Friday, 29 July 2011

Explore - Sit, Stand, Sleep

Hello ~

Prompt 6 - I've given up calling them 'days' because I am not managing to keep up with one day per prompt!!
We were asked to photograph where we sit, stand and sleep. As a childminder by day and a waitress at night I don't get to spend a lot of my time sitting down - I tend to be in the car ferrying children around or visiting the park or just chasing round the house like a lunatic playing games :)

I have 2 places where I like to sit - the first is my kitchen chair -not very comfortable!! but it's where the laptop tends to live so I spend quite s lot of time here. The laptop lives here because it is convenient and it's also near my crafting.
From here I can do my paperwork and also watch the kids playing in the garden and I sit here while they are eating.

This is the view from my kitchen/conservatory window - one of the  main reasons why  I like it as my craft space
It's also one of the places where I tend to stand a lot !

And this is my comfy chair - it's actually my sofa in the lounge. This is where the TV is. I don't get to sit here very often  :-D

And this is where I am often found, especially on a school day (most days I do the 'school run' 3 times!!)

 The other places I stand are here    :(

and here - :)

 and finally the place where I sleep is here :-   zzzzzzzzzzzzzz!!

Shimelle asked us to think about which one we thought gave us the most value - well, that depends really on  whether you are taking about financial value or psychological value. For financial value I would have to say my kitchen stool because that is where I do my invoices! but I would also have to say my bed because if I don't get my sleep (it doesn't have to be ultra-long!!) then I'm a right old grump and find it very hard to cope with the children :)

Thursday, 28 July 2011

'Explore' Day 5 - Construction - and my 100th Scrapbook page

Today was 'construction day'; the day when we put together everything from the last 4 days :)

Now we're getting somewhere (sorry about the pun!!) -

This is the layout I created using one of my favorite maps. It shows the area in Kansas where my DSs live. But don't worry I scanned the map into the computer then printed it off onto plain white card - bingo, instant background paper. I love it - I also love the colours in the map. (No real maps were harmed in creating this LO!!! :) ) It is a photo of a moment in time when I felt that life was pretty close to perfect...

 I loved making the embellishments. I love anything to do with circles and spots so this was heaven for me. 
The journalling reads - I felt very priviledged to be invited to join you and your friends on 'game day'!! The weather was super and we partied till late. Everyone made me feel so welcome.
Thinking of the perfect title took forever though - aaagh!! 

This was my 100th completed page since I started scrapbooking in December last year!!

:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :


I've cut out loads of extra circles to use on future layouts and I even made a couple for my Scrap Angels kit club page.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

A bit more ' Explore'

Thought I had better do a bit of a catch up on my 'Explore' course - I seem to keep running out of time!

My selection of mappy lovliness
Day 3's prompt was first gather together a selection of maps.

So here is what I found after raiding some travel brochures and leaflets, as well as an old school atlas and my road map book.

Then we were asked to cut lots of different size circles, both from the maps and from paper scraps and layer them up to make into embellishments.

Circles and 'map' tag in my playbook

Some more circles waiting to be stuck together

Circle details           

I loved Mandy's idea of making a tag out of the map. 

This is Mandy's original here  -

her blog is : -

Day 4

Day 4 was all about 'Perfection'.

This day really made me think hard and fast about my life and the direction I wanted it to go.
I have always considered myself to be a 'perfectionist'. I get very annoyed if I cannot be the best or do the best which often leads to disappointment and abandoning of projects! I will often take much longer to do something because I always want to do it right not just do it. 

In fact, I am already behind with my playbook/tasks/blog because I had to have just the right maps and just the right postcard (which incidently is too big for my playbook  -LOL! ) and having never done a Shimelle class before I have to keep checking the forum discussions to make sure I am doing everything right.

BUT - there is no right or wrong - I know that - but it's ingrained and going to take a long time to change it !!

So after a shedding of a few tears over my less than perfect life I have written down my thoughts and printed them off. There was too much to put into my playbook and I wanted to keep it private, so I made a little pocket where I have put my ramblings :)

The important bit I will share with you and that is the end, which says :-
Right so focus on the positive -
I am healthy.
I have great friends.
I have 3 wonderful sons whom I adore and they love me.
I get to travel to the
USA at least once a year
I live in
Cornwall with its amazing landscape - perfect (hey I said the 'P' word) for photographing!
I have a great job - it doesn't pay that well :( but I am my own boss, I can do what I want (within reason) every day, I work from home and I am providing a great service for children whose parents chose to work (or in one case go to the gym and out shopping
The photo I chose to represent something that seems pretty close to perfect in my life is :-
A rare pic of me and the boys together in one photo !!

In my playbook I've backed it with paper saying 'I love you'.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Explore Day 2

Today we had to think about 'Adventure'.

