Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Me on a Monday...but a bit late!

Sorry, sorry a bit late here as having a busy week!  Off work and making the most of it :)  I'm linking up with Sian's meme Me on a Monday to share my weekend....

The weekend started Thursday with some fabulous GCSE results from Alex.  I know a few of my blog visitors were in a similar situation so I hope there was joy & happiness in your homes too.

So on to the real weekend which carried on straight into Friday as I am now off work for two weeks. It was a meeting up for lunch with a friend kind of day.  We are responsible for the itinerary for the "girls' weekend" away this year.  With 12 of us and 4 days/3 nights to fill we always have an itinerary or we'd never decide on anything! The planning went well and was accompanied by some tapas to get us in the mood...

It was a chilling  kind of Saturday for Josh and I as Tony and Alex went off to the match with one of her friends, having been lent some season tickets for the week.  Alex had decided she no longer wanted to scrap so has gifted me her stash which meant a good sort out Saturday morning and a pile for the bin, a pile for charity and a big pile for me :)  It's not anything current but there are some nice papers and embellies in there and I'm on a shopping ban at the moment as still no budget for stash...

So after several hours of a screen (for Josh) and scrapping (for me) we came together for a game of Trivial Pursuit in the garden and read books in the sunshine...I'm slowly getting back into reading and determined to finish The Book Thief before I go back to work. Josh?  Well, he reads about a book every two days!  It was a baking hot kind of evening so after tea outside we carried on with another game "Best of British" where Josh and I were doing so well until we were rained off and had to move inside then the tide turned and our a***s were well and truly whipped by the opposing team!!  At least it gave me the opportunity to grab a photo for the Summertime Scavenger hunt :)...

It was glorious English summer kind of Sunday (the type of day we have not seen enough of this year!) so we headed off to North Yorkshire to walk the Ingleton Waterfall Trail.  The trail is 4 1/2 miles long and takes in several waterfalls and beautiful scenery. There are also a lot of ups and downs so by the end of it I felt like I'd walk twice the distance...

It also meant I managed to capture a quick family selfie - all to rare to get all of us in one pic these days!...

It was a lazy kind of Sunday evening with a quick stop in the torrential rain for food at Charnock Richard Services - we'd been so busy relaxing and enjoying the weekend we forgot the food shop! - and then a settle down for some "House" kind of Sunday evening viewing all together.

Hoping the weather is kind this week too as having a little stay-cation in the North West.  Any other holidays on hold until Tony gets a job!

Friday, 21 August 2015

Sketchy scrapper pages

I have a couple of pages to share with you today using Sketchy Scrappers sketches...

The first is the sketch I chose for June and although it looks simple it has produced some fabulous pages by the ladies in the SS group.

I used some papers I picked up in TK Maxx and scrapped a picture from Blackpool tower last year and the Brownie sleep over we had...

The second sketch was from back in April and set by Jessie ...

I struggled with this sketch; I think it was tucking the photo behind some papers, so once I ignored that it worked out fine!  

When tidying my craft room the other day I found a pile of leftovers mostly from this sheet of paper and a matching frame.

So I just set about piling them and layering them all together added a few other embellishments and came up with this...

One of my favourite photos of me and my Dad scrapped at last!

Monday, 17 August 2015

Me on a Monday

It was an early start to the weekend as I had Friday off.  I'd envisaged a family day out but the weather had other ideas so instead I made a huge list of things to do and ended up doing other things not on the list!

Friday eve culminated in a nice meal with the in-laws at a local pub - my panacotta loved me so much it was smiling at me! (Or it was mocking me as I've eaten healthily for 2 weeks and not lost a pound!!! I took the weekend off!)

So those jobs I wasn't supposed to do?  They included finishing my December pocket pages and another page later on (below) after we got back from the pub...

The page was influenced after finding the above scraps left over when I gave the craft corner of our study a good clean and tidy up (this wasn't on the list either!)

So Saturday was a get up early and take Alex and her friend into town sort of morning - they went off and talked India, college wardrobe and goodness knows what else.  I was in for a whirlwind visit for make-up essentials.  Before we left we'd both made a list of ingredients that I picked up on the way home..Raspberry and crunchy ameratti cake for me...Baklava for her.

