Sunday, 26 July 2015

A strange day!

Good morning everyone,
I hope you are having a great weekend!
This blog post is a bit different - no pictures of cards - more focus on the 'cat' part of my blog name today.
It was the Claritystampers East workshop at Bawburgh yesterday and for me it was a very strange one!  It all started on Friday evening when we realised that Merlin, our big black cat was in serious trouble - his breathing was all wrong and he was flopped out, his abdomen was a bit swollen and he was not very responsive, so we took him to the vet.  She said it was a problem with his heart and kept him in overnight...
So Saturday morning , still very worried about Merlin, we set off for the workshop, only to find that there was no-one there to open the hall - it took us a while to find someone to speak to, but eventually we got someone and a lady came to open up.  This was about 9:45, and normally I am in by 9:00.  Some of the ladies had arrived, so they set to and there were tables being set up, cups being got out (getting the water heater on was the first job, obviously!!) chairs being whisked around and all my sale items being set out.  No-one complained, I didn't ask, they just got straight on with helping me and as a result, we were pretty much set up on time.
While all this was going on, we had a call from the vet to say that Merlin hadn't responded to treatment and would we give permission for her to Xray his heart, so we agreed....
Finally, the workshop was under way, much the same as always.
I got a call from Simon at lunchtime which confirmed my worst fears, that Merlin wasn't going to pull through, he had probably got blood clots in his legs and that could be causing him pain, so we decided to have him put to sleep (he was pretty much unconscious anyway)  Simon went over to be with him while the deed was done and to bring him home afterwards.
I went back to the workshop...and it carried on as normal.
At the end, the lovely ladies helped wash up and pack up and put the tables away and just left me my own stuff to sort out while I waited for Simon to come and pick me up.  He arrived at 16:00 and we packed the car, but no sign of anyone from the hall, so we had to call and wait for someone to come and lock up.  Apparently they hadn't been able to contact the lovely man who should have been opening and closing the hall (let's hope he wasn't having a strange day too!!)
So we got home, I said goodbye to Merlin and we buried him under a bush in the back garden.
I was a bit numb to it all yesterday, but I feel very sad today.

Merlin turned up in the back garden about 5 years ago, thin, hungry, very nervous and with a big tick on his head.  I fed him, got rid of his tick and made friends.  He moved in, put on weight and became the most gentle, lovely cat who loved a cuddle and a fuss, so although I am very sad to see him go, I also know he had a happy and contented life with me.

Thank you if you have got through this long post, I am not the sort to dwell on this sort of thing, so it should all be back to normal soon.

I will post cards  from the workshop after the Great Blakenham one next Sunday.

Finally, I would like to say a huge Thank You to the ladies at Bawburgh for your help and support, you guys really are the best!

Janet xxx

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Black and White Christmas in July

Good morning and happy weekend to you,

It looks like another lovely day here.  I have been lucky recently, it has been raining while I'm at work and sunny on my days off. (so many times it is the other way round!!)

Today, I will be mostly preparing for the workshops over the next two weekends, will we be getting Groovi...?

Today's card is one of the ones I did for the last TV show.  It was very surreal...Barbara brought all the stamps with her to France, so we could work on them while we were there, which was brilliant.  So on the longest and hottest day of the year, there we were making Christmas cards!
I had taken my Zentangle gear with me (a pen, pencil, blender and card - not a big kit!) with the intention of doing some serious relaxing, so when I got the fab ribbon Merry Christmas stamp, I knew it just had to be tangled!

I stamped the Merry Christmas in black archival, then spent a wonderful few hours just taking my time, sitting outside in the sun, with my fine black pen, tangling patterns in the letters.  I also outlined all the letters too.  Then I used a lovely smudgy pencil and added some shading.
I wanted to use the stars from the Christmas Sprig and Decorations set so I decided to add a border across the top. I drew two lines, then filled them in and added the stars and a bauble from the set.
The lovely elf is from the brilliant Christmas Wee Folk set 7
I did add a bit of glitter to the stars.
Not really one to do if you have to make a huge batch of cards, but if you want to sit and relax, it is a perfect thing to do.
Enjoy your weekend and I hope the sun is shining on you!
Janet xxx

Saturday, 11 July 2015

Sunny Saturday!

Good morning and happy Saturday to you,

It is promising to be a very lovely day here in Norfolk, the sun is already hot, so I am planning some gardening in the sun to top up my tan from France.
Sorry I haven't blogged much recently, I have been quite busy with work and workshops!
Today's card is one of the one's I did at the Claritystampers East workshop and the Diva Red workshop

 I stamped the owl in place first, then put the stencil over the top and added blue and brown ink using a stencil brush.  I also added a bit of extra shading with a sponge.
Now the next bit caused a fair bit of muttering!
I went round the whole lot with a fine black pen.
Remove the stencil and fill in the gaps where the letters overlap, so they go over and under each other.
It gets worse!  Then I added shade to the underneath bits of the letters with a pencil and stump.
I have quite a rebellious group of ladies at the classes and some of them decided this was far too much work, so they didn't do all of it and it still all looks fab.
I stamped the owl on three different patterned papers, then cut out and layered.As a final touch, I added the mortar boards

The 'Congratulations' is stamped on a separate piece of card and stuck on.

The stamps used are from the lovely new 'Wise Owl' stamp set and the 'word chains'
and the stencil is the alphabet stencil, all from Claritystamp.
I'm off to enjoy the sunshine, hope you have a brilliant weekend!
Take care
Janet xxx