Thursday, 10 November 2011

It's official

It's been a reasonable week since my last entry, well apart from not winning the lottery and still having to go to work but saying that, made much better by not really having been there that much, which I shall tell you all about .......

Booked an annual leave day to go up to AFTH last Tuesday to do a portrait class. Sadly it was cancelled so I moved my leave to the Friday and took myself off to Marks and Spencers at Handforth Dean to do a bit of Christmas shopping and get some winter jumpers for work. Seriously damaged the credit card and with tasty goodies in hand trundled off to my Dad's for lunch and to collect Sam. Stopped at Townley Park in Burnley to give Sam a good walk before heading home, arriving back at 3.45pm to find MP still in bed after his night shift. So being a kind and considerate wife I let Sam jump on him and strangely that made him get up!

Saturday was a girlie day, my pal Kath and I went to a crop over in Rochdale run by Hysterical (Cal) from UKS. I am doing a Christmas banner swap so spent the day making these, not very successfully, finished one and half did two others. Only 11 more to go. Think I had better get my finger out. Had to leave early as MP had to work Saturday night to cover someone else's shift. His employers are not very good or nice and the fact that it was in the middle of his 4 days off and ruined any weekend plans we might have had does not concern them in the slightest. So I dashed back, bundled Sam into MP's car (the dog mobile) and set off to the local park.

Now MP has been fancying a new car for a while (it does have a permanent doggy smell and the inside looks like a skip) and keeps hoping someone will write it off. The standing joke is that if he gives it me for a week someone is bound to crash into me. I have had several accidents over the years and lost several cars with people crashing into me. (Can you guess what's coming yet?)

So Sam and I are heading to the park. Sat in traffic and not really going anywhere as the centre of Tod was really busy. Seems there was a big bonfire in Hebden Bridge and as there's only one road there and it passes through Tod it was chocca. So, sat there minding my own business when there was a bang. The woman behind me had, for some unfathomable reason, decided to set off and crashed into the back of MP's car. We pulled into a side street, poor Sam in a state of shock and me unable to get the boot open to check on him. Forced the door and got Sam out, shaking like a leaf, sorted out the paperwork with the woman who hit us, who was nearly as shocked as Sam and having done all that decided to head back home.

As I couldn't close the boot and no way on this earth was Sam getting back in there. He sat on the front seat with his head on me all the way back home. Poor baby.

Nearly a week later, MP's car is still sat under the car port waiting collection, he at least has a hire car, Sam still won't go in the boot of a car and I have a sore neck.

So, it's official ............... I am an accident magnet.

Funny though how many solicitors ring you up when you've had an accident. I can tell by their voices they think I am strange because I don't want to put in a claim for whiplash and non of them will pursue a claim on Sam's behalf for physiological trauma. I may change my mind yet, I could do with a couple of new windows :o) So in the meantime, I soldier on.

The TOFF challenge this week was Friends and better late than never, here is my entry. Can't wait to see what tomorrows challenge is.

I am off again tomorrow. MP is working tonight so I will have to be quiet tomorrow, no noisy housework so forced to spend the day crafting, daren't go shopping again after last week. Tomorrow night we are off to the Lowry Theatre in Salford Quays to see Journey's End, can't wait.

So till next time ......

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

UKS Blog hop

If you haven't seen what's going on, pop over to UK Scrappers. There's a blog hop with loads of the sponsors involved and the chance to win loads of prizes.

Monday, 31 October 2011

TOFF #18 Halloween

What a glorious weekend we have just had. Although a bit windy at times it was a lovely out and the colour of the trees at the moment is just spectacular.

Friday I had a flexi day at work so MP and I went over to my Dad's to help him with some jobs in the garden. I was in charge of pruning and cutting back whilst MP and Dad finished off making some compost things out of wood and MP then had to remove some turf so the compost things could go in the corner of the garden. Have to say all that fresh air meant we slept well Friday night.

Took Sam for a walk to Watergrove reservoir again on Saturday. He loves it there and goes off leaping through the trees in search of squirrels and other critters. He gave us a fright the other week when he bounded off only to bound back a few minutes later close behind a beautiful deer. Luckily no deer this week.

We walked off our usual route and up into the hills about the reservoir, finding all sorts of new paths. Had to take a photo of the trees we saw, stunning.

Sunday MP went off on a ride out with some of his biker friends. It's coming to the end of the season now so he likes to get out if the weather is nice and I like the peace and quiet. So with MP gone for the day, I set to task on this weeks challenge at the Octopode Factory - Halloween. Who better but the Father of horror and murder mysteries, Mr Edgar Allan Poe himself.

