Saturday, November 27, 2010

simple and stunning

Came across these stunning christmas cards, the maker of which I didn't take any notice of it, but they can be found at made it dot com.

Prefection in their simplicity.  I love them.  Am thinking that I would love to do some scrapbook titles like this, so might have to pay a visit to my SIL and her newly acquired Silhouette cutter. (of which I am highly envious).

3c8471032D312d2D47df2D90e42D45c4211ad876IMGP2164 5a0049f42D74492D48492D81c22D7ccf14718a4dIMG5F4811 341223442Df19a2D458d2Dbb602Dcd399b4aba0ehohorTb83c62bf2Dc46c2D43062D917a2Ddbfbb5ecadacIMG5F48167329aa4c2Db3db2D49432Db0a62Db0c5592754a9xmass1Technical talk:  now, someone might be able to set me straight, but I imagine that the words and shapes on these (with the exception of the last image, which is embossed with a cuttlebug embossing plate - I know as I have it ;-)  and I think the use of it here is gorgeous!) have been cut with an electric cutter? The words/letters all appear to be touching for the cutting process...

Would love to hear your thoughts!

Friday, November 26, 2010

I'll show you what I didn't make...

for a fun little christmassy swap thing a couple of friends and I are doing.  I can show you these things, as I didn't make them AT ALL, even though I had grand plans of sending off a couple of parcels of lovingly and beautifully crafted christmassy things.

And then I got a grip on reality and realized it probably wasn't going to happen. ;-)

But maybe you guys out there might be inspired by these crafty goodies!

4b97f1d12D9c7f2D41f52D82a72D6db734047c2cDSC5Fd 203dc4172D4f632D40a32D82202D7b5040a04d7ftree2t(hint: a paper doily sliced up like a pie! too cute. might still put this one on my list of things to try...)

300here's a hint - don't make them, buy 'em. Looks easy enough, materials  and tools hard to come by.  bce054492D48662D4ccd2Db2cf2D3c5d7a311c70Sprin1


Hope you've found this inspiring!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

One more

I forgot about this one. Another that I printed out in my excitement over the weekend.

_MG_5032 And yes, crap photo of the page I KNOW (Nicole!) but you have seen it before in its digital form back when i started DYL.

Thanks for dropping by! (and there by ends the shortest post I think I have ever written!)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

hello summertime

Today's page is brought to you by summer time - freshly picked from the tree just this morning!

The boy and I dined on fresh mangoes at lunchtime - not quite ripe, truth be told, but delicious non-the-less.  There is nothing quite as summer as a perfectly ripe mango.  For me, it has to be not too soft, probably on the greener side of ripe - firm, and juicy.

Luckily for me, and my mango loving family, we have two Bowen Mango Trees in our yard.  And as much as I curse their messy leaf dropping behaviour, I wouldn't get rid of them for all of the tea in China.  There is many a visitor that looks longingly and hopefully at our fruit laden trees, but between the my husband and I, the kids, critters and close family who just help 'emselves, there aren't a lot of leftovers!

Mind you, my mother insists on making mango chutney, as delicious as it is, with our green Bowen mangoes, when everyone knows that common mangoes make better chutney (and in using my green mangoes,  it means there is less for us to eat and at the height of the glut, slice up and freeze!)

A quick page I thought of whilst slurping on my mango at lunch time: 

mangoes and the journaling so you don't strain your eyes:

mango journalling for web Picture of the unpicked fruit from my tree, the sliced mango from the net, as I didn't have any others to slice up just yet.  They aren't quite ripe yet, although I am planning a bit more of a harvest this arvo to beat the wretched parrots to them.  I swear those birds can smell a ripe mango from twenty miles away!

Haven't printed this page out yet, but will do so when I get chance in the next few days.

And ending on sombre note:  thoughts and prayers for those poor families on the west coast of New Zealand that have been told there are not likely to be any survivors after a second explosion in the Pike River Coal Mine, where 29 men have been trapped for the past 6 days. (who knows if they survived the initial explosion. Somehow, I doubt would be too good to be true to have a second miraculous rescue after the Chilean episode). Very sad.

