Saturday, June 16, 2007

No Rain

This is me with my feet up poolside at the villa in Menorca that we've just spent a week at. Aaah, bliss! We had Sky TV out there, so knew it had been raining back home, but it was a bit of a shock just how much there had been! We came through a cracking thunder storm on the way back down the M6 from Manchester yesterday afternoon.

We had an absolutely wonderful week in the sun (or shade, in my case!) The villa was lovely, situated in the quiet development of Son Vitamina and having our own pool is just so nice - no one to swim around, rowdy kids or drunk lads to contend with and there's no rush to put out your towels on the sunbeds at stupid o'clock in the morning.

It was nice to have a few swims every day as I haven't done any exercise since (or even before) getting pregnant and swimming is the only kind I'll do, but our local pool is closed for a refurb at the moment. D enjoyed the pool, as well as the roof terrace ("it's lovely up there") where he could go and watch the planes taking off and landing at Mahon airport which was pretty close - how exciting...

We really relaxed as D and my parents wouldn't let me do anything too strenuous. We mostly visited beaches (how nice are the beaches on Menorca?!) such as Sant Thomas and Cala Galdana, although not too keen on the few jelly fish we saw. We also spent a good 15 minutes or so driving down the bumpiest road ever (not fun!) to reach Calas Coves and were greeted with a gorgeous sight once we got there:

It was so quiet when we got there, although it seems lots of others made the bumpy trip down as it soon got quite busy. There are caves high up in the rocks on the left that people used to live in, but there was no way I was climbing up there! We spent ages watching the crabs crawling in and out of the rocks instead.

We ate lots of nice food too - one of the best things about going on holiday! Had to be a bit cautious though, being pregnant, and would have loved to have eaten more seafood, but didn't dare risk it!

We christened the baby Wiggly as that's all it seemed to do all week - must've liked the fact I was relaxing so much! I doubt we'll go abroad again now for a few years at least, so it was just lovely to be able to do this now before Wiggly arrives.

The hugest, most mahoosive thanks go to Mom and Dad for taking us away for such a lovely week for our birthday prezzies!

Back to earth now though! Loads of washing to do, no food in the fridge and back to work on Monday...

ETA: Why does Bloody Blogger insist on mucking around with the formatting every time?!! GAH!!!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Radar Love

Completely didn't have time to blog anything this week, but Tuesday saw the first anniversary of Radar Bun's 'Gotcha Day'. Can you believe he's been with us for a whole year now?! Isn't he a handsome bun? I do love him so much. Beanbean will always be my special girl, but Rade is just so big and soft and docile and a bit dumb sometimes that you just gotta love him! They both seem really happy now they're outside in their new home - even with all the rain we've had and a cracking thunderstorm last week, which probably scared the little bunny pants off them!

So, onto this week's Dare...

This week is was my turn to set the Dare (already?!) and I thought I'd keep it pretty simple but just asking everyone to use some acetate, vellum, plasma or something else at least a bit transparent on their cards. I haven't really ever used acetate much, except form making the odd shaker card way back when, so had fun experimenting.

The card on the right uses Blonde Moments papers for the background (edges inked), with acetate sizzix hearts on bright pink card. Two of the hearts are decorated with wiggly lines using Anita's 3D Gloss. I first used this technique in Kirsty's class at the photography day in February and have been dying to try it again - it really does produce a great effect, although perhaps Diamond Glaze is better as I find the Anita's comes out of the bottle too fast and can make a splodgy mess! The third heart has teeny diamantes all around the edge, although I realise none of this shows up very well in the photo. Finished the card off with some pink grosgrain and a stamped greeting, with hand-drawn borders around the edge of the card and greeting.

This one's a bit pants, but it was just an experiment really. I used some acetate to make the blank, but then thought I'd better add an insert as it's darn near impossible to write on acetate! I stuck a teeny piece of pink BG Blush paper (still inking those edges!) behind a piece of the brown BG Blush paper and used a rub-on for the cake, with a teeny diamante in the flower centre. This was then all stuck onto the insert, behind the acetate. I then put the greeting rub-on onto the front of the acetate. Ta-daa!
I made another card, which I quite like, but have just realised I can't post it, as it's for my daddy's father's day card and he will see it! Duh!
Please take a look at the DCM blog and have a go at the Dare. As ever, the girls have been fantastic and there are some gorgeous cards - plus one from this week's fabulous guest designer, none other than the most talented Ms Wiseman herself!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

U Can't Touch This

So this is me last week, at 22 weeks pregnant - eeeek!! Please note, I do not normally wear leggings with vest tops, (in fact, I've only just purchased some leggings to wear under tunic-type tops after much wrestling with my conscience, as I distinctly remember thinking I would never, ever wear leggings again after the 80s...) but I put the top on to show off the bump. I'm rather fond of my new shape, as I look obviously pregnant, rather than just overweight and making people wonder if I might be just because I'm standing all slouchy with my tummy pushed out. One of the only things I've hated so far about this pregnancy lark is the way people just have to touch me. Generally people are pretty good, but there's a lady at work who I have to get on with but don't like all that much and she insists on giving me a good rub/pat when she sees me. What am I - a dog?! "Ooh, look at that lovely bump!" (rub, rub) How would she like it if I grabbed her chest and said "ooh, look at those lovely boobs!" Gah!! And she's passed it on to her daughter, who I also see at work ("Let me have a feel." "NO!!!!! Eff off!!!") The first time her Mom did it I was mortified, as I really wasn't showing and all she was rubbing was flab....
This week I thought I'd have a go at joining in with the Dares again! Now I've just about sorted somewhere to craft I thought I didn't really have an excuse any more and was worried I'd be kicked off the design team for non-participation (not really - the girls are too nice for that - I hope!), so I read Jo's brief and thought, "I can do that!"

