Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Following on from the lost passport saga (you may be pleased to hear tracking reckons the replacement will be with us in the next 72 hours) poor Laura phoned me up yesterday, just after I got in from doing a days supply to tell me she didnt have her car/house keys. She was still at work and stuck as her car had never had a spare key. So having just driven from Canterbury I had to go back again, fighting the rush hour traffic and the failing light (I am a hopeless night driver) to pick her up and take her home.

Luckily this morning her keys magically had appeared on her desk so a bit of a mystery as to where they had been but alls well and all that.

I am getting lots of supply work at the moment and really enjoying working in the school I am in right now. The house is a mess, there is no food in, and the washing is creeping out the bathroom door since we werent here at the weekend. Mmm, no I dont need full time work do I?

I am slowly attempting to go back and add all the credits to my BPS LOAD LO's - not easy since I have some stuff on disc and some stuff on the hard drive, but I will get there.

Blogger doesnt fancy my photos tonight so watch this space for more BPS LO's

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Just come back from spending the weekend in London. The family had clubbed together to send hubby and me to a show(Lord of the Rings) and overnight stay for my 50th birthday and this was the weekend they had booked.

We drove up, yet despite having planned out the route on multi-map, and borrowing Kelly's A-Z we still managed to get lost looking for the hotel. It took us nearly an hour to find our way around the rabbit warren of roads near Tower Bridge and even when we did spot our hotel, we couldnt get to it as the road was closed for roadworks, so it involved another go around Algate to find a one way street going one way in the right direction.

So in the end we only had time to drop our suitcases in the room and dash back out to grab a London black cab to the theatre. By saving on messing about walking to undergrounds, changing tubes etc we then had time for a drink and sandwich in a pub before the show.

The performance was really good with fantastic special effects, although there was a bit of licence with the story line to fit it all into 3 hours. It was the matinee performance though so lots of kids but the audiance was very well behaved. Some of the younger children got a bit upset when in the second interlude some Orcs came into the stalls and scared them. The only two dissapointing things were the price of the ice creams in the break and the fact that no one seems to dress up to
go to theatre land any more.

We had exchanged some Tesco vouchers for deal tokens to use at Planet Hollywood but it was too early to eat when we came out, so rather than go back to the hotel and then return for our dinner, we wandered into Covent Garden and watched the street theatre. This was almost as good as the show, so we dug deep into our pockets at the end to fill the guy's hat. Well deserved.

Planet Hollywood was packed and it was a 2 hour wait until we were seated. I think if we had not had the Tesco vouchers we would not have eaten there as we could have got the same food for half the price just next door in the TGI Friday. But you live and learn.

We did try walking around after that to take in the sights and atmospher but London is so much more crowded now then when we used to go to the West End in the '80's and after being knocked aside for the fifth time, Martin could see I was getting a bit stressed by it all and suggested returning to the hotel.

Here is a little note for Sir Ken Livingstone though. We had paid £8 for the cab to Drury Lane, we looked at the underground (and aside from it being dirty, scruffy, uncomfortable and involving at least one change of line to get us back) the tickets were going to cost £4.50 each! So Ken, what is the point in a conjestion charge if its more cost effective, quicker and more comfortable/convienient to take a cab??!??

Anyway a big thankyou to the girls, my parents, son-in-law, Wayne and Martin for a fabby weekend. I really enjoyed my present.

I would love to put some photos of the hotel, the theatre, the street show, on here, but this morning we walked over to Leadnam market where I went to take a few more pics, only to have my card come up saying reader error. When I finally sorted it out, all the photos from the day before had been wiped.

And just to proove how expensive London can be - even though we already had our tickets and hotel paid for:

£3 - park car until restrictions ended
£10 cab plus tip to Theatre Royal
£19 two drinks and sandwiches each in pub for lunch
£8 two ice-creams and bottle of water in theatre
£10 drinks waiting for table in PH (I was only drinking soda!)
£10 service charge and bit over the money I had in vouchers for meal
£10 cab back to hotel
plus the amount of shoe leather we used looking for an ATM that wasnt going to charge us £1 to get some cash out!!

Instead here are my last few days entries for the BPS

Kelly in dad's garden
Background by me,flower elements Colours of Tuscany from Jen at Chaos Lounge

Kelly Michelle
A quick page by Shabby Princess

Another Shabby Princess Quick page

Kez under the tree
Barbara Schiefer Christmas Nature kit
Bauble from A-liya
Chain from Jane Atwell
Atomic cupcake action

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Saga of a passport

In 4 weeks time Laura and Wayne have booked to go to Goa in India. This trip (quite expensive even though out of season) is their treat to themselves for all the work they did building their house. They are really looking forward to it.

