Monday, 22 September 2008

Birthday Boys

There are two boys in my life celebrating their birthday today (despite all my attempts to make it other wise!).

Ewan is TWO today. I can hardly believe it. Those 2 years have just flown by so fast. Here he is at the park on Saturday (while Grace was having her first swimming lesson with her instructor who is apparently "terribly bossy" (according to Grace that is)).


He got loads of fab presents including the COOLEST biker jacket (which I will try to snap some pics of at some point to post on here).


The other birthday boy is this guy:


This is my eldest nephew, Dan. He's 18 today!!

(Mrs Marmadaisy is probably now having minor apoplexy reading this as she knew Dan when he was as old as Ewan is now, so like me she is probably feeling incredibly old right about now).


I feel I should probably take this opportunity to apologise again to my nephew for that fact that he has to share his birthday with his cousin. Ewan was 11 days overdue and despite my assurances that I would not give birth on Dan's birthday he clearly had other ideas and arrived on that very day. Sorry Dan. I did try, honestly!

I have so many Shimelle's class layouts to post it's untrue, but I haven't photographed any of them so they will have to wait for another post - which may be some time as it's a mental week at work this week (Fresher's week *Shudder*), so apologies in advance for an anticipated lack of posting. I had to post this though, my baby is getting all growed up *sniff*


Thursday, 18 September 2008

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Time For The Little Hats Again. Yey :)

Some of you might remember that last year I took part in The Big Knit. This is a project run by the makers of Innocent Smoothies which raises month for Age Concern.

You can check out details of the project and download a knitting pattern here so you can make some of these:


These are little hats that fit on top of Innocent Smoothie bottles. For every bottle with a hat sold Innocent donates 50p to age concern.

They're really quick to knit up and you can have loads of fun with patterns and all sorts of pom poms and dangly bits. There's even a "Hat-of-the-Week" gallery where you can check out what other people have made.

Thanks to Michaela over at The Stash Basket for her post which reminded me about this - now I'm reminding you, so you can play along too if you like. I'm hoping to get some of these whipped up in the next few weeks.


Thursday, 11 September 2008

PIF Providence

So. Tuesday I was just piffed pipped at the post from making it onto Trashalou's Pay It Forward list (by a certain Mrs Marmadaisy, but its okay, I can live with losing out to someone who knows far too many of my teenage secrets ;)).

I was a little disappointed because the whole PIF thing sounds like a whole lot of fun - if only having other people to send my dodgy lovingly made crafty ideas too. I'm pretty sure my kids and relatives are sick of handmade items!

Today's prompt for the Learn Something New Class was all about, you've guess it, Pay It Forward. So I thought I would take it as divine providence and set about my own PIF exercise.

Here's how it will work. I will send some random crafty handmade-by-me item to the first 3 people who comment on this post. The items will be sent within the next 12 months (I'm not even kidding myself that I would get to them in any less than that, but if they're spaced out over a year I think I can manage it!). When you receive your item you then chose three people to send items that you've made to. Did that make sense? Clear as mud I'm sure!

If you fancy joining in then go ahead and leave a comment - but remember you'll need to be willing to make and pass on three items of your own when your PIF item arrives from me.

**OMG! I hope people actually comment on this or I'm going to feel like a very sad and lonely blogger with absolutely no craft friends whatsoever. *sniff* ;)

On the topic of Learn Something New Everyday. Here are my Sept 8th and 9th layouts:




Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Pushed For Time.

It's 4.30pm.

I will be running manically out of the door leaving work at 4.45pm. On the dot. Because today has been a crappy day. And I want to go home. There will be wine in my future. Possibly chilled. Definitely consumed. That gives me about 7 minutes to write this. Because I have to leave time for putting my coat on and nipping to the loo before I go.

Here's what I got up to last night:


September 7th layout for the Learn Something New Everyday Class. I love the Eggman's new hoodie :)



Very cute little drawsting bags for Miss Gracie's ballet and tap shoes. So easy to make and superbly practical. Love those too.

I love going home from work even more though.


Monday, 8 September 2008

Extra Curricular Activites (aka I'm a Soccer Mom now!)

