Saturday, 21 November 2009

Phew, that was a busy week, and no time to Blog!

Mon - Put ponies out to field then attend Perthshire Area Tourism Conference (20 miles away), 9.30am-4.30pm, home by 5pm then muck out stables, do hay and water and bring ponies in.
Tues - Put ponies out then travel to Edinburgh (60 miles away) for dentist & hygienist check-ups. Quick trip to Costco then home, muck out stables, do hay and water and bring ponies in.
Wed - Put ponies out and try to catch up with field work missed over past two days away. Do stables, get ponies in, then get cleaned up for the local Youth Project AGM (on Management Committee) for 7pm followed by Merchants Association (on Management Committee) early Christmas soiree for 8pm.
Thurs - Put ponies out then travel to Dundee (20 miles) for 'Evaluation of the Delivering for Mental Health Peer Support Worker Pilot Scheme Dissemination Event' (Isn't that a mouthful!) 10am-3.30pm, home, and, you guessed it - muck out stables, do hay and water and bring ponies in.
Frid - Was again a day spent trying to catch up in between doing the ponies and then off to a 7pm Reflexology appointment. I was the one doing the treatment, not having it done.
Sat - Another event in Perth (20 miles away). This time Perth & Kinross Council Community Capacity Building Sub-Group's Communication Seminar. Couldn't miss this one as I'm a member of the organising committee and was doing the closing remarks.

All this leads me to the conclusion that I need to take heed of what Shimelle says in Prompt 6 and take stock of what I'm doing now and set some goals for the future. I know my first task will be to cut down on the voluntary work I'm doing and put more energy into setting up my therapy practice now that my daughter has left school and is more independent. Time to hit YouTube and tap along with one of my favourite guys - Brad Yates. I'm sure he'll have a routine for goal setting. I could do it myself but it's much more fun with Brad!

I'm going to print off Shimelle's prompts and hopefully work through them even though the class is now finished. Another goal - to finish what I start!

Make & Take

One of our groups of scrapbookers wanted a make-and-take class when they were staying for a crop weekend and we decided to do some rubber stamping as some of them hadn't done any before. I came up with this layout to show them different ways they could use a set of simple flower stamps on their LOs. We used a watermark ink pad and stamped the images on the top part of the background cardstock and then used embossing powder to highlight the images on the lower part. The black strip of cardstock was stamped and embossed with clear embossing powder which they particularly liked. Then we stamped the images onto some patterned cardstock, embossed with black powder and cut out the flowers to layer up. Apparently the heat guns were in constant use after I left the group and some members were planning their route home so they could stop by a craft store to buy supplies to continue their new-found technique. Success!

Monday, 16 November 2009

Don't Leave Home Without Your Digital Camera!

The last time I had to call out the AA breakdown service was when the exhaust fell off my car. It was late at night, pitch black, and I was on my own. I wasn't sure exactly where I was on the motorway and the person I spoke to had no idea where the motorway was let alone my location (call centres!) but I gave it as best I could as I could see there was a turn-off just up ahead.
As I sat in the car I considered getting out and walking along the side of the motorway to get a closer look at what the sign said but I didn't consider that for long. Remember, it was late at night, pitch black, and I was on my own. However, I had a brainwave (unusual for that time of night). I got my digital camera out, waited until there was no traffic, put my headlights on full beam, stuck my camera out the window with full zoom and clicked. It worked, when I zoomed in on the picture I'd taken I could clearly see the writing on the sign and was able to phone the AA again with my exact location. I was more than a little pleased with myself, but forgot to take a picture of my car being winched onto the lorry so I could do a LO.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

An A-moooo-sing Tale for Prompts 7 & 8

Last winter one of our neighbours asked if he could rent one of our fields for two orphaned Highland Cattle which he had bought so we ended up with two little calves in the back field. Later in the year he bought some more young Higland Cows and put them in there too making seven altogether. A few months later one of our liveries rode into the yard and told us that one of the cows had just given birth which surprised us as we hadn’t been told any of them were in calf but apparently it was a surprise to the guy who bought them too!! He’d been a bit concerned that two of them were getting a bit fat. However, the farmer he bought them from assured him they couldn’t be pregnant - but there it was, proof of the pudding, so to speak. The mother seemed a little bewildered by it all as she wasn’t very old herself and kept misplacing it in the field when she wandered off with the rest of the herd leaving it sleeping ‘somewhere’. I walked by with the dogs one day and the calf was nowhere to be seen so I asked her where she’d left it. She raised her nose to the air and sniffed in several directions, peered through her long blond tresses, and ambled off to find it.

There is a twist to this tale as you’ll see in the picture below. Now, I don’t know much about Highland Coos, but I’m sure that calf looks nothing like one. How a different bull could get to these young cows without the farmer knowing is beyond me but one obviously had an eye for a pretty blond!

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Blogging for Scrapbookers Prompt 5 cont'd

I love these jewel brads and it really sets off the flower. This Fiskar punch is a favourite but unfortunately it's now broken so I'll need to look for a replacement. I also like to have a selection of striped papers in lots of different colours to tie everything in on the LO.

