Sunday 25 December 2022

Male 'triangles' Birthday card


My snippets card below was made for a friend's hubby - it eventually arrived but was late due to a variety of reasons. Our Christmas stamps for the UK finally arrived here on Monday and Len took the pile of stamped cards to the big post box. More than that we just couldn't do - so meanwhile, if we normally exchange Christmas cards, then yours is on the way! I do know that some have arrived in the nick of time. Having said that, one card got as far as Swindon and then was returned for no good reason - probably only half way to its real destination.

My snippets card is an out and out 100% CASE of a card that Franka (Inkami) made for the Snippets Playground last November - so I won't enter it into any challenges. However, I'm using it as a reminder of just one of the many ways you can use up a few different colors of snippets:

The card
The coloured snippets, ready to be die cut (almost forgot to take a photo!)

I used:

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

- snippet of the same white card, die cut using a Paper Smooches 'Triangles' die and glued onto the card front

- coloured snippets of card, die cut using the same 'triangles' die for the infills - also kept some of the white fall out from the main die cut as infills

- then I had a lovely time gluing triangles into the main die cut - used a glue pen

- die cut a sentiment using a die from the Impression Obsession 'Birthday top edgers' set and glued it in place

- finished!

I even followed Franka's placing of the different colours when inserting the little triangular die cuts. I remember at the time thinking how pleasing her layout was - not too rigid yet not just a jumbled up result either. She's a clever lady!

There's a new challenge #444 over in the Snippets Playground HERE. The theme is 'Anything BUT Christmas' - which should get you thinking a bit! AND, a special prize from Sarn and myself!

Dudley Pupdate: So we went from ice to plenty of rain, and then some! Either way, Dudley has coped really well and is obviously becoming quite used to the feel of 'velvety soft grass' beneath his feet! 

Even though I doubt that he truly knows what Christmas is all about - he's really picking up on the 'buzz' and is into everything possible! A few treasured Christmas soft toys have had to be put out of his reach - he would just want to cuddle and love them as he's not at all destructive - but they're not all 'pooch safe' as they were here before 'his Nibs' arrived! 

Anyhow, we've bought him a soft toy from Santa - as if he hasn't got enough! I suggested to Len that we should go through his overflowing toy box and was told that Dudley loves ALL his toys and would be bound to notice if anything goes missing - even something right at the bottom that he never plays with. I beg to differ, but it made me laugh so much I dropped the idea.

And of course he'll have his own little white dish of Christmas Dinner with us today - we prefer chicken to turkey so he'll have some pieces of chicken crown, perhaps a whole cut up 'pig in a blanket', and some chopped up veggies - with a little tickle of 'no salt' gravy. For those who might not know - pigs in blankets are a fairly traditional accompaniment at Christmas Dinner time - thin sausages wrapped in streaky bacon and then popped in the oven to bake.

Have a lovely day! Hope you find time after Christmas to join in with the new Snippets Challenge.

Lots of love from Dudley and myself,

Sunday 18 December 2022

No time to craft right now!

 Christmas decoration with red candles and foliage stock photo

I was a bit late putting the finishing touches to our Christmas decorations - and it also took me much longer than it used to!  So no snippets card from me today, but the results of Challenge #442 are now in the Snippets Playground.

Postal strike update - basically it halted my plans to post most of our/my UK Christmas cards this year. Our Christmas stamps order from Royal Mail still hasn't arrived - almost four weeks since ordering them. I'm typing this on Saturday and STILL no sign of them. So we're scuppered basically. I'm so very sorry as some are destined for a good few of you - and I was for a while, also angry at those who are holding us to ransom at such a time of the year. However, I've stopped fretting as we can't change it and am now in 'what the heck, let's have a mince pie and a glass of sherry' mode!

Dudley Pupdate: Dudley is absolutely thrilled to pieces with the revamped back garden  and races round doing happy 'zoomies' on the large expanse of 'no maintenance' grass we've had laid. He totally loves it so if you're in two minds - Dudley gives it a HUGE 'thumbs up' (or should that be a 'paws up')?! No more washing muddy paws from the garden is certainly making him all the more delighted!