Monday, November 22, 2010

"Real" pages ;-)

Had a great Saturday and got some paper stuck down and things put away...

For so long the biggest girl has had no opening/title page in her album. It was bugging me - like opening a novel right at the first chapter.  Just doesn't feel right!

I have these 6x12 page protectors that need using, so thought I'd use them here. Very happy with the result (and boy hasn't she changed since this photo - so NOT a little girl anymore....) I'll just change the number sticker if I find I get to 8 and have managed to squeeze more into her album than I expected to!

_MG_5028 And here is a quick Christmas page for my boy (lets not focus on which year it was OK!)  And lets also not focus on the number of measuring/cutting errors that couldn't be fixed due to the super sticky and once its stuck down that is where its staying nature of the great double sided tape I got from Spotlight. Nor run on sentences!

_MG_5024Ah, those $2 snappy teeth.  Hilarious.  When the winding mechanism broke (lasted a surprisingly long time) he still played with them - by walking around and trying to snap me on the bum or fingers. Mostly bum. Cheeky little devil!

Back in another couple of days to share the results of the challenge sketch from Nicole.  See you then!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A productive day

AKA the perils of printing at home!

So, I printed off the layout that I made in the last post -turned out very nicely on my old HP printer and Kodak photo paper.  Cropped it with a narrow white border and stuck it down on some nice dark blue cardstock, and as a finishing touch, added some brads.  Finally, I was happy! They just added the perfect touch, added some flair to the flatness of it all.

_MG_5026 And then, seeing as that printed SO well, I delved deep into the files of languishing non-printed layouts (I know, sacrilege!) and printed some more.  You may remember some of these back from when I started DYL.  I have grand plans of finishing DYL, by working my way through the templates and getting some serious pages churned out.  Though it does mean more time in front of this screen, which can be a problem...anyhow:

_MG_5030 Printed out, stuck it down, and then decided to add a strip of patterned paper down the side, just for fun and ground the whole thing. Well, dunno about grounded, but it felt better to me!

_MG_5031This one presented a challenge  - SNAFU - and after some fiddling, and cutting to fix a mistake I made in the digi part of it (I think, who knows what I was thinking back then!) it worked!  and because I use binders, the edges don't join anyhow and the little error in alignment isn't (as) noticeable!

I have another page printed and sitting on my desk waiting to be trimmed and adhered, and quite a few more where that came from.  I find I am quite enjoying the finishing process, and putting them in their albums where they belong!

Back tomorrow with some 'real' pages!

Scrapping On Saturday

As a little reward to myself for the work I accomplished yesterday getting some stuff done that I had put off for a very long time.  Still got some to do, but need to clear my head a bit before continuing on.

I have done a few pages today, can't share them just yet, but here is one I CAN share!  A CZ template that I knew would be perfect to capture the school camp my biggest girl went on back in August. Thanks to the staff that carted their cameras around (wasn't hard for them to do) I was able to grab a heap of digital images that included Kate (more than I could ever include on just one page!) and pick my favourite to tell the story of the great camp they went on.

One other thing that the photographs showed:  even though I packed MORE than enough clothes for my girl (all neatly bagged - shirts in one plastic bag, shorts in one, undies and socks in another and so on, she apparently wore the same shirt for at least three days, and no one noticed!  Although apparently they spent a lot of time in their togs etc, so it shouldn't have been camp Now I LOVE the templates and how easy they are to use, but lately I have been getting myself so very confused when it comes to "cardstock" and patterned paper digi-wise.  I am not sure if this kraft background behind the title works, but as I have just printed this off on my home printer (not something that I often do) it will have to do! 

And looking at these photos, I think I might have to go on school camp as one of the parent-supervisors next time! My boy will be in prep then, so I couldn't  possibly let ALL of my kids go away without me! (especially if its somewhere like North Keppell Island!)

Although, at this moment, as they scream and play and fight loudly in the pool, a week of peace sounds rather inviting.  On the bright side, at least being in the pool they aren't coming to me with their grievances!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


The newest addition to the family, after some recent and distressing (multiple) losses to the pet family.