This week we have to make a card using office supplies, so I used some coloured paper clips that I've had for ages and never used, plus some lined notepaper and some staples. Paper is from thePaper Loft Flips Flops range and the lettering is Sizzlits Nouveau. It's a bit boring and simple, but I'm easing myself back in gently. Actually, I'm starting to doubt that I'm good enough to be on the design team as there are some fantastic examples of work from both the other girls and those of you who play along. I've only had a couple of months break from cardmaking, but things seem to change so quickly and I feel it's often hard to keep up. However, keep trying I will. It's my Dare this week, so please have a look at the blog on Friday morning and play along with me.

Sunday, May 20, 2007


<------- Looky what I did!! It's a card. I wasn't sure if I still had it in me, but it's not too bad an effort, eh? I spent yesterday morning trying to tidy the kitchen a bit, clear the table of rubbish and sort out some of my stash so that I could sit and make something while D watched the most boring FA Cup final in the history of boring FA Cup finals. Luckily for me, Bex posted a card template challenge at just the right time, so I thought I'd have a go and this was what I came up with. Took me flipping ages to hand stitch those lines and they still look crap!! I've got one of those mini sewing machines, but do you think I've ever been able to work it?

I really feel like Mrs. Swotty Knickers as I have managed to make my Dare card ready for next Friday too - the first one in aaaaaaaaages. Of course, I can't show you that one yet... It's a great dare, so make sure you check out the blog on Friday morning and have a go!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Over Now

Pickle is dying :-( I came downstairs this morning and was just on my way out of the kitchen when something caught my eye and instantly I knew what it was. Pickle had crawled out of her little house and was lying still on the platform. I burst into tears and absolutely sobbed. I've known for a while she was probably getting close - she's over 2 years old now and has had regular trips to the vets lately as her teeth became misaligned and needed clipping. She's been quite shaky on her feet, but still fighting the good fight, but it looks like it's over now.

I called D, (still in floods!) who was on his way home from work on nights and when he got home he found her a little box to put her in, filled it with bedding and took her out of her cage to put her in the box. "She's still warm," he said. Oh God. Hamsters do this, don't they? You here all sorts of stories about people buying their hamsters alive because they have a habit of playing dead, slowing their metabolisms right down. I looked at her and she was breathing! About once every 30 seconds, but she was still alive. Argh! What do you do? There's obviously nothing we can do for her, but what if she did come round and was in a strange, dark box? For the moment we've left her in the box and put it back in her cage, but I really don't think she'll last much longer.
ETA: She's gone :-( Feel so daft getting upset. Have fun at the Rainbow Bridge sweetie xxx

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Oh. My. God. Just how much rain can there be in them there clouds?!! I am totally, utterly and completely sick of it now. The poor buns! They must think I don't love them anymore, sticking them outside in a draughty hutch to have their ears tormented by the sound of rain on the tarps covering the whole shebang! I hate the rain when it's so persistent like this - it makes me feel so miserable. Actually, I'm having one of my 'down' days today, rain or no rain, so it's just making me worse!!

To cheer myself up, I thought I'd revisit digi-scrapping for the first time in aaaages, after finally catching up on Kirtsy's blog and discovering the fabby freebie she created especially for my Hawaii photos - how on earth did you know? ;-) Only kidding... I'm a wee bit out of practice, and I've forgotten how to use all the lovely effects I downloaded a few months ago, not to mention how to do all sorts of things, so I guess I'm learning it all over again. Ho hum...

At least it means I can still be a bit crafty and creative until I get my 'real' stash sorted out again. I do like doing it digi style though, but would love a new pc as mine is so slow it takes all afternoon to do one simple layout!

And how impressed are you at my blogging performance this week?

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Friday I'm In Love

The scan was fine! Everything appeared to be ok with baby, although how they can tell, I do not know. It all just looked like random blobs to me and was so much less clear than the previous scan. I suppose that's just because baby is so much bigger. Here come the piccies - apologies to those of you who have trouble deciphering scan pics, as these are not labelled this time!

You should be able to make out it's head, with it's likkle nose sticking in the air and it's chest - the dark blob is the heart. Not really sure what the other bits are myself as I was in some discomfort, trying to crane my head around to see the screen while she pressed really hard with the scanny thing.

It's little lips are pursed like it's whistling in this one! The sonographer had us panicked at one point as she could see something strange on there that shouldn't have been, then she realised that it had it's hand somewhere between it's legs and was holding the cord. You know when you just know there's something not right by the look on someone's face? Then she exclaimed "it's a hand!" and starting laughing to herself! " I like this baby" she said. Of course, this meant that there was no chance we could see which flavour it was, which was quite a relief.

