Saturday, 28 February 2009

Interview with Heidi

Heidi offered to interview anyone brave enough so I rose to the challenge!

1) If a movie was made of your life who would you choose to play you and why?

Well, I have never thought about that...Angelina Jolie? ROFLMAO!!! Ummm, really??? Ally Sheedy? We have a similar look. I haven't seen her in anything for years so she may have "retired"

if so, it would have to be Neve Campbell-

She always looks like she is having fun & is passionate about the parts she plays.

2) Tell me about the nicest thing that you have ever done for someone else?

Hmmm...well, I like to think it's more about the little daily things...I'm not going to include my family because it's easy to do good to those who love you & return your favours regularly. I once bought our pastor a whole heap of Christmas decorations when I found out him & his family didn't own any.

3) What is your favourite day of the week?

That's easy! Sunday of's the day I get to set my own agenda. I can go wherever I like or nowhere at all. I can sleep in as long as I want without an alarm clock blaring in my ear first thing in the morning. I get to actually eat & enjoy a leisurely breakfast rather than a protein bar in the car. Saying that, it is the day I do the most housework as I have help during the week, but I love that most of us are at home, each pottering about up to our own little things, but all enjoying being together.

4) What is the naughtiest thing you have ever done?

I'm just not that naughty...I've tried to think of stuff but for some reason I've nearly always been responsible & conscientious...sickening I know. I left home at 17 to study in another country & live in a commune so never had the opportunity to do anything that would have a negative impact on my life as there was no-one around to bail me out.

Saying that, in my last year of school (upper 6th form) my best-friend & I shared a cubicle at boarding school (the 6th form dormitory was sectioned off into 12 cubicles housing 2 girls each) & we specifically chose the very end one so we could sit on the windowsill after lights out & smoke.
Seemed hardcore at the time...

5) 5 must-have items on your grocery list.

I presume you mean stuff I buy for myself, rather than the rest of the family...

USN Protein bars
Sasko Low GI Seeded Wholewheat bread
Woollies fat-free Bulgarian Yoghurt
Nestle Cappucino Powder sachets
Woollies sugar-free Ginger beer

That's "my" stuff but for what I have to have in the house for the rest of the gang it would have to be:-

Lotsa low-fat milk (Full-cream if hubby does the shopping...)
White Bread (they all hate wholewheat...)
Butter (they all refuse margerine...)
Bovril (who can live without the stuff???)
Nesquik (4 out of 6 of us are Nesquik addicts)

6. Actually, there isn't a 6th question but I'm just going to make one up 'cos I found a delightful photo on the internet this week & have been dying to share it with you...

Where would you like to be right now?

Right here. Isn't it beautiful? It's actually in the UK...I have always had this strange desire to live on a barge-how's that for bizarre??? I just love their down-to-earth rustic simplicity & it looks like a stress-free simple life,LOL!!!

Back to reality...I am feeling a bit better today. I went to watch Pink Panther 2 with my little ones (not my choice) but they loved it & were very appreciative. It was funny in a stupid way, which was probably just what I needed!

If any of you have a burning desire to be interviewed by moi let me know by leaving me a comment to that effect & I will roll your questions along to you. It's a fun thing to do & actually makes you think quite hard. Good thing I'm not a celebrity 'cos I would be hopeless at off-the-cuff interviews. No wonder they say the stupidest things...

Midnight Ramblings...

I found this on Ali Edwards' Blog tonight & it is totally relevant to how I feel about life right now.

Souza :
For a long time it seemed to me that life was about to begin - real life. But there was always some obstacle in the way, something to be gotten through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid. At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life. This persective has helped me to see there is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way. So treasure every moment you have and remember that time waits for no one.

Now, the real challenge is actually taking those words to heart & living them. I would rather not. I would rather just step off the radar & fade into oblivion. That's how I feel right now. I know it's wrong so I will try to get over it. I have many reasons for feeling this way, too many to mention & too boring for you to read. I don't want to feel this way, I just do. I know that I am blessed & have a lot to be thankful for. I'm trying to tell that to myself but it isn't working.

Hubby is still employed so for that I am grateful. Life is hard & it just doesn't seem to get any easier. I love being happy & positive but I'm just not feeling it at the moment. The New Year is not even 2 months old & so far I haven't been able to acheive so much of what I set out to do. Circumstances just keep changing & the "obstacles" keep appearing around every corner. Sorry if this post is boring but I need to record it for myself so no need to comment if you're already asleep...

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Yay for Cocoa Daisy!

I am so excited! Between Sophia & I we have managed to get SIX people together (us plus 4) to join us on the Cocoa Daisy bandwagon! That means scrappy goodness making it's way across the world, starting soon...gone are the days of desperation & lack of inspiration. Out with the old & in with the new! And at a bargain of a price too...Aaah, what can happen with a group of local scrappy bloggers get together is a good thing.

Shows what you can do when the budgetting bug hits & you have to come up with ways to save! Thanks to everyone for committing & we will be in the pound seats soon, with the cream of the crop on our desks. I am beside myself. I want to jump up & down but our floorboards are not the best & there is a creepy underground zone in this house so I will restrain myself,LOL!

