Sunday, 25 October 2015

Ramblings ~ Americanisms

I suppose my ramblings are not to everyone's taste... I mean, I do talk write rather a lot of nonsense; I do occasional cuss {American word #1} and considering this is a crafting blog, sometimes it takes a back seat to the thoughts in my head, thoughts that I want to get out, that need to burst forth with such determination that as soon as I wake they are telling me to write them down! Oh dear, voices in my head?  That sounds bad :(
I woke today... not to the sound of ticking, to hear about that, click [here], but to the thoughts of the words we use, I found myself thinking the phrase "I'm super excited..."  What?! {American word #2} (I can't, now remember what about, it was an hour ago, after all).  But just the use of those words rattling around in my head set off alarm bells!  I mean when did I feel the need to use American lingo?
I'm English (and proud), I have lived in Wales for the past thirty years... but I haven't changed my accent in all that time... if I've held out over the Welsh then why not the Americans?  Oh, I can cwtch (cuddle) with the best of 'em... when the kids were little it was 'bach' this and bach' that (little or dear) and occasional I even used 'cariad' (love) to my cheating welsh husband (ha... don't miss him!). I mean, my children (being born here) ARE Welsh, they both speak Welsh, my poor son even thinks like a Welshman! (A disadvantage, I think... but I'm obviously displaying racism, sorry about that, I will make it clear... not all Welsh man are cheats!  There racism averted!!! ).  They both had Welsh taught to them in school from 3 years old (full-time school no less, the Welsh do get somethings right! With only 14 months between them, I was ready to pack them off for half the day!) - solely Welsh no English was allowed until they got to year 3 (about 7 years old!)... poor kids! Having asked them, which language do they think in, they both tell me... they think in both.. now that's an advantage, making it easier to learn other languages in the future, or so I'm told!
But, being a proud Englishwoman I insisted, as they grew up, that they not have a welsh accent (stopping certain phrases or pronunciations... what a mean mummy I was).  So, now,  I feel they have the best of both worlds... they don't have silly sing-song accents (thought to be the second most 'thick' sounding accent in the British Isles only being thought a little more 'intelligent sounding' than the Birmingham accent!  <<My daughter's Welsh and her fiancĂ©e is from Birmingham... were did I go wrong?>>), but can communicate in two languages.  If I could do all that for them... why am I  now using words like 'adorable', 'super excited', 'trash'!
And while we're at it why would you call a fringe... 'bangs', that makes no sense what so ever!
Then it clicked... no, it's not all the US dramas/cartoons on TV (don't you diss Criminal Minds or The Simpsons) or even the influx of all the super-sweet {American word #3}  food goodies now found in all the major supermarket isles (Reeses peanut butter cups, yummy!).  It is in fact...
YouTube!  Yep, all those scrapbook process vids I've been watching (constantly)!  I know you do too... Have you noticed that the Americans are always 'super excited', it takes a lot for us Brits to be 'super' anything , we may occasionally become 'a bit' but 'super' nah..., except maybe,  on LIKE FOR EVER kit arrival day!  Then you should just feel sorry for all the poor postmen out there!  Us LIKE FOR EVER girls can be worse than the most viscous Rottweiler when a pizza box is held by someone other than ourselves!  <<ponder>> I wonder if we go into 'grab' mode when a real pizza is delivered, not that I'd know, I live in the back of beyond, home delivery is something only Tesco do, and then it's only been recently.
Having realised I'm developing an alarming vocal bad habit... I have been looking out for certain words/phrases to see if I've picked them up.  I mean, we all know that Americans sometimes use different words to us or some words have different meanings and certainly have different spellings (that alone drives me crazy {American word #4} ~ stop dropping letters, how am I supposed to use all my ephemera {from the Greek word 'emphemeron'} with misspelt words, and don't get me started on 'mom')... they use the words "fanny"  and "panties" for goodness sake... I means, come on, who (in Britain) would say either of those without a smirk. 
There is a fantastic write up, I found, not so long ago, that an American tourist had posted on Facebook about the differences between our cultures... it is brilliant, I'm just off to see if I can find the link...

Found it!

