Sunday, 29 December 2013

Christmas Scrapbook pages

Every year we have a few traditions...

We put our decorations up on 1st December.

We go to Uncle Willies Christmas Party which is a magical place for children.

I once helped run these parties (They are a Rotaract - "Junior Rotary" fundraising project) for 5 years (still do on the odd night they are short staffed) and now we have the privilege of taking our son.  He is 9 but still firmly believes in Santa.  It is so special for him.  The party has the same format every year so he anticipates what will come next.  I take so many photos every year that it takes a few double spreads to scrap them all!  This year I made a point of getting in front of the camera instead of being behind it all the time and documenting our activities.  I am about 3 or 4 years of Xmas photos I decided to get cracking with this years lot first and work backwards.
 While waiting for our tractor trip to the castle we took some crazy hat shots for entertainment.
 When you get to the castle, you pick your spot for the night and go into the arena to throw straw.
 Straw throwing is a big deal at this party!  It warrants 2 pages!
 Then the party starts once all the people have arrived and it ends at 10pm after gifts have been received.
I have not quite finished this last page yet, but have run out of steam...I still have Christmas day to scrap, but that is only one double page this year I think...The photos still need to be printed...that's tomorrows job.

Saturday, 28 December 2013

The End is Nigh

I know that sounds a little dramatic, but the end of this year has been so hard for me and I want it over.

I have struggled to come to terms with Claire's death (my good friend since high school) and the shock of hearing of another school friend who is recovering from surgery to a brain tumour...all this in the last 3 weeks.  My life feels like it has been turned up side down.  I have found it very hard to be cheerful this Christmas season.

I am really looking  forward to 2014 where hopefully it will be full of good things.  I am trying to plan and organise and get sorted for next year and am hoping that it will lift my spirits.

Thanks for your support and comments on my work over the past year.  It really means a lot to me.

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

What's on my Workdesk Wednesday No238? Christmas

Hello fellow Desker!  Merry Christmas to you!

Above you see my desk is in the throws of another Christmas Layout...(it is under there I promise!) I am trying to do this years photos as I am about 3 Christmases behind...there is also evidence of some gift wrapping and general chaos!

In my kitchen it has been a hive of baking and cooking...there is a 5 hour lamb in one oven and a gammon in the other (I have a double oven) Veg will be done shortly and my Mom and hubbies Mom will be joining us for lunch.  My Dad is due in 15 min for tea and other friends will pop in for mince pies this arvie.
My other desk this week.

Mince pies in the making!

Mince pies made with a friends mom's home made fruit mince and my gran's pastry recipe.

Banana breads made with my Gran's recipe.  A holiday food in our house. 

My gifts I gave to friends and family

My son last night at my MIL where we celebrate Christmas eve.  This was about 7pm and it was still warm enough to swim!

5:55am and he is checking all of Santa's hiding places!

Hope what ever you are doing today is special, whether you celebrate Christmas or not.

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Life is Short

I have been spending the last 10 days trying to process the fact that my friend Claire is gone.  I keep wanting to pick up the phone and call her.  It feels like she is just away for a while and will be back...

I have decided to live my life differently.  18 years ago, I nearly lost my husband (due to a household accident) before we got married and have tried so hard to make each day count.  But how quickly we get into the rut of routine and just getting through each day, each week, each month and yes, each year.

I have decided:

I will make time to see my friends and re-kindle old friendships that mattered to me.

I will create memories with my family.

I want to be able to look back on my life and see that it was good.

That I did my best.

That I lived in the NOW.

I died this streak of pink into my hair in memory of my dear friend Claire as a permanent reminder of how fragile life is and how quickly things can change.

Just this evening I heard of another school friend who is having a brain tumour removed tomorrow that was discovered on Tuesday.  If she does not have the opp to remove it, it will kill her.  She might not make it through the opp...but it is her only chance.

Edit: After a full day in theatre,  Bryony has come through surgery, only time will tell what damage the tumour did, they had to leave a bit as it was too enmeshed in nerves, but the life threatening part is out! She is awake and complaining of a headache!  May that be the least of her worries.

I find myself sitting at my desk devoid of inspiration and ideas, I just need to get through this emotional time and hopefully the ability to create will come back.  The act of being creative is usually my solace, but I am learning to do nothing and to just be...not to fill my time with activity.

I am tired of being strong, I am worn out and need to take time for me, to fill me up and to rebuild me.  If I don't look after myself,  no one else is going to do it for me...

