Wednesday, 3 July 2013

A Fairy? On Cloud Nine?

1 FS2S FairyJuly is here & it brings a fresh scrappy challenge over at ‘From Screen 2 Scrap’ & this month the inspiration comes from the movie poster for the film ‘Fairy’. Not one I’ve seen I have to admit but I was certainly inspired by the poster!

The added criteria for this challenge was…

1. Clouds

2. A white title

3. Lots of blue

So with that in mind I set about my D.T.
submission & came up with this…

2 On Cloud Nine!  
The photo was one I took on my recent holiday…relaxing by the pool, almost no-one else around, 40 degrees & a cold beer one hand & a good book (well my tablet!) in the other! Cloud 9 indeed!!

Shazza has announced this month that ‘From Screen 2 Scrap’ will be closing down in September, so why not join us for this penultimate challenge? I’d love to see what you come up with!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Let’s Do The Time Warp Again…!!!!

Hello, poor neglected Blog! And hello to you too, my poor neglected Blogland friends!! I think this is a new record!…SEVEN weeks without posting!! Oh my!

I remember, last year, the lovely Hilary commenting that taking part in ‘Project Life’ reduced the amount of actual scrapping she achieved & I thought ‘how can that be?’….but now I get it!!!

I’m finding that photographing & documenting our day to day life IS actually taking over!! I’m completely up to date with my ‘Project Life’ album almost complete (Jan-Jun) & the second all prepped to go '(Jul-Dec)..which, if you know me (the worst procrastinator ever!!) is quite a feat!

But, if I’m honest, I’ve done next to zero REAL scrapbooking this year, just my DT commitments really!! And I don’t have to tell you how I’ve not been blogging regularly!! I’ve managed a few sporadic forays into Blogland to touch base with one or two of my regular haunts, but that’s it!!

swap2So, why? do I hear you ask, am I posting today?! Well, yesterday I received some ‘Happy Mail’ from the lovely Fiona, who was my donor in the ‘The Great Big Swap of Very Small Things’ organised by the lovely Sian over at ‘From High In The Sky’.


Fiona had kept in touch as she found herself delayed in sending off my package, not that there was any problem with that, if anything it built the anticipation & I was really quite excited when the package arrived yesterday!!

P6140091I oohed & aaahed at the lovely card, the gorgeous little pouch containing buttons & brads, the individual handmade envelopes & assortment of pinwheels & butterflies….all in one of my favourite colour palettes!!

BUT…what really blew me away was something tucked into the card that wasn’t even for me!! Apparently, Fiona’s daughter had been looking over her Mums shoulder as she was browsing my blog & spotted the post about Alex’s love of all things ‘My Little pony’. She then drew & cut out a picture of his favourite pony Trixie & that was what was tucked into the card!


Well…he was so pleased with this unexpected & thoughtful gift! His exact words were “That’s so cool, so impressive, it’s amazing…I love it!!” & he immediately went off in search of blue-tack with which to attach Trixie to the frame of the
mirror in his room!

I know I’ve emailed you Fiona, but can I say again a HUGE thank you to both you & your thoughtful daughter for brightening up our day yesterday! Oh & THANK YOU to you too Sian, for setting up another fun & enjoyable event to take part in….will it be an annual event do you think?!!!

So there you have it, something nice that prompted me to get blogging again!! I guess I’ll be back soon with a potted round-up of the past seven weeks!!! I really MUST get round to catching up with all of you & what you’ve been up to too! I’ll leave comments so you’ll know I’ve dropped by!!

Meanwhile…I think I’ve some 'Summertime Scavenger Hunting to catch up on too…I’m off to Rinda’s to check out the list!!!

Thanks so much for stopping by & not giving up on me altogether!! Come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Thursday, 2 May 2013

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

1 Perks of being a wallflowerIt’s that time again! Time for a new monthly challenge over at ‘From Screen 2 Scrap’ & this time it’s a movie I’ve yet to see! Starring Emma Watson, who played Hermione in the Harry Potter series, it’s ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’.

