Friday, 30 April 2010


Alex so loves being in the garden that he was most disappointed that it was raining yesterday evening and kept saying ‘Oh dear, its raining, have to be inside’ which made me grin. I do so love the funny things that he says..he is a constant source of amusement. We are all tired as it is the end of the week so I am looking forward to a long bank holiday weekend which will hopefully be gentle and relaxed. We don’t have anything planned so we will just have to see what the weather is like and what we all feel like doing. He is turning into a real hoodie as this photo shows.
Crafting wise I have made my first ever circular card (hence the title of this post), and yes it does actually stand up! I made it with a folded over piece of red card, and then cut it out using my nestabilities on my cuttlebug. The background is also hand made in that I used the Swiss dots embossing folder on white card and then stamped the flowers (two different tapestry stamps in two different shades of red) on top. The Penny Black image was coloured in using Tim Holtz distress inks and the stack of flowers with the pearl on top are all from the Angel kiss range of flowers which are easily my favourites. This little card therefore fits with a lot of different challenges; Creative card crews ‘April showers bring May flowers’; Creative Craft ‘blooming flowers’; CCT ‘Make your own’ (background in my case); MTTC ‘Ruby red’; PTW ‘do something different’ (I have never made a circular card before); A spoon full of sugar ‘3D something’ (the flower is 3D); Cuttlebug Spots ‘Favourite flowers’ and CCC ‘not square’. As usual I would love to know what you think. Have a great weekend everyone.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Baked beans!

Alex has been making us laugh so much recently as every day at least once a day he announces quite suddenly and randomly with no prompting that 'I don't like baked beans!'.  This is followed by a small pause and then 'Mummy doesn't like baked beans' followed by a longer pause and then a puzzled voice saying 'Daddy likes baked beans'!  It just cracks me up every time!  I must say that he is loving the nice weather...they are playing outside most of the day at nursery and he comes home and plays out in the garden here, having a picnic tea.  The only trouble is getting him to go back inside at bath-time.
Crafting wise I have made two cards so far this week.  The first one followed this weeks CPS sketch and fits with the themes of 'summer' for crafty angels, 'blooming blossoms' for OCC, 'make your own flowers' for Pollycraft (I used two different punches and a tiny button to make my flower), and 'not square' for CCC.
The second one follows this weeks Sketch and stash sketch and uses my new Bo Bunny chipboard shapes. This also fits with the theme of 'card for a child' from Sophisticats (it is for my nephews 6th birthday) and Practical scrappers 'buttons' (can you see the cute little green buttons on the ribbon?  They are so tiny!). As usual any comments are welcome.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Gentle weekend

After being away last weekend we have had a very gentle weekend at home enjoying the nice weather and our garden. 
I have spent some time weeding and tidying and playing with my camera taking photos of the different flowers. 
We have three different types of daffodil,
some miniature tulips,
Some white heather,
and the usual curtain of pink/purple flowers (not sure of their name).
Yesterday Alex and I went into the park only to discover a couple of families playing games of medieval castles complete with swords and shields.  Alex was delighted to be allowed to join in with everyone, running round with a helmet and stick,
then being given a spear - it was a bit big for him -
so we swapped it for a sword.  He loved being allowed to join in with all the fun.
Crafting wise I made this scrapbook page of Tim's birthday which follows this weeks sketch from Practical Scrappers, the KLSNS theme of 'earth colours', Lots to do theme of 'leaves or trees', the Stamp something 'charms' theme, the DCM theme of 'die cuts' and the Scrap your C**p theme of 'embroidery thread' (the Americans call it floss!). It also fits with the SCSC theme of 'distressing' as I used a stippling effect with distress inks on the background, as well as edging the page. I used green embroidery thread around the chipboard flower. The title of this page is 'Birthday fun' and the journalling reads 'We celebrated Tim's birthday with a trip to Heeley city farm where he and Alex had fun on the playground'.
This scrapbook page follows the Unscripted sketch for this week and their theme of 'recycle' as the buttons are my recycled items.  I feel that this fits with the Ooh La La challenge of 'vintage man' as the stamp in the bottom righthand corner is of a vintage fire engine with three firemen on it.  It also fits with the Scrap and Stamp theme of 'debossing' as the central gold(ish) compass is a debossed image, and it also fits with the MTTC theme of 'quotes' (my quote is from the dictionary!).  The title of the page is 'Fire Museum' and the journalling reads 'Alex enjoyed his 'Fire Engine Venture', running round and pumping the hand punps, although he didn't want to get into any of the fire engines!'. As usual I would love to know what you think of these pages.  Have a great week everyone.

