Sunday 31st May
Is it just me or has this month simply dragged on & on, it certainly feels that way somehow?
All of the usual weekend housework is done & I have begun jotting down chores that I want to get around to in the coming week. I was tempted to leave the bed in the hope that my new duvet cover will arrive tomorrow, but then I did it anyhow as I haven't had an email about it being passed to the courier for delivery yet, so it could arrive any time up until the 10th.
The first of two Mexican Rose card kits that I have lined up for you this week, each uses the same oval decoupage but the frames are in a variety of colours chosen from the image, & the backgrounds are all slightly different too.
All four of the backgrounds are now on the papers page as I posted the last two there this morning when I published the newsletter & bonus sheet to site. I uploaded another three sheets direct to site too, so watch out for those as you browse.
Saturday 30th May
I have had a very quiet day, after my usual morning routines I went to battle again with a card for little Ollie's fifth birthday in July, & once again simply ended up with a bin full of recycling!
I think I will load some of my Serif digikits next week as I am sure I will have more success with images from there than I am having with my limited amount of kids themed dies!
A mirrored intricate decoupage duo for you this afternoon, from the Spanish Poppy file. I don't often do the intricate stuff as it does have a limited following & it is really hard work to create, especially on the eyes.
But as I have mentioned previously, this was the first image that I chose to play with from a resource file that I hadn't previously explored, & having done all of the hard work creating the intricate decoupage I thought I would run with it & see how many design sheets I could create from that one image.
Happily my sister phoned & distracted me earlier by asking if I could come up with a baby card for twins girls, she has been shopping for several neighbours throughout the crisis & it was one of those who asked if she could find one.
So I have been playing around with ideas for the past hour or so, but I may yet revert to the Serif digikits for this too if I don't come up with anything I am happy in the next few days.
Catch you all again in the morning with the newsletter & bonus sheets.
Friday 29th May
Has it really been ten weeks since we first stood on the doorstep at 8pm on Thursday evenings clapping to show our sincere appreciation of those people on the front line? The lock down seems to have gone on & on yet & that one small gesture somehow seems to have gone by in a flash.
I was inspired this morning, even before my shower, to type up another of those fancy fold cards that I figured out recently. I couldn't make a template for this one as it is based on a sheet of A3 card which, for those of you in the USA, is twice the width of our standard A4 paper size here.
But you can get two of these fancy fold cards from one sheet as it is simply cut in half to form two long strips. Anyhow, so I didn't bother with the metric to Imperial conversions as it wouldn't have worked out on your US paper sizes anyhow, sorry!
Another decoupage inspired by the Kate Greenaway images, along with a matching backing paper. This time I did an oval decoupage format, just because I hadn't done one for a while. If I look in the file I probably did several in that format, but as I work so far in advance of the actual uploads I can barely remember what is in each file until I open them up & take a look!
Anyhow, I have spent much of the day out back in the garden, I did try to simply sit in the swing hammock & relax but that lasted all of about ten minutes, so I came indoors to get my tablet & sat browsing the internet for a while.
But that barely lasted a half hour & then I came inside for lunch, this afternoon I got the air dry clay out & have been experimenting with that for the past couple of hours.
I fancied having a go at rock painting but even though the back garden is covered in layers & layers of pebbles they are all too small, so I made a couple from the air dry clay in the hope that they will dry out enough overnight for me to paint onto them tomorrow?
I don't like the smell of the clay lingering indoors so I only use it when I can use it outdoors & leave it out there to dry too. I also had a go at a couple of star shaped little trinket bowls, which are currently drying on top of plastic pots, in order for them to adopt the bowl shape I want.
So hopefully, if the weather holds, I can go out & paint something tomorrow & if anything turns out half decent I will take pictures to show you.
Thursday 28th May
That chilly wind had disappeared by this morning, so it has been a really nice day outside.
After I was done on the exercise bike I decided that as I had already hosed down all of the paintwork & windows out back the other day that it was time to bring the hose through the house & get the front done too.
I am always wary about bringing the hose through indoors in case it has a leak somewhere that I haven't noticed, but I don't have a choice as the tap is out on the back wall. So I brought the hose reel into the bathroom & fed the connecting pipe through the window & then unwound the hose to get it down past the work bench & out of the front door.
When I use the lawn mower I trap the extension cable in the door so I can close it, but obviously I couldn't do that with the hose pipe, so I closed the door as far as I could without cutting off the water supply having been out back to turn on the tap.
I really enjoy this annual chore as the paintwork on the outdoor cupboards is white, as are the roof facings around the bay window, plus the window sills & door are all white PVC so they get really grubby from being so close to the main road.
I managed to get it all done without flooding inside of the front door but lost pressure at the end? When I went out back to turn off the water I was met with a fountain of water where the pipe had come away from the coupling & flooded the garden path. How lucky was that, if it had been the coupling on the other end of the extension the bathroom & hallway would have got a soaking!
Obviously once the water had run off the windows I had to go out & clean them, but I can reach with the use of my little steps, so no problem & the front now looks just as nice as the back.
