Monday, November 27, 2006

I am a prat

Complete. Total. Utter.

A week ago I was given our tickets for the Sound of Music in January. I was so worried about losing them that I decided the safest place to keep them was my handbag. Today I went to look at them again (I am rather excited you know). No tickets. Phil tried to convince me that I hadn't left them in my bag. But I had. Now my work desk is very untidy. As bad as my craft desk actually. But I was sure I hadn't taken them out and put them on there. And there was a teeny chance they might have fallen out of my bag in the car on Friday when i took Hywel to the orthodentist and asked him to get my diary out.
I was so sure I must have pulled them out with other stuff and dropped them that I couldn't bear to have the worst confirmed that they were not in the car. So instead of looking I spent the day in absolute bits - almost literally sick. 10:30 tonight Phil had had enough and went out to the car. Guess what he found?
They are now on my notice board so please, please make sure I put them back in my bag on the day!
Phil is now happy because I owe him one (as it were).

Other news... concert in which I played the harp yesterday. Pratty nerves once more meant that I didn't play it like I can. But the good thing about a harp is that unless you stop playing altogether most people are enjoying the sound without notcing all the wrong notes (and there were quite a lot...) The conductor is happy for me to play with them again so it wasn't a total disaster.

Oooh and before I do a craft reveal (you see I like to keep you hanging on and don't you dare just scroll down to the photos) I was out all day Saturday at a London Summit for the United Reformed Church. It was a great day because so often these days we seem to be talking gloomily about the future of our denomination but this was a day full of hope. And I also discovered that the guy playing the piano and who sang a solo is Mr Banzai. Well his real name is Masashi but he was Mr Banzai in Banzai which was one of the funniest tv shows ever. I'd never have expected him to be part of the URC!

Today I have been mostly crafting (to take my mind off the missing tickets). I am ready for Fridays Dare. I have to do mine early in the week because it is my only large amount of free time. Can't show you those, but I have also made an exploding box for Phil's Auntie Jones for Christmas. (She is really called Joan but Carys used to think that she was Jones because we would say Joan's this or Joan's that and the name stuck). It has in it all her neices and nephews and their kids. Not their partners because we can't all fit due to us having three kids! late night piccies so bear with me. All the papers are birdie by Crate Paper. And it doesn't actually bulge that much. The central pages with my kids on. I enjoyed making it but it was harder work than I expected. Only another two to do!
I'm still a prat though

Friday, November 24, 2006

Diggin' the doodlin'

But before I tell you about my cards you have to trawl through the further escapades of my humdrum life because this is the best diary i am ever going to keep so there.
I left you on wednesday afternoon having just come home from Royston. Soon after I was afflictedby the most terrible headache. The sort where all i can do is lie down. So i was just about to when I had a phone call from Phil. He had gone to Wanstead (about 40 mins away) to pick up something from Freecycle (can't say what as H reads this). He had to borrow my mobile as his needed recharging. i warned that mine only had about a minute left.

Yup it had died almost straight away. so he had to use a phone box. Now our car has central locking but it is knackered from the drivers side. As he got out of the car he remembered to reach in and lock it from the inside, shut the passenger door and then realised the key was still in the ignition. Normally one of the back doors stays unlocked and you have to lock it manually. But wed night it did what it was supposed to.

So phil decided to come home by train and get my spare keys. He woke me up to take him back to the station as there aren't many buses. I was a bit cross and felt he would have been better off staying with the car and calling the breakdown cover we pay for to fix it as the car might not be there when he got back.
(Note would have driven him there but really wasn't well enough)

Car was there - should have known no-one in Wanstead would want an old skoda! I came out on Thursday morning to find i had left my car unlocked and my handbag in there all night. Humble pie was duly eaten.

Had a filling yesterday morning. Would just like to name and praise my dentist Dr Reed as she makes having a filling bearable. Even the injection is relatively painless.

And a funeral yesterday afternoon. Beautiful wicker coffin. But they do creak rather. Anyway it went well and the blokes out back said I had a nice voice (it is disconcerting because you are on tv and all the funeral chaps sit out in the back and watch to know when to come back in. You thought they had some innate special undertakers sense didn't you. No, it's CCTV)

Today it is orthodentist part one for Hywel. So i will be late posting my blog following the daring Cardmakers launch for the next 3 weeks as i have to go with him and watch. (well sit outside doing sermon prep). He is having every piece of mouth torture equipment possible put in. Aw bless.

