When you are looking to reinvest your money into a fruitful enterprise, a great place to look is the hospitality sector. Unlike choosing a restaurant, however, think bigger. A private golf club has all the bells and whistles that many premium resorts do, only instead of a waterfront, you have the golf course. Private golf clubs further have many advantages over public ones, namely being in the quality of the guests who attend. Golfers who attend a private golf club are three times more likely to visit to play golf. Many of these players are also very loyal to the club they choose. It is this very loyalty that can make owning a private golf club so lucrative.

 

The Economy is Right

We are leaving the recession that had plagued industry growth for the last few years and the economy is booming. Further, the travel industry has been booming, and will likely continue to boom as travel options become more affordable for the everyday person. By creating an all-inclusive getaway for your members, you can become a staple to their holiday plans, regardless of whether they live nearby or need to take a plane to visit. To achieve this more global reach from your members having custom memberships and great incentives both in terms of rewards and in terms of services you offer you can become a five-star getaway in no time.

 

You Don’t Have to Do It Alone

There is no reason you should avoid investing in an old golf club if you don’t have experience in the area. If you’re wondering what country club management companies do, they can help you market your golf course, organize food and drink, and can offer world-class designs and lifestyles. Rely on the professionals, and you’ll have a quality golf club that your customers will enjoy.

 

Marketing Can Quickly Increase Membership

You don’t sell the sport of golf when you market, you sell the lifestyle. You sell the weekends away at the beautiful golf course, dining on delicious meals and enjoying the serenity and peace away from the busy city. Marketing your golf course by using social media, influencers and other similar tactics can help you gain the attention of new members. It is very hard to tempt loyal members away from another club, but by using social media to speak to the millennial generation, you can gain new lifelong members.

 

Offer rewards for staying, quality service, and beautiful sceneries, and you can make the most of your investment. The beauty of a private golf club, after all, is its relatively stable membership fees which can help you more accurately reinvest and budget your investment for the future. Unlike catering to the public, which relies on marketing for new customers all the time, offering a private club allows you to create long-lasting relationships. Repeat customers are the way to go, and by achieving these loyal members, you can ensure the best investment for your money.

 

 

 

One recreation that everyone looks forward to is a vacation, and when you get to spend the vacation traveling, it can’t get any better. If you are a vegetarian, you might have some reservations about the food that would be available at various places because most of the places can be, unfortunately, mostly meat oriented. That doesn’t mean that you cannot procure vegetarian food at will. You just need the right amount of guidance and some useful tips to solve your culinary problems, and the vacation will become a more enjoyable one. The following particulars are to be kept in mind if you are a vegetarian traveler.

Do thorough research before leaving

Due to the advent of the internet, the world is at your fingertips, so it is always recommended to do some research about the type of food available in the places you are going to visit. You can put in your preferences and earmark certain places and restaurants which you feel can suit your needs. For more information regarding the same, you can visit websites like Vegan Food Lover. You are sure to stumble upon some choicest vegetarian delicacy.

Get accustomed to the phrases used related to food

Once you know the common dialect related to food, it will be easier for you to guide service providers and to especially make them aware of what to avoid. You may be allergic to certain ingredients and learning the local name for them will ensure that you can communicate properly and put your point across more convincingly. Learn the local language for saying phrases like you don’t want meat or egg in your dishes.

Stock some vegetarian treats

You can keep small treats, which are essentially vegetarian, in case you want to munch on them. Banana chips, tapioca chips, granola bars, peanut butter bars, ginger bars, and many more such items are not only tasty but will also satisfy your requirements.

Inform at your accommodation

You can have your meals in your hotel room if you plan to stay indoors during meal times. Notifying your hotel or whatever accommodation you have chosen, about your preferred food choice will simplify matters as they will know your preference and suggest foods that are suitable for you. Moreover, they will be well-informed about the local cuisine and also will be able to guide you better. They might even point out the best vegetarian restaurant for you.

Carry substitutes

You can always carry a small bottle of your favorite soy sauce and ask the food vendor to put it instead of the traditional fish sauce. Furnishing them with a suitable replacement makes it much easier for both of you.

Shop for your own grocery

Many hotels come with a kitchen. You can go to the local market and buy groceries and cook them yourselves. It will be a good cultural experience too.

