Saturday, 31 January 2015

52 books

Last year there were a lot of reading challenges about. These were all based on different things such as different themes or writers etc. As interesting as these were I tend to read based on my mood at that given moment so didn't want to join anything too restrictive so decided to just do my own challenge which is just to read 52 books in a year :) I will keep track of the books I read then review my progress at the end of each month.
This month I've managed:

For over a decade, Jenna Metcalf obsesses on her vanished mom Alice. Jenna searches online, rereads journals of the scientist who studied grief among elephants. Two unlikely allies are Serenity Jones, psychic for missing people who doubts her gift, and Virgil Stanhope, jaded PI who originally investigated cases of Alice and her colleague. Hard questions and answers.

I loved this, I'm a huge fan of her books anyway but can usually predict the ending. This time however I didn't see it coming at all. It took a little while to get into as there were a lot of people and it jumps back and forth from the past and present but once you know who is who its pretty easy to follow. I won't post any spoilers but it was certainly worth a read :)

When a teenage girl goes missing her mother discovers she doesn't know her daughter as well as she thought in Jane Shemilt's haunting debut novel, Daughter.
She used to tell me everything.
They have a picture. It'll help.
But it doesn't show the way her hair shines so brightly it looks like sheets of gold.
She has a tiny mole, just beneath her left eyebrow.
She smells very faintly of lemons.
She bites her nails.
She never cries.
She loves autumn, I wanted to tell them. She collects leaves, like a child does. She is just a child.
Naomi is still missing. Jenny is a mother on the brink of obsession. The Malcolm family is in pieces.
Is finding the truth about Naomi the only way to put them back together?
Or is the truth the thing that will finally tear them apart?

I had read really good reviews of this so was looking forward to it, however I was really dissapointed :( It was another book which jumped back and forth a lot but it did it so quick I was just getting into a bit when it jumped back. I'm also not a fan of books which don't 'end' iykwim. Cliffhangers are fine as long as theres a sequel. At the end of this book however I felt I had more questions than answers. 

What is Arcadium? Florence knows but she’s not telling anyone, and it could just be the key to the survival of the human race. 

Sixteen-year-old Florence West must journey across a disease ravaged Melbourne with her nine-year-old sister Liss, and she’ll do anything to survive. Mostly that means staying clear of all people, the healthy ones on the run and the infected ones hungry for human flesh. But when she meets a man that speaks no English and a defiant set of brothers, Florence will be forced to question her ways. Because there’s only so far you can go alone, right? 

Arcadium is a heart-stopping journey of hope across a ravaged urban land where survival always comes at a heavy price.

Quite often I'll go through the Kindle free book list and download anything that sounds interesting. Sometimes it's rubbish, and sometimes I find a gem I wouldn't otherwise have read. This book is a gem. Interesting, fast paced and would make a great movie. 
Funnily enough it starts half way through the story with a virus already destroyed most of the country, and ends without answering a lot about why and what happened. Usually this annoys me but while I would love to know more and would def read a sequel, it stands well alone.  

North Carolina, 1960. Newlywed Jane Forrester, fresh out of university, is seeking what most other women have shunned: a career.

But life as a social worker is far from what she expected. Out amongst the rural Tobacco fields of Grace County, Jane encounters a world of extreme poverty that is far removed from the middle-class life she has grown up with.

But worse is still to come. Working with the Hart family and their fifteen-year-old daughter Ivy, it’s not long before Jane uncovers a shocking secret, and is thrust into a moral dilemma that puts her career on the line, threatens to dissolve her marriage, and ultimately, determines the fate of Ivy and her family forever.

Soon Jane is forced to take drastic action, and before long, there is no turning back.

Another author I'm a fan of :) While I wouldn't say this was her best book, it was still an ok read. The ending felt a little rushed and there is a HUGE time gap where there could have been a lot more done but it wasn't dreadful. Not amazing either lol.