Monday, 9 December 2013

In my heart forever

This is a page I did while on a convention, it was designed and taught by Candice Greenway.  These are the photos taken of me and Claire the week-end of our 20th School reunion in 2010.  It will stay up in my studio for ever as a reminder of her and how fragile life is.

Claire died last night from what I understand to be from the Chemo she was having for breast cancer which damaged her liver.

It was so sudden.

She fought so hard.

She was going to come visit and stay with me in January...

She never got to see the new "skinny me" in person  Selfish I know, but I can't help feeling this way.

Life is short

Friday, 6 December 2013

Good Bye Madiba

Today we celebrate the life of a wonderful man who has left us forever.   Good Bye Madiba, the father of this nation, Thank you for all you stood for.  Let us not forget.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

What's on my Workdesk Wednesday 235? Everything and nothing much!

Hello fellow Desker

Today I give you my desk as I left it last night...

How do I always manage to end up working in a 6"x 6" space when I have a full A1 mat of work area?

I finished off my last card order for the year...well that is until someone wakes up at last-minute-dot-com and needs one from me urgently.

Funny how all the card samples I did for the Christmas card class have come in handy when my friends walk in or message me and you have any Christmas cards?  I need a special one for this person or that person...I now have none left of those and I still need to make the ones I am posting which case I better get a wiggle on as the 25th is just round the corner!

Interesting items on my desk is the solar jar light I was given yesterday behind the round gift box I made on my Silhouette and the easel card which is totally out of my comfort zone - all pink and frilly and bright!

Then there is the TH fabric a friend sent me (hanging off one of my drawers) which I am debating as to what to have made with...I am not a sewer...maybe bunting like Lunch Lady Jan made me?  Cushions for my lounge...I debate on...

Thats me...Now to see what you have to show over at Julia's place!


Saturday, 30 November 2013

Tilda Easel card

Hello there

I have been looking at these beautiful cards on Pinterest and have really struggled to get one to work for me at my desk...

I love them when I see them on line, but then when I try to put them together myself, they seem "too much" if you know what I mean?

I have gone rather bright with this one which is not anything like the ones I admire, but hey, it seemed to have a life of its own!

Here is how I put this together.
First I coloured her in, then I chose paper to match and found this cup cake paper which is YEARS old, then I found flowers to go with the cupcakes and inked up the die cuts to match the lot...This in itself took nearly the whole morning to go through my stash.  Not a bad thing as I am now reminded of all the stuff that lurks...

I cut the pink mat and drew round it on the back of the paper, cut out a square 1/8" in and mounted it on the mat to line up with where it was cut out.

Then I added all the bits and bobs I had gathered together and made the easel, mounted the card front and added the sentiment to anchor the easel.
This was so far out of my comfort zone it just isn't funny, but I learned a lot in the I need more flowers in my stash and next time I will chose my paper first and colour her accordingly!

Thanks for the visit

Please give me your opinion, crits and comments on  this card


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Whats on my workdesk Wednesday 234? Fake Phone

Hello fellow Desker
Welcome to my Desk over in Cape Town, South Africa, where the weather is winter one day and scorching summer the next...

Here is my desk in all its glory, full of new toys and cards I have just completed for this weeks orders.
It was my birthday a few weeks ago and I got a gift voucher for a local shopping centre where I recently spent an hour and a half perusing the stores...looking for that one thing I would never spend MY money on, but would dearly love.  I finally settled on the phone from TYPO...When is a phone not a phone dear desker?  When it is a light and a clock!  The handle is a light (and a bright LED one at that) and the dial is the clock.  It makes me smile every time I look at it.

Then there is the MS circle doily maker.  I have wanted one of theses since they came out at CHA...I got money from my Wednesday morning class of students and decided to get one of these and another punch.  Again, something I would not normally be able to afford.

These are such treats and I am really enjoying using them.

Here are the cards cluttering up my desk, fulfilling 2 of the 5 orders I have had for this week.
  I love the challenge of bespoke cards and it pays for my crafting addiction...
so that is my desk, please have your say, as I am off to find your desk  at Julia's place and do the same.


Wednesday, 20 November 2013

What's on my Workdesk Wednesday 233? Christmas stuff

Hello Fellow Desker!

Welcome to the beginnings of a Christmas village!  This is the prototype in cardstock and then I am going to build the rest in pretty paper.
I also have the die cuts from samples for my store lying in wait of inspiration as to what to do with them now that I have got them this far.  I did do a card with the wreath as seen below which is already in store...but the rest have to wait for me to find the time and the inclination...
So there we have my desk in all its chaotic glory!

See you at your desk if you have linked up with Julia on her new fancy pro designed blog!

