Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Workfree Wednesday

Woke up this morning feeling pants as a cold has taken hold. Not good news when you know you'll be looking after four boys as the schools are closed due to the strike. I also knew that I wouldn't get much done for the craft fair.
My husband and eldest son spent the day making a model of a WW1 trench using real mud, most of which was all over the table. I did manage to do the boys advent calendar, which is some feat and takes a surprising amount of planning. Last year I made an advent bunting at a work shop at The Eternal Maker in Chichester, this is a wonderful place full of buttons, ribbons material and card making supplies. They run a lot of different workshops throughout the year. The bunting consists of 24 little houses with a pocket in the front where you can put little goodies. I put a sweet in each and then some tokens which entitles the holder either to a treat or a little present. I have been doing a similar thing for years with my boys but the treats are getting harder to think of as they are a bit too old for 'Choose a book at bedtime'
I hope they're happy with this year's treats.
                                      This is the 24 houses waiting to be hung on the buttons

                                                   All the coupons waiting to go in the houses
                                           Here they are hanging in a row waiting for the boys
                                                         Strung out along the wall

I took the boys bowling in the afternoon, along with every other school child in the town! A quick trip to MCD and everyone was happy, except the bank manager.
I'm glad they'll be back at school tomorrow and I'll be able to get everything sorted for the weekend.
Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Thankful Tuesday

After the mayhem of yesterday I knew today was going to be quieter as I was working from 12.30-2.30 so would have less time to do stuff. I decided to make the Christmas cakes before I started my class and I'd just put them in the oven when I had a text from one of my students saying she couldn't come and neither could the 2 people she comes with. What a result! The fourth student arrived and I told her there wouldn't be a class this week so she went off happily to do some housework or have a nap!

Great news for me as I was able to knock out 13 thank you cards using some wonderful stamps by the very talented Marion Emberson.

I quickly shoved a chicken in the oven and went off to my youngest son's parents evening. I'd had a couple of calls from his teacher over the last two weeks about his behaviour so I knew it wouldn't be fun. I guess she wasn't looking forward to it either as her hands were shaking! Maybe she was scared of me as I'm sure I'm old enough to be her mother. My son is very bright but I'm afraid he's going down the wrong path and I want it nipping in the bud before senior school, we've agreed on a rewards programme where he is given a mark out of 5 for each lesson based on his behaviour, focus and attitude. At the end of the week, depending on his marks, he will be given house points or lose play time. At home if he gets good marks during the week I'll give him a pound! I find talking to his wallet works best.

I somehow ended up with another child staying the night as I will be looking after him tomorrow as their school is closed due to the strike action. I also have my eldest son and another boy plus my husband booked a days holiday. I wish I could be on strike too.
What will Wednesday bring I wonder?
Thanks for reading.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Manic Monday

I am so busy at this time of year and have always found it useful to write lists as ticking things off it gives me great pleasure. I'm currently preparing for another craft fair on Saturday at a school in Surrey where my friend is a teacher. I did it last year and it was lovely, the children and parents all loved my stuff and quite a few of them bought it too, which is generally the idea! This year my friend asked if I would run a card making session with some of the children on the evening before the craft fair. I said yes as I knew that the children would be well behaved and interested in what I was showing them. What I hadn't banked on was the fact that my friend would dictate what she wanted them to make! I had to come up with cards with movement, 3D and something else other than a bog standard card. I thought about what I could do and had a few ideas and had set aside today to make the three samples, luckily I was free from 9-3 as it took forever. That and the four loads of washing I had to do to catch up.
These are the finished samples, not bad for six hours work, luckily I don't charge by the hour, isn't it?
The first problem I had was with the star card. I'd seen the card in the Prima magazine on Saturday night and thought, 'That'll be easy to knock out.' How wrong can you be? Did you know you can't fold a five pointed star in half and that a six pointed star template is hard to find? No, neither did I until today. The card above is made by putting two triangle together and cutting round them. After I'd done this I posted on the QVC Craft Facebook page asking if anyone knew where I could get a 6 pointed star template from and within a minute the answer came back. Now why didn't I do that first?    If you want to join this group, it's brilliant!/groups/260491897306237/
The tree card was simple and I used a template from Activity Village. The funky card with the baubles is made using the fabulous Kirsty Wiseman's digi downloads and a doyley. The children won't be getting their hands on that ribbon as it is my all time fave.

All I have to do now is prep all the materials, write instruction sheets have a large gin and lie down.

I somehow managed to do all the washing, make the tea, get my son and his friend to football training on time, have a shower and watch the soaps!
Just another day in my madhouse.
Thanks for reading

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Christmas in November

After a restless night, I blame the wine and the Prima ideas running through my mind, I was again up early and out of the house at ten, you have to love early kick-offs, don't you? My youngest son plays football for a local team and has been having a really successful season, played 8 won 8, and are top of the league. This makes a wonderful change from previous seasons where they have been down the bottom, losing more than winning. Unfortunately, today they lost 2-0 to the team in second place. Never one to be down hearted he came off smiling as he just enjoys playing the game.

In the afternoon I went into town with my boys as they had some DS games they wanted to sell to raise a little money for their Christmas shopping fund (or maybe just to spend on themselves is probably nearer to the truth) Worthing was buzzing with shoppers and street entertainers and I took great pride in trying to show my boys up by dancing to the Lindy Hoppers and singing along to the band, it worked a treat.
They took me to see the baby rabbits in the pet store and I managed to get out without buying the cute black and white mini lop although I was sorely tempted.

