Thursday, 17 December 2015

Sketchy Scrapper pages

So last week I was struck down with the lurgy which meant a "swimmy" head, sore throat and the sneezes.  I didn't have much to post for Me on a Monday but I did manage to find some scrapping time on Saturday afternoon to cheer myself up!

I finished off this layout first which I started at a crop in November by adding the stitching.  I used the Sketchy Scrappers sketch but definitely only for inspiration rather than following to the letter, which is my usual slant.

I've used some papers from those gifted to me by my daughter to record some of the games we have been playing this year...

Next up was this sketch which had me stumped for a while.  I swapped the wash of paint behind for some embossing paste through a heart stencil...

And used some remaining MME papers to scrap Alex and Josh at my cousins' wedding in 2013. They both looked so grown up and smart.  There was a real differnce in height back then but now Josh has caught her up!

Thanks for looking and leaving a comment - I do love to read them.  My scrapping time has been dwindling lately with so much going on so I'm hoping to get some done once the holidays start (which for me is 24th December!).  I think my new years resolution (not that I usually make any!) will be to plan in more crafty time.  How about you?

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Me on a Monday

I really think I should call this post Me on a Tuesday from now on as I always seem to be a day behind!  I manage to do most of it on the iPad but then need to reach for the lap top to tidy up the post and resize the photos and it's always either out of power or out of reach!  Will make more effort next week!  Anyway on to the post...

It started off early again with a trip down the M6 at lunch time to Nottingham for our company conference.  The room looked very pretty - all white and blue - and we got an update on how things are going (which is pretty well, thank goodness!)...

Then it was off with the boring presentations and on with the partying.  A lovely meal, lots of catching up and putting faces to names, some karaoke and of course a lot of dancing!  These are two of the lovely managers I work with...

After a rather late night (or should that be early morning) we piled back on the coach for the trip home. The afternoon was spent tidying, cleaning and shopping. Oh and scrapping!  I finally scrapped!

It was a watch for the rain to stop kind of Sunday morning and as soon as it did we headed to Christmas Tree farm for our tree.  It has an eclectic mix of decorations which seems to grow every year!...

The bottom right hand one isn't one of them by the way.  That's just Josh wondering why we are looking at the 8th tree in a row when the first one was just fine!  Tree picked it was home for a quick lunch and leaving them all to get it up and decorated whilst I headed off with some of my Brownies to visit Santa...

We visited the county campsite for two hours of fun.  There were crafts, a Frozen trail, a mini panto, shopping and a visit to the big man himself.  The girls had a great afternoon and I was feeling very festive at the end of the day.  Just in the right mood to sit near the tree and watch the I'm a celebrity final.  I think this years has been one of the best yet!

Monday evening finds me collapsed on the sofa with a cat on my lap having just done the last Brownie meeting of the year and nursing a sore throat.  I'm hoping it doesn't linger.  In the meantime I'm cheering myself up with a little bit of Kirsty's Handmade Christmas on TV...

See what all the other Me on a Mondayers have been up to by heading over to Sian's.  If you've not joined in yet why don't you?  And let me know so I can pay you a visit.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Me on a Monday

Waves to all the Me on a Mondayers - please pop over to Sian's blog to see who joined in last week. 

It was another long weekend with a Fricay off work  This involved shopping in Manchester with breakfasts accompanied by bellinis, avoiding the Christmas Markets due to a bomb scare, being made over at the make up counter and picking up quiet a few things on my Christmas shopping list...

It ended with a lovely meal out and great conversation with friends....
It also included taking photos of pretty lights...

Saturday was a trip to Boots for some Black Friday bargains (hello Babyliss Curl!) then home to  get jobs done kind of day including a mammoth Amazon shop! It was Victorian Day in the village which was a bit of a wash out.  There were no fireworks but the lights went on.... 

Alex dressed the part for her shift at the tea shop...

Then it was boring food shopping on Sunday and a quick trip to the phone shop for another deal and an early Christmas present for me :)

In between it was the usual TV viewing - my goodness things in the jungle are getting feisty! - and more knitting of small hats for juice bottles.

