Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Discovering Myself Mini Journal

Hello! How are ya doin'?
I'm ok. Still snuffly and spluttery, but feeling much better in my head, the 'cotton wool' is subsiding!! yay!
I am immensely pleased at myself, because I made my mini journal, finally! and I'm so surprised at myself, its beautiful! even if I do say so myself, and I am my own harshest critic!
I sat down to it yesterday evening and had intended to just get things prepared and ready for starting it today. I cut out all the little goodies that Bonnie had made especially for the project, which I had downloaded and printed out. Such beautiful and cute little vintage pictures, tags, tickets and journaling pages, but before I knew it I had made the front cover, and then the first page!
 I even added little extra pages, and I eventually told myself to stop, as the clocked struck midnight, after I had finished my 5th page! after every page I kept thinking 'right, I'll stop there' then suddenly got a whiff of inspiration and started on another!

Today I had to take my car into the garage in town, so I spent the day at my Mum's house. I packed up a little picnic basket full to the brim of my crafting bits and pieces, and sat crafting all day!!
I've been a terrible mummy today, I had forgotten nappies and wipes for my little one! and for dinner tonight we had McDonalds! I think my family all breathed a sigh of relief when I announced "It's done!!"
But Oh! it was so much more enjoyable than I thought it would be, and I was really amazed at how I never felt stuck for an page idea.
My whole little book is made entirely from scraps and the printed stuff from Bonnie, and some stamps. everything I used was in my scrappings boxes

So here it is from the side, so you can get an idea of the wad of it all!! 
I actually didn't stick to all the intructions, oh naughty rebellious me! I made it a bit bigger, it's 9cm x 13cm. purely because that was the size of my first piece of scrap card!!

Front Cover

I can't remember all the details of the papers etc as they are scraps from many years, however this one, is
from Websters pages, Discover pic is Bonnie's

Inside Cover & First Page:

I thought I'd add some photo's to it too, this one I vintaged it up to make it look really old and even burnt! all with the magic of chalk & ink!

3rd Page

Paper is K&Co. ticket is Bonnie's.

4th page:

Postcard is Bonnie's, I made it into a little folder to hold the tags, there are two linked together with a brad for the journaling, I have much that I miss about childhood!! I didn't realise as I took the photo that the ticket has slipped off its tape!
                                                               5th Page

The Stamp in the middle reads " know the song in your heart and sing it like no one is listening"
As I was making this page, a song from Moulin Rouge came to mind, and I decided to put that as a life motto! and today in the car, listening to a Muse song, I heard " Don't waste your time, or time will waste you" ..I NEED that on my wall as a motto! So I scribbled that in there too!
Love label is Bonnie's

6th Page:

I love this pic bonnie gave us, so cute! the little circle at the bottom says 'cherish', it's stamped,and then has stickles on it. Again, making this page I had a giggle thinking 'My Precious' a la Gollum from Lord of the Rings. The papers are again a folder to hold the journaling tag.

                                                                         7th Page :

8th page:

                          used Websters Pages, in fact most of the papers are, now I think of it!
                                                                       9th page:
random page I added in, as I love this photo my brother in law took of my Hubby & I while we were in the Lakes, I realised the other day, there's not many photo's of Hubby & I , as one of us is always behind the camera!!

                                                                10th Page:

Yes, I had that annoying Christina A. song on my brain while doing this, sorry if you love that song, but step-daughter played it to death when it came out, now we all can't stand it! haha!

                                                                   Page 11:

                                                                Page 12:

Paper used here is actually a Cath Kidston design, It was a 'thank you for shopping with us' postcard thingy that I thought 'ooh I'll use that for something' and I did!!
Also, here's a quick card I made with the rest of it, on Monday,
                          Just cannot get the colours right!! the background is a soft grey, the green card, is a lovely sage green. Stamps are WMS

I hope you enjoyed seeing my journal, please let me know what you thought of it.

I thoroughly enjoyed making it, and when Hubby looked through it, he held it so gently, like it was a fragile, ancient work of art, and it just warmed my heart to see him admire it so. He has been very patient with me and my mess all over the dining table! and he really looked at every bit and was rather impressed!!
Then he said, 'So, what are you going to do with it? '......

