Monday, June 29, 2009

best card ever

Its been a long hot lovely day.
a bit frustrating in parts.
mostly due to the fact that my hard drive died again last week and I have to reload everything.
Which is why I haven't blogged my card yet from Friday
the nice part is that it is mine and Carys' birthday.
I had loads of lovely handmade, heartfelt cards this morning which I will show and tell. Thanks to all those who sent them to me
But for now I just want to show you my special card from Phil that had me laughing until I cried...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

And I will drive 100 miles...

as the Proclaimers didn't sing
Actually it was more like 140 yesterday and today. Why?
to stay in a travelodge in Derby.
Cos I meet up twice a year with two colleagues to talk over work issues. Two of us live reasonably close to each other but the other is in Cumbria so Derby is kind of in the middle. We have met at the same place three times now. There is a pub next to the travelodge so we meet work, eat and then relax at the pub. In the morning we stroll down the hill to the excellent Sainsbury's cafe for breakfast and more work before coming home again. And as we do it over 24 hours you can still fit in work on the morning of day 1 and the evening of day 2. Result!

It did mean I wasn't around for the Salt launch this week but I had actually got my layout done. Which may well be the last one in my first Salt scrapbook. It is an American Crafts lever arch one but I think it is getting to the point where it won't close!
the Salt challenge this week follows on in a pattern from the two before

The Fruits of the Spirit

Hi everyone! It's my (Melita's) turn to host the challenge this week! This challenge will also be along the lines of our last two challenges. Continuing along the same vein as Lythan and Kim, our focus this week is on the work on the Holy Spirit in us and how it is manifested in the community of believers, namely, through the fruits of the Holy Spirit in our lives which are so clearly laid out in Galatians 5:22-23. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law."

I love this verse at times and at others, I honestly have to say that I do get disheartened by it because I don't think I will ever possess any of these qualities in the way that God intends. Of course, I know that this is the evil one's way of getting me to forget about trying to apply any of them to my life. It is overwhelming to think about them all at once, but when I look at them separately, I know that God is working in my life and helping me to find measures of each to share with those around me. So that is my challenge to you. Look at each of these and share how God is working in that area in your life.

I had decided that I wanted to focus on USING the fruits of the spirit early on so after selecting an apple coloured top I got Phil to photograph me eating an apple which I then photographed close up and then ate. Yum. There is no Bible reading (gasp!) as I just couldn't fit it all on the page. I might write it out for the back of the layout. I know the passage well but not everyone who reads the scrapbook when I am gone may do!
The papers are straight in real life, it is the crop that is squiffy now I notice honest! I have used my new best friend, October Afternoon papers again - the Cherry Hill ones. The layout is a simple version of this weeks Pencil Lines sketch which was good for layering. The apple and label are OA; the butterfly is KandCO
The buttons are from my stash which I have now put in colour coded bags; lettering is adornit and American Crafts. And for those that need a close up

Right off to do a short worship service with the Brownies and Rainbows and then part 2 of a bereavement course; followed by a relax and catch up with Phil while we watch Big Bang Theory. So fab!

Monday, June 22, 2009

In a celebrating mood!

Lots of good news to share today!
1: Lil C is coming home in an hour or so. She had a great weekend away - we know because she phoned with updates every three hours! Looking forward to snuggling up and watching Casualty together.
2: I had my MA essay mark - the pass is 40 and a distinction is 70. I got 64 which I am over the moon about as I didn't do well last year and was really despondent.
3: I found out today that my church has won a Multicultural story award from the United Reformed Church. Back in May I posted the Bind it all book that I made as part of our contribution! We will receive the award in December at an event in Birmingham
4: I didn't get on to the Twisted Sketches design team (sob) but have been asked to be a GD in the future (yay!)
5: I have finally finished cards to show off the new Funky Hand I do work book
What I like is that the patterns are neutral and can work for a cream/white or any colour wedding with a bit of tweaking. I had a commission without any colour so ended up with a bit of a cream/white/bronze feel. Jenni and Alan are getting married in Italy - hence the initials
I stuck the J onto a different letter's paper in order to get the right colour combo and glittered the outline."Wedding day" is also from the download and takes glitter beautifully. The card is a little shorter than it started out being due to a few Bind it all accidents!!!!
I used my new Martha Stewart punch; some Distressed Stickles; a lot of distress ink and a few ribbons from my stash
Here is the inside