It was a baking afternoon for me making aforementioned cake to take to a garden party that evening, It's become my signature pudding - it tastes delicious warm out of the oven with fresh raspberries and cream or just as good the next day with a cup of tea.

It was a very social Saturday evening spent catching up with old friends and meeting new ones. Wine, food and fire made for a very lovely night.  It even only rained a little (not a lot!)

It was a let's get back to that list Sunday morning and one of them involved cleaning out the newly decorated spare room.  So Alex and I set about going through some of the boxes and piles.  It was a sad but "it's time" kind of day as we said goodbye to some high school projects that have been on the shelves these past 5 years.

It was also a "listen to this!" kind of weekend as I discovered a fabulous proms on the BBC iplayer.  I like classical music (I like all kinds of music to be honest) and I love dance music so the two combined were a must for me.  Fat Boy Slim played by a classical orchestra? Throw in a bit of Pete Tong? What's not to love?!  I urge you to take a listen!

It was also a jump up and down moment when we saw this video had been uploaded to Facebook...

And for those asking for photos from Alex's trip she managed to leave her camera at the guest house they were staying in... so photos will follow at some point.  Hope the video entertained you in the meantime :)

Thanks for staying with me this long.  For more glimpses into people's weekends then head over to Sian's little nook at From high in the sky  and see what everyone has been up to.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Josh (aged 14) on the subject of me...

A few weeks back I noticed a few people posting on blogs and Facebook a series of questions they'd ask their (usually small) children about themselves.  The answers were very sweet.  I thought it would be fun to try it on my teenagers and see what I got.  I think you will find this post mildly amusing (I know I did when we did it!)  So without further ado here are Joshua's answers to the same questions...

How old is your Mummy? 49
What is your Mummy's favourite food?A cup of tea (Josh, that's not food) Er, Um, Ok... Lamb
How does your Mummy make you laugh?  I don't laugh with you, I laugh at you
What does your Mummy do for her job? Works in a call centre (Not any more I need to explain to you about my job some time!)
What was your Mummy like as a child? Quiet...and a good kid
How are you and your Mummy the same? Neither of us have spatial awareness (and I can't drive either)  Ooh! the cheek of the boy!
How are you and your Mummy different? We have different colour eyes
What makes me sad?  A cat that dies, a family member that dies, a friend that dies - even the TV, that guy in Downton Abbey that died He was referring to Matthew and the car crash!
What does your Mummy do when you're not around? Scrapbook and go out
If you're Mummy were a cartoon character who would she be? Squidward...Why? Because he's really picky about everything too
By this point I was thinking I love the honesty this questionnaire is given me...Out of the mouth of babes eh?!

What is your Mummy's favourite thing to do? Scrapbook
What do you and your Mummy do together? Watch TV and I'm forced to go on long walks with you OK I'll get you the Childline number now!
What makes you proud of your Mummy? Look how awesome I am and you made me (Love this answer!)..Yeah, you're good at raising kids
What makes Mummy happy? (And Josh you can't answer Scrapbooking for this one) Spending time with your family

So thanks Josh for that insightful view into your head.  I was planning to do the same survey with Alex...just need to think about that for a while lol!

Monday, 10 August 2015

Me on a Monday

It was definitely a chilled out kind of weekend. 

Friday was a movie night and we introduced a Josh to the classic film...Shoreshank redemption

It was a I've got to work Saturday morning but that was swiftly followed (after a few household chores) to a sit in the garden and enjoy the warm weather kind of afternoon. (With the summer we are having here you've got to grab it while you can!) I enjoyed a few chapters of my book. Some blog reading. A cheeky cider and soaking up the sun. 

It was a cloudy kingd of Sunday so Josh and I headed into town to do the ubiquitous school shop. Several shirts, trousers, new shoes, trainers and school bag later we were done. We celebrated with a break in Costa coffee while I berated myself for not having his feet measured sooner as he had gone up a whole shoe size (no wonder he complained his walking boots were a bit tight at scout camp the other week - oops!)

