My Top Three (slightly bizarre) Christmas Videos

It's so near to Christmas that I can dig out those bizarre YouTube clips that I've been saving for a 'special occasion'.  Here are my top three slightly off-the-wall Christmas videos (with some extra music links for you at the end).

White Christmas

I've shared this numerous times and even though it's so obviously a set-up, this version of White Christmas with Ant & Dec and Robbie Williams still makes me giggle all the way through.

Do They Know It's Christmas

This group sing-a-long  (embedding has been disabled by the person who uploaded it so you'll have to click through to watch it) was shown on Stars in their Eyes in 1992. You've probably never seen it before - or have blanked it out of your memory - but you're unlikely to be able to unsee/unhear it this time.

All I Want For Christmas Is You

I can't choose between the Mariah Carey/Jimmy Fallon version and the Steve Kardynal/Chatroulette version so help me out here.  Tell me in the comments which one is your favourite.


Let me know if you've found something more bizarre! You can link to it in the comments along with your "All I Want For Christmas" vote. 

And if you're still wanting more Christmas music ramblings, you can read about my unsung heroes of Christmas, my five favourite festive tunes and my top three Christmas songs that aren't really about Christmas

#StationeryWednesday - 7 Signs I Am A Stationery Addict

*stands up* My name is Nickie and I'm a stationery addict. Here's why:

Marks, diary, Bureau Direct, #stationerywednesday
1.  I keep a diary.  This is alongside using my Google Calendar for digital reminders. I find the act of writing something down makes it more permanent and memorable. I normally use a Filofax but for 2015 I am going to try using a Marks Storage diary (more on that in a video soon).

2.  I write lists. Lots of lists. Discovering the bullet journal system was a revelation because it meant I had a legitimate reason for writing lists. And the best thing? I actually get to cross things off those lists because I am Getting Things Done.

3.  I buy notebooks. I have to have a nice notebook to write my lists in, obviously! I prefer dot-grid paper but this is a recent appreciation and was discovered through the bullet journalling. Lines don't really do it for me any more.

4.  I love handwriting. My own is fairly neat but doesn't really have a 'flair' to it so I adore seeing other people's handwriting with the different loops and swirls that they use. It fascinates me, considering we all use the same basic method of learning to write and the letters are a specific shape.  I'm made up too when I seeing signatures, especially when written in real ink *be still my beating heart*

5.  I have to use certain pens. I most definitely cannot use the same pen all the time. Each occasion demands a different writing implement. My most favourite at the moment is the J Herbin rollerball which I've been using for a couple of months now with Lierre Sauvage (green) ink. I also love Frixion pens for note taking (you can rub them out) and a fountain pen for special occasions, 

mt tape, bureau direct, green,  #stationerywednesday
6.  I discovered washi tape. This is literally a rabbit hole from which I may never return. When you think you have seen it all you find another pattern, colour or use. My most recent batch is all green (I'm sensing a theme here) and from the MT Tape collection so I am constantly browsing the Pinterest "washi tape uses" results - it's definitely not just for decorating my Filofax pages!

7.  I'm a little bit old school. I covet a red Silvine exercise book, I rarely use shaped erasers because I don't want to spoil them (I love the scented ones too), I sometimes dream about getting remarried just so I can pick some wedding stationery, I own a labeller and my desk is super tidy with everything in its place.

Are you a stationery addict? Stand up and declare now! 

#stationerywednesday, stationery, list,

Because this is a blogger/brand relationship with Bureau Direct, here's a link to my disclosure policy. You should also sign up to the Bureau Direct #StationeryWednesday newsletter ready for the New Year. It's delivered each Wednesday and an exclusive 10% discount code is shared on the first Wednesday of each month (if you miss any newsletters, you can find them here). There is also a new customer discount code on the Bureau Direct website.

This Quiz Book That I Wrote

Over the past few weeks I've been slaving away over a Word document, attempting to pull together an idea that came to me in a flash of inspiration about four weeks ago. 

You may or may not know that I founded the Friday Twiz (a quiz on Twitter every Friday evening) four-and-a-half years ago. It's a small community of quizzers who come together every Friday evening to battle with their knowledge and their wit for no prize other than kudos.  After running this venture for so long I had amassed a huge bank of questions so thought I'd pull some of them together and publish them in a book.

The book 
is now available to buy on Amazon

(and it's cheaper than a cup of coffee)

You can find out more about the book here.  There are three sections in the book; an interactive quiz section, three picture quizzes and a revision section.  This way, the book will never get boring - at least not until you have memorised all the questions and their answers. 

It's very strange to see an idea come to life so quickly but I wanted to publish now because this book will be perfect for your Christmas party (either at home or at work) or just to swot up to win that round of drinks down the pub. Let me know if you buy a copy (and don't forget to leave me a review).  It's a rather exciting "next stage" down my life path.

