Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A New Start is on it's way

Hello my fellow scrappers!

It's the last day of 2008... when I was younger I was always busy hosting a New Year's Eve party... usually fancy dress. Not done that for a while. Currently at home, but I am not idle!

I have cleared up my office/craft room in order to start 2009 with a clear desk.

As for Resolutions...? Well the main one is to "Go with the Flow" a little more. How about you? what are you planning to start... stop... improve?

AND.... will you scrap about it? LOL

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas brings a new meaning to multi-photo layouts!

Hi there!

Here's a little "heads up" for the January Newsletter!

MULTI-PHOTO Layouts! You just know you are going to have a mountain of photos after family get togethers... and with New Year's Eve on it's way... even more, well maybe for those party goers!

Anyway, in the next Simply Scrapbooking Newsletter (available early January) there are not one... not two... but SIX sketches for you and all of them multiphoto layouts. So subscribe now if you are not already a subscriber (it's a free online newsletter) and you can be "packing in" those photos to your scrapbooking pages very soon.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas - a different greetings card

Firstly Merry Christmas to all, and for those not of the same calendar... good wishes to you anyway and always. And thank you for stopping by whether a regular visitor or if this is your first time visit!

This is a card (front) I created in Photoshop Elements using the "Enchanted Forest" FREEBIE digital scrapbooking kit from Vicki's Blog (it's a collaboration kit with Sweet Blossom Designs too).

This was my card to my husband and I wanted to create something different from the usual traditional or "funky" Christmas cards that are available. I just didn't like what's on offer in the shops!

So I made this quickly on the computer and adhered it to the front of a tall thin card with a white fibre on the spine and little metal wreath embellishment inside the bottom ring of sparkles.

Another Hybrid creation!

So thanks Vicki and Sara for getting me out of a hole!!!! LOL

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Colours - inspiration from everywhere

Look at these photos... aren't they lovely. I think they are beautiful !

They evoke an emotion.. at least they do in me.

I realise that the photographer has "fiddled" with these shots, but still... the one of the boardwalk is fairly true to nature.

Twilight is my very favourite time of day. My hubby reckons Dawn is best, but I'll take his word for it, I am a night person, not a morning person!

Sometimes, on my way home from work (this was before my daughter came along) I would park my car a short way from my house (at the time we lived amongst fields) on a high spot where I could soak up the soft rays of the autumn or spring evening sun. It was a lovely feeling. Sigh.

The pictures here are from the "sunset of the Day" widget on the left hand side of this blog, courtesy of Blogger (scroll down a bit if necessary), so you can all enjoy these lovely photos.

Oh and by the way... it's official, Santa has finally finished wrapping my daughter's presents... wink wink!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Are you Scrapbooking at this time of year?

Hi there!

Well... as the title asks... Are you Scrapbooking at this time of year? Do you have the time? Do you have the Will? LOL!

My time, probably along with thousands of others, has been taken up with shopping, etc for the festive season. Made even more wierd by the fact that I haven't "been shopping" for quite some time actually.

You see I'm not your average woman... I dislike shopping - especially clothes shopping! Shoes I buy when I have to but find it difficult to buy comfortable ones, so mostly go home empty handed. Clothes shopping... I loathe because of all that undressing and dressing again... "boring" as my 5 year old daughter would say! So I find shopping a bit of a chore at the best of times!

And since my daughter has been born (2 weeks before Christmas) I find myself unorganised in general and getting all tetchy and uninterested in it all, and that's not how it should be, is it?

SO... a News Year's Resolution for me (there are many others!!) is to PLAN, plan, plan.

I shall write my "Plan for an Organised Christmas" and you never know if my plan works well next year... I will sell it as an ebook! LOL

I think I shall make a scrapbooking layout about my New Year's Resolutions, and I'll make a FREE overlay for you, or maybe some word art to add to your Layouts if you'd like to join me?!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Freebie Frenzy Winner - and a Ribbon Holder eBook Give Away

Well... Miles (my hubby) has a cold! It's not Man-Flu because he will actually "keep going" (too much sometimes) - he was vacuuming this evening... so I can't complain about that.
He's got a right "streamer" though, and at the moment he is tucked up on the sofa bed in the lounge watching the television... I think it's the Royal Variety Performance on BBC!

Apparently there's nothing else on, he tells me!

Anyway, I only know this because I have just been downstairs to ask him to stick a pin in the Freebie Frenzy piece of paper.

So... the winner of the kit is..... (but also see below)

KIM...! Well done to you... you need to send me your postal address via this email address.

And as a RAK (Random Act of Kindness) the second "pin hole" tells me that I will be sending a copy of my Ebook...

... to Debs, who has a blog "Pink Dandelion".
So let me know what email address you want me to send the book to Debs.
Thank You to all you lovely people who took part in the Freebie this month.
As for the picture above... it was one of the photos I had to "stage manage", but it came out quite well I think!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Freebie Frenzy Time again - Scrapbooking kit up for grabs

Here we are again, middle of the month and so it's Freebie Frenzy time for all you lovely subscribers to the Newsletter.