As much as I want to get going on some more card making, I've had to put everything away, we have friends coming over, and I have to spend some proper quality time with my boys while they are off of school. Shame, its so miserable, raining and cold.
And this weekend we are decorating our living room. Woo-Hoo!!

Have a great week, whatever you are doing
Take Care

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Another Snotty Sunday!!

Hello there friends!

I hope your weekend have gone well, and you are looking forward to your week ahead.
This coming week is half term for our kids and they're off school for a week. I am actually looking forward to this as I am looking forward to some lie-in's!
I still have a cold, and a irritating cough now too.
We were meant to have pleasant weekend, my niece had her engagement party...which she knew nothing about! Her Fiance had planned the whole party as a surprise, he proposed to her on Saturday, and then came straight to his "sister's anniversary" party, and there she found out "SURPRISE!" it was her party!!
But I wasn't well enough to go.  Hubby took the kids, and I stayed at home, head full of cotton wool and thudding, and coughing and spluttering.
Before he went that afternoon I made a card for them. I had the colours in mind, I know her favorite colour (and wedding colour) is Orange. So I made an orange & white card. I also knew I wanted to try out my embossing folders and new Spellbinder dies..well I say new, they're several months old now!!
I've never worked with orange before.
Here it is...

Deet: Orange card from craft shop,
White card embossed with Cuttlebug 'Swirls' Embossing folder
Stamp: Penny Black coloured using Marvy markers
ribbon from stash
But I'm warming to it, it is very cheerful and colourful. I've never heard of orange being a wedding colour though, but in my local craft shop, where I went to get some orange card, they said that traditional colours are going out for weddings, now, girls want orange, yellow, teal, turquoise and brown even.
I had lilac and purple for my wedding colours, apparently they are now 'so last decade' !! and totally out of fashion! I must say, I myself have gone off of lilac. I think I overdosed on it, by having it all over my kitchen and bathroom walls in my first flat!!
So...after the family left for the party, the still and peace that surrounded me, my craft stuff littered all over the dining room table, I thought 'hmm, I'll just make one more, while its all out' (since I missed my friends 1st anniversary last week)
I had a little browse through blogland, and saw a really cute little birdy, apparently its part of a PTI bits and pieces/button thing, I saw and thought..I can make that!! so armed with my cuttlebug and spellbinder dies, I set to work and I am Sooooooooo pleased with the result, although once again my camera does not do it justice at all (yes, I am still moaning about the camera!!!)

Deets: Turquoise card, white card & teal card from Paper Mill Shop
Spellbinders 'Circles', 'Scalloped circles' dies
Cutltlebug Polka dots embossing folder
movable eyes nicked from the boys craft box!
ribbon & lilac lily from stash
sentiment stamp: WMS
birdy feet, tails & beaks hand-drawn

Then, I made another, this time totally inspired by this card on the WMS sketch challenge, I thought "I have that paper!! and I have those dies, I'm gonna make that!' and I did my version as I don't have those fabby WMS stamps! or the lovely lace. But, yes, totally copied it, I do not take any credit for the design & layout!

Deets: Sage green card, cream card from Paper Mill Shop
paper Webster's Pages
WMS stamps
paper roses & pearls from stash
Then Today, still ill, coughing, spluttering and with Hubby now ill too (well, it was his turn! it'd be a miracle if he didn't get it!) I sat and made two cards. One I don't like so much, I feel it needs 'something', but I don't know what...
Deets: White & Raspberry card from PaperMill Shop
Paper 7 Label from Papermania Rose Garden
Flower pre-cut shapes had for years!
Cuttlebug 'Swirls' embossing folder
ribbon & button from stash

And one I made with my very best friend in mind, and in my opinion is one of the prettiest cards I've ever made. but since she reads this blog, (Hi Bon!) I'm only going to show a sneaky peek of it, because I know how much she LOVES surprises! don't you Bonnie?!!! *muffled evil giggle*  (think chipmunk gone bad..oooh now there's an idea for Alvin & Co. for the next movie...Chipmunks gone BAD!!") annnnnnd, I digress, it will be on the way to Bonnie soon, as its for our friendship anniversary. 

I'll show it to you all once she's got it!

