Merry Christmas

Monday, 22 December 2008
Firstly, I'd like to apologise for the major lack of blogging in recent weeks. Work got really busy and I was so tired by the time I got home that I was just crashing out on the sofa. I've since had this dreaded lurgy that has been going around and just feel rotten. My throat has been really sore and painful.

Anyway, I would just like to wish you all a Very Merry Christmas & All the best for 2009.

Here's to more card making in the New Year.

xx :0)

Another Award

Tuesday, 11 November 2008
I'd like to say a massive Thank You to the amazing Zoe for giving me this award (I sound like I'm at the Oscars...!).

The rules for passing this award on are:

  1. The winner may put this award on their blog
  2. Put a link to the person who sent this award to you
  3. Nominate 5 blogs
  4. Put links to their blogs
  5. Leave a message for your nominees

Most people I know have received this award already, but there is one person out there who hasn't. My best mate Nikola has only recently just started a blog. She makes fantastic cards but she is also an amazing photographer and artist. Her drawings are out of this world, but she doesn't see it, always talks about things that are wrong and how she can improve it. So Nikola, this awards for you!!!

I've been taking it easy today as I had an endoscopy this morning which wasn't very pleasant. Anyway, I hope to make some more cards in the next few days.

Thanks for stopping by.

xx :0)

More Christmas Cards

Saturday, 8 November 2008
As promised in my post yesterday, I've some more Christmas cards to show you. I've been off work the last two days as I've been feeling very run down and tired. I think the last few weeks have finally caught up with me. Anyway, I took the opportunity to sit stamping and colouring some images and just make a few cards.

I love the colours of this card. I decided as I was going to colour the cat grey then some pastel colours would suit.

  • Paper - The English Paper Company
  • Image - Whiskers & Fur - Penny Black
  • Card - Bazzil Basics
  • Ribbon - Stash (Joanna Sheen I think)
  • Silver Jingle Bells - Craftwork Cards
I created the background of this card by just using a snowflake stamp and stamping onto the card using the Versamark ink pad. This is also one of my favourite Penny Black stamps
  • Card - Bazzill Basics
  • Image - Just Wishing You.. - Penny Black
  • Snowflake Stamp - Judikins
  • Ribbon - Stash (Again Joanna Sheen I think)
  • Circle Sentiment - Craftwork Cards

This card layout is very similar to my FF card below. As you can probably tell, I only do simple cards! I can't do complicated!!

  • Card - Papermania
  • Image - Caroling Penguins - Penny Black
  • Embossing - Snow Dots
  • Circle Sentiment - Craftwork Cards

You can also probably guess that I'm slightly addicted to Penny Black stamps!! I absolutely adore them!!

Hope you like my latest creations.

Thanks for stopping by.

xx :0)

Forever Friends Challenge Blog

Whilst blog hopping the other day, I stumbled across this fantastic new Challenge Blog dedicated to the gorgeous Forever Friends bears. The challenge for this week is entitled With Love.

I hope this card is suitable as it is a christmas card, but could be given to that special person in your life.

I've used the lovely bear and tree stamp which I've coloured with copics and then layered onto some red Core'dinations card from Docrafts. I've then embossed some white card with the snowflakes embossing folder and layered this onto red card before adding some red ribbon across the middle. I apologise for the wonky photo. Not sure what happened there!!!
Thanks for looking.

xx :0)

Thank You

Friday, 7 November 2008
I received this lovely card from Michelle at The Card Grotto as a thank you for the package I sent during the Secret Sister Swap, which Michelle herself organised. This card is just beautiful and the photo doesn't do it justice.

Thank you Michelle.

I would also like to thank Tracy at Dies to Die For for managing to get her hands on the much sort after Martha Stewart Doily Lace Punch. I was one of a lucky few who got their hands on this.

These aren't being advertised on the website as Tracy isn't buying wholesale, but if you check out her blog, she will try and get hold of any that you would like. I definitely recommend Dies to Die For as the service is wonderful and the items come all beautifully wrapped in tissue paper.

That's it for now, I hope to have some new cards to show you later on today!!

xx :0)

Xmas is coming!

Wednesday, 5 November 2008
I will write more tonight, had trouble with internet connection, but wanted to put my new cards on this morning before work!

Edited: What a nightmare last night! I've no idea what was wrong with my internet, but at least it's back up and running now. I really wanted to show you all my latest cards..

I'm really pleased with how they've turned out, especially the caroling hedgehogs. They've all been coloured with copic ciao markers. I think I'm starting to understand them a bit better now. I would really appreciate any comments people have or any tips on how I can improve.
Cards 1 & 3 have embossed cuttlebug backgrounds. I have glittered the blue background with stickles to try and give an icy effect. I saw this on a card at Ally Pally and thought that it looked really effective.
Sorry I've not given more detail.
I hope you are all having a good evening.
xx :0)

I'm still here!

