Saturday, 26 July 2014

Die Cutting, Flowers and Freedom!

I love die cutting! I have about ten different dies, which I have chosen carefully for potential. I have birds, butterflies, shapes, a cat and dog and a typewriter. I spent quite some time yesterday cutting out birds in lots of different papers. You can use the left over shape as a stencil too so two for one! The butterfly below is from a coke can and looked so pretty on the moth book it deserved a photo. 
 Some of the birds. 

 Shadows of butterflies and a dragonfly. 
 Tuesday was the last day at work. I was lucky with flowers and had too many for a normal vase. The trug did nicely though.

 The last ever photo I took of school. It looks, appropriately, like a prison.
Cassie loves holidays, as I am around more to give her more treats and play. Here she is trying to wind up Tiger but is failing. Tiger just looked at her contemptuously. Every so often she will put her in her place though, so Cassie knows that she is still the boss!

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Fast, Beautiful, Emotional, Head Twisting Life

It is hard to sum up life in neat little blog posts, especially when I don't really like displaying my emotions, and prefer to appear happy and creative etc. I am too tired to sum up everything that has been happening recently, and it is such a mixture of emotions and events that I don't think I am able to anyway. So back to the pictures! So much has been going on, and, as this is my online memory bank I have missed a lot of important things in my little life. So here are a few. There may be more soon, or not!
 A number of weeks ago, after a number of weeks had passed since sending off my application to Arty Party, they contacted me and invited me for an interview. They are based in Balham, so  I had a lovely drive over there one sunny morning. I arrived a bit early so I rang to see if I could come in early. They asked for ten minutes to 'clear the table' then I was welcome. They are based in the house of the couple that started the business and it was lovely! There was a dog, a Grandad, and various other friendly people. I sat at a big kitchen table drinking delicious coffee(black as they had run out of milk!) and chatting with the two ladies who were interviewing me. It all ended after a while, mainly spent giving my details and saying when I was available for work. Though it all went well, I was not sure if I had actually got the job or not when I left. It was all so relaxed I kind of forgot to ask! I waited for nearly two weeks and then got a text offering me a week's work in August at a workshop in Blackheath. I am so pleased! It sounds like a busy day but the lack of responsibility for planning and organising sounds like a great relief. I just have to be there, work hard and help children do art-I can do that!. The pictures are from my journey back, when the satnav took me on a mystery tour(well I knew where I was really but not enough to challenge it!) I saw some great shop fronts and these two I managed to photograph. The one below is only in New Cross so I may visit it!
A cultural interlude. Andy and I visited an exhibition of Russian design in a small gallery somewhere off Oxford St. It was very interesting, and I was excited to see online before we went that they were exhibiting something I own one of. I have a doll like the one second from the right. I got mine on ebay and it said that it is Japanese. I know better now!
 It has been so hot recently. Cassie loves this large flower pot in the jungle garden and was being particularly cute in it the other day!
 I bought a die cutting machine. I have been hankering after one for ages and was going to buy a Grand Calibur. Then, on Create and Craft tv which I have become quite addicted to, they started to use an ebosser a lot. So that is what I bought. It was quite expensive, and so I have to justify it by using it a lot. I made cards for people at work this week, but other than that I have just been playing. I bought these wood sheets ages ago and it cuts them beautifully. They are stuck on an inked book cover.
 It was my Mum's 80th birthday on the 8th. She has two friends called Pat-serious Pat and cheerful Pat. Cheerful Pat's daughter Sarah makes brilliant character cakes and this is the one she made for my Mum. The feature she picked to emphasise was her boobs! (My Mum told me this-I am not being insulting!) and she also put a cat, bike, easel and flowers to sum up her hobbies. She is not going to eat it she says!
 We went for a meal in a lovely country pub to celebrate. My sister and her boyfriend came down and my brother was there too. Afterwards we went for a wander in Lenham and saw that there was a fabric sale on at the barn. The car that is normally parked outside on the grass had been covered in crochet and brought inside. 

Andy's cousin got married. It was a lovely evening in a local big old house that is now a community centre. There was a half time football game after eating and before Scottish country dancing, in the big garden out the back of the place. It was a lot of kids and adults too and was fun to watch. 
I am in the middle of a number of books at the moment but have been seduced by Stephen King again. I am really enjoying this one which I am reading on my kindle. It is easy and gripping, a perfect combination for my tired mind!

 At the weekend me and Caroline, my colleague, met up with Cheryl, the lovely teacher from last year. We had a delicious Mexican lunch, and then went to the Olympic park for a relaxed afternoon of chatting. I liked it there-it was quite strange in that it was pretty empty of things, but had lots of places to sit and chat, lovely wild flowers and little canals, and a water feature play thing that was great for my hot feet.

 My churros and hot chocolate dessert! Mmmm!
Enough rambling for now. May be back for more rambling soon. Hope anyone out there in blog world reading this is fine. I miss visiting you and hope to be back soon.

Friday, 11 July 2014


Andy's Mum Jean died on the fifteenth of June. I just wanted to share a couple of happy photos from a few years ago when we met her at Alnwick Castle to visit the gardens, especially the poison garden which was fascinating. There are no adequate words to sum up these times, so I thought that happy photos of a fun time would be a good thing. She was an amazing woman who had the most amazing life, in fact someone who it seems impossible should go. She is the person missing at the family gatherings. I think about her voice a lot. She had the most beautiful voice, with a soft Scottish accent and a comforting tone. Once, a long time ago now, when our nieces and nephews were little, we were at Stillaig, their house in Perthshire, at Christmas, and she had all the children together to read a story. I sat and listened too, in fact she called me over to do so, and I enjoyed it just as much as the children did. In fact stories are what I think of too, as Jean had so many of them, and told them so well. I am happy to have known her.