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Adventure Eagle Card

Hello everyone and welcome to my very sporadic and hardly-ever-updated-these-days blog. I have no excuses – just busy with life and whatnot. Lots of whatnot. Unwanted whatnot, to be honest, but I guess that is just what being an adult is all about. Sigh… So, apologies for the irregular posting. I will try to get back on track, but I am not making any promises!

I thought I would get back into things by posting this card I made recently for my boss. She had a birthday this week and was also heading overseas for a holiday in Europe (lucky thing!) so it was an birthday / bon voyage kind of card that was required. I had had a couple of weeks to make it but had completely forgotten about it, so I found myself getting it done at midnight the night before her birthday morning tea at work. Not very smart. But, I was very pleased with how it turned out, so maybe I should do all my crafting in bad light when I am half sleep 🙂

I had a book on “Birds from the Bible” that I had picked up at a second hand book sale, so I cut out a nice vintage eagle image from it and added some butterfly wings over the top of the original wings, just to give it a bit of added interest and colour. The crown I had bought only a few days prior – I hadn’t really known what I was going to use it for but it was perfect for this project and I think it looks pretty awesome .

Then I just needed to stamp “Adventure” on to the backing paper and, voila, all done! I was quite chuffed with it because it really didn’t take me long, in comparison to the usual RIDICULOUS amount of time it takes me to finish one card. I got everyone in our team to sign it and then it was ready for our boss. She really liked it 🙂

So, that is my first post after how many months? Like, seven or something? So bad! But one is better than none, right? Hopefully, I will lift my game from now on and post more regularly. Hope you are all well and happy in your little corner of the world. x

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Cats (Not the Musical)

Hello everyone! Apologies for my absence from Blogging Land. I have all the usual excuses – laziness, too busy, no time, life got in the way etc – but I also have a REALLY GOOD EXCUSE too… I got kitties! Yay me! I had been procrastinating about it and kept finding reasons why I shouldn’t get furbabies right now, why I needed more time, why I needed to organise myself better, why I should wait… But, eventually, it became apparent that there would never be the RIGHT TIME and I was just putting it off due to anxiety and fear of making a mistake.

So, one day, I went along to the Cat Haven, with my Mum in tow, to have a look – just a look – at the cats and kittens available. Why did I think I might be able to go in and not leave with a furry friend that same day? Duh! There were so many lovely kitties needing a home – all ages, colours, shapes and sizes. I did have in mind that I wanted perhaps a ginger kitten and a black and white one, but what were my chances of finding a pair like that, that were the right age too? I definitely wanted two – so they would have company when I’m out – and had originally wanted them to be boys, but that had changed over the preceding days. I didn’t care what sex they were in the end. I just wanted a little furry friend to love.

My Mum actually spotted them first. A bright and bouncy 6 month old tabby kitten, leaping about, trying to get attention – smooching on the glass of his cubicle and generally being adorable. The sign on his door said “My name is Ryan – how can you resist my chubby little face?” And, indeed, we could not.

Hiding away in the back of his cubicle, was his little sister, Oakie. She was obviously terrified and just wanted to make everything go away. When I reached in to stroke her, she cowered but did not hiss or run away. I felt so sorry for her. What a frightening world for her. The only comfort she had was her big brother who, bless him, tried to protect her by putting his arm around her. They had to be homed together as a bonded pair. We were sold.

So, now two months later, I have a pair of gorgeous, crazy, entertaining and affectionate kittens. Introducing, Atticus and Harper! 🙂

Atticus (AKA “The Toad”)

Harper Louise (AKA “Poppy”)

Atticus is a big boofy boy. He is a bit of a bully to his delicate and timid sister. In the first few weeks, I was quite concerned about his behaviour because he just would not leave her alone – she was getting beaten up constantly. Play-fighting is absolutely normal, of course, but Harper is so much smaller and, especially in the early days, she was in poor condition and not feeling well, and couldn’t defend herself. She took a long time to get over her desexing operation, and spent most of her days curled up on my dining room chair, looking miserable. Her appetite was good, however, and she seemed to trust me so I took heart that she would eventually come out of her shell.

I have to supervise meal times, otherwise Atticus will eat all of his own food and then Harper’s as well. She eats about a third of what he consumes (or should I say inhales) and tends to dither about. I can’t leave the food out for her to graze on – it will be gone in two seconds flat if Atticus is anywhere near it. I swear I got jipped and actually adopted a dog – he eats like a dog, plays like a dog, carries things around like a dog. He even chews on my shoes! But, despite his naughtiness and never-ending energy, he is adorable. The sweetest, most loving little guy. He enjoys a cuddle (on his terms) and just likes to be wherever I am. He ruled the roost from day one.