Sunday, 2 November 2008
I've not fallen off the edge of the earth! I've been stamping images and colouring them with my copics ready for some more cards. I had some problems with the ink pads I was using as the ink would bleed with the copics. However, thanks to Janet's tip, I'm now using the Brilliance Archival Graphite Black ink pad with no problems.

I have made 3 Christmas cards today but the light is so poor I'm not even attempting to take photos of them at the moment. I promise they will be posted ASAP.

Thanks to all the lovely comments on my 1st card after such a long break. They all really mean so much.

I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend.

xx :0)

The Wait is Over!!!

Thursday, 23 October 2008
Finally I hear you cry!! Yes, I've actually made a card!! With the exception of the SS Swap, this is the first card I've made in about 6 months and I feel so happy and proud about it.

It's my mother-in-law's birthday tomorrow and when I woke up this morning I just decided that I wanted to make her card when I got home from work. I've not felt like that in a long time.

Anyway, it gave me a chance to put into practise all the things I've learnt watching video tutorials on using my Copics and I just love them!! I'm no way an expert but I like what I've managed to achieve with this card. I would also like to thank everybody that I've emailed asking for tips as your advice has been greatly appreciated.

I used one of my new Forever Friends stamps and coloured them with the copics before backing onto some mirri car. I've then taken a sheet of dp from the Party Time FF paper set and backed this onto mirri card and attached some ribbon before mounting onto a card blank from Craftwork Cards. The sentiment is also from CWC, before finishing off with the obligatory gemstones. I've also added some stickles to the spray from the bottle but I don't think this shows.

I apologise for the poor quality of the photo but it's hopeless trying to take any decent photos indoors at this time of year.

I'm off now to colour some more images!
Thanks for stopping by and for any comments you may leave.
xx :0)

Thank you Maria

I would like to say a massive Thank You to Maria for giving me this lovely award. It means so much given my lack of crafting the last few months.I know most people have had this award by now so I would like to pass it on to everybody that pops by to check up on little ole me. It means the world to me to know that there are so many lovely people out there.

Thanks again.

xx :0)

Ally Pally & Other Stash

Sunday, 19 October 2008
At long last I've finally got round to taking photos of all the goodies I got when I went to Ally Pally! I had such a fantastic time with my best mate Nikola and spent just a little bit!!I've been a bit naughty since then too and have purchased some CC Design Stamps from Silly Monkey Crafts and some of the really cute High Hopes Christmas Stamps from Dies to Die For!!

The last photo is of my new Copics that my other half treated me to. I've not used them yet but I'm going to start stamping up some images today to practise with as I really need to make a start on some Christmas cards. I'm sorry about the poor quality of the photos. No matter what I did today, they looked terrible!
I hope everyone is enjoying the last day of the weekend. Is it just me, or do they go by so quickly?!
Anyway, thanks for stopping by and for any comments left. They are greatly appreciated.
xx :0)

Secret Sister Reveal

Saturday, 18 October 2008
A little while ago the fabulous Michelle organised a Secret Sister Swap which I took part in. The idea was to make a card and send little package to our Sister and see if they could guess who it was from!

My SS just happened to be Michelle!! I have to confess that I don't think I took a photo of the card I made so I've had to take it from Michelle's blog. Here is a little look at the package I sent her:

I would also like to make a special thanks to Pam again for my brilliant SS package.

I hope everybody is having a lovely weekend. I'm pleased to say that my dad came home from hospital last Sunday and appears to be doing well. It's going to be a slow process, but it's just great to see him back with my mum who is doing really well in looking after him after all her problems too.

Thanks for stopping by.

XX :0)

Update on Dad

Wednesday, 8 October 2008
Thank you for all your messages of support in my last post, they mean such a lot.

