Saturday, September 29, 2007

Through the Post...

A post about post - both sent and received...............
Isn't it fab when birthday surprises keep arriving?
I had more cards this week!

This one came all the way from Singapore - a lovely surprise from Pearl - who has become a good friend and crafting buddy!

And then through the letterbox popped something else with a "foreign" stamp on it - this one coming from "just over the water" from the lovely Sylvie in France; someone else I've met through the DCM dares and am happy to call my friend.

Don't you just love the way the crafting community is world-wide and just so full of friendly, generous people?

And then yesterday a parcel arrived all the way from..........
and inside was this beautiful card and pressie from the lovely Em

I've now got my very own blackboard to write my reminders on. Em's obviously trying to help me get organised (fat chance....) because she's even tied a piece of chalk on a cord so there are no excuses. hmmmm nice try Em, but huge Thanks for my lovely pressie.

I'm busy making covers for my new CJ - it's due to start on Monday and I'm hoping to be ready by then - it's another BIG CJ with 9 or 10 people in the circle (must check that). Also need to make my file cards up for a recipe card swap - theme is chocolate this time, so it should be fun to see all the choccie recipes that come flooding in - I bet there are a good few choccie muffin recipes in there!

Busy too with Design team stuff, making birthday presents and various cards, and then just when I'm twiddling my thumbs because I don't have enough to do (as if) I get an order for three special cards......and one is needed pretty quickly. So why am I sitting waffling on here then? Because prevarication is a wonderful thing.....

Anyway. I know that Anne's received her blog candy prize from my birthday card challenge, so I can now blog some photos of what I made for her.
It's a maze book (do I hear "oh not another one....yawn...."?)
I used the beautiful BG Fusion papers for this one (are they my favourite BG papers ever?)
each double page has a place for a little photo and a little area or tag for some journalling. I'm quite pleased with this format - it has more cohesion I think thatn others I've made where i just do each page as I fancy at the time!
Here are some pics - not all of the pages though, don't worry!

Friday, September 28, 2007

In the Frame

It's Friday-Dareday again already adn this week we have the fabby, super-talented Lynne setting the dare:
Good Morning Darers, Lynne here - are you ready for a new dare? Thanks for all the amazing work for Gill’s Op shop dare last Friday, and Tuesday’s Cars, Boats, Trains & Planes Little Extra - we love seeing all the different takes on the dares that are set. Of course we still have our fab Guest Designer Rachel with us this week.

So, on with the dare.
This week I’d like you to use a FRAME or FRAMES on your card. You can use any type of frame you so wish. How about a die cut frame or a hand cut frame.
You can frame your card with brackets or flowers or how about some doodling ?
the choice is yours.
Remember to leave a comment on the Daring Card Makers Blog so we can hot-tail it over to see your creations. We do visit every Blog and try to leave as many comments as possible. There are so many amazing creations that we can't all leave a comment - we hope you understand.
Thanks Lynne for a fun dare. Here are my cards:
I cut the frame 3 times with the Robo and embossied the top layer with the Dots and Spots Cuttlebug folder before sticking all three layers together. I inked and heat embossed the whole frame.
Papers are Blonde Moments, Blooms are a mix of Angel Kisses and Prima and the brads are those pretty jewel ones from Dovecraft, I think.
I'm still not convinced this card is finished - it looks to me like it needs a greeting of some kind = probably in the top right corner - I keep looking at it and trying to work out what to do to finish it off. Usually the three brads trick works but this time it doesn't seem to have done the trick.
I made this one in about 30 minutes this morning - only because I already had the slidemount lying around from making a few of them a year or so back!
The slidemount was inked and UTEEd with red and gold inks, and there's also some red glitter embossing powder in there. I stamped into the hot UTEE with a little swirl stamp too.
Yhe little holly charm is actually a pewter one from Eclipse in the US but I needed gold so I Krylon-ed it and put some red glitter glu berries on to perk it up a bit more. Papers are from the DCWV Christmas pad - which btw is fab - lots of the papers aren't too Christmassy at all so will be really useful for other cards. More inking and glitter glue dots - oh and the fabby tiny greeting comes from a mini stamp set by Hampton Arts and available from the wonderful Bubbly Funk shop. I bought a couple of these stamp sets recentlyand they are just soooo cute!

