Thursday, October 28, 2010

You haven't seen me, right?

Cos i'm not here. Well if I am here something has gone badly wrong as I should by now be in Belgium somewhere en route to Germany. (Will we stop off to at Ghent to celebrate Vegetarian Thursday? I doubt it. I will probably just want to GET THERE.)

But there are people - and many, many dogs in my house right now so I feel safe in telling you this. And I will be back by Saturday night. I hope.

Meanwhile today is Salt day and it is my turn to choose the challenge. I went for "Who is my nieghbour" because I think this is an important question to reflect on at the moment. In the UK all the talk is of cuts and I fear we could end up with a divided society. It is up to all of us to find ways to stand together and for Christians to practice loving and sacrificial giving.
Here is my take on it
The photo was taken at the Muse concert in Wembley before the concert began and I love the fact that there are loads of different (tiny) people there.
The papers are all Scenic Route. I also used glimmer mists; sizzix die body; nestability die; stickers from jenni Bowlin, Cosmo Cricket, Making Memories, October Afternoon and the chipboard letters are making Memories. The journalling tag is from Jillibean Soup and the ticket is Tim Holtz.

Close ups time
Oh yes I have new GOLD Glamour Dust. (Yes I am excited. Yes I am sad)
Maybe I should have used a ruler...
See that little golden heart. That is for God not Muse.
I'll be back eventually with my Daring Card for this week.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hey hey its half term

and it couldn't have come at a better time. I had a reeeeeeaaaaalllly full diary this last week and need a bit of RandR. Mind you with all I have to fit in, that might be pushing it! The house needs some serious attention (and if I say it does then it most definitely does); I have to do some work on my MA and on Thursday Phil and I embark on a slightly mad road trip that in about 50 hours takes in both driving to Witten, Germany and Cambridge, England. IF the French are not revolting and everything goes smoothly I will tell you about it at the end.

This week I managed to get my Daring Card done on Monday :) but since the launch on Friday I haven't had a chance to blog :( The colours of the cards together this week are lovely as Lynda chose the theme of Autumn Leaves. I took the opportunity to use my new favourite stamps again!
The leaf; sentiment and frame all come from the same Waltzing Mouse frame it set. The leaf was stamped onto three different plainish papers from the Cosmo Cricket Nutmeg pad then embossed with clear powder. Brown distress ink was smeared over the top and buffed to allow the veins of the leaf to shine through. The cardstock is by Papertrey Ink; all the papers are Cosmo Cricket and the border came with a Gottacraft kit.

I'm thinking of going to do some crafting now but slobbing about with some chocolate and the paper also sounds good. Oh what a hard decision to make...

Thursday, October 21, 2010

All quiet on the Upminster front

and that is the way it may stay for a while. I'll try not to bleat on to much about my MA course this term except to say it is a research project that teaches you how to do research projects that still needs proper ethical clearing, actual research and 6000 words by... 2oth December. Not great. The course is good, the teacher really lovely and my fellow students fab plus it does help prepare the way for the Dissertation (eeek) BUT it is a lot to fit in a short time that is already crowded. So I'm expecting not to make Christmas cards this year (sob) and have to make some other tough decisions too. And once this is done work has to begin in earnest for the Dissertation.

I have done a little crafting - I can't not do any. I have managed a Daring card for tomorrow having blown out last week (not well again. Fine now) And made two other cards as well.
This one was for the wonderful Emma at Imagine That. Always the scariest card of the year to make - how do you make a nice card for someone who owns a cardmaking (and scrapbooking!) shop?
Everything is from Crate Paper Restoration apart from a Cuttlebug Embossing Folder; a Waltzing Mouse greeting and some pearls from Imagine That

I'll leave you to guess what the second card is for...
Papers are Dear Lizzy spring; Fiskars Border punch; papertrey ink stamps; black pen outlining and what you can't see so well is the ooooodles of glamour dust sprinkled over everything!

Talking of Fiskars I was thrilled to get a mention here today. Thanks Caroline and Jayne!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

God is good

I've just watched the BBC clip of "33 tearful reunions" of the Chilean (and Bolivian) miners which should be called "33 tearful reunions that will make you blub". I'm hoping to use it as part of worship on Sunday - I think it fits with the idea of persistent prayer at the heart of Jesus story about the widow and the judge.
I like this comment - one of the miners, Jimmy Sanchez said, “There are actually 34 of us, because God has never left us down here.”
I always worry when miracles happen about the times when it doesn't feel like they do in the same way but I think in the end that stops me from praying for miracles so I might as well be persistent and hopeful and know that God is good.

