Wednesday, 3 September 2014


I'm back!  Life has been keeping me away from blogging.  There really aren't enough hours in the day - and I certainly do not have enough energy to get through all that I want to do.  I hope that all the lovely crafty bloggers are well and happy.  I will have a tour around this week to catch up on your news.

I cannot imagine there are many people left on this planet who do not know what WOYWW means, but if you do need more information go over to

Crafting has not featured a great deal in my daily life  'vgbgbgb' (just typed by Milky the cat!).  The cushion cover I had started on a while ago is still sitting on my 'cutting table' and any birthday cards for family/friends have been quick digital designs.  I am about to start my first decoupage project - this 'tea bag box'.

I created a nice main design (to go inside the lid where it won't get too knocked about) with my Silhouette Cameo - and the rest of it will be decorated with a random selection of papers.  The nice shiny new bottles of Mod Podge are waiting to be opened.  I think I will need to consult YouTube to ensure that I have some idea of what I am doing!

Something exciting has happened this week - and got my writing juices flowing again.  I saw a request on Facebook for writers for the Positivity in Pain blog.  Decided that it would not do any harm to send an application in, and received my invite yesterday.  I am an expert at the difficult process of remaining positive whilst enduring constant pain, and have a constant stream of new ideas to research and write about.  Being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Hyper Mobility Syndrome, then developing Hip Bursitis - and having Psoriasis since early childhood - has torn my life apart (and many of the dreams I had), but I am now rebuilding myself and there are so many new aspects which are positive side effects of my health. 

Crafting is a huge part of my new life.  If I had been able to continue with horseriding, running etc, then I would not have time for my craft room - ' ... silver lining ...'

I will not promise to be here every week - but borrowing hubby's tablet has enabled me to type this whilst catching up with some tv.  So much easier and quicker than using my smart phone. 

Ali x

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Christmas 2014 has started!

I have been thinking about starting my Xmas cards for 2014 for a while, but it took a post on Facebook from CraftyHazelnut and the arrival of my new Bebunni Christmas Papercrafting CD-Rom to get me going.

I cannot even remember when I last entered a challenge - so forgive me if I am a bit rusty.

I dragged my Xmas Stash Box out of the wardrobe - every year I forget how heavy it is (and I have cleared a lot out!) - and put together this simple card.

The card used is from Kanban (both snowflake designs and the gorgeous dark grey), topper is a Bebunni 'fabric' design (the edges are faded to suit printing onto fabric), the sentiment is from a Hunkydory diecut topper sheet, and the fabric brad is from Wilkinsons (they are such a great place for some Xmas stash).  I will design an insert closer to the date to suit the recipient.

I enter this into -

Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge #182 - Include a building or part of a building

Craftyhazelnut's Christmas Challenge Extra - Anything Goes

Fab 'n' Funky Challenges - #222, Christmas

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Stiff and sore

That little title of this blog post really describes how I feel most of the time.  I have Fibromyalgia and Hyper-Mobility Syndrome, and hip pain which has been diagnosed as Bursitis, but may well 'just' be a symptom of either/both of the first two!

I used to wake early every day, but in the past few months have been able to stay in bed until a more reasonable hour - until today, when I woke at 5 am as usual but the pain/stiffness was too much to bear and I have even taken a painkiller to make things more blurred and fuzzy.  Painkillers also used to be a regular part of every day, but since I changed my diet and started taking an assortment of supplements I am mainly coping with just one (or even none) per day.  Oh well, no one is counting, except for me!

This morning has been productive for me so far, sort of.  Yes, there has been time 'wasted' on Facebook - for some reason many of my 'friends' and family look down on Facebook.  Their lives are just too busy and full with 'real friends' to come down to my level.  A level where we live in an isolated location, where my day is full of pain/fatigue, where I have lived in over 20 different homes and, therefore, never really made the sort of friendships where I get invited to endless weddings, where I keep myself busy with my animals/housework/crafting/internet - and to tell you the truth, I have always been a sociable loner (I can chat for ever with people I want to chat to and I used to be the woman who was the first on the dance floor!) and would quite happily become a hermit.  Facebook - and my blogging friends - are good.  I can be nosy about other peoples' lives, but 'defriend' them if they share something horrible/have views that I cannot tolerate.  I laugh and cry, and all from the comfort of my own home.

I typed a letter to a new penfriend this morning - a lady on one of the Fibromyalgia Facebook groups.  I used to have lots of penfriends, and there are 2 more who are writing to me - so I look forward to receiving Happy Post.  If anyone would like to share 'snail mail', then just get in touch.

Most of my blog posts have been regarding crafting - or sharing the renovation of our farmhouse - and, therefore, there has been photos.

I will add a random photo so that you have something to look at apart from my early morning rambling.

Gorgeous bluebells in a local wood

I discovered a really interesting blog this morning.  Go and take a look -

Ali x

Wednesday, 21 May 2014


Happy Wednesday to everyone.  It is bright and sunny here, and I am finally dragging myself away from Facebook to get this typed.

If anyone needs further details on What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday, take a little trip over to Stamping Ground.