It's another of those "difficult" days - It would have been Mum's birthday today. My birthday was also mum and dad's wedding anniversary so celebrating my birthday is always tinged with a bit of sadness too. In exactly two weeks time it would be Dad's birthday. Makes for a difficult few weeks - but in a way it's much better to remember them on their special days and wish them "Happy Birthday" rather than on those much less happy anniversaries.
Spare a thought for me today please.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Sun, Rain, Sun, Rain, Sun

Phew! that was close.

Just got back from taking Anne's blog candy package up to the post box in time - now it's absolutely throwing down - "coming down in stair-rods" as my grandma would have said. "Stotting off the road" would be another apt description - which will probably only make sense if you are familiar with the Northumbrian dialect....
Funny thing is. I took these photographs of one of the trees in our garden just this morning because it looked so beautiful against the bright blue sky. By the time I'd finished typing this post I had to come back and edit to say, the sun is shining again now!

We had quite a busy weekend.
On Saturday we went out to do a bit of shopping - we bought hundreds of Spring bulbs as there doesn't seem to be a single daffodil in this garden, I'm just hoping that this isn't because the squirrels dig them all up as I won't be happy - it's going to take hours to plant them all (incidentally for all you pink loving gardeners out there - I saw some pink garden tools in the garden centre on we went to on Sunday) we also bought a passion flower for the pergola and one of those garden vac things, mainly to clear up all the leaves that the above tree flings down on the grass! It was a lovely day so we had lunch out on the patio then gave the garden vac a work out - oh the garden looked lovely when we'd finished - got up Sunday morning and it was covered with leaves again...........
We had MIL staying over the w/e and on Sunday we went here for lunch, currently one of our favourite lunch-spots. It was really busy and we sat out in the warm sunshine - at that wooden table you can see on the photo, actually! After lunch we did the trad thing of going to a garden centre, managed to use some cunning and suggest the one near Huntingdon which has a Craft Central inside it. Didn't buy much - a couple of paper pads and another square punch to add to my collection.

Anyway, I thought I'd add a few little sneak peek pics of things that I've been doing over the last few days.
This is a very skinny peek at what's on it's way to Anne. I hope she likes it.

And two more little photos, just to be going on with

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Birthday cards and crafty pressies

Thought I'd share some pics of the gorgeous handmade cards and gifts that have been popping through my letterbox. They're all so fab and phtos don't really do justice to the work that's gone into them, I love them so much - a huge Thank you to you if you read this and sent a card - I'm going to get some sort of frame so I can put them up on the craft room wall, they're too lovely just to keep out of sight in a box! I'm going to leave you to see if you can figure out the makers of these cards....

Sue made this cute plaque for me to hang round my
neck so I won't forget my name..... Gill sent this all the way from the Land of Aus(sie), it's about 4 inches square so I can get that framed and onto the wall too. And this is the beautiful piece of "stitchery" that Sharon sent, how lucky am I? Sharon, Jackie and I share a love of Greece and all things Greek and if we all lived nearer each other I think we could happily meet up and chatter on for hours about how much we love it and all the bits of the country we've visited etc - we'd probably bore everyone rigid! Anyway, I obviously couldn't posibly miss the opportunity to add one of our photos from our 2005 trip to Santorini , could I?

Friday, September 21, 2007

Charity Begins at Home

I'll be back later with birthday card and pressie pics - I've done the photos but need to do some cropping and resizing, so for now I'll stick to the really important Friday morning stuff!
The fabby Gillian Hamilton, *star* covergirl of "Australian
Paper Crafts"
magazine has set our Daring Cardmakers Dare this week and she sent us out to do something we all love........ shopping!