Just leave a comment on the blog here and by this time tomorrow (8.30pm GMT), you could be a winner of a lovely kit! Doesn't matter where you are in the world... I will post it airmail to anywhere!

The kit and includes:
10 pieces of Dovecraft 8x8 paper (from the Retro Floral collection)
2 pieces of white card
a pre-printed page of quotes and titles and a tag template
6 ribbons approx 12" each
and a pre-printed tag on cardstock.
There are also some (splat type) flowers and colour various co-ordinated brads in the kits too.

If you aren't already signed up for the Newsletter you can sign up top left of this blog (just under the header) and then leave your comment. You never know... somebody has to win!

And a RAK will be going to a second winner too, so don't delay. Winners will be announced tomorrow evening.

Good luck.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Another event to Scrapbook

Hi there!

Well I am glad that's over...! What am I talking about?

My daughter's 5th birthday party for what turned out to be 16 kids plus a couple of siblings.

Gosh I'm tired, everyone kindly said it was great and the kids enjoyed themselves.

Me... I would call it slightly controlled chaos! I'll be honest and say that at times I felt a little out of my depth... it's over now. Next year... I'll take my daughter and a few friends somewhere and that's it. It's so close to Christmas that December for me, has become stressful.

And I sure don't want to be one of the millions who find this month a stress inducing nightmare!

But, of course, I have some photos... I hope... hubby was in charge of photos and I did have to stage one of daughter blowing her candles out after she had already done it once, but hey... that's showbiz!

I'll be back soon with the Freebie Frenzy Alert!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Scrapbooking Thank You Thursday!

I posted an item late last month all about taking the oppotunity to make Thursday and day to say Thank you to and for as much as possible. This is a life improvement thing!

Well here is a page for my Thank You Album.

I found the quote, by Mother Teresa, over on this blog, and thought it so lovely, it inspired me to make a little page for my Thank You Album. (6x6)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Decorations using recycled catalogues or scrapbooking materials

Here is a great "Recycling idea"!
It is Flower Garland idea from a blog called Zakka Life, which has lots of "natty" ideas actually.
This is the link for the tutorial for these flowers.
They are made from the pages of catalogues. You could, however, adapt for scrapbooking paper, as although you need a number, these are just strips of paper.
Also it's a jolly good way to keep the little ones occupied for a while, and with the materials of just an old magazine and some glue.... it's a winner!

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Scrapbooking layout using FREEBIE journal block

This is an 8x8 layout I made really quickly as an example of how to use one of my free downloadable Journalling blocks.

I printed this one directly onto some Bazzill Basics cardstock and my journaling AND title are incorporated on it.

Very simple, effective page.

This journal block is one of 3 I have designed and is avaiable for subscribers to my newsletter to download (via an article in the December newsletter).

They are suitable for traditional scrapbooking (just print out and use - technically called hybrid scrapbooking) and for digital scrapbooking.

Sign up to the newsletter via this blog (top left) or via

If you have left your name and email address on the (or websites, then you are already a subscriber!!

Woo hoo - I'm connected again

I'm back online boys and girls... phew, what a lot of catching up I had to do!

So I have nothing Scrapbooking to post here yet... but will be back shortly with some tidbit!


Thursday, December 04, 2008

Well all Great Plans......

I am currently sitting in a friends shop (luckily a computer shop!) using his internet connection to check the WWW! I have been offline for nearly 48hrs.

It's getting to the cold-turkey stage, I think I'm starting to twitch! LOL

Anyway... this is just a short one to say... I'll be back soon!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Oh... it looks like such fun!

I've been in conversation with a lovely lady over in the US this evening called Terrie... hello Terrie, [waving].

We got to talking about our daughters and I asked for a photo and/or a layout, and she sent me these lovely layouts.

Now you can't tell me that you don't just want to be "in there" getting stuck in with all that FOAM!!

Oh, the freedom of childhood!!! FANTASTIC... it makes me want to get out the shaving foam RIGHT NOW! and oh...... how MY daughter would like to get her hands on that lot!

Thanks Terrie for these lovely layouts, I just luurve the title and your little one is very cute!!

The lady in the picture is Terrie's daughter's Nanny by the way (carer type, not grandmother!LOL)

And what's more... is that these pictures are of pages in an album which Terrie made for the Nanny for her birthday... what a thoughtful gift! I would have loved to have received such a gift when I was a nanny (for a couple of years!).


Sunday, November 30, 2008 December Newsletter and a Scrapbooking Video

Hi there everyone!

I have just uploaded the December issue of the Newsletter. Couple of videos in that and a freebie download of journaling blocks.

You need to be a subscriber to enjoy the benefits and you can do that by placing your name and email address in the boxes at the top left of this blog OR by going to the website and signing up there OR if you have already visited and entered your name and email address at (or site then you are already signed up!

I have found a great video on You Tube about making your own Prima Lollipop flowers. It's by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer and her blog is HERE, there are some great layouts on there too.

So here is the video...

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Scrapbooking Ribbon technique - Video

Here is a video showing you a technique to use ribbons. I lurve ribbons!

This video shows how to scunch and sew them for your layouts.

It's quite long, but you can get the gist of the technique by fast forwarding a little!

