Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I got tagged!

by the amazing Sharon Kenealy. Now if you haven't checked out her blog yet you so way have to. Talk about an amazingly talented person! Sharon definitely fits that bill! And generous! So anyway you have to make sure you check out her blog. http://artisticmusings.typepad.com/artistic_musings/

Okay I have to list 6 weird things! Okay there are way more than 6 things that I could list here but I only have to pick 6 so how bout I don't pick the really weird ones and frighten everyone off!

  1. I absolutely hate text talk used in every day situations! You know those absolutely brain dead abbreviations that are used by seemingly all! Well all except me! Thats why my text messages always have the correct spelling. It bugs the boogies out of me otherwise!
  2. I would prefer to have nothing or only socks on my feet if I could get away with it. Unfortunately that can't happen!
  3. I spend way too much time getting over critical while proofing photos or pages/other art I create and am trying really really hard to just let it go and move on!
  4. I simply can not sleep without locking the door! I have to make sure all (entry) doors are locked, it freaks me completely out otherwise!
  5. I don't stress at all when my husband goes racing (motorbikes) but get worried that some idiot car driver will take him out while on a ride! Sounds stupid I know but at least I know that when he's racing everyone else is going the same way as he is, on the whole they are all experienced riders and wouldn't intentionally run him over if he came off. It's funny really I know he is an experienced rider and doesn't go looking for trouble but when he's riding on the road its all the other vehicles and their drivers that don't have a clue about bikes that I worry about.
  6. I get really bugged with constant droning or intrusive noise! It bugs the boogies out of me that people (mostly young) that think we all want to hear their brainless bass beat noise, I will never ever think of that noise as music! And noise like the constant drone of the diggers and road crew that seem to be permanently based outside our home at the moment! And why do they see fit to start their drone at 7 in the morning and work all the way through to 4.30 or 5 o'clock?

Uhhh, now who to tag? Thats the question, okay how about

Rach (Mrs Femka herself),

Jenny (even if for some strange reason I can't get onto your blog at the moment, dang I wanted to come back and catch up with your holiday too!),

Geyla (okay I gotta try catch up with you for a good long girly chat soon)

Sharon, (Life of Scraps another great blog to read)

Uhh thats about it at the moment, the drone is starting to get to me again! Dang when will they ever finish??????

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Some pages, and assorted other chatter

First up the page I created for Andrea Burns CT call, didn't get picked but I won anyway, got another page created! Everything except the Circle stitches (Christine Smith) and Staples (Sharon Kenealy) is Andrea Burns.

Next up both girlies with their hair call curly, well as curly as these two are going to get without perm!

I have had so much fun creating these. I took these photos of my daughters after curling their super straight hair round heated rollers, givng them just a hint of curly curls.

Who could not love working with Lisa's fantastic, beautiful mess. I layered her blossoms, adding shadows as I went, finally adding the brad and quote. And managed to add far more to these pages than I typically do, but boy did I have fun and yes I do rather like them!

Burnt Edge overlay - Michelle Coleman from Joshua's Day in the Sun kit
Everything else - Lisa Whitney - A Beautiful Mess kit

Next up is something I created for the Designer Digitals Guest CT call and then changed my mind about entering it. Fearing I guess it was way to over the toply simple!
Part of the rules where that everything, with the exception of fonts had to be from Designer Digitals, and this met that rule, so as you can guess everything is from Designer Digitals, some free, some not!

Entering it or not, I still came out the winner with another layout that I love!

Now we went off for some family time yesterday, and went to visit Godley Head. Don't ask me where my head was at cause I struggled up and down the hill and through the tunnel!
Struggled because I wasn't wearing decent shoes for the hike, thats what I mean by I don't know where my head was at. I mean we had talked about going to Godley Head but duh on me didn't think to put some boots on, and Chris didn't think to ask why I was wearing those shoes!The tunnel, oh my that was not something I ever intend to repeat! I was brave once but thats it for me! No more, never again!

If you like my sketches take a trip over to the Cherpea Designs blog and pick up some new ones, and while you are there check out the little competition I have running till the 9th. Its not hard trust me.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Busy bees live here

Well it seems that way anyway. I found a nest of bumble bees the other day while loading more of the huge grass clipping pile into the green waste wheelie bin and that kinda just sparked off another round of busy here.

