Monday, May 1, 2017

Live, Laugh, Love Blog Hop

Welcome to our Australasian Blog Hop for the Live, Laugh, Love Stamp of the Month for May.
If you have arrived here from http://expressionsofthe-heart.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/may-live-laugh-love-australasian-stamp.html you are in the right place. Just keep following the links at the end of each blog to go right around.

I absolutely LOVE this stamp.  You can see from my blog header that this is one of my favourite maxims and something I very much try to live by.

The text on this stamp is so versatile - it looks entirely different using different techniques.
My first card used gold embossing powder, gold glitter paper and the lovely gold foil print from our National Scrapbook Day feature paper (which will be in a Blog hop all of its own this month!)


The same "Love" stamp looks totally different in black memento ink and pen work.





This little birthday card used some of our new "Little Dreamer" paper (which will also make an appearance in a Blog Hop this month!) I teamed it with a scrap of fundamentals and some white twine.

Although this stamp is perfect for cards I also love it on album pages:

This one uses Whimsy Fundamentals, Little Dreamer and glacier cardstock.


And this is crystal blue cardstock, Little dreamer paper and assorted leftovers from complements packs.

But this one is my favourite: Sapphire cardstock, the seaglass ombre paper and rose paper from our "Live Beautifully" NSD pack and a few of my most favourite recent photos!


So that is it for me. Now take a peak at http://doristaylor.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/ctmh-may-stamp-of-month-blog-hop.html . Enjoy the Blog hop!

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Taking Stock: The way things are: April

I've come to enjoy this tradition which oddly seems to coincide with school holidays.  I can't remember the last time I enjoyed school holidays quite so much.  With all of us home we really have made the most of it.  There have been lots of sleep ins, reading in bed and cooked breakfasts.  There has been lots of crafting time and unfortunately (or fortunately depending who you are) lots of t.v. and screen time for the rest of the family.  We spent Easter at Aldinga. We have had lovely shared time with friends and spent a glorious day at Bushland Park wandering the track we use for Bush Kindy.
Easter Selfies with my girls!
A great walk along the beach at Willunga
Easter morning - never too old for Easter Bunny 
All in all a most satisfying holiday.
Big brother teaching Little Sister to skim stones at Bushland Park - how to make mummy's heart melt!

Making : progress on the WIPS - finishing the second sleeve on my blue jumper and finished Maddie's school cardigan this week too
Cooking : malteser cheesecake for James' birthday
Drinking : coffee, and probably a little too much red wine but it is holidays so care factor?
Reading: Drums of Autumn (ALL holidays - I was hooked!)
Trawling: Pinterest looking for skirt patterns
Wanting: To make myself some simple, flattering, quick skirts from the stash fabric
Looking: For suitable high waisted work pants (not easy to find)
Deciding: I really need to lose weight
Wishing: It was that easy!!!
Enjoying: The sound of children alternatively chortling, shrieking with delight, and grumping at one another - the sounds of siblings
Waiting: for James to put the fire on
Liking: the slow but sure success that is coming with my 100 day goal
Wondering: If this house will ever really be clutter free
Loving: Cheese and onion bread toasted
Pondering: How to keep the rabbit out of mischief in the loungeroom
Listening: to the sound of footsteps upstairs
Considering: Best way to market beginner scrapbook classes
Watching: Call the midwife (episode after episode)
Hoping: For a more relaxed term at kindy (bring on Bush kindy!)
Marvelling: At how well my pot plants are growing - normally I kill anything in a pot!
Cringing: At the inevitable chaos and mess that happens when we are all at home
Needing: Fresh air and some serious Spring Cleaning (even though it is Autumn!)
Questioning: How I can keep the same relaxed feeling of holidays during term time
Smelling: my lovely Strawberries and Champagne Serenity Wicks candle - I am not really a candle fan but I do love Serena's fragrances.
Wearing: My comfy black leggings and burgundy tshirt dress and my almost dead black boots
Noticing: The sauce bottle without its lid and a big trail of crumbs on the table...definitely school holidays LOL
Knowing: That this is not a catastrophe and I will miss them when they are all grown
Thinking: About page layouts for SOM blog hop and National Scrapbooking Day
Admiring: Green Gate Porcelain on pinterest (how I wish we could get it somewhere in Australia!)
Getting: slightly chilled - definitely fire time
Bookmarking: slice recipes in Fete Magazine
Opening: Brand new paper packs to play with
Closing: Kitchen cupboards and drawers (I swear we have a ghost - they are ALWAYS open!)
Feeling: Blessed and grateful and slightly cold!
Celebrating: James' birthday tomorrow
Pretending: He is not getting older!
Embracing: My life, my family, and simple happiness

