Wednesday, 31 December 2008
Tuesday, 30 December 2008
Sunday, 28 December 2008
Tuesday, 23 December 2008
Sunday, 21 December 2008
In an effort to catch up a little I decided to just make a menu card showing what we normally have for dinner on Christmas day. Over the years I have become very adept at managing to pass on the serving dish containing sprouts without actually putting one on my plate , I've even tried convincing people that I have a strange sprout allergy. They're a bit of a 'marmite' food aren't they? You either love 'em or hate 'em!But you know one of the best bits of Christmas dinner? Doing the dishing up in the kitchen - having one of the first slices of the turkey with a little bit of the crispy skin, a spoonful of the little crispy bits of the roast potatoes that has stuck to the bottom of the roasting pan, a parmesan coated parsnip that 'accidentally' won't fit in the dish, and the chipolata sausage that you eat while you are plating up. Oh and did I mention the glass of compulsory champagne that all kitchen helpers are given?! Mmmm, not long to wait now!
As for the letter to Santa, well I think the most important things to wish for and the things that money simply can't buy are health and happiness, so that is what I have asked for.
Saturday, 20 December 2008
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
Tuesday, 16 December 2008
Monday, 15 December 2008
Saturday, 13 December 2008
Wednesday, 10 December 2008
Monday, 8 December 2008
Sunday, 7 December 2008
This was an emotional prompt to do. I have hidden the journalling inside the little pockets but the tags read as follows:
THE NOT SO GOOD
By far the worst Christmas I had was in 1997. My mum had been diagnosed with cancer in November and died on Dec 18th. It was so hard to put on a brave face for my children when my heart was breaking but I knew she would not want us to not celebrate Christmas for them. She had bought her gifts for us all and to read the gift tags that she had written on them still makes me cry. She knew that she would not see another Christmas and her messages were all the more poignant for that.
She loved Christmas and made all our Christmases with her special and it was so sad to lose her at the time of year she loved so much.
I will never know where I got the strength to get through that time.
It is hard to find one Christmas that stands out above the rest and so I shall think about the things that make me smile.
The time we decorated the tree, went to have dinner, heard a crash and found that the dog had pulled too hard on a decoration and brought the whole tree down on top of her
My dad dressing up as Father Christmas. Watching the children’s faces as they opened the door to him
Family traditions: R & J still sleep in the same room on Christmas Eve night even though they are now 22 and 18
I love waking to the sound of wrapping paper being ripped off presents
Eating hot chipolata sausages mid morning while the turkey is cooking
Playing silly games after lunch – not that we are competitive ;-)
Saturday, 6 December 2008
Friday, 5 December 2008
Wednesday, 3 December 2008
The theme for today was 'cards' so here is my layout. Why does Christmas card writing start as a pleasure and end as a chore?! The poor people at the end of the alphabet in my address book are subjected to my scruffiest writing and minimal message. Maybe this year I should start at the end and work my way towards A ....
This will be my first year as a 'scrapbooker' and so I am still very new at cardmaking too, but I have started to make some and intend to send handmade cards to my closest friends as it is always lovely to receive something that you know someone has spent time creating.
And maybe this year I will also get them sent out before the last posting date!
Tuesday, 2 December 2008
The topic for today was Winter Weather and whilst I am the first one to admit that I love hot weather and that I was never meant to live in a cold climate, I do love snow! So if I could design my perfect Christmas, I guess it would have to include waking up on Christmas morning to a covering of snow.
Monday, 1 December 2008
Well Journal Your Christmas has finally started! The first prompt was for us to actually take time out to say why we are doing this project and how we intend to do it. A kind of manifesto! So I have kept my first page kind of plain, and just in case it is hard to read on the image, this is the journalling I have written:
When I look back on years gone by, Christmas has always been special, not just the actual day of the 25th, but the days leading up to it and I intend to take this opportunity to record some of those events along with those that are happening in 2008 on a daily basis.
The Past – What happy Christmas memories my sister and I have to look back on. Our parents made Christmas magical. So many traditions started by them, pre-Christmas routines and the excitement of Christmas Day. I want to record some of those memories to remind myself, and anyone who reads this, of happy days gone by.
The Present – Only now, as a parent myself, do I fully appreciate the hard work and effort that went into those Christmases! The cooking, the shopping, the decorating; and when the children are young, maintaining the magical secret of Father Christmas! We have kept our family traditions, added a few more of our own and done our best to make sure that Christmas remains special. As the pages unfold, I will share some of these aspects that make our Christmas.
The Future – I intend to find a few minutes each day to record my thoughts, memories and hopes. I will be making a Journal which can be looked back on, one that someone may pick up in years to come and see how Christmas 2008 unfolded.
Sunday, 23 November 2008
I have finally got round to making the scrapbook page for our daughter's graduation. I wanted to get a page done while it was still all fresh in our memories. Once we get the official pictures back I am sure I will do another! It was such a happy day, truly a day to cherish. I tried to choose a mix of photos, one of her on her own, one with my husband and one with me, then a family group (although our son wasn't able to come to the actual ceremony, he met up with us - briefly - outside City Hall afterwards. The other photo is of Lord Robert Winston who is the University Chancellor as well as being famous for his scientific and medical expertise.
Thursday, 20 November 2008
It's been a tiring day, there will be a proper scrap page to follow, but I just wanted to share a photo on the actual day.
Tuesday, 18 November 2008
The reason I have a long time off is that I don't work Wednesdays anyway, then it is my daughter's graduation on Thursday, inset day Friday, weekend, then I don't work Mondays. Lovely! I could get used to this! So I will be a very proud mum over the next couple of days and will have lots of pictures to do a graduation scrapbook page very soon. Watch this space .....