I am teaching classes in March at the local college in their adult education programme, so having to get worksheets/supply lists/examples all organised and ready in preparation for it. So have been busy with that, got three canvases and one monogram done, still have a scrappers technique book to organise yet and perhaps a couple more monograms to be on the safe side.

Though that in itself is causing more work, I am having a heck of a time sourcing some particular letters, and though I know of someone who makes them, it appears he is not selling them at the moment. So me being me I thought okay I am going to give this a try myself! So yesterday went and got some MDF to try my hand out at it. Now to print out some letter templates to mark onto the MDF to cut around. Hopefully its not to miserably hard using a jigsaw, since this is something I have yet to experience.

Painting, well we progressed nicely last weekend and completely finished the ceiling! Mind it took five coats to do it! DRATS! Okay so after getting two coats on and having strange marks showing through, (remember we have hardboard lining our kitchen) that we decided that a coat of primer/sealer was called for, and after that went on the two top coats looked fantastic. Next time and yes there is going to be a next time I will make sure that the sealer/primer is the first coat on.

Chris is off to Europe at the end of next week so instead of doing more on the kitchen we are going to have some family time. The kitchen will wait, its not going anywhere and maybe just maybe by the time he returns all the door frames and the window will be done and dusted!

School starts again for the year in 10 sleeps time! The countdown to going back to school is rather bittersweet actually, Anya is so excited to go back to school, she is getting just a bit bored and wants to get back to school. She's so excited to meet her new teacher and to play with her friends as well. We have managed to catch up with a few of them over the holidays, but its not quite the same.

And with the new school year starting it also starts the countdown to Dannielle starting school. October is going to roll round rather quickly I think and before I know it I will have two school girls! I have to admit that I am at a loss as to where the last few years have gone, we bought Dannielle home here from the hospital and now, here she is looking forward to going to school.

Okay I was going to add some more digi pages that I have done but its getting late in the morning and I haven't got as much done as I should so I will come back later and add them then.

Friday, January 19, 2007

All the photos on this page for Anya's book I took on Christmas Day. Isn't she purty?

Supply List
Duplicates 1fish2fish combo set by Rachael Giallongo and Heather Roselli to be released 25/1/2007 at the digichick
All papers, flowers, staples etc Fee Jardine - Chocolate Cupcake kit at the digichick

And this one was for a quote challenge on a board I visit. This quote jumped out at me and hollered you have to do something with me, NOW! not later but right now!This is the finished result! I really do kinda love this one!

Supplies:-Cardstock - Cheryl Peacock

Flowers & Beaded Wire - Michelle Coleman (Chelseys Dream Kit) www.scrapartist.com

Font - CK Maternal

Photography - Cheryl Peacock

Spain, Portugal and France

All countries that Chris will be visiting on a whirlwind factory tour for a couple of weeks in about ten days time now. A slightly unexpected trip, there had been talk of him going prior to this, but then he wasn't two of them have to travel for work and it looked for a while like the guy that took over Chris' old job was going to be the second traveller, now its not, now its Chris. He rang the cellphone yesterday while Mum P, the girls and I were in town and asked if I minded him going?

It's funny actually I have had several people comment "oh you must envy him, travelling to all those fun places!" Yes and no would be my answer there.
Okay yes it's cool that he gets to go to all these really neat places, but he's going with co-worker, not someone he loves, he's going to have extremely long days, no doubt the crappiest flights ever going the wrong way round the world and ending up with the longest night ever all in the name of supposedly saving the company some money on the airfares.
Which if they sat down and worked it out would be more expensive in the long run! Which gets me to another point, why would a large company put their travel plans through only one person in the company, why not let the people travelling decide which is best for them, most people will find the cheapest and the easiest on them way to travel. Okay obviously you give them a $ limit but wouldn't that be so much easier in the long run? For everyone!

Oh and I have to tell you I did survive yesterday, left here at about 10.30 to go round to pick up Mum P to go into town for a bit and help her do some errands in there. And when we got back the contractors weren't there! No noise and relatively little disturbance to the ground, well considering the size pipe they had to put through. Though they will be back today to finish off in front of our house and to cross over the main road. Then they go on further up the street bugging other neighbours instead of me.