And to think I was meant to be making a roman blind and making that mini 'Me' Journal! Tsk!!
I am more than pleased with my crafty output forthis weekend though.
Have a good week, and please let me know what you think of my cards, I do love reading your comments, gets me all happy and warm!
So, I'm going to make myself another 'stinky' drink as my family calls it, I don't care how smelly it is, it certainly does the trick, 1 teaspoon of honey, 1 tablespoon (or 2 capfuls) of Cyder Vinegar, and hot water.
such more effective than lemon I feel, especially for sore throats. It works best at the beginning of a cold, but it is very soothing during.
OH OH OH, I nearly forgot!! How could I?! I amazingly, especially after my long blogland absence, recieved an AWARD!! I know!! I couldn't believe it either!!!
the lovely Ruby Two Shoes passed it to me, at first I assumed it was another 'Em' so I clicked on her link and it went to someone elses blog, but then the next person had the same link too, so I thought 'Ohh! what if, it is me?!!' I left a little comment, leaving my wondering with her, thinking, that it must be someone else,and on her next post, she comfirmed it was actually me! Yay! 
So here it is...

Thank you very much Ruby.
And I'm surposed to tell you 3 things about me...

1/ I need to change my blogname as actually, I prefer being called Emma, not Em!!
Everyone calls me Em, and I don't mind it really, but I do just like my name!

2/ When I sing along to songs that I know, I generally sing the harmonies or backing vocals! Its a habit, I got into, because when I was a teenager I adored the Beatles ( I know, born in the wrong decade!!) and I liked George & John best, and so would sing their bits in the songs! haha! so I learnt to listen for it, and then when I was in a duo, I sang harmonies alot on my partner's songs, and it just became something I end up doing!!

3/ My husband thinks he doesn't like cheese. But I put cream cheese (a lacto-free one as I'm terribly intolerant to Cheese) in our mash potato, and he wolfs it up, and since I've been putting it in, he has been commenting on how delicious and lovely the mash is. I've told him its because I put a vegatable stock cube in while cooking, and use desiree potato's!!! I know I'm so deceitful!! but he is so incredibly fussy, as anyone who knows us knows, somethings are a geneuine intolarance, some foods just make him gag because of the texture (fruit & veg mainly and pasta) and some of it is because of the way his mum made stuff that put him off for life!! and most of it is due, I believe, from the few serious head injuries he has had, that have impaired his taste. So occaisionally I throw something in, just to test him, to see what is pychological, and lo & behold, he hasn't been sick, or had tummy ache, or indigestion, nothing but satisfied.
But I do feel a little guilty over it, so here is my confessional!! haha! I feel better for getting that off my conscience. I will tell him eventually!

Well, that wasn't really about me was it, that last one, more about Hubby, but he's my other half, so it counts!!
Besides, I couldn't think of anything else!!

Anyway, I'm off now, Hubby's woken up from his nap and is looking very rough and is sounding like Chewbacca.
I think its hungry!
Take Care

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

I Love Autumn!

Hi There,
I hope this week is treating you all well.
Last week my little boys were ill with sickness and colds, and now I have such a horrible cold. I hate being all snotty! HaHa!
I still haven't got around to making the mini me journal with Bonnie's class, I thought I'd be able to get on with it this weekend, but Hubby was away, and I painted our downstairs loo,its always been such a dingy, dull smelly little room, with vintage 1950's tiles, that I quite like. the walls above were painted lilac, but it was such a dirty, dull lilac it looked gray, so I painted it in 'Cream Lace' paint. and I bought some vinyl floor for the nasty old tiles there, but I need Hubby's help with that. But it looks so fresh and bright in there now, and whilst drifting off to sleep a few nights ago, I suddenly remembered that I have some fabric remenant I bought, of a green toile pattern on a white background. I dug it out the next day, and would you believe it, its the exact same colour green as the tiles in there! yay! love it when that happens!! so I will set to making a little roman blind for the diddy little window, as soon as my head stops thudding and feeling like its stuffed with cotton wool.
Anyway, I do have some photo's to share with you.
At the weekend, I took the kids to the woods, we seem to go to these particular woods every autumn! But I had never seen the fabulous toadstools and mushrooms there before.
My step-daughter always thought that those toadstools that had red tops were 'only in fairy tales' she didn't know there were real ones! haha! (no amount of hair dye will ever stop her from being a typical 'blonde'!!!!)

