Thursday, 30 January 2014

Sarah's cards January Challenge

Sarah's cards has a sketch challenge every month, I usually do the challenge but often forget to post it and upload it to the blog..... but not this time!

This is the sketch

and this is the page I came up with.....

Yet another Harry Potter Studio Tour layout, this time showcasing 3 of the animal actors... the rat and the toad were actually in the films.... really interesting learning about all the work involved with filming and training these clever creatures.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Miniowner's January Sketch Challenge

You may have noticed that I am joining in a few different things this year, 2014 is a year of trying to ....

  • do some more blogging ... I hope to manage at least 2 posts a week, I know everyday wouldn't be realistic for me
  • try a few new things, I tried out for a DT this month, didn't get in but I tried and that is half the fun, I want to dabble in Project Life, try out making a mini book or two, try some altered art and some more messy stuff.... different things whilst keeping it fun!
  • buy less stash and use more..... I am not going to buy another piece of scrapping paper until I have made at least 50 layouts....I can't put myself on a complete stash ban as that would be too hard! Having said that I have only bought one lot of craft items and have been very good at not spending money so far this year.
  • join in more fun bloggy type events like Abi's time for tea and 1P20W, I know there are more 'blog goings on' out there so I may partake of some this year
  • complete more challenges.... so far I have joined in with the challenges on UKS, I have completed a Scrapology Challenge and I have other challenges in the pipeline. Today I am taking part for the first time with Miniowner's January Sketch Challenge.
This is the sketch

this is my page, slightly altered and flipped to make a layout that will go with the page called stirring the Christmas Pudding that I shared yesterday.

(For some reason I seem to have got a bit of grass on the page.... not sure how though but it isn't on the layout must have blown onto the paper when I took the photo)

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Simple Recipes January

UK Scrappers is full of inspiration, just looking through the gallery I guarantee you will find several pages to add to your Pinterest boards. The UKS organisers are constantly striving to encourage us to scrap more and there are numerous free classes/challenges/ideas easily accessible by everyone.

Simple Recipes has been up and running for a couple of years now, in fact I made a page following the class back in June 2012 which can be seen here .  This year for the first time you can collect 30 points for completing the challenge, which is great encouragement for points collecting teams.

These are the colours chosen for this month

January's class in full can be found here with a downloadable PDF including a sketch, and some 'added ingredient ideas'. These extras include using a large format photograph (or a group of photos) and altering an alphabet.

I chose an unloved chipboard alphabet, sitting unused for so long it had lost it's adhesiveness (is that even a word?)

I covered each alpha in red ink, sprinkled on some clear embossing powder, dusted down the heat gun and voila a re-vamped set of letters!

I didn't have one large photo so I used 4, I struggled to use the purple colour most of all but managed it in the end.  A real challenge but one I really enjoyed. The page also fits a JOT challenge about layering a title on a photograph.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Time for tea

Welcome to my first 'time for tea', a monthly Meme from Abi over at Creating Paper Dreams. Such an English idea, grabbing a cuppa and sitting down for a good natter.  I would seriously love to meet up with a blog friend or two in 'real' life and indulge myself in a chat and a mug of something refreshing, but for now, we will gather here.

The last time I met with some blog friends was in November and one of our favourite beverages was this....

Originally discovered (by me) at the Bloggers Weekend in November, thanks to Jacky. So will you join me in reminiscing about past retreats or perhaps in planning for the next one? I have another weekend to look forward to at Grafham in March and I am also hoping to be going again in November! Thanks to Sandie.

As we drink our mugs of tea (I have lots of different tea, don't worry if you don't fancy the Vanilla Earl Grey!) or a cup of coffee, I will offer you some of my homemade pineapple, carrot and cranberry muffins, still warm from the oven. 

I am feeling happy to have you here and I have enjoyed myself, shame you have to go really. I hope we can get together again soon xxx

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Sharing Scrapbook pages on Sunday

This week's challenge on UKS was 
  • use an outside photograph
  • use some triangles
  • use either layers or a cluster
  • and use at least 3 of these colours

I decided to combine the weekly challenge with the Scrapology B is for Badge challenge using this fabby sketch....

This is the page I came up with.....

difficult to see the colours used but the paper matting the photo is actually red, honest and it has triangles on it which you can probably just make out! I have lots of layers using up lots of scrap bits of paper and only used a whole 12 x 12 for the background.  I had a couple of badges that seemed to fit the theme of the photo one was advertising a drink but I blacked out the wording under 'get lost' and the other badge simply says 'naughty boy'!