But there was a sting in the tail of this shopping expedition - here's Gill's message:

Hi all, Gillian here this week it's my turn to dare you all, but first I'd like to welcome our latest Guest Designer - we're so pleased to have another of our regular Darers join us for the next couple of weeks as GD - this time it's the fabby and very talented Rachel Booth who's coming to play with us!
OK, here's my dare:
Let's go Charity shopping
or Op shopping (as we call it in Australia)
I DARE you to visit your local Charity Shop & make someone else's TRASH your STASH! and make a GORGEOUS card from it
You'll be amazed at the special little treasures you'll find if you only take the time to look with CREATIVE EYES
I've not been in a charity shop since I left college - and even then I never managed to find the bargains my friends came in with - that sort of put me off, despite the fact that other people seem to find wonderful little crafting gems in charity shops. Still, a dare's a dare and they're not meant to be tooooo easy. My plan was to get myself some moral support and drag Sue on a Charity Shope tour on Tuesday but she was having non of it - she's such a posh bird ;-) the look of horror on her face when I told her my plan was priceless and I just didn't have the heart to do it!
So I was a Big Brave Girl and went alone - though I must admit I only managed one shop, they had some bits of bead jewellery, buttons and a big flowery hair-tie thing so I decided I'd have a bash with them - I could always go back and try a different shop if those failed to work, eh?
I pulled the hair thing apart and got two big feathery flowers, I've used one here, cut in half and layered to show the glittery bits on the petals.
The button I chose to use was the right size but just a boring silver colour so I tarted it up with Glossy Accents and tiny beads.
Papers are Crate, the Avenue Collection, and the spotty one is from an old SA kit, not sure which papers they are though
Big chipboard photo corners are Plain Janes from a past SA kit
The black section of the "tag" is embossed with the Cuttlebug Textile folder
Gorgeous Ribbon is from Ribbon Oasis, I discoloured the white pattern slightly with some distress ink to get a better colour match to the paper

I really hope you'll play along with this dare - it's got that extra little challenge, hasn't it? If you do charity shopping, then you'll find it easy, if you don't well - this is a real challenge isn't it?

So, do YOU dare?

We'd love to see your cards, so please join in and leave us a message when you've got something to show us.
Don't forget to check the rest of the DT cards on the DCM blog, and all the other info on the various personal blogs

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Right up my Boulevard!

My new SA Kit arrived yesterday, and the papers are just fab this month - they are all from the Boulevard Collection by MME, all shades of blue and green and all double sided, patterned on one side, plain on the other.

I love them sooooo much that, shock horror, I've made a card with them already! This one's for my Uncle's birthday which is on Monday, so I've just been up to the post box with that and a stack of other stuff that was sitting waiting. Obviously if I'd been a bit more organised and got all this finished yesterday then I wouldn't have got thoroughly drenched in the downpour which started just as I left the house, would I?I've taken the photo this way so that all the chipboard bits show up nicely. Papers & Bazzill all SA Kit as above.
Chipboard square, monogram and oval thingie are from various palces, brads, ribbons and eyelets from stash


is everyone else getting messages in German when they upload a blogger post?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Southwold Photos

Some photos from our trip to Southwold on the Suffolk coast, you can click on them for a bigger version if you'd like to

This is where we stayed, sorry it's not a great photo because I should have taken it in the afternoon when the sun was on the front of the house....
The cottage was out in the country and this was the view from one of the windows in our room
Lots of haymaking going on!
Southwold Pier
On the beach
And of course there are LOTS of fabby beach huts all along the very very long prom

And get this! apparently one sold a couple of weeks back for £100,000 - but sadly it wasn't hubby buying it for my birthday.....
Ah, well, a girl can but dream........

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Chasing my Tail

Funny how a couple of days away and you spend the next fortnight trying to catch up eh? My "to do" list has grown like a weed yet again (at least as fast as the weeds in my garden grow) and I have masses to do and not much mojo to help me out. I will get round to sharing some of the photos of our weekend aaway, and maybe even get some photos of some of the gorgeous cards that came through the letterbox for my birthday. I was so lucky, loads of cards and presents, some beautiful crafty makes (Sharon - if you're reading this, your wonderfully thoughtful gift made my chin wobble and brought tears to my eyes - I'll be in touch asap.....)

Then of course I was good and didn't come and check the blog after I'd issued my little bit of a birthday fun challenge, so when Monday came around and I couldn't wait any longer I had just the best fun checking all your links to the fabby cards you made for me! Must admit I wondered if I'd be left with egg on my face and no cards to look at - but I should have known better!
You were just great so a huge THANK YOU to all who joined in,
you really made my birthday feel so special and it was fun to share all those cards with everyone too!
I've just written all the names of those who made a card,
chopped them up and put them in a box
shook them about a bit
and pulled out a winner:
ANNE, it's YOU!

