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.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

WOYWW 247 - I am back

I cannot remember whether I only missed one week of 'What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday' (see Stamping Ground for more details), but it seems like ages since I joined in with our favourite tour/snoop of crafty workspaces. 

Life has been full of attempting to sell excess craft stash from my over-full craft room.  A lot has gone (but there is still more, so get in touch if you would like anything - got lots of Kanban cardstock and topper sheets, a few stamps, a whole of box of Xmas stash etc, etc, etc!), but I am now just listing the bigger items on Ebay (Inkadinkado Stamping Gear packs at the moment) rather than wasting my valuable time on Facebook. 

My craft room is a lot clearer now and I can start to concentrate on cardmaking for family/friends/charity, getting my sewing machine in use again (joined a monthly club where they send me the materials for a project with instructions - go to, scrapbooking (I start a fortnightly workshop at a local craft shop on Friday), journaling, and continuing my quest to learn new craft techniques (at the moment that includes parchment craft, paper cutting and also got a magazine with quilling to try).  Busy, busy, busy!

Blogging has taken a back step, but I will try to do regular posts of what is going on in my life.  My health has improved 'sort of', with painkillers being taken rarely rather than several times per day.  However, my hip is the issue, flaring up if I try to do too much, which is not enough in my thoughts!  Very frustrating when the weather is improving and I want to be out training my pony, walking the dogs and getting on with jobs around the house/yard.  Oh well, at least I get to spend time in my craft room 'resting'. 

I will have a good read of other blogs later - another excuse to 'rest', but hope that everyone is well and happy.

My photos this week show a really cute origami dog card I attempted for the first time (you can get the download from and also my little collection of crafty books.

The other big piece of crafty news is that I treated myself to an Ebosser (after my little Sizzix machine proved too small for a project yet again).  It is waiting patiently to be unpacked and a permanent home found for it where it will be convenient for me to use it.  I love new gadgets!

Ali x

Wednesday, 5 February 2014


Firstly, I hope that everyone around the world is surviving the horrible weather.  Here, in Pembrokeshire, we have had a bus knocked off a local road by a huge wave (the jury is out as to whether that bus driver should have attempted the road!), several roads closed due to flooding and our daily lives on the farm made more difficult by strong winds/rain most days.  Spring seems a long way away - was watching 'Escape to the Country' last night, filmed in June, and it was hot and sunny - what a dream!!  Moving to Lanzarote or Spain seems more attractive by the day.  Anyone else want to join me?

Secondly, What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday is explained and the linky thing provided over at Julia's Stamping Ground

My photo this week shows what Create & Craft delivered to me yesterday - some very useful additions to the stash for my new addiction, Parchment Crafting!  A selection of embossing and piercing tools, a piercing mat and a selection of printed parchment - whoops, just realised they call it 'perforating' - note to self: must get the 'lingo' correct!

I am also 'busy' creating a selection of Valentine cards.  No, I do not have lots of secret lovers, but I have had some orders for cards - and I am making a few so that each person can select the one they like best.  So difficult to make a card for such a personal occasion, when the brief is 'cute, but not too cute'.

Well, I must leave my cosy craft room now and head downstairs to continue the morning routine, before dressing in several layers to go outside and feed/muck out ponies etc.

I have started 'juicing' and really enjoying my liquid creations, plus my health is continuing to improve, with no painkillers at all taken yesterday.  If I am like this now with the cold and damp weather, I hope that in the summer I will be able to ride my pony again.  Everything crossed.

Happy WOYWW to everyone I do not manage to visit in the next few days.

Ali x

Wednesday, 29 January 2014


Well, I am here - but a little distracted (looking for cheap pony rugs on Ebay!).   Was absent last week, as we went away for a few days on Thursday and had the usual extra stuff to deal with before we escaped!  We didn't go far - stayed at a couple of hotels west of Cardiff, including Cowbridge (our first visit and loved it there).  One day was spent exploring the Cardiff shops (well, some of them, we mainly stayed inside the shopping centre) and a rare trip to the cinema (Wolf on Wall Street).  I was so proud that I managed to walk around a lot and cope with eating out, mainly without painkillers.

For anyone who does not know what WOYWW is (What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday), take a look at Julia's Stamping Ground.

Some crafting has occurred in my craft room, but not a lot.   After my husband's first grandchild was born early on Sunday (Lily, 8 lb), I had to rush to make a card when we returned from Cardiff on Sunday evening.  Yes, should have been organised and had one ready, but one of the new Bebunni CD-Roms saved the day and I made a super-cute card in record time.

This is my main desk this morning - all of the usual essentials (I keep saying I am going to clear my desk, but then I realise I love having all of this stuff in front of me!) and some printed/cut out extras for creating a few cards.

This week will see me getting Valentine cards finished, attempting some parchment craft for the first time and getting on with my journals.

Hope everyone is well and happy.

Ali x

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Final Thrive update - and not a happy ending

Well, I was so excited reading all of the wonderful testimonials about Thrive and really hoped that I could have a similar positive experience.  However, as usual for me and my strange body, it has not worked out - in fact the capsules gave me some nasty side effects, which were getting worse.  Therefore, this morning, I have not taken any - and my large orange box is now available to anyone else who would like to try the system.  Already feeling more human.

I am glad that I did give it a go.  I am always a 'glass half full' sort of person and having Fibromyalgia/Hyper Mobility Syndrome/Hip Bursitis/Psoriasis (and the myriad of nasty symptoms that come with these) is turning me into someone who is constantly searching for the help that is not available from the doctors.

I had already changed the way I ate most of the time last year (Food Combining), which reduced my IBS a lot, but after indulging over Xmas on 'normal' food (ie processed, sugars, grains .....) I was suffering again, and there was no way that I was going back to the times when I avoided travel (worried that I may become truly agoraphobic).  Not sure when I first saw it, but Paleo suddenly came into my life.  I saw the sense of it, loved most of the recipes and became excited about food for the first time in ages.  Not completely there yet, but slowly the grains/sugars will disappear from my life most of the time (I will admit that there may be some weaknesses involving toast and butter occasionally, or a chocolate when offered one!).

For those who do not know what Paleo is - 

Paleo Leap
Nom Nom Paleo

Along with drinking more water, turning off tv/internet an hour before bedtime, using my 'rebounder' every day and continuing to be active (with 2 dogs, 2 ponies and various cats, plus a large house, I have no choice!), I am hoping that eating whole/nutrient dense/unprocessed food will improve my general health and eventually I will sleep more/better. 

Well, no rest for the wicked, off to try a recipe I have just seen - mash a banana up with 2 eggs and cook as a pancake - and also sort out the rubbish (we get our black bags collected fortnightly now, and TODAY IS THE DAY!!).

Hope that everyone is well and happy.

Ali x

ps   My flu bug is easing slightly and looking forward to not having a headache.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014


Another cold, dark and windy Wednesday morning.  Go to Stamping Ground for more information on What is On Your Work desk Wednesday.

I continue very slowly to clear out my craft room, and have been selling on Ebay.  My photo today shows the pile of stash that I will be listing next (also on Facebook - will put a link on here).

I have had a nasty flu bug since Saturday, so no crafting has happened.  Got the 2 journals to add to, Valentine cards/gifts to make for a craft fair I am attending on 2nd February, a commission card and various swaps.  Really need to feel stronger.  With regard to that, I have been trying the Thrive supplement for 4 days.  I have been able to cope with less painkillers, but there have been some horrible side effects that were worse this morning, so giving up on it.  I will concentrate on improving my diet - focussing on Paleo.

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

Ali x