Monday, 20 January 2014

Journal Your Christmas pages 21 to 24

A few more pages today....

slightly off topic for day 21 I talked about my annual purchase of the radio times so I can plan my Festive TV

On the 22nd I told the story of my cousins 2 children who were set a challenge to buy food for £5 to show them how expensive it is to buy food and understand that some people do not have much money.  They ended up using their own money to buy the food and donated to a local shelter.... it really did warm my heart!

Slightly odd photos of the childrens stockings hung on their bedroom doors for December 23rd

This last page is also my House Challenge entry over on UKS which was simply 'twas the night before'.  I stuck with tradition and used it to describe Christmas Eve and how we usually have people over but only one family could make it this year.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Sharing Scrapbook pages on Sunday

Another week means another weekly challenge on UKS and this weeks was fantastic.  We had to choose 3 elements from the following...

1. hot tropical or warm summer colours
2. ribbons or flowers
3. birds or butterflies
4. sparkle and bling
5. break open your new stash after the holidays
6. use your favourite photo from last year (2013)
7. ice cream
8. sand or water
9. frame the photo
10. scraplift from someone else's work and please do credit them when you post your LO picture

Initially I thought this might be hard as it struck me as being a bit girlie for some reason.....but of course it isn't and there is something there for everyone.

I love sketches but without them I love a good scraplift so that was my first choice made, then I used a favourite photograph from 2013, which I framed and I also managed to add a flower and a bird into the mix!

This is the fabulous page by Jo that I scraplifted

I had added this page to pinterest as I have some of the same papers and as I really love Jo's work I kept pretty  close to the original as you can see below....

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Journal Your Christmas Days 17 to 20

I have loved making my JYC pages this year and I hope I haven't bored you with sharing them.....

Day 20 shows lists of all I still have to do and the photo was taken at Waterloo Station of the large Christmas tree and all the people looking busy hurrying to get things done!

On Day 18 I shared a photo and told the story of Christmas Dinner at home, just the four of us from a few years ago....

I still love Father Christmas and met him just before we went to see a panto, the rest of the family abandoned me and I asked if I could take his photo and he asked his elf to take one of both of us!

The prompt for day 20 was all about a special present for someone so I shared the story of buying gin for a friend and how I had used Facebook to try and find out what to buy as I am not a gin drinker....

Have you amde any JYC pages this year?  How far are you going? I haven't finished yet and I am not sure where my album will end this time.  Last year I finished on Boxing Day but I think I may go further this year.... we shall see!

Sunday, 12 January 2014

UKS first weekly challenge for 2014

So excited to be getting back into the challenges over on UKS and my first 12x12 started and completed in 2014 yay!

So January week 1 challenge is right up my street, use misting or paints, add journalling and use this sketch....

I think I kept to the sketch quite a bit for my page adding 3 different mists (which were a bit leaky and messy but I coped!) and plenty of journalling ....

Looking forward to creating more pages soon.... I will be back to share some more JYC pages too/

PS I am sorry I never got back to you with my top rated book on Goodreads, the only book scoring 5 stars was Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (or HP and the Sorcerer's stone as it is in the States and therefore on Goodreads!)

Thursday, 9 January 2014

One photo & twenty words January

Saying goodbye to the old, welcoming in the new. Here's to a year of great things for us all.....Cheers!

This post is part of Abi's one photo, twenty words (or 1p20w as I am gonna call it!)Thank you Abi xxx

Monday, 6 January 2014

Christmas Crazy

I made this page at the all day Christmas Crop it seemed a fitting theme!

I used a photograph taken way back at our Bloggers Weekend in November 2011, it is me reflected in a bauble, I added a few die cut ornaments and a couple of blinged up trees and the page was made.
The journalling is all about my love of Christmas and the fact that I am definitely a wee bit Christmas Crazy! 

