The first time I have scrapped away from home (other than at Mum’s house) we went to a retreat in Cheshire – lovely hotel, 80 odd women as obssessed by the craft as us = heaven – enough ME time to keep me going all year! Evidence that Eileen and Lou did do some work. Mum enjoyed the ‘unlimited tea and coffee’ which she got very excited about before the retreat before realising she can get that at home. I found it really easy to scrap in a room full of people enjoying the same thing and managed 16 layouts over the course of the weekend. Mum and I managed a quick photoshoot when we were checking out and took a photo of the pretty path outside which was handy for the middle of my collage. top and bottom right and the two in the middle row and from the fantastic classes – impossible to pic a favourite as they were all fantastic and I learnt so much. Mum was worried she would not be able to keep up as some aspects were pretty speedy but she managed and had fun too.Sarah taught a class with 2 8.5×11 layouts – I have done this size before in my A-Z album (got a few more of these done over the weekend) but she has a particular style which just wowed me – I felt like a scrappingstalker asking if I could take photos of her layouts I love them so much – luckily she has a blog with all her layouts on – enough inspiration to keep me going. The first two were her class then I attempted a few of my own.Really hope the retreat is repeated next year and if it is I will be there no matter what lol
Taking inspiration from an online friend Suzi – http://amelieslog.blogspot.com/2008/06/photography.html I decided to try for an outdoor photoshoot with Megan – this was the day before she became poorly with probable swine flu and she still is not 100% so havent had a chance to post until now. Not completely happy with any of the photos but enjoyed trying. It all started to go wrong when I chose her outfit – she didnt like the coat (a hand-me-down from Cousin Charlotte) as it had velcro at the collar and was scratching her – so I took it off and she quickly got cold. With only a few minutes to snap some pictures I tried a few different angles. The farmer drove past giving me a very odd look so as Meg was beginning to whinge I decided to call it a day and go home. I plan to retry these photos as I love the contrast between the little girl and the HUGE hay rolls – they seem to have stacked most of them round here – this was the only easily accessible field they are still scattered in. Hopefully we will get a good crisp day soon and Meg will be amenable to pose again.
I have also started an online ‘course’ blogging for scrapbookers with the idea of blogging more often – hasn’t really worked so far as my pc is sooooo slow it gives me a headache trying to get a post done – but John has said I can order a Macbook as my Christmas present so there may be more blog posts from then on……………………………..
The children had a training day off from school yesterday so we decided to make the most of the nice weather and go to Flamingo Land before the summer holiday crowds. We walked miles and the children went on too many rides to count. We had HUGE icecreams, walked round the zoo, bought sweets, had a picnic and left so late we had to stop at Macdonalds on the way home as it was past bedtime – Meg had her first HAPPY MEAL – not sure she was that convinced – she drank her milk then finished off the baby gingerbread biscuits lurking in the bottom of my bag. Ben’s highlight of the day was the Tug boat ride, Tom loved the ‘ghost train’ as you see Frankenstein on the toilet – typical, Sophie loved the adult upside down ride that she was just tall enough for – I will NEVER go on a ride like that again though – it was terrifying!! think I must be getting old. My photos are still in the camera as I don’t have my cardreader with me but here are a selction of Mum’s – the sun was so bright it was difficult (Mum says impossible) to see the lcd screen so we have an interesting collection of nearly shots! but also some lovely ones of Meg walking. – Great day though with loads of good memories
Alnwick Castle was great – we only made it to the gardens last time. We met Lucius Malfoy and he was very intimidating – Thomas showed him how magic should be done though – think he was impressed !
Poor Tom he got over a hundred stinging nettle stings trying to get back round the pond after looking at the fish – he was very brave though as it must have really hurt all over his hands and legs. He also had about 30 little thorns which he patiently let me pull out.
The pool at village farm was one of the main attractions as it was so easy to go a lot during the holiday. Thomas and Sophie practised jumping in and by the end of the week were really confident and having great fun. Ben was less cooperative so din’t make much progress.
Freezing fog on our trip to Whitehouse farm but still lots of fun – face painting, animal feeding, toboggan ride, bouncy castle, trampolines. The place was really busy despite the weather would hate to see how crowded it gets on a sunny day but there was loads to do and the people were very friendly.
