Ladies Camera Club

30 Nov 2009

Ug Ug Ug

Oh its such a joyous time at our house - colds, grumps and redundancies...........again.
It kind of leaves you hanging out on a limb and at arms length from the world.

Normal service will resume soon :)

25 Nov 2009


Still a tiny speck of a girl full of hope and possibility and yet with so many things preventing her from becoming the peer group level of acceptance.
What these jerky kids don't see is the huge heart she carries around on her shoulders everyday - people are blind judges of character, that's what they are.

So Wednesday is her sleep in day as she doesn't do PE. How cool was it that it landed on her birthday? I gave her the birthday crap breakfast - a chocolate pudding and a chocolate bar (with her milk and food supplement and don't fret - she had a healthy lunch!) She was in heaven. She got a wad load of cash and gifts for her birthday.....her little face was a picture but obv not a photo because her eyes were shut on every photo!

We went to the opticians after school. I tell you what, it pays to go to private opticians. They give you so much care and attention. The optician suggested Ellie have a colour dyslexia test and from what she was saying, I gathered it might just be a really good idea. Unfortch we have to pay out big wads for it but I think she is on to something with Ellie. She is so patient with her and suggested lots of cool styles for her little nose and eyes. Ellie chose the most amazing pair of glasses, totally rad and "out there". They make her look so grown up - I was surprised! I can't wait to share them with you when they come back next week.

For tea we went out with nanny, pops and our gang to Frankie and Benny's. Her birthdays are just not a birthday without a trip to her fave place of celebration. Then we came home for coffee and cake (hhhhmmmm, cake) and a quick wizz on the Wii.

Simple pleasures (coffee and choc cake made by nanna)

Me, in 3 years time :(
The night was rounded off with a DVD in the dark (so it felt like the cinema) and that, my friends, is how my girl loved her birthday. She didn't ask for much neither, not bad when she has only requested £10 and a box of maltesers for Christmas. Now how many 14 year olds do you know that wants such pitiful things?!!!

I say, marks hands are as steady as a rock........not much

Happy Birthday my darling girl........ and although I worry about how dinky doo and tiny and fragile and innocent you are, Im going to hang on to that for as long as you let me.

**Mince pie lip slicks are in the house as well as Amaretto**
....go git!

New Flavours

Pop along HERE to have a gander at the new flavours: Tiramisu, Turkish Delight, Peachy Keen, Violet Cream and Strawberry Jam along with the existing line.

Sorry its short and sweet - I have a birthday girl to prepare with gifts, yummies and hugs

She's 14 today!

23 Nov 2009

A proper grown up post

Will arrive here one day soon.
In the meantime we have Tiramisu fawn tint and Violet cream lilac tinted lip slicks on the boil (in limited edition tins! How non plastic and green am I getting?). Will add to the shop tomorrow (hoping my mince pie oil arrives tomorrow plus my key lime pie and peachy keen too).

Also the postcards are in but I have so many orders in reserve Im not sure how many I have left for the shop (I got them professionally litho printed for extra professionality).
I made a layout.....can you believe it? Anyone would think I scrapbooked.

Am now off to watch twilight after making my eyes bleed from reading the damn book in the space of 6 hours, in spats, over the weekend.

Team Edward!!! - obv I'm bound to say that as Jacob only makes a three second appearance in Twilight. Will hold that thought until I read New Moon. Oh and that Belle girl ought to lighten up. Id have played her part much better part in the book (I don't fall over as much as she does, clumsy clut)
**edited, Ive just been told by one of my twitter followers that "clut" is slang for someone who is both clumsy and a slut - WTF? Me and my girl say it all the time........ I refuse to believe it.

20 Nov 2009

Is he human?

I think he thinks he is.
He sits up.

He lays his head on my pillow when Im in bed (he sleeps next to me)
He snores like Mark,
He knows when Im not well (obv he was a doctor in a previous life).
He tells me when he needs his dinner/walk.

Love this little dude more than Basic Grey - you know, thats a LOT.