[here], but if you're anything like me ~ that's way too much effort (I know, I know... I'm lazy! It's probably unfair to class you the same, but hey, it's my blog!).
Makes you feel better about Britain doesn't it, although I didn't know Cornwall was a country in its own right! And no guns!
<Rambling> over...

Let the crafting begin...

Why am I posting a picture of sugar? Because I am proud, yes proud, proud I say... of my weight loss, after a year of struggling ~ I am 50 lbs down, which is great... but I want you all to recognise just how much that 50lbs represents (I'm needy like that!).  I am no longer carrying all those sugar bags... wow!

I'm also doing another challenge today (a much easier, more enjoyable one)... I'm scraping for the LIKE FOR EVER Sunday Challenge (#4)... to use a loonnnngggggg title...

I'm telling you... the only kit you'll ever need is one from LIKE FOR EVER (if your British anyway), they are awesome {American word #5} and Nicola (owner, hard-worker, dedicated crafter) is so, so good at her job...

Scrapped using the LIKE FOR EVER September kit... 'Acorn Avenue', goodies from
the Pink Paislee Cedar Lane collection

I absolutely love these glittered words, they add such a great impact

Proud... I tell you!

Hand stitching, with some embroidery floss, a wood veneer butterfly and a glittered heart (sorry I didn't even allow the glue to dry before I started snapping away with my camera LOL)

Proud, I SHOUT!

Minimal embellies and just a few light splattering of Heidi Swapp colo[u]r {American word #6} shine in gold
Have A Nice Day {American words #7}
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Saturday, 24 October 2015

What's That Ticking?

Ok, so I woke up this morning (always a bonus ~ gratitude #1), to the sound of ticking... uh? what?
As I lay there in my semi-wakefulness, half way between the land of nod and breakfast, my face on the pillow resting on my arm (this is how I sleep, on my side) and I realised two things.  Firstly I have the headache from hell... seriously, who wakes up with a headache?  Me, apparently.  And secondly, I can hear ticking?  Yes, ticking... I know I'm only half awake and in pain but tick tock?
Has some nefarious criminal placed me on an exploding mattress like they did in Criminal Minds or was it NCIS? Is there a bomb under my pillow?  Has someone delivered an old grandfather clock whilst I slept OR am I channelling my inner Captain Hook and a crocodile is about to attack?  OR is it really air in the radiators OR am I having a new sensory disturbance from my MS (like the 'crawling over the head' sensation isn't bad enough!)... should I be ringing the MS nurse (although perhaps not, I still haven't got in touch with her, to tell her my 'Hug' is back because I'd rather put up with the pain than have to constantly pop a pill!). I lay there and listen... tick tock, tick tock...
I hear my mum moving around next door, then my niece arrive to collect her coat... tick tock, tick tock...
I roll over... and low and behold the ticking stops!  As I haven't been blown to smithereens I assume they won't be making an episode of Criminal Minds about me, I know I'm not Captain hook (no missing hand, gratitude #2) ~ so no crocodile, and I really can't think why anyone would deliver a clock to me in the middle of the night, the heating hasn't come on... so that only leaves the MS, oh pooh!
I lie there and listen... no, there's no ticking.  I roll back over and hug my pillow and... tick, tock...

Oh no!  My pillow is a bomb...
My niece visits me (I'm still in bed!), to show off her coat, my son calls in and brings me a cup of tea (gratitude #3 for the tea, gratitude #4 for my thoughtful son), even my mum calls in (I'm still in bed ~ gratitude #5) and my hallway looks like Piccadilly Circus or a family reunion (gosh, I'm popular this morning LOL).  Do they not realise the danger they're in? As I sip my tea (tea first ~ bomb disposal later... priorities folks!) and think about Criminal Minds, my gaze lands on my watch (on my wrist)... have you guessed it yet?  Perhaps I'll remember to take my watch off tonight, or at least not lie on top of my wrist!  Tick, tock...
Now to business...

