Sunday, 24 March 2013

A sad day...

The Final Flight

Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free, I'm following the path God laid for me.
I took his hand when I heard his call, I turned my back and left it all.
I could not stay another day, To laugh, to love, to work, to play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way, I've found that peace at the end of the day.
If my parting has left a void, Then fill it with remembered joy.
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss, Ah, yes, these things too I will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow, I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My Life's been full, I savoured much, Good friends, good times, a loved one' touch.
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief, Don't lengthen it now with undue grief.
Lift up your heart and share with me, God wanted me now, He set me free.

Sadly my mum passed away last night,  while I am sad I also feel relief that she is no longer in pain,  and has no need to face any more long days.   I felt numb for a while,  the paramedics and then the police were very kind and thoughtful.  As was the young man who took my call to the out of hours service,  as he finished the call he said how sorry he was and to take care.  I'm not ashamed to say that the tears have been falling on and off all day.   This afternoon I tidied her bedroom, I picked up the duvet and could still smell her, so I wrapped it around me,  I felt she was there with me.  She'd had a miserable five years,  with her health steadily declining, the loss of two close friends hit her hard, that was when she saw no point in going on.   She was proud to see three of her grandchildren get married,  and thrilled to be a great granny to two Joe and Patrick.   There were things she never did, she couldn't ride a bike, and she never learned to swim,  but she took joy from life,  was rarely without a smile.   She never once uttered the words 'I told you so',   rather she let us make our mistakes,  how it must have hurt her to watch,  yet she was there to help us get back on our feet, or mend our wounded hearts.   She was a wise woman,  she'll be missed by all who knew her.  

God bless you Mum, now you can be at peace and with those you had to say goodbye to.

Friday, 22 March 2013

The white stuff!

What is all this fuss about the snow?    It has snowed in March before, it happens.   We've had a mix of rain, sleet and snow all day, with a bitter wind.  We'd due to get our deluge of snow around 11pm tonight.

I've been faffing most of the week.  Making stuff then rejecting it,  liking it but not thinking it is quite right for whom it is intended... if that makes sense! I've not been helped by a very sore and creaky back,  not sure what I did, but it has been very sore all week. I have got a slipped disc, I suspect that a bit more has slipped! 

This was what I managed on Monday and Tuesday, crafting limited to how long I could sit comfortably.  This has a shaving foam background,  embossed and buf and rub flower,  foxy, sentiment and a bit of border punching.

I like it, but think it will go in my journal.  This, see pic on right, is what I made today.  I used my spellbinders frame,  some die cut flowers in cornflower blue - found it after deciding to see what was lurking in the cupboard, and the flutterby.  It isn't quite finished yet.  Hopefully it will be tomorrow.

Had a very mixed week with the craft stuff.  I was going to tackle the stash and sort it out, but the bad back put paid to that idea, as did mum who hasn't been very well this week.

 And with my wonky back and sore foot everything has taken twice as long.  Of course today's weather hasn't helped.  I took notice of the forecast and got the shopping yesterday, a slow hobble around the supermarket,  getting everything we will need.   There was one twit, a man, dressed in T shirt and shorts, shivering - idiot.  Plus the usual array of families with unruly children,  what sane person lets a 5 year old push a trolley?   My mum refused to take us kids with her when she went shopping, she'd leave us with a neighbour so she could shop in peace. 

Oh back to the pic,  I used up some stuff I'd made but then decided not to use for a page in my journal.  After seeing it I liked it and have now decided to use it!  I stamped the flowers then gave them the UTEE treatment,  used the spray and shine on the leaves, a few coats.
This is another journal page,  again to use up stuff I'd cut/made.    The fox made another appearance, sorry but he is just so cute!   I just messed with some stamps on the page,  that is the fun of an art journal, you can just mess. 

Was watching CnC a bit this week,  got a tad sick of the spellbinders,  after them having that huge spellbinder POTW, they follow it with another.   Very nice,  but how many have the money to buy all this stuff?    Now Tonic are at it with a pricey POTW,   why can't CnC split it into 3 flexi payments?    They've also been getting rid of old stock, but I've not been tempted.   I'd like to see a Creative Expressions POTW, or Clarity.   I hear that Clarity are now sellling the Gelli plates,  be interesting to see what Barbara Gray does with it.  They have intrigued me but want to see them in action, so to speak.

