Tuesday, 21 November 2017

January in November

I'm not a big fan of digital stamps because I enjoy the process of stamping. But I love Chinese Lanterns, and I've been looking for a long time for a rubber stamp with a spray of them...there are a couple out there but not any that grabbed me. So rather than order a full set of photopolymer stamps from Power Poppy and pay carriage when I really only wanted one, I bought a digital set and had fun making this card for my aunt. My current crop of Chinese Lanterns in the garden come from her, although in our previous house I very (too) successfully grew some from seed. Thankfully I haven't found them as invasive here, maybe the soil doesn't suit them so well. I grew honesty, both the purple and white flowers from seed back then too - maybe I need to acquire more of those from my aunt again because I love the silver pennies.

I'm also adding a photo of an oil painting by a friend of my grandmother's which hung in my bedroom when I was a teen, and which now is in our spare bedroom. I've always loved it. For a sense of scale, the canvas is about 18" x 15".

Editing the post to add a couple of photos I took with my phone - some lovely Halloween floral decor using Chinese Lanterns.

Sunday, 19 November 2017

For the birds...

We were dog-sitting for my aunt for a week, and took a short walk in the East Coast Nature Reserve.
Not many photos because, as a couple we met leaving one of the hides said, "There's not a feather stirring out there." Not quite true - we saw a bird of prey circle when we arrived, perhaps a kite or hen harrier, and C really enjoyed seeing (and hearing) a flight of swans go overhead. And there were plenty of geese grazing. But also a couple of my photos seem to have been corrupted, and then the card became unreadable, so while the preview thumbnails looks great, I can't open them. A shame, because there was one of the reeds looking beautifully golden yellow in the sunshine.

Oh - and here's the dog we were "sitting". Waiting hopefully (and in vain) for scraps at the table.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

October Favourites...

My favourite cards from this month. It feels harder to be creative with the shorter dark evenings, but that's what we have! Birds seem to feature heavily! I was delighted to see a redpoll on the feeders last week, and even more surprised to see a pied wagtail on the back wall, as I think of them as real "street" birds, and don't think I've ever seen one in the garden before. 

The first project fits inside the matchbox suitcase which I posted a while back.

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Halloween Winds

Actually, I don't really celebrate Halloween. But these little stamps from Purple Onion Design were so sweet I couldn't resist adding them to my collection.

This cute little kitty was another one I couldn't resist, this is a card from last year.

And the year before, I put him into a little pumpkin shaker card.

Friday, 20 October 2017

Hot off the Needles

My niece requested a cream sweater for her birthday - work was busy so it was a few days late, but her birthday was Monday so it really wasn't all that late in arriving - and meant she got two cards, one with the sweater and one posted last Friday.

And I said that now we're into October and darker evenings (and rain and wind and general grey-ness), that I didn't feel it was too early to post some of the Christmas cards I have been making. These look like most of my favourites, though I need to look through my box and see what I forgot to pick out!

The screen ones were both samples for a technique challenge.

And these little pop-up ones were also challenge samples. 

I bought the Tim Holtz snow globe die set with a gift voucher last December, but it's taken me till now to have the time and energy to create a scene with it. I abandoned the snow globe part and  went for a little mountainside village.

One stamp, two looks:

And last of all - some time I posted a photo of  a tree-stump carved as a mushroom, along the main street in Greystones. It has now become a fully-fledged des res, complete with a little garden. 

By the Sea

I was visiting my aunt one day this week. After the horrendous traffic last time, I elected to get a train this week, though I think the timetabling was still suffering the after-effects of Ophelia.

I got a train before the one I normally get, so that I could post the sweater off to my niece. Although it was quite windy it was pleasantly mild and I had a lovely walk along the seafront.

We have - a young cormorant. two crows (there's also a photo of them looking at each other) and then what at first I took from the colouring to be a juvenile gull - but on closer inspection it wasn't, and was also too large. I think it must be a diver (loon). I've never seen one in Greystones before.  There was a gaggle of little plovers scurrying around the rocks and bathing in one of the pools, and once the beak emerged, I realised the next bird was an oyster-catcher. At first he was resting with his beak tucked under his wing, and I wasn't sure what it was. And finally some sort of little pipit.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Country harvest

Last weekend we went on a local blackberry-picking outing and came back with a small amount of sloes - but enough for C to decide that he'd take his last day of annual leave (which had to be taken by the end of the month) and take a day trip to the Burren yesterday and see if we could get more sloes in either of the places we've had good pickings before.

It wasn't the sunniest of days, so not good for photos but we had a lovely day out and did get a good harvest of sloes, and enough blackberries for one more batch of jam. As an extra bonus, it felt like Saturday so we have the Saturday feeling all over again today.