Granny Pat bought Megan an icecream and the seller was a little over generous with the amount – I tried to lick some off but she was desperate so I gave in adn let her try her best – what a mess but she had fun and it washed off!!
I spend a lot of time zooming in when I take photos having learnt to get down to eye level and fill the frame so I decided to do something different and be almost on the ground using a wideangled lens to include more background – Craster harbour gave me the perfect backdrop and I am quite pleased with the results. The children were engrossed in their project so I had plenty of time to practise.
I did the same once Ben started paddling – my camera was almost in the waves but the unusual perspective was worth the risk and I managed to get some shots without even getting my feet wet thank goodness as the water was freezing!!
Despite the culture, wildlife, great outdoors the highlight of the week for the children was an afternoon spent at a rather rundown softplay centre. It was the first time Megan had really had a chance to play and although she din’t do much exploring of the baby area she had a lot of fun watching and crawling at speeed!
Loads more snaps I could share but has taken hours to get this far! Definitely a place I would recommend visiting and I hope we will be back there soon in better weather to really take advantage of the wonderful beaches.
Sometimes Sophie amazes me with her capabilities. The other week she made lunch for everyone – including me – tuna mayo sandwiches and she did the lot – found the ingredients, opened the tin, drained the tuna, mixed it spread on bread and cut into neat triangles. Today she helped me take some pictures of Megan who was totally uncooperative earlier when I tried alone – after a while Sophie asked if she could take some photos so I took the opportunity of being in the pictures and this is the result – I am thrilled!!
However while editing this post Sophie shows her true age – I heard a scream from her room where she is supposed to be asleep – when i rushed up she said her water burnt her – she has a cup of cold water by her bed at night – I couldnt see how this could be possible so I asked again what had happened. She said that she had accidentally got water on her lamp – when I looked the bulb was totally smashed and there was glass in her bed. On further questioning it appears her lamp was too bright and hurting her eyes so rather than switch it off she thought she would pour water on it to make it less bright :0 – she won’t do that again in a hurry. Thankfully she is unhurt – unfortunately I haven’t been able to find all the glass so will have to search again tomorrow.
Lots of fun swimming – Sophie is like a water baby now doing head over heels in the water – Tom is so confident too they are finally having fun in the water.
Ben says he hates fruit and only likes watermelon so Granny Pat bought him one – surprise surprise he didnt like that much either – luckily Tom did and he ate most of it.
And we finished with some ten pin bowling and lots of unhealthy foodcolourings in blue slush puppies!
Just when I think I know what I am doing with blogger it all goes pearshapd. I cant get photos in the right order at all – the previous post has all the wrong info with the wrong photos so this time I am not even going to try you can just play a mix and match game and work out which photo I am talking about
This week Meg has decided she can manage steps – I keep finding her halfway up the stone steps to the garden room – she is fast too! and next minute she will be at the bottom of the main stairs standing and only holding on with one hand – she is growing up too quickly. She and ben had fun with an empty cardboard box – free toys are always the best. Ben got very excited when i said it was time to go to his dance class – he was getting his own black ballet shoes and couldnt wait. Meg and Sophie had fun at a party yesterday – Meg cleaned the village hall floor and Sophie stuffed a teddy. I tried to nick a sandwich from the party tea but Meg took it out of my hand and ate it.
The children love a ‘sharing tray’ for lunch and/or tea – saves on waste as they can pick what they want – was impressed at how relatively healthy this one was – Sophie made it.
Phew what a week – had the children off school Mon/Tues and told Mum not to come so she didnt catch it as she is away this weekend and I didn’t want her to miss out by being poorly. Not too disorganised considering I didn’t have her help but absolutely exhausted Sophie and I had fun with the new candy floss machine I have bought to use at the playgroup spring fair – can safley say it was a hit with Sophie.
Sophie helped me make Yorkshire puddings on Sunday – John was away at the races all day so when we got back from church I rushed around trying to get a roast together – Sophie is so helpful and great company too.
Thomas was really proud of this lego model – he wanted his picture taken to send to the lego magazine – but when he saw it he didn’t like how he looked so made me take it again without him in it – no matter how many times I say how fantastic he is he still has low self esteem.
Sophie helped in the kitchen again on Monday – she made everyone’s lunch – tuna sandwichs – and yes she is wearinbg a nightie cos she was off school sick – Thomas was worse but as she wasn’t 100% and the weather was awful she stayed off too.