Friday, 30 September 2011

LSNED - day 30

On the last day of the month I learnt a sad lesson. I learnt that the loss of a friend still hurts the same even if you had never met them.

I wish you all the best for your future my friend. I will be praying for you.


Thursday, 29 September 2011

Poor neglected blog ...

No, I haven't dropped off the face of the earth yet :-)  There just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day for everything, which isn't helped by the fact that I keep falling asleep before 8:30pm!  So much to get done and so little time.  I hope you are all faring a bit better than me LOL

I have found a few minutes to spare over the last few weeks and have created a few layouts that I will post when I find a few minutes.  Spring has definitely arrived here and we have had weather that encompass all the seasons in one day.  Tuesday even saw a huge hail storm!  I love spring weather as it is not too hot yet but the sun is often shining.  In a few more weeks you will hear me complaining about the heat!  I wish spring lasted longer than a month here.

Happy spring or autumn/fall, which ever it is where you happen to be.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

LSNED - Day 11 & 12

Day 11
"Distress Stain does not dry on everything you want it to, but it does stain your fingers and nails!  Even the lemon I was told to clean my fingers with to get rid of it didn't work.  I have very dark green fingers and ugly green nails!"

Day 12
"First impressions are not always true.  In this case I am talking about the lemon not working to clean my fingers.  By mid morning the colour had almost completely bleached away!!!!! So a much better result than the last time when the colour lasted three days!"
Maybe the lesson I should have learned is "wear gloves when working with stains"! LOL



The Princess is performing in a schools dance competition today called J-Rock.  They have been rehearsing for over 4 months and we got to see the final dress rehearsal yesterday.  She is a bootscootin' meerkat!  A few years ago she wouldn't have even set foot on the stage let alone joined everyone in dancing at the Convention Center in front of 100's of people!  We are so proud of her.

They are at the center all day today and each school has time to rehearse at the venue, and then there are activities for the kids.  The theme this year was 'tropical' and they were asked to wear grass skirts or leis for the activities.  So for the past week The Princess and I have been making a grass skirt out of raffia.  I sewed the buttons on last night and here she is this morning ready to go.

She has a multi coloured grass skirt which is sure to be a hit with her friends! Although I am not sure how long she will wear it for as she says it tickles her legs LOL  I wonder how much raffia will still be attached to the waist band by the time she gets home?

I can't wait to see all the performances tonight.  She is there for over 12hrs today.  They even had to take a pillow and blanket for rest time.


Monday, 12 September 2011

Random post just because I can ...

I read a post just recently by Sparkling Gnome about 10 songs that kick start her creativity.  I haven't had a chance to hear what those songs are as I never know the name and artist of any song, however it got me thinking about music.  I learnt the piano as a child, and sang, and played percussion instruments.  But above all else I love to sing (this does not translate to being any good though!).  My teacher was quite old fashioned and I never sang anything modern, but as I wasn't allowed to listen to the radio as a child, I never felt I was missing out.

I think that because I like to sing I hear the lyrics to songs where others may only hear the music.  This means that there are some great songs out there that I would listen to if the lyrics were nicer!  I still don't listen to the radio much as it was never a habit that I developed, but recently I keep hearing the same song every time the radio is on no matter where I am.  The first time I heard it I cried.  It is like a very sad poem put to music.  This morning I heard it while I was sitting at my computer at work, so I googled one line of the lyrics to find out who was singing it.  It is called "Jar of Hearts" by Christina Perri, you may already know which song I mean :-)  I tried to just copy the lyrics here for you to read, but I can't find a copyable version and I don't have the time to type them out.  So here is a link to the song :-)

I wonder why I keep hearing it???

Randomness over for now, sorry if this is of no interest to you but I just felt like saying it :-)

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Starting Points

This weeks Starting Point Challenge over at Shimelle's was up by the time I got home from work on Sunday.  This is great for me as I get a couple of extra hours on a Sunday evening to craft.  And what an interesting starting point it was!  I love that after putting down my papers for the beginning of the page, my mind can run away with itself and I don't feel like I am scraplifting.  I love this concept more than sketches.  I have only started using sketches recently to help me move a little faster as photos are stacking up everywhere crying out to be scrapped.  But this idea of Shimelle's is speeding up my scraping and I don't feel as constricted as I do at times with a sketch.  However I do still find them a challenge!  Take today's starting point as an example ...

