Wednesday 9 March 2022

Love, Baking, Birthdays, Awards, Storms & Cardmaking a-plenty!

Where does the time go? It seems just a blink ago I was catching up on February & already we're almost halfway through March!! 

So with four weeks happenings to relate, I'm not going to attempt chronological, but instead break it down into the categories above!

Firstly 'Love'....

Lee is in the habit of buying me a dozen red roses for St Valentines Day & this year was no different....I love them but feel sad that they only last a week or so before being assigned to the compost bin! But they are beautiful as they open up & greet me each morning for that week or so! 

The card he chose was very apt this year too! The quote 'I know sometimes I drive you mad, but my heart's in the right place' seems particularly suited to recent events....but I guess I'm not alone amongst wives on that score!!

As I have previously posted, I love to bake on a Thursday, both for the weekend at home, but also for my colleagues on the Friday shift. So over the last four weeks there have been a variety of bits baked...

Lemon meringue topped fairy cakes, Sausage rolls, apple crumble tarts & a brand new recipe for banana bread incorporating copious amounts of milk chocolate chips!!

All but the latter were taken to work & appreciated by the hungry hoards!!

The banana loaf was a success with Hubby & boys

Of course there were more reasons to celebrate with food this month, starting off with Pancakes for Shrove Tuesday... us boring but we like them served with just lemon juice & sugar....or in our house that's granulated sweetener as we have Alex's Diabetes to consider!

We have celebrated two birthdays too, but I only needed to bake one birthday cake, as Nathan requested an American style cake from Costco this year...

My baby boy turned 23 years old on 25th February & we had a family dinner, joined by his lovely girlfriend. 
They then headed off the next morning to spend the weekend at Lake Windermere in the Lake District.

My wonderful Hubby notched up another year but we decided to stick to one token sparkler on his cake! We had a lovely day out in Cambridge to celebrate, with lunch at Bills, a quick stop off at our local on the way home to toast the day & then home for cards, candles, coffee & cake with the boys.

It's been quite a productive month in my Craft Room...with a mix of cards for family & friends in a variety of styles....

...there were a couple more but they feature photographs of the recipients & I always feel I shouldn't share those without permission!

I had a wonderful evening last Tuesday, having been given a 'Star Performers' Award at work, I was invited to attend a Gala Dinner along with other Star Performer colleagues. We had a fabulous night & I feel very proud to have been recognised....

One final thing to happen during the last month was Storm Eunice...I found myself travelling into work as she arrived in the county, & driving home tentatively to avoid fallen trees! But then a week at home as Woburn Forest was one of Centerparcs villages to close while the storms came through & then for the big clean up operation! Unprecedented stuff! At home we had a shredded cover on our patio furniture & needed to call out the fence repair guys, who managed to secure the posts so we avoided having to replace the panels...phew!!

So, that about brings me up to date! No wonder it seems to have flown by...

Thank you so much for stopping by & I do hope you'll come again! I'll try not to leave it so long next time!! 

Take care & stay safe

Sandi x

Sunday 13 February 2022

Curve Balls, Cornwall & Catching up with weeks 4,5 & 6!!

Week four started off with a bit of excitement....

We live in a Bedfordshire village that has close connections with the Airship Industry & we were used to seeing the 'Flying Bottom' cruising over our house on test flights. Then disaster struck as it crash landed in a local field & we waited for it to be repaired & once more be a regular sight over the village.

We still have the two magnificent Airship Sheds that dominate our skyline, but sadly now only used as film studios or by bands wishing to use the space for rehearsal.

It was lovely to hear that we would once again have an airship at the sheds, if only for a fleeting visit! 

This colourful little airship was flown across Bedford to commemorate the anniversary of the R101 crash in 1929, at Beauvais in France. 48 souls were lost most are buried at Cardington cemetery 

Then our week went off track with our elder son being admitted to hospital with Diabetic Ketoacidosis. This was made even more scary by the ongoing Covid restrictions which meant he was in hospital for three days alone. 

