Monday, 31 January 2011

Holiday on Ice

Wow!  What a spectacular show!!

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We took Mum to the ice show at the Brighton Centre for her birthday.  We went to the 1.30pm show, which was a lovely time to go out and we were nice and early back home.  We had been with the kids years ago, but Maurice hadn’t been before.  He is very keen on Dancing on Ice on itv at the moment so I knew he would love it!  He was really gob smacked!!  The rink is in the middle of the Brighton Centre with tiered seating on 3 sides.  The set was spectacular with a huge ‘planet’ in the middle which lit up with a variety of lighting effects, and had a ‘ring’ around it which turned out to have a skating ‘line’ on the top!

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The costumes were wonderful, all colourful,and sparkly.  The skaters were sublime- especially the Korean girl and the pairs skaters. 

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That pairs skating is just sooo scary!  How do they do it?  They skate so fast and then the lifts!  The man will often just lift the woman high above his head with just one hand.  What balance!  What strength!  How do they practise?

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There were 2 clowns Ein and Stein who were just so funny.  They were obviously very accomplished skaters, but fell over lots and mucked about, great comedy!  (Why is it that falling over is just so funny?)


And then a really wonderful finale with a ‘Bollywood’ theme, with everyone on the ice, and fireworks going off from the edge of the rink.  What a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon!

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Have a peek at for video of the spectacular ice dancing!

Monday, 24 January 2011

Weekend Project no 2

WE decided a while ago that our front garden is seriously overgrown!  And then, we booked a firm to install cavity wall insulation.  They are coming on Wednesday and we needed to clear in front of the house for them to get ladders up to the wall! 

I forgot to take a ‘before’ picture, but here’s some taken while the work was  ‘in progress’

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Mum came over to help.  She’s cutting back the ‘hedge’ at the front of the garden.

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Here’s the bit that needed cutting back so they can get their ladders in.  That aucuba and a couple of forsythia bushes have been severely cut back (murdered probably!!), to reveal the gorgeous bay window of my dining/scrap room.  I can’t believe how much lighter it is in there, even today on a dull grey day.

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Poor Maurice had to take 3 car loads to the dump!  And we still have a pile of cuttings on the lawn.

After they have been on Wednesday – providing the weather stays dry for a few more days – I will get out here and dig this bit and plant some ground cover while the bushes grow back.  But, I am determined not to let them get as big again!

Friday, 21 January 2011

Magical sunsets

There have been some wonderful sunsets this week:

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The sun appeared to melt into the sea!

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And have you seen the moon this week?  it’s so low in the sky, it gives the illusion of being huge, and very bright!  Lovely! 

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

B is for….. BEACH

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It doesn’t take long to walk to the beach from here.  I often walk down there with Merlin.  As we get nearer it gets more windy.  Even on a still day here, it is breezy on the beach.  I love the feel of the sea breeze on my face.  It feels really fresh and wakes me up, feeling like it’s doing me a whole lot of good, but of course it is not good for the skin!

I can see more sky. I love the huge expanse of sky, it’s form and colour changes every moment of every day.  I love the vast amount of light down there. It fills me with light – I feel lighter, brighter.  Even on a dull day there is so much light on the beach – an enormous expanse of sky and reflected off the sea itself.

I guess I am used to the smell as I don’t usually consciously  notice it, unless it’s been particularly stormy and there’s lots of seaweed.  Sometimes I can taste the salt on the wind.

I love the colours, I love the washed out beiges, creams and browns of the pebbles, interspersed with the dark blues and blacks of the flints.  The sand itself is a biscuit colour and the seaweed can be a whole rainbow of colours!  The sea is a different colour every day, depending on the weather and the sky.  It varies from deep, deep, blue to grey, brown, pale blue, silver and gold.  I’d love to be able to paint it – but how to begin?  I guess I’d have to look really carefully to see the real colours, not the illusion, to be able to translate them from paint palette to paper.

Sometimes it is oh so quiet on the beach.  On quiet days the wavelets just tickle the shore.  Lovely!  I might hear the rush of the wind and the crashing of the waves.  If it is high tide and it’s stormy it is very noisy.  The waves crash onto the pebbles and drag them back.  The sucking of the pebbles back down the beach is the loudest.  The wind rushes past my ears and it’s hard to hear the music from my MP3 player.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Weekend project

Sorting my wardrobe….


I got everything out and tried it all on!  Pictures are taken into an old mirror which is a bit misty now!  Soft focus LOL!

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And then all put back in order, coat and dresses, tops, trousers.  No skirts, I don’t own a skirt!

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Sunday, 16 January 2011

December Daily Journal

Every year I read Ali Edward’s December Daily posts and get excited about having a go myself.  In the past, I have completed 2 of Shimelle’s Journal Your Christmas and 1 December Daily.  This year I ordered a scrummy kit from Cocoa daisy.

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But…. it took forever!  I got well and truly fed up with it after only a few days.  I don’t like printing out my own photos really as it takes such a long time and that is the only way to keep up.  So I made a massive effort to complete it this week.  (I had to finish it because I spent so much money on the kit…did I tell you how lovely it was?)

The book is now really thick and is not sitting properly even with the biggest book rings.  I see Ali Edwards has bound hers with ribbon and bakers twine.  Great idea but can I be bothered to thread ribbon through all those pages? in a word, NO!

Here’s some pics:

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I followed the instructions more or less that came with the kit, here’s the cover.  The words come from a super duper pack of stickers from Girls paperie.  And don’t you just love the snowflake??

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The album measures 8” x 6”, cut down from an 8 x 8 chipboard album.  So I cut 2 pages from each 12 x 12 patterned paper, with a long strip left for embellishing.

