Monday, 29 February 2016

Sweet Sixteen

On the 25th of this month, my youngest, AJ turned 16

Sixteen is a big thing to me and I think for our generation and even more so the generation before but it doesn't appear to have the same impact for AJ's generation. Or maybe it is just my son's laid back attitude to life in general

He didn't want any fuss or big party, mind you neither did the other two kids

This is the card I made him

I concentrated on texture and a strong graphic element, nothing too girlie or themed

AJ opted for a quiet meal at home ( Chicken New Yorker, followed by Carrot cake) and then met his mates for a couple of hours afterwards

We had worries when we first moved here, that at the age of fifteen and at a critical point in his academic career, AJ might struggle. But he has settled well and has lots of new friends, he is happy and very chilled and loving the new surroundings.

Love and sweet sixteen kisses


Sunday, 28 February 2016

7 On Sunday

I have been asked why we moved to Cornwall

This is why !

1. St Mawes on Tuesday

2. Bathing in the glorious sunshine

3. Our first visit to Crinnis beach which is right on our doorstep

4. Midweek the beaches are virtually deserted

5. I have never known two dogs happier than when they are playing in the surf

6. Clear blue waters, clean sand and winter sunshine

7. One very soggy but very happy Bruce

Out of the past 7 days, we have enjoyed four days at the beach

Yes I have a little ironing to catch up on and the house hasn't been dusted yet this week, but do I care ?- hell no, the cleaning will get done on a day when we are limited by the weather. We wanted to move somewhere we could enjoy the outdoors. The coast has called me for years and I know we have done the right thing when I can see Neil and the dogs on the beach, not a care in the world !

Love and blissful beach days


Friday, 26 February 2016

Get Well Soon

Ooops, one of my lovely friends recently took a tumble and has hurt her foot

We were talking on the phone and even though she really wasn't feeling too good she managed to make me laugh, so I just had to make her a more comical card rather than the general 'get well soon' type

The tortoise was made using a variety of punches, I had great fun trying to work out how to make him look like an actual tortoise

Get well soon - you know who you are - love you xxx

Love and little mishaps

Thursday, 25 February 2016

St Mawes

ST Mawes is a small fishing village at the end of the Roseland Peninsula, opposite Falmouth on the South coast of Cornwall, approximately 30 minutes (by car) east of where we live

We have passed sign posts many a time as we have travelled to and from Truro and promised ourselves a little trip there once the weather picked up

Tuesday was glorious and so we packed the beach towels, dogs and a picnic into the car and off we set

St Mawes is positioned within the gulf stream and basks in mild weather all year round, during the summer it is often a Mediterranean climate, which explains why there are some stunning gardens in the area

We headed straight to the harbour so the dogs could have a run on the beach

This is the view from where you enter St Mawes

We started out on Idles Beach

It didn't take the dogs long to dive in, Bruce is already swimming ( that little dot where Molly is heading)

I wandered off down the beach to explore the rockpools, Molly was not far behind, ears flapping, tail wagging and stick in mouth ready to play

I love this photo of Bruce, checking that his little sister is not far behind, he is a very elegant and strong swimmer, hardly making any splashes when he is in the water, Molly on the other hand, starts off like she is drowning with seemingly more legs than an octopus, she eventually settles into a lovely little doggy paddle but Bruce is always mindful that she is ok.

After our playtime on the beach we explored the town and took a wander along the harbourside.
St Mawes is a beautiful little village, well maintained and very clean. There was lots of painting going on, many of the seafront properties, mostly little fisherman's cottages have been painted ice-cream colours - so pretty, and then there was this stunning thatched cottage, up for sale at a cool £750,000 - but honestly the view it had was priceless

Strolling passed the thatched cottage and continuing around the harbour we found the perfect little sun trap to settle down, take a breather and enjoy our picnic. With views out over the harbour and out to sea, the sun on our faces it was the perfect end to an absolutely beautiful day.
I just love the way Molly is catching the rays, eyes closed, sniffing the clean sea air and drying out nicely.

