Tuesday 31 August 2010

Bank Holiday Bliss

I had a very busy bank holiday indeed! A friend and I planned to spend the day in Bank-Holiday-esque activities. To that end, we went to a Diner in Camden for brunch. French toast + Hash Browns + Banana and Peanut Butter Milkshake = Total yummies!

We then drove out of London (in my new car!) to visit a rest home for horses. They had an afternoon opening and we chattered to some really beautiful creatures, all of whom were very gentle. Most of them were retired police horses or army horses or similar, and so that had to have very docile temperaments. They certainly didn't mind being poked and prodded.

Then the crowning awesomeness of the day was a visit to Lacey Green to tackle the Maize Maze! I've never been in a maze before and it was brilliant! It was unusual as well - the maze was laid out in the design of a castle and they gave us a map. We had to find various locations on the map and note down relevant info.

We got lost.

Fortunately, the union flag was flying over a central point so we managed to locate ourselves and performed death-defying feats of bravery, shimmying down turrets, inching along rooftops, sliding down doorways and even navigating the odd stained glass window. In maize form, naturally.

We intrepid explorers delved deep into the heart of the maze, fearlessly brushing aside clawing fronds of...well, maize....and venturing jauntily into the unknown. With a map and a contact telephone number. Just in case.

Kisses xxx

Got to see my friends new flat which was totally gorgeous and cosy and so homely. I'm moving to my new place in less than a month now and I'm SO EXCITED!!!!

Saturday 28 August 2010

Lost In Fiction

I've been banging on about this for a while, but I have LOVED rediscovering reading this summer. I've always loved books but during term time that tends to get diminished to a few minutes before bed. This summer I have indulged, truly and properly and consumed copious cups of the good brew. And I have particularly revelled in Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody books, so big thanks to her!
In other news, I also scrapped the first pictures taken with my new lens. Yay!

I'm really looking forward to Shimelle's Learn Something New Every Day class - I've never done it before but I'm going to do it at 12x12. I don't really get on with anything else as I love the space too much! There should be lots to scrap: back at school with my own form for the first time, moving to my own flat for the first time, Last Night of the Proms, starting as a Guide Leader...

What I've noticed is that I usually blog about things after I've scrapped them and lately I've found that I like what I write here better than what I write on my pages. This is silly. So I think I'm going to make an effort to blog as I go and then use that to inspire my journalling instead of the other way around. It's certainly worth a try.

Kisses xxx

P.S. I made cupcakes yesterday - more on that another time as this weekend is Party Weekend!

Friday 27 August 2010

DVD Boxed Set Victim

I don't really buy many films on DVD, largely because with a film, once I've seen it, I don't feel the urge to watch it repeatedly (with a few notable exceptions). However, give me a series in a shiny box and it's a whole new story. I love things that come in series and can watch and watch and watch them and not get bored. I like to watch characters develop unrestrained by the length of a film and if you can through in a will they/won't they story line, so much the better! I know so many of these series practically by heart and often like to have one of them on in the backrgound while I scrap. My favourites include Gilmore Girls, The West Wing, Friends, Yes Minister/Prime Minister and Doctor Who. And now I want Sherlock please.

Addicted? No doubt.

Kisses xxx

P.S. I'm on my last book. Why has nobody serialised Amelia Peabody and produced it in a boxed set? Not that it would ever live up to the books, but it would be fun nonetheless.

Wednesday 25 August 2010

Into The Woods

Left the house yesterday in just a T-shirt and waltzed into glorious sunshine and perfect blue sky and by the time I hit Euston it was clouded over. Anyway, I did breakfast with a friend which makes me feel very grown up as though I'm living in a sitcom (my life is not dramatic enough to be a drama but it is daft enough to be a sitcom) and we went to sit in the little roof terrace on top of the British library. It was completely empty and it's a lovely place to sit, not to mention the deliciousness of the library itself.

