its finally available for all. While I felt super important and honoured to be part of the exclusive club who had seen this video I am beyond excited for you all to see it.

Learn about the slaughter of rhinos in South Africa and those fighting against it at all costs. Watch the video, like it, share it and help save this endangered animal.

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Bucket List Before Twenty-Three

Bucket list is no longer a rare term however it is not something you would usually associate with a twenty-three year old. But when life alternating circumstances occur the usual rules go out the window.

The concept is simple, twenty-three things to do before turning twenty-three. Sounds easy right? Think again. Grace Collins is the founder of this bucket list which has grown more famous over time. It may have started out as a bit of light-hearted fun but it soon turned serious with a significant birthday. Grace’s fame first came about after she created a blog to tell the story behind the list. Even though there has been some media attention since then, none have yet caught up with her after the list has been finished. TURNBULLTEXT interviews Grace and speaks in-depth of the highs and lows of the list. “It all began with my housemate when she was doing her UCAS application and I realised I wanted to do something with my life. I said I was going to make a list of things I wanted to do. But the reason behind twenty-three things before twenty-three is because my brother passed away at that age. It felt strange coming up to the same age and being in the same point in my life.” Grace’s brother, Oliver sadly passed away in his sleep in March 2006 when he was just twenty-three years old, hence the importance with the number. “Ever since that day my life has been completely different. It is very true that you don’t know what you have got till it’s gone.” Oliver suffered from a cardiac arrest and died suddenly in his sleep, neither he nor his family were even aware he had any heart conditions. He died from Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) which is an umbrella term for the many different causes of cardiac arrest in young people. Cardiac Risk in the Young (C-R-Y) is a charity which works to raise awareness and provide support and counselling for those affected by SDS. Their ultimate goal however is to have heart-screening done for every young person between the age of fourteen to thirty-five to help uncover any undiagnosed heart conditions. It may seem like a rare condition but statistics show twelve young people die from SDS a week. A spokesperson from C-R-Y explains the charity’s aim “to work with cardiologists and family doctors to promote and protect the cardiac health of our young by establishing good practice and screening facilities devoted to significantly reduce the frequency of young sudden cardiac death throughout the UK.” One of the main services the charity provides is counselling and helping those who are struggling with the loss of a loved one. Grace explains how they helped her “I heard about C-R-Y from day one, someone actually got in touch with us and asked if they could be of any help. They paid for me to have my heart screened in London because it’s important to make sure it’s not genetic. I feel like they took me under their wing.” Grace soon became fully involved with the charity and helped raise enough so they could organise a free heart screening day for 130 people. The idea was if something was picked up by the screenings then the information was passed along and further tests were organised. “It actually picked up some serious conditions in three people in my family. One of my cousins had to have an operation and one will be on tablets for the rest of his life but if these tests had not been done then they could have died. So it does show that it is all worthwhile.” C-R-Y speak of Grace’s involvement: “Grace’s approach to fundraising has been innovative and great for raising awareness of the charity. She has regularly updated her supporters with posts to her blog about the events she has been doing and why she has been doing them. Through her blog, she has been invited to interviews in local press and on local radio. When she speaks about her fundraising it really is inspiring and entertaining to listen to.” While heart conditions in the young were once rarely heard of this year the world was shocked when two cases of SDS appeared in the sporting world. Bolton footballer, Fabrice Muamba made an almost miracle recovery after collapsing from a heart attack on the pitch in March. Despite his heart having stopped for just over an hour the footballer has made a full recovery. Just one month later Italy’s Piermario Morosini died from a heart attack on the pitch in front of thousands of fans. Both players were under twenty-five and these unfortunate events highlight the risk of unknown heart problems in the young. If any good could come of this it would be the world wide awareness people now have for SDS. It is the aim of charities such as C-R-Y to spread the word about SDS. Chief Executive and Founder of C-R-Y, Alison Cox MBE, says; “We feel it is time re-launch this powerful campaign to help emphasise the importance of screening and the fact that so many of these tragic cases affecting fit and healthy young people could have been prevented. These twelve faces are just a “snap-shot” of the problem and we need to keep up the pressure and engage support from as many MPs as possible to ensure we can prevent other families from experiencing similar tragedies.” With the death of her older brother Grace begin to take on more adventurous challenges and tried to fully embrace life. “He was the typical big brother; protective, loyal and loved to spoil me. We were not angels by any means but I could never imagine my life without him. I don’t think I will ever face that reality. But if Oliver taught me anything it was to live life to the full. I have always aspired to be like him because he seemed to have no fear. Whatever he wanted he fought hard to get, and I always carry that with me.” Even before the list the twenty-three year old Brummy decided to take life by the horns and do more daring things. With her friends going off to university Grace decided it was time to do something for her and so created a list of things she has always wanted to do, facing her fears and visiting different places.

