Sunday, April 29, 2007


Had a busy and long day yesterday!
Job 1 was to buy DS1 new shoes. Went to Clarks (cos I like to think of myself as a responsible mother!!!). He tried on slip ons. They apparently didn't have as much room in them as the sales assistant would like but as long as he didn't grow much it might be worth the risk. He needs to grow! I am putting spinach in his cereal to build him up! Plus they cost £36 and as I did a quick how much patterned paper is that calculation in my head I decided the risk wasn't worth taking. He tried on lace ups. Which even he admitted felt better. went to pay and the sales assistant was having trouble. She kept scanning the price and shaking her head. The manager told her it was right. They were £5.
I know.
I thought even the shoe polish was more than that. But I didn't argue.

The rest of the afternoon was spent beginning a compy layout and making a card for DS2 to take to his friend's baptism party. I was thrilled that his friend was getting baptised; that he was having a party and that E had said yes as he is notoriously cripplingly shy. And doesn't like new situations. So over the last few days I have talked about the party and buying the preset and making the card and that we would start our grand family movie night when he got back.
Or so I thought.
I asked him 10 minutes before we had to go to sign the card.
Then I lost him.
He turned up in his sisters room saying he wasn't going. A "full and frank discussion" ensued when he claimed he knew nothing about the party, i was springing it on him and he wasn't going. My heavy arsenal of threats (which I will follow through on usually) was spent. I wasn't sure what was happening at the party so decided that the only thing to do was to take present and card and explain. The parents were so nice and understanding (we'd never met before) and I stayed for ages. Which helped me see that
1: E would have hated it (there were girls there and everything. And boys who care about their clothes and hair. I dream of having one of those)
2: Obviously all the conversations I thought we had either we didn't really or he didn't hear what I was saying
3: he can't help being cripplingly shy and ill at ease in new social occasions and I shouldn't punish him for that

And as I had been away from home for an hour thought that was long enough and we had a good talk and he even said sorry (which is quite something). I did first but hey, I'm the adult and I have to give ground sometimes (shucks)

So Dr who and grand Family Movie night were back on. Our plan was to watch all three Lord of the Rings films in one go.
Now there are two things you need for that
1: lots of time
2: the dvd's

We didn't really have either. But I went to Tesco and lo a hugely expensive set was there, (plus some bright pink pants and feminine hygiene products). I loaded it all onto the conveyor belt and then noticed that the cashier sharing the cubby hole with mine was one of my church members. Cue Lythan trying to hide the several pairs of bright pink nicks and panty pads under the rest of her shopping...

And really 8:30 is not the time to start watching the trilogy. It was only 15 minutes in that I remembered how long the first film was...
And readers, the children talked the whole way through it. Cheering characters on, laughing at the silly elves hairstyles, spotting Gollum etc. For. three. hours.
By film 2 they were not as talkative - because I brought out the snacks. At 1:30 when that finished we decided that was enough as we had the Baptism service to go to today. we will watch the other next Sunday evening as it is Bank Holiday Monday next day!

The baptism was intensely moving and it was lovely to go to church as a family (sometimes we are in 3 different churches on a Sunday!). Our yawns were not to do with the quality of the sermon but the late night!

I haven't told you about the chicken rescue Phil and Carys did, but will save that for another post
I leave you with a few of the cards I made using old Self Addressed kits!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Did you miss me?(yeah) while I was away?

Did you hang my picture on your wall?

Ah.. innocent days when Gary Glitter was just fun.
Anyway I am back. Again. Phil did go to the loo first but I did smile to note that both of us headed for the computer before doing anything else. Not that we are addicted...

So our time in the Clacton caravan is over. We worked. I slept a lot. I ended up thinking about taking some cardmaking stuff and took my tote stuffed to the gills! And made a few cards in the evenings. Phil did loads of work on his NVQ. I read a lot of books I have bought and put on the bookshelves. We watched Little Miss Sunshine - brilliant film. And have come home to a lovely clean house. My mum is fantastic. Or to use my dad's favourite adjective - tremendous.

Because of going away I had to do this weeks dare last Sunday. So to be honest I had almost forgotten what the cards were like!
This week's challenge was a little different for the Daring Card Makers- as it was completely sponsored by Self Addressed.
Self Addressed very kindly donated papers, cards and envelopes (from various SA kits) to the whole of the DCM team to see what we could come up with. So I (Jane) came up with the following template for you and the team to follow. We would like to thank Jenn at Self Addressed for her generous support of our blog, we really appreciate it. Many thanks Self addressed!