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Journal your Christmas days 13 -16

So a few more days of my Christmas journal starting with December 13th , when I went off topic (which was weather) and journalled about our trip to see the pantomime Cinderella

'Oh the places we go' on the 14th fitted in perfectly with the all day Christmas Crop, 14 hours of scrapping and chatting and eating! I had my one and only mince pie of the season as generally I am not a fan... this homemade one by the lovely Sue was rather delish with it's Frangipane topping

We love looking at all the decorations in the Christmas Shop at the local Christmas Tree Farm, though this year we didn't end up buying any we still had plenty of our own to 'Deck the Halls'

Today was culture and entertainment but I had just covered the panto so instead I talked about the weather


Saturday, 4 January 2014

Top ten UKS layouts of 2013

I love challenges and I have loved being part of my new team on UKS and these are some of my favourite  'entries' from 2013 ....

I haven't made many double layouts since I started scrapping and this one took a bit of fiddling as it has lots of layers and I stuck them on crooked and had to pull them up and restick them. I also used the Xcut London die borrowed from Julie and used 2 die cut shapes on the layout. I took the buttons off in the end and then was really happy with it.

This is a challenge from September, following a sketch, I really like the colour combination used here though I don't always go for bright colours

I made the star embellishments ( die cut vintage book paper on cocktail sticks) and created a simple layered messy stack on inky spritz kraft as a base..... the first Harry Potter Studio page featured here

I made another HP Studio page featuring the blue Ford Anglia in March and loved all the little bits and bobs added to the page

Ok, in April, another HP page showcasing the house that Harry grew up in, people commented on the brick stencil but it is actually a film strip die cut that I used to look like bricks.....clever!!

My final featured HP page, which was a scaplift from  Shimelle I think, used up some 6x6 sheets  and die cut shapes..... see the little people..... inked vintage book paper cut with a die

I was so so proud of this page as somehow it ended up featured on the UKS homepage! This was scraplifted from a LO I had made the year before. It documented a hospital admission with my son and I wrote how proud I was of him and how he had been handling his illness.

I really love this summer LO with photographs of the family on the Kamakaze water slide in Cyprus, the colours and the layering of all the paper elements worked so well, I must scraplift this one!

This page used up strips of scrap paper,some flowers, a few brads and a string of embellishments all in shades of blue.It immediately takes me back to the blue skies and blue sea from the boat trip we had in Antigua.

I love this page made in October as it immediately reminds me of watching the meteor showers in August, a young member of my family mistakenly called it a Metaphor Shower.  Also used glittery letters which is a rarity for me but works so well with the topic.

I am looking forward to all the UKS weekly and monthly challenges and doing more with my fabulous team in 2014....hopefully we will have a team meet up and maybe a sleepover so we can all scrap together! Again I will plug UKS and suggest you go and have a look at all the inspiration over there and consider joining a team.

Friday, 3 January 2014

Books of 2013

For the second year in a row I set myself a challenge to read 52 books in the year.
For the second year in a row I didn't quite manage it, this year achieving 35.

I use Goodreads to record and rate each book and it is a great way to remember exactly which works of literary genius you have loved and those that you wish you had discarded as complete and utter drivel after the first sentence! 

Of the 35 books I read there were none that received 1 star, only 2 received 2 stars and the majority, 19, received 3 stars. 13 books were awarded 4 stars and the genre and themes of these books varied considerably including in no particular order....

pictures courtesy of Amazon
But there was only one 5 star book, any guesses as to what it might be????

Let me know if you have a guess and I will let you know tomorrow.

As for the reading challenge for 2014 how many books am I aiming to finish this year???  52 of course!

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Resolutions anyone?

Well this time last year I was posting here about starting a diet

and I did
I actually lost about 1.5 stone and until this Christmas had kept a whole stone off despite the fact that I stopped doing the 5:2/fast diet before the summer holidays.
I would recommend it and I will be going back to it soon, as I would love to be 8lbs lighter at least by the end of 2014.
I am going to continue with the fab Facebook group that is filled with like minded women all hoping to drop a few pounds using whatever method best suits them.... I have met most of them and many are a huge inspiration in particular Jemma, as her weight loss journey has been amazing and Sandie as she is such an encouragement to us all.
There is a new board on UKS for the 5:2 diet now so I will be popping on there once I have restarted.
I think this was actually a fairly successful aim/plan/resolution from January 2013.

Usually I have a shed load of things that I want to achieve at the start of the year but I so rarely complete a single one of them.  I am hoping 2014 will be different, I would love to try some new ideas, fingers crossed there will be some adventures and I will be here to share some of them with you. Blogging and scrapping are definitely on the list plus a few other things..... let's see how this year goes shall we???