_MG_4977 SIDney, also known as Mr Squeaky, has fattened up considerably since his arrival - photo taken on his first night - and has decided that he belongs to the Man of the House, but does condescend to be loved by the rest of the household when he isn't home. And the fattening up has led to quite a lively and playful little critter.

And my littlest boy? SO happy to have a little friend to cart around and interact with during the day. Its been a lonely year for Angus, especially since Millie, the dog with the death wish, got her way. (The perils of having pets I suppose!)

I do have to note:  SIDney, the little stinker, has sharp little claws. Which can be quite startling when they are applied to an unsuspecting victim!  I think the mouse and rat population best start packing their bags, as your hassle free days are numbered!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tidy kitchen drawer

The bottom draw holding all of my recipe books (not often used, to be honest) had been rather a mess for awhile, and the other day I finally did something about it. I threw out a milk crates worth of old cuttings and un-used freebie cookbooks.

Ahh, much better: (you are lucky I didn't take a BEFORE shot, although then you would be truly able to appreciate the after shot I guess!)

_MG_4987 Also found (well, I knew I had them, but it tickled me to see the dates again - 1969 - 1970 etc) were these vintage lovelies!

_MG_4981 _MG_4982I was having a dilemma as what to do with these booklets - which are full of great old fashioned and user friendly recipes (ie not containing weird out there and not easily attainable ingredients for those of us who don't have a flash Woolies around the corner!). 

When in the city recently I grabbed a cool Kraft A4 lever arch folder (how I wish I had grabbed two) in which to house these booklets and other recipe clippings - should I ever need more! in page protectors. I might hit the Kraft folder with a quick painted on coat of PVA glue just to seal the cover from any kitchen messes it will be sure to face!

I'll share the results of my Kraft folder and how it turns out, might be a nice project for the christmas holidays!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Other crafty capers

_MG_4988 (2)

hey, before I get started, check out that cool bokeh in the photo above. Didn't realise it was there until now! (I think its the fish bowl actually)

Anyhow:  I quickly (well sort of quickly) whipped up the card the other day for a cousin's new arrival - little - very little - patterned paper triangles stuck down with a dab of glue, and then stitched down with my sewing machine. And because I noticed AFTER the fact that the bobbin cotton was a bit oily looking and dirty (from the recent oiling and service carried out by my husband) I then added an inside bit from white card.

I am not sure if the mother of the new baby will be appreciative of a handmade card or not, however I had run out of suitable cards in the stash so it was either handmade, none or a card when I remembered and the baby was about to turn 12!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

when things go wrong

This was going to be titled "Sketch Three Ways", inspired by a recent post over at Nicole's blog.However, due to my printer having issues with my lovely new Kraft cardstock, things did not quite go to plan....! 

Here is the original sketch:airport_fun_sketchAnd here is my first layout.

_MG_4999Despite my bad layout photo taking skills, and dark and lovely rainy day here, you can see that my layout more or less followed the sketch.Y ou will notice that the topic is the same on the below layout as well, so I thought it would be SO easy to quickly make three pages the same. Famous last words.

Enter the kraft hating printer:

_MG_4993Same journaling, except that of course it didn't feed through the printer correctly and that is where it printed.  And rather than waste valuable Kraft, or risk further stuff ups by trying to print again on the other side, I improvised.  Cropped the photos down a little more, got out the notebook punch tool (just for fun!) and added a little bit of paper. And a ginormous green brad to help with the white space at the top.

And as for the THIRD way?  Not worth photographing! Nothing like the sketch, certainly not an award winner, but another story told and away in the album for the child in question to look at. Like I said, when things go wrong....!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Weighty matters

It was while I was at the clothesline this morning, contemplating the joy that is a tissue gone through the wash, I realised that I had something that was weighing on my mind.

It was truly bothering me. Important, stress inducing stuff.

Those bright colours on that last layout that I did, were just not RIGHT. I mean - sleeping child? bright colours? WHAT was I thinking?

