Wednesday 30 October 2019

WOYWW - Week 543

Hello Everyone,

It's been a while - in fact I can't believe it's two weeks since I last joined in with Julia's What's On Your Desk Wednesday - and I've missed you all. It's great to be back sharing what's on my desk today.
However, there's precious little going on. I'm in catching up mode so what you can see are several piles - one of blue card/patterned paper, another of dies and embossing folders and a tiny one of the very few cards completed over the last few days. And furthest to the right is some happy mail. And that is it. I should be doing more but my Mojo has gone AWOL while I've been MIA. So, of course, there's the much needed cuppa - it's a distraction.

I am happy to report, however, that I have finally completed the album I've been working on to celebrate my son's fiftieth. This is good because we are all meeting up on Friday for my grandson's wedding.
He can also take this year's hop harvest away back to the Highlands of Scotland with him ... 
... - he's a keen amateur brewer.

And now, the book bit.
And this one is very appropriate for Halloween. Elly Griffiths' 'The Stranger Diaries' is a contemporary Gothic thriller and, of course, there's even the requisite ghost. The main character, Clare Cassidy, a teacher of literature who also runs a creative writing course for adults, is writing a biography of RM Holland, the author of 'The Stranger', a very creepy short story in the style of Wilkie Collins, MR James and the like. Needless to say this eerie tale comes to life as people closely associated with Clare become murder victims. I'm not a real fan of Gothic writers or ghost stories but this book is a compelling mystery that kept me listening as secrets are slowly revealed and the creepiness mounts until the mystery is solved.

I've been very lucky today. It's cold, very cold, outside but the sun is streaming through my window warming me up very nicely - making typing up this post a real pleasure.

That's it from me today. Be sure to pop over to Julia's Stamping Ground to visit so many more desks today.

I hope you are having a wonderful WOYWW and wish you a great week ahead.

Monday 28 October 2019

Christmas Card Club - Card 22/2019 - Penguins or Polar Bears

Evening Everyone,

It's been quite a while since I last posted. I wish I could say I'd been doing something really exciting - touring the Highlands or climbing Ben Nevis, for example - but sadly not. Instead, I can only blame life - it just got in the way.  And it's been difficult to find time to make cards but I did squeeze in a few hours today, so here's what I've managed to make for the Christmas Card Club challenge. Today the theme, chosen by Shaz, is 'penguins or polar bears'. As you can see I opted for penguins.
The penguin chick is too cute and looks disappointed to be offered holly leaves instead of fish, don't you think?

Supplies used:

- a white A6 card base
- cardstock: white for embossed layer and penguin; black for layering and penguin; grey for baby penguin chick; red for greeting
- embellishments: tiny black and white pearls from Craft for Occasions

Tools used:
- die-cutting machine 
- die sets: Docrafts' Spiro Circles, 'Snowflake Penguins' from Apple Blossom and 'Modern Merry Christmas' - a Mini Moments from Tonic Studios
- embossing folder: 'Congrats' set from American Crafts

After watching the first episode of 'Seven Worlds, One Planet' on TV last night, I have renewed respect for these brave creatures so was delighted to bring out this cute penguin die set today.

There's only three more challenges for the Christmas Card Club left in this year and I'm pleased to say I have, by now, built up quite a stock of cards. It's been well worth participating in the challenge along with the others this year. I hope you will pop over to see what my teammates have created for today's theme. You'll find a list of their names and links on my right sidebar - as always they are so much more creative than me.

Sunday 13 October 2019

Christmas Card Club - Card 21/2019 - Nativity

Hello and Happy Sunday Everyone

I hope you are having a lovely weekend. Many thanks for taking the time to check out today's post - your visit is much appreciated.

The challenge for today's Christmas Card Club, set by Rita, RMG Creations, is the 'nativity scene'. Difficult this one. A trawl through my complete stash of stamps and dies came up with nothing remotely related to the nativity. Luckily, I have kept cards received for Christmases past and that's where I found the image I have used as the topper for today's card. 
Supplies used:

- a white 5½" square card base
- gold cardstock 
- star patterned paper from Sizzix 'Christmas Spirit' paper pack
- dies: largest dies in the Spellbinders 'Renaissance Jubilee' Designer Series & M& C Boutique's 'Heart' die set;Docrafts X-Cut's 'Star' 
- Docrafts X-Cut circle cutter - used to cut the image out of the old card front
- Versamark and gold embossing powder - used to edge the image once cut out
- various adhesives

That's it for CCC today but I hope you will pop over to see what my teammates have created for today's theme. You'll find a list of their names and links on my right sidebar - as always they are so much more creative than me.

Wednesday 9 October 2019


Hello Everyone,

It's a grim day here, so much so that even our resident flock of sparrows have taken refuge in the escallonia for now. However, that makes it a perfect day to join in with Julia's What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday. 
The mess on my desk today is just too much! I'm still working on my son's album, of course. And, in the meantime, my desk has become the dumping ground for any bit of ephemera and embellishment not used. All those little dishes need clearing out. Soon. Today would be good! And those scrap pages need to put away too, which is why they are out, ready and waiting, on the desk.

Here's close-ups of a couple of the pages.

I wasn't able to attend the quilting class on Thursday due to trouble with the car. The EM went out to put the sewing machine in the boot (trunk) only to discover the back window was smashed to pieces. No clue to how it happened but, fortunately, it was insured and so was replaced by teatime.

For those of you who read it there's no book bit either. This week I'm listening to Nikky Gemmell's 'The Invisible Women's  Society' - not a book but an Audible podcast which is free for members.