Layout #5 using my LIKE FOR EVER. September kit ~ from the Pink Paislee Cedar Lane collection, this kit is called 'ACORN AVENUE', with its autumnal colours its easy to see why.  My photograph is US, my family, quite a few years ago ~ I can't remember the exact date (why oh why didn't I put dates on the back of the photos :(  ~ twerp) and if I'm honest I've no idea what the occasion was either... but here we are ~ my mum, step-dad, brother and sister (I've no idea where my kids were or my hubby, but someone was taking the picture, right?)...

The start of my title using the glitter word stickers

I punched circles out of different patterned papers to tie in with the circular photo

I've no idea why I had two photos of this scene (its not like any of us are that good-looking!)

I tried to keep the embellies tone-on-tone

The end of my title, using the American Craft 'Fitzgerald' glitter thickers (in peacock)

I used that little fox from the ephemera pack, I could say because my little sister is 'foxy' but that is not the reason for it.  I used it simple because it was the right colour!
So there we have todays creation.  Have a great weekend everyone x
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p.s. for anyone who still doesn't know what the tick tock was...
it was my wrist watch!

Friday, 23 October 2015

NOT an Unboxing...

I was gonna do an 'unboxing' of my new kit but... I can't be arsed!
And since my brother told me he enjoys my crafting but he doesn't appreciate my sarcasm [here], the joy seems to have gone out of it  ~  perhaps he's a little upset that I didn't mention just how much I appreciate him, or that I think he's an amazingly kind, positive person (no sarcasm, no, none at all), or that he's a great father, fabulous son and an even better brother (no one likes to have the wrong impression given of them, after all.  Just goes to show 'watch your words' & 'be kind')... although nothing negates the fact that... you still ARE 'The Favourite' child, Kenny!
Head on over to Smashing Sarah for a great showing of the latest LIKE FOR EVER kit... her pics are fabulous... SMASHINGSHARAH
I didn't do quite so well with the add-ons though Sarah, but I did get a couple of things, and I did splash out on the Maggie Holmes 'Shine' dies...
I'm looking forward to having a creative play with these...
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P.S.   I'm sorry Kenny, but I do believe the family exploits
will still get blogged, sarcasm and all!

Thursday, 22 October 2015


So what has today bought me?
My super-duper new LIKE FOR EVER kit (so excited!) for one, apart from that... not a lot!  Oh I did have my flu jab, a nice young man gave me a little prick and it was all over in about 45 seconds (sound familiar?), sorry I just had a little <<nudge, nudge ~ wink, wink>> moment there LOL!!!
Before I delve into my new kit, I'll share today's layout with you.  This photograph is of me as a baby (ahhh), a VERY long time ago (ARHHH)! 

The photo has sat in an uninspiring frame with no glass... forever, my mother obviously didn't cherish this particular memory, and didn't mind how much crap it got coated in over the years... it's funny how all my  brother's pictures are literally framed in 24ct gold (with protective toughened glass) and are only allowed to be handled by someone wearing pristine white gloves, whilst mine are left to rot (well, I suppose he was her 'first born' and a boy, AND he was premature, I didn't stand much of chance, did I?  Needless to say... I am not the favourite!  And then just as he's leaving home and I'm - at last - about to have some attention, my prolific mother has another baby!  A girl!!! - Scuppered again), anyway for the past 50 years my baby pic has floated around mainly being ignored, getting dirtier and before it fades away completely, I decide to scrap it scrapbook it ... at least it will be in a plastic protector from now on and cherished by me!

I decided to use my LIKE FOR EVER September kit for this one, its called 'Acorn Avenue' and contains mostly goodies from the Pink Paislee Cedar Lane Collection.  I used the 'b' side of the patterned paper called 'Green Space' for my background, I though the green ombre effect went well with my faded photograph. 

My journaling is done with a typewriter (a very old typewriter, which sticks on the letter 'i', sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't!), I started along the top edge and then just carried on around the paper - meaning that the bottom is up-side-down!

That patterned paper I 'fussy cut' (Town Square) is still going strong!

