20th-october-2016

Things I’ve Learned This Week

Happy Friday!  . . .  Apparently it’s now officially winter – as far as ‘weather reports’ are concerned.  I don’t know why this happens or the reasons for this.  I only heard it on the weather report this morning but I was so busy taking in this information and trying to work out if I’d heard it correctly that I didn’t hear the reasoning behind it.  But there you have it.  It’s winter.

They are reporting that the UK set for the heaviest snowfall for years, and the Long-range forecast warns that the Winter of 2016 is going to be THE BIG FREEZE!   Saying that Britain is facing the heaviest snowfalls in years this winter, as the country’s first icy blast arrives soon, and it will unleash (apparently)  four months –  (FOUR MONTHS!?) –  of heavy snow and sub-zero temperatures.  I read that forecasters have announced this,  and they added:  “expect a very ‘exciting’ December with the possibility of a White Christmas this year“.  OK….  so  NOW I’M GETTING EXCITED! 

The last white Christmas I remember was in the 1980’s …  so this would be such a huge event and I’m already feeling the excitement of it.  In fact … so much so that I’ve even bought a woolly bobble hat!   (If you read one of my posts a few weeks ago, you’ll already know that I look like an extraordinarily comical, female, over-sized unwanted 8th Dwarf from Snow White and the Seven Dwarves  when wearing ANY hat.  So this new bobble hat is a BIG thing for me to have bought!).

It’s a chilly, cold wind which is already blowing around outside.  This morning, here where we live in the South of Great Britain,  it was minus 6.  Mr. Cobs informed me of this when he came back in the house from letting the chickens out to play.  I believed entirely that it was minus 6, for I could feel that minus 6 blow right through our little cottage when he opened the door to come back in!  It made me want to hibernate!  Brrrr!

Oh anyhoo…  we’re here to find out what I’ve learned this week so let’s get on with it, shall we?

This weeks Lessons in the Key of Life seem to have been (in a lot of circumstances)  about things which start with the letter H!  I have no idea why, but I thought I’d go with it and share this Letter H stuff with you.  Hats on?  Had your shots?  Here we go …

Henge Stonehenge to be precise.  I learned that Stonehenge was in private ownership until 1916, when it was bought,  on the spur of the moment by Sir Cecil Chubb, who was the owner of a local lunatic asylum,  as a present for his wife. Three years later she gave the site to the nation. 

Now this posed a question for me.  Why would a chap buy his wife some big stones which weren’t of the diamond variety?  Did he think this would earn him brownie points?  Well … the fact that she gave this gift away just three years later, must surely have told him something.

So, in the interests of happy Christmas days to come, may I make a suggestion to all the fabulous chaps who read this Friday post (and I know there are a few of you because I have the class register with your names clearly shown on it) ….  Here’s my tip for Christmas Gifts for the fabulous women in your life.   If you’re struggling to find something she’ll be happy to receive,  I truthfully think that if you go by this one rule, you’ll probably strike the right chord:  Buy:-  Something with a Hallmark on it.

You can thank me later.

Hypnotism.  Did you know that:  English writer – Charles Dickens’ marriage broke down partly because of his obsession with Hypnotism Now this surprised me, because if you read a little bit of information about Mr. Dickens you’d find a whole lot more stuff which would and could have broken down his marriage way before this obsession!

I learned this week that:  Apparently Chickens can be hypnotised.   From what I learned:  The record period for a chicken remaining in a hypnotic state is 3 hours 47 minutes.  

Holidays.  Let’s start with a Holiday inspired joke, just to lighten the mood, shall we?

The girl at the Ryanair check-in desk said,   –   “Window or aisle?”
I replied,  –  “Window or you’ll what?”

fnar fnar!

 I have to explain –  here in Great Britain (at least), a ‘Holiday’ is what people of the USA call a ‘Vacation’.  Where-as Christmas is NOT a holiday to the folk of the UK. Christmas is exactly as it says.  It’s CHRISTMAS – and we don’t call it anything but that.

So now we know that  ….

I learned this week that popular Holiday island Hawaii was discovered by Captain Cook in 1778 and named the Sandwich Islands in memory of his patron, the Earl of Sandwich. On landing, he and every man on his crew became completely constipated: one man suffered for 44 days in a row. The men became the first Westerners to witness the traditional Hawaiian sport of surfing.  Cook was murdered in Hawaii in 1779.

The Hawaiian State flag is the only US flag to feature a Union Jack.  It also has eight red white and blue stripes representing the eight main Hawaiian islands.

The ‘wiki’ in Wikipedia is Hawaiian for ‘fast’.

Here’s a question for you: 

I want those of you who have had Haemorrhoids to put your hand up.  Go on.  No one is going to see you, you’re all alone!

Those of you who didn’t put your hands up . . .  are fibbers!

