Friday, June 29, 2007

Happy birthday to me and Carys!

The trouble with having two birthdays on the same day on a weekday is that you have to get up extra early in order to open presents and cards. But I do love having the same birthday as my gorgeous girl.
Here she is modelling my new dressing gown. Doesn't she look adorable?She is spending two days at the senior school (including tests - boo!) and was a tad miffed not to get a badge with Birthday girl on so in 5 minutes I whipped up this tiny thing
Thickers felt numbers to the rescue!
She is at Gaynes today and Hywel is at work experience at a pre school. the stories he tells about the little ones and the way he tells them have us in stitches. All the helpers are called auntie and one child has called him "Auntie Owl" (its how they say his name). It is so tempting to call him that from now on!

We had lots of lovely pressies. Her main present was a mobile phone and mine was a new screen for the 'puter which means everything looks so much clearer now!

I have been in Cambridge for the week on a Ministers refresher course. A tiny bit of this

(well watching anyway, I'm not paying for a punt)
but mostly locked away inside here
having lectures, Bible studies, earnest conversations and maybe an afternoon spent sleeping...
(that is me with new trendy haircut on the left). It was very refreshing and only another 7 years til the next one...

I managed to fit in making a DCM card on Sunday morning this week - ready to give as a card for the child being dedicated on Sunday morning! We had a fabby time even if it poured with rain on the BBQ.
And here is the Dare for this week - Beady Eyed
Well this week is my dare (Saffa). Its quite a simple challenge really. All I ask is that you make use of beads on your cards. They can be seed beads, big chunky beads or little sequins, whatever takes your fancy.
Square card with printed phrase. Some bits of BG Pheobe. The Aaronic blessing printed on tracing paper, chalked and adhered with brads. An auntie Sarah's and a Dunelm bloomer and then on the top the rather lovely bead encrusted B.
It was so easy to do yet looks quite scrummy I think. I covered an already white chipboard letter (Heidi Swapp) with glossy accents and then plonked on some matching beadsfrom the Bead Merchant. Finally I poured on some of those tiny accent beads I ahve had for years and never used. And that is it!

Thanks to all who sent cards to me - I was overwhelmed with them. I don't open them all straight away as I have more than Carys and it isn't fair. But in a mo I shall take a cup of tea and open some more!

Friday, June 22, 2007

Today is the day

Carys comes home - yippee!

I've been out most of the day at a meeting and then shopping in costco for the church BBQ on Sunday. As it turns out it is cheaper to buy the meat in Tesco so there will be more work related shopping tomorrow! (I did also pick up 2 12x12 albums for a tenner though)

So now I can talk you through my card of the week for Daring Cardmakers

Rhi said
Everything we buy has packaging, some of it excessive, some of it beautifully designed. Tags, labels, stickers... all sorts of bits and bobs that we can recycle onto cards. I dare you to make a card using a tag, label, sticker or anything else you can find, thats from packaging and would normally end up in the bin. Of course you can ink it, change it, distress it and add anything else you like! If you're feeling brave, I DOUBLE DARE you to make it a card for a man!

OK so I missed the double dare bit totally but never mind!
I have had this tag for ages. It was on a pair of trousers from Peacocks and too nice to throw away so it has been on my bedside cabinet since then. I carefully dusted it off (it is fabric so the dust sticks a bit!) before distressing the edges. I layered it on some BG stella ruby paper and used a different sheet for photo corners. The ribbon across the bottom (hiding some of the words on the tag) is actually two BG urban couture ribbons layered together. My they are lush! the bottom one is a deep velour and the top one is ruched and stretchy!
the velvet blossoms are Maya Road and the jewel brads are 7 gypsies. the rest are yer every day brass ones!

