Friday, 2 December 2011

Skin care

I've always been blessed with fairly okay skin, certainly softer and less wrinkled than I deserve after a life of not actually looking after it, but recently I've been plagued with dumb spots and general dullness, so I decided to try an oil based cleansing routine. 

I have an atypical T-Bar skin, dryish on the sides, and a greasy forehead, nose and chin combination that isn't unusual so the idea of plunging oil on my face was one that filled me with trepidation.  I'd definitely recommend it though, only two days in and this 'at-home facial' has left my skin feeling fuller, more taut yet softer and it has a nicer glow while retaining a mostly matt finish!

I decided, for my own edification, as well as anyone else who's watching, to conduct an experiment so after two days I look like this

Please ignore the enormous plook on my forehead, the one at the side of my right eye socket and the scarring of a very recent cold sore on my lower lip.  I'm hoping with this regime it may eradicate this all together!

My daily routine consists of massaging in a small amount of a mix of sweet almond and light olive oils, then steaming with a (very very) hot cloth (as many applications as you feel the need for).  A few hot, 'squeezed out til it's dry' cotton wool pads are then dabbed on all over the skin, with another 'hot as you can stand it' wrung out cloth applied over the face, finished off with a 'cold as you can stand it' cloth - It is recommended that the water is changed out regularly, so I refresh the sink between the first cloth and the cotton wool, and again before the final hot cloth.  It takes about 5-10 minutes all told, and my skin tingles, glows and 'pinks' like a cooling engine for about an hour afterward, and never feels greasy. There are no chemicals, scents (though you could add an essential oil if you liked) and there isn't any requirement for additional toner or moisturiser!

This is day two, and I'm amazed at the results, and have swapped the 'first thing in the morning' for a later in the evening regime.  In the morning I just dampen a cotton wool pad and dab at the sleep and anything else that looks tatty, with the evening getting the full attention.

The idea of blogging about it is twofold, I may actually manage to continue this as planned on a daily basis so it becomes routine, and I may encourage others to try it! 

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Normal Service

will resume shortly!  Well, what passes for normal around here.  Still working, getting a bit of hassle back and forth, and reaching the end of my tether!  Piper seems to pick up one thing after another at nursery and after walking down with another couple of messmakers one of whom had a stinking cold (mummy informed me she was fine, she's on antibiotics.... *eyeroll*) she's off nursery again! 

I've been crafting my socks off to try and build up stock for a fair on 10th December, at the Dobbie Hall in Larbert - Sigrid, Lisa and I are trying our hand at getting ourselves out there! Having done this in the past with only jewellery I admit that I was a bit hesitant when Lisa proposed this ... but now, I'm excited, as well as anxious as a very anxious thing suffering from a panic attack!

I made a prototype crayon roll which will be a Santa present for Piper, as the design needs a good tweaking before I'm happy with it.

I have mosaic and button covered photo frames, fridge magnets, pomanders, phone pouches and bags to sell - and was thinking of having a bash at some handscrub as well, but we'll see.  I will also make some tablet, as I am making some for the nursery as well as some for work! Today, I finally popped some crayons out their moulds.  I was indifferent about the results as the crayons I'd used weren't the best quality and as suspected, the pigment separated from the wax ... however, once I'd rubbed my hands with a dab of olive oil and massaged it into the crayons I'm rather pleased with the finished articles! :)

A bientot! :D

Monday, 14 November 2011

Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr

"plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose"

you can change how a person conducts himself, you can make him delete his facebook profile, and cut himself off from his friends and family, even those who love and cherish him, but you cannot change the past, nor how he conducts himself out of your sight at that point you have to trust him, if you cannot trust him perhaps it isn't a relationship worth pursuing.

The father of my two boys can be the most annoyingly self centred man, who has lived and operated as a bachelor his entire life, but he deserves someone who will take him for who he is, past, present and future as he can also be the sweetest guy when he puts his mind to it.

You may be able to tell him how to run his life, but you will not change me or my approach to life, not here on the internet, not in this world or the next so if you have a problem with the existence of me and mine, you will have to learn to deal with it.  One way would be to stop reading this blog ...