The things on the list include everything from a bungee jump and holding a tarantula to buying a pair of designer shoes and going to Paris. “I owe it to Oliver to live my life to the full and have no regrets. So I had a fantastic idea to make a list of everything I want to do to remind myself I am alive and I only get one shot at this. Life is not meant to be easy but people can get so swept up in money, work and materialistic objects they forget you’re meant to be happy. You work to live, not live to work.” Grace has set herself the task of completing her list before her twenty-third birthday with the rules that everything must be done or booked by her birthday. There also has to be at least one of her friends to accompany her and provide moral support and a photograph to provide evidence each challenge has been done. Writing a list of things you want to do may sound easy enough but it is a completely different matter when you have to do the challenges in reality. It is an impressive feat to remain focused and interested in something that goes on for a year of your life. Yet Grace had made a promise to Oliver she would complete this list and do more outgoing things and enjoy life. There is also the blog to be taken into consideration. Even before any other media heard of Grace’s task word of the blog spread via social networking sites. The blog has regular followers from family and friends to those who just happened to come across it. Either way Grace’s is the kind of story you can relate to no matter who you are or where you come from. It is a story about loss, grief, courage and inspiration. Something which is consistently mentioned in the comments and emails left on the blog “It has motivated me quite a lot when people got in touch so I started to put my email address on there and I definitely did have a lot of people contact me. Some people had been in a similar situation and say I’ve heard about this and I think it’s great what you’re doing for the charity.”
TURNBULLTEXT caught up with Grace while she completed yet another task on the list – visiting Scotland.
Sarah: So let’s talk about the list. So what made you think of the things that are on there?
Grace: Some of them are just things I’ve always wanted to do and others I got from other people’s bucket lists. Like people say you should always watch the sunrise on New Year’s Day. I actually read somebody’s blog and thought it was amazing. It’s something I’ll tell everybody to do. Some were things Oliver really loved, like sport. So I’m doing a triathlon next Sunday. And with Paris, I cycled there in 2008 for C-R-Y but I only got to spend a day there and I really wanted to go back. Bits of the list were facing a fear like with the bungee jump and the tarantulas and others were just things I thought I’d never do like going on a blind date (laughing). I wouldn’t do that one again! I should of known he was a little odd when he text asking if I wanted to go ‘riding’, quickly followed by ‘riding a horse’. There are challenges on the list as well, for example with the charity race I wanted to push myself and even trying to get on the telly was difficult. I was lucky because we just happened to get tickets with Strictly Come Dancing and then we had to get on the front row. It’s kind of a mixture; it’s strange if I look back now, I think I would have changed some of them and put some harder things on there.
S: Like what – what did you really want to do?
G: One that I wanted to do was arrange a flash mob. Some people have said some of the things do seem a little bit easy but obviously at the time I was doing them as a personal challenge and it did have a different meaning in the beginning. And now I feel with each task I have to make it as interesting as possible for people and even have a twist as well.
S: So you came to Scotland to complete another task on the list and give a speech for The Compassionate Friends?
G: Yes, they gave a lot of support to Oliver’s dad. What they do is offer, I wouldn’t even call it counselling, but somewhere you can speak to other bereaved parents. So my speech was about the sibling point of view. And taking a positive from within a negative and how I tried to change my outlook on life.
S: Did you feel nervous at all?
G: I was absolutely petrified (nervous laugh). I’ve never done anything like that in my life before. I struggle to talk to my friends sometimes with what’s happened so to speak to that many people! But it was amazing, the sense of achievement afterwards and the feedback I had. After my speech I had a man in a kilt bring me flowers.
S: So you’ve seen only one man in a kilt?
G: We saw quite a few men in kilts, last night, in a bar, they were very friendly. (Laughing). They were on a rugby night out so it was just coincidence that we saw them. But they were real Scotsmen we found out. (Cheeky laugh).
S: Have you got anything planned for when you finish the list?
G: A lot of people ask me this and at the time I thought I would just be relieved to be done but I have to admit it has been the best seven months of my life. And it has shown me how much you can do if you put your mind to it. I thought I would have done these things over seven years not seven months and knowing I had a deadline it has been fantastic. And I recommend everybody do a list of crazy things they want to do, even if it’s one thing and think, right, by the end of the year I’m going to make sure I’ve done that. So I think afterwards, I’m not going to make a new list, but I might do a new blog called ‘life after the list’ and it won’t be so pressurised to write so regularly but I’ll be living my life a certain way after what I’ve learnt and hopefully it will still inspire people. I’m still living life for the message I’m trying to get across to people. And I have signed up for the London Marathon next year. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do and I’ve applied before but I didn’t get a place so I’ve really got my fingers crossed for this year. I’ve always wanted to go travelling as well so that could be something that’s next and I could do a blog about that too.
S: If you keep on at this rate you’ll end up climbing Mount Everest!
G: (Laughing). Yeah maybe one day – I’ll never say no. I think that’s the problem I have, I can’t say no to anything. I’ll always do it, with the speech as soon as I heard about it I thought that was my worst nightmare but I gave it a go. The more against something I am or the more I know wouldn’t normally want to do it then the more likely it is I will do it. No matter how hard you think it’s going to be or how difficult, the feeling afterwards always overrides the fear that you had before.”

