Sunday 10th April 2016

Oh my goodness WHAT a weekend!  Paul and I had been invited to the Serenity weekend yesterday  (a Hearing Fund event) where Merrill, Justin and Kristi Osmond would be attending.  What a fabulous occasion, which had been extremely well organised in beautiful surroundings. A huge thank you to Tracey and Pauline and anyone else who helped to make things run so smoothly.

On arrival I had the chance to have a one to one chat with Merrill Osmond about my swimming challenge and share one or two personal things which meant so much to me. What a lovely man he is.  I could never imagine Merrill getting upset with anyone because he has this extremely calm persona about him that just makes you feel at peace with the world.  I have watched him from a distance this weekend, how he takes time with each person, looks them straight in the eye and gives his full attention, despite what’s going on around him. He’s such a humble person, and really really genuine.

And then there is Merrill’s son Justin. Like father, like son. My inspiration.  I had an opportunity to talk to Justin and Kristi last night about my efforts to swim and fundraise, and how excited I am to be doing this. I have come up with a t-shirt challenge… those I mentioned on Friday which DCLT have funded.  This is what is going to happen.  Justin is to take back T-shirt number 1 and get as many of the Osmond family to wear and sign it, and have a picture taken with it on.  This will be brought back to the UK for the Hearing Fund Gala week in August.  Here he is, the first Osmond to wear their’s:

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T-shirt number 2 is my responsibility.  My aim is to get as many famous people to wear it and this is where I need some help.  Do you know a famous person I could have wear my copy of it?  DCLT are going to help me, but I am up for ANYONE you know who people would recognise 🙂 If this really takes off, as I hope it will, in the hope it will raise the profile of the Hearing Fund, I will create a collage and see if I can make mine as impressive as the collage made of the Osmond’s t-shirt!!  Both will be auctioned off at the Gala for the Hearing Fund UK in August.  With four months to achieve this, the Challenge is officially on!

My first famous person is the one and only Joanne Milne. Joanne rose to fame a couple of years ago when the Youtube video of her hearing for the first time after receiving cochlear implants, went viral.

 

The first celebrity picture!! 😀

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This lady is truly inspirational. She is about to head out to Bangladesh to record a BBC documentary which will be on our screens soon. It’s such an exciting time for her, and for us to watch her progress.

Apart from the t-shirt challenge Justin and Kristi and I got to talk about several other ideas, some of which needs to be confirmed.  However, the most amazing thing came out of our discussion…… Justin will swim my final mile with me at Armthorpe Leisure Centre, with Merrill, his dad there for support!!!  How crazily awesome is THAT?! The village of Armthorpe are going to go wild at this idea!!  I am hoping that with Justin’s example, that several of our local sporting teams, including Doncaster Rovers, will be excited to take part, particularly at the Swim a Mile with Me event.

Justin also asked me a favour. In his Presentation about his 250 mile run in 7 days, he was going to talk about the lessons he had learned from his experience.  He asked if I would come back this morning and share my story.  What an honour to be asked. As we hadn’t planned to stay over, we drove back home and had about 4 hours sleep before driving back again to be there for 9.30am.  Some might think it a bit crazy to do that when we hadn’t expected to be there this morning, but I simply felt very humbled to be asked, and that actually to do this for Justin was the least I could do.  It also has added to some wonderful memories to a fabulous weekend.

Tomorrow I will be sharing a page about a young 10 year old boy who is deaf, who has directly benefited from the Hearing Fund UK.  We met him last night, but I would like tomorrow’s page to be dedicated to him.

I also will share with you my experience at BBC Radio Sheffield and the chance to appear on ‘My Life so Far’ slot with Rony Robinson at 12 noon. Famous T-shirt packed 😉

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