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Lazy Sunday Afternoon

Well the sun is shining, and the misty foggy conditions have cleared today.  Wish my head felt the same.... Piper's sinuses seem to also be fugged up as her wee cheeks are aflame and she's awfully clingy, so that's a fine excuse to dabble in little crafts whilst sitting on't sofa with the bub.  Stuarty is upstairs watching youtube videos of some bloke named Simon who is playing Minecraft ... I cannot think of anything more boring than listening to this guy drone on whilst he plays the game and you merely watch!  But I'm allowing him as his big brother is away to rugby with their Dad and he's feeling at a loose end.  Doesn't help his friends all seem to go visiting on a Sunday so there's no one to pal around with.  Taede is off to Colin's to take him out in our new car...

Here's a piccy of the vehicle - it's a Citroen C5 with bells and whistles, as well as the more usual car features.  Currently it's showing up all sorts of sensor readings that just can't be true, so Colin and Taede are going to run a proper diagnostic on it.  According to P'Shep at work (who used to apprentice for the local dealer before it shafted him good and proper) it's more likely to be the sensors being faulty ...

I also got Taede to return Lisa's cuttlebug to her, as I've had it a week and not used it to its full potential ... am very tempted to ask Santa for one! I selected buttons for matching pairs of hairclips and have sewn them together ready to attach to the clips ... it's more time consuming than I anticipated, but I did find inspiration in the thread I selected, look out for this colour combo at some point for me!

I received my goodies too, and should really be taking a photo of them but duty calls, Ewan is coming home from rugby early with a sore head - I'm assuming it's a headache and not a head injury ... I think they'd have said on the phone, but you never know!

Last weekend was the festival tournament hosted at their home club.  The team did very well, again, working cohesively and making intelligent play.  Ewan excelled himself too, with many of his plays setting up perfect tries - I was again so very very proud of all the boys (of course Ewan the most but that's just a Mum's job, right? :) )

And it all paid off - they won their gold, at long last and oh so much sweeter to win it on home turf and be presented their medals by Ben Cairns!  Ewan, amongst other boys got his shirt signed, and came away euphoric!  I'll admit to being a little high myself! ;)

Thursday, 3 November 2011

posting and running

Just a quickie, been a busy time of late - always something going on even if it is just the kids being ill!  Can't believe it's November already - hope you all had a suitable Samhain/Halloween/All Hallow's Eve ...

I have been very lucky of late in the beady stakes ...

This piece was entered into O:TTBS Monthly Moodboard and I was lucky enough to be picked at random to win this awesome haul ... yup, I'm waiting to mug the postie! ;)

This month's Bead Buddies colours begin with K, Kiwi, Kahki and Kohl ... (which I was brought up to think of as cabbage, so thought it was another green, but it is kohl for your eyes ... The colours reminded me of a kiwi fruit but it wasn't until Bead and Banter with the fab input from Mary Marshall that I was encouraged to make a slice of kiwi!  Several aborted attempts later, I managed to produce this. 

Which led me onto this month's moodboard challenge for O:TTBS - red and green ... now how do you do something in red and green at this time of year and not fall into the Christmas trap?  Answer - you make a watermelon! :)

Hope you have enjoyed a foray into my beady world at the moment, though there are other things I could and should be showing, like this scarf,the bag or these hair clips! :)

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Quick 'n' Dirty

I find making earrings to be rather inspirational, or at least a dirty little kick start to one's mojo ... so I just had to say count me in to the Day & Night Earring Swap on O:TTBS.

I finished my earrings last week but panicked as I didn't have anything packaging wise to send them to my partner, Gill Hardbattle.  At work last Thursday night I discovered Asda sell boxes, which is fab! I packaged them up ready and hopeful Taede would post them out, and he did! Yay! My relief has been shortlived however as I received mine from Gill yesterday but as yet, Gill hasn't got mine! Noooo! Boooo!Of course I utterly forgot to take photos!

Gill makes delightful stuff and should definitely be proud of her talent!  Here are the beauties - I need to point out  that Sigrid was here when I opened the package and snaffled the crackley drops!

So, forlorn, I turned to the bead mat to make replacements for the lost ones.  As I was at Mum's we talked as I worked and after I made a sort of copy of one pair (spot the deliberate mistake), Mum suggested that it might be an idea to make totally different earrings in case the first lot miraculously turn up!  Quite sensible really!  I dug out some silver hoops and started to brickstitch around it ... I'm pleased with the result though I didn't risk not taking photos as the light was good today and who knows when it will be again! I am working on the other one now so Gill won't have to rock the pirate/Van Gogh look.  The other pair I made from two of the felt balls Marina sent me for being the lucky commentator on her Bead Soup Blog Party post! I even made my own earwires! :)

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Moving along

Short snappy update, as it's been a while.  Well, I've beaded a little more of late since the Big Bead Soup Blog Party, which was a blast to have been part of.  But all those blogs, and so many inspirational pretties!  It was difficult to get around everything, and some pieces really wowed me!