We’ve had a busy old week over at Casa de PTC. Grace has had a hectic first week at her new school, what with mini Olympics in the playground, learning things from the “learning board”, story time, snack time, computer time and chasing boys around the playground on scooters (not sure how I feel about that little titbit of information! LOL) it’s been a tiring week for her.

The fun didn’t end there though. Saturday was her first ballet and tap lesson at a local dance academy. We’ve been signed up since last March waiting for a place for her and the school called me in the summer to say there was an opening (some of the bigger girls were moving up classes) and she could start at the beginning of September. She was a little bit nervous going in but then she spotted a girl from her play group (who has gone to a different primary school from her) so she was happy to have a friend to go in with. Sophie was very helpful in showing her the ropes and they spent most the class paired up. She was able to loan both ballet and tap shoes from the school for her first lesson, but of course was so enthused when she came out that she wanted her own. I’d sworn I was going to wait a few weeks before falling into the trap of buying all the gear, but from her reaction I think it’s safe to say that she’ll be keeping her interest up. Thank goodness for Grandparents I say, other wise I’d have been stuck with the whole of a hefty equipment bill. As it is we’ve all bought bits and pieces, so that’s easier on the pocket. She has a leotard, socks, tap shoes and ballet shoes, I just need to pick her up a skirt and cardigan and she’s good to go. I’ve even whipped up a crocheted bun cover (I forgot to take photos of it though, I’ll do that when I take pics of her all togged up in her dance gear). It took me back though; I remember bun covers being “in” when I was little. LOL.

Other than chasing round in my new “Soccer Mom” shoes (although she’s not actually doing soccer, and I don’t drive a range rover, but you know what I mean ;)) I’ve actually managed to keep up with the Learn Something New Class (no one is more shocked than me, let me tell you). Here’s my layouts for Sept 3-6:

September 3rd: Gracie’s first day of school – harder on me than it was on her!! (hidden journaling under the flowery panel:


September 4th: I don’t do much cover on reception at work (only about 30 minutes a week) but it’s taken my 12 months to finally be able to put a call through from the switchboard without cutting it off!!


September 5th: Rather tragically the change in seasons for me is always linking to the change in TV programming. Clear indication that I watch WAY too much telly.


September 6th: Bits of Gracie’s dance uniform in the photo. I just hope she doesn’t decide to take up jazz and modern aswell!!


I know what I’m scrapping for tonight’s page – I just need to snap a quick pick of Egg when I get in.

I have a couple of ballet related crafty projects brewing in my brain at the minute, including a drawstring bag for her ballet pumps, a larger one for tap shoes, and a tote back to carry all her gear round in. Some of the kids had official RAD (Royal Academy of Dance) pump bags but as soon as I saw them my crafty brain kicked into gear with a “I could make that really easily” moment. I’m sure you’ve all had those. If I can get my LSNE layout finished quickly tonight I might drag the sewing machine out and see what’s in my fabric stash. Well, there’s no Big Brother to watch now, what the hell else am I going to do??


Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Sept 2nd Layout: A Rare And Most Excellent Occurance.

Today's page for the Learn Something New Everyday class (well, technically yesterday's page, but that's just too confusing) kind of makes me sound like I'm auditioning for a Bill and Ted movie. Most excellent!

Kendo recently discovered a band after hearing one of their tracks on the radio. They're called Cage The Elephant and their debut album is indeed most excellent. If you visit their My Space page you can hear a couple of tracks off the album, for free. Hurrah.

The thing learnt today then? Every now and then you discover an album where every song is awesome. A rare and most excellent occurance.


I'm thinking this 6x6 page per day might actually be doable. Hope that hasn't jinxed it!


And So It Begins.....

I can't believe it, but it's finally here. Today is Gracie's first day at primary school. I'm not quite sure how that happened, or where the time went. It only seems like yesterday she was making her early and unexpected arrival. Time flies.

Of course I had to have a bit of a photography session this morning to record the moment. She looks so grown up in her uniform *sniff*


Of course, trying to get her not to crack up laughing is hard work... this is serious business Miss Gracie! Pay attention!



As with all photo sessions, she got sick of it well before I did.

"Muuummmmmmmm, pack it innnnnnnnnnn!!!"




She's only in for half days for a couple of weeks, so I'm off to collect her now and find out what fun stuff she's been up to her first day.


Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Sept 1st Layout - Trust What You Think

Today was the day for the first of the layouts in Shimelle's Learn Something New Everyday class.

So, what did I "learn" today? Well, today I realised (although possibly not for the first time) that I tend to overthink and second guess myself when I start classes like this, or when I try to record my thoughts in other ways (like blogging or in my failed attempts at journal keeping). I don't know why I do this, or maybe I do know. Maybe it's because I worry too much about what other people will think of what I do, which is entirely the wrong thing to be thinking when it comes to stuff like this. Today's lesson for me then is that I need to stop second guessing myself, that there is no right or wrong when it comes to recording my own thoughts. I need to trust what I think and not worry about what other people will think. Here's my layout:


I'm still slightly reeling from the fact that I actually managed to do something crafty today. It's been a while (I don't really think the name labels count - do you?). Hopefully my scrapping mojo will remain present for the rest of the month! Fingers crossed, eh?


Monday, 1 September 2008

I Love The Smell Of Autumn In The Morning

Can anyone else feel it? The change of seasons just hovering there on the brink? I love Autumn, so I can't wait and I definitely had that Autumney feel setting off to work this morning. There's a definite "back to school" vibe in the air. I can't wait until the nights start to draw in. Autumn is the best season ever!

Kendo would probably disagree with my assessment above. Mostly because he collected this at the weekend:

It didn't come with the kids and the haggard looking wife (he had to provide those himself ;)). Autumn isn't so much fun on one of these - wet leaves tend to make the back end want to go some place that is else. Which is a bit scary. I don't think even that will stop him behaving like a kid with a new toy though.

The two of us managed to get out for a spin on the bike together at the weekend (after dropping the kids off at the MILs for a bit). It was FAB! I'd forgotten quite how good bike rides are for blowing the cobwebs out of your brain. I felt 18 again - well, at least I did until I tried to get off, then I felt about 75! When we first started dating (about 14 years ago -eek!) we went everywhere on Kendo's bike (a GPZ500, with a broken monoshock. Suspension's for wimps I tell you!). The new bike is the same engine size and has a similar feel so it really did take me back to those years. A crazy rush of memories, especially when we started heading up to where one of our friends used to live (a journey we used to make a couple of times a week). Total memory overload. Fantastic. I was a bit worried that I'd totally mess up as it's such a long time since I rode pillion, but it's just like (sitting behind someone) riding a bike. You never forget. Hopefully there'll be many more chances to escape for a couple of hours and enjoy some reminiscing.

It's amazing that we actually managed to get around anywhere the last two days without either of us bumping into something. We both went to get new contact lenses on trial a month back and this was the first week of new lenses. Kendo put his in first on Saturday and then I went to put mine in. We both spent two days bemoaning the fact that the lenses we were wearing weren't comfy and that they didn't seem to be the right strength. Only last night did it occur to Kendo that maybe he'd opened the wrong packet when he put his in. Yup. You guessed it, we've been walking round in each other's contact lenses for two days! No wonder I couldn't bloody see anything! What did we do? Well, easy. Took them out, gave them a damn good clean and swapped pairs. Is that a bit disgusting? I think maybe it is, but hey, we've been together for 14 years, what's a bit of eyeball liquid between husband and wife? (should I pause while you throw up a little in your mouth?).

I still haven't done anything remotely crafty around here. It seems I get all geared up in the mornings and while I'm at work but by the time I get home and put the kids to bed I've lost all motivation to do anything other than veg and read (my book arrived finally btw, and damn good it was too :)). This class starts today though:

and it's a page to do everyday. I'm making a 6x6 album for this though which I think should be a manageable size to keep up with. September will tell I suppose.
On the topic of which - I can't believe it's September already! I'm pretty sure the last time I looked it was March. What happened there? Gracie is starting "big school" on Wednesday! I can't believe my little girl is going into reception. She looks so grown up in her uniform (we had a big of a dress rehearsal last night) *sniff* I'm sure there'll be some blogging about that on Wednesday morning.
Oh... and I lied a bit. I have done something crafty, well, if you count sewing in 14 name labels into various items of school clothing. Joy!
Right. Off to do some work for a change.