Monday, 23 July 2012

The summer starts here...

Oh what a difference a little sunny weather makes. The first week of the summer holidays has started well, the hubby took me to the Vintage Emporium for an afternoon of rummaging. I actually bought a few treasures this time round.....I was all excited at my buys. We take the country road route to the Emporium, it looked so pretty with blue skies and swaying grasses along the roadside. Off to the big smoke tomorrow for a little culture...

Friday, 20 July 2012

...and relax.

Phew! I made it to the end of term, boy I need a break.  I'm looking forward to lots of this...

Plenty of this...

and a little of this...

Oh, I'm so looking forward to get stuck into some serious crafting.

I have been enjoying getting messy with paints and sprays recently.  The middle photo shows a canvas that is a work in progress.  It currently looks quite different from this.  I'm not sure where I am going with it as I do tend to just start and add splashes of paint etc randomly as I go.  Using different ideas I have seen in magazines or on line.

I also have these mini canvases on the go.  I used the same idea of covering them as the 'take flight' post I previously posted.

I started by covering the canvas in Gesso to give a good base for the sprays.  Then I sprayed three different Cosmic Shimmer Sprays on a craft mat and sprayed with water...

Then I dipped and dabbed the canvas side down into the spray...

I did this a few times, dabbing with kitchen roll when a more subtle effect was needed.  Leave to dry between applications or use a heat gun if you are impatient... 

Stamp black script, butterflies, a quote and add butchers string...

It looks like the weather forecast will be good tomorrow and Sunday....sun is on it's way....yay!  I may finally get to wear my 'cupcake dress'.  I'm off to buy some new watercolour pencils this weekend.  I want some good quality, soft leaded pencils that blend easily....any suggestions?

Whatever you are doing this weekend, enjoy!

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Take flight...

Things have been tough round here recently....really tough.

The past seven months haven't been pleasant. We have had the threat of redundancy hanging over us and then the stress of facing unemployment and the job hunting that goes with it.  We bared the death of immediate family and tried to pick up the pieces as best a small family could.

Yeah, it's not been a great start to the year... but...things are changing.

A new job is on the horizon, the summer holidays are near....time  to be creative ....therapy for the soul.

Supplies: cheapie Wilkinsons canvas, Guesso, Cosmic Shimmer Sprays, black script stamping, Big and Juicy stamped butterflies, beaded wire , Paperchase  butterfly and sequins.
The canvas was decorated by spraying Cosmic Shimmer on a craft mat, spraying with water and then dabbing the canvas into the diluted sprays.

Take flight...

Wednesday, 11 July 2012


Ahoy there!

Here on the Good ship Little Blue Shed it's all go.  Counting down the days to the end of term with a hive of school activity. I'm trying to fit in a Cycling Training Course for the year 6 children this week amongst the fun runs, secondary school visits and of course our great British summer weather.  We have only been soaked once this week but I'm sure it is going to rain on Friday which is assessment day for my young cyclists. Looking forward to that then.

So apart from the general mayhem that are the final weeks at school I have been mostly Art Journalling.  I seem to of found my style that mostly consists of drawing the image one night, colouring with watercolour pencils and finishing off with a little stamping another night.

I have also been a guest designer over on Sian's blog 'High in the Sky' while she is away cruising the high seas hence the sea related banter today.

I was a bit stumped with the theme 'Come sail with me' until I stumbled on some old naughty sailor calender girl pictures I had saved from a previous year.  I stuck with the nautical theme of red, white and blue and made a couple of saucy sailor girl cards.

Oh well, an early night for me tonight as all that cycling (and talking) has taken it's toll on me (it doesn't help when you find out your cycling training assistant was born in the 80's and you were born in the 60's...late 60's I may add).  But after a nice long sleep I'm hoping there will be life in the old bird yet:)

Sunday, 1 July 2012

A bready post...

As luck would have it I am ready to share my bready post on the day that it Sian's Storytelling Sunday.  So today I have a tale or two to share, a bread recipe and a few bready photos...

The other week I shared with you my,some of you thought wrongly, weird sandwich choice.

Fish finger and mushy pea sandwich with gherkins on the side.

WHAT?.....did I hear you right?  Yep, with gherkins on the side. Now here I start my little fishy tale.  It's not amazingly funny but it's a little 'in' joke that Nigel and I have shared together  over the last 24 years of our marriage.

When we first married I worked in a travel agency and Nigel worked in a local office.  Because of the shop hours it meant that I worked most Saturdays and took a day off in the week.  On these days Nigel used to come home for lunch.  Now I have never liked making lunch, it bores me rigid.  Aren't sandwiches boring when had daily?  A-ha! I thought, He loves fish fingers but at the time I wasn't a fan so we hardly ate them.  'I'll make a fish finger sandwich' 'Won't he be impressed'.  But when Nigel saw it he burst out laughing.  He had never seen such a sandwich in his life and thought it very odd.  I was a little deflated from his reaction until he tried them and declared them a triumph of bready genius.  

Since then, I have been seduced by fish fingers and enjoy them too.  So the other week, we all had them, even the teen.  Now Robert and I both like mushy peas and I thought that instead of just serving them on a plate, why not put them in the sandwich?  Genius!  A little messy to eat perhaps but then so is a fried egg sandwich.....oh that's another story.  Both Nigel and Rob declined and stared at me in amazement at my combo.  Don't knock it until you have tried it I say:)

Aww, sweet bready memories.  While making this layout it reminded me of when I lived at home and was in my first job.  I was employed on a Youth Training Scheme, earnt a minimum wage but learnt all about office work.  I worked in a pharmaceutical factory where I typed, filed and collected orders from the pharmaceutical sciencey techy department.  This is where I met a great group of fellow training scheme employees.  We shared a lot together... first aid training, an outward bound week in Derbyshire where we built rafts, fire safety training, drunken nights out and our lunchtimes in the canteen.  My mum made my sandwiches every day (thanks mum).  Hand cut white bloomer bread, thick and crusty..... emphasises on the thick.  I was ribbed rotten about my 'doorstop' sandwiches....happy days:)

Enough bready memories shared for now so what about I give you a little bready recipe.  It's a family favourite here.  Mine too because it's low fat, quick and uses up your crusts...

Bread Pudding
(not to be confused with bread and butter pudding)

First take your crusts (I save mine up in the freezer until I have enough) and break them up into smaller pieces.  You can use white or brown or a mixture.

Next, soak them in cold water for a few minutes. Squeeze out the water (the more you squeeze the drier the finished pudding will become)

Add hand falls of raisins or currents, a few teaspoons of spices such as Nutmeg and Cinnamon and mix together.

Flatten out in a parchment lined flat tray.

Dot with butter and sprinkle a little sugar over the top.

Bake on 180 degrees for approx 30 to 45 minutes.

Once browned on top, cool and slice into squares.
Because this is very moist from the water it will only keep for a few days.  If you want a drier pudding then squeeze out more water and have a thinner depth when flattening into the tray.

An odd recipe I know, not many ingredients, wet bread...but then that's how I roll...

Have a super Sunday and don't forget to check out Sian's other story tellers.