So, that's it for scans, as long as there are no problems in future. Next time we see little one it will be on the outside in about 19 weeks or so - eeeeek!! We went to the Baby Show at the NEC today and have ordered the buggy and bought a steriliser, so it's getting more and more real now. Mom and Dad bought baby a Sleep Sheep that plays soothing sounds, etc, which was the first official purchase for little one - aaww!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Come Out and Play

Finally took some photos this morning while the sun was out. It's piddling down again now though :-( This is the hutch - you can see Princess Bean-Bean in the run at the bottom. She spent the whole day in the hutch part yesterday as she just hadn't a clue what the ramp was for or how to use it. This morning, however, when we went out to feed them, she was in the run - hurrah! She then showed off, running up and sliding down the ramp a few times...

And here are just a few totally gratuitous photos, just because I loves 'em!

Just look at the bunny lip!

Other stuff: we've got our 20 week scan tomorrow and I am actually looking forward to this one. At the 12 week scan, part of you goes in worrying that there's not going to be anything there, but as bubs is now kicking the hell out of me, I don't have that worry this time. Being the anomaly scan, they will be checking for problems, but keep your fingers crossed that everything is fine. I can't believe we're half way through already!

Oh and yes, that was my layout in this month's Scrapbook Inspirations :-)

It was amazing to be asked to have a go at the sketch challenge and such a buzz to see my work in print. I've really got to get my stash back out soon before I forget how to do it!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


... was the day my babies became outdoor buns. Eeek! I so hope I've done the right thing. We've bought them a mahoosive hutch and run combo so they've got lots of space, but what a crap week to move them out! What's with the weather?! I'll post piccies of the palace just as soon as the wind and rain stop. At the moment it's all covered with a delightful combination of shower curtain and tarpaulin and looks like some sort of makeshift refugee camp. I know it's all for a good reason, but I just know I'll be so worried about them for a while. They've spent all day in the run as neither of them could figure out the ramp to get up to the hutch, but I've just been out to check on them and found that Rade has managed it, so there's some hope!

We've had a clean of the kitchen and I swear there was enough bun fluff behind the radiator to make another rabbit - gross! No matter how much you think you've cleaned, that stuff just seems to get everywhere and that's not good when you've got a baby, eh? Now I've moved some of my craft stuff into the kitchen, but even that seems to be taking over now. I just have so much stuff that I know I won't use but don't even know where to begin to sort it out and get rid. Any ideas gratefully received...

This week is all about sorting out the bedrooms and it's like trying to tackle Everest in flip flops. Today I took one look at all the crap and just burst into tears. Where to begin? D keeps telling me not to worry, Rome wasn't built in a day, etc, etc, but heck, you should see it! I should have taken photos actually, in a kind of before and after makeover way.

Sorry, this is a rambly, pictureless post, but I felt like sharing my agony with you. I'll keep you updated on (possible) progress and will post those bun pics just as soon as I can!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Jump Around

Here are the Terrible Two enjoying their first foray into the garden this year. We spent a couple of hours outside this afternoon and I think they enjoyed themselves, if the binkying was anything to go by! I love seeing them outside on the grass - they're like different rabbits. I think the reason they don't run and jump in the house is because of the laminate floors - not ideal for them but easier for us to clean, so when they get on the grass they become so sure-footed and tear around like nutters! Radar's ear was straight up and doing its radar thing and Beany was munching on the grass and dandelion leaves like she's never been fed. If the weather forecast is anything to go by, we'll be out again tomorrow!

Monday, April 09, 2007


It's been a funny old day. I've spent much of it packing away my craft stuff and I'm feeling a bit down about it really. We need to have a serious move around ready for the baby, as s/he will be having our current room, we'll be moving into J's room and he'll be moving into my craft room. Unfortunately, I am the Princess of Clutter and Hoarding (the Queen being my mother *wink*) so it's a pretty daunting task. I've got a week off in May when we plan to hire a skip and have a good go at J's room (which is really J's room/ironing piles/junk room) but I am petrified! So, I thought I'd make use of the Bank Holiday to start on my craft stash. I've filled 8 big boxes already and I'm nowhere near finished - eeek! I just don't know what to do with it all. Packing it away seems so final and I'm scared that I'll never do any crafting again, but there just isn't any room to keep it out anywhere. Hmmm.

In other news, I bought the buns a lovely, squooshy new bed to replace the manky, hairy one they sleep in all day. However, they have pointedly ignored it (after trying to dig it and Beany weeing on it) and are back snuggling on the carpet. Bah!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Angel of Mine

Hi honey, I'm home!! Did ya miss me? No? Oh, okay.... I am very sorry if there is anyone out there who has been checking in to see if I've finally updated my blog only to be bitterly disappointed. I have had a very, very good reason...

Ta-daaaa!! See that? That's my baby that is! While away I have been cultivating a real, live baybay in my tummy. Innit amazing? I love this scan even more:

Look at the likkle legs!! I'm really sorry if I'm boring you now, but it's all just so fascinating and I can't believe that it's really happened at last. I am now 16 weeks in and have developed a bump already - eek!! We're due on 24th September. I haven't been sick at all, although I've felt pretty icky, hence the reason I haven't blogged; for some reason, bubs doesn't like me being on the PC for too long! I have hardly done any crafting either - just made a couple of cards when I've needed too, but other than that I just can't get into it. I'm a bit sad really. I hope the mojo returns, although once baby arrives I won't have a craft room as it will be J's bedroom. Goodness knows what I'm going to do with all my stash!

So, now you know. I can't promise to blog regularly from now on as I haven't got too much to say at the moment, apart from baby stuff and I don't want you to doze off through boredom. I'm also pretty whacked and in bed early most nights, although the tiredness is wearing off a bit now and I'm feeling pretty good.

