morning everybody, i have no idea what happened last week, i posted my blog on time, uploaded it, and then through a couple of friends became aware that it hadn't been delivered as it should have been on friday at 9.
i have no idea what happened, but for now, here is last weeks blog, which i can apologise for being seven days late, hopefully this week it works.
good morning bigmoose chums, thanks for opening this weeks blog, our weekly offering seems to be attracting more and more readers, which is quite scary, but also great to see that there are more people actually interested in what we're up to, so cheers for spending your precious time reading our stuff, as we're aware of how many distractions there are these days.
since we started bigmoose about a year and a half ago things seem to have accelerated really fast, and there isn't a week that goes by where i forget something that happened, that was actually pretty awesome, so i am going to try to tell you of most of the current stuff that is going on at bigmoose basecamp.
the one thing i omitted to tell you about last week was that at the end of the supertri we gave a family attending the event an early christmas present, and it was pretty awesome, so i will explain.
last year, regular readers will have read that i was lucky enough to be invited to talk about bigmoose at the 100 year anniversary of british ice hockey, which was for me brilliant, and to feel the warmth and love of my fellow hockey players was extremely rewarding.
at that event a fellow team mate kal land, aka lando, who came up to me after my talk, told me he had a villa in florida, and that he wanted to give bigmoose a two week slot free of charge, but not just once, but every year, which was fantastic.
lando is one of life's characters, sporting long silver hair, and colourful hawaiian shirts throughout the weekend, which match his personality, and an acerbic wit that i love, the world needs more landos.
this offer was brilliant, and i set about figuring out who we wanted to give it to, and after a conversation with fellow ex cardiff devils goalie sean ward, who's idea it was to start the supertri, he suggested a family he was very close to, whose son was very ill, and this was actually causing some depression within the family, especially the dad.
we decided there and then that we had found our family, and i told lando, and we spoke about being able to fund some other stuff fo them such as flights, disney tickets, car hire, and possibly some spending money, and came up with a figure we thought we would need to raise.
the problem was we only had a few weeks to raise the money, so i spoke to some of moose's closest mates at a dinner in london, and we agreed that between us we could raise a few quid, so at the supertri we announce and presented the lovely family with their christmas gift, and their response was emotional to say the least.
mission accomplished, well almost.
the small matter of raising a number of thousands of pounds, and we needed to get moving on getting it, as time slips by, and i wanted to deliver on our promise.
so i spoke to one of the organisers of the 100 year event, fellow goalie frankie killen, and frankie assured me we would raise the money with the support of our hockey family, our sport really is very close.
so we hatched a couple of ideas, and started to plan.
however, this week i received a message from another of my old team mates, the gargantuan paul heavey, a six foot plus, ex boxing champ, who hails from glasgow, and on the ice was feared by most men, although i did see a battle between him and moose, which was agreed by all to be a draw, terrifying affair :(
heaves as we call him, sent me a message saying that he had some old hockey jerseys that were gathering dust in the loft, and he wanted to donate them to bigmoose, now for those of you not connected to hockey, game worn shirts sell for crazy money, and i have seen sought after ones at cardiff go for more than four hundred pounds, insane.
so whilst heaves shirts wouldn't all sell for that, they would have a great value to the right fan, heaves was a g.b. star, and is revered in my hometown of cardiff.
this got me thinking.
if we put a shout out to the hockey fraternity, to all see if they could find one shirt to donate, and then we auction them online, we could possibly raise our money needed to send our family stateside, and possibly have a surplus for next year.
heaves sent me through 16 pictures of various uniforms he was going to send, so watch this space to see how this thing builds, but i kinda like the romance of the story, of how moose's pals all rally around to do a super kind gesture, and maybe do it annually, which is a pretty cool legacy.
so that's one thing i forgot, sorry.
i also mentioned last week that we were signing an agreement to collect all food waste from hockey buddy archie nelson's morrisons store, well this week we signed a second morrisons store up, which is pretty amazing, and finally a friend of mine, the lovely sophia al janabi, works for a company who specialise in waste globally, and long story short she has arranged for me to meet with their tesco account manager to discuss food waste, so having seen the list of folk gonna be at the meeting it's gonna be a biggy, so i might not wear my flipflops for that one, though i may.......
so with greggs gig, morrisons and possibly tesco, we are definitely doing our bit to reverse the tide of waste, and we are talking to morrisons about other areas of the country.
the main reason for this is that a longterm bigmoose follower hana blackley who lives in bournemouth has been doing some sterling work in her neck of the woods, and we have been chatting for some time, about how she wanted to emulate some of the stuff we get up to, so it was very rewarding when she spoke to me over christmas to tell me about a campaign that her and some friends had been putting together, and she dropped me a line to tell me about it, have a read.
As promised some (very rough) details about our handout;
We started by investigating a little about the help that's out there for the people of Bournemouth, here is the link for what we found;
probably easier to watch than for me to type it all out? (If you want me to more than happy too)
At the end of the video we asked people to donate anything try could... We had so much! In the end we made bags with all of the following in each of the 15 bags!
- thermal top and bottom
- ham or cheese sandwich
- mince pie
- variety of cakes
- bag of crisps
- packet of digestives
- breakfast bar
- packet of cream crackers
- cuppa soup
- instant noodles
- instant rice/noodles
- chocolate bars
- bottle of water
- bag of sweets
- baby wipes
- lip balm
- dog food
- dog treats
(I'll point out now all of this totalled to us spending less than £5 on each bag!!!!! That's less than a box of quality streets!!!!)