He is also on the Autistic Spectrum & while very high functioning it means his anxiety levels were through the roof. But he was allowed home sfter three worrying days & had a week at home before returning to work.

The silver lining is the experience has made him determined not to repeat the experience & he is being very much on top of his carb counting & diabetes control!

 I was relieved to have a week off work, & Lee a week off school to recharge our batteries after two such challenging weeks! 

Firstly, we headed off to Ikea to pick up some white storage units for our recently redecorated hallway. 

I admit to owning thousands of loose photographs, besides my scrapbook albums & other photo albums! These fab file boxes have provided a great storage solution, keeping them accessible & tidily out of the way!

I'm also reluctant to part with our CD collection, even though we tend to listen to music digitally these days! There are so many memories tied up with all of those little silver discs & yes, we do still have more than one CD player, so they're staying. tidily stored for posterity!!

Then, on the Wednesday, we headed off at silly o'clock to drive to Cornwall.

It took a gruelling seven hours, mainly due to diversions at our end & traffic on the M5 but as dawn broke it brought blue skies, which followed us all the way. 

We are lucky to have friends who live in Cornwall & welcome us to visit, so stop one was at Porthcothan to drop Lee off for a few days with 'The Boys' while I travelled on the Tressillion to stay with my old friends. 

Clare & I have been friends for years & don't see each other often since she moved to live in Cornwall, but when we're together we just pick up where we left off!

We had such a great time together! a girls trip into Truro for a spot of retail therapy & lunch.  

Then a walk around Trelissick National Park & a drive down to Marazion to enjoy a coffee while watching the sun set!

On Saturday, we drove to meet Lee in Porthcothan & enjoyed a bracing coastal walk...before heading to the Cornish Arms, a Rick Stein restaurant, for a thoroughly enjoyable dinner!

Times like this are good for the soul & we returned to Bedfordshire on the Sunday feeling as well as if we'd spent a fortnight on some far flung sun kissed beach!!

I even managed a little creativity during my time off, making some Valentines cards for a colleagues wife & a birthday card for my Brother-in-Law.

My apologies for this photo heavy post & I wish I could master the alignment of them a little better! I will have to revisit my collage creator....can I remember how? Only time will tell!!

But thanks for stopping by & I hope you'll stop by again soon.

Take care & stay safe!

Sandi x

Monday 24 January 2022

January Week Three - 'Covid in the Robinson Household!!'


Our week started with a bang!...or should that be a Pop?!! Either way our old toaster tripped the fuses twice in a morning & it was decided that maybe it would be a good idea to buy a new toaster!

So we sallied forth on a toaster hunt (who knew there were so many to choose from?!) & finally decided on the DeLonghi, partly because it was less that half price in the sale, but also because it's look appealed to me! Can a toaster be considered pretty?

On Monday, Lee returned home from school, only shortly after having got there! Along with several other members of the teaching staff, he had tested positive for Covid 19. A prompt PCR test followed to confirm his result & his isolation began. He said he didn't feel unwell, just very tired, so I packed him off to bed, where Shadow took it upon herself to be his own personal Florence Nightingale,not leaving his side. I think she liked the fact of having cuddles on tap when she's usually home alone for much of the day!

The boys & I had to take a daily lateral flow test for seven days, all of which were negative, so I find myself glad that we are all triple jabbed & what was a very scary virus seems to have been tamed, for the moment anyway!


We installed our newly purchased bird feeder too this week, to compliment our array of hanging seed & fat-ball feeders which have proved very popular with the local bird population! 

It's designed to hold a jar of peanut butter & should attract smaller birds like robins, sparrows & tits. They seem a bit slow on the uptake so far, but I'm sure once they twig how delicious that mealworm enriched peanut butter is, they'll be on it in swarms!!

While I have not had any time in my craft room this week, household chores & nursing duties taking precedence, I did get some baking in!

I work with a lovely team & it's become something of a habit to bake for them for our Friday shift.

This week it was chocolate butterfly cakes, neatly transported into work in my new cake carrier...a very thoughtful Christmas gift from my sons girlfriend!