The final sheet in this series of six intricate card kits/decoupage toppers.
So with that chore out of the way I settled at the work bench to make a start on the July birthday cards. Happily my first attempt for one of the men in the family worked out well so I made a second, slightly different for one of the others too. Sorry no pictures as they are personal cards.
But then I realised that I would have to make bespoke envelopes for those two, they are easy enough but like typing up project notes, it isn't something I enjoy doing.
I made a start on a card for a great nephew, little Ollie's who will soon be five & is the youngest of my sister's grandchildren, but I just couldn't get my head around it, so binned that & went on to the feminine cards that I need.
So I now have four of the six cards that I need for July, so I am happy with progress today.
My Asda groceries are due between 5 & 7, which was the only delivery slot available when I booked it, but next week I am back to normal with an early afternoon slot on Wednesday.
Catch up with you all tomorrow.
Wednesday 27th May
I think that rather disappointing little trip out yesterday worked to help settle my restlessness. As soon as I was finished on the exercise bike this morning I settled myself at the work bench &, apart from a quick break for lunch, I have been here ever since.
I was amused earlier by the radio presenters take on the north eastern coastlines weather today, she said it was mid twenties around the country but 'refreshingly cooler' at the coast! What she actually meant was there is a chilly breeze blowing in of the North Sea pegging the temperatures back to the mid teens here.
So I wasn't tempted to ponder in the garden, having pegged out washing after my shower this morning, so that may also have helped me settle.
A meduim & a small layered topper on one half of the sheet & the other half a matching background, from the file that I called after the name given for the flower 'Mexican Poppy'.
Anyhow, I happily played with card, paper & dies up until around 2.30pm & made two cards that I quite like, but I had glimpsed something during my morning exercise while browsing the internet, unfortuantely I didn't save it but I thought I could propably come up with something similar.
So the card making stuff got cleared away & I set up the sewing machine & grabbed the scrap basket.
Happily I was able to come up with a quick version of the hand gel hanging dispenser that I spotted online this morning, it isn't by any means perfect but I am happy enough with it & it's now hanging in the kitchen ready to use when I come in from the garden.
So I have posted pictures of the three makes from today to the gallery if you are interested.
Tuesday 26th May
It is another beautiful day out there with hardly a whisper of wind, so today's back garden clear up was a minor task in comparison to previous days.
I made a list of things to look out for along at the High Street as soon as I was done exercising, but had to wait for a parcel to be delivered before I could go out.
So it was late morning before I finally booked a cab to drop me along at the High Street, & caught up on lock down etiquette from the driver - through the plastic sheet separating the driver from the passengers in the rear seats - as we went.
The front entrance to B&M was locked down & as I walked up the ramp to the back entrance the long queue of people, socially distanced, unfolded in front of me. But next door is the back entrance to Wilko & there was no queue for there so I skipped B&M completely & went in there instead.
Apart from taped lines at the checkouts & screens shielding the cashiers from the public, everything was pretty much normal in there. I was really only looking for some little plant pots but much like online there weren't many to be found, though I did manage to pick up a pack of disposable one's which will have to do for now.
Another decoupage with matching background inspired by images from Kate Greenaway today, though the final two layers do get a bit tricky I am afraid so have your craft knife ready!
I came out of Wilko by the front entrance which opens up into the mall, it was very stange to see all of the other shops & coffee shops with their shutters down, in fact I think the only other place which was open was the chemist, but I didn't need anything there.
When I came out of the mall onto the main shopping street it was much the same but fortunately the greengrocer was trading, but only allowing two customers in at once. The cashiers were protected by face visors, as opposed the the plastic screens I has seen in Wilko. Fortunately there was only one person in when I arrived so I was able to nip in & get some berries for my smoothies before heading to the cab office to catch a ride home.
But I have to be honest & say that my brief visit to the High Street today was enough to deter me from going back again until the lock down is lifted.
Catch you all tomorrow.
Monday 25th May
Finally those high winds dropped during the night so I have been able to get out back to have a proper clear up today, & it is an absolutely beautiful day too.
I have just been out again to water the garden & there is a dizzying array of BBQ smells coming from absolutely everywhere. I am so glad that folks are finally able to get outside & enjoy some lovely weather, after more than two months of lock down indoors. Apparently it is meant to be nice all week too, so that is a bonus.
I have been as restless as ever today, I did get the sewing machine out earlier to get a couple of things done....been meaning to make a new peg bag for months & the left over scraps from the face masks were perfect for that particular job.
A new fancy fold template for you today, this is one of those two that I worked up for you late last week. I didn't initially create the letter sized version as I am pretty sure that they will work out no matter what size paper your printer requires, but then I began to doubt myself so created & uploaded a set for my US readers - just in case!
I am definitely heading out along to the High Street tomorrow - with face mask - as I just can't get anything done because I am so restless, so hopefully an hour or so out & about will help.
Besides I have no idea what 'out & about' looks like since the lock down began & I am curious how people are acting, how many are wearing face masks, how long the queues to get into the shops are etc. etc.
Catch up with you all again tomorrow afternoon.