Things are not going too great this side to be honest. The whole world is in a recession so I suppose that is some comfort, but my poor other half is in the textile industry, & that is being very hard hit here at the moment. Major structural changes need to be made at his work place for things to just continue, forget about flourishing. Tomorrow is the big board meeting & I feel like he is being sent to the gallows, so goodness knows how he must be feeling.

Finding a job in South Africa is like finding a needle in a haystack, so we are all praying furtively that we will not find ourselves in that predicament. Even if we do not, it's going to get tougher & we are going to have to pull out all stops to keep afloat, so the thought of a monthly kit arriving at such a good price is just like a precious gift to me. I'm going to save a stack of money & get better stuff!!! Hee, hee, hee!!!

I am also working on a little project to make me just a scrappit of pocket money so we don't have to give up our once a week date night ;-) I am making the sweetest little 2-tone crochet flowers, which I want to package & sell in sets of 6 as scrapbooking embellishments. At the moment I am organizing the samples in all the different colourways, then want to do a little marketing locally & see if there is any interest. I never count my chicken's before they hatch, but, if they don't sell at least I will have half a dozen flowers in each colourway to add to my layouts.

I am into new-takes on flowers as I am tired of my old Prima stash so these are just the ticket. Will post some photos on my blog only once they are all organized. I am off to Joeys for a wedding sometime next month so am hoping to see a couple of peeps about them there too. ;-)

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

It's all about the boys today.

Reilly turned 11 today. He is just the sweetest boy I know. Jack is the great achiever but Reilly is the one with the heart of gold. He is a very easy, undemanding child with a very gentle nature.

We started the morning slightly earlier than usual so that he could open his presents before school. We had ordered his present online weeks ago from It was a history of Manchester United compiled from newspaper articles over the course of the club's existence from inception to present day. Hardbound in a leather-look cover with his name embossed on the front & a personalised inscription inside (we e mailed that to them).

We were slightly concerned last week that it had not arrived so Shane tracked it, only to discover it had been sent to Australia!!! After much ado the company remade the book for him & agreed to courier it to us. It arrived yesterday, needless to say, to our great relief! I went out yesterday with Jack (I needed his knowledge) & bought Reilly a few little extras "from his siblings" so he was very happy with his gift & all his tidbits. Chelsea, Cami, Reilly & myself went out for "lunch" today after school (3p.m) as soon as I collected them, then came home to get the homework done. As soon as Shane arrived home from work at 6p.m. we had to head out again to Jack's school for their Performing Arts Competition, in which Jack was taking part.

It feels like the term has only really just started (they've been back about a month) & Jack is at a new school (High School) with none of his friends from Junior School, because we chose to send him to a school out of our area, without any of his peers (long reason for that). It has been a whole new ball-game for Jack at a massive school, steeped in over a century of tradition, with very strict rules, where he is back at the bottom of the pile again as a Junior. Not only is he excelling in the cricket & tennis teams, but he is doing wonderfully well academically & socially too. He has made firm friends almost instantaneously & taken to High School like a duck to water.

To say that I was concerned about how he would fare this year would be an understatement. I was beside myself with worry as to how I may permanently damage him by prizing him away from his peers yet again, as we had done the same thing 3 years ago when we moved here, & it took him at least a year to recover. My fears were totally unfounded & we now know that we definitely made the right decision in our choice of school for him, as he is flourishing. Without any prompting from us at all Jack entered himself (one out of three grade 8s participated out of 189 boys in the grade) into the Performing Arts Competition. He decided he would be singing a solo, downloaded his song of choice onto a disk (God Bless the Broken Road) rehearsed at school & performed tonight to a hall packed full of people.

I had no idea about the calibre of the boys performing tonight & was blown away by the talent, commitment to obvious rehearsal, creative genius (a lot of the boys wrote their own pieces) & sheer guts involved. I was absolutely awe-struck tonight. Seriously impressed & entertained. I just loved my evening. When Jack took to the stage he was the smallest boy there, in age & stature, & his voice the only one not yet broken. His voice was weak by comparison to the older boys, who had deep voices & have had voice training lessons, but, standing there in the spotlight, my little boy was so brave that I just wanted to cry. He has the voice of an angel & was selected to join the Drakensberg Boys Choir School here, which is a very prestigious honour, as their choir is world-reknowned. We turned them down because he would have had to board & they focus mainly on their singing & not on sport, which is Jack's true passion.

Tonight I was overwhelmed with pride for Jack, who left home today at 6.45, went straight from school to cricket, showered at school afterwards & went straight to rehearsal then on to the show, & arrived back home tonight at 10p.m. All that at 13. I couldn't have stood in front of all those people & sung my little heart out (complete with actions mind you!!!). There was a bunch of girls behind us who all looked about 16, that were saying how cute he was & I just wanted to turn around & say "that's my boy..." This is probably all sounding really sickly, but it was a major moment in my life & one I will never forget.

We let the kids stay up until we got home (because it was Reilly's birthday) & there was a football match he really wanted to watch. It's been a very long day for us all but a truly satisfying one. I've been tagged by Shayne so hopefully I'll have some time tomorrow to play along.

Goodnight all ;-)

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

My Journaling Junkie Design Team Challenge 51.

Our task was to:-

Make a LO describing your scrapping habit and use your favourite scrap stash items.
This challenge closes on the 28th of February 2009 midnight GMT- you can email me your submissions eyeore(at)telkomsa(dot)net or leave a comment with the link to your URL. Thanks.

