When you make a conscious choice to be happy, no one can take it away from you because no one gave it to you: you gave it to yourself.

A quote from April Green's - Bloom For Yourself Journal

Wednesday 29 February 2012

WOYWW 143 - Happy Wednesday

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Well I must say I enjoyed my trip around the world visiting all your desks and spaces last week. It takes me a few days, but Blogger allowing, I get there and am thrilled when you pop by my desk, and I must say Thank you for all the lovely comments that have been left over the last few weeks. They really do lift me.

So today I thought I'd not only show you my desk, but also let you have a peek at my room.

To start here's the view from the door.
I even resisted the urge to tidy up before I took these photos, I know some of you can't believe how tidy I am but I wanted to show you I do make some mess......see look closely, there's bits on the floor!

Looking around the room you see
 My laptop desk and specialised chair. The chair was made to order for me; it has many adjusting features and helps me to be able to sit. The chair material is flexible but supportive to fold around my back, which is twisted along with my ribcage. The chair also moves to propel me forwards so helping me to stand. It wheels nicely between my two desks.

 The tower with all my Craft CD-ROMs in and my printer which is always covered with paper and diary.
 My window sill and, of course, my shelves.

 The bookcase with all my inks, sprays, paints, pens, and jars full of flowers and obviously, my Cuttlebug.  In the baskets on the middles shelf are embossing folders, and that pink folder is home to my dies.

Under my desk is my Ultimate pro and Maxi Clevercut plus lots of A3 storage folders with various papers, sheets, sentiments etc.

And finally this is what's hiding behind the door

Lots and lots of books! Once, before craft took over, the room was like a reading room with bookcases along the walls, but then the craft came in and, well, pushed the books out.  One of these bookcases will be moved downstairs eventually. I need more storage and space for crafty stuff!

On the wall above my laptop are some postcards & pictures from Paris, and my Bristol Rovers calendar. In the frame is my degree certificate from the Open University(well the basic one, the one with the honours is in the living room!). The list under the frame is fixtures for Rovers where I record the results!

So my desk today

Last week I had a mammoth stamping session so over the last few days I've been colouring and making cards. You can see one of the stamped sheets which I'm in the middle of colouring fully and some papers that I've chosen to go with the images. 

This is where the image that is missing ended up, on the first Christmas card I've made this year!

I'm trying to be good and choose the papers first so that I can colour the image to compliment though I have a habit of just grabbing my Spectrum Noir pens and colouring away before realising I have no matching papers! Of all the pens that I have, I find my Speccies the easiest pens for me to hold.

I'm sorry to say there are no additions to the button collection this week.  My Dad hasn't eaten enough sauce for me to have the jar yet.  Some of you have asked what sauce comes in these jars.  It's from Tesco's and is their finest Tartar sauce in the smallest jar. My dad is Coeliac so can't have anything with gluten. He can't have the larger sized versions as the preservatives in them contain gluten. These little jars are perfect for my buttons. Can't beat a bit of recycling.

Anyway if you're reading this and thinking what is Zoe going on about, please pop over to Julia's blog The Stamping Ground and see for yourself and maybe you'll be like me and will enjoy being nosey!

Take care Zo xx

Sunday 26 February 2012

How lovely!

Well I've just popped on here to see what you've all been doing this weekend.  I looked at my awaiting comments to find that the lovely Marie has given me the Liebster award. Thank you!

The idea of the Liebster Blog Award is to spread the love from one small blog (under 200 followers) to other small blogs. This helps to spread knowledge and readership.

To accept the award, you must:
1) Link back to the person who gave it and thank them for thinking of you.
2) Post the award to your blog.
3) Give the award to 5 bloggers (with less than 200 followers) that you appreciate and value.
4) Leave a comment on the blogs of the five people you have chosen to let them know.
"Liebster" in German means "dearest", so to carry on the
  Liebster tradition, I am going to pass the award on to 5 people who's blogs have been an inspiration to me and my crafting. 

I have been lucky enough to have been given this award before but never got round to putting it on my blog (forgot to save the image) so now I'm going to do it properly and show it!