My dad is recovering well, although I'm not sure if he feels it at the moment. He's very tired, which is to be expected following anaesthetic and sedation. He was only on the Critical Care Unit for just under two days before going back to a normal ward.
Yesterday I took him for a walk around the ward before the physio arrived to test him going up and down a flight of stairs. That left him very tired out. I think it's that that he is finding just a little hard to get used to as he's always been very active. Hopefully, in a few months, after rest and cardiac rehabilitation he should be feeling much better, it just takes time.
We're not sure at the moment whether he will come straight home from the hospital or whether they will transfer him back to our local hospital for a little while due to the situation with my mum. Although she is now out of hospital herself, my dad is worrying about whether she will be able to cope looking after him. The last thing he needs at the moment is stress, so we're trying to arrange something with the occupational therapists, who are aware of the situation.
On a crafting note, my darling husband has treated me to the entire set of Copic Ciao Markers!! He said that I needed a treat after everything that I've been through this year. I can't believe it! They're due to arrive today, so I hope it doesn't take me too long to get the hang of them!! All I need now is to make a start on my craft room and everything will be perfect!
Thanks for stopping by.
xx :0)


Friday, 3 October 2008
Sorry, I've been meaning to post all week following my spending spree at Ally Pally. I had a great time with my best mate, Nikola, and bought some great goodies! I will show pics in a couple of days.

In the meantime, my thoughts and energies will be with my dad. I took him into London today to the Heart Hospital as he's got his double heart bypass tomorrow. I hated leaving him there, but I know he's in safe hands. My sister is staying with my mum whilst he is in hospital and we'll all be together tomorrow whilst he's having the surgery. I'm not sure what time it is yet, so I've got to ring the hospital tomorrow morning to find out.

Jon and I will then go and see him on Sunday and I'll be popping up most days next week to make sure he's okay.

Please keep us in your thoughts and I will try and update as soon as I can.

Thanks for stopping by.

xx :0)

The Mighty Kev...

Wednesday, 24 September 2008
Thank you to all your lovely messages following yesterdays post. It has been a very strange day at work today. I really feel for my best mate, Nikola, who sit's looking at his desk My lovely boss did say to her that if she wanted to, she could move, but she was strong and stood firm.

The photo below was taking on our team day out on a river boat cruise up the Thames on 30th July 2008. It was a gorgeous day and I love this photo. This sums Kev up perfectly. Friendly, always happy and loving his cricket!

Such A Sad Day

Tuesday, 23 September 2008
I'm sat here numb at the moment, unable to believe what I'm about to type.

We found out at a work today that a lovely young lad that I work with, Kevin Young, died yesterday. He was only 27. He was such a valued member of the team I looked after.

Last Monday I was laughing and joking with him as he was telling me about his week long holiday on a narrow boat with some friends and all the pubs that they'd stopped at on their journey. That was the last day I saw him as I was out on the Tuesday and he went sick on the Wednesday.

He always had a smile on his face and nothing was too ever too much trouble for him. I can't believe that I'm never going to see him again. I thought of him like the little brother I never had.

I'm sorry for such a sad post.

RIP Kevin.



Saturday, 20 September 2008
I've been painting the ceiling and coving in our hall today (not my craft room :0( ) and don't I know it!! I did two coats on each, spending a lot of time up a ladder and my back is now telling me what it thought of it!

I'm only 30 but my body feels about twice that at the moment! I've just had a nice soak in the bath and now plan on doing absolutely nothing the rest of the evening.

We've been meaning to decorate the hall for a while, but decided to put it on hold until the boiler had been fitted, for fear of the paint work being scratched.

I can't start on my craft room until this project has been completed, so that's my incentive to get it done!

I think I may have got my measurement's out a bit for the spare room, but I'm adamant that there will be a desk in there, even if it means getting rid of something else!

Thanks to everyone for the lovely comments that have been left recently, especially with my lack of blogging over the past few months. I do really appreciate everyone that takes the time to stop by for a little peak. I hope to have some cards to show really soon.

xx :0)

Forever Friends Part 2

Thursday, 18 September 2008
After my earlier post about all the wonderful goodies that are being released with these cute little bears on, I have to confess that my resolve didn't last very long! I ordered a HUGE amount of stamps, papers and stickers! Jon told me to do it as I deserved to get some new bits after everything that we've been through.

Anyway, my long wait for the postie is over and I can now show you all my new goodies!!

OK, I admit it, I bought all the stickers and papers, but I didn't get all the stamps..........yet!! How naughty have I been?!? I couldn't really wait until I go to Ally Pally on 27th Sept and was worried that they wouldn't all be available when I got there. Plus, I've helped out all the other crafters who might have been tempted by buying them all!! LOL :0P

I guess I'd better get my new craft room sorted so that I can start to use it all now!

xx :0)

A BIG Thank You To My Secret Sister!

A while ago the brilliant Michelle at the Card Grotto organised a Secret Sister swap. Michelle emailed us the details of our SS with instructions to send our parcels around the 16th Sept. Yesterday morning the very nice postman delivered mine and I was so happy with my goodies!! I don't know who my SS is, but I would just like to say a BIG thank you, especially for the Elzybells Stamps.