February Prize
February  Prize
a guest dt spot for both March challenges.

As you can see there are still a few days left for you to all join in & win the prize of a Guest Designer Spot on Stefanie's inspiring blog.

This is my take on the subject. My favourite supplies are 1) Bazzill Cardstock. 2) Alpha Stickers 3) Ribbon 4) Jelly (epoxy) stickers 5) Bling I decided to somehow incorporate all these items onto my layout.

Title :- Life thru' a Lens.


I live my life thru' my camera lens. I stalk my kids & pounce when least expected. You can find me peering thru' the kitchen window when they are in the pool & arriving with the ladder to capture an aerial view of their latest Lego creation. I have lots of ammunition for when they are older - potty-training & skinny dipping could come back to haunt them at their 21sts! At times they complain that they are living their lives on Reality TV - that's when I pack away my camera for a few days & give everyone some down time...Teenagers make reluctant subjects but Facebook has solved that. Suddenly it's cool to be photographed again - the more impromptu the better - just the way I like it - hee hee hee...

The black edge around the pale green cardstock is not part of the layout (it's my front door mat!)

I've had this photo for at least 6 months. It's for my BOM (Book of Me) that sadly gets added to very infrequently...

Rather than taking & printing more photos I thought this would fit the bill perfectly.

The pale green cardstock is Bazzill. The black is shimmer cardstock, with quite a pronounced silver glitter fleck. The brown is Bazzill Swiss Dot, inked with olive-green around the edges. I laid a polka-dot ribbon on the join between the green & black cardstock. This set the stage for a colourful layout as it is a multi-coloured polka-dot. Underneath the photo I ran a piece of DCWV self-adhesive ribbon, before adding the journalling block on top. I printed my journalling out on photographic paper, after typing it in Word on the pc.

To do this you need to start with a Text-Box (see task-bar along the top). Click on Create Text Box & a tiny box will appear on the screen. Make sure you get this the right size by adjusting the measurements for length & width on the right-hand side of the task bar, or directly on the text box by pulling it to size with the arrows that appear when you hover the mouse over the lines. Before printing, decide if you want to see the border-lines or not. If you do, you can choose their width & if you don't you need to click on the No border box that appears as a drop-down from the task bar.

If you type your journalling in your pc's default text first, you can then scroll down your type options to choose which font you want, watching your typed text change as you go, therefore you are able to see exactly what it will look like in your chosen font. To get the lettering white - type in black first, then choose your "fill" colour on the task-bar & fill your background in with the colour of your choice, then highlight & change the text to white.

I bumped up my journalling block on a piece of foam-core.

Next I got my title into place. I had already decided that I wanted a Shimelle Laine type of title, whereby I use alpha stickers from various packs for a jumbled, eclectic effect. I hauled out my box of alphas & chose from 6 separate packs. I added a * from one of the packs, to draw attention to the "through" in the tiny letter stickers. All alpha stickers are from Making Memories. Now I could start having fun embellishing. It was all looking a bit bland & lost, despite the funky title. Looking at the camera lens & title, I decided to contain the subject (the photo of myself) with a circle of bling gems. I had these amber ones in my stash & used a plate as a template. To draw attention to the title, I interspersed the bling gems at the top with a few of my Love Elsie circle epoxy stickers.

I was now loving the look of my layout & decided to go a bit moggy with some more Love Elsie epoxy stickers from my new pack. The speech bubble says "If it can be imagined it can be" - which I thought was very apt. I balanced it out with the colour-graduated flower ribbon on the bottom left corner of my photo. (I adhered this BEFORE adding the bling gems as it is underneath them). Also from the same Love Elsie pack, I used a red corner on the top left, aswell as the "Artist" badge & the "(Love) to Scrap" sticker plate.

The tiny stickers on the left of the layout say "2008". I try to always include the date (or at least the year) on all my layouts.

This layout was definitely one of my quicker ones, but I thought it was very effective & said it all.

Funny, because of my Design Team position now over at Little Shop of Sketches I have (for the first time ever) started "seeing" all my layouts in sketch form, ie:- I can look at them when completed & see the basic cardstock/photo shapes/positions very clearly. I've never had the inclination to work with sketches before, but, as my love of photography grows (along with my pile of photos) I can see myself turning to sketches more & more as I snatch chunks of time here & there out of my busy schedule, in order to take the thinking out of some of my layouts.

If you are able to do the same you will see that the "sketch" for this is very simple & easy to replicate & I would be more than happy to share it with you. Just click on my layout, Save as * (your choice here!) to your Desktop or your "My Documents" & feel free to scrap-lift my "sketch" when you have the time ;-)

Monday, 23 February 2009

Please forgive me...

If I haven't left you a comment all week. It's been a crazy one & I've got behind on everything. Got through a lot of DIY over the weekend & tackled some major gardening so all is not lost. All 3 of my scrap mags arrived at once (feast or famine) so I haven't even got to read them all yet & one of my kids is absolutely FULL of cold & in need of extra TLC, so please bear with me...

Found this on Stefanie's blog & you know I'm addicted, so here goes...