Anyway, when we left there, it started to rain. No coat, jumper or umbrella. I broke my own golden rule about leaving the house without an umbrella and I paid for it! I always take an umbrella either to shield me from the rain or as a deterrent to the weather. It's less likely to rain if you take an umbrella. That's probability in action, baby.

Anyway, I high-tailed it home, abandoning my plans (best-laid, etc) and decided to scrap the last photo I had from last weekend's Into The Woods extravaganza. And I use my layered embellishment that I made for Shimelle's crop.

Taking up the same plans today. I am taking a jumper and a coat and an umbrella. Suspect it will not rain.

Kisses xxx

P.S. Of couse, by the time I got of the tube on my way home, it was sunny again.

Tuesday 24 August 2010

Ode to the Humble Tube

Londoner's seem to love complaining about the tube and public transport generally. I'll admit it that occasionally it has bad moments but by and large I've found the tube to be efficient, regular and generally a really great way to get around. It's one year on from my move here and I LOVE it!

There's always someone or something to watch, subtly or otherwise, I enjoy the mystery of weaving through dark tunnels beneath the city and dodging around less savvy city slickers to hop onto the right tube at the last second leaning casually against the wall with my book open, disdaining to hold onto the rail and looking up to condescendingly explain to someone that actually this is a Charing X tube so we won't be going via Kings X St Pancras. With a smile of course. That used to be me!

Plus I can read on the tube which I can't on buses. It makes me feel travel sick. So I enjoy my rides to and from the centre and around it, even when it's busy and you have to cram in a bit too close - or even much to close - for comfort. I feel like I'm part of the London club.

And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Kisses xxx

P.S. Being 23 has not stamped out my enjoyment of riding up and down escalators and obviously the Underground has some crackers! See layout above.

Monday 23 August 2010

Oh I do like to go along to Prom-a-loms!

Quick page using some Sassafras that I've had lying around for a while. I own several circular die cut papers but I rarely use them. They're one of those things that I like to buy more than I like to use. Note to self: don't buy any more and use the ones you have.

This weekend, I took my new lens for a walk (and I LOVE it) around the metropolis and set up camp in a lovely tea shop called Yumchaa which I discovered this holiday and have visited a couple of times. I really don't like coffee but I do love hanging out in coffee shops with as much tea as I can drink (more than you'd think) and ideally a piece of cake and a good book. However, most coffee shops - proper ones where they encourage you to stay for a really long time tend to serve tea as an afterthought. So although Yumchaa doesn't have sofas (how terribly remiss) they do have a lovely vintagey shabby-chic style and it's a really peaceful beautiful place without being pretentious. Plus they play classical music! And they have innumerable types of leaf tea laid out of the counter for one to inhale and select from. Delish! (And the cake's not bad too).

Yesterday I spend most of the day queueing for the Rogers and Hammerstein Prom at the Royal Albert Hall. I went with one of my friends and we had a great catch-up gossip while queueing and the concert itself was wonderful. I loved the conductor and the orchestra played with such vibrant enthusiasm to make one of the richest sounds I think I've ever experienced. Amazing!

In other news I've now read 4 books in 5 days. Only three more to go - sad face!

Will make another page today though. But first, going to pop into town. See if I can get more of the clothes on my list from the charity shops I didn't visit last week and then if there's time, I can take my book to a coffee shop or something.

Kisses xxx

Saturday 21 August 2010

Life of Leisure

Made this page yesterday out of a few left over bits and bobs from the previous day's page. It's one of those shots where I try and get a good candid photo of my family but as they persist on wandering about all over the place instead of looking soulfully into the distance I asked them to pose candidly instead. For some reason they all chose to do things they never normally do as my brother attempted to assume an expression of thoughtfulness by scratching his head, my mum pointed wildly into the distance and my dad, grinning, tipped is cap. And do you know what? I LOVE this picture!

I picked up a new lens for my camera a couple of days ago - it's a 50mm prime f/1.8 which is a first for me in couple of ways. It's my first non-zoomy lens and it's got a much bigger aperture. Really looking forward to taking it out and breaking it in today as I really want to play around with a shallower depth of field. London here I come!

