Friday, December 29, 2006

Hope everyone had a good Christmas and survived the frustration of all those darned twisted wire bits that hold toys captive in their boxes!! at the risk of sounding ancient...they didn't need all that in my day!!! lol!

Had a fun xmas day at our place hanging out with my Mum and Dad and enjoying a relaxing walk round the lake after lunch...

Looking forward to the New Year now...have our bottle of champagne fraise ( had to try it of course!!) chilling ready to share with my partner in crime on our back deck under the stars...

have flashed up the blog a wee bit with the new settings on blogger, looks better....even had fun playing with a new pic of me...not that you can see all the fancy bits cause its so blinkin small rofl!! here it is ...

If you have littlies to entertain over the holidays check out this cool kids activity site for fun things to do...I've got my eye on making one of those sock monkey's....for no reason whatsoever except its CUTE and I want one and maybe even get the boys making themselves one too!

Have a good NY's and stay safe!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

A big MERRY CHRISTMAS to those who take the time to read my little slice of blogdom!

Some pics from today...berries and cherries...sweet juicy summer fruits = christmas to me and I had fun introducing the boys to the delights of chocolate truffle making or reindeer poo...hilarious to small boys...thanks Rae lol!

Things I remember from childhood christmas food....Mums huge hams complete with pineapple rings and cloves which would last for weeks after and the homemade chocolate truffles and strawberries doused in icing sugar...these were such a treat!! No roasts or ham these days...tomorrow we will be dining on barbequed chilli and lime prawns...and basil pesto chicken with cherry tomatos roasted in foil on the barbie...followed by mums wonderful rasberry marshmallow pud!

Announcement to those who took down the Kiwi cocktail recipe I blogged the other day...add lemonade too!!!! Sorry lol!!! forgot this bit...not sure your cocktail will be so fabulous without this ingredient.....!

We cleaned the house from top to bottom this afo...probably not everybodies idea of fun on Christmas Eve....but it feels sooooo goood knowing we have a headstart on the mess that will ensue tomorrow lol!

If you have checked out the NZdare site recently you may have seen I have been asked to be a contributer....what a cool christmas suprise that was...thanks a bunch Lianne and the Kiwi dare girls...looking forward to adding my inspiration to the melting pot! Check out Lesley and Liannes totally gorgeous christmas layouts....

Friday, December 15, 2006

I mentioned to Jim last night how cool it was for kids of this day and age of digital cameras to have all their achievements recorded and he replied 'yep imagine Joseph showing his girlfriend his childhood pics...'heres me picking my nose, me scratching my bum, me hiding from mum so she dosn't photograph me....' rofl .....anyway here he is at last nights evening assembly nearly finished his first year at school, receiving the class certificate for fantastic work in all subjects while his very proud Mum and Dad watched from the sidelines....and took photos!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Here are my first pages for Janines twelve days of christmas challenge. As you can see it is all about the Christmas tree...I have used an envelope on the left side which is for holding cards with written memories on them...I have started with some childhood christmas tree memories from myself and DH and plan on adding thoughts from the boys about what their favourite thing is about our christmas tree this year...on the other side in a pocket are the star decorations I made for the boys which I will give to them on Christmas Eve to hang on the tree! So cool to see this little book shaping up....onto favourite Christmas recipes next!

Talking about trees...I guess you could call me a tree hugger...I love them, they seem so strong and idea of Heaven is to sit in the shade of a beautiful tree and watch the world go worst moment last year was watching my
beautiful Japenese Acer being ripped
out when added the extension to the
house...I have since aquired TWO new maples in my Japenese garden to make up for it lol!
and I just love the glory of the Pohutakawa during Summer trips to the coromandel.....anyway the point is when we moved into our house 7 years ago we planted an olive tree and have watched it grow and its trunk grow thick and strong...the ticket said it would mature and set fruit in 7 years and every year it would blossom and the tiny spikes of flowers would fall off....only this year they havn't fallen! I am so excited we are going to have olives this year!! I have no idea when to pick them let alone how to preserve them so need to do some research!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Two weeks until Christmas so we put the tree up in the weekend much to the boys delight and yay, Samuel although intrigued hasn't destroyed it like we thought he might! He gently touches the lights but thats it...

... and he has got a new face....all of a sudden out of the is the funniest thing I have ever seen and it never fails to make me laugh out starts off with him jutting out his bottom jaw in a real staunch way then all of a sudden he pushes his lips out...will have to try and catch it on camera...

