Saturday, 30 April 2011

The One About my Craft Room Update.......

I know that a lot of people are interested in how my craft area is progressing, and I like to keep track of all the stages too so that I can scrap it eventually so here is the next stage.

M finished varnishing the shelving units and put them altogether on Thursday to show what they looked like, bearing in mind they're not in the right room at this point:

Please excuse the mess that is our dining room - another room that needs a make-over!
The drawers have been made especially as 12x12 inches to fit my card and papers :)
Then yesterday we went on the hunt for something that would do for the work tops.  We tried three different places before we ended up in Wickes where we found the wood that we decided to use.  Do you know how difficult it is to find pieces of wood in large widths and depths?  You see we needed it to be at least half a metre wide, with a good 2cm depth to it, and we didn't want laminate as we need to varnish the worktop to match the rest of the wood.  Wickes was the best with a width of 60cm and depth of 2.8cm.  So M has done his initial cutting out, and put it altogether in the craft area (nothing is fixed in yet, and a bit more painting is required - you might be able to spot the odd wall area of white or yellow where I forgot to paint - ooops!), but nothing isfixed in, and the work tops need varnishing still.

The bit in the middle on the chimney breast is where my fold down table is going to go, and M has just gone off to Wickes to get some more wood for that part, and for the hinges for the legs.

Let me know what you think!  And if you have pictures of your craft space on your blog please share them here so that I can have a nosy!  (I'm intending to frame some of my 12x12 LO's and putting them up on the wall running to the left of the craft space, I'm after some of those ones where there is just glass all the way to the edge, with no actual frame.  If anyone knows where I can get any please point me in the right direction!)

And don't forget everyone that it is Storytelling Sunday tomorrow over at Sian's.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The One About Easter Monday in Photos...

M just before going for his regular Monday run - he wouln't let me take a picture of him when he got back!  Shall we say he was just a little bit hot!

Catching up on all the lovely blogs I read (see RHS if you're interested) and adding a blog post of my own before work on th ehouse actually starts.

And so the second coat of the craft/exercise room begins

A sneaky pic there that M took, he was all for this project today!

No time to make lunch so off to Subway we went

M is building the work units for the craft area, as we couldn't buy any wood in the shade we wanted they are being varnished as they are built, this looks like the second coat going on!

I tried a new recipe for Aubergine, tomato and parmesan bake with a twist

The twist was I added bacon and sweet potato to it to make it more filling, and very tasty it was too!

See here for more days

Monday, 25 April 2011

The One About Speke Hall....

Yesterday Mum and I took a trip out to Speke Hall, near Liverpool.  We're both members of the National Trust, and this one wasn't too far away, and we hadn't been before.  We got there for just after 11am to be told the house wasn't open to the public until 1pm, but we could always sign up, for free, to a tour of the house by one of the National Trust volunteers.  Well of course that's what we did!  So our tour started at 11:15, with just enough time before for a quick trip to the ladies, or o we thought.  On starting to make our way to the house (it was some way from the reception area) I read the back of the visitors pass, which said make sure you get to the front of the house 5mins before the tour is due to start, and that the house is a ten minute walk away!  Well given that we had 5 minutes to get there we got a wriggle on (a new phrase I've picked up from M and that my Mum had never heard before which made her laugh!) and very quickly hotfooted it to the house - only to find we were there in under 5 minutes, and that the National Trust were obviously erring on the side of caution with their 'it takes 10minutes!!!!!'.

The gentleman showing us around was dressed in full victorian attire, and was very knowledgable about the  house and the family (as he should be really if he's giving a tour but anyway), and told us lots of little anecdotes and stories as we went around.  Apparently one of the upstairs bedrooms was haunted (I'll tell the story later if anyone wants to hear it), and there were lots of little hidey holes around the house.  The man of the house, one William Morris, had two wives, and get this, 19 children!!! 7 by the first wife (I believe she dies, but not sure why) and 12 by the second!  I can't really comprehend having that many children, but as Mum said they didn't have contraception in those days!!!