So that's it, another week done & 2022 well under way. Thanks for stopping by & I hope you'll come back next week too? Do leave me a comment so that I can drop by to visit you too!

Sandi x

Tuesday 18 January 2022

January Week Two "Oh yes we did!"

We kicked this week off in style by attending the panto at the Gordon Craig theatre in Stevenage. Last years was cancelled so this year it felt especially good to be back!  This year it was the story of Aladdin & we were introduced to a new Dame, who did not disappoint! The dancers were amazing, the principle characters were in good voice, 'Wishy Washy' had us in stitches & Abanazar was the best Baddie I've seen!

I love this theatre, it is quite small & cosy, but it's productions are so professionally presented. Even sitting in the back row, you feel included & can clearly see even the most subtle facial expressions of those on stage.  We kept our masks on for the duration of the still felt strange to be in close proximity to so many people at once!!

This week I also got to reunite with some Scrappy friends! Pre pandemic we met regularly in each others homes, or to attend workshops & crops, but it's now almost two years since we've done so! But this week we met up & enjoyed a day together. One of our trio is moving away, so getting together will prove more of a challenge, but she very generously gifted us with a selection of her crafting stash as she is using the move as an opportunity to declutter. We had great fun rummaging through papers, embellishments & gadgets before heading out for lunch....& on returning afterwards too!!

Finally, I did manage some crafty time this week, besides my Project Life layout of course!  I put together a 60th birthday card for the friend of a friend who loves anything 'Tiffany'...I used some licence free clipart images, printed & fussy cut, on an easel card, matted & layered with silver mirricard & a suitable patterned paper, then added plenty of bling & glossy accents. The sentiments were cut with Sue Wilson dies from Creative Expressions.

So, as we arrive at Mid January, I hope everyone is keeping warm & staying safe.

Thank you for stopping by & please do leave me a comment so I can drop by & visit your blog too

Sandi x 

Thursday 13 January 2022

Hello 2022....January week One!

Happy New Year! 

So 2022 has arrived & with it hopefully, the chance to get back to more normal life, albeit a new kind of normal in some areas! I guess the way we view life from here on in will always be 'Pre' & 'Post' pandemic, but I'm happy to have enjoyed the first week of this new year in relative normality.

We saw the new year in with good friends at a dinner party in Hampstead.  
Good food & wine, lots of laughs, reminiscing & putting the world to rights!  The local fireworks were going off from as early as 8pm, right through to 2am & we had the perfect view from the dining room window!  We stayed overnight & drove home to spend a lazy New Years Day at home & I had a blissful afternoon in my craft room

I was putting together a birthday card for a friends son. He's a big football fan & supports both Everton & Brentford, so some research was needed to get the kits correct!  The 'Goal' embellishment was made using a file from my silhouette Cameo design library, as were the player silhouettes. I used a font to cut his Name & the number 11 on my Cameo too, but the stars were made using two different sized star punches.

As much as I love the house all dressed up for Christmas, I enjoy dismantling it all just as much!
When the house looks clean & tidy again, and you marvel at how much room you actually have when there isn't a large tree dominating the lounge!

It never fails to fascinate me though, how each year I can never pack things away exactly as I got them out! There are either too many pieces of bubble wrap....or not enough!!

But once again tree, baubles, ornaments, lights & soft furnishings are all bagged or boxed & stashed away in the loft for another year. 

This week I returned to my Slimming World 
group!  I had last re-joined in October & had been doing quite well, but seasonal work shifts & a houseguest meant it was impossible to get to group for the last three weeks in December.

Not surprisingly I had to face a gain at the scales, but am undeterred! Fast on can be just as fast off in my book with a little this space!!

We were all issued with new books this week, no change to the plan itself, just shiny new books to refer to & record our progress in.
I also got to spend a fabulous evening with a few colleagues at an amazing local Italian restaurant.  We were catching up with an ex-colleague who had left us to become a teacher. It was good to hear how much he is enjoying his new career.   My sides were aching from all of the laughter by the end of the evening. Much fun was had...& all on a school night too!