Friday, 23 April 2010


I seem to be developing yet another fluey cold as I have a thumping headache, a sore throat and runny nose not to mention the aches and shivers. I think poor Alex must be suffering from exactly the same as he isn’t sleeping well and is really tired and somewhat sensitive poor lad. That said we have had fun over the past few days with games of boo and pounce as well as chasing a balloon around the house and pulling silly faces.
Crafting wise I made this card for several challenges. Crafty Cardmakers are having a ‘desert island challenge’ where you have to think about what crafty items you couldn’t live without and make a card or project using just those items. At the moment I think it has to be my Tim Holtz distressed inks and my crafty individuals stamps which is what I have used exclusively on this card. This card also fits with the Pile it on challenge of ‘Spring’, the ‘distressing’ challenges from both Crafty creations and Sophisticat, Penny’s challenge of ‘anything goes’ and was inspired by the photo in Simply Scrapping. Have a great weekend everyone and enjoy the sun.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Back from the conference!

Well since I last updated I have been down to Exeter to the British Microcirculation Conference and come back again!  I left on Sunday lunchtime after spending the morning packing and with Alex in the park on Lydgate lane.  We had a lovely time with him scooting, playing ball, sliding, climbing, running and discovering the world of insects.  I just love this age as Alex explores the world around is such an interesting time.  I was so sorry to leave him and Tim behind as I got on the train to Exeter.
The only good thing about the conference being so far away was that I was able to stay with my bridesmaid, Susie and her family.  I see her so rarely these days that it was wonderful being able to have a great catch up and to meet her 6 month old son, William. 
He is a real poppet who was full of smiles and was perfectly content for me to play with him and cuddle him! Although parts of the conference were altered as speakers were not able to fly into England due to the iceland volcanic ash, it was still very good and interesting so I was glad that I went. 
On the long train journey back I was fascinated by the brightly coloured houses in Bristol - so much so that I couldn't resist attempting to photograph them from the train. Not the best photo, but I think you will understand what I mean when I say that they were colourful! I am exhausted now though as I never sleep well when I am away from home so I am very pleased to be having a day off work today to catch up with some much needed housework and to craft!
This scrapbook layout follows this weeks unscripted sketch and the themes of bow, buttons & bling for SSDS, Fibres and ribbons for Practical Scrappers and something non-scrapbook for Scrap & Stamp (in my case this was the fibrous wool used along the top). The papers were from Fancy Pants, the star stamps were SeeDs and I doodled the edging. The title is 'Scooter Dude' and the journalling reads 'Alex got the hang of his scooter on 11th Oct 2009 when he spent 30 minutes whizzing round the park enjoying the fact that he had finally got it!'
The next page followed this weeks Sketchy Thursday sketch, and the themes of 'A day out' for SCSC and 'animals' for Stamp with fun.  The papers are from DoodleBug and Fancy Pants, while the stickers and ribbon are from Papermania. The page is entitled 'White post farm' and the journalling reads 'We all enjoyed a wonderful sunny day at the farm. Alex especially loved the ice cream, playing on the tractor and throwing grain to the ducks and geese while I enjoyed feeding the goats and llamas. 10th Sep '09'.  
Finally I made this really quick (less than 10 minutes) and easy card using the free Kate Knight papers from this months CM&PC magazine.  The butterfly was cut and embossed using my cuttlebug on both a pink piece of card and a piece of vellum.  I highlighted the vellum with my sakura stardust pen to add sparkle although it doesn't really show up in this photo.  The card fits with: DCM - 'flap' (the wings are not stuck down); OCC - 'beautiful butterfly'; Kaboodle Doodle - 'embossing'; Simon Says - 'things with wings'; Magical Crafts - 'something for the girls'; Creative Card Crew & A spoon full of sugar - 'Happy Birthday'.  Not bad for a quick and simple card!!   I would love to know what you all think.  Have a great rest of the week.

