Joanne & Damian do Raleigh

Exploring life from a different perspective

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£1 Supper Club

Our fundraising event for June was to host a supper club with a difference and we have to thank Thomas the Caterer for coming on board with this challenge.

Live below the line is a charity project where by people live on £1 a day for all their food and drink, for a week, to raise money for overseas charities and raise awareness of how there are still so many people that have to survive on this every single day. This was our inspiration for our event in June. We felt that by us living on £1 a day, nobody would be involved, so we decided to hold a supper club style dinner party with the principal being that the meal was costed at £1 per head. We did cheat a little on the £1 a day, as technically, the evening meal should have been 33p, but we felt it would still be a good talking point at £1 per person.

Knowing the challenge was tough, we asked Thomas the Caterer would he like to take it on for us and he surpassed our expectations. Eleven of us dined on Roast and pressed pork belly, with new potatoes, roasted beetroot and pea puree, followed by Floating Islands with honeycomb. It was delicious and our guests were thrilled to not only get a course that was more than beans and lentils, but also a dessert.

Our huge thanks goes out to Thomas for doing this for us. I can only imagine what he could create for your dinner party if you booked him for a special occasion. We were so impressed.

We raised £270 and to find out more about Live below the line, see the links below.

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Burpee Mile Challenge Video

Well the burpee mile challenge has been completed and I’m so excited to be able to say that!

At first the challenge seemed not that bad, then it seemed the most ridiculous thing I had agreed to, then it was exciting, then it was exhausting and finally it was incredible. I can’t thank those that took part and came to support us enough. It made the morning so much easier.

Be Fitter were the challengers of this event and Martine has created a brilliant video for us, that shows just a snippet of everyone’s achievement, but encompasses the feelings of the day.

I am thinking that Zack, Mubs & Wayne’s timing of less than an hour must be a record and it is undoubtedly, an incredible achievement. I have to say, that I am no fitness lover, so if I can train to achieve a mile of burpees, then it is down to the team of Be Fitter. Hats off to them for motivating me and I’m even still going to classes to keep up the fitness. Even their advice of the ice bath, meant I could walk the next day – now that was a surprise.

Big thanks to everyone for the donations & support. Fitness challenge completed – a big tick – yay!

Joanne x (One very happy bunny)


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Mother’s Day Portraits

I usually work on Mother’s Day taking portraits and this year was no exception, apart from the fact that we did it for charity this year. You will never regret having some laughter captured with your mum and to be able to do this for those that came in is a fabulous experience.

Another big thank you to those who donated so generously to our Raleigh expedition and I have to say you were so much fun. We had wigs & tiaras, laughing, dancing, a princess and a new mum to be with her gorgeous baby bump. All captured for those memories and absolutely priceless. Thanks everyone, Joanne x

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Thinking of Others

I woke up aching this morning due to a ‘mini’ fitness challenge yesterday and was listening to Nick Grimshaw talk about being overseas as part of Sport Relief. This was another example of timing for me, in a good way, that has put me back on track.

If I explain a little further, yesterday I went to take part in a fitness challenge that the team of Be Fitter had organised for their classes. They are designed to push everyone further than usual, in a fabulous, community atmosphere and last anything from 1 1/2 to over 3 hours depending on what level you choose to take.

On the way to the sports hall, I broke down in tears and this sums up how I feel when I take on something new. I am in fact a great big wuss, who over thinks too much and worries beyond what I should at everything in life. The trouble was, that I was seeing this challenge as a lead up to our Burpee Mile and I let fear take over my head. I knew I wanted to do my absolute best on whatever the Be Fitter challenge was going to be, but in taking on the top level, I would be the last to finish and this is horrible for me as I don’t like the attention. I’m not a competitive person and so finishing last doesn’t worry me at all, but to have everyone waiting for me feels awful.

I chose to take on the immediate level as my head wasn’t in the right place yesterday and it was the right decision at the time. Although I am in admiration of everyone who took on the challenge at every level. Even minutes before we started the challenge, I turned to Damian and said that I needed to pull out of the Burpee Mile challenge because I was feeling so sick. Simply because being so far behind everyone else, fills me with dread. I will always finish what I take on, but I just need to take it in my own time.

I have to say, that the fear is just in my head and I couldn’t ask for a better team to train, or do challenges with than Be Fitter. It is absolute credit to them, that I felt a commitment to take on their day, because they give so much to their classes. The atmosphere in the room was amazingly encouraging and they look out for each and every person training with them. They leave nobody behind and even stuck with Damian for every last burpee he needed to do at the advanced level. I’m so proud of my husband for sticking with the top level after everyone had finished. I need to take a lesson out of his book.

I’m not a person who thrives on fitness and if it wasn’t for wanting to stay healthy, I probably wouldn’t show half as much commitment. I’m totally envious of active people who love the challenge and thrive on the buzz of exercise and feeling great afterwards. Everybody is motivated by different things and I will keep going in pursuit of that feeling that fit people achieve. This leads me back to Nick Grimshaw. He is not know for being an athlete, or for taking on crazy challenges like Davina McCall, but he is cycling for 12 hours to raise money for those that aren’t as fortunate as ourselves. Listening to the stories of children in the slums, made me realise why I am taking on a Burpee Mile. It is not about me, but about raising money for the communities that Raleigh work with to develop their futures. A day of hell for me is nothing compared to what many other people take on for charity and certainly nothing compared to what many people live with day in, day out. I can go back to a nice bath and a cosy house and I have to remember to just take it one burpee at a time.

(Yesterday’s Be Fitter challenge is in the phone pics below.

Advance level equated to 2500 reps, 500 burpees & 3 mile run.

Intermediate consisted of 1980 reps, 260 burpees & 1.5 mile run.)

Jo x

 Computer Screen Grab of BBC Radio 1 website Be Fitter fitness challenge written on a whiteboard

Time results of Be Fitter fitness challenge Time results of Be Fitter fitness challenge

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Pet Portraits Fundraising Photohoots

Our first fundraising event went ahead on Saturday 15th February and several dog owners showed some Valentine’s love for their beloved pooches and brought them along to the studio for a mini photoshoot. The day was great, with Hugo, Ollie, Lottie, Jaffa & Bertie all posing to perfection – well there were a lot of treats involved! See just a few of the images we captured on the day below.

We would like to save a massive thank you to those that took the time to book in and come along. Your donation were very generous and very much appreciated. I have my first fundraising amount of £95 now added on to my Just Giving page and it feels great to be off and running now.

Love Joanne x

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Pet Portraits for a Donation

The most obvious choice for me with regards to raising funds for Raleigh International, is to use my talents as a photographer. I was researching something else online and found myself laughing at all the quirky pet images on Pinterest. This made me think, what a fun day it would be to take just portraits of pets for the day.

So here is my offer to all you pet owners out there. Book in for Saturday 15th February for your pet photoshoot and get three full resolution files for you to use and have to cherish your beloved pet. In my time, I have photographed dogs, cats, goldfish, rabbits and a snake. I would love it if somebody from the village wanted to ride their horse down for this!

I love to create images rather than just take them, so bring props and have a look at my Pinterest board for inspiration. It is also worth bringing some pet treats, or toys they react to, just incase we need them.

There will be a donation box / tin in the studio, so your donation is at your discretion, but it all means so much to us, to get us started on the road to fundraising.

Email or call Joanne to book in. 0116 2696494 / 07815187583

Looking forward to Saturday, Jo x

flyer advert for pet portraits for a donation