Tuesday 30 July 2013

25 years ...... and still going strong!

Morning everyone,

It's a bit of a landmark day today - I've done my Tim Tag with over 2 days to spare!!! ....... No,  that's not the reason ......... it's actually our Silver Wedding Anniversary.  I can't believe it's 25 years since we said 'I Do' 
After seeing each other for only 10 days, Stephen whisked me away to Scotland for the weekend and proposed.  I said Yes, (obviously) and the rest is history.

July 30th 1988 (he looks so young!)
It's been a fabulous 25 years of fun and laughter, always an adventure, there's been a few tears along the way too.  But, I wouldn't change a thing.  He's my best friend, he can always make me smile (well, nearly always), and I love him to bits!
We're certainly eeking out the celebrations - the holiday in Italy, weekend away in the Cotswolds, we're off out for a meal tonight (just the two of us) and we were going to spend the night in a hotel but, unfortunately Stephen is off on a business trip early tomorrow so we thought we'd save that for another time.

I must confess, I haven't made him an anniversary card - how bad am I?!  I am going to dedicate my July Tim Tag to the best husband ever though .........
Here's Tim's inspiration for this month

and this is my take on it ....... specially for hubby.

All the details on the techniques and products used can be found over on the Tim Holtz blog.  As usual, not all mine are the same. 
I kept to the colours (more or less), and did Tim's brayering technique to colour the tag.  Then I used stamps from Urban Chic (CMS086) and Shabby French (CMS087) to create the background.  I also added a few words from a sheet of the 'Words'  Remnant Rubs.

I went for the Heart Wings alterations die to create the focal point, cut from Grunge Board.  I think it's time I had a new pot of the Rock Candy Crackle paint though - mine was very thick when I applied it, you can see all the brush strokes.  I quite like the effect it's made though, it's still crackled ok and I love how it takes the colour  from the stains ......

I used Festive Berries Distress Stain on the heart, and Brushed Pewter on the wings.

The 25 was cut using the Wordplay die then coloured with Distress Paint

The words are from Tim's 'Simple Sayings' stamp set .......

and I finished it all off with some seam binding, coloured to match, and some metal embellies

There's even a tiny heart on there, encased in Glossy Accents, along with a lock and key.  Well hubby does have the key to my heart - aawwwww!

Thanks for popping by today.  Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday. 

Cheerio for now


Monday 29 July 2013

Me and my big mouth .........!!!!

Hi everyone,

I'm home!!  It's nice to be back.  Suitcase is unpacked (again), washing is all done (again) and the craft room door is open - yeah!!

We've had a lovely weekend in the Cotswolds ....... what a beautiful part of the UK it is.  We're definitely going to be going back there, there's so much to see.  We crammed as much as we could into the 3 days we were there, but only skimmed the surface.

I had to go and say it, didn't I - that it was looking like we would have a good flight over to the UK.  Me and my BIG! mouth.  We had a delay of over 4 and a half hours ........ just after I'd blogged on Thursday, the blue skies and the sun disappeared and a thick mist came in over the island.  It sat there all flippin' afternoon, and we sat at the airport!! 
When the weather's like that, flights can't land on the island, our plane was actually circling overhead when we arrived at the airport at 4pm, but eventually it turned around and went back to Liverpool.  We finally got away at 9.40 in the evening.   After a long journey on the motorway, what with queues and then it was closed for two junctions so we had to take a detour, we finally arrived at our hotel about 2am.

We stayed in Cheltenham, at a lovely little hotel called The Wyastone.  Lydia was lovely and told us the best places to go and see.  One of her suggestions was that we took the Romantic Road - two specially researched car routes - A Road for Today and A Road for Tomorrow (aawww).  We took her advice and off we went. 
The routes take you through the most beautiful parts of the area, lots of little villages, full of beautiful honey-coloured stone cottages, very picturesque.    My favourite parts were Broadway, Stow on the Wold (great little Tea Rooms - Huffkins, they do fabulous cream teas!) Bourton on the Water (the Venice of the Cotswolds - cute little town, nice pubs along the water) and the Lavender Fields in Snowshill - simply beautiful! The tea rooms are very nice here too ....... we had some yummy lavender shortbread .......

