Tuesday, 26 February 2013

WOYWW - Full of Good Intentions !

So - it was Sunday, the weather didn't get much above freezing outside - and at 8am the Much Beloved headed off  to Wembley - to watch Swansea win a cup final 5 nil !!

So there I was bursting with good intentions - the prospect of an entire day to myself - crafting all the way !

Why does it never seem to work out the way you have it in your head ?

I got stuck straight in working on my Mother's Day card - I had seen some examples of cards with Lavinia stamps in a magazine and decided to have a go with my own stamps & some background papers I had bought from them as well - at a craft show last year.

So, I matched the colours in the papers with Distress Inks & went from there ... I was quite pleased with how it came out - because as you know card making isn't my main thing - so each one I make is a new venture !!

And I did enjoy making it but it took me much longer than I expected !

I had - in a moment of madness & having had a glimpse of sun - hung my washing outside - but on checking it I found that it was literally frozen solid !!
As I gave up hope & took it all back in to dry indoors the arms of my blouse stayed sticking out rigidly as they were frozen in position !! It did make me giggle !!

Card complete I went on to scrapping - more Africa photos I'm afraid - you must be bored of me keep rambling on about this trip's layouts !
I couldn't believe how long I spent muddling about on just this one one layout !

This was to capture the visit to the Cape Point Ostrich Farm - they really are very strange comical creatures !!

So suddenly, having had a whole day stretching ahead of me, that was the morning completely gone !

I decided I really had to attack the ironing at this point - and that was another 2 hours well & truly disappeared !

Then feeling cooped up I decided to pile on the layers of clothing and head outside to the garden - it wasn't my most glamorous of look ever !!
After an hour's tidying up I was frozen to the marrow & headed in for a hot drink !

By this stage all my creativity seemed to have evaporated - all I could muster was starting to play about auditioning some photos onto a layout ... but sadly inspiration had fled !!

All those good intentions & I didn't seem to have the momentum to get any more done !!

And all I was left with was a creeping sprawl of stash which had mysteriously moved itself onto an additional temporary table !! Has to be sorting out & tidied away ... a job to be tackled right now !

So better scoot & get that tidying done !
Have a great week & looking forward to seeing what you are up to this week !
Take care, Ali xx

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

WOYWW - Garden Called .. Scrapping Squeezed In !

Hi hope everyone is well this week - still more preparation & planning than action on my desk this week !
My project box is put together to get my Cape Town trip scrapped ... but last weekend it actually stopped raining, didn't snow & with 4 layers, a woolly hat & gardening gloves on it was warm enough to get about 5 hours work done in my back garden over the 2 days !!

My desk has a pile of photos I have been printing out - printed a load last week to have the ink cartridge give up the ghost half way through - grr !!
So forked out the extortionate sum they charge for cartridges & had to print them all again - still a load I haven't even prepared for printing yet - but I have reviewed the photos & made a note of the numbers of the ones I will print eventually !

This logo was on a brochure one of our hosts gave us - but it was perfect recycled for my album cover !

Here's some of the stamps I bought & bits & bobs I collected to scrap with too ...

The fabulous dancing ladies stencil is one Bella bought for me - isn't it brilliant - can't wait to use it !! The cloth is a napkin I purchased with an African print design - and the stamp a was bargain in Hobbycraft ! Oh & some ostrich feather sneaked in too !

I did get a couple of pages started at Scrap Club last week .. one of our guides in the township kept saying "T.I.A." to us when we encountered things rather different to home - This Is Africa - as if this explained everything !!

This was a restaurant we dined in - and had a drumming lesson before we tried a pan-African selection of dishes ! Page needs journalling etc !

And I started a page from when we went to Signal Hill to get a great view of Table Mountain - we tried all week to get up the actual Mountain but either high winds or thick cloud (they call it the Table Cloth as it lies along the top of the mountain even when the rest of the sky is pure blue !) prevented us - happily we finally made it on my last day - but those pictures are still to print !!

 That's as far as got because as I mentioned before - I was finally able to set to & get the garden tidy up & weeding started - some 5 odd hours later I had 6 huge bags & 2 large trugs of weeds & prunings and thousands of oak leaves (we back onto a wood !) to cart off to the Council Compost Heap at the Tip - and a very sore set of leg, back & bottom muscles from all the crouching down !!
But at least all the mess of dead plants is finally gone and the rampant Hairy Bittercress weeds vanquished for a few days at least !!

I even got my first harvest of the year ! Purple sprouting broccoli, Russian kale & Cavolo Nero - an Italian black kale - we stir fried them with ginger, garlic, chillies & spring onions - delicious !!