Being a vegetarian is not a big problem, and if you take the necessary steps, it will take a backseat among the points of concern and the vacation itself will come to the forefront.

 

 

 

 

 

Cuddle Fairy

Keeping your bed clean is something we hear a lot about in the media with horror expressed about the statistics around how often people change in the bed. Here are some tips on how it is relatively simple to keep your bed super-clean and healthy.

  • As with every housework chore, it is important to deal with things quickly. If you spill something on the bed, deal with it immediately even if you are tired because it will be that much easier to tackle. Try to avoid rubbing as this can make things worse and just blot the spillage with a damp cloth.
  • Consider how much paraphernalia you have on your bed. Cushions  and teddy bears may add to a good look but are just extra things to clean. You decide how much cleaning you want to do and make decisions about your interior design with that in mind.
  • Wash all bedding at least once a week. Make it a routine. Housewives of old had days for certain tasks such as baking and you can use this method to ensure those sheets get washed regularly. Read fabric care labels and go for the hottest settings recommended in your battle against the dust mites.
  • Vacuum your mattress taking care the attachments are clean first and giving particular action to tricky edges and corners.
  • If you come across stains, research the benefits and drawbacks of cleaning agents such as hydrogen peroxide and liquid dish soap. Enzyme cleaners are particularly powerful when dealing with yuckier stuff like blood, vomit and urine.
  • Baking powder is your friend when it comes to deodorizing your mattress and you can combine it with an essential oil if aromatherapy is your thing. Leave it on for as long as you practical so that it does its thing more effectively. Oh and using a flour sifter is a great trick for spreading it evenly across the mattress. Now it is time to get the hoover out again to remove the powder from your mattress.
  • Throw open your windows to air the mattress.
  • Moving forwards, flip your mattress regularly, invest in a mattress protector and perhaps some new bedding to celebrate all that domestic goddess like effort.

Keeping your bed clean does not actually take too much hard work once you put your mind to it and get into a routine. Sweet dreams!

3 Little Buttons

Today I am sharing my interview with Ailsa Bosworth, the CEO and founder of NRAS – The National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society which includes a little of her life story and  the reason she started the charity along with tips for women.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

 Describe your childhood and teenage years

I was born and grew up in a small village in Scotland to the west of Glasgow until I was between 7 and 8 when we came south to East Sheen because of a change in my father’s job. So my early childhood was full of freedom to roam the fields and the woods locally with other children from the village.

I am of an age where I remember dancing round the village maypole with coloured ribbons. On moving south, my ‘Glasgie accent’ gradually disappeared and after a couple of years, I went to Putney High School Junior School, graduated to the Senior School and left when I was sixteen after O-levels to attend a language school in Switzerland for a year. I came back fluent in French and with very good German.

I then attended St. James Secretarial College in London for a year to qualify in shorthand, business studies and book-keeping. As a teenager, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do and didn’t particularly want to go to university, so my parents made an excellent decision to send me to Switzerland to study languages (which I was good at) although I didn’t think so at the time!

What was your first job?

So, at the age of 18 and newly out of college I was ready to start my first job. This was as a bi-lingual secretary with the Bata Shoe Organisation. I enjoyed this role, travelled with the organisation and used my French extensively. I stayed with them until I was 20-21 and then started searching for something that could become a ‘career’.

Please tell us about your health challenges

My father had Ankylosing Spondylitis from before I was born and was very ill for most of his adult life, dying early as a consequence of his disease and drug side effects of a stroke at age 62. I started experiencing problems with joints in my late twenties and it’s not clear even now whether this was the very early stages of Rheumatoid Arthritis or the result of a fall down some stairs. When I was 30 I started experiencing a painful and swollen right knee. I did not connect what I was experiencing with my father’s disease, nor with Rheumatoid Arthritis which I probably wasn’t even aware of. It was nine months before things got so bad that I was forced by my boss to see a doctor, and Rheumatoid Arthritis was diagnosed immediately resulting in being hospitalised. Thus began my journey with this horrendous disease.