Have some work to do now, and some photos to download, will I promise be back later with the layouts I promised you yesterday.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Oh my its been a while again

Ever so sorry to leave you all hanging, I promise to at least TRY and do better from now.

Well this past Sunday was a trying one for us, many of you know we are the proud owners of an older home, one that when we moved in had many interesting colour choices on the walls, floors, ceilings etc. Well we have rectified three of those rooms, (the bathroom, the girls room and the playroom/spareroom). Our room wasn't too dated and is still in fairly good nick so its just going to have to wait. However the kitchen really was starting to drive us both batty.

I mean in whose eyes would a light moss green walls with dirty apricot cupboard doors and that hideous 70's old gold carpet ever go together? Well that is all about to change, well it started on Sunday, the sanding! Uhhhhh this is after getting everything off the walls, and off the surfaces that didn't need to be there and some that did need to be there but we will just have to work around that till we get this kitchen of ours done.

This is going to be a bit of a temporary measure also in the fact that in a few years time (i'm hoping 5, while Chris thinks more like 10. Yeah well in truth probably somewhere in between) we will be able to redo the back of the house, new bathroom, laundry, toilet, internal access from another double garage, and in turn move the bathroom from where it is now increasing our kitchen space two fold. But in the mean time there was no longer anyway I/we could live with the hideousness that is our kitchen.

Sanding old houses is never fun! Uhh must have something to do with all the lead they used to add to paint etc, that and the fact that our kitchen is lined with hardboard not gib! The easy way would have been to re-gib the whole thing but unfortunately that was not going to be an option so sand it we did! Or should I say Chris sanded the whole dang ceiling, (I kept spinning like a top standing on the table with nothing to hold onto!) while I did the walls! Or as far as I could reach up them without standing on anything which means of course that there is still the top quarter of the walls to do yet.

And the plastering, uhh poor Chris has seen more gaps in our house than we realised we had! Nothing at all seems to be straight which I guess considering the house was built somewhere between 19?? and 1945 is not too bad. At least this one has withstood the test of time with only a few sags and bags here and there. Unlike some of the newer leaky homes!

So its been a case of waiting for plaster to dry to be sanded off and then replastered before we can paint the sealer coat on. The chap at the hardware store I got the paint from swore by it, said that it would help us with paint stickability no end. What he doesn't yet realise is that if it doesn't he is going to be told in no uncertain terms about it.

And talking about giving store workers/contractors a peice of my mind we have contractors outside our boundary laying sewerage pipes up to the new subdivision at the other end of our road. Uhhhhhh what really bugged the snot out of me is that our street address is not on the street they are working on so they didn't see fit to come and tell us that this would be occuring!

Duh how many marbles does it take to figure out if there is one letterbox (street address) on a street but you can see three houses on said street and our dang drive way that the people in these other houses may like to know about said earthworks as well.
Poor bugger looked absolutely terrified when I went marching along there yesterday asking why I hadn't been told about this as it was going to affect us as well. Yeah he had every right to be terrified, I was spitting mad, okay so its the council land and he is working for the council but do we ever see the council come and mow the verge? HUH not dang likely!
So as soon as the girls wake up after their late night last night we are going to depart our house for the day, the noise they are creating is enough to drive me batty! It was bad enough yesterday when they were down outside our neighbours house!

I will come back in a bit and load some of my recent layouts up, but I need to go track down something to eat right now.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

2002 - a very busy year

Okay so 2002 was a very very busy year but I so didn't want the layout to celebrate it to be overly busy or cluttered, just not my style. I did want it to have some impact though and I think the beautiful red and black with just the merest hint of white does that.

Paper - Lisa Whitney (Peppermint Paper Pack) (blog freebie) designer at www.ScrapArtist.com
Stitching - Christine Smith (Rather Ragged Stitches) www.thedigichick.com
Chipboard Alphas - Sharon Kenealy http://artisticmusings.typepad.com/artistic_musings/
Doodle - Dawn Moore
Sketch Template - Cheryl Peacock @ cherpea designs http://cherpea-designs.blogspot.com/

Monday, January 08, 2007

Oh my poor neglected blog ...

Okay so we have been a bit busy here the last few days, well 6 to be precise. See Chris had to go back to work today so we got stuck in and got stuff done around here.

