29 May 2008


Drum roll please as we welcome another member to the 40 Gang! Cathy is turning the big 4-0 this weekend and is giving away some amazing blog candy. Pop over to her blog and have a nosey!


Well I don't really know what to say. Not been having too much fun lately, what with my back injury rearing its ugly head AGAIN and having hubby signed off for yet another month with his run of bad health AND I'm still job-hunting.

Went to a local farm shop today on a sort of recce to see what papercraft stuff they sell. The idea was prompted by someone who saw some of my cards at the exhibition the other weekend and who thought I should try to sell them. However, they already have about 3 stands with different sorts of cards. But here's the stinger - they're 'hand finished'. This means they are mass produced and then the topper just stuck on and a ribbon tied around, so there's no real effort gone into them and they can supply them by the bucket. I can't compete with that. However, on returning home, my neighbour suggested that I should try with my bookmark cards (I made the oriental ones for the expo) as they are so different. She says I should aim for the niche 'posh and hand-made' market. Anyway, going to knock up a few and take them around and see....Bit disheartened, though.

So when I was sent messages saying that I had been given another TWO awards today, it really cheered me up. I have been given these by Tara, Manda and Zoe - thank you so much, ladies. Really made my day!!

Finding others to pass these onto is quite difficult as most of the blogs I admire/visit/steal from (LOL!) have already got them, but there are few of my favourites still without - for some strange reason! - so I'll pass this one (YOU ROCK MY SOCKS!) to Cathy, Sara, Emma and Gina for about a million reasons, mainly for being fab and having a similar outlook on life as me. Hugs to you all xxx

The second award was the KREATIV BLOGGER. This one I'm giving to some folks whose cards and creations are a constant source of amazement to me. The first person I'd like to award is Julie. Her blog is lovely and her cards are incredible. She has an amazing eye for colour and detail and her workmanship is gorgeous. The second person is Vicky. Not only does she make great cards, but has recently started altering shopping bags. They are fantastic and so cleverly done. Oh, and she's a great mate, too! And lastly (but by no means leastly LOL!) is Donna. I first saw her work on DoCrafts some time ago and I've always loved the unique style she has and her workmanship is superb. So there you have it. There are so many talented crafters out there that I can only dream of emulating but who have already been given these awards; and justifiably so! It sounds a bit twee, but I really feel humbled to have the same awards as some of these peeps! xxxxx

28 May 2008


... is really fun... NOT!! But off we went last weekend to sunny Norfolkshire. And it was sunny but really really really windy. I suppose a good clue to the expected climate should have been the wind turbine farm behind the campsite, but hey!

So the man told us where to pitch and we fought with the tent for an hour and eventually got it up, just as the man came back and told us that we were in the wrong place!! So we moved. Then our friends turned up and we had to do it all again!

Saturday was baking hot but very very windy again. We went off to Great Yarmouth and couldn't believe how quiet it was. Not a soul around. Half of the attractions were empty so our two little girls - Lil G and our friend, Amy - went on everything in sight and had a fantastic time.

On Sunday, it started to rain. We headed home but had to go via West Runton to the Hillside Animal Sanctuary, where Lil G's adopted shire horse, William, lives. It's a lovely place and the animals are so well looked after there, it's a joy to see them.

I have never been so happy to see my bed as I was on Sunday night! xx

26 May 2008


Evening all. Not long back from a weekend of camping and came home to find that I have been given the CIRCLE OF FRIENDS 'award' from Vicky, Zoe and Cass!!! How fab is that?? Thanks, ladies, I'm really touched.

I have to pass this on to 4 other people. I'm obviously passing this back to Vicky, Zoe and Cass, but I'd like to pass it on to Emma, Barbara, Sharon and Tara.

With lots of hugs xxxxx

22 May 2008


One of my best friends, Janis, is celebrating her birthday tomorrow, so I made this for her. I made it using some of the fantastic blog candy I got from Cass, so I hope they both like it.

The image, ribbon and flowery paper is from Cass's stuff. My lovely hubby treated me to a shopping trip for craft stuff (love you lots! x) and I bought the Bazzill card and blooms. He also got me some lovely shimmery chalks that I used to colour the image and edges.

Thanks for looking xxx

O M G!!! I'M 40!!!

Well here it is. Apparently my life begins today!!!

And my good friend Vicky sent me this fabulous card to mark the occasion. Isn't it gorgeous??

It's all shiny and sparkly and lovely and I love getting handmade cards, so this one is a treasure! Thanks, Vicky! xxxx

This little beauty came from my very bestest friend, my Lil G! She coloured it in, cut it out and stuck it on all by herself and I think it's brilliant - and we have some serious competition, crafters!

21 May 2008


.... as picked by Lil G under the firm adjudication of Daddy....

...........EVE'S CRAFTS!!

So congratulations to Eve - I hope you like it all!

And thank you so much to everyone for all your great ideas on how to celebrate my birthday. We particularly liked the idea of letting off 40 balloons and the visit to the Pottery Cafe!