Monday found me chairing a disciplinary which took 3 and half hours with a few twist and turns followed by a very noisy Brownie meeting (I don't know where they get their energy from!) so forgive me for not posting last night.

Here's to a good week and oh look it's the 1st December. Holidays are coming!!!

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Pocket page scrapping

I'm not a project lifer but I have used pocket pages for a few projects now - December memories for the last two years, some insert pages alongside 12 x 12 pages on trips away and currently I'm working through a load to record a trip to Barcelona a few years back.

I've learnt a few things along the way so thought I'd share them here (forgive me if you already knew!);

  • It's good to collect ephemera along the way like tickets, messages and leaflets.  
  • Do photo printing in batches but work out your sizes before hand so you know which page protector to use.  Print some full pocket size and others smaller to be mounted on paper.
  • Have your diary to hand so you can remember the date and order things happened.
  • Gather all your supplies and stick to them for faster scrapping.  I put all mine in a small basket and a tray.
  • Don't scrap week by week just as it comes.  That way I cam include lots of photos from one event and won't get stressed if I have a quiet week where not much happens!
  • But if not much has happened then remember to include the little details.

So now I've dabbled a little I felt it was time to commit to completing an album and what better year than 2016 when I also have a big birthday to celebrate.  

I felt I needed a kit to help with a whole album, one that gave me some small alphas and embellishments and not just a box of project life cards, so I did some research.  Sadly there was nothing in the UK that I could find so I continued my search overseas.  The result was four US kits which all varied in cost and content...

Hip Kit Club
Gossamer Blue
Citrus Twist
This life noted
Project Life kit
Life pages kit
Pocket Life kit
25 PL cards
Alphabet x 2
Embellies x 3
30 PL cards
Stamp set
Embellies x 6
Digital printable
Card stock x 4
6x6 paper x 18
Stamp set
Embellies x 5
12 PL cards
After 3 months
Any time
After 3 months
English money!

The result?  A subscription to Gossamer Blue's Life pages kit.  I've subscribed to their main kit in the past so knew the quality and service could be trusted and I also liked the selection of products in past kits...

So now it's case of sitting back and waiting for the postie.  Kits ship on the 5th and I've started with December's so hoping I might get time to play over the festive season.

Would love to know if you have any tips for pocket scrapping.  If so please let me know!

Monday, 23 November 2015

Me on a Monday

It was a "let's start early" kind of weekend with a day off work on Friday for both of us.  We headed to John Lewis and an out of town M&S to make a dent in the Christmas shopping.  Whilst out Tony bumped into this fellow...

Then it was a stuck in horrible traffic kind of afternoon which meant it was a mad dash to get out Friday evening for our festive meal together.  21 out of the 24 of us made it out all together - all but one couple have a boy in Year 10 and we've been friends since we met in the primary playground. The other couples' connection is Year 12 with a couple of us.  I thank my lucky stars I have such an amazing group of friends on my doorstep.  When I first moved up here to move in with Tony I knew nobody and felt quite lonely.  Those days are long gone!

It was a working Saturday morning (with a little sore head!) but it was over by 1pm and then it was errands and little jobs, home to sit on the sofa and comfort Alex as she had a tummy bug (and an excuse to catch up on I'm a Celeb!) and then a chill out in front of Strictly evening.

Sunday dawned and it was a 7am start kind of day!  I was picked up at 8am to go Kirsty's Handmade Christmas Fair in Manchester.

There were beautiful crocheted snowflakes...

There were beautiful wood shapes to cover and decorate (I may have bought a few!)...

There were beautiful hand crafted items for sale - I love this quote...

We did a couple of workshops - Napkins painted with Annie Sloan paint and Folk Art.  This was my effort and I loved it so much I bought a kit...

We watched a "wreath off" with a couple of designers which gave us some great inspiration (I'm definitely adding fairy lights to mine this year) and we saw Matt Chapple from the Great British Sewing Bee and had a lovely chat with his wife about how their life had changed since he won.  Then it was time to rest our weary shopping feet with a little pick me up...