Haemorrhoids : everyone has them!  I learned this week, from watching a TV programme at about 2am in the morning, (sleep escaped me), that EVERYONE has haemorrhoids (UK spelling).  They’re apparently like little cushions in the walls of your B.T.M. and live there quite happily.  However … something happens to upset them, and that’s when they become a problem.  It could be childbirth, carrying a little extra weight, ‘straining’, or even, apparently, a sneeze can cause them to inflame.  However – that old wives tale that sitting on a radiator gives you piles or haemorrhoids, is exactly that.  An old wives tale.  There’s nothing to prove that this causes the problem.

And now, ladies and gentlemen, we come to the final H of our ‘What I’ve Learned This Week’ list…..  Happiness.  Or Happiness in the form of Jokes, to be precise.  Are you ready for a chuckle?

Q)  What’s green and fuzzy and would kill you if it fell out of a tree? 

A)  A pool table.

Q)  What did the Pirate say when he turned 80?

A)  Aye Matey.

I tried to catch fog yesterday.    Mist.

Q)  Why does a Chicken Coop have two doors?   A)  If it had four, it’d be a chicken sedan.

Doctor: “I’m sorry but you suffer from a terminal illness and have only 10 to live.”. . . . 
Patient: “What do you mean, 10? 10 what? Months? Weeks?!”  . . . . .
Doctor: “Nine.”

I’ve just been on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. I’ll tell you what, never again.

A male friend met a Dutch girl with inflatable shoes last week. He rang her up to arrange a date, but unfortunately she’d popped her clogs.

How do you make a tissue dance?  You put a little boogie into it.

Where does a sheep go for a haircut?  To the baaa baaa shop!

Why can’t you hear a pterodactyl in the bathroom?  Because it has a silent pee.

And finally ….  I’ve decided to sell my Hoover… well, it was just collecting dust.

Thank you so much for coming and having a coffee with me.  I love seeing you here.
Have a wonderful day, doing whatever it is that you’ll be doing.  Remember … you have a choice of what sort of day you have.  Choose a Good one!
Oh …   and have a fabulous weekend.  May you find peace and rest, and maybe a few smiles along the way.

Sending squidges to you in your corner,  from me in mine.  ~

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A bunch of Christmases all at once.

Happy December the 1st!

Yes  …  it scared me too and I didn’t see why I should be feeling that feeling all alone, so decided to drag you in there too.  And now that I’ve sent your brain into a spin, let’s get on with enjoying the day shall we?

So, to start with  … smile, even if you don’t feel like it.  S.M.I.L.E. …  and remember that even if the day is grey and you don’t feel like anything like happy …. just the act of smiling can trick your brain into sending out the feel good hormones which can turn your day around.  So stand up … go and stand in front of a mirror and smile your biggest cheesy smile at yourself for 30 seconds. 

Look into your eyes while you’re stood there grinning like a Cheshire cat – and although your cheeks might ache a littlekeep the smile going until either:  you crack and begin to laugh at yourself.  OR …  30 seconds is up.  Then go off and do something to get your day kicking and alive.  (And if you feel miserable at all any time today – do the smile thing again.  30 seconds remember!).  Even if it only works for half an hour, that’s half an hour of feeling better that you would have missed if you hadn’t tried the smiling trick.

I’ve been trying to post these Christmas Cards since last week!  I haven’t been tardy or lazy, I’m fighting an infection which is causing me the most dreadful pain on the right hand side of my back and partly in my tummy;  and it’s also affecting the skin on my back, making it feel as if the skin is burnt – like it’s been ironed with a hot iron, and it feels like it’s been sandpapered and should be red raw.  Just awful.  I’m now on my third (different) lot of antibiotics,  and if these latest ones don’t start making a difference within 24 hours,  I have to call my GP, and I think they may admit me to hospital so that they can plug me into the ‘powerful drug army’,  filling me up intravenously with infection fighting soldiers who will (hopefully) beat the infection to a pulp.  (I have my fingers crossed that these new antibiotics which they’ve given me, begin to work, so that I don’t have to go in, as I don’t like hospitals). 

Right, enough talking about rubbish stuff  …  let’s get these cards shared with you …

I wanted to make a few quick and easy cards for various people.  I have to send some through the post so wanted cards which will fit into an envelope and not have them damaged or bits knocked off them, so they had to be of few ‘adornments’, and flat enough to go into a regular envelope.  AND … just to add a bit of a challenge to the task, I wanted to make them from bits and pieces I’ve had left-over from projects I’ve made for Christmas cards of long ago.  So I went through my Christmas Box and by the time I’d finished I had a pile on my desk all the things which were left overs from previous Christmases.  Cor!  Did I have a lot of left overs! 

I found some card stock and bits of adornments from about 7 years ago (I think – but this is just a guess).  All of the following cards are made from those left overs.

