Monday, 23 February 2009

Completely forgot to add......

a HUGE thank you to Mrs Wonka who managed to sort out my blog header and background!

Thanks Mrs Wonka - love you xxxxxx

Natalie x

Just a quick update...

I honestly did have every intention of posting over the weekend.

Our lives are overtaken by football at the moment. Both boys have football practice on a Saturday morning and matches on Sunday. That together with Ethan being put forward as one of three on his team to the new Crawley Academy and extra training on Tuesdays, it's pretty hectic. Though we've joined the local club, they seem to have taken a liking for training over the other side of town which is a pain but have to say that both of the boys absolutely love football. They play it every minute of every day - every break time, after school on their way home and then they are back out there again straight away.

I'm convincing myself that it is all worthwhile that when they earn their first million, they will pay their mum and dad's mortgage off for them LOL! I live in hope :-)

There are lots of really exciting things that I am involved in at the moment but can't share most of them at the moment - sorry. That's why it seems that I am not updating much at the moment but am very very busy LOL!

I've been off today as the boys had an INSET day, but it was spent food shopping, three loads of washing and three loads through the dishwasher!! And yes, housework was done over the weekend too - a mothers job is never done is it.

So back to work tomorrow, but only for three days.

Every November, Damon and I celebrate our wedding anniversary and go away somewhere for the weekend. It is always paid for with Tescos clubcard vouchers and we've been to Prague, Amsterdam, Bath, Windsor, Frimley and more.

However, last November our resident babysitter (Hi Mum!) had the cheek to go on holiday so we had to delay it and we are going to Oxford this weekend and staying here.

It will be great to just get away from everything and completely relax with my hubby.
So, I've been finishing off some cards for my "Cards for the Boys!" class on Thursday night and I am offering support to a new Stampin' Up lady on Wednesday night at her first home party - go go Maggie!
Right, better go, bed is calling me after a migraine yesterday afternoon, I think I still need an earlyish night.
Have fun!
Natalie x

Thursday, 19 February 2009

I am still here I promise....

and you can see that I'm trying a new banner and blog background but still have a way to go....LOL!

I have failed dismally on updating everyday and now it's been over a week - where does the time go?.

Well a trip to Stitches trade show in Birmingham on Sunday, more football matches and training, husbands birthday on Monday and Salsa lesson 2 on Tuesday. Yesterday was spent chilling and here we are today.

There has been lots and lots of birthdays in February so I do have various cards to show you including the one above which was made for a little boy who came on holiday with us last year. This uses the Wild About You stamp set and some inspiration from Monica.
Anyway, I'm going to get on today and hope that I can go back to updating every day!
Have fun!
Natalie x

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

And so to bed......

I think that the last few nights / week have caught up with me and I am absolutely exhausted so I am off to bed and I'll see you all tomorrow.

Couldn't leave without a card in my month of birthdays. A very quick card using the Simply Elements Rock Star kit from Stampin' Up! for a little boy who turned 5 this week.

Night night.

Have fun!

Natalie x

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Would you believe me if I told you where I'd just come back from?

Would you believe me anymore if I told you it was my husband's idea to go together?

Excercise, being a couple and getting out of breath - we survived our first Salsa class!

Nothing like I was expecting and great fun :-)

Share more tomorrow - I'm off to bed!

Have fun!

Natalie x

Monday, 9 February 2009

Photo overload - watch out!

Well yesterday was a VERY productive day.

We had football matches, birthday parties and a visit from Grandad to fit in, but I was let off of football duties and Grandad took my place which meant that after a lovely roast dinner, I played catch up and have to say that I was very proud of how much I achieved.

My February newsletter was sent out yesterday full of information on Sale-a-Bration, March classes, Stampers 6 group, ribbon shares, paper shares and parties - be sure to sign up on the link on the right hand side to make sure that you are included.

Anyway, I was very good and I did make my mum's birthday card yesterday (which is probably a good thing as it is today and we are off out for yet another meal tonight!), and I did promise step by step instructions, so here goes, as best as I can considering I had no tripod, I couldn't use a flash, the light was awful and I didn't have any idea where I was really going with the card LOL! I just knew that I wanted to use blue and yellow and the Rose is a Rose two step stamp set!

In the above picture you can see the Rose is a Rose stamp set together with So Saffron and More Mustard inkpads.

The stamp set is a two step stamp set which means that whilst the stamps don't look much on their own, put two together with different shades of the same colour and you create a masterpiece.

Firstly I stamped the large image onto Whisper White cardstock with the So Saffron ink. Nice even just on it's own!

Then we use the wonderful contraption that is the stamp-a-ma-jig. If you are ever one of those people who stamps wonky, this is the tool for you - you'll wonder how you managed without it for so long. So the SAMJ is a black handle and a sheet of clear plasma. You put the plasma in the corner of the SAMJ and stamp your image by placing your stamp right in the corner too and stamp the image. You can use any colour ink but I used what I had out and you can see the image here.