Monday, 17 November 2008
I went to a craft morning in Ware on Saturday where the theme was 'Quick Christmas' and it certainly lived up to its name - 5 cards in two hours! I learnt quite a few techniques I hadn't tried before like the waterfall cards and also some decoupage and the two hours flew by in a blur. Even though some of the things we did really weren't my style, it's good to experiment and I really enjoyed it. So, I'm now inspired to do a few more of my own.
With the prospect of the JYC class starting in just over a week, I've tidied up my craft supplies and got all the bits I intend to use in a box so in theory my pages should take no time at all. We shall see!
Friday, 14 November 2008
At the moment I am preparing myself to take my son to the station to head back to uni and as the saying goes I'm 'missing him already'. It's been lovely to have him home, although we haven't seen much of him as he caught up with old friends. It's just been nice to know he was back. Now it's goodbye time all over again.
My daughter gave me a little book of 'Mum' sayings a couple of years ago and one page she marked says 'Nothing looks as lonely as your mum before she sees you coming up the platform' and it's very true. When she came home from uni by train I used to arrive at the station way too early just so I would definitely be there when the train pulled in. Then I would hold my breath as the doors opened and scour the platform looking for the first sight of her. Then that little leap of joy as you see each other. But tonight, it will be the other way round, getting to the station and saying goodbye. I know he won't want me to come with him to the platform, and I know that 'lonely' is how I will feel as I turn the key in the ignition and start the journey back home without him.
Wednesday, 12 November 2008
It's been a busy week or so and at the moment I am enjoying having my son home from uni for a week supposedly getting some work done for 3 deadlines that are looming.
But I will get back to keeping this up to date, there is no excuse - less reading and more writing!
Tuesday, 28 October 2008
Sunday 25th October, 'Scrap your day' day, was a Saturday and it kind of followed a normal Saturday routine. Get up, cup of tea, have breakfast, go to supermarket, have lunch, do some baking, go for a walk, have a cup of tea, spend two hours with Brad Pitt and George Clooney. Well, let's be honest, it's not every Saturday night I get to spend time with them, and ok, it was at the cinema and there were dozens of other people there too! But that is how I spent my Scrap Your Day in October and here are the photos to prove it ...
He seems to have settled into uni life so well and is enjoying exploring the area and visiting other friends who have gone to uni in the Manchester, Nottingham, Sheffield kind of area. He's also loving the music scene up there, and going to so many gigs and expanding his musical tastes.
It's only a month since he moved up there but he seems to have grown up and grown so independent in those few weeks. Student life suits him!
It seemed a very long journey home, leaving him behind again but reassuring to see that he is coping so well with living away from home and making new friends.
Nevertheless, I am counting the days to him coming home for reading week, it will be good to have the family all together again.
Wednesday, 22 October 2008
I've tried bits of it at every stage and have left a lemony, sticky mess as evidence around the cooker. For me the ultimate LMP will have a sharp but not bitter lemony custardy bottom and the meringue has to be crisp on top and gooey inside. Can't be soft all through or chewy in the middle - not that I'm fussy or anything! I'm not convinced this one will be nicer (or maybe even as nice) as my tried and tested, family recipe but as they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
Monday, 20 October 2008
OK, has she gone?
Today I went shopping with a friend to Cambridge and it was really nice to have a leisurely look round the shops with nothing in particular to buy. Shops are all getting their Christmas goodies in and it was lovely to start to get the Christmas atmosphere without all the crowds. We were in the Grand Arcade and I noticed that a Build a Bear Workshop had opened. I had bought Rachel a Build a Bear for her 21st birthday and every now and again I buy her a new outfit. It's coming up for Rachel's graduation in mid November and I saw that you could get a Graduation outfit for the bears. So here is Princess, ready for the ceremony:
Ah, doesn't she look cute? So now the bear has a new outfit, and of course Rachel will have her cap and gown, so I'm guessing that as Mother of the Graduate, I will need something new too ;-)
Sunday, 19 October 2008
I don't know why, but he just appealed with me so much that I had to buy him. And then having broken the 'Not before November' rule, I bought a festive tin of Toblerone Tinies too.
There are two dangers here. I now need to put Robbie the Reindeer somewhere safe so that he doesn't get lost or damaged before we decorate the house for Christmas. This relies heavily on me remembering where that safe place is when mid-December comes. The second danger is that bearing in mind what has happened to my Trick or Treat sweets 2 weeks before the event, I need to restrain myself from opening that tin of Tinies ..........
Thursday, 16 October 2008
Wednesday, 15 October 2008
Look at these gorgeous little darlings! Aren't they fabulous? My friend Mandy is a brilliant cook and recently made almost a hundred cupcakes for her daughter's wedding. (sorry Mandy for the awful picture below. It was taken after a few glasses of champagne and I forgot to use the flash!) After baking all those, she must have been sick of the sight of cupcakes but knowing how much I enjoyed sampling the various flavours, icings etc while she was developing the ultimate wedding cupcake she very kindly made more and brought round a box last night. I'm not telling how many there were to start with or, more to the point, after a day at home how many are left ...
Monday, 6 October 2008
and not to mention the title page:
Saturday, 4 October 2008
Thursday, 2 October 2008
Wednesday, 1 October 2008
The next page was prompted by having to work on the evening of the 25th as it was Open Evening at school for prospective students. I may only work 3 days a week, but I do various jobs while I am there, and this week I have taken on new work helping the admissions officer. When we arrived for Open Eve, we were given labels to wear so prospective parents would know what role we held at the school, and my boss had printed one saying 'Wonderwoman' following a rather hectic day in the office preparing for the evening ahead. I did have to relinquish it for a 'proper' one, but for a few minutes, I felt really appreciated!