WPlus9 ‘Man Card’ & Man Card Stamp set

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The ubiquitous man card.
The scratch your head and umm and ahh.
I’ve been making tons of these men cards recently.

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It’s the Dockside set and there’s tons of images. Granted, there aren’t lots of guys I know who I’d send a card with boats on- but there are other ways of using boats than just for birthdays.
This is the Happy Trio set

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Both of these sets are available at Make The Day Special

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I’ve done lots with the freebie set from the latest Creativity magazine.

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More on those in later posts but for now- it’s the Creativity mag priced at £4.95 and you get two topper sheets and also a jewellery set of beads too.
The toppers are traditional but you can do something more modern with them like this

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Well I’m off for a family walk in the rain. Will be lovely to get out and about rather than stuck in at my craft desk like I’ve been all day!

See you soon
X

April 23, 2014 at 6:45 pm 1 comment

Mama Elephant treat bags & Easter!

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Happy Easter! Hope you all had a wonderful day..and it’s an extra holiday today too! Despite the fact that Easter is nothing to do with bunnies- and all to do with celebrating that Jesus IS risen,-this was the only Easter sentiment set I could find. I did put ‘He is risen’ on the bottom but fortunately my kids don’t think it’s all about the bunny!
This set is from Mama Elephant and despite the non traditional sentiments- there’s a ton of stuff left on the set to make it an all year round favourite

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It’s called Hunny Bunny! Make The Day Special sell them ( think this is OOS- but restocks are happening all the time)!
I did one for each kiddo to find on those bed in the morning. Kinda saved the initial ‘canIgo&eatallmyEastereggsbefore7am’ question, or at least tided them over for half an hour!
Easter Day for us consisted of church first- I was playing & snapped a quick pic of us ‘not’ playing in the band. (Well I’m not good at selfies whilst playing the keyboard!)

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After a lunch consisting of a modicum amount of lamb (plus other meat) we did an egg hunt. I have to be pretty crafty in hiding the eggs or it’d be all over in 2 mins. I also had to count the eggs so we knew whether they’d all been found as otherwise I forget where I’ve hidden them.
97 eggs (teeny ones) later, they hunted & needed a ton of clues (I’m quite sneaky when it comes to hiding!). They collected them all- well, I say all. 5 are still missing. I couldn’t remember where their ‘amazing’ hiding places were!! I’m sure we’ll find them eventually. Either that, or there was secret nibbling on the way around!
I’m just hoping they weren’t anywhere that if melted would give me issues!!
Ah well, after a sibling disagreement about who was going to divide the eggs, an unsuccessful film afternoon ( I got incredibly bored watching!!) and some butties and hot cross buns, that was the long and short of it.
Littlie wasn’t aware that all the eggs were NOT supposed to be consumed on Easter Day so he’s very little left. I’m surprised he wasn’t green going to bed, but the night passed without event so he’s obviously fine!

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Better go and do some clearing, washing and tidying. Yawn. With 5, the washing of clothes has to go on- you just can’t leave it much longer than a day or there’s trouble!
xx

April 21, 2014 at 9:16 am 5 comments

Big Squishy Waltzingmouse Hugs & Old Friends!

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I have a bit of a thing for …graph paper.
Not sure where the love has come from.
Possibly stemmed from the colouring pages I used to do as a kid- like this

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I think it’s the repeating pattern idea- if you don’t believe I’ve used graph paper on my card- here’s a close up

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The set which is beautiful is called Gift Card It from Waltzingmouse Stamps here

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The set is all about creating gift cards.. some gorgeous sentiments. I’ve not even started making a gift card greeting yet! There’s a brilliant die that goes with it too. Their service is super speedy and I really recommend them. The paper and gold adhesive sheet is from Cosmo Cricket.

Today I met up with an old friend. One I’ve been utterly rubbish about keeping in touch with. It was lovely to pick up where we’d left off nearly 7 years later. Amazing isn’t it how friendship with some people just spans time.. with no expectations, just a connection and bond nearly as unique as the person you’re friends with.
It was lovely trying to cram the past 7 years into a couple of hours. We did it pretty well, but vowed not to leave it so long this time.
Here’s to friends, chatting and whiling away the hours. Who do you miss and who would you love to spend a few hours with?