And a rare picture indeed - I'm usually the other side of the camera ........

All in all we had a lovely relaxing weekend, stunning scenery, nice food and wine, and we even managed a spot of shopping.  No craft shops though, although we did buy a painting, I'm just waiting for it to be shipped.  It was hung in the hotel, done by a local artist, Katharine Dove, and it really caught my eye.  Luckily Stephen liked it too, an early anniversary pressie. 

Oh well, I'd better get on.  There's a chicken roasting in the oven, and the veg is cooking nicely, dinner won't be long. 
Thanks for popping by.  I'll be back tomorrow with some crafty stuff - my Tim Tag is finally done!!!

Have a lovely evening, it's beautiful here on the island (for now!)
Cheerio and I'll see you again tomorrow.


Thursday 25 July 2013

Just before I go .......


I've just got time for a quick blog post before I go and pack my suitcase (I'm getting quite good at it now, all the practice I've had recently!).
The sun's just come out, the clouds are clearing and there's blue skies out there.  Should have a good flight this afternoon. 

Before I dash off on my latest trip I need to get my entry in for this weeks Less is More Challenge.  Yes, I'm on a roll, two weeks on the trot - whoo hoo!!! Go Me! 
I couldn't not enter this week, could I, after being ShowCASed last week.  It is my favourite Blog Challenge, (it was the first one I ever entered) and to be chosen for the ShowCASe is always a thrill, there's so many fabulous entries every week.
I must say, I haven't got much else done this week though - too much TV watching.  Thank goodness it didn't take too long to name the royal baby.  Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge - has a nice ring to it I think.
Hopefull next week I can make a big dent in the To Do list.   My Timmie Tag's still outstanding.  Ah well, there's time when I get back, along with all the other stuff I need to do (gulp!)

This week over at LIM it's a Theme week ........ and the theme is ......

Hand Made Flowers

We can use any medium we like, card, fabric, embossing powder, you name it.

I've gone for coloured cardstock and one of my favourite flower dies ....... the delicate Prim Poppy from Memory Box (I love it!!)

This little die is sooo pretty, and looks fab whatever colour you use.  I've stuck with the traditional red poppies.  I've cut the die twice, one red, one green.  Cut the flower heads from the red one and attached them over the top of the green - simple.

I've stamped the lovely sentiment from the JOFY 14 set of rubber stamps, onto a piece of white card, added my poppies and mat onto a layer of the same red cardstock. The whole thing was then attached to a 7x5 cardblank (I love this size of card)  I think this qualifies as Hand Made Flowers don't you - hope so anyway.

Oh well, I suppose I'd better get a move on.  There's still a few jobs to do around the house before I jet off.  I've already conquered the mountain of ironing this morning, and every room has had a quick tidy.  Just the dishwasher and the bins to do -  I get all the good jobs around the house ....... in fact, I get ALL the jobs around the house come to think of it.  I deserve a break!!

Thanks for popping by.  Enjoy the weekend, I'm going to. And I'll see you again soon.

Cheerio for now


Wednesday 24 July 2013

It's a Boy!

Hi there,

Happy Wednesday, and Congratulations to William and Kate on the birth of their son.  Isn't he cute, and he's already got the royal wave too - clever boy!

picture from the Daily telegraph
Hopefully I can get back to normal now, instead of having one eye on the TV all day.
It's a good excuse to make a baby card though ......

Sorry, just a sneaky peek on here.  To see it in full, you'll have to pop over to the Indigo Blu DT Blog today, it's my weekly post day.