For my Secret Sister, you don't know who you are, but I just want to let you know that it will definitely be in the post by the weekend! Sorry for the delay.
xx :0)


Wednesday, 17 September 2008
Sorry it's been a little while since my last post (I feel like I'm at confession!).

Since then Jon and I have celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary. My in-laws surprised us with a little mini-break in Dublin which was lovely in spite of the weather. It was just nice to take a break away from everything that has been happening here the past few months. It was a bit of a double celebration as Jon had just found out that he had got promotion, which he thoroughly deserved.

Yesterday I went up to London with my dad for his pre-op check-up. He is due to have a double heart bypass on Saturday 4th October. As my mum is still poorly, I have been doing the hospital visits with him. It was certainly very eye-opening, especially the visit to the Cardiac Care Unit. There was a patient on the ward that had just come out of surgery, to see what my dad will be like was a little bit daunting. I have been advised that there will be no point seeing him the day of the op as he will be very groggy, however, I have asked that I can go and see him on the Sunday so I can sit with him and let him know that I am there whenever he wakes. He did this for me after every op I've had (which has been a few).

We are currently having a lot of work done to our flat at the moment and I have asked Jon if I can redecorate the spare room and make it more of a crafting room for me, than it is at the moment. I currently sit on an ottoman box and work on the window sill, but I'm going to rearrange the furniture and have a little desk in there for me to work on. I can't wait to start!!!

Anyway, that's enough for now, there's loads of drilling going on! I hope to post again later on.

Thanks for listening!

xx :0)

Forever Friends

Monday, 1 September 2008
I have just seen all the new Forever Friends goodies that Docrafts are releasing in a few days and I want them all!!! If you want to have a look at them before they're released, Artymiss have them all on their website.

These could be as addictive as the Penny Blacks!

xx :0)

The Great Unwashed......

Thursday, 21 August 2008
........have descended on Reading so that must mean it's festival time again!!

Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against festival-goers, but I hate how my town becomes invaded for 5 days. I left work early as I wanted to go to Waterstones and treat myself to some new books and it was just a nightmare, especially around the station where they were just piling out in droves.

My dislike of the festival started at a very early age. My mum had taken my sister and I into town and as a treat she took us into a Wimpy restaurant. On the way out I was confronted by two festival-goers throwing up right in front of me!! Nice!

Anyway, I've treated myself to 8(!) new books. I didn't mean to get that many but there were too many offers on and I just couldn't choose!

I really hope to get back to making some cards as it's mine and Jon's 1st wedding anniversary coming up and I'd like to present him with a homemade card.

I'm also getting excited about Ally Pally and having a good spend up with my very good friend Nikola.

Fingers crossed it won't be long until you see a new card from me. I think I'm just a bit scared/nervous about making a card as it's been so long. Maybe I should start off with something simple and let it go from there.

Finally I would like to thank everybody for the kind words of support you have been sending me in my absence.

xx :0)


Tuesday, 22 July 2008
Sorry for the delay in posting again.

Following on from my previous post, my mum was sadly sectioned that day under police orders.

She has been transferred back to our local mental health hospital, but we wish she was still in Norwich as she was getting better care. She is surrounded by alcoholics and drug addicts and there have been at least two incidents there since she arrived when they've had to call the police in to deal with the perpetrators. My dad said that whilst he wants her to get help, that ward is doing her more harm than good and she is becoming a nervous wreck.

I've been unable to visit since Wednesday as I have been struck down by a water infection and then a sinus infection and feel absolutely rotten. I've got no appetite and am having to force myself to eat even though I don't want to. I've hardly eaten in the last few days and have no energy, so I know I need to do something to keep my strength up.

Please forgive me for my lack of card making and blog visiting the past month or so, I will try and get back to normal soon.


Where to begin?

Sunday, 13 July 2008
How I wish I was back on holiday!

I've been unable to do any of the washing as our machine has packed up!! I put a load on and let it go through the cycle as normal. When Jon got it out, he shouted "Shouldn't it be wet?!" Turns out one of the valves has packed up. We got an engineer out the next day who put a new part it, but it turns out his was faulty and we need a to wait now until Monday for another engineer to come out with a working part.

Things with my mum have also got worse than I ever imagined possible. She's become violent and attempted suicide on a couple of occasions, but still the hospital say that she's okay. At this very moment, she's waiting to be seen at a mental health hospital in Norfolk after hitting my sister and dad with a poker as well as going for them with a knife. I feel so angry as my dad was told to take her away and now this has happened. My sister should not have to be going through this, she wouldn't hurt a fly. I'm also angry with my mum. I know she's ill, but to turn round and tell the police that she's not violent, that she doesn't mean it, I find hard to believe.