Oh yeah, my other bit of news was that I had a layout published in Scrapbook Inspirations last month! Two of my goals for this year achieved already...

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Relight My Fire

Wowee it's been a while, eh? I've not felt like being around the pc much lately and haven't really felt like scrapping or making cards either, hence the reason there's been no blogging and I've missed a couple of Dares (sorry girls!). Still, I thought it was time I got back on the old horse and started riding again, so here I am...

First things first, I did manage a card for this week's Dare. Kathy dared us to use 20 of something on a card. Being an utter wimp, there was no way I was going to use 20 blooms or suchlike. Instead, I made a relatively simple, yet very effective card using 20 thin strips of coloured card. I cut them different lengths and stuck them down on a piece of scrap card so if I made a mistake I wasn't mucking up the whole card. I then added a thicker strip of card at the end. The letters for the name are stickers from the Lisa Bearnson kit, stuck on black circles of card. The '13' is die cut using sizzlits 'Nouveau' set. Apparently, this was Matthew's favourite card as it was 'made with love'. Aaah, bless 'im.

So. Other stuff. I passed my Ofsted suitable person's interview and the new nursery is all set to open on Monday, unless something's gone drastically wrong between Friday night and now... It looks fantastic and I'm so proud of it. All the staff have been over to have a look and they all want to transfer to the new one now! Not a lot else to tell you at the moment.

Today I went up to Lach Dennis in Cheshire to Kirsty's Photography and Scrap day. It was great! I learnt loads, some of which I actually hope to remember and use sometime!

We learnt how to do things like this, where you can get a nice, sharp focus on an object but the background is blurry. We learnt how to take pictures of Natalie O'Shea walking past some 'interesting' curtains so that she was blurry but they were not and vice versa. I'm thinking much practice is needed at this, as most of the time she had walked right past and all I got in the frame were the curtains...

We did two amazing classes in the afternoon - a lovely technique one from Kirsty and one by Debs, which was fabulous and the result of which can be seen below. Kirsty's technique involved using Glossy Accents or similar on acetate to draw patterns, but I haven't finished the LO yet, so I can't show you. I lay in bed thinking of other variations, so that definitely inspired me. Debs' class was one of the best I've done - she really is talented.
Using a fabby canvas and easel from (I believe) Poundland and a generously supplied freebie photo taken by Ms Wiseman herself, as well as the lush Blush papers from Basic Grey, we created the gorgeousness that you see here. The overlay is acetate, stamped around the edges with Rhonna Farrer swirls, generously lent to me by lovely Laura (thanks chick!). It's so effective, and yet really easy to do, even though it involved acrylic paint and *gasps* scrunching the paper!! I (genuinely) took a few deep breaths before I could will myself to do it - it's so far out of my comfort zone it's not even funny. I can see me making these left right and centre for gifts (but without my ugly mug on!) Now I know I have to get me some Rhonna Farrer stamps...

A good time was had by all and I'm glad I went - I was so nervous about not knowing anyone, but all the girls were lovely, as were Kirsty's hubby Mark who worked hard to keep us fed and watered, and daughter Ellie (even if she didn't pick my ticket for the raffle!)

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Love Can Build A Bridge

I finally decided to post my Dare card for this week's fab joint challenge with the Speshal girls. My card didn't have a photo, but I scrapped it as I would a teeny page, so I guess is counts, doesn't it?

I used red cardstock for the base and inked the edges, then cut the word 'valentine' in Cafe Rojo font on the craft robo, as well as some red hearts. I used the negative of the word placed on the red background and stuck 3 hearts (with faux stitching) on foam pads on another piece of black card below the word. Before sticking these down, I made small holes and tied the two pieces together with some narrow black and white gingham ribbon. I then cut a piece of lined notepaper and wrote the words, then scrunched it up, smoothed it back out and lightly inked over it with black ink. Added a big black bloom with another heart and some more ribbon and there you have it!

Been feeling very loved up this week, so did a digi layout using the gorgeous freebie kit that Kirsty created and very kindly shared, plus a couple of other bits including a freebie arrow from Katie.

I'm getting a bit bored of using that photo of D and me on our wedding day, but it's the only decent one we have as we still haven't had the professional album done yet! The other photo is my Mom and Dad. I wanted to convey that I hope D and I have a marriage as good (or at least it seems good - unless they're really good at hiding stuff!) and long-lasting as theirs.

I've had a bit on an aversion to the pc lately, which really isn't like me, but I think normal service is resuming. Not sure if I'll get this Friday's Dare done in time, but we'll see.

Monday, February 05, 2007

So Much To Say

... but so much I can't!! I've been a bit AWOL lately, so huge apologies to my fellow DCM team mates and to anyone who bothers to check in here regularly! I've got quite a lot on at the moment, most of which I can't really talk about yet, but I will spill soon, I promise!

I did do a card for this week's Dare, but wasn't totally happy with it, so I haven't posted it. The girls came up with some fantastic ideas for this week's very 'speshal' collaboration with the 'Everyone Is Special' team, so please do go have a look at the blog and join in. I will if I get time!

