Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Techfest in Aberdeen

We went to this last year and A didn't seem that impressed, so I was surprised she was so keen to go again this year. Anyway, I signed up for us to go with the home ed group, then realised our sessions would start at 9am, and seeing as we're a 2 hour train journey away we decided to go the night before and stay at a B&B. And of course we had to go out for a nice meal because it felt like we were on holiday - so a half day science festival turned out to be rather an expensive trip! Still, we had a great time, so it was worth it :o)
Our group was much smaller this time - 9 kids and 5 adults - and I have to admit I found that a lot easier, and had a good chat with the other parents there. A seemed to get more out of it too, I think this was because it was just a morning with 3 sessions, rather than four sessions with a lunch break in between as it was last year. They had an interactive 'bodyworks' workshop, a 'supermarket science' show with several other groups - lots of fun, and a session with 'Mr. Bug' where we all got a chance to handle giant African snails (slimy) and cockroaches (wriggly), and to meet a lizard, tortoise and a snake.
The whole event is well organised and run so efficiently, very impressive. We're both really glad we went.
Did I get any photos with all those fantastic photo opportunities? No, of course not :o( I was however suffering from sleep deprivation after sharing a twin room with A muttering and shouting in her sleep, and at one point knocking a glass of water across the room with her flailing arms - splashing me, my phone and my book, not a good way to be woken at 2am! So that is my excuse.

A is now talking about having guitar lessons, so thats something I've got to look into. She's finishing with the piano lessons next month, so I'm quite pleased she's decided to take another musical route. Her grandparents bought her a half size guitar a couple of years ago, and she messes around on it from time to time, mostly with her grandad who also plays. Its really nice for them to do this together, and I think he's quite pleased she's decided to have a go with proper lessons, so we'll see what comes of it.

I'm feeling a bit frazzled just now. I decided to try doing a bit of work for an American company who use lots of freelancers to write very short articles for online sites. The pay is really crap, but the format is very structured, so I thought if I got quick enough at producing them it might be an ok way to bring in a little bit of regular income. Well, after spending a ridiculous amount of time on a job that was going to earn me a little less than a tenner, then having it rejected and told to do a complete rewrite, I have come to the conclusion that it is just not worth it. I found it really hard trying to write in the company 'voice', when I am used to writing, don't know how else to put it - from the 'heart'. With all articles you have to have in mind the target audience and what the publication wants in terms of style and content, but you still write from your own perspective and in your own 'voice'. This just felt like selling my soul, and for very little!!
Part of me thinks I'm not really in any position to be so precious about it - I need to make some money! But I just don't think I could get to the point where I'm churning out pieces like a machine, about things I have no interest in, from some corporation's 'point of view'.

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