You's all crazy

After I eventually launched my new batch of lip slickers, you all got lip slick clicking crazy - they are flying out the door, thank you. Really :)
If that is not enough, I have mince pie, tiramisu, violet (oh yes!), cinnamon burn, st clements, key lime pie and amaretto flavours to make this weekend - I am chuffed with how many people like them :) If you want to buy some stocking stuffer priced goodies yourself, take a look HERE

Also available in my shoppy next week will be a set of 4 heavy weight, glossy postcards from my Keep Calm range (seen below) plus the sale of my unwanted supplies will come soon (I'm waiting for a "good light" day to photograph them). These will retail at £2.99 including free P&P - perfect for frames and fridges as little spurs of encouragement (espesh the "dump him one ;))

Somebody asked what Christmas fair I was selling at - well its the Sleaford Christmas market in erm, Sleaford...Lincs. Sun 29th :) My sister and my stall is called "stocking stuffers" and 10% of our sales goes to Help for Heroes

PS: Happy Birthday to my skinny blister who is a whopping 37 today....bwahahahahhaah. man, I still think we are both 16 and 14. I really do.

19 Nov 2009


Man I had to really jig my lip slick blog about - I didnt want it to look like a blog and now it does not! I don't want to put these on Etsy yet as their charges are exstorsh and I didn't want to put on my website because well, lets just say that since I went fully mac, I cant edit it! LOL

Fear not you can now buy lickably lickable lip slicks to your hearts content
(well, until they run out) over
click on the audio button when you get there and hear Ellie in all her munchkiness


Creepy film, scarey film - it could really happen film......gah!

Lip Balms did not make it to my blog tonight due to a lovely little job I had to complete before 6pm and then subsequently hubby whipped me out for a romantic cinema date about death and destruction. Nice ending to a nice day!

Prom they will be on tomorrow.... everything is prepped, just need to take pictures :)

(sorry Carol xx)

17 Nov 2009

Lip slicks are back!

Ive made so many of these over the last few weeks (150 today!), some selling before they even make the etsy shop and some aside for a christmas fair that I am doing next week (400 in total!)I get so excited with these because they are so calming and relaxing to make. Each ingredient is painstakingly combined together so that I adhere to the certification I was granted for my formula. My lip slicks contain natural ingredients in varying quantities of beeswax and natural butters, vitamins and flavour/essential oils and I am very very proud of them. I designed the packaging myself which makes me smile from ear to ear ... look -> :)

And now I have cosmetic grade lip tints and mica powder sheens (with certification) to add in into two of my mixtures and with that I have not amassed the following flavours:

Fawn tint in Lemon Bomb
Rose tint in Mint Ice
Pineapple and Coconut
Cherry Rose - my returning customers absolute favourite
Honey and Lemon
Chocky Toffee Apple

Next week (after my new oils arrive) I will have a limited edition Mince Pie flavour as well as St Clements and possibly a Cinnamon Burn. Can you believe I was asked to make a black lip balm? - I mean, would anyone really buy that? Can make it for all the goths/moshers/emo's/witches/vampires out there ;)

Im going to add some to Etsy (people who dont follow my blog won't find them here) and add some on here 18th Nov (to save on Etsy fees, which can be extortionate). Come and grab ye a bargain for stocking stuffer prices. All lip slicks are individually batch coded with an 18 month shelf life so you know you are buying a certified product.

Oh my house does smell nice, heeeeeeeeeee!

16 Nov 2009


I am so glad that my parents come and visit me and don't expect a full on "oooooh, happy clappy - what can we entertain you with next?". No, they are happy to come and veg and chill out and do what we all like/want at everyone's agreed pace.
The boys cached and the girls shopped (at the Trafford Centre - it was heaving so much that I hated it). Wish I had the spare dough to go and buy Gok Wans new book as he was there, signing it in WH Smith. Bless his heart, he does make me laugh. The book store had cleverly concealed him so that the poor people (me, not buying his book) couldn't even get to take a cheeky picture of him.
Oh I almost forgot, I had my first Stampin Up party on Friday - it was such a good night. The social side was lots of fun and the demonstration was thoroughly enjoyed by all. This is one of my samples - simples....eeeeek! My last Stampin Up party will be 27th Nov at my sisters house. Man, Im not much one for the long haul am I? LOL. Working agreements and contracts means that I can't give Stampin Up what it needs (and to be fair, they can't give me what I need either) so I am taking on other freelance ventures pretty much guilt free. Watch this space!

On Sunday I refuse to get dressed. I had been busy so much last week that I truly needed the "no bra, messy hair and non make upped face" relief. I know you can identify with that! We hung about at home whilst the boys cached (again - yawn) and prepared a lucious sunday roast.