I have been getting the Self Addressed kits for a few years now and they are always brilliant value for money. There is so much in the kit for cardmaking and scrapbooking and I value it even more now than when I started. I was given the job of parcelling up the stash and sending it round the world (sounds grand doesn't it!) Somehow I managed to miscount the bits of stash and had sent half away before I realised it. So thanks to Kathy, who alongside me had to dig into her own stash of precious kits to do this dare.
Yes, I really am a Muppet.

To see the template - and all the other awesome cards, visit the Daring Cardmakers Blog
I am particularly excited that Lynne has joined the team as a full time member and that Tracy is joining us for a few weeks as Guest deisnger. I know it's Designer really. The alternatives spellings given by my spell check were "derringer" and "mudslinger"!

Here are my cards then...
February SA kit papers (sold out I'm afraid). Flower stamp cut out and layered. Fibres given to me by my lovely friend Sue (they actually tone with the papers in real life but you can't see the blue of the pattern very well here. Honest). Safmat greeting. Details picked out with a lime green stickles

The card itself as well as the paper is from the same SA kit. Wooden button from same place as cute house. Little tag is from a Making Memories set I splurged on at Alexandra Palace. I couldn't beleive how well it went with the papers and stuck a safmat sentiment on top.

I've been tagged by a few people so will give it a go!
You have to do seven fact/habits about yourself .
Now because I tend to tell all I don't know what there is to say that I haven't already blogged about! but here goes
  1. I bite my nails but not down to the quick, so I've always got short finger nails
  2. I hate celery. It is repulsive. Interestingly Knorr stew sauces contain the warning "may contain celery" so I can't be the only one
  3. I will read anything and everything. Including ingredients lists on Knorr Stew sauces.
  4. I am very messy.
  5. If I really were a Muppet I like to think of myself as Animal but am really more like Beaker
  6. My head is full of useless information like what I was wearing on a particular day
  7. I would love to be a backing singer
  8. I am still a bit scared of dogs even though we had one for 14 years and I am looking forward to getting another. I am also scared of cows.
Ok that is probably enough to have me carted off.
I won't be away for ooh another 4 weeks so I promise to blog a bit more often!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Felty fun

It was Gillian's turn to set the dare this week...

Make a card and include some felt,
the theme & style are entirely up to you,

My first thought was "help" as I don't usually use felt. Then I began to notice it cropping up everywhere and I have ended up with 3 felty cards, plus loads of cut out pieces that I haven't used yet.
This one was helped along by a little make your own book from Poundland which included sticky backed felt pieces. The flower is actually made up of red and orange but they look the same in the picture. The cool corner is orange. I added a few stitches, some white and red brads, orange and yellow ribbon, a safmat sentiment and some BG Gypsy papers (inked natch) et voila!
This one was a tad more elaborate. The little handbags are QK dies cut from felt. Now not all dies will work and they don't always work a second time. I have one lovely photo corner and then had to give up on a second. Bags are fine. But nothing smaller. Some Sizzix dies will also cut in my Zipemate as well. Diamente buttons and some Scarlets Letter paper. I inked and embossed Banana Frog swirl stamps. The stamps on the paper corners are Stamps Away corner stamps. Safmat sentiment using a 2Peas Cards font (ie the word happy birthday in black is actually one letter of the alphabet)
And the only one hubby likes. Hand cut felt flowers; same safmat sentiment as above; stem done using doodling genie and a white gel pen.
No news - just work this week. Although I am off again next week - not hols but work. Study leave in a mobile home in Clacton! No internet access (sob!) but lots of reading "proper" books and writing prayers and suchlike.The Oldies are coming to look after the children on Sunday so I also need to get the house straight. And tidy away my craft stuff. Eeeek!
Have a good weekend
And don't forget to check out the Daring Cardmaker Blog for more colourful felty fun!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Home sweet home

Was the Little Extra Dare on the daring cardmakers site this week and as I have had two weeks off I thought I had better have a go!

The first card is a Self Addressed card blank from April 2006, but it is completely covered in various Stella Ruby Basic Grey papers from a 6x6 pad. Just shapes cut out and inked. This is based on a card that Netty from Self Addressed did. The SA forum and gallery got wiped last year and I did the card from memory. But I have just found that I saved her original!
so I might have to do some more cos I love her shapes better than mine! The stamps are Purple Onion but I got them with an SA kit. How cool is the kit. Stamps, ribbons and the most gorgeous papers. check out this months kit. it is a drool fest!

My other card was a simple one. A bit more Stella Ruby (I think), ribbon, a few sequins, printed sentiment, Auntie Sarah's bloomer and a wonderful button I bought at Ally Pally on Sunday.