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Frost and Ice Christmas Tree.

This first card …. is made on a background of a rich, dark blue card on which is printed a music score, with the addition of some script writing.  I embossed around the outer edges of the card background to make it look more icy and wintery cold, using the silver embossing powders by Tonic. (This icy cold doesn’t show up in the photo, but in reality it actually does look really wintery and like looking through a window which you’d scratched off the ice so that you could look through it).

I added a length of [plastic] balls on a ‘string’ around the tree (and glued it in place on the back) then added some red gems to represent baubles on the tree.

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I then mounted the decorated die cut Christmas Tree onto a square of printed velum using foam tape.  The addition of the greeting  ‘Merry Christmas’ finished the card off.

This next card was shamefully easy, but in real life looks far lovelier than in the photograph.

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The card background is actually white with a sort of shimmery silvery white patterning all over it.  If you hold it one way, then you see everything as white.  But if you hold it another way, you can clearly see the patterns on the cardstock.  It’s really beautiful, and so tactile too!

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I added tiny red gems to the die cut wreath and a die-cut bow – mounted on foam dots, to give it depth, then fixed the decorated wreath to the cardstock using foam tape, and Voila!  Card 2 done and dusted.

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Card 3 was made using the same cardstock as card 1 – the deep dark blue, with the musical score printed on it.  Two die cut snowflakes adorn this card.  One large, and one small,  along with a length of silvery balls, onto which I threaded a silver bead, and glued it in place on the length of silver balls using Tonic Glue.  Whilst that was drying I fixed the largest of the snowflakes in place …

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…  and added three little red gems to the middle of it, to give the card a nod of a third colour.

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Then added the second, smaller snowflake, which was die cut from holographic card, and twinkled like crazy.  I added a little clear gem to the middle of this snowflake, to give it an added dimension.

Finished the card off with the ‘Merry Christmas‘ greeting and this was then Card number 3 ticked off the list.

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The fourth card …  I love this background!  All those fabulous little Christmas Trees, with the great big star on the top, complete with the baubles.  Love it!

Using a rule, I drew lines with a thicker nibbed embossing pen all around the card, and using Tonic Silver embossing powder, I embossed those lines.

Then taking a square of velum, I embossed the edges of the card with a frosty looking Dtsilver Embossing Powder and then did the same thing on the edges of a die cut and embossed Christmas Tree.

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Using foam tape, I mounted the tree onto the velum, and fixed the velum and tree to the cardstock.  I wanted a silver star for the top of the tree, but sadly couldn’t find one big enough,  in the end I chose this lovely blue pearly star, which looks slightly different in colour in the photos, but it’s nearer in colour to the blues in the card background.

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And that was card 4 ticked off the list!  Now onto card 5 …

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For this final card, I chose to make another snowflake card, but this time on a different background, and with a more complicated snowflake as the main attraction.

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I’ve tried to capture the various layers of this snowflake but have failed miserably.  Because it’s cut from holographic paper and card, it twinkles madly, and I’ve tried taking photographs with the flash, without the flash, with the spotlights, without them, with and without a desk lamp and all sorts of combinations, I couldn’t find the right one to show you all the layers, so I’m afraid you’ll  just have to imagine them showing up – for they are there in that photo above!

And that, was a big tick against quick and simple card number 5.

Normal service of cards which need a box or a security guard, will be resumed as soon as possible – dependant upon how this darned infection behaves on these new drugs.  Hopefully I’ll be up and running at a more reasonable speed on Friday, when we have the regular ‘Things I’ve Learned This Week‘ post, where I share with you the stuff life has taught me during the last seven days.  (I already have a list made,  and I think you might enjoy this list …  and get a few laughs out of it at the same time).

In the meantime …  do me a great big favour and spread a little joy about your home and your neighbourhood.  Do something lovely which will make someone else smile.

How about using a piece of chalk and leaving little messages on the pavement (sidewalk) for other people to see, read, and smile about.  What would you say?  How about “Hello!” for starters?  Or: “You have a beautiful smile“,  or maybe  “Hello Beautiful!“.  Just say something you know would tickle you if you saw it chalked on the pavement.

Or .. maybe make someone’s birthday extra special …  don’t buy them flowers or chocolates, buy them something they may never have received before … balloons!  A bunch of  Helium balloons, chosen just for them, by you, and either deliver them yourself or have them delivered if you can’t get to them.  They’re a reminder of childhood, and seem to make everyone smile.  So give it a try.  (Even if it’s not their birthday … if you want to make them smile, then send them a bunch of helium balloons.  It will make their day!)

And . . .  for you;   I wish you a thoroughly tip-top Thursday!  May the day bring you smiles and at the end of your day, may you look back over the hours and realise that you’ve had a really O.K. kind of day, in a thoroughly good way.  May you have found something wonderful to smile about today.

