Tuesday, 26 March 2013

WOYWW - Guilty Secrets !

Hi there
Hope all of you affected by the dreadful snow in the North & East of the UK are managing to to stay snug & warm - and maybe trapped in the house with only crafting to cheer you up ?? !!

Thank heaven we have escaped the chaos down here in West Wales - but did see a bit of the white stuff when I went to my sister in law's in England last weekend !

Being away all weekend - and consequently having no crafty time at all - is the source of the guilty secrets on my desk this week

Yes - shock, horror - those ARE shop bought Easter cards on my desk !
I usually love making my Easter cards but having been away earlier in the month & all last weekend - plus 11 hour days at work - I had to be realistic & acknowledge it just wasn't going to happen this year - so had to buy some if I was ever going to get them posted in time !!

I bought them at a lovely garden centre I went to in Surrey near my sister in law's home - they were also  selling all sorts of Easter decorations - it was like Christmas revisited - just with chicks, eggs & bunnies !!

I got lured by a little bird & bird house - and did think I could use them as templates to make some more of my own !!

The little bunny was being sold if you made a donation to the local hospice - and as he was so cute & it is such a good cause how could I not give him a new home !

The only creative venture on my desk this week is my little shadow box

I have recycled a box that came with chipboard letters in it - painted it & used some of the Chronology papers, embellishments & stamps to decorate it !
So at least I have something hand made to show you !!

Despite escaping the snow it has barely crept above freezing for weeks here - we are all so sick of winter !

I am using this picture to lift my spirits & to think that at least I did escape for a week earlier this month ! This is me in my "celebrate life" mood !! Thought it might make you smile !!

Anyway hope you all stay safe & warm - and for those of you in the Southern hemisphere - just to remind you to savour every last morsel of summer - winter will be with you all too soon !!

Have a fun time over Easter ! Ali x

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

WOYWW - Will Winter Ever End !!

No blog post last week as I was away in Spain - and we had some lovely sunshine even if the northerly wind was pretty biting at times !

I had this crazy optimism that spring might have crept in a bit back here in Wales whilst we were away - but sadly this winter seems to be endless - week after week of cold - will I ever get out of fleecy tops & thick warm trousers !!

We got back at the weekend -and I was able to have a bit of time playing at my workdesk on Sunday !

So there is a bit of a mish-mash on the desk today !

I finally got around to playing in my journal - haven't seemed to be in the mood for journaling for ages ! More later !

In the middle of my desk you can see the new Alphabet set of stamps I had been lured by - can you ever have enough alphabets !?!

On the right towards the back is a little red box - this was a present from my friend Jan in Spain which she has filled with loads of cute die cut pieces for me - these are going to be great fun to play with on my layouts & cards or journal !!

I love the arched windows especially - I have some ideas bubbling in my head for these !

I have a few packets of seeds piled up - can't believe it will ever be warm enough to sow seeds !

You can also see lurking a couple of little blue die cut butterflies which were on the table at a Gala Dinner we went to with our friends in Spain last week... fellow scrappers will know the compulsion to squirrel away little mementos which can be used on layouts !!

And a couple of freebies - some little buttons & a mini stamp from the front of this month's Craft Stamper magazine are waiting to find a good home !

So some play time in my journal ...

To tell you the truth, I don't really know where this page is going !!

They say that inspiration can strike from anywhere !!
I came across these apple shapes as labels on some mini chopping boards we bought last week - and they really took my eye ! So I snaffled them, brought them home and used them as a template to cut the shapes in some papers ... I am hoping the page will tell me where it wants to go next !!

As you might be able to tell I am obsessing that winter is dragging on - and on and on - with so few signs that spring is coming !!
But these snowdrops did cheer me up when we found them bravely blooming away in the National Botanic Garens of Wales near us last month - how could they not make me feel hopeful for the spring to finally be around the corner ... please, please !!

And one last page playing with my new Bunny stamps from Crafty Individuals ... and my collection of grasses stamps, the new alphabet set - and the stars were also a freebie on a recent Craft Stamper magazine !!

Well that's me for this week ... have a great crafty week !
Take care Ali xx

Monday, 4 March 2013

WOYWW - Scrappy Days !

Well we had a lovely sunny weekend here in West Wales for once !
It never got above about 4oC but at least it gladdened the heart to see some blue skies & sunshine !

I did get a couple of hours done in the garden - just general tidying and then replacing the cover on my little plastic greenhouse & scrubbing off cloches so I could sow some salad leaves seeds - mind you they may just freeze rather than germinate !!

Once I got too cold to work outside, I set to on my scrapping .. as for the last month this has been all about my trip to Cape Town !
Kind of some of you to say you are not yet too bored of it all !!

Anyway here are a few more pages - I am being fairly basic with the designs - with so much to scrap I don't have the time for lots of layering & embellishing - although I think I will go back through at the end & add in bits & bobs that I collected - like bank notes, coins & postage stamps !

First - here you can see why I was blown away by the stunning scenery !
A drive through the mountain coast road was breathtaking - as was Hout Bay below ..

The little fish at the top is washed out & recycled from an M&S sushi lunch pack !!
And the compass embellishment I bought at the scrapping shop Bella took me to ...

And then as you may know it was a Food Inspiration Expedition for work - so many of the pages feature food - it's not just me being greedy !!

Firstly a fabulous seafood restaurant in Kalk Bay ...

Then we had a fascinating afternoon visiting food venues in a Township just outside the city - our Tour-guide was a local guy, extremely articulate (spoke 5 languages !) and a passionate advocate for his community.
We met some great ladies running their own businesses & saw some sights that - for me with UK Food Hygiene regulations drummed into me - were more than a little challenging !!
This tour was one of the highlights of the trip for me ...

And with my job I am fairly adventurous with food - but the local delicacy  of sheep's heads was too far ! Especially as they tucked into the eyeballs with gusto ! I couldn't bring myself to sample it !!

 I have used a lot of my own handwriting on these pages - I waiver back & forth between thinking this makes a page personal & authentic - a testimony if you like - to thinking my writing is scruffy & not sure if it works !!

What do you think ? Is handwriting a good thing or should I have typed the journalling out ?

Anyway one last crafty bit on Sunday - my DH asked me to make him a new case for his iPod & earphones - so I whipped one up from a few scraps of fabric & quilt wadding.
I love lime green with black - so thought the music black fabric was appropriate - and won't get too grubby if he shoves it in his pockets !! - and the lime lining livened it all up !

Well that's all on my desk this week - have a fun week yourselves ! 
Take care
Ali x