The video is by "scrappyrachy" on Youtube, there doesn't seem to be an associated blog, etc for this lady, however.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Saying Thank You on Thursday

It was Thanks Giving in the States yesterday, so best wishes to all of you who celebrated (and who are still celebrating!

I received a newsletter from "The Secret" Team (see archive label "The Secret" in the left margin for other posts) and it was all about gratitude... of course.
In that when we are grateful, and that means when we genuinely "feel" thanks for something and not just say the words, we attract more of what we want and therefore more reasons to be grateful.

Well the team are bringing out a new product (a daily teachings book) and to promote it, they quoted an excerpt.

It refers to "Thank You Thursday" recommending that you make every Thursday a day where you spend the whole day saying thank you for things, people, experiences.
I won't go into detail here, but I thought it was a good idea to adopt! So I have decided to start a "Thank you" Album - something I have been wanting to do for a while - but every Thursday I will put something in it.
The album will be a "Random" Mini Album, (see this post for more info and the videos about it are now available to everyone by clicking on the link(s) on THIS PAGE on the website).
The main reason for that is that some weeks (like this week for instance) I would not have much time to make a full blown scrapbooking layout, but I could make a quick 6x6 or a tag, or just embellish a photo which may say it all. So I may well be able to "keep up" with this weekly committment.
How about you?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

That's five more photos on a layout then!

Here is an 8x8 page on which I have included no less than 5 photographs !

Very simple page using Basic Grey papers (Two Scoops) and a few bits and pieces.

The title is on the photograph... in other words I printed the photograph out with the Words already on top. There is a sentence of journaling bottom left on the main photo too.

I have made a video showing how to do this. The video will be published in the December issue of the Newsletter - due out on 1st December.

If you are not a subscriber, you'll have to wait a month to see it, as Newsletter content is only released onto the main site when the next issue has been published. But as it's free to sign up - so why not?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Scrapbooking Video - "How to easily re-colour brads"

Hi everyone,

I have made a little video to show you how I use ink and embossing powder and EVEN clear nail varnish to re-colour brads to exactly match my layouts.

As long as I have the correct ink colour, (and even then I can mix the colours to get the right shade) I no longer have to go and buy more brads to match my projects.

What a money saver!

I hope you find it useful!

Oh and no prizes I'm afraid for spotting the spelling mistake! LOL

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Christmas Brag Book - mini album

Here is a lovely Brag Book which my friend Heidi made recently.

She has more pictures over on her blog .

Worth a look, I particularly like the way this album unfolds, check out the other pictures to see what I mean.

I'm currently finishing off a multiphoto (5 pictures) 8x8 layout... yes that's right 5 pictures on an 8x8 page!

I'll show you the finished item shortly!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Old Timer has gone

It is with a heavy heart that I post tonight.

Harley, our nearly 14 year old labrador was put to sleep this evening. It was time for the The Old Timer (pictured here) to rest his weary limbs for good.

Sweet Dreams Old Boy. x

Thursday, November 20, 2008

ScrapBuddies Sketch Series Number 7

Well the scanner seems to want to play ball now!

I didn't have time to shut it all down last night and reboot... I had too many windows open. So I have fired it up again this afternoon and hey presto it's behaving.

So here is the sketch which I drew for the "In Strawberry Fields" scrapbooking layout (see this post). As you can see my layout is different from the sketch, just to prove the point that you don't have to stick exactly to the sketch. And I know a lot of you don't which is great for variety.

Although I have to say that I have seen some resulting scrapbooking pages from sketches are nothing like the original sketch, and I wonder if indeed the creator was actually looking a the right sketch in the first place LOL!

I helped one of my bosses this morning to print a couple of photographs, explaining my way of placing the pictures into word and printing from there. He said he'd forget next time round! Which reminds me that I must make a video of how to do this. I have published an article on the subject, but maybe a video you help too, as I know there are others struggling to quickly print out photos.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Scanner Trouble!

Hmmm... I sat here drawing a sketch for you all and then my scanner refused to work! tut (a lot!)

So I will have to reboot and hope that fixes the problem. Or take a photograph. So hopefully will be up for you soon.

An update on Inde... home safe and sound... couldn't get in the car fast enough, bearing in mind his history of disliking cars! But he's bright enough. Does need his "funnel" on (or Elizabethan collar as they call it) to stop him licking the stitches! bless him.

But he's a good boy... I have removed and replaced the funnel a couple of times and he just sits patiently while I fumble and swear and curse under my breath at the fiddly plastic tabs.

Oh and 10 days of no running around?!!! A border collie... I think not! A couple of days and he'll be wired if he can't run.

Inde's in for THE op!

I took Inde to the vet this morning and left him with a bewildered and slightly worried look on his face!

Poor little man had no breakfast in preparation for his operation today... yes he's getting the snip!

And whilst there he is also having a tooth removed, because somehow he has managed to break one already! That was probably done trying to manically grab a flying ball.

So he will hurt at both ends... ahhhh!

On a different note... I am hoping to post a new ScrapBuddies Sketch shortly.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The November Freebie Frenzy Scrapbooking Kit goes to...


Number 7 was picked out and the 7th comment was Jean's.