and a card made from the leftovers which happily fits the UKS June card challenge
I layered the border with thin foam pads and also raised the teeny alpha letters. The velvet ricrac is from Imagine That and the crochet flower was a pressie ages ago. Jenni's brother Graham, who commissioned the card and is my church secretary is a dab hand at crochet and he is going to make me some more! I added a button and some bakers twine.

I have also made a layout to go with this weeks twisted sketch. The twist is to use at least one die cutThese are photos of the place we stayed in over May half term. Isn't it pretty!
Sadly the sky was only this blue for the last 2 days...
the papers are all October Afternoon apart from the Bazzill layer and the brown paper which is Costco. This was going to be the base layer until I stuck the next part down too far to the right. I quite like it now... the brackets and the journalling spot are die cuts. They are from the Cherry Hill set but match the County Fair papers too. Clever!
Here is a close up of the journalling
Off to work on my Salt layout this week - which may well feature OA papers too and also start preparing my next Doodling class for Imagine That. Oh and pick up Carys and do a Youth Praise service at church. Not sure how much will get done...

Friday, June 19, 2009

What, Friday again?

Say it ain't so!
I know I am getting old when it only seems like yesterday was last Friday. Ooooh me aching bones.
It does mean it is nearly my birthday (tiddly pom!). And my pressies (chosen by meeeeee!) have arrived. There are two problems however, due to the fact that my best birthday present ever was my daughter born almost 13 years ago.

1: we normally open our cards and presents in the morning. She insists (bless!) that we do this alternately. This can take a long time. Number 1 son has to be out of the house by 7:45 in the morning. Do I really want to get up at 6:30 to do the present thing? No. But if not, I can't play with my new toys (which are possibly craft related but I don't know as they are a surprise. Well I pretend they are) until after school. Oh the agony!

2: She wants to do something with her friends for her birthday. Fairy snuff. I don't want to have to organise it. Must drop better hints to husband...

One day she will find sharing her birthday with her mum annoying. So I must cherish it while she doesn't and make the most of it. I'm just hoping she doesn't do a Kevin ...
She has gone away on a school trip this weekend. Its a science/activity weekend. 9 girls and 20 boys. Interesting.

Which gave me the inspiration for this weeks Daring Cardmakers challenge
Miss you
Make a card that shares your love with someone - it could be missing you, thinking of you, across the miles - just let you imagination take flight.
I have popped the card in her suitcase as the postal workers in London may be going on strike this weekend.
It is a cream square card that uses layers of kraft cardstock and Scenic Route Sonoma papers and some faux stitching.
I added bakers twine around the centre panel which also has a Martha Stewart doily punch border and is raised on foam pads.
The cork and die cut accents are all from Chatterbox. I bought this huge pack of Chatterbox embellishments from Studio Calico - they are cork; card; chipboard and acrylic. There are birds; butterflies; stars; random shapes and some cute deer!
The big letters are American Crafts felt thickers and the little ones are Adormit. To make the felt stand out I drew around them and then added some tiny pearls.
There is a lot of dimension going on (another reason for not posting it!) as you can see from the close up
I also made a quick card for my friend Sue to give to someone. She wanted a funny card. This is more cute really but I couldn't resist the die cut bird to match the October Afternoon papers
the papers are all from the Cherry Hill collection. I just added some Making Memories tiny alphas.