I hope that the holidays have been good to you, and that you are embracing the chill of Autumn in the air, and the many, simple joys in your life.
Happy weekend!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Some Kind of Wonderful Blog Hop

Welcome to our April feature paper pack "Some Kinda Wonderful" Australasian Blog Hop.  Some of you may have arrived here from Georgia Creates.. just follow the links at the bottom of each blog to go the whole way around.

This is a remarkably versatile paper pack.  Depending on what colours you put with it you can end up with pages suitable for a wide range of topics.  I thought the easiest way to show you what I mean might be to do 1 layout 2 ways.







This layout is very simple. Cut a zip strip off a 12" piece of patterned paper.  Then cut the paper at 9 1/2"  Set aside the narrower strip and trim the bigger piece to 91/2" square and round the corners.  Use your remaining pieces, 1 with the same pattern cut down and corner rounded at the top for the piece on the right page, the other, flipped over (the joy of double sided paper!) trimmed as you like it for the border at the bottom of the left hand page.  Use the zip strip to create a vertical stripe on the left hand side. Embellish and corner round as you wish.  The glittery black embellishments have come from the "Some Kinda Wonderful" embellishments but the chevrons and arrow on the bottom layout are leftovers from the "Dreamin' Big" embellishments.  You can see what a difference is made just by altering the colours that you put with the Some Kind of Wonderful paper. The Slate gives it a more masculine feel and the Glacier makes it little girly and fun. I hope you have fun playing with this idea.

I also have a couple of cards and a tag to show you.  The "Birthday" sentiment is one of our thin cuts.


The little cup cake is a stamp and thin cut set called "Sweet Birthday".

And this little tag used up some scraps. I love the way that black just makes this paper pack pop.
Now head over to http://vandractmh.blogspot.com.au/2017/04/some-kinda-wonderful-australasian-blog.html to see just how versatile "Some Kinda Wonderful" can be.
Happy Easter to you!
Keep smiling,
Nell

Saturday, April 1, 2017

CTMH Australasian Blog Hop April Stamp of the Month

Hello and welcome!
If you have arrived here from Maz over at http://wp.me/p45lJH-L6 then you are in the right place. If you arrived here by serendipitous accident then that is a happy thing and welcome to you!
Now, this month we are sharing S1704 "Flock Together" Stamp of the Month which is only $7.50 with a $75 order.

I love the sentiments in this one and my daughter thoroughly enjoyed colouring the birds in for me!
First up is a little card - the birds were simply stamped with Poppy ink onto a sheet of Dreamin' Big paper and then fussy cut.  I cut their legs off and then just drew them in with a black pen.  The sentiment comes from C1672 "Silly Sayings Sentiments"  This would be a good card to send to a friend that just "gets you" in all your quirkier moments!  I have a feeling that I will be sending this to one of the Mums at school who often makes me snort with her quirky view on the world! I want her to know how much I appreciate her sense of humour!



Next up are two simple page layouts.  Both pretty self-explanatory.  The first uses Colonial white, Poppy and Canary cardstock with Poppy and Black ink.


The second uses Black, Lagoon and Sea Glass cardstock with a small strip from Dreamin' Big.  Remember that I said I was "bringing back the border"? Well this is a sweet little border at the bottom of the page and will showcase photos of my gorgeous family when I get around to printing them!