More playing tomorrow, or should I tackle the stash?   The latter depends on mum, she takes so long to get going in the morning.  Today she was up at 9 a.m.,  but didn't get her shower till gone 11,  so the morning was gone by the time I'd helped her shower, washed her hair,  then sorted out some clean clothes for her, having found some that should have been put in the laundry basket!  It's infuriating,  as I'd like to do other stuff but can't till she is all done and dusted.  

I hope you are all safe and warm,  enjoy the weekend, and thanks for stopping by.

Friday, 15 March 2013

In with the new and out with the old

My Grand Calibur arrived today -  I'm impressed with the speed of delivery.   So what does any crafter do with a new toy - yep they play!   Since I was going to make a card for someone it was a great chance to put the GC through its paces.  I put all of this little lot through in one go,  that is 5 dies,  two spellbinders, and 3 marianne dies, so different makes and they all went through together and cut no probs,  the embossing was also a doddle.  Curiously I found the handle on the GC easy to turn, could be because it is bigger,  I'm having a bit of trouble gripping stuff.   Also tried out the CB embossing folders,  using the adaptor plate,  no problems with that.  Only one issue, the tan mat is incredibly 'sticky',  could be just cos it is new, but that is very minor.  No need for shims as yet. 

Of course CnC would have to have another spellbinders pick of the week.  Some lovely dies,  but my spending is over for this month.  I've still got a bit of birthday money left but I'm waiting for my craft shop to get some new goodies, which should be soon.

It's been an odd day,  slept well,  but no sunshine today!   Mum had a lie in,  but then I had to talk her into getting a shower and washing her hair.  She is neglecting herself,  she thinks it doesn't matter anymore how she looks.  I finally persuaded her to do as I asked and of course she felt much better,  I put the plug into the bath so she could soak her feet as well.   Also took the chance to grab the washing that she leaves in her room, she forgets that it needs washing, so before she could object it was in the washing machine.  It's sad to see this decline,  mum always looked after her appearance,  now she just doesn't seem to care.  By the time I'd helped mum my foot was really sore, so I abandoned the idea of the supermarket shop and fixed lunch instead.  Then right on time, just when I needed a cheer up the GC arrived!   I really didn't fancy having to cut all the dies on the Bug individually, so I was saved that task.  I've worked out that I've had four die cutting machines,  the Big Shot,  never liked it, found it too cumbersome, then an electronic cutter, not going to mention the name as it was a pain in the butt to use - it seemed to have a mind of its own and never made my life easier!  After that it was the Bug,  okay, did what it said it would,  but still didn't feel happy,  just got sick of needing to faff with shims, and now the GC, will it be the last, I hope so.  It certainly did what it promised to do today,  I do like that the plates say what they are for, cutting plate, base plate,  necessary for us thicko crafters.   I will need to rethink the storage in the craft desk,  as the Bug did fit nicely inside, the GC won't, but it is about time I had a tidy up!  Did I just say that?  

Anyway off now for a cuppa,  enjoy the weekend, and thankyou for stopping by, it is much appreciated.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

More patterns

I decided to carry on with the patterns.  But first I paid a visit to the craft shop to spend a bit of birthday money,  top of the list was black card,  and adaptor plate, spellbinders and washi tape.  Oh should add that I succumbed to temptation and got a Grand Calibur from C&C,  it was too good a price to turn down.   I like the Bug but have wanted to go a bit bigger with the dies so it seemed the sensible option. 

Back to the patterns.  I cut a square of black mirri card,  drew my usual cross to get the centre point and to have some guidelines then used the leaf stamp with the flourish and added gilding flakes.