1. Do you like blue cheese? LOVE IT!!!

2. Have you ever smoked? PLENTY, just not anymore...

3. Do you own a gun? What kind of a question IS that??? Scrappers make love, not war!!!

4. What flavor cooldrink was your favorite? As a kid? Cherry Plum.

6. What do you think of hot dogs? Mmmm, nyum...

7. Favorite Christmas movie? The Holiday.

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? A nice hot cuppa tea ;-)

9. Can you do push-ups? Hardly ever could...

10. What's your favorite piece of jewellery? All my jewellery is "junk" but still love it.

11. Favorite hobby? Scrapbooking, with blogging coming a close 2nd, lol!

12. Do you have ADD? Definitely not, if anything I have ME !

13. Do you wear glasses/contacts? Glasses, yes.

14. Middle name? Never to be divulged...

15. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment:
  • It's way past a sensible bedtime.
  • I have a stiff neck & sore butt from this unergonomic chair I bought at Mr. Price!
  • I feel like more tea but don't know if I'll bother to go & make any...

17. Current worry? Don't get me started...

18. Current hate right now? Selfish people.

19. Favorite place to be? My bed with my hubby (for those of you with dirty minds that's our chill-out spot over the weekend...on TOP of the covers!)

20. How did you bring in the New Year? Watching the Royal Variety Show on TV with my family.

21. Where would you like to go? Away...

22. Name three people who will complete this: 3 bloggers out there somewhere...

23. Do you own slippers? Woolies, 2007 , no holes.

24. What color shirt are you wearing? White with turquoise & lime embroidery (Queenspark sale).

25. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? Never tried but sounds freaky. I'd probably slide off in the night.

26. Can you whistle? Sure!

27. Where are you now? In the passage, where the pc is located (it's called space utilization...)

28. Would you be a pirate? I'd love it, finally get to plunder instead of being plundered!

29. What songs do you sing in the shower? None, serious chill-out time.

30. Favorite Girl's Name? Tunya (have wanted to change my name for years BTW)

31. Favorite boy's name? Myron (anyone remember Tour of Duty?)

32. What is in your pocket right now? R2(US 20c)

33. Last thing that made you laugh? Can't remember, everyone else has been asleep for hours.

34. What vehicle do you drive? Chrysler Grand Voyager.

35. Worst injury you've ever had? Bent both feet forwards like a ballet dancer in points ((but further) when I crashed into a wall after falling down a flight of stairs - chronic tendonitis as a result.

36. Do you love where you live? No.

37. How many TVs do you have in your house? 4 (think Flintsone variety).

Happy Monday ;-)

Sunday, 22 February 2009

Some of my latest 365 Photos

I'm sure you must have all heard of the 365 by now. Becky Higgins came up with the concept & designed an album, complete with accessories, especially for the purpose of recording a year's worth of photos, simply by taking one photo per day. Any followers of Becky's Blog will be familiar with the fracas that ensued when people actually tried to order the album. It sold out within minutes & a huge amount of people were left disappointed. I love Becky's blog & the debacle was through no fault of hers. The above image is something I've wanted to capture for quite a while. My delicious brad collection. Yes, all mixed up! There is some loose order actually, small, medium & large! I just tip 'em out & roll 'em back in...

I decided that ordering one of Becky's Albums would be a near impossible task as I only learnt of the 365 in early January. I hunted high & low for a suitable album here & ended up finding one in some random store that sells a variety of everything! It's a photo-album with plastic sleeves divided into four equal sections so that, when opened up beyond the first page there are 4 sections to the left & 4 sections to the right. With 8 sections in total I can use 7 sections for my week's worth of photos & the remaining section for my journalling card. I had to buy 2 albums because I had to use the sleeves from one to add to the other because there weren't enough in each to complete the entire year. The albums have a lever-arch mechanism so one can add or subtract plastic sleeves but unfortunately there were no plastic sleeves for sale separately. Luckily the albums cost R70 each (USD7) so they were inexpensive.

This is another photo of some of my nyummy embellishment stash. I have tons of brads, flowers & buttons, so they are on my "hit" list at the mo, of things that I can use with gay abandon! The photo above this one is of my blog (as you can see!) & I love how the light has reflected in a ripple effect on the screen. The idea of the 365 is to take a photo of something that is meaningful in your life on that particular day, in order to give a general overview of your year in the end. The sections in my album take jumbo sized portrait (vertical) prints but I don't want to be limited by having to take all my photos vertically (& keep forgetting anyway!) so I am printing the landscape (horizontal) ones postcard size so that I can fit them into the compartments on a backing card. This adds some visual interest & gives space for some light embellishment.

This is a photo of one of our pc's, with Cami's screensaver - Brandy & Mr. Whiskers. It's her favourite cartoon at the moment.

This is the view from one of our bedroom windows - one I haven't been able to enjoy for 4 months now because I have had to keep the curtains closed. This is because our landlord has been stalling all that time on providing paint to repaint the wooden window frames that were replaced by a carpenter last October (they had been eaten from the inside out by borer beetles). After 4 months of persistence, empty promises on his part & disappointment on mine we were finally given the go ahead & the requisites yesterday & got the job done. Now I can finally enjoy this pretty patch. A little pond with a scooped out bamboo tube serving as a feeder spout for the flow of fresh water to our family of little fishes & noisy frogs!

