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Wednesday, 19 November 2014
My desk for this week has nothing going on at all. Nada. Nowt. But I did realise, looking at last weeks picture, that when I showed the stamps I bought, pretty much none of them were visible. Bit pointless really. So I thought that as my desk was bare, I'd lay them out and show you.
A few more of my favourite Visible Image stamps.
This Clarity set looked like it would be a useful addition for scenic stamping.
Final item is something I forgot about last week, as it was still inside a bag.
Glitter. How could I miss that?
Some nice orange shades, which seems to be sadly lacking in glitter colours, although there are quite a few in the Barbara Trombelli range. A nice variety of purples- you can never have too much purple, I say. And the obligatory black.
One or two thoughts on the NEC- its getting smaller every time I go, I find. And there are less stamping companies attending every year. Quite a few of the big names were noticeable by their absence this time round, and a lot of others had much smaller spaces than they usually do. Looks like Hobbycrafts is pricing people out of taking part.
So that's me done, I'm not working tonight,(Tuesday) I'm absolutely shattered. So glad this is my final week of treatment, its getting to me now. I was quite wiped out over the weekend, I slept till midday on Saturday, then went back to sleep at 3.00 till 6.00, and was back in bed by 10.30, and slept till midday on Sunday. All I've been thinking about since I got up is going back to bed, so that's where I'm off now. Only 4 more treatments, and until at least Thursday, when I see the Oncologist, I'm off the Chemo tablets. One of the side effects you are supposed to tell them about is getting sore hands/feet, and for the last few days the balls of my feet have been quite sore. Like when you've been wearing heels for too long? Or had the seam of your socks/tights under the ball of your foot? Anyway, I phoned them and told them, and I've not to take any more till I see Dr Sothi on Thursday. And I also now have 6 weeks worth of Vitamin E tablets to take for it!
Wednesday, 12 November 2014
The rest of my room is gradually getting back to normal, I've got everything put back on my desk, and have a few drawers to put stuff away in yet.
Running update, I now have only 9 days of radiotherapy left, thats gone by really fast. Oncologist was very happy with me last week, and said that if I still feel ok this week, I don't need to wait and see her, I can just see her next week, and she will organise the CT scan for 6 weeks time then. Works Occupational Health Nurse was also happy, and said she recommended that I continue doing half shifts until my treatment has finished, and gradually go back up to full hours after that. Which I am happy with, I do find that I tire easily- thats how its affecting me, lack of stamina. I can't do anything for as long as I used to be able to. I am really glad to come home at 2.00am at the moment. Apologies to those I didn't get round to last week, Thursday was a long day, with treatment and having to see the Oncologist, as well as the Works Occupational health lady, and it was early hospital appointment, so had little sleep. Lost most of Friday catching up on sleep! I shall be doing better this week, lol.
Wednesday, 5 November 2014
This was the corner where the old desk used to be:
Hubby getting ready to construct- I'm still banned from lifting, and to be honest, I felt really worn out all weekend, just seemed to move from sitting down in one place, to sitting somewhere else. Which is why nothing as yet has been put back, my energy levels were on the floor!
By today, I am half way through my treatment, it has gone quite quickly. Didn't go in to work Monday night, as I still felt tired, but was feeling a lot better last night, so went back.
So that's my show and tell for this week, keeping my fingers crossed my energy levels stay up, as I've booked a ticket for the Hobbycrafts show at the NEC, I shall be going on Saturday, as Thursday and Friday I have my treatments, so they are out, and Sunday I will have time to recover if I'm tired. Anyone going Saturday, give me a heads up, and we'll meet up somewhere. Which also means I need to get my stuff sorted and put away, as I need to find the ticket I printed off!
Wednesday, 29 October 2014
Last weeks selection of Stampscapes, and a few oldies, painted with the glue and drying off.
I reckon this bottle will last forever, such a small amount needed, and I'm painting it on with a foam brush.
