Thursday, 26 August 2010


On a lot of blogs that I read, people make more of an effort to decorate the house for the smaller holidays. I think this is quite normal in America and most of the blogs I read are written by people over there so I guess it makes sense. But I like it. I don't want to just have Christmas decorations, I want to have Easter ones too, and so this year I did. 

It probably started last year with the giant eastery mug that I bought (matches our Christmas mug too), but that's all I had back then. I regretted filling it with chocolate eggs, 1) because it's pretty big so I had to buy lots, and 2) because I ate them all, by myself, in a big chocolate binge! So this year I bought some polystyrene eggs with a plan to paint them all prettily. Stupidly, I bought these at the end of Easter, so didn't finish it. Story of my life really!  At the moment all the eggs are one solid colour, but I'm planning on adding detail before I use them next year. 

The decorations I did have this year were squidgy gel type things that stick to glass, so the random window between my dining room and library turned into my Easter display. The best thing about these is that they came from the pound shop, so it was nice and cheap.  Please ignore the mess in the background (and the terrible quality - I took this on my phone).

I also put my two lindt bunnies on my mantel along with the nesting owls I got for my birthday and my purple flowers Ian got me at christmas.  You'll notice that I forgot to take the photo until after I'd eaten the right ones ears! Oops!

Over the easter weekend I also found these cute chickens at a local craft show, so have added them to my easter decorations for this year.  

I think halloween is the next one for decorating (unless I celebrate Elephant Appreciation Day!)

Monday, 23 August 2010

Let me win this one too!

I'm not greedy or anything.  I just think this is an awesome giveaway - look at all those stamps! I spent time this weekend searching my hobbycraft for some good stamps and they hardly had any, so I could really give all of these a good home.  Fingers crossed for me!

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Let me win!!

I love the blog world - the generosity of people, with all their giveaways.  This one is definitely worth winning (well, I think they all are) so I'd recommend popping along here to enter too (but only if you promise not to win so I can!!)

I think I should start thinking about hosting a giveaway too - but I'd have to finish something first!!

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Stash Additions

If you follow my other blog, you might have seen the cupcake bouquet I made recently for my friend.  To make this, I had to get a few supplies from hobbycraft.  As soon as I enter the store I lose all control, but I'd told myself that I was here specifically for supplies for that project, and no extras (I decided July was "essential spends only" month).  Unfortunately, I saw a whole load of shiny sticky paper rolls for just 20p each, and whilst I had no particular project in mind, I knew it would come in handy at some point.  

For the cupcake bouquet I needed lolly sticks, but instead of getting the small packet, I got 1000 lolly sticks.  It made sense really, as they were practically the same price and you can do tonnes of things with lolly sticks right? As it turned out, I didn't even use any of the lolly sticks, so now I need to think up a good project for them.  But yay for more stash!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Hamper Goodness

I went to a friend (PG) from works wedding back in May.  I wrote about the wonderful food he had here.  Now I'm going to write about the wonderful gift we made him.  We spend a lot of time with PG at work and he sometimes tells us too much about himself.  So far we know that he has a love of hampers (which we think is a bit girly) and he knows more about sewing than he should.  He also is very good at ranting, and we love listening to the things that annoy him (sometimes I think they'd annoy everyone, other times it's just something really funny that only he can find annoying!).

With all of this knowledge we'd been gathering over the last three years, my friend and I decided to make him a hamper.  He supports Pompey FC, and they were playing in the FA Cup Final on his wedding day (they lost) so we managed to get a magnet with the date on.  He's a big James Bond fan, so we stuck some top trumps in too.  He's also a bit of a Eurovision geek, so we added some Eurovision DVD's and badges that we got from ebay.  When they changed the logo of sprite recently, he'd complain every time he saw it (which was quite often as that's all Ian drinks and we have breakfast together every day), so we got a couple of cans of that to add.  At breakfast, PG also has a habit of destroying the stirrer he gets with his tea, so I got a small picture frame, and put one in, with 'In case of emergency break glass' written on it.  He's also very interested in bridges, so we bought a book with lots of bridge pictures in (bridge porn I guess!) but it turns out he already had that one. 