Had a good night out for Jims christmas work do and spent most of Saturday recovering....thank goodness nights out are few and far between these days lol!

Hopefully we have some weather like today on the 25th...a breath of Summer...Jim and I have concocted a scrummy Kiwi Christmas Cocktail to have pre-lunch this year....

a tall glass with ice
a slosh of gin
a good dollop of feijoa smoothie (found amongst the fresh juices at Countdown)
and a dash of kiwifruit juice (found next to the keri and justjuice juices at Countdown)
Mix well

Delish! Should get Mum and Dad and Nana Jean in the christmas spirit mwah ha ha!

A packed week ahead with Kindy Christmas party, Athletics Christmas party and Josephs evening School Assembly and Playcentre Christmas party on Sunday....just party, party party this time of the year lol! Jims little red car will be transporting Mrs Claus which should be a camera moment....

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Ok so here is what was keeping me from folding the washing mountain this afo ha ha!! These are christmas decorations to be included in a pocket on the christmas tree page for my boys to hang on the tree and they'll go back in when the tree is taken down.

This is the current state of my (and my poor husbands!) bedroom floor at the minute after such creative effort...I've made such a mess on my desk I had to abandon ship and move to the floor mwah ha ha!!

This is Patrick and Samuel at playcentre today....what a hardcase pair!!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Hooray I'm out of the starting blocks at last with Janines twelve days of christmas daily challenges based around the NZ version of the twelve days of christmas verse...although strictly speaking I havn't done day one yet lol!

Being the sort of person I am I always have to start at the very beginning and have created a cover and inside page first!! onto my first page!! Found it too exhausting trying to sort out and find!! actual photos so decided to create a sort of 'Merry Christmas' handbook for the boys which will be like a guide to creating magic at Christmas this space for more...

Monday, November 27, 2006

My favourite photo from the weekend...Nana and P doing it! Patrick's favourite thing at the moment is Athletics on Wednesday afternoons and they do all sorts of things like obstacle courses and games. So yesterday he decided he was going to design an obstacle course for everyone... with the help of Grandad providing sticks and gumboots and other things to jump he did! So we worked off our lunch with a few laps of his obstacle that photo, fluffy slippers and all!!

And on the scrapping front another layout for the UK trip album yippee, not far off finishing!

We made sushi in the weekend, complete with the pickled pink ginger and a dab of wasabi(just a dab no more otherwise it'd blow your head off)...YUMMO!!! and so easy!! Our dream trip is still Japan!!

The kids were watching Bad Jelly the Witch yesterday, I love that story, brings back memories of snuggling up in bed 7 o'clock on a Sunday morning listening to Spike Milligan reading Bad Jelly on the radio! The video version is very cool though and the boys loved it.

I am feeling very smug because somehow I am on top of the christmas shopping...have just been gathering things up here and there over the last couple of months...woohoo!! Still racking my brain on how we can manage a christmas tree this year with young Samuel wrecking everything in the nicest, cutest possible way of course....Jims suggestion....hang it from the ceiling...might just have to as well!!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

NZ dare time again!! man two weeks just went like that!

Didn't want to miss being part of the international (US, UK, Oz and NZ) combined dare so after struggling with this one for a bit, here is the end result (raced home from the kids athletics with 10 minutes to spare to upload in a hurry!).

This is me and my old sheepskin rug friend Ruggy who was thoroughly loved to the end...he was a small sad scrap of leather by the time I finally said goodbye around 10 years old lol!

The dare required you to scrap a childhood memory, cover your whole background cs , put your title on the photo, add a touch of paint ( I used white paint on the scallop edges).

Must go and see what everyone else has done for this!

For the last couple of weeks I have been thinking of making an advent calendar for the boys this year...but my wonderful MIL has bet me to it and sent the most gorgeous fabric calendar with pockets and all the goodies to go in as well!! The boys are going to LOVE it! Havn't got a pic of it yet...will do soon.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Pucker up Baby! Some serious candle blowing going on here....Happy 4th birthday Patrick!

We have had all had a lovely relaxed day, pressies and bike riding this morning then lunch out at the local for huuugge burgers and lots of chips and pink lemonade with Nana and mess, no fuss.

In fact Jim and I were even totally relaxed creating the sponge bob cake last night...we are getting good at this birthday thing or have we simply realised kids do not look for perfection, they are too busy enjoying the moment.