It was faith scrapbooking at Church last night and this week it was words of faith. I was starting to panic over what to do as the idea I had thought of was not going to work, when I remembered a sheet of rubber stamps I hadn't mounted. Then I couldn't find my Kai scissors (I should never tidy up!) which are THE best for cutting red rubber. Happily my new little westrim ones worked too
so our techniques were embossing with gold (which they found very different to clear embossing and chalking!); using doodling stencils, making a pocket and using funky lines to help you journal. I think I shall use these bookmark stamps as candles on cards again as I really like the effect!

This weekend is a bit mad and Phil and I are away Monday to Thursday next week so the next time I blog may well be on my and Cary's birthday. And can you beleive there is a postal strike that day. The nerve!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Black is black

do, do do doooo, I want my baby back.
(Yup, showing my age again!)

I am missing Carys sooo much. She is the most communicative of the three at the moment. Most likely to say "and how was your day" and give cuddles. Still she will be back tomorrow and I bet she is having a spiffing time. It was one of the best things ever for Emrys -he came back so much more confident and ready to hit senior school. I'm sure it will be the same for Lil' C.

To take my mind off missing her I did some late night scrapping last evening. Did a little before tea (Phil's turn to cook, yay!) and then finished off two once getting home from a meeting at 10. Yup 100% mad.

The first was for a compy at Bex's forum. I have been meaning to do a page about this for a while. But the thing about the comp was you had to cut the picture in pieces and that was just the perfect thing for what I wanted to convey

I used SEI letter sized paper and was going to print direct but it wouldn't fit the printer. Hmmm, maybe I need to go the A4 route then...
I used SEI, Cherry Arte and BG papers, some rubons from an old SA kit, American Crafts thickers from the new June kit, ribbons and clear button from stash. Oh and some 99p shop coloured staples.

The other thing of significance yesterday was finally posting off my MA acceptance form. So I just had to do this...
Which conveys my mixed feelings exactly.
SEI cardstock; Crate Paper cowgirl papers; flower punches; BG urban couture ribbon; Dunelm Mill bloom; Philadelphia (I think) sponge stamps; American Crafts thickers

Must go as I have a meeting to go to (Its all go here you know)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Just fabulous!

The best creation of the day has to be Ruth's new little baby - check out her blog for awesome new baby pictures. Aaaaaaaaawwwwwwww. Huge congrats to the whole family.

Mine is not so exciting. And I didn't create it today either but for Phil on Father's Day. Although I may just have known about the midweek dare at the time. tee hee. I don't usually have time for a midweek dare but had to give this a go.

Used my snazzy new Self Addressed kit. Go to the site and see all the wonderful things the design team have done with the papers and things

Mine is dead simple ( like me!). Fontwerks Elsie flowers stamp set and stamps away brackets (my most used stamp!), some versamark, detail black embossing powder and a black pen. rubons, paper ad card all from the kit. its like the 70's done even more fresh and funky this kit. I love it!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Its been a loooooong day

Carys went off to Winmarleigh Hall this morning. We had to be at school at 5:30 so Carys made sure we were up by 5... She was too excited for words. I know they arrived safely so I hope she has enjoyed the 5 different activities for the rest of the day!

I decided not to try going back to bed and managed to fit a lot in today. Mostly cardmaking actually. the very gorgeous Sue Hyde came round to play. And brought my birthday pressie! Which I have opened as per her request but won't show you until my birthday. But suffice to say - swoon!
I decided to crack open a set of papers and plumped for my new Junkitz celebration papers. Oh my how lush! I also printed out some card templates from CPS and Sketch This: Cards which I found really helpful. I'm not going to match them up now (too tired surprise, surprise) but they are a great idea!
I made 14 cards today. Won't make you endure them all but here are a few faves!

Cupcakes, candle and bunny are all hand cut or assembled (hmm maybe a smaller punch for bun's head next time, but he was a first for me)

I'm really chuffed with my output today - and I have tidied away again. Shock! Right I think it better be beddy byes now!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Wierdo weather

I drove home in torrential storms yesterday, aquaplaning most of the way, worrying that my car would sink, then remembering the leaky conservatory and everything left out and panicking over that. Only about 1/4 mile ( if that, I am useless at distances ) from home I realised that there the road was bone dry. In the middle of Upminster - torrents. At my end of the main road - dry pavements. And dry left out stuff in the conservatory. Result. (It is hot and sunny here today as well while most of the UK seems to be flooding...)