It's proving to be another busy week, and it's a short one too.  I'm in headless chicken mode again I'm afraid.  I'm off on another trip at the weekend, and I've only just unpacked from the last one! 
This should be a nice relaxing few days though. Stephen's taking me away for our Wedding Anniversary (romantic thing) - well it is our 25th next week.  Plan was to go up to Scotland (that's where he proposed all those years ago), but we've changed our minds.  We're off to the Cotswolds instead.  We've never been to that part of the UK so it'll be an adventure.

I've some stuff to do before we leave though, so I'd better get a move on.  Back to the craft room it is.

Thanks for popping by today, enjoy the rest of your Wednesday.

Cheerio for now


Monday 22 July 2013

We're having a baby ........ !!!!!

Good afternoon everyone,

Two Blog posts in one day, what's going on!? 
Well it's a bit of an historic day isn't it.  Kate's finally gone into labour.  Yes, it's the royal baby I'm getting excited about - not the patter of tiny feet arriving here! (Phew!  - you can breathe again now Stephen, just in case you saw the  post title and thought there was something I wasn't telling you!)
Let's hope he, or she, doesn't take too long to arrive I can't get anything done - come on Kate, Push!!

What a busy weekend I've had, and I've loved every minute of it, well maybe not the flight home.
I spent the weekend in the UK, down at Indigo Blu HQ for the Open Weekend.  It was a huge success and I think everyone that came really enjoyed themselves.  Thanks to everyone involved, the Indigo Blu staff who were absolutely awesome - Diane you're an angel, thanks for looking after me all weekend, making sure I was fed and watered.
All the ladies, and gents, that came to see us, thanks for making the weekend such a huge success.  And of course a mahoosive thanks to Kay and Alfie for inviting me over to demonstrate.  I was so nervous to begin with (it had been a while) but I soon settled in.  It was so nice to have the DT all together.

Here's a little look at my corner of the workshop area ........ 

I must confess it didn't stay that tidy all weekend ......... we had fun though.  It's a tough job, but someone's got to do it!

Dates for the next Indigo Blu Retreat have been released, and also a number of 1 day workshops with Kay.  Check out the Indigo Blu website for full details and cost etc.  Don't leave it too long if you want to attend, they're booking up fast!

I got a nice surprise too when I got home.  Hubby had got a chinese take away, there was a nice bottle of red with my name on it, but that wasn't it.  While I was checking through my Blog list, catching up on what I'd missed all weekend, I found that I'd been ShowCASed for my Shades of Grey entry over at LIM - whoo hoo!!
I love this Blog Challenge, it's just a shame I don't get the time to enter as often as I'd like. It's definitely on the list this week.

Well, there's still no news from the hospital, and I really must get back to the old craft room, even though it's like a sauna in there at the moment.
Join me again tomorrow (not too early though), over on the Craftwork Cards Blog.  I'll be burning the midnight oil to get my project finished for you.

Thanks for popping by today.  Enjoy the rest of your Monday.

Cheerio for now.


Christmas ........in July!!!!!

Season's Greetings, and a Happy Monday,

I'm sorry to mention the 'C' word again, especially as the sun is still cracking the flags outside.  We're all thinking about barbeques and salads along with tall glasses of something cool, not trimming the tree, roasting a turkey and hot chocolate by the fire.

But, it's that time in July again when there's a brand new Indigo Blu Forever 21 Challenge., and this month's theme is ..........


The challenge is actually launching a day late this time, but we do have a good reason for that .......... we were all a little busy with the Indigo Blu Open Weekend.  Thanks to everyone involved and to those of you that came along and made the opening a huge success.

Before I show you my DT inspiration though, Congratulations to the winner of the last challenge ......

 No. 14   Almo

Well done and thank you for taking part in the challenge.   I hope you enjoy your prize.

Indigo Blu recently launched their brand new range of Christmas stamps, so we thought it was the perfect time for you get your thinking caps on and start designing this years Christmas cards. I know some of you will have already made a start, but  if you're anything like me, the festive stash is still well and truly locked away (well it was!!!)  Panic usually sets in about the middle of November when I realise just how many Christmas cards I need!
Each year I have good intentions.  For instance, in January this year I said I was going to make at least one Christmas card every week.  How many have I got so far ........ 0!   The only Christmas cards I've made so far are the one's for the TV.  Not to worry, there's still loads of time ...........