Aren't they great?!
Are they Toadstools or Mushrooms??

I've been using a cheap little camera that I am starting to hate, I miss my SLR so much.
I have a couple more of the woods too, it was so beautiful, with the sun shining through the trees, those beautiful sunrays glimmering through the leaves, everywhere was golden and peaceful, such beautiful serene colours and my stupid camera didn't capture it half as good as it looked, so disappointing! But with a little help of some photo editing I managed to add a bit of warmth, but it still feels like cheating!! haha!

I felt so refreshed and at peace when I walked through here, I just felt an inner happiness or contentment.
I think this is one of my happiest places to be, give me a forest, especially one with a river and I am in my happy place!!

that's my son on his bike hurtling down the hill. I love those big beech trees and the oaks and chesnuts. Some of them really are so ancient, hundreds of years old.

I actually should also share with you some pix of when we went to the Lake District the weekend before last. Its one of my most favorite places in the world, # 1 place in England for me anyway. I totally understand why Beatrix Potter moved there and she felt her most at home there. (my sister says the same thing) but again the little camera doesn't do it justice or capture its full beauty. 
We went camping there and went on Ullswater Lake to kayak. On our last morning we went for a walk in the woods adjacent to the campsite along the river. It was just so beautiful, the colours of the trees and the cool,crisp, truelly fresh sweet air, was just 'heaven' to me. 
Here are a few 'snaps'well just my two favorites, to see the rest, pop on over to my Flickr page, (click on the link on the sidebar.)

I just wish my camera had captured all its beauty and colour.
Anyway, I hope you have enjoyed my Autumn photo's. I'm currently browsing on Ebay to get a new camera lens, as I've found that is what is broken, so soon I shall have my beloved camera back!
Til Next Time Xx

Saturday, 16 October 2010


Scroll down to the end of the last post to see the recent photo's!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

September's Post (Not Very Good At This Blogging Lark, Am I?!!)

Reposted, finally added new photo's at the bottom!
Finally posting this post I wrote in September...

Hello Friends,
Oh I am sorry for not keeping up with my blog, but in all honesty, i lost my mojo,totally, and I haven't made anything of late. So I felt I had nothing to blog about.
I had a bad month in August personally with illness and what not, and it's taken me all of September to get back to being myself again.
But, alas, the season has changed, and we are well into Autumn. Its a briskly cold, crisp day, we have blue skies and sunshine, but a biting snappy breeze is whipping away any warmth!
Soon, I am going to don my winter woolies and wellies and take my boys for a walk down the country lane to pick some blackberries, before they're all eaten by the birds!
my Hubby is crazily out on the river kayaking with friends today. Nutter!
My 'craft room' is our conservatory, which do not be misled, is not one of those lovely sunny rooms, its at the back of the house (of course) the sunlight blocked by our neighbours house, for best part of the day so it doesn't get warmed up much, and its just soooo cold to sit in there for any length of time especially in the evenings when I'm motivated to do anything in there most! I didn't really think it through did I when I cheerfully set up my desk etc in there in the spring!! No wonder Hubby was so enthusiastic and helpful to help me move my things out there!!! haha!
So, I am looking at heaters at present!! I shall conquer...the cold!! haha!
But, I do have something to share with you, nt that I'm vain or seeking glorification for myself! but I have reached somewhat of a milestone, that I'd like to share with you.

This time last year, I'd seen a photo of myself and I got so disheartened my it. For I saw not what I had decieved myself in thinking was me!  I remember the photo being taken and I was doing the 'holding my tummy in' stance, and I was horrified when I saw a bloated, swollen version of me. I cringe at the photo, and hate it but I am going to share it with you...

There I was in my trademark Black clothes that I thought would be 'slimming' or flattering! 
I never viewed myself as overweight, but I've always been 'fairly slim', about a size 12, since I've been married, and I was happy with that, but after I had my boys, I could only squidge myself into some 12's, and if i was honest to myself, I was more like a 14. In this picture, I am  size 16, wearing very loose, linen size 14 trousers!

I had a wedding to go to, a few weeks later, and so I decided firstly, I needed a fringe again, and got myself those 'spanx' hold-you-all-in body things. Then I squidged myself into the dress I had that was the most comfortable, into the only one I could get into.