Last night's Bible study was a blast. In fact I also did the card making club at the other church so I spent most of the day involved in crafting as part of my job. Double result! The theme of scrapbooking faith this week was heroes of faith. I chose an orange/brown/gold palette for them and people had brought photos to add in. I didn't - simply because I don't have photos of all my personal heroes and didn't want to single anyone out. I taught them how to use alcahol inks and a large rolling stamp. Dunno what technique next week as I am not really a techie person - but they like that element too. Anyway I could not get them to stop. They would have gone on a lot longer but I wanted to get home as I had my dare cards to finish off!
Here is my take on the theme - some of the others are much better!

I set the dare at the Daring Cardmakers this week. You are not the (em) boss of me. Basically just any kind of embossing you like. I'm nice like that. Simple. Big theme. (Which means I will probably do a right hard one next time ha ha)
I produced a set of cards as my contribution. This is becasue Carys is away next week on her year 6 school trip to Winmarleigh Hall (sounds like something out of Dickens!) and I wanted to send her a card for every day. Handily she has a name with 5 letters...
All the papers are from my K and Co Neopolitan Scrap pad to go. I wish I had looked at the two I made in the afternoon and stuck another one together horizontally but there you are.
Here are the techniques
Strips of paper glued to an outline and triple embossed. I discovered that you can actually then peel the white paper you glued it too off the back afterwards. Cool.
Chipboard painted with a Dabber, triple embossed with a penny black letter stamp stuck in on the last go round

QK embossing square on a technique tuesday letter stamp
fontwerks elsie flowers and technique tuesday letter stamp embossed with detail white powder.
Penny Black clear embossed stamp smooshed with chalks.

Its a doctor, orthodentist, GSCE, dentist kind of day today - let alone service prep so I must fly!
Have a good weekend

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Come back and finish what you started

Well I can't just have half a point can I?

I have now made a card using the same template
This also covers another Bex challenge - to make a Father's Day card not using the word father or dad. So this is for my dad using the Welsh for Grandad - and the name my kids call him. The paper is all K and Co Neapolitan Scrap Pad to Go which may come as a surprise as most of the colours look girly in the pad, but there are some great masculine papers too. I used a Ranger Dabber on a piece of chipboard and then triple embossed it with UTEE, sticking a Purple Onion star stamp in on the last go. the black didn't really work so I coloured over it, botched it up a bit and so used some Art from the Heart pigment powder to soften it again!. Letter stickers from the pad, QK star, printed sentiment and a couple of brads to finish off. Plus my usual ink and outline thing.

And then I did a layout for the Bex forum comp which is "proud". I went for being proud to be Welsh. And then went down the stereotypes route of things that made Wales, Wales
I took the photo of the Gower coast which actually looked even better than it does in the photo from May 06.
I covered Heidi Swapp letters with pigment powder/paint medium. Because the letters had a white coating they ended up stripy looking, which I like! The heart button was painted that way too.
The colour palette was based on the Welsh flag which makes for a bright layout!
I used one of my sheets of Elsie paper, coupled with two of the Crate Paper Samantha range. I added a few green sequins and some more wooden hearts (already painted) which I doodled on. And there you have it. If I'm honest, I much prefer all the other layouts in the compo but I am glad I have done this one.
So lets all sing along with Cerys and Catatonia
Every day when I wake up, I thank the Lord I'm Welsh.

You're not?
Well I suppose we can't all be!

Monday, June 11, 2007


Argh. There is nothing worse than having a movie night film that you doze to. Why? Because we have a no snooze rule so if any of the family catch me nodding off then I get woken up. If I could just have a real nap I might watch the rest, but instead I spent about 45 minutes with eyes open for 5 and shut for 5. Consequently I can't tell you what Superman returns is like but it can't be that good otherwise I wouldn't have fallen asleep to start with!