After our tour round the house we meandered round the formal gardens, and found our way into the bluebell woods.  It was lovely because it was still so quiet that I could stop and take photos without anyone else accidentally getting into the shot.  I've been after some pretty shots of bluebells for a while so I tried.  You'll have to be the judge of how good they are :)  I also wanted to try out my new remote for the camera that M's father got me for my birthday last year (I know its taken me a while to get round to using it, but the weathers nice now).  The night before M helped me work out how to use it, and I was all set.  I lined the camera up on the tripod (a pressie from M the Christmas before last - one of those ones with wiggly legs, only about a foot tall) and stood next to Mum and pressed the button and, nothing happened!  I went back to the camera checked all the settings and tried again, still nothing happened!  So for the time being I gave up, because I didn't want to hold Mum up much longer.  (Don't worry I did come back to it later, but more of that in a mo).

By this time we decided it was time for lunch, and with it being such a warm sunny day we had a picnic in the grounds of the house.  Whilst we were having a break I thought it would be a good time to have another go with my camera, so I again set it all up, and tested the camera and got this shot of my Mum's feet.

I thought that would be it and I again set the camera up for a shot of us together (as we only go out with the two of us its rare that the two of us are in a photo together), and guess what???  It still didn't work!  I have no idea what I'm doing wrong, but I'm going to play with it at home with M.  As a last resort I did the usual thing and held the camera at arms length, but of course at such a funny angle it made our necks look huge and gave me a double chin!  So that picture will not get shown!!!

As we still had the afternoon free and to make the most of the weather, we thought we would attempt the  external walk round the grounds, which was just over a mile long.  (I say attempt, the leaflet said it had rough terrain and that it was fairly steep in places).  We needn't have worried, the ground was fairly flat and there were no steep hills!  We stopped for a while on a bench along the way to watch the aeroplanes taking off, yes the house it right next to Liverpool airport.  It was quite strange to be in this lovely setting with this old house and beautiful grounds, to hear the thundering of an aeroplane every ten minutes or so!

Whilst on our little walk I again tried for some interesting photos.

I look large from the waist down in this photo - its only because I've got my jacket tied round my waist!

Mum has this habit of taking pictures and standing too far away.  So I set the shot up let her take the first one and then told her to take a step in for the next shot, and then another step and so on, and the final shot is really quite good.  Although my hair looks very windblown and untidy, but Mum said it demonstrated the surroundings more!

We finished up our walk and headed home for a much earned cup of tea :)

Sunday, 24 April 2011

The One About the Little Things...

Its the little things that turn a house into a home isn't it?  And we're slowly getting there with the house, room by room.  The kitchen has been fully painted for a while, but it was only yesterday that we got round to putting up some finishing touches.  The utensil holder actually got put up on the kitchen wall, and I bought a whiteboard (to write things down when they run out as it is inevitable that when I get to the supermarket I won't remember!) for the other wall, which went up this morning.  So all we need for the kitchen now, is a blind (which I ordered online yesterday - another tick on the list!) and to give the ceiling another coat of paint, and its finished.  Unless you include the fact that the cupboards need a complete reorganisation (but I think that can wait for another weekend) as when I moved in with M I brought all my uni crockery with me and now we're just not making best use of the space.

Here are pictures...

Yesterday I also ordered a blind for the downstairs loo, its been on my things to do list forever too.  Do you know how difficult it is to find a roman blind in purple (to match my towels of course!) ready made with the weird dimensions of our windows??? I was there all afternoon looking in the internet!  Anyway, I found a plain one which I'm going to snazz up a bit with some crystals.

I hope everyone is having a lovely Easter.  Mum and I went to Speke Hall today and had a fab day in the sun.  I'll be back with photos tomorrow :)

Friday, 22 April 2011

The One About Dunham Massey Park......