Off to catch up with some ironing.
As if.
xx

April 16, 2014 at 7:47 pm 8 comments

SugarPea Designs & Barbara Braberers!

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Hey!
I’m over at Make The Day Special
with a new company ‘SugarPea Designs
I’ve just used part of the set ‘Take A Load Off’ ( now wouldn’t it be nice if someone did!’

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I’ve added my own ‘line’ and hearts and trimmed out the spaces for the socks by tracing around the outside of the stamps.

It’s musical where we are. There’s always someone singing. The are varying degrees of musicality, precision, and silliness.
Recently the boys have been singing
“Barbara Streisand…woo-ooh-ooh-ooo”.
They had no concept of who or what ‘Barbara Streisand’ was. It made me laugh.
Equally funny is Will’s tripping over certain words.
“Mum, can we go to the brabrerers?”
“The what?”
“The braberers”
“Umm”
“Where we get our hair cut”
“Oh- the barbers”
“Yes- I can’t say it”
“Say bar…”
“Bar…”
“Bers”
“Bers” he replies.
“Bar-bers” I repeat slowly
“Bra-berers”
Ha ha!
Well, we’re off there shortly.
They love going because of tag mini pack of Haribos that accompanies all haircuts.
Adult cuts are never that exciting.

Better run.. Eldest is applying for a drivers license.
Now the fun really begins!
xx

April 15, 2014 at 11:56 am 1 comment

Easter with Lawn Fawn & Cleaning

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So, I got playing last night. Just for fun. Doesn’t happen much. I was supposed to be working. Oops.
Having done tons of ‘other’ stuff ( more on that later), I hadn’t had chance to crack out Cole’s ABC’s dies. I wanted to try a new hanging technique- nope, not on my hubby (!) but by die cutting the sentiment, leaving the negative as a ‘shadow’ and then hanging the letters on top. It’s so new, I kinda just created it! So I guess it would come under the Lawnscaping ‘try something new’ challenge here ( he he!)

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You can see better what I’ve done in that pic. Lining up the hanging letters was such fun ( not). I’ve actually used several sets; Happy Trails ( for the ‘happy’, and Hello Sunshine for the hearts and dashed line. I’ve popped some ‘Let’s Polka’ & ‘Hello Sunshine’ paper on there too.
I didn’t have many bunny stamps. I’ve the Mama Elephant ‘Honey Bunny’ set and I’ve plans for that next week.

With only having 3 kids at home at the mo (the other two return Saturday), life is much more relaxed. So much so that I had chance to sit and gaze out of my windows.
Dearie me.
They’re shocking.
Steve was skitting me as I cleaned them with white vinegar. The room smelled a little like a Fish and Chip shop but at least the windows are somewhat better. There’s just the rest of the house to do.
I also had a bash at the carpets. Took all day. I don’t know how people keep their houses so beautifully – I struggle to keep mine tidy never mind beautifully clean.
I’m a little worried now.
Everytime I get ahead- and tidy and lots of things organised, something tends to come a cropper.
Last time was a couple of weeks back and Steve got taken into hospital. I’m just enjoying the semi-clean feeling and wishing I had a maid and cleaner.
Ha ha.
Can you imagine.
Downton Abbey eat your heart out.
Thing is, they’d quit. With the noise, bustle and kids mess they’d hand in their notice before the week was out.
Guess it’s down to me.
I keep roping the kids in, but they make even more mess straight after!!

Here’s to happy kids and clean homes. I’m not sure I can do both! Any tips for me- I’m all ears!

See you when I’ve enjoyed my last day of calm until two suitcases of dirty washing returns! x

April 11, 2014 at 10:55 am 9 comments

Lawn Fawn & More Beaches

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Sometimes life brings around lovely happystances ( good circumstances!!). In my freelance job for various magazines, sometimes I get really unique commissions. One such one was from Crafts Beautiful to do a series called ’5 Ways With’ based on a particular manufacturers new range. I had to hunt down ranges & in doing so came to be in touch with Kelly Marie Alvarez. She’s the owner of Lawn Fawn and one of the nicest people in the US craft industry. She generously sent out a TON of stuff – some so new, they even had the Velcro from where they’d been stuck onto the CHA14 stand boards! Obviously we are working quite a few months in advance & the May issue is just out. There are 5 beautifully photographed Lawn Fawn cards all on the theme of ‘scenes’.