Saturday was mostly a day of rest (hurray!). We sometimes get periods of total madness so need to take rest days when we can. I made a card for a friend's niece's dedication. But didn't take a photo first. So I can say it is the best card ever and you will never know the truth...
Actually it was pretty good! I used the chalk and emboss technique from the Church scrap class and it looked very pretty.

IN the morning I went to the Open Day at Imagine That. I couldn't stay long but they had some great demos. I didn't mention my fear of paperartsy images but the new ones 0ut are more my thing. And Liandra who makes the stamps is hugely talented. She was using the Ranger Dauber acylic paints to such good effects. I bought a few more...

Later on Helen and Mike came over for a meal. Phil used his BBQ for the first time. The main course was ok but oh the puddings! He made lemon meringue and egg custard tart and I hand crafted a pavlova (it takes a lot of skill to take it out of the box you know). We watched Dr Who which was officially scary. How can things that you don't see move be so scary? Miss "I'm not scared" C Nevard spent the majority of the night in bed with her mum and dad. Which maybe why I slept today actually...

Sunday we had a lovely service at my little church. We meet in a room that is more like a large living room than a church. All three babies were there - all under 18 months. They were a delight (not always like that with so many of them in a small space!). And the fellowship and learning together worked really well. I love it when you can really feel the love of God moving through us. Ages from 7 months to 88. People from Nigeria and Romford and Trinidad and Wales. A real mix of the body of Christ.

Today I taught a class at Imagine That. Emma must despair over me because I always take far too long over the classes. I do enjoy teaching tough. Today was the exploding box class. In retrospect I made the class model too complex with lots of fiddly bits. I'll know if I am ever asked to make another prototype. And I did a bit of scrapping at home. I would love to enter all the challenges on Bex forum amongst other places but I just don't have the time. So I decided to set too today. I did one. For which you are supposed to do a card too so that is a massive .5 points for me!

We had to use this template
I have just received these papers in a kit from Funky Kits It is a nice kit because you get a few different sets of papers. These are Tropical Breeze by Paper Adventures. I cut a lot of the backing Bazzill off to use as a mount for the picture. The kit also included the seahorse which has been Daubered; the stamp which turned into a crown using paint; and the little blue gems. The letter stickers I have had forever from an old SA kit. The BG rub ons were a last minute addition and almost obliterated the "E" until I stuck another letter over the first one!
I have a little notebook to put scrap layouts in and scrapping this picture by adding a crown and cloak to Carys has been in there for about 9 months now! I'm glad I waited for this paper though

I took the elements of this to work on during the class at Imagine That. I find it is better to be doing than looming or reading - as long as I don't get too stuck in to my thing instead of keeping an eye out! This page uses BG Scarlets Letter (still can't beleive I love this paper as much as I do because en block it doesn't shine, but on the page - wow!) and some 7 Gypsies papers that come as four in a square - really cool. I chose the love bit becasue of the quote I have circled but also as an in joke as Emrys hates to kiss and hug. Add in my new letter stamps (again). These clear ones are so easy to place; more BG rubons; a Hambly journalling overlay and a clip which has been hacked and stuck on with glossy accents and there you have it.

these pages are 8x8 to go in the Scottish scrapbook which needs finishing before August. When we have another Scottish holiday! But there are only 4 pages left now - even with an extension in. Looking back over it is a joy - so why didn't I start scrapping before?

Friday, June 08, 2007

I'm over it

Thanks for all your kind words over my self indulgent sob fest yesterday. Which was obviously HUGELY hypocritical as I don't comment on every blog I read either. So I will try harder this week!

It is Dare Day today. I love Fridays. Love seeing the cards that we have made all together and feeling a sense of collective pride in the range of interpretations. And love seeing how quickly other people join in and create out of this world cards joining in with the dares. It blows me away!

