Tuesday, 23 November 2010

It's all been happening in Blackpool!

Well, it seems that Blackpool was THE place to be this weekend!  I've been going along to some of Blackpool Football Club's home games - it's within walking distance of my house, it's a good afternoon's entertainment in the fresh air, with a good-natured crowd - and this weekend our opponents were Wolves (we won 2-1).  Little did I know that Prince William (complete with blue baseball cap) was also at the match, not tucked away in the director's box but in the stands with the rest of the crowd - he was spending the day in Blackpool on a "stag do" with friends and was also seen later enjoying some of the rides at the Pleasure Beach.  The media are now, of course, speculating that he was checking out the resort for his own "stag" celebrations next year!

And then, Saturday night, "Strictly Come Dancing" was televised from our own Tower Ballroom (the mecca of ballroom dancing) - tickets for this event are like gold dust, a friend of mine has been trying to get tickets for us for this event for the past couple of years, without success.  I've been watching the show each week on TV and there are some wonderful celebrity dancers this year - my favourites have to be Matt Baker and Kara Tointon - but I cannot believe that Ann Widdecombe is still in the show; I was sure this was the week she'd be voted out but no, it wasn't ....... sorry, Ann, but the 'dance' routines aren't funny anymore and poor Anton now looks like he wants to be put out of his misery as her partner .... definitely time to go and make way for the better dancers now.

Now .... just a reminder that the "Movers & Shakers" ATCs and Christmas Triptychs are due to me in a week's time. I hope everyone's getting on well with making them, but I know how busy everyone must be starting to feel with Christmas starting to appear large on the horizon, so if you're likely to be a day or two late, please let me know. As this is such a busy time of the year and we all grow short of time, I've decided not to run an ATC swap in December ........ I'll think up some new swaps for after the New Year and hope that's okay with everyone.

Friday, 12 November 2010

What a Night!

It looks like Lancashire took one of the biggest hits with the heavy winds (80 mph here in Blackpool) last night so I hope none of my fellow Lancastrians suffered any big damage.  The wind didn't sound too bad at the front of the house where our bedroom is, but in the bathroom you could really hear it roaring outside and it set up a very weird and ghostly-sounding high pitched whistle - creepy!  This morning we found a tile had blown off the roof and a few more have become dislodged, so we're now waiting for a roofer to come and take a look at what needs repairing (roofers were in very big demand today!!!) .... apart from that, we seem to have escaped fairly well.  But neighbours had several fence panels blown down and someone else had a lot of their roof tiles blow down and smash through their conservatory!  In Blackpool, some of the scaffolding at the top of the Tower blew down so the roads beneath were cordoned off, an estimated £1,000,000 worth of damage was done to the Illuminations and one of the sails was blown off the Windmill on the seafront at nearby Lytham ..... thankfully, no-one here appears to have been injured.  Tonight all is calm again, thank goodness.

I've not been able to craft much lately, but I did receive my beautiful altered book home again and as promised, here are pictures of all the pages everyone contributed ....... there were quite a few blank pages at the end of the book so I plan to turn them into an extra "shaker niche" type page and I've still to decorate the front and back covers.  The title/theme of my book is "Flights of Imagination".

My Pages - Collaged, Painted, Stamped

Ali's Pages - "Found Poetry" Technique

Liz's Pages - "Window Technique" (1)

Liz's Pages - "Window Technique" (2)

Mel's Pages - "Tipped-In Tags" Technique (1)

Mel's Pages - "Tipped-In Tags" Technique (2)

Barbara's Pages - "Folded Pages" Technique with inserted ATCs

Mima's Pages - "Karen Whimsey" Technique

Sandra's Pages - Own Choice Technique

These pages are all so beautiful and wonderful to see and touch close up, I'm very happy with how it turned out and hope to alter some more old books in the coming year - maybe some of you will be inspired to have a go at altering an old book too.

I can't believe how quickly November is moving along - and I'm looking forward to seeing your "moving and shaking" ATCs coming in for this month's swap, as well as the Christmas Triptychs .... still time to join up to one or both swaps though, if anyone is considering having a go.

Friday, 5 November 2010

Bonfire Night

I have to admit to being a real "scaredy cat" when it comes to bonfire night - I do like to see the dazzling bursts of colour as the fireworks explode across the night sky and I don't mind sparklers, but I'm not fond of the big bangs and the nearest I want to be to the fireworks is behind the safety of a window (or TV screen)!!!  Graham, on the other hand, has always loved bonfire night so for many years, especially when Max was younger, I've gone along to the local fireworks displays or stood at a safe distance in the garden whilst he let the rockets, volcanoes, starbursts, catherine wheels and roman candles off.  So I hope for those of you who enjoy this night, that you've had a safe and happy one and that your pets have all been tucked up safely at home too. 

Mia has been okay - it got very noisy earlier on and she was a bit uncertain as to what was going on, but it didn't stop her looking out through the window to watch the rockets shooting up into the sky.  Now all is quiet and she's curled up asleep on her cushion at the side of me as I type.  Max had been to the local shop on an errand for me at the start of the night and came in furious, because he'd seen a dog (spaniel type) running down the middle of the road, obviously unnerved by all the loud bangs going off around it, and cars having to slow down or swerve to avoid it.  There was no-one with it so it had either escaped from someone's garden or, even worse, someone wasn't bothered that their pet was running around alone and afraid in the dark.  It ran off down the road too fast for Max to be able to catch it (if that had even been possible) but he was disgusted, to say the least - he absolutely can't stand any kind of cruelty to animals at all!

It also looked like there'd been a bit of an incident too, up the road from us - there was an ambulance blocking the road and a police car, outside a house where some new people have just moved in this week.  Several people were standing around in the road, but we didn't see who had been put in the ambulance - I know there are young children in the family that moved in and I'm guessing they might have been having a bonfire party, so I do hope that if anyone has been injured as a result of a firework accident, that it's not too serious.  The daughter of some friends of ours was injured by an exploding firework a few years back - she did recover, but it was pretty traumatic at the time.

Now - to something more arty.  I've just received a link to a new blog by Laura Carson, an American lady who creates beautiful artwork and some of whose ATCs I'm lucky enough to own.  Laura will be posting instructions for some of the techniques she uses in her art (check out the wonderful stained glass effect one) and will also be having a draw every month where you can win a piece of her art.  So I would highly recommend that you check out her Artfully Musing blog right now - you'll love it!

Monday, 1 November 2010


I had such fun creating the "shaker niche" into the pages I made for the altered book round robin (see previous post) that I thought it would be a good idea for this month's ATC swap.  You can make your cards in any style you like, to any theme you like, but you must include something that moves or shakes on each card - it might be a shaker niche as I have done, something that opens like a door or window, maybe a tag that swings - these are just suggestions ..... I'm sure you can all be inspired to create your own "movers and shakers" and I'm looking forward to seeing all your cards.  (Details of the swap are posted in the sidebar).

The "Things that Go Bump in the Night" ATCs are now all swapped out and I'll be popping along to the post office shortly so they'll be with you in the next few days.  Thanks to all who joined, I loved seeing all the spooky ATCs you created and I hope you all enjoyed making them.