I was very lucky to have had my name picked from a hat after commenting on this very talented artist's blog. SavonFeutré showcases such a wonderful talent with pieces that are just gorgeous, and so I was delighted to be the winner of this beautiful soup

I've also been entering another couple of competitions, one of which is to design a charm bracelet kit for The Bead Shop Scotland, the monthly colour challenge at Bead Buddies and also this month's Moodboard Challenge over at Operation:Tackle That Bead Stash.  So busy!  Got some phone cover orders, had a couple of sales through Folksy and discovered a brill little online marketplace at Tosouk which has no fees or strings by the looks of things! :) 

I also picked up some material from the Salvation Army shop in Falkirk, and have teamed up with Sigrid and Lisa to start up a stall at a local Craft Fair. All in all things are looking exciting! :) 

Family news has Ewan in the spotlight as rugby is upon us again - today was a tournament at Linlithgow, and our boys in all primaries did very well, with P4 winning their tournament, Ewan's team mates played out their skins as a team and through their heats and the semi final did not conced a single try against them.  They played Watsonians in the final and held them to a very hard fought single try win.  We are all so very proud of them, playing cohesively as a team and supporting each other very well both on, and off the pitch.  it was a pleasure and an honour to be on the sidelines encouraging them on ... And a rather spiffy medal too. 

Saturday, 24 September 2011

An Evening on the Town

Just what the doctor probably didn't order, what with antibiotics and still sounding like a seal on the ice floes of ....well, somewhere cold! :)

A very nice steak at the 'Spoons in Falkirk, and fresh orange juice for me (gotta keep that vitiman C uptake going) .. then on to the Scotia for the karaoke.  I was encouraged to join JoJo for Cher's If I Could Turn Back Time and she rocked it, totally rocked it, she sounded amazing :)

The bar was lively, full, even if it was predominantly males that were thronging the bar.  (what is that all about, anyone care to enlighten me?  It's not, erm, a gay bar ... I'm sure) - what I really need to know is why the gentleman in the bar wearing the white tee shirt tapped me in the side (where I'm horrendously ticklish by the by) and then lifted up his tee to reveal a rather ... average stomach actually and the very clean waistband of his Calvin Kleins ... when he didn't get a reaction (because he wasn't actually looking at me at the time) he did it again ....
I was very pleased to see he was proud of his mum's laundry skills - not enough sons take the time to show how much investment their mother's make in them

I particularly liked us (Sigrid and I) winding up the bouncer that we were posh!  Don't think he's ever going to believe you come from Bearsden :)

On the way home it was discussed that we must take afternoon tea at this establishment!
The Blind Pig

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Bead Soup Blog Party

Huzzah! And time to pull those party poppers!  

Thank you firstly to Lori Anderson for all her hard work and for giving me the chance to partake of this party!

Secondly, a BIG thank you to my partner Liz DeLuca who makes the most beautiful beads and shared with me the fruits of her talents!

When I received my beads I was like a child receiving a parcel from Down Under, and upon opening it stunned by their inner sparkle and I'm guessing they're a lot like Liz from the correspondence we've had and her blog posts!

I had sat down earlier in the week and typed a whole post including links for when I uploaded pictures of what I'd made, but it was all on my laptop which I've just packed up and sent away with my 9 year old to his Dad's, complete with SD Card containing said, as yet not uploaded pictures!  I was organised because I work nights Thurs, Fri and Saturday and have a propensity for forgetting stuff at weekends! Sadly, I've actually been off sick this week what with one thing and another (details are boring/icky) so I now have time to post and nothing to hand! Those who know me will laugh as that's typical of me ... As Rabbie Burns once wrote, 'The best-laid schemes o' mice an' men. Gang aft agley' But I have taken some with the mobile and am rather taken with the 70's porno soft focus it has managed to give them!  I will however, return to decorum and add on the original edited photos when I get my lappy back :)

I didn't want to detract from the loveliness of the selection Liz sent, so I went back to my stringing roots. I added very few small ivory frosted crystals to give a little space and lightness, if one thing was transmuted to my hindbrain when I saw the beads was; how the light played through them was important. I've been beading for just over three years and tried a range of different things to keep me learning and soothe the restless beast that is my creative bint ... multipersonalities? check!  I moved ahead from stringing quickly,  wishing to produce more complex and intricate pieces.  And I don't believe I can do 'chunky ' very well.  So this was a challenge on one hand, and a comfort, like Gran's Mac 'n' Cheese, on the other!

