The Big Trip

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Another award - thanks Doodles!!!

I received this award today From Donna a.k.a. Doodles Dumpkins) who has just this week joined the blogging world with a very pretty blog here. So many many thanks to Donna.

The conditions of this award are that I must name the person who has given the award and list their blog and link to it. (Done!!) I must list 10 honest things about myself. I must put a copy of The Honest Scrap Logo on my blog. I must select at least seven other worthy bloggers & list their links. I must notify the bloggers of the award.

As I've already made this list I'm sure I will be forgiven for just copying it up as I'm really quite a boring person with very little to say for myself LOL!!

So here goes :

I hate ironing
I wish I could give up smoking
I don’t think I’m a creative paper crafter
I would give my last anything to someone who needed it more than me – but would have to give it long thought when it comes to my K&Co Blue Awning papers!!!
I don’t recognise stress in myself
I was a Scottish Under 18 archery champion
When my numbers come up, it’s a house by the sea for me
I’m terrible with money
My favourite colour is blue
I wanted to be a nurse when I was young but it wasn’t to be.

My 7 worthy bloggers are

Valerie-Jael whose work is absolutely stunning - go see!!

My dear friend Maria who in her very limited spare time produces some beautiful work and in her blog reminds us of the things in life which truly matter

Dyan Reaveley of Art from The Heart who workshops I aspire to attend at least once!!

Sall in Devon from her Aunty Gill

Sue - if you know her, you love her!

Caz - for courage

And last but by no means least - Ann Caldwell who first gave me this award - thanks Ann for my weekly doses of pure creativity!!


Sunday, 23 August 2009

The best laid plans ...............

Or to Quote Burns accurately in "To A Mouse"

"The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men, Gang aft agley,"

Here I am at the end of three weeks holiday from work and I seem to have so little to show for it. But then how often are we subject to influences beyond our control e.g. health, weather, other people's needs/wishes?

Anyway, here I sit, having determined today to get at last a little light crafting done before my life resumes it's normal hectic pace again tomorrow

First creation made using a new Cuttlebug die set and scraps from a secret project which will accompany this card. Also took a chance to air my Rhona Farrer Swirl stamps and my new Dex Drop Brilliance ink pads:

Next card came about when I was browsing through some printouts of downloads from Digistamp Boutique. Some Brenda Pinnick papers, titles cut using Cricut, unearthed my watercolour pencils and came up with this which, for some reason best known to myself, really pleases me.

The weather up here has been abysmal for the last few days and generally when I've headed towards the shed, Charlie has been hot on my heels and is quite happy to sit and keep my company!! On the days the other week when I couldn't really get up and about very easily, he acted as a perfect temperature hot water bottle, seeming to know just where I was sore and how to snuggle in without too much pressure. He's such a big softy and I just adore him.

Yesterday I was still in the throes of some flu-type lurgy and decided to snuggle on the cough in the afternoon and came across the most fabulous film, 84 Charing Cross Road. The lead characters of Helen Hanff and Frank Doel were played beautifully by Anne Bancroft and Anthony Hopkins. I sat engrossed for the whole of the film and tonight am ordering the book of the same name, as well as Helene Hanff's Duchess of Bloomsbury Street. I will say no more but urge you, if you love a truly good film which doesn't contain sex or violence, to spare yourself a couple of hours and sit and watch it.

And so I must be off, to prepare the workday clothes and paraphernalia, and prepare for the sleepless night which always precedes my return to work after any lengthy absence. Strange thing that!

Take care


Thursday, 20 August 2009

Shopping, school and Demented Dad

Well dear reader

It's been a funny old week since I last wrote.

My darling boy was home from Friday until Wednesday as it was his birthday on Tuesday and there was no way no how he was going to spend that important day in school. The little soul was as good as gold the whole weekend with lots of interaction in the form of requests for "tickles", "tig" and endless food. This boy looks like a pencil with the wood scraped off so goodness only knows where all the food goes. I think he burns it off as soon as he digests it!

OH took Ross back to school yesterday morning and at about 11.30 the phone goes and the conversation runs:


"Yes Dad?"

"What are you doing just now?"

"Not a lot - why?"

"Good - get yourself down here now before I put this b***y paint away. I'll give you breakfast when you come down."

By way of explanation, my Dad is a true highlander and a man of few words!! The background to the conversation, as far as I knew at that point, was that he had been instructed the previous day, in mu mum's absence, to paint their small living room. It had also been planned that the Council would arrange uplift of their three piece suite that day as a new one was to be on the books.

So off I trotted like a dutiful daughter. On arrival my opinion was sought of the paint job - but what can you really say about Barley White? Mum and Dad were standing looking at me expectantly so I dutifully responded that it looked "Fine" (my most hated word in the English vocabulary!!!