She didn't want me to go away on holiday. On my 30th birthday, all she wanted to do was to take all her pills and end it.

This is why I haven't been around (as well as the holiday). I've been trying to get my head round everything and it's so hard. I'm at a point in my life where I should be happy and enjoying myself.

Thanks for listening.

I'm back!!

Thursday, 10 July 2008
Hi all, I'm sorry I've not been around for ages. I've just got back from 2 gorgeous weeks in Skiathos where the sun was shining and the temperature was in the high 30's everyday!!

I'm sorry I didn't post before I left to let you know that I would be going missing, but, as you know things haven't been that great.

Hopefully the rest will get my creative juices flowing again, although I can't get to my craft stuff at the moment as it's blocked off!!

Anyway, I'm going to go and check out what you've all been up to in my absence.

Speak to you all soon!

xx :0)

Long time, no blog

Friday, 13 June 2008
Firstly, thank you to those who sent me lovely birthday cards for Sunday. I will post a picture of them at the weekend hopefully.

I'm sorry that I've not blogged in the past week, or visited any blogs for that matter. I've been feeling very tired when I get home from work and have not picked up my laptop once in that time. I've not made any cards either.

Whilst Sunday was on the whole a lovely day, I had a very difficult time when visiting my mum. She was very low and it was so hard to see. I'm not going to go into any more detail as I feel I have posted too much already about her condition. It's not been helped by news that my dad may need bypass surgery.

I've not been anywhere near my craft room in days, which is not like me. I hope to feel more like my old self in the next few days.

In the meantime, thanks for looking.

xx :0)

Almost there!

Saturday, 7 June 2008
I can't believe that I'm nearly at the big 3 0!! I've been burying my head in the sand trying to pretend that it's not happening, but it's crept up on me so quickly!!

Thank you for all the kind wishes and cards that I have received. I have been good and not opened anything that has arrived this week that may be a card so I can look forward to opening them all tomorrow.

Jon took me shopping town today for my presents. He couldn't get me what he wanted (a Wii Fit and Mario Kart) so he left me spend £100 and then told me that he would get me the others once they were back in stock!! How sweet is he?!?!

Anyway, I brought some new clothes for my holiday and Mario Party 8 for the Wii which looks fun.

I will post back either tomorrow or Monday with photos of the cards that I have received.

I hope everybody is enjoying the weekend.

xx :0)

Email Attack

Friday, 6 June 2008
This is just a quick note to apologise to anybody that may have received an email from my account yesterday evening. It would appear that my account has been hacked and this email sent to everybody from my contacts list.

I would like to assure everybody that I am no way involved or responsible for that email and have now taken steps to ensure that it doesn't happen again.

I don't know how this happens when I have a very good system/virus protection on my laptop. It makes you worry about everything else they may have accessed. It's the last thing I need at the moment as things are still very bad and we've received some bad news about my dad too which my mum has taken very badly.

xx :0)

Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge #50

Sunday, 1 June 2008
I've been looking at Beate's blog for a while now but never been brave enough to attempt one of her weekend sketch challenges, until today! I liked the look of this sketch and the samples that had been provided are amazing.

My card isn't in the same league as the others that I've seen, it's very simple. I'm not sure if it's missing something, but have decided against adding anything extra. It's also the first time I've made an A5 card.
This is the first time I've used the Hook, Line and Sinker Penny Black stamp. I've watercoloured the image and added some stickles on the water ripples. The white shimmer card has been embossed using the Swiss Dots folder and layered onto some purple cs. I've added some organza ribbon and a Prima flower to embellish the card.
I hope it is okay. Thank you for looking.
xx :0)

Friday Sketch #4

Saturday, 31 May 2008
I have finally been brave enough to take part in the Friday Sketchers challenge! It's week number 4 and this weeks sketch has been provided by Heidi.

Edited to say that I have just realised that this card also qualifies for this weeks Cute Card Thursday Challenge as the task was to use patterned paper.

I have used one of my favourite Penny Black stamps, Lazy Days. The backing paper is from Papermania and is the Amethyst Fusion Creative Tones set. The flowers are from Prima and the sentiment is from Hero Arts.

I'm looking forward to my "Lazy Days" soon. Jon and I will be off to Skiathos is just under 4 weeks and I can't wait!! It's our 4th year going there and we just love it. The people are fantastic and the food is out of this world.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by and I hope you are having an enjoyable weekend.

xx :0)

Jo's Blog Candy

Jo has some amazing blog candy on offer on her blog. To be in with a chance of winning all you have to do is make a birthday card that's pretty and pink!!