In other news, I am still reading Amelia Peabody books by Elizabeth Peters and becoming more and more enamoured of them every day. I bought 7 of them on Amazon and they arrived on Tuesday and I'm almost half way through the third. It's been a while since I found a new series that I love so much. It takes me back to a time when I stayed up past my bedtime reading under the covers with a torch, listening for the footsteps of my parents while I read in case they put their heads through the door (not literally, you understand).

Of course now that I'm 23 and it's the school holidays I don't have a bedtime but I can't help reading way past the time I tell myself I will go to bed. Getting up in the mornings would be hard except that I can always get back to my book!

Kisses xxx

P.S. How much do I want to go here? I'll give you a clue; the answer is beaucoup!

Thursday 19 August 2010


Well, it's been a lucky week for me prize-wise! First I won these beautiful paper clips on Wendy's blog My Ordinary Life. I thought they were so pretty and was pretty excited when I won them and even more so when they arrived! As you can see, I used one in the page above, If You Go Down In The Woods Today.

Then, having entered as many of Shimelle's online crop challenges as I could, I was pretty chuffed to win one of those as well! I can't wait to see what the prize is. I love Shimelle's online crops as there are so many different ideas and ways to go, plus you get to see inspiration from loads of other scrappers.

I've been indulging this evening with a bowl of rice pudding and golden syrup, Location, Location, Location on the telly and organising my papers. I found that pulling out three or four matching sheets and putting them to one side means that I save time rooting through massive amounts of stash when I want to make a page and means the process is a lot more fluent. I used one of my little page kits to make the page above and I'm really pleased with how it came together. It features candid shots of my friends having a picnic before we went to see Into The Woods.

In other news, I'm absorbing as many Amelia Peabody books as Amazon can deliver, and I finally went to get some new clothes. Haven't done this in a couple of years as there are always other things that I want to spend my money on. Anyway, I spent £41 in the end and acquired a pair of trousers, 2 skirts, 2 jumpers, a smart work jacket and a trench coat. Bargain! I love charity shops!

Kisses xxx

P.S. Anyone else find Location Location Location a guilty pleasure? I love nosying into other people's houses, watching seeming foolish buyers with unrealistic expectations refusing beautiful homes and judging them harshly (you're allowed on telly as they'll never know) but most of all, I love watching Kirstie and Phil bicker. See? Guilty pleasure.

Monday 16 August 2010

The one with all the photos.

I've been doing lots of challenges from Shimelle's Blog this weekend and here are the photos I've taken for some of the challenges. I've stuck them all in the one post to avoid having to write millions of separate blog entries! So, onto the story of my weekend...

These are my feet stepping into my brand new flat for the first time. As it's still a building site, I had to wear hardy boots but as it's shiny and new and clean, I had to put little blue bags over the boots. New trend? So exciting!

This is my picture for the 'home' challenge. A self portrait in my new home. I move in just over a month but just walking in the door felt like stepping into my own little slice of the world. Wonderful!

Ah, my crafting in progress. Not a particularly good picture but it does show how I scrap: rarely at a table, usually on a sofa having commandeered the coffee table. My supplies look scattered everywhere but I confess I do have to stop and tidy every so often or the mess makes me sad :(

My weekend included a trip to the British museum. I've only made a couple of brief visits and barely scratched the surface of their exhibits but I am in awe of the place. It's a beautiful building in it's own right and the big hall is literally breathtaking. But they have so much to see that it's hard to take in. Anyway, I intend to make a few more visits this summer. This is a picture through the glass of hieratic text. Ancient Egyptian scribes wrote in hieratic for general admin as it was quicker than doing the hieroglyphs. They tended to be reserved for ceremonial things like tombs.

Either that or the Egyptians were scrapbookers and made great vintage-feel script paper.

Relaxing outside with a book. Got a big order of more Amelia Peabody's on the way. Can't wait! I love having the leisure time to read in summer.