19 May 2008


Right then, can't do anything about it so I'm going to damn well enjoy it! On Thursday I will be 40...... (sob!). So in honour of this momentous occasion, I thought I would give away some lovely blog candy. (Should have hoovered the rug first *blush*!!)

There are (deep breath!) :

Mini cards/envelopes; Peel offs; Stickers; Flowers; Mini roses; Leaves; 2 x Craft scissors; Fancy folding template; Assorted embellishments; 5 m of red/gold 15 mm ribbon; Rub-ons; Paper packs; Assorted A4 cardstock (glitter/mirri/holo/pastel/black/white); Raffia; Chipboard letters - self-adhesive; PM Brass stencil; Ribbon brads; Gems; And a load of 12 x 12 papers!

If you'd like it, please leave me a message on my blog with your most imaginitive (yet feasible!) idea for what to do for my birthday and a link on your blog to mine to this post and I'll get Lil G to draw out the winner's name on Wednesday (21st) night - about 7 pm (cos she goes to bed then!).

Good luck!! xx Debs, aged 39.....
PS I've got say that o/h took the photo, perched precariously on a stepladder, so thank you Sexybum xx (he'll sulk for days, else LOL)

17 May 2008

These are the last two. I credit the incredible Sue Nelson as the inspiration for the wedding one and my hubby again for the simple Congrats card.

Luckily the Congrats card took just minutes to make, cos the Wedding one took flippin' ages. I had to make sure that the three sections sat together as one without much of a join being visible.
I do wonder if I'm the best person to teach anyone anything about card-making LOL! xx


So I managed to cough up three more cards last night for this exhibition. Rushed them over this morning before the visitors arrived. This is one of them. I can't believe how hard Swiss Dots are to work with - they're so easy to squash and I spent ages poking them out again!

And the church where the art is on display is damp so some of them are wilting slightly, but they'll do.

This one was OH's idea and it came out really well, I think. There was language when I tried to get the metal ring onto the ribbon, though, without bending it! There must be a better way of doing.

The good news is that the guy who runs the Art class whose work is being exhibited has asked me to come in as a guest and do a class in card-making! Get me, eh??!!! Not sure I'm good enough at cards myself yet, but I'll give it a go! TFL x

16 May 2008


You'd think I was going in to the Tate Modern, wouldn't you?? I know it's only a little event, but people come from all over the country to see the local churches and my cards are going to be in with some very talented artists' work....
This one was a 'happy accident'. I had almost finished it and somehow managed to make a black mark on the gingham (I cried like a baby LOL!).
So I got out the old Cuttlebug die and added the flowers - and I like it. And I went to bed feeling invincible!!!
The idea for this card came from the extremely talented Sharon Johnson (I can't find a link anywhere to her gallery so if you have one, please let me know!). Her style is incredible and fresh and her workmanship is superb. TFL x
PS: Thank you Julie for the link - Sharon's gallery can be found at blog. http://notimetostamp.blogs.splitcoaststampers.com/ so take a look!

15 May 2008


This is another one that just sort of made itself! I like black & white stuff - I think it can be quite effective. This could be for any occasion, really. We'll see whether or not it should go into the exhibition tomorrow when we set it all up. Mum's paintings are going in too; such a shame we can't sell stuff cos I'm sure she would make a mint!! Thanks for looking! xx

14 May 2008

This one shows the inside (sort of!) and the bookmark.

I'm really pleased with this one in particular.

Hope you like it too.x

Not so sure about this one, but it looks much better in real life.

The ribbon has a real sheen to it and flecks of blue, which contrast really well with the red, bizarrely.

I may put all three of these into the exhibition if I look at them tomorrow and still like them LOL! TFL x

This is the same idea but with different papers and ribbons. I love this ribbons cos they're sticky and fabric and blingy! TFL x


I have had this set of Oriental stuff for ages. I saw it on C&C and just HAD to have it. And then couldn't think of a damn thing to do with it all! Not sure where this idea came from but I'm quite pleased with it.

I'm thinking of putting it into the Arts & Crafts exhibition this weekend.

It was a tri-fold card and I've cut and glued the front to the next piece, so it opens like a normal card. The inside is the same design, but with room for you to write. The bookmark is double-sided with the same paper. TFL x


Am I the only one getting really fed up with the shocking level of customer service these days??

The last 7 days have been a barrage of ineptitude, lies, rudeness and downright incompetence. And they ALWAYS blame the computer. I work in IT and if you put rubbish in, you get rubbish out. Similarly, if you pay peanuts...... And I was taking on three of the biggest organizations in the country.

For example, we collect our Airmiles through a certain well-known supermarket (and every other flippin market!) and we were trying to book a short break for someone's BIG birthday, only to find that said supermarket had not deposited any Airmiles into my account since last year. On investigation, they said it was because of a problem with my address, but - are you ready for this? - they couldn't tell me what the problem was. I know. Ridiculous. Once that was sorted (and I must have spoken to four people before I got them to accept that there actually was no problem), they then said they could only transfer the Airmiles in August as part of the quarterly cycle. They were rude too! So I persisted and ranted and eventually got a very nice Customer Relations lady to sort it out, so watch this space....