So good start so far! :)

Friday, 30 January 2015

More layouts :)

Yesterday would have been my Granny and Grandads diamond wedding anniversary. We wanted to acknowledge the event but obviously Granny didn't want a big deal made from it. After some thought Mum and I decided to buy her a necklace and bracelet set with some small diamonds in it. The necklace was a heart and the bracelet had a symbol of infinity on it with 'forever' engraved on the back. Gran was very touched so pleased we did it :)
On other news I'm still scrapping :) Almost used up the kit I pulled out so will be breaking into another one soon, just in time for the February Counterfeit kit!
This one was for a sketch challenge for a group I'm on on Facebook. This was the sketch set
and this was my take :) Whenever we go to Disneyland we always have a photo taken at the sword in the stone. Last time we went Caitlin posed nicely for the first photo, then became very determined to pull out the sword and really put her back into it lol. Bless her she thought she could really do it and wasn't best pleased it wouldn't budge!
When not scrapping or cleaning I've been playing computer games and reading with the kids. We borrowed an old Wii game from my niece (pikmin) we're all a little addicted to lol. As its a Wii game we need to move the chair close to the TV for it to register the remote. This seems to have led to a very odd sleeping position for Scamp lol.
His new fave place seems to be lying like Snoopy over the back of the chair. As it's in the middle of the room he can look around and see everything thats going on by only lifting his head. Lazy dog dog, he didnt even stir when we had an earthquake the other night!

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Is it not over yet?!

Wow, its been a while since my last post. To be honest though I've been busy I've been in an odd mood so haven't been very chatty. I think it's because it's January, I hate January. It's so dreary compared to December and seems to be the month where everything expencive breaks!
I have been scrapping though :) Now I've got the desk in the bedroom I do enjoy crafting more, rather than having to drag everything out and putting it all away again before bed in case Scamp ruins it, I just just pile it on the desk :)
This is a really old photo, I think Caitlins 3 years old here. She looks just the same as now though just smaller! lol. Anyway it was the first weekend I'd ever been away without the kids and was missing them like mad when Mark sent me this photo on my phone. They'd all gone to Mcdonalds with my Mum and it made me feel so much better :)
Love these little dots from Stampin up.
Bit of a more up to date photo from Turkey a couple of years back. In the main town there were some beautiful fountains I wanted to get some photos of the kids with. Typically the morning of the day we went Caitlin decided to have her face painted at kids club so not quite the classy photos I'd hoped for lol.
Well only have a few more days of January left, yey!

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Sassy girl

Im ashamed to say I have a pile of photos that need to be scraped, and considering I've only had 12 developed since 2013 that's bad! I would say I am to get them done by such and such time but I've said that lots before so I'll just aim to do my best to catch up. :)
Starting with this photo from a few Summers ago. We were having a picnic at Wicksteed park and I took this photo of Caitlin. The girl was born 13 I tell you so the 'sassy girl' cardstock sticker was brilliant with this photo.
So I do seem to be on a little bit of a roll :) Today I've got boring jobs to do, like defrosting the freezer and cleaning the kitchen. However I do need to do some crafting too as I have a couple of cards to make.
I'm dreadful at cards but I realllllllly don't want to go asda on a saturday so I'll give it a shot! Caitlins got a birthday party this afternoon so need one for that. Cup of coffee then get on with it I think!

Friday, 16 January 2015


So last July I bought one of those clocks which has little photoframes instead of numbers. I put it on the wall at the top of the stairs (no battery or photos) and there it sat, and sat, and sat. Yesterday I was BORED!!!!! So bored I actually remembered to get the clock down and put photos in it. Spent an hour or so finding suitable photos, cutting them to size, realising the screws on the backs were too tight, so had to find a tiny screwdriver to get in it, put photos in, set it to the right time (5:55) and hung it on the wall.
Looks pretty good if I do say so myself. :)
So was quite pleased until this morning when I got up, at 7:00 as always, and realised the clock STILL said 5:55! I dont care it doesn't work, it looks pretty and its staying there lol.
I was supposed to be going to town today but that fell through so I spent the morning here. Yep 12x12 scrapping. and I loved it! I know I always say it after taking a break but I always forget how peaceful scrapping makes me feel. To make it easier I pulled out an old Counterfeit kit to use. I did try and look back to find out which one but I went back to July 2013 and still can't find it so oh well.
Again to keep it easy, I turned to the Challenge YOUrself blog to take part in their monthly challenge. This months is 'one little word'

 Challenge YOUrself #14: One Little Word
Choose a word that you will focus on and reflect upon all through the year and create a layout that celebrates your chosen word.
Remember to include YOU in the photo :)

I chose the word 'simple' and made this layout. :)

I haven't done the journaling yet but when I do it will say
'Last year was a big year. Lots of day trips, events, and spending! This year I hope to focus on the more simple things. Walking in the park, cuddling up on the couch, reading a book. Just enjoying the simple things in life, and hopefully saving a little bit of money too!'