So wht have we been up to? Well we sorted out paint colour for our kitchen and managed to get $$$ off it, yippeee! Our kitchen is lined with hardboard, and having been created in the 60s? they had added those wonderfully decorative 1/2 round mouldings over the joins instead of plastering it! Uhhh colour that butt ugly, so anyway Chris went round the other day and pulled all of the hideous stuff off! No more ugly half round moulding on our walls.

We have picked up neutral colours for the kitchen, the rest of the rooms are inspired by a paua shell so I guess you could say the kitchen is loosely inspired by the outside of the paua shell. Browns in varying shades. The hideous gold carpet that we currently have on our floor is going! Well it will as soon as I can find some cheap lino to replace it with. Who in their right mind would put carpet, and not very good carpet in a kitchen? Let alone butt ugly gold acrylic stuff!

I have more sketches done, just need to find five minutes peace to get them uploaded and the previews up at cherpea designs (have a look over in the little bar thingie to the left there for the link to the design blog). Have been scrapping too, got several layouts done, some I can't show you right now well not until I get them loaded up to the site the competition is on anyway. But I can tell you one is a layout looking back at 2002. Do you know how snotting busy I/We were in 2002. You will have to wait to see it cause you really won't believe it otherwise! I thought about adding photos to it, but I swear I would have had miniscule little thumbnails for photos if I did that or about a 10 page layout. Can you see that happening? Nah me either.

I have just completed another for a quote challenge on a board I frequent that I am really rather pleased with, might just have to submit that one to a few mags as well.
Speaking of submitting to mags, I did just that today, actually had something I really liked that mostly fit the bill so sent them off. Hey you never know, maybe just maybe a big US based mag will love my work and publish it. Well a girl can dream can't she? But I swear I am not, repeat not going to start creating layouts specially for calls. If they don't fit like they are then it don't get picked up, no skin off my nose. And I think somehow with that attitude I am actually creating great pages. Why? Cause I am simply doing it for myself, and not caring two hoots if anyone else likes it or not!

Do you remember a couple of posts back me telling you about my cleaning fit? Well it appears that dang bug lives in our house at the moment and the little bugger seems to be finding me really rather tasty cause the little ratfink keeps nibbling on me! I had a huge fit yesterday and sorted through the playroom, sorting out toys, sorting them into boxes so that the girls can actually keep their toys tidy themselves! The lounge had not escaped my notice the night before and got seriously dealt to! All the Christmas decorations went the day before that, they are all nicely tucked up in their one big box now ready and waiting for next Christmas.

So thats what has been happening here for us. Keep an eye out for those templates over at the design blog and if you are a scrapper, happy scrapping! Will be doing some more digi myself tonight then tommorrow paper scrapping with friend. Gotta sort out the classes I will be teaching in the first term too.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Camping Holidays NZ style

I found this link to a story apparently first printed by the ODT and then re printed in the New Zealand Herald.
Please make sure you don't just take a mouthful of tea/coffee/whtever before reading this and if you are anything at all like me and can possibly relate to this whole thing, go pee now!

Camping holidays - Drive for hours, wrestle with tent, ignore the rain
Monday January 01, 2007By Ben Fahy

There's nothing like using communal bathrooms with people who say, 'Yeah, nah, yeah', a lot. Now that's a holiday.

What you need

* A huge, leaky, multi-room canvas tent from the 1970s that sleeps about 20, takes about eight hours to put up, smells like mildew and, with about 100 metal poles, is heavier than Texas. The tent, which should be primarily beige or green in colour, must have an ineffective awning and exceedingly large guy ropes to trip over when nature inevitably calls in the middle of the night and the torch batteries run flat.

* More contemporary campers should invest in a newer, easily assembled, Chinese-made, synthetic dome tent that feels as though it will be blown away in anything more than a breeze and will heat up to 120C by 8am.

* Old sleeping bags with broken zips, a large supply of canned goods (loophole: beer is included in this category), a rusty metal pyramid to cook toast upon your rusty metal gas cooker, scroggin (which experts say is one of the funniest words in the English language), insect repellent that has no noticeable effect in the repelling of insects, an inflatable suede-topped airbed that typically requires daily reinflation and a dual-purpose 175g championship frisbee (for throwing and, potentially, as a surface to eat off).