The second one was a well-known arts and crafts supplier to schools, who "lost" my parcel, replaced it but it was 'lost' in transit. They then sent it 24-hour delivery by ParcelForce, who also lost it. So they sent yet another one, only to have a different driver covering this area who "couldn't find" us. We live dead opposite a post office, too! As a "goodwill gesture" - what, for them having worked hard to mess me about??? - they are sending me a gift voucher... to spend with them!!! Fat chance.

Then, and most amusingly - NOT - was the complete ineptitude of a certain well-known motoring organization who also do loans. We tried to pay ours off early. They initially gave us the wrong settlement figure because, despite the rigorous hoops I had to jump through to prove who I was, they were still looking at someone else's account!! So I went to the bank and the manager transferred the funds to them. As an aside to this particular moan, we had already paid this month's instalment, but rather than deduct that from the settlement figure, we had to overpay them and wait for them to refund the month's instalment - WHY??? When the overpaid instalment did not reappear within 10 days I rang them to be proudly told by a rather dippy lady that "we probably have it but it's disappeared into cyberspace". It was sitting in a holding account, they were sending me strong letters because I'd cancelled their direct debit, and they still owed me £250!! Only when threatened with the police did they miraculously find it and we now have to wait ANOTHER ten days for our money back. WHY???

WHY do you have to fight for everything with these people?
WHY do you never get the same person twice and end up explaining it all over again?
WHY do I have to pay RIGHT NOW or they send snotty letters and late-payment bills and bailiffs, etc, when they can make me wait up to 3 months before I get back what's mine?
WHY am I penalised for not paying by Direct Debit? And I don't because of the number of cock-ups I've had to sort out.
WHY do I have to sit on the phone for ages listening to Vivaldi and being told my call is important but they're very busy, only to find that the person who answers either doesn't understand a word I'm saying or is the wrong department?
WHY can these ruddy call centres NOT call me back? They said it was because they were so busy taking incoming calls. Well.... duh! If you ring some of them back, your incoming call rate will drop........
WHY does no one accept responsibility for anything? What happened to taking ownership of something and sort it out?

In mitigation, I will concede that in each of these cases, a very nice and capable person has in the end sorted these out, but they still manage to make you feel like they're doing you a HUGE favour in their very busy day to stop you moaning.

COME ON PEOPLE!! You have a job to do. Do it. Or I'll start submitting bills for my time.

And after all the ranting, all I got on the day was blinding headache. I wait with bated breath to see if it is all resolved.

My favourite incompetent person was from the HMRC (tax office). I queried my ridiculously high tax code only to be told that it was because of my company car. This is some years back and I hadn't had a company car for over three years. So I told her that I had given it back when I left the job some years ago and therefore didn't have one. And she said - are you ready for this? Please do not be drinking or eating when you read the next bit. You have been warned! -


I rest my case.

12 May 2008


I bought some wooden flower photo frames for Lil G to decorate, along with some bits and pieces. With the weather being so hot, I've tried to keep her indoors in the middle of the day, so she sat down yesterday and did these!

I think they would make great little presents and I'm going to put them in the Arts & Crafts exhibition next weekend.

I think they look great. She has a good eye for colour, I think. TFL x

11 May 2008



Well that's just completely changed the whole mood of what I was going to post tonight, I can tell you! I don't know if it's the heat or having hubby at home (poorly) for month - and this was only the first week :( LOL - or what, but I just can't get my head straight.
I've been asked to submit some stuff to a local arts & craft exhibition next weekend. No problem deciding what to submit - birthday/male/sympathy/wedding - but just really can't come up with anything! We can't sell our stuff at this event cos it's being held in a church, but we are allowed to leave our details. So I want to do something really eye-catching but my head won't come up with a thing!!
HOWEVER, with all this lovely new stuff coming from Cass, I've a feeling that may all change... Someone said I should look back through all the stuff I've done in the past and pick one I really like and do it a bit differently - problem is, I don't really like a lot of it!! I've spent the weekend flitting between Lil G's new paddling pool and blog-hopping for inspiration. And then I saw all the very talented peeps out there and gave up... But now I feel a lot better, so I'm off to bed now and I'll give it another go tomorrow xxx

8 May 2008


Go see my mate Cass at http://poursomesugaronme-rockchick.blogspot.com/. She's celebrating over 5000 hits and is giving away some brill blog candy!!

2 May 2008


Just realised I haven't posted anything for quite a few days now.... can't believe it's May already, either!!

Had some good news this week. My lovely (quite old now) Lexus passed her MOT - I must confess I was expecting quite a large bill, not because there's anything wrong with her, just because that's the way my luck's been going lately LOL!

AND most of my order from Ohmycrafts arrived - yay! So lots of lovely new Cuttlebug folders to play with... watch this space for new stuff!

AND Lil G is now a Rainbow (baby Brownies - didn't have 'em when I was little!) and she loves it! x