This is rather depressing evidence of the inefficiency of the municipalities of the new South Africa. It should read "Port Shepstone" but was actually painted by someone & erected by someone else, yet obviously not one of them noted the error. We just laughed...gotta laugh! The photos not perfect. It's not supposed to be. The 365 is supposed to be stress free & achievable. If I have time to edit I do, if not, I don't. As Ali Edward's says - let go of perfection...I had to take this whilst stopped at a traffic light in the rain I tell ya...

Another photo I've been meaning to take for at least a year. Cami enjoying her staple diet - Microwave popcorn. As my mother would say "she survives on the smell of an oiled rag!" This little girl eats next to nothing, weighing 23 kg's at 8.5 years old, and she's tall...She can be coiffed to perfection as she's a natural beauty but this is the real her - Miss Messy Head we call her as she hates to brush her hair & only does so for school in the morning, under duress. I used to style her for photo shoots & have some lovely photographs, but have come to understand that that is not the purpose of scrapbooking. It's all about everyday moments (you guessed it...I'm a serious Ali Edward's fan!)

Reilly in familiar pose. On my bed, doing his homework, in a position (froggy legs) that only he can acheive...

Chelsea & Jack on their way to sleep in Chelsea's bedroom. Our girls share a room, as do our boys, but, because Chelsea & Jack have a later bedtime than our 2 little ones, Jack actually sleeps in Chelsea's bedroom. It's incredibly hot here at the moment, so the boys usually sleep in just boxers. I blacked out the top of the photo for the sake of Jack's reputation, as he was horrified I wanted to blog a photo of him sleeping under a pink & purple duvet cover, lol!

Chelsea is actually a very good scrapbooker, but has given it up (hopefully temporarily) in favour of more frivolous teenage pursuits. At the moment, painting her nails is high on her list of priorities, & yes, the colour of her choice that day is the bottle you see out of the drawer, black! I have to choose my arguments carefully these days & have decided that if anything is removable or undoable I can live with it...

This is my forever baby, Daisy Bucket (named after a scrapbooking line). She's now nearly 4 months old & still seems tiny next to the BFG (Coco). Here she's taking it easy on my scrapping chair. I find I end up standing for the bulk of the time I scrap anyway, so don't mind her commandeering my chair, not that I have a choice!

Here is my firstborn furbaby, Cocoa Blush (named after a paint tint). She loves to lie on the dining room table because the wood is cool for her in this heat. She hates the camera, she thinks it is some type of weapon as she is rather more highly strung than Lazy Bucket. I love how the light shows a perfect reflection of her in the wood.

Well, there you go, that's a selection of 12 out of my 22 photos for February so far. If you like the idea of the 365 but think you are too late or it's too daunting, why not just take some "lifestyle" photos as & when as you could always do a monthly layout instead. If you find it hard to think of what to take, walking around your home & garden is always a good place to start. Also, focus on your hobbies & regular pursuits, as well as, of course, your loved ones (including your pets).

If you are interested in my 365 photos, for ideas/inspiration, please leave a comment, as I'm considering it as a weekly feature, but would hate to bore you all to death, so be honest, is it a hit or a miss???!!!

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Little Shop of Sketches Layout

Here is my layout for the Little Shop of Sketches Design Team. You can check out their blog here. They also have a very active & friendly forum so, if that's your cup of tea & you have the time, why not come in & say Hi? You can upload your layouts into the gallery & stand a chance of winning a prize too. Last week they had a free online class on offer to their members, so it is well worth your time to go & take a look. Click on the Stampin' Scrap blinkie in their sidebar to get taken through to register. All very easy ;-)

I cut the flowers out of a free paper I got in one of my Scrapbooking magazines & raised the middle one with some self-adhesive foam squares. The scalloped cardstock was pre-cut but some of the circles were still in the holes, so I popped them out & used them as the flower centres, after inking the edges for a bit of dimension. I used some Love Elsie rub-ons (delish...) & a "Friend" fabric tag I've had forever...I placed a rub-on directly over it & around it onto the photo itself. Worked a treat...

I printed my title in Word, on a scrap of my famous photo-paper & also applied the rub-ons directly to this, then bumped it up on some foamcore. I can really recommend the Love Elsie rub-ons for ease of application. I'm not sure if it is just our climate, but I do find rub-ons in general to be temperamental & not always 100% successful. Notice under the title block that I used the circles to create a scallop edging.

Just add your double-sided tape to the back of your title block first (before you attach the foamcore backing) then position your circles (I always use my mat to measure as it is full of graph-paper style squares) then, once 100% happy with your placement, stick on the foamcore backing. Simple! Also a great way to create a perfect scallop effect without a template.

I used some MM coloured staples to funk it up a bit as it is a teenage layout. I repeated the set of 3 staples on the other side aswell. Always advisable for balance. In the camera glare the letter stickers I used look very obvious but they are not at all, in real life. In fact, they could pass for rub-ons. Very handy. Can't remember where I got them as I've had them for yonks!

See the weird paper I've used with all the little turquoise squares on it? I printed this by mistake (onto photo paper) when I changed my ink cartridge & forgot that it printed out a series of blocks first. Instead of throwing it away I thought it looked kinda funky so I used it!

I printed the word "Gangstas" directly onto the photo, in Picasa, before I printed it out. The lovely word rub-ons are all from the same coupla Love Elsie rub-on packs I got last year. I always try to include the date somewhere in my layout. In fact, I think it's practically obligatory, as I've learnt that, as time goes by, you just can't remember otherwise!