Outlining gives a different effect

Some wood veneer butterflies and a few gems add to the overall creation

I only wanted a simple title and these black American Craft thickers ('Hardcover') are perfect

My journaling reads...
"Wasn't I a pretty baby?  I have learnt somethings over the past 50 years - some advice... laugh often  *  eat your greens  *  drink lots of water  *  life is unpredictable, enjoy the surprises  *  like yourself  *  be brave  *  FAMILY is everything  *  be kind  *  don't complain  *  be grateful  *  do your best  *  love always"

Up-side-down LOL

Still up-side down...

...and more
Happy crafting y'all, may all your journaling be spelt correctly...
Apparently there are two equally correct past tense forms for the word 'spell' (who knew, right? or cared!).  In Britain we tend to use 'spelt' whereas in America they usually use the spelling 'spelled'... and this piece of nonsense was bought to you by... Karen (your grammar freak) x
Coming soon...
October's kit unboxing
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Wednesday, 21 October 2015

From This Day Forward...

My layout today is of my ex-mother and father-in-law on their wedding day. 
Why am I scrapping passed relationships?
Because although we are no longer related (legally) I still get on great with these two lovely people ~ it's not their fault, their son couldn't stay faithful or that I didn't see my marriage falling apart ~ we still communicate, say hello, even have the occasional cup of tea together and a chat, they are after all wonderful grandparents to my two children, always have been and always will be.
So, although the relationship of daughter-in-law is no longer there and we have a different relationship now, we do have respect (on both sides), and a never ending love for our shared family.  Hopefully my children (maybe, even grandchildren some day, if we are blessed... please God not yet!) will be able to look back through my scrapbook albums and see all the relationships we have shared.
I am NOT a bitter divorcee after all and although I am not happy to have failed at marriage, I always prided myself that faithfulness was the one non-negotiable aspect of wedded bliss and I'm glad I stuck to this principle.  Even in the beginning (of the end), my children came first and although I would have cheerfully castrated the man at the time ~ my children only ever saw us getting on.  Had they seen inside my mind, as I carefully sharpened my imaginary, very rusty knife, would they have realised that the pleasantness and smiling was only for their benefit!  But time heals (yes, it really does, sometimes you triumph, sometimes you lose), and so thirteen years after the event I can honestly say...
I LOVE being single!  I have known love!  I laugh OFTEN!  and I LIKE myself, I really do.
My dark place no longer matters - you know that place? That dark place inside your own mind, the place filled with doubt, self-loathing, uncertainty, low self-esteem and minimal confidence.  When I look at myself (especially when I've done something embarrassing or stupid) I now laugh it off (easily) and LIKE MYSELF.  I like the person I am... I like that I have empathy for others, I like that I'm (nearly) always happy, I like that my children have grown into fabulous people, I like so many things about myself that the dark place, that's filled with all the negative, is no longer heard and I can just... LIKE MYSELF!
I could write a book about all the negative I have been through, as I'm sure most of us (who are over 50 and have experienced some of the world) can.  I have experienced marriage, births, deaths, divorce, murder, legal battles, miscarriage, cot death, disability, house moves, step families, children... to name but a few, but through it all I have SO much to be grateful for... I have never been made homeless (come close), I have never gone hungry and I have always had a wonderful and supportive family that I KNOW will always be there for me (no matter what).  Family means EVERYTHING!  So...
Back to the crafting...
Layout #3 using the September LIKE FOR EVER kit, 'Acorn Avenue', featuring my ex-in-laws' wedding day (over 50 years ago! That's what happens when you stay faithful!), 'From This Day Forward'...

I'm very pleased with how this turned out and I'm really loving this collection from Pink Paislee (Cedar Lane), the colours are so 'right'.
The purple splatters are a little bit too dark and I should of put another piece of purple doily near the bottom of the photo, but... never mind, too late now!
Oh and my next kit is NOT here (as I mistakenly reported yesterday), my (not) so nice postman delivered a pizza shaped box to someone else!
... me as a baby!
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Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Always Full Of Happiness

... that perfectly describes my delightful niece.  We all know that one person, who can walk into a room and the world seems brighter  ~  that's what happens when you're with Abbie.  She is always happy and always smiling.  She is a joy to be around.  When things aren't going your way or you're feeling a bit down  ~  there she is with her wide smile and happy nature  ~  and life just seems better some how! 
Don't get me wrong... she has her 'moments', the same as any child... she could win an award for her sulking and don't get me started on how very, very stubborn she is... BUT that smile and sunny disposition ALWAYS brightens my day... I am blessed to have such a charming niece.
This photograph was taken during a trip to 'Fantasy Farm' a local farm adventure park with animals, nature trails, play areas, boats, go karts and lots of other great things for kids to do.  Abbie is buried deep in the ball pit, grinning as usual and having loads of fun.  I can't believe that was 4 years ago! How time flies...