Here's some inspiration to maybe get you started ....

I've used the Stag Cliffhanger stamp - love this!
You can see it is all one stamp, but just by masking off the bottom part (the Christmas sentiment), you could actually use the stag all year round - great for men's cards I think. Don't lock this one away at the end of December.

I've made a large 8x8 design here, but you could make this smaller.  Or, maybe just use the stag scene for the cards you send to everyone and his dog (well, it is Christmas) and use the larger design for family and special friends.

The background panel was done using the Baubles Flourish (another of my favourite stamps - this is going to get used a lot!).  I've stamped the flourish part around the edge of a piece of cream cardstock using Coffee Archival ink, then inked the edges with a touch of Vintage Photo Distress.  I've also picked out all the dots within the design, and used a Quickie Glue pen over them, left the glue to go tacky then covered them with Chariot of Fire Mega flake.  Left it to dry completely, then scoochied off the excess.

The winter scene was created using masks, hand cut from copier paper, and Vintage Photo Distress ink.  I masked off the bottom of the stamp, inked it up using the Coffee Archival again, then removed the mask BEFORE I stamped the stag.

The extra bits of foliage around the edges were done using just the tips of the tree - first and second generation stamps, to create a bit of depth.

Everything was then mat and layered using red and Kraft cardstock.  I stamped the sentiment part of the Stag Cliffhanger onto cream card using Crimson Red Versafine.  I then cut around it, mat and layered to match the rest of the card, and added a pretty organza bow.

I finished off with just a touch of fine crystal glitter to highlight the snow .....

Are you feeling festive yet? Want something a little quicker to make?  How about this one .....

Really quick and easy, using the stunning new Baroque Bauble.
8 x8 again.  Stamp the bauble, towards the top left hand corner, using Flitter Glu.  Cover with Mega Flake, I used Winter Dawn, and scoochy off the excess.
Make yourself a mask to cover the bauble.  With this in place, stamp the bauble again, this time using a metallic ink, and stamp slightly overlapping the one that's masked.

Add a pretty bow and some gems to finish.

Have you got the festive spirit now?   Why not dig out those Indigo Blu Christmas stamps and get creating.
You have until 8.00pm on August 20th to get your Christmas in July entries in.  It may just have cooled down a bit by then - or not!

Have a great week.  I'm looking forward to seeing all your festive designs.  Good luck to all of you.

Happy crafting!  Oh, and Merry Christmas!!!!!!
Cheerio for now


Friday 19 July 2013

Morning everyone!

Happy Friday!  Well, that's another week gone by and no blog posts done - shame on me!!  I do have an excuse though - I've been working in the old craft room all week.  Well, apart from a couple of hours on Wednesday that is, when I had coffee and a lovely catch up with a friend.  Even managed a bit of retail therapy too (once I'd escaped for a while, there was no stopping me!)

It's been so hot over here too, the craft room is like a sauna in the afternoons.  There's no room to put a fan, and I can't even open a window.  Can you imagine the state of things though, once a breeze started coming through - there would be paper and card everywhere, not to mention the glitter and gilding flakes.  It would be worse than it usually is!  I can't take any more layers off - naked crafting is not a good look!!

OK, so what have I been up to?  Well, funny you should ask ........ what a busy week it's been.  It all started with samples for the lovely Sam Poole.  She's back on our screens on Monday next week - Create and Craft at 4pm and 7pm.  If you fancy a sneaky look at what I've been doing then pop over to the Creative Studios DT Blog.