He had such a busy day today, checking on me, very slowly working on the last of the Christmas decorations downstairs, in between racing upstairs to Len who was replacing a pair of TV speakers ..... and then coming back down again - for me to come and let him outside and to watch his garden zoomies! 

Right now, he's literally flat on his back snoozing underneath my desk. He's has a hard day for sure!

Try to enjoy the coming week - my darling Mum always said, if it isn't done in time then don't worry - we'll manage. I know, always easy to say! And Mum never followed her own advice as it happens!

Sunday 11 December 2022

Thinking of you

It's always so hard to know what to do about Christmas cards for recently bereaved friends. On the one hand, 'jolly and bright' doesn't seem right, yet it also doesn't seem right to not at least show that you're thinking of your friend.

This year, I have two such friends - grieving for their loss of a spouse - so I made a couple of cards exactly the same:

I used:

- 5.5" x 4.25" white card blank, tent style

- a snippet of Tonic pearlescent 'Navy Dazzle' card which I die cut using a 'Lil' Inkers Stitched Rectangles' die

- the Penny Black Stickeroo is from the 'Woodland Splendor' sheet popped onto a snippet of Tonic Studio pearlescent 'Majestic Gold' card

- then glued the rectangles on top of one another and then to the card front

- no sentiment, just added a plain insert to write a message

Some of you will already know that one of the friends is our lovely 'Snippets Playmate' Carol Longacre, whose much loved husband Butch died recently - we all send you our love and thoughts Carol.

If you care to skip over to the Snippets Playground HERE - Sarn has opened up a fresh challenge, her snippets card is so lovely! 

On the subject of cards, I ordered our Christmas postage stamps weeks ago from Royal Mail. I was updated to say they're finally on the way, and today is 12 days since that notification - but no sign as yet. Thankfully all the overseas cards have gone, along with a few UK cards - I did have some UK stamps left from last year. However, it's looking a bit grim with the ongoing strikes and I apologise right now that my UK cards will very possibly not reach people in time for Christmas. 

Dudley Pupdate: Our back garden landscaping work is finally done. As with any big project, there have been been a few hiccups along the way but thankfully all sorted out now. Dudley's so funny - he's fussy about his feet and began to literally wipe them on the door mat during the messy part - as he came indoors! In fact, he's still doing it! At one point it was so muddy that he had to be carried out during the night if Nature called! Glad all that's over. 

PS, He is scheduled for a bath/shower on Monday - wish us luck!


Wednesday 7 December 2022

Wednesday Waffle - Monica Tebbs - Part 2

St. Trinians Jolly hockey by Ronald Searle on artnet

Last Wednesday I wrote about Miss Monica Tebbs, who was Senior Mistress when I was at a co-ed boarding school in Wilhelmshaven, Germany.

Fast forward to around 28 or so years ago, when some of the 'previous pupils' set out to form an Association, called 'The Wilhelmshaven Association' or 'TWA' for short. They undertook the mammoth task of trying to trace as many former pupils and staff as possible, not easy by any means! Over 7,500 pupils had attended the school during its 25 year 'life' in Wilhelmshaven. As well as a good few teachers, House Matrons and other staff. We had scattered to the four winds of course - Army kids are nomads and we'd spread all over the UK and the rest of the World.

The Association is still going reasonably strong and we've had reunions every two years in various UK cities - with sometimes hundreds coming along for the weekend (650 for the very first one at Newbury!). Covid didn't help of course, and more and more of us aren't willing or even able to travel the length of the country, depending on the chosen locations - and a fair few have sadly fallen off their perches and are no longer with us.

And, our Monica Tebbs used to attend Reunions for at least a couple of days/nights - right up until her final illness. We used to have the Reunions in pretty smart hotels - where the overnight room rates were more costly than nearby alternate hotels or B & B's. Those of you who joined Darnell, myself and others at the Grand Harbour in Southampton (Sarn and I have met up there with friends too) will have an idea of the sort of hotels and the room rates charged, that TWA Reunions are held in. We used that hotel as we needed a decent sized Main Function Room  and location - for between two and three hundred people for a start. And Monica was careful with her pennies so she never stayed in the Reunion hotel overnight.