I chose to embellish the focal bead with fringing, because I like it, and thought I could try out Lynn Davy's technique.   I'd do it again, but learned several things ... one, crimps are tricky - why did I not remember this?  Two, doing a project like this for public consumption is not the best time to try out a new thread.  Although I am loving the SoNo ... but it has a little bit more stretch to it than I had thought! Three, beading with toddlers around is hazardous to one's mental health!

Here it is, Liz, I hope you think I've done your selection proud, and thank you once again! 

I am retiring to bed now, but rest assured, I will dig out the silverskin opnions and have a couple of martinis later whilst browsing through all the wonerful Bead Soup Party Blogs!

If you are in a partying mood and not yet had the chance to sign up, please do the next time, and snuffle along the trail to the many, way more talented than I artists! xx

Edited To Add - original photos ...

I think these are possibly more 'true' in colour represetation :)

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

well, the day is nearly upon us and for a change I've been ready for a few days, with my piece made for the Bead Soup Blog Party ... I can't wait for the reveal!  I hope Liz DeLuca had as much fun with the beads as I did with mine!  I was more than a little relieved to learn that mine had arrived safe and sound! after this post last week!

Djinn Rummy: Tenterhooks?

Here's hoping that Liz isn't offended by what her beautiful beads have been turned into! 

Thursday, 8 September 2011

The week that was

where did that 7 days go? A blur of work, rugby, social outings and crafting!

My washing machine has gone on the frit again, but at least is covered by warranty.  That was the good news, the bad news being it will be tomorrow now, before an engineer (called Tom) will visit (between 8am and 2pm) to fix it.  I hope he fixes it good and proper as we seem to have three loads every couple of days.  Mum has been a brick letting us use her machine but that tends to lead to visits on a daily basis where lunch is consumed, then you hang around to go pick up the boys instead of going home, which leads to nothing much getting done around the house!

Bead and Banter on Tuesday night was, as ever, a blast. I was quite productive for a change, and can only reveal one item as the other is for the Bead Soup Blog Party!

The rest of the time I've been bag making, pouch making and a hat now as well.  The idea didn't execute as well as I had hoped, as the fur was a lot thicker to sew than expected and the presser foot didn't like me much after it!  Next time I shall make a double length of fleece so it is only fleece at the top and fold the fur up. I would also use a single strip, instead of trying to make the most of the fur fabric I had, and accidentally sewing one segment upside down! :) Still, looks like the recipient liked it :)

The bags I made for myself, a handbag to match my outfit on Monday as I was off out with the girls for a late lunch! :) The next day I whipped up a tote to cart my beady projects to and from Bead and Banter, complete with keyholder. Today, whilst out shopping (at a local charity boutique!) the manageress approached me and asked if I would make bags for them from their fabric - the stuff they get donated that may have a mark on it, or a tear that can't be sold.  She's meeting with me next week to discuss terms etc, but she's hopeful I can be paid for my time - or they pay a small fee per bag and they add a mark up. And of course - they'll promote my bags and other bits and bobs as well.  I'm fairly happy at that, I never thought I'd make it on to the High Street! ;)

Monday, 5 September 2011


I'm on them .... isn't it strange the saying we have? :)

I received my Bead Soup Blog Party beads from Liz Deluca, and have to say the pictures I have taken just don't do them justice.  Having them in your sweaty little mitts is just divine, to turn them over (and over and over...etc) to see the shimmer and sparkle has become a daily past-time :) I have to thank Liz greatly for her generous spirit and for her attention to detail in the presentation.  I am on tenterhooks, awaiting news of delivery of my beads to her... I'm worrying because of the vagaries of international post, hoping they survived the journey and herald the return of spring/summer to the southern hemisphere.

I can't even recall if I took pictures of the beads I sent, having been in such a rush to actually post them out!

Hopefully they'll arrive soon! *prays*

Here, for your eye candy, is some photos of the beauties I am lucky enough to receive :)

and I know what I want to do with them too! :) I may even get it done tomorrow night at Bead and Banter