OK I'll put you out of your misery now.
Once more i have to apologise for the pics. There just isn't anywhere to catch the sun in my house at the mo so all the cards look a bit blue. This one is all drawn and written by my fair hand apart from the diamente bling. And the lettering is traced from a free 2peas font called platform shoes
This one uses the cafe rojo font and there is loads of doodling using white pen. The purple and patterned paper is BG LilyKate, the background paper is from my SA kit this month (slurp!).
And the last is hand doodled but inspired by some paper I have which I can't remember the name of now - anyone recognise the flowers? it's on a white background! Coloured in with twinkling H2O's Gotta love them!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

And life goes on

Can't believe so long has gone since I last blogged. OK so its only a few days but I try to write something every few days because I'm always disappointed when I open a blog and realise I have read what has been said before.

So what has happened in my slightly squiffy world?
Children's bit on Sunday was fabbo. we made our tower and i asked if anyone else could paly with it "NO" shouted one of the kids and we made up some rules it was just for us, agreed that wasn't God's way and they knocked it down. Toby cou;dn't have done it better if i'd primed him. What a sweetie.

Monday I met up with SueH my fantastic crafty friend who reads this but never comments (hi Sue!). we tried out the new craft shop in Upminster called Imagine That. oh wow. it is lovely. Not tooooooo much stock but some different things. A great cropping area and lots to see. I bought one pack of rub ons as I am trying to cut down on spending.

Then we thought we ought to go to Artbase so it didn't feel left out. Now that is crowded but lovely too. I just bought some crate Paper (Birdie) and matching Bazzill to make an exploding box as a Christmas pressie but I love the paper so much i don't want to cut it now!

In the evening my dad arrived for a stop over for a meeting in London. Then I went to an orchestra rehearsal as I am playing the harp in a piece with them. look this is me actually playing the harp!
I know you can't see my head but it is me honest!
And I did my cards for the dare blog this week. I have to do them early in the week in case there is no time later. I am not, and never have been a girly swot!

Tuesday was mostly work. Today I had an earyl start with a breakfast meeting at Romford Dogs! Interesting venue - but rather cold (we were inside but I think they expect people to have sports coats and flat caps on at all times). My second meeting finished early so i had more time with the girls at Royston. 3 craft shops in 3 days! A few of us who live within about an hour of Royston have met up there for 'Christmas' lunch for the last two years. its good fun.
I only bought 2 packs of 99p rub ons (OK so in the meantime I ordered BG Fruitcake from SA becasue they have a great deal on but I pretending to be a virtuous scrapper this week)

Here we are eating lunch. SueH and sueW. And the remnants of my baked potato. The ONLY baked potato left. I got in before Clare and carolyn who were then trying to force me to enjoy every last bite while they slurped their second choice soup. Carolyn spent the rest of the time looking daggers at me. watch
And here I am looking like a potato There is another photo of me where I look better but this is the nicer one of Janice who hates having her photo taken so as a reward for her you get all my chins....
and finally carol had so much fun sitting next to JJ that she felt forced to entertain herself
Pants weather driving home. Kids tea to make then out for a meeting. Not much time for crafting this week til oooh Monday I expect :(. But I may gaze at the crate paper a little longer...

Saturday, November 18, 2006

My new man

Yes Johnny Depp came to the Romford URC Church Fair today. So did our local MP. And Nemo
What is it with my daughter and large cuddly toys? she has the smallest bedroom one could have yet she insists on toys being lifesize...
Yes we had a Pirate theme.

Enjoyable but tiring!
And now I have managed to polish off my sermon and worked out what to do with the kids tomorrow (we will build a big tower of cardboard boxes, admire it and then I will knock it down being a kill joy. because what Jesus says in the Bible passage is a criticism of the way loads of effort has been put into building and maintaining the Temple instead of actively sharing God's love with people).
But I am tired after all that effort so it will be a craft free zonk in front of the tv.
Me and Johnny snuggled up together.
Sorry I mean Phil, PHIL, yes Phil and I snuggled up together
(wonder what he would look like in my bandanna?)

Friday, November 17, 2006

It's Friday, it's 10 o'clock, it's time for...

Daring Cardmakers!

ok so you have to be as old as me to get the reference and if you did have this invisible 'daring cardmakers'(DARING CARDMAKERS!) pencil as your prize. In a minute we will play the game with the cabbages.
(McClain? Yes I had a bath this morning!)

If you are not old enough to understand what I am talking about you have my sympathy. Friday nights without that kids tv show. Happy days.