On one such weekend, a pal from school days called Rod - RIP my friend (who had been the love of another school friend's life - so we were just pals, right?) and I found out that she was staying in a pretty seedy end of the chosen Reunion city and also that she was walking to and from the Reunion venue, alone and at times in the dark. So, on the more formal Saturday evening we collared Monica (as much as you dared to 'collar' such a formidable lady) - and said that that on no account was she to walk back to her hotel alone - Rod and I would go with her. Her lips were pursed as she stalked away muttering that she was being 'treated like a child'. All we had was her safety in mind of course.

Anyhow, Monica then began a game of cat and mouse with Rod and myself by taking great delight in 'working the room' and speaking to as many different people as possible - always with us loitering nearby. I even followed her to the ladies at one point and hid behind a pillar in the hallway to make sure she didn't make a run for it. As the evening wore on we noticed signs that Monica was preparing to leave - the handbag was firmly over her arm and she was going to try and race us to the exit. To do that, she had to pass our table so both Rod and I positioned ourselves ready to bring her down in a tackle - metaphorically speaking.

However, she turned the tables on us as she approached - by pronouncing very loudly that we were 'not to bother her and that she had a perfectly good pair of legs of her own'. Heads at the other tables turned and stared when Monica's familiar 'schoolmarm voice' rang out loud and clear.

And that's when I to this day think a red fog of insanity descended upon Rod because, quick as a flash and certainly before engaging his brain before his mouth he replied - 'Miss Tebbs - we are just going to accompany you. Not give you a piggyback ride to the hotel!'.

OMG, to this day I swear that you could have heard a pin drop and the sound of horrified gasps of ex-pupils, my eyes were out on stalks in sheer terror and Rod blushed bright red as if we were back at school, as pals, trying to set up the 6th Form Social Club, (OMG, another memory coming!). We stood there like a couple of naughty kids - waiting for the eruption. And waiting....................

............... And you know what we got? Monica with her eyes twinkling, trying to suppress an outbreak of the giggles as she practically squeaked 'Alright then, you two win, this time. But, I want 100 lines from both of you for insubordination!'.

We walked with Monica in the centre, back to her hotel arm in arm, one on either side and it was such a precious time. She bade us a formal goodnight at the front door of her chosen lodgings and sent us off back into the night with the words 'Mind you two, behave'. ☺

They certainly broke the mould when they created dear Monica!

PS. One of our earliest Reunions was back in Wilhelmshaven - and much of the school was still standing, unoccupied but made accessible for us. We had such fun and more than a few adventures - to be retold in a further 'Wednesday Waffle' - or perhaps even more than one. 

I spent most of that long weekend in tears - some of it was pure emotion but a lot was due to the endless laughter and crazy things that seemed to happen, almost 'on cue'. And yes, there was a hockey match - men versus the ladies - and we terrified as well as beat them!

And of course, our Monica was there, still very spritely in those early days.

I hope my love and tenderness for past times isn't in any way a problem for you. I've always written true tales from my heart and will do so when I can. Come back if you wish - you will be so welcome. xx

Sunday 4 December 2022

More money holders

I needed money holders to send to Kai in Germany, for her to use a PayPal transfer from us, and fill them with real Euro notes for the 'girls'. Len had rejected the 'Santa's suit' holders from a previous post - so they will go elsewhere. I then went for something more 'girlie' for Mia and Livi:

Both money holders, Mia's on the left

Mia's money holder - open, with the band off of course

I used - for each holder/wallet - which just looks like a normal card until you open it:

- a sheet of Hunkydory 'Adorable Scorable - Let it Snow' card, which is slightly glossy and ombre in the shading of the main background, Scored at 4.25" and 8.5" from the long edge downwards

- then folded the holder along the score lines into three, creasing well with a Teflon bone folder

- trimmed the smallest side to 2" and the bigger one to 3" so there would be an overlap