Random Thoughts From Today

Why is today's earworm Ed Sheeran's "Sing"?
Has my contact lens gone behind my eye or on the floor? Why can't I find it!!??
How do we go through so much washing powder?
New diary on the way... I must practice my best hand writing
Why does a teenage boy need to use 14 towels per week?
Does anyone ever get an extra follow from a #followfriday mention on Twitter?
Holy shit, it's 11.45. I'd better get dressed. 
IT'S SNOWING... oh, it's stopped.
Am I ever going to catch up with Serial before the final episode?
How the fuck did I fail a 'Can You Speak Lancashire?' test on Buzzfeed (19/22)
Are "keks" trousers or underpants?
Planning. Yes, planning...  oohh distraction techniques...
The best thing about working for myself has to be that I get to watch Minder at lunch time.
What's the point of clearing my email inbox when another deluge of emails drops straight in?
Aaawww Vintage TV 80s tunes.  Awesome.
Vintage TV really does have the most random videos for some of their songs.
AAARRGGHH damaged memory card. *opens eBay* 
I wonder what theme I should create for the FridayTwiz tonight?
X-Factor is really pushing for Fleur to win. 
Plus, why is Andrea singing a different 'winner's song'? 
And why are the 'special guests' just people who have performed on the show in recent weeks?
Should I buy a Christmas jumper?
I should make a list and plan a new radio series.
I want a pair of denim dungarees.  No, no no no, I don't. 
MORE SNOW... oh, it's stopped again.
Today is going really slowly...
How did I just waste half an hour on Pinterest?
And another half an hour on StumbleUpon?
I know, I'll have a little practice on my ukulele.
Bejewelled Blitz? Wow, I haven't played on that for ages.
I'm crap at Bejewelled Blitz.  
What shall we have for tea? Probably take-away.
Why do I have so many websites bookmarked that I never visit any more?
Better not remove them. Might never be able to find them again in the future!

10 Famous People Alive Today That Are Older Than Sliced Bread

Every time Buzzfeed publish a "which came first" listicle we are reminded that Betty 'Golden Girls' White is older than sliced bread, which was first sold in 1928.  Out of curiosity (quelle surprise) I wondered which other celebrities were also older than sliced bread. Here's my definitive list of ten.

sliced bread

Born in 1916 and turning 99 on his next birthday we have Kirk Douglas. Apart from his acting career we also know him as the father of Michael Douglas. He is ranked at number 17 on the American Film Institute's list of the greatest male screen legends in American Film history

Born in 1917, therefore turning 98 in February 2015, Zsa Zsa Gabor is probably known just as well for her nine marriages as she is for her acting career. She was once quoted as saying, "I am a marvellous housekeeper; every time I leave a man I keep his house." 

Born in 1922 Christopher Lee, who will be 92 next May, is best known for his role as Dracula in the numerous appearances in UK film series 'Hammer Horror' and, more recently, in Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit.  Did you know that he is also a classically trained singer? 

Born in 1925 and turning 90 next year, we have the lovely Angela Lansbury who I first fell in love with in 'Bedknobs and Broomsticks' but then later watched avidly in 'Murder She Wrote' (did no-one else think it was a coincidence that a writer of murder stories was always handy to solve the mystery?). At the age of 89 she's still treading the boards.  Girl Power!

Another favourite born in 1925 was Dick Van Dyke. I can't choose my favourite character of his but it's definitely between Caratacus Potts in 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang' (just for the 'Me Old Bamboo' dance) and as Dr Mark Sloan in 'Diagnosis Murder'. Did you know he is ambidextrous? Well you do now!

Born in 1926 was the crooner Tony Bennett - he'll be 89 on his next birthday. He is one of those traditional performers that seems to have done everything in music (apart from Rock). He's also a bit of a comeback King having relaunched his career in the 80s and the 90s and is still going today! He once said that if he couldn't sing any more he would just paint for the rest of this life. Apparently, he's quite good.

Another favourite of mine who was born in 1926 is the multi-talented Mel Brooks - actor, director, screenwriter, producer, lyricist and composer, oh, and total genius for giving mime artist, Marcel Marceau the only speaking part in the film 'Silent Movie'

Also born in 1926 was the original Playboy, Hugh Hefner.  He used to work for Esquire magazine but left and founded Playboy (which was originally going to be called 'Stag Party) after being denied a pay rise of $5 per week.

Born in 1927, therefore reaching 88 next birthday, we start with Roger Moore. He was the first Bond I remember, taking the lead in seven of the films. Did you know that Mike Reid (yes, him from 'Runaround' and 'Eastenders') was Roger Moore's underwater stunt double in 'The Saint'?

Finally, born in 1927 was Sidney Poitier. By chance, I recently caught the film 'To Sir, With Love' which I hadn't seen for years and was reminded what a ground-breaking film it was, mainly because of Poitier's acting. I also had no idea he directed 'Stir Crazy' until researching this blog post.

older than sliced bread

As an aside, I think that's my DeadPool list sorted for 2015... 

Image credits : IMDb