I thought I would take this opportunity to ink up my new Lola's Tea Party stamp which is part of the Sugar Nellie collection. The paper is from Pink Petticoat. Not sure if you can see the white dots on the paper due to the poor lighting! The flowers are from Prima and the sentiment is from Hero Arts.

Hope you like it Jo!

xx :0)

Where do you start?

Wednesday, 28 May 2008
After looking at so many wonderful blogs and cards this evening, I was just wondering what your starting point is when making a new card.

Do start with the sketch first, or do you choose your card and papers? Do you decide on your stamp and colours first and then choose papers to match?

I seem to just stumble my way through each card and am starting to think that I should try and be a bit more organised when making a card

Anyway, I would be interested to hear how you go about things.

Thanks for stopping by, I hope to have a couple of cards to show in the next few days.

xx :0)

Some More Cards

Monday, 26 May 2008
Thank you to everyone who has left such kind messages and words of support after the disappointing fair on Saturday. They have certainly encouraged me not to give up and to try again.

Here's a selection of the last batch of cards I was making these on the last couple of days prior to Saturday.

These ones are the last of the male cards.

I started making two cards at a time using the same image but changing either the sentiment or colour used to help increase my supplies. I kept the styles fairly simple but I hope they still look eye catching.

xx :0)

Very Disappointing.

Sunday, 25 May 2008
I really wasn't looking forward to writing this post and have been putting it off since I got home last night.

The fair was very poorly attended and where we were situated was away from the main hall so at times we got forgotten about.

I sold just 2 cards. The lady on the stall next to me told me not to be disheartened as it was not to do with my cards as they're lovely. She used to own a craft/sweet shop and makes cards, but currently concentrates on selling old fashioned sweets (not good as I spent £8 on there!).

She was really good at giving Nikola and I advice on where to try and other ways to sell our cards. We are thinking about maybe trying some local fetes in future.

I went with the intention of it just being a learning curve and not to let it effect me if I didn't do very well, but it's hard when people just walk passed you without even looking at what you've got on display.

xx :0)

A little bit scared!!

Saturday, 24 May 2008
It's 15 mins before Nikola collects me for the Art & Craft fair and I have to admit to feeling scared, nervous and sick!! When we set up last night, we had a look around a felt a bit amateurish when looking at everyone else's stall set ups. We also found that we've put fairly close to another card maker.

I've had nightmares about not selling anything! I was up at 6:35am this morning so managed to make a couple more cards. I've got a lot of photos to post of cards that I have made in the last few days in preparation.

Once this is out of the way, I promise that I will get back to checking out all your blogs again and hopefully participate in a few more challenges too.

Keep your fingers crossed for me and I will let you know how I get on!!

xx :0)

Highs & Lows of Life!

Thursday, 22 May 2008
Yesterday afternoon I was on such a high as I found out that I had passed the interview and got my promotion!!! The others that had been interviewed kept coming to ask me if I had got an email which was really starting to make me worry. Turns out the failure emails went out first and the passes went out a few minutes later. They were the longest few minutes of my life!!! I'm really happy as my good friend, Estelle, also got through.

Unfortunately Jon's team, Chelsea, lost in the Champions League final after a dramatic penalty shoot-out which put a dampener on the rest of the evening. Although Reading are my team, I do have a strong liking for Chelsea because of Jon so felt the defeat just as hard. I so wanted them to win it for Frank Lampard who so recently lost his mum. Seeing the big man, JT (John Terry) in tears last night was enough to start me off. I really hope they can pick themselves up from this and rebuild for next year. I also hope the likes of Frank and Drogba stick around too as the Premier League will be a sad place without them.

Craft Fair Cards - Part 2

Sunday, 18 May 2008
Okay, here's second set of cards that I have made today. I've really enjoyed myself, it's helped me take my mind off the results of the interview and the stress of my mum. I've got a few bits of decoupage completed so hopefully I should be able to make a few more quick cards tomorrow.

I hope you like them!

xx :0)

Craft Fair Cards - Part 1

Well, I've certainly been busy today, I've made 7 cards in preparation for the craft fair on Saturday. I can't believe how quickly it's come round, so I'm going to have work really hard this week to increase my stock.

Anyway, here are some of the cards that I have made today. Please excuse me if I don't give details on what I've done or used. If anybody has any queries, please just let me know and I'll happily let you know.

And they're off!!

Saturday, 17 May 2008
Thank you for all the good luck messages for my interview yesterday. I was more nervous waiting for that than I was on my wedding day!

I think it went okay. My mind went blank for the first question and I really don't know if what I said bared any relevance to the question!! It appears that my mate after me also suffered the same fate!! After that I think it picked up okay, but you can never tell for sure with these things. They hope to made their decision by the end of next week.