On a side note I just love that "Chi chi chi le le le" chant but sadly "bri bri bri tain tain tain" just doesn't flow in the same way. Their pride in their country alongside their faith in God is quite something.

it also ties in with the Salt challenge that Kim set for us this time. To explore the righteousness of God. Kim's thoughts are well worth reading and I think it can all be summed up in the ATC she has made "God is good". I must admit that I discovered that while I understand the concept of God's righteousness, putting it into words was more of a struggle!
I decided to focus on Romans and the reading that explains just what it means to say that "God is good" - look at what he has done for us! And on Wikipedia (my theory is that if a theological concept needs to be understood by everyone then I should manage too, hence my wiki reading!) righteousness was defined as "living a life which is pleasing to God" which I loved and wanted to use.
So this is the whole layout
Having used just about every scrap of the gottacraft kit that included the Cosmo Cricket Delovely papers, I won a draw on the Studio blog for a whole set of the papers so expect to see more of these lovely colours everywhere! I think they go perfectly with the colours of the photo and I have finally managed to use the journalling tags. They are all too big for me but I trimmed some down and I love that look.
Also used:
Doodlebug and Funky Hand letters
Big scallop scissors (no longer available)
tiny heart punch and a Sarahs Cards pink gem.

I'd also like to thank my beautiful model. She had a rough day at school yesterday and I hope we can sort things out for her soon.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Feeling flat

I've nearly run out of birthday cards. Shock fact. Which means I need to start making some quickly. Also because of the changes in postal stamp charges and card thickness (boo hiss) I am trying to make cards that are more flat so I don't have to spend so much on postage. I thought I might be helped by a new Waltzing Mouse stamp set that was released last week and it arrived this morning so I've had a play (How kind of it to arrive on my day off)
This first card also uses Basic Grey Lime Rickey paper and Scenic Route stamps. I shall be making quite a lot like this I think.
Then I got overconfident and decided to do a background direct to the card blank. Epic fail which meant I need to change things around a little
The flowers are another WM set. The cardstock behind the stamped square is from American Crafts and an almost exact match to the Memento Grape ink. Honest.
I haven't shown a photo of the piece of art I made at imagine that recently. (ooh a fortnight ago. Doesn't time fly) It was a long morning class and perfect for me as it was the morning after H had gone to Uni and I needed to be out of the house. here is my version
based on all sorts of different techniques. I had to buy the stamp set with the birds on. I have been trying not to buy it for months so missing Hywel seemed like a good excuse to indulge...
This card uses the same ideaalso Basic grey papers and Imagine That Write Big stamps

this uses another of the Paperartsy stamps and a Personal Impressions and a Waltzing Mouse one. Phew that is a lot of stamping!
Which may be the answer for flat cards I guess...

Friday, October 08, 2010

What's that smell?

Yesterday I could smell a smell. Not a really bad smell but just a vague whiff. It wasn't the dog (for a change) or a child (having showers as I sniffed). I even asked Phil if it was me. He gave me the odour once over (brave man) and pronounced me clean. Relief. However this morning I tracked the smell down. Although he was thorough he missed my feet. My fluffy lined crocs are now in the wash...

OK so it hasn't been a newsy week.
Well my MA course started and eeeek! it is going to be hard going. I am back for a full day in Cambridge tomorrow and have loads to read and think about before the next seminar. Also starting to get clarity on my dissertation and I am quite excited about the research. Possibly not the writing though.

Last night there was a target setting/work placement meeting at Carys' school. It all reminded me of when my three were babies. I was mad enough to have three kids in under 4 years (3 years, 10 months to be precise). But each time I was pregnant/gave birth the advice was slightly different. Weaning was 2 months/3months/4 months. I do believe it is about age 2 now (actually it is 6 months, I just checked). Well it is the same with exams etc when they are teenagers. Each time we get to GCSE's there is something just a little bit different to keep everyone on their toes. Carys is expected to do pretty well - she just needs to knuckle down and work. (Don't we all...)

OK on to the crafting
It is DCM dare day today and Rein came up with the idea of using Office Supplies. So here is my card. I had the wild and wacky idea of stamping on office labels. And decided to split the image between two labels as an interesting effect. They are very translucent I discovered... I stuck the two halves onto different Echo Park A Walk in the Park papers. And then realised that the middle of the butterfly was missing more than I wanted it to. Inspiration! Use a paper clip. I quite like that. The upper body is raised in foam pads. Other office supplies used are - staples; scissors for shredding and cutting up cards to make a fringe; hole punch to make holes.
Take a look at all the wonderful cards the rest of the team have made - they are fab!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Its beginning to look a lot like....