Finally a quick layout which all came together when I found the Scenic Route chipboard piece that says "Lucky" on it.
The title came from this book which was one of Carys' favourites when she was little. Kraft cardstock (how glad am I we can get this easily in the UK now!); Scenic Route and Cosmo Cricket papers; another Chatterbox embellishment; a button; some twine and some gigham ribbon and bob's your layout. I love these leaves and trees that I cut and layered up from some Mr Campy paper.

Anice has launched a new wedding themed wordbook download today at Funky Hand and it is fab, fab, fab. To my shame I haven't created anything yet but the other Design Team members have been really inspired. I am going to pull my finger out and get going over the weekend, so must get my service prep done now...

Monday, June 15, 2009

A trip down memory lane

Over Friday and Saturday I spent some time with my good friend Anna. We don't get to connect very often but she is such a wonderful amazing person. She lives in a gorgeous little cottage in Barnes, just back from the Thames. On Friday we pottered round Barnes and ate and talked and drank some wine (mine watered down as Anna bears the scars of my night of shame from University. And no I am not going to write it down on my blog!). On Saturday morning we did a 4 mile walk to Kew and back along the towpath (how virtuous was that!) then went to Richmond for more pottering round shops helping Anna find the right dress for a posh occasion soon (I love clothes shopping for other people) followed by a late lunch watching the cricket on Richmond Green. It was like a normal persons weekend! Only of course I was back to leading worship on Sunday. I'm NOT COMPLAINING . But one of the sacrifices of my job is that my time off is not when working people have time off and it can make it difficult to get together.

I decided that I needed to scrap a page about how long we have known each other and that we are in denial about it. I took the small camera with me and we did an arms length photo. I came home and delved into my photo album from Uni. Do you know I have one album for three years? And most of the photos are from party nights ... fortunately from the beginning and not the end! there aren't many photos of me and Anna to chose from but here are some to give you a giggle.
This will appear on a layout below but note the close up of my lovely room. This was a double room as I made the mistake of saying that I didn't mind sharing. That means you share. But you do get a room three times as big as a single. Note my beloved Kermit the frog mask. And the black and white etching of a man about to be burnt at the stake. A friend was a talented artist and I asked him to draw me something. He chose this theme "because I know you are religious" Nice. I really wish I'd kept it now. I do have the "Lythan the sheep" one he did in 3rd year. The stake burning man was put in the one place in the room my room mate Debbie and I couldn't really see it without actually trying. Sorry Andy. What you miss from this angle is all the lovely rainbows I decorated the "sperm walls" with (so called because of the shape of the paint splatters). Groovy.

Here is us in second yearwith Haggis, still a close friend of Anna's and Jill (I think) at Haggis' 20th birthday party. HIs real name is Paul but we never call him that! The black was creeping in and by year 3 I was more "alternative" looking. I used to spend ages getting my hair to look this bad
but it was 1985 by then. I have no idea of the name of the girl in between us - and we were all on the Executive together! that is just awful. We were having a Furness College Executive do in the ultimate eaterie in Lancaster - the Kebab and Steak house. Veg kebab and chips - just the best! (And posher than it sounds!) I was Welfare Officer for the year. I was rubbish at it really.

And finally in the memory lane stakes a photo that gives me a real pang. I've scrapped it below but again it is good to see a close up as the camera doesn't like taking photos of scanned photos
This was taken around the same time as the last one in the room of the lad at the front whose name may have been Stuart but I can't remember. Then we have cool guy who was doing an MA; Paul Talman; me; Mark; Russell (who wasn't a student but was the brother of Paul Cannon who was my best mate for the first term and I wish I was in touch with now and was probably taking the photograph); Andy (the artist); Scott (another great mate) and Jonathan Harper Hill in front of me.