We managed this with donations of money and food. We handed out coats blankets and sleeping bags as and when needed. I was actually shocked at how many said they didn't need anything else! We had so much clothing donated we are doing another collection and handing out in Poole some time in February.
Of course the wether was horrendous! Not so sunny Bournemouth eh! If anything more it made us so much more determined to power on through and help these people as much as we could whilst we could, as fortunately us we knew we all could all get back in our cars, turn the heating on and be cosy again in no time.
The rain got heavier and the wind got stronger as we headed towards the pier (we were told by some others that that's where people were going as it's the most sheltered) you can see the weather here
I can't speak on behalf of the whole team but I know for sure I have been incredibly humbled by the whole experience, I have been extremely lucky growing up so have never known or could have imagined the struggle. The fact that at a minimum we had warmed and fed people for a few days for less than a fiver still astounds me. I have started putting together bags for the next handout and can't wait to help others.
I have you to thank for the inspiration so thank you, and I know for a fact others want involvement as I had countless messages, it's just getting people to take that jump from an idea to putting it into action, everything else then snowballs.
Iv literally thrown this together as I am rushing, so it's all jumbled up but hopefully you get the general jist!
Please let me know if I can be involved with any upcoming new events 😁
Speak soon big J
so as you can see some great effort by h and her gang, and now we are looking to see if we can get morrisons bournemouth to support her, small steps, but all in the right direction i reckon.
wow, we're going for a longest blog vibe today!!!
a quick update on pritch, and his 100k challenge, he has made an amazing recovery from getting hit of his bike by a car last week, and yesterday did a half ironman distance training day, and told me he's feeling fine, although tired, his challenge of thirty in thirty days is really going to be tough, so if you follow him on social big him up, he needs plenty of support, and if you have no idea what i'm talking about have butchers at his website here.
please don't cheer, that is really rude, i have feelings you know!
my friend karen dell'armi, who if you saw our social stuff recently will have seen is gonna take a bit of a step change in her life, and hopefully we (us and you) are gonna help encourage her, be inspired, and tell the world about her.
i first met kda as i call her in 2010 when me and chloe were revving up to climb kili, and she was a part of a group of ladies led by jacquie williams and her group of welsh women walking, which kinda do what it said on the can really, they were a group of women who meet once a month and pay ten pounds, which goes to a different chosen charity every month, to walk up a pre planned mountain route, and the girls had just returned from their successful tanzanian trip to climb mount kilimanjaro.
karen is a very brave woman, and as well as climbing kili she has also been to everest basecamp, no mean feat.
so it was then that karen weighed herself on boxing day 2015, and read 24st 10lb.
now i don't tell you that for dramatic effect, merely to paint the picture.
karen has supported me and my family in everything we have ever done bigmoose stylee, so it was a pleasure that last year she told me she wanted to join our cardiff half marathon team.
pleased, i told her to contact running coach rory for advice.
rory gave her some guidance and told her to lose a stone and call him back, he likes to see that people really want it, and this is his way.
karen never called.
she did, it transpires, lose the stone, but due to a number of big changes in her life didn't feel the time was right to prioritise running in her life, and i agree the time has to be right.
january 14th i saw a picture karen on facebook saying that she had just been for a run, and somewhere in the soil of my mind a seed took root.
fast forward, we spoke, and now, the time is right.
karen dell'armi is going to lose 8st or more this year, and we are going to follow her story, the pain, the joy, and the amazing transition, and i hope this will inspire many people to actually do what they have never believed they could do, and make big changes in their own lives.
so, this tuesday coming kda is coming to meet rory with me, and the journey begins, and i am so excited, as i know that this will be a game changer of epic proportion, and karen's braveness to share it in the public domain is to be admired.
i posted this on fb this week, and the comments, and love shown to her for being so brave are exactly what i hoped would happen, so hopefully we can build and grow, as karen shows us all how you can do anything if you commit 100%.
we will be doing some video updates, and if you follow us please share as much as possible as the bigger the following the bigger the support and impact karen will make.
i told you there was a lot to chat about, sorry if you have gone cross eyed, but hopefully you agree, some pretty cool stuff going down, so please keep following us on social stuff fb, twitter and instagram.
so today me and fluffy head off to the new principality stadium in cardiff for it's new sponsorship launch, and as big supporters of bigmoose, i am looking forward to working with these guys in new exciting ways, with james and pat specifically, least of all collecting the stadium's food waste, which we must never mention we have been doing up to now ;)
finally tomorrow on a personal note i am heading to the cardiff parkrun, which for those of you have never heard of this before, basically is a shed load of people rocking up on a saturday morning at a predetermined place, then running like the clappers for three miles as fast as you can.
not sold it yet?
well i don't fancy it either, i'm a bit of a lone runner, but rory has put this in my mds programme so parkrun i shall do, the biggest problem i foresee is my competitive nature might possibly kick into play, and whilst discussing it with marks and sparks manager simon p who is gonna break his parkrun virginity with me, he told me that rory suggested running like you stole something, and i'm not sure if mr p knew if i was serious or not when i said great idea let's steal something.
anyhoo, i've gotta go, i've gotta go and get my car, which i must tell you about it catching fire, see so much to tell, so little time.
have a great week, and maybe this weekend do something that scares the bejesus out of you, and think of me and simon with a 50" telly running down western avenue.