Be careful out there … oh ….  and ….  be good to each other.

love and squidges ~

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things-i-learned-blackboard-25th-november-2016-copy

Things I’ve Learned This Week.

Happy Friday!  Last Friday of November this year.  You know what that means, don’t you?  …….  It means that ‘thing’ is upon us.  Yes…  Christmas is only four weeks and one day away!  But don’t panic – we have ages yet.  29 days in fact. (not including today and Christmas day of course).   Ages!  Just remember to put your sprouts on a low light by the end of this month and you’ll be fine!  (I think British readers might understand that little joke about ourselves,  more than anyone else understands it).

But let us put away thoughts of Christmas and instead turn our attentions to Friday, because, after all, that’s what we’re here for!

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Shall I share with you what I’ve learned this week?  Do you have your seat belt on?  Ready?  Steady?  GO!

This week I’ve learned:   That The founder of match.com, Gary Kremen, lost his girlfriend to a man she met on match.com!  How embarrassing, but fantastic is that?  It’s sad, but it proves that the site actually works.

I also learned: The sun’s core is so hot that a piece of it the size of a pinhead would give off enough heat to kill a person 160 kilometres (over 99 miles) away.  Can you believe that?  A tiny piece like that?  WOW!

I learned this week that the shortest war ever fought was between Britain and Zanzibar on August 27, 1896. Zanzibar surrendered after 38 minutes.  (You can read about this if you want to find out what this was all about, HERE)

I learned a very important lesson this week,  that being:  … Medically –  you shouldn’t ever ignore a symptom.  If something isn’t quite right or doesn’t seem or feel right, you should get yourself to your Doctor and not hang about.  Hanging about can make a problem worse.  So look here you lot!….  Do as I say, not as I do!

Oooooo  . . .   This one tickled the heck out of me:-

I learned this week that until 1913,  children in America could legally be sent by parcel post.  I can’t see a problem with this.  It’s an economical way of travelling and I think we should all do it!   I bet it would be cheaper than buying an air ticket!  (nooo… I’m only joshing with you! lol)

Ohhh, and this one sent me off on a totally different thought pattern  .. Did you know that if you drilled a tunnel straight through the Earth and jumped in, it would take you exactly 42 minutes and 12 seconds to get to the other sideAgain … another cheap way of travelling.  I think Walt Disney ought to look into this.  They could make it into the ‘Worlds Biggest Slide’, and charge people to experience Time Travel just by buying a ticket to: ‘Travel on the World Slide‘.  We could all visit Australia (or wherever the other side of the world is for you where you live) just for the day.  Travelling time to go there and back would be just One hour and 24 minutes!   It would be a Walt Disney Spectacular!  (Those Airlines would soon be putting their charges down and bringing back those good old-fashioned seats which gave paying customers leg room and comfort!)

And here’s something I learned this week which I absolutely loved ….  When he enlisted in the army,  J. R. R. Tolkien’s son Michael put down his father’s profession as ‘Wizard’.  Ohhh I love this sooooo much!  It tickled me in just the right place,   I think perhaps because our girls talked it over when they were little and decided, that I was The Magnificent Mad Madam Mim – from the Walt Disney film: The Sword in the Stone.  I don’t think they saw her (at their tender ages) as being an antagonist or wicked person – but more of a slightly crazy but kind of loveable woman who made them giggle.

However  ‘pet’ names sometimes live on, and for daughter No.1who is now approaching her mid 30’s,   I am still and probably forever will be:  “Mim”.

Of course, I always showed mock horror and denied that I was anything like her.  “After all,” I said,  ..  “I don’t have Purple Hair!”.

And finally ….  Friday wouldn’t be Friday if I didn’t share a few jokes with you which I’d learned this week!

What key won’t let you through any doors?  …….  A turkey.

Why do bees hum?  ….  Because they don’t remember the words!

What key would open a banana?   …….  With a monkey!

What’s white and sits on the TV at night?  …. *click and hold the click and roll your cursor over this area here to see the hidden answer →  A fly in her nightie.

It has four legs and it can fly, what is it?  ……. do the same again, click, hold the click and roll your cursor over here → Two Birds!

How can you tell you have an elephant in your bedroom? ……  By the big “E” on his pyjamas.

How do you measure a snake? …..  In inches.  Snakes don’t have feet.

Why did the elephant wear green socks?  …..  Because the red ones were wet.

Why did the elephant swim on his back?  …..  So his green socks wouldn’t get wet too.

What is black and white and waits on the washing line?  ….. find the hidden answer by holding the click and hi-lighting here → A fly in a wedding dress.  ←  (you didn’t see that one coming, did you!  LOL)

Thank you so much for coming and sharing a coffee with me.  This week has been an adventure of learning,  and I’m sure that you’ve learned some stuff this week too.  If you’d care to … I’d love to hear about whatever you’ve learned this week too.  Just tell me in a comment, so that I can come and spend some time in your world too, and see how your ‘education’ has, like mine, grown this week.