So for the first time in the history of scrapbooking, I re-did a page.

And before I share the new "improved" page, I must share something else with you:  I am finding digi scrapping harder than paper scrapping.  The choosing of the papers! OMG! for some reason I am struggling with this...with real paper I just pick up the photo, spend a few minutes picking a suitable cardstock, and then a few more minutes with patterned paper(s). Maybe I have too much digital choice?  Or by using a template I am feeling obliged to fill every little square, as its there to be used, whereas with real paper, i might have just used ONE paper instead of thee.

Anyhow, enough in depth analysing of my internal struggles with such life altering stuff.

sleepingPretty much the same journalling, just expanding on the story a little.  I don't seem to have a problem with adding in extra words!

Technical stuff:  this is an 8x8 placed on a 12x12 white background.  (I think the template came from a free Jessica Sprague class) I might even print this at home just to feel the satisfaction of sticking it down and sliding it into a page protector.

So dear readers, what are your thoughts? Do ya like the bright one better, or this quieter, calmer, more restful version better?

Now, I best get back to tackling the oh-my-lord-never-ending-bottomless-pile-of-washing-to-be-folded. If I go missing, you'll know its swallowed me whole!  Me and the tissue.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

well that took longer than I thought!

Thought I would do a quick digi page or two this afternoon.

I have to say its not quite as satisfactory as playing with real paper and photos, but still...story told.

I would have done another page, except the photos I wanted to use were on a memory stick that needed I can't get the darned things off (although, thought here! computer they came from was XP, so might boot up my own old XP version machine and see if it will accept them!).

Anyhow, technical issues aside, I have managed to come up with one page! Feeling the need for bright today (not sure it suits the photo)... in our bed

Not sure if you can enlarge this image, but its basically about the boy sneaking into our bed on a regular basis, and how he has a startling habit of flinging out a hand whilst asleep and feeling the nose or ear closest to him.

I think I've shared the photo and story before (poor memory!)

This is what I plan - roughly - the printed and finished version to look like, with some thickers as the title. Bad choice of background paper for blogging! but for today I like it mounted on white card with some more orange to back the title onto. When it comes to assembling, I could change my mind. Just cause I can! in our bed lo man, it IS bright, isn't it!

Hmm, perhaps a little less orange might be in order. We'll see!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Some Quick Christmas Crafts

that the kids should be able to handle.  This post is dedicated to KAT, who is a long time friend and reader - but never a commenter! (poking tongues).

She wanted some christmas craft here we go:

bb835ea12Dd9b62D4cd62D9d262De5a35cfff568IMG5Fl Gift cards - or indeed the front of a folded card sans the hole thing at the top. Kids could write merry christmas on a strip of white paper and that could be stuck on the front - would be very cute!

If they are up to sewing - or indeed gluing with some help from a grown up:

980ee6202Ddfd22D41722D8aba2Dc880be6538b7simpl2 Actually, when I was teacher aide many years ago, we did something very similar and made little stockings and stars and glued on ribbon and sequins.  The kids loved it.  I don't think we stuffed ours, just had two layers of felt.

owl_brooch_1 I might of shared this image before, but following the felt theme, this little fellow could easily be created by an older child - say year 2 upwards with supervision. Buttons for eyes to make it easier for little fingers  - and all of the bits could be glued on instead of sewn.  Actually can see this stuck to the front of a card instead of an ornament.  Similar felt shapes - christmas trees - stars etc could also be used for a card. (pre cut shapes can be bought at $2 stores or from educational supply catalogues).

What else? here are some more ideas that are fairly self explanatory .






button_tree_Christmas_card paper-chain1

There are also some great books out there - specifically those published by USBORNE - like Christmas things to make and do.

If you want to get your kids doing some christmas crafts over the summer holidays, I'd get my hands on this book. Available on ebay or from QBD i would think! they have several similar books on this topic (and many many others!  I love these books and have many of them - they don't ask for strange items for crafting and have simple instructions.Hope this haa been a help Kat!




photo shoot with a difference

Most people dress their kids up and take them somewhere pretty to get their photos taken. 