Saturday, 17 April 2010


I do so love the sun.  Weekends are so much nicer when you can spend the whole time out in the garden!  Alex had a wonderful time playing out in the garden all morning, first with Tim, while I did a little crafting, and then with me.  I managed to finish most of the weeding while Alex played with his cars, tricycle and sandpit.  This afternoon we went to a friends house where Alex had a great time turning the place upside down exploring all their toys and their garden.  Tomorrow we are hoping to get outside again first thing and have some fun before I head off to Exeter for a conference, leaving the two boys together.  I think Tim and Alex will be fine. 
Crafting wise I made this card to join in with the Practical Scrappers Spring blog hop.  The theme for both Practical Scrappers and Cuttlebug Spot is bling/glitter and with the sakura stardust on the flowers, the glitter card used for the butterfly, the pearls for its body and the gem flowers I am sure that this fits!  The pile it on challenge was to not use a traditional image as the focal point for the card, so with this card I am using the background paper to set a scene and then adding embellishments to it as well as the words 'Happy Birthday', so hopefully it counts! This also fits with the touchy feely challenge from Cute Card Thursday as with the cuttlebug embossed butterfly slightly raised off the background, the pearls, gems and ribbons it is quite a tactile card.
As I am not going to be able to post as usual tomorrow due to being on a long train journey I will leave you with my Design Team entry for this weeks Quirky Crafts, giving you a brief heads up as to the challenge which is 'Trains, Planes and automobiles'.    As Alex is vehicle obsessed I just had to do a layout about him for this challenge.  All the design team were given an image from Limited Runs Stamps - in this case the cupcake with the car on it, so I used that on my scrapbook page of Alex's birthday.   The title is Celebrate, and the journalling reads 'Alex celebrated his 3rd Birthday over 2 days with 2 cakes and lots of presents including a quarry set, a train set, Bob the builder toys and a tool kit. He was such a happy little boy!'. The photos feature him playing with his new quarry and train sets as well as his two birthday cakes and I included his birthday badge as an embellishment. This layout also fits with the Creative Card Crew 'Happy Birthday' theme and with the PTW 'cutie pie' theme.  As usual I would love to know what you think.  Have a great rest of the weekend and enjoy the nice weather.

Friday, 16 April 2010


Well we have reached the weekend and I have, by the skin of my teeth, managed to do everything I needed to do at work.  As a family we are all so tired that poor Alex had a complete screaming tantrum on the way back from nursery.  However, when we finally managed to sort him out he had a great time out in the garden with a picnic tea and enjoyed dropping stones into water and splashing us both.  I am so pleased that the weather is makes everything so much better.
Crafting wise I have made a scrapbook layout following one of the layouts on Practical Scrappers blog.  This uses Bazzil and Basic Gray cardstocks, Martha Stewart punch, distressing inks speckled across the background, Purple Onion Swirl stamps and pearls, all of which are amoung my favourite crafting items so this counts for the Crafty Angels challenge.  The page also fits with MTTC 'pretty pearls', Sophisticats 'distressing', Stamp something 'layered' and CCC 'childhood memories' (the photo is of my 9th birthday party!).  As usual I would love to know what you think. Have a great weekend and enjoy the sun!

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

No sleep!

Don't you hate it when you can't sleep.  I was awake at 3.15am and couldn't get back to sleep for the rest of the night so am completely shattered this evening.  Poor Alex hasn't slept well for about 2 weeks so is also exhausted, especially as he is now moving up a class at nursery.  As of next week he will be in the 'Pre-school' class. He is in there in the afternoons for this week and is loving it so I don't think we will have any problems in transition.  This photo is of a tired little boy cuddling his teddies and watching Bob the Builder teaching him about how a road is built taken just before bath-time tonight.
Crafting wise I made this very quick and simple little card for a friend who is going on maternity leave.  The image was from a stamp swap on the CM&PC forum and it is simply layered over a cuttlebug embossed background.  The card fits with this months Craft Garden challenge of pastels!
The second card I made is a belated birthday card for a forum buddy who is into all things oriental.  I am running very late with this one, but thought she would appreciate it anyway.  It fits with the MTTC 'pearls', OCC 'bows', Stamp something 'stitch something' and SSDS 'birthday card' challenges.  As usual I would love to know what you think.  Have a great rest of the week.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Blah Blah!

