Looking forward to…….

(The photo has nothing whatsoever to do with this post but I mean c’mon…….)

We are looking forward to the Winter Olympics. The winter games have a place in our hearts more than the summer games do. We love the curling! It all started in 2006 when the U.K ladies were defending their title. We were decorating our bedroom and set a little T.V up in there so we could watch all the matches. We also like the scary luge, skeleton and bobsleigh events and four years ago we really go into the snowboarding too!

We are going to read two books a month, at least. Gav’s joining me on this quest. The stacks of book to be read are crazy right now so we need to do something about them. Last year was possibly my slowest reading year since 2012. I need to work on this.

We are going to see The Last Jedi again tonight! We had a big family outing the week in between Christmas and New Year to see this long awaited movie and we both loved it so a return trip is in order.

I have a new One Little Word®. PRACTICE. More to come on this.

I am taking part in the 30 day yoga challenge over here. I have been doing a little yoga since May last year. I don’t feel like I have improved physically but I know my mind loves this practice and I like the way she teaches so thought it would be good to give a challenge a go.

We are going to start learning a new song in our mini band soon. H, Gav and I have been learning ‘No Surprises’ by Radiohead for a few months. We haven’t perfected it but it is time to try something new.

We are looking through all the seed catalogues and getting excited for another growing season. I need to have a search through all my flower photos to see what was a success last year. So adore growing things!

Just a few things to think about as we get into this year of 2018!

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Let’s Start the Year Right! With Snow

Technically this delightful day was last year but I’m using poetic licence here.

If you’ve been here a while you’ll know I adore snow. We don’t get much in Leeds s when it comes it is a treat.

This flurry arrived four days after Christmas Day which was bad timing on the weather front but I loved it all the same and the beauty was that I had no idea snow was forecast so when I peeked out of the curtains it was a total surprise!

I donned the wellies and Buddy and I set off for the best morning walk and when we’d been home a while and I had ventured out into the garden for some photos and to clear a spot for the bird feeding area it started to snow again and carried on for a couple of hours.

The flakes at one point were giant. It was a perfect hour or so as I watched it get a little deeper.

I went back out after it stopped and built a teeny snowman.

Unfortunately I couldn’t find anything to make his face.

My niece let me know that they were going to the park sledging so I tagged along to try to get a few photos.

Snow is very tricky to photograph especially if the day is overcast and misty! It throws the exposure out because it tricks the sensors into thinking the image is going to be overexposed. I thought I’d got my setting right but when I looked at them back home I needed to up the exposure quite a bit more.

They had fun though while I tried to get a shot. My sister and brother-in-law in the picture above. Then H joined in and they raced….

You can see that we don’t need much of a snowfall to get us out sledging round these parts!

And for the final run down the hill they persuaded me to have a go……

She was very happy about that…… me clearly not so much!

All in all though a fun few hours surrounded by that fabulous snow and a bit more practice with the big camera in those conditions. If only it snowed a bit more I might perfect it!

Posted in garden, mel, photography | 1 Comment

2017 – A Review in Pictures (and Some Words!)

An amazing trip to NYC to celebrate my 5oth birthday. it snowed on the big day and I got to walk in central park in the snow on my birthday!

Went on an adventure for sixteen days with these lot.

Witnessed a total eclipse which was truly amazing.

Welcomed a new life to the family.

Saw four generations together.

Played family rounders.

Grew things.

Arranged flowers.

Took part in the 100 day project.

Walked with my word Light.

Left a job I loved.

Found two more jobs and picked the wrong one…… lasted a week! Spent December unemployed but LOVED having all the time in the world for festive things.

I’m sat here today and on the one hand I feel panicky because I need to find a job and that is tainting my fabulous year but on the other hand I know this is just a blip. I will be okay, we will be okay and I must celebrate this wonderful year of 2017.

In that positive note I will say bring on three more months of my big birthday year and let’s get to making things happen in 2018……..

Posted in mel, rumble ramble | 4 Comments

Photo a Day – Week Forty One and Forty Two

Hope all the festivities went well for everyone celebrating this season. As always I find myself whiling away hours watching dreadful films and overeating the chocolate!

To help me drift back to reality here are a couple of weeks in photos.

The snow froze and stayed a day or two.

Buddy loves the snow and it made him all puppy like.

Getting festive with the dining room mantle.

I snap a shot like this every year.

Oh! More Bud.

Trying to finish a Christmas cushion before Christmas called for some quick sewing.