I had a great afternoon at the races after that, culminating in winning £50 on the final horse for a little £2.50 each way bet!! Between Jon and I we had 6 winners out of 7 races, both picking 3 a piece. Jon was so sweet, he gave me £100 at the start to bet with and I came out with £110 so I ended £10 up on the day, thanks to the final horse!

I was hoping to get back to some card making today, but we've been invited to some friends for a BBQ. I just hope it brightens up a bit more!

Fingers crossed I will be back with more tomorrow!

xx :0)

Down, but not forgotten!

Wednesday, 14 May 2008
Yep, come 4:45pm last Sunday my worst fears were confirmed; Reading FC were relegated from the Premiership after a 2 year stay. I'm not ashamed to admit that tears were shed at the final whistle! I'm still a bit down about it all now, but I'm still proud of my boys and what they achieved for a small club. Unfortunately there were just not good enough this season and paid the ultimate price.

I will be back there next season to try and lift them to try again. Hopefully Stevie Coppell will be too!!

I've not got any new cards to show just yet. I've been busy preparing for an interview I have on Friday. I'm going for promotion and it's my first interview in 11 years!! It's all changed since I first got the job. It's all competence based now and you have to show how, in your work, you've meet the competencies required!! It really is a case of selling yourself too as you're advised to always say "I", never "We" and you have to answer the questions in a STAR format:


I've been trying to revise/remember what I put on my application form for each competency. We've been told the the 4 that we will be questioned on.

As my interview is fairly early on (11am), I am taking the rest of the day off and Jon is taking me to the races at Newbury Racecourse as I've never been before!!

Keep your fingers crossed for me!

xx :0)

Men, Men, Men!!!

Sunday, 11 May 2008
I won't say that I'm moaning about Men in general, just about making cards for them!!

I thought I'd better make a few more men's cards for the fair, but really didn't know where to start so I paid Michelle's gallery a visit as I always find that inspirational.

The two I've made are fairly simple. I've made duplicates of birthday and Father's Day and then realised that I didn't have any FD messages so a trip to the shops will be in order!

I have the bowls stamp as my dad is an avid bowler and I used this for a card a couple of years ago and haven't used it since. I also love the PB stamp I used. The sentiments are Hero Arts.

I'm now off to listen to the Reading FC match and see if we can hopefully avoid relegation from the Premiership! I'm not too confident as it's out of our hands. Whilst I'm doing that, Jon will be watching the Chelsea match and hoping that they win and that Wigan can stop Man Utd from winning so they can clinch the Premiership title!! Talk about nerves today!!

xx :0)

Stamp Something #1 - Firsts

Saturday, 10 May 2008
A new challenge blog has just launched called Stamp Something. They will set a new challenge every Friday morning. Being their 1st challenge, the theme is "Firsts". It can be a first for you i.e. using a new colour combo or design or it can be a first as in a first birthday/baby etc.

I've chosen to make my first twins card!! It was also the first time I had used this new Sugar Nellie stamp, so I'm sure that counts too!

I embossed some white startburst card with the fabulous Swiss Dots embossing folder, added the new baby girl ribbon from Making Memories and mounted this onto pink cs. The imgae has been cut and mounted using my square nestabilites. I used Sizzix's Girls Are Weird alphabet to cut the word "Twins!"
xx :0)

I'm on a roll!!

After so long without making a card, I've made 6 in 24 hours!!

For the latest two I have used 1 of my new Sugar Nellie stamps. I fell in love with this when I received some stamped images as part of a swap. I've used the flowers and swiss dots embossing folders, some ribbon and prima flowers and finished them off with a couple of CWC sentiments.

Sorry if the photos are too dark. I don't know if you can see where I have glittered some parts of the image.

xx :0)

More Cards!

I made some more cards yesterday to help take my mind of what's happening with my mum. All I will say is it's not looking good at the moment and she isn't helping herself at all which is making it hard for the rest of us.

I have to build up my stock for the craft fair in two weeks time. I had a load of images that I had stamped so I set about watercolouring them once I had an idea on the colours I wanted to use.

I apologise for the the poor quality of the photos. Photography and photo editing is not a strong point of mine, no matter how hard I wish it was!
I'm hoping the top two cards will come across as male-type cards, but I'll just be happy if somebody wants to buy them!
I hope you like them.
I'm off to make some more cards now so be sure to pop back!

CCT #9 - Gems & Jewels

This week our challenge is to use gems or jewels on your card, it's as easy as that!

I used this gorgeous PB stamp which I watercoloured and cut out using my nestabilities. Not sure if you can see due to the poor quality of the photo, but the red card has been embossed using the Swiss Dots embossing folder and I have added a strip of white starburst card across the middle which has a heart gem on each side. The sentiment is from CWC.