Now I don't mean the title of this post in a negative sense at all, it is just something Alex has started saying, or rather singing.  He can spend ages sitting playing happily singing a tune with the words 'blah, blah, blah'.  It is so funny!  I guess it is just a new word that he has discovered that he likes the sound of.  I just love this photo of him looking so serious reading the paper!
It has been a wonderful weekend of sun, so nice that it has felt like summer.  Alex and I have spent a lot of time out in the garden with me weeding and him throwing stones into water, or helping with the weeding.  In the afternoons we have been to Endcliffe park where Alex has had fun on the bouncy castle, going down the bouncy slide and playing on the playground. 
It was so nice that he wanted to try paddling, although he quickly decided it was too cold! A perfect time for a small boy
Tim has also been playing with Alex inside allowing me plenty of time for crafting.  I have made three scrapbook pages, three ATCs, and a card this weekend.  This first scrapbook page is from last August featuring my mother playing with Alex on the beach, hence the title 'Beach fun'.  I have used shells I collected on the beach on this layout so it fits with the challenge to use something natural for KLSNS. The journalling reads 'Alex enjoyed bulldozing the sand and knocking down Grandma's pebble towers while Juno chased in and out of the sea'. I guess this layout also fits with the theme of mono mania from CCT with all the browns and buffs, but I have cheated a little by adding a little blue to the edges to mimic the sea. This also fits with Sophisitcats challenge of 'raining cats and dogs' as it features my parents dog Juno having fun in the sea!
The next two scrapbook pages are both interpretations of this weeks Unscripted sketch which is really versatile.  The first page is of Alex and is entitled 'Zoom'.  All the papers, stickers & rub-ons come from the Rough and tumble collection by Fancy pants and I hand drew the title to match.  The journalling reads 'Now Alex has worked out how to sue the accelerator peddle and the forwards and backwards button, he just loves zooming round the house on Granny and Grandpa Pete's quadbike. Nov '09'. This again fits with Spoon full of sugar's challenge of 'one for the boys.
The final page is one from my childhood again loosely following unscripted sketch #50.  The background card is a sparkly Bazzil cardstock and the rest of the papers are from Cosmo Cricket.  The stickers are from Papermania.  The journalling reads 'I have very fond memories of Christmas 1985. Thirteen people to Christmas lunch, laughter and games of 'Pitt', and Archie, Harry, Andy and myself having the traditional photo by the tree'.
I experimented with Brayering again using a mixture of Adirondack and distress inks...the distress inks do not brayer any where near as well as the Adirondack ones do.  This time I was attempting to create a night sky and used my new stamps from Lavinia stamps and circa design.  I was quite pleased with the end result but would love to know what you think. 
Finally I made three ATCs for a nature swap I am holding on the cardmaking and papercraft forum this month. I sued crafty individual stamps and distress inks and then tried heat embossing over the top so this fits with the lots to do challenge....they sort of worked, but the dragonfly is probably my favourite.  These fit with the 'wings' theme for.  As usual I would love to know what you think of these.  Have a great week everyone.