Especially given its the Christmas Card Season very soon!

I decided to stage my own photo shoot, but with a difference. "kids, put on your oldest clothes!  and if you do as you are told for five minutes, I'll let you play in the mud ALL afternoon!"

_MG_4932They needed little encouragement and before too long they were wallowing. With the pig. _MG_4958_MG_4938 _MG_4972  And despite my offer for them to play there all afternoon, that sneaky little breeze chased them to hose off and get changed within ten minutes (their mother ain't silly!  when I made the offer I knew they wouldn't last long!)

And a technical question before I go:  I am getting "file is corrupted or unreadable" when I download my photos via the inbuilt card reader on my new computer. Not all of my photos, just enough to be annoying (and sometimes its the best shots).  I am pretty sure its a fault with the reader, however has anyone else had this problem? I am curious.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Get out your sharp scissors

All right, so maybe I am not the first person in the world to think of this, and its not rocket science, but I thought I would share how I get a little more wear out of my kids clothes.

If your kids are anything like mine, they grow like weeds, and I can't usually get an item of clothing to fit from one winter to the next. (speaking of respectable-out-in-public-clothing here, not the feral play/yard clothes!) This is great for our niece, who scores the bags of hand me down clothes, but bad for my pocket!

However, with a sharp pair of scissors I can turn a winter t-shirt into a summer one, and at the end of summer the shirt can go into the pile to be passed along.


1. t-shirts with the "underneath" long sleeves - i.e. those with the appearance of having a short sleeved shirt over the top of a long sleeved one, but are in fact all in one.  This works equally as well with boys and girls shirts.

2. Sharp scissors that have been hidden from the kids in a high high place.004 Turn inside out, and carefully snip the long sleeve away from the shirt at the seam.

005 I do mine as close as possible so there isn't any bulk of fabric left around the armhole.  And t-shirt material doesn't fray, so I can snip with gay abandon!

006 Result: three perfectly acceptable short sleeved t-shirts that did not see a lot of wear over winter, but will surely get a lot of summer use, what with the Christmas parties and trips to town and the like over the Christmas holidays. And no need to go shopping for t-shirts!

Mind you, my niece might be a little short of long sleeved shirts in the hand me down bag, but her mum can deal with that!

Righto, back to the clothes purging I go. Turfing out all of the I-don't-like-that's and the it's-too-tight's that have been lurking around annoying me in the girls room.

I should do the same to my own cupboards. Sigh. I think I would find there would be LOTS of space once I finished that job, but that is another, depressing tale for another day!

Look what I made!

This might seem rather minor to accomplished crafters and crochet-ers out there, but until recently crochet patterns have looked to have been written in a foreign language.

Well, I'll be honest. Most of 'em still do. But with the aide of VERY clear instructions (thanks to Lucy at Attic 24) and pictures, which I printed out, I have managed to make some of these:

_MG_4826This is the first one I ever made, and looking at it now, I am pretty sure its not meant to have 7 petals! Oh well.  I've since managed to crochet around some face washers/cloths (the only other crocheting thing I know how to do, though lord knows what I will do with them) and made some flowers like this one to stitch onto the washer to make it pretty and less like a granny made it! 

I've been doing this while watching TV at night (well, not so much watching, but listening and looking up occasionally for the important bits - and Oi! my goodness, wasn't the end of packed to the rafters last night a doozie! Even The Husband was getting all teary on the couch! Anyhow, it seems like a more productive use of my time than just sitting there looking at the TV (although some evenings that is all I am able to!)

Anyhow, now that I am able to make some flowers, some might end up on a scrapbook page. Or not, they are a bit lumpy for my normal pages.

One more thing:

_MG_4820 All of my pretty buttons in little coffee jars. Just cause they look pretty.  Watch out for these buttons featuring a another craft project coming up soon. However, in the meantime, if you need any orange, white/cream or springy coloured (yellows, pale blues and greens and pinks - simply delicious - photo does not do them justice) buttons, we might be able to do a deal! ;-) Or get yourself to Spotlight and get your own bag full of buttons!

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