* As camping in "temperate" New Zealand is usually a "summer" activity, a bilge pump is also recommended.

* A body of water, be it a stream, a creek, a lake, an ocean, a pool, or a trough, that is less than a five-minute walk from your tent (in either Jandals or bare feet). There must also be a purveyor of fine icecreams served in cones located close by.

* Aloe vera to remedy burns from toasted marshmallows and, for those of a whiter hue, the sun.
What to do

* Let Dad pack everything into the boot and/or trailer. A father's boot authority is never to be challenged, even if his chosen technique is obviously inefficient and/or potentially dangerous.

* Drive for hours (preferably with windows down). Children will ask parents to change the music every two minutes, saying "Do we have to go camping again?" Parents will say "Yes, be quiet", then sing along to Elvis or the Beatles even more loudly and/or terribly in an attempt to portray their false enthusiasm.

* After reaching the campsite, exude confidence before beginning tent erection process. Obviously, it will be impossible to refrain from making erection jokes. Confusion will soon set in, followed by frustration, then fury, as stubborn Homer-a-likes attempt to connect poles and hammer tiny pegs into rock-hard ground, regularly hitting themselves on the thumb and apologising to the young-uns for swearing so loudly.

* When tent is erected, make another joke and then set up ancient deck chairs that seem like they could either give you tetanus or snap shut at any second. Remain sedentary for as long as possible, only moving to get wet, collect fresh beverages, put the awning back up, pour more petrol on the barbecue to enhance chargrilled flavour or find children who have been wandering around the camping ground unattended for more than three hours.

* If elderly and male (this category will also include some fathers), don inappropriate Speedos, displaying your impressive and well-defined beer gut at every opportunity. Always remember that those with a tanned motor are aesthetically superior to their pale, sun-smart counterparts.

* After a winter of slipper-wearing, the soles of the feet will be soft, tender and pale. This needs to be remedied, and the only way to condition them effectively is to walk upon sharp gravel or burning hot sand, all the while making strange noises like "oooh, hot, ahhh, oooh, ahhh, sharp". Soon enough your feet will be calloused, filthy, bronzed and, most importantly, shoeless.

* If residing at a holiday camp with your family, beware of the grumpy old couple in the caravan directly behind your tent who keep complaining about the kids being too loud.
Amazingly, all caravan owners must sign a contract stating they will do everything in their power to try to stop other holidaymakers from having fun (or, for that matter, overtaking them when in transit).

* Also, try to avoid the annoying couple who keep inviting themselves around to your tent site, drinking all your beer and wine, and nudging you in the ribs with an elbow in an attempt to prompt laughter after telling another unfunny story about their last camping trip.

* If camping at one of the 120 Department of Conservation-managed sites around the country, or in a rest area on the side of the road, best of luck. But please, for the sake of your fellow free campers, try to find a toilet rather than going in the tussock just a few metres away from the picnic table.

* If camping at a New Year's "hot spot", pay no attention to the rioting, bottle throwing, vomiting and obnoxiously loud car engines of the young revellers. At this stage of the year, "quiet time" at the camping ground is oxymoronic.

* On the last day of the camping trip, allocate another eight hours to rolling up the tent so that it fits into an impossibly small bag, and, with furrowed brow, drive home hastily, safe in the knowledge that there may still be time for some proper relaxation when you arrive back at your permanent abode.

* Tell friends and associates who decided to stay within solid walls that you had a terrific time in the tent, despite having been either uncomfortable, irritable, itchy, sleep-deprived, sunburned or malnourished from the constant diet of baked beans, sizzlers, booze and double-scoop hokey-pokey ice-creams.

* Do it all again next year.

What to say

* When confusion reigns during tent erection, use the excuse: "Well, someone obviously packed it up wrong last time. No, honestly."

* Bemoan the fact that the quintessential Kiwi camping holiday is under attack from heartless, money-grubbing property developers who continue to snap up vast swathes of camping land to build oversized, sterile mansions for the wealthy. Excuse me, Camp Commandant? My fees going up to $4 a day? Pack up the tent kids, we're going somewhere that isn't quite so up-market.