The added criteria for extra points this month

1. Green cardstock somewhere on the page

2. A black title

3.Bricks! Stencilled, Masked, Painted, Handmade…however!!

So with that in mind this is what I put together for my DT sub'…

2 Meeting Cromwell 

I used a photo from the day last October, when Nathan & I visited the Tower of London. I used green CS to mat the photo & journaling strips, stencilled bricks in two colours of ink & there’s the black title too!!

So why not join in with us this month, we’d love to see what you come up with!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Sunday, 21 April 2013

I Need Help With The MANE Event!!

Do you remember earlier this year I mentioned a soft toy project I had embarked on? Well, here’s the story behind it!

As you’ll know, my boys (& Lee!) are BIG into computer games! I tend to let a lot of the chatter & excitement about this game & that game just wash over me! Most of them seem to involve war, or fighting zombies…lots of shooting & strategic planning involved…give me cutting & sticking any day!!

But I digress…my ears pricked up one day when Alex was getting very excited about a new hybrid trend online…someone (or lots of someone’s) was (were) blending all of his favourite 18+ games & more, with ‘My Little Pony’…yes…you read that right!

fc,550x550,black_u2Apparently this has been happening since 2010 & the group even have a name…they’re called ‘Bronies’. He was laughing at how all these unlikely, very macho characters were being depicted in pony form, with pony names to match…Dr Who became Dr Hooves for example!

There’s even a website for MLP Bronies…DeviantArt, where a Broney can share his creative work & admire fellow Bronies work too!  Alex was soon creating digital images including his own pony alter-ego ‘Robinmane’! He also downloads & watches adapted ‘MLP’ cartoons, all with an underlying moral story but geared to a teens/twenties audience!


   So, I have been paying
   attention since, I’ll admit
   I’m fascinated by what these
   Bronies come up with! A visit
   to the DeviantArt site is quite
   impressive! There’s even a
   site selling Tee-shirts, sweats
   & hoodies up to a mens XL,
   all bearing MLP images & pony

fig,black,mens,ffffffThese are no ‘Little girls ponies’!!

So where, you may ask, is this leading!! Well, my own Brony Alex asked me if I could make him a plush toy of his favourite pony Trixie!
He & his brother have quite a collection of plush toys collected through the years, mostly from their Pokemon era! So I wasn’t surprised at the request!

Happy Mail

   I managed to find on ebay a
   ‘blind bag’ miniature of said
   said pony, hoping that that
   would satisfy the need to
   own a solid replica! But No!
   the need still prevailed for a
   larger soft toy & I thought
   ‘where to start?’

   Years ago I made soft toys,
   teddies & other animals, rag
   dolls etc but I can’t say that I
   ever made anything like a

TrixieHere is the pony in question, her name is Trixie & Alex was very specific about the colours & type of fabric I needed to use! I found a pattern on DeviantArt for a generic pony body & set about my fist foray into toy making in more than a decade!!

project 1 

   The cutting out & sewing up by
   hand was very therapeutic & it
   was nice to see it all coming
   together & taking shape! Then,
   once the body was done I stuffed it, using lentils in the ‘hooves’ for added weight, & we had a satisfying but rather blank looking pony!!

project 2

Now the fun began! I scoured through DeviantArt for patterns for the very specific requirements for mane & tail, but none are to be had! So I decided to get on with the eyes & cross the whole ‘Hair’ bridge later! I opted for a combination of felt & embroidery for the eyes & this is how it looked stage 1…

project 3



   …& then I HAD to tackle the
   mane & tail! I could not avoid it
   any longer! I sourced some white
   velveteen fabric & blue satin that
   would be perfect but with no
   pattern to cut, it was trial & error
   from the start!


IMG_9696I managed the tail, with approval from Alex that yes. this is just how she should look…I even managed the eyelashes & smile to his satisfaction…

…but the mane is giving me nightmares!! I’ve had two attempts & she either ends up looking like she has bunny ears or some kind of hat & scarf combo!!

So this is where I need your help…you wonderful crafty people!! Can you offer any practical advice, links to sites etc that can help me get Miss Trixie done & dusted? If you can you’d make one frustrated toymaker & one self confessed Brony very happy!

