Sunday 28 November 2010

One snowman and his dog...

... went to mow a meadow? Hardly, in this winter wonderland LOL. The first snowfall of the winter, and for us on the coast to get enough to make a snowman means that there is alot of snow about! Now, I don't exactly hate snow, but I am not a lover of the stuff either - snow is pretty to look at, and fun to play in, but if you need to get anywhere, then it is a nightmare. Not being able to walk to work means I get really uptight when it snows, as I hate driving in it. It's not that I don't have the confidence, it's more like I have little confidence in other drivers, especially 4x4 drivers who think they can drive normally in horrendous conditions.

But luckily, this weekend, we haven't had to drive anywhere - and with it being my weekend off I haven't had the stress of worrying about driving into work either. So I have embraced the snow, and had some fun with the kids.

Yesterday we built our first snowman of the season - an Arthur lookalike - with his faithful companion, who has no name, although Tom was thinking of something suitable.

This weekend was supposed to be the Hopeman Crop, but seeing as the weather is so bad, it was cancelled. It was going to be our Christmas Crop, so Erika set us the challenge to make something Christmassy - either a layout, card or anything else as long as it was paper LOL.

So I made this.

I had an empty tin which originally was a candle, and I covered it with Crate Paper "Snow Day", and added some flowers and diecuts to the lid. Then I cut out the "joy" from a Sizzlits set, the reindeer which is Quickutz, and a couple of punched snowflakes. I stuck them to some wire, then spiralled the wire round a pencil to make like springs, and then stuck them into the lid. I added some ribbon round the centre of the tin, and I put some chocolates inside the tin. I think it'll make a nice ornament this Christmas!

Although the crop is cancelled, Erika has some homebaking that she needs some "help" with, so I am going along the road to enjoy a couple of hours of crafting and muffins LOL. I just need to snowproof my craft supplies and stick my winter gear on...



Thursday 25 November 2010

Not the same

I finally managed to use Allison Davis's November Sketch week sketch as a whole.

I was looking through my storage albums, and found a handful of photos from Christmas 2005. This was the Christmas that Mark spent out in Iraq, and was the first time he had spent Christmas away from the kids. We had the in-laws visit, but even so, it just wasn't the same without him. I took few photos, and sent them to him via e-mail, so this is what he saw of our Christmas.

I used the new Crate Paper "Snow Day" - I just love Crate Paper!
Cardstock - Bazzill Basics
Patterned Paper - Crate Paper "Snow Day"
Die cuts - Crate Paper
Alphabet stickers - American Crafts Thickers
Embroidery thread - DMC
It's absolutely baltic outside today, and although we don't have snow, we have certainly had wintry showers...

Tuesday 23 November 2010

Slip sliding away

... Slip sliding awaaaaaaaaaaayyyyy... My father has a lot to answer for, force feeding us Paul Simon..... Anyhoo, on to the layout! For something that looks so simple, this has taken me the best part of a week to do. Probably due more to a lack of time rather than complicated creativity!

A bit of background to this - whenever we have visited a play park, Mark always comments on how un-slippy the slides are. His sense of duty took over (both to his kids enjoyment, and to the greater community LOL) and he started to take a can of furniture polish and a tea towel to the park, so he could polish the slide and therefore enhance his kids experience at the park - by making the slide slippy.

Fast forward to this week. Jemma went to a Council run sports day on one of the extra In-service days. As it was only open to P5-7's Tom couldn't go, so Mark asked him what he wanted to do with me that day.

After dissuading him from spending all day on the sofa with his DS, it was decided (by Tom) that we were to go to Cooper Park in Elgin and make the slide slippy, and then go to Jimmy Chung's for the all you can eat Chinese buffet. Sounded like fun to me. So we dropped Jemma off at Lossiemouth, and headed into Elgin.

I also took some bread, so we fed the ducks (or tried to, whilst trying not to feed the seagulls) at the boating lake, before heading to the play park to polish the slide. Then we walked around the park, taking the time to play in some leaves, before the man from the council decided to hoover them up... A warm up in the library, and a new supply of reading material, and then we went for our lunch. A great day all round.

So, this 2 pager is based on another of Allison Davis's sketches - the June Sketch Week sketch. I added captions to the photos, to describe the process Tom followed. Tom is such a perfectionist, I wonder where he gets that from...? The photos are not that great, the light wasn't good at all, and I am a complete cameraphobe. Point and shoot is my maximum skill level. But, I am all for telling a story, and naff photos are better than no photos.

Cardstock - Bazzill Basics

Diecut paper - Creative Imaginations

Alphabet stickers - American Crafts Thickers

Ribbon and buttons - unknown, just in my stash!