Hopefully, normal service will resume soon, although it's my birthday next Monday, so I can't guarantee it. With any luck I'll have some gorgeous photos of Scotland to post, taken on my birthday trip with my new camera, which has finally arrived this morning - yay!!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

The Most Beautiful Girl in the World

A sent me this beautiful picture of Baby Z at home on her playmat, so I couldn't resist scrapping it for her. Obviously, she has a real face and not a blurry circle! I used the Compassion kit from Shabby Princess - it's so versatile, but I wanted this LO to be really simple. A sent me an email detailing the whole of Baby Z's little life so far and boy, what a story! I was in floods reading it. I really can't wait to get a free weekend to go see them, but may not be till March now.

Went to see another friend P last week. She too is having problems conceiving. It's just so strange that I have at least 5 friends trying for a family and having various problems of one type or another. Perhaps it's an age thing? I dunno... P has a lovely rabbit called Mopsey, who just lollops about her apartment. She's a lone bun, so quite affectionate with hoomans. Except me. Last time I went, Mops decided she'd quite like a little nibble on my leg and finger. P was mortified - she never bites! This week, Mops was back to her cuddly bunny self. For a while. Lulled me into a false sense of security. Bit of a nibble on my jacket - ok, that's quite a normal bunny thing to do to strangers. Suddenly, there's a couple of pounds of fur flying across my face and latching on to my inner arm!! No blood was drawn, but I've had a helluva bruise all week! Mopsey was banished to the kitchen in disgrace... We can only assume her change in character is down to the scent of my two on me. Weird!

Here's a couple more digis I've done using the lush and, amazingly, free kit from Katie and Kirsty.

This one used this week's Pencil Lines sketch.

The one on the right was an attempt at a technique whereby you blur part of the photo to provide a panel for your journalling. Journalling isn't something I do a lot of on my LOs, but I love this one and think it fits really well.

Really need to take some new photos - all my LOs feature either me or D!

Friday, January 26, 2007

Black Metallic

It's Dare day! This week, Saffa wants us to make a card featuring something metallic, be it hardware, inks or pens, paper or card or whatever you can find!

Not had a lot of time again, but I was asked to make a 40th birthday card, so this is what I came up with. Using black as my base, I cut out the 'happy birthday' using the Craft Robo and Journaling Hand font. I then put a piece of silver mirror card behind it. I made a ribbon slider with the Robo, cutting out '40' and again putting silver card behind. I tore the edge from a piece of Basic Gray Gypsy paper (ouch!) and added it to the card, then threaded some pale pink grosgrain ribbon through the slider and stuck it down. A few diamantes added with the Kandi Kane finished it off. It's difficult to show in a photo, but it looked pretty good in real life, honest!

As ever, the other girls have made some stunning cards, so please go take a squizz at the blog and join in when you can!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Father Of Mine

I'm having reet good fun at this digi lark. Still haven't tried anything adventurous and there's loads of tutorials I need to look at, but I think I could get addicted to buying kits and elements! The layout on the left is the old 70s pic of my Dad and me and I used the Compassion kit from Shabby Princess. It has some fab bright papers and not one but two alphas, which are both scrummy.

The LO on the right uses a picture I've wanted to scrap for absolutely ages and just never got round to. Whenever we go camping, J barely leaves 30 seconds to let his dinner go down before he's asking to go and play. This photo captures the moment he was told to wait for a few minutes... Check out the mood! I used the Urban Kiwi freebie kit, also from Shabby Princess. The stamped alpha is from Designer Digitals. I like how simple this one looks - I managed to restrain myself on the elements!

It's so much easier digi scrapping as it's really simple to just pick a photo and change it to suit as you go along, rather than hunting one out, or finding one, printing it, then discovering you needed it smaller/larger/black and white. I'm glad I've got an external hard drive to store all my new stash on, as well as the layouts, but now I need lots more photos! We lost loads when our pc crashed a couple of years ago and I'm gutted. I was hoping to be able to start taking some with my new camera, but the online store my Dad ordered it from kindly took his order and payment before telling us it was out of stock, so I'm on the hunt for another good deal now. Grrrr!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

End Of A Century

100 posts!! Not bad for a not-so-regular blogger I guess. I am trying to blog more regularly, but sometimes I just don't have anything interesting to say. Perhaps I should just find a joke or inspiring quote for those days. Trouble is, I then have to find a relevant 90s song title to go with the post and it takes about an hour just to come up with a teeny post then! I'm not sure I like the 90s titles - I mean, the 90s was my era musically, but when you look at a list of titles from the decade, they're all a bit, well, weird! Anyway, I'm rambling...

It was Dare day yesterday. Fabulous Rhi dared us to make a card using an aperture. I had all these grand plans about using my Robo to do something fancy, but, in the end, I didn't have a lot of time and went for one of the most boring ideas ever! However, I think it actually looks quite simple and elegant, so I guess it's not too bad. Some of the other girls on the design team have used their Robos to come up with some beautiful cards, so I couldn't hope to compete really. Do go and check out all the cards on the blog and have a go!

So, for my nice and simple baby card, I used a tall card blank and my square punch to make the aperture. I would have liked it a little lower, but that's punches for you! I cut a square of 'baby' paper (from a Costco pack) and stuck that inside behind the aperture. I then drew stitches around this and around the aperture with a black journaling pen. I cut a Quickutz babygro from blue Bazzill and inked the edges to make it stand out, adding a contrasting pocket in white. Mounted this on 3d foam and stuck it slightly overlapping the aperture at one of those 'jaunty' angles! I then cut a strip of scrap Bazzil, rounded the end and stuck it near the bottom of the card, folding the edge over to the inside. I used Doodlebug 'All Mixed Up' rub-ons to add the baby's name.. and there you have it!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


Today, I are been mostly digi-scrappin'. Well, tonight, anyway. Today I are been mostly changing dirty nappies, but you don't want to hear about that... I couldn't resist this kit from Shabby Princess. I just loved the mix of colours in it and there are some too cute embellies. So, here is my first digi layout...