The pang I explain with the scrapping. Its an application for the Twisted Sketch design team. I had to use a sketch and ribbon in some way. Here it is
see what I mean about the photo? I used Dream Street Birdie Bits as background paper and then some large pieces of 7 Gypsies and Scenic Route Sonoma. The flowers used SR Grafton and two Crafts House Allsorts papers. The big journalling block is by Theresa Russell. I used my big scallop scissors (again) and did some daisy chain embroidery along the scallop. Then I added some fabby velvet ribbon from Imagine That, scrunched up using staples. You can see the colour of the ribbon better here.The letters are Basic Grey White Chocolate Chip coloured with an aqua marine chalk ink pad. And I crowned myself with a Prima Say it in crystals swirl. And here is the scrapping as therapy slightly easier to see. I used to think I was so fat and ugly and unloveable. It makes me sad for me then. Mind you if I had a steady boyfriend I don't think I would have got a 2:1 :)
And here is the layout which kicked off all this brooding over my past (and laughing at my daft get ups!)
Papers are Pink Paislee (as are the rub ons) and Sassafrass (as is the chipboard) The cork is Chatterbox. I tried to get a studenty effect with the cork and the layered photos
the only other addition wre some papermania stick on stones and Anitas ribbon given a ruffle effect. Here is the journalling
I've also made Carys' birthday card today which I am going to submit to the Papercrafts Idol. I think the competition is rather too strong for me but I needed a special card anyway. Its still drying so I'll photograph it later! Now it is time for an evening off en famille with Pizza, cider and Oceans 13. And more preparing Hywel for his time at Uni which is coming round all too soon!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Just a quick one

Do you know how hard it is for me to write that and not make it something rude?

Anyway I really have no minutes to blog but I am going to any way!

I am off soon to spend time with my mate from Uni who I have known for (cough 25years cough). The rest of the family will be home so I feel safe to blog this unlike the couple who twittered about being away and were burgled...

I still haven't shared much of my hols or my day out to Secret London with Phil on Monday. Ah well... So Daring Card today. Theme Sizzling Hot. Lythan did not read the word "only" so her card has more colours in.

Sizzling Hot!

Hi it's Keryn here this week and in New Zealand we're in the middle of winter. Not snow like some of you get but we think it's cold all the same. I want to see card creations using only sizzling hot yellow based colours like red, orange and yellow to send some heat out to us through the web.
And I had my eyes tested yesterday with no change so no excuse there!

I used an old 2Sketches4U sketch for my card. The papers are all WRMK Nonsense range. I did a bit of border punching, adding some tiny yellow jewels; a die cut number; hand written sentiment and a mahoosive felt star from a German craft shop which I hand stitched. There is also a wee bit of doodling. It turned out quite complicated and I think Katya's parents will wonder why so much effort went into her card!

I also did a quckie layout on Wednesday. I love clean and simple but can't really do it. This is close though.
The sunshine effect is from photographing it. Carys and I are shopping in Rye in the photos. On the close up we are in front of a craft shop which I was allowed to enter (gasp!) and did not buy anything (double gasp!). It had been raining which brings a depth to the colours I think. The papers, journalling card and scallop are OCtober Afternoon; I added Jenni Bowlin letter stickers; American Crafts felt rick rack; Making Memories epoxy star thing; chatterbox die cut butterfly; Scenic Route "love"; a pin, a button and two of my Papermania tags. I lvoe them now which is good as there are about another 3 million to use up. The "two" card came with the Studio Calico kit but I think it must be OA as it matches so well!
blrub close up for those who DO need their eyes testing!


Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Community of Faith

I was sitting here trying to work out what to call this post and when my mouse hovered over the title bit, the title for todays Salt post popped up so I decided to use that rather than use another 5 minutes on something different.