For those who don't know about it, its a sort of repostionable glue, almost like you find on the edges of Post It notes. Stays tacky for ever, almost. This way, they stick to the holder sheets, and your acrylic blocks, and generally take up far less storage space than using the foam EZ mount. I did at first put all my u/m's onto that, but over the years have found that it started to separate from the stamps, and quite some number have started to 'cup', which means they don't stay on the carrier sheets, or the blocks. So thats an ongoing project. Talking of stamps(!), Chocolate Baroque, every now and again, have a sale of what they call 'Broken Biscuits'. You can probably figure that out, its stamp sheets that didn't all come out perfectly, so the poor ones have been cut away, and replaced with a good stamp. It means you get all the stamps in a set, they are just not all joined together on a sheet when you get them. As you are going to cut them apart, that's no difficulty. And generally they sell them at roughly half price, which means I got an A4 set for £15, instead of the usual £24.96.The set I bought is called Artistic Affirmations.
I was expecting to get a bag of mainly loose stamps, but when it arrived, it was almost a complete sheet- just one stamp separate from the rest!
Not a lot of crafting done this week, we called in at IKEA on Friday, and I bought another couple of drawer units, a tall Alex and a wide one, so there has been some tidying and reorganising going on.
Last and final thing I want to show you: Beloved Hubby has struck again! The things he manages to find on the Internet never ceases to amaze me. I knew he had ordered something for me and Mikey, but had no idea what it was. Then on Saturday morning two packages arrived, and he told me to go ahead and open them.
This is what was inside:
Two cushions, with pictures of Ambrose on. One set for us, and one set for Mikey and KT.The fabric is suede- like, and the image quality of the prints is amazing. Got Mikey to pop over yesterday, with KT, said we had something for them. They were both chuffed to bits with them.
My treatment is plodding along, still so far, so good. The worst part is the time involved- 45 minutes there, the same back. The actual treatment takes less than 10 minutes, and three days last week I was called in within 5 minutes of arriving. Monday this week, we got there to discover they were running 70 minutes late! Not funny. Also this week, on Monday, I returned to work, doing half shifts at first to see how it goes.
Wednesday, 22 October 2014
I actually have a few pics of purchases this week, so the weak willed amongst you may wish to look away, lol.
First up, some new Stampscapes unmounted stamps. I do love my scenic stamps and these extend the range of scenes I can build up. The top two are intended to be snowy brooks, but can easily be grassy ones with a change of ink colour, and the next two down on the right are a right and left version of a river bank. Some small filler grasses and rocks, and a wading fisherman to add detail.
Next up is the engagement card I made for Mikey and KT.
Just a simple diamanté buckle threaded onto ribbon, and matted onto matching navy card, with a stamped and heat embossed sentiment.
Next up is a book I saw advertised in a Chocolate Baroque email, about Brusho paints. I still haven't got round to trying them out, been concentrating on the C- cards, but thought this might make interesting reading. Its full of various techniques for using them with other products, such as alcohol inks/gilding waxes etc.
Final pic is something I purchased thanks to Shoshi's post last week- some more mini misters. She had found an online store, Ampulla, selling them very cheaply. I went to have a look, and they turned out to be identical to ones I had bought from the NEC last year, just a lot cheaper.
These are the ones I ordered, and they are 54p each-and it works out to 49p each if you buy 25. I paid about £4.50, for a pack of three, at the NEC, and that's about average if you do an Internet search,so these are a lot less than a 'craft' version, as usual!
These are the ones I bought at the NEC, one set was branded, Mist-It!, one has nothing on it. The one on the left is the 'new' one, the two on the right the originals.
Can't find any info on the volume of the Tim Holtz ones, but I reckon these hold at least half as much again, at 8ml. Here they are side by side. And they do spray a lovely fine mist.
Last couple of pictures now. One from Saturday night, when we went out for a meal with Mikey and KT to celebrate, and also my Eldest son Ant, came along, with Becky and the grandkids.
From the left, clockwise: KT, Becky,Mortimer, Ant, Merlin behind Doug, and Mikey.