The journalling reads:
'Mum and I share a love of visiting new places, most especially National Trust properties.  So one sunny Sunday in May 2009 Mum & I took a trip out to Dunham Massey Park.  It was such a nice day that it gave me the chance to practice different types of shots with my camera.  Luckily Mum is very patient with me and is used to me stopping to take photos.  First up we took a trip round the house (unfortunately cameras weren't allowed) learning the history of the family that used to live there.  Then we took a walk around the pretty gardens, me photographing unusual plants along the way.  Next to the lake were a few ducks having a snooze in the afternoon sun.  I wanted a decent shot of one of the ducks, with the background a bit out of focus.  Well as I started taking pictures & approached it, I began to talk to it, telling it not to move.  Well unsurprisingly Mum disowned me and walked off!'

Edited to enlarge the photos - took me a while to figure it out, but I got there in the end!

Thursday, 21 April 2011

The About Being Jinxed...

Do you ever have a day where anything electrical you touch goes wrong?  Well thats what happened to me today.  I was going about my usual working, I printed a few pages showing monthly transactions, then moved onto my next task where I had to request a new supplier to be set up on Sage.  To do this I had to print off a form and fill it in.  I sent the document to the printer and waited for the printer to produce it.  Nothing happened.  I checked the store on the printer (sometimes the printer saves it and you have to relaease your print job with a password).  Still nothing.  So then I thought maybe I hadn't sent it to print at all.  So I asked it to print again.  I was quite confused as I'd already been printing documents ealier on.  So to bypass the problem I sent it to the colour printer (despite it being a black and white document) and it printed just fine.  (As is departmental policy at the moment I reported the problem to IT).

Next issue was with Sage.  My job doesn't involve needing to be in Sage all day long, so when I've finished what I'm doing I close it down.  Sage needs a password.  Earlier in the day I'd posted a few journals and it was just fine.  Later on I had to run an account to check the transactions.  So I attempted to log on.  Even though I was using the same password as earlier it wasn't having it and said my account was locked.  So that had to be unlocked by the Sage manager.

Next up, my phone.  My shiny lovely smart phone that I've had about two months.  It was flashing to show there was a new message on there.  So I pressed the menu key to unlock the phone, and the screen didn't change.  Next I tried to use the unlock button on the side of the phone, again nothing happened.  So I thought the best thing to do would be to turn the phone off and on again, thats what people usually recommend isn't it?  Even the power button wouldn't work!  In the end I had to pull the back of the phone off and the battery out and put it back in again to make it work!

So, later in the day IT responded to my report of the printing problem.  So we tried to print the same document that wouldn't print earlier, and what happened?  It printed just fine!  It really wasn't my day at all!!!

So has anyone else had a day where it seems they emit electromagnetic radiation or something that just effects everything electrical around them?  

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The One About Lunch...

Yesterday I was a 'woman what lunches'!  I had the day off and M asked would I like to meet him for lunch so off I went to meet him at work (nevermind that it was an hours driving in total, it was worth it).  It was nice to actually sit and take some time out together - don't you find that although you live with someone you're always doing something, or everything has a purpose and very rarely do you take some time out to enjoy each others company???  Well yesterday we only went for lunch at a little cafe, but it was nice having a meal out and time to talk :)

Which brings me on to today, and again I went out for lunch.  One of my friends at work asked did I want to go with her to the pub over the road. Despite having my packed lunch with me I still said yes, because I very rarely get asked for lunch at work and thought it would be nice to spend some time with the girls away from the office (and in the sunshine!)  We had a lovely lunch with girly chatter and gossip - and it really made me realise that I'm going to miss some of the faces from work when I leave in three weeks time.  I was only saying to M the other day that I don't have that many girlfriends to go out with, my best friend S living in London makes it more difficult nowadays for regular meet ups, and it was lovely being one of the ones asked to lunch today(I only realised when we got there that not everyone was asked).  I think its a shame really that we never socialised outside of work much while I was there.  So I'm hoping that I'll make some lovely new friends at the new place (not that I will forget the old ones - we're already arranging a meet up) and try to be more proactive in arranging more socialising :)

J, me & H

Today I saw three Eddie's, can you believe it three!!!  Karen Emma, Jade Amy (seen before) and Ruby Louise.  At the moment its rare on my journey to work even seeing one, so three is a bonus!!!