I again was trying to suck in my tummy in this picture too!! haha! but at the wedding, I almost fainted with the discomfort and actual pain those pants gave me!  I'd squidged into size 12 ones, so they were so tight, but I was too self-concious and vain to not wear them, as i was also singing at the wedding too.
I actually had no confidence at all.
And although I thought I scrubbed up ok in this picture, it was sad to think of the discomfort I went through to try and look acceptable and nice to myself. Because that's the thing isn't it?
 Friends, family and my husband all loved me as I was, no-one said I should loose weight, no-one said I was fat, overweight or anything. It was how I felt, about myself and how I looked. And i didn't like what I saw and felt when I saw those pictures. I didn't see the me I wanted to be.
So for the first time in my life, I went to one of those slimming clubs, because as much as I'd tried to just diet and cut things out since I had my boys, I never actually had the willpower to keep it going. I hate the thought of depriving myself of chocolate and puddings!! Its bad enough that I'm intolarant to cheese and can't eat it!! 
I joined Slimming World, and even went to a group in the neighbouring town where I didn't know anyone!!! (how sad am I?!!haha!)
I thought it was great and that I'd loose it all in no time. But even though the plan is all very simple and healthy and great, it took a lot longer than I ever thought to loose it all.
Just 2 stone in all.  Some ladies were loosing several pounds a week, and hitting their targets, while I lost about a pound a week, even when I excercised more, I still only ever lost 1 and half pounds!
anyway, by about May time, I got really closeto my target, then with holidays and anniversary, I took a few steps back, and finally, last week, I hit that target.
I'd been either just one or two pounds from it since July! so it was most frustrating to just keep plateauing.
I went shopping with my husband a few weeks ago, and I got a shock as I got closer to the shop, I thought I had seen my younger sister who's always been slim, with such an enviable figure, so I hurried closer to say Hi and it was ME!! in the reflection!! My hubby laughed when I exclaimed 'Oh! its ME! is that me??'  i was delighted!
I know full well I've looked in the mirror I do it everyday, but somehow seeing my self from a distance...It just hadn't sunk in quite how much better I look, and feel.
I sang at my sisters anniversary party, exactly a year after the other wedding I went to, not once did I worry about what I looked like, (granted I ws nervous singing for 45 mins in front of everyone my sister knows!) and I danced and danced all evening, which I struggled to do before.
I have so much more energy now, and the most important thing I have found is my confidence again. I feel like I am me again. As I was on the journey of loosing weight, I realised that its not all about the size I was, it was about my own insecurities, self-confidence, issues and baggage etc. Loosing weight doesn't solve all those things but it gave me such a sense of achievement.
I've never been ambitious in my life, nor aspiring nor achieved much in my humble little life, but this, little achievement of just shedding a couple of stone, has made such a difference to me. I know it sounds so cliched as I always read simular things in the life stories in the slimming world magazine, but I know what they're on about now.
Now I know I can overcome things, now I know that I don't have to accept the way I am, if I don't like certain bits in my personality, or outlook, I can change it (with help & will-power of course)
and then there's the vain pleasures...
Just to be able to go shopping, with my 17 year old step-daughter and actually having to go get smaller sizes in clothes, in shops that I'd never shop in before, as I thought I was too old or frumpy to find anything in there.
To go shopping for clothes and actually come home with something for myself instead of finding nothing that fits right, and getting something for the kids instead!
We took my 19yr old step-son to university last weekend, I hadn't seen him for over a month and so far I think his comment is my favorite I've had so far. we stopped at some services and I got out the van, and he said 'Oh My God! you actually look HOT!' 
He was shocked at his own comment that fell out of his mouth, in front of his girl-friend and Dad to his step-mum, and for once, instead of blowing it off, and not believing it, I smiled and said Thanks.
So I am going to re-discover myself and am joining Bonnie's class "Discovering Myself"
I think its time I start seeing other good bits I have!!

Here's some pix I took of myself,what I look like now I've lost the two stone in weight,

And lastly,  here's one of me wearing those black trousers from last year in the first photo

and to save you scrolling back up the see the 'before' photo!!

Quite a difference hey?!
thanks for reading my Looooong post!
I will be back soon and won't leave it quite so long before my next post!