Speaking to Grace was truly inspirational. Here is a young woman who has suffered a great loss which is not usually felt by one so young. Yet she has not allowed it to get her down and has determinedly learnt from the painful experience. As a result the twenty-three year old has completed her list of twenty-three challenges, fears and things she has always wanted to do. Not only has she taken on an incredible task but she is determined to spread her message. “If by the end of my twenty-three things I have inspired one person to do something they have never done before, given a few people a laugh after a hard day and raised some money for charity then my job here is done! So I ask everyone on Wednesday 19th October, what would have been Oliver’s thirtieth birthday, to do one thing they have never done before, not matter how big or small. You only get one shot at life and if you live it right, once is enough.”

While Grace’s birthday was in June and she has successfully completed her list there is still on more thing she has booked but not yet done. Grace has already organised a trip to go to New York in October. This is especially significant as the city holds many memories for her and Oliver. TURNBULLTEXT would like to congratulate Grace on all her hard work and finally finishing the list. However I am sure this will not be the last we hear of her. Read in detail about all the tasks on the list on Grace’s blog 23B423.blogspot.co.uk and look out for her new blog ‘Life after the List’.

MoonWalk for Charity

Imagine the scene: thousands of women with their bras on show descending on a city near you. No this is not the opening of a new movie dreamt up by The Hoff but a reality – at least for a couple of cities in the UK. In fact this is a walk organised by one of the coolest charities going: Walk the Walk.