A bit of an aside now... but sometimes I get an idea about what I want to blog about, then I write it in my head (generally while I'm driving), does anyone else do this or am I slowly going mad????

Monday, 18 April 2011

The One About Madeira....

A year ago this week, M and I went on holiday for a week to Madeira.  We hadn't been away since we went to Paris the November before, so we were really looking forward to going away somewhere and relaxing, and having some warm weather for a change!  We had an all inclusive hotel not too far from the city centre of Funchal.  (It was 20 minute walk away, which going down hill wasn't too bad in the mornings - coming back later in the day - that was harder!)  Anyway we got there on a Monday and spent the next few days exploring, and doing touristy things, going on a coach trip round the island, visiting the various gardens in the island, and one mad day we trekked up on a very hot day to find a garden/animal park that was at the top of a mountain - we were exhausted by the time we got to the top!  Well on the Friday morning we turned the tv on in the hotel room (we were quite lucky to have some english channels and the news) to find the Volcano in iceland had decided to erupt and throw out lots of ash which started to get blown towards Europe.  We had frantic phone calls from our family, trying to find out what was going on, as flights were being suspended.  Well the first day it said they were only suspending flights on that day, so we tried not to worry about how we would be getting home as we figured things would we back to normal on the Monday.  How wrong were we!!!

On Monday we went to the airport as planned to be told that of course our flight had been cancelled, but they were putting us up in a hotel, and would feed us breakfast and dinner, and we would be there until further notice.  The new hotel was nowhere near as nice as the original one, and it was a good 15mins bus ride away from the city centre.  We were told to just try and enjoy the extra days, and that we would get 24 hours notice when our flight would be ready, so we were fine to just go out on trips out.  Well we didn't like to stray too far from the hotel, and only made it out to the city centre on just one of the days.  Well on the Thursday night we were at dinner and it was about 8:30pm, and the lady from the travel company came in and said we had a flight leaving at 2am and we would get picked up at 11:30pm.  So four extra days, and we landed about 6am on the Friday.  Luckily I had booked two weeks off work so they weren't expecting me back.  Unfortunately M should have been at work on the Tuesday, so despite the lack of sleep he went to work and came home about mid-afternoon.  I will never forget our trip to Madeira, and before the volcano fuss we actually had a really lovely time.  I have more than 200 pictures from that trip because there was a flower festival on at the time, and a parade on the last Saturday.  One of these days I'm going to get round to scrapping these pictures, and the story of being stranded!

So... was anyone else stranded at the time?  Or know friends or family that were stranded?  I'd be interested to find out!

As you will all be aware I took part in Shimelle's class Blogging for Scrappers.  Well starting to today I'm doing the follow on class Beyond Blogging for Scrappers.  And so... its time to think about the theme of my blog.  It started off simply as a tool to take part in one of Shimelle's other classes.  More recently I've been using it to try and keep track of my thoughts and memories so that when I do come round to scrap things I haven't forgotten important parts!  I do like to share my LO's too once I've completed them.  And actually in the last month I've done more scrapping than the rest of the year, so blogging has given me a bit of a boost :) and its nice to find out what other scrappers think of the craftiness that I get up to!  Sometimes I throw in a few stories just about every day life, which one day I suppose will form part of my history for future generations.  So, I guess I'm wondering, do people enjoy the mix that I write about?  Would you prefer to read more about life in general?  Or less life and more craft???  Let me know what you think :)  all comments are appreciated!

Monday, 11 April 2011

The One About My New Job & Time Travelling.....

