Friday, 17 January 2020

Mary Crat Aooeal - shower party - more news

First of all, massive thanks to all who have responded to our show of love for dearest Mary.

I've had to ask that requests for Mary's email addie or her snail mail addie in order to send cards, wishes and any craft goodies to are only sent to me via email please. A comment just means it can take some time and guesswork) - a direct email me allows me to email right back. i really can't flip flop between the two right now and then search - much as I would love to.

Also, we know that many of us don't keep our stamps,and more so our dies in the original packaging. My own dies are in files on magnetic A4 sized sheets in files and they weigh a ton. I keep notes of the makers and names of dies in the front of each file.

For lightness and ease of posting can I suggest that if dies aren't in the original packaging, then you just tack them using DST - low tack if possible onto a piece of card stock (hooray for snippets!), then pop each die or set of dies into a poly or cello bag to suit the size - and, IF you do remember the name of the die or die set then you just write this at straight onto the piece of backing card - another idea of me .... and my wonderful pal Sarn! Love ya babe :)

I'm off to bed at 10pm - it's been manic today! And I ache! x

Mary Craft Appeal

Can I please ask that you contact me via my email address on RHS of my blog page, if you wish to have Mary's address - do not leave just a comment but do follow up with an email please. I can't carry on with noting comments and then flipping around my email searching out your email addresses - it's taking me ages.

Please do carry on - it's just a bit overwhelming today!

Love and thank you,

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Mary McMillan (Glitter Grammy Plays With Paper blog)

Please read this! 

The other day we had our Christmas card to Mary McMillan (USA) returned. In the past she was such a very loyal Playmate, who I assumed had eased off from crafting. This was now the second Christmas I'd heard nothing and naturally, 'being me' decided to play sleuth. But what I found out when I emailed was way beyond my imaginings - just stop right there and please take a look at this:

This is what remained of Mary and Richard's home, after they were caught up in the Camp Fire in Northern California, a year past November. They escaped with only the clothes on their backs, their beloved dog, a folder with important documents in and one vehicle in which to make that escape. Other than that - they were left with absolutely nothing, zilch, nada. Eventually, after months of searching, one of their four cats was located by their son and Freckles is back with them. Who knows what happened to the others though?

I've wept since finding out .......... and been told off by Mary lest we both cause flooding! She and Richard are finally settled into a new home in Illinois - close to some of their family but many miles from friends of many years standing. And I think it must be lonely without them. All of Mary's little crafting group of pals escaped safely but are now scattered in different areas as well.  

I've offered (my idea) to hunt for some precious dies and stamps that Mary lost - although she's very philosophical considering the trauma. Trauma which left her unable to remember how to even make a card, let alone cook a meal. She is slowly getting back on track and happily has joined a local craft group - but imagine losing close contact with so many friends in one fell swoop. And, as she wryly said, 'Well. it solved the problem of who should have what when we're no longer here'.

I also said I'd ask you if any of you have any craft supplies you would like to send to help out. I suspect that Mary would have refused but didn't like to hurt my feelings! I can be a little bit obstinate when faced with certain things!

I'm thinking that Mary can buy new stuff without a problem - but just think that she's lost so many items that can't be replaced. Many are out of production for example. I've had to comb through her blog to get a feeling for what might be suitable to send to her to rebuild her stocks. For instance, I'm desperately hunting for the Memory Box 'Piano Border' die. It's out of production and barring a minor miracle all I can now hope for is that someone, somewhere will sell one to me or even donate their own die. What's one die out of the, probably, hundreds we all have tucked away?

Mary wrote these words in her most recent email today:

Please tell people I’d really love to receive cards.  As for sharing the story ........ I’d like people to know that when you loose every physical possession, you mourn. But when you loose the close proximity of  your circle of friends, you mourn as though there was a death.  I thank the internet, texting, cell phones, blogs for keeping people in the lives of one another.  I often think of our pioneer days when families moved away, sometimes thousands of miles.  I think how precious every written communication must have been.  I think of how many months passed as people waited to hear about family and friends.  And I see how lucky we are in these modern times.  I hope each and every person takes a minute to hug a fellow crafter.  I hope each person sends a note to someone saying hello, I miss you, or I thank you for being you. It is so very important to keep in touch with others.   On November 7th my friends and I were planning on a craft get together on the following day.  Had we only known what the following morning would bring.    All of us lost our homes and every possession.  But none of us lost our lives.  Not so lucky were 86 others. 

