Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Coming back to blogland

I know I have been missing for several months and actually went AWOL almost mid-post. Sadly it was part due to a sudden worrying health scare (OH) which required lots of doctor and hospital appointments for some weeks and also our beloved doggy companion, Alice, had to be put to sleep. I am afraid blogging had to take a back seat. But let's face it I've had more comebacks than a few pop bands I could mention and feel as if I'm making yet another excuse for neglecting this space.  In reality I am not one for bearing my soul to everyone either so I seem to end up with all or nothing and withdraw from everything. 

Then in June our bestest friends Glenda and Adrian, who own Chocolate Baroque, moved to bonny Scotland. Tearful day as we have been friends for a lot of years now and shared so much. However it also heralded a new role for me in as much I am now General Manager at Chocolate Baroque and run the business for them on a day to day basis. Plus we get to have some fantastic weekends north of the border.

So time has continued to tick time by and I think it actually becomes harder to get back to it. It's easier to say to yourself 'I'll blog again next week' than it is to just sit down and do it. Bit like life really. Sometimes we opt for the easy path rather than the one that takes some effort when, in fact, the difficult one would be much more rewarding. We cannot expect to find health, wealth, happiness etc  without turning up and contributing. It's like the joke Adrian has told on several occasions about the guy who prays to God to win the lottery and God replies ' Meet me half way, buy a ticket!"

I think the key is possibly what I call baby steps. Make the effort certainly, but don't throw everything in all at once. By pacing yourself and taking baby steps you will not sicken yourself or tire yourself from the task. Going from zero to hero in one or two moves cannot be sustained, you will either burn out or lose interest. And each comeback becomes longer and harder until you eventually turn your back on it altogether. 

So here is comeback number whatever and I would like to share something with you though, which I created last weekend whilst spending time 'over the border'.  Glenda has been re-running her weekly inspiration email called Monday Mojo and incorporating brand new artwork. Last year she used one of the cards I had taught at a class as her inspiration and conincidentally that particular email was due out again on Bank Holiday Monday.  As We decided to each make a card using the instructions from last year and set to. Despite the fact we were working in the same room we paid no attention to the other's work. So you can imagine how surprised we were when we did show and tell. We had both used very similar colours and the same sentiment stamp. Sisters under the crafting skin!  You can see and read about Glenda's card here.

I used an 8" x 8" card blank, but this would work with a small card, just adjust the sizes of the dies to be used.
  1. Using three dies in progressively smaller sizes and cut three masks from Masking Tissue, making sure you leave a broad edge around each die cut.
  2. Position the larger mask (the negative from your die cutting) on the card and with some Cut and Dry Foam and Crushed Olive distress ink, colour through onto the card.
  3. Now take the actual large die cut and position over the area you have just coloured. Using the next size down mask position to the left of the first block and colour as before, this time with Wild Honey distress ink. Add extra colour to the edge closest to the middle panel to give depth.
  4. Remove the mask but leave the large die cut in place and position the smallest mask to the right of the first block and colour again using Dried Marigold distress ink. Again add extra colour to the edge closest to the middle panel.
  5. Ink up the key from Key to my Dreams with Versafine Olympia Green and stamp in the centre panel.
  6. Ink up a smaller key with Orange Blossom Archival ink and stamp off onto a piece of spare paper (you want to achieve a very litight covering of ink) before stamping into the left hand panel.
  7. Finally ink up the Be Happy stamp from the Happy Words and Birds clear stamp set with Orange Blossom and stamp into the right hand panel. To finish off I used a toning coloured pencil to create an edge around the centre panel.
I hope you have managed to stay awake through this extremely long post and I thank you for staying with me. And, whilst I am making no promises about regular posts, I must remember my own words and at least turn up once in a while 'Oh' and maybe buy a ticket.