Of course such a trip isnt as easy as jumping on a plane to Spain. It requires visa's and injections and such. So Laura went to dig out her passport so they could start preparing. Visa's apparentley take 2 weeks to come through and they only have 4 weeks, time is ticking. Except Laura couldnt find her passport.

Now most people would be able to say - well I used it last when I went to ... I know it must be in the house someplace. But for sometime Laura has been living between 3 homes. She has needed her passport for her CRB check with school, another one for Christchurch, to replace a driving licence as well as their last trip abroad. It could be anywhere. So we have all been on the hunt, but with no joy.

With no more time to look, she got her dad to get her a replacement passport form (which have to come from the main not the nearby sub postoffice) rushed off some photos and got Wayne's brother to countersign it. Then yesterday we were to take it into the post office for checking and posting post haste. Only Craig hadnt got the wording on the photo right, the photo wasnt showing all her eyes anyway, and some of the form was filled in wrong. So we took a trip into town to nab Laura at work to put things right. After wasting an hour and a half for her to come out of her teaching lesson, a new form was handed over. This time we decided to get my friend jan to countersign it. So last evening was spent pleasantly over a coffee and catch up natter while Jan did the deed.

Hopefully (fingers crossed) it will all be right now and we can send it off today. Hopefully the passport office will be quick, and RM efficient. Hopefully they will get their passports, their visas, their injections in time and wing their way off to far off lands!

Some more LO for BPS.

This is this weeks sketch for pencil lines. I knew it would be perfect for Kelly's wedding album which I still have tons of photos to do but had put aside while making christmas cards and stuff. Back to that chatterbox, but I hand cut the florish!

And a really quick one using some Automic Cupcake borders plus a kit I downloaded free but which didnt have any credits on it, its called Moments.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The one where I do some mother/daughter bonding, spend in the sales and ..oh yes, scrap!

A busy weekend.

I dashed into Canterbury early Saturday as I had heard that Wilkinsons were selling cheap plants, where I nabbed 5 raspberry canes, a blackberry bush, runner bean, pea and sweetcorn seeds plus some plant labels and a pair of gardening gloves for the princely sum of £14 ( I spent more than that on dad's raspberry canes alone last year!). I then remembered that I would need something half decent to wear to the theatre when we go next week.

Now try as I might it is just not easy to squeeze into a changing booth with raspberry canes and runner bean seeds in tow, even if I did loose 1.5LB at WW this week. So home again to drop of stuff and (following a quick visit by mum and dad) off out down to Westward Cross and a bit of a browse through the clothes sale racks.

While in Canterbury I had seen something I liked in H&M but not in my size so that was my first stop. OK not very upmarket but it wasnt a bad little dress for £20. Have you noticed just how hard it is to buy a dress? I mentioned before how few there were in M&S? No? Well in a whole 2 story shop full of ladies clothes they only had 3 dresses! One was bright orange!!! One was so low ALL my bra was on show, and one not in my size. So I was really pleased to find a dress even half suitable. I like wearing day dresses, much more comfortable and no worry about things matching, or having no waist so they gap or fall down. But it seems that they just dont sell them. I went in several shops were there were no dresses whatsoever.

So I was in cowpat heaven when I walked into Peacocks and discovered that for half of one wall there was nothing BUT dresses. Yeah ok. They were all very similar in colour and style, but I bought another two!! A new short jacket, a couple of cameo tops, a new pair of shoes and a top also found their way into my basket. Sales are brilliant, and if you wait for the crowds to die down there are still plenty of bargins to be found.

I was just about to plough into the handbag and jewellry sections when my mobile went off ... and then died. No one ever phones me. So I jumped back in the car and rushed back to see Laura - who had spent the entire day pulling her house apart looking for her passport. She needs it for her visa and to go to Goa in 4 weeks time and as it still hasnt turned up, panic arrises.

Today I took Laura back into Canterbury where we spent a pleasant hour mauling all the goodies in Jane Norman. Wayne's mum had bought a rather expensive jacket in there for Laura's chrissie pressie but it didnt fit her, so we had plenty to spend. And spend we did. And nattered, and had coffee and a brilliant morning.

Finally more BPS stuff.

Colours changed in PS but elements from Little flower Douceur au Caramel

Friday, January 18, 2008

Busy because of illness!

Inner child kit by Rachel Bohall Desighns

With all these nasty viruses going round at the moment there has been lots of supply work on offer. In fact I had to turn some down today (one school have been so impressed with me they actually asked the agency specifically for me).

As much as I love teaching Reception and as much as I rarely get offered that year group I just couldnt do today. My poor baby herself has got the rotten flu thing and has been off work since Tuesday.
That in itself wouldnt have been enough for me to turn down the chance to earn a few pennies but she inadvertantely took some medication that she forgot she is alergic to. It causes her to halucinate. And now the doc has told her she cant drive. Although she is feeling better, she cant go back to school just yet and is feeling really down about it. So I am off over to see her where I am going to attemp to teach her to sew!!