Once they were all done and in the hands of Mr Royal Mail, it was on to prep work for the BIG event this weekend.
Indigo Blu are having an Open Weekend over at HQ.  It's all happening and I'm flying over there at lunchtime today.
It's so exciting, they're having a Grand Opening of their brand new retail premises, along with purpose built workshop area.
There's demonstrations all weekend, by the lovey Kay Halliwell-Sutton, Nikki, Clare from the DT and of course ME!!!   - eeeek!  I haven't done any of that for over 3 years, so I'm expecting to be a little rusty.  If any of you are popping over there, be gentle with me won't you.
There's going to be a launch of all the workshop dates, and the next Indigo Blu Retreat, and of course lots of tea and cake!
The shop does look fab, Kay's daughter Becca has designed it and done all the hard work.  If you fancy a look, check out Becca's blog there's some fab pictures.  I can't wait to see it in the flesh, so to speak.

In between all the goings on in the old craft room, I've had a couple of visits from postie this week.  Look what he brought me today .......

oooh ....... pretty colours.  Haven't had time to use them yet.  That's something to look forward to next week I suppose.
The best one though was on Tuesday.  The doorbell went, so off I go.  There's my delivery man holding a parcel (nothing strange there).  'Are you on your own love?' he asks.  Well, what does a girl say .......... why does he want to know?  'Are there any little people around' he continues 'only this thing is talking!' He hands me the parcel and it says ....... 'To infinity and beyond!'
That's when the penny dropped ........ this is what, or rather who, he'd brought me .......

Alex's birthday present.  Phew!!

Anyway, it's off to the UK later today.  But first I have to pack.  Samples - check.  Demo stuff - check.
Craft kit - check.  Oooops, there's not a lot of room left for clothes (we're back to the naked crafting again!)  It's a good job I don't need much.

Before I dash off here's something I was playing with yesterday.  I thought it could sit on my demo table at the weekend .......

It's made using the new Indigo Blu Poinsettia stamp.  I've just stamped the largest bloom 5 times onto yellow card, then topped it off with the medium one.  Added the centre, punched from brown cardstock and now I have a sunflower .......

I used Mowed Lawn Distress paint to colour a kebab stick, and then stamped the large bloom again, this time onto green card, to make the leaves.

I've fixed the flower into a large cotton reel that's been painted using the new Indigo Blu Cottage Garden Acrylic Paints - Hot Cocoa shade, then added some ribbon and a cute little dragonfly.

Just goes to show ....... a poinsettia is not just for Christmas!

Oh well, must get on.  I've a suitcase to pack, and a plane to catch.

Thanks for popping by today.  Have a lovely weekend, I'm certainly looking forward to mine.

I wonder if we'll get another 'boat' popping into Douglas Bay this weekend.  This is what we saw last Saturday as we drove down the prom ......

...... the second one this month.  Apparently, the captain on this particular ship was Manx so he spent the afternoon showing passengers around the island.  Hmmmm ...... wonder if he made it down to Castletown for the Tin Bath races !!!!!
And on that note, I'll say ......

Cherrio for now

Enjoy the sunshine and stay cool


Friday 12 July 2013

Not quite 50 shades .........

Happy Friday,

And what a glorious week it's been.  I'm blogging in the garden again, sat in the sun with a glass of something chilled (orange juice of course!)  I've had a busy old week, so I don't feel guilty at all.

I've even made time to enter one of my favourite Blog challenges.  It's been a while, but I couldn't resist this weeks challenge over at Less is More

It's the first week of the month, so it's a colour challenge.  We need to use .......

Now, we don't have to use Fifty, just a minimum of two will do, with lots of white (or grey) space.

This little die, new from Penny Black, popped through the letter box a few days ago, along with the new JOFY stamps which is where the words came from, and I thought the two went nicely together.  The birds have been cut in two different shades of grey cardstock, trust me.  It's difficult to see in the photo - that'll teach me to take pictures in the sun.

You can see it a little better here.
The words were stamped in Smokey Grey Versafine ink, so that's another shade I suppose. See, I said we didn't have to use fifty ......... I've managed 3!

Speaking of shades, I needed mine last night........... the things I do!!!
There's more than 50 shades in this lot.......... a spot of ironing that needed doing last night

Hubby's wardrobe for today at work.