Talking about being out of this world, take a look at this weeks dare...
It was Keryn's turn this week and she (or rather her 7 year old Lachlan), chose the theme of all things Celestial.

I decided to make a sun out of wool and ribbon. WHY? I have no idea really except that I thought it would be a bit funky. I think it is - but it is also a bit fiddly. I punched out a large circle covered it with glue and then wound 3 shades of wool round and about, using something to prod the wool down when it tried to escape.
I adhered the ribbon to card first to make it easier to position. (Adhere is one of those words like sentiment that make it all sound so much more professional I think!)
White square card - I seem to be using these a lot at the moment!
All the papers are Christina Cole which I love as much as when I first bought them.
Circles of paper have safmat sentiments and some Poundland bling stuck on them. Oops I mean adhered. (can't be professional for long)
Shell buttons are my £1 prize from Capture the Magic at Ally Pally.

The Bible study last night was a huge success!
We talked about recording our faith and then got down and dirty.
It was all pretty simple - A4 card
Here are my pages
I have printed out the title page for everyone.
I used the Cafe Rojo font.
Then I swirled chalks all over it and painted "faith"with diamond dust. The little sticker in the corner is from an awesome little stickerbook from the Lindisfarne Scriptorium
Mary Flessom is a wonderful artist who has produced prints, books and the wonderful sticker book and colouring book for grownups!
The theme of last night was the journey of faith. There was a choice of title style. I embossed some footprints before swooshing chalks over. The "footprints" poem was printed on tracing paper, torn and inked. I created the journalling spot with my new scallopped circle punch, then just added a little patterned paper from my old pile of papers, more stickers and a cross punch.

I did have time for another, more linear page but had to give it away!

I promised everyone there would be no show and tell but every single page was unique and beautiful.
It was wonderful to see and I can't wait for next week when we will scrap our heroes of faith.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Not talking to you lot.

As nobody commented on my last post. Waah. I only do this to get some love ya know.
Do I smell? (Actually yes I have just come back from charing a meeting which always makes me sweaty and will have a bath in a mo')
To be honest tho', I think a blog is kind of cool as you get this record with pictures of your life.
So I don't do it for the response. But it is nice!
Trouble with hols is that they end and then you come back to work. I've had a busy old day today. BUT I did manage to finish a layout I started last night and some of my work is getting ready for Bible study tomorrow on the theme of "My faith scrapbook". It wasn't my suggestion honest!
Lots of dubious people at the moment!
But we are going to make pages about different dimensions of faith. |Tomorrow it is my journey of faith. I have already made one sample page which is "arty" and I want to try and do another which is more linear in style.
There will be chalks and punches and embossing and paper on offer and i hope it will be ok. I am pretty nervous today...

When I was at morning prayers at one of my church's yesterday the theme of the reading and prayers was "hope" and I said I wanted it to be the watchword of the day. I thought it only right that I should scrap it. So I squeezed a little scrap time in.
Its an 8.5x11 size page
All the paper and cardstock is Love, Elsie. The stars, buttons, photo corner and heart are hand cut in Elsie stylee. Don't look too hard at the scalloped top. Maybe it's that I am left handed. Maybe I just need a straight line to cut along. Anyway wonky is the new straight. The letters are my new Technique Tuesday ones. Do they rock or what? (As Elsie would of course say).
I was going to have a Charlie's Angels vibe going on with this picture but I prefer the message now as that is my dear hope for my children.
And for everyone actually.

right better go and have that bath...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

I won!

Esther's quiz on her blog that is. Fancy those little things being peel off "faux" staples. (Urgh hate the word "faux" it is the lingual equivalent of polystyrene to me). And she sent me a luvverly prize - look!
Yup some of those staples, lots of flowers and those brads, ooh they are all jeweled and everything. Thanks so much Esther!

