Saturday, 24 December 2011

Nearly there....

Nearly there....this will be my last post until after Christmas Day.  I only have one more page after this to show you but I need some foodie photos. 

This year I tried to make mostly homemade gifts.  I didn't do too badly but i learnt a can never have enough time and maybe I should of started earlier.

Well, it just leaves me to wish you all a wonderful Christmas and to say thank you for looking in occasionally and leaving kind comments.

See you after Christmas...

Friday, 23 December 2011

Happiness is a found snowflake...

Simple things make me happy, like when I found my lost stick-on snowflakes.  They had been missing for a couple of years until I discovered them in a Christmas decorations box that needed clearing out.  I immediately stuck them up on the windows and doors.

In the box was a paper folder full of Roberts Christmas creations from when he was little.  They brought back memories of shepherds with tea towels and school Christmas dinner crowns.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Fairies optional

Fairy, multicoloured, white, multifunctional, static and morphing lights are all essential in the Christmas decorating. On the ceiling, wound around green garlands, around windows, draped alongside Nordic white hearts and stars.

I'm so pleased to have found the time to make this mini Christmas book. On the last day of school,after I had got home, I decided I wanted to write down our Christmas traditions and oddities. We have only recently started to have Christmas at home, just us three and now we find that we are much more relaxed and can chill out watching a DVD or if we don't want to, not eat sprouts for dinner.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

No to sprouts!

This household is a no sprout zone, except for the sprout racing after dinner.

They came one year in our crackers and it's become a tradition after dinner to race them around the dining room table.

This year I am making my own crackers with a cracker kit that I bought last year and never used.  I have bought some lottery tickets and need to make some hats.  Maybe a dare or two?  What do you think?

Just to answer a few of you that have asked for video evidence regarding my dancing.....there isn't any, will never be video evidence.  You will just have to be reassured by myself that it did happen, I was good and I made some of the boys dance with me (well one as this one had a resigned look on his face and the others ran when they saw me coming).  The girls just looked embarrassed and laughed!!!

Tuesday, 20 December 2011


When we first set up our home, our decorations were very chic and had a colour scheme.....well it was the 80's.

But now we prefer a multicoloured kitsch dream.  Don't ask me why our tastes have changed, maybe it's our interests and hobbies.  Maybe we just like to be different.  I know I like it when people ask 'What do you have on top of your Christmas tree?' (because they do don't they?) and i reply 'Oh, a glittery, purple leaping deer'.  Although the deer is at the top, Rob has stuck on the very tip, a tiny feathered robin this year.

There are dogs with ruffs and tutus, burgers, fries and glitter balls, sledging snowmen, jewel coloured glass stars, angels reclined on clouds and chandelier baubles.  Whatever finds itself on our tree there is always to be found a little golden bell (from a lindst chocolate reindeer) and a iridescent bauble, inscribed with gold pen 'Roberts 1st Christmas'

Monday, 19 December 2011

It's all about the holly

There is a never ending quest to find holly with berries for my Christmas Wreath.  In the lead up to Christmas I can be seen scouring the hedgerows for evidence of berries.  We do have a couple of holly hedges nearby but the council cut them back in the autumn so all the berries are cut off.

We used to troop off to the woods searching and come back empty handed.  Until last year we found a bush on our doorstep that produced berries.  So this year it was literally a minutes walk away, armed with scissors and plastic bag.  I also cut some nice long lengths of ivy to weave around the wreath too.

I know it is only the third day of my mini series (a sort of JYC mini style) but I am enjoying it immensely.  Knowing that I have plenty of time to make the pages, some gorgeous My Minds Eye papers and a supply of pre made bottle tops really help. Have you noticed the Dymo tape titles.  I used the strips of paper on the bar code section of the papers and then either sanded or inked the letters to stand out.  Another thrifty idea was using the packaging page that shows you all the designs in mini version that comes in the set of papers.  I used a circle die to cut the paper and popped them inside my squidged bottletops.

Tomorrow gets a bit kitsch....

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Festive Bakes

Page two of my mini festive book is all about Festive Bakes.  Early preparation is key when it comes to baking for Christmas.  It varies year to year to what gets made but you can be sure there will be a mince pie or two.  This year I used a Jamie Oliver recipe and made my own 'Whisky and Walnut' sweet mincemeat.  It was incredibly easy that I wished I had made it in previous years.....tastes good too.

He he, see my nosey kitsch doggie peeping over the top?