In the adjoining dining room I noticed the should-have-been departed suite lying. When I asked why it was still there Dad reported that the Council men had appeared the previous day to collect it as arranged but that he had sent them away empty-handed. When I asked why he replied that my not-so-darling husband had commented that it would be good for our conservatory. OVER MY DEAD BODY - MEN!!!! My mum was well aware of my thoughts on that matter and was hiding in the kitchen trying not to wet herself laughing.

Meantime my OH had arrived in response to my text to get himself down to Dad's. Needless to say the men in the family were informed that the aforementioned suite was going to the council tip and nowhere else - certainly not within a mile of our house!!! Gill 1 - Men 0.

Longs story cut short, I had to phone the appropriate Council Department and ask for the suite to be uplifted. When the 12 year old girl on other end of phone asked for details I gave them and explained that the job had already been requested. She asked why the job hadn't been done as had been called in some 9 days previously. I explained that indeed they had but that my darling dad in his demented state had sent them away and told them he had changed his mind. I could sense that the girl was struggling with all this.

"So our men did come but they didn't take the item?"
"That's right"
"Because my father has dementia and got confused and sent them away without the item"
"So I can I please arrange for the item to be uplifted?"
"Can you hold the line a moment please?"
"No problem"

The girl comes back to my remarkably promptly and says that the item will be uplifted tomorrow (Today) but can was please ensure that it is outside the house and repeated this request about three times. I think the men didn't want to deal with the demented pensioner again!!

All the while this conversation is being relayed on hands-free round the kitchen table and my mum and dad are sitting in kinks and OH (who lacks our familial sense of humour) is just sitting shaking his head.

For the avoidance of doubt (in case anyone reading this knows the aforementioned Mr Sutherland) my dad is of extremely sound mind (although his hips are a bit iffy these days) and indeed lectured on psychiatry for about 30 years. He was however greatly tickled by the notion of losing his marbles and for the remainder of the day referred to himself as "your poor demented Dad". I have not enquired today as to whether the suite made a safe interrupted departure from their back garden where OH and I deposited yesterday immediately after the telephone conversation!!!

OF greater excitement to me yesterday was the arrival of my Cuttlebug from Cutting Edge Crafts. Fab price and fab service from them!

In addition I got a couple of embossing folders delivered:-

Birds and Swirls

And Leafy Branch

I could easily fall in love with this little machine!

Went off shopping today with mate Tania to Craft At Home and haven't spent such a joyous stash-filled hour in such a long time. This shop is filled with the most delectable stash assortment I've come across and adore their K & Co!!!! The two ladies who were serving us (repeatedly) were absolutely fabulous - funny, knowledgeable and absolutely ace saleswomen. Hence why T and I were both back at the till about 5 times between us. There is a funny story about this but if you want to read about it look here. If you want to meet these two wonders in person, visit Craft At Home in Blantyre or visit their stand at the SECC in October.

Will stop boring you to death now dear reader and put details of my crafty purchases on blog later.

Before I go I just want to send the biggest sparkiest hugs I can to Maria and Steven, mother and son, who endured the trauma and worry of Steven's general anaesthetic today. Hope all went well and without cause for concern.



Thursday, 13 August 2009

Girls on Safari

Good evening dear follower

I woke this morning and realised it would be the last day of my daughter's summer holidays during which we would have a chance to do something interesting without having to take into account the interests and thoughts of the male members of the household.

Accordingly I asked Alexandra what she wanted to do and her instant answer was "Safari Park". Well, the sun was shining, the housework can always wait and it's only 45 minute drive so it was all systems go. A quick call to my mum confirmed that she was up for this mini adventure. So by 12.15 we were parked up at Blair Drummond and ready for a bit fun.

See my slideshow below for some of my fave pics from the day. Have to say though, it's very much still a case of "Meerkats Rule!!"

We had a really fab afternoon and even found time to visit Chimp Island but unfortunately I couldn't get any good shots as I was on the wrong side of the boat - trust me!!

All in all, a fab day which might have started off pretty poorly with news that I'm more than likely going to need surgery to get rid of all this pain I'm getting - but that'll be a while yet so no point in fretting. Onwards and upwards!

Definitely need to get some scrapping done in the last week of the holidays, I think a Meerkat page is a must!

Now, must head for bed as am off down to collect Ross in the morning to bring him home for a long weekend as it's his birthday on Tuesday, so he's home until Wednesday - Yay!!!!


Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Holiday Week 1 - Mixed Fortunes

Dear Reader

Here I am with one week of the holidays gone already. The first few days were a miox of the usual stuff without the hassle of having to fit work in around them! On Thursday I had a rare opportunity to spend time with Ross down at school. These visits come in the middle of his spell between arriving back at school on a Monday and coming back home again on the following Friday. A welcome break for all concerned. We spend time just off campus in a cabin set in the middle of a beautiful sensory garden.