Talking about photos, Mark and I were involved in an interesting conversation with friends the other night. It was alcohol fuelled (although I was stone cold sober, due to being the designated driver) and someone asked the question "Do you have any regrets?" One of our friends said "Yes, that I didn't take more photos". He was referring to his time in the forces, and that he has only a few photos of his 22 year career. Yes, he had the stories and the memories, but nothing that he could "show" his grandkids. The debate began on the pros and cons of photographs, how they could be seen as the killer of storytelling, and how the present generation are so reliant on visual media.

I had to put my tuppence worth in, and said that as a scrapbooker, I was taking photos and then adding the stories, so taking the best of both worlds so to speak - taking a visual media, and then using storytelling to create a page for the future generation.

This discussion just fuelled my desire to carry on scrapbooking, and record as many memories as I can. And to also go backwards, and find out stories to go with the old photos I have, and try to find things to help illustrate the stories I have - my Papa's war stories for instance. A good a reason as any to be a scrapbooker, I think...



Thursday 18 November 2010

Dinosaurs and inky hands

The kids are back at school again after their extremely long weekend off. In-service days. Ugh.

Anyway, I took advantage of the silence, and got busy in the craft room. I even got a bit adventurous and played about with ink, hence the inky hands...

A walk with dinosaurs. When we were down at the inlaws in October, they took us for a walk around Watermead Country Park. We always called it Wanlip, seeing as it was near there LOL. We walked the Jurassic trail around King Lear's Lake, which had lots of dinosaur and fossil themed sculptures dotted about. The kids loved climbing on them, and generally had a ball.

I used the left hand side of the November Sketch week sketch from Allison Davis, I do like it when a sketch for a double page can be split into singles. I got the needle and thread out for this page too, and did a spot of chain stitch around the edge of the dino paper, which made a change from normal straight stitch.

Cardstock - Bazzill

Patterned paper - BasicGrey (Archaic)

Cardstock stickers - BasicGrey (Archaic)

Border sticker - BasicGrey (Archaic)

Alphabet stickers - BasicGrey, American Crafts

Embroidery thread - DMC

Button - BasicGrey

Tag - Making Memories

Lace - from my ribbon box

Glitter - Stickles

Don't... Yes, I have yet another set of photos of me looking particularly grumpy and disgruntled whilst trying to conquer my fear of heights... Mark takes a lot of pleasure recording my discomfort whilst doing these kinds of things.

I had a lot of fun making this layout - lots of inking and distressing going on! I wanted to use a KI Memories die cut sheet, but the problem was that it was fushia pink, so I turned it over and inked the back of the sheet with 3 different shades of green ink. Lots of mess, and lovely green inky hands after! I then tore up a cardboard box to make a sort of tree trunk on the left hand side of the page. I took the right hand side of the November Sketch week sketch as inspiration for this page. Maybe at some point I will use the 2 sides together and make a double layout LOL.

Journalling reads - Don't... ... keep pointing that camera at me. You know I am scared being this high off the ground. You know I don't like having my photo taken. I am not photogenic. And do we really need to see my Paddington hard stare? So, please put the camera back in its pouch. Please? Pretty please? With a cherry on top???


Die cut paper - KI Memories

Patterned Paper - BoBunny Press

Inks - Colorbox

Chipboard elements - Scenic Route (circle), leaves from unknown source

Flowers - Prima Marketing

Brad - American Crafts

Alphabet stickers - American Crafts Thickers

Other - cardboard from a packaging box



Tuesday 16 November 2010

2 little birdies

Two-wit, two-woo!

When I was about 12 or 13, I was taught how to do Macrame at school. I did the obligatory hanging pot holder, and the large owl wall hanging, but my teacher also taught me how to make these tiny owl brooches. I used to churn these out like clockwork - I think everyone in my family received one as a gift one Christmas, and I even sold some at the Church fair. My bedroom floor was littered with the little blighters.

Fast forward to this past weekend. I decided that Sunday afternoon was a good time to indoctrinate Jemma into the owl making tradition. However, although I knew exactly what the finished owl looked like, the how to bit was buried somewhere deep in the old grey matter, and needed a bit of a helping hand to find its way out. Thank goodness for Google.... Or in this house, the phrase frequently used is "Google is your friend". So after refreshing my memory, we bust out the boxes of embroidery thread, some beads, a couple of safety pins and a bamboo skewer and toiled away all afternoon until we had both finished. My effort is on the left, and I think you will agree, the 11 year old's owl on the right is considerably better. Another case of the student outdoing the teacher methinks! Now she has caught the bug, and is already making them for friends.... What have I started..???

If you fancy having a go, I found a nice set of instructions here by Gretchen H. Brierly. My owl turns out a bit different to hers, but I think you get the idea...



Thursday 11 November 2010

Yes, I know...'s been a while. You must have thought that I'd got lost on our trip around the country in 8 days... Alas, we did not. I thought I would bring you up to speed on whats been going on around here, but first...