Anyway on the way home Patrick announced this was 'best birthday EVER'!!...we did good Jim!!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A layout for the metal swap at SE. Congrats to the new
DT over there and well done to those who entered...I just don't know how you find the time lol!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

If you've got the Basic Grey Gypsy collection papers check out
....can take a little bit to load if you are on dial up...but be patient...its worth it! Some fantastic inspiration to be had!

Well we are learning about all of Berts little quirks all the time...we have noticed every now and then he will pick up a random item, sometimes my slipper or a shoe or even the tv remote and take it somewhere to sit and guard it...he dosn't chew them just likes to sit and 'own' them for a bit.

This afternoon the clouds were looking ominous so I thought we'd take the car to pick Joseph up from school but uh oh no keys to be found! after 5 minutes frantic searching we had to zoom on foot to school to make it in time for the bell....I promised the kids $2 for their piggy banks if they found them when we got home....lots of searching later still no kids and I upped the price to $5 lol!! I started to think I was going mad as I retraced every step I had taken from garage after Kindy pick up to the hallway where I thought I had dropped them onto the floor next to P's kindy bag and a bag of groceries, looked in all the normal places and in all the not so normal places like the fridge and Samuels cot!

Nothing... vanished into thin air...until I noticed Bert quietly disappearing out the door with a party blower one of the kids had just been playing with and a big fat penny dropped! After a quick search outside I found them by the back steps....silly hound! Oh well least I know now where to look when things go missing

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

A wet Labour mum to three boys I have started to fear the sound of rain on the roof on a weekend morning!! It always cracks me up how we extended our house for more space but we seem to still ALL end up in the same room rofl!!

Typically we put some good sounds on,

made a heap of colourful playdough which kept the boys amused for a good length of time,

Jim carried on nailing the timber on the new deck regardless of the rain...complete with his little assistant Samuel still in his pjs! He just loves helping Dad and the look on his face when he got to go in the ute to get more wood, just him and not the big boys, he really felt cool you could just tell!

I did some scrapping and some baking,

the dogs (yes we have a new doggy friend for Harry, called Bert adopted from the pound and he is just lovely!) looked for cats out the window and waited hopefully for a break in the weather for a walk

and Mum and Dad came for tea....all in all in was a good day despite the rain! Last time I have an Irish coffee though, I swear I hardly slept all night...darn caffeine! I knew I should have stuck to my green tea.... I couldn't stop planning layouts in my head....or maybe I need to drink more of it lol!!!

The layout I did 'In good company' was motivated by Ilka's challenge at SBO to make your own paper....started off by staring at my cs for a good length of you some green and blue paint out and dabbed some on....stared some more by which time the paint dried and it was all looking a little sad until I picked up my black zig and doodled stars and circles and spirals all over the place then glued on little squares of red to give it a lift....quite liking it by now...but the hardest bit I found was the second part of the challenge to then use bought pattern paper on the layout also! Lo and behold nothing I had seemed to work with it so I went minimal and used strips of some dotty Cherry Arte and KI memories between the journaling.

Still havn't used my new Autumn Leaves the stars and layout.....!!

Bert has a new nickname already...'Dirty Bertie' as in that cool kids book where the kid does all the gross things and the adults all say 'thats dirty Bertie'!! In his short time with us so far he has rolled ecstactically on a dead fish during a walk round the lake, fished a dirty nappy out of the rubbish...and held on with jaws of steel as we tried to prise it off him, and today out at the farm he found the stinkiest, pooiest mud patch he could find and covered his lovely white fur with it....under all that cute, butter wouldn't melt in my mouth fur is one disgusting mutt rofl....I swore I even saw Harry turn his nose up in disgust...but he is such a lovely fella and he is here to stay...will just have to buy in bulk dog shampoo...!!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

My... what a big one! lol! This Oriental? poppy must have got mixed up in my punnet of Californian poppies and finally burst out of its huge bud this morning in full glory! Its bigger than my hand!

I'm still here... thanks Ilka :-)...just cogging along! Spending more time in the garden now that Spring is here and Samuel is always two steps in front of me and keeping me on my toes lol!

Scrapping wise I have just sent off a box to Scrapbook Creations with a layout I submitted and another they then asked me to create to go with it and a few words as well for their Quick and Easy page...hopefully it should be in issue 40! Thanks to Kelly (Memoryfairy) at Scrapbook Essentials for her submission challenges which motivated me to submit in the first place! Havn't done anything else!! Just quietly recharging my scrapping mojo at the moment...and the garden is the perfect place!