I tell you, there's always something going on where Stephen works.  Today, not only have they got free ice cream all day (there's a van parked in the car park), but it's been Loud Shirt Day. 
I believe it's something being run by one of the islands radio stations - 3FM, to raise money for DASH (The Drugs Advisory Service Helpline).  Poker Stars, along with other businesses on the island are all joining in.

Now my other half does like a loud shirt now and then (these are just a few from his collection).  And, as he couldn't make his mind up which one to wear, he took all four with him - I've just spoken to him and he's wearing shirt number 4 (more washing and ironing!)  It's paid off though, I've just had an email with the names of the winners and he's top of the list - Go Stephen!!!  Not sure what the prize is yet, but a night in a fancy hotel was mentioned ......... nice!

Now I haven't been sat in the garden doing nothing all day, I have posted on the Creative Studios DT Blog, if you fancy a read - more quick and easy cards using Sam Poole's new Shabby Chic stamps. However it is getting rather warm now, and it's time to refill my glass.

Thanks for popping by. Have a lovely weekend, let's hope this sun keeps shining.


See you all again soon


Wednesday 10 July 2013

It's been a while ......

Good morning everyone,

Yes, it's me ....... I know it's been a while since my last blog post.  Just in case you were thinking I'd given up, closed the craft room door, covered myself in SPF 30 and taken to a sun lounger in the garden (if only!!!!),the answer is no, I haven't.  Tempting as that sounds, I'm afraid I've not had much time for sun worshipping, although I must confess I did spend a couple of hours yesterday in the garden (in the shade of course).  I had the laptop with me, and I was working.
The reason for my absence is ..... I've been writing up 'Step by Steps', lots of them, and now my head hurts!!! There's a batch been done for some of my Indigo Blu Christmas samples, and I've also been busy doing some for one of the sets of Wedding Stationary I made for Kay's Indigo Blu Wedding show on Create and Craft, back in May this year.  Hopefully they will be going into one of the C&C Club Members Magazines ....... ooh!

It's hard work writing instructions, trying to keep things simple.  You know me, I can go on a bit  .......why use four or five words, when you can use twelve, or more!  Anyhow, each set includes pictures as well as words, and each of them have been followed and the cards etc. made, so yes, the Step by Steps do work!  Just one more to go and then they're all finished - yeah!!

I had to take a break though and make some birthday cards.  Bit of a last minute thing, which is nothing new for me!
Actually, I did say I wasn't going to make any cards for this particular birthday boy, but in the end I weakened.  Well, just because he forgot MY birthday, (for a couple of hours anyway) and I DIDN'T get a birthday card ............ I shouldn't hold it against him.   Two wrongs don't make a right and all that.

So ........... Happy Birthday Hubby!!

Nothing fancy I'm afraid...... but hey, at least he's got a card.

The image is from an SU stamp set, from last year, called Feeling Sentimental, and the words are from the Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous Classics #5.  This saying is so true.  I don't think Stephen will ever stop playing,  he's always said he's never going to grow up - bless him!

Not only did I make one card, I made two ........

Again, quick and easy, but it says it all. 
The image is from Penny Black, the stamped words are SU again, and the word 'Dad' has been cut out of paper pieces, from my overflowing 'bit box', using the Tim Holtz Wordplay Die.  The 'd's' are actually 'b's' reversed, they looked better :)

So, the Birthday Boy has had breakfast in bed (just like every other morning), 2 handmade birthday cards, and, we're off out this evening, to one of the top restaurants on the island for dinner. Can't be bad!
No pressie though ........ shame on me!  Well, he can't decide what he wants. What do you get the guy that has everything?  A new computer has been mentioned so I think I'll leave that up to him to sort out.

Well, that's got Wednesday off to a good start.  Back to the craft room now, it's my day to post on the Indigo Blu DT blog, so its time to put the old thinking cap on.   Check it out later to see what I've been up to.

Thanks for popping by, enjoy the rest of your day.

Cheerio for now