Monday, July 24, 2017

Taking Stock - Jul

Stealing Pip's list again as I really love to look back over these blog posts from year's past to see where we are at and what has changed. Unfortunately I left the ipad at work so no photos today!

Making : A chevron crochet blanket for our loungeroom (it is just long enough to cover my knees now!)
Cooking : Peppermint bark for our Christmas in July Dinner and cream mustard chicken (known forever in our house as "Lisa's chicken" after the friend who gave me the recipe) at Hannah's request
Drinking : chai tea - I don't like a lot of chai but the lipton's chai tea bags are my standard night time drink
Reading: The last of the Outlander novels. I am going to miss Jamie and Claire.  I also read quite a few good reads over the holidays - light hearted and easy but I now can't remember any of the titles LOL
Trawling: Bendigo Woollen Mills site again, and again, and again..
Wanting: them to bring out some tweedy yarns in luxury
Looking: forward to catching up with some very dear old friends next month, lace weekend, and quilt retreat.
Deciding: that we probably need more heating than just the fire since no one else seems to want to light it.
Wishing: For ducted reverse cycle - oh to hit a button and be warm!
Enjoying: Knitting, quilting, spinning and playing with new products
Waiting: for Spring
Liking: My boy's brave decision to go on a week long school camp - pushing out of his comfort zone, this kid is growing up.
Wondering: how he will go?
Loving: My electric blanket
Pondering: Spring planting..what to put where..should I have ordered more roses? When will we start our Central Park tribute garden?
Listening: to the last episode of Master Chef
Considering: how to enjoy my kindy days on site as much as my kindy days in the bush
Buying: wool, and fibre, and two tickets to the school star gazing night
Watching: Anne with an "E" on netflix. Not convinced yet.
Hoping: For more sunshine
Marvelling: at how a house can get messy so quickly
Cringing: at how a house can get messy so quickly!
Needing: a couple of days at home to get things sorted
Questioning: the best natural product to scrub the bathroom walls with?
Smelling: wet dog and wood fire smoke
Wearing: wool socks, gumboots, bush kindy garb
Noticing: the first of my jonquils are flowering
Knowing: Winter will not last forever
Trouble-shooting: new computer dramas
Thinking: We need to sort out that top room so it is more functional
Admiring: People that like cleaning
Getting: Frustrated at marketing campaigns - so many stupid ads at the moment
Bookmarking: patterns on ravelry
Opening: my ludite mind to new technology
Closing: old habits that no longer work
Dreaming: of getting the balance right consistently
Hearing: the sound of the fish bubbler
Celebrating: the start of term 3
Pretending: my babies aren't growing up
Embracing: life and all of the good, sweet,simple things.

Have a good week!
Keep smiling,

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Prickly Pear Australasian Blog Hop

Hello and welcome to our Australasian Blog Hop.  Hello to those who have arrived from Colleen's Blog - I hope you are enjoying the hop.

Confession time.  I am not a lover of cacti.  This could possibly be because I remember eating prickly pear on a camping trip as a kid and having to go wailing back to campsite so Mum could remove prickles from the roof of my mouth.  When I first saw the Prickly Pear Paper Pack it didn't sing to me.  However, I have just busted open my second packet.  Why? Because the colour palette in this one goes with EVERYTHING.  It also works really, really well with some of our older complements and papers and washi tape.  It is SOOOOO easy to use and because it is bright and bold a little bit goes a long way.

I have to also rave on about the Prickly Pear Scrapbooking Stamp (D1722)  As you probably know, at Close to My Heart we are all about celebrating relationships.  I feel like this stamp nails that! It is perfect for creating special pages to celebrate family and friends.  It has user friendly words that coordinate with "I love my.." or "is the best time" so you can make a page celebrating your grandparents, family, cousins, parents or sisters/brothers and friends.  This is the page I am teaching at my workshops this month so that my customers can celebrate someone dear to them:
See how the Prickly Pear paper goes so well with our old washi and the stamps just support the photo of me with one of my besties? I just cut one 1/2 inch sapphire strip and a 1 inch strip to use with the scallop border punch, with a 2 inch strip of Prickly Pear to sandwich in between.  If you don't have old washi then any zip strips or patterned paper would work just as well.  The stamping was done in Sapphire, Poppy and Tangerine.
 I love this rainbow stripe paper so much! It makes an effortless border, with a simple title straight from the Complements.
 Proving versatility - this is using Sweet Leaf cardstock as the border background and then the complements with a couple of dovetailed scrap strips. Easy Peasy!

 My take on the layout straight from page 27 of the Seasonal Expression.  I wanted to add more photos and moved the strips over to the left hand side of the page.  This is a fabulous layout for using up scrap strips of paper (when you are getting towards the end of a paper packet!)  I can't wait to share this idea with my customers!)

Lastly, this paper lends itself really well to cards.  I had fun mixing and matching paper and stamps.
So if you aren't particularly fond of cacti either please don't let that one feature paper put you off.  The floral and the rainbow stripe in this are just gorgeous, as is that sea glass irregular stripe.  It is a paper pack that will extend what you already have in stash.  The Complements have beautiful sentiments and flowers so I just used up the cactus stickers on cards to give away.
I hope you fall in love with Prickly Pear.  Doris has some great ideas so pop over to her blog now (and don't forget to leave a comment - we love to hear from you!)
Keep smiling,

Saturday, July 1, 2017

July Storybook Alphabet SOM Blog Hop

Hello again and welcome to our Australasian SOM Blog Hop featuring the beautiful "Storybook Alphabet" stamp. Hello to those of you who arrived from and to my regular readers.

Let me tell you why I LOVE alphabet stamps so much.  I have a "Hannah", a "Daniel" and a "Maddie" - do you see the problem here? No sticker letters could ever have enough "a" "e" and "d" or "n" stickers for me.  With alphabet stamps I can make my own titles exactly the colour I want, exactly the way I want every single time.  And who wouldn't want to add an alphabet stamp to their collection when it is only $7.50 with a $75 purchase?

This stamp works brilliantly for cards. Both of these were made quickly using up scraps.  I used a rock and roll technique for the top one with Lemon in the middle and then Sorbet and Sweetleaf on either end.  I deliberately placed my stamps higgeldy piggeldy on the long block - no messing about getting them straight that way!

These little bookmarks were just a bit of fun for my bookworms (again using my box of scraps!) I am thinking this would also be a fabulous school holiday idea to get the kids to make personalised bookmarks for their friends!  July school holidays are upon us and we are bound to get a few cold, rainy days where this kind of project with some junk food and scrapping by the fire will go down a treat.

Cards and bookmarks aside it also makes awesome titles (only giving you a sneak peak of this page as it will also be featured in our Jack SOM) and I am teaching it at our Consultant Meeting this month too!

I hope you can see the many uses for this stamp set too! Head over to for more great ideas! We are glad to have Colleen joining us this month so don't forget to leave her a comment.
Until next time,
Keep smiling,