It's so tempting to want to use all the bits and bobs in the kit as they're all so scrummy, but I guess that really isn't my style and it's not as if they're going anywhere if I don't use them. Actually, they're not going anywhere if I do. That's the beauty of this digi lark. If you use a particular flower or rub-on, it doesn't matter, cos you can use them again and again and again! Hurrah! I'm really getting into this and I get to see more of D too as I'm on the PC in the living room and not hidden away in my craft room. Not that I'm going to be getting rid of my 'real' stash any time soon. Oh, no sir-ee Bob. I mean, these kits and bits are nice to look at, but you can't feel them; can't stroke the ribbons or lay your cheek gently against the paper to feel its texture... Or is that just me?! Now I have so much to learn and I think that that's just it - I love learning new things and having a go. I'll probably have moved on to the next fad in a couple of months. But we'll see....

So, to my word of 2007. I just did a quick Google search for definitions and this is what it came up with:
  • make: make or cause to be or to become;
  • bring into existence;
  • pursue a creative activity; be engaged in a creative activity;
  • invest with a new title, office, or rank;
  • create by artistic means;
  • produce: create or manufacture a man-made product;

At some point I will write this out and put it somewhere I look every day. Probably on my mirror (not vain, just need make-up!) or my PC. Found a couple of nice quotes too, so will probably (digi)scrap these soon too.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Put The Message In The Box

Finally decided on my word for the year, as per the Ali E Aezine. I know it might seem awfully predictable, but I chose it for reasons other than the obvious; maybe I'll go into these a little sometime. So, my word is....

Now I have to catch up and go find the definition in the dictionary and I might look for some inspiring quotes too.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

New Age Girl

I've finally gone and done it. This afternoon I've had my very first go at Digi-scrapping and managed to produce the new banner at the top of my bloggy-blog - not bad for a first attempt? Thanks to the fantastic Clare for the instructions on how to change the banner in the new blogger.

I've been putting off doing it digi-style for ages, mainly cos I feel like I'm deserting my real-life stash, and there's nothing like a stroke of some Crate when you're feeling low. However, I was mooching around on UKS, as you do and decided to check out a few links. Before I knew it, I was downloading a kit and alphabet from Peppermint Creative, and using the fabby tutorials from Jen, which I found via a link from Katie, I've had a great time! I used Adobe Photoshop Elements as that's what I'm used to and once you get the hang of it it's pretty easy to do the basics. There's loads of free stuff to download too, so go on, give it a whirl! Might have to try some proper layouts now...

In other news... I spent last night babysitting - the first and, hopefully, last overnighter I'll ever do. Looking after a one year old and a nearly-three year old is usually fine, but having to sleep in the baby's room and him waking up for a good hour in the middle of the night was not. Might have to rethink this having kids malarkey... It was worth the lack of sleep though, as I earned more than enough to add to my Crimble money to buy my new camera! Hurrah! I have a Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ7 on order as we speak (thanks Dad!).

And finally, a Baby Z update: She moved into a room with her Mom yesterday and is hopefully going to be allowed home in the week! How amazing is that? She's such a fighter and truly a little miracle.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Two Steps Behind

Ooh, I'm a norty girl this week! This is the first week since we started that I haven't done my Dare card in time :( I've been struggling with my mojo again, as well as having trouble finding the time. However, I had one of those lightbulb moments this evening and actually got out of my cosy warm bed where I was watching Soapstar Superstar to go and make it.

This week, the very lovely Lythan dared us to raid our wardrobe in search of inspiration for our cards.

I'm ashamed to admit I actually raided my dirty washing pile for this one (oh god, the shame of it!). I can't help it if that's where the inspiration decided to manifest itself! There I am, lying in bed watching telly, when my eye falls upon my favourite pair of pants. Yes, I was inspired by my pants.

I rummaged in my drawers (oh, the humour!) to find scraps of paper or card that pretty much matched the colours and found some different textures, which looks nice. I cut them into equal strips and stapled them together, inked the edges and placed them on a square card blank. I found a scrap of lace and coloured it pink with an inkpad (there's pink lace around the edges of the pants - you can't see it here - you only get a sneaky peek of my smalls!). The greeting is from the Lisa Bearnson TSV kit from QVC a while back - I inked the edges of that and placed it on the lace.

So there you have it! One of the quickest cards I've made in a while and it just came out of nowhere - or out of my pants, if you think about it! Go peep at the blog to see the fantastic cards the other girls have made, including our newest recruit - the fabulously talented Gillian Hamilton! We are so lucky to have Gillian on board - her stuff is amazing and she's my new inspiration.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Thank U

Thank you all so much for keeping Baby Z in your thoughts. Had a text tonight to say she's had the final stage of her op and she's coming off life support, so I'm crossing my fingers even harder. I so wish I could be there to give A a huge squishy cuddle.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Ice Ice Baby

Dare day! This week Lynda has challenged us to make a card the features Bling and Beads! Now, I do love a bit of bling, so I made myself a mini-dare, and that was not to use too much. Whenever I want to add a bit of sparkle to a card, I can be tempted to Kandi-Kane it to death.