So my good news..... I've got a new job! I couldn't say before now because I needed to hand in my notice first but now I can tell everyone!  I've been worrying all weekend about how my boss was going to take the news, but I needen't have worried, he claimed he knew I would be off soon anyway, although how he knew I have no idea.  He must have just sensed I wasn't happy for the last few months.  Anyway, new job in a month (oh what a pain it is working notice) new start.  Its doing more of what I enjoy (thats working with numbers) its closer to home, so no more hour long commute yey!!!!!  And no more of the mad management that sends us all away for three days to talk about the organisations 5 priorities (just an excuse to get drunk really!).  So I'm going to be counting down the days for the next month now :)

This week whilst I wait for Beyond Blogging for Scrapbookers I thought I would revisit one of Shimelles other classes 'My Freedom' which ran a couple of years ago, but which I didn't really finish!  So, today I'm thinking about where I would go if I could travel through time. Hmm... Sometimes I think I'd like to go to the 17th Century, when Pride & Prejudice was set, and wear the pretty dresses, and go to all the balls.  But then I think how boring it must have been for the women, waiting to get married, and not having any gainful employment.  Or else the 60's when everything was more relaxed and wore flowers in their hair (I still do wear flowers in my hair by the way).  Sometimes I think it would be interesting to go back to when my mum was in her early 20's and see what she was like then before having my brother, sister and myself.

So, if you could travel in time where and when would you go to????

Sunday, 10 April 2011

The One About Our Midnight Visitors...

Okay so it wasn't midnight when they arrived, but it was after midnight when they left so I think it works (plus it sounds better than our nearly midnight visitors!).  Anyway, M's sister C had been out in town to the pub with a friend last night, and on their way home they saw the light as on in our front room and decided to pay us a visit.  Well over the last few weeks I've been re-reading my Scrapbook Inspirations mags (I can't bear to throw them out) for new ideas.  Anyway C's friend S saw one of the mags and asked did I do scrapbooking, to which obviously I replied yes! And she wanted to see my albums, so we happily spent an hour upstairs looking through all my mini-books and albums and just generally chatting about scrapbooking.  I have not met anyone before that actually scrapbooks in real life.  Of course I know people online, but its not quite the same thing is it?  And I show my LO's to M or my family, and they're always pleased to see them, especially if they're in them, but last night I met someone who was just as enthusiastic as I was, who actually appreciated the time it takes to make things look pretty :) And she wanted to look at everything, not just look at one page and walk away, everything!  I'm hoping that I might meet u with her again, as it would be great to have someone to scarp with!  And maybe even find a crop to go to!

So, has anyone else had any surprise visitors??

And do you know any other scrappers in real life??

Saturday, 9 April 2011

The One About All My Books...

Well it's a lovely sunny day, and I want to be out enjoying it like everyone else, but instead I'm stuck indoors revising for my exams :(  M is out in the back yard building my storage for my new craft area, so I can hardly drag him away to come out with me can I?!!!  I know the studying will be worthwhile in the end which is whats keeping me going!!!

Last night M was at the rugby so I took the chance to spread all my stash out over the living room floor (well the dining room table just isn't big enough!), and I made my first LO of my sisters wedding, not of the bride and groom, but of my sister and I in the photo I showed last week as it is one of my favourites :) I'm waiting for the professional photos to scrap of the bride and groom as my photos aren't great, as I only used my point and click camera.

I have had some really good news this week but unfortunately I can't share it just yet, so you'll have to pop back for an update!  So rather than leave this as a really short blog post that doesn't share much at all, I thought I'd share a glimpse into our home, and all the books the we (I mean I!) have, and the fabulous book that I have just finished.  Its called My Last Duchess by Daisy Goodwin, and its just fantastic! I really couldn't put it down.  Its set in the 19th century and explains the story of an (very young) american heiress that gets married off to an english duke.  I love reading about all the little customs they used to have, and the way that they used to live.  Not that I could live that way now!  I'm far too outspoken for that!  But its nice to disappear into that world for a couple of hours isn't it?

(Sorry I've just noticed that these are dvd's, but honestly I've got lots of bookshelves and 100's of books!)