Right 5 blogs to award to...hmmmm....this is hard because over the last few weeks I've come across some amazing blogs, especially as I have been taking part in WOYWW. But I think my first will go to 

1) Tracie I met this lovely lady on Twitter & through Crafty Boots DT. Her work is stunning, and I love Tracie's adventure when trying different things like canvases. 

2) My second goes to Sandee I found Sandee's blog by joining in with WOYWW and every week she makes me smile with her pictures. Hmm crocheted/knitted yellow men's'll have to go and see what I mean by visiting her blog and looking through it! 

3) Another find on my WOYWW nose is Vickie at where fun and ink can be found! 

4) This one is for Sheena another WOYWW-er! Fab creations can be found! 

5) This one is for Debs, now I know she has had this award before but she really needs some new followers over at She is one creative lady with words that  inspire me.  So go and look and find out for yourself!

So there you go - please go and have a look at these fab blogs to see why I've chosen them, become a follower and enjoy. 

Take care Zo x

Saturday 25 February 2012

Happy Everything

Hello - what a beautiful sunny afternoon it is. Well it is here!  It's fairly warm in comparison to some recent temperatures, though it's not quite warm enough for me to read up the garden just yet!

I'm sat here with the radio on, Bristol Rovers are away at Rotherham so I will no doubt be shouting at the radio, cheering my boys on.

I thought I'd share a card I've made to give my friend and her husband for their anniversary later next week.

I've used 2 sets of Sheena Douglas's stamps - firstly the church stamp from the sketchy series and the poppies from the Paint fusion range. I've had some lovely comments about my recent card I made for my dad using the poppies in the traditional red.  I saw Sheena mention poppies in different colours such as blue so I researched and found there are definitely blue poppies - Himalayan Poppies! My friends are like me, Bristol Rovers through and through and as such we don't really do red so I wanted to do something different for them.  I wanted a Spring-like card so coloured the stamp to show leaves growing on the tree while still trying to keep a soft tone so the background didn't over take. I used the masking technique once again.

I know some of you are friends with me elsewhere so have seen this but I thought I'd also share a picture with you of the new me! I had my hair cut yesterday and had it chopped off! It was longer at the back but I had it all cut off to a short bob that falls just below my ears and then I had gold/copper streaks put through the dark brown to break up the block colour.  I also picked up new glasses!

The glasses are definitely me, bold, and fun. I love the turquoise animal print on the side arms. Those who visit me for WOYWW will recognise I'm in my craft room! My head is actually covering up my Cuttlebug that's on the top of the unit behind me. I think for the next WOYWW I will show pictures of my whole room as well as my desk. So pop back for that!

Take care and enjoy the rest of the weekend.
Zo xx

Wednesday 22 February 2012

Here we go WOYWW 142

Hello fellow WOYWW-ers or any one else that pops by!

Please pop over to Julia's Stamping Ground to see what I'm on about and, of course, to meet fellow crafty peeps sharing their desks, space, um, and where ever they choose to create!

My desk today

Well this is how I left it yesterday so this is what's greeted me this morning. I'm in the middle of a stamping session. I don't know about you but when I want to colour and create, I get frustrated having to do all the stamping bits first so I often have mammoth stamping sessions and get all the images ready to colour. I'm stamping onto Ultimate graphic paper bought from Polka Doodles. The stamps are mostly from Crafter's Companion's SWALK, Strawberry Kisses ranges but I have stamped some Tilda stamps and even some Christmas images. Oh yes, I plan to get on with the dreaded 'C' word early. But then I say that every year!

The button collection has grown again this week and now white buttons have joined the rest on the shelf. Thank goodness my dad gets through a jar a week of that sauce stuff he has!

Right last week you may remember my desk was covered in printed out sheets. Well I've made a couple of cards with them so I thought I'd show you them too.

These are both from those sheets, and are for my brother, one from my son and the other from me. I love this vintage style and enjoyed distressing, tearing and splattering to create these 2.