It was back home to a sorting out kind of afternoon. Moving all the stuff out of Alex's room so she can sleep in it this week and back into the spare bedroom. Some has been sorted but some still to do and I daren't do it without the kids involvement or I'll throw out something precious!

More chores done then back to the book (so pleased I'm getting back into my books. I had lost my reading mojo since Christmas) and stopping for a quick snap of Bruce who seemed to have found the smallest and most dirtiest place for his afternoon nap!

Monday found me back at work with a very busy week ahead but also tracking Alex's flight home in between meetings. She landed at 17:21 at Heathrow and is currently winging her way back up north in a minibus. So I'll sign off now as I need to go and pick her up - can't wait to hear all about her trip. 

I'm joining in with Sian and her weekly meme. Do pop over and read about others weekends. It's so good to be nosey!

Saturday, 8 August 2015

How I discovered scrapbooking (and my first ever page)...

It was many moons ago (c.2004).  My friend Vanessa and I were partners in crime at card making, toddler taming and drinking wine.  We saw an advert in the local art shop (sadly no longer there) for a Scrapbooking workshop and thought...why not?

This is the very first page I made (no laughing please)...It's 6x6 (I don't know why, I was following the teacher's instructions!) and has a photo cut into a shape, some shrink plastic and a Making Memories phrase (I bought a stack of those in the early days).  It's not seem the light of day for some time!

I remember asking if I could take a few extra papers home and then stopping in the art shop to buy my first scrapbooking stash - I bought punches, ribbon, some letters and some magazines (with free paper!) I was hooked!

Next I made a double page spread at home about Alex's first day at school (still 6x6 - I'm not sure I knew any other size existed!)  This photo I embellished with some nattily punched shapes in the corner!  

The rest followed - all 6x6 - until I discovered the larger sizes when I read my magazine and I've never come back to finish this album.  This is Alex's first Christmas play at nursery...

Her infamous ice-cream face on holiday in Lanzarote...

An uncanny likeness between she and me at the same age on our school photos...

A photo of my Mum as a small girl...

And my all time favourite photo of the two of them from nursery...

It was while sorting out my PL page protectors that I rmembered these pages as I found some style E protectors with 6x6" pockets.  Just perfect for displaying the above little lot and getting them out of a small album and into my AC 12x12 ones.  So now they look like this...

And can be seen with all their other early childhood pages (of which I need to do more!) 

Am I slightly embarrassed by the shaped photos, old style embellies and cutting with decorative scissors? - just a tad - but I'm more grateful that I found such a wonderful hobby that has kept me sane over the past 10 years and continues to be my "happy place" when things get tough.  I love playing with pretty paper and glue and reliving the memories on each photo.

Sadly Vanessa emigrated to Australia in 2006 so I lost my scrapping buddy but I am also grateful for the other buddies I have in Blogland and having met some of you in real life.

So here's to this fabulous hobby.  Will you share your first page and your discovery story? (Warts and all!) I'd love to read about it.

Friday, 7 August 2015

Sketchy Scrappers - Jan sketch

I had a lovely time at The Haslington crop and was quite productive!  I was trying to catch up on Sketchy Scrapper sketches as I am woefully behind! 

This was January's sketch...

And after some deliberation I realised I could use it to capture something that is very current in our family - The yellow car game. I used some MME papers from TK Maxx and lots of embellies from my stash to make this...

Does anyone else play this game or is it just our mad family?!  Back soon with another page once I've thought of a title!

Monday, 3 August 2015

Me on a Monday

It's been a chilled weekend but Monday finds me at my desk realising I have a ton of FCA checks to complete before I finish on the 19th!  Oh the joys of the finance world.  So putting that to one side here is how my weekend looked.

It was a "we've still got no kids to worry about" kind of Friday evening so we headed up to the pub to share a bottle of wine and some (not so tasty) food.  It's fair to say the pub food has gone downhill!