Harper is a tiny little lady. She is about half her brother’s size and is delicate and slight. She has a permanently worried expression on her face but is a happy girl most of the time. Initially, she had a very rough, almost crinkly, coat, and her hair was falling out in clumps. But, as she settled and recovered from her surgery and early experiences, her coat improved and is now quite soft and smooth – a pale, pinky-silver tabby. Still very timid, she will hide from everyone except for me. I am hoping this will change, but it may just be how she is – there is no way of knowing what her previous experiences with humans has been. She too is very loving and enjoys being stroked and talked to. She will roll on her back and let you rub her tummy and she has a special little voice just for me that warms my heart. She and her brother talk constantly – chirrupping (as I call it) and calling for one another when it’s playtime. They also groom one another quite violently, which generally leads to fisticuffs but, as long as Harper is not getting hurt, I leave them to it. She initiates quite a lot of the fights now and gives as good as she gets. I do have to separate them from time time, though, when Atticus forgets himself. When I first got them, they were showing signs of perhaps behaving a bit incestuously, and I am pretty sure Harper may have been pregnant. It took a couple of weeks for things to settle down in that way. Hormones get in the way of everything!

Atticus is very handsome. I think he knows it too. His coat is like silk – thick and shiny and so, so soft. He is much darker than Harper, and I think he is going to be a big boy, if his enormous feet are anything to go by. He is growing at a rate of knots and I have to keep an eye on his food intake, because I think he could easily be a bit of a fatty 🙂

I have had to have an unwanted trip to the vet with Harper. Poor girl got her ear torn by her boofhead brother, and so we had to go through the trauma of her needing medication on the wound twice a day. It healed quickly, thankfully, and didn’t need the full course of drops. She hated me doing anything to her and it made her take a few steps back in terms of her social development and feeling secure, so I was glad to be able to leave her be. She soon forgave me and didn’t hold a grudge.

Atticus likes to suck on his blankies. This is normally a sign of kittens being taken away from their mothers too soon. He will suck and knead for ages, any time of day. I have special blankies for this – he only likes the soft “minky”ones. Often, he will be having a suckle session while Harper gives him a good tongue-bath. I think it comforts them both and I’m always happy when they’re they not bashing each other up.

They have the run of my house, except for my bedrooms (gotta have a couple of rooms free from hair, y’know!?) but are not allowed outside. I am planning on reinforcing my outside patio and enclosing it, so they can also have that room to play and explore. I have a two-story house so they get lots of exercise running up and down the stairs and they like to sunbathe by the upstairs windows, where they can also spy on the whole neighbourhood.

I love them so much. I don’t know why it took me so long to make the decision to get cats. I have missed having a pet, and cats are the best option for me, given I work full time. They are pretty self-sufficient and, provided I give them lots of exercise and play times to prevent boredom, they are pretty well-behaved. I have covered all my couches to prevent little claws shredding them, and also have a variety of scratching posts and mats. They have a selection of toys and I make sure we play at least every afternoon until they are ready for a rest. This keeps them happy and stimulated, and less likely to get up to mischief. Before I brought them home, I removed all plants from the house that might be toxic and moved any remaining ones to higher spots that the cats can’t access. They have their own room – my laundry – and they go to bed every night in there. No fuss – I just call them and they happily trot in and settle in for the night. They have toys and an enormous cat tower in there, as well as their litter trays and food/water bowls. They also have blankets and little cat igloos. So they’re pretty well sorted. I have no room for anything, but they are fine 🙂

So, expect many a kitty-related post from me in the near future. They have pretty much taken over my life (and bank balance – when did cat food and kitty litter get so expensive!?). They make me laugh so much and it is so nice to have someone to come home to. They are ratbags sometimes, but full of love and affection too. Watching Harper slowly blossom has been so wonderful, and Atticus puts up with so much harrassment from me – it is so nice to have a cat that will let you cuddle and kiss them (albeit begrudgingly some days 🙂 ).

Thanks for dropping by. Happy New Year to you all. May it contain as many blessings as you can handle xxx

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Just Be Ewe

A quickie post for today.  I made this collage a couple of months back….

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I used a dress image from a vintage sewing pattern and cut a lamb’s head (does that make me a butcher?) from a book of nursery rhymes.  I added detailing with a white paint pen and teeny-weeny heart trim to the skirt with a black pigma pen.  Oh and put some bows on her shoes.  Because, y’know, bows!

The plaque itself was one I picked up in the opshop and covered with pretty papers.

The words are corny but hey, so am I 🙂

Hope you all have a lovely weekend.  Be true to you in all that you do! x

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Taking Stock : October

I have been meaning to do a “Taking Stock” list for ages.  Pip Lincolne posts them on her lovely blog Meet Me at Mike’s and they always inspire me to do the same.  But I have yet to do it.  So here goes…..

Cooking : Curries – I am trying to make a decent one.  I have a delightful library volunteer (she’s Indian) who brings me equally delightful meals and I am pretty sure she uses some kind of witchcraft on them because they are SO GOOD.

