Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Blog Award

How lovely! I've been awarded the following blog award...

... from my lovely LOAD friend Debbie (check out her creative blog here). I am thrilled that she thought of me and it certainly made a grey day a little brighter! Thanks Debbie!

This award comes with a few rules:

  1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this. 
  2. Share 8 things about yourself.
  3. Pay it forward to 8 bloggers that you have recently discovered (see below).
  4. Contact those bloggers and tell them about their awards.
8 things about myself:
  1. I am always tired - I mean ALWAYS! Have been all my life. No excuses, I just am!
  2. I can't curl my tongue much to my family's amusement - all of whom can. 
  3. I love this time of year - the colder the better.
  4. I think that even though I have a British passport, I must really have been born German - Gemany just suits me SO well!
  5. I am a total control freak - go figure!
  6. I am a Scorpio - can you see a theme here?
  7. I think I am addicted to the internet and email. I can't imagine my life without either of them.
  8. I am a total Christmas film freak - all the way from the Muppets' Christmas Carol through to my all time fave, Holiday Inn
8 blogs that I enjoy -  in random order:
  1. Libby - A Lifetime of Chances
  2. Debbie - A World of Imagination
  3. Sarah - Sarah's Pigeonhole
  4. S - Snaps & Snippets
  5. Nic H - It's Been One of Those Days
  6. Margie - Xnomad's Blog
  7. The Gutsy Mom
  8. Paper View
They may not all be recent discoveries, but they are all very creative and fill me with inspiration every time I read them. As I have talked about before here on my blog, living away from friends and family, as well as being a "bit" of a Billy No Mates (!), my blog friends are really important to me and helps me to feel connected. I love this virtual world of ours - don't you?

Looking forward to the start of December - I really want to attempt some sort of a daily album à la December Daily or Journal Your Christmas. Any similar plans your way?

Monday, 29 November 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like....


I love this time of year and today brought on our first real snow which always makes me feel like a child again, pressing my nose against the window and wishing that I could go outside and make snow angels without the neighbours thinking I am completely mad!

So, what has been going on round here the last weeks?

Well, there were two of these in the last week...

And I was spoilt with lots of...

And plenty of these, all of which were so carefully chosen and were totally perfect...

Can you see the Prima flowers? And the ribbon flowers? And the shadow, display box that I had so admired on Libby's blog? Yep, all mine!

My mum was over to visit for the weekend and we had a lot of fun.

Christmas market season is officially open so first stop: Dortmund for a Glühwien

A wander round to admire the lights

Dinner at the newly modernised Duisburg Innenhafen (harbour) at Mongo's which is our new favouirte place to go - Mongolian BBQ. Scrummy!

And then we rounded the weekend off by baking cookies! A good German tradition but something I haven't done with my mum for more years than either of us care to remember! I don't think I had even hit my teens the last time ;-)

Of course, all this means no scrapping for several weeks. I think the last thing I created was way back at the beginning of November for my BPC class - Colour! or is it Color? by Nic H which is just wonderful but I am way behind. I did manage the first and second week and was rather pleased with myself for my yellow week:

I think that I'm caught up now. Is it me or has somebody stolen the last few weeks? How prepared are you for Christmas (gulp!)?

Saturday, 13 November 2010

A bit of Chance scrapping

It's been quiet on the scrapping front this week. Somehow, while I was in my room a lot, I didn't manage to actually stick any photos to paper. 

But I have attempted to tidy up a bit (lot!) and have discovered that my room does have a floor, that the shelves are naturally white and not dust grey, and that my desk top is not naturally sticky! And of course, I discovered a pile of paper that I hadn't exactly forgotten about, but I had sort of ignored it since I bought it! But all good stuff. And the room now looks and feels a lot cleaner and clearer. I have one or two small projects to finish off and my pile of kits is still way too high, but when I look at the pile of layouts I created last month, I feel good that so much stash has been used up. And now the room is tidy enough that I can start cutting and sticking again.

But last weekend, I was busy using up another kit (May), just picking up some randomly gorgeous Chance kiddie photos and using them to make pretty pages. 

** This photo has been hanging around for way too long and I knew that I wanted to use it on a page that wasn't necessarily about the day itself (Isabella's Christening) but rather about the joy I feel whenever I look at these giggling friends. Such a lovely photo.

** Don't need to say too much here - Just a gorgeous girl in a gorgeous photo. (can you tell I was already struggling with letters left on the alpha here?!)

** Using a Page Maps sketch for inspiration here. Not brilliant photos, but I love them all the same. Just a fun use of papers and product.

** I was preparing to put away the leftovers from the May kit when I came across this orange paper which was getting damaged in my paper storage. My eye then fell upon the leftover pink cardstock from the kit that I was putting away and thought that they looked pretty together. So I decided to use up a couple of the last flowers from the kit and write a few words of love to Maddie. This girl is so special to me. We love her so much.

Not much else here. Can you believe that November is already halfway through? Yesterday was the 12th so I was busy taking photos, using a new toy app on my iPhone so watch this space for that!

Thinking about making some Christmas cards. Thinking about some new decorations. Are you? If so, do you want to share your ideas?

Saturday, 6 November 2010

A quiet week

This always happens after LOAD.

After manically scrapping every day for a whole month, I suddenly stop. And that usually means a total STOP. No scrapping of any sort for weeks and weeks and weeks!