Yes I have broken my craft fast!
Saturday I went to Imagine That and bought some paper and card stock. I was very excited 9becasue I am sad that way) to discover that Emma stocks the Bazzill kraft paper - it is called Paper Bag and I can't wait to use it. I also bought some rather lovely Piggy Tales chipboard and paper.
Then Sunday I went with my friend Sue to the stamp and Scrap show. we had free tickets due to the failure of the scrap classes event to happen. I'm glad we did because I wouldn't have wanted to pay. I suppose I was expecting something on the scale of the knitting and stitch show with exhibitions as well as shopping. This was just shopping. I didn't let my disappointment get in the way of my wallet though and picked up a fair few bits and bobs. Paper (no surprise there then), daubers, UTEE, stamps and some doodle genies. And these wooden buttons. oooh so many to choose from. And you can see the whole range here

And before I forget I had a fabby parcel from the uber talented Tracie Hudson today. Loads of gorgeous chipboard which I can't wait to cover in my new paints and powders. Cheers me dear!

Monday, April 16, 2007

And so she's back

from outer space.

well Swansea really. A lot more relaxed than before I went!
Thanks so much for all your notes of condolence. I really appreciate it. It was good actually to go away so soon after losing Dutch. I still think I hear him round the house but not being hear immediately afterwards makes it more bearable.

Well I won't bore you with all the details of the hols - some of them will be coming to layouts near you shortly anyway. But here are some highlights.
Cousins getting together - having fun despite the age differences
Time at Caswell beach and caves
Cardiff bay
for Dr Who exhibition (not as good as it might be but still cool)
and boat trip
traditional trip to Verdis (this is cinnamon flavour with hazelnut crunch, yum!)
and walking in the sunshine afterwards
meeting up with old young friends
and old old friends (I'll send the pics pronto Sue).
Plus theatre trips and pub quizzes, swimming, going back in time at a Manor House (brilliant), mummifying a dummy (pulling his innards out and everything. Poor Jeffrey) and chilling. Bliss.
And notice the sunshine. All week. Apart from the last day - hence the trip to the Egypt exhibition.

I'll share more of my crafting news tomorrow but leave with a glimpse of my design collective class book that I did over the weekend using scrummy Scarlet's Letter paper from Basic Grey. All about our dog. Sniff. it was good therapy really. And I realised how few photos we have of him. Pet owners - take photos immediately!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter!

Jesus is risen!

... And I made it through the week - just. Phew that was tiring. Really good. Really feel that it was full of worship. But tiring all the same.
I did manage to do two scrap pages though. I just had to. They were both using a lesson from the Design Collective. I'm really pleased with what has been sent through so far.
The first is a direct copy just about of the original idea. I was going to use other photos but then took these on Friday and needed to scrap them straight away.

We took the difficult decision to have our dog put down on Saturday. we took him to the vet on Thursday who confirmed what we thought but sent us home just to make sure it was time. So on Good Friday after the Walks of Witness (two Ministers in the family means we can never do these things together), we took Dutch for a last walk round the fishing lake. He could hardly manage which showed us how right we were. But it still hurts. i took the camera so we could have some last photos of him. Carys was really upset and spent lots of time with Phil crying and talking about what she would miss about Dutch. So that is what this LO is about. it would have been called Comfort but i didn't have any black rub ons with the right letters left and I was not allowed to buy any new stuff (til today!) so used a sticker that i have had for ages. Paper is Crate paper carnival (I think)

I couldn't sleep Saturday morning so got up early and scrapped the photos I was going to use in the above layout. I played about with the basic idea (and ruled out setting eyelets at that time of day). Hearts instead of circles and much less journalling but the idea is still the same really. Paper is Basic Grey Urban Couture, QK and Sizzlet hearts, BG & SEI letters, new Sassafrass lass bracket stamp.

So we took a very tired and in pain Dutch to the vet Saturday morning. Carys, Phil and I went. it was very quick, very peaceful and the vet was lovely. We had Dutch as a rescue dog when he was about a year old. He had 3 owners in quick succession before us. As a young dog he was bouncy, naughty, grumpy and would go for other dogs if they came near him - even if they were bigger than him. But over the years he has mellowed a lot and has just been an important part of family life. He has never been a really affectionate dog, you still had to shout at him to get him to do anything and he would latterly love to lie in the middle of an open door or anywhere that he thought he would be in the way.
But he was ours and we loved him and are all very sad.Though happy that he is out of pain and running free and happy again.
Rest in peace Dutch.