   Thank You in anticipation!!

   …& thank you for stopping by
   too, be sure to come back
   very soon! Open-mouthed smile

Better Late Than Never…I Hope!!

Hello! Remember me? I’m returning to Blog Land after yet another extended absence!! I’ve just spent a lovely couple of hours stopping by all my favourite blogs & before that, a not so happy but ‘had to be done’ hour of bringing all my online chores up to date! You know the stuff…emails, surveys, bills to pay!! Still it’s all done now & I fully intend to keep on top of it now that the Easter break is over!

So..I must get this one thing done….it’s the April challenge over at ‘From Screen 2 Scrap’ & there’s still a week left to play along!!

freaky friday posterThis months poster for inspiration is ‘Freaky Friday’…Remember this classic starring Jamie Lee Curtis & Lindsey Lohan?

The added criteria for extra points are…

1. Green & purple cardstock
2. The word ‘Freaky’ in the title
3. A cut out figure on the page

I will admit that I had to dig deep to find a photo to work with for this one!  I finally found one…..

…of Lee, taken during the dress rehearsal of the school Christmas Pantomime in 2009! He played one of the Ugly Sisters & believe me, that WAS just plain freaky!

So if you’d like to play along we’d love to see you over at ‘From Screen 2 Scrap’. The deadline is midnight on Tuesday 30th April…hope to see you there!!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Monday, 1 April 2013

Happy Easter….

I’m just sneaking in before Easter is over!! I do hope you’re all having a wonderful weekend!

Easter Bunny   I was greeted at the 
   breakfast table by a fan
   arrangement of my
   Bunnies! Lee had actually
   bought me a box of 32!!
   Thankfully he has them
   under lock & key & I’m to
   be rationed!!! ;D

SpringIt’s now British Summertime (!!) & I think maybe there are one or two signs in the garden that Spring is on its way!!

These little Daffodils pushed their way up through the snow & have now opened just in time for Easter & the first bit of Spring sunshine…even if it is barely above zero with a biting Easterly wind!!


St Patricks dinnerSince my last post I’ve celebrated St Patricks day with the girls…two of them are Irish & one hosted an evening with a menu of Irish stew, beef in Guinness, baked potato’s & soda bread!

The dress code was green & a good time was had by all…we always laugh so much that I end up in tears!!

Marti Pellow

   I also got to see Marti Pellow
   in concert last Sunday night. I
   went on my own but had the
   BEST seat in the place!! He has
   a truly amazing voice. He sang
   mostly songs from stage &
   screen but in the second half
   snuck in ‘Goodnight Girl’ & ‘Love
   is all around’ from the Wet Wet
   Wet songbook!!  I love live
   music/theatre & just wish it
   wasn’t quite so expensive!!

Eye test
Alex has had a busy week with his quarterly Diabetes clinic & his annual sight test. At the hospital they wanted to discuss the possibility of his having an insulin pump fitted. He went into shutdown mode & would not even talk about it!! It is so difficult as he is so resistant to any kind of change!

But his sight test revealed no change so that was good news!

I managed to harvest the impressive (not!) crop of THREE whole chilli peppers we’ve managed to grow on the kitchen windowsill & used them in a new recipe I found for Creole pie…

pepper 1Pepper2

…it was delicious & we could certainly taste the fire from the chillies!!

Cake!   Nathan raised a smile
   this week with his DT
   cookery item! Somehow
   he mixed up the fats &
   sugars for the sponge &
   the filling & ended up
   using only half the fat
   but twice the sugar (to
   explain, he included the
   icing sugar meant for the
   buttercream in with the
sponge mix!!) that the recipe required! It looked OK….& it tasted just fine!! But I still want to know where the teacher was while this masterpiece was being mixed!!

with NannyWe also had a whistle-stop visit from Mum-In-Law & her gentleman friend as they were returning from a reunion in Cambridge last weekend.  It was so lovely to see her & grab the photo opportunity with the boys! She couldn’t get over how her two ‘Little Angels’ are both now taller than she is & how deep their voices sound!!