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I’ve used a heap of sets- including these

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If you like the sets- you can visit Make The Day Special to purchase them. I’m not showing you all of them- you’ll have to buy the mag to see the rest..!

Yesterday I was a little stiff ( again!!). We decided to venture on a walk that involved following a typed out trail and a not-to-scale-map.
Should have been easy.
Ahem..
Is anything our family does ever straightforward?!!
We plumped for a little train travel which was supposed to add to the excitement. It did. Mostly.
Apart from the point where you’re visiting the underground part of the railway and the escalators are so high-angled and the kids so wriggly that my heart was in mouth plenty of times.
Once on the walk, it involved crossing two railways. One was secure, the other, you were told ‘just make sure you look and listen well’. Walking straight onto a track knowing that ‘trains cross here every few minutes’ was a little unsettling.
The next instruction was ‘cross through the golf course watching out for balls’!
Was this the ‘Bear Grylls walk’ in the local vicinity or was it just to give the folders target practice?!!
We walked through VERY quickly and came to the forested area. Legs tired quickly and we stopped for lunch after finding the most perfectly placed picnic table and chairs. Whilst eating our lunch we were treated to the surreal sight of police officers waving at us as they sped through the forest on quad bikes!
We got to the beach portion of the walk. The littliest was complaining of tiredness and apart from the broken glass on the beach, sand in their eyes and dodging the crazy dogs we had a great hour beachcombing and playing football thanks to finding a ball on the beach!

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We were glad of the beach however, as it washed off the copious dollops of mud on our shoes. I wasn’t bothered- I told them we could wash the shoes but honestly, I seem to have unexpectedly raised neat freaks who were most concerned about the state of their shoes!!
We got a little lost.
The map was unspecific about which way you were doing the loop and I was unsure which way we were supposed to be heading along the beach. As it was an hours walk along the beach, I knew a wrong decision wasn’t going to go down well. Despite the lack of GPRS, we survived but then got lost in the forest too.
There was a great deal of whining by this point, they’d walked nearly 4 miles and although it’s not really far, it was windy on the beach and I think they were tired.
We relievedly reached the train station, got on the train but had to alight a stop before we were supposed to. We boarded another train to get the next place. The train after that took us somewhere we weren’t planning on going!
The escalators loomed and one of mine said they didn’t like heights.
Great.
The littlie decided to shout very loudly every sign he saw. People looked at him as he shouted ‘hold on tight, stand to the right!’. He repeated the phrase over and over but I was too tired to remonstrate him.
We couldn’t get to the stop we needed, so I had to drag them through town. Littlie was stopping every few minutes and if he could have stopped, sat down and never got up, he would have.
We finally reached the last train – ironically for all this train faffing, we could have driven the whole journey in 40 minutes!!
One started to worry that the car wouldn’t still be there, another decided we may have been broken into and yet another reckoned I couldn’t remember where we left the car.
The car was silent as I drove home- I’d finally managed to wear my kids out.
The next morning- it was quiet. No one rose early and all complained that their legs were stiff.
Not as stiff as mine.
The secret to good parenting?
Take them into dangerous situations where they may be run over, hit by golf balls, take them running along the beach ( avoiding the police, this time razzing it in a Landrover on the beach!!), do 7 individual train journeys, eat in the forest and you’ll end up with 3 tired but compliant kids!!

See you when I’ve been to the cinema ( also known as how to fall asleep in 5 minutes as it’s so dark and nobody is calling your name!) Xx

April 10, 2014 at 9:41 am 6 comments

Unity & docrafts Adventures!

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Morning! I’m sorry to have been away for so long- I’ve been travelling and working & other stuff- so much so, I’ve hardly had a minute to myself!

I’m over on Make The Day Special today with this project because the store are saying Goodbye to Unity. Not unity in general!- us gals are a pretty tight knit group but the company Unity who produce some beautiful sets. I was surprised at how many different styles they produce- there is something for absolutely everyone- from CAS, to artsy, to grungy, to cute.