I think I am still recovering from having to travel in and out of London yesterday. How people do it every day I do not know. I missed most of the breakdowns on the tube but made the mistake at the end of wating for the bus. It is quicker to walk home and only takes 15 minutes. I was tired so I waited. Which meant I got home cold and tired instead of fit and tired. Remind me next time eh? Still the meeting I went to was worthwhile so that is good. I am a Borough Dean you know. Sounds impressive doesn't it. Well it had to be either Phil or me as we are the only URC Ministers in the Borough. I won the wrestling match though I have always been suspicious that he let me.... I am now determined to make something of the post so we'll see.

But what you really want to know about is the cards for men using ribbon eh? The ribbons are

from a Shoebox Trims kit (the kit is no more but I do have a lot of ribbons now...) The wavy paint lines (I meant to do them like that you know. Its Arty) were done with some dye paints from Artvango. It's a lovely little palette like watercolour but yer actual dye which makes for vibrant colour. The middle square is a Junkitz Squarez which I shouldn't have bought as I have an aversion to z's and k's instead of 's's and 'c's. Its not arty, its not funky, its bad English. (panicking about my use of "its" now though...), the other two are Bazzill.
This card came about because the Daring C's had an extra internal dare to use pink ribbon on a card. So I went for it! Apart from the white ribbon underneath, the other ribbons were this month's free gift from Scrapbook Inspirations and they are lush!The paper as I'm sure you know is BG Lolipoppe Shoppppppe (Don't like extra letters in words to make it oldy worldy either) The 'r' is a Heidi Swapp chipboard letter with extra pink spots and the 'think pink' label is from Ms Swapp too. This was a simple quickie. Using October Self Adressed paper, a bit of Bazzill, 4 bazzill brads, grosgrain ribbon, letters from QVC kit, 1 from Doodlebug. flower one of Auntie Sarah's (who is expecting twins which is really exciting!) (and is the home of the Heidi Swapp chipboard which I find almost as exciting...)

In a moment of weakness this week I ordered some stuff from A Trip Down Memory Lane. They have these Christina Cole epoxy stickers which match the paper (which i have of course) and a few other bits - like the doodlebug letters and the small BG letters to go with Lily Kate and Gypsy fell in too. well delivery was super speedy and I got a handwritten note and some extra ribbons as a thank you. So thank you ATDML!

OK cannot put off the service this week any longer. The readings are all about doom, death and destruction. Anyone got any ideas for what to say to the kids?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A few words of explanation

1: Sadly the boxes in the photo are filled with work stuff - envelopes, musical instruments, visiting cards, puppets, candles and a whip (it's only a prop one). The drawers aren't really deep enough for 12x12.
2: I only wore the shoes for the photo. I took em off again straight after and put my biker boots back on. I can dance in heels like that, but not necessarily walk again for a while afterwards...

Daring Cardmakers has produced a midweek dare for those who enjoy them! Here is mine I'm having problems with getting the pictures right - either there is no sun or too much and scanning is a wee bit dark. This is a scan hmmmm. Papers are from K and Co Scrap Pad to Go Neopolitan which is absolutely gorgeous. Flower is another Auntie Sarah's bloomer (love em so much), little prima flower and bazzil brad. Ribbon from my enormous stash. Last bit of the narrow pink and brown double sided with is gorgeous and I don't know where it is from.

I should be in Morning Prayers now but the traffic beat me back home. My churches are in Romford and Harold Hill but I live in Upminster. Normally that is fine but to get to prayers by 9 on a Wednesday takes 30 minutes at least. If there is an accident (like today) I can be crawling for 45 minutes and have taken the decision that there is no point crawling along and then disturbing the prayers for the last 10 minutes. I shall have my own prayer time soon.

Then its two visits, a working lunch and preparation for Church Meeting tonight. Oh yes it's all go here. And its a biker boots day rather than heels I think...

Monday, November 13, 2006

He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy!

We have finally introduced the family to "the Life of Brian" with suitable warnings about swearing and naked people. For the kids it was an eye opener (not about the naked people) because suddenly everything their parents say makes complete sense.
THAT is why Mum says "I'm Brian and so's my wife"
and "10 for that you must be mad"
and "we are all individuals".
Incidentally, I have always thought that the crowd scene would make a great point in a sermon about how we are, well, all individuals. But then have remembered that Brian has no clothes on. So I was pleased to note that he has by that point so I may show it one day...

It still amazes me that so many Christians were aghast when Life of Brian came out. It couldn't be shown in Swansea, where I was living when it first came out. The film never mocks Jesus Christ, just those who are religious. And we are all too guilty of taking ourselves too seriously. It mocks lots of other people too.