Digi stamps from the Octopode Factory, background paper Tim Holtz, red pepper paint dabber for the blood, home made frame - with distressed inks and TH crackle paint.

p.s For those of you who like the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Lily has done some great digi stamps available here.

Thanks for looking and back soon

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Sunday Postcard Art Challenge

Had some time on my hands with MP working nights and all the housework done, so here is my entry for the Sunday Postcard Art Challenge - Bats.

Background Blonde Moments stamp in snowcap paint, distress inks - barn door and lipstick. Heart and bats by Octopode Factory.

Thanks for having a look.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

TOFF #17 Houses

This weeks challenge over at The Octopode Factory Friday Challenge is houses, so wanting to join in and wanting something I could pop in a frame and put up on my wall, here is my entry ............

Our house (same colours) complete with hills in the background and of course a ginger and white cat (I have 3), sorry Muggle (my token black cat). I used a bit of one of the trees for the cloud, it's always cloudy up here.

General blog update to follow. Thanks for looking

Monday, 17 October 2011

Challenge and RIP Ginger Princess

I have only just realised that the Octopode Factory do a weekly challenge having just found their The Octopode Factory Friday Challenge Blog (TOFF), well it shouldn't suprise you seeing as I've been so bad at keeping my own up to date!

Anyway, moving on, Friday's challenge was to create something using the colours black and orange (well it is October and therefore nearly Halloween), so diving in, here is my entry for this week. I used the angel stamp and altered it a little as you can see, the background is paint dabber and Dylusions orange spray with some Tim Holtz stamps thrown in for good measure.

Now I have bought a few of the Octopode downloads but to be honest I have been a little scared of them, preferring to buy 'proper' rubber stamps. The reason behind this is that I don't have a laser printer but a canon photo printer because being originally a scrapbooker, I printed my own photos a lot but having had an interesting and enlightening chat with Leannie at our Whittle Le Woods crop on Sunday I have been converted. So this morning I ordered a few of the digi stamps and I have a feeling they are going to be well used over the coming months. Watch this space......... Oh and bring on the next challenge.

On a sad note. Just seen a post from my mum on facebook, their cat Ginger has been put to sleep this afternoon. She was an old girl and at the end terribly bald and scabby and Dad said she'd started having problems with a swollen shoulder blade. I went to give her a stroke when I dropped Sam off with Dad on Sunday and she didn't even recognise me (if you aren't a cat lover you won't get this) so I think a bit of old age as well.

But as sad as it is, she had a good no great life so RIP Ginger Princess.

Friday, 14 October 2011

More updates

Had a lovely day today, flexi day from work and off to the seaside. MP's beloved bike was in for a service at Southport Superbikes so Sam and I followed in the car, met MP and the 3 of us went to the beach for a walk. Well I say beach ............. mud flats would have been more accurate. Boots trashed (they'll clean), Sam soggy and covered in mud and sand - loved it, MP sliding around in motorbike boots. Followed by a little coffee in Southport centre to kill some time before heading back to the shop to collect his baby.

Man and his dog

On the beach!!

Look Mum i've got a stick

Back home and a well deserved siesta for all of us :o)

As said previously, I have started making my Christmas cards. Love these stamps from the Octopode shop, in fact, love them so much, just ordered a few more but don't tell MP.

Here is my entry for the Christmas chipboard swap over on UKS, hosted by my mate Kathb.

Right off to give Sam another run, he's got his energy back now, and then to catch up with some recorded tv programmes. Fire lit and Haggis, neeps and tatties for tea ............. autumn has arrived.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

As promised

As I have a full weekend off and no Sam (he's at his Grandpa's for a visit) I have unusually had time to myself. Yesterday I was up early (old habits die hard and hungry cats) so I took myself off to the QVC outlet at Warrington to see if I could pick up any bargins. Not a lot to be had although I did buy two Tim Holtz dies for £14 :o) the tattered florals and the butterfly dies. Was hoping to find the gears die but alas ......... Spent the rest of the day finishing off some snowmen for a Christmas altered chipboard swap over on UKS.

Today MP starts his night shifts so he is at home for the day but will be spending the afternoon in bed and I will need to be quiet :o) so more crafting this afternoon, probably crack on with some more Christmas cards. I am making some to sell for the Northern Rose Boxer Rescue where we got Sam.