My most favourite using this SOM is this page.  Sapphire cardstock base with a strip from the Rustic Fundamentals and then just Lagoon and White Daisy cardstock scraps.  The "Smile" title is from the Springtime Complements - sometimes mixing and matching is the way to go.  I think those sweet little hearts are my favourite part of this stamp set.


So there you have it, some super simple scrapping from me. Now head over to http://passionateaboutpages.com/2017/04/01/s1704-flock-together-ctmh-australasian-sotm-blog-hop to be inspired by Shaunna!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

CTMH Australasian Blog Hop - "Dreamin' Big"

Hello and welcome to our March Blog Hop showcasing the beautiful "Dreamin' Big" Paper Pack.
If you have arrived here from https://wordpress.com/post/cropcraf... then you are in the right spot. If you arrived here by happy coincidence then enjoy playing along.

As always, a lot of work goes into making these hops happen so please go right around and feel free to leave comments.  Constructive feedback helps us to know what you want to see more of!

Now, this paper pack is perfect for those of us with a rural lifestyle.  I am a country girl by birth and by choice and we moved back to a more rural lifestyle a year ago.  I am also lucky enough to have regular visits home to my parent's Qld farm.  This paper was perfect for our Christmas farm photos.







I really enjoyed using the new circle thin cuts on borders this month.  I love borders (I am secretly on a mission to bring back the border) - it takes next to no supplies to create a sweet border and best of all borders give you plenty of room for your photos to be star of the show!
The complements are just beautiful - those gorgeous little bugs!  My son is a bug boy (always has loved his critters) so it is perfect for his photos.

The bottom layout looks a bit funny with two photos so similar there in the middle but what you can't see is that I have used one of our half page memory protectors (3 spaces for 4x6 landscape photos) to fit an extra 6 photos into this double page layout.  I love how easy they are to use.

So there you have it.  I have done an enormous amount of scrapping in January and February - quick simple pages mean I am almost up to date (even with all of those pesky Christmas photos!)  Keep on keeping on! Your photos will thank you (and so will your loved ones!)
Until next time,
Keep smiling,
Nell

Now head over to https://passionateaboutpages.com/2017/03/15/dreamin-big-ctmh-australasian-blog-hop where Shaunna is waiting to show you her artwork!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Taking Stock: March

Joining in with Pip Lincolne to take stock of life as we head into a new season
Making : C2C wrap with love - love how easy C2C is but hate the nasty acrylic
Cooking : Bliss balls and healthy wholemeal apple muffins (trying a few new things for lunchboxes
Drinking : chai tea 
Reading: Tale of Two Cities (which I just can't get into) and Letters from Paris
Trawling: Bendigo Woollen Mills looking at luxury 8 ply
Wanting: to replenish my 8 ply stash
Looking: at the dead flowers on the coffee table and the dog hair on the carpet
Deciding: we really do need a decent vacuum cleaner
Enjoying: getting to know new kindy kids
Waiting: for my upcoming CTMH weekend and the Bungaree fibre retreat at the end of March
Liking: That I managed to get through everything on my to do list yesterday
Wondering: if that could be habit forming
Loving: A night at home before crazy week starts
Pondering: Why some people make dramas where there are none
Listening: to the hum of the fish tank and the sound of the bunny thumping around in her cage
Considering: How much battery power the laptop has left (I left my cord at kindy)
Buying: a present from T2 for my friend
Watching: Call the Midwife (seasons 1-3)
Marvelling: At how blessed we are
Cringing: At how messy the kitchen is
Needing: To pack for our Melbourne Conference
Questioning: What to wear
Smelling: Stinky rabbit and dead roses
Wearing: my work clothes and sensible shoes
Noticing: how slow the internet is tonight
Knowing: the year will fly by
Thinking: I should be typing risk assessments
Admiring: crochet patterns on ravelry
Getting: tired - I need more sleep
Disliking: how messy the kitchen is and how slow the internet is LOL
Opening: cold and flu tablets
Closing: pantry doors
Feeling: a little bit blah and sleepy
Celebrating: the new arrival of a friend's little daughter and another's news of impending birth
Pretending: to be more on top of things than I really am!
Embracing: life, chaos, and the day to day stuff in all of its messy glory.
  • Wednesday, March 1, 2017

    CTMH SOM Tea-rrific Blog Hop

    Hello and welcome to our Australasian Close To My Heart Stamp of the Month blog hop.  If you are here from http://laurenctmhcraftings.blogspot.com/2017/03/s1703-tea-rrific-ctmh-australasian-blog.html then welcome.  Also a big hello to those who have arrived here by accident and also to my long time readers.  I hope you are enjoying these blog hops?

