Archive for December, 2010
Ok- here’s the big one! Sale-a-bration time. Fancy some FREE stamps? well do ya?
You’ve seen my project- here’s the collection of scrummy stamps that could be sneaking into your craft drawer. All you need to do is 1-2-3.
Do you likey them? Pretty gorgeous huh! My favourite is the Bliss set- I don’t have it yet and I’m putting my own order in really soon so then I’ll be able to play too. If you didn’t quite get enough Christmas spends to manage an order of £45- why don’t you share some goodies with a friend and you can share the FREEBIES too! If you get the order sent to me and pick it up, its only £1 postage. Otherwise its £4.95 no matter how big the order. All the parcels come to your home address, and are delivered by those really lovely UPS men (and women!!). No matter where you are in the UK, I can process your order. I can take credit and debit cards now too.
Did you notice I’ve gone a bit minimalistic? I reckon the way forward is simple. I’d quite like to simplify my life too; shave off the excess! With all of this paring down I’m thinking parts of me could be ‘reduced’ too. I’m considering visiting my old friend Rosemary Conley- or should I accept the status quo? Challenge or contentment?- Answers on a postcard please!!!
Here’s a close-up- a bit of fussy-cutting and layering. I find these type of cards much harder as you’re constantly trying to resist adding things onto the card. I’ll be back with some more projects and sneak peek of my January class.
Okey dokey. I need to summon up some strength- we’re off taking the kids to ride their new bikes. Better stock up on plasters!
Card recipe; whisper white cardstock, ordinary paper, Subtles designer paper. Subtles brad. Stazon ink. Sweet summer SAB set. Sentiment stamp from ‘Tiny Tags’ stamp set.
I’ve just updated my Stamping and Craft Classes page- so go, check it out! Hope there’s something there that interests you. If you’ve got anything that you’ve always wanted to learn about- get in touch; I’m all ears! I’m taking bookings now and I do have limits on places, so get in touch! I’ve had such a lovely Christmas although all this eating is tiring!! I’ve had some lovely gifts and some great surprises- one of which was from a great girl called Ros who makes some really beautiful things. Go visit! In order to accept this blog award I have to do the following;
1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award.
2. Share 8 things about yourself
3. Pass it on to 8 bloggers
4. Contact those bloggers and tell them about their award
The bloggers I’m passing this onto are
Well, it’s far too late- I need to be gone! I need to prepare you some nice samples with the new Sale-a-bration stamp sets!
I can’t claim that these are my ideas- because they’re not. I’d love to know who first created them. These are my versions and they’re perfect little receptacles for single chocolates a la the Ferrero Rocher variety. You just need a variety of punches (or a very steady hand!!). I’ve made some with extra large holly leaves that have the space then, to put a name on or use them as festive place settings. They don’t take very long either- I’ve got lots of people making them and some people were brilliant at perfecting their holly (no names mentioned huh!!- but they spent the whole night punching out holly leaves). One word of warning- as you take off the edges of an oval with a tiny circle punch (this creates the ridges on the holly leaves), the bits have a tendency to twang everywhere- I found a ridiculous amount of them down my top!!!!
They’re also great for using up all those annoying little bits and bobs of card. I don’t hang onto card pieces if they’re below a certain size- but these puddings are perfect for remnants!
Today has been busy and productive. It started with a trip to the dentist for a temporary filling for me. It was very kind of the dentist to be so seasonal and use oil of cloves in the filling- now every time I breathe in, it feels like Christmas!! Less good was when he informed me that to have an implant on a tooth that has been bashed, will cost me in the region of £2000! -yes there are not too many 0′s- he really said two thousand quid! Hmmm- better get saving!!
We then thought we’d beat the rush and go to the local Post Office which was delightfully empty and then visit Tesco for my Christmas shop. Me and 100′s of others had had the same idea!! Carting 5 kids around and trying to get your groceries isn’t really advisable. We came away relatively unscathed. After I’d spent rather more money than I’d intended (although I made a great saving on my turkey) we set off out to pack up the car. It was then we noticed the stars.
Now I’m not telling you this story to pat myself on the back as I’ve hardly done anything much- anyone could do this- but it’s so heartwarming that I thought I’d share it.
