Category Archives: Gift Experiences

Talking about the ‘Bucket List’

Ticking things of the bucket list with this great bunch - winning big on a game show - TICK

RedBalloon has always been about ‘good times’ it might just as well be about the ‘bucket list’ or ‘dream catcher’… Maybe your family or friends might give you something from your list – or maybe you will choose something for yourself… Here I talk with Grant Denyer on All Star Family Feud (with Shark Tank and Bondi Rescue) about ticking things of my bucket list.   Do you have a bucket list? If so what is on it and when…

Standing out – is about the customer experience

Standing out – is about the customer experience

These days, I am known to many simply as the #RedShark from Channel TEN’s Shark Tank Australia or ‘that lady in red,’ but being the Founding Director of RedBalloon did not mean I always wore red – nor infact is it my favourite colour. The question I often get is – how is it not being the CEO? How did you do it? I appointed Jemma Fastnedge as CEO (now CEO of close to five years ago – and…

Kids’ gifts that really score!

Kids’ gifts that really score!

I was recently asked back to Studio 10 and as part of the many and varied topics we covered was the “what do you do when told what to give as a gift” question. I know personally I struggle when my friends are getting married, and they say “we just want cash to go to our honeymoon.” I want to give them something that is memorable and special. Something that represents our relationship and how I know them… Okay so…

We’re All In This Together- CEO Sleepout

RedBalloon CEO, Nick Baker

It’s now many years since I have been the CEO of RedBalloon. Nick Baker took the reins in early March and is steering the business on it’s growth trajectory – delivering ‘Good Times’ to hundreds of thousands of people each year. But even with new leadership our values remain the same. Consistently we live by them.  We do what we say we are going to do, we are generous, a team of leaders, have a sense of humour and fun…

How much do you owe your mother?

How much do you owe your mother?

I’m very open about the fact that I’m a woman of many labels – entrepreneur, speaker, director, author, blogger and innovator – but to my children, I am simply mum. And of all the roles I’ve ever had, being a mother is the most challenging and yet the most rewarding. It is not linear by any means. I left corporate life when I became a mum because I wanted to spend more time with my little ones. I genuinely thought…

All she wants is your time.

Mum and I last year doing candle making

With Mother’s Day rapidly approaching, how could we miss the resounding message in “the toughest job in the world.” More than anything, I know that what I want from my two young adults is to hear from them regularly (more than once a day works for me!) and to spend time with them. I’d love to go to a cooking class with my daughter and to go go karting with my son (kids, you don’t have to spend a fortune…

Sage advice – or shameless promotion… you choose

Sage advice – or shameless promotion… you choose


1 night, 2 people, 3 venues.

Giovanni at Terra Rosa

When I was a child my parents would go to ‘progressive dinners’  – usually as a fundraiser for the kindergarten or primary school.  I remember my parents having a ball – wandering the local neighborhood with friends – eating a different course at a different friends house. I was excited when the 1, 2 ,3 progressive dinner experience was published on the RedBalloon site – but I wondered if it would work – to the same degree. Finally last Friday…

I’m not getting any younger

Mrs Sydney Smith - my great great great grandmother on my mothers fathers side.

I actually like being the age I am… You just know so much more than you once did. I know my teenagers look at me and think ‘she’s so old’ but I wouldn’t be a teenager again for quids. I have looked at photographs of my ancestors and wondered if they would think the same thing. What would they make of all this internet and smartphones – The only thing we have left of them is a single photograph. I’m…

Eleven years courting – finally we are engaged.

BridgeClimb founder Paul Cave with me at a RedBalloon team Lunch & Learn

Way back in May 2001 Kathy Mason contacted Bridge Climb to let them know that RedBalloon would be launching later in the year. She invited them to become a supplier to list its experiences in time for launch. At the time the response was “Let’s wait and see how RedBalloon goes. Each product manager that has joined RedBalloon in the last decade has taken it on as a personal challenge to pitch the idea of how fabulous it would be…