    So how was your February? Tea-rrific I hope!  March's SOM involves something dear to my heart - tea-cups with sweet sentiments about friends and Mothers!  Now I love a good cup of tea, especially in the company of dear friends. My two current favourites are the T2 Blue Mountain tea and a Dilmah one called "Rose with French Vanilla" which is undeniably girly and sweet.  I will admit that this stamp takes a bit more playing with than some but I am pretty happy with the way I have been able to use it.

    First up is a sweet and simple card using our Dreamin' Big paper range with a scrap of leftover Sugar Rush.  I used sea glass paper and ink and our new Circle thin cuts.  I employed a little trick taught to me many, many years ago by the talented Chris Lothian (her blog is in my blog list on the right) If you want a small edge/border around something but don't have coordinating thin cuts or fancy edging tools just use your micro tip scissors and take random little snips to make a pretty random scallop type edge - super quick and effective. Dreamin' Big is our feature paper pack this month so be sure to go blog hopping on March 15 to see more of this beautiful paper!



    The two little tags (because yes I am still a bit obsessed with using my scraps to make tags) were actually coloured in by my girls.  Maddie has decided she would like her very own set of Shinhan markers as they are "the best pens EVER" (high praise from a 7 year old stationery junkie!)


    The next page used a masking technique with a post it note at the bottom of the tea cup stack so that I could have them go right down the page.



    The last page is an important one to me.  A couple of years ago I did an online class with Stacey Julian. She really helped me to let go of being so chronological in my albums but she also helped me to think about the stories that I wanted to tell, that maybe needed to be told, in my albums.  This is a page that fits into that philosophy. I cannot stress to my customers enough the importance of journalling your memories, especially when they are about something or someone important to you. My challenge to you this month is to make a layout that is not about "art" but about "heart" - that tells an important story.  In years to come you will be glad that you did!
    Can you see how that bigger teacup just fits a little sentiment or a sweet heart sticker nicely? And it would work well stamped and fussy cut on all sorts of patterned paper - think about a small floral? Or spots? So many possibilities! I can't wait to use this stamp for a sweet Mother's Day card at my card buffet this month!

    Happy March Folks.
    Don't forget to leave me a comment and now finish off that cup of tea and head over to http://expressionsofthe-heart.blogspot.com/2017/03/march-2017-tea-rrific-ctmh-australasian.html
    Until next time,
    Happy Scrapping,
    Nell
    xx

    Wednesday, February 15, 2017

    CTMH Australasian Blog Hop - Hello Lovely

    Welcome to our CTMH Australasian Blog Hop for "Hello Lovely"
    If you arrived here from http://creatingwithkaradavies.blogspot.com/2017/02/hello-lovely-blog-hop.html then you are in the right place.  If you found your way here by accident then hello to you!

    Now, this is not a statement I make lightly but this really is my all time favourite CTMH paper pack! I suspect that this one will always hold a special place in my heart because this one has got me finishing my wedding album almost 14 years after my wedding!

    The beautiful muted roses in this paper pack are exactly the same tones as the olde world roses that were in my bouquet and the blush shimmer ribbon is an exact match for my dress. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this paper suite!