So congratulations Jean, you're November's winner! Send me an email with your postal address and the code from the Email Alert. If you signed up last night or today however, then make sure you use the same email address as you did for signing up to the Newsletter, and I can match up your sub!

Anyhoo... I want to give a RAK as well, this time it is a copy of my ebook (and the bonus ebook) which is available from (if you have already seen the Newsletter there is a special link from each Newsletter, just click the picture of the book)

The book is called the "Fast, Easy and Virtually Free Ribbon Storage Solution", and it is a full colour, step by step guide showing how to make your own ribbon holders, for virtually nothing. And you can make as many azs you want whenever you want. The bonus book shows you how to make the Ribbon Reorder Ring which is an extremely easy way to keep track of your ribbon collection.

So the RAK (picked out in the same way) goes to... number 10 comment... so that's...


Well done, Patricia you need to send me an email just like Jean, but I only need your email address.

I want to thank you all for coming over to the blog and posting a comment, it is REALLY lovely to hear from you... a bit of interaction makes my day.

Freebie Frenzy - little extension!

Hi all... thank you to those who have already left a comment on the blog... your names have been entered for the draw... I did forget that I am out this evening "dancing" or should I say "Exercising!!"

So rather than rush to make the draw before, I will do it later when I get home. This means you have a couple more hours to leave a message here (see post below) and thereby be entered into the draw for the kit.

So I will post who the winner is around 11.30pm tonight! Good luck!

I will, of course be huffing and puffing and be somewhat red in the face whilst picking the winner!!! LOL

I'm only kidding... I've usually stopped the wheezing by the time I've driven home! LOL even more!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

It's Newsletter Freebie Frenzy time!

Well it's the middle of November and time for the Newsletter Freebie.

There are Papers, Stamps, ink, ribbon and fibres, chipboard and embellishments.

Here's a photo of this month's Freebie Frenzy Kit!

I've gone for a "winter theme" here which can be used for Christmas, but are suitable for any "chilly" Scrapbooking Layouts! The kit consists of:
  • Six 8.5x8.5" Patterned paper from the "Garden Collage" Pad by K&Company,
  • Set of six word clear stamps by Studio G (Dovecraft) - of a Winter theme,
  • One Blue/turquoise ink pad from Papermania
  • 3 chipboard swirls from Maya Road
  • 4 metres of blue and white ribbons (over 4m actually)
  • 2 metres of fibres (gold and white)
  • Plus as assortment of white and clear beads in various shapes and sizes.
Don't forget that this kit will be shipped anywhere, so you can take part no matter where you are in the world.
You do have to be a subscriber of the Newsletter to enter, but you can sign up from this blog or from the website.
This is my way to say thank you to all my subscribers.
Just leave a comment here and then a name will be picked out at random this time tomorrow (so around 7.30pm GMT). Oh and maybe this month you would like to tell me what size Layouts you like to create most... or maybe you make more mini albums or even cards.
Good luck everyone.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A sense of Humour!

I found this over on a blog -

I think it is funny too!

I hope you can read it clearly enough!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Preparation for the ScrapBuddies Crop tomorrow

Well I have been busy today sorting out the preparation for my demonstration at the Crop in Ditchingham tomorrow afternoon.

The Demo is showing how to make 2 mini-books - which you can use as mini albums or gift cards - I just love mini books.

I have adapted the instructions from a book which I plan to review in the December issue of the Newsletter. A particularly "dinky" book with lots of ideas for mini-books.

And talking of the Newsletter... I'm thinking the next Freebie Frenzy Alert will most likely be... ummm... let me see... this weekend!!! Keep your eyes peeled for the email!

If you're not signed up... you can sign up from this blog (top left under the header).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

How to make a instant book or mini album

Well parents evening was short and sweet! As I suspected everything is ok, and Honey is a delight in class LOL. I have to say that I am truly thankful that she is a confident child and quickly gets stuck in to projects and is gregarious (spelling?!) so I have never had to worry about her getting on with others. I'm off to peruse her workbooks in a mo before handing them back tomorrow.

Anyway I promised something scrapbooking didn't I? Well I found this video a couple of days ago on my travels across YouTube. It shows you how to make an 8 page (including covers) mini book from one piece of paper, either 12x12 or A4. Incredibly simple.

I think a great idea for kids to make and decorate too (school hols over Christmas period and all that?!!) I'm thinking of making a video to show you a twist on this mini book too, so keep your eyes peeled!

It's from Hero Arts and is by Lisa Spangler.

Parents Evening

Oh I have my first ever proper parents evening tonight!!!

10 mins with the teacher and a browse of Honey's work maybe? Will be interesting to see what she's been up to in her first half term of school bless her.

Will be back later with something about Scrapbooking...! LOL

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Party Planning all day! oh and some Bonfire Night photos

I feel as though I have spent the whole day browsing the internet looking for suitable party goods for my daughter's 5th Birthday party coming up soon.

I really wanted to give it a break... there are only so many party bags and party plates you can take in one day... but I made myself finish and ended up ordering £60 of stuff from to online shops!!!
Still I'm hoping now that apart from the food and drink (which will be extremely simple!), oh and the cake of course, I have sorted the expense side of the party and just (she says rolling her eyes) work out how to entertain 20 kids for 2 hours! LOL.