My little boy Jamie is 7, and some of you will know that his twin sister died about 4.5 years ago. He was really missing her on his Birthday last Monday and he asked about the stars that were on the Christmas tree in the foyer of Tesco. All these snowflakes/stars had ‘boy aged 9′ or ‘girl aged 15′ written on them and the idea was that you bought a little extra something, gave the star with the corresponding present to Tesco Customer Services and they pass it on to a local childrens’ home. I’m all for trying to get my kids to see beyond their own situations and notice that the world we live in is groaning with sadness and difficulty. We chatted about how there were many kids in this city for whom Christmas isn’t about the typical Christmas picture you see on cards and I guess even though the homes do an amazing job, some kids must find Christmas-time pretty tough. I hadn’t managed to do a shoebox this year and thought Jamie might enjoy marking the moment in memory of his sister. I asked him to choose a gift that he thought his sister might have liked if she was still here. He told me he knew exactly what she would have liked. He picked out a really cute little chipmunk that moved when you stroked it. “It’s perfect Mummy’, he said, ‘she’d have loved playing with this’. He wanted to know about the little girl who would get it instead and I said we could pray that she’d have a lovely Christmas. He turned to me as I took a picture of him clutching the toy; ‘Mummy, we’ve just created a lovely moment‘. I nearly started blubbering at this point!
He handed it over with such pride to the bloke at Customer Services, who wouldn’t have dreamed for a moment that this gift was so special to him. As we got back into the car, he said ‘Mum, I’m going to do a happy cry now’. Kids know how to ‘get’ you sometimes don’t they! We were sad to see just how many stars were left. We reckon the recession is probably squeezing everyone. If you have a local store that is doing something similar- it would be great if you could manage to go and do the same- it doesn’t need to be extravagant – just a small gesture to let someone unknown that you care. We got far more out the process than we could have imagined- I guess that’s often the way.
Well, I’ll put my Kleenex down now. Hope you get time to watch out for others who are alone or just a little bit in need of some friendship this Christmas.
Sending you all a big Christmas hug
Supplies needed- large and small circle punches, small oval, large scalloped punch. Crop-a-dile. Wild Wasabi, Early Espresso and Very Vanilla and Real Red cardstock, Pear Pizzazz marker and White Signo Gel pen.
Brrrrrrrr! Since when did we become part of the Arctic Circle??!! What amazing weather. I say it’s amazing because its entirely beautiful to look at when you’re snuggly warm and toasty sipping a good cuppa. There are some disadvantages; the latest for us is having no running water or flushing toilets for the second time in a week. There may be an easy fix- there was last time- our neighbour had a leaking outdoor pipe to an outdoor toilet. Once he switched it off- hey presto. Our neighbours are at work today and he did say last week that he was keeping it switched off. Oh well- I think we’ll be trekking up to the local petrol station to buy vast amounts of bottled water- if only to wash down the loos with!!
This little package was my Christmas card to some of my friends. It was an entirely flukey thing but ended up well. I was busy making Tiffin for the teachers at school. One of them has a penchant for a bit of rum in the Tiffin mix (refrigerator cake to some of you!). I managed to get rum in there last year but as I stirred the molten choc and rum mixture it began to seize. I rushed to the fridge and whisked in some cream very vigorously. It turned into a ganache type mix and I put it in the fridge and hoped for the best. To say there was no measuring and it had begun to seize, the final result, was rather yummy. Just goes to show that sometimes happy accidents are the best. Can you just see the little stars? I’ve been decorating everything with them- they were a little pricey but there are literally 100′s of them so it’s not so bad.
I love this stamp set- I have in fact ordered one too many- so if anyone wants to do some last minute stamping and lives locally, you’re welcome to purchase it- I just might do you a deal too!! I’ll show you some non-Christmas ideas to use this particular image after Christmas. After all a stamp is for life- not just for Christmas!!! I love coloured staples too- they add texture rather than just being utilitarian- check out your local pound shop for something similar.