I have to share a silly photo with you….Lee came into my craft room this morning to ask ‘did I think he needed a haircut?’  What do you think?

Need a haircut

   It’s a good job it’s love
   is all I can say!!

   I’ll leave it there for now
   & I’ll be back soon with
   a new FS2S challenge
   for April!
   Thanks for stopping by
   & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Can You Tell I’m British?

I’m developing a bit of an obsession with the weather!! I know…very British!! But it seems like we never know what we’re going to wake up to these days!

13 a.m. sunshine

For example…

Last Wednesday morning I enjoyed a sunshine stroll along the Embankment…



14 p.m. snow

   …& then on Thursday
   morning we opened the
   blinds to snow!!

   This morning, although
   cold, it was a beautiful
   sunny start to the day
   …but by lunchtime the

local radio station was warning of snowfalls in the early hours of tomorrow & to listen out for school closures on the breakfast show!! And it’s only ten days till Easter!!!

Well, enough of that! I’ve not been online often of late, just keeping up to date with emails but not much else! I’ve been busy around the house & I am at last up to date with the ironing (BIG YAY! Open-mouthed smile), the loft is coming along nicely & I’m working through all those jobs that tend to get neglected…washing down paintwork, moving out kitchen appliances to clean behind (ugh!) & sorting out the black hole that is the cupboard under the stairs!!

15 Online ClassNot much paper crafting going on but I am managing to keep up to date with Project Life, I’m working through a couple of online classes I downloaded before Christmas from the Jessica Sprague website & I’m

16 Knit project    finishing off a knitting
    project! Oh…& the soft
    toy I posted about
    earlier should be done
    soon too….I just have
    to come up with a way
    to add a convincing
    mane & tail!!!

17 Mothers DayI do hope all my ‘Mum’ visitors were spoiled for Mothers Day… 

I had a totally relaxing day & enjoyed my first Mothers Sunday in eleven years when I wasn’t at work! The boys spoiled me with vouchers for a facial & I didn’t have to cook or clear up all day!!

I’m looking forward to my weekend…snow or no snow! I have a ticket to see Marti Pellow in concert on Sunday night at Milton Keynes! I’m going on my own as Lee wasn’t interested!! I shall hang on every note…I think he has an amazing voice & I’m hoping he includes a couple of ‘Wet Wet Wet’ numbers!

So, that’s about all to report for now! Same old same old otherwise! Thanks for stopping by & be sure to come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

A Tempting Glimpse Of Spring?

Yesterday, here in Darkest Bedfordshire, we had a taste of sunshine! It was warm enough by mid afternoon to venture out without a coat!! My feet even felt too warm in my Uggs!

It was bliss! I threw open the windows in every room & pottered away in the kitchen with the back door wide open too, wishing all the while that I hadn’t been so prompt with the laundry on Monday as it would have been wonderful to have pegged out a full wash!!

But…today we’re back to wintry cold, coats scarves & gloves back on! It even drizzled with rain on my morning walk along the Embankment…ugh!

So, while Mother Nature makes up her mind what season to throw at us tomorrow, I’m going to share one or two highlights of our week so far!

IMG_9339Sunday saw me once more ensconced between the beams in our attic! When we moved in nine years ago we vowed that we would NOT do what we did in our previous home & cram it full of stuff we didn’t really need to keep! A vow made with good intentions but it hasn’t really worked out that way!

So far I have liberated one end of the roof space of THREE car loads (& I drive an estate car!!) of cardboard & packing materials! Hubby insists on keeping the boxes of new electrical appliances “just in case”…but there was a box there for an iron I threw out years ago!!


  It’s actually very cathartic
  to just hurl drop what’s
  for the tip through the loft
  hatch & watch it pile up in
  readiness for hubby to get
  it down the stairs & then
  loaded into the car! He
  leaves me very much
  alone to the sorting, but I’m accumulating quite a stack of boxes which seem to contain paperwork going back decades…those he can do himself!! He does pop his head up through the hatch from time to time to marvel at the expanse of floor space opening up!