Most of my craft room is looking very messy and neglected.  Not much crafting has happened in the past week and I really need to spend some time sorting out the piles of magazines etc, etc. 

My photo shows the sewing part of my life currently.  My very first project - a simple bag - and a cushion cover that is almost finished.  I purchased an online course through, and next I have to attempt a skirt!!!  I get very breathless at the thought - but the tutor insists that anyone can do it, so I will watch the videos over and over, and give it a go.  Wish me luck!

Thank you to those you sent me a message re. the sudden death of my friend last week.  Her funeral is today.  It was undetected heart disease that took her away from her family far too young.  She leaves young twin girls without their mum.  Has made me really think about living life to the full - and after thinking about it for ages, we are making steps to purchase a new van to convert into a camping vehicle.  It will be used for my hubby for his mountain biking events, and also we can enjoy trips away with the dogs.

Hope that everyone is well and happy.

Ali x

Wednesday, 14 May 2014


I knew I had not blogged for ages, but shocked to see it was actually 2nd April!   I have missed catching up weekly on a Wednesday.   What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday was started nearly 5 years ago and you can see more details at Stamping Ground

I am hugely late with this post, but decided that if I am going to start blogging again, I need to just get on with it.   I do not have a photo of my desks,  but I can show you a box card I made for my stepdaughter's 21st birthday.

Life has been all over the place recently,  with health issues, attempting to cope with the housework/animal care etc and fitting in some crafting.   I am doing more sewing - will do a separate blog post soon,  and a bit of Cardmaking.

Had a terrible shock yesterday - a friend was found dead unexpectedly.   She was only my age and has left a husband and their very young twin daughters.  Such a tragedy.   RIP Wendy.

Here is the card

Wednesday, 2 April 2014


Good morning everyone, wherever you are in the world.  It is around 7 am here in Pembrokeshire - and raining.  The rain was not forecast until around 10 am, but when I went to bed last night I heard rain on the window - and there have been heavy showers all night.  Very annoying when I left the ponies out on an area that gets muddy quickly, thinking I had time to get them in this morning before the rain arrived!

For WOYWW-novices, please go to Julia's Stamping Ground for all the information you need.

This will be a quick post.  We have been away with the caravan since Sunday - and I have my first dog training session at lunchtime - and my Mum arrives for a visit tomorrow - so even more to do than usual (Ali - take a breath!).  I also have a long To Do List for crafting - but that will have to wait until Monday.

My photo this week shows my very first sewing project almost completed.  I did finish the handles, and then got on and made the external part of the bag.  That is pinned together, ready to get the lining sewed.  If I had a spare hour, then it would be finished today - perhaps later?!  BTW - do not adjust your screen settings, the fabric is really that bright!  It is a My Minds Eye kit - and after struggling to get to grips with the written instructions, I realised there was a link for videos.  So much easier to follow, and I am glad I have subscribed to an online tutorial course for my next 2 projects (an envelope cushion and a pencil skirt).  I will eventually do a separate blog post with further details - sorry to those who have asked about it.

Happy WOYWW to those I do not manage to visit this week.

Ali x

Wednesday, 26 March 2014


I am ashamed to see that I have not blogged since 26th February - I used to type something most days, but I think the 'Time Fairy' has come into our home and stolen lots of time (or perhaps it is because I have been putting me and my health first, and not doing so much)!

For further details on what WOYWW means and how to join in, go to Julia's fab and bright yellow-spotty blog, Stamping Ground.

My photos this week show my new addiction - sewing!  I have had my machine for well over a year, but had hardly touched it - from fear of the unknown mainly.  I kept saying to myself that I would get the instruction book out and have a play - and finally this actually happened.  I found a bag kit that I had in my stash and so far have done about 50% of the handles.  Was forced to stop when I realised that I needed to be set up with the basic equipment - iron (£5 from Morrisons), ironing board (old one still down in our boiler room), rotary cutter/cutting mat/ruler (great prices and choices over at

I plan to get the handles finished later (I was going to say if I manage to get the planned housework done and also have papercrafting to do - but I need to be positive and say the handles WILL BE STITCHED!) and may even start on the main part of the bag.  All very simple, I know, but all good practice on using my machine and the many varied techniques involved.

I will do a separate post soon on the online course I have purchased - where I make a cushion and a SKIRT (yes, the tutor promises that I will have a skirt made by the end of the course).  Again, positive thinking required - and I hope that the family sewing skills (both my mum and younger sister are very skilled) are somewhere hidden in my genes. 

Papercrafting has also been a big part of my recent life.  I made my 2nd parchment craft card, journaling continues, digital scrapbooking, using my new Ebosser and made some Mothers Day gifts for my mum.  I also have some foiling products to review for the Docrafts Creativity magazine.

The BIG CRAFT ROOM CLEAROUT continues - with sewing/cross stitching/yarn supplies to be sorted.

Hope that everyone is ok.  I have been reading a few blogs when I have a spare few minutes.

Happy WOYWW.

Ali x

Ah yes - must attach photos!

Snazzy purple cutting mat and ruler - and fairly
tidy desk areas (look at the sunshine so early in the morning!)

My little sewing machine table.  The stripy things
are the partly-finished handles for my very first bag.