For this, I used some gorgeous Crate Papers - inked the edges of the stripy one with distress ink and then used the coloured strip at the bottom of the paper to go across the card - waste not, want not and all that! I used one of the tags and a monogram that come in the set with the papers. I added a few pink seed beads to the monogram and covered it in Anita's 3D gloss, which doesn't show up very well in the pic. I then threaded a few beads onto some pale pink ribbon and added this to the tag. Punched a few flowers from more Crate, added seed beads and 3D gloss. The bling I managed to keep minimal by simply using a flower bead I found in my stash at each end of the green strip, to which I also added a rub-on greeting. I resisted the urge to fire up the Kandi-Kane - go me!!

As ever, there are some beautiful examples over on the blog, so please go and look if you haven't already, then promise me you'll have a go yourself? Every girl needs a bit of bling in her life!


Thanks for all your comments about baby Z. No news as yet today, but I've got everything crossed she pulls through.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


I never got round to blogging it, but remember my closest friend A who was pregnant? Well, she gave birth early, on 12th December! Got a bit of a shock when I saw the text message her hubby had sent. Baby Z does have Down's Syndrome, but was born a really healthy weight and was out of special care after about a day, just needing some oxygen to help her. I still don't really know the full story of what happened, as A is still in hospital and has no access to email, only texts. She's managed to work out the new phone she had for crimble and sent me couple of pics of Z - she's booootiful!

Anyhoo, I've just had a text to let me know that Z had her full heart repair op today as she was starting to struggle a bit and she's now 'critical but stable' in intensive care. Wow. I have absolutely no idea what they're going through and I hope I never have to know myself. I've never even met Z and I love her so much, so goodness only knows how A and J feel. They wanted this baby soooo much and are so totally in love with her. She has to come through this. She just has to.

Monday, January 01, 2007

New Year's Day

A predictable title for a predictable post, but hey, it's still 80s so it counts! Actually, perhaps I should start on the 90s now....

I have mixed feelings about New Year's Day. There's always such a sense of hope and expectation, yet it's just another day. I don't make resolutions any more, as I was tired of feeling the disappointment when I inevitably let myself down just a few hours/days/weeks in. I do, however, think of a few things I'd like to achieve before the end of the year, but don't set myself huge goals or targets and restrict myself with time limits.

This year, I have one specific thing I'd like to happen, but I'm keeping it secret. Those of you who know me well or have been with me and my blog for a while may be able to guess. I'll let you know if I do it before this time next year. Other than that, I guess I'd like to continue doing well at work and I have the opening of the new nursery to look forward to. I'd like to do lots more scrapping and crafting and I aim to be published somewhere this year! I want to learn better photography and am taking steps already to achieve this. I aim to keep on blogging for as long as people keep reading! I enjoy writing my posts (when I get the time) and find it quite therapeutic, so that can only be a good thing.

I'd like to spend some more quality time with D this year. His shifts and bewildering love of Torquay United FC don't allow us much fun time, but I'll admit I didn't make much effort this year. We used to think nothing of jumping on a train to Devon and wandering around for the day before coming home, but this year I just haven't felt like it. There's always something else I would rather be doing, but when it comes to it I usually end up wasting the day doing not a lot at all. This year I need to unwind a bit, so perhaps I'll say 'yes' when he asks me if I want to come, rather than 'hmmm, not really'. It can be a great excuse to get out and take some more photographs, can't it?

I guess the main thing I'd like for this year is to be happy and healthy - anything else is a bonus. I hope you had a good time last night, whatever you were doing? Here's to 2007!

Sunday, December 31, 2006

The Final Countdown

Can you believe that's another year gone? I swear they're making them shorter. There's some sort of conspiracy going on - all the governments around the world are secretly nicking days here and there and soon a year will be only 5 months long.

I'm not a huge fan of 'New Year' as an event. I don't go out - not that I tend to go out anyway, but especially not at New Year. There's no way I'm going to pay to get into somewhere that's free any other night of the year, pay extortionate prices for drinks and taxis and spend the night with my face in someone's armpit/cleavage as the venue is so rammed you can't move and you spend the whole night bursting for the loo, not daring to go in case you can't find the person you came with when you come back... Nah, I'd rather stop at home watching whatever passes for entertainment on the telly and watching the bongs at midnight. The drinks are free, I can stretch out on the sofa and there's no queue for the loo. This year I shall be at my parents with J, as D is conveniently at work on nights this week. Unfortunately, this means I have to get up at stupid o'clock to go and get him on Monday morning as he can't get home. Gah!

I saw this blog prompt on UKS and thought that it might be an interesting one to ponder. Have a think and blog your own answers, or leave me a comment.

What are you doing now, or what have you done this year, that a year ago would not have seemed possible?

  • Er, well. I've had a couple of promotions at work and a nice pay rise, which was unexpected. This didn't seem too possible last year, when I was unemployed (or taking a career break, as I like to call it!)
  • I've rediscovered scrapbooking, after a feeble attempt and the grand total of one layout I did last year. This has also led me to spend way too much on stash - also not possible last year due to the 'career break'... The scrapbooking led me to join UKS and now I've booked a place on a one day event that I would never have had the courage to do before on my own.
  • One of the best things that has happened is being asked to be on the design team for the Daring Cardmakers. This has been just fantastic and I have made some new friends, both on the DT and participants in the Dares and I've learnt some fabby new techniques. I've really been inspired to craft again - I was worried I was losing it and seriously considering chucking it all in last year.
  • Ooh, my blog!! I wouldn't have dared do this last year. Who would have wanted to read my thoughts and ramblings? However, I decided to go for it earlier this year and here we are! Still hanging on in there on the Crafty Blogs Top 50!!