The matting paper (large spots) is also from my freebie pile so the only paper I had to buy were the 2 pieces of bazzill & the shaped cardstock. I matted the photo, title block & the flowers in a very thin matt of black glitter cardstock (offcuts...) to make them visually "pop". It has a lovely shimmer that is not evident in photographs unfortunately. I didn't journal intentially, bacause it didn't need it.

Thanks for looking! Now, remember to scroll back to the link & go over to the Little Shop of Sketches Blog, to check out my Design Team Sisters' creations!

Take a Peek...

I always enjoy reading about other people. It seems like rather a strange habit but perhaps you're the same? I can't really credit this to anyone in particular as I came across it 4 times today, in my hour of blog-hopping.

1. Where is your cell phone? Here on the computer desk.
2. Your significant other? At work as always.
3. Your hair? In a crocodile clip.
4. Your mother? In Cape Town.
5. Your father? In Cape Town.
6. Your favourite? Favourite what? Like too many different things to choose favourites!
7. Your dream last night? Don't remember anything about last night except the cat crying at the window to get in...
8. Your favorite drink? Woolworths Sugar-Free Gingerbeer.
9. Your dream/goal? To buy another house.
10. What room you are in? The passage.
11. Your hobby? Scrapbooking
12. Your fear? Not being able to buy another house.
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? In my own home (another one, not the one we own in Zimbabwe.)
14. Where were you last night? At home.
15. Something that you are not? Dishonest.
16. Muffins? Can live without them.
17. Wish list item? My own home.
18. Where you grew up? Zimbabwe.
19. Last thing you did? Blog-hopped.
20. What are you wearing? Jeans & T-shirt.
21. Your TV? Could live without that too.
22. Your pets? Adventuring outside.
23. Friends? Scattered.
24. Your life? Monotonous.
25. Your mood? Guess...
26. Missing some one? More than one.
27. Car? Chrysler Grand Voyager (only 'cos of the space - gives me nothing but problems...)
28. Something you're not wearing? Mascara (yet...)
29. Your favorite store? Online.
30. Your favorite color? Brown.
33. When is the last time you laughed? In the car on the way to school.
34. Last time you cried? Can't remember.
35. One place that I go to over and over? Movies at Gateway.
36. One person who texts me regularly? Jacquie
38. My favorite place to eat? M&A Gateway.
39. My favorite food? Fresh Crayfish.
40. What did you do today? Took the cupcakes Cami & I baked last night (for the cake sale) into school, only to find that 90% of what was on the table came from Pick 'n Pay & was still in the packet. (Why am I not surprised?)

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Check out my Poll!

No, this isn't it...will get to that later! This is a layout - NOT MINE! - that I found on one of my favourite blogs recently (BANANAFROG again...) & it is a year in review one. Well, you know I did one of those recently & needed 50 pictures so created a Picasa Collage, so this would NOT do if you have a big family like me! BUT I do think it would make a great layout for a MONTH IN REVIEW which could be a bit more achievable than the 365 - which I am photographing for but have yet to compile.

Nice layout & love the doggy pile effect of the photos randomly layered over one another & the whited out journalling spot. A word of warning - I've done this before & it can be VERY frustrating (& ruin your pen) waiting for the paint to dry & trying to write on it before it does SO rather do this in 2 stages, with a good few hours, or overnight preferably,in between, so that you keep your fineliner in tip-top condition & don't have to scrape it through...

This is an award that I found on another blog last week (can't remember which one, sorry!) that was up for grabs to anyone deserving, so...if you like & you have a blog that showcases your creations then this could be for you too!

I've had a little play this morning & come up with a poll that I created on Vizu ( a site specializing in polls) only to see, when adding it to my sidebar, that Blogger has an "Add poll" gadget! Oh well...perhaps this one is more specialised, who knows? Anyway, I am running it for a week, just for fun, so play along if you like. I customized all the colours & I see it has come out black & white after all that! I found it on the Pink Paislee site where I have registered & uploaded 4 of my layouts. If any of you are members there please leave me a comment & join "my friends!" - seems like a lovely site/gallery & think it gets quite a lot of exposure so why not follow suit? See some of you are there already...

I have been busy with my Design Team layouts aswell last week, so they are done & dusted but can't show them to you yet. My confidence must be growing 'cos I LOVE both of them & was very nervous for my first installments, so they were a bit on the safe side!

Well, I think that's enough food for thought for a busy Tuesday morning so will sign off now ;-)
Don't forget to put in your vote on my poll!

Monday, 16 February 2009

Layouts from Last week...

Just a couple...
More to come later this week!
I'm on a mission to do what I can to make a dent in my printed paper & cardstock stash, aswell as to use up at least one (!) box of my offcuts this year ;-)

This creamy yellow checked printed paper I've had for years & the mustard cardstock strip, plus the blue strip are all from my offcuts. The shiny circles are newish but these pieces are offcuts from a layout I did last week, that I haven't photographed yet. The red dot paper behind the circles also came from my offcut stash. I cut around the circle design, before matting it with the dot, then I punched out the circles from the glitter circles paper & punched out the bigger dotty circles with my larger circle punch to matt them. I bumped these up with foamcore for a 3D effect.

I know matting so close to the photo is old-fashioned, but at times it does help to "pop" the photo from the background, as in this case! I used up a lot of my flower stash (that being the idea...) including the large felt "Fiesta" self-stick flower on the corner - that I recoloured from white to pink with an ink pad.

