Sunday, August 19, 2012

Can't... get... no... sleep...


Well I decided to come down and catch up on everyone's blogs as I was tossing and turning. It's 12.30pm now (at least 2 hours past my bed time!) and Stew is up at 5.30am to go to work. So I thought I'd give him some peace!

I am worrying about packing for the Florida holiday. Specifically, I am worried about sterilising bottles & making up formula on the journey down. I think I'll go to Target tomorrow and pick up some of the ready made formula bottles. And some sachets of puree, just for simplicity.

We also heard today that it looks like we are going to be moving! It was a bit hit and miss as we have to give 90 days notice, so the houses we'd seen were possibly going to be gone, but it looks like it's all going to fall into place. I am worrying about what we're going to say to our lovely neighbours as the house we're moving to probably isn't as nice as this one, but it is in a "younger family area" IYKWIM, plus the house is situated on a cul-de-sac which will help me feel more confident about Jacob "playing out". There is also a basement so I am hoping I can spread my craft stuff out a bit. :D

OK eyelids are heavy now. Here's hoping I'll be able to sleep! Perhaps I just needed to offload my (admittedly trivial) worries!


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Zonko Malonko

Is what we say when we're SUPER TIRED!

But on the plus side, we're off on our holidays (vacation for all you Yanks!) a week from today! Woooooooooo! If things go to plan, we will be in Emporia, VA this time next week on the long drive down. We're breaking it up over 3 days to make it a bit of a "Road Trip" and to make it easier on the boys. I am very excited, but I really need to get packing. Not sure what exactly to pack into, usually when Brits go on vacation we pack suitcases because we're getting off the island by hook or by crook. However, a driving vacation is a different kettle of fish!

Anyway, I'm sure you'd like me to stop wittering on and show you what I've made today! As I'm tired, this was HARD. But I like the result, it contains a really weak pun, the colour green, and chevron paper. What's not to love!?

Couldn't even be bothered to get the light tent out, so you can't see that the green banner thing is popped up with the pear. Still debating putting a teeny-tiny "You're" on this. But we shall see.

This is ALMOST all SU!. The paper is from the Summer Smooches DSP pack (125409 $10.95). I used Certainly Celery, Lucky Limeade and Always Artichoke. The stamp is from the Perfectly Preserved bundle (it has matching Framelits - squeeeee!). I wasn't sure about investing, but I can think of loads of uses already. And I think there is lots more scope for my side-splitting puns. (129944 $38.95 CM, 129943 $44.95 WM) I've put a diamante (ooops, sorry, rhinestone!) on the pear. Finally the letters are from Basic Grey. I wish SU! did letter stickers. They are fabulous for when you want an unusual and hilariously punny word! :D

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Quick Chrimbo

I had done four Christmas cards (towards my target of 6/mo) and spotted Limeade and Gumball Green scraps on my desk. As you may know, Jacob isn't the only one in our family who LOVES green. So I knocked a quick card together from mainly scraps.

Colours are Real Red, Gumball Green, Lucky Limeade, Chocolate Chip, and that fabulous Champagne Glimmer Paper again. I just love "En Francais" background stamp - it works for loads of different occasions. I love it stamped in Real Red on Very Vanilla cardstock as here. In case you are wondering what ribbon I used, it's Scallop Dot Ribbon in Chocolate Chip. Because the dots are Whisper White, and I used a Very Vanilla card, I flipped it over to the plain side. It's like a BOGOF!

I usually make my Christmas cards in pairs - really, you might as well. :D Once you've cut your card base, you've automatically got two. It really doesn't take much longer to knock another one out!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Festive Banners

Big news - Leo has a tooth! We have had some bad nights of little sleep, but we now know why - a wee tooth! It's his front left bottom tooth. Poor monkey.

Here's my second Christmas card for August.

It's inspired by a card by Kristina Werner, just Christmas'd up! I used a Cherry Cobbler card base, with Very Vanilla and Gumball Green. The colour combination came from the DSP, Be of Good Cheer, as did all the bannery bits. I used some Silver Sparkle Dazzling Details and Linen Thread knots (just stuck on with Mono Multi!) to put the finishing touches on it. Finally, the sentiment comes from Chock-full of Cheer.