* Caravan enthusiasts should say: "There's nothing I love more than hauling this big, heavy, box-like contraption around the countryside and driving at a snail's pace when the roads are at their busiest. Why stay at home over the holidays when you could take an inferior re-creation of your lounge to a small town in the middle of nowhere. Look, isn't that tiny TV cute? Oooh, watch your head now."

* If camping near a popular beach, say: "Look at all those superficial urbanites driving those fancy jetskis, drinking those fancy drinks, lounging in their fancy holiday homes and looking down on us with those fancy eyes. If only they knew how much fun it is to play Yahtzee in our mosquito-filled tent, eat Rice Bubbles with warm milk off a frisbee and use communal bathrooms with people who say 'Yeah, nah, yeah' a lot. Now that's a holiday."

* Nudist and naturalist campers should respond to fabric-embracing sceptics by saying: "The human body is a beautiful thing. We have absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. I feel so free."

* Proceed to indulge in a range of activities that make your old, baggy, wrinkled flesh wobble and bounce even more than usual, such as volleyball, tennis, trampolining or even double-dutch skipping, thus confirming the stereotype that, typically, the human bodies on display at nudist colonies are not beautiful things at all. Excessively tanned, perhaps, but not beautiful.

* If rich and/or slightly rational, say: "Well, this camping business is certainly over-rated, isn't it? Why don't you guys just come and stay in my over-sized, sterile, beach-side mansion? There's a spa pool on the deck. And I've got eight spare rooms. We can take my boat."
Who are you to disagree?


January 2, 2007

Well first up I hope everyone had a great new years. Ours was very quiet, didn't even make it to midnight!

Must be seriously getting old! Either that or I was coming down with the dreaded bug that caught up with me last night! Chris was so concerned he wanted to find a Dr for me, take me to the hospital whatever it took!

Instead what he got to his smart comment was, I need more Ajax Spray and Wipe go and see if the shop is open (small village on New Years day, what was I thinking?) or go and ask your Mum if she has any. Okay what are you still doing here very shortly after followed by a go on hurry up please.

In case you haven't guessed it was a cleaning bug that bit me! And those of you who know me know that I have cleaning issues! Okay so I don't have a filthy dirty house, I do have a clean house its just well lived in okay!

Anyway in order of doing the dang things.

Bathroom cleaned, that means walls, bath, handbasin, toilet, cupboards, mirrors, even hands and knees for the ruddy lino! including behind the bog!

End of bathroom nightmare!

Kitchen cleaned, walls, surfaces decluttered, table returned from the pile of crud tht had been thrown on it and polished! Chairs polished! rubbish bin cleaned.

End of kitchen nightmare!

Laundry cleaned, freezer and washing machine wiped down, floor found under a huge pile of washing! all washing shoved through machine ready to be hung out tommorrow. Watch out world if its raining tomorrow.

End of Laundry nightmare!

Sit down at computer and clean out files no longer needed! Yay that wasn't quite so terrible!

Anyway I think there must be a layout in there somewhere. Chris very sensibly declined from dragging the camera out in my fit of cleaning. Heaven only knows what would have happened if he had!

Today we are going to take the girls to see "Happy Feet" Anya is obsessed with Emperor penguins at the moment (they were studying Antarctica the last term at school!) so we thought she might enjoy it and have a bit of a giggle too. She loved the March of the Penguins movie and can tell you heaps about it if you ask her. And hopefully Dannielle will like it too.
Sounds like fun, probably not what Chris had in mind to go watch with the movie vouchers we were given by a friend, but will be fun none the less.

Got to sort out some paint colours for the kitchen as well. At the moment Mitre 10 (huge hardware chain here in NZ) and Dulux paints are taking $30 off each 10 litre bucket of paint you buy. Can you colour me happy? Yep you sure can cause we want to use a water based enamel put out by Dulux! The deal is only good for a short time though so we have to get our act together and choose a colour.

I have a photo shoot tomorrow afternoon, had to delay the pre christmas one due to absolutely foul weather, so crossing fingers that the weather starts to co-operate some for us. And have been booked for a huge family group end of Jan/early Feb still working on the dates at the moment. When I say huge family group think two sisters and their broods (one has two and the other four) their parents and their grandmother! Should be interesting to say the least.