Then take the plasma sheet and place over the original image where you want to stamp the second image. This works well if you are trying to line up letters for titles or other things like that too where you need to be pretty spot on - how about that All in the Family Set - impossible without the SAMJ!
So once your plasma is in place, place the black handle so the plasma is in the corner again. Hold the handle still, remove the plasma, ink up your stamp and place the stamp exactly in the corner and you will be perfect!

Excuse the colours but you get the idea about what depth you can get with two step stamping. There are quite a few sets like this throughout the SU catalogue including the Botanical Bloom set in the Sale-a-Bration promotion!

For my actual card, I used textured Bashful Blue card, the En Francais background stamp and Bashful Blue ink. Just inked up the background stamp and stamped straight on the card. Love the effect of tone on tone stamping - very subtle but lovely!

Get some of the Bashful Blue double stitched grosgrain ribbon, make a bow and attach to the left hand side of your card.

I wanted my wording to match perfectly too - isn't that just the SU way LOL! So I had some white chipboard letters, I took a blender pen and just took ink from the inkpad with the blender pen and coloured in the letters. Now if I had the matching marker pen, I could have used that but I've just not got everything yet, although I'm doing very well :-)
So I used the So Saffron inkpad as my base colour and then used the More Mustard to highlight some of the sides to add dimension.

Can't make many cards without using my scallop edge punch - love that thing :-) So I scalloped the edge of the front of my card...

And then I wanted a So Saffron edge on the inside of the card, so I scalloped the edge of some So Saffron card too and stuck the strip on the inside page.

You can see how pretty it looks here :-)

And finally, here is my masterpiece. The chipboard peices were added with normal glue, the rose was cut out and mounted on 3D foam pads to give dimension and three silver brads were added to the top three scallops of the card to add some balance.

Phew! Well if you've got that far, well done. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be (apart from the quality of the photos obviously!), so I might just make this a regular thing.
Watch this space and enjoy your Monday.
Have fun!
Natalie x

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Can't decide what SU paper you want?

How about I make it easier for you?

To get a 6 x 6" piece of every sheet in the 8 sets of Designer papers (Summer Picnic, Rainbow Sherbet, Haiku, Holiday Treasures, Junior Varsity, Sweet Always, Tea & Crumpets and Spiced cider) will cost you £17.50 inc p&P?

To get a 6 x 6" piece of every sheet in the 6 sets of patterns Designer Series Papers (Bashful Blue, So Saffron, Chocolate Chip, Rose Red, Old Olive & Pumpkin Pie) costs £13.50 inc p&P?

Splitting each pack will mean that the order is big enough to earn a Sale-a-Bration set for each set, so I will have a draw from each set of four people and one person will win a FREE SAB set, so be sure to let me know what set you would like if you happen to be the winner! You've got a one in 4 chance to win.

Okay, got lots to do today, so I will just leave you with a quick card done for a party that Ethan is going to today:

All made with bits from the Simply Elements Rock Star pack with the addition of a Pebbles Inc rub-on greeting and some Heidi Swapp chipboard letters.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend,

Natalie x

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Super Saturday

I slept so deeply last night and as much as I should feel better for it - all I want to do is creep back into bed, but I've got another busy weekend and my to do list is calling me - one item of which is to update this blog.

So a quick post for today because what I want to try and do is to photograph a little tutorial whilst I make my mums birthday card and upload that either tomorrow or Monday (depending on when I make it of course LOL!) The tutorial with cover both two step stamping and how to use the Stampin' Up! Stamp-a-ma-jig! (The what? I hear you cry! - all will be revealed!).

So I leave you with a quick card to whet your appetite for tomorrow! An abundance of Old Olive ink, card, patterned paper and ribbon from Stampin' Up! together with stamps from Baroque Motifs, the Sale-a-Bration set Polka Dot Punches and Friendship circles - gotta love that co-ordination and just look at that swirl - yum!
Have fun and enjoy the weekend!

Natalie x

Friday, 6 February 2009

Almost didn't make it today....

Just a few photos from the other night - sorry that they are not David Bailey quality - blame a point and shoot camera and a bit too much champagne - LOL! Above is me and birthday boy (my brother!).
Here is us sitting on our table. We were on the Chefs table which is located actually in the kitchen - it's great to see everything being made and the way that the kitchen is run.
My cheeseboard always looks like this at my dinner parties - doesn't yours? :-)

Ah, and a special birthday cake - the last in a long line of courses - each one just yummy!
Enjoy and see you tomorrow with more info on a paper share that I'm doing for those that can't decide which Stampin' Up! patterned paper to have - why not have a little bit of each?
Have fun,
Natalie x

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Off to a party.....

Well having had nearly a week off of work - it was fun going back in today - NOT!! As much as I love having time off of work, I hate going back in again. Nobody does my job when I'm not there, so all the work just stacks up and it is also the joy that is month end too - nice :-)

Well, I'm home now and just preparing myself for my Stampin' Up! party tonight at Teresa's house. Some of the regular stalkers (you know who you are :-) ) so it there will be fun had by all!

Above is a picture of the make and take that we will be doing - it's using the Sale-A-Bration set Botanical Blooms which I wasn't quite sure about but actually really love these cards.