I am feeling relieved today. My brother went for a major op yesterday but has come through fine. I now think that it was major in that if it went wrong, it could be serious (as they worked on his neck) but if it went right then recovery is quick. I'm still a bit shocked that he is being discharged today! But just thankful that he came through all right and they are pleased with him. we have an odd relationship in that we haven't seen each other for many, many years and hardly communicate by phone or card. (Complex reasons that I'm not going to share here!) but I am longing to see him now. I was going to dash to Preston on Monday while he was in hospital but can't do Blackpool there and back in a day so Phil and I will head up for a dirty midweek when the kids are with my parents in July! (for an international readers Blackpool is like a very, very poor person's Las Vegas and was famed as the destination for illicit affairs hence the phrase "dirty weekend")

It was my turn to choose the Salt challenge this time. I wanted something that would follow on from the last theme so took my inspiration from the end of the second chapter in Acts where the doings of the first church are described. Wow what a gang! Read about them here. Eating together, worshipping together, sharing everything together, supporting each other. See, some of that I could do, but having done something like it in my youth - where I met Phil - I know that it is by no means easy. But sharing everything? What, even my new October Afternoon papers?
I'll have to get back to you on that...

So what does it mean to be a community of faith?
Here is my take on it...

The photo I used was not taken by me. I wasn't even there! It is the end of the worship on Easter Day at my tiny church - Heaton Way. I was at the other one but someone sent me the photo on their Blackberry! We are a Church who are only just there. there is always a question mark over the existence of such a small church. But it is a truly special place with a really diverse congregation that is both vulnerable and exceptional.

The blue paper is MME and the rest is Daisy Bucket. The big tree was a lot bigger and just too dominant so I had to do a lot of pruning! But it did mean that I could add some dimensional leaves. The large scallop was traced from a Technique Tuesday tile and the small journalling one was done on the Craft Robo. I added Adornit letter stickers and Basic Grey chipbaord letters and LOTS of distress stickles.

Here is a close up of the journalling

Off to make a Get Well Soon card...

Sunday, June 07, 2009

And here is Friday's news

How come I haven't updated my blog? I have no idea! Work rather got in the way of blogging. OK work and Bejewelled Blitz.

I had one of those work weeks which quickly undoes the good of a holiday. Actually that is unfair. It had a pretty good try but the hols were so relaxing that they won out! There is something really lovely about being away just the 5 of us and those times may be coming to an end with Mr H going to Uni in a year's time. I hope he will still want to come with us but we'll just have to see.

I have a layout and a card to share. The layout is actually about 2 weeks old now but I've just been that slow! It is another one using up my Studio Calico kit. Have I mentioned that I love that kit? I think I might be able to squeeze one more layout from it!

the actual photo is not up to much - taken into the sun at McDonalds on Phil's birthday, but I like our expressions. Apart from the string and the heart it is all SC kit. There was a yesterday too but I had already cut that off the paper and used the other side before I noticed! Our 21st anniversary was during half term. This is getting to be serious numbers now...

And my Daring card for this week.

This image was sent to me during an image swap by the Funky Hand design team. I love these images. (Phil wonders why a headless woman is standing in a puddle of dog wee but that is just a male perspective...) I used a card in Card Trends as a template although, again the end result is quite different. I used Lime Rickey papers and hand wrote the sentiment.

The craft club at Church was on yesterday and I made a few simple cards for that but haven't photographed them yet. The next few weeks I won't have a lot of crafty time (sob) but I will see what I can do. Maybe less bejewelled blitz and more creativity is the answer!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Creative catch up

I had a snippet of good news today - I had a really positive result from my Christian Aid collecting - £66 and some change plus enough people gift aided to add an extra £22 on top from the government. It makes it all worthwhile so thank you generous residents of Tawny Avenue, Upminster :)

I've been mostly working today with a break in the middle to go back to the top of the Bejewelled Blitz league on Facebook (only amongst my friends, not a national champ or owt!) I have become amazingly competitive about it along with Emma from Imagine That. Truth is there is as much luck as skill to the game and I get low scores as well as high ones. I just don't mention those! And I'm working tonight as well. Ministry is a great job in that it is not fixed hours but it is also a lousy job because it is not fixed hours. three nights out a week for work stuff does not make me a happy bunnykins. Still next week it is a theatre trip one night and a catch up with my uni mate Anna at that weekend so can't complain. (Still do though...)