So what is everyone else reading at the moment???

Thursday, 7 April 2011

The One About How I Started Scrapping...

Once upon a time I wanted to be a teacher, so I decided to some work experience in a school.  I went one afternoon a week for a year and helped out with Year 4/5 & Year 6 whilst they were doing their IT class in the computer room.  After a while the school changed the timetable and I helped out with the Year 1 class instead.  Well when it got to Christmas the class teacher arrange for the Year 1's and Reception to go round the house at Tatton Park and to meet Santa.  I was very kindly asked to go with them, and I obviously jumper at the chance!  I was assigned three of my own little people to look after for the day, and we all held hands while we walked round.  The tour of the house itself was really interesting as we had our own tour guide and they gave us the history of each room.  Although the children's interest evaporated after a while because they were so keen to go find Santa.  As well as the tour round the house the staff had arranged for the children to make a Christmas decoration from pine cones and ribbon which they all enjoyed!  It was a bit of a trek from the house to go see Santa as his little grotto was down at the farm.  So the children also got to feed the goats and chickens and visit all the other animals there.  Then... they went in to see Santa in groups of three or four and all had a chance to tell him what they wanted for Christmas.  I know this hasn't linked into scrapping yet but please bare with me!

Well while we were all going about the various parts of the trip one of the teachers too photographs.  It turned out that the school had a book that was filled in after each school trip.  Well the teacher asked if I wanted to design something for the book about the trip to Tatton Park, so coming from a crafty family (my mum was into cross stitch and my sister painted) I said I'd have a go.  Well I'm never one to dive straight in without planning things first, so I did a bit of research.  And having dabbled in making cards before and buying Papercraft Inspirations (I think that's what it was called - correct me if I'm wrong) I knew there would probably be another magazine that would give me some ideas.  This is where I stumbled across Scrapbook Inspirations in my local WHSmiths!  And do you know what, I loved that magazine!!!  So I bought a few embellishments and some letters from Partners and put together a double page spread for the book.  Looking back it wasn't my best attempt, but it gave me the scrapping bug!  After that I decided to put together a birthday album for my mum's 50th birthday.  And it kind of took off from there!  So how did you all get into scrapping????

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

The One About The Parking in Paris....

On the way home today I had a really random thought as I was driving in and out of parked cars.  I remembered that in France, and Paris have a really weird rule about parking, down main streets.  Well on the first half of the month everyone parks on one side of the road, then on the second half of the month they all swap over to the other side of the month!  It was always interesting on changeover day because the cars were dotted on both sides.  I never quite worked out how everyone knew which day they were supposed to swap!  It makes sense though doesn't it!  It's funny what triggers memories!!!  So... does anyone else know of any strange customs in other countries?

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

The One About The Radley Bag.....

Last week my lovely OH came home and said 'I've got you a voucher for the Radley shop'.  (Not because it was my birthday or because it was a special occasion, but because he felt like it!)  At Christmas I saw a Radley bag in the sale, but because it was January, and because we're saving for works on the house I didn't get it, just kept day dreaming! So this voucher was for when the next sale came along, and it wouldn't be as expensive.  Wasn't that nice :)  Unfortunately the small print on the voucher (it being a promotional voucher) said that it couldn't be used on sale items, in conjunction with any other items, and had to be used by the 21st April!  So I hotfooted it to the Trafford Centre yesterday, and came home with a new Radley bag!!! (I was going anyway, my double sided sticky tape ran out on Saturday - you should have heard the yells when I realised!)  I needed an every day weekend (not work) bag with a long strap to go across the body so I found the one below with quite a cool design on.  The strap isn't quite to my taste and in the future I might take it off and replace it, but for now its perfect!  I cant wait for the weekend now just to use it!

Now, this isn't my first Radley purchase (nor will it be my last!) and I seem to be building a small collection of Radley items, so, my question today is 'who else has a Radley collection?  Or just one?  Or harbours after a particular bag?? Pictures please!!!