In the meantime I have also been shortlisted for two interviews - fingers crossed. I would love a permenant job as suppy is just sooooo hard. Especially when they keep phoning up at 8.25 am!!!!

Some more stuff for the BPS - sorry I will get all the credits and upload as soon as I can.

Quick page by Gina Hoff from Weeds and Wildflowers
Holly elements from A-liya kit

Colours of Tuscany kit from Jen at Chaos Lounge

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Keeping up *Pant! Pant!*

Gosh doing all these LO's for BPS is a real marathon. I am keeping up - just, but it has meant time for blogging updates has been lost to Photoshop! Added to the fact that thursday and Friday I was called in to supply a lovely class of children in a school a bit of a hike away. Which gave me the opportunity to try out the new Ka car some more. Still no photo as now it has been on its two day cross country rally through all that torrential rain we have just had, it needs a good clean.

As well as digi scrapping and teaching, I have been trying to source some red striped and checked homespun material in order to make some soft toys from a brilliant book I have just got from Amazon. They are all christmas type dolls and bits and I really want to have a play but finding the right fabric has been a bit of a problem. I have finally found something not quite what I wanted but near enough on ebay and am now waiting for it to arrive. Watch this space should I be successful.

Today Kelly and Ollie had invited themselves for a roast dinner, so yesterday since Martin was home I dragged h
im around Tesco before rushing off to collect Laura and Wayne who had asked for a lift to the pub. They were off to a wedding and were meeting all the other guests there, but didnt want to drive. It has been a bit of a busy time for Laura as Wards had chosen the same weekend to hold an open house viewing of their house in hopes of getting a sale.

Now here is a cautionary tale - remember to give clear instructions when asking for something to be done!! I had promised that I would hire the Rug Doctor carpet cleaner and clean Laura's
carpets for her on Friday, going halves on the cost and doing mine while it was out on the 24 hour hire. Work took presidence though so in order that Laura could get on with the job as soon as she got in from work herself, I asked my mum and dad to pick up the cleaner and take it to Laura's house. What I forgot to say was not to collect it until late afternoon so that I could do my carpets on Saturday and take it back late Saturday afternoon. Dad collected it at 10 in the morning. Meaning it had to be back by 10 on Saturday. So Friday became a marathon carpet clean in and Saturday we were up early to take the thing back. Still it has made an amazing job of them. We have been using them on a regular basis for some years but even I was impressed that it managed to remove all the oil that has spilled out of the deep fat fryer when it fell over in the pantry.

Anyway on to my BPS Layouts! I apologise for lack
of credits, I will find all the bits on my computer and see where they have come from, and when I have I will add them on.

More Shabby Princess. This is based on a card class by Andrea seen on this weeks Creative World, I just added photos and letters to her idea.

I felt like doing something a bit pretty pretty. Its another template - got the hang of the mask clipping now, and apart from adding the wording I've not messed with it.

Its ages since I used a template, I thought it would be a quick option but resizing all the photos and then remembering how to clip the masks actually took me twice as long. Its not a LO I could do in paper though as I am hopeless at cutting the photos all the same size. And I forgot to write all the credits down so I will add them as I find them again.

Ok first attempt at trying a style similar to Kate Hatfield's. In fact some of the elements are her design any way.

I enjoyed playine with this one, used an inky over lay and lots of a Shabby Princess kit

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to my mummy!!

I am going to see her later so hopefully there may be some photos to share.

In the meantime here are a couple of LO's that I have uploaded for the Big Picture Scrapbooking contest.

This paper one doubles as my A entry for the A-Z challenge being run by Creative World. I am doing 12x12 individual LO's and hoping to use up some of the pre-married photos of Martin and I. These were me in 1974!
And this digi one is Martin and his work mates from a wedding we went to this summer (said loosley because half of the country was under water at the time) in The Forest Of Dean.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Out for the count.

Its really odd, I am getting more hits on my blog than ever before due to the BPS links, but I am actually sliding down the chart. (I keep the link there so I can quickly go look at all the other crafty bloggies). I have concluded that tons of new people must have started up new blogs as the year started. This is great, more stuff to read and share!

I am really getting into the digi stuff again. I have realised that not ony am I far far quicker (I actually finish LO's in hours rather than days) but I can do things I would never be able to do with paper. This LO is a prime example. Its todays entry for the BPS, and in real life paper and glue there is no way I could print and crop all the photos to be the same shape and size. I just dont have the skills or patience. And since I made my own background paper for this one, I wouldnt have the cs supplies for real either.