Actually I do have a "cunning plan", but need to sort out the games and time table... military operation and all that, what what!!
I might set up a Kid's Party Planning Business !LOL

Anyway, other things... It was lovely weather for the fireworks on Friday evening, and the weather has not been good since, so in true "English" fashion... I'll say ... "we were lucky with the weather" LOL

I took some photos, before my batteries gave up... on the camera you understand... not mine! LOL

Friday, November 07, 2008

More Bangs and Hisses

Well you know here in the UK, we have Bonfire night, Guy Fawkes night, whatever one wants to call it. Basically nowadays that means lots of people buy a box of fireworks for their garden and every night for about a week either side of the actual night of 5th November, there are sporadic bangs.

Toffee doesn't like bangs... Harley just can't hear them I don't think, because he used to be bothered, but now it's just Toffee. Inde doesn't appear to be bothered at the moment.

On 5th there were more bangs, and coming from clse neighbours too, so I was sitting here at my computer with Windows Media Player blasting out some BonJovi to try to mask the noise, with Toffee curled up in a ball resting on my feet! Poor little mite. It worked though!

I was thinking actually... I know that fireworks this time of year is a very English thing, but there don't seem to be many firework related scrapbooking layouts around, or kits or embellishments, traditional or digital... I realise it's difficult to take photos of fireworks, but surely we can embellish with some simulations. After all we take our kids out on Bonfire night to stand in the cold... oh that reminds me what I'm doing this evening. Honey's first Bonfire Night attendance!

I used to loathe my mum dragging us out for that! LOL Honey seems quite keen at the mo and it's at her school, so she's more keen maybe!

i'll let you know how she feels in a few year's time eh!?

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Finished multiphoto layout - made from own scrapbooking kit

This is a layout I finished this evening!

Those of you who have already signed up for the Simply Scrapbooking Newsletter may well recognise the materials used for this one!

They are from the kit I put together from my own stash, for which I wrote an article in the November Newsletter.

And... there is an accompanying video too.

So I started this layout after my demonstration at the October ScrapBuddies crop about making your own page kit from your existing stash.

I did have to put it one side for a while but got round to finishing it today!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

It's you Mummy!


is ME????!!!!!

I don't look too good do I?! LOL
Honey drew this last night and came bounding upstairs...
"This is for your Mummy.... it's YOU!"
"Lovely!" I said, "I'm obviously having a bad hair day!"
Well at least I'm smiling... I think!

Sunday, November 02, 2008 Blinkie !

Well I actually managed to make my first ever blinkie !! Woohoo... only took one and a half hours, when I really should have been doing something else! LOL (see also earlier post)

Still I have already sorted all Honey's stuff ready for her first day back at School after the half term break, and sorted the packed lunches ('s' refers to the fact that I have to make one for myself too as I work in an ordinary office a couple of days a week!) so I started fiddling and you know what's it's like... "I'll just do this quickly" ha ha!

Well I'm impressed that I managed it in only 90 minutes! Here is a tutorial I found on the web about making a blinkie using PhotoShop Elements (which I use).

So what do you think then? Oh and I've added some other graphics to the side too... scroll down to see... mmmm... lovely sunsets!

Scrapbooking Blinkies for blogs

I was looking into making my own blinkies for this site and my other sites, but thought I should actually sort out putting them onto my own first.

I haven't done so before as I am not a fan of flashing lights, but I know a lot of you like them and they can certainly be colourful!

So I went on a search for instructions as to how to go about putting blinkies on this 'ere blog... and I found a great one here on the GingerScraps Blog. Thanks Ginger for a clear tutorial on how to sort out a blinkie problem! And just for that help, I have added Ginger's blinkie to my favourites!

Have a look on the left hand side (you may need to scroll down a bit!

Now... off to make my own and see what you think!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Would you combine such colours for a Scrapbooking Page?

Well, in the wake of uploading the latest issue (November) of the Newsletter last night, I am currently in the process of "clearing the decks"!

Goodness me it is a mess in here! Mostly of paperwork and not of craft stuff unfortunately, but my aim is get stuck into a page or two tomorrow.

Honey has not one, but two birthday parties to go to tomorrow! What it is to be popular eh?!! LOL

Anyway... Have you worked out what the top picture here is yet?

Well it's a photograph from one of the winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the year 2008. And actually the picture intrigued me, but that's not why I post it here... I actually think that the little write up that went with it was beautifully written! It is posted below exactly as I found it on msn news.

The second picture I do post here for aesthetic reasons... such beauty in nature... such superb colours. It is a "Carmine bee-eater"... um I wonder what he likes to eat?!

A fabulous photograph!

Anyway, I give you the write up with that picture as the text is evocative too.

Now would you think to put those colours together in a scrapbooking layout? Nature.... doesn't have any rules... and neither should we!