The current economic climate is having a real knock on effect on animals with all the rescues and animal charities experiencing a huge increase in the number of animals being handed over (if they are lucky) or abandoned. The boxer rescue being no different and having to find and fund kennel spaces for the dogs they cant place with foster homes, so at the moment they need all the financial help they can get, hence the cards. Some people off the boxer site and some friends at work have said they will buy cards which will help and at our last Whittle crop I sold some surplus crafting stuff and made £25 to send. If anyone wants to make or send me some home made cards to sell for the rescue then I and they would be hugely grateful. You can email me for an address :o)

So, as promised, here are some of the lay outs I have done recently. Please excuse the somewhat sub standard photos, it's a dark horrible day here and I had to take them without flash as there was a little too much glare.

Sam and his brother Jack at their foster home pre adoption

My gorgeous boy Muggle

From our trip last year - stunning place

Our day out to Formby Point

Me getting ready for a ride out with MP

More Sam at Formby Point

Sam's 1st Birthday photo

More Sam

Me again

Guess who?

Well think that's enough for now, don't worry there are more to come along with some journalling pages and cards :o)

Till next time ..........

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Remember me?

I feel very sheepish, I have not kept to my word and have been very lax at blogging and I am sure what followers I did have will have left by now, well except my pal KathB who has been reminding me for quite some time to update my blog. Sorry to any followers who do still check in on the off chance.

So here goes with the update .....................

Sam had his first outing to the beach in March. KathB, her children, her puppy Selby (henceforth called MadDog), Sam and I went to Formby Point for a run. I'd never been before but heard Kath talk about it and what a treat. A National Trust owned bit of coast between Liverpool and Formby, stunning woodlands to walk through and then miles and miles of beautiful beach. Sam and MadDog had a great time and I think the rest of us enjoyed it nearly as much.

April saw some lovely weather and lots of nice walks with Sam. I think it was about this time we discovered Watergrove reservoir, which is only about 15 minutes drive from us and another treasure. A 2 1/2 ish mile walk around what used to be Watergrove village before it was flooded to make a reservoir. It's got some areas where you can walk down to the water, woodland paths and bird hides for the twitchers. We love it and Sam soon overcame his fear of water and is now a seasoned swimmer, in fact it's hard to keep him out of the water and great for hot days to cool him down.

In the walls around the reservoir are the key stones from the properties that were demolished to make way for the water. Wall behind Sam here.

So apart from walking Sam, which constitutes the majority of our time, MP and I haven't done an awful lot. We did have a week off together in July and luckily the weather was good so we arranged with KathB to have another trip to Formby Point, this time taking MP and my Dad for a bit of exercise too.

It was scorching on the beach and half of Liverpool was out in their skimpy swim wear, oh we saw some sights! We had a good walk, the dogs and the kids ran themselves ragged whilst the grown ups ambled along. Back to the car for a picnic and going well until my Dad got stung in the mouth by a wasp who was also enjoying his sandwich! Luckily I had anti histamines in my bag and there was an ice cream van nearby to provide ice lolly compresses. A good day over all though.

My water baby

MP and Dad putting the world to rights

Selby (MadDog) on her lead in disgrace for not coming back when called

Skipping to September ......... MP went off on a tour of France for 10 days with some friends from work. This was his birthday present as he had a BIG birthday in January. So I took the time off work and looked after Sam. Whilst MP basked in the sunshine and complained about the 33 degree heat we had nothing but rain and Sam and I got soaked twice a day without fail.

I did however give the house a really good clean, not that you'd know it 10 minutes after MP returned.

On a crafting front .......... I have done a bit of scrapping but haven't taken any photos which I will remedy this week and have done a little bit of art journalling but I have been busy on a couple of projects.

I went to Art From The Heart in July to do one of Dyans fabulous classes, a unique piece of art class and this is what I came home with ............

Fab isn't it. We got to choose our own colour schemes and I chose, well as you can see cream, brown and red to match my lounge and it now hangs with pride at the top of the stairs as you enter the lounge.

The project I have been working on for quite some time is this ...........

It was made as a present for my friend Fiona or Top Totty as we like to call her. The canvas has a Scarlet Lime type background of paper, paints and stamps and the other characters are all from the Alice range by the amazingly talented Lily at Octopode stamps. They are all stamped onto water colour paper and painted with Tim Holtz distress inks. Took quite some hours but I and Top Totty are well pleased with the result.

If you haven't come across the Octopode factory yet then you don't know what you are missing. Lily does this awesome quirky rubber and digital stamps, Alice, Wizard of Oz, Steampunk, Christmas, I could go on but go and have a look. You can find Octopode from here, happy shopping :o)

Right enough for now. MP is just out of bed for his night shift tonight and I need to take Sam out again and guess what, it's raining again ho hum.