I’m running scared from Christmas at the moment- I was doing so well – but mostly due to prepping so much for my weekly course- all the plans to make my stuff for people have gone down the pan a little. It seems a little ironic that I’ve been so busy teaching people how to create homemade items and cards that I’ve no time to do my own!!! I have enjoyed it though, and the group of girls that have been coming are such a great gang. It’s the last week this week and I need to bake some cakes ready for them. Just goes to show that I need to keep the real reason for Christmas in mind and not concentrate on all the fripperies!. Today (apart from sluicing the loos) I’ve got some little people coming round to play. I’d love to christen my new food processor (an unexpected pressie from my parents- Mwah!!) and make some gingerbread dough but I fear the cold in the kitchen will keep me from entering there!
Better go- I’m sooo far behind! Before I go, want to hear another faux pas from my 3 year old? We’re at the checkout this week, being served by a really nice young bloke who happened to be sporting a ponytail. Will obviously hasn’t seen many long haired men and to my horror, pointed at the said man and started spouting (very loudly) “Ladyman, ladyman‘! I did not know where to put myself and opted for the gentle shushing approach rather than the fullblown telling off and making a big scene!! I’m sure the man heard, but he was very gracious and continued to chat away. I enlightened him as to what mince was and recommended he had a go at making his own mince pies!!
See you soon (next time will be me typing whilst scoffing a mincepie!!)
Christmas card recipe; Cardstock Cherry cobbler, very vanilla. Ink Old Olive. Stamp set Contempo Christmas. Ribbon, Old Olive grosgrain. Cello bags- medium size. Rhinestones.
This is the end product- I’ll show it how it started out towards the end. People are beginning to wonder if I have a secret deal with Tesco, such is the frequency with which I keep sending people there with the promise of various craftable products (do you like that word, I think I just invented it!!). The green on the tree (from the Season of Joy set) is altered in hue because of the thin oh-so-nearly -not-there layer of shimmer paint. It’s quite unintelligable to the camera, but trust me, it’s quite a nice shimmer ‘up close and personal’.
Pearls and rhinestones are starting from ship from the European warehouse , after an overdue absence but then, you all went mad and ordered them!! Hold on a few more days- they ARE coming!!
The button is acting as a closure- with the twine being wrapped around it to keep the little book together. Thing is, why would you give a Christmas notebook at Christmas when then you look a bit silly for the next few months, whipping out a notebook out of your bag with a festive tree on it?!! Perhaps I should’ve been using it as Seasonal check list holder? Ah well, there’s always next year!!
You would hate to see my lists- you’d hyperventilate as much as me I reckon!! I actually avoid looking for a couple of hours and then the need overtakes me! It’s not just Christmas- a Mario themed Birthday party at the weekend for of my little boys complete with iron-transferred Mario’s on the T-shirts rather than party bags (that is, if they do get to me with all the post disruption).
Recently, the size of my family has been the subject of quite a few discussions. From the man serving in the Post Office who kept shaking his head in disbelief that I actually had 5 children ( I know, you have to love people like that, even if they could do with visiting Specsavers and checking their eyesight!) to another man in Asda this morning who came up to Will and said that he looked ‘stressed’ and had I been shouting at him? Will looked at him with a confused expression. Bless him, he was sitting in the trolley, happily playing with his tiger. ” oooh, I bet he has plenty of paddies (tantrums)” said the man (looking at the colour fo his hair). ‘He’s quite good”, I replied, ‘although he does have his moments’.- I have another red head and she has her moments too!!’. He asked me how many kids I had. When he heard the answer he laughed and chuckled ‘next time I see you in here, we’ll have a whip round and we’ll buy you a television and then you’ll stop having so many children’. With that, he walked off!
Honestly, it’s the not the first time (and probably not the last) that people make comments like that.The first time shocked me that someone could be so personal, -now i’m well used to it. Although it doesnt beat the ‘Are they all yours?’ question, followed on its heels with ‘Do they have the same Dad?’!! Well, there you go- I’m sure this humour and straight talking is fairly unique to Liverpool!! Maybe I just need a sign around my neck ‘Yes, I have 5 children, and yes, I like it this way!!! Righto- I’ve got to go and finish all the baking that William and I have been doing this morning so I can give all those teachers something for Christmas.
Notebook supplies- blue spotty notebook with pen (Tesco). Old Olive ribbon and ink. Real red button, linen thread, Jolly Holiday papers (background) and Merry Moments scrapbook set (paper on notebook), pearls, Cardstock very vanilla, real red and Old Olive. Silver shimmer paint. Stamp set, Season of Joy.