- sliced the whole triple folded holder across the width, using a guillotine and cutting it down to 5.5"

- to create the 'flap' for the money pouch I just used a large X-cut corner punch on the top corner of the narrower flap to round it off

- then used very narrow red line tape (one eighth of an inch wide) to securely adhere the bottom edge of the 2" flap to the main body of the money holder - forming a narrowish and long pouch for the Euros (the Hunkydory card was such that I didn't fancy tackling it with scissors to make a shorter 'pouch')

- then made a one inch high slip-off band using leftover card (yay, a snippet!), by scoring it and sticking it to together at the back to form the band, using red line tape

- final touches were a round Craftwork Cards Christmas sentiment from years ago - glued onto a die cut Sweet Dixie 'Layering Snowflake' snowflake (using a snippet) of white pearlised card

- then glued the snowflake plus sentiment onto the slip-off band

- finito!

I did make the slip-off bands a little 'slack' to allow for the expansion when Kai adds the Euros! (I don't like the term 'belly bands' for some weird reason). I'll just write a little message directly onto the flaps.

And we have the Snippets Playground Results from Sarn  over HERE for you to see.

Huge thanks to all those who joined in with the Grand Christmas Switch On in the Playground. I suspect that Dudley was a bit spoiled with tit bits. He slept for almost 24 hours after his marathon stint - pedaling the generator for the lights!

We've had workers here for over two weeks, don't even ask, and I was sitting chatting to Len downstairs this afternoon when who should spot the big bowl that the biscuits go in for the guy's regular tea/coffee times!?

Yup, Dudley of course - on his hind paws with one paw on my lap and the other one hanging limply ........... to beg for a digestive biscuit! The bowl was empty and ready to put away but he made the connection - with THE sweetest face of course. AND, that's after all the savoury nibbles he shoveled down in the Playground Party the other night!

I'm joining in with the Allsorts Challenge #705 HERE. The theme is 'It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas'.

Thursday 1 December 2022

Light up the Snippets Playground!

It's time to have the Grand Switch on of the Christmas lights in the Snippets Playground. Do hop over to take a peek - HERE - at 7:30 pm UK time - this evening!

I made a Christmas card in keeping with the lights theme:

I used:

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

- snippet of white card which I die cut using a NBUS die called 'Christmas Light Background' by Poppy Stamps

- coloured the strings of lights using Pro markers

- added little white lines to the bulbs 

- went on the hunt for a suitable single word sentiment to fit in between the lights and ended up using one from the Colarado Craft Company's 'Big and Bold' set of stamps called 'Holly and Berries'

- bit of fiddling around with the die cut and Misti to line up the stamp with the string of lights, before removing the die cut then stamping the sentiment onto the card front using Memento 'Tuxedo Black' ink

- added the die cut to the card front, using a glue pen on the frame and the lights - the 'cable' just sat in place nicely - apart from one little curl which ! popped down with a teeny dot of glue

- finishing touch was to coat the glass of the light bulbs with Glossy Accents - so really didn't need the little white lines

Got a shock when I realised that this die came out in 2014! I bought it during 2022 and it was in my Christmas NBUS basket. There's a sample card made for Poppy Stamps over on their blog, which I followed - mostly for speed. One could snip the strings of lights from the frame and use them in several other ways of course.  

And, being stupid, I made two the same when really time wasn't on my side!

Dudley is already really excited about this evening, having helped Sarn and I to do the decorating - he seems to be anticipating a few savoury nibbles as I've baked us all a tray full of sausage rolls plus a tray of cheese straws, to go with the mince pies. Dried fruits aren't good for pooches so no mince pie for him - all the more for us then!

It STILL beats me how Sarn and Dudley managed to manhandle (or should that be 'woman and dog handle') their (ahem) acquired Christmas tree back from the farm to the Playground! I worry that we'll hear that a tractor also went missing! Last seen on CCTV being driven by the tall, slim one wearing black and a balacava - with the little one also in black but with a white fluffy tail, also wearing a balaclava. The farmer swears he heard someone singing 'Oh Christmas Tree' around the time of the CCTV footage!