Thursday, 27 February 2014

You can never have too much cake

I am sure you will all agree with my post title. On Monday my darling baby Boy Matt (he would hate seeing me write this but as he does not read my blog I am safe ;0) was 25. Yes 25 years have passed by in the blink of an eye. My son lives nearby and his girlfriend and I liaised and thought it best to host his birthday tea at our house. Charlotte is a keen cake maker, she usually makes exquisite cup cakes and we decided that we could both make him a you can never have too much cake!

It was a very small family party, just 6 of us as it was mid week. Here are the cakes we made;
You will also see my Mum, who makes beautiful decoupage, made him a giraffe card as my boy has a lifelong love of these wonderful creatures.
Charlotte decided for the first time to make a giant cup cake with a golf scene as my son's business and pleasure is golf.
Here is her amazing creation in close up
He loved it and I am sure would love it if golf courses did have 25 holes, he could be even longer out there!

I made my usual Victoria sponge, as always packed with a whole jar of raspberry conserve and plenty of vanilla butter icing

 I added a fun Mr Happy candle to my plaque creation
and he had fun blowing out the candle
It was such a lovely evening. My baby boy is now a strapping 6'1" man, no longer the 8lbs 9oz little one who came into the world in 1989 but as anyone who is a Mum knows...our baby's are always our baby's aren't they ;0) We were so thrilled to share his special day with him.

My card today is the tag I made for Matt's pressie. I had fun with my Distress inks again using some yellows are green to create the background. When it was dry I repeat stamped some flowers and also some butterflies and added a  bird box stamp. I added some shimmery blue and green ribbons.My son adores being outside in the open and I wanted my creation to have for a sunny feel. Also green has always been his favourite colour.

The sentiment is one from Lili of the Valley's Quotables.....I love these stamps which I embossed with gold embossing powder. Here is a close up.
and the repeat stamped flowers

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

The Artistic Stamper use distress
Lili of the Valley name that tune my tune is Summer Breeze by the Isley Brothers, my favourite ever summer's so uplifting.
Pile it On thinking of you
Fashionable stamping anything goes
Sentimental Sundays make your own background
Rhedd and Rosie aanything but a card
Totally Papercrafts Spring my greens and yellows are very spring colours
Vintage Stamping It's a man thing

Today is my day off and I am looking forward to meeting up with my dearest best friend for lunch...lot's of girlie chat and catching up. The sun is shining and on Saturday we are seeing our Darling Daisy I don't really need to make a wish...mine have all come true.

Happy Thursday everyone, enjoy the upcoming weekend and one wish that you might want to make.......... is for lots of cake ;0) Enjoy.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Signs of Spring

Yesterday morning we woke up to blue skies and sunshine, such a bonus at the weekend. We had already appreciated how light the mornings and evenings are becoming...all signs that spring is on it's way. My daffodils are well ahead this year and were nodding sweetly in the rays of the sun. Such a pretty sight.

I also noted that my flowering current is in blossom.

And look at the buds on my magnolia

Last week Ignacio of Nicecrane sent his DT some of his new releases. I really loved these images, they are just perfect for spring themed projects and they are aptly named Blossoms and Birds. I decided that it was a perfect time for my inspiration from my garden to help me create a few projects for him as his DT guest designer.This lovely sheet is available here.

I first decided to make a card using the bluetit image on the bottom left. I made an inky backing card using some very spring coloured Distress Inks, one of them is named Mown Lawn, what a great name! I also added a few flicks of water to give some extra texture.
I wanted to made a scene like my branches I saw on my magnolia tree so I used my Marianne bough die which I inked to give some depth. I also wanted to make some blossom so I headed for a couple of punches I have had for years and punched out some little blossoms, I wanted these to have just a delicate wash of colour so mad woman that I am I decided to paint them.....I kid you not and here is a photo to prove to prove it.

 The backing card is some gorgeous new blue pearl card which fell into my online shopping basket the other day.

Here is my finished piece. I kept it quite simple as I think it shows off the image, blossom and backing card without other big distractions.

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

Frilly and Funkie Bloomin' marvellous
Ladybug crafts Ink flowers galore
Country View Crafts Painty Pleasures
Totally Papercrafts spring
Artistic Stamper use Distress
4 Crafty Chicks things with wings
Cupcake Inspiration Birds
Pile It on Thinking of you

And in case you have been missing the newest flower in my family... darling Daisy...she is 14 weeks old tomorrow and has started swimming lessons ;0)

Here she is 2 weeks ago wearing Nana's handknit...;0)
and my daughter sent me these photos during the week of Daisy when she first woke up, waving to Nana...bless ;0) She is losing her very dark hair she was born with and looks as though her hair is going to be a light brown.
Daisy is just such a happy soul, her photos make me smile every day and I do miss her lots.

and when my girlies came to stay the other week we had lunch in Caffe Nero and it seems my granddaughter has already taken an interest in must be in the genes.She was fascinated by it but at least at this age can't pinch any from her Nana. 
and good girlies are driving up to meet me after my silversmithing class on Tuesday and then we have a whole day down there with them on Saturday, I can't wait.