It was a try a new crop  out kind of Saturday.  I was up early, three page kits packed and positive I'd not forgotten anything (it's been nearly two years since I've been to one!) and I hadn't!  I managed 1 and 1/2 layouts and one set of pocket pages for December last year.  It was a lovely day adn I will definitely be going back :)

It was a pick the prodigal son up from scout camp kind of Saturday evening. He was tired, smelt of camp fire and had a bag of dirty washing but it was soooo good to have him home :)  He had an early night.  We watched more House of Cards!

It was a lazy Sunday kind of day (if you discount the food shop in Asda, lol!) however I made a list, planned the meals and bought some diet shakes.  It's the start of a strict regime this week to get rid of some pounds.  The rest of Sunday consisted of watching some TV whilst sewing on badges to Alex's camp blanket, finishing the other 1/2 of the aforementioned page, sorting out some items to post, reading blogs and enjoying cuddles with my boy.  Tony meanwhile prepped and glossed the spare bedroom :)

It was also a five loads of washing day (including the sleeping bag AND the small rucksack) and smiling as I found this t-shirt in the pile.  He has been on every camp whilst at Scouts and I love that he gets a week away from screens and phones and gets to swim, canoe and play with bows and arrows. He's moving up to Explorers in September so I hope he sticks with it.

It was also (again) a weekend of staking Facebook for posts from India.  They have had a busy week working at the orphanage school - sanding desks and plumbing toilets as well as playing with the kids - and have headed off to Jaipur for a weekend away.  This has included a visit to a Bollywood film, shopping in the market and an elephant ride up to the Amber Fort.  I can't wait to see pictures.

Hope this Monday find you well and happy.  If you would like to join in with this brilliant meme of Sian's then head over to her blog From high in the Sky.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Summertime Photo Scavanger Hunt 2015 - The Conwy edition

I'm linking up with Rinda today to share some of my finds from the hunt this year.  If you've not come across it before it's a list of items to take photos of in the summer.  Sounds easy doesn't it? Well I've still to find the ornate door knocker and the overloaded car or lorry!

But what I did find was a few things in Conwy on a weekend away.  The same weekend we go on every year with a ton of families; some camp, some have their own holiday home there and we stay in a B&B!  Conwy didn't disappoint again this year and here is what I found...

6. A metal bridge

This one is owned by the National Trust and has a lot of history.  Built by Thomas Telford in 1826 it was one of the first suspension bridges in the world and originally held a road.  It was very photogenic as bridges go so I took a few!

12. A public restroom, bathroom or toilet

Again I went for the historic version.  The ladies is in the square building on the left but the gents get to relieve themselves in the posh tower.  What you can't see is that they have a beautiful view of Conwy estuary (see next find!)

20. A natural body of water - the estuary of the River Conwy 

15. A flag pole with at least three flags on it.  Later in the day we had a late lunch at the marina around the corner.  As we walked towards the pub I spotted the flag pole with several flags flying.  I remember someone else spotted a very similar flag pole at another marina during this hunt so I did some research and found out they are called gaffs!

They were 9 families/couples away for this weekend, all with various extra children and dogs!  While the lads and dads headed off to watch Conwy Town v Bolton Wanderers us ladies (and small girls!) chilled on the beach and entertained the aforementioned dogs before walking them round to the marina.  So here is my last Conway find...

3. A person walking a dog or other animal.  Well, 9 people to be precise and 6 dogs!

Still lots to find on the list but I'm hoping to cross a lot off when I take a break from work later this month and I know of two occasions coming up where I can get numbers 10 and 17.  Wish me luck!


1. A bouquet of flowers
2. An ornate door knocker
3. A person walking a dog (or other animal)
4. People playing a board game or card game
5. Architectural columns
6. A metal bridge
7. A turtle
8. Someone "plugged in" to social media 
9. A tent

10. A college or university
11. A cellular tower or television satellite dish
12. A public restroom, bathroom, or toilet
13. A merry-go-round or carousel
14. A traffic signal
15. A flag pole with at least three flags on it
16. A panoramic view, taken while standing someplace high in the air
17. At least two people wearing matching outfits or uniforms
18. An overloaded truck, car, bicycle or other vehicle
19. A ticket booth
20. A natural body of water21. A photograph of you with a sign reading "2015 Summertime Photography Scavenger