The 30 Day Sharing Challenge, Week #1!

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If you haven’t already, go and read my blog on my 30 Day Sharing Challenge for November!

I’m one week in, and things are going so far, so good. Hopefully you’ve seen my daily tweets on what I’ve been up to (and if not, check out my Twitter for them), but this post is a round up of all the great things I’ve done so far, and the wonderful people I’ve met along the way.

And here’s a reminder of all my challenges for each of the 30 days:

Day 1 – a lift

OK, so I’m kinda the expert in this, what with working for Liftshare and everything 😉

I shared a lift with my friend and colleague Vickie using Liftshare.com. I don’t actually drive, and as I live in Norwich (a pretty small city), I tend to walk everywhere, or take buses/trains if I go a little further afield. But, I was off to see my Mum this sunny Sunday and Vickie was heading my way, so rather than rely on country buses I booked a lift with her!

Check us out, posing!vickie2

This was a pretty easy share for me. I looked up the journey online, found Vickie, and booked straight on. I paid online, she dropped me off on her way and it was cheaper than the bus – result!

We chatted the whole way, listened to the radio and had a bit of a gossip, which was a great bit of light relief before my parental duty for the weekend started. I’ve liftshared before through the system, but for longer journeys – normally replacing a train journey. This proved to me that it works as a good bus alternative too, particularly on a Sunday when the service isn’t as regular as usual!

Day 2 – a skill

Day 2 took a bit of advance thought, as I needed to find something that I was actually good enough at to be confident to share with others. But, my October 30 days challenge proved inspiration, and so I held a mini-yoga class for my long-suffering boyfriend, Matt. He was thrilled…

 
OK, so I’m not sure if I’ve converted him to a yogic lifestyle quite yet, but he gave it a go and we had a laugh trying it. I’ll get him into a bikram studio one day..! :)

If you fancy sharing your skills, check out Caretoshare, the UK’s community of skill-sharers!

Day 3 – a secret

After having it recommended to me years ago, I’ve spent many a Sunday reading up secrets on PostSecret.com. If you haven’t heard of it before, it’s the world’s largest blog with no advertising, and each week posts up pictures of anonymous postcards that people have mailed in detailing their deepest, darkest secrets. Some are silly, some are sad, and some are really intriguing. I’d definitely recommend logging on to read through once in a while, or leafing through one of the books.

Alas, this Tuesday, I got crafty, did some colouring in, made my own card, and mailed my own secret in. I’ll be keeping an eye out to see if it’s featured any time soon!

Day 4 – a memory

After much conferring with my colleagues, I decided on the below photo for my share a memory tweet…

Yep, that’s me, rocking ginger hair, a snowsuit and parasol (of course) and looking distinctly Vicky-Pollard-chic. In this picture I’m aged 3 (25 years ago, aaggghhh!) and in the garden of the first house I lived in, in Bishops Stortford. I really vividly remember this because, oddly enough, I adored this outfit.

I realise that a snowsuit isn’t always the natural fashion choice when the weather necessitates a parasol too, but I loved being zipped up and comfy – and as the brolly was pink, it was, of course, my favourite. It’s funny the little things you remember, isn’t it? I’m still quite partial to a matching tracksuit.

For your ‘share a memory’ needs, you can document your social media behaviour of days past using an app like Timehop. Or, if you’d prefer to hear the memories of others and have a natter, why not volunteer as a befriender with Age UK in your community?

Day 5 – a story

Another opportunity for me to use a great site that you might not have heard of!

I love to read, but never keep my books. I either lend them out, donate them to a charity shop, or BookCross them. BookCrossing.com is like an online library, world wide, for travelling books, documenting who reads them and how they pass them on to others. You read a book, and release it out into the big wide world with a reference number attached. When someone finds it and reads it, they look up the number online, and leave notes on the book, and how they’re passing it on. You can track your book’s life as it travels across the globe and is enjoyed by others!

I released a book in my hometown of Norwich. No one’s journalled that they’ve found it yet, but I’ll stay tuned.

If you don’t fancy bookcrossing, why not donate a book to a local charity shop, or find a reading volunteering opportunity in your area?

Day 6 – a space

  

Day 6 could mean a whole host of different things – sharing a room on Airbnb, a house-swap on LoveHomeSwap, sharing storage space at StoreMates, sharing an office on Hubble, or even sharing space for events with HireSpace.

I live in a pretty small flat, so these options aren’t really for me. But, I do have a parking space, so I’ve chosen to share mine using JustPark! I’ve registered on the site, listed my space and am now taking bookings for when I’m not using it. Feel free to book in! :)

Day 7 – some time

Sharing some time could work in loads of different ways, but I chose to do some volunteering for a local cause, and for the seventh day, visited Norwich Foodbank.

Norwich Foodbank is run by the Trussell Trust, and staffed by volunteers. It sorts and supplies distribution centres with emergency food parcels that can be given to those who have been referred by a care professional (social workers, doctors, etc). Non-perishable food and toiletries are donated, and then everything is sorted into categories and sell-by dates, so parcels can go out without creating waste. I was really impressed by the warehouse – the volunteers run everything with military precision and work really hard.

   

If you’d like to donate some food or toiletries, you can get a shopping list of items they need here. Sponge pudding is the least donated item, and anything you can buy that can be split (ie multi-packs of crackers, selection boxes of chocolate bars) is really helpful. Food packages are only for 3 days at a time, so nothing too big! Next time you see a supermarket buy-one-get-one-free, you can donate your freebie!

Check with your local foodbank as to what they need exactly, and get in touch with them if you’d like to volunteer. You could help in a supermarket collecting, sorting in a warehouse, or in a distribution centre giving out parcels. I’m really glad I picked such a cool project to go and see, and I’ll definitely volunteer for them again!

So, week 1 is DONE. Check back for next week’s update, where I’ll be sharing an outfit, a home-cooked meal, a walk, a smile, a fact, a cuddle, and some sweat (ew)! :)

Author Lex Barber

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