(Loving my walnut theme - its better than Holy cow or Holy guacamole in the current sitch-you-ation. My walnut not so good, going to get the bugger sorted tomorrow).
When Jane Dean calls you to ask if you are still alive, you know its time to update your blog.
I had planned to update tonight and I still am (look, you can see me doing it now) but Ive only got back today from my annual trip to the Dutch Alliance scrap escape. As Easy Jet's amazing priced flights means I can take a trip to Holland the same as a trip to see my Momma on the east coast (basically £40), it is a world away being in the company of such amazing girls (as well as talent and inspiration). Dutch scrappers such as Anita Mundt (ok, not strictly Dutch but married to a Dutch guy)....look at her lubbly necklace **note to self: must steal it next time I go in December**
Corinne Delis - I had just called her a toilet brain to make her laugh out loud. As her understanding of the english language is better than even my own, she totally got that I was trying to make her laugh (rawr rawr ;)) Birgit Koopsen - wistful birgit who is looking one hot momma right now. Danielle Slingerland - Owns a fabbo shop in Holland (thats why she is my new best freind.... wink wink)and BonnetteAalder **NO PICTURE - GUTTED. Sorry Bonette but for you guys... imagine an angel with a good heart**
These girls are published internationally so you can see that I was not short of inspiration. They are all excellent photographers as well so I managed to get a couple of portrait photo's of myself which makes such a breath of fresh air from being behind the lens. I wasn't feeling particularly beautiful as some of my own personal concerns of late has made me look grey, tired and drawn. Corinne took this of me with my camera. I love the lighting on this - it was sunset. Thanks Corinne.And I have to say that even through the camera never lies, clever angles can work wonders for the broken hearted!
So my friend Anita?
Anita lives in the Friesland area of Holland which is calm, tranquil and pretty. Her house, a converted church school, is so quaint with a split level access and has a ton of dual aspect lighting. Its a place where I felt totally at rest and I was made to feel so welcome. A place where you can just breathe with no mad energy, you know the kind of place - right? We took a trip to her local town to do a little Blokker shopping. That shop is the best! Let me tell you that you cannot go in there without parting with a little pocket money on yummy little trinkets like this. £3.60 buys you this yummylish cake stand - just in time for Belles 12th Birthday on Sunday. It was so interesting to go supermarket shopping in Holland too. They are so into fresh produce as opposed to the junk you get on our shelves (I mean the ready made type of foods). I experienced my first Falaffel (oh yes - amazing) with salad, yoghurt and mint sauce all wrapped in tortilla. I know its not a Dutch delicacy (where the hell does it come from?) but as all the food is fresh, it made a change from a toasty for lunch at home. The rest of our pre-alliance scrap time was spent helping Anita out on a couple of personal projects which took us into the wee hours of the morning and without cava and chocolate oranges, we would have given up way earlier. Hurrah for Terry's that's all I can say.
So Friday we take a trip to Ees near the German border to meet the rest of the girls. I travelled remarkably light (two 12x12 RUB boxes and no more!) in stark contrast to Ms Danielle Slingerland who brought everything and for that I was grateful. I really can't go on to describe the rest of the weekend as it consisted, mainly, of: scrapping, rude cakes, drinking, laughing, crying (but only like, a bit!), photos, Abba, curry, laughing, sleeping (but only like, a bit!), scrapping, sharing and everything you would expect from a wonderful group of friends. It was here that I made some of my most proudest layouts, I think I was sponging the energy from the others to be honest. My mojo flowed so easy but I cannot share them as they are for Studio Calico (although Im allowed to share sneaks tomorrow, I think). This is my best ever kit to date, I dont want it to end to be honest but then again I want to use it because its all so usable. As I talk of Kits, Mandy finally announced she is giving up her beloved club in favour of spending more time with her family and friends. Im so proud of Mandy, I think she left on a high. The best time to hang up your herma, I reckon.
I left the weekend to go back to Daan's to stay before my flight this morning. As Schipol airport is around the corner it was so nice of her hubby to drop me off this morning after spending time with her two adorable children. Not a word of English they did speak nor I any Dutch, Daan kindly translated wee conversations as the boys entertained me with mischief. I was absolutely knackered on the flight home surrounded by young lads with stinking hangovers (as is the norm with Brits on a bender to Amsterdam for the weekend). I came home and slept and woke up feeling more rough but ready to meet my angel from school. Oh how her face lit up and suddenly my tiredness drained. We chatted for ages and cuddled forever as I tried to catch up with 177 emails (NOT FUNNY!) with 4 of them (and two bloggers) worried of where I had gone. Thats 6 people who missed me as well as Ellie!!! So funny! My little girl (who I MUST stop calling little as she is 12 in 6 days. Can't help it though, she is little in size.... does that count for my excuse?) would not let go of me tonight. Ive been away every weekend this month and am again this coming weekend. Im working down at Chepstow at their amazing club for a days teaching. I have 3 lovely classes for them of which I am so proud of (whats all this scrap proudness going on??!!). Im waiting for a delivery from Holland to finalise the classes and then Im set to go again on my last teaching event this year. I love going away but as the wind down to Christmas tots up, Im looking forward to getting really christmassy before we hack the lounge to its crappy death in order to make way for our dream sitting room.
Additionally I have an overlay to share. I haven't done one of these from ages and it felt good to get wizzy with the wacom. Feel free to drag her from her sleepy bed he
Also want to add that Im starting an online class after christmas that will appeal to most scrappers, photographers and artisans alike. I have had a number of people ask me to do this and thought "why not?". Simply entitled PRINCIPLES, I will explain more about it next week when I have caught up with myself :)
PS - Been to the Doctors today and finally have the walnut jiggles narrowed down to two problems. One maybe a freaking heart condition (fingers crossed its not but explains palpitations of late) and Two maybe something called Costcochondritis. Nice. Real nice. At least I know you can't potentially die from the second one. Phew!
Gotta go, been scraing myself to death reading up on this stupid Costco thingy and strangely enough you can actually get it from laughing too hard. Im being serious!