Till next time

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Bad blogger - part 2

So into February and still no snow :o) Did have the odd day and some days a light dusting but nothing really of note.

The dog hunting started in earnest end of January and into February. MP and I took ourselves over to Bleakholt animal rescue in Edenfield near Rawtenstall early one Sunday morning, saw some lovely dogs but non were the age we were looking for or cat friendly, so we decided to go to Manchester Dogs home.

I got my Murphy from the dogs home many years ago and it wasnt the nicest of places back then, but it is a busy place and receives no state funding so has to rely on charity donations. Therefore it was little suprise that it was over crowed and very institutionalised. MP likened it to an old fashioned sanatorium for dogs! It was heart breaking to see all the dogs there and we were both really subdued for the rest of the day. I am sure they do their best in the circumstances and I was pleased to see several dogs being taken and rehomed.

Feeling very disheartened we filled in a few adoption forms for various rescues, a Labrador rescue and having seen a gorgeous Boxer Dalmatian cross (Hugo) on a boxer rescue site, theirs as well. The rescue contacted us to say the Hugo had been rehomed but they had a 5 month old pup arriving at a foster home in Rochdale the following day and invited us to go and have a look at him.

So with Dad in tow, off we went to meet Dylan. What a sweetie, very boisterous with the longest legs you have ever seen. Turns out Dylan is a Collie Boxer cross but we think there is a little bit of Whippet in him. After half an hour of licking and a quick walk on some local grass, Dylan was loaded into the car with his new forever owners.

Here is Sam - the puppy previously known as Dylan

So 4 weeks in and he is settling very well, not all the cats are impressed but I am sure with time they will come around.

The second BIG event of Feb was the class up at Art from the heart with the one and only .............. Tim Holtz.

We had a full 5 hours of wonderfulness and playing with his fabulous goodies including his new distress stains and making a brilliant mini book out of Wendi Vecchi, Claudine Hellmuth and Tims products. I had the most amazing time and of course it would not have been complete without the compulsory photo with his Lordship

Dont I look smug?

This was kit we got to make the class

More of the class goodies - can you tell what it's going to be yet?

Work in progress but starting to take shape

His Lordship doing the raffle - I won a set of his new steampunk stamps.

If you get the opportunity I would really recommend attending one of his classes, he really has a fantastic knack of making it seem easy and you will come away so fired up with so many ideas your head feels like it is going to explode but in a nice way.

So thats pretty much February taken care of, next post will bring us back up to date and will be full of pics of all my latest work.

Till then ............

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Bad blogger catch up - Part 1

Ok, its official - I am a bad blogger and very lazy. No excuses and I apologise, so without further ado, here is part 1 of the catch up;

December came and went in a flash and so did Christmas. This year we decided to model our Christmas tree on the one displayed in the Tate gallery, that and the fact neither MP or I could be bothered decorating it. So this was our tree 2010 ............

I am more than pleased with the finished effect :o)

Christmas was a bit of a wash out. MP had been struggling with a cold for a few days, I started to feel ill just before Christmas eve and Mum was full of a cold and a chest infection so we all wanted to postpone Christmas lunch till we felt well enough to enjoy it but Dad was feeling fine and was mortified at the prospect of not having a Christmas dinner so we were out voted (work that one out 1:3 !!). So we have dinner and I dont think any of us did it justice (except Dad) and MP and I made a hasty retreat back to our sick beds. Pressies were exceptional as usual, just cant remember what I got at the minute :o)

New Year passed with no celebration, I think MP and I went to bed well before midnight and I dont think we did anything New Years Day. Gone is the family tradition of a walk on the beach at Lytham St Annes. It's not the same when you don't have a dog to take with you - that's half the fun. Still that may soon be rectified, as MP, Dad and I have decided to start looking for a dog and hopefully win Mum round when presented with a new family addition.

After the first flurry of snow, and the purchase and fitting of winter tyres, we didn't seem to have much more, which I am overjoyed about. So what if it has rained non stop, who cares, at least it isn't snowing!!

29th January, my mate Kathb and I tripped up to Art from the Heart in Harrogate for an art journalling backgrounds class by Kate Crane of The Kathryn wheel fame. Excellent day, amusing and productive day was thoroughly enjoyed and nice to spend some time with my pal Kath :o)

Kate working hard on her pages

The pages and tag Kath did at the class (dont know what I have done with the photo of mine!)

So that's January accounted for. There has been some further art journalling but the photographer has been a little slack of late, so more pics will follow (under threat of severe injury) so till part 2, take care and see you soon.