In nineteen days’ time, the UK as we know it will change forever.
Armageddon, the Apocalypse, call it what you want but the dreaded B Day (or as I like to call it "Bidet" will arrive. A sign of what was to come, about two weeks ago Arthurs Seat in Edinburgh appeared to erupt spewing lava across our country’s capital. It was in fact a bush fire caused by a rogue cigarette butt, but the capital watched the once extinct volcano basked in fire. The following day a mysterious fog descended across a Kilmarnock v Motherwell football match causing it to be abandoned mid play.
Surely these were a sign of the impending doom.
I am a proud Scotswoman and lover of Europe. I voted to remain as I do believe that aged old adage that we are in fact better together. With the UK finally in a state of stability aft...
I love Christmas, I always have done. It’s was always a special occasion, my dad just made it that way. The huge roast with all the trimmings, the open roaring fire and the real tree that made the house smell like a forest.
From making mince pies from our family recipe, to decorating each mirror, side table and tree that resided in our house, it filled me with so much joy.
While I still feel a lot of spirit inside of me at this time of year, it seems that as time has passed and as I have lost my wonderful daddy, the holidays just are not the same as they were.
I can find myself desperate to find a semblance of those feelings that I had when my dad was still here and when I had that childlike innocence. I can almost find myself in tears because I feel myself drifting away from the one thing I dream of...
It seems that we cant look online these days without seeing another award ceremony taking place and someone winning the best entrepreneur, the best property, the best accountant (!) or best beer.
I'm definitely not knocking these awards. They are an entire industry in itself. In fact i think there should be an award for the best award ceremony.
The organisations running these know how to make a buck or two as well, offering free tickets for the 200 finalists across 50 categories (believe me these award ceremonies can go on for days) and then sell them tables at £1000 a go. Some entice with speakers and charge VIP tables at £10,000 a pop if you're desperate to meet the likes of George Clooney, Leonardo di Caprio or Richard Branson (which i was in a past life). Call me cynical if you like. I mo...
There are generally two types of people in this world.
The organised, or disorganised; the creative or analytical; the leaders or followers, and the big one:
Those that clear their inbox and file everything away meticulously and those that let their inbox flash up that you have 1005 unread messages.
Why one are you?
I used to the former. I was a slave to my email account. Notifications constantly jumped up in the corner of my laptop, teasing me to open the message and read it - spam or no spam, urgent or even less urgent. It didn't matter how busy I was or right in the middle of the most complex of tax returns. I just had to open the email, you know, just in case it was life or death.
Admittedly, if it was *URGENT*, life or death, or the Tax Man was banging on a clients door demanding all sorts th...
The past 48 hours have been a whirlwind of planes, trains, taxis, tube rides and awards.
When I got the call from Craig Vickery (Head of ACCA Scotland) to tell me that I had been awarded the ACCA UK Advocate of the year, I sat in my office and burst into tears. Apologising to Craig for crying on his shoulder (metaphorically) my staff came in to check I was okay as they had heard the cries (of joy) so I shared the news with them.
Sidenote: I was sworn to secrecy on the award so could only tell a few close people ahead of the event in London.
The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) have been a wonderful support to me - ever since I qualified in 1998 (sshh! Don't mention my age thank you very much) and when I set up Faith Simps...
When I was growing up, I always got over excited as the summer holidays approached. Not just because six weeks of fun and long days in the sun lay ahead but because I was lucky enough that my parents took my brother and I abroad every July to somewhere new, exotic and exciting.
1976, holiday number 1 was Tunisia where mum forbid us from eating any fruit unless it came from a tin, a waiter used to walk around the hotel complex peddling his wares and shouting "Asda price" at the top of his voice and some local at the market in Monastir offered to swap my very blond brother Nial for a rather handsome looking camel. Greece was the destination in 1977 where I had my first official holiday crush on the waiter. Portugal's Algarve coast, Menorca and then a gite in France with my extended family f...
You know the mum that wont let their wee darling play outside in case they catch something? That parent that is scared any dirty spoon will kill their little angel?
Yes. I am officially that parent.
I cant remember the last time I washed the floors in my flat so often. I reckon that I have cleaned the floors more than I ever did in the two years since I bought it. I was hoovering at 7am this morning and moving beds as Caley has figured out how to slide under them in search of "treats" or random socks and fake eyelashes!
The last seven days have been filled with walks, prison breaks from RAF Lossiemouth, chewed tables, inauguration at my offices, kamikazee dives through bushes, playing with the sat nav and taking over the music controls in the car and...
So, who knew that in the space of 7 days I could go from a rational, level headed business woman to a soppy heap of #puppylove ?
Last week on my birthday I went with my best friend & business partner Neil down to Chester in England where we spent the day sat out in the sun, being all carefree, no responsibility and a "go to bed when we wanted" kind of attitude...
Fast forward 24 hours and I was sat in my pristine clean X3 with a crying 11 week old Cockapoo on my lap as we made the five hour drive back to Edinburgh and his new forever home.
I am now an oracle on all things "puppy". I am up with the larks ( most mornings) to let him out of his cage, feed, water and yes, bathe him (but that's a story for another day).
I have never had children. I have never been that maternal but one week on and I...
They say hindsight is a marvellous thing. If we had known when we were 17 what we know now, would we have started smoking? Would we have dropped out of college, broken up with that boy; or even trained as an Accountant and set up our own business?
Twelve years after setting up "FSA" I have gone through every conceivable emotion and problem; from HR issues, to suing clients, to sacking staff and teetering on the verge of a breakdown. However along with the bad has been the bloody marvellous and best times ever; opening new offices, branching out, winning multiple awards and being accepted by my peers as a game changer in the industry.
So, if I were to go back and start all over again, would I do anything differently? Hell yes I would.
So here are my top 5 tips that I would tell myself in 2006 when I s...
A few months ago, I very publicly published a blog about my ongoing battle with depression. It was a ballsy move and one I wasn’t sure I was ready to share. I knew there would be mixed reactions; some would see it as weak, an admission of a chink in my armour. Others would see it as a liberating move, a shout out to the 1 in 4 people that suffer from mental health problems today.
I also felt that it was really important that I followed this piece up and that I didn’t just publish the blog, end of story. After all, when we have gone through any illness we go back to the doctor or hospital for a check up so a follow up to my first article was essential to my recovery.
Four months on and I can happily say that I am out of the woods and feeling so much stronger, healthier and happier.