First there was the LOAD challenge. And I did it! Yes, 28 layouts in 28 days! It was such a brilliant feeling to get to the end of the month and realise that I really had managed the whole month and my pile of layouts are sitting here, smiling at me, giving me a warm gooey feeling inside! I got a great sense of achievement and that is brilliant. At some point, I will do a review of what I learnt from this experience and see if any of my original strategy needs to be modified before the next session of LOAD in May! And yes, I'm already signed up for that. Imagine. Another 31 layouts. Enough for the rest of the year! (NOT!!!)
So without much delay, here are the remaining layouts from the month.
** a layout without a photo was a first for me, but I like it! It, of course, relates back to this post about my playlist for 2010.
** You may not believe me, but this layout was put together and completed whilst sitting at the airport on my way to the UK. I knew I wouldn't have time to do it any other time of the day, so I packed a box with the photos, some scraps of paper (remember, no scissors!), a glue runner, some bling, a ruler and a pen. I had an idea of what I wanted to put together and had written out the jornalling I wanted to include so while I was sitting there, I just put it together. You should have seen the looks from some of the people there! I felt quite self-conscious, but was determined to get it done and I did!
**This layout was one of the classes I did at the Scrapagogo day retreat.
One of the two reasons for my visit to the UK was a Scrapagogo day retreat which included 5 classes (4 layouts and a mini flag book) and a lot of fun. I was invited along by Libby and Deb and I had such a good time. It was lovely to spend time with other scrappers (remember that I am the ultimate Billy No Mates Scrapper) and laugh and create and shop. I was amazed that we actually completed all the classes which was such a bonus for me. I had expected to come home with five unfinished, never to be completed, projects which would sit on my desk until the next Stone Age. But we had enough time to finish each one and I even managed to fit in a bit of journalling onto them, too. The classes were really interesting with something "special" about each one and yet not so complicated that they dragged on. It was nice to do two male layouts as I do struggle with those a bit and even though the mini flag book was not my favourite, and the colours not really "me", I love the concept and will definitely be copying this in the future. It had looked so complicated but the instructions were so clear and concise that it proved a doddle to put together.
I have to say that my favourite was the last class of the day by Sheena when I got the opportunity to use one of my favourite Yukon photos with some wonderfully autumnal papers. Libby proved a bit of a rebel in this last class and ever the follower, I copied! We made our wonderfully shimmery chipboard shapes to open up differently and feature small photos on the back rather than underneath. So sweet and such a lovely design.
It was great to sit and be told what to do, to have all the products (often cut) all together with clear instruction and a very good handout to follow. While I like to sit here and create my own stuff, it was lovely to just follow the crowd and have fun creating.
I did a bit (lot) of shopping and came home with a bag full of goodies. All in all, a super day and well worth every penny. I will definitely go along again (if I'm invited!) - thanks to the Scrapagogo team!
And of course, the second reason for going home for the week was mum's special birthday which she celebrated with a girls' afternoon tea extravaganza. Libby has also posted some of the photos (here) so I will just pop one or two here to mark the event.
We all had a lovely time reminiscing about the past, sipping champagne, and scoffing the richest, most sparkly cupcakes I had ever seen!
** yes, we are related - honest!
My wonderfully talented school friend, Geraldine, came along too bringing with her one of the best cakes I have ever seen. She wowed everyone with her interpretation of mum from way back when! She tells us that she has a totally clear memory of mum wearing an outfit something like this at a party, complete with curly hair, sunglasses and copious amounts of alcohol! We have to agree that the likeness is scary!
I knew that Geraldine made specialty cakes, but this was amazing and there is more to be seen at her website - go over there and take a look - HERE!
And the oodles of cuddles?
Well, they were provided mostly by adorable Isabella - the whole week! That's the thing with being an aunty who lives far away: you become a bit of a novelty. Now that Isabella has got over her coyness around me (there was a time when I was not allowed to make eye contact with her), she has become totally and utterly scrumptious to me. Maddie provided me with cuddles when requested, but I can tell how she is growing up now and let's face it, I'm not her favourite uncle. Just a hanger on! And as for Cameron - he puts up with me being around and is (un)willing to give me a peck on the cheek from time to time or even an arm round my neck, but that's about it. But what I lacked from the older two, I made up for with sweet Isabella! And I have no photos to prove it!
Well unless you count this one:
Just look at this cheeky face here:
And if this wasn't enough, in between all this excitement, Libby looked after me so well with delicious food, plenty of cups of tea, scrapping evenings (I managed to finish a total of three cards only!), a Saturday Bromsgrove Crop where I caught up with another school friend, Sarah (one double layout completed and I don't even like it!!!), shopping trips to numerous craft shops where we met up with Rachel and Deb, and countless lifts to and from Harborne - huge thanks to you Lib!
All up to date I think...
What have you been up to?