This weekend waste some time.  Hard working people never waste time on frivolous fun-filled activities.  Yet, for hard-working people, any time spent this way is far from wasted.   So one of my wishes for you this weekend is to waste some time.  Grab your coat, and a friend or partner or dog or the children, and go out and have some frivolous, fun-filled time doing nothing but enjoying the freedom.  If it’s raining, have a tea party in the house with your little ones, and if you don’t have little ones, then go and visit a friend who does, take some little cakes and biscuits (cookies) which the little ones would love, and tell them you’ve come for a tea party.  Really throw yourself into it.

You’ll be the bestest, most loved, fun-filled uncle/aunty/grammy/granddad etc, etc, that they ever knew,  and you, in turn, will have had one of the most enjoyable few hours, ever!

Of course … if there are no children around to have a tea party with …  then have one with a friend or two!  Make, bake or buy cakes, set the table and get your friends over for a tea party, and just to have some fun.  Of course … you could also have a Beer and cake party if you’re a chap.  Or … how about visiting your parents and taking the tea party idea to them as a surprise?!

May your weekend be blessed with love, smiles and joy.  Be safe out there, and … be nice to each other.

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Of Summer Memories

Hello!  Happy Wednesday.  Wednesdays are such friendly days.  Even the name:  “Wednesday”  – sounds sort of made up.  Giggly.  Silly.  Like it’s not a real name at all, but one that someone inserted into the middle of the week, just to see how gullible we really are, and how many of us would notice.

And while we’re on that subject .. did you know that the word ‘Gullible’ isn’t in the dictionary?  No .. no it’s not.  Go on… I’ll wait here while you check.  …  …  … … … … .. .. . . . . . . . ..  .  [three minutes passes and I hear footsteps coming back down the hall]  . . . . . .  So,  did you check?   Well those of you who believed me …  and either checked in the dictionary which you keep handy there in the house, or those of you who remembered that you’re on a computer and can ask Mr.Google these things, ….  aw, you GULLIBLE lot!

You do know that the rest of us are all having a giggle now, don’t you?   ahh.. but we love you.

Annnyhoo ...  it’s down to business, and todays business is crafting.

I made a quick card which I titled Summer Memories, and I did this because I’m fed up with Christmas coming all too fast.  At today’s date, (23rd Nov.2016)  we have 4 weeks and 3 days until Christmas day arrives.  FOUR WEEKS AND 3 DAYS.  ARRRRGH!!!

It feels like it was only a couple of weeks ago that I was wearing shorts to craft in.  Now I’m wearing my ultra warm jogging pants and a warm top and even, sometimes, a scarf around my neck!  What the DIVIL is going on here people?

So to do something which was totally opposite of Christmas…  I made a little card of Summer Memories.

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I began this card by giving the glass in the door some dimension by using Anita’s 3D Clear Gloss over each pane.  But then, when it was finally dry, it still didn’t feel like memories.  So I thought I’d give it a watery sort of effect – like looking into a pond or something like that, so that it wasn’t all quite so sharp and in focus.

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Once dried, I loved the effect.  It gave you a focus on all the summer bedding plants, but all the other things like the step, door, porch, bricks .. were all in the background, in a sort of soft focus.

I matt and layered the picture then fixed it to the card front, added the title ‘Summer Memories’ onto the bottom of the picture,  and then added four metal corners to draw the eye in towards the photo.  And that’s all there was to it.

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This card made me think about what my favourite memory of this summer was…  and I came to the decision that it was some poppies which grew in our front garden.  Big, bright and beautiful.  Warm almost sparkling red, and smiling.  When I pulled my car onto the drive I could see them growing against the wall, and I would sit for a moment, smiling at them.  They almost seem to talk to each other in whispers, and I imagined that they had soft, gentle little voices, and one, I imagined, had a lisp. Yes … those Poppies will be my chosen memory to share of Summer just gone.

What about you?  What memory of Summer just gone would you like to share?  Do tell.

Have a wonderful Wednesday.  Don’t get stressed or annoyed.  Just let the day flow over you and keep a pocketful of joy in your heart, which you can dip into all day long.

I hope today brings you a few smiles along the way.  Be nice to each other.

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Things I’ve Learned This Week!

Happy Friday all. We’ve survived another week!

But .. I seemed to wake on Monday morning and by the time I’d showered, got dressed and done my hair, it was Friday!  Someone is stealing time and I’m going on a mission to find the beastly boy who’s doing this!  (It’s a boy.  I know it’s a boy.  Don’t ask me how, I just feel it,  and I know it’s a boy).