I started by thinking about what adventure meant to me -

Adventure is ~
  •    something exciting
  •    something challenging
  •    something that gives you a feeling of achievement  and
  •    something new

So then I started to think about the adventures is my life. I'm not a 'gotta climb the highest mountain', 'gotta rescue elephants in Africa' type of person. I don't particularly like big roller coasters and I certainly have no desire whatsoever to bungee jump. I am a feet firmly on the ground (at all times!!!) type.

I am very lucky to have travelled quite a bit with my parents, mainly around Spain, Italy and France and so the urge to travel far and wide has only just kicked in!! I had a good education which gave me plenty of confidence in myself and my abilities - most of which has sadly been lost - but I am gradually regaining it, one baby step at a time :)

I have had a few small adventures along the meandering path of my life ~

     * spending a month in Spain with my friend after we finished our 'O' levels
     * moving out of home to a tiny flat in London

     * our trip to DisneyWorld in Florida where I had to drive myself and 2 children in a rented car, on the wrong side of the road, with no idea how the signposting worked, to our house in Kissimmee!! After nearly 2 hours and asking at 2 petrol stations and stopping to buy a map we got there ( oh yes and it was 10 o'clock at night when we landed at Orlando!!)
    * taking all 3 boys to Disneyland Paris on my own, after doing everything together for 21 years!
    * travelling all the way to the middle of the USA on my own and having to change planes mid-way. 

But the 5 main adventures in m y life have been ~

  •    getting married at 21 and moving to Cornwall. New life, new job (well after a couple of months of job searching anyway!!)  :)
  •   Setting up my own business - selling designer children's clothes in Truro. The buying trips to London were super and then months later the stock would arrive and I had forgotten what I had ordered, so it was like Christmas - so exciting :)  Having to deal with my own staff was definitely an adventure and sometimes a nightmare!  Unfortunately, I had to close it down after 3 years :(
  • Getting divorced. Suddenly a single mum - having to get my own mortgage, sell our house and move and look after 3 children while working full-time (thank goodness for a brilliant childminder) 
  • Being on my own again after all 3 boys decided to follow their dad and move to the USA

And last but not least ~~~~ PARENTHOOD!!! The biggest ADVENTURE of them all. And I did it 3 times !!!

It's an adventure because 

  • babies/children do not come with instructions
  • they come attached with a massive responsibility ( decsions you make could, and often do, affect the whole of their lives  *aaaagh!*)
  • every day is an adventure for you and them - 1st steps, 1st words, 1st day at school, trips out, holidays, 1st girlfriend ................... the list goes on :)

We have been tasked to write ourselves a postcard detailing when we felt at our most adventurous and mail it to ourselves. When it arrives back I'll write about it here! :)

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Explore - New Shimelle class

On Monday I started Shimelle's new class 'Explore'.As this is the first 'Shimelle' I have undertaken I had no idea what to expect!!!

Our first task was to set up a 'playbook' (like a workbook but it's play - yay!! I can do play!! :D)

So this is my 'Playbook'. It's made from 12 x 12 cardstock cut down to 6 x 4 pages. I added some photos backed with patterned paper and then decorated the front cover. For this I used several scraps of paper cut into random strips then stuck down at angles ( I saw this method being used in quilting on TV and thought I would give it a go - using my initiative you see and exploring! :-D)

The first page inside has a picture of me !

This is the original which I cropped.

And then we had to write a 'Note to Self' (and for all you KU fans out there not Bill Self  :lol:) 
which reads as follows :-

18th July 2011

Note to Self :)

The self-portrait was not too bad – I am getting better! I have very few pictures of me…partly because I am usually the one behind the lens but also because I hate having my picture taken!

I have done a few scrapbook pages of me, mostly of me as a child though.

I am feeling very creative at the moment particularly as I have a new found interest in photography. I only wish that I had started all this years ago when the children were small and I could have documented their lives and special moments. I sometimes feel like I am making up for the missed opportunities by being a ‘scrapping dervish’ (term borrowed from my scrappy friend Maria :))

I love the view from my window – I scrapped it a couple of weeks ago! I look out over sand dunes and the golf course and to the right I can see green fields (well they are brown at the moment because the farmer has just cut the corn!).

I am so lucky to live where there is so much inspiration and ‘potential’. I can go out on a Sunday and take 150-200 photos and every one will be different!! :)

Sometimes I look out of my symbolic window and feel sad and tired but most days I embrace the adventure and look forward to continuing on my journey of life! My youngest son once told me that you have to have dreams because without dreams you have nothing to look forward too :).

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Creative Craft World - Scrap Map challenge July

I have  felt as though I have been neglecting the Creative Craft World Saturday Scrap Map Challenge recently so here a couple of layouts I have done this week to catch up a bit.

July 2nd's challenge theme was 'At the Beach'

This I my 3 DSs with my friend's son Hamish and their daughter Sopie at Polzeath beach. They all spent ages making boats and jet-skis in the sand. They had a fantastic time, surfing, ice creams and a slap-up meal in the evening.
Lazy, hazy summer days :)

I also used Georgia Keays LO in Australian Scrapbook Memories for tips and techinques and inspiration. Thank you Georgia  for a very informative article.