Well that's enough of my ramblings for this week !
See you all around your desks !
Have a great week
Ali xx

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

WOYWW - My Valentine !

Hi there - I'd love to say my desk has been a veritable hive of activity this week - but sadly life keeps getting in the way !

My poor Art Journal thinks I have emigrated & left it behind, I have neglected so long !!
And I have a pile of the cookery books & magazines I brought back from Cape Town also waiting patiently for some attention !

Saturday, I spent a fun afternoon with my friend Lynda lurking in Hobbycraft & our local Wyevale garden centre - whilst the men went to footie - & we all got back together & tucked into a curry afterwards !

Lynda & I were both bemoaning the fact that after the "18 month winter" we have had here in Wales - summer 2012 never really happened & it was the wettest in a hundred years - we can't even set foot in our gardens due to the bog like state of the soil - and it never stops raining long enough for us to do anything out there anyway !!
I have weeds galore & am desperate for a decent day of weather at a weekend to get tidying up & weeding !!

I also helped Lynda get her new blog "Sparks of Art" on the go - so I'm hoping she'll join us on WOYWW soon - do go & visit her & make her welcome as a newbie in blogland! http://beazleyart.blogspot.co.uk

Sunday was, sadly, less fun & lost to a mountain of ironing !! After 4 & 1/2 hours ploughing through sheets, shirts, tops & PJ's - I didn't have a creative bone left in my body to face anything crafty !!

So the only action on the desk this week is the Valentine's card I have made for my lovely husband - my best friend & Valentine !

And poised for action on my chair is the new scrapbook album I bought Saturday - intended for when I get going on scrapping my Africa pictures - so far I haven't even got them printed out !!

And as I am writing this on Tuesday night to link up to WOYWW tomorrow - we have just chomped through a yummy pile of pancakes !

Rich is the designated pancake maker in this household - due to his far superior rolling round the pan & flipping skills !!
I am the lowly sugar sprinkler & lemon squeezer !!
We stand in the kitchen & eat them fresh from the pan as he makes them !! Well it is only once a year !!

Mind you I am just trying to figure out where the time went since we did the same last year - as I said to my friend Jan in Spain this evening, the past year has simply whizzed by in a blur !!

Anyway better say ta-ta for now & looking forward to seeing your desks this week !
Take care, Ali x

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

WOYWW - Out of Africa !

Hi Welcome to my messy desk ! All the souvenirs of my travels last week are dumped here waiting to be sorted out !! 

I missed you all last week as I was away on a food inspiration business trip to Cape Town - well I didn't miss everyone as you will know if you read Bella's blog last week !

Through the power of WOYWW I was able to meet up with her from the opposite end of the world !
It was so great to meet her !
We had fun seeing one of their scrapbook shops - some yummy things we don't see even in the UK !
We grabbed a coffee in the lovely Waterfront area of Cape Town - and later in the week she & her hubby Andrew were able to come to a foodie evening & Braai (BBQ) that was part of our week's food inspiration expedition !

How amazing is it to make a new friend, who enjoys the same hobbies, just by meeting up here on line!!

It was very hectic but such an interesting visit - we packed in visiting loads of inspiring entrepreneurial food producers, farmers, lovely restaurants, fun cafes and a trip to the Langa township where it was a real privilege to meet some great girls running their own food businesses really tuning in to their customers needs.

The Cape has to be one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited - the scenery took my breath away along the coast - we made the bus driver stop for us to take photos !
And the charming town of Franschhoek -  set in a ring of mountains with Dutch colonial style buildings lining the streets was just lovely - and the view from the top of Table Mountain made me feel you could almost touch heaven !!

And of course we had to squeeze in a visit to an animal reserve - and got up really quite close to the animals - so got some great photos !

So as you can see from just this small selection of photos I will be scrapping this trip for months to come !!

Bella made me this lovely tag  - so watch out for it on a scrap page sometime soon !!

And we found some local die cuts - and a feather embellishment from the Ostrich Farm !
Bella also gave me a gift of some great stencils - but I'll save showing you those until I have had a chance to play with them !!

So wish me luck on my scrap-a-thon to come - I am itching to get started - but a pile of ironing bigger than Table Mountain is only half tackled & then of course I had to go back to work !

So Friday I was in a field in Wellington, just north of Cape Town - it was 38oC and I was patting a Water Buffalo on the nose - and today at 7am, in the dark dreary morning, it was zero degrees and I was scraping the ice off the INSIDE of my car window - talk about back to reality !!

Anyway have a great week & looking forward to seeing your desks !
Ali xx