Friday, January 26, 2007


I've been making a tag book with my new cowboy stmaps from Tanda Stamps. What a great bunch of people! I've just joined thier forum, and it's a lovely chatty small forum. Talking of forums, I've just joined Beth's lovely forum for all things altered!

Anyway, my cowboy stmaos have been stamped onto home made background using swooshes of Ditress Inks. Iused Colorbox Queue inks to stamp them. The 2 sets I have are all these greeny, ornagey Grand Canyon type colours, my faves.

On the back of each tag I have attached a photograph of us 4 on horseback in Canada in 2004. I've embellished with primas, rub-ons, stamping, and journalled around the photo.

To give an idea of scale, the tags are 4" x 3", and the photos are pre-digital, the little ones you used to get from triple print.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Nicholas has written a wonderful new membership database for me. It includes everything on the membership form, ie members details plus surname interests, services they can provide, and other interests. It has taken him hours and hours, but I think everyone is pleased with it! He has had quite a bit of correspondance from Committee members about it, and he has really learned a lot about working with users!!

I had 3 new members this morning so I entered them in the new database. (I still have to use my excel db as well atm, cos the new access db is not live yet. One bug we found was that he had set the postcode field to letter, letter, number, number (AB12), and I had a Birmingham postcode which is just B! So it wouldn't accept it!

Nicholas has gone off to college now for maths, and when he comes home we have to go to halfords to take back his bike lights that don't work. Then we'll get down to sorting out the bug!

I really want to be playing with my new stamps! I bought some cowboy stamps last week, and haven't got them out of the packet yet! They are for a Wild West CJ. I have some more coming from America (Las Vegas!!!), but not sure how long they will take.

I also got some stamps from eBay today, an ornate letter set, and another Snoopy! Just looked on the Stampabilities website, and there are loads! I want to make a few cards, becasue Lucy at work is hosting a jewellery party laterin the Spring, and has asked me if I wnat to take some cards to sell - YES PLEASE! I like the idea of selling a few cards to pay for new stash!!

According to John Ross's website, the largest gust of wind was 47mph, at about 9.30am, it's now about 20mph.

Monday, January 15, 2007

A great weekend

We went for a super walk up to chanctonbury ring on Sunday morning. The weather was fab, sunny, a bit cool in the wind, but bright. Makes a change from the wet, windy, gloomy weather that has dominated recently. Merlin absolutely loved it up there, and just ran everywhere! He even had energy left to madly chase another dog at the top! It really makes the walk so much more fun when Merlin is so exhuberant!

Here's what I did at my Brighton and Hove crop on Saturday. It took me nearly the whole 6 hours to complete this!!! I am quite pleased with it, and am more and more recognising my own style, even though I scraplifted this froma Becky Higgins sketch. We did a bring and buy sale this month, and everyone bought loads to sell, but I don't think anyone was in a buying mood, cos noone sold much! I bought a Notch and Die tool (cos I love the tool and it's packaging, doublt I'll use it much!!!) for £5, some Anna Griffin papers (for my heritage album - must get back to that soon), some background stamps and a few other bits and pieces.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Dog tired!

I have felt very very tired today - those early mornings catch me out towards the end of the week! Here is what I would like to have done all day! SLEEP

Merlin sleeps by the back door most evenings. If you go in to the kitchen, he will lift his head, and the curtain falls across his head like a hot and he is oblovious to it! It is so funny!

Monday, January 08, 2007

gloomy january day

It is so gloomy again today. We have had a lot of rain lately, and it's been quite windy too. It's cold, dreary and miserable, but what can we expect in january?

But, today I have acheived a lot. I have cleaned WFC for 3 hours, walked the dog for 1 hour (down the beach), and then taken all our rubbish from the lounge to the tip and charity shop. Yoohoo! It always feels good to get rid of rubbish/clutter, especially when it is going to be recycled. Then I cleaned the conservatory floor (where all the rubbish was!), had lunch, showered, and now am having a well-earned chill out reading other people's blogs on here!

Blogs are easier to read if they have short entries, so I apologise to anyone looking at mine lately!

Friday, January 05, 2007

craft and settees day

I haven't done much scrapping lately. But here's my latest effort for the Christmas traditions CJ. I'm pleased with how it's turned out - love the BG Fruitcake papers!

I've had these pics of Nicholas and Merlin to scrap for ages! Finally managed a DLO for his album. It's based on a sketch in Creating Keepsakes sketch book. I do like using sketches - I tend to choose photos and then find a sketch that more or less matches the size, shape and number of photos. I cropped these to make square shapes and to fit along the bottom. The original sketch didn't have the second little one at the top on RHS, but we (DS and I) thought it needed something - frightened of white space!!!