Drinking : Yorkshire Tea.  I always drink tea but am finding I need an extra strong brew these days, so Yorkshire Tea it is.  That, or I dunk two regular teabags in my cup. And then walk away, forget about it, and come back to a cup of tea that is so strong the spoon stands up in it.

Listening to: Juliana Hatfield Sings Olivia Newton John Seriously – two of my fave artists combined?  Hello!?  Awesomeness. Have you never been mellow, indeed.

Reading: The Little Paris Bookshop  It’s a lovely story about a floating bookshop in Paris and the owner who “possesses a rare gift for sensing which books will soothe the troubled souls of his customers”.

Next read: Haven’t made my mid up yet, because I have SO MANY books to read at home.  But I think I will tackle The Wonder by Emma Donoghue.

Making: Lots of collages.  Which, in turn, means I am making lots of mess.

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Wanting: An electric drill.  It is time I made the commitment to proper DIY projects and got myself some power tools.  It will probably end in disaster, let’s face it.

Looking: For old drawers.  Of the furniture / storage variety.  I don’t mean knickers.  I want to make some groovy storage / shelving thingies from them.  Have a look at some of the ideas HERE

Deciding: On what to do with my life.  This is a recurring theme for me.  But I feel very anxious about it all.  I am thinking about going to a career counsellor.  I can’t work out if they are a load of nonsense or actually quite a good idea.

Wishing: For world peace, obviously.  But also a Lotto win, a flatter stomach, reliable hair and comfortable (yet fabulous) shoes.  Mostly the Lotto win – I really need that.

Enjoying: Strawberries.  We’re in the midst of a bit of strawberry scare at the moment in Australia (some fool has been putting needles in them as some sort of disgruntled-ex-employee protest) but I have been bravely soldiering on and enjoying these luscious little bites of sweetness.  They are so tasty right now.  I could eat a whole punnet in one sitting.

Waiting: For Spring to really kick in.  We’ve had some lovely sunny days, but they’ve been interspersed with very rainy, cold, miserable, ugh kind of days that make me ache and want to hide under a blanket.

Loving: A new discovery, The Rustic Gallery  Full of lovely old and not-so-old STUFF.  Rusty yumminess – everything from furniture to homewares, garden pieces, hardware, tools etc.  Beautifully set out, really well organised and very reasonably priced.  There are treasures around every corner.  You must visit!

Considering: Joining a gym.  It’s a ridiculously scary idea for me.  My physio wants me to start strengthening up and is encouraging me to go to the gym to work on this.  It is freaking me out.  I am not a gym person.  If I could work out in the dark, with no one else around, I would be ok.

Buying: DIY stuff.  Spray paint and house paint and staple guns (!) and all manner of handyman-esque items.  Injury is imminent.

Watching: That should read “binge-watching”.  Because I am overdosing on episodes of Lee Mack’s hilarious sitcom Not Going Out.  I admit to loving him just a little bit.  I have several years of the show to catch up on so it’s nightly viewing for me at the moment.  I’m also watching Jamie Ray Vintage on Youtube.  Her videos make me want to paint and upcycle everything in sight.

Cringing: At my thighs.  Sigh.  I don’t know how they happened.  And also at Donald Trump.  I don’t know how he happened either.

Needing: A hug.  I am not a touchy-feely person and everyone who knows me knows I am not a hugger, so when I say I need a hug, things must be getting tricky.

Smelling: The last remnants of my favourite perfume from Somethin Special.  It’s called Butt Naked.  Which is a horrible name that I am embarrassed to tell people about, but it smells like heaven on a stick.  I must order some more directly.

Wearing: Trousers and jeans.  Ugh, I hate them.  But I have put on weight and none of my skirts fit right now so I have to wear pants.  Many of them with elastic waists.  Which make me cry and want to hide in a cave somewhere.

Worrying: About the future.  A LOT.  Everything seems so unstable and scary, both personally and around the world in general.  I don’t remember there being a time like this, where nothing makes sense and everything seems crazy and upsetting.  The wrong people are in power and it frightens me.  We seem to be evolving backwards.

Knowing: I need a haircut.  Every day I have the same conversation with myself about booking an appointment, but do I do anything about it?  No.  I do not.  I am starting to look like a bedraggled yeti.

Thinking: Way too much.  How do you switch your brain off?  I am attending a Mindfulness workshop next week to see if I can learn to be more “in the moment” and all that stuff.  Most of my health issues are connected to my inability to relax, both physically and mentally so I have to try and do something about it.  Fingers crossed! (and then uncrossed…and relaxed…) 🙂

Sorting: Lots of sorting!  I have just gone through three ENORMOUS boxes of paperwork and shredded/sorted/filed it.  It’s a job I had been meaning to do for YEARS.  Like, why did I have receipts from car repairs I had done 15 years ago?  Why???  I am culling books and clothes and STUFF as well.  Just trying to get in some sort of order.

