Sunday, 30 January 2011

Weekend Roundup

Well, I don't know about you but I am glad that January is nearly over. It's been such a long, tedious month - cold, miserable and no money! Pay day tomorrow - hurrah!

Having said that, I have had quite a nice weekend for a change, and productive too.

Perhaps it helped having two nights out - such a rare thing to have a social life! I really enjoyed going to see The King's Speech on Thursday, one of the best films I have seen for ages. Colin Firth really deserves all the awards he gets for it, and Helena Bonham-Carter and Geoffrey Rush were amazing too.

Had another great night out at a friend's house on Friday - 6 women in their 40s, good food, lots of fizz and loads of laughs. Didn't get home till gone 1am and should have been really hungover on Saturday but wasn't. We drank champagne with a raspberry liqueur (Chambord) all night - heavenly!

Am feeling rather virtuous at the moment because we have planned and shopped for the whole week's meals. Usually we have no idea what to have and it ends up with Mark going to Tesco every night and cooking three separate meals (very fussy kids - Edward more so than Emily). But yesterday we planned the menu together with loads of input from the kids and then did a Tesco online shop which came today. So hopefully it will be less stressful and less expensive now we have a plan. Alsace roast chicken, new potatoes and mangetouts for dinner tonight - sounds yummy!

Have manged to make three cards this weekend. The first one is actually the biggest card I have ever made - it's 8" square. A bit daunting at first, but I think it turned out OK. The card is for a friend at work for quite a few of us to sign, hence the size. The paper is by We R Memory Keepers and I cut the numbers from DCWV cardstock and decorated them with glitter glue and tiny Prima flowers.

This second card is for another colleague, just from me, so usual size 14.5cm square. I think the papers are My Mind's Eye and I used Martha Stewart glitter - peridot. It's the first time I have used my new scallop punch that I got for Christmas. I'm really pleased with the design - as you will see, I am using it a lot!!

And another significant birthday!! Same design as before - no idea who the paper is by, and I think the glitter is fire opal.

Have even had some time this weekend to do more baking for the children's lunchboxes - Brownies this time. I used the recipe from the Hummingbird Bakery book. They taste nice but were really tricky to get out of the tin - stuck to the greased proof paper. I wasn't impressed!
Anyway that's me finished for now. If I don't see you before, hope you all have a fab week.
M x

Wednesday, 26 January 2011


Just a quickie to say thanks for all the comments I have had recently and sorry for not responding to you all. I hope you haven't thought me rude, but life has been a bit unsettled in the Frecklepuss household of late, and blogging hasn't made it to the top of my list of priorities. I'm hoping to be a bit better, but please bear with me.

M x

Note to Autumn Mist - may consider a tutorial for the card I made Mark - I'll see how time goes during the school holidays. Never done one before, so it may be a challenge!
Happy Birthday Dad!

Today is my Dad's birthday and here is the card I made for him. I'm really pleased with the simple, clean look of it and will probably make a lot of cards using this design. The two papers are from a paper stack by My Minds Eye and the three little circles are Card Candy from Craftwork Cards. I also used their chipboard letters as a template for the wording.

I have a few cards that are works in progress - a 30th birthday and a 50th. There are a lot of milestone birthdays this year for friends and family, so I anticipate being kept very busy!

It was Craft Day on QVC last week and luckily I was working otherwise I would probably have spent lots of money on things I can't afford and don't really need, however I did spot these Paula Pascual stamps at a very reasonable price, so I decided I needed a treat to cheer myself up (hasn't this month been SO long and depressing?).

Filled With Flowers

Simple Flowers

I'm hoping to go to the cinema and see The King's Speech tomorrow night. I've heard it is very good. Anyone seen it?
Take care
M x

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Best laid plans . . .

Hi Folks, hope all is well with you and that you have had a good weekend.

I had planned to have a weekend of "me" time, making lots of cards, but sadly not. The weekend was a bit tedious actually, boring jobs and chivvying children to do homework/revision (why don't they just get on with it and get it out of the way??!!). Not how I had planned it at all. So unfortunately I don't have anything new to show you, apart from the card I made for Mark's special birthday last week.

The papers are all by DCWV, I think they are called Rockstar. I made the card blank myself out of smooth white card stock. Each panel measures 10cm x 10cm. I used Craftwork Cards' plasma letter templates to do the lettering, and numbers, and used Martha Stewart glitter on the numbers. A little bit of glitter glue and Card Candy finishes it off.

I really enjoy making this type of card for special occasions and special people. It's quite easy and you can get totally carried away with your own creativity.
Hope this week is a good week at work. Last week was quite boring, I seemed to spend more time at the photocopier and doing admin than working with the children - not what I am paid to do. Ah well, we shall see.
Take care.
M x

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Celebrations and Awards

Last night we had a fabulous little get together to celebrate Mark's 50th birthday. Just family and a few really close friends. Mark had a lovely evening, as did I, and I am delighted with how well it went.
We decided to have hot food, rather than the usual buffet bits (had enough sausage rolls and potato salad over the Christmas period). I cooked a chilli, Mark made a chicken curry and my Dad made a lamb tagine which we kept hot in slow cookers and I also made an enormous lasagne. There were the usual assortment of accompaniments - nan bread, rice, couscous etc. The food was a big success with everyone coming back for seconds.