I'd bought a mini turkey roast from Lidl and had decided to do a mini Christmas dinner for us today and wanted to lay the table nicely, once I'd found it under the buttons, lace, materials, stamp pads and other crafty stuff which usually covers it during the week. I made some place tags and wrapped them round the serviettes and I think they looked quite nice. The dinner was lovely and the evening was rounded off with St Trinian's and 27 Dresses.

Perfect weekend, how was yours?

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Crafty Fun Day

Setting the alarm for 8am on a Saturday is not something I usually look forward to but I was doing my first craft fair at an unknown venue and didn't want to be late. I needn't have worried about oversleeping as I was wide awake at 7.30 and was waiting outside the Salvation Army Church hall at 8.55! I was considering knocking on the doors when a car rolled up and two earnest looking elderly ladies lumbered out and I assumed that they were in charge. Indeed they were and they welcomed me into the hall.
Now, I'd been expecting a large hall full of tables with plenty of stall holders with which to compete. My image couldn't have been further from the truth. The sale was to take place in their cafe with just a few little tables with just three or four other people selling their wares!
The event was a coffee morning and the sale was more of a side event! The people were lovely and the cakes were amazing. Everybody loved my things and complimented me on my skills and all I could think of was 'Yes, I know they're lovely now just put your hand in your pocket and buy something!' I was beginning to worry that I wouldn't even sell enough to cover the cost of the table (£5!)
I thought that it was going to be a complete waste of time but when I checked my watch I realised that the actual sale had only been going twenty minutes I'd just been there so long it felt like it was nearly over. It didn't end up too badly, I sold about £30 worth of stuff and the only sour note was that somebody stole a lavender bag off the stall. I have no idea how it could have happened. I was really annoyed as the bag in question was stuffed full of lovely lavender, hand thrashed by my 11 year old and hand sewn by me whilst watching Corrie. All I can hope is that they enjoy the bag and don't feel too guilty about stealing from me :-(
Now, I don't get out much but I also had a date that same evening. To prove how sad my life is I was so excited about the evening and all that was happening was that I was popping round a friend's house as she was child free for the evening!
So I duly walked round to her's, after Strictly, clutching my bottle of Sav Blanc and my newly purchased Love Actually DVD full of excitement and anticipation of the hangover that was sure to follow. The evening was wonderful, full of laughs and gossip. Can you believe you can have so much fun for £3.50 (Tesco wine sales are amazing)? And, can you also believe that it takes four hours to read a Prima Christmas magazine from cover to cover? Well it did that night and before I knew it it was gone midnight.
A wonderful day and a little cash in my pot too.
Thanks for reading

Friday, 25 November 2011

A week in a paragraph

So, here is the reason I was late blogging, well one of them.
The first was that I couldn't post the first edition of my day for some reason. Having re-done it and successfully posted, I have now found the original! Blooming Blogger.
I have been busy making things for various craft fairs I have coming up. My button heart went down well with my Facebook friends, so much so that I have an order from a famous TV presenter, well she's famous on QVC!

I really need to do a bit more research before I price things up as I have a tendancy to underprice. I've also been making bunting, lavender bags, cushions and cards.

Right, I have to go now and wash up before I make a mess again.
I promise to try and blog more frequently and in fewer words.
Thanks for stopping by.

Sorry I'm Late!

First of all, forgive me! When I check people's blogs every morning I get quite cross when they haven't been updated and here I am doing the same thing on my first entry!

So I am now officially 49 and 4 days having woken up on Monday in London. I'd travelled up on the Sunday afternoon with my husband for an overnight stay. I learnt a couple of things whilst I was there; did you know that stopping to take photos is dawdling? Or that the lovely Christmas Market which has just opened on the South Bank was  put there solely to get in my husband's way? And, that when you are in a pub near London Bridge station watching Liverpool vs Chelsea you do not cheer when Chelsea score? No, neither did I but I do now.
Going to London with my husband is certainly a different experience to my usual trips to the big smoke! We stayed at The Premier Inn, Southwark which I would recommend to anyone wanting a cheap stay in the centre of things. After a glass of bubbly, paid for by my lovely M-I-L, we continued our walk along the river with me providing the running commentary. I was determined to take him to The Mudlark, made famous in Sky's programme The Mud Men starring Johnny Vaughan. Well, what a discovery! No Johnny but Mulled Cyder, I'll certainly be making this very soon. My husband was desperate to find a pub showing the football so we continued our walk and finally found a pub, it was a bit the the Old Vic, luckily Chelsea lost so there was no punch ups at the final whistle.
Dinner was in The Real Greek, Bankside, a favourite of ours and my son who I delighted in texting to tell him where we were! I'm a meam momma.
We got back to our room in time for Strictly results show, I know how to live!
Breakfast was wonderful, no really it was, a huge fry up in a greasy spoon with all the workmen in their high viz jackets reading The Sun. The workmen were reading The Sun not me, just so as you know.
More wandering along the river followed taking photos, dawdling, and generally enjoying the lovely weather.
We caught an afternoon train so that we'd be home in time for the boys finishing school, and for me to open presents and eat cake!
It was a very different birthday and one I really enjoyed as it lasted three days! Roll on the big five oh is all I can say.
Thanks for reading and sorry if I bored you, I'm used to summing up my days in fewer words!