Then it was time for Gav and I to celebrate our tenth anniversary in Bamburgh. Love this hotel so. The Victoria.

Terrible photo but I love it anyway. We were married on Lindesfarne an island that is cut off at high tide from the mainland. Were paid our visit there later than planned so had to grab a few photos and leave before stranded for the day.

The following day we headed to Dunstanburgh beach for another traditional photo.

Back home and shopping with these two.

The baking the next day. It’s a few years since we made gingerbread together! She doesn’t have to stand on a stool anymore….

Family pooches.

Gav and I took a walk to see twinkle lights and spotted the parks lantern festival in full swing.


There we go.

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December Daily® – Day Nine to Day Fifteen

Here we go with a few more days.

As a reminder day nine looked like this in my foundation pages. It was a four pocket page.

I went with a combination of two photos, one of Buddy and one of my Christmas play list,  a print out of some lyrics and a 3×4 journal card. The story that goes with the lyrics. I had made that journal card earlier in the month and used a musical notes stamp. I thought that music would feature at some point in December and it turned out to be perfect for this story. Love that gold embossed look.

Day ten is a no photo page. This also uses a couple of pre-made 3 x 4 cards both in gold and tells the story of how I went to a carol service at a local church. I added the programme from the service into the album too.

The star card was made using gold leaf that I have had in my stash for years and the other card used a polka dot stamp that I gold embossed.

Day eleven was originally a 3 pocket page, two 4×4 and a 2×4. However, I had a 6×8 photo for day twelve so decided to lay out day eleven as if it was inside the original style page protector but was actually just adhered to the back of the day Twelve enlarged photo.

Here is that large photo for day twelve. I typed up the journaling onto the photograph in photoshop before I printed. I found that it printed ok too. Still having issues with darker pictures but not sold on the quality of the local photo place. I going to try printing at home and just work with the darker images. Not ideal but better than not completing the project as I go.

I adore the enlarged pictures and white type.

You can see day thirteen in the image above. Another no photo page and using a spotty transparency with thirteen added to that.

I used a 5×7 envelope wrote a few words on a sheet of paper and popped them inside. I added a stamped image and the gold large arrow paperclip to the outside of the envelope.

Here is what day fourteen looked like originally.

I moved the page protector to the right of the envelope and put that kraft and gold star card a little further on in the album.

‘Tradition’ is hand written with a gold sharpie, the number is a stamp and the black negative circle is punched from black velvet effect paper. The photo is a selfie of me and the advent calendar.

Here is what day fifteen looked like in the foundation pages.

But was now a three pocket page. I found a 3×4 journal card that said around the house and felt like it was a good time to document some of the festive scenes around here.

The right page is a cut down 4 pocket page. I added some letter stickers to two of the photos and a label to the 4×6. A few star brads completed this spread.

And there we are caught up a little bit more.


December Daily® is an album project developed by Ali Edwards. Read all about it over here.

Posted in December Daily, scrapbooking | 2 Comments

December Daily® – Day Six, Seven and Eight

The month is ticking away and I’m still catching up but here are a few more days.

Here is day six and seven from my foundation pages.

I filled the top 4×4 pocket with a picture of my niece trimming my Mum’s tree. The light was poor so I changed into black and white. I added the six to a punched black circle and hand wrote my story leaving the bottom pocket empty because of the transparency the previous day.

I added a photo of me in our porch to the cardstock page opposite. Didn’t add any words apart from a label sticker.

On the back of the cardstock I decided to add a list of all the Christmas films I watch throughout the month. I have typed the details onto patterned paper trimmed and adhered to the page. I love keeping a record of these things.

Opposite I added a large photo of our Christmas bedding. Again I didn’t add much of a story just a little washi tape and a label.

My intention was to have the page fill the space there fully but as ordered these prints from a local photo place and the cost of a 9 x 7 print was so much more than an 8 x 6. I couldn’t justify the cost.

The back of that large photo is another large photo and makes up the left side of day seven.

My sister grabbed that shot of me and my tree. Loved going to buy it with her. That is what my story was all about on the 3 x 4 card at the top right. I used two tree motif cards in the other pockets both from the mini kit I bought.

I’d already stitched the hand cut felt star to a page and decided to use it here.

Also love documenting the cost of the tree and where we bought it from so that label was added to the 4 x 6 card.

You can see what day eight and nine looked like originally here.

Id already moved the tree card and the cardstock page and was left with a three pocket page protector.