Monday, 4 April 2011

The One About Mothers Day....

So I had all day yesterday set aside to spend with my mum but no idea what we were going to be doing apart from 'visiting' (this is something we do regularly when the weather is good, pick a National Trust property and visit the house and gardens).  Anyway I arrived at Mum's and she said 'Gemma I have a plan!' (She and my family are really the only ones that call me Gemma now, all my close friends have shortened it - but thats just an aside!)

So The Plan.... to have a wander round John Lewis, spending vouchers wherever possible, and then a visit to the Style Quarry Mill if the weather held out.  So we spent a lovely hour meandering through the department store (its on its own retail park next to a Sainsbury's which is why we were only going there!) Mum bought a gorgeous purple leather jewellery box, and I got some little butterfly embellishments (I'm into butterflies on my LO's at the moment, but you'll see that in a mo!).  After a quick picnic lunch in the car, we decided to chance the weather and visit the mill and gardens.  The mill itself was really well laid out, it was all set up for school visits so there were a lot of fact sheets all around, and even national trust staff in various parts of the mill giving presentations, and showing how the old equipment worked.  Mum found it particularly interesting because she's into patchwork, and making quilts (thats where I get my creative streak from) and it explained how cotton is made into fabric.  So we had a really good time, and learnt something too.

The gardens were a little disappointing, really only because it's the wrong time of year to be expecting much in terms of colour from a garden, even I know that from doing Mum.s garden for several years when I lived there, but still, you pay to vist a garden, you want to see something interesting!  Anyway there was a magnolia tree that was about to flower, a nearly open rhododendron, and lots of daffs!  I do think though that the garden will look fab in a couple of months time though when the weather ets a bit warmer :)

Anyway, I also promised some scrapping, so here we go....

First up is the LO about the flowers my OH got me this week.

Secondly is a mini book that I made (started two summers ago, and just never quite completed) so I decided to finish it off.  Pictures from various camping trips in Wales in the summer of 2009.

Tomorrow I'll tell you about my new purchase today (its very exciting!)

Sunday, 3 April 2011

The One About The Lights in Paris.....

When I was 7 my family (including my 5 year old sister and 4 month old brother) had to move to France because my dad's job got transferred over to La Defense, Paris.

Well a month or so before we were due to move we all had to go out to find a house to live in.  So we were booked into this quite fancy hotel in Versailles, with my parents having an adjoining room to the twin room my sister and I had.  I think it was the first time that we had all been abroad as a family (I can't remember going anywhere before that anyway!) I thought it was brilliant, our beds were made for us every day and a chocolate was left for us on our pillows, and we had a fancy bathroom with shiny taps and everything! (you've got to realise our bathroom at home was still set in the 60's with an aubergine suite, so shiny silver was different to us!)  Anyway one day my mum and I were in the bathroom (and because it was an ensuite there were no windows, and you had to have the light on to be able to see anything) I am going somewhere with this, honest! Anyway... we were in the bathroom, and mum had to pop to her bedroom to get something, so because I had finished in the bathroom and because my mum had trained me well, I turned the light off. When mum came back to finish what she was doing she asked me 'why did you turn the light off?' and my 7 year old response.... 'Because I wanted to save the battery!'  And for some reason that story has stuck with me more than the actual house visiting did!

So that's my first Story for Storytelling Sunday which I have found on Sian's blog here, (whose blog I'm loving to read by the way!) through BFS and which I believe happens the first Sunday of every month (please correct me if I'm wrong).

I got lots of scrapping done yesterday, and today I have been out with mum for Mothers Day, so will pop back tomorrow with pictures and details :)

Saturday, 2 April 2011

The One About the Flowers....