Thanks for the visit


Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Christmas isn't a Season, its a Feeling

I just love Tim Holtz's dies...they can be so dimensional.
From this angle you can see how the holly leaves lift up 
I used the negative shape left from the wreath die cut to ink the shadow onto the base card after I stamped it with Tim's wood grain stamp in coffee archival ink.

The wreath itself has pearl paint dabber on the tips and red stickles for the berries.

The sentiment is by Kaisercraft and is stamped in vermillion archival ink.

Thanks for the visit

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Cappuccino Anyone?

I have been given these cute little silicone cups to bake "cup"cakes in...
This takes Cupcakes to the next level!

I have a THING for cupcakes...always have and always will.
This was a gift from my scrapbook store business partner Alison...I guess she knows me well which is why we get on so fabulously.

Now I have turned them into little next favourite thing!

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Pinterest button

So I created this card for my Mom in Law who likes to sew.  I got this idea from Kezzys Craft Journey which I pinned to my Pinterest board.  Please pay her a visit to see the original inspiration for this card.

I am trying to get a Pin it button working on my blog...according to the preview available...It might be working!  Lets see...go on give it a try for me please and let me know!


Wednesday, 6 November 2013

What's on My Workdesk Wednesday 231? Tim Stencils

Hello fellow desker, sorry I was AWOL last week but it was my sons birthday on Thursday and somehow time ran away with me...

Welcome to my desk over in Cape Town, South Africa where you can see front and centre, the three latest stash acquisitions.

Apparently these are still not available from our wholesalers to purchase here yet, but a friend and I got into cahoots and ordered these on line.  I could not wait any more.

I have already used the measuring tape one in class last Saturday and the ladies really loved it.

So this is me, short and sweet as the rest on my desk is debris from projects and classes that is waiting to be put away.

Now I am off to see what you are up to on your desk over at Julia's place on Stamping Ground.


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

What's on My Workdesk Wednesday 229? Test runs and stuff

Hello fellow Desker from Julia's place
Today I show you my desk over in a sunny Cape Town, South Africa where there is a lot of not much going on...

I got a new die (mini film strip and tag) yesterday and test ran it through my Vagabond, then I also got a Dylusions ink spray pad which I have tested with the only two colours I own.. with my go to stamp of the fabulous flourish by Tim...
Here is the inside of a card I made and blogged about yesterday so won't go into the details, but you can see the purple bird house on its side at the back of the desk which was one of the prototypes...

So this is me this week.

Thanks for the visit.


Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Going Coo-coo!

Hello there
I got a bespoke card order for a lady called Gretel who is Swiss.  The request was for a card with a coo-coo clock.  After pondering this idea for a while, I decided to use my birdhouse die by Sizzix and turn it into a 3D card.
I printed a coo-coo clock off the Internet and cut out the bits to stick on the die cut house. I also printed just the pendulum and the weights on the inside of the card onto which I stuck the house after having given it an extra fold down the centre.  
 The house is folded down the centre so that it will collapse when the card is closed.  I only stuck the coo-coo and the clock face to half of the house so that it will flatten out when open.
 Here you can see how the house flattens inside the card as it closes.
 This is another view of the folded house inside the card.

Thanks for the visit


Sunday, 20 October 2013

My take on Liane's Challenge

A fellow teacher up in Jhb, Liane van Harn put out a challenge on her blog:
  To use her layout above and make it your own.  Here is my take on her page.
I decided to make all my own paper and embellishments, so here it is from start to finish.  This is a photo heavy post so bear with me...
This is the plain grey paper with the black in the centre to measure where I must stamp the grey paper to mimic her patterned paper.
Above you can see the stamped image using Tim Holtz Wallpaper stamp with White Distress Paint with the bottom row covered in Iced Spruce Distress ink.
I cut this stencil on my Silhouette cutter and started at one end of a half sheet of cardstock and repeated the pattern to make my own paper.    You can see the finished sheet below.
I then made my own Chalk board embellie using the technique I learned in Tim's CC102 class.
I set about making my own strips for above and below the photos using Tim's On the Rail road set of stamps.
Here you can see the layout coming together
I die cut two strips from Tim's Vintage lace die to mimic Liane's edge under her photos.
Then I made my own tags and stamped them with the woodgrain stamp in the same set as the wallpaper one of Tim's
I also stamped a piece of card stock with the same stamps and cut the title out on my Silhouette.  The word ALL is from Tim's Block Talk Alphabet die.
I embellished the page using a tag I had made for one of Tims challenges earlier in the year and made some more little ones to match to add to the page.

Thanks for the visit

I hope you enjoyed my step out photos of how I made my page.