...when we were rudely interrupted by a woman asking us if we'd like to attend the last demonstration on stage with Betty's cookery school and Kirsty on stage.  Well we'd been spotting her all day in the distance talking to stall holders and walking through the event so thought this would be a better chance to see her so we were up and off before you could say Christmas Craft.  The demo was brilliant and we even got a taste of the Christmas Pud at the end which was delicious.  I also managed to stop Kirsty and have a little chat, she asked me to come round the back of the stage as I enthused about the show and what was great and what was missing.  She seemed so keen to listen and was really lovely.  Of course we had to have the obligatory photo...

Then it was a head home kind of evening to roast lamb, the Strictly result and more jungle shenanigans accompanied by a bit of knitting.  Inspired by my visit to the show I picked up my needles again and have started knitting a few hats for Innocent Smoothies to raise money for Age Concern together with Alex.  I've started with the beginners to get back in to it but I'm keen to have a go at the sheep!  More info on the Big Knit here.

So Monday found me very tired and back at my desk but looking forward to a four day week with another Friday off - yay!

Have a great week and join all the other Me on a Mondayers ((waves)) over at Sian's place.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Me on a Monday (oops! I forgot to press publish!)

It was an Imagine Dragons kind of Friday evening as we all headed to the Manchester Arena for a family outing, one we've been looking forward to for several months...

It was a get up and dance from the first song kind of night and don't sit down until the end!  The mosh pit was jumping, everyone sang along and the whole place was rocking.  It was one of the best concerts I've ever been too (and those that have stuck with me for a while know I go to a fair few of them!)...

Saturday dawned and it was a catch up on washing, cleaning and ironing kind of Saturday.  There were a few errands to run and then time to sit down and do yet more badge sewing!  This time on Josh's Explorer shirt as he was invested on Wednesday...

It was a Gogglebox catching up and Strictly watching evening accompanied by the first home made Beef Bourguignon of the year which smelt and tasted delicious!

Sunday was a pop to the shops kind of a day with a trip to M&S and IKEA for essentials but managed to get a couple of stocking fillers and some wrapping paper into the bargain.

It was also a day I joined in my first Blog Hop as a postee and managed to plant my tubs at the front of the house finally - inbetween rain showers!

Then it was Ju Jitsu and Josh's first time on the opposite side of the mat as a Sensei...

Then home for Strictly result watching and the start of I'm a Celebrity...I think I look forward to seeing Ant and Dec more than anything but this year's motley crew look quite entertaining already!

Just as a little extra treat (and in case you were wondering who the hell Imagine Dragons are) here is one of the best songs from the concert.  This was filmed earlier on in the tour but the energy was just the same on Friday night!  You need to wait until 1 min 50 to get to the audience participation part lol!!

Thanks for stopping by and thanks to Sian for hosting "Me on a Monday".

Have a great week!

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Festive papers or not festive papers? That is the question!

Welcome to the Frosty Festivities blog hop which is part of Jennifer Grace's Frosty Festivities 2015 event!

You should have arrived here from Jacky's blog but if not and you'd like to start the blog hop from the beginning or you're a little lost then it's time to visit Jennifer's blog at JenniferGraceCreates.

So in my post I thought I'd share a page that used some Christmas product but where the theme was not overly Christmas. The photos are from our visit to the Harry Potter studios last December where the great hall was decked out in all its Christmas glory. However I didn't want to go overboard with Christmas themed products as this is just one of many pages I'm scrapping about the visit and the others do not have any festive orientation what so ever! If I used too much Christmas product it would look very out of place. 

So my solution was to use some festive product but mix it with non-festive to get the balance right and I was really pleased with the result.   I started with a sketch from Stuck! Sketches.  I don't have a lot of spare time to scrap so a sketch always gets me started quickly...

And this is the result...

I added some red tickets, an ornate transparency to ground my title (which I've had for years!) and some tiny wooden stars that were all neutral embellishments. Then I used some American Craft "Frosty accents" reindeer rub ons which reminded me of Harry's stag patronus!

The most Christmassy bit was the "Deck the halls" sticker from Simple Stories but this fitted the theme perfectly so had to be used! The papers are old ones in my stash from Lily Bee Designs and Simple Stories, I think. 