Most charities chose to encompass either the serious or the light-hearted; this is a classic case of the bake sale vs. the triathlon. While this does not describe the dedication of participants it has up until recently been the only option for fundraisers. Yet a new form of fundraising has recently become popular. A mixture of the two can be seen in numerous forms, from the fancy dress costumes at the London Marathon to the Great British Duck Race. Yet none truly encompass both the serious and fun like the MoonWalk. While the term moonwalk may call up many vivid, even cheeky (sorry for the pun!) images for some, the walk actually gets its name from the time it begins: midnight. A time when thousands of men and women are released all dressed with bras purposely on show to support breast cancer charities. People are encouraged to participate for their own wellbeing and health as well as raising money for charity.
Many of the events hosted have two different walks people can participate in; either the full-moon. (Don’t feel too guilty about letting out a little giggle here, I know I did!) which is 26 miles or the half-moon which, you may have already guessed is half the length at 13 miles. Walk the Walk claim: “Anybody can do it no matter their fitness level.” It is a grant making charity which means instead of taking the money as a charity and spending it on a single need the money is spread out to cover several charities including cancer care and cancer research.
Just to add a little pizzazz to the already quirky event, other than running round a city at midnight in just your bra! Each year has a unique theme to inspire the design of bras and costumes. Edinburgh played host to the Moonwalk again this summer this time with the theme of Midnight at the Oasis. And the bold power-walkers did not disappoint as people put their imagination to the test and came dressed as belly dancers and Arabian Princesses.

TURNBULLTEXT speaks to Jayne Diego, a recent participant in the Moonwalk: “We were crazy and went for the full marathon 26.2 miles. That was the bit that scared me the most but I trained a little and also signed up for a 15 mile moors hike for the air ambulance in Scarborough in March.” Walks take place all over the world but the main UK Moonwalks are held in London and Edinburgh. “The buzz of walking round the gorgeous city of Edinburgh with the added quirk of being in a bra…how many people can say they have done that?” Jayne excitedly claims. Although the twenty-three year old has been lucky enough to be a stranger to cancer there are always others to think of. “At times I think it was crazy to suggest it but my friends and I had been looking for something like this to do for a while and it’s a fantastic cause that raises money for breast cancer research and rehabilitation projects.” On the night the MoonWalk suffered from the typical Scottish weather but event went ahead without a glitch. Jayne describes the midnight powerwalk “It was so difficult but really rewarding. The weather was awful to begin with, as soon as we got to the start site the heavens opened and we were soaked through. When we started we were in good spirits and the rain cleared up eventually. We had great support from friends and family. My mum called us to cheer us on during the early hours which really helped.”
Scotland’s capital even joined in with the fun by bathing its most popular attractions, such as Edinburgh Castle, in a pink light to show support for those taking part. “The people of Edinburgh were fantastic cheering us on, one guy managed to get us singing along to Lulu’s ‘shout’. Even the police officers helping with the traffic were good. I remember one police guy clapping us on and he was kind of hot so we had a giggly girly moment that made us forget about the hills!” explains Jayne.
The charity started out as a group of friends trying to raise money for breast cancer with their bras on display in the New York Marathon but it soon turned into something more serious as the founder, Nina Barough discovered she personally had breast cancer and a tumour. As a result a team of friends and family powerwalked the London Marathon with their bras on full display in a show of support. Entering a team the following year the group found they were more popular than previously thought as they had more participants than they had places for. As a result the charity created a separate walk in which those who missed out on a place could powerwalk from midnight to seven in the morning, finishing at Trafalgar Square where the London Marathon runners were waiting. This became the first official MoonWalk and with sponsors it soon became a charity in its own right.
For the past fifteen years Walk the Walk has held its quirky and unique MoonWalks to raise money and awareness of breast cancer. While Walk the Walk is an international charity most of the money raised in an area stays in that area. Edinburgh often hosts the MoonWalk and raises awareness and money for Scotland as a whole. A spokesperson from the charity claims: “This iconic night has brought together ordinary men and women, not just from Scotland but from all over the world, to achieve an extraordinary personal challenge, whilst raising money to improve the lives of cancer patients in Scotland.” This will help Scotland’s cancer care as figures released in 2007 showed cancer survival rates in Britain were some of the lowest in Europe. Further studies show a Scottish female cancer patient’s survival rate is nearly 15% less than a patient in the US. This is because 1 in 8 women in the UK are expected to experience some form of breast cancer, and statistics show this type of cancer has accelerated faster in Scotland than anywhere else in the UK. Reports also show 42% of all breast cancers could potentially be prevented by reducing alcohol intake, making changes to diet, becoming more active and maintaining a healthy weight. However it is not all doom and gloom as Scotland has gained progress in this area. A new Cancer Research UK Centre in Glasgow has become a world leader in new development of treatments tailored for individual cancer patients. Scotland also has the only breast cancer clinic which delivers same day results to two out of three women. Organiser and founder Nina Barough speaks about the Edinburgh events “The MoonWalk Edinburgh is a very special night, not only for all the wonderful Scottish energy that unites us in this common bond, but I love and cherish the fact that we are making such a difference to the lives of so many people in Scotland with cancer, not just in the main cities but from coast to coast including people living in the Highlands and Islands. It really is a night when everybody can help to make a difference, not only towards their own health but the lives of many. It is probably the most dynamic and awe-inspiring night that you could experience.” This year’s event was the seventh Moonwalk to come to Edinburgh and on the ninth of June the walkers assembled in Inverleith Park to a festival atmosphere. While the Moonwalk did not begin until midnight, the walkers were encouraged to come along earlier to a small festival just for them. The idea of which was to get them pumped and ready to go. The events organised are famous for their emotional environment as many take part for family and friends, or even because they’ve suffered personally from cancer. Jayne explains how she remained motivated “It was fantastic to be surrounded by survivors as they made it worth the pain.” The unique walk causes it to remain a popular fundraiser with the Edinburgh events bringing in over sixteen million pounds over the last six years alone.
So what’s next for the young Yorkshire woman? “I think you would have to bribe me to do the Edinburgh one again because even though the city is gorgeous the hills are killer! A few weeks later I did a 6 and a half mile midnight walk for St Michael’s hospice in Harrogate that looked after a colleague who sadly died from cancer two weeks later. I will do more challenges for charity in the future. I have two in mind to do before I die, walk the Great Wall of China and cycle across Cuba. The next challenge will hopefully be the Jane Tomlinson run in York in 2013 but I need some serious training for that!”
For the future Walk the Walk wishes to reach out to more countries with the MoonWalk and spread the message Jayne seems to have taken to heart: ‘Rise money, raise awareness, get fit and have fun!’