Love and sandy paws

Sunday, 21 February 2016

7 on Sunday

Our week in photos

1. My lovely friend at work Margaret has been knitting squares to make dog blankets for one of the local vets, we get lots of oddments of wool at the shop so I have joined in and have started making some myself, I am not as quick as Margaret but it keeps my fingers busy while I am watching the telly

2. Our poor little patch of lawn has taken a battering this winter. Before we moved in, it had been allowed to grow too long and we nearly lost it all after the first mow. Add to that, the incessant drizzle and frequent downpours plus two energetic and sometimes rather silly dogs skidding about, the lawn looked more like a quagmire. I took it in hand this week ( between showers of course), mowed it close, raked it and reseeded it, I am hoping with a little TLC we can nurse it back to some kind of health

3. We had some paint left over from decorating our hall - we adore the colour so have decided to use the rest up in our bedroom, it matches our bedding perfectly. I have been prepping the walls and have now got the first coat on, it is already looking much cosier than the magnolia

4. The long evenings have been perfect for catching up on one of my favourite TV shows. I absolutely love Dickensian. The bringing together of Dickens' best loved and iconic characters, all living together in 19th century London has been a triumph. Their lives and stories intertwined, is, in my opinion utterly genius. All the characters have been brought to life with such a talented cast and every episode has been full of drama and intrigue as well as a good dose of humour - love it

5. Our first beach day of the year, a very chilly day but nice and dry. Molly and Bruce ran and ran and ran, in and out of the surf, catching balls and sticks or in Molly's case anything that moved ( as in mouthfuls of ebbing and flowing seaweed)

6. Puppy training. I have been taking Molly to puppy training for a few weeks now and to be honest the distraction of the other dogs usually makes me wonder why I bother. Molly has no attention span at the best of times and just wants to run and play and generally mess about. But ....... we turned a corner this week and it just seemed to click. I think she is getting a little more used to the other dogs and settled down much better, we still have a long way to go and we are never going to be auditioning for Britain's Got Talent, but we are much better with some of the tasks

7. We have been enjoying making a daily smoothie, Neil and I both look out for bargains on the fruit and veg each day as we pop out for the newspaper and whizz up our finds for our daily juice.

Love and all the little things

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Happy birthday Katie

On the 16th of this month, my lovely niece Katie turned 18

There is a couple of milestones this year  - AJ is 16 in a few days too, it doesn't seem two minutes since they were all playing together as toddlers

This is the card I made for Katie

It's an 8in x 8in card and I made the cake by hand, using punches to create the fancy cake stand, the banner is a die cut

Love and birthday kisses


Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Spit Beach - February 2016

We had a break in the rain yesterday so decided to make the first visit of the year to our nearest beach - Spit Beach which is a 15 minute walk from our house

It was still pretty chilly so it was no surprise to find the beach deserted

Guess who was especially happy to run around in the sand and surf, Molly actually looked like she was grinning the whole time we were there

It was just after lunch time but the light was extraordinary, the cloud cluttered sky sporadically broke to allow the sun to dazzle the waves

We made the most of the full length of the beach and the dogs explored every nook and cranny, always mindful of where the next tossed ball or stick was coming from

A brave and bedraggled Bruce patiently waiting for the ball to be tossed back into the seaweed strewn surf

Crystal clear rock pools

Gazing out to sea, man and dog, at one with nature, tired, a little cold but completely content on the crisp Cornish coast.

Love and salty kisses


Sunday, 14 February 2016

7 on Sunday - Happy Valentine's Day

 Happy Valentine's Day !

It's a day of double celebrations here in our house, I always get extra spoiled as it is my birthday too - lucky me

Here is our past week in photos

1. Valentine flowers from my lovely hubby

2. Yummy steak meal out today, total surprise as we hadn't planned on going anywhere,  but the sun was shining and so off we went, called in to the local garden centre on the way home and added a little colour to the garden with some super bright and cheerful primroses

3. Shrove Tuesday brought the obligatory pancakes, it never goes uncelebrated in this house, the variation this year being the addition of blueberries and fresh Cornish Clotted Cream in place of the traditional lemon and sugar topping we normally go for

4. Centre stage is the lovely little Lily - Amy's hamster, we have been looking after her as she couldn't go back to Uni with Amy this last time and we said our goodbyes this week, she fell asleep and didn't wake up bless her. She was such a sweet little thing. She has been buried in the garden and a new little shrub has been planted there in her honour

5. This is how the dogs often sleep, nose to nose - they are so close and protective of each other, all our furbabies get along so well, it really is heartwarming to witness

6. Another little valentine treat from the hubby - my favourite ever chocolates, he also bought me Prosecco to wash them down with - that's why he's a keeper !