Jims Mum and Dad are visiting from the UK again this year which is great so we have been busy planning a weeks getaway with them and my Mum and Dad up North in March...found a wonderful bach on the beach in Tutukaka which looks like heaven for both adults and kids....all booked! theres nothing nicer then having a holiday to look forward to!! check out

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The NZ dare this time round is to use flowers on a masculine layout. I wanted the flowers to almost be part of the background cardstock and all the focus on the photo.

So I used the same colour cs with a rub of delish paint, outlined in grey pencil and sketchy detail added with white pen to pop it a bit....hard to get a good pic but hey you get the idea, looks better in real life though!! The words read...somewhere in the middle of wales....the man I fell in love with.

This was taken on one of our little road trips in moritz (a little red metro car) somewhere in the middle of nowhere in Wales, we used to love just driving anywhere and seeing where it would take us... the road is the grey line running across the middle and we had just raced up the side of a rather steep hill!

Our favourite hot drink lately is green much so that we have ditched the healtheries teabags and bought some proper leaves and the most gorgeous little Japanese teapot and cups (off trademe for $10!)! I feel like a little girl in the mornings now having a tea party!
Jim and I have both decided Japan is a place we would like to for the tea and gardens...the for the classic japanese cars (he has so far restored a classic honda N360 and is working on his next project. An Isuzu for the whole family to fit into lol!!

With the good weather we have been having I am really enjoying being able to fling open our new bifold doors onto the garden! We have set up the stereo in one of these rooms and it is so nice to have the music on while gardening. Really enjoying the sounds of Morcheeba, Corinne Bailey Rae and KT Tunstall at the moment.

Monday, October 02, 2006

I seem to be doing the dumbest things lately! don't know what my brain is up to at the moment...for example, the boys are out at mum and dads for a couple of nights sleepover and I totally forgot to pack Patricks nightime pullups duh! even though I laid their Jammies out and everything! Apparently Patrick told Mum when she asked where they were that 'he was a big boy now and didn't need them'....NOT!! rofl! It didn't dawn on me until midnight last night when I suddenly thought about it so rang them (how embarrassing, but hey its my parents they know I'm an egg lol!) to get him up for a wee! I know its hardly a major drama...just stupid and I hate being stupid! so get over it and get on with it lol!

Not a whole lot of scrapping going on but I have started my Get Real Album using some of the lovely new Basic Grey for the SBO comp and completed a double layout for the cyber crop they held...the challenge was to use chipboard. I painted up some letters with delish paints and decorated the star with urbanlily rubons.

The holidays are going well, I really enjoy having Joseph home and Patrick does as well, they are good playmates.
Caught my little superman Patrick in action
flying down the hill on his bike the other day

We were lucky to have such lovely weather for the first week, even got to meet up with some of my yahoo scrapping group in Hamilton gardens on Friday which was would be so cool if one day the whole group could get together! The Japanese garden is coming along really nicely, must take some pics...when the rain stops lol!

Have just installed a better photo editing program on the pooter, have been having much fun playing. This is my first attempt at painting out an ugly taken pre Vicky's photography class lol! I know now how to get better shots without the ugly stuff in the background lol! but I really like this pic of my boys so thought I would try and save it! I like it!

Autumn leaves have a new blog to inspire and motivate you to use more colour called Designing with colour one day I might learn how to add the link properly lol!

I actually used red as a background on a layout the other day for the Scrapbook Essentials button swap! That is so unlike me, master of blues, greens and browns or colours! So I might try and do some of the autumn leaves colour challenges to keep me using more bright colour

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Here are my favourite pics from my photography homework. I identified our hallway by the front door of all places as having good lighting and it also has a dark curtain which I used as a backdrop.

Wasn't going to do the NZ dares this time round, but started fiddling around this afternoon and put this one together using some of the making memories moulding strips that I 've had hanging around for absolutely ages!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

I took Vicky's online photography class at SBONZ on Tuesday night....This lady knows her stuff, but explained it so simply with the most awesome examples of her own pictures...that I 'got' it!! Now I just have to put it into practice which isn't so easy lol! I tend to be a panic clicker...but my subjects are usually kids or the dog and they move sooo darn quick! Anyway I have been carrying my camera around all day and trying to practice all the wonderful things we learnt this week...2 lessons to go...these are my favourite pics for the day...even the dog got to play soopermodel and said cheese...gotta love those teeth!

ps: do people usually iron their backdrop sheets or what? mine's definately got that crinkled look lol!