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Hi everyone!

I'm Bliss (otherwise known in the 'real world' as Rachel) and I'm a part time local government officer and part time web designer/developer. I'm 36 and live in Derbyshire in the UK. I spend most of my time glued to the screen, but tend to spend a lot of time in and out of hospital. I was born with a mild form of spina bifida and have a number of long term health problems. I'm stubborn though, and it doesn't (often) stop me. Slows me down at times, but I keep plodding on.

Most of my spare time's spent at the computer. I've been doing web design for about 6 years now, after I accidentally got into it after I volunteered to do a website using Frontpage for a voluntary organisation I worked with, little realising what was involved. My first attempt at a site was judged "okay for a first attempt" on a web design forum I joined, but being rather a perfectionist the site was only on the server for about 3 weeks before I decided to start again from scratch and learn HTML and CSS.

After jumping in at the deep end and launching straight into CSS layouts, I did a series of Open University courses (HTML/CSS, ASP, PHP, database design and server management) and got myself a certificate in web design (and nearly drove myself round the bend with all the assignments).

For the past few years I've been running a medical support website and forum, but recently gave that up to concentrate on setting up my business. At the moment I run a site and forum for my cousin who runs a BMX cycling club, and I've just started a site for a charity bookstall my mum and a friend run.

I love music and photography, and writing. I write some poetry, and I'm still writing (on and off) a novel I started when I was 18 - one of these days I will finish it! My other big passion is all things western and Brokeback Mountain, and a couple of years ago discovered that there are communities of Brokeback fans out there on the internet (yep, there's a forum for just about everything out there on the web! :D ). A member of one of the Brokie forums I frequent (which is the technical term for Brokeback addicts) once described Brokies as similar to Trekkies, except that Brokies are usually found wearing western gear rather than pyjamas and dressing up as small furry creatures. :icon_mrgreen:

So, that's just about me in a nutshell....geek girl, slightly crazy (yep, about a year ago I shocked my work colleagues by turning up for work in a cowboy hat and western boots, but they've got used to it now :icon_razz: ), weird sense of humour, and me and Diva, my computer, spend more time online than we do offline...addicted, moi? :icon_cheesygrin:

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Last Post by edhardy
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Hello Bliss - Welcome! I am not a big representative of this community as not IT savy, but it's a very nice place and people have helped me, so hope you enjoy it and find it useful.
I was interested to see you've done OU web design courses, as I'm learning from a book to do html/xhtml/CSS from scratch so I can do my own websites - it's a good book, but when you get stuck it's hard to get unstuck.
I'm from the UK too and have had a chronic illness - now getting back to normal but I think can identify with some of what you may have to contend with. You sound very spirited about it - bravo!
I write a little (village newsletter) however mainly paint and do garden design - I took courses while ill so big career changearound (when I've finished the websites that is!). I also like Brokeback Mountain thought I am not a 'Brokie'.
Anyway, hi! 'Hear' you again sometime!
JaneX

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Thanks for the welcome.

I'm a bit of an OU addict to be honest - I started teacher training when I left school, but had to leave on medical grounds unfortunately. I eventually finished my degree off about 8 years later with the OU (in a strange mix of teaching, geography and psychology), and then did a few short courses with them. After I accidentally got into web design working for a local voluntary group, and we'd got some funding for training, so they paid for me to do the first couple of courses on the OU's "Certificate in Web Applications Development" - 6 12 week courses which I did over 18 months. It was hard work (especially as I was in and out of hospital at the time and spent half the time working on the courses in hospital with very limited internet access!), but I finally finished the last course and got the certificate. Rather foolishly I decided a few months later to start an IT degree, but as I discovered during the course of the Web Apps certificate, I'm not a natural programmer (I can do it with the books infront of me, and I can tweak scripts, but I struggle writing things from scratch), so at the moment I'm having a bit of a break from studying while I decide what to do next. Maybe something easier than programming....like knitting! ;)

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Welcome to the community!
Nice to meet Ya! And have fun with us all!

And thanks for the detailed intro, now we all know u more!

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