This card combines two sets

and I’ve showcased quite a few projects harnessing the Harvest of Memories set (just pop the title into the search bar)

They have another 25% off, if you enter UNITY25 at the checkout, and it will remove the 25% as the order goes through. The paper is Fresh Cut from Basic Grey.

 

I have been a busy bee.. done a little travelling (if you can count Abingdon & Bournemouth as travelling!) The first place, Abingdon was to see my lovely friend Carole who has been doing quite a sterling job adding simplicity to the crafting world. For any of you with the WRMK envelope board or the Stampin’Up! one, she (with a little help from her techie husband David) have produced a gismo to give you the measurements of any sized envelope when you just pop in the cards measurements.

It’s GENIUS and it’s here.

A little bird tells me someone super famous in the crafting community will be featuring it on their blog very soon- I’ll tell you about that when it happens.

Her blog is here and she’s well worth a visit- she’s a marvel with the Silhouette- even gives coaching too.

After I’d laughed, got several inky alcohol stains all over my hands which I then realised needing removing pronto as they wouldn’t look good in filming, I scubbed them and fortunately got them clean.

She served some very awesome ‘duck puddings’ (we were in the South- good grief, she’s posh!!) & we crafted and sorted the world’s problems out in around 2 hours & then I had to go to bed reasonably early as needed to be on the road for 7am!

Filming for docrafts with Katy Godbeer & Rob is always funny & nervewracking and a case of thinking on your feet..like when you realise you’ve left the glue runner on the other side of the room and rather than having to do another take, you manage to carry on, gently stuffing the items into the pockets unstuck & hoping they’ll remain in place there for long enough to get the filming finished!

I went back to my Best Western hotel after a brief visit to HQ and was disappointed to find there wasn’t a bath.

It was supposedly one of the best hotels in Bournemouth (according to the travel reviewers) & it was certainly beautiful downstairs.photo 4-2

Having 5 kids and very little ‘downtime’ , an unhurried soak in the bath is my idea of relaxation (amongst other things!). So no bath was a little disappointing. I was scrupulously clean but a little on the ’80′s side’ in my bedroom anyway. I was showing my friend Virginia the pics and she (living in Canada) thought it was ‘quaintphoto 2-16

The staff were really lovely & I couldn’t fault anything else (other than the crazily noisy fan in the bathroom which was more annoying than a whiney child!!)

Before I checked out, I went on a lovely beach walk (my legs were sore the day after on my demo day!!) photo 3-8

When checking, there was the usual ‘was everything ok with your stay, madam’.

I told her how lovely the hotel was, clean, with attentive staff but mentioned the fan and the ‘sans bath’. She replied

‘well you should have booked a bath when you made your reservation’

I looked a little surprised.

This was not the time to bring up the fact I’d asked for a sea-view when booking and instead got one of the car park.

‘I didn’t realise I needed to book a bath’

She repeated her comment, maybe she thought I was a little hard of hearing.

‘You needed to have requested a bath when booking’.

At this point I wasn’t impressed. I replied

‘I have been to many hotels, and never have I needed to ‘book a bath’ before’

I guess you live and learn.

Britishness prevented me from issuing the following statement

‘Oh, ok. What’s next? Booking a kettle? Booking clean sheets?’!!

The manager emailed me (standard email) on Sunday morning, so I related this to him.

He’s yet to get back to me!

Maybe in light of the fact I was only 5 minutes away from the sea, I should have gone for a soak there? I’m not sure the swimming pool was the correct place either. Someone mentioned that I should just have sat in the bottom of the shower?

I didn’t fancy that option either.

Ah well, now you know.

Always book a bath… and maybe check there’s a roof on the hotel and a door on your bedroom whilst you’re at it!! (he he!)

 

See you when I’ve braved another beach to take the bottom 3 kidlets on a walk,

xx

 

 

April 8, 2014 at 10:04 am 15 comments

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Welcome

Hi there! I'm Keren, a Mum of 6 living in the UK with my extremely long suffering husband. I craft for therapy (with 5 kids, what do you expect!). I do some freelance craft work, hold craft classes and love papercrafting, scrapbooking and fabric. Baking is another passion too.
Things in my life that are important to me is being a Christian and I go to a great church in Liverpool.

Please say Hi!- feel free to make comments or drop me a line kerenjb@hotmail.co.uk.

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