Tuesday, 30 March 2010

A Morning Out

I felt in need of a change of scenery this morning so, after dropping DS at nursery, I hopped on the Tube and went 4 stops east. The reason for visiting this bit of fairly posh West London is that there is a Cath Kidston store.
I didn't go with the intention of buying anything specific, but this lovely vintage cardi jumped out at me and made me buy it. In real life, it is a soft blue in colour, but under the spotlights in the changing room it looks somewhat grey, doesn't it? And, of course, the curtains across the doorway are made from Cath Kidston's beautiful fabric line.
It's another grey and damp day here. So much for British Summer Time having begun! And there's my train coming in to platform 1 to take me home again. I don't think I would like to live that close to the tube line, although I suspect that you'd stop noticing it after a while.


~ Homeless man sleeping rough in the doorway of the church at the end of our road ~
It did cross my mind whether it was the done thing to photograph someone sleeping rough, especially when they don't know they are being photographed. But, sadly, rough sleepers are becoming an all too common occurrence in my bit of West London, so I decided that in order to give an accurate portrait of daily life in the 365:2010 project, he should be included.
Would you have taken the photograph?

Monday, 29 March 2010

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 8

Today's prompt from Shimelle was all about buttons. Ah, yes. Buttons. Those round colourful things that sit so prettily in their spice jars along the back edge of my desk. I look at them every time I scrap, so how come I hardly ever remember to use them? I've scrapped 3 photos taken yesterday of our raised flower bed in the front garden, which I planted up for the 1st time last Autumn. I'm chuffed to see how they've come on and are finally opening up.
I also came across some mini brads; they seemed perfect for this LO, although Shimelle is bound to have a prompt specifically for brads later this week, isn't she?
Oh, and see that butterfly? It's actually a metal brooch, given to me by my mum because she thought I might be able to "use it". Thanks, mum. You were quite correct!

Scrap Weekly 2010: Challenge #13 LO

Yesterday, over at the Scrap Weekly 2010 blog, Linda wanted us to use a grid pattern on our LO. I chose to scrap photos I'd taken of my 1st ever batch of Peanut Butter Cookies (using a recipe posted by Deb at Paper Turtle). Bearing in mind Shimelle's Something From {Almost} Nothing class, I managed to use up 3 lengths of ribbon, a Bazzill Just The Edge ruffle (frill? what are they called?) and a heart shape left over from when I made ladybugs last month. The story of how I came to find the recipe is on a journaling tag behind the photos.


~ Happy shopping ~

Sunday, 28 March 2010


~ Enjoying the Spring sunshine ~
Does anyone else think that the tree outside our gates looks like a face?

Scrap Weekly 2010: Challenge #13

Linda has set this week's challenge over on the Scrap Weekly 2010 blog, and it's all to do with grids. Which is a wee bit spooky, because only this morning I thought about scrapping some of the many Austria photos in a grid pattern ...

Friday, 26 March 2010

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes

Sir, When my efforts to help our ten-year-old daughter with her maths homework were met with "what do you know about it?", I told her that I had a maths degree. She gave me a withering look, and replied: "Well, you couldn't get one now."
William Lack,
Pontesbury, Derbyshire.
Letter to the Times, 24 March 2010.
Many thanks to Mel for permission to use her LO as illustration.

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 7

Shimelle's prompt today was all about flowers, and that's something I can relate to!
I loved putting this LO together, as I have far too many flowers ~ 4 cookie jars full! I set myself the extra challenge of randomly selecting a cookie jar and only using flowers from that jar. I think it's worked out quite well. I even like the clashing colours, because sometimes nature is exactly like that!


Thursday, 25 March 2010

A Thank You Card

Tomorrow morning sees DS and me go to our class at the YMCA for the last time. I had thought that we would see out the summer term, but it seems to have to come to a natural conclusion. DS is now one of the oldest children there (and by far the tallest!) and the activities aren't holding his attention as they once did. The lady who runs the class is wonderful with all the children and they, in return, all adore her. Our card is ever-so simple. A sheet of 6x12, which I creased to make a gate fold, some stitching, stamping and a few embellies.
And as you can see, inside the card is a fab shot of the little people clustered around the teacher while she takes the register.