My mum made Mark a really fantastic cake - he was thrilled (he's a total guitar obsessive!). It was incredible - such a shame when we had to cut into it. She's a very clever lady.

I'm feeling pretty thrilled as well as I have received my very first blog award from the lovely Sucrette at Le Monde de Sucrette (check it out here). Thank you so much.

Now, I'm supposed to tell you seven things about myself that you probably don't already know (this is so hard, I've been wracking my brains over this one), so here goes:
  1. I am a huge fan of the Chalet School series of books by Elinor M Brent Dyer and am proud to say that I own all 62 paperbacks. I started reading these as a child, but it wasn't until I was about 30 that I realised that there were so many in the series, and I have since been able to complete my collection.
  2. I am terrified of falling down the stairs! Don't really know when this started but I'm really not very good at coming down stairs, and have been known to have a helping hand from my children at times (they are very tolerant!).
  3. I'm slightly OCD! I like my towels and tea towels folded just so, and I like photographs kept in the order they were taken etc etc! Drives Mark mad but I can't help it!
  4. I love my crafting - it has taken over my life and my home. I have more paper, card, stamps, wool, fabric etc than I could ever use - but it makes me happy.
  5. Some books, films and music have reduced me to tears. I cried at the end of Watership Down and Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince and I can't watch Meet Me In St Louis without a box of tissues to hand.
  6. I love chocolate of all kinds, but you can't beat a bar of Cadbury's Dairy Milk.
  7. I drink black coffee (don't like milk), but can't stand anything coffee flavoured - hate, hate, hate coffee cake!

There we go, that wasn't too bad! Now I'm going to pass this award on to some of my favourite people, do go and pay them a visit.

  1. Coco Rose Textiles here
  2. Chickens in my Kitchen here
  3. Ladybird Ladybird here
  4. Kids, Cakes and Cobwebs here
  5. The Ramblings of an Everyday Mummy here
  6. Little Tin Bird here
  7. Cooking, Cakes and Children here

Well, that's me done for today. I am off to get cosy on my sofa with my Dream Blanket and crochet hook, maybe a film on the TV and a lovely cup of hot chocolate in my new Cath Kidston mug.

Enjoy the rest of your precious weekend.

M x

Friday, 7 January 2011


Hi everyone - just a quickie tonight. I've now crocheted each colour twice on my Dream Blanket and it's looking pretty good, even if I do say so myself! I'm absolutely delighted with how it looks.

Goodness me though, it's getting heavy to hold, but I can't wait to snuggle under it - although by the time I'm finished it will probably be spring! It's taken me approximately two months to get to this stage. I'm still undecided on the colours for the border and how deep to do it, but I've got a while before I have to make that decision.
Today is an important day in the Frecklepuss household. My lovely man is celebrating his 50th birthday. We both had the day off work and went out for a delicious lunch. And very shortly we are off to Cafe Rouge with the children for tea. Tomorrow we are having a small family party in the evening, so it will be a day of cooking and cleaning, before the festivities begin!

Hope you have all had a good week and if I don't see you before, have a fabulous weekend!
M x

Monday, 3 January 2011


Some things I would like to achieve in 2011, in no particular order.

  • To finish my hexagonal blanket (I've been doing it for over a year, must get it finished)
  • To cook more new meals (or to cook more! Mark does most of the cooking)
  • To save regularly for Christmas 2011 (I say this every year and never get round to it)
  • To finish my stripy Dream Blanket (it's going well, I'm nearly halfway there)
  • To blog more regularly (I'll try, but I can't promise!!)
  • To be more active and feel fitter (I need to stop being a couch potato and get going)
  • To bake every weekend for the children's lunchboxes (must be better than shop bought)
  • To make cards every weekend (even if it's just one)
  • To start scrapbooking (I MUST get round to this I am desperate to have a go)
  • To take more photographs (I never take enough and I always regret it)

I don't think I set myself anything too tricky, but sometimes it helps to have things written down to concentrate the mind.

Have you set yourself any goals for the new year? I'd love to hear them.

M x

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Starting as I mean to go on . . .

I hope everyone had a lovely start to the new year. Ours was very quiet as Emily went to a party on New Year's Eve and one of us had to be her chauffeur - the joys of having a teenager!

Yesterday was spent with my parents planning Mark's 50th birthday soiree which is on Saturday (actual birthday on Friday) - just an intimate little gathering at our house, of family and very close friends. (Note to self - must make birthday card!!!).

I wanted to share with you the Christmas card I made for my parents The paper is by Craftwork Cards (as is the design actually). I like the funky, contemporary colours. Expect to see more of this soon as I plan on making my Christmas cards for this year very soon. I know it sounds mad, but it really took the pressure off in November and December.

I did a little baking recently and made some chocolate whoopie pies - wow they were such a success, particularly with Edward, that I know I will be making them often. I have decided to do much more baking this year so that the children have some homemade goodies in their lunchboxes instead of shop bought.
Well that's all for now. Off to try and get child number one out of her pit (it's only 12.40pm!). Hope you like the new look of my blog, may tweak it a little bit yet.
M x