A very symmetrical beginning which you probably all know is not my favourite.  I can't wait to see what Shimelle does with it!  Here is mine ...
My Little Shoe Box papers

These photos were taken at The Princess' party.  They are of my boys and my two beautiful nephews.  These photos have captured each of them in typical poses.  I love them! (the photos and the boys themselves LOL).  I used papers from two different collections by My Little Shoe Box and that is one thing I love about their papers.  The colours often work together across collections.

I discovered something new today ... The felt shapes that Little Yellow Bicycle make DO NOT like distress stain!  I tried to stain some die cut circles and no matter what I did it wouldn't dry.  So I tried wiping off the stain and painting it, but the stain never fully came off and nothing else would dry on them either!  My cute little bird worked though.  I painted him roughly with some distress crackle paint and that dried on the felt!  And in the process of all this experimenting I have died all my fingers GREEN!  If anyone knows how to get it off please tell me!!!!  I have tried lemon juice and that didn't work either, I guess I will be going to work with green fingers tomorrow :-)  The little nest the bird is sitting in is made from the left over stems from my rose heads.  I twisted them together and then turned them brown with a permanent pen.

The title is a laser cut chipboard that I stained (might as well use up all the stain that was everywhere!) and then covered it in UTEE.  I then sprinkled random bits of tarnished gold embossing powder over it and reheated.  Now it looks like it has gold flecks through it.  I bit of machine stitching, a bit of fake stitching, some muslin died with more stain and the page was done.

Oh, and the little semi circles were grunge board that I embossed in one of my new embossing folders to get the sun pattern.  By then I had had my fill of distress stain and so I inked them and sprayed them!

I hope you find time to give this starting point a go this week.  I needed a happy distraction this evening and this worked wonderfully.

LSNED - Day 10

"Do not leave things until the last minute!"

I am sure this is a lesson that we all learn from time to time, and it is one that I have to keep reminding myself frequently.  You could say that I learnt it good this time around!  I had great plans to give my cousin and his wife a nappy/diaper cake and some baby shower thankyou cards as a gift for their baby shower on Sunday. I did manage to finish them all but not one piece is how I had wanted it to be.  Probably my only saving grace is that I have a Cricut machine and neither of them craft! LOL

Here is what I made them.  I am taking the photos at work and I am surrounded by industrial buildings.  These are the best backgrounds I can get :-)

Nappy/Diaper cake

Baby Shower Thank you cards
I used the Cricut cartridge 'New Arrivals' and cut all the animals at 5in.  That way I could use my matching Peachy Keen stamps for their faces.  It really finishes the animals off nicely and there is no way that I could draw the faces myself!  The cards were cut from the same cartridge and I really had to hunt for generic baby colours!!!  The Princess helped me decorate the cards and she put the chalked cheeks on all the animals.  The Thinker hunted the internet for a baby shower thank you poem for the inside and he found a great site HERE.

So never leave things till the last minute or you end up having to rush!!!!


LSNED - Day 9

"Going on a lunch date is just as good as a dinner date, if not better!"

With our one and only employee back from her holidays, The LOML and I were able to grab just over an hour for a lunch date on Friday.  We quickly dropped in on our local Chinese and enjoyed a beautiful lunch together.  It can be so difficult to organise baby sitters in the evening so we don't often go out for dinner.  Although our lunches out are a little faster than dinner, they are just as enjoyable and perhaps even better as I am not so tired!


Starting Points

I really love Shimelle's new weekly challenge, Scrapbook Starting Points!  Each week she posts the start of a page and on the following day she posts how she finished it.  I love this challenge as the finished page doesn't influence how your page develops.  Each of the finished pages look so different.  Here is this weeks starting point.