I just had to share a picture of the flowers my lovely OH came home with for me today :)  he doesn't buy flowers for special occasions, he simply brings them when he feels like it, which makes it far more of a surprise and always puts a smile on my face :)

So I'm done with my studying for the day (finally!) and really I had to put a good few hours in as I've been on a bit of a break, as I've come to the end of my first module, and so have nothing to move onto yet, and am waiting to hear back from my tutor about my third and final progress test.  All being well, I can then register for my first exam.  Which is a bit scary, as I think they're only meant to take two hours for the whole module, whereas its taken me two hours per progress test, and I've done three!!!  So I'm quite concerned, hence starting to revise today!

Following my last post where I talked about the story behind our Salsa dancing, I had a bit of a revelation.  I've finally 'got' what Shimelle is trying to get us to do with these blogs.  Its somewhere to write the memories before they get onto the scrapbook page or before they get forgotten, well thats what I think anyway!  So this might turn into an update about daily life, and a bit of reminiscing too :) So I'm going to try to write more lengthy posts about things, because up till now its mostly been heres what I did and heres a picture, I'm still probably going to miss stuff out because I find it hard to share but we'll see how I get on!

So with that in mind I thought that i would share the story of how my OH half and I first met.....

Well I did the brave thing and signed up to a dating website (I thought it was brave anyway, it was well out of my comfort zone and no-one else I knew had done it so there we are) my single friend in fact, the one brought about by Sarah Beeney.  I was at that point in my life where all my friends had partners, and I just wasn't meeting anyone, and I'm not the type of girl who goes out to a club/bar to find a man (not that there is anything wrong with it, just not for me). Then I read an article about this website, about how safe it all was, and how you messaged people first and got to know them before even thinking about meeting up, so I decided to take a look, and I lurked for a month or so before deciding to go ahead.  (IT was the success stories that swayed me, if they could do it why couldn't I?) My friends were completely supportive, and were just as excited about it by me.  So after a couple of dates, I found my OH, lets call him M, and sent him a message (again that was scary because I was sending out the first email - but I figured if I didn't try, I wouldn't get anywhere), and I had a lovely, chatty cheeky response within a day. It took three weeks of messaging before we decided to meet up, firstly because M didn't want to pressure me, and secondly there was a slight issue that M was going to the Isle of White for a few days.  And because we'd got so used to messaging through the MSF website every day we swapped mobile numbers and started texting instead while he was away.

So the actual first date... M suggested going to play crazy golf at the Trafford Centre (which I agreed to  even though it meant I had to go on a motorway, I hadn't driven on a motorway for several years because they scared me) (so two days before my best friend gave me a motorway lesson). We met at 11am and had a coffee and a chat (well mine was hot chocolate I don't like coffee), then went to play crazy golf, which was such fun, with me gently teasing him, and trying to be flirty!  I can't actually remember now who won, it probably wasn't me to be honest, my aim is rubbish.  We weren't quite ready for lunch yet, so we went to play pool. At which I was equally as bad, but that meant I could ask M to give me some pointers in lining up the shots!  Lunch was next, and different.  We went to the place that does Italian food but in small portions that you can order several of, and I can't remember the name of it now (even though we went back for our one year anniversary!)  We started with garlic bread, then I started looking at the dessert menu (I always do, to check how big a main I want and whether I need to save space for dessert - I'm sure I'm not the only one!) and the waitress said why don't you just have desserts. So thats what we did, three desserts between us! (I later found out that M isn't too fond of desserts and only did it because it was what I wanted :) ).  Then we didn't really want to part, so we went round the shops, had another drink, by which time it was 5pm and I had to get going to a family meal.  If I hadn't had to leave we would probably have stayed for hours! We had such a lot to talk about, and so much in common.  So there we go, our first date!

I also wanted to share this fab photo of my sister and I from the wedding last weekend that one of my sisters friends took.  I think it captured us perfectly :)

And after that mammoth memory I just wanted to write a short bit about how Eddie Stobart dies this week, aged only 56.  He built up the business and then sold it to his brother and another partner back in 2004, so he wasn't as involved so much in it these days.  The full story can be seen here.  And on Thursday I saw two Eddie's on the way to work, Danielle June and Jaime Anne :)

If you've made it this far I'm impressed, and thanks for reading!