I really like the Be of Good Cheer paper. Because it only has three colours, it is super easy to coordinate with. It's also an excellent choice if you're new to Stampin' Up as there isn't a huge amount of outlay to get all you need to make tonnes of Christmas cards!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Colour Challenge

Francesca threw down the gauntlet in my blog group this week with this fabric swatch:

The colours are: Baja Breeze, Calypso Coral, Poppy Parade, So Saffron, Creamy Caramel, Chocolate Chip, Lucky Limeade and Tangerine Tango.

Well, about this time of the month, I start thinking about the month's Christmas cards. If you didn't already know, I take part in a Christmas Card Challenge throughout the year on Splitcoast Stampers. The idea is, you make a certain number of cards each month, so that there is no panicking in November. Works for me, last year I sat down to a lovely box of handmade cards. Some people even write them as they go along!

Anyway! I decided that this colour scheme wasn't too far from festive, so here's what I made!

The card base is Chocolate Chip, then the snowflake circles are in Poppy Parade, Tangerine Tango, Baja Breeze and Lucky Limeade. Finally the "tag" is in Soft Suede (didn't have Creamy Caramel) with gold embossing powder and backed by the irresistible Champagne Glimmer Paper. Finally, a bit of Lucky Limeade ribbon and some Early Espresso baker's twine. The stamp set is a retired hostess set called Northern Hearts. I doubt I'll ever part with it as it's kind of Nordic which I love. You could get pretty much the same effect using "Snow Swirled", a current set. I punched them out using a "best fit" philosophy which has kind of a neat effect. 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Catching up

Well, I am catching up on blogging. Last night I made myself do some "making" as Stew calls it. It wasn't a success as I was too tired and kept making daft mistakes. But I want to blog them because it's all about learning from your mistakes. How can you learn if you pretend it didn't happen, right?

Not sure what my plan was there. Next!

This was for the monochromatic challenge on Shop Our Stash. Something's missing.

Finally, today, whilst Leo was in his swing (!!! Not quite there with the cot but making progress!) I made this for a friend who has just had a baby called Noah. I never thought I'd like this stamp, so I borrowed it from Lovely Heather, and I have fallen in love!

For me, that's a damned good job of colouring. I try, but it isn't my forte. Not quite sure what is my forte, mind you.

Anyway! The stamp is called "Two by Two"  ($8.95) by the awesome Stampin' Up!, coloured in with a blender pen & SU! inkpads. When I get my own, I think I'll cut the sentiment off and mount that on the side of the wood block. That way it's really easy to use the image and sentiment separately. I also love the wavy sentiment - it means I have a bit more leeway than usual on trying to keep it looking straight. Again, not a forte!

Right. Must go and wake Leo up. Jacob has requested McDonald's for dinner, and since he's been a bit poorly, I am obliging him this evening. I'd like to pat myself on the back there for my "great mummy" skills, however, I am not sure taking your child to the Golden Arches really qualifies.

Super Bargain! But be quick...

Just to let you know that FOUR types of fabric have just gone to $0.99 on the Clearance Rack. Each pack contains three pieces of fabric, slightly larger than a fat quarter. It's gorgeous stuff for making embellishments, sewing and whatever your heart desires! I just loaded up on 10 packs to put around jar lids for holiday gifts.... for which there will be a full tutorial later!

Anyway - here's the details! Just click on the links to go straight to the Clearance Rack!
Candy Cane Christmas Designer Fabric
Candy Cane Christmas
Springtime Vintage Designer Fabric
Springtime Vintage

Deck the Halls Designer Fabric
Deck the Halls

Sweet Stitches Designer Fabric
Sweet Stitches


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Exciting news!

I just signed up to be a Stampin' Up demonstrator again! I am so excited to get started. I've been a demonstrator before but wasn't really in the position to do much as I was pregnant, but now I am all systems go!

I will shortly be uploading some fun buttons to take you to my very own Stampin' Up! webpage, but in the meantime, this is the link!

Enjoy! Shop away! Etc etc.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Rule Britannia...

We just started a new blogging group on SCS for graduates of the 100 cards in 100 days challenge called "A Card A Day". Well, I am not managing to make a card a day thus far, but I am doing my best!

Anyway we decided to start a mini-challenge every week - and this week I set the challenge "London Calling" - to have something to do with London/the British - inspired by the Olympics!

Here's my take on it...

My Union Jack came out a bit wonky donkey (as we say in Lancashire!) but I like it anyway! It's such a clever stamp set - Keep Calm by Amuse Studio. The cleverness is the fact that the image is made up of two stamps - one for the traditionally "red" parts and one for the traditionally "blue" parts.