In the early 80’s the drugs we have today were not available and the way in which treatment of the disease was tackled by health professionals was very different. As a consequence I experienced a huge amount of irreversible joint damage which has led to my having (so far) 19 operations including 2 operations to my eyes. It started in my eyes in the last 10-15 years. I’ve had a foot fusion, both ankles replaced, both knees, both hips, my wrists are fused with metal rods, both elbows and 2 operations to partially fuse my neck which restricts my ability to turn my head.

The disease affects every single aspect of your life. The main symptoms are pain, which at times can be unbearable, even to someone like me who has developed a high pain threshold, fatigue and stiffness. The disease halted briefly whilst I was pregnant and when my daughter was born in 1982, it migrated from my right knee to many other joints including my hands. At times I was unable to pick up my newborn daughter or change her nappy.

I went back to work when Anna was 3 months old, part time initially but by one year, I was back full time. I had a good job by then and had reached Director level in the company I worked for so was in the fortunate position of being able to employ a nanny and enjoy a level of autonomy, supported by a fantastic boss, who, in spite of my disease and having to attend hospital frequently, believed in me and enabled me to do this without penalty.

It took a long time to go through a grieving process for the life I would never get back and to accept that I was ‘disabled’. In my mind, I didn’t feel disabled. I used to ride bikes, play tennis, dance, water ski, snow ski and was generally very active. I quite quickly had to come to terms with giving all of these things up although I have never fully come to terms with the fact I can’t even go for a long walk.

There have been many occasions when I have been subsumed in tears, many times a flare has become so bad that my husband has had to call an ambulance, and many times of being in low moods and being terrified of impending surgery or what was coming next. It has impacted on relationships, although in many ways it has made the bond with my husband and wider family even stronger. For many, many years I have felt guilt (for being less than independent and having to rely on others), there is also stigma attached to having a long term condition, as if you are somehow ‘different’. You feel sad for the things you have lost and at times inadequate and wretched.

However, out of adversity often comes other benefits and strengths and so this has been for me. Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis has undoubtedly given me the ability to empathise more with others who have long term conditions and with people who have their lives restricted in some way.

Who has supported you most?

My husband Brian has without doubt been my rock. He thought long and hard about taking me, my 3 ½ year old daughter and my Rheumatoid Arthritis on but thank goodness he did! I seriously don’t know what I would have done without him and had I not re-married, my life as a single mother and later as a ‘single’ person would have been immeasurably different and less comfortable.

My daughter, like me with my father, has only ever known a mother ‘with RA’. One of the benefits of this, although she may not fully realise it, is that she learned to be resilient. When you get knocked over, you get right back up again and carry on. I think that teaching your children to be resilient is one of the most important things a parent can do. My daughter is now, at age 36, also incredibly supportive and we have a close and strong relationship. Wider friends and family and also my staff in NRAS are also incredibly supportive and practically helpful when I need it.

My heart always goes out to people with this painful disease who live on their own. It is quite isolating and awful if you can’t even get out of bed to make yourself a cup of tea when you are having a flare. Having a partner who is there for you and can do the cooking/shopping and just ‘do stuff’ makes the world of difference.

I haven’t really had experience of getting help from another charity before I set up NRAS and this was one of the reasons for doing just that.

What do you do now?

I am the founder and CEO of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society. I started work on the creation of NRAS at the beginning of 2001 following the experience of being on a clinical trial for a new drug which, for the first time in many years, had an impact on my disease and I was then unable to get access to the drug after the trial. I started with a blank piece of paper, we launched in October 2001 and we now employ 24 staff and enjoy a high, international reputation in the field of rheumatology. I had the honour of being awarded an MBE for services to people with RA in the 2016 new year’s honours.

Tell us about the services and campaigns of NRAS

The National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS), is the only patient-led organisation in the UK specialising in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Due to its targeted focus on RA and JIA, NRAS provides truly expert and wide-ranging services to support, educate and campaign for people living with these complex autoimmune conditions, their families and the health professionals who treat them.