Wednesday, 7 May 2008
Once again thank you to everyone that has left such kind and thoughtful messages.

I cannot believe the conversation I had with my dad yesterday. After the stress of the weekend worrying that my mum had a heart problem, it would appear that that is incorrect! My dad got my mum down to see her GP to discuss the ECG results from the hospital. After looking at it, she said that it showed exactly the same as the one that was done at the surgery a few weeks before which was given the all clear. Apparently, ECG machines give a verdict on the reading, which in this case showed an irregular heartbeat, but different machines interpret the same results differently. My mum does have additional beats in her heart, but this is caused by the anxiety and hyperventilating that occurs when she panics, but she does not have a heart problem!! It is also the hyperventilating that is causing the dizziness and feeling faint.

How can machines give different readings on the same report?!?! I've been worrying about this all weekend and am really angry by it all, but also relieved that my mum's heart is okay.

Anyway, the latest on my mum is that she is to start attending the hospital for relaxation classes and stress management among other things. She will go Monday to Friday from 10am to 3pm and it is meant to last for 6 weeks. Obviously she is a bit anxious about it all. It's a bit like being a child starting their first day at a new school. But ultimately it's what she needs to do to try and come to terms with what has been happening and find other ways of dealing with her anxiety and stress, and hopefully we will start to see an improvement. It also means that my dad can go back to work and try and regain some normality for himself. He needs space too and some time for him as he has been the primary carer since it began 3 months ago.

I'm hoping to start making some cards soon as I have this fair to get ready for. I've got some stamped images next to me that need water colouring and mounting, and then hopefully everything else will come back to me.

Thank you all for persevering with me and my lack of crafting. You are all truly wonderful people and I won't forget the support and kindness that you have shown me.

xx :0)

Update on Mum

Monday, 5 May 2008
I'm sorry it's been so long since my last post but, to be honest, I've not really had a lot to say.

Thank you so much for all the kind words of support you have offered, they are greatly appreciated.

Things with my mum have pretty much stayed the same. My dad has had to be off work all week as he's not been able to leave her, despite the Home Support Team saying that she should be left to fend for herself. How can you leave someone on their own for 7 hours when she keeps coming over faint?

Anyway, things have come to a head a bit over the weekend. My mum collapsed twice in the space of 24 hours. With the help of a neighbour, my dad took my mum to the Out of Hours clinic at the hospital on Saturday morning. After a thorough examination and an ECG, it appears that my mum has a problem with her heart; an irregular heartbeat. This has been exacerbated by the lack of fluids and food she has taken on board, and is partially dehydrated. This is the reason she has been collapsing, or nearly collapsing. The doctor could also not believe the low dose of antidepressant she was on and feels she should be on at least double, but that is down to the HST.

The HST came round yesterday and were talking to my mum about going to the hospital to their therapy rooms, but, apparently she became very argumentative and was adamant that she was not going. Unfortunately this is non-negotiable and I don't envy my dad when they come to take her down on Tuesday.

I still don't feel 100% either from when I was poorly the other week. Something has triggered off my BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) and it is making me feel even worse. I am unable to sleep or lay on my left side when I have this and any movement to my left can bring on a bout of vertigo.

Thanks again for listening. Hopefully I will have some cards to post really soon.

xx :0)

Feeling Blue.

Monday, 28 April 2008

I've not been feeling very inspired the last few days and not just because I've been feeling poorly.

My poor mum is really ill again. She has taken a real downturn the last few days and, I hate to say it, she looks like an old lady. My dad phoned me in tears this morning as he just doesn't know what else to do. The home support team from the local psychiatric hospital don't seem to what to know anymore. They say they've done their bit and want to sign her off. She's just as bad as she was when they first started. They've messed around with her medication which gave her problems with her heart problems (she was getting extra beats) and not a lot else.

When my dad rang them today, they kept saying that they would ring back but didn't and when they did finally call, all they did was speak to my mum for 15 mins and said they would pop round on Thursday. I'm sorry, but that's just not good enough. She needs to bee seen now. Our surgery can't get involved either as she is still being "treated" by the hospital.

She's not eating much, hardly drinking, not really sleeping and she's lost so much weight. She's so exhausted she doesn't have the strength to do a lot and quite often her legs go from under her and she collapses.

It's breaking my heart to see her like this and even more so to hear my dad so distraught. I really feel for her state of mind and well being. I'm really scared that she won't get back to the way she was. I wish I could turn the clocks back 7 months to my wedding day and have my mum back again because I miss her so much.

I'm sorry this is such a long post.