Today is Remembrance Day in the UK and Veteran's Day in the US. As a proud wife of a RAF serviceman, I wear my poppy with pride. We will all be marching in the village Remembrance Parade on Sunday. Also as a Granddaughter of a RAMC Burma Star recipient and the Great- granddaughter of a RGA Gunner who saw action in Ypres and Gallipoli I feel very proud of all the sacrifices my family has made over the decades to ensure we enjoy our freedom today.
We will remember them.

So, back to the recap of the past few weeks in the house of Yoo...

Our trip.
15 - 25 October. We had a great time, catching up with family and friends, exploring London, and seeing the boy's face when he walked through the gates at Legoland. It was so worth the travelling, the getting stuck on the M25, the 2 nights in a dubious hotel in central Watford and the having to sleep on a blow up matress on the lounge floor.
What wasn't so great was the announcement in Parliament on the 19th October. An announcement which sent our little family and the local community into a stae of shock and disbelief. Uncertain of what the future holds, but coping as best we can, even though we have no definitive answers. When we know what we are dealing with, I can get my head around it and carry on. It's what Military families do. Whether we like it or not...

Hopeman Crop.
31st October. Another great afternoon with a lovely bunch of girls - some old and some new. It was so therapeutic to sit down and craft, something I hadn't managed to do since returning from our holiday. I managed to complete most of a double layout and a single layout. I never seem to finish things off completely at a crop - usually due to me forgetting an important element (this time it was foam sticky pads) - and I always go home to add the finishing touches! Thanks to Erika for the delicious Halloween themed orange muffins. Nom nom nom!

Tang Soo Do belt grading.
6th November. The kids did really really well, both achieving their brown tag belts - which look like a huge long Oreo cookie, brown with a white stripe down the middle! And thankfully, no new trim to sew on the suits this time around!

Finally, I have some layouts to share. The first 2 are the pages I was working on at the crop.

Drivin' me Crazy. This page is based on a PageMaps sketch from January 2010. It is my Mum and Dad on their wedding day - my Dad held only a Motorbike license when they got married, but my Mum had passed her full driving license, so it was up to her to drive them away on their honeymoon.

Patterned paper - My Minds Eye, Prima Marketing
Cardstock - Bazzill
Punches - EK Success
Alphabet stickers - American Crafts
Buttons - Paper Mania
Stamp - Close to my Heart
Flower - Prima Marketing

Ribbon - from my ribbon box

Temple. These photographs were taken on our holiday to Turkey in 2008. We visited the Temple of Apollo at Didyma, the ruins are spectacular, and the remaining standing pillars are just breath taking.
I used an Allison Davis sketch from her August Sketch week.

Cardstock - Bazzill

Patterned paper - Making Memories, Fancy Pants Designs, Prima Marketing, K&Co

Alphabet stickers - American Crafts

Embossing plates - Cuttlebug

Buttons - Paper Mania, my button box

Gorge walk. These photos were taken during our "adventure week" in July, when we went gorge walking just outside Aviemore. The photos were taken by one of our guides with his waterproof camera, and then e-mailed to us after. They aren't the best quality, but they convey the whole experience we had that day! Again, I have used an Allison Davis sketch, this time from the January Sketch week.

Cardstock - Bazzill

Patterned papers - October Afternoon, Doodlebug, Prima Marketing

Stamp - Close to my Heart

Buttons - Paper Mania

Alphabet stickers - American Crafts

Kleines Fraulein. This page uses photos of our youngest German cousin, Eva Lotte. Mark has a German side to his family, as both his mother and his Aunt both spent time in Germany in the 60s as nurses. Doreen met a German guy, married and has lived in Germany ever since. Mark has 3 German cousins, and now there is a second generation of cousins. At cousin Sara's wedding in 2008, we got to meet them all for the first time. Eva Lotte was a complete darling, and everyone was besotted with her. I took these photos of her after the wedding. I converted them to sepia as the colour photographs I had were not fitting in to what I was planning! I used an Allison Davis sketch again, this is the latest Sketch week sketch - it's happening this week! I took the right hand page of the sketch, and just made a single layout. The flowers I made by punching 2" circles out of tissue paper, stamping some of them and then scrunching them all up and inking them, before fastening a button to the centre with embroidery floss.

Cardstock - Bazzill

Lace cardstock - KI Memories

Stamp - Prima Marketing

Ribbon - from my ribbon box

Alphabet stickers - American Crafts

Buttons - from my button box!

Embroidery thread - DMC

I have also been working on a couple of projects - things that I don't want to jinx by mentioning them here... But don't worry, I'll spill the beans soon enough, whether they come to fruition or not.

I hope you like the look of the place - I thought I would redecorate, although getting to grips with a new blog header is driving my nuts....