 

Fashion Diabetes Bracelets

Amy Murphy from Tennessee is the owner and designer of Gratify Designs. A small company which offers handmade leather accessories and one of their biggest sellers are medical Alert Bracelets for diabetes. For those of you who do not know most people with diabetes, especially children and young people, wear medical ID bracelets to inform others of their condition. This is useful in the event of an incident where the person who is diabetic would need medical attention and is unable convey their condition. “I have a friend whose daughter is Type One diabetic and she requested a leather wrap bracelet with her medical condition. The common medical alert bracelets are usually not very stylish. I offer bracelets that compliment your look and style.” While some may argue the helpfulness of a personalised bracelet with diabetes it can be a small piece of happiness while going through a difficult time. Sutcliffe gives her opinion on the matter “I think it is a fantastic idea, being Type One diabetic at twenty-three I sometimes feel like I am alone, no one understands what I am going through and for a short period of time I had an implant inserted into be stomach connected to a box to test my blood sugars every few second. (continuous blood glucose monitoring), this made me feel very self-conscious and felt like people were looking at me judging why I was walking around with a box attached 24 hours a day. I think this gives young girls a great opportunity to feel comfortable with their condition.” And Murphy agrees “I think it helps tremendously! What young girl wants to wear a bracelet that doesn’t look stylish? I believe my bracelets provide relief from the common clumpy diabetic bracelets.”

Travel to the Lake District

The Lake District is not a truly fair name to describe one of Britain’s most beautiful national parks. As the biggest in England it is a popular holiday resort for people seeking to soak up its natural splendour and wonder just as the famous poet William Wordsworth was once did. Home to the biggest mountain and the longest lakes in England, there is no end to things you can do in this awe-inspiring, poet creating place of natural beauty.

Getting here
Trains run regularly from London and Scotland dropping you right on the doorstep of The Lakes. Driving may be lengthy but is well worth the views you’ll find and the stories you may discover.