One thing that has astonished me is how only one or two people I know seemed to be aware of all this - and no-one has yet stopped to think what we could do. Or if they did then I'm not aware of that.

Because we CAN do something - trust me! First off we can send Mary a card, be it funny (she has a great sense of humour) or whatever - just to let her know we're thinking of her, we're gonna be the wind beneath her wings to help her on the road to crafting again - or even just to let her know we care and want to help. 

I am happy to accept any donations for Mary from your pre-loved craft stash if you're in the UK (apart from a lorry load of snippets!!) as well as cards of course. Email me if you need either Mary's or my address), I would suggest that you take a look at Mary's blog to get a feel for her 'style' if you're thinking to donate anything. And I would then make up a parcel to send to Mary from the UK. If needs be I can book a flight and nip over with it :) Joke! Do bear in mind weight and size please if you do decide to help out. And please remember, we're trying to help Mary to get back on her feet and also to give her inspiration. If you have anything to donate, then I very politely ask you please to make sure it's useable - if you wouldn't want it as a gift then imagine how bad that might make someone already suffering from such an experience feel. These are my words, nothing of this ilk has come from Mary. I think the greatest gift to her would be our love and to know how much we care - a card is a great way to show this as well as it can be such an inspiration.

If you're in the USA and want to send something to Mary then please drop me an email for her address so you can send to her directly - the same goes with any donations of pre-loved goodies. I've very quickly whipped out one of my most loved stamp sets (my Habico Santa)- plus a new and pre-loved set of SU stamps and dies I've seen Mary using and I know she will do a much better job than me with them.

I thank you so much for reading this far my dear girls - I try hard in this life to make it a happier place, often through the Snippets Playground. And, how wonderful if we can turn all that fun and love we have for our Playground into something so, so positive for Mary. 

Bless you, and thank you, if you read this far. I think you will have - because I know my girls and their kind hearts. Any questions do please email me.


Can I please ask that you contact me via my email address on RHS of my blog page, if you wish to have Mary's address - do not leave just a comment but do follow up with an email please. I can't carry on with noting comments and then flipping around my email searching out your email addresses - it's taking me ages.

Please do carry on - it's just a bit overwhelming today! You darling girls - as always! xx

Sunday, 12 January 2020

Pixie's Snippets Playground - Challenge #369

I'm baaaaack! There's quite an improvement in the shoulder - so long as I don't go doing anything silly like stretching up to lift heavy things or anything too repetitive. The ironing has been left well alone (even though I can't find anyone local who does ironing any more - apart from big laundries. In the past I've used a couple of ladies who eventually either moved or got themselves a full time job.) and for now I'm just folding stuff straight from the dryer. To be fair, I generally do that but some things I can't get away with! And, as you advised, I'm also keeping the shoulder mobile so it doesn't freeze up. Thank you all so much for your very kind words when I had to take a step back, the break was a huge help and your comments are so much appreciated. Mwah - what a lovely crowd you are!

So let's get this show on the road again - with quite a nice prize to celebrate eight fun years of me running the Snippets Playground.

And first of all here's my snippets card for this fortnight:
I used:

- 6" x 6" square white card blank, side opening

- snippet of white card, trimmed to 5.75" x 5.75" and put to one side after running a gold calligraphy marker around the edges to add a little bit of definition

- using a Crafters Companion set of 'Three Baubles' dies I die cut three solid baubles from very precious snippets of deep red satin mirri card

- then using the outline dies plus the inner filigree dies I cut the top layer for the baubles from snippets of X-Cut gold adhesive-backed glitter sheet

- then die cut the sentiment from another snippet of X-Cut gold adhesive-backed glitter sheet

- it took me a while to think of the best way to attach the baubles to the card front panel, in the end I threaded through then looped and tied some gold cord at the top of the baubles (using a poky tool then a darning needle to thread the cord through the hole)

- before adding the baubles I added the sentiment to the card panel, putting it through the Cuttlebug to make sure it adhered well - and I also ran the baubles through the Cuttlebug for the same reason

- then backed each bauble with red line tape and stuck them in place across the card, adhering the gold cords to the back of the panel with more red line tape (NB leaving the protective red layer on!)

- then glued the front panel to the card front - leaving the red line tape protective layer in place meant that the panel still had maneuverability (coo, big word there!)