Here are the cards that I made on Monday with Sue H. Well I made them while she was here, it wasn't a joint effort nor did I use her hair for embellishments or anything. Hmmm, looks like that MA speak is already in the dim and distant past again. Anyhoo here they are. The first two were inspired by cards in Card Trends June. I bought it to celebrate handing in my MA essay! They don't look much like the cards in the mag though

this one uses up snippets from the Studio Calico kit I won. (Oh how I wish I could afford the kit every month. But I have just read a book about kids going to Uni and it has struck home that the next 10 years or so are going to be really tight as we put three kidlets through University. SO I will have to curtail my craft spending big time!)
The stitching is all pretendy; the star is a Chatterbox die cut I bought to be shipped with the kit; ditto the twine tying it; the button is from Imagine That as is the sentiment stamp and the brads I have had for years
This one uses one of the Polka doodle flowers that I won teamed with some MME Magnolia paper. The papers are slightly more shabby than the flower so I inked that up a bit. I added some doodles, a teeny weeny butterfly; an Imagine That sentiment stamped with white chalk ink and a Basic Grey rub on

And the last card I made on Monday was a Kathy Black sketch special! Number 11 in fact

I kept pretty much to it. I used K and Co Amy Butler papers and card with an American Crafts grey cardstock base. I'm loving grey bases at the moment - will have to buy more grey bazzill I think! (but only a little, bearing in mind note re purchasing above). The oval started out as blue chipboard with gold around it but the gold wasn't to the same thickness all over so it ended up getting covered with patterned paper and painted. Yes, in that less than sensible order.

I then added some really thin pink ribbon and lots of flowers with gem brads in the middle and teeny Adornit alpha letters. The trim is WRMK Tiffany. Having made the card I am itching to take those gem brads off - it is too much of a splurge. But what I might do is add "on Fathers Day" to the sentiment and send it to my dad. He deserves lots of gem brads even if he doesn't appreciate the sacrifice!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Sidles in quietly

It's been awhile!
In fairness, I have been away for half term and the days before I went away were absolutely brutal in terms of work so I kind of crashed. But I am now refreshed and raring to go! (mostly)
We had a fab half term staying in a cute cottage in Peasmarsh, near Rye in East Sussex. There will be more on this later!
But for now I am going to catch up with the dares and challenges that I missed out on.
I was around for the Daring card on 22nd May but was just too busy to finish and then photograph my card. So finally here it is

I downloaded these digital images and papers years ago - on a hard drive that doesn't exist anymore so I can't attribute them. I used scallop scissors to make the waves and layered it all up with foam pads, inserting the boat into the waves. You can see the layers better here
the sentiment is a freebie stamp from Creativity Magazine.

then this last Friday it was to do a card with 5 of something. I went for my new punch...
and 5 butterflies!
the papers and die cuts are all Crate Paper Carnival, with some Making Memories Tiny Alphas thrown in. I love tiny alphas. Thought you might like to know!

And finally for today my Salt layout for last week! Kim set the theme of

The Work of the Holy Spirit
every time I thought about the layout I started singing a song. Which turned up on Hazel's contribution! I'm so glad I didn't use it too.
I made the bird part before I went away. I printed a template from the net and layered strips of Crate Paper Carnival (yes again) on the other side and cut it out. I added the lettering - al thickers. The red "Come" letters were just the wrong red so I added some pearlised paint thickly with my fingers to tone it down. I then set to a-journalling about my relationship with the Holy Spirit and then added the Docrafts stick on gems. A WHOLE packet! They were a freebie. I'm usually MUCH tighter than that with embellishments. BUT I do like the splurge look and I think the Holy Spirit deserves it!

I have more to share. I have even already done one layout about last week. But I'll save that for another post! Its good to be back :)