Right I'm off to make a coffee before starting my trip around your desks. Yes I visit everyone and try to leave a comment if Blogger let's me that is. But it does take me a few days, I don't sit here for hours at a time you know! Lol

Take care Zo xx

Monday 20 February 2012

Crafty Boots - Food, glorious Food!

Good morning one and all!

Well today sees the next challenge launch over at Crafty Boots so I suggest you go and have a look at the fabulous DT projects and hopefully you'll be inspired to join in!

When I saw the theme was Food, I just knew I wanted to get my Strawberry Kisses stamps out.

Here's the card

I printed out the card companion from the Strawberry Kisses cd rom, then stamped the wonderful image of Pup with his strawberry sundae on to super smooth card. I coloured the image with my Spectrum Noir pens, and then used the Spray & Shine to add the shiny finish to the glass (I created a mask to spray through). I added Glossy accents and other glaze to the strawberries etc.  I also stamped the Yum sentiment and coloured it to match. Then I had great fun arranging the tumbling strawberries and, of course, I added buttons from my ever growing collection!

I really enjoyed making this card, and for those of you who visited me during WOYWW a couple of weeks ago, you may remember I had hidden an image from you all that was going to create a DT project, well this is it!

Take care & enjoy your day.
Zo xxx

Wednesday 15 February 2012

WOYWW 141 - here we are again!

Oooh I'm so late this morning. Well I'm not but it feels like I am. I've already been up to my parents this morning as it's my Dad's 60th birthday, so of course, I had to go and give him his cards and pressies.

Ok my desk this morning is full of printed off sheets, ready for cards I want to make for March Birthdays.

Those of you who have been visiting the last few weeks will notice there are things missing on my desk - my button jars. Well look where they are now....

Yes finally I have had some shelves put up on the wall right next to my desk! And those eagle eyed of you will notice there is another jar of yellow buttons now. The collection is growing!

Anyway last week you all saw the starting of my Dad's card.  My first idea of the acetate overlay didn't work out and do you know, I'm pleased because the final card is so much better.

Here it is for those of you who didn't see my post which featured it.

I'm thrilled with it, and so was my dad when he opened it this morning!

I'm looking forward to visiting you all over the next few days, I managed to visit all of you and left comments on a majority of your posts last week. So thanks for sharing, I'm loving seeing your desks and your work. Thanks to Julia over at The Stamping Ground for hosting our collective creative spaces!

Take care Zo x

Saturday 11 February 2012

Kitchen update!

Good evening! Well today didn't start so well, my stupid legs weren't working properly and I felt so weak and horrible that I had to make the decision not to go and watch my boys (Bristol Rovers) :0( But they did win to cheer me up!

So I've been resting, though I did play a bit with my crafty things while listening to the football commentary. But all this resting gave me chance to sort my kitchen photos to share with you all. So here's a look at my kitchen before, during and how it is now. It's not finished, still grouting and sealing to do and obviously it needs redecorating and all the bits and bobs need to go back in, but I'll share those pics when it's all sparkly new.

First the before shots!




Then the new kitchen arrived so it was time to create a temporary one after all I needed to be able to make a cuppa, so we set this up in the back room for the time being.


You should have seen the boxes that arrived.


So then it was all action as the old was ripped out and the new put in.


Lots got done on Thursday.



It's hard to tell in the pictures but all of the cupboards have been lowered, you can see in some pics that the cupboards are well down into the previous tiled area. The work tops and sink have also been lowered so that I can reach easier. I'm only little (4ft 10) and with my conditions it's hard to bend down or stretch up so the new layout will mean I can access more of the cupboards!

Okay this is what it looks like at the moment.

All of the handles are on and it's been tiled. The man is coming back on Monday to grout, then I'm having it decorated by which ever of the men in my family volunteer! At least everything can go back in the cupboards now. It's quite fun deciding where to put everything. Think there will be lots of empty space as I've got far more cupboards than before but less stuff as I had a major sort when the kitchen was emptied!

Will show the final pictures once it's decorated and all my pictures and stuff is back in too.

Take care Zo xx