Saturday 29 August 2015

Follower Candy

I have been very generously donated two fast pass one day tickets to Ally Pally on 19th and 20th September by Deby at Inkylicious. Unfortunately it is that weekend that Meg will be moving into her accommodation at University, so I am unable to use them.
I am offering the tickets as blog candy to my followers, so if you would like the opportunity to go both days yourself or one day with a friend, pop your name in the linky below and I will draw a winner on Thursday 3rd September.

Friday 28 August 2015

A few more photos from Scotland

 I can't believe that this is my 900th post! I am planning blog candy fairly soon as it is my 7th bloggerversary, and I really appreciate the support I have had from my lovely followers. I will let you know more when I have got it organised!
I know I have already shown you lots of bird pictures, sky pictures and my '3 reds' day, but I have a few more photos to show you, I hope you don't mind! Today is the turn of the mammals and garden flowers! First of all I have some more red squirrels, this time at Threave gardens. We sat in the woodland hide, and first to arrive at the bird feeders was this beautiful creature...
 He was then joined by another squirrel with a very blonde tail, who found it quite hard to get at the peanuts...
 Our first friend had a totally different technique!!!!
You've got to congratulate him on his enthusiasm, lol!
Next up is a Bank Vole (I think) who also liked peanut bird feeders...
That little face is just so cute!
Now onto some flowers (and insects) at Threave.
 Butterflies and bees loved the pot Marjoram
 and the Scabious was very popular with the bees too.
 One side of the walled garden was planted as a wild flower meadow, although one or two Californian poppies had found their way into the party!
 When it rained we sought shelter in the greenhouses, where this magnificent Lily greeted us...

 Back outside the rain stopped and the bees continued their busyness.
 This last one was a type of primula, which came in the most beautiful sunset colours!
Hope you enjoyed the photos and thanks for looking!

Tuesday 25 August 2015

Rudolf days for August

I can't believe the end of August is approaching already! Five weeks of summer holiday has flown by and I am getting everything ready to start back at work next week. As usual, I am finding lots to do that aren't school related - Procraftinating is an excellent word for it!
As it is the 25th August it is Rudolf Day, and the perfect time to get distracted by Christmas cards! I was away for July Rudolf day and had intended sharing 4 card with you today, to make up for it. Unfortunately, one of my creations became bin fodder, So here are 3 cards
First is a card made with dylusions, a poinsettia stencil and some silkies from Imagination crafts, and a sentiment from Inkylicious.
 I heat embossed the sentiment using kaleidoscope embossing powder. You can see a bit of the sheen and sparkle on the photo below.
I added a bit of extra sparkle using a clear stardust gelly roll pen.
There was some of the silkies paint left over, so I used it up on a scrap of white card and added a touch of sparkle medium to made my next card.
 I added a Craftwork Cards sentiment and some gold liquid pearls.
 If you add the sparkle medium on a baby wipe in circular movements through the stencil, it just goes round the edges and gives quite a subtle effect.

 Finally I made a very traditional card using some new papers from Dovecraft, some added snippets and a very old stamp from Stamporium (No longer available) I coloured the image with Promarkers and added quite a lot of  stickles. here is a glimpse of the sparkle.
The circle and the border were two different snippets of red card that weren't quite the same colour, but I used a promarker to try and make it more uniform.
I am of course entering Scrappy Mo's Rudolf Day challenge, but I am also entering the second and third into Di's snippet playground.
Thanks for looking!

Saturday 22 August 2015

Inky playtime

A few weeks ago I had a play with dylusions and shaving foam to make some backgrounds. I had asked about some of the wonderful samples on the Visible Image stall at Doncaster Stamp Magic, and Helen and Mark told me that this was the technique used. I couldn't wait to try it! Thank you for the inspiration, Theresa Morgan! You can check out her blog here. Both of my pieces were done using the shaving foam and dylusions onto copier card. I stamped the wonderful Visible image stamps in memento luxe ink and embossed with clear  powder. This technique bleached very easily, and I added a little pastel blue promarker to shape the eye. I also added a little white gel pen to help the sentiment stand out from the background. I gave this card to Meg.
I was a little more pleased with the second attempt, as I managed to make the marbling streak free. I asked a few people what they thought I should do with it, and the majority said 'Frame it!', so I did. Whilst shopping for Meg at Ikea yesterday, two square frames 'fell' into the trolley!
Not sure where to put it now!
Thanks for looking, and I hope to be round to visit you all soon.

Sunday 16 August 2015

Creative Stamping Magazine or more birds!