Getting around
Buses are also regular but why stick with something so boring when you could hike, abseil, horse ride or even catch a boat to get around. Row your own or hop on one of the many boat tours running on Derwent Water.

Where to stay
The Langdale Chase – overlooking Windermere Lake is a historic and majestic hotel crammed with character and personality and its team is no exception. The staff are known by the locals for their quirkiness and most importantly family spirit. Stay and bask in the endearing views and atmosphere created by those who love to work here. http://www.langdalechase.co.uk

Armathwaite Hall – is a former stately home which mixes the traditional and contemporary. With all the rooms looking out onto Bassenthwaite Lake, the gardens, Deer Park or the courtyard you are promised a spectacular view no matter what.
http://www.armathwaite-hall.com

What to do
Whether swinging in the tree tops or enjoying the great views it is guaranteed there is something for everyone.

Go Ape – Is more literal than you would imagine. A tree top adventure even Tarzan would envy. After a safety brief you are set loose on zip wires, swings and crossings all in the trees of Whinlatter Forest Park which is so high in places you can see Scotland.
http://www.goape.co.uk

Whinlatter Bypass – Want to see some of the best views around but aren’t the hiking type? No problem! Before you get to Whinlatter Forest Park you’ll pass the best kept secret. A layby with views over Bassenthwaite Lake and if it’s a nice day there will even be an ice cream van waiting just for you.

Oxley’s at Underscar – Halfway up Skiddaw Fell and surrounded by 40 acres of stunning wood and parkland you are forgiven for mistaking this as Snow White’s house with all the wildlife attracted to the gardens. Inside the tranquillity continues as a team of expert therapists deliver a range of treatments including unique Australian Aboriginal healing.
http://www.bluefishspa.co.uk

Something Special
Muncaster Castle – Learn about the castle’s colourful history and its ghosts. Dare to spend a night in the haunted tapestry room or visit the World Owl Centre the world’s leading owl conservation organisation. See what life is like for a meadow-mole and explore the maze.
http://www.muncaster.co.uk

Air Ventures Paragliding School – take a tandem jump or learn to fly and see The Lake District like never before. Fly above the fells and make some truly amazing memories in one of the top flying areas in Britain.
http://www.airventures.co.uk

Country Adventures – is a passionate organisation running adventures ranging from walking, mountain biking and even swimming in mountainous pools. Each activity is run by expert guides so you can enjoy the outdoors in a safe environment.
http://www.countryadventures.co.uk

Diabetes the Medieval Illness

Over four million deaths occur globally every year due to diabetes. It ranks in the top ten of disability and if no action is taken then the number of people with diabetes is predicted to more than double by 2030.