Thanks for all you kind words and your entries to my jewellery giveaway, I have put a link in my sidebar for it and also you can find the post here if you would like to join the fun. It is open until 7 March to everyone.

Today is rather dull and damp but I have plenty to keep me busy as it's my darling son's 25th birthday tomorrow and we are hosting a little tea party here in the there is a cake to bake....must get going.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Jane's Journal Giveaway

Last year I did not have the time to offer a little something on my blog to celebrate my 300th post. I promised that I would come up with something special at a later date.  Time has marched on and here we are at my 335th post and at last I have finished creating my gift. I wanted to offer something extra special as a thank you to all.

 I have created 2 special necklaces for the occasion. They are summer based so that they can give us something to look forward to.

One is created in copper metal clay and the second is in silver metal clay. In case you have not heard of metal clays, they are very pure metals combined with a binder. When fired they leave behind pure copper and fine silver, much purer that most precious metal jewellery you would buy.  The silver necklace is a flower with a second daisy in the flower which I have textured. It comes with an 18" sterling silver necklace. The copper necklace has a handmade double textured heart and a Vintaj (lovely quality) seahorse charm from my stash. It comes on a red cord 18" necklace. Both pieces can be taken off their necklaces and could be used as simple charms on your keyring if you prefer or they would make a lovely gift as they come in an organza bag. They have been so difficult to photograph, especially the silver flower as it is really sparkly in real life.

I have also been having a restock in my Etsy shop and if you are in a summer mood there are a couple of new pieces there.
This is a mermaid bag charm with 2 gorgeous artisan hand made lampwork glass beads available here .
Below is a  lovely artisan lampwork beach bead necklace. I have silver wire wrapped the bead with 2 Swarovski bicone spacers and it comes with a silver snake chain. It is available here
or if you like pearls and shells there is one more new Summery piece available here
At the moment summer still seems a long way away doesn't it?

I thought today's card challenge entry also needed to be really summery and full of love

I used my newest Lili of the Valley stamp called pots of love which I coloured with my Promarkers and highlighted with Prismacolor pencils.

 The backing card is a hand embossed piece I made with lots of distress inks and some gold metallic gilding wax. If was so hard to photograph this as the lovely gold foil matting card reflects so much. The sentiment is also LOTV from their grunge range.
My card is for sale in my Etsy shop here and would suit either Mother's day or Mum's birthday as it is blank inside.

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

Lili of the Valley Name that tune my tune is the theme tune from Bill and Ben the Flower Pot Men! No I wonder if some of my readers are old enough to remember that one!
2 Sisters embossing
The Artistic Stamper Use Distress
Stamping Sensations wings fantasy or fiction my birdie die cuts have got wings!
Crafty Sentiments anything goes
Papertake Weekly lovely layers
Pan Pastel UK  anything goes
Divas by Design rubber stamps only
Love to Create sparkle and bling
Deep Ocean love is all around us
Rhedd and Rosie love is in the air
Totally Gorjuss lovey dovey
Make it Monday linky party #179
Whimsy stamps love is in the air

My giveaway is open to everyone, I never like imposing restrictions as I am delighted that people read my blog, even as silent readers. You do not even need to have a blog but of course you do need to pop back after the closing date and see if you have won. I will post world wide. Just leave a comment on this post to say you would like to be in the draw.
However I do like to add a little extra for my loyal blogging friends who visit me here week after week and leave such kind comments.
So, if you are a follower you will get an 2nd entry and if you put the photo at the top of this post in your side bar or mention my giveaway in a blog post or on Facebook you will also get a 3rd entry. That means some of you will qualify for 3 entries.Please leave a comment to say how many entries you qualify for and it does not matter if you come back another day to say this as my names go into a hat to be drawn out by my Hb.

Good luck to everyone and again thank you so much for being such amazing friends. This blogging world brings me a lot of pleasure. My giveaway will close at 4pm GMT on Friday 7 March. I will announce the winners soon after that date. The first person out of the hat will have the choice of the necklaces, the second person will have the other.

The sun is actually shining as I type this, long may it last.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Monday, 17 February 2014

After the storm

After the dreadful storm we endured here in the UK on Friday night we have been given some optimism that that may have been the worst of the weather. I wrote this post over a month ago when we hoped the torrential rain was over,  little did we realise that the worst was yet to come. A lot of poor souls still have flooded properties and I just count my lucky stars that we have stayed dry so far. On Saturday afternoon the sun came out and there was a little promise of hopefully sunny days ahead and spring. Despite the rain we have had a mild winter and my bulbs outside are well ahead. This time last year I had nothing in bloom but this year I have snowdrops, crocuses and daffodils swaying in the breeze. On a walk around our local park I snapped this pretty patch.

the ponds looked gorgeous in the late winter sunshine

There is still so much water around and the river is flowing so quickly

When I got home I spied some more crocuses and snowdrops in my front garden

and I also noticed the water drops still hanging from the ivy leaves
and on the leaves of my violas which have braved the winter in a hanging basket.
All this natural beauty inspired me to sit down on Sunday and make a card...incorporating the lilac and blue colours, the joy of mother nature,the raindrops and of course a little bit of magic ;0)
I chose 3 Distress Inks and blended the colours onto some card. I made another stencil this time using my lovely Joanna Sheen Ivy die and stamped through this with more  Distress Ink. I created this ivy border on both side of the card.

