Friday, 27 February 2015

... and normal service is resumed

So this time last week I was working on a project for the one year anniversary awards at the Kit and Clowder Facebook page.

It was late last year that I was looking for a way to improve my colouring and saw an advert or a mention of Kit and Clowder and looked at their website and coveted their colouring classes which are fabulous and give one on one feedback for each and every image uploaded to their feedback section of the class.  As I was not able to immediately take a class I did join their facebook page and I am so glad I did.  This is such a friendly supportive environment for beginners and advanced alike.  So supportive in fact that I entered my first challenge on this page and have attempted to enter each challenge ever since.  Plus the prize for this one was amazing.

So the anniversary challenge was posted by the owner of the classes and this page the wonderful Alyce Keegan. She uploaded a digital word image of what Kit and Clowder means to her (see below). 

"the challenge::  I've created a little word art here to show you all what Kit and Clowder represents and means to me.  The challenge is I would love to see you create any project using the word art as inspiration in any way ... you can use any one or combination of the words (eg you might pick a stamp showing Exploring or a group of people was friendship), you could use the colours as inspiration, the rose as inspiration, etc. anything you like.  I would love to see you all participate "

I spent about six hours on Thursday working on it - well getting everything ready for final assembly.  I finally stopped and ate something at 22:30 - oh yes that was 22:30.

I was then up and at them shortly after getting up the following day!  All the bits were ready but I needed to put them all together which took a while, I will admit.  Then I put the base together all wrong do had to so that and then I managed to put a crease where there shouldn’t have been one which was a mistake oh sorry an embellishment opportunity.  Try and spot where.

Then just as I was about to finish the power did its usual trick of going off for about an hour which meant that I stayed up longer than anticipated.  I really wanted to upload this on Friday to make sure that I was entered in time (all this Australian time difference it quite confusing).  So on Friday I went to bed without eating anything at all but was pleased with my end result.  And here it is …

Here are some more detailed photos of my entry ...


This is a Stampin' Up! World map that just to happens to show Egypt and the diamante is placed right where Luxor is. 

Alyce has a cat called Lila or Lila Bear who is a bit of a Diva

My entry was one of 120 entries in the event and the awards were drawn on Saturday starting at about 13:00 Egypt time (21:00 Brisbane time).  And to my very great surprise I was placed second in the Clowdies award.  All the entries were fabulous and I was shocked that I managed to win something as I never usually win anything.

The awards, and the categories themselves had many interesting titles and Alyce managed to mention each and every entry, having finalists and winners, in each category.

My prize was a pick of the latest releases from the fabulous sponsor Visual Image (  I chose my image and then, of course, had to purchase the rest of the set.

As I said previously, out of all the groups I belong to on Facebook and yahoo, this is the only place that I have felt comfortable enough to enter the challenges as with regards colouring I am a total beginner.  Part of this is because I know the group is really supportive of everything posted and everyone; not just of crafting stuff but of life in general.  Check out this wonderful page (they do have a book club too) and you never know you may embark on one of Alyce’s classes and start a wonderful colourful and creative journey like me.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

... and now for something completely different

Those who know me know that I have usually got my nose in a book and since learning to teach I have been able to access the wonderful website Netgalley which gives educators, professional bloggers and librarians the chance to read Advance Review Copies (ARCs) of upcoming books in various categories/genres.  You request the books you are interested in and are either authorised or declined depending on your profile, your reviews, and the demographic requirements of the publisher. 

Unlike many reviewers I do not include a prĂ©cis of the novel (that is what the ‘blurb’ is for) but rather concentrate on my experience of the novel thereby giving an honest review.

As you know, I got behind in my blogging and have not posted many of my reviews here but that is going to change.  Whenever I post a review on Netgalley it will also appear on my page at Goodreads, Amazon, The LibraryThing, Facebook, and at However, any craft books read will be reviewed here.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

When will this horrendous year end?

I was not the only one to experience a bite from a cat last year.  Hubbly Bubbly visited in October and he was stroking Marky who, not knowing him too well, went for him and bit the back of his hand (on his birthday no less).  So first aid mode kicked in and I cleaned the wound, which was barely bleeding, with TCP, and then used the antibiotic spray and cream I used and gave him anti-inflammatory tablets.  We thought this was working well and HB continued to work on his train set (oh sorry model railway J).  But after being active with his hand for two weeks he had a couple of days when he did absolutely nothing. 

We went out for a meal the evening before his departure and his hand although still a bit swollen was fine.  However, it was a different story when he touched down at Heathrow Airport where his hand had become a balloon.  So HB went straight from the airport to his local hospital and in turn to a specialist hospital.  

on arrival at East Grinstead - 14 October 2014

He had two surgeries (here was talk of further plastic surgery) and was in hospital for nearly a week, followed by various out-patients visits.  

After first operation - 15 October 2014

Another from after the first operation

After the second operation - 16 October 2014

hospital check-up 21 October 2014

after the stitches have been removed - 30 October 2014

A shout out goes to my dad who ferried Neil to all his hospital appointments in deepest darkest East Grinstead.  Dad even made a round trip to from Bognor Regis to take him on one of his appointments. Dad I miss you everyday and hope you come and visit real soon.

Neil only recently returned to work (after a couple of months off) and has finally been signed off by the hospital on 19 December.  He has had a risk assessment and he is driving trains although he has to be accompanied.  He has to wait for another occupational health assessment on 4 February when he should be given the all clear.

The comparison in scars though is amazing.  Mine are tiny and his are so large and angry still.

One would have hoped that that was the end of our troublesome year but no.  In December one of our furbabies decided to disappear for a couple of days and when she came home she had a lump either side of the base of her tail.  She was constantly crying and not her normal 'Hi' or 'I'm hungry' cry.  It really hurt her when I touched it; so I decided to take her to ACE.  But she left again and hid for two days.  

She had just come back in and I had just called a taxi when my cleaner arrived and let her out ... so i had to cancel the taxi and again wait until she came back.  She finally arrived home on 30 December and the lump had disappeared and there was a huge open wound.  So I took her to the vets from ACE at their evening clinic on 31 December and all the skin that was on her tail was about an inch on the top of the base of her tail.
I was given antibiotic injections to give her twice a day; and antibiotic powder to put on her wound and also to add honey.  I had to keep her secluded in my craft room so we could leave the wound open.  Three day's later was a further visit (with Hubbly Bubbly in two - he had just arrived for a two week stay yay!!).  The vet took off more of her hair to see the wound more clearly and it was looking better.  I had to give her more antibiotics (tablets this time - oh my) and still honey the wound.

Towards the end of January though she managed to escape the house with slightly open wounds but she did come back a while later thank goodness and she has turned into quite a home bunny

Today one side is totally healed but the larger wound still had a scab on it but she is active and a lovely cat.