I was chuffed with the result, a few mistakes as I double stamped with the glue,  next time I will make sure I dab on glue before stamping to ensure the glue stays tacky enough.  Next came the perfect pearls,  had these for yonks and have barely used them.  This is just a piece of 8x8cm square card, used the leaf and then dusted with perfect pearls.  A few smudges, but practice makes perfect as they say!  With the glossy black card they do look very good even if I say so myself.  I did use an anti static bag, essential for any work on black mirri, or any mirri.  And limited handling to ensure no fingerprints.

I dug out a few more small stamps, and after a trial on smaller pieces of card I moved up to the A4 square.   After I'd finished the stamping I left it to dry then diluted some dylusions and did a paint wash.   Now I am wondering what other patterns I can create with these stamps!   I think I need a very indulgent afternoon of stamping.

Well my Grand Calibur is on its way to me, so it may be here by the weekend.   That would be nice as I can have a proper play with the new dies I bought yesterday, spellbinders - some of the new ones.   I used the bug to cut some of the smaller bits.    I had a nice lazy day today,  well it has been my birthday,  not done a lot, and cooked myself a nice roast dinner.  Mum is taking me out to lunch at the weekend.  I've got to make something special for a special person who is having a really hard time of things right now, no ideas as to what yet, but they will come.  Yep it has been a good day. 

Thanks for stopping by, hope all is well with you,  and take care.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

A break from the usual...

I've never really done this, using a stamp to make patterns,  I've seen Barbara Grays creations and been envious.   So after a not so good morning I decided to just sit down and do some stamping, rather than try to make something.

For this I used the leaf stamp from the Get Stamping set of stamps.   I found this piece of card,  it is actually meant for painting, but what else is scrap for?  To find the middle I drew a line from corner to corner, then began making a pattern, just did what I fancied rather than work to a plan.   I guess I could make a really nice set of tiles if I had the patience!

Here's another using a flourish stamp,  it just seemed to lend itself to pattern making.  I wasn't sure whether to colour them or not,  but since these are just samples I decided to get the promarkers out.  I've put these two in my art journal.

Today wasn't a good day,  just like yesterday when I started this blog post!  Mum wasn't very well today so I had to cancel my plans, the first was to visit the walk in centre to have my foot checked, then to have coffee with a friend.   The foot does need to be checked the bruising is still there,  and it is also still very swollen after nearly ten days.   Mum did perk up in late afternoon and she's had some food.

Made this pattern today,  I cut a piece of card into a square, did my usual thing of drawing a line from corner to corner, then drew a circle.  This time I put more thought into what I wanted to create. These are still experiments, but it is so relaxing.

This one is my favourite,  I was a bit heavy with the flourish stamp,  kept forgetting it is a softer stamp!   I'd like to do this with the gilding flakes, just think it would look really good on black card with silver or gold flakes.  Not got any black card, note to self - get some!

Monday was also a disappointing day.  I had hoped my niece would take the electric scooter back with her to Cardiff.  I asked her and got an odd reaction, she seemed unsure,  her husband said yes, she said that they couldn't as they didn't have any room in the car.  They have an estate car,  they'd only been away for the weekend, so I didn't buy the excuse.   Then she said that mum would be using it,  to which mum said that she wouldn't, at least not unaccompanied,  my niece then said I escort mum, er only one, or rather a couple of snags, I can't get the scooter out from the shed, or assemble it - which she knows, in fact she can't lift it either, but she expects I can with a gammy knee and back.  So the damn thing is still here.

I'm hoping mum will be okay tomorrow so I can go to the walk in centre,  I also fancy going to the marina to feed the ducks and swans, need something to cheer me up.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Foxy stamps

Here is the stamps from Get Stamping,  I love the fox, he is so cute. There are two frames as well,  and the chevron is easy to line up.  They are good, solid stamps.

Mum was delighted with her card and the verse I had found, and the book I'd bought her,  which is the new one by Judy Finnegan.  She has been pampered all day,  now I'm having a rest!  I think there should be a Carer's Day!

So here is what I made with the new stamps, I didn't want to leave any of them out, but in the end I went with the fox and the sentiment.  As you can see I stamped the fox cub 3 times,  I heat embossed the first, then used gilding flakes on the other two, then added some small beads for their noses and eyes.  I used some promarkers on their eyes and tails,  didn't like the true white,  the background was embossed and inked, some flowers added and a bow.  Now I'll move on to the other stamps, the tree is really nice,  lends itself to all sorts of stamping, including backgrounds, as does the chevron.  This is just for me, in fact it is now in my art journal.   I did enter Hels challenge,  always lovely to put something on her blog.