Snapshots from my day:
Moi, in my cosy pink flannelet pidgies

Hubs and the boy - Eddy tries to show his affection towards Mark but its me he REALLY loves
My mum, crocheting me a rather trendy scarf....I love that she loves crochet more than me. And Belle, surfing........she is a google queen

My small yet humble table, set for dinner. I love it when its laid out. We are not posh in this house but getting together for such simple pleasures is a thrill for me.

I actually thought our weekend was somewhat perfect especially as it climaxed with the X Factor results and Im a Celebrity - get me out of here!

Finally, this is my latest "Keep calm" postcards for my etsy shop. Seriously one for the girls ;)
Ha haaaaa!

12 Nov 2009

Ive been busy

Ive got a Stampin Up party tomorrow and a few at the end of the month. Its good to get prepared and geared up towards having a night of craft with crafters new and old - I am so excited about it :). Also, at the end of the month I am attending a couple of Christmas fairs with my sister. She is selling Hampers for Heroes and I am selling lip balms, hand made gifts, flannel cup cakes, my own design postcards, hand finished note books plus other odds and ends of which I am donating 10% to Help for Heroes. Im also selling these
Ive road tested the Keep Calm range and its such a hit with my friends alone. Here's hoping they will go some mileage. I keep meaning to putting them on my etsy with my lip balms but I get private orders first (which saves on Esty bills) so its a pain in some respects and good in others.

Wanted to leave you with this - Im not American (obv) but this sure gave me a lump in the old throat.

10 Nov 2009

its been a while

.......since I made something.
I have been so busy with behind the scene stuff that I forget that sometimes I am allowed to please myself. Do you ever get like that? Im most happiest when other people are having a good time. I admit it - Im a people pleaser. Anyone that knows me will know that. I go with the flow, I usually do what other people want to do and as long as everyone is having fun then I really don't mind.
But seriously and only sometimes I forget to do things for myself. Like take a selfishly long bath or go and watch a bit of TV during the day or make myself a proper cooked lunch. This also includes making a layout "just because".
For the last few years I have made layouts on DT's because I had products and deadline. Now thats all gone I feel completely bereft but also relieved that the pressure is off. Or do I? No. The motivation has jumped in the drain and washed out to sea.... its completely vanished. Vamoosh, scram and left in a trail of blaze. I have made nothing for the past two weeks and its making me feel really really low.
So yesterday, after making sneaks for PACS Italy

(are you coming to that - you really should.... info for PACs is HERE and is now open for with easy jet are dead cheap!)) I also made this. I used some stampin' up card, stamps and ribbon along with a test tube that I filled with French Lavender - kind of like a gift card. I don't have the scallop punch so for effect I punched out a few little circles, snipped them in half and made a fake punched scallop edge!

Quite pleased with it actually. Im going to make up some more samples for my first Stampin Up party on Friday and make way for a few more SU parties in 2 weeks or so. I am in love with Stampin Up products but Im struggling with their restrictions on their terms of service. I don't think I can do it for much longer but here is holding out for the time Im with them as their inks have my heart.

9 Nov 2009

4 All Blacks v 1 English Rose

There are many photographer friends of mine who carry out shoots, come home and put one or two key photos from the shoot on their blogs.
I just cant do it.
I fall in love with too many of them to pick just one winner plus I would hate for you to miss out on all the fun........ I like to think im providing you all with a little service (lol!)

Today I met Michelle, Scott, Eime and Kate who are ex pats of New Zealand. Whether you are sore from getting stuffed from the Kiwis and All Blacks on Saturday or not - you can't deny that the Haka style warriors mean no harm and are as friendly as this wonderful family. They were all equally fun in their own measures but then there was Little Kate provided the days entertainment with "love you one minute, run away the next". Little Kate who called me Dusty instead of Kirsty and Little Kate who wanted to hold my hand for parts of the day and the Little Kate who jumped in the muddiest puddles and splattered us all with designer patterns on our trousers!
We had a marvellous time at Rosliston Park in the New Forest today - perfect Autumn weather for a good old hike around the park with the leafiest leaves and the muddiest puddles ever. Couple that with fantastic kids and a delightful set of parents and you got a day out to remember for a long time to come; if only for me, at least!