Finally,as all of those who know me on FB know, on Sunday, we had to have our much loved cat Ambrose put to sleep. He was 16 1/2, and in final stage of heart failure, all his organs were shutting down. Mikey is heartbroken, he and Ambrose were pretty much inseparable when he lived here, where Mikey went, Ambrose followed. I phoned him to tell him what the vet had said, and he and KT came over, so all four of us were with him and fussing him when he died. We all left in tears, he'd been a big part of our lives for so long. I do have to say the veterinary staff inside Pet City were wonderful, and could not be faulted. Later next year, when all this cancer thing is done, we will adopt a rescue cat from Cats Protection, and give another cat a forever home. Speaking of the cancer thing, by now I've had my first day of chemo/radiotherapy, and be having my second later today. I will post up on my page later in the week how its leaving me feeling.The chest infection has gone also, so that's all to the good.
Wednesday, 15 October 2014
Still plodding along with the Christmas cards, I've trimmed all the stencilled toppers now, trees, Noels and some baubles. Next up will be some stamped ones, using the tree stamp, from Inkylicious, just about visible on the right.
By the way, the stencils I've been using are all Dreamweaver ones.
And an update on the Gold embossing paste- don't know whether it was the daylight in my room, or my eyesight, but the new pot turned up this week, and it dries out exactly the same, and they both now look like gold! Go figure.
A card I made last week, for my Beloved Hubby, as last Friday was our 5th Wedding Anniversary.
I managed to pick up a chest infection last week- started Wednesday with a bit of a sore throat, that had gone Thursday, and it felt like I was getting a stinking cold, or flu. Unfortunately, that really went downhill on Thursday night, and I ended up having a couple of asthma attacks in the night. Never, ever had one before, and I don't think I've ever known anything so scary. Ended up at the docs on Friday morning, he put me on a nebuliser in the surgery, as I was struggling to breathe, and I have antibiotics, a course of steroids I finished this morning, and an inhaler.So we didn't go anywhere over the weekend, Hubby had intended us to have a day around Stratford, but as I couldn't walk the length of the room without gasping for breath, that didn't happen.Seems to be clearing up now, fortunately, as next Tuesday I'm due to start my Chemo/radiotherapy. At least it happened before that, rather than during.Went for blood tests on Monday, ready for the start, and on Wednesday I have to go see the Occupational Health Nurse at work, prior to starting back, which I intend to do on the 27th, just doing half shifts for a couple of weeks to see how it goes. Just a case of trial and error, really, as I have no idea how I'm going to feel once the chemo/radio starts.I shall make adjustments if necessary- doing less, or even being signed off again, if its too much. We shall see.
Finally, a cause for some celebration.My youngest son, Mikey and his girlfriend, KT announced they are engaged! Apparently, they got engaged on 14th August (our Birthday), but have only just told everyone.
This pic was taken when they were having a day around the Bull Ring Centre in Birmingham, Mikey is the one on the right- wonder who he gets his dress style from? The guy in the pic was some promo thing going on. And yes, that's the closest Mikey ever gets to smiling in a photo, lol.
I would dearly love to go to the Hobbycrafts at the NEC in November, 6th -9th, which is in four weeks, but I shall wait till closer to make a definite decision on that, again depending how I feel. It may be a 'decide on the day' sort of thing.
And one final AAARRRGH! Slipknot and Korn have announced they will be touring in January, they will be in Birmingham at the end of January, (27th) and we can't book tickets! My main surgery should be at the beginning of the new year,so have no idea what the date will be, or how I will be by the end of the month. But short of needing to drag a drip with me, I shall be doing my damnedest to get there, lol.
Wednesday, 8 October 2014
Talking of Embossing pastes, as I mentioned in one of the previous posts, my Gold embossing paste, which I've probably had for a couple of years, seems to have lost its colour, its not gold out of the pot, and it doesn't dry gold either. By contrast, I spotted some Aileenes Glitter snow on the shelf, and thought I'd try some white embossing.
I have sprinkled the trees with crystal glitter, and I've also done some green ones, gold and silver.