Photographing Children

How many times have you spotted your child/children unconsciously providing the perfect 'Kodak Moment'? My guess is that's it a lot. Take DS, for example. There he was, after lunch, happily colouring with his crayons and announcing that it was "oh, so beautiful" (all that positive reinforcement is paying off!), but as soon as he saw me move into position and go to press the camera shutter, he stood up.However, defeated by a 3-year-old I will not be. Ten more minutes of perching on a tiny chair and I got my shot. Who'd be a professional photographer? And just think of all those silly faces and point blank refusals to come from DS in the next few years!

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 6

Yesterday's prompt was all about the use of stickers. I don't have that many stickers, mainly because I don't tend to like how they look on a finished LO (excepting self adhesive alphas, obviously). However, I realised last night that the Wishes & Dreams paper that I am using for the sailing album came with 2 sheets of co-ordinated stickers. Two different types of alphas and more felt fish ~ job done.
I've created a DLO in order to accommodate the numerous photos of Salcombe Harbour. It's not quite a true panorama of the harbour, but it's near enough. A scrap related extra: I bumped into the lady who used to run my local crop this morning and she told me that she was hoping to restart after Easter. It's almost 2 years since the crop folded due to lack of regular support, so I'll be happy as anything if I can have a 'Mummy's Crop Saturday' back again once a month!


~ Stewed apples and blackberries ~

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 5

Monday's prompt from Shimelle suggested using page protectors in the construction of a LO, rather than just using them as what they are intended for. It's the first time I've ever cut up a page protector, and it took me a while to work out the correct tension on the sewing machine.
In the end, I went with making two 6x12 wallets with 3 pockets for the Austria photos I am currently working on alongside this class. The pockets seen in the photo hold a collection of photos and journaling from a visit to Hitler's Eagle's Nest in Berchesgaden, Germany.
The second 6x12 pockets hold photos of Innsbruck's stunning Altstadt architecture and will be added to a DLO on Innsbruck (when I've done it!)


~ Derelict houses next door to DS's nursery ~
The 2 houses have been boarded up for as long as DS has been going to nursery, and he started there in January 2009. Two men were lurking in the back gardens recently and when I asked them what they were up to, they said, "Rat catching!" Just what you want close to little people ... not.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Monday, 22 March 2010

London Olympics 2012

You can now register your interest for tickets to the 2012 London Olympic Games here.
As a Londoner, I don't have any more chance than you do in acquiring tickets, even though Londoners have had a premium Olympic Tax added to their annual Council Tax bill. No doubt we shall suddenly become very popular with 'friends' needing B&B accommodation during the summer of 2012!!

Scrap Weekly 2010: Challenge #12 LO

As mentioned yesterday, Vernell set a 2 part challenge this week on the Scrap Weekly 2010 blog: scrap a different size to normal and only use cardstock. Here's what I came with with.I took the opportunity to complete another page in DH's sailing album, which is 6x12 and is also the work-in-progress album for Shimelle's current online class, 'Something From {Almost} Nothing'. I've tried my hand at a tone-on-tone page, using Cricut cut sailing boats as the prominent embellishments. Yet more felt fish, red alphas and red zigzag stitching completed the look. I'm not sure how I feel about the end result; perhaps it will grow on me.


~ India, the Guide Dog puppy we sponsor ~
For those of you with children who want a dog, this could be the answer. (Mel, are you listening?) It costs just £5 a month to sponsor a Guide Dog, and the sponsorship runs for about 2 years. If you sponsor in the name of a child, then the child receives regular Pupdates and photos. You can find out more here.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Scrap Weekly 2010: Challenge #12

Vernell has set this week's challenge over on the Scrap Weekly 2010 blog, and it's in 2 parts. Firstly, scrap on a size you wouldn't normally use. So, if like me, you tend to scrap mostly 12x12 pages, this week scrap a 6x12, for example. Secondly, use only cardstock. Yep, that's right, no patterned paper allowed. Great challenge, isn't it?
I'm thinking about trying a tone-on-tone LO, as highlighted by both Mel and Sian recently ...