If you like the look of these stamps, you can get them FREE - yes, FREE if you spend over £45 on Stampin' Up! products this month. After that you won't be able to get them again!

I am also looking for a couple more people who want to get more FREE stamp sets and stash. I will be starting another Stampers 6 group as soon as we have six people who are happy to commit to spending £25 a month for 6 months with me.

It's like having a virtual party, so you don't need to do anything more other than let me know what you want each month and I will do the rest. One month you get to chose the hostess set for the group and another month you get to pick FREE stash - it doesn't get much better than that. I already have a couple of ladies, so if you are interested in choosing your own Stampin' Up! kit each month :-), then please email me on and I'll add your name to the list.

Don't forget about the ribbon share too - only a couple of sets of those left too.

Okay, well I'm going to go and get myself prepared for tonight.

Have fun and I'll speak to you again tomorrow :-)

Natalie x

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

So my head is just starting to feel like it is attached to my body :0)

We had an absolutely fabulous day yesterday but I am feeling a little worse for wear today! I did have today off of work to recover and have to admit to staying in bed until 11 o'clock which was just perfect - doesn't happen very often around here anymore.

So, I've got a Stampin' Up! party tomorrow night and need to go and prepare for that, so I will update with more tomorrow but didn't want to miss out on my posting everyday!

I'll leave you with a quick photo from yesterday - may I present three of our Claridges chefs - otherwise know as my brother, the Birthday Boy, my husband and my step-dad!
They had fun!
Natalie x

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Well today is the day that my brother is 40! Last year my mum was 60 and we had a fabulous day in London at the Ritz for lunch then the London Eye and then to Gordon Ramsey's Maze restaurant for a meal in the evening.

Well my brother is such a tart and he wanted to make sure that his 40th was just as memorable. So today, as you read this (yes, I did pre-prepare this post - cheating I know but I would never have done a post today otherwise!)I will be here having a relaxing spa morning to set ourselves up for the day - just my brother, my mum and I. All finished off with a light champagne lunch!

And then it is back home to get ready for the limo that is picking us up at 4pm to go here. Gordon Ramsey's restaurant in Claridges. 11 courses over five hours - it will be tough but I'll manage it! I'm sure that it will be another day that we will remember for the rest of our lives!

I'll come back and share some photos tomorrow with you if I've got over the hangover sometime during the day :-)

Have fun!

Natalie x

Monday, 2 February 2009

And here is the last of the set of four cards that I did for my Scrapbookmate Design Team bit. These four cards were all quick and easy. Here I've used a KI Memories Love Elsie soft charm with some white buttons, and lots of lovely textured card!

For those that loved the Ribbon Share idea, I now have the next set of ribbons which are the Taffeta Ribbon. I wasn't sure that I would like these as I thought they may be a bit pastel for me, but I love them - just like tying silk.

So, again to add to your collection, I am offering 8 metres of 8 different coloured Taffeta ribbons for £6 including postage and packaging - so email me at if you want to share the luxury.

The other additional ribbon share details are here for those that missed out the first time around:

Stampin' Up! sells some FANTASTIC ribbon but only sells it on the reel, but here is an idea where you can own some of it and it not cost the earth. I have decided to share my reels.....and here is what you can get......

To get 1.5 metres of each of the 11 colours of the 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, it costs £6.50.

To get 1.5metres of each of the 8 colours of the 5/8" grosgrain ribbon, it costs £7.50.

To get 1 metre of each of the 3 colours of 1" double stitched grosgrain ribbon, it costs £2.50.

If you would like all three sets, I will do them for £15.00.

These prices include postage and packaging but will not be included towards any promotions (such as the Sale-a-Bration).

Have a look at this page of the catalogue and it's the first three groups that I am selling here.

Another busy day today - I'm having my nails and feet pampered tonight in preparation for my big day tomorrow - my big brother's 40th birthday - I'll share what we are doing tomorrow!
Have fun and enjoy Monday!
Natalie x

Sunday, 1 February 2009

And yet another.....

Here is another card that I made for my Scrapbookmate DT spot on A Daily Inspiration blog. Another one to come tomorrow!

At the end of April, there is a Scrappers Paradise Scrapbooking Getaway in Guildford - have a look at for more details if you fancy joining us - there are only the last few spaces left and it is always a relaxed fun weekend away from it all.

Or perhaps you just want to escape for the evening? On Thursday February 26th, I am having a Stamp-a-Stack full of boys cards. Each person coming will get a whole pack of this here
to play with and there are some goregous cards that could actually be used not only for boys but for anyone who likes blue and green! We have four spaces left on this class, so again, be quick to reserve your place by emailing me on

On other news - another packed day for us today - usual ironing, washing, food shopping but also two football matches with both boys where they both scored goals and both won Man of the Match, so we were very very proud parents today :-)

Right well, I don't want to spoil you with too much info today. So I'll say goodnight and be back to see you tomorrow.

Have fun and enjoy the snow (did you get it too? It wasn't fun standing at a football match with it blowing a gale and snowing hard but I guess that's just what you do!)

Natalie x