Thursday, 15 January 2015


So today seemed to drag on for aaaagggggggeeeeesssss! I actually had nothing to do. NOTHING! The housework was all done, everything sorted and put away, nowhere to be and nothing to do. It was boring. I suppose I could have scrapped but tbh my mojo has run off so didn't really feel like it. Ended up just walking around the house doing anything I could think of.
Got to go to town tomorrow so at least that's something. :)
In the meantime I thought I'd share the other PL style pages I've done. I actually started these last March, then they've sat in my 'to do' pile since!
Various peoeple around Disneyland
Photos of the castle.
Meeting the princess'
and dinner at Cafe Mickey. :)
Still not a huge fan of these style. They seem to take much longer than a 12x12 and IMO look less impressive. They are a great way of scrapping lots of related photos that don't need their own pages though iykwim.

Monday, 12 January 2015


So no blogging yesterday. Though didn't do much to blog about lol. More cleaning, little more scrapping, playing with the kids etc. Nothing big.
To be honest I've been struggling a bit lately. It's no secret I suffer from anxiety and used to suffer from depression too. Recently I've found myself feeling very pointless and I dunno, useless I guess. Running up to Christmas I have so much to do with the PTA, home, Homestart etc, then January comes and suddenly there's nothing. There's housework, and care for Mark and the kids etc, but thats it. Outside of these four walls there's nothing I do or contribute to. Unfortunately that is unlikely to change anytime soon so I've got to pull myself out of it and get on with it :) Last night it was 9pm and I was sitting dwelling, bored, nothing to do. So rather than just sit there I got out the HUGE ironing pile, put a chick flick on and got on with it. By 2am when it was all done and hung up I admit I felt better lol. Maybe not the best way granted as needed a couple of cups of coffee this morning but hey its a start!
This morning keeping in the same vein I tackled the photos which are on the computer. I usually go through them each month getting rid of rubbish ones, editing others and putting them in the correct folders. Hadn't done it since September however so was a bit behind! While going through some of the very random photos Caitlin had on her camera I found lots of selfies she had taken. Considering she hates getting her photo taken I was quite surprised! Shows how much she has changed in a year. My baby girl growing up :(

Hi I'm Caitlin :) Here are some facts about me:
- I am very creative. I love to paint, colour, make things, anything creative and preferably messy! I spend a lot of time crafting with Mummy and I constantly surprise her with how my mind works.
- I swing between being very shy, and very outgoing. Theres no reason to it which confuses the life out of my Mummy and Daddy. One day I'll be singing my head off in a packed shop, next I won't say hi to our neighbour we've known for years.
- Nobody messes with my big brother. If we're at a playcenter or something and I see someone take something off of him or push him, even if the bully is twice my size I will go up and shout at them.
- My fave TV shows are My little pony, Rugrats and Barbie life in the dreamhouse. But when I'm poorly I like to watch Pingu and Max and Ruby. Mummy thinks this is because I loved them when I was little and it makes me feel safe.
- I'm allergic to fish. I used to be allergic to strawberries but I grew out of that which is good because I love them!
- My fave food is cheesy pasta. I don't like many veggies (just peas really) but I eat pretty much any fruit I can get my hands on. If Mummy has some Melon she has to eat it when I'm at school or in bed as I sit right next to her and stare at her until she gives it to me. hehe.
- I love to dress up. Mummy had to get a special bar put on my wall so I could hang up my dressing up clothes as they wouldn't fit in my wardrobe.
- When it comes to dressing and looks, I'm a girly girl. Mummy refuses to take me into clothes shops anymore because I ask for everything. While Cameron makes his Christmas list from the Argos catalog, mine is from the Next catalog :)
- However though I'm a girly girl with clothes, I can run, jump and climb with the best of the boys! I also see nothing wrong with doing it in the pretty dress or outfit I've picked to wear that day. Mummy does a lot of washing in our house.
- I never want to get married or have kids. They're too loud. Instead I want to be a teacher or a vet and own a pink convertable car.
- I hate going to bed. I use every excuse in the book to stay awake but when it comes to getting up in the morning thats a different story! I once told Mummy I don't like going to sleep, but once I'm asleep I like it. :)
- My teacher says I'm a social butterfly. Which sometimes worries Mummy as apart from a couple of girls I don't have any 'best' friends to stand by me through school. I seem happy enough though, and to be honest I sometimes prefer to play by myself if other people are being (in my opinion) silly!. Mummy says I'm too much like her.
- I'm very active, I love to swim, dance, run around with Scamp or just ride my bike. Mummy doesn't know where I get my coordination from as her and Daddy have none!
- I'm very stubborn and independant. I know what I want to do, when I want to do it, and how I want to do it. Luckily I'm a good girl at the moment and do listen to Mummy and Daddy when they tell me things are a bad idea but Mummy is dreading when I hit my teens.
- I love my Mummy, and love spending time with her and doing things with her. But when it comes to snuggles I'm a daddys girl. I love to cuddle up next to him or on his knee to watch tv or read a book. When I'm upset or scared Daddy can always make me laugh and feel better.

