Sunday 23 December 2012

Christmas is coming

First up -  apologies for being absent, more about that at the end of the post, first up some Christmas cards I have been making, all for close friends.

I have been busy with all the usual Christmas preparations, shopping, wrapping, card-making, decorating etc etc.

On top of my usual 2 hours a day at the gym, Neil and I have decided to try out the Insanity home workout programme, it is seriously eating into my free hours - hence lack of blogging and general internet use.

We have just finished week three and I am so proud of both of us for sticking with it so far. With all the usual Christmas preparations, me working and Neil working shifts, all the stuff that goes with having three kids and life in general, it has not been easy !

But I am feeling much, much stronger, I have broke through a plateau at the gym and increased my weights on every single exercise, I have also increased my cardio intensity and seem to be able to do all the usual daily tasks with much more ease, I have no idea whether I will see it through to the end, it is a 60 day programme, but I am determined to try !

Friday 30 November 2012

Baby girl

It is not often I get the chance to make an overtly girlie card, especially a girlie baby card, so when one of Robbie's friends recently gave birth to a lovely baby girl I jumped at the chance of breaking out all the yummy pink supplies I have been hoarding.

I used a Marianne design die for the pram and papers by Nitwit, the banner was created using a Whimsy die and the lettering was created with a Tim Holtz die.

I added liquid pearls to the quilted paper and bows to add a little softness

I am sorry, blogging has been a little scarce lately, I have still been crafting  - unfortunately some has been Christmas related and cannot be shared yet as the recipients read my blog, also I have been working on ATC's and our Circle journal both of which are projects which cannot be shared, hopefully soon things will return to normal and I will be able to share a little more regularly.

Saturday 24 November 2012

Happy birthday sis

For my little sister Helen, who celebrated her birthday yesterday and will be reaching a landmark birthday next year.

I used stampin' Up stamps, Hero Arts flowers and obviously lots of love.

Tuesday 20 November 2012

Bloomin' Banner

Today I have a banner to share which I started approximately one month ago.

The components of which have travelled back and forth from home to shop and back again, with me adding a ribbon here and a button there.

I used the elements from the Molly Bloom christmas kit

The alphas, I drew onto cream card, cut out and embossed using the Cuttlebug with a Stampin' Up folder

The images were all painted with Tim Holtz Distress Inks

All finished with some ribbon, lace, holly leaves and little red pearls for the berries.

Lots of the girls from the shop have also been making these banners and although we are all using the same supplies it is amazing just how very different they are all looking.

Friday 16 November 2012

Boo !

These are my ATC's for our last swap

Sarah chose the theme for October and we were required to use a Halloween theme and the colour silver

I use a vintage girl stamp and turned her into a little witch by adding a hat, which I cut by hand and then embossed through the Cuttlebug

The silver was added by way of a background stamp and silver embossing powder and I finished the cards with a little washi tape and some table confetti from Tescos

You can see the rest of the ATC's entered into the swap and find out who won, by checking out the shop blog - HERE

Tuesday 13 November 2012

Bye Bye Bob.

Mixed post tonight, very photo heavy

First up a card for my friend and neighbour Jenny

Whilst we were away on holiday our dear neighbour Bob died suddenly, we didn't know anything about it until we got home.

Bless him, he was a lovely, lovely man. Bob and Jenny become our friends shortly after moving in over the road from us a few years ago and have been brilliant with our boys, they have a grandson a similar age and have been incredibly kind and generous with our three.

Bob was originally from America and had a really laid back and languid way about him, always had time to stop and natter and always genuinely cared when he asked how you were.

We will miss him and we hope his wife Jenny will find some comfort in knowing how loved her husband was. 

On another note entirely.

Here are our pics from our holiday in The Lakes a couple of weeks ago.

We stayed once again at the Quiet Site just outside Penrith.

St Andrews church - Penrith

Just so happened to be right next to a lovely little craft shop !

The weather was pretty miserable, until now we have been incredibly blessed by fair and dry weather whenever we have visited Cumbria, but the legendary rain caught up with us this time.

So we spent a little more time pursuing indoor activities this time round

We even ventured as far as Newcastle and enjoyed a day at the metro centre.

The Christmas decorations were up and the boys had a little pocket money to spend.

We had a day out at Whitehaven and ended up taking the boys bowling

Rob had just scored a strike so was super happy, mum won at the end of the day (least said about that the better - none of the boys were happy to be beaten by a girl !)

Later in the week and after a walk up to Penrith, we called in a pub for some liquid refreshments and we all enjoyed a few games of pool and darts.

