10:30 - 11:15 SHENLEY BROOK END VILLAGE HALL Shenley Brook End Old Village Hall, Church End Road, Shenley Brook End, Milton Keynes, MK5 7AA (View map)
10:30 - 11:15 BROOKLANDS COMMUNITY AND SPORTS PAVILION Countess Way, Brooklands, Milton Keynes, MK10 7HN (View map)
10:30 - 11:15 MAIN ROOM - SAPLINGS CHILDREN'S CENTRE Queensway, Bletchley, Milton Keynes, MK2 2HB (View map)
10:30 - 11:15 HODGE LEA MEETING PLACE Hodge Lea Lane, Hodge Lea, Milton Keynes, MK12 6JS (View map)
10:30 - 11:15 OXLEY PARK COMMUNITY CENTRE Redgrave Drive, Oxley Park, Milton Keynes, MK44TA (View map)
Meet the Radolly Annas Milton Keynes Team
Prior to Ragdolly Annas, I spent my days working in IT Service Management. I loved my job and the experiences it gave me. Then came my beautiful children, Austin was born in 2007 and then Milly followed in 2009. My whole outlook on life changed, as did my priorities and I was lucky enough that I didn't have to go back to work. After a couple of years as a stay at home mum, I needed to do something for me. I had met Anna VJ in my last role and as well as being a great work team, known as 'The Annas', we become great friends too. I had the idea of running my own business for a while as I wanted the children to remain my priority and decide my own working hours but I couldn't do it on my own. When Anna VJ called me to say she had decided she had, had enough of the 'corporate world' I told her of my plan. Within hours she had sent me a list of her ideas too and then, as they say, the rest is history!
I now work part-time, choosing my own hours and have the best of both worlds being at home for my children as and when they need me, attending their school events, having their friends over for play dates after school and having my own career. I am very privileged to be able to go to work doing something I love with one of my best friends and we want to share that experience with as many other parents as possible, not just in them attending our sessions but also in the franchise opportunities that we offer.
Being a parent can be very lonely sometimes, especially if none of your friends have children of a similar age or live far away. We wanted to create an environment that the adults could enjoy as much as the children. From my own experience, I know that children love music, whether it is to listen to, sing along to or dance to, even if they are a bit shy at first! I wanted to ensure that Ragdolly Annas would be a place which would nurture that simple enjoyment whilst aiding key learning and development areas for each child.
Since launching in 2011, I have met some incredibly wonderful children and lovely parents/carers who make my job the best in the world. Who could ask for more!
My old working life in the IT services industry seems like a distant memory now. May 2011 everything changed for me, I left the world of suits, deadlines, meetings, high heels and with my good friend Anna E we created Ragdolly Annas. Life is just as busy don't get me wrong, however now with a job I love, that fits around my children, I never miss a school assembly, am always there to pick up my boys from school and no longer have the sense of dread that the weekend is over on a Sunday night.
There is not one day where I get that feeling that I don't want to go to work. Running our own business has been challenging yet hugely satisfying. Working with children and being a part of their development whilst watching them grow in confidence, learn new words and bust out the dance move makes all the hard work worth it! Seeing the delight in their faces when their favourite song comes on and in some cases seeing their first steps, has been more rewarding than any job I have ever done. I love it!