How Many Sleeps?

I am taking DS to Scotland!! Yay!! We are heading North on Easter Monday and will stay with Sib and Nephew for 6 whole days (BIL will be away with work). Our tickets are booked and I suspect that DS might be so excited at being on an aircraft that he may pop! Fifteen sleeps, by my reckoning ...

Photo: DS, 28 June 2009

Originally, the plan was for Sib and Nephew to come and spend a week with us, but an appointment has cropped up for Nephew that can't be ignored. Given that I can't remember the last time I saw Sib in person (last August, we think), it'll be great to be just the two of us with our sons (and the pooch) for a time.


Hopeful That Spring Is Sprung

Now that we are officially into Spring, I'm hopeful for nicer weather. A trip to the park this morning was perfect ~ blue sky, no wind and not too cold. The added extras for DS were aircraft spotting and the children's playground.
The added extra for me were these beautiful daffodils.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Following On From Something From {Almost} Nothing

I signed up for Shimelle's current class because I wanted to make a dent in the stash mountain that lurks on and around my desk. I'm more than happy with what she has suggested so far and I have begun to tackle 'old' stash with relish.
Bearing that in mind, I decided I should probably tackle old photos as well. For no particular reason, I have chosen to tackle a holiday to Soll in Austria in 1999. The photos aren't that great (still 5 years to go before I switched to a digital camera) but with the help of my Cricut & sewing machines and Scenic Route's Garden Grove range of patterned papers, I'm making headway.
And you know what? I shall be eternally grateful to K of Warrnambool, Australia for introducing me to scrapbooking.

The Kindness Of Strangers

Yet again, I have been caught out by the kindness of those who inhabit Blog Land. We came home from swimming to discover the Postie had left a pile of mail, including a parcel for me from Canada. "Who do we know in Canada?" asked DH. In reality, we don't. But in the Blog Land I inhabit, I know Jane from Life Is Sweet. And she very kindly sent me these FANTASTIC mittens from the recent Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver.
My sister had posted recently about mittens I bought her a few years ago, and I commented that I still liked them, but not as much as the Olympic ones. Jane saw this comment and that was that. She also very kindly popped into the parcel an Easter sticker book for DS and a box of marshmallow chicks.
I am completely overwhelmed by her generosity and it's not often that I am stuck for words, I can tell you. Jane ~ thank you a million times, and do let me know if there is anything I can send you from 'home'. (Jane is a Brit masquerading as a Canadian!)


~ Another successful session at the swimming pool ~

Friday, 19 March 2010

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Scrapped Artwork

I began this project in January, but it has taken until now to get my finger out and finish it. The idea behind it is, because we don't have any family members living where we live, that DS can look at this 'family album' daily and put names to faces easily. It is now hanging in the playroom. The inspiration came from a piece in the January 2009 edition of Creating Keepsakes by Suzy Plantamura. She'd made a wall hanging about her goals for getting fit and it was only 2 photos in width. If you're interested, we have:
Top row ~ DH & me, DS, DH; Middle row ~ Granny, cousin S, Uncle J & Auntie L; Bottom row ~ Uncle L & cousin D, Grandma & Grandpa, Grandma & Auntie L.
(Two Auntie Ls, just to confuse you!)

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 4

Yesterday's prompt suggested using up scraps of card. I cut five 3" scalloped circles, and added 2.5" circles of patterned paper on top. Two of the circles were then cut in half. A shoal of felt fish completed the look. I can't believe how much better this photo looks!


~ Tiny clump of Narcissus braving the jungle that is our flower bed ~

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Something From {Almost} Nothing: Prompt 3

The prompt on Monday was to use ribbon, something that I don't do very often, simply because I tend to forget about it. I managed to use 4 strips of 'watery' coloured ribbon, plus some brads, more felt fish and more metal.
I also added a lift-up flap to the page, so there is somewhere to record the journaling. Given how limited the colours in the photo are, I'm quite pleased with the end result.


~ Picasso ~
Edited to add: the stains are paint (acquired at nursery this morning), and the new DVD is The Penguins of Madagascar.
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