Thursday, 8 April 2010


I have had the past couple of days off work to recover from the travel and lack of sleep over the weekend and catch up on the housework. Alex has been in nursery and loving it, leaving Tim and myself free to catch up at home.  The house is now looking spick and span and I have had time to craft!  In the evenings Alex has been enjoying playing with his birthday presents, especially his quarry set which is the current favourite.
Crafting wise I have been focussing on scrapbooking and have made two layouts following the Crafty Cardmakers theme of 'Challenge yourself'.  I decided to challenge myself to do some free-hand doodling, which is not something I normally do, other than a brief line of hand-drawn stitching!  For this first layout I doodled some swirly lines around the edge of the central panel and then some circles and dots (not very adventurous I know but it is a start!).  This layout follows this weeks Unscripted Sketch and also fits with the MTTC on the spot challenge (spotted paper and hand-drawn spots), the Spoon Full of Sugar challenge of 'one for the boys' as it features Alex, Practical Scrappers as I used my Whispers marker pens for the doodling, Daring Cardmakers diamonds theme (there are quite a few little diamonds scattered across the layout), and Magical Crafts 'animal antics' theme (I'm assuming fish count!). The journalling reads 'Alex really enjoyed his first trip to the Deep in Hull and was fascinated by the fish swimming around, especially the big ones and was still talking about seeing 'sharks swimming in big tank' weeks later!'
The second layout is entitled 'Waiting for the train' and follows this weeks Pencil lines sketch.  I got a little more adventurous with my doodling this time, freehand doodling the central frame and the title word 'Train', again using my Whisper Marker pens (fitting with both Crafty Cardmakers and Practical Scrappers themes). This also fits the OCC theme of 'buttons'. The journalling reads 'Alex having a cuddle with Grandma and finishing her ice-cream while watching the steam train puff along the top of Blue Anchor beach. Aug '09'
Finally I completed a layout of a Peacock butterfly that I took in the park last August, which fits with the Stamp, Scrap and Doodle challenge of 'Wings', and follows the Stamp with fun recipe of 3 papers, 3 flowers (I am counting each flower stack as one flower) and 2 buttons (can you see my tiny little buttons to the right of the photo!). The stamps are a mixture of Crafty Individuals, Tapestry and Stamps away done using distress inks. I hope you all have a great rest of the week and a lovely weekend and I look forward to reading your comments.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Easter fun!

Firstly an apology for the late and long post this time round!  I have been away for Easter celebrating two birthdays (my Dad's and Alex's) and of course Easter itself.  We travelled down on Saturday arriving at my parents house in Somerset at lunchtime to find my brother, his family and my Gran already there and I finally got to meet my new nephew Nicholas who is simply gorgeous! 
After lunch Alex and Daniel spent a happy afternoon playing out in Grandma's enormous garden with trucks, tractors, diggers etc,
exploring the grounds and ending with a game of splashing in puddles to great squeals of laughter.   Needless to say they were soaked by the end of it.
On the whole Alex and Daniel played nicely together and got on very well although one set of toys had to be removed due to a tendancy to fight over it! Bath-times were especially good fun with lots of laughter and splashing.  We even put them to sleep in the same room for the first time.  For the most part this was a success although Alex struggled to sleep the second night we were there, ending up being awake from 4am!
On Saturday evening after the boys went to bed we celebrated Dad's birthday with champagne and a nice meal and then settled down to watch the Doctor Who Easter special - this is everyone waiting for it to start!
On Easter morning we went to Hillfarence church for the children's service which was lovely.  During the sermon there was an Easter egg hunt out in the church yard for the little ones and they helped to decorate the Easter cross.  We came back to find young Nicholas (aged 10 weeks) fast asleep on his Great Gran!
My aunts then came across for lunch and the afternoon so we had a lovely meal of roast venison followed by a rich chocolate pudding and then went into the garden
before going off for a traditional Easter walk across the fields.
Alex and Daniel went with myself and Grandma to watch the trains
and then had a 'mud walk' back running from one patch of sticky mud to the next...they were covered by the time we got home.
On Monday morning the boys had a wonderful time out in the garden riding in the back of the tractor
and being pushed round in the Angel truck.
We then celebrated Alex's third birthday with a caterpillar cake followed by more presents, and an Easter egg hunt in the hall. All in all it is fair to say Alex had a wonderful birthday and we had a wonderful Easter.
Finally onto a little crafting.  I actually made this before I went as it was my design team card for the Quirky Crafts Challenge which this week is a sketch by Lynn.  The card also fits with the Pollycraft 'Anything goes', Stamp something 'pink' and CCC 'make your own flowers' themes.  As usual I would love to know what you think.  I hope you all had a wonderful Easter. Take care,