I'm sure there's probably lots more, but I can't think at the moment. It doesn't actually sound like I've had a very exciting year from that, but I have! I'm back doing a job I love (most of the time), I love my husband more than ever, I have a gorgeous stepson and my bootiful bunnies and smelly hamster, my Mom and Dad are the best, I have proper hobbies that aren't just watching telly and make me feel clever and creative and I can honestly say I am happy. Yep, I still have my down days, but they are few and far between now and I feel better than I have done in a long time and that, for me, is enough.

Whatever you're doing this New Year, enjoy. I hope you've had a good year and if not, just think - things can surely only get better. Trust me, I know.... See you in 2007!! Kel xxx

Friday, December 29, 2006

Thanks For Christmas

Did you have a good one? It was all over a bit quick though, eh? 'Specially when you have to go back to work at 7.30 on the Wednesday morning. You wouldn't believe how many children were dumped on us at 8 o'clock - it's as if the parents have actually had to spend some time with them and they needed a rest! Whaddaya mean, they do?!

Right, Dare's up! A nice easy one for those of you with post-Christmas fatigue. We decided collectively that it would be nice to make some 'thank you' cards, but simple, stylish ones that don't take forever to do, just in case there's lots to send. Well, we can live in hope.

Technically, this wasn't as quick and simple as it was meant to be, but that's mainly due to my rather unusual incompetence on the PC! I used Jo's text box technique to make a background of 'thank you' in different languages. Once you've done this once, all you need to do is press print and hey presto! You've got lots of quick cards. I then cut the 'thanks' from DCWV mat stack card using Sizzlits 'Nouveau' alpha and stuck it on top. I really, really tried so hard not to ink anything, but couldn't resist using my black Stazon around the edges of the card blank - sorry! Ta-daaaaaa!! One simple (and hopefully stylish) thank you card. Once again, check out the blog to see the other creations the girls have managed this week and please have a go - it won't take you long, honest!

I plan to blog some of my Christmas, but the photos are on Mom's camera, so will probably get round to it sometime in June. Hope you all had a lovely time - can't wait to read all about it!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Home For Christmas

Woohooo! I've finished work for a whole 4 - yes, that's 4, days!! Hardly worth it, eh? Roll on Wednesday morning....

Still, it's been a good, if exhausting week. As a rule, I don't go out. Well, not often anyway. My social life is crammed into a week at this time of year and I'm feeling a little worse for wear now! Last Friday D and I went to a colleague's leaving party in town - it was great to catch up with lots of ex-colleagues of my own and I somehow managed to drink most of a bottle of champagne on my own - oops! Paid for it muchly the next day though... I went out for a yummy meal with my Mom and her work friends on Monday and was shattered at work on Tuesday, then on Thursday it was D's 40th birthday! Awww, bless him. The day before he kept telling me he was still in his 30s. Again and again. And again... We went out for a Chinese buffet to celebrate, then came home and had a couple of glasses of wine while we watched 'Bruce Almighty'. Early nights all round as we were both up early on Friday. Then last night was my works do in Solihull. It was a good night, although there is so much tension between the two nurseries owned by the bosses. If the others loosened their knickers a bit, they might have actually cracked a smile and enjoyed themselves... Nothing stops us when we get going though!

And so, yesterday was Dare Day! This was a first for many of us, as we had to make a card to celebrate the new year, following a recipe too - 3 brads, 2 patterned papers and a die cut or punchie...

For my card, I used a square blank, then tore two different DCWV papers into opposing triangles. I inked the edges and added a couple of brads in the opposite corners. My die cut was the tag, which was cut from DCWV mat stack and inked. The '2007' was cut from the Nouveau Sizzlit set. Added some green spotty grosgrain ribbon and the final brad and there you have it! Once again there are some fabulous cards on the blog and some of our players have already added theirs to their own blogs - do you ladies have nothing else to do or something?!! I'm sure there's something called Christmas around the corner!... Thanks for joining in though - it's so uplifting to log on and see the new comments on both the Dare blog and this one.

I felt so inspired by last week's dare that I decided to make some new Black & White cards to send out this year. The picture's not great, but they look nice in real life!
I used a scribbly tree stamp (see what you've started Keryn?!) and embossed it with black sparkle glitter. Did a few squiggles and mounted this onto some lovely Kings Foils from Little Lou's that I picked up at the NEC last year. This was then mounted over some lovely spotty ribbon from Paperchase. The greeting was printed onto the blank using the Greeting Card Factory program. I'm just so glad I got to make my cards this year, as buying them from Asda last year pained me!!

Not sure if I'll have time to blog before Christmas, or indeed anything to blog about, so if I don't, I'd like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!! Thanks so much for reading my mundane mumblings - it means a lot to know you're out there. I hope you have a fabby time, whatever you're doing, and the 'Kalorie Kounting with Kel Klub' starts in the new year for anyone feeling guilty about overindulging like I undoubtedly will be...