When you enter the garden you come under/through (never sure which) a gazebo over which is growing the most gorgeous honeysuckle with gorgeous yellow flowers and these amazing spirals blooms - they're just amazing to look at and I'm sorry my photography doesn't do them justice!

The cabin is up on your right and is just my idea of bliss - when my numbers come up on the Lottery, I'm having one just like this as a craft hideaway, complete with kitchen, bathroom and two bedrooms!!!

You stand on the balcony and look out and see nothing but trees, trees and more trees with no traffic noises - bliss. My favourite tree is the red acer in front of the balcony. In the sunshine the upper sides of the leaves are dark red and the under sides are bright crimson but again my photography just doesn't do this any credit.

We had a lovely time chilling out on what was an absolutely gorgeous day down in that neck of the woods. There was scarcely a breeze, the air was warm, and Ross and I were quite happy just spending time together just the two os us - an unfortunately too rare occurrence. I took time, while he was watching a dvd, to try and capture some of the delights of this little haven for your enjoyment.

Friday saw me heading off to the hospital for more scans in an effort to locate the source of this damned lurgy which is causing me so much grief. Hopefully an answer this week! Friday night and my parents, DD and I went off partying in wild Coatbridge at a surprise joint 60th birthday party for my aunt and uncle. A fab time was had by all but guess who forgot her camera - idiot!!

After a lazy Saturday morning I got settled in the shed to do some serious crafting and about 4'ish remembered that I had to venture into the village to do a few errands so off I set. Fifteen minutes later, in middle of ASDA no less, I was struck down with the most awful abdominal pain imaginable - in ASDA I ask you!!! Weel, managed to stagger to car before passing out, made a phonecall to hubby who duly arrived with my Mum in order to retrieve me and OH's car. Funny how it's always his car I get stranded with when this pain comes on? Maybe it's the car? Anyway, that was me laid up until about lunch-time yesterday. I was truly not a happy bunny as I had to forgo a long-awaited visit to Kelvingrove Art Gallery so that Alexandra could see the Dr Who exhibition. By Sunday morning it was patently clear I was going nowhere so bravely (with martyr hat on) suggested that Hubby took DD off, just the two of them. No arguments from either of them - I'm not a good patient!!!

Anyway, by Monday night I was muchos imrpoved so had a visit from the lovely Tania and the even more grogous MacDuff, hr fourmmonth old Westie pup. Isn't it amazing how four month olds, animal or human, can totally kill conversation (in the nicest possible way)? That little pooch is so cute!!!

Anyway, today finds me back to something resembling a normal looking (it's all relative mind you) so felt at leasst a little blogging was called for while waiting for rain to go off. Crafting planned for later, finishing the projects which were so rudely cut off before completion on Saturday!!

More later!!!

Thanks for allowing me to bore you dear reader!!


Sunday, 2 August 2009

Three Beautiful Weeks

Yes dear Reader, that's how long I've got off work. Three lovely weeks to do pretty much as a I please, when I please. Except that is, when I need to act as taxi driver to daughter, do occasional h*******k and i*****g. I plan to get off up to St Andrews this week, we all as a family just adore the place. I have a friend who is a golf pro and he's given me his card and that acts as an invitation to play a bit of some of the lovely courses up there.

For me there are rituals to be observed at the start of the summer break. You'll laugh at this one, but if you're a woman, perhaps not. High on the to do list is a handbag for the holidays. This year's delectation is a bright red moc-croc affair. Now I don't go for big expense - it's purely to make me smile and this one definitely does the trick so let me know what you think. Subdued it ain't!!!

Another thing that I love about the holidays s that first Sunday evening when you realise that you don't need to rush around like an eejit making sure all the ironing is done ready for the working week - now that really is my idea of bliss!!

While I was in the garden tonight pondering that particular pleasure, I noticed some lovely new blooming additions to my collection of pots. The first was this gorgeous crimson geranium.

And then this little beauty hiding up near my little corner of crafting heaven way down the bottom of the garden

Ross has been home this weekend, and has been in fantastic form, although going by the look of his face, perhaps that hasn't been the case at school this week. We just keep applying the arnica cream and pray for calm for his little soul.

I was all set to do the return trip to school with him tomorrow but OH wants to do it so Alexandra and I will stay home and do some errands and make lunch for his return. Alexandra has music lessons in the afternoon so I shall have a genuine couple of hours R&R as OH is working for the next two weeks. I SHALL NOT ACT PLEASED ABOUT THIS OMMISSION ON HIS PART - I should write 100 lines about that little fact!!!

The week will then be free for other jaunts and explores.

Take are dear reader and I shall post regularly from different destinations for your delectation and undoubted boredom!!