Our new trailer tent, which did us proud, the weather certainly tested its durability.

The view from our tent door on the final day before heading home, the skies were a beautiful clear blue and totally devoid of clouds, in the distance we could just make out a three quarter moon.

And the view towards the rear of the tent

And the inside ( for Marie - who wonders how we keep so organised lol)

This is the left hand rear corner of the living area, with the fridge and tea making area.

And the right hand side of the living area, with two larder units.

The left hand one contains all the non perishable food.

The right hand one contains all the pots and pans, cutlery, cooking equipment etc, on top is our new grill ( for those all important early morning bacon butties !)

As always we have board games, playing cards and plenty of reading material to keep everyone entertained in the evenings.

To the right of the silver chair is the oversized buckets for the shoes and wellies and the black square basket at the back is for laundry.

And this is the trailer part of the tent and the sleeping area

Lots of storage underneath the cushions. The boys slept in the bedroom pod on the left and Neil and I slept in the one on the right.


Neil's and my bed ( bedding from Ikea)

The boys bed ( much more comfortable in proper quilts this year and bedding from my mum - thanks mum )

 And just before leaving on the final day, car all packed up ! Yes it really all does fit away quite neatly.

Leaving Watermillock we just had to stop and capture this beautiful image, see those white peaks ? Yes there was snow on them there mountains !

Camping in the Lakes in early November definitely is not for the faint hearted but it was beautiful and it didn't spoil my love for this breathtaking part of our country. All coming from someone who 'doesn't do' cold !

Friday 9 November 2012

Happy Birthday Amy

Tuesday was my baby girls birthday - 19 already !!!! How did that happen, it was only yesterday I was changing nappies and rocking her in my arms !

I used my brand new Memory Box heart die, the sentiment is a Stampin Up stamp, the butterflies are also a Stampin' Up embosslit.

Happy birthday Amy, love you xxx

Thursday 25 October 2012

Tree Lined

I created a twisted easel card for this weeks class card at the shop.

The card featured these little folded trees.

I couldn't find a template for them anywhere on the net but had seen a similar tree crop up every now and then on various blogs.

So I set to and devised a way of making them out of a semi-circle.

Once I managed to figure it out, there was no stopping me and I made a whole forest of little folded trees.

Here is a variation I created for one of my christmas cards.

I must say it seems a little weird creating a tree out of paper, it is normally the other way around !

I used basic brown cardstock, embossed it through the cuttlebug, inked with white and added a little bow to the top and pearls for baubles.

All papers are by Carta Bella
Sentiment and background stamp are by Stampendous.

I must apologise for the unearthly cast of light on my photos, the weather here in Lincolnshire has been rather misty and dull, great news for Neil, he is quieter at work as all the ships he is responsible for documenting cannot sail, and lovely as a backdrop for spooky halloween scenarios but not conducive to great photo taking !

Saturday 20 October 2012

Bikes and bearings

This card I made for my cousin Phil, who is just a couple of years younger than me, he is mad about bikes - always has been.

I used Bo Bunny papers, Bazzill cardstock, the motorbike stamp is Inkadinkadoo, the sentiment and cogs stamps are by Stampin' Up, the paper cogs were cut using a Nellie Snellen die and the metal cogs are by Tim Holtz.

Happy birthday cuz xxx

Thursday 18 October 2012

Happy birthday Beryl

I made this card for my dear friend Beryl

I love Beryl to bits, she truly is one of a kind, so thoughtful and gentle, a real lady.

I made a 5x7 inch easel and used Mariposa papers

Stamps and punches are by Stampin' Up

I heat embossed the birdcage to give it a shabby chic feel and I know Beryl appreciates beautiful gardens, flowers and nature so I tried to incorporate that into the design.

I hope you have had a wonderful day my sweet friend xxx

Wednesday 17 October 2012

TV debut

I wasn't going to blog this evening as I don't have anything crafty photographed and ready to blog.

But I felt I needed to say a massive THANKYOU to my wednesday morning ladies.

I was approached by the local telly, ie channel 7 to be part of a christmas crafting feature they are conducting locally, I think all us local craft shops have been involved.

 When I took the initial call I was only half listening ( naughty me) and when I was asked if they could come and speak with me, I said yes, anyone who knows me knows that the N......O..... word fails to exist in my vocabulary !

Anyhow, I thought I was just being involved in a local business initiative and had no idea about any cameras etc, we arranged to meet last wednesday and then the full enormity of what I had agreed to hit me, thank God it wasn't Sky News or the BBC !