So this week, I woke up on Monday morning and thought, "Oh, no layout today." And went on to enjoy our day. The same happened on Tuesday and most of Wednesday.

And then I decided to pick up the paper trimmer again and see if I could be creative!

I had a commission for The Scrapbook Magazine to do and spent some time pulling it together. I think it's so pretty, full of a lot of gorgeous product. Of course, I can't share the whole thing with you, but how about a little sneak peek?

Surprisingly for me, this appears to have given my another small kick-start and I've done another two layouts  trying to use up some of the numerous kits I have lying around. My new kit arrived this week and I still have 8 unfinished ones that ought to be used up before I start the new one. Now I know that won't happen but I grabbed one and have done two cute Chance kids layouts. The light is too bad to photograph them but will upload them next week sometime.

The only other exciting thing to happen round here was Halloween last Sunday night. I've written before about how this is something new and unknown here in Germany and we like to celebrate it, but to the "delight" of my Germany family - well, at least I like to believe that it's to their delight :-) !

I won't upload all the photos I took but I have to share a few.

I am especially proud of my very special carved pumpkin. I'm not known for anything fancy and usually just do the standard lopsided face so I decided to step up to the mark and find out on the internet how the fantastic carved pumpkins you see on the internet from USA are done. I downloaded a template and read up on what I should be doing. I didn't have the right tools but I think I managed quite well! I used my paper piercer (scrapbooking to the rescue!) to highlight the shape to cut out and then I scraped off the skin to give the two tone effect. 

Ta laaaa:

We made sure that our communal staircase was Halloweened up and apparently, the orange light shone out into the night and could be seen from far and wide! (I think all our neighbours think we are ever so slightly mad!)

The mantlepiece looked just as lovely as I had hoped and the atmosphere was wonderful with all the candles and the eerie pumpkins peeking through the window.

And me? I spent a bit of time on my costume and made myself into Frankenstein's Monster's Bride using lots and lots of black tulle which was a lot of fun although a bit of a fire hazard! I got the idea of the makeup on the Martha Stewart website and it was done using the theatrical white makeup we have and a doily. I thought the effect was really interesting!


Thursday, 4 November 2010

31 layouts in 31 days? Mission accomplished!

Another successful LOAD! 31 layouts in 31 days. 

There were really a couple of days back there when I thought I wouldn't make it. It was late, I was tired, I was neglecting a certain someone, I was a bit uninspired. But somehow, I managed to pull myself together every day and come up with something new and different and really something I am very proud of. 

Personally, I think I am making my most favourite pages at the moment. Pages that make me sigh with happiness when I look at them. And pages that tell the stories I have been meaning to tell for some time. Of course, some were much better than others and through them, I can see the days when I was struggling more than others. But it's ok. I'm satisfied and thrilled to have completed it again.

Roll on February when the next LOAD will be.

Some statistics:

  • 28 single page layouts
  • 3 double page layouts
  • 127 photos
  • Uncountable pages cut into or even completely used up
  • At least 7 collections or kits broken into which had not been touched before 
  • 2 kits used up to the point of considering them "finished"

October 24th
** This was better in my imagination than the reality! I couldn't get the lace paper to stick down without making a big mess, then the journalling space was a bit too small, and the colours were so bold that my title doesn't show up enough. But the photos were sitting there, looking at me asking to be scrapped so I went with it. The large, white framed one is downloaded from the website. Slava's Snowshow was really spectacular - so want to see it again when it is next "in town". I recommend it to all of you.

 October 25th
** I had been blog browsing and was looking at the Studio Calico blog where I fell in love with a layout by Maggie Holmes (here) and decided that I needed to use it as inspiration. My fellow LOADsters thought it was funny that I had some white space here. Seems as though I have a reputation as the no white space person. I love this layout. So pleased with it.

 October 26th
** This idea has been going round my mind for some time and the September Scrapagogo kit was perfect for this - the colours, textures, patterns. I haven't got around to doing a mega-album for this trip, but the story and photos are being captured a layout at a time - I might even collect them all together sometime. 

 October 27th
** I've been wanting to use these photos for some time so this was ideal. More clustering and a simple story of mad kids. 

 October 28th
** A layout assignment as part of a (yet another) new BPC class "Colour! or is it Color?" by Nic Howard. Yes, this week was red in case you hadn't guessed already. This was so much fun to do - following instructions and just making pretty things. Using up more of another hardly touched kit which felt good even though I messed up the title incredibly badly! I just cannot get these letters right - they are all askew but glued down so well that there is nothing to be done! But Nic showed a technique of clear embossing paper flowers which was a new idea for me and so I had a go. I really liked how it worked out even though I'm not sure I will be using it all the time. 

 October 29th
** Two of these photos had been hanging around on my desk for a loooong time. I knew pretty much what I wanted to do with them, so another unused kit to the rescue.

 October 30th
** Something I need to practice every day - I'm not known to be the most optimistic of people. This page is again inspired by the Maggie Holmes SC layout mentioned on 25th October.

 October 31st
** Just something pretty showing my huge pile of layouts - the pile seems to be higher than in May which suggests that they are a lot more dimensional than in the past. I loved doing this LOAD and the people I have "met" through the gallery and message board are just the most wonderfully supportive, kind people (hi to any of you who are reading this!) and I can't wait for the next LOAD in February.


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