This was a quick layout - real "cut & stick" style, but I am realistic enough not to worry if every layout isn't a "masterpiece". One day last week I ploughed through 5 layouts, this being one of them. With my lifestyle it's not always possible to scrap every single day, so ,on other days, I have a "spurt" & try & pump out more than a make up for lost time!

In this close-up you can see that I printed some text ("Sisters") on the photo in Picasa (my love/hate program,lol!) Obviously it's no PSE but, until I've got the time to get to grips with that program, at least Picasa offers various style & colour options. I used a bling sticker to dot the i (over the text) just for fun ;-)

I like it, I think it turned out pretty...

A foolproof method really, just offset the photo at an angle & embellish away!

The plain cardstock at the bottom "grounds" the layout & provides a good place for the title.

As there was a quote beneath the "Friendship" title I didn't feel any extra journalling was necessary.

As for the layout below, I bought this paper online & on sale...

I've noticed this type of background around a lot lately, being created with paint (the messy frame around the edge) then usually stitched on top or with a thinner line drawn on top with a fineliner pen. So I reckon finding this paper was a bonus! Think it is an older 7 Gypsies one...This is a photo of Chelsea & one of her school friends. The spotted paper was from my offcuts & I distressed it with my MM Distressing tool then "waxed" it (learnt this little trick from Cindy-see her lovely work here) What you do is stick down some gummy sticky tape (the stickier the better) around the edge, then rip it off!!! A lot less painful than on your legs, lol! Look carefully & you'll see the whitish bits around the edges of the spotty matt... I inked with my dark-brown cat's eye then stapled the bits back together that had torn off with my enthusiastic use of my under-used distressing tool...was after the ultra-distressed look after all ;-)

I tore the mustard matt, then heavily inked it with dark brown & stapled on some MM crochet lace ribbon. I stuck on one of my fave 7 Gypsies sticker quote strips (top right) & clicked out the journalling on the bottom left with my Dymo machine. The "friends" title was an embroidered fleece iron-on fabric one from an old kit & the date stickers are MM glitter alphas - black. I cut out the red flower from a MM Falala paper & pinned it through with an old hat pin. I finally got to use the roll of printed "Friends" masking-tape I bought last year, just under the flower. I added a glossy printed MM brad in place of the dot on the "i" & a fancy MM paper-clip on the bottom left (you can only see the glossy circle part sticking out).

I haven't done a heavily distressed layout all year (all 6 weeks of it,lol!) & thought I was sick of the look & only into fresh & funky, but I enjoyed mixing it up a bit on this one, for a change ;-)

Some close-up details...

Thanks for looking ;-)

Again I printed the text directly onto the photo in Picasa.

BTW if any of you are also experimenting, I saved these pictures in My Pictures, edited them in Picasa (which I now keep free of photos so it can edit fast & efficiently), exported them back to My Pictures in their newly edited form, but, beforehand, I e-mailed them to my more waiting for ages for each picture to load & you can send as many as you like! How's that for a tip & a trick???!!!

Monday's Inspiration.

First up is a little freebie for any of you who haven't seen this cute little badge around & want to add it to your sidebar gadgets. Sure you all know how but, if not, leave me a comment & I'll be happy to let you know ;-)

Next is a cute little project I found recently, on the Bananafrog Blog. I've had it on my Desktop for a while (that means I'm supposed to be doing something about it,lol!) & I thought it was a great alternative to the mini-album, which can end up taking up rather a lot of time & money. So, if you're in need of a great gift idea I think I've found it! Just the thing to make in literally a couple of hours, as opposed to a day for a mini-album. The cost would be much lower too & the "credit crunch", as it's been coined, is something that everyone in the world is now more able to relate to.

If you are in need of a daily dose of inspiration add this blog to your Google Reader - it's inspiring & informative. I would suggest a little "thingie" added to the back of each side of this project, like on a picture frame. Must be a name for it & shamefully, I don't know what it is...but that would be perfect for ensuring that this little project could be viewed from an angle, just like a photo in a picture frame, on a desk or table ;-)

Isn't this scrummy? It's the new Making Memories Just Chilling range of canvas tags. I LOVE canvas tags! This range is designed with teenage layouts in mind & is just perfect, I say. Note the yellow, grey & lime AGAIN. This weekend I got all my yellow cardstock onto my bedroom desk & there it sits, waiting for my next layout...Yellow it WILL be ;-)

For those of you who haven't seen it. THIS is the latest Basic Grey Range - Marrakesh. Can't wait to get my paws on this...The colours, the designs...custom made with me in mind ;-)

Hope this little post has enriched your life in some small way today & set your mind a rolling...

Enjoy your week & Happy Scrapping ;-)

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Where did the weekend go?

Finally I've been able to sit for a couple of hours & catch up with all your news...Have just closed down my Google Reader & enjoyed all your new posts ;-)

This weekend has come & gone in a puff of smoke & I haven't managed to get any scrapping done, & only minimal blogging. Friday night had me exhausted from a busy week so I caught up on a bit of gossip,courtesy of UK OK Magazine. Saturday was painting & gardening day & ,of course, Valentine's Day, so we had to bring our date night forward & go off to our local haunt, Gateway.