Of course, even being fully aware, I still failed to get that pesky N......O.......word out of my mouth.

It took me a week to pluck up the courage to break the news to dad, who threatened all week to wear the Borat mankini for the interviews to teach me a lesson.

Well, today was the day.

They came, they filmed and they laughed !

My wednesday ladies did what they do best, they made the whole experience an absolute hoot, the crew were treated to plenty of belly laughs, everyone co-operated fully with the filming and made my job so much easier and we all actually managed to get our cards finished.

Fortunately dad behaved himself and kept to his regular attire ( more than can be said for our Dawn)

The short film will be edited, cut and whatever else they do, and then I will be sent a copy to share with you all.  I will try and embed it here on my blog once I have it, and it will be aired on channel 7 in the not too distant future.

So, thankyou to the two very lovely guys from Channel 7

Thankyou to dad for behaving

But most of all thankyou to my wonderful wednesday morning ladies

Love you all xxx

Tuesday 16 October 2012

Girlies and gifts

I have just completed painted these cute little Molly Bloom girls, ready to adorn the banner from the gorgeous kit out at the moment

I painted them in distress inks and kept the colours simple as I wanted to match them to the papers in the kit, I am still adding bits and bobs to the banner ( as you do) but as soon as it is finished I will share it here.

This next little project is not mine, it was a gift from my lovely friend Linda, Linda is our local Stampin' Up demo and a very good friend. She made myself and the other girls in our tuesday afternoon group these as thankyou gifts, lots of tags and ties for our Christmas gift giving, she made all the boxes too and presented them in a gift bag, how sweet. 

We all know how pressed for time she is at the moment so we appreciated them all the more.

Thankyou so much Linda, you have inspired me to make more of an effort to get my own Christmas projects started !

You can find more of Linda's stunning work HERE on her own blog

Wednesday 10 October 2012

Photo scavenger hunt

Another couple of pages for my photo scavenger hunt journal

Number 10 - A horse

And number 13 - A library

In both cases the page backgrounds were created with neocolours and inks, with stencils used to create the designs around the edges/corners

I have been using up my scrap papers and note pages to add the details and the journalling for each page.

I am hoping to finish up the photo taking part of the challenge when we return to the Lakes in a couple of weeks time, yes you heard right, we are taking the kids back - camping - just as we start to experience frost in the mornings ! Thermals are at the ready and I have already stocked up on hot chocolate, extra blankets and woolly socks !!!

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Purple patch

As promised yesterday, another christmas card completed, I now have a grand total of two made for this year.

I used a Marianne image and chose the colours to complement the winter scene, although I love traditional colours mostly,  I do quite like to use an unexpected colour combo every once in a while.

And although I would love to stay and natter I have a strong urge to scrapbook, and trust me that hasn't happened for a while, so I am going to grab hold of that mojo before the pesky little thing disappears into thin air !

Monday 8 October 2012


I had plans to share a christmas card this evening but alas, by the time I had done my chores at home, spent the daily two hours at the gym and completed the Tesco's shop I ran out of daylight to photograph it ( note to self  - make the most of the morning sunshine before the day runs away with me)

So, one thing I did have already on my hard drive was a couple more pages in my 'Wreck this journal' which I had completed yesterday

I had to poke holes in the right hand page with my pencil, and, as I sat pondering what to  do with the rest of the page, I had a lightbulb moment and decided it looked like something had been shot through the page. As my drawing skills aren't quite up to the uber cool Clint Eastwood, I settled on Merida from Brave.

Background was created with Gesso and blue acrylic paint, I added red cardstock behind the holes to make them stand out more and Merida was coloured in Polychromos pencils.

I am working on my 'crack the spine' page next, but I will be back tomorrow with a christmas card.

Sunday 7 October 2012

Wreck This

A little while ago whilst perusing tumblr I stumbled across the concept of "Wreck This' journals.

The little black books created by Keri Smith grabbed my attention straight off.

I am a book lover and take great care of my books, wrecking one - on purpose seemed so wrong !

Here are my first two completed pages

And how the pages were before

I bought and started my journal in the Lake District earlier in the year, I bought all the kids one too and we spent a couple of evenings before coming home sat around the fire working in our books.

One of the pages tells us to crack the spine and another to take it into the shower with you, I took it outside in a rain shower and my journal is suitably wrinkled and torn as a result.

Already I am in love with my tatty little book.

Over on the RWS shop site we have a couple of upcoming saturday workshops, you can check them out HERE