Photo a Day – week five

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Three amazing days of sunshine this week. Plenty of garden goodness here. And of course food.

Salvia seedlings.

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Pudding!

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Pretty whites.

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Gav’s onion sets ready to be planted out.

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Lunch outside for the first time this year.

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Getting ready.

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Learning something new. Bud is so interested…..

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And there we go. Enjoy all the Easter Eggs!

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Read 2014 – A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

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I always thought I should read at least one of his books. I love Sherlock so much in all his movie and T.V incarnations and remember fondly watching the Basil Rathbone films on rainy Saturday afternoons when I was a child.

So I read the first story he wrote about Sherlock and Dr Watson. It was a struggle. I didn’t enjoy it. It is blasphemy I know but there it is. I can see all the good and intriguing  parts of the novel that those T.V and film people lifted out and woven into something similar but easier to digest. Like our first glimpse of Sherlock’s mind when he sets out how he knows Watson has been in Afghanistan.

Maybe it is the ‘time’ in which I read it. Life is so different and novels are so different now. I don’t know. Perhaps I just need to accept that the style wasn’t for me.

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Project Life® – week three and four

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The momentum I have for making the pages is flagging a little but I am keeping going and just ordered some more photos.

Here is more from January. Still a week per page but I worked on them together to keep the colour consistent across the spread.

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Just love the speech bubble cards. I ran it through my type writer. Also used up some older letter stickers to make a bold title for the piano card and the date.

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More soon.

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Project Life® is a memory keeping system developed by Becky Higgins. I am using the Honey and the Fifth and Frolic ‘Dear Lizzie’ Core Kits and the Seasons Mini kit in my pages.

Go here to find out more from Becky.

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Bloom 3.0 – Erysimum, Pulmonaria and Cerinthie

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I missed the snow this winter but I am delighted that the milder weather allowed a patch of self-sown Cerinthie to grow and flourish. I picked a few stems to go with Erysimum and Pulmonaria.

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The filler foliage is, as ever at this time of year, Euphorbia.

A punchy jewel-like little bunch.

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A little quilt for Buddy

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About two years ago I purchased a metre of purple fabric with the intention of making a little cover to minimise the Buddy smell on our sofa. I also bought some pretty thick batting. He would be comfy and again the thicker the fabric the less the pong!

I laid out the fabric sandwich with the batting and backing material and safety pinned (basted) the three layers together. Then I started to wrangle the thick sandwich through my sewing machine. It didn’t go well. My machine is a great little one but I think it struggled with the amount of material I was trying to force under the foot. SO I put the whole mess to one side. For a year at least.

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After another attempt at getting it through the machine I decided to try hand quilting it. Remember the photo in this post of the quilt hoop I bought. It was a challenge. Keeping my stitches straight didn’t work so well and the thickness of the quilt made it tricky but after a few weeks of picking it up for an hour at a time I finished the hand quilting. And I really loved the process of hand stitching. It was calming and therapeutic.

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I ummed and aahed about the binding but eventually used a lovely beige star fabric. I followed this video to attach the binding and did hand stitch the back of the binding to finish this little sewing project off.

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I can’t tell you how thrilled I am with it. I know it’s nothing special but I have zero patience and zero perfection so making something that looks not so bad is huge for me.

Now all I have to do is finish this one…….

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Photo a Day – week four

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Some really poor quality shots but gems all the same and um… food this week.

My older niece and I went to see Divergent. Great highlight on my nose…..

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Victoria sandwich. My BFF, H has used this method of making this cake for years now. When I just checked the recipe online I found that it hails from good old Mrs Beeton’s way of making a classic Victoria sponge. Here is the article I found. Gav made that heavenly butter cream.

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Breakfast.

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Healthy lunch.

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Morning sky near work.

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Sweet. He pushed me out of the way so he could sprawl on her!

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Coffee with H.

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And there we go another week.

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More ‘Light’ Talk

When we were away at the cottage I wandered down the garden and spotted this little scene. The composition isn’t perfect but work with me here.

I took this shot first and then the sun came out so I grabbed another photo of the same scene because sun = better right?

Right. Take a look.

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Canon 550D, lens – 17-40mm l series, aperture 4.0, shutter speed 1/100, auto white balance, ISO 100

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Canon 550D, lens – 17-40mm l series, aperture 4.0, shutter speed 1/400, auto white balance, ISO 100

You just can’t compare them can you?

When I looked at these two photographs I was amazed at how the sun had made such a huge difference. Amazed and rather pleased with myself for capturing two shots that are identical apart from the sunshine. Actually I did alter the shutter speed in the sunny shot, which I don’t remember doing, but I must have actually taken notice of the light meter in the camera that would have been warning me of an overexposed photo if I’d have taken the sunny one with the original 1/100 shutter speed.

Another interesting factor with the sunny shot is that you can see the definition of the clouds in the sky. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to capture that amazing blue sky on a sunny day and it came out all white. The sky comes out overexposed in contrast to the scene on the ground. But because I increased the shutter speed which without the sun would have made the photo darker I got the clouds in the sky. The sun compensates for the faster shutter speed and allows the photo to be correctly exposed yet still capturing the sky.

Photography is a challenge but I loved this serendipitous moment and am so glad I captured both pictures.

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Layout share – Back in the car

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I used another of my pins on Pinterest for inspiration on this layout. I loved the frame at the top of this page. I simply hand cut the frames from white cardstock and built the layers with various scraps of patterned paper.

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Like how the frames make a visual block down the left of the page. I added a few enamel dots and punched a heart from paper to add little clusters inside the frames. The title is made from some very old letter stickers I had lying about.

It is so good to use a jumping off point sometimes you just know where your design in headed.

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Bloom 3.0 – Erysimum and Euphorbia

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Just picked a few of these the other day as they were there saying pick me and get me out of this wet weather!

Actually it was a good week here last week. Some rain but some sun too.

Just adore the zingy lime green the Euphorbia Amygadloides provides at this time of year and it went well with the Eryismum.

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Pretty little addition to the hall.

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Read 2014 – Black Coffee by Agatha Christie

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This is my third read of Agatha’s plays adapted into novels. All adapted by Charles Osborne.

This one had the ever marvelous Hercule Poirot and Captain Hastings reunited in a country house murder mystery. Classic Christie.

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