    This layout was done using up my scraps (cutting 2 inch squares and using small leftover strips) The "what a day" comes from the "Snapshot Complements"
    The next one uses the "Adore You" from last month's SOM (and I will let you in on a secret - the journalling box hides a botched stamping attempt underneath)


     This layout was modified from one we did at our Convention this year - I just added photos and the journalling box on the right hand side.
     And this is also one we did at Convention - I love the layering of paper and complements on this one.
     If the wedding layouts don't thrill you - how about a very sweet simple card using our new "Dreamin' Big" dragonfly stamp and thin cut (overlayed with the lightest touch of gold from our gold shimmer pen!)

    Last but not least, a dear friend recently reminded me of the joy of using your scraps to make tags.  I haven't decided yet if these will end up on a page or a card but they were certainly fun to play with.
    So there you have it! Hello Lovely! 
    Now click on this link Maz's blog to see more of the beauty of this paper pack!

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

    Just Summer Chillaxin'

    Hello Friends,
    Welcome to a lazy Saturday at home.
    It feels somewhat strange to have children growing up and going their own ways enough that we have more leisure time on the weekends (as long as I still feed them at regular intervals)  The father, and the children, in this house all have a tendency to gravitate to electronic devices on the weekends which gives me some fibre/papercraft/reading a good book time.  Whilst I regularly fight this and wish they would spend more time outside I am somewhat outnumbered.

    So what's been happening?

    Reading: I am currently obsessed with Outlander. Waiting for Series 3 and reading book 3 and seriously debating whether to buy the book of Outlander knitting patterns.  It has been in my book depository cart, then out, then back in again.  Somehow I think that while chunky rustic knits might look AMAZING on Claire Fraser, they will probably just look kind of lumpy, farm girl and smell slightly of sheep on me.
    I was lucky enough to get my copy of "No Scrap Left Behind" this week. I LOVE it.  It makes me want to sew. I do have a crafty, sewing day planned for this week so stay tuned.
    I am also reading "The Light We Cannot See" which I have wanted to read FOREVER but so far my Outlander obsession is winning out over it.  I am reading "A Tale of Two Cities" for our rav reading group.  So many famous lines in it but I still can't confess to being much of a Dickens fan.  I suspect that there may be others firmly planted in the Austen camp that feel the same way? He does have a tendency to "over" describe.

    Knitting: I just finished this http://www.ravelry.com/projects/nelliebligh/tashirojima-haori-cardigan-test for my niece.  I kind of hate it, kind of love it.  Love the pattern. Hate the acrylic wool.  The way the pockets are knitted in blows my mind and I love that I learned how to do something totally new.
    I've also been knitting little hats for kindy babies.  3 girls in a row and still 2 more pregnancies for Autumn so I will be knitting for a while yet.

    Crochet: A friend recently taught me how to do C2C crochet and now I am addicted. I am using acrylic (ugh) in different shades of blue to do a Wrap With Love. I can do a square and a half in a night so this might be the quickest blanket ever.
    Kathy recently had a Spin along on Rav and I was lucky enough to win a project bag which has come in perfect for storing my WIP square and a couple of balls of wool.

    The garden: EVERYTHING has gone to seed and the birds are eating the nectarines faster than we can. Because of the heat the nectarines only last a few days off the tree.  I need to try some nectarine recipes or at least stew some up but it has been so hot here (finally!) that the thought of spending time in the kitchen is just blah.  My roses are loving the combo of recent rain and sudden heat.

    Papercrafting: I went to a SA training day with my Close to My Heart upline last weekend and was reminded of the difference between "Heart" and "art" - I snuck in a few hours Wednesday to finally get photos onto pre-done/demo pages - 24 pages in just a couple of hours.  I put them into albums this morning. A good feeling.  Get those pages finished!  While we are on the topic, I hope you are enjoying the bi monthly blog hops?
    If you have ever thought of being a consultant then there is a great joining offer this month and also a fab re-start for those who have been consultants previously. 
    This afternoon I need to do some more pages for my February workshops.  I love that I am finding time for scrapping again and seem to have regained some of my lost mojo!

    Dyeing: I had a go at overdyeing my peach coloured cardigan. I like it so much better now. I think I will even forgive it for being the project I worked on when James missed the plane to New Zealand for our wedding anniversary!  Amazing what a difference colour can make. The brown is so much more me.  