Saturday, 10 January 2015


Today has been a lovely peaceful day. When Cait woke up I settled her down with breakfast and managed to get the kitchen cleaned, washing collected and on, Scamp fed and brushed all while she finished her cereal. Girl eats slow! lol.
Mark was still in bed so Caitlin wanted to do some crafting. Who was I to say no? :) I made some space on my table and she sat quite happily painting some magnets while I sorted out some papers to sell. To be honest the day carried on in the same vein. I'd do a job, play with the kids a bit, do another job, so on so on. Somehow I managed to get pretty much as much done as when I would be working from morning to night!
Kids are now in bed and Mark has laid claims on the TV so I'm using the Wii U. Love that thing. Can just stick my headphones on and watch a show on Netflix in peace.
and yes I'm still scrapping :)

Friday, 9 January 2015

Best laid plans and all that

Well today I had planned to clean my floors and scrap some more. Then I woke up with a pounding head. Got kids to school, went for a 20 minute lie down and woke up at 11:30! Felt much better for it though.
So after a cup of tea I sat for a few moments before planning on doing the floors and this little cutie curled up on my lap. So it was grey and raining outside and I was warm, snuggled and had the tv remote within reach; and I couldn't disturb Scamp could I?!
So rather than doing the floors, scrapping or anything else I should have done I cuddled up with Scamp and watched a few episodes of Numb3rs. :) Not productive at all, but sometimes nonproductive days are needed.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Ive been scrapping :)

I've not had the chance to scrap since way before Christmas, so at the start of the week I said that I was going to spend Thursday scrapping. Come rain, shine or meteor striking earth I was going to scrap. :)
So I sat down with papers and photos and was overwhelmed. Seriously I had no idea what to do! While sorting out papers I came across some PL style pages I started last March. Well they were smaller, easier and really should be done by now so I decided to tackle them instead.
Took me far longer than it probably should have but one page done :)
I did enjoy doing it but not as much as I like doing 12x12 pages. Theres a sense of completeness when I finish a large page I don't get with these or mini books. But it's done and used up scraps so yey :) Planning to finish these over the next few days then hopefully next week tackle 12x12 again.

Wednesday, 7 January 2015


Where did yesterday go?! Honestly I blinked and it was gone!
As it ws the kids first day back at school I took the opportunity to get started on all the jobs I ignored a little while they were away. So yesterday morning was all about returning unwanted xmas gifts, picking up Next order and getting shopping in Asda. Mark was amazed that it took 3 people 2 trips to bring my Next order down. Woops! Unpacking the car took forever.
Among other things Scamps little rain mac was in the order. I think I like it a bit more than he does lol.
After all that was unpacked and put away I set about resorting the kids rooms. Caitlins in particualar had got very cluttered and messy and as she's been having trouble sleeping I wanted to get it sorted for her.
While doing so I decided to write a little note to her on her Lamby doodle bear.
Later after doing dinner and batch making soup I went back to Caitlins room and found this.
She hadn't said a word, just left me a note of my own. :)
Today was cleaning, cleaning, bills and starting a new hamma bead project. More on that later ;)