Laura taking Bailey for a walk in July when he was but 5 months old. He is severly much bigger than that now and although boisterous, a real sweetheart. He is a Champagne retriever.
Frame is from Miss Mint After Midnight kit.

Yesterday I spent the entire day taking down the decs, sortign them into the boxes, cleaning, and an hour shifting the tv back to its rightful position and untying all the cables. I am so going minimalistic next year!

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Crafts, LO's and more

Wow! The scrapbooking community are excelling themselves with free stuff intended to get us all beavering away with our scissors, glue and Bazzille in 2008!

Yesterday I got my first prompt email for Creative World's A-Z album, which is starting off today. I am not actually going to do an album, but use the prompts to give me a push doing 12x12 LO's for the albums I already have on the go.

Then I also discovered Anna's 365 challenge, daily prompts to make you get out your camera EVERY day this year (except did she forget it's a leap year?). Already there are 4 prompts up. This looks like fun and although she would like to get you scrapping the photo you do and journalling about it at the same time, the focus does seem to be on the photo taking to record your year. So I am going to have a bash at that too.

I am still keeping up with BP
S - this is attracting so much attention! Here are the LO's I have done for Days 3/4/5
Day 5
A quick page by B Derksen, (I never use these) but I have added a ribbon, some text and a pattern to the bauble.

Day 4
Messed about with a curling action to get the photos like that, I'm not very good at this 'throw everything at the page' style but I am going to keep trying.
Kiki Holbert swirls, Barbara Schiefer and J Baechtold kits, Sil & Nic clip and stitched circle,

Day 3
Nicole Kaltenecker Christmas Frames and a Kiki Halbert florishes that I changed the colour of.

I am using this as a digi springboard and each LO I am attempting to play with a different technique.

Yesterday I finally gave in and bought a decent 'fake' christmas tree in the B&Q sale. Its not that I am fed up with hoovering up pine needles (although this is becoming more of a bind) but I just dont think today's christmas trees do so well in central heating. As a child I am sure that the tree seemed to last longer and drop less needles. Mine had only been indoors 12 days yet when I undressed it yesterday, there was barely a needle still clinging to it, they were all in a heap on the floor.

Add to that the fact that in order to fit in in the front bay, we have to loose an armchair and move the tv unit (with associated perifials and wires), it is just too much effort just for Martin and I.

So for a little more than this years throw away version cost, we are now the proud owner of a 6.6ft slim aspen fir FAKE tree!

Thursday, January 03, 2008


When I uploaded Day1 1 LO to the BPS class there were 49 other LO's. I have just read this morning that they have 2400 scrappers signed up for this!!!!

Well it is certainly getting me scrapping anyway, and as well as that Creative World start thier A-Z prompts in 2 days time. I have just signed up, so no excuses for not creating this month!

Here is my Day 2 entry for BPS - the site is 8 hours behind GMT so I will be posting one day late on here each day.

Barbara Schiefer Christmas kit and one of Scrapdolly's lovely transparencies.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Get a Load of This

That is the title of the new 'freebie' class over at The Big Picture Scrapbooking this month. The idea is to upload a LO a day for the 31 days of January. A bit of a daunting task but already over 500 people have uploaded to the gallery. They are taking registrations for a few days more yet so anyone can still sign up.

I am a slow paper scrapper but can knock out a digi LO fairly quickly so yesterday I visited a few blogs and snagged a few freebie kits, loaded up Photoshop and got back into digi scrapping. I've not done any for a long time, and it was good fun.

So this is my Day 1 LO

Mostly Miss Mint Winter Sparkle kit and some stuff from JBaechtold and a couple of brushes.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

First this year


Gosh last year went so fast!

We had our friends Jan and Trev over to help us see out the old year and the new one in.I had made a huge buffet and we chatted, played Rummikub and then taught Trev how to use the Wii.

This took a while as the controllers needed reconfiguring from when they were used at the Cricket club on Wayne's Wii, and we couldn't find the handbook! The flat batteries in the remotes didn't help either LOL

Trev - who hates all new technology with a passion - was sceptical at first but once we got onto the bowling and forced him to have a go, loved it. In fact we had to insist on stopping to watch Big Ben and those fantastic fireworks. A quick rendition of Auld Lang Sign and he had us playing again until gone 1.30 am!!

Of course those phone messages take awhi
le to come through on NYE and just as I got to sleep another one arrived at 2.39am, waking me up. So today I have a splitting headache from lack of sleep. NOT from drinking I might add, as we were so involved in the games I only drank one glass of wine.

It was a good evening though.

No finished projects to upload today but I do have 3 on the go at the moment. This is the start of a word book I am making using my papers from the Christmas Kit Sw
ap I organised on the Pad.