Added a photo of my Mum in our kitchen helping me bake cakes and a story on that lovely pink card above. The ‘baking day’ stamp is from an older Ali Edwards stamp set.

Okay there we go back with more soon.


December Daily® is an album project developed by Ali Edwards. Read all about it over here.

Posted in rumble ramble | 2 Comments

Photo a Day – Week Forty

The festive season is in full swing plus snow and lots of me it seems!

Treats from the advent calendar.

Never too many twinkle lights….

Oh yes. Twice in December!

The quilt is finished at last.

Getting as close as possible. Crazy pooch.

Another little flutter of snow flakes.

Hope this December is as festive where you are.

Posted in Photo a Day | 2 Comments

December Daily® 2017 – Day Four and Day Five

Hey! A couple more days are done so I thought I’d share. Still having printer problems and decided to send all the photos I’ve taken this past week off to get printed. I’ll swap them when they arrive. For the rest of the month I think I’ll go to a local photo place and see what the quality is like.

Anyway here is what day four looked like originally.

It was sited on the left of the album and had that lovely 3×4 card with the snow globe on it. I’d already added the number four.

As I’d adjusted some earlier pages day four was now on the right. I loved the 3×4 card and the ‘let’s stay home’ words and my story came from that when I found a photo I’d taken the day before of our garden in the sunlight.

I cut the page protector in half so I had two 3×4 pockets instead of four then added the photo of the garden.

On the back I made a circle card with some punched circles from velum and patterned paper and a little heart. This was totally inspired by Ali and a page she made in her Product Play class.

Can’t remember using pink much before in these albums but I liked that star paper and thought it looked great.

Journaled on another card with a touch of red running around the edge so it tied in with the circle card.

For day five I had already added the white polka dot transparency and added the number to that piece and stapled it inside the pocket. You can see the original page at the top of this post.

I bought this style of page protector by accident but wanted to try to use them all the same. They are three pockets, two 4×4’s and one 2×6.

There was another card in the mini kit I’d bought earlier this year that said ‘I’ll bring the merry’ I’d already honed in on it and wanted to use it somewhere in the album. The story from the fifth fit that perfectly.

No photo on this page just some typed journaling about a conversation I had with my niece about Christmas magic.

The photo doesn’t show this page very well but I left the transparency in the same pocket, added the sentiment to some patterned paper with Christmassy words for the background and my story went into that long pocket. I added a punched snowflake to the top of the page.

I must admit that having more time on my hands this December is influencing the stories I’m telling. Not only does more time mean I can do more festive things but I can also reflect a little more too which means I have so far told two stories that I’m not sure I would have done in a different year.

But that is the beauty of this album right? The chance to look for those stories and document them.


December Daily® is an album project developed by Ali Edwards. Read all about it over here.

Posted in December Daily, scrapbooking | 2 Comments

Layout Share – Good Eats

You can’t keep a motivated scrapbooker from scrapping it seems!

I adore the burst of inspiration that comes to me now and then and hop aboard willingly knowing that I’ll make layout after layout for a week or two. Then I’ll be on to the next thing. I made about twenty pages while we were away for a week in Northumberland!

I visited the ‘big box’ store Jo-Ann a couple of times when we were in America this summer and found lots of bargain scrapbook supplies (as well as lots of fabric, but that’s another story…) A 12 x 12 paper pad from American Crafts Amy Tangerine came home with me.

Recently I have been swayed towards white cardstock backgrounds but as I have all these lovely papers to use I tried a pattern for this page.

The story tells of our food routines while on holiday in Portugal last year. I love this three photo design. I first saw Shimelle Laine do it years ago and it comes in very handy for multiple photo layouts. Picked up on the red in the top and bottom photo to add a colour accent to the page and really like how that full size background turned out.

Now back to twinkle lights and glitter…….


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Photo a Day – Week Thirty Nine

Here we go again….

The most beautiful light. I took lots of photographs of the garden and this one stood out. That wind chime is six and a half years old, my Mum bought it after our other pooch Lewis died. It hangs on the branch of an apple tree above the spot he is buried. It’s holding up well and is home to some lichen.

I needed a little pick me up and found rainbows in my living room that lifted my heart.

Lots of tulips planted here….

Something else that always makes me happy. Snow!

At some point in the month of December I always find myself at Waitrose with my Mum and sister. We got our visit in early this month.

Love that pooch so and that light and the fact that the advent tree is up!

And to round off the week Christmas crafts with the girls and out newest addition of course.

Great start to the festive month.

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