Hi There
Thank you for all of your lovely messages for Megan in the last post. You are all so kind. Thanks also for your lovely comments about my bird photos. Truly appreciated x
Talking of birds, have you seen the latest copy of Creative Stamping Magazine that came out on Thursday?
There are some wonderful bird stamps with it this time. I have some cards on pages 10, 11 and 12. Here is a little taster...

If you would like to know how I made them then you will need to buy the magazine, which will of course get you the stamps as well!

Friday 14 August 2015

Bird photos from Scotland and News!

 Before I show you my photos, I want to share a bit of wonderful news we had yesterday. Our Daughter, Megan got the A level grades she needed to get in to the University of Sheffield to study Medicine. She won't be too far away (just over an hour to get there) and she gets the chance to follow her dream! We are over the moon and so proud! The past eighteen years has gone so fast. Now we will need to get busy shopping for all those extras she will need - Ikea here we come!
Now on to some more photos. Here are a few of some of the birds we saw on holiday.
 Our first walk down to the beach on holiday revealed this little fellow, a male reed bunting with a beak full of insects.
 This pheasant was right outside the kitchen window when we got up. I guess he was there all night as you can see how saturated he was in the rain!
 Later in the week I was pleased with this shot of a swallow I took at Caerlaverock castle... until I took this one below the following day at Threave - Don't you think he just epitomises joy?
 This nuthatch below was also taken at Threave.
 I ummed and ahhed as to whether I should include the next one as it is such a dreadful photo, but I decided to anyway - a Barn owl taking a rest from his hunting, from the living room at the first cottage

 There were lots of chaffinches at the second cottage and I took this rather handsome male from the dining room window.
 Outside the House Martins (and swallows) fed their fledglings on the flies and midges...
 We visited the Red Kite feeding station at Ballymack Hill Farm and saw some breathtaking red kite action!
 But photography-wise I seem to have had most success with the more common garden birds like this Blue tit at Ken Dee Marshes.
Thanks for looking!

Wednesday 12 August 2015

A Birthday card and some more photos

Here is the Birthday card I made for my niece before we went on holiday. The stamps used are all from Inkylicious and I used my ink dusters to shade the central aperture and the base card. I used memento inks in Teal zeal and lilac posies for the main stamping. I stamped the background grass in shaded lilac distress ink. The circle was dusted with dried marigold and faded lilac distress ink. I am trying to adapt to using inks that aren't Adirondack (now they have stopped making them), and for most I can find a decent substitute, but I haven't found a substitute for Eggplant yet.The Dragonfly was from an Inkylicious acetate sheet. I coloured the wings and body with a turquoise promarker, then put glossy accents on the back and added a sprinkle of glitter. The glossy accents was also the glue I used to attach it to the card.
Now for a few photos. When we were in Scotland there were posters in the visitors centres encouraging people to see if they could spot the '3 Reds' - Red deer, Red Kites and Red Squirrels. We set out to have a go all in one day!
We started the day at the Red Deer range for a Ranger led 'Come and meet the Deer' session. If you ever want to get close up with wild Red Deer this is the way to do it, as they come to see the Rangers for a bit of easy food at 10am each morning!
 The hinds would take the food from your hand and we were allowed to hand feed a few...
 but the Fawns were only about 6 weeks old and were quite timid still.
We then went on to see the red kites being fed at Ballymack Hill Farm.
The sky was full of Red Kites waiting for a meal...
Then along came this lady with a bucket of food and as she threw handfuls, the kites swooped down to catch it.
Once the spectacle was over, we went for a little walk at Ken Dee Marshes RSPB reserve. We had no idea that we would see our third red there, but when we got to the first hide, look who was feasting on the Peanuts!
 It was a rather wonderful day.
Thanks for looking!

Sunday 9 August 2015

Back from my Jollies

Hi There! We arrived home yesterday after a fortnight away. We went to Scotland this year, spending the first week in a cottage on an RSPB reserve on the Solway Firth, and the second week in a cottage in the Galloway Forest Park. It was very enjoyable and relaxing, despite being a bit cold and wet at times. I have taken nearly 500 photos and I am still working my way through them, but I will share a few with you over the next few days.
Our first cottage was a 10 minute walk from the beach, which was deserted most of the time, but especially once the reserve was closed to the public. It had amazing views across to the Lake District on clear days...

Our second cottage was three miles down a single track road, not too far from Clatteringshaws Loch, which we saw in many different moods...

Hope you have enjoyed the views. I will be back with more photos as soon as the washing is finished and I have caught up with some commissions and other jobs. I hope you don't mind if I don't go back over the blog posts you have done whilst I have been away, but I hope to catch up with you very soon.
Thanks for looking and for all your lovely comments on my scheduled posts. Very much appreciated x