Most excitingly, our new settees arrived today. The men were well on time, and they even moved the big old sofa out into the hall so they could put all the new ones in the lounge. Very helpful, and definately not 'jobsworth' type people! I love the new settees - they are smaller, and fit perfectly, especially the lighter one in the bay window. They are quite firm to sit on, but very comfortable. All we need now is new curtains, CD/DVD storage, and pictures back up on the wall. We may need to reframe some, as they are original paintings, and it would be a shame not to put them up. I'm thinking of red cushions and a throw (as an accent colour CORR that sounds posh). DS,DD and I don't like the stereo unit (behind the chair), and are wondering if we can persuade DH to get rid of it (unlikely!) He spent a lot of money on the hi-fi, and a proper unit before DS was born, because we were going to be in lots more and thought we would listen to music lots - but we don't!! Well, not in the lounge anyway. I listen to the radio in the kitchen, and the dining room, and CDs and radio in the bedroom, and of course use my MP3 player at work and dog walking.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

New Year - New Me!

The end of the year is a great time for taking stock, looking back at what I have achieved this year, and lookig forward to a new 'beginnning'.

I think 2006 has been a good year.

DH and I are better friends than ever becasue of the dog walking! We definately are on our own now, the kids just don't want to come. In fact, Lucy doesn't really have much to do with Merlin. Nicholas is much more likely to play with him, and has really grasped how good a companion the dog is. But N is at home a lot more than L. I have a really nice relationship with N. We are often together in our 'computer' room! (Ususally me asking him how to do something!) He has really grown up and is likely to join in adult conversations, and does come on dog walks too occasionally. L is very very teenage, and I think 2007 is not going to be any better than 2006, in fact, it will probably be worse. Yesterday she refused to eat with us, and was in a foul mood last night, literally just grunting at us. I felt rejected! Today has been much better, I made a real effort to include her and her friend at meal times, and they ate more sensibly.
My mum and dad have had a terrible year becasue of dad's health. He has really been ill all year, and now is in remission again. He is on a small dose of thalidomide to ward off the myeloma, but I don't think he is reacting very well to it. I really hope they have a better year. It really is awful watching your parents health deteriorate.
BIL has sold his house, which is really good news! He is in B&B at present, so we just hope that 2007 brings him good luck with finding the perfect place, that suits him, and that DH and their mum agree with (a hard task!)

Highlights of the year, our trip all on our own and on the motorbike, to Sherborne. We did a bit of family history too, which I think DH found just as interesting as I did. The main one though was New York. I so loved it, and for one who does not look forward to holidays, I was really pleased with myself. The flights were not really that bad. New York was fab, all thos iconic stree signs, and iceskating in Central Park, and going up the ESB!
Don't know what we are going to do this year though. Maybe a couple of long weekend city breaks?

Work for me is mostly voluntary.
Family Centre. I still love it, I feel well settled there now, and know what to do. I took on the cleaning in October, and my aim this month is to get settled in my new routine.
AIFHS I feel I have done a lot to streamline the membership admin, and am very excited that Nicholas has written a new database for me. It should be going live quite soon, so fingers crossed! I really don't feel like taking on anything else on the committee, it has been moted several times about me becming chairman, but I really don't want that.
DHS Govenors. I have blown a bit hot and cold this year, mostly cold I'm afraid to say! I did have a wonderful day ion school at the end of last term, and I do enjoy the Govenor's panels for exclusions, but I'm not sure I really feel part of the team. I think I'll just keep my head down, and not volunteer for anything else new.

Scrapbooking. I really got into stmaping this year. It started with doing Shimelle's art in the mail course. I am self taught, and not so very confident in my abilities, especially when I joined the UKStampers 1st CJ! All the others are soo much better than me! My first love is scrapbooking, and I did have to say to myslef this year that I should reduce the no of CJ's and swaps that I get involved in. I've hardly done any swaps- one that does spring to mind is the calendar tag swap! It was such a mess, that we ended up doing it twice! I have tried to use them in my 'garden' album, but I'm not pleased with how it's turned out. My 2006 album is coming on well, I started a heritage album, a book of me and an album for Nicholas's 18th birthday. My goal is to finish all these before starting anything new. I tried to do Shimelles' christmas journal again, but feel at the 2nd post! I just had to decide to give it up. I will try to consolidate all my techniques and projects in 2007, and have just ordered some new storage! I will not take on anything new. (at least for the time being!!!)

Reading. I'm really pleased that I have read quite a few books that I wouldn't normally read because of book forums. I will continue to read avidly, and to try new genres and authors throughout 2007.

Family History. I feel that my own family history ahs taken a bit of a back seat since I joined the AIFHS committee. I really want to get going with it this year! So I have subscribed to for 12 months so i can really get going on the Fumagalli trail. WE did go down to Sherbourne, adn in just half a day found out quite a lot of interesting stuff on the vanstones. I should try to get to Birmingham (with M&D if they are well enough) to research the Fumagallis better. I'm not sure whether I will try to go back into Italy this year. I think I'll stick with going forward from Giovanni, and see how I get on.

Gardening. Not so much time for gardening these days. And I have to say, not so much enthusiasm for it either! I will complete my garden album, and that has given me a bit of inspiration, and I will continue to visit garden centres with M&D!!!! And hopefully lots of nice gardens. M and I hare now members of the National Trust, so we really should get to as many as poss this summer.

I am running out of time now! Other things I want to do: Drive less miles in the car. Means using my bike more, and car less. Be generally more organised so that I feel like I'm getting more done! Cook more.

That will do for now!