Tuesday, 31 July 2012

This 'n' That - A Month Misspent

Has it really been 20 days since I last blogged?????

Life does that to you sometimes doesn't it?  Either getting busily in the way or sucking the motivation out of you ... or in my case both!

First there was a visit up north (should that have a capital letter?) where I managed to get photo #2 and item #8 in Rinda's Scavenger Hunt:  the lovely Angel of the North, with No.1 Son to give it some scale.  He's the one on the right!

I'll tell you why we were in the neighbourhood on Sunday when I'll be joining in with Siân's Storytelling.

A Song Of Ice & Fire - 12½ inch stack of books
Disappointingly, my recently-operated-upon elbow flared up which meant that I had to limit my activities again.  It's hard to scrap or blog (or chop vegetables or even clean surfaces) when your write right arm needs elevating and ice-packs!  This did however give me LOTS of time to read books ... and I have just finished wading through the entire series so far of "A Song Of Ice And Fire" by George R.R. Martin - a mind boggling 12½ inches of paperbacks.  At first I was bewildered by the enormous cast of characters in the first book, "A Game Of Thrones", and the switching of viewpoints between them.  Apparently there are 31 different viewpoints and over 1000 different named characters - not that I've checked!  However, I was soon completely hooked and wanting to read more - to the extent that I couldn't wait for Hubby to finish the 4th book of the series, so we shared for while, before I sneakily overtook him while he was out at work!!!
If only reading were an Olympic sport :o)

We finally had some summer sun too which meant I could tackle some garden jobs and tend to the vegetables that we planted this year.  We've even harvested a young lettuce or two.

Runner bean flowers in my garden
{ These are not the lettuces - can you guess what they are? }
Thanks to this 'n' that (and some other stuff) I have been very neglectful of my July Counterfeit Kit and managed just 2 pages with it - neither of which I can share yet.  They did involve a lot of machine stitching though.
I'm hoping to be inspired to use other forms of stitchery soon by hanging out over at Obstinate Pursuit: Clair is about to host a FREE class about stitching on paper - it starts on Saturday (August 4th) and runs each weekend throughout August (sneaky peeks here).

I guess there are enough numbers in this post to qualify me to play along with Julie's Month In Numbers - providing I also include that No.1 Son spent only 10 days at home messing up our house before departing and thankfully leaving the mess marginally more contained.  Oh and that Child No.3 had to endure 3 interviews (phone, group and individual) before being turned down for a weekend job in a local supermarket.  As for No.2 Son ... he did help by mowing the our 3 lawns 4 times this month which is something I suppose.
Ooops!  I haven't actually shared June's Month In Numbers yet ... hopefully I'll do that when I scrap it - possibly with next month's kit from the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog!

How has your month been?

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Ten on the Tenth: The Boys Are Back In Town

Welcome to another Ten from me - on the eleventh as I was working yesterday and forgot to pre-schedule the post!

This month I want to share some of the signs that we are back to having a house full ... of large male offspring!  Both of them had to move out of their university accommodation and have FILLED our house with much more "stuff" than they ever took away from it when they left!

It's not that there isn't space for some of their belongings (they each have a decent sized bedroom); it's more that their "stuff" is larger than we can store.  Like the shoes that don't fit into the shoe cabinets:

Or the weights that we've had to stash behind the sofa to save people's toes!  Then there's the boxes of cooking ingredients and pans and storage containers - my kitchen already has plenty of these!!!

Photo - Teenage Invasion

Our spare bedroom (you can't even reach the bed for the suitcases littering the floor) and garage have been taken over with "stuff" that has yet to find a home in their bedrooms (or the attic).

Their tastes have changed while they've been living away and we now have to have different tea and milk for them as well as LOTS of extra food!

Photo - Teenage Requirements

And to top it all - the mess that should be restricted to their bedrooms is spreading elsewhere in the house!

Photo - Teenage Mess
I can close the door on the mess - unless it's all over my kitchen worktop!
In the interests of fairness I have to come clean and say that these photos are ALL from No.1 Son's "stuff" as No.2 Son has now managed to squeeze all of his things (apart from his shoes) into his bedroom - but then he has been home an extra couple of weeks already!

I'm off to take my mind off things with (hopefully less messy) tens over at Shimelle's place - do you want to close the door on all of this and join me?

Monday, 9 July 2012

Breaking My Duck With A Horse

Not as nasty as it sounds dear reader - just that I've managed to break my duck (i.e. get a first score) on Rinda's 2012 Scavenger Hunt ... with a photo of a horse!