Now, Anne, I haven't a clue what your prize will be, but I promise to think of something - can you email me (contact button is in the sidebar) with your info and I'll have something on it's way to you as soon as poss.

Met Sue for coffee and gossip this morning. She was supposed to be helping me with a task but she bottled out when she heard what it was, and kept up the chatter long enough for her to get out of it so I had to go on my own.....friends, eh?

Now what else was there? Oh yes - it's DCM Little Extra Day and this week it's a word challenge, just one word which we hope will inspire your cardmaking in lots of different ways. The word is GOLDEN and there are some cards on the DCM blog to help get you thinking.
Here's mine - made in a bit of a hurry so probably would have been a bit different if I'd had the time to think it through - or actually got round to starting it sooner, which is more the truth - one day I'll learn to be more organised and day...maybe....
Vellum is by Pixie Press
The mirror card "50th" and the golden glittery frame were cut with the Craft Robo
I wrote "Anniversary" with a gold pen - I was going to make a tag but writing was quicker :-)
Blooms from a local garden centre, Brads form stash
ooooh, maybe I should have added a bit of ribbon too.......hmmmm
Well, anyway, I'm sure you'll do something more inspired than this so I can't wait to see what Golden Crafty Moments you come up with - hopefully you can help me get my mojo back, because it's run off again :-(

Monday, September 17, 2007

Birthday Card Blog Candy

This is just to let you know that my little blog candy bit of fun will close at 12 noon UK time today.

I've stayed away for the blog as long as I can manage (and phew! I see some cards were left for me so I'm off to have a look now) If you made one to the recipe you'll be in my draw and one of you lovely people will win a prize.

Thanks so much for playing :-}

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Kathy Two-Challenges!

I've got TWO challenges for you today, the big one - the DCM new dare set by Rhi I'll come to in a minute, but here's a little one for you: It's my birthday on Saturday and I'd love it if you'd make me a card and show it on your blog, if you do that, and leave a message so I can come and see it then I'll put your name in a hat and draw out a winner early next week. There'll be a prize for the winner - might be stash, might be a little thing I make for you, I've not decided yet! I think a little recipe might be in order for this so I'd like you to make me a card with these ingredients included on it:
3 separate flowers (ie not 3 layers of petals)
3 different ribbons
3 different papers
easy, eh? I'm not going to check my blog till Sunday evening or maybe even Monday morning if I can hold out that long, so hopefully there'll be lots of lovely cards for me to see when I can't bear the suspense any longer! Oooooer I hope there will be some to look at now or I'll feel really really silly!

And so, on to the DCM and one of our Newly-Weds!
Rhi came back from her honeymoon in gorgeous Crete, just in time to set us the next challenge on the Daring Cardmakers Blog She said:
Use one word as a main focal point on your cards. It can be a greeting or a name or just a word, but only one main word, and no hyphenating-words-so-you can-fit-more-than-one-in either.... (As if we would!) You can use any other stuff you like, including other words and text as long as there is one focal word. You might like to use the word to inspire the rest of your card, sun, sea, sky, siesta or you might be inspired by the papers and pretty bits you have squirreled away.
I seem to be making a lot of baby cards at the moment, and this worked out quite well for Rhi's dare! I've used the Robo quite a bit on this one, I cut the letters and their mats. the scalloped frames and the circles all with it. I cut a corner off the front of the card so the letters would stand out from the main card. All the little flowers and the butterfly are cut with a Cuttlebug die. Pink and White card is Bazzill, all the other bits and pieces are from my stash. It was after I read something on someone's blog that I remembered about adding the flowers - it has been in my original plan, but then I forgot all about it and so the first draft of my card looked rahter plainer. It's ok without the extras but I'm glad I got that little reminder as I think it's better with them on there. There are some great cards on the DCM blog so please go and have a look, and we'd love it if EVEN more people joined in with the dares, it's such a great way to share ideas and inspiration and everyone is just so friendly