And the second LO is for the week beginning 9th July. This week there was no theme just the sketch :)
And this is my DS1, having finished his breakfast, now chewing a toy car!!

Everyone seems to be using bubble wrap to print their backgrounds so I thought I would have a go! :-)

Monday, 11 July 2011

UK Scappers - weekly challenge

This was my LO this week for the challenge -  
We were asked to use something old (a technique or embellishment) I used distress inking, a punched flower (the little one in the centre - it was about the 3rd punch I bought- the other 2 were both circles!!!) and some rik rak ribbon that I often use.

Then we had to use something new so I tried a triptych technique with my photo - something I've been angling to do for a while and I also use alcohol inks on gloss card for the photo mat. This is my newest and current fav technique!!

Then for something borrowed I used a Sketch from PageMaps (January 2011)

and I also used something blue - think that one's obvious !!!

Goonhavern Village show

My easel card (see 3rd July post) got 3rd place  :-D in the 'Handmade greetings card' class

The other 2 cards I entered did not get placed :(   

This was one................I seem to have mislaid the other one !!  (Sorry, the colour is much nicer IRL !!)

I also got a 2nd place for one of my photos.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

A good scrappy weekend

Well I have another bit of news - on top of my success at winning week 10 Play along with Scrap Factor on UK Scrappers and coming 2nd in the monthly house challenge I have also won a challenge on ScrapFit with my Legoland LO :D

This challenge was to use items from around the house on your LO. I had used a pie case, corrugated card and my 'signature' ring pulls!!

Here's a reminder of the page I did

 Check out their web page

I also finished my UKS weekly challenge LO last night!

This challenge asked for a photo of one thing (animal, vegetable or mineral!), circles, brads and/or eyelets and doodling.

The idea of the circles came from Jules on her blog 'Scrapping Mojo'. I used faux stitching as I needed doodling on the page for points.

And I just completed my double page for June for the album through the year that I am doing at a Scrap Angels class.

Sunday, 3 July 2011

First Easel Card

Here is my first attempt at an easel card. It was supposed to be a double twisted easel but I didn't like the way the first one was going so I binned it and started again !!!

I used caramel, raspberry and sunshine yellow alcohol inks on glossy card. I also inked the lower flower petals but just used the caramel and yellow, so it toned but was not exactly the same!

UKS - Play along with Scrap Factor wk 11

Last weeks LO........

Won the 'paper' section !!!

Yay - what a lovely surprise and a lovely memory of my dearest dad!!

I really enjoyed doing this page - it's surprising what you can achieve without any patterned paper!!

And I was pretty pleased with the result   :-D

~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~  ~

So this week we had to 'scraplift' one of our own earlier layouts. This was quite a challenge as I have only been srapping for 7 months and I don't think my style has changed that much - although my earlier LOs were somewhat naive and lacking dimension and techniques.

So I decided to re-do my first solo page (previously I had done a page at a Scrap Angels class)  :-D 
Since starting scrapbooking I have learnt -

how to re-size my photos ~
distressing ~
inking ~
making my own flowers ~
heat embossing ~
spritzing  ~
and much, much more ....


The original LO was mounted on canvas and was a Christmas present for a dear friend. All the embellishments were bought and I only had pinking shears to edge my tags  !!

What do you think ?  x x

Friday, 1 July 2011

A Batch of Layouts ............

I wonder what the collective word actually is for a 'batch' of layouts - is there such a thing even?
Anyway here they are ....This one was last week's UKS weekly challenge

For this challenge we were aksed to scrap animals or birds in our everyday lives. I chose to use pictures I took of the seaguls (I don't have any pets!!) at the water's edge on Perranporth beach. For the swirls I used 2 blues and silver alcohol inks. I titled the page 'goelann' which means 'seagul' in Cornish!

And this was this week's..
This is me and my friend Wendy. Our birthdays are only 9 days apart so we thought we would treat ourselves to a birthday breakfast at Jamie Oliver's 'Fifteen' restaurant at Watergate Bay, Nr.Newquay. Wendy's daughter Katie also came with us - she took the photo! We had lovely food but it was spoilt by an extremely jobsworth waitress who insisted on sitting us behind a huge pillar, because we had dared to turn up without booking. You didn't used to be able to book for breakfast so we didn't know that it had changed!! Her excuse was that 'it gets busy you know' - breakfast was set up in about 1/3 of the restaurant and of that there were 5 tables taken when we went in!!  :(

This is the page I did for Creative Craft World Scrap Map Saturday challenge - we were asked to scrap our craft space. I choose to craft on my kitchen table mainly because of the view but also because it is convenient!!

And this is the LO I did at Scrap Angles last week.

Nick's 12 th birthday - I know that only because that's how many candles are on the cake :-D