Shall we dive into my diary and find out what I’ve learned and am wiser because of, this week?  Seat belts on, I’m unlocking the fancy lock on the cover of my diary ...ready?  …. in we go   . . .

I learned this week  . . .  that I have too many clothes and I don’t wear half of them. Now just stop and think about what I’ve just said.  Chaps … this is a gal talking and she’s just said she’s got too many clothes.  Yup, you read it rightGirls …  I’ve just told all your men that a girl can have too many clothes.  When your man points this out to you remember to say:  “Yes but that’s Cobs, and her husband is a millionaire.”  I’m only giving you that ‘get out clause’  so that you don’t hate me for telling the chaps that I have too many clothes.  (N.B.  Mr.Cobs isn’t a millionaire.  I have access to his wallet, his pockets, our bank account is joint,  and … I’ve had up every floorboard in this place and found nothing.  Definitely NOT a millionaire.)

I’ve learned this week  that there is only one particular Christmas Advertising Video this year which makes me cry.

Here in the UK  (from mid November’ish’)  various different (big) companies release their Christmas videos and it’s become a bit of a thing to try to out-do the other companies for the best video.  Normally, it’s John Lewis who win hands down.  They make some really magical Christmas videos which melt my (and an awful lot of others) hearts.  However this year, their video just makes me howl with laughter and joy.

BUT …  there is one video which seems to (at the moment) have passed by unnoticed by some folks here, but for me, it’s the one which turns me into a big girly wreck, crying, sniffing, dabbing with a tissue and wanting to watch it again – even though I know it will make me cry all over again.  (I’ve so far watched it six times, and after each one, I’ve cried like a baby).  I have to share this one with you.  Guys might not ‘get it’ … but I’m pretty certain that most ladies will….  –   it’s only just over a minute long  (and totally child safe in case you have one of those in the room with you) 

So…  are you crying?  Did it make you cry? ….  Almost cry?  …  Not cry at all???

I’ve also learned this week .…  that some Craft Companies expect their customer to be clairvoyant when they don’t send you an item which is clearly shown on a delivery note, which they’ve enclosed in the parcel along with all the other items you ordered at the same time.

Customers are apparently expected to automatically know  that because these companies haven’t included *that* item in the parcel,  it’s not that they’ve forgotten to pack it in with the rest of the order,  but that they’re waiting for it to come back into stock.  And when you phone them up to tell them who you are, what the order number was, and which item it is which is missing,  their attitude is as if you should have known in the first place and you’re wasting their time by phoning.

This forces me to ask …  EXACTLY  HOW  DIFFICULT  IS  IT –  to simply write on the delivery note:  “To Follow” or words to that effect?

CRAFT COMPANIES  take note:  …  I’m going to begin naming and praising very soon, the companies which I’ve shopped at, or with,  which have given me good or excellent service.

BUT   I’m also going to begin naming and shaming  those companies who need to pull their socks up;  buck up their act;  or generally  GET WITH THE PROGRAMME!

Give good service, get more custom.  Give poor service, customers will shop elsewhere. It’s as simple as that.

Crafters chat to other crafters,  face to face, social media or on their Blogs,  and they share their experiences with and of particular companies.  Don’t lose out on free advertising by giving crafters bad service.

I’ve also learned this week …  That a crafter shouldn’t ever think that they’re great at something just because they’ve been doing it for a while. Even crafters who have been crafting for longer than they care to admit to being alive,  can still be the complete opposite of a genius  and burn her fingers on the bally heat gun;  cover herself in ink which won’t wash off and makes her hands and nails look like she’s a potato farmer with no shovel;   and moves things around in her craft room to make it easier for herself,  then can’t find the blasted things she’s moved when she needs them a day after she moved the blasted things in the first &£%*>^  place!!!

And that same Crafter can suddenly remember at 10pm one night that she needs a particular type of card for the following day,  then frantically goes through everything she has in her craft room trying to find inspiration and at 11.20pm finally gives up, telling herself she’ll look in the morning,   knowing all the time that she may as well just go to the shop and buy whatever they have  because she’s obviously a simpleton with a noodle for a brain and she’ll never be able to make anything ever again so she might as well sell all her equipment in her craft room right now damn it and be done with it!

…… clunk.  screeeeeech.  clunk.  [sound soapbox being put away]

I’ve also learned  that people are some of the nicest things God invented.

When you give people a reason to be lovely, they will (more often than not), be lovely.  When you give them a reason to care, they will (more often than not) care.  When you show them a need which you have to get them involved in praying for someone they maybe have never met before, don’t know and haven’t even heard of that particular persons blog before …  These people will see that their own prayer or ‘wish’ or hope,  could be the one that makes the difference and will pray, or wish, or hope and push that feeling out into the ether.  And they’ll show their support by leaving a few words for that person to read so that they see that they’re not alone.  People care.  People care enough to make an effort for a person they don’t even know.  People care enough to try.  People are hoping. Wishing.  Praying,  for a positive outcome.