The first page has the date:

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The second page a photo or two:

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The third some journalling:

These pages were made using spritzer paints with a mask made from snowflakes cut from my Cricut machine.  What fun!  I’d not used spray paints before.  Note to self, must get some more colours!!

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And then the 4th page holds more photos!!  Can you see the problem?  Too many pages per day!!!  Too many photos to print out!!  EEK!  I must admit that towards the end of the album I missed out the 3/4 page.

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The patterned papers in the kit were just gorgeous!  Here’s a close up of day 10 – following the kit instructions, I am not good at making up these ‘clusters’!  This one includes just the back of the snowflake.

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Here’s the page about my table.  I journaled about how I have to put away all my scrapbooking stuff so we can eat Christmas Dinner at a nicely laid table!

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I followed through right up till 31st December (well I couldn’t miss Nicholas’s birthday on 27th could I?)

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Wednesday, 12 January 2011

A-Z photography challenge


I’ve put my own twist on this challenge!  As I am going through old photos on my computer, tagging and rating them.  I decided not to take new photos but to show some old ones.  Here’s A for Ace Cafe Reunion, a motorbike meet on Brighton seafront.  This photo was taken in September 2007. 


It was a gorgeous day on Marine Parade in Brighton.  It was full of all sorts of bikes, here’s my favourite Harley Davison.  I dream of riding one down the coast road from LA to San Francisco, with  a fringed leather jacket and cowboy boots!


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Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Document 2010

is finished!

Here’s my last but one LO:

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The white template is cut with a cricut expression (not the one I’ve got unfortunately!)  Isn’t it brilliant for snow photos? 

I did a few extra pages for December, 2 extra divided pp pages, and 1 extra 12 x 12.


I really enjoyed this way of documenting of 2010.  I think I’ll do it all over again for 2011!

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Some more Goals related websites

Check these out!

I hope that’s inspired you to set your own goals for 2011.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011


I love to make new year’s resolutions, I love the fresh start and new beginnings!  Last year I joined an online class from to help me set my goals and live a life I love!


So I thought I’d better do a review of last year’s goals before I start all over again in this year’s class:

Here are my goals for 2010

I will lose 14lbs (1 stone) in weight by my birthday (25th March) by eating more sensibly (cutting out crisps, cakes, biscuits) and exercising 3 times per week (exercise DVD, swimming or cycling) I will keep a food and exercise diary to help me keep this up.

I did lose about 9lb, but it took me to the end of the year!  Unfortunately I have put several pounds back on over Christmas!  I will be happy if I can stay below 11 stone generally.

I was rubbish at the exercise!  I simply cannot and do not want to do it!!!  But I try to walk the dog for longer walks

During the month of February I will take a moment before meeting friends to remember what they have been doing and ask them about it. I will also follow up important life events such as job changes.

This has morphed a bit into an active listening goal.  I am not very good at it yet, I need loads more practise but I am aware of when I am not doing it!

During the month of February I will go out just with DH to the theatre or cinema.

This was my/our big success!  We went out to the theatre, cinema, concerts, etc once a month and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves!  I have to say that this has added a little more sparkle to our relationship!

During the rest of January I will research for a course that will teach me MS Excel and practise using it at work.

Yes, i did the research, but didn’t use it at work.  I’ve now left my job and am not currently working.

At the end of January I will check our bank balances and transfer any money that is left into our savings account. I will analyse our spending for the month so that I know what we are spending our money on.

Another success!  just got to finish off analysing Nov and dec, but I now know how much we spend and where it goes!  We’ve cut back a little and managed to save a fair bit this year.  I’ve even switched bank accounts and savings accounts for better rates.

By the end of June 2010, I will have researched and bought a picture for the lounge room wall.


By the end of June 2010 I will research and buy bedside cabinets for our bedroom.

There’s a story to this one!  When we were clearing out the loft we were selling some pine shelves and a pine chest.  The chap who came to buy them asked if we had any more pine we wanted to sell, so Maurice sold our existing pine bedside cabinets!  I found some really nice ones on the internet and ordered them.  They were due to be delivered just before Christmas, but got delayed because of the snow!  They were then due to be delivered on 28th Dec, but when the lorry arrived, there was only one of them on board!  So we finished the year with just one!!!

So now you know!

Do hop over to Aby Garvey’s www.simplify101,com and have a look at her classes.  they are excellent!

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Finishing off….

I took on a few year long projects in 2010.  One of them was 52in10, from Scrapdolly.  She gave a weekly prompt for a scrapbook page.  I finished mine a couple of days ago!  I am really pleased with my album, an American Crafts 8x8.  I found the 8x8 pages not too daunting, and managed to keep up quite well throughout the year.  Thanks to Scrapdolly (aka Karen) for the weekly prompts which were free on her blog!

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Other projects include:

  • Document 2010, a class run by Shimelle on, which I have nearly completed, just waiting for December’s photos to arrive.
  • 52 walks.  A challenge on  I have taken loads of pictures and have them printed, but have not done very many pages yet in my album.  A job for this year!
  • Scrap Weekly in 2010.  A challenge blog that ran for most of the year, but sadly floundered towards the end!

For 2011, I have signed up to Ali Edward’s One Little Word class on (more about this later!), but am trying to keep year long challenges to a miminum! 

Happy New Year!

New Year’s Eve was traditionally spent with friends, getting very drunk, and suffering for days after!  But, since we’ve had the kids we’ve rarely been out – some years we have been to a friends house for nibbles and drinks, and once or twice a party.  This year we went out to the sqaush club with our old friends Stewart and Sue!  Just like the old times …. except we didn’t get drunk!!!


Ready to go….

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Maurice with some of his squash friends, that’s Stewart on the right.

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There was a DJ and lots of dancing!

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Love the effect of the lighting here!

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Happy New Year!

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