Today was also paperwork day!  Really needed to knuckle down and get stuff done.  So lots to go into the shredder, but also stuff ready to be posted, phew.

Here's my art journal, on the second page, along with another favourite quote.  I used the gilden heart and the frame from the foxy stamps, plus the trees, just felt like stamping them on there. I may though start using the blending tool to add the glue for the gilding flakes, using the pads means you get sticky fingers, which then end up with flakes all over them.   It does take a few goes to get the hang of it,  for a start you don't use the acrylic block, but literally 'kiss' the paper with the stamp.

And  I had to include a close up of the sentiment,  just fun and  happy words.

Nice also to have Julia back,  I've been missing her amazing creations.  Good to have you back, hope all those bugs have now gone.

I'm now getting caught up in Dancing on Ice, I would love to see Beth Tweddle win, she has been an amazing skater.

Not sure what is on the cards for tomorrow,  my niece is supposed to be calling in on her way back from Scotland,  she'll be travelling from one end of the country to the other as her home is in Cardiff.  The forecast isn't very good, so I'm not sure if she will have time to call in.  Now for one final photo, and is has nothing to do with crafting.

Not attractive, it is our bin shed, and this is how my brother in law left it, the recycling stuff piled on top of that damn scooter,  I can't access anything in the shed itself, let alone untangle the recycling boxes.  And he thought this was okay?!  I could clock him.  Mum won't use the scooter unacommpanied,  but there is no way I can get it out of the shed,  or assemble it, or then lift it onto the pavement!  The man is just stupid and pig headed, this was his idea, so he is determined it will work, it takes him nearly 15 minutes to get the scooter in and out of the shed,  he has an estate car so it will fit into his boot, it won't fit into the Micra.  If it weren't for my twisted/sprained ankle that ruddy scooter would be laying out in the road.   If my niece does call in tomorrow it will be going back with her to Cardiff.

Hope everyone had a nice weekend,  stay warm it is going to get very cold this week!

Saturday, 9 March 2013

A bit of this and that

Finally got round to putting the Mother's Day card together, though as usual the design was changed.  I was going to have an all white background,  embossed and perhaps with some mirri card but...  couldn't resist using the shaving foam card I made yesterday.  I embossed it, and then layered it onto mirri and some white card.  I cut a mount for the butterfly, using silver mirrir and vellum for the flutterby,  then cut some flowers in white card, added a white ribbon and that is it!  Just needs the sentiment and an insert.

I was pleased with the finished design,  it just all came together.  I think I need more dies,  spellbinders labels I think would be very useful for mounts,  and more flowers.  Should have some birthday money next week so I may treat myself.   I almost succumbed to the four day deal on CnC, but resisted till it all sold out, phew.

Now for a bit of digi art.  There are some lovely quotes in the book A Safe Journey Home,  and I came across this one.  I just felt it needed a picture.  I did look to see if there were any remembrance digi kits, there was one but it was a bit too full of religious images for my liking.  I haven't been playing with Craft Artist Pro much, so it was nice to get back to it.  I bought a few cheap digi kits last night, some digi stamps and more backgrounds.  All had been reduced so they cost less than a tenner.

I also indulged in a new craft magazine, Get Stamping, I spotted in Tesco and just couldn't resist the set of stamps that came with it.  I've been having a play with them today,  they are lovely quality and give a nice crisp image.  I do find that stamps with some mags can be very poor quality, but not with this mag.  It is bi monthly,  and is 7.99, which isn't cheap but you do get a full set of stamps, stamp pad and acrylic block,  so keep a look out for it.   My foot is still sore and the bruising is still coming out,  I've been resting it all week,  but had to go to supermarket as I'd forgotten some bits on the online shop, was hoping that there would be an electric buggy available but they were all taken.  So the foot was complaining for the rest of the day and night.  Now must go find a nice verse to go inside mothers day card!