I hope it’s ok for me to let you know, and I don’t think that she’ll mind me sharing with you   ….  I had a very short email chat with Michelle today and she said: …  “the outpouring of love and support meant so much, and came at perhaps my lowest point”.

Thank you to those wonderful people who left her a message of support,  who prayed,  who wished,  and/or hoped.  Each and every one of you made a difference.  Sometimes, just knowing that people are rooting for you, praying for you, wishing you well … or are just on your side, is all it takes to give someone the strength to keep on keeping on.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading and doing what you did.  (If you left a message for her on her blog and it hasn’t appeared yet, it isn’t that you’ve been forgotten, things are getting done as and when they can be, as you would expect).  

But from me,   many, many thanks xxx  Bless you all. How brilliant you are.  I love you. 

And … finally…

Since I always try to leave you with something funny to smile about …. 

I mentioned a few paragraphs ago about the John Lewis Christmas Video for this year which makes me laugh ….  I share it with you here  (don’t fret, it’s only a little over two minutes long – and again, totally child safe)

 

…..  and in case that wasn’t quite enough . . .

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And a few silly but funnies …  ….

Q: Why can’t you give Elsa a balloon?
A: Because she will . . . Let it go.  Let it go.
Q: Who earns a living driving their customers away?
A: A taxi driver
Q: Where do bees go to the bathroom?
A: At the BP station!
Q: What do you call security guards working outside Samsung shops?
A: Guardians of the Galaxy.
Q: What do you get from a pampered cow?

A: Spoiled milk.

Q: What do you call a belt with a watch on it?
A: A complete waist of time

Well, that’s me done and dusted.  I’ve fessed up, taught you what life and taught me, and given you some jokes to make you smile.  Yes, the oldies are the besties.
Have a truly wonderful Friday, whatever you’re doing.  May the wind blow a little softly, if it has to blow at all.  May the rain be gentle, if it has to rain.  And may your day be filled with happiness and smiles, dotted throughout the hours.   Be kind to someone today.  Say something nice.  Admire their shoes.  Like their hair.  Tell them they’ve lost weight (even if they haven’t – insist that you think they have, just a little).  Let’s do it to them before they do it to us.  (be kind that is).

See you next time.  In the meantime,  I’m sending squidges,  to you there in your corner,  from me here in mine.

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Something I wish to share with you

I don’t normally make two blog posts in one day, but this is important, so I am.

I know that when you want to share a blog post which someone else has made on their own blog, you can do a little gizmo thing to share their post with your own followers.  So yes, I do know I can do that.  However, in this circumstance, I don’t want to do that, and the reason for this might become clear when you read this ‘story’.

A dear blogging friend, Michelle, has been going through a really heart aching time of recent.  In the last 6 months Michelle has had her youngest Son, just three years old, go through surgery;   Her young daughter (aged just 7) had to go through heart surgery;  and since August  1st  her eldest son has been very, very poorly indeed and is in hospital.

Yesterday Michelle posted this:

When Tears Become A Way Of Life

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Sometimes, tears become normal because life can be hard. So very, very hard.

The photo above is the view from my son’s hospital room. His illness first started on August 1st and he is still desperately sick. He now has post surgical meningitis and his pain is immense. Tears are never far from my eyes as I watch, helpless to ease his suffering. But do you know what he does?

He sings praise.

His spinal column and brain are filled with bacteria and pain, but he sings praise.

His hope has never grown dim and yesterday, when he could barely speak and was going in and out of delirium, he said to me

“Mom, I love you. Never lose faith.”

 Can you imagine? In the midst of his suffering, he was encouraging me. Tears still come, but I wipe them away and carry on for him because if he can be that strong, so can I.

To all of my wonderful readers, customers and team, I have been pretty missing in action due to all of this. Thank you for sticking by me. I have so many Stampin’ Up! things I need to share with you, but they have to wait because my boy needs me. Thank you for your support, your business and your understanding, and thanks for stopping by today.

Many of you have shared your own stories of personal health struggles or watching loved ones suffer, and some of you have even recently lost those closest to you. My heart is with each of you who have shared. If you are in the middle of a season of tears, my message to you is the same as my son’s:

Friend, I love you.

Never lose faith.

Michelle

Michelle is the most incredible person.  She’s a very soft and gentle girl, – and if you’d have been at school with her, you know you’d have protected from any bully, and made sure she knew she was fantastic, whatever someone else might say, and quite possibly thumped anyone who hurt her.  (no matter how much a scaredy cat you actually are.  – or is that just me I’m talking about here? lol).  But she’s built of sturdier stuff than I, for I think I would have caved in under the weight of what she’s had to bear.  She amazes me with her positivity and ability to keep going long after others would have been on the floor.