Getting: Into meditation and mindfulness.  I am trying so hard to calm my mind and stop being so anxious, panicky and sad (usually all at the same time).  I have bought a new little CD player, so I can do some guided meditation at night before bed and I am trying really hard to stay mindful and BREATHE during the day.  It’s not easy.  But at least I am trying.

Coveting: Phil Collins tickets.  I tried to book tickets (the crappiest, cheapest seats I could get) and they had all sold out within minutes.  The next class of tickets was too rich for my blood so I had to bow out.  So sad. *cries*

Disliking: The way people behave on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram.  Who are these people who like to troll and abuse folks they don’t even know?

Feeling: Tired.  Tired.  Tired.  And middle-aged.  That one crept up on me…

Admiring: My dear friend for packing up her unsatisfying life and moving on to bigger and better things in a faraway location where she will know no one and have to fend for herself in an isolated location.  She is so much braver than me.  But I will miss her 😦

Snacking: Way too much.  I recently made these three-ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies and it wasn’t so much snacking as a cram-them-all-in-my-gob-at-once kinda scenario. They. Are. Delicious.

Giggling: At the antics of my temporary lodger, Ella the guinea pig.  She’s my niece’s little piggy and she’s adorable.  I am looking after her while her “people” are away.  She never stops eating.  I believe we are kindred spirits.

 

So, that’s my October.  What are your plans?  Are you looking forward to Spring cleaning, Halloween and the start of Christmas shopping?  Or is October just another month to you – one that flies by like the rest of them?  Whatever you are doing, I hope your month is creative and happy.

Thanks for dropping in x

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Small Things

Hello everyone – just a quickie post today.

I haven’t done any crafting for weeks, due to illness and getting my house redecorated, and also just not having the inclination.  Always makes me worry when that happens – where does the creativity urge go when it disappears for a while?  I guess it just gets used on other stuff that requires that part of your brain for the time being.

I painted this picture a few weeks back.  I have since bought a couple of other stencils because I am a bit addicted to that brick one – I use it on everything.  I have toyed with the idea of doing a larger version on my own walls but know it will end in disaster and much face-palming and crying from me.  Sometimes I have great visions of what could be achieved, only to realise I don’t possess the necessary skill or talent.  It’s very disappointing.  I blame Pinterest 🙂

I am hoping to get back into something arty this weekend.  Just a little something to get me back in the mood, creatively speaking.

Thanks for dropping by x

Materials : canvas, gesso, acrylic paint, paint pen, pigma pens, permanent pencil.
I will have this piece up on my soon-to-be-opened online shop soon!

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Restyled Drawers

Hello everyone.  I have not posted for some time and, I must be honest, have thought about discontinuing my blog altogether.  I’m just not “feelin’ it” y’know?  But I will hang on to it for now and think about what I can do to make it better.

The last couple of months have been very busy and I’ve had a nasty bout of bronchitis which left me with a horrible sprained rib and zero energy.  The fortnight preceding that I had been very busy, redecorating my house and organising my stuff so that my living space looked somewhat more livable (and like a grown up lives there).  I was doing so well and getting HEAPS done and then I got sick and everything went to Hell.

One thing I managed to finish and be reasonably happy with was my little bedside drawers.  Old, daggy, chipped and a bit grotty, the drawers were purchased a million years ago at a garage sale for $25.  They’ve done their job and travelled from house to house with me and so there was really no reason to get rid of them, other than I felt like a change.  At first, I thought I would just give them a fresh coat of white paint and that would do.  Then I thought I would paint the individual drawers different colours, or maybe in an ombre style, and put new drawer pulls on.

In the end, I went for a rather dramatic glossy black (not my usual style at all) and covered the fronts of the drawers in a peacock feather pattered paper, before varnishing the whole thing in a satin finish spray varnish.  I re-coated the drawer pulls in gold paint (they were a bit chipped and cruddy looking) and, overall, I am pleased with the result.  The darker colour goes well with my newly painted bedroom wall (Dulux Ocean Trapeze) and has helped me to figure out what direction I’m going in, decorating-wise.  I don’t normally do dark colours and definitely don’t do gold but I feel that this combination looks good and gives the whole room an opulent feel.

I’ve still got heaps to do.  There are pictures to be hung and window treatments to be bought and eventually I want to replace the revolting carpet.  But these things take time and money and I am a bit short on both.

But, this little project was simple to do, very effective and didn’t take any special skills.  Which is basically the perfect project for me!  I am nothing if not lazy.

I will update as I go along.  Hopefully I won’t stall for too long and will get stuck back in to changing things and finishing the rooms and then starting on other areas.

Thank you for stopping in.  Sorry for tardy blog-posting 🙂

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