Click on the pictures to enlarge :)

Here is Kate - bursting in on the scene with her amazing, infectious laughter

A little dolly, no?

Eime and her Mum, Michelle

Scott and Michelle smooch a little....swit swoo

Im in love with this vintage finish. I dont like to faff too much with photoshop but the light screamed for this finish. Kate was a twirling princess inside a twig house

Eime, I swear, will break some serious hearts some day soon

In the twig house, again, I love the look on Kates face - she is an absolute diamond

Hmmm - she or isnt she?

Gah - yes she is!

3 Kiwis sitting on a fence........

I love this picture

But not as much as I love this picture

I love this story board - click on it to view it properly
I took over 300 pictures today - I don't think these even scratch the surface. Phew....I am whacked after today but it truly was worth the travel.

These shots were taken for Christmas cards in mind which leaves me to say if you want some piccies taking between now and December I only have weekdays left now and I am willing to travel. Email me HERE if you are interested in some good old family fun piccies x

7 Nov 2009

Mad few days

These days Im either sedate, doing nothing and wishing I was busy
I am maxed out, doing everything and wishing I was sedate if not comotosed.

Thursday night Nikki and I drove to the NEC to stay overnight in a lovely hotel. Only the journey (normally 1.5 hours) took 3 and when we got there the hotel didn't offer free parking instead offering us a £20 charge for an over nighter. The hotel was boiling hot and the settee bed I stayed in broke (the slats fell out and snot snapped in half - I hasten to add). This was highly amusing to Nikki who videoed the whole thing and if it turns up on YouTube....she will be killed.

Clearly these comedy of errors set us up for a great day at the NEC and it was. I met friends new and old, did a little business (as you do), scoffed cafe junk, gained swollen ankles, bought wondrous things and came home. All the way having fun with Nikki who has the same shopping fetishes as I. Oh and we did put the world to right again seeing as it took another 3 hours to get home in Friday traffic.

Today I did a lovely photoshoot at the other side of Manchester but I can't put the pics up as the mother of the girl that had the pics taken reads my blog - obv I dont want to give the game away but all I will say is..... ADORABLE. I will have to share the pics after crimbo!

I feel such a fraud not adding pictures of anything of remotely NEC, broken beddish or hellish car journeys. Instead I shall share this picture I found on my camera that I took a few weeks back on the way to Harrogate. This is dawn over a field near where I live. It was bladdy freezing and not that inviting to want to have to stop and take a picture but the sky was amazing.

Im off to bed and dream that Lloyd or Danyl gets the boot from X factor tomorrow. I love Lloyd but he just can't sing as good as the rest. Still not loving Danyl in these rounds....booo!

5 Nov 2009

Final Clear out

I don't know how many times I have had a clear out in my craft room but this time I have been ruthless to the point of being sadist.
So in light of said clear out, next week I am going to be holding a grand sale of items (on this blog) that I have BARELY used such as a craft robo, copic pens (never been swiped), zig pens, alcohol inks, mini books, albums and craft totes. I figure if I sell them I can start investing in things that really appeal to me right now and that's experiences. I love days out with my girl and I love going to workshops and buying tutorials .... feeding the soul with input is far less stressful than a room full of stuff that I no longer have time to use. Ive invested in some quality Stampin Up supplies which is more than sufficient for my new purchases desire - I hope you might find something in the sale you can make use off.
So yesterday.
Ug! I had to be brutal in deciding what to sling and where to re-house my favourite craft supplies. So to get my head out of the turmoil I took the boy for a deliciously long walk. There had been a torrential downpour the previous night and the parks pathways were washed away and streaming with rainwater from the hills. All the leaves have practically disappeared and everything looks murky brown and yuk. I took my camera out with me in hopes of finding more little toady stools like I did yest but no. The boy didn't have much to sniff as it had all been diluted in the downpour so it was hardly worth the walk but the little chubster needed the exercise (me, not the dog... LOL). I came across some odd points in the walk that made me think "oooh, serene" and one point that made me gasp like this tree that seems as if it were a burning torch

Twisted trunks so stark now compared to being well hidden by their summer leafy dress

I love the shock of green poking through the dark stretches of branches

My favourite little footbridge - its entrance is so inviting whatever time of year

More leafy lanes and muddy puddles await

When I got back to the car eddy was sodden (is that a real word?). I had to towel dry him both in the car and at home. He has been such a lovely companion of late; I just love that little pork sizzling sausage so much. He went off for a 5 hour nap whilst I carried on sorting and rehousing and re purposing the whole of my supplies and its what, almost 7 hours of progress and Im still in a pickle.