Monday, 5 January 2015


Well its been a rubbish start to the new year! First the oven breaks, then my phone, the 360 computer, my sister gets herself into another fight and Mark scares the life out of us with a bad chest infection. Hes been poorly a few weeks now but Friday he got really bad and said it felt like when he had pnumonia before. Took him drs who diagnosed a chest infection and gave antibiotics. That was fine until we got home and his temp shot up. He couldn't stop shaking and was delirious. God love my Mum who took Caitlin and my neigbour who took Cameron so I didn't have to worry about them. Managed to get Marks temp down and next day he was much better :)
So I'm hoping that that's the bad luck out of the way for the year! As I haven't done much interesting I thought I would start a new tradition. On pinterest I saw a thing about noting details about your kids each year and seeing how they change. So I plan on doing it for each member of the family each year :) Starting with our newest member ;)


Hi I'm Scamp. I'm a pugzu but take after the pug side a lot more. Here are some facts about me:
- I LOVE my food. But I'm really nosy to see what others have in case it's something better. When my cousin Poppy comes to play, Mummy has to give her her dinner first, then I can see what she has then go to mine. If she gives me mine first, I abandon it and try to steal Poppys even though it's the same thing.
- I shed, even though Mummy has bought special food and brushes to help improve it. Mummy doesn't mind, but I seem to find it funny to save up my loose fur and let it all go when I'm sitting on Daddy :)
- Mummy and Caitlin are my fave people in the family. They give the best cuddles. But if I want to play I go to Cameron or Daddy. Mummy usually ends up yelling at Cameron or us to go outside thought, apprently lots of things have ended up broken since I moved in.
- Mummy is pretty sure I was a bull in a previous life. Though I'm small, I love to run around and skid into things. I'm really not very graceful and often end up missing my target and hitting my head or butt off of things. Mummy says I need a little crash helmet.
- I love walks, but panic if Cameron or Caitlin walk too far ahead of us. I cry and pull at my lead. Mummy keeps telling me I'm only little but she doesn't know what shes talking about. If a big dog goes anywhere near my big brother or sister I bark until they go away. I'm very brave, :) Next doors cat scares me though, if she walks near me I run away :(
- Daddy says this is his side of the bed. He's wrong though, it's my side and my pillow. If he tries to move me I just sleep right by his head and snore in his ear.
- I hate it when Mummy does Caitlins hair. I cry and try and steal the hairbrush. Mummy has to do it upstairs now.
- I have lots of toys, but my fave ones are the ones which rolls under the couch and I cry until someone has to get it for me. It's a good game :)
- I have a very strange obsession with pants. When Mummy is doing the washing I like to steal them and take them to my bed. I like Daddys the best as I can put my head in them and hide.
- I love baths! Mummy has to be careful to shut me downstairs if she is bathing Cameron or Caitlin as I like to run really fast and jump in with them.
- I'm a very thirsty dog. But rather than drinking the clean water Mummy puts in my bowl for me I prefer puddles, Caitlin painting water, Daddys drinking water, bath water, you get the idea :)
- I'm a very, very loved dog :)

Thursday, 1 January 2015


Well new year didn't exactly get off to the best start......
Yep my oven door fell off. I told my Gran about it and she asked if I was drunk! lol. No didn't have a drop of alcohol last night, but these things can still happen to me.
Mark bless him has started off the new year with man flu so has spent the day on the couch. The kids have been peacefully playing on their new games so I took the opportunity to sort out the new stash I got for Christmas and try and catch up with the counterfeit kits I've missed. Forgot how much I love just going through patterned papers, embellishments etc and putting them all together. :) I doubt I'll actually manage to get any scrapping done before the kids go back to school but at least I can get ready for it!
Will hopefully share the new kit I made tomorrow as Marks moved from the couch to the bed now, and all my stuff is in our room I better not wake him by getting it all. Watch this space :P