And here is my completed page.

Basic Grey LilyKate
The photos are from when we set up The Princess' 10th Birthday Craft Party.  Everything was pink and purple and these papers were just perfect.
I was hoping that the banner at the top would reflect the streamers in the room and distract your eye from the VERY busy and ugly back wall of the top photo.  I think it helps nicely!  You can't have a princess without a bit of bling so I jazzed it up a bit.

I really feel the page could use a little more embellishment, but I am not sure how or with what.  Do you have any suggestions?  I have put it to the side for now as nothing I have tried so far is right.  Either way I like it :-)


Friday, 9 September 2011

Signature Accent Challenge

You may remember that a while ago I participated in a challenge weekend over at Shimelle's, along with loads of other people.  I didn't get a chance to finish all of the challenges but I am still slowly working my way through them.  One of the challenges was to scrap using your signature accent.  I looked back through everything that I have been creating since I finally unpacked my stuff, and discovered that I use paints, sprays and sparkle on almost every layout!  I just love making a mess :-)  So here is my page complete with all three elements.

Doodlebug paper
We spent one of our afternoons while at Disney playing at Blizzard Beach water park.  I loved the chance to use snowy papers for warm photos!  The boys lined up with the rest of the crowd and went on the HUGE speed slide.  The Princess was too little for it, so I didn't get a chance to go on it this time around.  (Besides, I wasn't wearing a suitable swim suit for speed slides!!!)

I painted some warm white randomly behind where I wanted my photos and cut some nice big swirls with my new Eclips machine.  I sticklesed the swirls with Frosted Lace to look like snow and then used the negative part of the swirls to spray more swirl patterns on the paper with Glimmer Mist Frost.

I had only recently bought the Jolly Holidays Lite Cricut cartridge and just HAD to use the cute little penguin with a very sparkly umbrella!!!!

I cut the title from the negative swirl card that I had been using to spray the swirls with.  That way they were already sprayed the right colour! (You can just see one of the sprayed swirls on the paper in the photo on the left)  And of course I glittered everything with my Sakura Jelly Roll pen in clear (just LOVE that pen).

Added some punched snowflakes and the journaling to the large swirl and it was done.  It was hard to capture the sparkle even in the sun, but you kinda need sunglasses to look at this page. LOL

Enjoy your weekend,

Thursday, 8 September 2011

LSNED - Day 8

"Every now and again you have to dream a little."

I did quite a bit of dreaming today :-)  Check out my previous post for just some of it ...


Are you ready to dream big?

I think it is time I bought a lotto ticket and possibly won something.  Not a HUGE jackpot, just enough to do this ...

Can you imagine going on a small retreat in a location such as this with a group of friends?????  I MOST CERTAINLY CAN imagine it!!!  Ah, Italy ... somewhere I have always wanted to go ... so why not for scrapbooking!  This looks AMAZING and you should all go check it out here.

Now to go buy that lotto ticket ...

P.S. can you tell I am getting lots of work done today? NOT!  :-)

LSNED - Day 7

"All you need is LUNCH when you are having a trying morning!"

Especially when it is macaroni & cheese!  Thanks honey :-) xoxox


Wednesday, 7 September 2011

LSNED - Day 6

"Surprising interruptions to your well planed day can be very enjoyable!"

I had my day off planned down to the second (well almost!).  I even got up early to enjoy as much as possible.  My original list has only half crossed off as the afternoon didn't go to plan.  But they were all good changes.  THE LOML arrived home earlier than normal so I had lunch with him.  When the kids came home a few hours later they all had stuff that had to be done RIGHT NOW!!!  But that is the great thing about a day off.  The Extrovert was given a science project that didn't need to be done then.  But as we were home during daylight and the sun was shining, we went for our bush walk to collect all the needed specimens right away.  He had to collect plant specimens from all different types of plants.  He then has two weeks to research about them and present them as a display.  After discussing it he decided to press the specimens.  He photographed each of them after we got home.  Here are some of his photos.