Finally, I have committed to completing a Project Life album this year.  I last did one in 2013 but only managed January - July as I returned to full time work that year & found myself with no spare time to craft at all!!
Now I work just three days I week & I am trying to ensure I build in as much crafty time as I can, between laundry, housework & gardening chores!! 
I'm keeping it simple this time, a single page spread each week, documenting the highlights. So much simpler than 
attempting a daily photo in a double page spread! So far so good...

So, that's my week. I hope your new year has got off to a good start? What are your resolutions? Commitments? Anyone else documenting the year for posterity?

Thank you so much for dropping by! If you'd like to, please leave me a comment so that I can drop by & visit your blog too.

Take care & stay safe

Sandi x 

Tuesday 28 December 2021

Testing, testing part 2

Today we ventured out to Frosts garden centre for lunch & a spot of retail therapy. They have everything down to a tee regarding social distancing & Covid regulations. We felt quite safe enjoying our food & bagging a few bargains!

It is always so good to spend time with family, especially those who we don't see every day, even more so this year after not being able to have visitors for the festive season last year. 

I hope you've all had a wonderful time with family this year & wish everyone a very happy, healthy & prosperous New Year. May 2022 bring us all back into a world of relative normality!

Thanks for stopping by & come back soon 

Monday 27 December 2021

Testing, testing.......

 Hi there!

After almost 7 years away from Blogland, I am planning to return in 2022.

I recently had a prompt pop up, which led me to revisit my Blog & I remember how much pleasure it gave me, both by posting & by visiting others.

This is simply a practice run to see if I remember how!!

So, watch this space!!...& thanks for stopping by! ❤

Tuesday 20 January 2015

Off To A Good Start....

Well hello again!

So, how are all your New Years Resolutions holding up?

Mine is in a 'So Far So Good' kind of place at the moment! I have managed to find time for a little creativity....& it feels good!!!

Firstly, you may remember this POST about Alex & his interest in all things pony.

Well, after all these months he's still a Brony & about a year ago I made him a small pony in the style of his online pony avatar Robinmane...

As he is a Pegasus pony I had to add wings, which were the most challenging part!!
But, Robinmane is still much loved & has been everywhere with Alex....small enough to be tucked into his backpack & brought out for 'selfies' in various venues!!

So, Alex now has an online girlfriend who is also into ponies & he asked me to make another plush for her, as her avatar Golddrop.

After much procrastination, this was the perfect project to kick off my New Years Resolution...& here she is...

This time, instead of felt, I used a short pile plush fabric, which was messier but softer!

I worked from the image of Golddrop Alex provided me with for eye & hair colour....& of course the all important cutie mark on the rump!!

I also included a headshot of Robinmane in the heart locket on that pearl choker!!

I have stuffed the legs with lentils to give added weight, which makes the plush more stable when standing.

Oh & she's a unicorn so that's why she has a horn poking through that fringe!!

So, a belated Christmas present which also gave me the motivation to get creative in 2015!!

I also headed off to my first crop in 18 months on Saturday....where does the time go?!!!

There was a small flurry of snow as I
headed off to Renhold for the Merly
Impressions bi-monthly crop & it was
bitterly cold!

But there was a very warm welcome
waiting & it was so lovely to meet up
with some scrappy friends again!

I couldn't have chosen a better place to sit that where Chrissy had put me...
right in the middle of a table of familiar faces....

The lovely Denise & the delightful duo
Dawn & Sharon!!

Hugs all round & a
lengthy catch up followed...& yes,
some actual crafting did get done but
no, I didn't actually complete either of
the class layouts!!

But I will...& I'll share my take on
them when I do.

Here is what the class layouts looked like....

A lot of pink & much more girly than my own style, but to ease myself back into scrapping gently, I thought I'd go with the flow!! I'm off work this week so am planning some serious craft room time towards the weekend, so plan to have these both completed by then!! 

So that's it for now! Wherever you are in the world, I hope the weather is being kind!
Thanks for stopping by & come back soon!
Sandi x