Their vision is to support all with RA or JIA to live life to the full with an underpinning mission to:

  • support everyone living with the impact of RA or JIA at the start and every step of their journey
  • to inform – be their first choice for reliable information, and
  • empower all to have a voice and take control of their RA or JIA

We provide wide ranging services including a free helpline, peer support service, on line and social media platforms for peer support and social networking, informative websites for RA and JIA, policy and public affairs campaigns and activities in all four nations of the UK, many publications available in hard or soft copy, and other support services including supported self-management programmes. We have approaching 50 community groups across the UK which provide a local forum for education and peer support. Everything we do as an organisation is about supporting people to understand their disease as best they can so that they can learn to self-manage as well as possible. We know that those who proactively self-manage effectively have better long-term outcomes. We support UK clinical and academic research and conduct our own social research. We also run training programmes for health professionals. We are involved in the setting of national standards and guidelines (through NICE and the British Society for Rheumatology) and I have been the principal expert patient for all NICE health technology appraisals (the process by which new and innovative drugs come to market in the UK) since 2003.

One of our most recent programmes launched in February is an interactive video programme, Love Your Heart. The interactive video programme is an engaging, educational platform, where people who register (free) will be able to:

    • understand the reasons why RA increases cardiovascular (CVD) risk
    • calculate a QRISK®2 score (a GP recognised prediction algorithm for CVD)
    • learn how to reduce the risk of CVD
    • log progress through a series of behavioural goals

 

Please share your tips for a woman thinking of starting a charity

Be prepared to work harder than you’ve probably ever worked before and make a lot of sacrifices in terms of work/life balance. (My husband and family are used to coming second to NRAS!). If you haven’t got a bucket load of passion for your cause, don’t even start!

Do you have any words of wisdom for a woman facing health challenges

Be kind to yourself. Forgive your body. Always have something to look forward to. Ask for and accept help. People actually like being asked for help, it makes them feel good about themselves. Took me a long time to learn that. Don’t shut your nearest and dearest out, try and talk about how you feel.

Please recommend a book for a woman to read

The memoirs of Dame Stephanie Shirley. She is an amazing woman who really pioneered getting women into the workplace in technical jobs, whilst struggling to bring up a very autistic son.

What website would you advise a woman to check out?

I honestly don’t know the answer to this. The websites I use are all very practical for ordering things.

I struggle with the idea that Amazon probably don’t pay enough corporation tax, but the practicality of being able to order almost anything you want/need from them with minimal clicks and fuss, makes my life easier! So, in the absence of anything particularly ‘women’ focussed, it would have to be Amazon!

Is there anything else you would like to say?

I would just have to finish by saying that setting up and running NRAS has been the most rewarding work of my life. It is humbling and moving to know that you are changing people’s lives for the better and although I have had a challenging and rewarding career in engineering, computers and the audio visual industry in the past, it is the work of NRAS and the support of my family and colleagues that has inspired me and causes me to think almost daily how much I love my life.

https://www.nras.org.uk/

Sharing so openly takes a huge amount of courage so please do consider sharing this post by clicking one or more of the buttons below.

If you would like to share your story on this blog please get in touch.

 

Confessions of a New Mummy

Winnettes
My Random Musings

Infertility is usually a surprise initially and so many of assume becoming a parent will be straightforward and absolutely possible. Today I am sharing an interview with Berenice Smith who set up a website called Walk in our Shoes utilising  her own experiences to help others feeling the isolation of infertility and the mental health issues that can follow.

Infertility

Please tell us a little about your childhood and teenage years.

I was brought up in a sleepy village in Cambridgeshire and couldn’t wait to escape! I have a big, wider family with lots of cousins and now second cousins. It was a loving family but depression affected my mum, as it has me.

What was your first job?

My first job was cleaning cars for my grandparents business. They ran a limousine and private hire car company and I would vacuum up the confetti in the wedding cars! Inside was an artist trying to escape!

Tell us about infertility and how you feel you have handled that life change

I always wanted to be a mum. I had series of terrible relationships and finally met the man who would be my husband. He’s a bit older than me and we were friends for months before we went on a date. We just clicked. I’d already had problems in the past but not long into our relationship I was pregnant. I miscarried a few weeks later and though we were sad about it, we felt we had time. Fast forward five years and we were married. I had another miscarriage and went onto have more, mostly early but a few later ones. We were referred to investigations that ironically took place in the maternity ward of our hospital. They couldn’t find anything wrong. Finally after a few months of monitoring and blood tests we were told IVF was the answer. Only to find there wasn’t any funding in our area. We ended up going privately but this cost thousands and we were doing up our house at the time. Ultimately it meant a lot of the appointments which I went to alone because my husband worked overtime to pay for it My employers at the time were not very supportive either and it was a lonely time. The first cycle resulted in 36 eggs and 27 embryos so I had no problem there but I did suffered with ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (where my body was still responding to drugs). Because of the number of embryos that we had frozen, we had 6 cycles and one pregnancy over ten years. Sadly the pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage. It’s actually impossible to articulate how that felt or the grief. By the time we realised IVF wasn’t going to work, we’d left it too late for adoption because of my husband’s age.