- and the finishing touches were three little bows made from a snippet of narrow gold lurex ribbon and held in place with very narrow red line tape

Dreadful lighting here today (Saturday 11th). Mirri card is hard to photograph at the best of times - but at least you can see how the backing shows through the gold filigree top layer - even though the red satin card is a deep rich red in real life. Such a shame that Joanna Sheen no longer stocks it - nor can I find any other stockists that carry the deep rich red version, sigh.

I bought the sentiment die a while ago, with the idea that it would make a very simple, long, narrow Christmas card with no other additions - and I still think that. But, as a prize I wanted to add something more to it, hence the set of bauble dies I used.

And here's the prize for this fortnight:
A Crafters Companion 'Three Baubles' set of dies (six dies in total) plus a Tonic Studios 'Large Merry Christmas' die. All one prize, which I won't be splitting. And now the Playground Toy Box is totally minus any Christmas prizes - hooray!

As always, the Snippets Challenge will run for two weeks and the Playground gates will close at 11am UK time on Saturday 25th January. The gates will open again at midnight UK time on the same day.

It's a maximum of ONE entry, please say in a comment if you wish to play and be a possible winner of the prize. Please also link back to the Playground in your blog post to be eligible for the draw.

Remember, if you link into the Playground and don't say clearly that you want to be in the draw in a comment on here, then you will be bypassed if your name comes out of Mr Linky. I'm sure you all know I ask for a positive 'yes' on the blog post itself - just in case you're only playing for fun - otherwise I don't add you to my little list.

Don't forget to check in next Sunday to see the names of the winners in the Grand Draw which ran over Christmas and New Year. I intend to do the draw during this coming week - and have already printed off slips with your names on for Dudley's 'pick and mix' ............. from a clean doggie bowl :) Already trimmed into little strips, they just need to be folded and away we go!

No photo of Dudley once again this time round - he's been a little treasure this week, so affectionate and yet gentle at the same time. Almost as if he knows! Having said that, we've been going to bed pretty early (so I can rest this shoulder now that I can sleep reasonably comfortably again) and the little monkey was up doing what sounded like a 'sand dance' from around 3am this morning. No sooner did he settle down then off he went again! Of course, when Len got up for archery at silly o'clock - Dudley curled up and went back to sleep for a couple of hours! It reminds me so much of when he was a little puppy and we both were tottering around feeling as if we were undergoing torture by sleep deprivation!

Lots of love from us all - Parsnip, Dudley (woof, woof!) and of course me,

Saturday, 11 January 2020

Playground is re-opening at midnight!

Just to let you know, normal service in the Playground will be resumed from midnight, as per usual, with a new challenge, running for two weeks. Hope to see you joining in!

Friday, 3 January 2020

The next Playground challenge

Things have got quite a bit busier than ever here. Sort of squeezing until it's almost hard to breathe. Taking down Christmas decorations for example before Twelfth Night seems to be top of the list, yet I know it'll be slow work with this shoulder. Although much improved, it ain't taking much to set it off hurting like mad again - who knew that folding some laundry just earlier would be so painful for example. We haven't even had our planned roast beef joint for New Year's Day yet! But, I'll be up at the crack of sparrows tomorrow to pop it into the slow cooker for sure!

So, in order to relieve the pressure I've made a decision. It's only a short term one so never fear - normal service will resume ASAP I promise. If something has to give in the next couple of days it will (sadly) be the next Snippets Playground Challenge post/new prize, which I should really post first thing on Sunday.

That really will give me some much needed time space to concentrate on an overflowing pile of ironing (which WILL be done slowly and carefully I promise) .......... after I've done as much as possible to return the house to its pre-Christmas state and also tried to sift through more decorations to donate to our local charity shop rather than hurriedly packing them into boxes until next Christmas. So, the next Sunday (ie. 12th January), we'll have a new challenge to celebrate another anniversary of me running the Playground, and the following Sunday the results of the Grand Draw.

In some ways I feel I've failed a bit but also think I need a week's break from commenting and checking the blog - also it's time I pitched in to help Len more - he's been carrying the load for long enough, ever since I had that awful gout episode. Am sure you'll understand and I need to ease things for Len as much as possible right now.