I also made a Christmas cake this year, Tropical Rum so no manky marzipan and icing to be done.  It would of been rude not to taste the dark rum with coke and we found that we actually quite liked it.  So much so we had to buy another bottle...hic!

Nigel had been hankering after Gingerbread Men recently so I made a batch of them too.  Unfortunately my legendary icing skills came to the forefront again and they ended up with very demonic faces...

It's all about holly tomorrow, so stay warm and see you then.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Festive Traditions, Oddities and Kitsch

Now schools out for the festive period, I can run my mini series of 'Festive Traditions, Oddities and Kitsch' in the run up to Christmas.

Here's my first mini scrapbook page......The Glittering Season.....

Squidged bottle tops and mini doily's, distressed with brown ink. Staples, string and old sheet music.

If you are wondering how to get an even squidge of your bottle them through a Big Shot or similar machine.

Another page tomorrow:)

Friday, 16 December 2011

Big box, small box....

Oh poor neglected blog......I'm back! After strutting my stuff at the end of term disco, doing the Superman, Conga and Big box, small box (which I particularly rocked at) I finally have some craft/blog time.
So whats new? I'm joining in the Project 365, photo a day for starters where I am going to take photos entirely on my itouch and upload monthly using the Project 365 app. Should be simples:) Over on Suzie's blog who is hosting the 375 challenge she has asked us to share some pics of our Crimbo trees. Another great app that I have used for this is a collage app using Pic Collage. Here's my freaky dogs with ruffs and tutus, santa in a spaceship and general kitsch:)

Sunday, 11 December 2011

My week in pictures

Clear frosty day shadows, furry warm boots, gingerbread baking, fair argyle wool socks, broken necks, found snowflake happiness, Christmas lights....

Thursday, 8 December 2011

It's all in the prep...

At last after a week of squashing bottle tops, cutting, sticking, spraying, heating and glittering, the prep was done and the tags ready.


Finally I could assemble my Christmas cards.  I don't know about you but I do find it hard to come up with ideas for seasonal cards.  Until I took inspiration from these Tim Holtz, 12 days of Christmas tags.

A couple squidged bottletops,smeared with stickles,a few Bo Bunny paper embellishments and these vintage style free printable downloads helped finish my Tim stylie cards.

But look.....Decemeber....that's not right.  So I stuck a star over it later on.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Last week in pictures....

What with the festive season jobs getting in the way, my week in pictures comes a day late.
A couple of frosty mornings with lovely red sky, cosy toes (my favourite position after a long day), walking to school on a strike day (so jeans were allowed), Christmas lights, seasonal lattes, new festive accessories, St Albans Cathedral and special memories.....

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Storytelling Sunday

Over on Sian's blog 'From high in the Sky' it's Storytelling Sunday.  I have tried to join in as much as possible this year and this month I want to share a story that is a bit christmassy, a little sentimental but also joyful.

Pull up your chair, curl up under the blanket and I will begin.

This is the story of a strong, determined lady who had a heart of gold and despite outliving two husbands one of which she nursed through cancer and being herself housebound later in life still had a positive,cheery disposition.  

This lady was my Nan and Great Gran to my son.

I have fond memories of staying with my Nan in the summer holidays.  Going to work with her in the pub kitchen, walking home from the village as she didn't have enough money for the bus as she had treated me to a chocolate desert in Sainsbury's, and her ringleting my hair (Violet Elizabeth style) with her old fashioned metal ringlet curlers.

Later in life when I had my own son she adored his visits and understood the modern life when hers was so different. 

That was my Nan, dearly loved and missed since her death.  So I was deeply touched and felt quite sentimental when I discovered that my son had lit a candle in her memory when he visited St Albans Cathedral where he was drawing the inside for his college coursework.  

I felt bad though as I had just berated him for not actually drawing anything as he had forgotten to take his sketch we revisited today.  I lit a candle and remembered these memories while he sketched.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Glittering season

Hello there, I am pleased to announce that today at school the glittering season began. Most of the glitter was on them, the table, the chairs and the floor but the kids do like a bit of bling.....and so do I. I met the teen in town for a seasonal Starbucks late afternoon today and also bought some Christmas headgear to add to my collection that I wear to school. After seeing lots of pretty seasonal light photos on Pinterest and various blogs this week I wanted to take some of my own. This was the best I could do......well our town centre Christmas lights are a bit pathetic. I will try again at the weekend when we visit St Albans (the teen needs to draw inside the cathedral).....their lights are much better. Just have to try not to feel like a berk taking random photos in public first.