Enjoy the weekend, and Happy Mother's Day to all the mums.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Getting Messy

Take a plate of shaving foam, add dylusions and... get messy!   Well a challenge I've entered means I have to use this technique, so decided to have a not so dry run today. 

The twisted ankle is doing nicely,  now it is green, blue, black and purple,  back and front of foot!   I got some tubi grip for it  yesterday, and a wrist support for my sore wrist.  Hobbling nicely,  outside I'm using two crutches,  need to take the weight off the ankle.   Managing to catch up on some sleep at last,  didn't wake up till almost 9 a.m., this morning, which is a lie in for me.   At least I was greeted by blue sky and sunshine.

So after mixing the shaving foam and colours I dipped in the card.   Nice, I like it!  I want to try the alcohol inks tomorrow.  I also started a project, but the light was fading so couldn't take any photos, will do tomorrow. 

Think my mind is still back in the Lakes at the moment,  wish I could press rewind!  It all seemed to go too quickly.    Have now got loads of pics from the others,  always nice to have.  And have downloaded a few digi kits from Daisytrail

I did this yesterday in my art journal,  a bit of watercolour work, and a stream of consciousness above it.  I was trying to capture the view we had from the cottage.  I rather enjoyed it,  must have another go. 

Mum is now being less needy, mind you she has no choice as I am pretty much out of action.  She had her shower today, but I couldn't help her much, but she managed.  She even admitted later that maybe she had been letting me do a bit too much for her!   I do though miss our old neighbour Maureen, she was such a rock when I broke my knee and wrist, I so wish she was still here,   she was always so cheerful and saw things in a positive light.    Though I think Fortune is smiling on me as I had an email from Mr Tesco, offering me £12 off the next online shop!  Brilliant timing... the order will be going in tomorrow.

I'm an expert at balancing on one leg while cooking, or doing anything.  But my poor left leg is starting to feel the pressure,  it is really sore at the moment,  I don't need it to let me down. 

More tomorrow, and hopefully a new creation!  Thanks for stopping by

Sunday, 3 March 2013

And Relax.......

I'm back from my weekend away...   feel the calm!   It started well, as I approached the Lakes the weather improved, the sun came out and it was blue sky.   Then...   SatNav got confused, mind you so did I - and not with the SatNav, but with the silly exit from the M6.  After a quick look at map I spotted where I should be going and the SatNav caught up.  Me have blind faith in a SatNav... not on your nelly.   Had to laugh at the way the SatNav said 'recalculating' in a really fed up way!   Got to my destination, well SatNav said I was there,  but which bloody house was it?
I made it after a quick phone call,  enjoyed a nice cuppa and relaxed, a few minutes later the rest of the gang arrived and any hope of relaxation went out of the window.  This is what happens when you don't see friends for a few months, lots to catch up on.  The first photo was the view from the back door,  what would you give to wake up to a view like that every day?    Second pic is part of the 'complex' there are 3 cottages for hire,  ours was at the front, it being the biggest.  It was a very old cottage but had been lovingly restored,  no expense spared it seemed.   Comfy beds, lots of space...  a woodburner,  bliss.  Only downside to my stay was when I ventured outside in the dark, missed the last step and fell,  in trying not to do any more damage to my damaged knee I successfully twisted my ankle, and have a big bruise on my hip!   Just as well I am still using a crutch.   The ankle is nicely swollen and currently a black and blue colour

with a hint of green.  Hey ho. I think it was one of those 'meant to be' things,  mum has become very needy of late,  letting me do more for her when really she can do it herself.   So at the moment I am semi out of action,  meaning mum will have to do a bit more fending for herself, which is no bad thing.

We did lots of arty things at the weekend,  I did some sketching, but was missing my craft stuff!  I had been planning to take some bits but didn't.  But I can do that this week, since my sore ankle means  I won't be doing much else.   My sister, who was looking after mum sorted out the shopping, and cleaned the flat!

Now we just have to plan the next weekend!   Crafty stuff coming up in the week...  Hope your weekend was as enjoyable as mine, without the injury.