(For the TOP picture)
Baris Koca, Turkey: Starling genie (Animal Behaviour: Birds)
Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2008
Birds are among the most popular subjects for photographers entering the competition, but the challenge is to take a picture with aesthetic appeal that also shows active or interesting behaviour. At Lake Mogan, near Ankara in Turkey, the photographer tried over and over again, day after freezing day, to capture the amazing shape-shifting of the flocks of starlings coming into roost, but none of his attempts did the spectacle justice. Then, one weekend, something different happened. The lake was frozen, and so he was able to stand facing the reeds with the sun behind him. As usual, at around 5pm, thousand-strong flocks of starlings wheeled in over the horizon to merge into dense super-flocks, providing half an hour of incredible aerobatic routines. Then, as the sun set, the birds pirouetted into the spotlight of its rays, and the perfect picture was created. As they descended, their wings sounded like soft clapping. It was ‘so relaxing’ that he stopped taking photographs and just listened. Then the starlings twittered down into the reeds, and the curtain of darkness fell.

(For the BOTTOM picture)
Chris van Rooyen, South Africa: Bee-eater ballet (Animal Portraits)
Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2008
This category, one of the most popular in the competition, invites portraits that capture the character or spirit of an animal in an original and memorable way. A boat moored on the Zambezi was the perfect hide from which to observe the colony. At least 1,000 carmine bee-eaters were breeding in this area of riverbank, in Caprivi, Namibia – one of the largest colonies in southern Africa. Whenever a loitering raptor drifted too close, a burst of carmine would explode from the numerous burrows. Activity was constant and the birds never stopped chirruping to each other as they chased insects. “I had the distinct impression some were just having fun,” says Chris. “They would weave around in the wind, hover in the updraft created by the riverbank, and then fold their wings to parachute back into the nest-hole.”

Words By Benjamin Chernivsky
Photographer, MSN UK News
For more information about the photographs visit Natural History Museum: official website

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Scrapbooking all over the World - oh and my EasyRibbonHolder!

I met a nice lady in cyberspace today! Since setting up the site and the, I have had the pleasure of chatting to lots of people from all over the globe!

I was only thinking this evening... whilst cooking the dinner - you know... during those times when you "tune out" of the bubbling pans (well buzzing microwave in this instance!) and the mind wanders - how wonderful it is to make new friends from far flung places. I was talking to someone in New York yersterday and Australia before that, and so on.

Anyway, this lady (in the UK as it happens) is Kathleen and has bought a copy of my ebook for the Ribbon Holder and kindly wrote about it on her blog, for which I thank her.

I am in the process of setting up a an EasyRibbonHolder site for UK payments, as it is currently in Dollars, so you don't have to worry about the exchange rate!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

ScrapBuddies Sketch no.6 - Could be a multi-photo page layout!

Hello there everyone!

I have been busy putting the final touches to the Newsletter which is due out on Saturday (1st Nov).

But for something else - here is the next ScrapBuddies Sketch. Sketch no. 6 in the Series so far.

And below is the layout from whence it came!

The reason I say it "could" be a multiphoto sketch is because of the blocking. You could easily add more photographs where I have used patterned paper. In fact the whole page could be made up of just cropped photographs?!

Would make for interesting cropping, wouldn't it?!

Monday, October 27, 2008

The beauty of a flower

How beautiful is this...

... and the picture below.
It is a photograph of a "SunPatiens" (or Busy Lizzy) in the evening sunshine.
If you click on the pictures you'll see a bigger image and you will be able to appreciate the glistening of every petal, especially noticable on the white flower.
I often get lost for a few special moments just admiring the wonder and beauty of nature.
I sometimes wonder how I can recreate such texture in a scrapbook page! I am thinking about creating a background paper with these and/or some photos I have taken of flowers... I will have to make sure that I choose the right paper for printing mind!
I may even use some spots of 3-D gloss to attempt a recreation of the sparkle of the petals... Hmmmm!!! thinking...!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Circle Journal - "Quotes" finished pages

Well I did actually finish these pages a couple of weeks ago, but other things have superceded their publication till now! Ooh er!

You may notice that there are 2 "envelopes" (one on each page) both of which do have journaling inside, but I haven't shown the contents as they are my personal message to the creator of the circle journal.

These pages are pink and blue as per the "rules" at the front of the journal.

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Hybrid Scrapbooking Page - what do you think?

A short while ago I showed you a video of how I made a background paper using pencil shavings and my colour home photocopier.

Well this is a page layout made using the resulting background paper. You may notice that it is an A4 sized layout. I just thought it worked this way, what with the brwn background paper and the big word "Smile" - which I didn't want to lose.
So although the homemade "shavings" paper did actually come out around 8x10" I trimmed it to fit, I thought 12x12 would be to big.
Of course, the background paper already being lined, rather leant itself to direct written journaling... always a bit nerve wracking when you've done the whole of the rest of the page!
Anyway... would you say this was a traditional layout, or a hybrid one?
What it IS though, whichever you decide, is a multi-photo page layout!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Scrapbooking Inspiration - keeping notes

Here's a little one of my tips!

When I am surfing for Scrapbooking Layout Inspiration I make notes to remind of things I have seen, for later use... nothing new there!

However, when I am in my internet browser, I have my word processor package (Microsoft Word, in my case) running in the background.