(that season)
I'm trying so hard to enjoy autumn before winter and the bit after Advent but everything seems to conspire to make me go "ho,ho,ho" before I'm ready.
(actually I have quite enjoyed it)
but now it is going to STOP.
Until at least the middle of November.
The bit I have enjoyed is a lovely challenge from Anice to make some Christmas cards out of non Christmassy papers from her Colour Me Happy and Dreams Come True CD's. It was also a good fit to the DCM world cardmaking extra dare which had a Christmas theme.
Shame you can't see all the glitter on this one but it does sparkle! I think that is the key to making anything more Noel-y (I'm refusing to use the C word again) - sparkles!
The snowflake and these baubles are from Anice's digistamps that fit for that time of year
as is the sentiment. look even sorbet pink and green can look celebratory!
And my favourite. Just how gorgeous is this spotty paper
The card is made using Paperartsy dies. There is a lot of glamour dust used again.
I have also made two wordbooks but I will share them another time. Instead here is a layout for my holiday album. Another double one. It was necessary in order to fit the number of photos on
Everything is from Cosmo Cricket togetherness apart from the black letters which are Papermania, Black Soot Distress Ink and Bazzill Vanilla Cardstock. See the black lines with bows on? That is sewing that is. It took ages.
It was the walk that took me a day to recover from as my hips hurt so much, which has led me to try and exercise 6 days a week. It will be 5 this week as I have to leave home at 8 in the morning for a long study day. And my back is rather sore today so I will need to think carefully about what to do tomorrow. I love the alst photo of Emrys who fell asleep reading at the end of our epic adventure. Of only 6 miles. We are so hardcore.

Friday, October 01, 2010

I'm engaged

OK I first got engaged on 29th June 1987. Actually we knew we were going to get married 6 months before that but couldn't share it just then. We didn't have much money so my ring had the smallest stone in the whole world. Until 5 years ago when cleaning the ring with a pin (as you do) the stone came out. By some miracle I found it. I put the ring and stone in a little box. Next time I looked the stone was gone. And there it lay until now. Yesterday Phil went down on bended knee and produced the ring with a new stone. I think my hands are rather more wrinkly now (my face may still be pretty fresh but my hands aren't!) I must remember to tell my Heaton Way URC congregation. We did the story of the lost sheep and lost coin a few weeks ago and I talked about my ring. I can rejoice because what was lost has been replaced found again.

So I have made him a card to say thanks. It is to go with the rather tricky birthstone for October a la Daring Cardmakers - Opal. I was stumped by this one until I remembered Angelina. Angelina is a collection of fibres that you iron between sheets of paper. You can add other stuff which will be fused in by the heat. I found some iridescent white and fuchsia pink. Et voila
Now I am gutted because you just can't see the opalescence here but you will have to take my word for it. The top background to the card is white angelina that has gone through an embossing folder to create the dots. It has a lovely sheen to it. The heart was cut using a sizzix die and embossed as well. The papers had actually been put away after making the Salt layout but the Cosmo Delovely came out again. Also Ribbon Girl ribbon; a button; liquid pearls in White Opal (note that)
Here's a close up but you still have to imagine the sheen
(Added at lunchtime)
In my excitement I forgot all about the fact it is double dare day today!
Yes the first of the month also means its time to Get Funky!
It was my turn to set the challenge and I decided on
Take 5
Use 5 or more different patterned papers
These are all from the Colour Me Happy CD. I actually used 6 papers. One is almost hidden (the pattern round the oval) and two are subtle (the self coloured squares) but they are all patterns! Iused my EK Success big scallop punch to layer the patterns and the butterflies are martha Stewart. Nestability ovals; Imagine That stamp; Black Soot distress ink and some Sarah's Cards bling finished it off. The Funky Hand team have been sooooooooo inventive so do go and see what they have been up to.

Phil and I are finishing the 30 day shred tomorrow. We've actually done more that 30 days and I am v. proud (we are allowed Sunday off). After that I will try and keep up the regime but add in yoga and wii fit I think. The key for me is keeping the exercise to about 30 minutes. Sunday it is harvest at Romford. On Thursday there was a Ministers Meeting in my other area and someone brought a fantastic illustration of how small is good - especially referring to mustard seeds. Now I am pretty sure he is not a lectionary follower (a set list of readings for each Sunday) so how cool is it that it is one of the Mustard Seed readings this Sunday so I can use his illustration. Result! Thanks Rich and yes, God is good!