One of the biggest rants PG has ever had was about this other wedding he'd attended where the bride had a brown sash on her wedding dress.  He could not understand it, he complained how horrible it was (I've since seen the photos and I agree, it's really not a good look).  At this same wedding, the napkins that were supplied for the wedding breakfast were paper.  PG seemed outraged that someone would have paper napkins at a wedding.  I agree that it's not very classy, but I don't think I'd be as offended by them if I was in a similar situation.  So, to remind him of these two things, we managed to find some paper napkins with brown stripes! (We didn't want to just put nice things in this hamper after all!).

Now, generally, at a wedding, there is more than one person getting married so we had to put some things in that weren't for PG.  PG's now wife (DL) is also crafty so I chose the most fashionable sewing magazine I could find in WHSmith.  The eurovision gifts were also suitable for DL as she's just as geeky and she also supports pompey.  

As well as all the funny things, we put in several packets of biscuits, some dark chocolate heart lollipops from Hotel Chocolat, some bubbly and glasses.  I spent the day before their wedding making some small hearts out of felt, two of which were embroidered with their initials. 

The hamper all came together nicely, it had a red gingham lining, the hearts were red and white, we'd managed to get some cellophane with red hearts on it, and we had red ribbon round it.  It looked beautiful, and it got a big smile from PG when we arrived at the wedding. 

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Less Painful Memories

I've been reading a lot of other peoples blogs recently as part of the swapbot blog swaps that I've been doing.  I came across Mimi's blog, The Happy Honeybee and I read about her love of Christmas ornaments, and how a whole box got broken in a house move.  It reminded me of my latest Christmas and the sadness I felt when something similar happened to me.  I've not shared it before, because I was truly devastated, but there's a slightly more happy ending to my story now.  

I'd been making myself a collection of pottery snowmen - painted by me at the local pottery painting shop.  I put them in pride of place, on my mantel - they looked so lovely.  Every year, instead of a card, Ian draws me a nice christmassy scene - this years one seemed to make the perfect backdrop for my snowmen so I placed it behind them on the mantel.  

We had all my family over for christmas this year, and we cooked the bird on our barbecue outside to free up space in the oven for all the trimmings.  As Ian opened the door to outside, a gust of wind caught the backdrop picture, and it fell forward.  All the snowmen were pushed onto the fireplace, smashing into many pieces.  It was a real snowman massacre.  

What made it worse, was that I knew there weren't anymore of the big snowmen left at the pottery shop - their supplier had stopped selling them.  I couldn't replace them and I was heartbroken.  My first christmas in my new home was effectively ruined, but I had a good cry and got on with it as best I could.  Ian tried to superglue as much as he could back together - but there were so many missing shards and it just wasn't the same.  What made it worse was that it was my own stupidity that caused it - it was the hardest lesson to learn. 

Anyway, I did promise you all a happy ending so here it is.  I searched the internet high and low and found a supplier of the pottery snowmen.  I now have 11 unpainted ones sat in my library and 1 that we painted earlier this year to check that it would fire correctly in the kiln at the pottery shop.  So although I killed lots of snowmen that Christmas, I can get back my collection and be more careful with them in future. Oh, and the cute little rudolph on the end of the first picture survived (he fell on the carpet) so I guess that's happy too!

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Work In Progress - Octopus

This is a picture of one of the octopuses I started making last year - I've got two on the go, one pink, one purple.  I was making them to give to my nieces for Christmas, but didn't finish them on time. I really should finish these off as they're so close to being done, all they need doing is their eyes, adding sequins and beads to their legs and then sewing all the legs on.  Hopefully this will shame me into doing it and I can give them as this years Christmas presents!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Weekend of Fun (But no crafting)

Just thought I'd check in and let you know why I've been gone for over a week.  My mum, sister and two lovely nieces came to stay this weekend, so I was preoccupied with tidying my house and then having fun.  We spent the day on the Isle of Wight in the glorious sunshine (I got a little burnt) and I got to make some sandcastles so I thought I'd share them as they're the closest to crafting I've gotten recently!

We also went to see our first 3D movie - Toy Story 3.  I really enjoyed the film, but didn't think the 3D really added much (although it was worth it just to see my niece reaching out trying to grab things from the screen).  If you've not been to see it, I highly recommend it.  

Talking of tidying my house, I've just discovered the following website which tries to create new cleaning habits one step at a time, so we'll see whether that makes a difference.