I then got busy with my tiny flowers stamp and made lots of little flowers by repeat stamping. I stamped a floral "hedgerow" around my card and  I decided I needed to have a fairy on this card. I also wanted to incorporate the rain drops I had seen on my viola. So here is my little creation....

Here are a few close ups
The fairy stamp is made my Lavinia and the water drops stamp by Ryn.
I would like to enter my card into the following challenges

Winter Wonderland fairies
Artistic stamper use distress
Craft stamper make and take repeat stamping
Stamping sensations wings real or fantasy
ABC challenge F is for flowers, I have multiple flowers in my stamping border
As you like it Inspired by an object my object is the viola flower in the photo above. The reason why it is my favourite object is that I adore flowers and even with rain drops on I think they still look so beautiful. The viola despite being tiny is such a survivor!
Stampin for the weekend flower power
Pan Pastel UK anything goes
Fashionable Stamping build it up
Deep Ocean love is all around

Have a great week everyone, I have also been finishing off my long awaited giveaway projects, stay tuned.....

Let's hope the rain dies down now after that incredible storm. The daylight is certainly lengthening every day, which is a sure sign that the first day of spring is now only 31 days away......I for one can't wait.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Friday, 14 February 2014

All you need is love

Happy Valentine's Day everyone and whether you are a soppy romantic like me or find today rather over the top, I am sending you some love in my post today. I enjoyed 5 wonderful days with my Darling Daughter and Daisy. The 3 of us managed a little bit of getting out and about despite this horrendous weather. The flooding is frightening and is now very close to of Surrey are under inches of water and still the rain continues. Even more is forecast. I thought I would try to lift the mood with some sunny photos.

I still smile when I see my granddaughter in the same Moses basket her Mummy and Uncle slept in over 25 years ago. Also look how much she has grown in 3 months, it is nearly time for her to go into a cot.

Can you feel the love in my photos above?...if not the photo below has some,,,,,,,,,
 or how about this second bloom on my hyacinth which popped up unexpectedly....mmmmm

 or the gorgeous tulips my daughter bought me?

Now I never usually do really personal stuff on my blog but occasionally a cause is so worthy that I need to promote it. My son's wonderful girlfriend is running the London Marathon in April to raise money for Anthony Nolan, a most worthy cancer pioneering charity which helps to find bone marrow donors to help treat the victims of blood cancers. This disease has blighted my own family and Charlotte's too.
I am proud to share a link to her JustGiving donation page here and if you feel you can spare £1 or any amount, it will help to raise funds for this vital work. You can donate anonymously and you do not have to create an account, just skip that part. Payment can be by Paypal too if that makes things easy. If you are a UK taxpayer they are even able to claim back Gift Aid which adds more to you donation with no extra cost to you.  Thank you in advance if you are able to help. Even if you do not feel able to donate please do have a look at the wonderful work that the Anthony Nolan Organisation does.

My card today is the Valentine card I gave to my darling hubby this morning, we are celebrating 34 years since we got engaged. How lucky I am that he is still my sweetheart. Tonight we will enjoy a special Dine in for £20 M+S Valentine meal and will be popping open the bubbly. Cheers!

I stamped the background with the freebie Craft Stamper rose stamp by Visible Image using white ink. I used my newest Spellbinders set of dies to showcase the focal. The bow die is Memory Bax. I also added lots of gems and used a stamped sentiment as my focal with silver embossing powder. I have no idea of the maker as the packet it was in was blank! I bought it a few years back in a crafty sale.

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

Make it Monday linky party
Rhedd and Rosie love is in the air
Pan Pastels anything goes
Natalie and Amy love is all around you
Penny Black and More make it sparkle
Crafting for all seasons Show us some Romance
Papertake weekly with a heart
Cupcake Inspiration Inspirational cupcake I was inspired by the cut out heart for my card
Visible Image love
Totally Gorjuss sentiment as the main focus
Hels Sheridan shine on you crazy diamond
Ali Craft Valentines
Squirrel and Fox Love
Deep Ocean Love is all around
A Creative Romance Let's get sentimental
Whimsy Stamps love is in the air
Polkadoodles love/romance

Sending all my blogging friends a virtual hug with lots of love. I hope I can put a smile on your faces today and in the words of the Beatles remember that "There is nothing that you can do that can't be done......................
all you need is love."
Spread a little love around and it's amazing how it comes back tenfold. Enjoy this evening how ever you are spending it and have a wonderful weekend. Take care in the UK with the extreme flooding we are suffering.

Thanks for visiting me and thanks for the sweet comments you take the time to leave.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x