I've had a nice end to the hols with some crafting and chatting and tv watching.
Movie Night was the Island with Ewan McGregor in it. thumbs up from the Nevards. it is so much easier being able to choose 12's as well as PG and U. (OK so youngest is not 12 yet but we deem her to be mature enough to cope with it on a small screen at home). Phil and Carys went to another chicken rescue and C worked her socks off apparently.
Craftingly I made two layouts and also went to a class at Imagine That. Can't show you as it is Carys' birthday card. And not finished.

I discovered that I have something in common with Emma's mum Judy - we both had daughters born on our birthday. I mentioned it because I was showing off about having my text about it read out on 5 Live last Tuesday (AND Matthew Bannister pronounced my name correctly!) and Emma said "oooh so did my mum". Sadly in my excitement at finishing my first card and having crafty stuff to get for nothing I forgot to mention it at the till.
I bought Big Timber Letter rubber stamps by Technique Tuesday. (I say bought becasue they were such an extravagance they were more that the £20 freebie. Blush)

I've also bought some Elsie papers which arrived today - I'm well impressed with Scrapshed. Good price, speedy delivery. I bought the papers in the girly lines as Self Addressed are promising the whole Toby collection which is in fact, my fave.

If i get some work done tonight I might get to play with them. So before work/tea/washing encroaches I will share my layouts.
Homend Estate is where MiLaw lives and I wanted to show off some of the animals. The paper is from a kit called Ethan Kate by Scrapworks. I wanted to try some circular cutting. Hmmm need more practice I think! It all looked a bit bare so out came a doodling genie template and a trust white pen. Not bad though - took photos on Saturday and did LO on Sunday!

This one uses photos from Easter hols. It is my 3 with cousin Jack. HE usually poses nicely! The paper is all Scenic Route. Letters are my new alpha stamps which someone with good taste has also bought (tee hee!). Photos and letters outlined with a paint dauber. finished off with some 7Gypsies 97% letter stickers (love 'em), some funky brads and ribbon which truly isn't as way off as the photo suggests.

Right, must work before I can PLAY

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Home again

Doesn't time fly!
We have had a good few days at the mother in laws house. She lives near Ledbury - right out in the country. We managed to go out for a walk on the wettest day, go to the cinema for hours on the sunny day (Pirates of etc won't even bore you with how bored I was. Not even gazing at Orlando and Johnny lifted the tedium) and travelled home on the hottest day. Typical.
Here we are being wet

this is Mother in laws estate. Ok she lives on the estate and doesn't own it. But she gets to walk around here and see lambs and calves and ducklings. And scary cows... (and a bull but he wasn't as frightening as the cows who were guarding him and warning us off their man)

and here is the pup with his best friend Topper. Topper is really patient and lets Spin jump on him and play tug. Spin thinks Carys is a pup too and attempts the same with her. Although he did also get over excited and wee all over her one day...

I was also inducted into the mysteries of the Wii. It is quite addictive. The children are so kind and try hard not to be patronising. But I really am pants at most of it.

Oooh and I better talk about DCM. It is so long since I made my card I nearly forgot!
I missed all the "fun" of the blog disappearing but the heroes down under rose to the occasion and sorted it out. Thanks guys!
This week the dare is all about seeing clearly.
Kel says- Okay, this week I would like you to use some acetate, vellum, plasma or anything else remotely 'see-through' on your card. That's it!
Now we have a brand new guest designer - the brilliant Kirsty Wiseman. And we did quite similar cards - though hers is a tad more on the funky side PLUS I think she sensibly used permanent inks. Unlike someone else who then had a mad panic becasue it wouldn't dry and threatened to smear. And anyway will not stay flat. But apart from that...

I cut an A4 sheet of acetate in half (and should have scored it better)
punched various size circles from BG Perhaps.
Used various stamps to add the wording (happy, 2 and you are purple onion from SA sets)
Added Banana Frog circles using chalk inks (doh. Do not repeat this step with chalk inks, they are still smearing 6 days later)
Ranger Dauber paint round the outside of the card.
white paint pen dots round the patterned paper circles.

Well it nearly worked... It is still better than what I can do with a Wii anyway!