I don’t know that I handled the life change very well. I really did hate my body a lot for letting me down and went through a long time of having a bad body image. My weight has yo-yoed from steroids and all the other medication one has to take for IVF (about 5 types of tablets and 3 injections). I generally get the impression from many that I should be over it, but it never leaves me.

What are you spending your time doing these daysAfter IVF, I studied for a postgraduate degree in graphic design and typography having worked all my life as a graphic designer. I’m working part-time now, running Walk In Our Shoes which was researched and designed during the degree which I speak about. I’m actually presenting at Fertility Fest in May. I also have a design practice called Hello Lovely.

What was the reason you started to blog?

I wanted to address the fear that many men and women have in speaking out. Lots are put off by trolls or less than sympathetic responses. I’ve been told children are not all they are cracked up to be by a relative and that nobody died from not having kids with scant awareness of the mental health problem around infertility. Walk In Our Shoes is a safe space where people can share their stories and to bridge the gap between those who are involuntary childless and those who are parents or chose to be childfree.

How does blogging help you when you are struggling?

If I hadn’t been though all this and had a child, I’d be struggling to say the right words. I hope that I can bust some myths and in doing so it helps to know others have benefitted. I have no doubt it’s hard being a mum but infertility also brings struggles of a different kind and I strongly believe in listening and gaining respect on all sides.

Are you a fan of collaboration with other bloggers and if so, why?

Yes, very much so. I was involved in World Childless Week last year, am a huge fan of Gateway Women and run a Twitter chat called Childless Hour which has many brilliant bloggers in the conversation.

Who has supported you in life?

My husband. I always say that men are the unsung heroes of infertility and IVF because regardless of whether they themselves are infertile or not, they have to sit on the sidelines watching all this. He is my absolute hero, overcoming needle phobia to help me with injections to happily adopting our dog who has also helped me so much. She’s a rescue who was days away from being put to sleep on a council pound so I like to think we saved each other.

What are your words of wisdom to someone who is struggling emotionally?

Control social media not the other way around. I talk a lot about this on Walk In Our Shoes, from encouraging better use of Facebook friend lists to protect involuntary childless friends to having two accounts, not being afraid to remove friends if you’ve drifted apart. Seeking out support groups on Twitter and Facebook can result in a different and more supportive friendship circle. Sometimes it’s easier to have face to face friendships with mums because honest conversations in person can be more emotive and restorative, free from predictive text!

If you could recommend ONE book to a woman what would it be and why?

Dear You: A Letter to My Unborn Children by Tessa Broad. I met Tessa through her blog tour and was lucky to get an advance of this book. I strongly recommend it to every woman, to get  a brave andhonest account of life with infertility. It’ll help anyone who wants to know how to help a friend or relative coming going through IVF or coming to terms with childlessness.

If you could recommend ONE website other than your own to a woman what would it be and why?

Gateway Women. Jody Day is a friend and inspirational woman who has spoken extensively about her experiences and paved the way for the likes of me and many others to go public.

Is there anything else you would like to say about struggling with infertility?

Infertility can feel incredibly lonely because it’s not talked about enough but online you can find your tribe. There are some great support groups out there, many are listed on Walk In Our Shoes. Most of all, if you are a mum, then let your friend lead the way. Grief is so fickle. There are days when I adore having children round and other days when it may be an anniversary (and there are many) when I can’t. Many of us feel this way. Trust that your friend needs space and be careful about not letting each others struggles become a competition.

Sharing so openly takes a huge amount of courage so please do consider sharing this post by clicking one or more of the buttons below.

If you would like to share your story on this blog please get in touch.

 

My Random Musings
Winnettes