The only scene I have ever found hard was the crucifixion at the end. But then I remember that crucifixion was the punishment of commoners and lots of people would have been up on that hill. I don't expect many were whistling though. (Cue for another sermon which I shall save until Easter I think)

I had to work all day Saturday (sob). I have had some crafty time yesterday and today but yesterday was Daring Cardmakers stuff, which i can't show you and today I have been cracking on with my Circle Journal for Carolyn's and it is the bit I can't show for that until the end!

I will show you a photo that Phil took for me today that I needed for it though...
Oh yes, am I not the coolest person you know?

Don't answer that.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Guten Morgen! Bore Da! Bonne Matin!

Oui, la challenge pour cette semaine etait de fabriquer les cartes en langue different. Ce n'est pas facile! Mais j'etait tres impressed par toutes les cartes des mes "Daring Cardmakers" amis.

Phew that is enough for me. You wouldn't think I had French A level would you. Mind you I got German o level and can't put a sentence together at all in that. I also got up to (but could not pass, sob) level 2 in BSL but that isn't really helpful as you can't see my arms waving about.
Although we are getting a Webcam at christmas time... (mind you my mum will be able to see what i'm doing when i talk on the phone.... usually playing spider solitaire)

So... this weeks dare was to make cards with different languages on. Seemed a tough brief! But wow! look at the cards!
(I will just pause here to tell you that when I mentioned the 'dares' at breakfast this morning, my two boys disdainfully scoffed and said that these are not dares but simply challenges. Yea, thanks for the support guys)
It's funny how just about all of us in chatting to each other really lacked confidence in what we had produced. But I think this is the best work so far!
So here is the science bit on mine...
OK I have realised that this one is mostly English - but it made me smile!
Papers are from the September Self Addressed kit. The hands are a QK die and are mounted on springs of wire (which looks nice but makes it difficult to phtograph or scan). The blue strip of paper has been through a Goosebumpz.

This means 'Congratulations on your new baby' in Welsh
This one was based on the Pencil Lines card sketch for this week. (That blog and the Speshals show just how much talent there is here in the UK)
BG Lily kate papers, one of Auntie Sarah's Bloomers, gorgeous brads are from Carolyn's shop. So are the hand and foot but they aren't in stock any more. Hope they come back becaue I love them!

I've finished Flying Under Bridges now. So good. It's a great story but also provides food for thought. I am also reading Shaman's Crossing by Robin Hobb. I love her fantasy/adventure books and not just because they are long (I read fast) Hywel has read all her books too (he reads faster than I do) and it's nice to share things like that with him. I always thought Robin was a man - all the main characters are men. But no!

Enfin, je vais finir maintenant cars j'en ai besoin de travailler pour la Dimanche!
A bientot!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

It's Kit Day!

What a surprise! The Self Addressed Kits were only posted last Friday and I have mine already.
Looky here at what I got.
The picture just doesn't do justice. I love double sided card soooo much - but then hate having to decide which side to use when they are all so lovely!
I've done two cards for the Dare on Friday but they are proving hard to photograph. I think that the details are too far apart for the camera to know what to focus on so it just panics and goes blurry. That's what I would do anyway.
Today has been good cos
  • I tidied my desk
  • sorted my clean washing piles
  • listened to the kids laughing and playing as they put their own clothes away. Can there be a nicer sound?
  • even managed time to make a few more Christmas cards - and had some lovely comments about them on the Bumbleberry forum - a very friendly place
  • Have enjoyed listening to another installment of the brillaint Flying Under Bridges by Sandi Toksvig. Being an old lady I love listening to audio books while I am crafting (I get them from the library as I am too mean to buy then though) and this is a peach. Not only is the book great but her delivery is superb

And now I shall go and dribble all over my lovely kit again

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I love the postman

especially when he brings me big boxes of crafty stuff!

My Scrapstars prize arrived yesterday. look at all this and go green! there are card stock stickers, bags to tart up, cards to use, paper, rubons, tags, ribbons, page pebbles. it is crafting heaven. Thanks so much everyone.