My friends and I went to an outdoor performance of Into The Woods in Regent's Park. It was incredible! And the atmosphere was brilliant as the night descended turning the theatre into a haunting forest and giving the whole theatre a velvety black canopy. Zoom out...
A pre-into the woods picnic for tea. Candid!
And finally, a picture of smiles when everyone has a tummy full of delicious Mexican food from Wahaca where we lunched. I must confess that I largely prefer posed pictures of of friends in groups. But I find there are always elements of the candid. This is one of a series of five or six pictures are various folks make various silly expressions. Posed pictures don't have to be awkward and I love how they've all leaned around the camera in a conspiratorial way!

That's all for now. Bedtime for me.

Kisses xxx

P.S. Fab weekend.

P.P.S. So much for chronology. Silly uploader thingy.

Layered Embellishment

I loved making this - not something I've done before but I'm really pleased with the detail in the result. I'll certainly be doing it again. More of what it's for when I've finished the page!

Ten things

In response to a challenge on Shimelle's blog, I made a page using mainly products from Sassafras. I've really started to get into their stuff recently and I love their new CHA lines and embellishments. I may have gone a little paper whimsy crazy here!

The page is called Ten Things and lists ten things that I love right now off the top of my head. They ended up being:

My family
My camera
Amelia Peabody books
Junk food
Doctor Who

I also included a little explanation for each one. I think I'll try listing ten things periodically and see how they change - what things are fickle obsessions and which ones stick around?

Kisses xxx

P.S. Any other Sherlock watchers? Wasn't it fantastic!

Take Flight

I wanted to scrap this for two reasons: one in response to the use hearts challenge on Shimelle's blog, and secondly because this was one of those photos that you just have to scrap as soon as possible. I made my own hearts (still working with Thrift Shop!) and although this is really a boy page, I love how hearts can still work.

As far as the photo goes, this is a picture of my little brother graduating. I couldn't attend the ceremony as I had school and also no ticket(!) but my Mum took lots of pictures. And this one scrapped itself: unfortunately, there was a double-headed lampost sticking up in exactly the wrong place so my brother's mortar board appears to be sprouting a propeller. Needless to say, this was my favourtite pic of the lot and I think there's a good metaphor in there somewhere about taking off into the future.

Works for me!

Kisses xxx

The Comedy of Errors

I made this LO in response to a patterned paper challenge on Shimelle's blog. In my previous post I mentioned I had October Afternoon Thrift Shop leftovers. Well, this is one of the pages that produced them! I'm really pleased with this as I don't often use yellow. Anyway, there are 5 patterned papers in there although one of them just had lines on so I used it for journalling.

The pictures are from a couple of weeks ago when I went to see The Comedy of Errors at the Regent's Park Open Air Theatre. It was amazing!

Kisses xxx

Doing Lunch

I made this LO in response to a challenge to use up leftover scraps on Shimelle's blog. I did actually use a whole sheet of Bazzil for the background but pretty much everything else it bits of leftover Thrift Shop by October Afternoon. I even made my own embellishments from it!

This LO is a picture of me meeting my friends in Oxford for lunch and reminiscing about the good old days....a year ago. Seems like longer!

Kisses xxx

P.S. I actually think I like the good new days more!

A Day at the Spa

Well, I had my first spa day a couple of weeks ago and the pink challenge on Shimelle's blog seemed like a good way to get around to scrapping it. No photos allowed inside so I just scrapped a small pic of the sign and included lots of journalling. I also wanted to try out my new mist and between that and the sign colour, a lot of this LO ended up in blues and aquas. However, I included little pink accents so it counts!

Kisses xxx

P.S. Spa day was sooooo lovely....


I made this LO in response to a challenge on Shimelle's blog: journal around something. I was quite keen to have a go at this as it's something I've seen used to great effect but never got around to trying. I think I would use this technique again!

The LO features a couple of pics of me and my brother mucking around in Yorkshire, competing to hold the daftest pose on the biggest rock.

Kisses xxx