We are even trying to press a slice of the mushroom.  So now all of the specimens are 'pressing' under piles of heavy books, with the exception of the lichen and moss as they are drying in paper bags.

Meanwhile The Princess 'forgot' that she needed a R costume or a helper from the community costume for tomorrow.  Nothing like short notice.  So we recycled an old costume that was in the dress up box and she became 'Robin Hood'!  And of course it needed repairing so out came the sewing machine.

My day ended even better than I had planned :-)  But it is still good to start with a plan, just be prepared to be flexible!


Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Shimelle's Sketch of the Week

Finally, a day off!!!!!  I have planned my day so that I get the most of it and have already completed Shimelle's sketch last week.  I wasn't really inspired by the sketch as it was very symmetrical and not really me.  However I love to challenge myself and jumped in.  Here is the sketch.

I decided to use a photo from our Florida holiday as there are so many to get through!  It is a photo of The Extrovert and as it is kind of on its own I used it for this sketch.  It is very simple and went together very quickly.  And for some reason I didn't even use any sprays or paints!!!

Basic Grey Cupcake collection
Singing in the Rain is one of The Extroverts favourite movies.  He knows all the songs and was very excited when we rounded the corner and found this umbrella at Disney Studios.  No matter what he did he couldn't get it to 'rain' as he wasn't heavy enough to set off the sensor on the ground.

The pile of scraps at the base of the photo was almost all cut from the cover page of the collection pack.  I love that page as it has all of the papers on it, but in smaller prints.  They work great for punched shapes and handmade mini matching embellishments.  I always buy the Basic Grey papers in the collection packs, as I end up using the plainer co-ordinating papers (background red) which I wouldn't have bought otherwise.  They are great for making quick pages like this one.  If all of our Florida photos come together as quickly as this one did, I might just finish them all in my lifetime!


LSNED - Day 5

"All things come to an end.  Even four long weeks without a day off!"

Yippee!!!!!!!!  This is the last day of my four week stretch without a day off.  I even managed to get lots accomplished so that I can really enjoy my Tuesday off.  Hopefully I will even manage to create the first 5 pages of class!

Note to self: It is not a good idea to give your only staff member three weeks off in a row :-)


Monday, 5 September 2011

LSNED - Day 4

"If I get up earlier on a Sunday, it almost feels like an extra day off!"

I do not like working on Sunday, but our shop is open for 4 hours from 11am till 3pm.  It seems to kill the day completely.  The last few weeks I have risen earlier and sat in my sunny chair with a cup of tea and read for a bit until the kids emerged.  Then we have a delicious cooked brunch and head to work.  It is ALMOST like having another day off!  It is not how I would choose to spend every Sunday, but it is a good compromise.


Sunday, 4 September 2011

LSNED - Day 3

"Life will never be the same as your favourite childhood book or movie.  Sometimes it is worse. But when it is good, it is better than any story could ever be, as it is tangible and can be felt in your heart and remembered in your mind for years to come."
For most of my childhood I wished for a life like Trixie Belden.  It was never going to happen and it was my dream to create that life for my children.  Oh how childish that dream was!  No matter what rapids the river of life takes you through, the beauty of even the simple everyday things make it all worthwhile.


P.S.  While trying to find a picture of one of the book front covers I discovered that there is even a Trixie Belden convention!!!!  Who knew such things existed??? LOL

Friday, 2 September 2011

LSNED - Day 2

"Sometimes friends come from the most unexpected places."
I think this is a lesson that we all need to learn.  This is something that I need to keep reminding myself.


LSNED - Day 1

Today was an ordinary day, with ordinary hiccups, and ordinary 'to do lists' not getting accomplished.  Until I went to the primary school Music Showcase to watch The Princess sing in the choir.  Many memories came flooding back during that 2hr show.  Some great, some sad.  I don't think that it is ever a good idea to have a perfectionist teach a perfectionist, especially when it comes to music.  Is there ever any music that is performed or played perfectly?

So my lesson for today ...
"Perhaps there is a chance that I wasn't such a terrible musician after all."
I wish I had learnt that lesson a long time ago.