TIME PERCEPTION...{how to make time go slower}

The more we age, the more often we come into contact with information our brains have already processed. This familiar information takes a shortcut through our brains, giving us the feeling that time is speeding up and passing us by.  For young children, it’s easy to see how this would work in reverse, since the majority of information their brains are processing would be brand new, and require more time to process.
How to make your day last longer...
According to the research, if we feed our brains more new information, the extra processing time required will make us feel like time is moving more slowly. And supposing it’s true that perception is reality, we’d effectively be making our days longer. How awesome is that?
Here are five ways you could put this into practice immediately.
1. Keep learning
Learning new things is a pretty obvious way to pass your brain new information on a regular basis. If you’re constantly reading, trying new activities or taking courses to learn new skills, you’ll have a wealth of ‘newness’ at your fingertips to help you slow down time.
2. Visit new places
A new environment can send a mass of information rushing to your brain—smells, sounds, people, colours, textures. Your brain has to interpret all of this. Exposing your brain to new environments regularly will give it plenty of work to do, letting you enjoy longer-seeming days.
3. Meet new people
We all know how much energy we put into interactions with other people. Unlike objects, people are complex and take more effort to ‘process’ and understand. Meeting new people, then, is a good workout for our brains. That kind of interaction offers us lots of new information to make sense of, like names, voices, accents, facial features and body language.
4. Try new activities
Doing new stuff means you have to pay attention. Your brain is on high alert and your senses are heightened, because you’re taking in new sensations and feelings at a rapid rate. As your brain takes in and notices every little detail, that period of time seems to stretch out longer and longer in your mind.
5. Be spontaneous
Surprises are like new activities: they make us pay attention and heighten our senses. Anyone who hates surprises can attest to that.  If you want to stretch out your day, this is a good way to do it. Try surprising your brain with new experiences spontaneously—the less time you give your brain to prepare itself, the less familiar it will be with any information it receives, and the longer it will take to process that time period.  
Enough of 'time ' (or should that read <<never enough time>>)...
Layout #2 using my LIKE FOR EVER September kit "Acorn Avenue", this kit is made up from the Pink Paislee 'Cedar Lane' collection and with its rich hues, gorgeous florals and fabulous seasonal colour palette - it is the perfect autumnal kit.
'5th Avenue' paper was used for the 'feather' background with a piece of plain
white CS for the main body of the layout

I'm not the best at 'fussy cutting' but the 'Town Square' patterned paper called out to me!  So I cut out loads of the floral elements

Glittered alphas are always a great way to add a title, and these from American Crafts are lovely ('Fitzgerald' in peacock), adhered above the rest of the title 'full of happiness' (an acetate ephemera piece)

I added splatters in gold (Heidi Swapp Color Shine), blue (from stash) and a little bit of purple(Derwent Inktense)

>> more fussy cutting

 >> and more
Love those wood veneer butterflies (LIKE FOR EVER add on)

Acetate arrows from the ephemera pack

>> more ephemera

>> and more

And a few more splatters and some sequins ~ completes Layout #2!
I'm behind with my kits ~  my mojo went on its holidays :( and my wonderful postman has just delivered my next kit whoop whoop!!!
Coming Soon...
...unboxing October's kit "Hello, Beautiful"
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Saturday, 17 October 2015

Kanban Kwikie V

Knocked out a few cards from my never-ending Kanban Card Kit - 'So Macho' (this kit is amazing... it's still going strong after about 4 years!)...







Quick is right... minimal layers, papers and embellies  ~  not very creative  ~  but hey ho, sometimes you just need a quick card!
Happy Saturday everyone x
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