    Kids: Dan starts footy clinic tomorrow morning. Wish us luck.  Maddie started ballet this week. How stinkin' cute is she?
    I also love that her teacher is just joyful and fun and totally not serious and the other "ballet mums" were totally normal and not all pretentious.  I think it will be a very easy 45 minutes of wait time with my knitting each week.

    Hmm, well that is it for the moment.  If you are still skulking around here but haven't left a comment in a while why don't you just add a "hi" and tell me what you've been doing with your Summer?
    I'll be back on the 15th for another CTMH paper pack blog hop.
    Happy Weekending,
    Nell
    xxx





    Wednesday, February 1, 2017

    CTMH Australasian Blog Hop "Easter Bunny" SOM

    Welcome to our February SOM Blog Hop. If you are here from http://woodies-creations.blogspot.com/2017/02/ctmh-australasian-blog-hop-s1702-easter.html then you are in the right place. If you arrived here by accident then welcome to you too!

    This month we feature S1702 "Easter Bunny" which is a D size stamp set available only in February for $7.50 with a $75 order.

    Now although this stamp has been brought out for Easter, in our house we never have any shortage of bunny love and when I first saw it I knew that it would be perfect for photos of our sweet Marmalade Rabbit.

     There are two tools that are absolute game changers for this stamp.  The first are our non-stick micro tip scissors - they are perfect for fussy cutting sweet bunnies. The second is the Memento Tuxedo Black ink.  I am a new convert to this ink (having always used our Archival Black) I find that the Memento Tuxedo gives a beautiful, clean, crisp line and good coverage and doesn't smudge or run whether you are using watercolours, watercolour pencils or our Shinhan markers.  I used pens when I wanted brighter more saturated colours and watercolours and pencils when I wanted a subtler shade.
    This SOM works beautifully with both the "Hello Lovely" and "Dreamin' Big" paper suites. On this first layout I have used the zip strips from "Dreamin' Big" to make those little ribbons at the top.  The photos were matted in the juniper print from "Dreamin' Big" and then I used a piece of the pink art deco "Hello Lovely" on the right hand side. Isn't the little flower border so sweet?

     This layout uses the beautiful Kraft spot and Complements from "Rustic Home Fundamentals" I traced around a saucer and free cut the circle then used one of our water brushes to paint in the title and the grass.

    We have a family tradition of celebrating Easter with my inlaws at Aldinga.  Because I work on an album for each child and a family album I always know that I will have 4 lots of Easter photos so I am happy to do a few layouts before Easter to make life easier! This will be for my son's album so I found that the brighter colours of "Dreamin' Big" worked perfectly.  A note about those photo mounts. I am a lazy scrapper and I love my camera.  Because of this, the bulk of my photos are 4x6.  When I design layouts for the photos to go on later I try to make my photo mounts practical so the left hand side one is suitable for 2 landscape 4x6s and the right side is a 5x7 (a bigger portrait print of my son with his Easter basket) and a smaller 4x6 portrait. If you can get in the habit of making border mounts 4.25x6.25 or for a double 8.5x6.25 then it is a simple process to add photos later.

    Once again I have made the most of zip strips. The little title box is one of the PML pieces with the "happy" complement from "Dreamin' Big" with the "Easter" from the SOM. I stamped the sweet little flower border in juniper. I also used foam tape (I love that stuff!) to pop the top rabbit up off the banner! A very quick and easy layout!



    Last but not least are the two little "Hello Lovely" cards.  I like to have a couple of generic "feel good" cards on hand to send to friends when I want them to know I am thinking of them.  Truth be told I am better at sending that kind of card than birthday cards! Isn't that "Hello Lovely" paper just divine? If you want to see more of it be sure to join us on the 15th of February for our "Hello Lovely" Blog Hop. 
    Now hop on over to Maz's blog to check out some more work from talented Aussie CTMH consultants. Just follow the link http://wp.me/p45lJH-HB
    Oh, and we would love for you to leave a comment too - let's keep sharing that sweet bunny love!