Photo of a carthorse on the mural of the Potteries museum
10 - A Horse
This wonderful mural is on the outside of the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent

Almost the whole mural outside the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery

Just another 20 items to go but plenty of time before the September deadline!

Friday, 6 July 2012

(4th Of) July Counterfeiting

Kit detail - buttons
Welcome to the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog Master Forger July Kit Blog Hop!  What a mouthful!!!  The hop started here with this month's Guest Designer Sherri (a former Master Forger who just can't stay away) and, thanks to a other commitments for a couple of the girls, I'm 2nd in the hop!  I didn't make any pages in June following my surgery so I'm really glad to be back in the counterfeiting saddle again!

Citrus Twist - Summer Boardwalk Kit
Summer Boardwalk
This month's kit-to-copy is from Citrus Twist and is full of teal and apricot loveliness with plenty of trendy chevrons and woodgrain.  Unfortunately I have just about run out of teal and apricot stash with or without chevrons and I've never owned any woodgrain!!
So, after substituting some wavy blue paper for the blue chevrons, some stripes for the woodgrain and grabbing a few floral papers I realised I had the beginnings of a great kit to continue with my Las Vegas photos - stars, stripes and denim?!

Counterfeited Kit - Jimjams
Cardstock in black, blue, red & white
Lucky Sun-Kissed by Basic Grey
My Mind's Eye Stitched (On The Bright Side collection) - bright stripes on white on the reverse
Japonica from Kaisercraft's Loire Valley - cream grid & bird silhouettes on the reverse
Basic Grey Recess Answers
Lucky Joy by Basic Grey
Petite Red Floral by Jenni Bowlin
Kaisercraft's Sakura Park Kanzan - brown floral on the reverse
Red starry paper (manufacturer unknown)
Affection from Fancy Pants Designs' Love Story collection - black & white floral on the reverse

Jenni Bowlin shaped journalling spots
A selection of red & blue & black buttons
Red velvet and floral trims, tiny white ric-rac, blue embroidery floss
Wooden stars
A selection of stamps
Blue & black blooms
Thickers Regards chipboard alphabet
Blue Jeans mini alpha stickers by MLS
Multi Reds mini alpha stickers by Adornit
Vintage book page(s) & scrap(s) of denim (not shown)

Very 4th of July don't you think - shame I'm not an American (and that my Diamond Jubilee celebrations were such a wash-out)!  I do hope you'll join me for some counterfeiting this month :o)

Next on the kit tour is the lovely Julie-Ann who will be sure to have something special for you to see.  If you get lost along the way pop back to the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog for a full list of the hops!

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Chelonian Chit-Chat

Layout detail - butterflies and twine
Welcome to the second half of 2012 - the first Sunday in the seventh month - which means it must be time for a story of sorts.

A story without a proper photograph; from long before I scrapbooked and took careful photos to illustrate our memories; from a time when snaps were just that - snapped fragments of a summer afternoon, with too much physical background, sometimes blurring, even obscuring, the point of the photograph!

I went to my monthly crop yesterday and enjoyed myself immensely: good company, "me" time, yummy cakes, free stash ... my friend Ally had had a clear out and was offloading unwanted papers ... some of which were just perfect for a cute little photo (heavily cropped to get rid of that excess of physical background) of two toddlers chatting together by the garden fence.

Layout - Chit-chat - Jimjams
{This page was actually done with a challenge in mind: ATDML asked us to scraplift their DT,
I chose Karen's page here, but life has got in the way and I missed the uploading deadline *sigh*}
These two little tots were actually chatting about "Timmy" the tortoise just the other side of the fence.  You can't see him though - but I know he was there.  Furthermore we don't have any photos of him - he was a pet at their grandfather's for over 30 years - just part of the (garden) furniture!  Timmy had travelled from Spain to the UK with my father's young family.  He was available for feeding with lettuce, cucumber and dog food (!) every  summer visit; somethingone to hunt for whenever he escaped; an exciting box to unpack from the attic during mild Easter holidays ... both for my (half-)siblings and I and latterly our own children.  But of course, this story is being told in the past tense: a couple of years ago Timmy did not come out of his attic box as usual.  It wasn't too cold for him.  It was simply time. Although Timmy never seemed to make it to centre stage in any of my photos, we'll miss him.

Layout detail - Buttons, butterflies & twine

Have you got a tale to tell?  Why not pop over to High In The Sky and share it so that the rest of the Sunday Storytellers can come and read.