It’ll be a long project & I’m hoping for some more of that lovely Spring weather so that I can get out on as many Sundays as possible to our local car boot fair & turn some of these hoarded treasures into cash!! Meanwhile I’m sure there’ll be many more visits to the tip, along with bags to the charity shop before we’re I’m done!! Winking smile

IMG_9364It was Lee’s birthday yesterday & we celebrated at home with a roast pork dinner followed by cake & candles….just a token six as I didn’t want scorched retinas all round from lighting 55!!  He came home from school with a selection of handmade cards from pupils in his class…so sweet!  He opened all his cards & gifts in the evening too & although I find it harder & harder to buy ‘surprises’ for him, he seemed very pleased with everything!

I had to laugh on Monday when I opened the cookie tin to fill it with a new pack…

IMG_9355  …Lee had at some point
  obviously fancied a choc
  chip cookie or two & then
  discovered he’d been
  beaten to it by our
  resident cookie monster…

  So I left it where it was &
  put the packet in the
  cupboard….I’m still waiting
  for Alex to comment on
  the note…maybe his conscience has been pricked & that’s why he hasn’t mentioned it yet!! I’m sure he will once his craving for choc chip cookies kicks in!!

IMG_9409Finally, I noticed yesterday that the cactus in the lounge is breaking into bloom. It’s flowers are so delicate but they don’t last long. Mum-In-Law says it’s a Christmas cactus & my neighbour says it’s an Easter cactus!! Who’s right I wonder?…Can any of you tell me? Please!!

So that’s it from me for today. I do hope you’re all keeping well & those of you who were at one of the scrap retreats over the weekend had a wonderful time & will be sharing all the gossip at your earliest convenience!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile

Sunday, 3 March 2013

My Precious The Third…

4 Storytelling SundayIt’s that time again! The first Sunday of March & time to share a story about something precious! I did have an object all lined up but then had a rethink!

On Friday something prompted me to realise that there is something very precious that I should be acknowledging, so my object will wait till another day!!

Enduring Friendship

I left Hereford in 1983 to set up home with Lee in Hertfordshire. I left my family, friends & much loved job with Estee Lauder! I started work as Deputy Manager of a fashion shop in St Albans but after about a year I missed my roots in cosmetics & took a job with Elizabeth Arden in a local department store.

It was here I discovered a group of friends with whom I had so much in common & we were soon spending our days off & evenings together, as if 40 hours a week on the department wasn’t enough! Those of us who had ‘other halves’ were not surprised that they got along well too, which helped!!

We did silly things like having themed fancy dress nights out & would cause much hilarity arriving in pubs & clubs dressed as fairies, schoolgirls or in our pyjamas! We had frequent dinners & parties at one another's homes & anything was a good enough reason to get together! We spoiled each other on birthdays & played silly practical jokes on each other!

Over the years we supported each other through heartaches & crises, celebrated successes, went to each others weddings & welcomed each others children into the world. Then, as often happens when children arrive, life moves you off in different directions & you don’t see each other so often.

But that friendship never goes away, even when you all move away into different counties & you’ve not seen each other in eons! When you do get together you just pick up where you left off, as if it were just yesterday!

This Friday I was lucky enough to get together with three of these friends, two of which I hadn’t seen for five years & it really brought it home to me just how lucky we all were to have shared those wonderful years when our lives were so intertwined!

5 Carol & Marci

6 Polly & I








We caught up on all the news, what our kids are doing (now all in teens & twenties!), who’s heard from who, & then we got down to reminiscing about the 80’s & the 90’s…& laughed so much at memories of those happy, happy days!

I managed to dig out a photo of the four of us taken at another friends wedding in 1995, but I’m sure if I dug deep I could find some of us as fairies, schoolgirls….!!

7 the way we were 1995

So, my precious this month is ‘Friendship’…I am lucky enough to have many people I call friends & I value each & every one, but to have enduring friendship is a true blessing indeed.

So, what’s your precious? Do share your story over at ‘From High In The Sky’ where I know you’ll be very welcome…you’ll find lots of other stories there too!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon! Open-mouthed smile