I ahve been working on my circle journal for the Crafts by Carolyn enormous circle journal project. It's the first I have done and I was pleased that I managed to cut the chipboard myself (may have mentioned that before but I am really, really pleased!) and only lost a few cm's trying to get the pieces to match up... I made the inner pages just a little smaller so they don't come out over the side of the journal - well ribbon can (hint hint)
here is the front - Cosmo Cricket paper - yum yum and lots of krylon pen to add bling to stickers etc
and the back has one of Auntie Sarah's bloomers with a button/paper combo in the middle

Saturday, November 04, 2006

In one side and out the other

I had my cheque from the Chicken people today! woohoo - my first royalties... Phil asked waht I was going to spend it on. I gave a rather hollow laugh becasue if I were a business I would now only be about £4,000 in the red!
It has been payday (from my proper job) so I have done a leetle shopping recently. Scrapbooking uses the same kinds of paper (good) but needs something else - like aplphabets - so I have been buying some rather nice naked chipboard ones by Heidi Swapp and BG and loads of lubbly wubbly Auntie Sarah's Bloomers - paper flowers from Sarah's Cards. I bought 4 mixed packs of large ones of various kinds and some mixed colour small selections. I had just bought a few when sarah celebrated her birthday and gave a rather nice discount. That is the type of birthday I like!

And I also bought the Junkitz Classic Rock collection as I have noticed that my kids all wear a lot of navy, red and beige and hey - those are the colours of cl-ass-ic rrrrrrock! (said in my best radio 2 voice). And of course Dasher - which I bought from Scrap Revolution - but they are now out of stock. I can understand cos I love those cool christmas colours!

Any more spends? Oh yes, as I have heard they are discontinuing zipemate I bought a load of plates for it - cheaper than replacing it - yet.

And today we had the Card Club at Church. we had 11 there! So it's growing which is good. It is still using mostly my stuff although there are one or two other card makers who bring bits and bobs. I don't mind because I usually only take along older stuff so it gets rid really! I'm not as green as I'm cabbage looking you know.
It's lovely to see people getting a kick out of making cards.

I've done some harp practice and the blisters are beginning to harden and the fingers loosen up so I might not make too much of a prat of myself in a few weeks time. But i'm too tired for any more crafting today - apart from cross stitch while watching Casualty.

Was going to upload a pic but I only have 10 minutes to cook tea pre Caszh and the luck of the Blogger is not with me. Lucky there is a tv in the kitchen though...

Friday, November 03, 2006

Chicken goes bananas

I so hope this works...

banana fun

Big thanks to Kathy

for making me get the sewing machine out!
When this weeks Daring Cardmakers challenge came up I nearly fainted with terror
I had just got to grips with my sewing machine last year when it died on me. And I lost all confidence again. The thought of having to do lots of hand sewing also made me blanch (but that's cos I'm lazy) so i put my big girls pants on and got the machine out. It did not start well. Two broken needles and having to take the whole bobbin race out to retrieve caught up thread later and I was ready to give up. But I put my extra strneght big girls pants on, phoned a friend who reccommended a stronger needle and by jove it worked!

This was my first try. If you bring it up you can see all the extra holes (it takes a lot for me to throw out a card and start again!)
cream square card, the awesomely fantastic Scenic Route paper from the october Self Addressed Kit. I have gone up to getting 8x8 papers and it is even better!
The flower is cut from some of the paper and the buttons are from an ebay buy ages ago. Sentiment (love that word) is printed on safmat and layered on card. basically see above for details! But I will just mention again that I love, lvoe, love these papers - so classy!
Not so sure about this one but I was on a roll with the zig zag! BG Gypsy papers and Queen and Co flowers and brads

and finally for now
Dasher paper, free machining on the 'bauble' (so proud of myself!) and hand stitching on the square.

Yes I have some Dasher paper. It is lovely. And it's all mine!
I MUST go and finish my services for Sunday. Tomorrow I will write about my latest craft shopping....

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Hi ho, hi ho, BOO!

Yup, I'm back to work. But what a great job that involves cuddling a two week old baby and spending time eating and drinking with friends. I even got Richard the one who doesn't talk to tell me about Colchester Zoo - his family were there on Friday too "I saw da yiyon and de pengwins and de yeyefant". He didn't see us though!

My mum arrives to spend some time with us today and we haven't told the kids so that will be nice! (plus she usually thinks its a pigsty and cleans)
Can't show pics of the crafting I've done yet but I've been working on my Dare Blog cards for the week and my CBC Circle Journal which is getting more daunting. But I've discovered that the Cropa dile is a dream for punching through chipboard.

we didn't really do Halloween - i'm fairly ambivalent. I think to say it is bad gives evil more power than it deserves. It's better to be poking fun at devilish things than to beleive them. ON the other hand I feel that in England we are copying the US to a certain extent (note the use fo england o Scottish readers, I know that it is different there and trick or treating is a centuries old pastime) on the other hand it all looks so much fun. So I did the typical british thing of dithering all evening...

But the best bit was when a group rang the doorbell and Phil answered it and went "RRRRrooooooooooooooaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrr" at them and they screamed their little heads off.

I do that when i see him first thing in the morning though so its understandable....