Well that's me, me old fruit. Im going to the Birmingham tonight with Nikki and we are staying over in a posh hotel before pounding the floors of the NEC in search of inspiration. I have a meeting planned with a company for some design work which is going to be fun but other than that I shall be on the look out for something relatively small as there is no flaming room left here at this old house.

4 Nov 2009

Do you tweet?

If you use twitter and if you can raise @gowercottage followers to over 300 today, she will give away a box of brownies to one of you lucky lucky lot (uk/europe only, Im afraid due to the fact that I think when the travel transatlantic, some mysterious being eats them in the hold).
Go tweet her now :)

They exist!

On the way to school this morning we drove the usual way at the usual time ... just pootling along and minding our own business. I had to overtake an awkward parked car just off my street when I spied these little beasties!
Ellie was just besides herself and I thought I was hallucinating - these kind of toadstools surely only exist in Enid Blyton book illustrations etc etc.

So I came home, grabbed the dog for his morning walk and my camera and took some pics. I wasn't really aiming for an arty, stylised super duper picture as the floor was soggy. I had to kneel down in the wet grass and have my backside gracing its presence in front of neighbours who were twitching their curtains - I just wasn't going to faff with perfection on this occasion but was obv quite pleased with the results.
As for my rear end poking in the air, it was quite the sight, enough to put some of the residents off their cornflakes (if not choke on them).

I spent most of the day transferring data from my iMac to a ext hard drive (grrrr) in order I could make a clean exchange at the apple store tonight (hooray). You have got to love those dudes on the apple store, they literally break their backs in two to help and go beyond what is expected of them. The staff are always amenable, courteous and would chop their left arms off for you; should you have a fetish for left arms of course. Ellie got herself sat at the kids mac geek corner and allowed herself some free surf time whilst I waited for the staff to make the exchange. I had to splurge on a new mac book battery which has just died a powerless death after a 3 year battering which irked me - before flaming well Christmas :(

Not long after we left the store after being escorted to the door (as always - they never leave you at the till!) and we took a trip up to wagamammas to enlighten Marko. belle and I had been before so it was such a treat to take Mark somewhere exciting for a change. We loved our meals and enjoyed being us three out in public, doing normal stuff which is such a rarity!

Mark thought he might be able to hide behind his chop sticks, unlike me, I could hide behind just one

The girl, in her element as we were eating out (tres posh thing for us to do these days)

Me... focus, much - Ellie?

We came homes, went our separate ways to our little dens and I configured my new machine with love and filled with all the familiar programmes and features and photos that makes me get by in my working day. The dog got a thorough fussing for leaving him in the house for 2 hours and hot tea sedated our little jaunt followed by a jammy donut - slurps!

A lovely day in the Wiseman household; even if it has been raining really hard for most of it :)

2 Nov 2009

She washed the dishes

For a number of years my Belle, my lovely little girl of whom my heart aches for infinitely, occasionally dries the dishes. When she got home from school today she asked to do some jobs for me. Its not unusual for her to ask but she doesn't ask, like, everyday; more is the pity.

Well I was elbow deep in flour at the time making pastry so I asked if she would like to wash the dishes. She didn't even whine, she just rolled up her sleeves and dug in. Well that was it. I grabbed a cloth, de-floured my hands and grabbed my camera and loved watching the concentration in that tiny mites face. Its so hard to get pictures like this as she has problems with photo phobia so I not only had direct filtered light on her face from the window (it was a drab day here) but I also relied on ISO 1000 (yeeeek!) Im starting to appreciate the whole ISO thing and it can work provided you have metered correctly - they are still not sharp but they are so precious to me.

Look at those arms reaching over the sink top - I offered to get her a chair but she can't kneel (her muscles wont stretch enough to kneel) and then I offered for her to stand on a little platform but she was happy just reaching and the tongue - I love kids concentration tongues. I find it fascinating to see such concentration in a kids face regardless of the task.

The lips - those sugary lips. How I wonder where she got those from.

He heeee!
They were not washed brilliantly but who cares?