Of course, it was packed & the cinemas were full, but there was also a very good "loving" vibe that went with it (lots of couples of all racesout together) so it was fun. We watched "He's just not that into you" and LOVED it. It was just so cute & funny & Scarlett Johannsen is one of my favourite actresses of the moment, & played the perfect part for her. We had a late night as the kids were razzing it up too, of course (the two teenage ones that is) so we had to do the late collection & some drop-offs on the way home too. We share lifts so that we only have to do one way. I prefer the late collection, then at least I know they have no excuse for getting in too late,lol!

Sunday morning is always just bliss for me to be able to sleep in. We had a lovely lazy morning & I spent hours on the phone to family in connection with the latest family drama (yes, the SAME one I told you all about SEVERAL times) It is STILL raging & cannot possibly have a good outcome, whatever happens. You know those Catch 22 situations, when you're caught between a rock & a hard place? Well, this is a perfect example & 3 phonecalls & many hours later we're no closer to a resolution. Is it only in the movies that families actually nurture & support each other? We could really do with a bit of that right now, but instead we are faced with continual challenges & ,I have to say,great disappointment.

Anyhoo...that took up a significant part of my day, but I feel it's important to be available as a sounding board & it's good to feel loved & entrusted into someone's confidence. My youngest was also in need of a bit of TLC today. She is very undemanding but has been rather too neglected of late, due to lack of finances, so weas suffering from a bit of cabin fever & dying to get out & about. Unfortunately there is not alot one can do here that is safe & free so we usually take the kids off to Gateway to movies or Fantasy Forest (a games arcade) or just out for a milkshake, etc, every so often, for a bit of a treat.

I had to be extra inventive today as I was determined not to make a trip to the ATM & draw out any money! As a result, what was left of my day was spent baking a Valentine's Cake (in the shape of a Heart) &, yes, I do realise I was a day late on this one, lol! Camryn thrived on the one-on-one attention of helping mum & it all took twice as long as she did all the greasing, measuring, mixing, etc. I must say it was great just to take some time-out & accept that I wouldn't be getting anything else done for the next hour & devote all my time & attention to my extra special little girl. She absolutely wallowed in our bonding time & it was well worth the sacrifice.

Shane played several games of chess with her while I tidied up the kitchen from a day's worth of cooking & snacking then I helped her make a single scrapbook layout with 2 of her favourite photos of our cats. I bought her her own little photo album (takes 100 photos) about a year ago, & print photos for her of her favourites that she sees when I print out our family ones. She has done 7 layouts so far & I have bought her her own Scrapbook Album to store them in. Of course, she can't work alone, so I need to help & supervise every step of the way. She only scraps when she remembers so I try my hardest not to jog her memory, lol! I noticed, interestingly enough, that she is actually quite a lot more dexterous than she was when she last "scrapped", a few months ago. Hence, her layout was quite a lot neater this time.

Again, she was relishing all the extra attention & ,while I loved it too, it actually made me quite sad, 'cos I realised how undemanding she really is & how a couple of hours of my time at the end of a busy week just really made my little one's day ;-)

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Awards Time.

Couldn't resist logging on this morning, between touch-up spots (the painting...)

Saw that Jenny from New Zealand had given me an award! Especially exciting as it's a new one that I haven't seen around before. As it's the weekend I'm going to break the rules a bit & say that if you deserve the award you can claim it. You know if your blog measures up or not! So help yourself if your conscience is clear ;-)

The rule of this award is to say one nice thing about the man in my life – in my case, my husband Shane.

I could say a thousand nice things but, most importantly, he just “gets me” – he understands me & always automatically thinks the best things of me, & is very non-judgemental.

Next is to list the 7 ways I measure success in my life:-

1) By the state of my marriage - our communication levels. How we connect. How we raise our children. What we want out of life. How we compromise. The fact that we tick all those boxes means that we have worked on our relationship all these years & it has been well worth the effort.

2) Jenny listed “a nice house & possessions which we have worked hard for” – this is a hard one for me ‘cos we currently live in an old house that needs a lot of work on it. We do own a beautiful home that I designed & my husband & I ‘built” (ie;- no contractors – we bought all the materials, paid the wages, supervised, etc, ourselves) but we are not currently living there (nor will we ever be) as it’s in Zimbabwe & we left there 3 years ago for obvious reasons. That property is definitely on my list of successes in achievements though, including the garden, as it’s a big one (most gardens there are at least an acre) so I’m going to make this count for TWO ;-)

3) Our kids – the fact that they are well-adjusted beings in all areas of their lives & succeed in all the things they have an aptitude for is a great success to me. I don’t believe in forcing them into square holes if they are round pegs so we let each of them develop in their own natural way & it is wonderful as they are all very different!

4) My scrapbooks – I have 2 dozen of them crammed with 50 pages each. Plus various other creative pursuits. When I feel like I’m getting no-where I look at them & feel a great sense of accomplishment.

5) My faith – having come to terms with all the questions I used to have about the meaning of life – I’m now satisfied & content with the answers I’ve found, although I’m definitely short of the mark at times in carrying out my convictions.

6) Happy being me – as a young person I had a lot of identity crises that came from an insecure background – now I am happy to say that I like myself & only care about the opinions of my immediate family. In other words, if you don’t like me, I really don’t care!

Well, that was back to the painting!!!