And finally I'm re-posting a page I made a while back which is the opposite. A Christmas Day photo scrapped with non-Christmas themed products. 

You can read more about this page here.  Have you scrapped either of these ways? If so I'd love to see it.

I've added the full blog hop list below in case you've missed any...

And your not stop is Katherine's blog.

Jennifer Grace is giving away a prize pack of a Lawn Fawn stamp set and more...

Enter to win by commenting on all the blogs in the Frosty Festivities 2015 hop!  The giveaway closes on Sunday 6th December at 10pm GMT and is open internationally.

If this is your first time to my blog then thank you for staying a while and please come and say hello again soon. If you've been before then thanks for stopping by again.

Happy festive scrapping x

Monday, 9 November 2015

Me on a Monday

After a very emotional week is was definitely time for the weekend which included fireworks, scrapbooking, chilling out in the warm home while the rain lashed down down and a little bit of a celebration...

It was a head up to the local fireworks display kind of Friday eve.  It didn't disappoint!

It was a spend the day scrapooking at the Haslington Crop as Tony had gone away with some of the other hubbies in our group.  2 almost finished pages and another one started...

It was a relaxing Saturday evening with a glass of wine and Strictly...

Then it was a get the food shop done kind of Sunday morning where these beautiful poppies were spotted outside ASDA....

It was a try a friend's recipe and home made, delicious nachos for lunch kind of day...

It was a nice to have hubby home kind of Sunday afternoon and he cooked a roast chicken while I ran the kids to their gradings.  There was success all round with a purple belt for Alex and....a black belt finally achieved for Josh!  He's worked really hard for this and will now get to help out and teach the younger ones.

Then it was a Strictly result watching evening and the last episode of Downton (I may have cried!) But I'm doing a little dance as I managed to book tickets to visit Highlere Castle (Downton in real life) next March with my parents and Alex.  we are having afternoon tea too so a real treat. I'm just a tad excited!!!

This Monday finds me shattered from being back at Brownies (I've had the last 3 weeks off) and a very busy day at work.  But it's a new regime here and everyone is mucking in with the jobs while Tony works away so a good start to the week :)

Have good weeks all you Me on a Monday-ers and waves to Sian for this fabulous meme.  

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Me on a Monday

Joining in with Sian's meme today and hello to all the other "Me on a Mondayers".

It was a very satisfying weekend of getting things crossed off the (ever increasing) To Do List and going places to see some fabulous things with a bit of TV watching thrown in for good measure (Gogglebox, the Mexican Grand Prix and Downton).

It was a catch up on cleaning and washing kind of Saturday interspersed with setting up my new, designed by me, planner...

...helping Alex plan the weekly meals for the family (this is week 3 of 6 and is something she is doing for her Baden Powell Challenge badge)...

...and meeting up with the in-laws for a coffee kind of afternoon.

It was then a head into Manchester kind of Saturday evening to see this cheeky chappy..

and he didn't disappoint,  And neither did the lovely Chinese we had before the show in China Town...

It was a lazy kind of Sunday, heading back over to pick the kids up from their Grandparents and heading to the Cinema to see the handsome hunk that is Daniel Craig!  I love a Bond predictable and so entertaining.  Thoroughly enjoyed it...

Then it was a "let's sort the shoebox" kind of afternoon.  We nipped into the shops for Josh to pick up a few things for his appeal at school and then added some things from his own (slightly overgrown) toy collection.  The dinosaur has since been swapped for a monkey.  It appears there is an emotional attachment that is too strong to let go...

This Monday finds me in a very sad and reflective mood as it is a year to the day that my friend died. Death is is hard to handle at the best of times but when it is mixed in with a violent murder it becomes so much more challenging.  The last 12 months have been a rollercoaster of emotions but hopefully we will get some closure this week when sentencing takes place.

In the meantime I have plans this evening to meet with friends and we will reflect and remember; both the bad and the good.

Sorry to leave my post on such a sombre note.  I hope you understand, my good blog friends, that not all days can be filled with sunshine.

Give your loved ones an extra hug today and call that friend you've been meaning to speak to. Wishing you all a good week x