When I see a layout I like, I copy the picture and paste it into my open page in Word. I then copy the address bar (the address of the exact page, not just the domain name) and paste that into my document too.

In Word, the links are "clickable" and I can get straight back to the right page directly from the open document.

I make notes, copy and paste text, etc... and I then save the document and can refer back to it later.

This is great for keeping sketches, layouts for scraplifting, etc because you have the information linked so that you can refer to the internet pages to make sure you give the correct credits... especially in my case with publishing on my blog here.

I often place these documents directly onto my "desktop" for easy access. When I have used the information, I simply delete the file! Of course you can print out these pages, but I mainly use this system for the ease of clickable links with which I can write some of my own notes.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

On a Personal Note

I thought I would just take a moment on my blog to do something personal!

I was in the process of logging into Blogger to write a post today... and then I realised it is now tomorrow! LOL

It's quarter past midnight whilst I type this... I got side tracked looking at other people's blogs... you know how that goes... right?!

Well I was going through some recent photos and I found this one, so I thought I would post it. My hubby took it on the evening of my birthday, just before we left to have a pizza together.
A nice photo (not cos I'm in it you understand!).
Anyway, I have been thinking about this blog and the sorts of things on it.
I have peeked at some others which seem to be ranked at the top of the Crafty Blogs list (see button on left hand side for my rating).
The blog at number 1 on this list gets around 800-1000 hits per day! it's a blog about handbag making! Next few down are from 500 down to 300 visits per day. I notice that a few of these shot up "the charts" as they give freebies away, such as digital scrapbooking kits, etc.
I wonder... do I give value for money (bearing in mind it's free LOL)?
I wonder what it is that makes those people visit? I also notice that a lot of the posts on the blogs (not all blogs) are just about personal stuff, and nothing to do with crafting, yet the visitors return, they are drawn somehow?
I have tried to keep my posts to scapbooking or crafting and have steered clear of personal posts... but maybe you would like to know more about other things too?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Hybrid Scrapbooking page layout

This is a hybrid scrapbooking page layout!
It's quite a simple page, using shaped background papers (the light pink colour I "inked" digitally) and some matching accents such as the ribbons and bows, plus the title.
I then added 5 brads, a large flower ad buttons for the centre of the flower and finally edged the printed layout with cardstock to bring the page up to A4 size and to give it a uniform edge
Materials used...

Brads - Basic Grey
buttons - various
flower - Bazzil Basics
Bazzill Cardstock

Digi papers, ribbons and bow - by Verena Karolyi "My first flowers" kit.

Free Fonts
Title - "Oh Photo Shoot" and "Patterns and Dots"
Journaling - "Cathies Hand"

Friday, October 17, 2008

Freebie Frenzy...And the Winner is....

Well the lines are closed... as they say on the TV! LOL Thanks for entering in the spirit everyone! Nice to see you all!

And the computer picked out the winner at random with a highly complicated algorithm which took many technical people months to perfect... oh all right then, the real way this was done this evening...

I wrote a number for each person who had commented on the Scrapbooking Freebie Frenzy post, onto the middle of a piece of paper, in a mixed up fashion. I then took the paper downstairs, with pin in hand, gave the pin to my husband, held the paper up with the numbers facing away from him and asked him to stick the pin in the paper anywhere he liked!

So... all mod cons and hi-tech stuff here! LOL

And the winner is.... Denyze! Denyze your number is up! It has a large pin 'ole through it! So email me your postal address and the kit can be winging it's way to you very shortly!

Actually... hang on a mo.... I will just pop downstairs and ask my man (!) to stick the pin in again and I'll send a little something as a RAK to someone else from the list...!

Ok... update... the pin (which I have to say was thrust rather forcefully into the paper this time!) stuck right through the number which corresponds to Siobhan! So as apparently your fave colour is green, I shall send a green RAK to you!

Well done to you both and a big thank you to all those who came over and commented this month.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

October's Freebie Frenzy Time

It's Freebie Frenzy Time again, middle of the month means that subscribers to the Newsletter, receive an email from me letting them know "it's that time again" and to head on over to this blog to leave a comment.

In 24 hours, someone's name will be picked "out of a hat" and they get to win this lovely Mini Album Kit!

If you're not already a subscriber, then be quick, else you'll have to wait till next month's Freebie Frenzy! Click here for more information and to sign up. Then come here and leave a comment.

But for those who have already received their Freebie Frenzy Email Alerts... you know what to do... post a comment on this post - and to make things more insteresting, this month I would like you to tell me what your favourite colour is please!!!

The kit up for grabs consists of a 7x5" PaperMania 12 page mini scrapbook album, with a window at the front to include a photograph (or title) and it has a pretty ribbon fastening.

I have included the following embellishments to compliment the mini Album:
Brads- dragonflies, stars, flowers and butterflies
Buttons - miced selection
'Splat' flowers - selection of sizes in 2 colours
Selection of ribbons (3x 1 metre)

So good luck everyone!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Scrapbooking - Blog Action Day

I mentioned last week about the fact that today was Blog Action Day. Well this year it's about Poverty.

I said... "I definitely have my views on this subject... but maybe not the sort you might think...! "

Well that's because I'm NOT going to talk about Poverty and ask you to think about giving more and caring more for those less fortunate than others!