My sentiment is from Simon Says Stamps "Absolutely Delightful". I actually wanted to put "Brilliant" but I don't have a stamp saying that, clearly this is a hole in my stash as I say the word 20 bazillion times a day!

I used Pool Party, Island Indigo, Calypso Coral, Primrose Petals, Sahara Sand, Summer Starfruit, Lucky Limeade and Wisteria Wonder SU! marker pens. Nice eh?! :D

I may yet do more British inspired cards. It is after all my nationality! Another project I got done today was Jacob's Lego bag. I've been meaning to make one for a while, as Leo is getting alarmingly mobile and Jacob is obsessed with Lego at the moment. These things aren't really compatible. So I used this fabby tutorial to make a Dino Lego Bag! I'll try to snap some pics tomorrow.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

CAS Clouds mark II

The challenge on CAS-ual Fridays this week is projects including things you would find in the sky. As you know I love clouds, so this was a doozy...

See the neon? Love it... This is a similar card to one I did a while ago, so if you think it looks familiar, that might be why! However this time I clustered everything at the bottom, cut the card 1/4" narrower so that the sentiment strip could hang over the edge slightly, and used Neon Yellow (Hero Arts).

The raised clouds are made from 4 layers of white cardstock die cut and stuck together, I then sponged the edges with Neon Yellow ink and added my final layer of the embossed cloud. The chevron pattern on the sentiment strip is from Lawn Fawn (Chevron Backdrops), and the sentiment itself is Papertrey Ink's Up, Up and Away Sentiments. Finally, I used my Stampin' Up embossing folder, and the clouds are cut using PTI's cloud dies. One last thing to note - I used Basic Grey ink rather than Basic Black as the BB looked too harsh.

Hope you like it!

Friday, August 3, 2012

House hunting

Well, we're thinking about moving house, so we are touring 3 tomorrow. We don't want Jacob to get excited (in either a positive or a negative way!!!) so he and Leo are going to play at Lovely Heather's house. This is a little note of thanks to Heather.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

From the chaos!

By the end of last night's creating, I had to work leaning on an ArtBin, on my lap. That was how bad my desk was! I only made two cards too, but struggled with them both so that's why I made such a mess!

These are both for Kristina Werner's photo inspiration challenge on the Simon Says Stamps blog. She has an adorable cat called Mannie who pops up occasionally in her videos. The photo she chose really showcased Mannie's eyes, the shape of which inspired this...

See how the leaves are kind of cat's eye shapes? I wasn't actually that pleased with this as I messed up the masking on the right hand side by throwing my usual background stamp technique out of the window and just stamping. Error! I also wasn't thrilled with the colours somehow. So... I made this:

That stapler is getting some love! Another reason I made another card was because the challenge suggested using Basic Grey things. Well, neither of my two BG things quite fit the colour brief, so I decided to stretch it a bit and think about my gorgeous cat who lives with my parents in Lancaster, UK. Gobo is 19 years old (human years!) and we didn't think he'd survive the flight over here. I miss him - a cat makes a house into a home in my opinion. Jacob asks me about twice a week for a cat too... but our lease doesn't permit pets as the previous tenant adopted loads of cats and let them loose in the HVAC system. It didn't end well. Anyway! Gobo is a white cat with splodges like Mannie, except that Gobo's patches are tabby. The brown bits of the tabby splodges are made up of individual furs which are stripy! So that was why I included the plaid part of the paper - the yellowy-gold part reminded me on Gobo's stripy fur. The green was Mannie's eyes, and the sunburst was an attempt to give the illusion of how the fur of a cat all seems to flow from the nose! There was a disaster with this card too, see if you can spot it.... This is BG Oxford by the way.

Feeling a lot better this week. Haven't made it to the gym but I have left the house etc. So there is progress! I also managed to make cookies today, and I got my hair cut. If you know me personally, you'll know I absolutely HATE going to the hairdresser so that was a major achievement!

I just booked Disney tickets for our Floridian odyssey! Yay! Apart from I think my bank card might have melted. They are seriously pricey!

Finally - and this is FANTASTIC news - I toughened up today and put Leo in his cot for nap AND at Jacob's bed time. Usually he locks me to the sofa by lying along side me and snuggling my leg, which is lovely, but a little frustrating and unproductive. So he cried it out at lunchtime and then this evening it only took two cycles of "popping in". Brill! I think having things a bit more routiney will help me get jobs done and make plans with people. Getting out of the house is key!