7. When we moved home, one of the things I was concerned about was being welcomed by the neighbours, us being foreigners from up country and all that - but I had absolutely no need to concern myself. We only have neighbours on one side and they couldn't be lovelier. Mary and Colin introduced themselves to us over the garden fence when we first moved in and have been so kind and thoughtful from that day on, nothing is too much trouble and they are both so warm and open. Every time I see them they make me laugh. Today Mary came round with a birthday card and these lovely plants for my garden, she has also been saving me seeds and always thinks of me when she sees any bargains I might be interested in, love her to bits already !

This is the card I made Neil for Valentine's day

My husband, my best friend, my soul mate

Love and loving wishes


Sunday, 7 February 2016

7 On Sunday - Our Week in photos

Hello and happy sunday 

I am trying to make an effort to take more photos and have decided to do a little round up of the weeks events in photo form

Cheating slightly as one of the photos was from ten days ago but it was an event I hadn't yet blogged but still wanted to remember

1. Daffodils, these were from my local Co-Op, at £1.00 a bunch it is hard to resist adding a little spring cheer to a corner of the kitchen

2. We have found a brilliant local source for hardwood, kiln dried logs ( thankyou for the link Sue), so our woodshed ( yes we have a woodshed) is now fully stocked, and we are all ready for cosy evenings tucked up in front of the log burner

3. Molly and Sox. I am still taking Molly to puppy training, she is a typical Lab in that she is still very puppy-like and full of mischief but she is not a typical Lab in that she will NOT be coaxed with treats, she is not a greedy dog so rewards at puppy training have to be varied and bizarre, silly voices seems to be working right now, I dread to think what all the other mums think, Molly is definitely the class clown and is far too sociable for her own good, coupled with my silly voices and abandoned piles of treats tempting all the other doggies it's a wonder we haven't been banned ! Progress has been made though, she always sits on command, will give you her paw, is getting much better at coming when called and has calmed down enough for Sox to feel safe on the same sofa.

4. Cardiff. We actually went here last thursday, it was an early birthday treat from Neil, we spent the day browsing the shops, ate more meals than should be possible in one day and then had a fantastic night watching Blackstone Cherry, Shinedown and Halestorm at one of the best gigs we have been to in a while. Cardiff is beautiful, the shopping was fantastic and I had an amazing day, thankyou Neil - love you xxx

5. Carrot cake. One of the meals we had in Cardiff was at Nandos, Neil always orders Carrot cake as it is his favourite ever pudding. Much to his dismay, the Nandos we visited were experimenting with a trial menu, lots of puddings but no carrot cake, what's a girl to do - make one, I used a Jamie Oliver  recipe and adapted it slightly to make it Gluten Free, this turned out so delicious, very moist and flavourful, I doubt it will last long !

6. Talking of feasts, February 3rd is a feast day in St Blazey, in honour of St Blaise. Our Parish church is dedicated to this Saint who was a legendary healer and Patron Saint of throat illnesses, wool combers, wool trading and animals, the park outside our house was adorned with lights and decorations and all the locals paraded down the road playing music and all dressed up, there was an illuminated sheep and of course Saint Blaise, all the local children especially the little ones were having so much fun

7. In between rain showers I have been spending a little time in the garden, all the raised flower beds have been weeded and I have added a couple of new hardy shrubs, there is still lots to do, the lawn is a quagmire and all the fences and walls need another coat of paint but I think that is going to have wait until at least we have a few dry days

Love and daffodils


Friday, 5 February 2016

Happy Birthday Rob

20 years ago we were delighted to meet our second born , our first son and one of the happiest babies and toddlers you could wish for

Happy birthday Rob, love you

Masculine cards are my least favourite to make, especially for young men and adolescents

Looking at images for inspiration on my phone I suddenly had the idea to actually create a replica iphone, et voila !

I used a charcoal grey pearlescent cardstock for the base and the image of the actual screen was found on google images, I just imported it into a photo editing programme to add the appropriate text.

Some of my favourite photos of Rob from last year

Playing football golf at St Austell. Robbie is quite competitive like his dad ( AJ and I are just happy to make it round the course in one piece without losing our ball) but he also has a fantastic sense of humour and is quick to see the funny side of any situation, we had some proper belly laughs on this day

Sat quietly in the caravan when we first moved here

Having fun at Perranporth beach with AJ and the dogs, they threw a ball about for a couple of hours and it was heartwarming to hear them laughing like the little boys they once were and having so much good clean fun, totally unplugged for once !

Roll on Easter break, missing my kids already

Love, frogs and snails and puppy dog tails