In answer to our Shaz in Oz's questions from last week about the audiobooks I listen too, I should explain that most are also available in real book form - many much cheaper to buy than in audio form. And, yes, I do sometimes read a real book too, preferably in large print as my eyesight isn't as clear as it once was - this is because I'm developing cataracts in both eyes and there's a bunch of floaters in my right eye which are incredibly distracting. About as distracting as the tinnitus in my right ear. Oh, the joys of getting older!

On a brighter note, the EM is making his famous potato and leek soup and the most delicious aromas are drifting my way - yum!

That's it from me today. Be sure to pop over to Julia's Stamping Ground to visit so many more desks today.

I hope you are having a wonderful WOYWW and wish you a great week ahead.

Monday 7 October 2019

In A Vase On Monday - Cupcakes and Tartan

Morning Everyone

I have a very quick and simple little arrangement for Cathy's In A Vase On Monday today. So without further ado ...
I found the sweet little tartan vase in a charity shop last week and just couldn't resist it. It reminds me so much of my father's regimental tartan, and the Highland dancing performances I endured as a child - I was a very nervous little dancer. True it is a bit bright and bold so, regretfully, all the colourful roses that are still in bloom were dismissed and instead I opted for the many and delightful white Cosmos 'Cupcake' that are still looking wonderful.
I even slipped in the only love-in-a-mist, Nigella 'Mrs Jekyll', I could find.

That's all this week - I said it was quick and simple this week.

Linking this post to Cathy's In A Vase On Monday, and joining with the many others who share their floral arrangements each week. If you have filled a vase today, I'm sure you would be very welcome to join in too.

Sunday 6 October 2019

Sunday Snippet Card - Autumn Birthday

Hello Everyone,

And happy Sunday to you too. I hope you are having a wonderful day. It's been perfect crafting weather here, dull, miserable and rainy, and I've been happily creating another layout for my son's 50th album. It's getting nearer completion but still a way to go. In the meantime, I have a little birthday card to share with you.
It's made from scraps from the bits and bobs box - I swear that box is really a Tardis!

Supplies used:
- a white card base measuring 5x7 inches
- scraps of white and green cardstock for topper and greeting
- a scrap of green ink spritzed masterboard - a leftover from an earlier project
- stamps: 'Variostamp Leaves' from Folia Bringmann; 'Autum Harvest' stamp set from For the Love of Stamps by Hunkydory
- inks: various green ink pads from my stash including Versafine 'Olympia Green' and Memento 'Tuxedo Black'
- pens; Promarkers in greens, browns, orange and yellow for colouring the autumn harvest image
- glitter glue: yellow, cinnamon and platinum Stickles to decorate the pumpkin and cones in the image

The 'Birthday wishes' stamp was originally all one stamp but, as I wanted the words to be separate, I snipped it in half, then stamped the two words on two very tiny scraps of white cardstock. They can still be stamped together if needed - no irreparable damage done.

That's it for this Sunday. Take care everyone and enjoy the rest of the day.

Friday 4 October 2019

Friday Smiles

Hello Everyone

It's a wee while since I've been able to join in with Annie's Friday Smiles, but I've finally got to grips with the new computer, all necessary software installed, etc., so, hopefully, normal service is now resumed.

Part of this morning had us at our health clinic to get our flu shots - ouch! And because we had been so brave we treated ourselves to a trip down to the beach. It's cool, cloudy and very breezy but perfect for blowing away the cobwebs. Here's a few pics taken there.

Now a cafe and child's play centre, Pirate Pete's, this building was once a theatre, The Pavilion, very popular in it's day.

Dark clouds looming overhead - I fear Storm Lorenzo hasn't finished with us yet.

This site made me chuckle.
The sign reads, 'Feed a Bin, Not a Gull', but I'd say that this gull has not lost all hope yet.

That's it from me today. I hope you've had a week full of reasons to smile, and if you have, you've shared it with Annie too - the more the merrier.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday 2 October 2019


Hello Everyone,

It's the first What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday of October and I'm running late. Nothing unusual in that, of course, but I have been busy in the garden - yes, the sun is shining and it isn't so very cold. We've been tidying up ready for the gales that have been forecast. Which means there's nothing much on my workdesk today so here's a shot of what's on the sewing table instead.
I've been working on this unfinished cushion cover. Progress is slow but it will be done before December.
The quilting class at the community centre has started again. This term I'm making a table runner.  This is the first block - an eight-pointed star. The fabrics are printed with fruit and vegetables - very appropriate.

And now the book bit.
Jane Gilley's 'The Woman Who Kept Everything' tackles, through the story of 79-year-old Gloria, the very important issues of  hoarding, senile squalor syndrome, and the financial abuse of older adults. Whilst living among piles of magazines, cardboard boxes and the many knickknacks that she treasures, Gloria is unaware of just how desperate her living conditions appear to others.  This changes when a smell of burning suddenly forces her to leave, not only her home, but all her much loved possessions too. Her bully of a son. Cleg, dumps her in a home, clears her house and puts it up for sale - this without her knowledge or permission. On discovering this Gloria decides to pack a suitcase and go on various adventures in Skegness, London and Eastbourne. It's difficult to believe that a hoarder can change her ways so easily and quickly, but that aside I found it an enjoyable and uplifting story.

That's it from me today. Be sure to pop over to Julia's Stamping Ground to visit so many more desks today.

I hope you are having a wonderful WOYWW and wish you a great week ahead.