Tuesday, 7 October 2014
Still plodding along here, and I'm swapping between two stencils at the moment. I moved over to doing some sparkly trees, using another Dreamweaver stencil, as I wanted to sprinkle them with glitter, and that meant I could use the 'off-gold' paste!
Both are done with the gold paste,and the glitter hides it nicely.
I've also done some white and silver ones.
I shall be adding some acrylic flat back gems as 'decorations' eventually.
I'd swapped to doing the trees, as I was having trouble getting the NOEL stencil to come out cleanly. I kept getting paste go under one edge of the 'L'.
Anyway, I went back to it after a while, and tried again. I discovered the trick to this particular stencil is to drag the paste down from the top, rather than spreading across the stencil from left to right/right to left.
Once I figured that out, it went much better. I also decided to leave the glittering of the snowflake till after the paste had dried, and go back to that bit. As you can see, no nasty smudged line anymore.
When the paste was dry, and I left them overnight by the way, I lay the stencil back over the design, and using a small piece of Cut'n'Dry foam, patted a little Flitterglue over the snowflake. Removed the stencil and sprinkled the glitter over it.
I've also done some white, using the Aileenes Glitter Snow paste, crystal glitter and silver glitter again for the snowflake. These were easy to glitter all in one, as I did the crystal glitter first, then the silver.
Monday, 6 October 2014
For the first batch, I've been using a Dreamweaver NOEL stencil.
I started by doing some in Silver paste, and adding silver glitter to the snowflake. All going well. Then I switched to Gold. It seems that the Gold paste has gone 'off', as when I put it on, the colour did not look right. I've used it before, and it definitely looks Gold. This is almost a pinky/brassy sort of colour, so they are on hold for a day or two, while some fresh paste arrives! I can still go ahead and do my Gold Christmas tree stencil with it though, as I plan to sprinkle glitter over the whole tree, so the colour of the paste won't be seen. With the NOEL stencil, I'm sprinkling silver glitter over the snowflake, leaving the letters silver.
The stencil taped in place using low tack artist masking tape. I cut each strip in half, to make it easier to place the stencil without touching the previously pasted word, and to make the tape go a bit further. You can't really re-use it on the next stencil, as it will have paste on it.
Its best to tape all four sides, as this can get messy, and its far too easy to have paste go over the edge of the stencil.
Next start peeling off the masking tape, leaving one side still attached to act as a hinge. It doesn't matter which, just whichever you find easiest to work with, or, if you are like me, whichever one is left when you remember not to peel them all off!
Now gently lift the stencil, folding it back on the 'hinge'.
Peel away from the card.
And if all went well, leaving you with a stencilled design on your cardstock.
At this stage, the advice is drop the stencil in a bowl of water, so the paste does not set, and then clean it up. I found this not very user-friendly, to be honest.
My choice is to have a baby wipe lay on my desk, drop the stencil on that, and fold the wipe over it. I leave it like that while I do the glittering step, then come back to cleaning it. For that, I use a second baby wipe to wipe all over both sides, while it is still flat on the table. Then I move it onto a piece of kitchen towel and dry it over with either another piece of kitchen roll, or a towel.
The cat stencil here is a perfect example of this problem- the piece that shapes his back haunch is very easy to bend out of shape, as its only attached at the bottom, which results in paint/paste going underneath it.
I have seen people suggest running it through a 'bug or big shot to flatten it if this happens, and I should imagine that would work well.
Now for the glitter, and I use an old teaspoon to place it fairly accurately, as the snowflake is quite close to the letters.I'm using a silver with rainbow sparkle.
When you come to tip off the excess, try to curve your cardstock slightly, to funnel the glitter straight down. Its not always possible to avoid a little going on to the edge of the letters, but most of the time it works ok.
The finished piece. I will make all my panels before starting to construct the cards. I found I can get 6 panels per A4 sheet of card.
Now to the Gold.
So thats where I am so far. Today I shall mostly be doing the Gold trees, then some more Silver Noels, as well as some Silver Trees.