"Then what ARE you going to talk about?" I hear you enquire.

Well... I'm going to talk about the COMPLETE OPPOSITE!

"Why?" you ask.

Because all the time we Talk, Think and Act about Poverty it is our focus of attention and the more you focus on something, the more of it you get.

I have talked about "The Secret" (see this post and the link within the post) which is about the Law of Attraction. And the Law of Attraction says that if you focus on something, you eventually get it! Good OR bad.

If we focus our attention on Poverty, we will get more of it! What we should be doing is focusing on the opposite... abundance. That may be very difficult for those who are poverty stricken at the moment, but people have pulled themselves from the gutter, ie homelessness, using this Law.

Even if you don't consider yourself in Poverty, and let's face it, if you are sitting in the comfort of your home, sitting at a computer reading this... then I don't think you are!, you could improve your life by doing ONE simple thing.

Want to know what it is?


We constantly remind our children to say thank you, but why? Because it is polite to do so, right? Well actually there is a LOT more to "thank you" than mere courtesy.

I'm not going to preach to you here, instead I will tell you of my own experience.

Since learning about the Law of Attraction around this time last year, materially I do not appear to be any better off.

But inside... I am a LOT better off. I have much more peace, so much so that people have commented on how much more confident and happier I look on the outside.

Now there are a number of reasons for this, but one of the things up there on the top of the list is that I have learnt to FEEL gratitude.

I don't just enjoy the blue sky and sunshine, or the beauty of a flower, I say thank you for it. And not to God, I am not a religious person, but I just say thank you and really feel it in my heart. I am fully in that feeling, maybe for only a fleeting moment, but it is there.

It was hard for me to know what it actually felt like at first, and I still can't hold on to the feelings for long, but it is starting to become automatic now that I can "really" appreciate things.

I think that one reason I didn't allow myself to "feel" gratitude in the past (and why it's still hard for me now because it is an ingrained habit) is that to feel grateful meant I was to feel vulnerable. It meant that I was weaker for opening up to this feeling. I realise now that maybe I was only subconsciously trying to protect myself from hurt, possibly a childhood habit that no longer serves me.

We are supposed to "appreciate what we have, while we strive to achieve what we want". And now I understand what that means...

Don't forget, or push to one side in your mind, the good that you already have around you, don't begrudge where you are now because it's not where you want to be. Embrace where you are right now, right this minute. Look around you, you will start to see all the things to be thankful for.

Even if you are reading this in a library, because you don't have a home PC, or even a home... be really thankful that the library has a PC for you to use, that you have your health, the clothes you are wearing.

If you know someone who is "on their knees" physically, mentally, or spiritually, ask them to identify something to be grateful for... the clothes on their back maybe, that they have a friend in you? If it's a beautiful day, they can feel "thank you" for the blue skies... if it's a rainy day, say thank you for the beauty in a raindrop. It's all there if we can but see it the right way.

Joe Vitale (Google him he's all over the place!LOL) said that when he was really struggling and in dire straights, he felt he had nothing to be thankful for, then he realised that he could be thankful for the pencil he was holding in his hand, that potentially he could write a masterpiece with it, that he could write his CV with it and get a job, etc. He is now a multi-millionaire... but he had to start somewhere.

When in Poverty there is more of an incentive to focus on improvement, but being "just ok" can be improved on too.

So be grateful today and always that you are not in poverty by being grateful that you are where you are, that you have good things all around you everyday. Be grateful for what you have now and you will attract more things to be grateful for.

And so to scrapbooking..? Time to start scrapbooking those things to be grateful for now. This is a great way to start a Random Mini Album (see website for article) because you can be grateful about all sorts of things, using different shapes and sizes of paper and other stash to show the diversification of all things around you.

I may have waffled a bit here, but I do hope it has made you think, even if for just a moment.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Couple more multiphoto layouts and an Award from Katy

Here are a couple more scrapbooking layouts created by UK Scrappers Members. They are from the challenge set my my Team last week (see Saturday's post).

A lot of ladies took part and that you to these ladies for allowing me to post their lovely layouts here.

So this layout is by Leanie

And this layout is by Tinkerbelle

I also have to say a BIG thank you to my friend Katy, for recently giving me this award. I'm glad you like the Blog Katy, I hope I can "continue with the good work"! I enjoy your blog too, especially all that "stash" you keep buying LOL! (Katy's Blog)

Monday, October 13, 2008

More Layouts using the Scrapbooking Sketch used this week on UK Scrappers

Here are 3 more 12x12 scrapbooking layouts based on the sketch and challenge set by our UK Scrappers Team. Again the names are those "handles" used on the UKS forum.

I must say I have enjoyed seeing all the Layouts that my fellow scrappers have created as a consequence of our Challenge. It just highlights how diverse all our techniques and skills and most of all interpretations are when it comes to Scrapbooking. Given the same 4 parameters but the layouts are fantastically different!

And one of the great parts of this challenge is that it is a "multiphoto" challenge too!

Layout by TracyTeabag

Layout by Tillybud

Layout by NoviceScrapper