So, why am I here sharing blog post with you?  Well, I have a favour to ask.  Would you please go to Michelle’s blog page and post a message for her?

If you pray, would you tell her that you’re praying for her son?

If you don’t pray –  that’s fine  …  tell her that you’re thinking positive thoughts and pushing your hopes and wishes out into the world.  That way those good wishes and hopes and thoughts can join up with all the other people who are doing the same thing, and make one great big positive, thought, prayer, love and … oh lots of other things.  And together,  all those things make something so powerful and so good and, who knows ….  maybe out of this could come something wonderful which we’re all hoping for.

The reason I didn’t want to do that gizmo ‘share’ of her post is because to do so seems wrong.  The blog post, on this occasion, should stand alone, out of a deep respect for her and her family and the situation they are in right now.  I didn’t want Michelle being notified that someone had shared her post on their own blog.  There’s something wrong in doing that.  Somehow it felt like a tacky thing to do.

But … If however you yourself have followers that you would like to encourage to visit Michelle’s blog and post something truly uplifting and which will give her an even greater hope that something good is happening,  then that would be brilliant – and yes, you can do the quote of this blog postI don’t mind.

You can visit   Michelle’s blog post HERE.

When the page loads (in another window) scroll all the way down to leave a comment for her.

I thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for posting words of encouragement on her blog;  showing her your support;  telling her that you’re praying;  or telling her that you’re thinking of her son and the family, and pushing good thoughts out into the ether, wishing and hoping that her sons health improves soon, and that he’s back home, fully recovered as soon as possible.

Thank you to all the wonderful people of blog land.  Praying or Wishing or Hoping may seem like only be a little thing for you to do  … but all those little things add up and eventually they become something BIG.   And sometimes, all those little things bundled up together contain miracles that can amaze you.  Those things really can make incredible things happen.  They can change the world.  Or a boy’s life.

As Arthur Conan Doyle said:  “the little things are infinitely the most important.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

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A Sunny Hello!

Hello.  Happy Wednesday all!  Did you see the BIG MOON a couple of nights ago?  We couldn’t see even the glimmer of it where we are.  The sky was SO cloudy that it hid that  moon totally!  Monday’s moon event was billed as the biggest and best moon in a series of three ‘Supermoons’ this year.  The first was on October 16, the second was Monday,  and the third is due on December 14.  Afer that there isn’t going to be another till 2034.

↑  An aeroplane flies past the London Eye on Sunday.   Credit: TOBY MELVILLE

The Moon rising beyond the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, Great Britain. Credit- Peter MacDiarmid

↑  A jet flies in front of the moon on its approach to Heathrow airport in west London    Credit: ADRIAN DENNIS

Anyhoooo . . .   enough mooning around, let’s get crafty…

About ten days ago (or so,  – I’ve totally lost track of time) I made a card to send to a fabulous fellow blogger in a wee parcel I was sending to her, so couldn’t post about it here on the blog, until I knew for sure that she’d received it otherwise it would have spoilt the surprise!  But I know it’s safely arrived and so can now share the card.

It was one of those lovely, enjoyable to make, quick to pull together cards that seemed to almost make itself.  I knew I wanted to send a warm smile and visual hug – and as I was sat there trying to summon up what a smile and a hug would look like on a card –  suddenly the Sunflowers I’d seen at the supermarket when I walked through the door a couple of days previously popped into my mind.  They’d me smile instantly when I walked into the store and I even commented on them to Mr.Cobs.  They kind of welcomed me in and made me feel all warm and snuggly so what better ‘thing’ could I put on a warm, sunny Hello card from me, but Sunflowers!

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Closer up of the Sunflowers

For the centres of the sunflowers I used a lovely warm shade of brown, and on some of the petals I added Tonic Studios Nuvo crystal drops in two colours – a pretty lemon and a slightly more warm orange colour. I also added some pale green to the leaves, but to give the leaves a little ‘movement’ I sprinkled a little green Wow glitter so that it added shade and highlights in the right places as the card was moved.

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Photo taken with no flash & just light from the window

I added two lots of three pearls – bottom left and top right, then some seeds in random places;  along with some ‘leaves’ flying around the card, as if whipped up by a passing breeze,  and finally the little envelope for which I made a folded tag for the envelope, on which I wrote a story about the meaning of the Sunflower.  Then,  once the sentiment of ‘hello’ was added, the card was finished and ready to go!

And that, as they say, is all there is!

Wishing you a truly wonderful Wednesday.  Play safely.  Be nice to each other, and … if you can … pray for the next person you see. (or push a wish out of your head/heart, into the world.  Hoping for something good for that person).

Have a blessed day my friends ~

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