These may be shocking statistics yet they are true. These figures come out after the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) reveals its global diabetes plan. The plan includes raising awareness of diabetes and World Diabetes Day (WDD) so it will be recognised all over the globe. WDD raises awareness of how diabetes is escalating around the world and how to prevent the illness. It was founded by IDF and the World Health Organisation (WHO). It is celebrated on the fourteenth of November to mark the birthday of Frederick Banting who was instrumental in the discovery of insulin. The wider objectives of the plan are to prevent diabetes where possible or to at least try to minimise complications. A spokesperson from WHO states “the overall goal of the Diabetes Programme is to improve health through stimulating and supporting the adoption of effective measures for the surveillance, prevention and control of diabetes and its complications.” So why is it important? Diabetes often falls into one of those medical conditions you are not truly aware of nor appreciate unless you know someone or are personally affected by it. I was the same until a good friend of mine found she was Type One diabetic. Felicity Sutcliffe is twenty-three years old and works in the fashion industry, designing clothes for teenage girls and young women. In fact there is an interesting story with the timing of how she found out she was Type One diabetic. “I found I was diabetic in February last year, the day I had my interview to work for my first fashion design job! The symptoms I had prior to being diagnosed were; drinking up to fifteen pints of water a day, sleeping for about thirteen hours a day yet having no energy and I lost around seven pounds in weight.” These symptoms may sound scary but this gives you an idea of just how severe diabetes can be. As Type One diabetic Sutcliffe explains “I am aware of so many complications which can appear because of diabetes and the lack of care to yourself.” As you may already know there are two main kinds of diabetes; Type one and Type two. Type one, as you may have already guessed; is the more dangerous of the two but is luckily less common. This is where your body attacks the insulin-producing cells. Medical professionals often describe this as a key and a lock. Insulin is the key that unlocks the door to the body’s cells. Once the door is unlocked glucose can enter the cells where it is used as fuel. In Type One diabetes the body is unable to produce any insulin so there is no key to unlock the door and the glucose builds up in the blood. It can develop at any age but usually appears before the age of forty or in childhood. Type One can be treated with daily insulin injections, a healthy diet and regular physical activity. Sutcliffe reflects on her daily routine “I have to inject myself four times a day with my insulin pens. This includes one time with each meal throughout the day, and one injection at night which is my longest lasting (24 hour injection). I must always eat balanced meals with carbohydrates, so it works with my insulin correctly ensuring my blood sugars stay stable throughout the day. Occasionally my blood sugar levels will dip meaning I have a hypo.” A hypo is just another term for hypoglycaemia which simply means your blood sugar level is low. It is usually associated with diabetes and is an often occurrence. While the symptoms can begin relatively mildly as slight shaking and feeling light-headed it ultimately leads to your body shutting down if left untreated. Luckily your glucose levels can be brought back up by ingesting something sugary such as a glucose tablet. “I have to carry glucose tables, fruit juice and sweets in my bag just in case, which is shame.” Sutcliffe laughs. Type Two diabetes is similar but not as serve. It is more common in people over the age of forty. But it is becoming increasingly popular in children, teenagers and young adults as obesity becomes an increasing problem in society. Type two diabetes accounts for 85 per cent of all people with diabetes and is treated with a healthy diet and increased physical activity. In addition to this, medication and/or insulin are often required. “I have recently attended a carbohydrate course which has enabled me to count all the carbs in what I eat and has enabled me to manage my own dosages. This had made me feel like the condition is more manageable, however I know that I will never be able to go out and drink sugary cocktails as this will affect my blood sugar within the night and can have an effect for days afterwards which can make me feel very ill.”
The Federation has been leading the global diabetes community since 1950. Despite the severity of this situation the global plan to fight diabetes was only founded last year. However the IDF claim this is the best time to strike up a worldwide plan to raise awareness of the risks and dangers of diabetes. For the first time world leaders are all at the same point in their awareness of the dangers of diabetes and therefore open to discussion. Many issues with diabetes are caused because the small blood vessels in the body can be damaged by high glucose levels. The heart, eyes and kidneys are the main organs affected by this. This can result in cardiovascular disease, amputation, kidney disease and even blindness. Frighteningly “people with Type Two diabetes are over twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke as people who do not have diabetes” claim the International Diabetes Federation.
It is not my wish to scare anyone and I have to admit these conditions can sound quite dramatic here. However many of these results, including dying from diabetes are not an often occurrence in countries with medical help so readily available. Death is obviously the worst case scenario and would mainly occur if the condition went untreated. “Sutcliffe talks about the on-going difficulties “I was quite shocked with just how serious it is and how it impacts your life, however I knew I had to get on with it as it wouldn’t go away. As time has gone on and I need more insulin now as my pancreas is ‘shutting down’ I have found myself becoming quite resentful of it as every aspect of my life is affected by this and even an enjoyable task such as going on holiday becomes hard as different weather conditions affect the speed in which the insulin is taken into the body.” While the overall picture may seem quite negative, there are treatments available to help lessen most of the conditions associated with diabetes. Although there are some upsetting statistics in relation to diabetes you have to keep in mind just how this matter has been overlooked. However the International Diabetes Federation has a global plan in place to help tackle the issues in this area. Even World Diabetes Day will have more of a focus to help raise awareness of diabetes. If you have diabetes this message is just for you from Sutcliffe: “You are not alone! Take all the care and opportunities of courses and treatment which you are given, this will build on your knowledge of the condition and will give you more confidence to lead a happy and healthy life without too many interruptions.”