On a happier note, little Dudley just had be SO full of mischief today! And of course that slows things down as he needs attention, playtime and cuddles. He really is such a little tinker - we need eyes in the back of our heads, even though we keep thinking he's growing out of being a puppy. I was so tired last night I dozed off in the lounge and must have had a tissue on my lap. When I woke up - guess who had had a whale of a time ripping it apart! Nope, NOT Len :)

With love

Thursday, 2 January 2020

Pixie's Snippets Playground - #368 - Prize L

Today is the final prize in the Grand Draw - and this is the sample card I made:
I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" white card blank, side opening 

- then chose a little green plaid strip snippet from the envelope stuck in the back of LOTV's 'Classic Christmas' paper pad - so I could match the colouring of the images

- snippets of white card stock onto which I stamped the biggest Christmas puddings, holly leaves and berries using Brilliance Dewdrop ink pads in 'Coffee Bean', 'Pearlescent Ivy' and 'Rocket Red' and stamps from Clearly Besotted's 'Christmas Pudding' set of stamps

- then stamped the 'yummy little pudding' words using the 'Coffee Bean' ink pad again - took the risk and just eyeballed it so I could use the pudding die to cut it out, and it worked out fine

- die cut the pudding pieces and the sentiment using dies from the matching set

- assembled the puddings using very narrow pieces of red line tape to add the holly leaves and berries and put them to one side

- added a very slightly wider strip of red (another snippet from the same paper pad) to two plaid strips - using a tape runner

- then added the strips to the top and bottom of the image panel using a tape runner again and trimmed off the excess at both edges, from the back

- finally, popped the two puddings and the sentiment in place using thin sticky pads and I chose to add the puddings lower than the sentiment, partly to balance it out and partly as I didn't trust myself to get all three absolutely level - at least I give you the warts and all background!

The set includes three smaller puddings and I just thought, whilst typing this, one pudding on its own, flanked by capital letters (stamped or die cut) could spell out the word JOY for a rather different Christmas card. I have some letter dies that that I think could work quite well. Watch this space :)

And today's prize is another one where there are three chances to win:

A Clearly Besotted set of stamps with matching dies called 'Christmas Pudding'. I wasn't too sure about them once I'd bought them, a while ago now - but they're good fun to use and make for some pretty quick and funky cards.

I've said previously that Clearly Besotted have some cracking clearance deals fairly regularly - in fact, I've just nipped in and ordered a couple of future prizes as the Playground toy box is getting a bit low now that all the Christmas stuff is out of it. So, I make no apologies for the frequency in which they've appeared in this draw - and will continue to appear in future challenges. Disclaimer, I have no connection with Clearly Besotted - my only connection is that I buy from them and at one point they did give me a gift voucher to offer as a prize to you lovely ladies. I got their written gratitude for showcasing their products - which is all I ever want. They're a small company, basically run by two sisters with a lovely lady who does the dispatching side of things - and I like to support small businesses when I can. Plus, they do make wonderful stamps and die sets! Regarding the clearance deals, keep an eye on them if you're interested as, if you like matching dies, those seem to run out first.

At the end of all of the celebrations I'll do a massive draw session for all the prizes using the one Mr Linky - which is on the main snippets post HERE along with details of exactly how to join in - so you do need to have entered one snippets make over on that post during this fortnight to be in with a chance :) Maximum of one entry please - to keep things fair for those who may not have time to craft. Mr Linky closes at 11am on Saturday 4th January so you do need to have added a snippets make by then to be eligible for the draw.

Commenting for all prizes will also be turned off at 11am on Saturday 4th January to coincide with the draw closing.

I just added up and there are 18 prizes in this draw (some are three chances to win the same thing, mostly Clearly Besotted needless to say). So that's pretty good odds I think!

Just leave a comment on this post if you would like the chance to win today's prize.

We were really lucky on New Year's Eve, no fireworks nearby to speak of (after the first burst at 6pm) and Dudley was fine all evening. We did pop his onesie on just in case though, towards midnight, as a precaution.

And, even better news is that we've now gone 36 hours without the RCD tripping out the power sockets. By the process of elimination we're as sure as can be that it's some outside lighting in the front garden (post lamps on the garden walls). And, it can be sorted out apparently - Len is on the case! We are a bit concerned that all this wet weather will have played a part so Len is going to change the lamp bulbs for low wattage and use a transformer where they plug into in the garage. Ha, the last thing we need is some local nosy eedjit to get an electric shock. So strange, we always thought the guy who installed them when the wall was built as part of the extension about 10 years ago was a bit stupid using an existing ring main power socket instead of adding them into the lighting circuitry - now, we're very glad he actually did that!

Got the giggles here at the thought of some trespassing eedjit - shaking, teeth chattering, hair on end, eyes revolving in their sockets, lighting up the whole street thinking 'Whaaaaat just hit me?'. Snort. Oooer, I do have a bit of an evil streak :)

Love from Parsnip, Dudley and of course me,