Blogging for Scrapbookers Prompt 5

Today I made this. Well I didn't actually make the LO, I just made the picture of the LO as it's one I did for a scrapbooking class on International Women's Day. I kept it simple as I knew I would have people in the class who didn't have a clue what scrapbooking is. This is my sister and family heading off to the Middle East when her husband was transferred abroad. The picture lifts up to reveal journaling underneath and I've still to make a slit in the page cover so that it will be on top and then held down with the pink brad. They've been away for about six years now and my nieces are growing so fast it's hard to keep up with their progress. We see them when they're home each summer but I think it's getting more and more difficult to come back to our sometimes dreary summers when they're so used to sun, sea and sand - lots of sand!

I used a Fiskars punch on the bottom of two of the papers and I just love these spotty flowers which I've bought in lots of different colours to use on other LOs.
I haven't managed to 'take a picture in natural light' in my home as it's been too dull and I've also still to figure out how to turn off the flash on my camera. Must find those instructions!
However, from wandering round my house people would learn that we need to get organised! I'm always busy with other things these days (Community Council, Regeneration Project, Merchant's Association, Community Capacity meetings, not to mention cottage change-overs and ponies) and the two other peeps living in the house - DH & DD - don't seem to think housework of any kind has anything to do with them but you know what they say, 'A tidy house is the sign of a wasted life'. I think I'll leave them in here and go live in one of the cottages, I keep the two of them out of these as much as possible 'cause they're neat, tidy and always spotless unlike areas frequented by DH & DD. Any tips on how to train a teenager to clean up after herself greatly appreciated.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Sammy Schnauzer

Just thought I'd post a pic of said little dog who likes to follow his mum around. This was my first attempt at a digi layout.

Blogging for Scrapbookers Prompt 9

Okay, I know, what happened to Prompts 5 to 8? I will get back to them but felt this was one I could do something about now. I love lists and in days gone by used to make them regularly and tick off the tasks one by one until most were accomplished. Then I'd carry forward unfinished items and make a new list to live by. It all seemed so simple and organised, then came husband, children, pets etc., etc., etc.. I guess lists are even more appropriate now than ever before but I've just got out of the habit so this is a great prompt for me and I'm hoping it will give me the kick-start I need to review my life and plan ahead more.

Shimelle suggested doing This week... I am... but I thought about the prompts as I was sitting at my computer and answered them for the here-and-now.

I am computer, and beyond that the garden, fields, and hills in the distance. The stable yard is obscured by the large pampas grass in the corner of the lawn but unfortunately it's not large enough to blot out the polytunnels on neighbouring farms!

I am hearing.. my little dog making his way through from the kitchen to find me after waking up and realising his mum wasn't still there.

I am smelling.. the chicken soup which is simmering on the Raeburn.

I am tasting.. toothpaste..I've just cleaned my teeth before going out to a meeting in town.

I am feeling.. frazzled and totally unorganised. I feel like there are things which I'm forgetting to do, important things and it's stressing me out. Time to make a list!!!

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Blogging for Scrapbookers Prompt 4

Well, here I am, way behind with my blogging as I was down south for a long weekend visiting friends and taking in the Hobbycraft show at the same time. Went to the show on Saturday and spent all day there so we were shattered by the time we got out.
It's taken me ages to read through the prompts and other posts so now I need to find time to actually do something. I have lots of mundane stuff I could blog about but not many pictures and I forgot to take my camera with me today when I went out to the fields to work. Still, I did find this one when I was sorting out and trying to organise my digital pics. It's my husband cleaning up the door to one of the cottages. There's always something needing done and this is a rare pic of him actually doing it! It doesn't occur to me to take pics of all the sorts of things involved in running the cottages like the cleaning and laundry - just hate all that ironing but the ironing service was dreadful last time I sent some away and I ended up doing most of it again myself anyway. Maybe I'm just too fussy. When it's all spick and span and ready for new people to come in though it does give me such a feeling of satisfaction and it's always good to meet our guests and get feedback.
Looking at the picture, I noticed that it was taken before the yard was paved and reminded me what a difference that had made to the look of the whole place, not to mention being able to cross over to the barn in shoes rather than donning wellies to squelch through the mud on rainy days. I think I'll do a future blog with some before and after shots (maybe even layouts!) of the cottages. They really have been transformed and it's good to remind myself just how far it's all come.
Tomorrow I'll try to remember to take my camera with me and photograph some of my most essential items for daily living on the farm - wellies, quad-bike, poo scooping equipment, heavy duty gloves. I know, doesn't sound very exciting does it, but someone has to do it!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Blogging for Scrapbookers Prompt 3

OK here's my list of five. I've chosen five quotes from daily ones which a friend sends me and a pic showing the view from our steading which always inspires me (when I remember to look up from working to take it in and appreciate it!)

1. Silence is often misinterpreted, but never misquoted.
2. "At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person.
Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us."
~ Albert Schweitzer
3. "People become really quite remarkable when they start thinking that they can do things.
When they believe in themselves they have the first secret of success."-Norman Vincent Peale
4. He who dies with the most toys is still dead.
5. There is no key to happiness. The door is always open. Come on in.
No time for Scrapbooking yet.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

My Tidy Craft Space!

Thought I should record this somewhere just so I know what it looks like tidy. It doesn't stay like this for long!


I have been doing some crafting as one of my groups of Scrapbookers left me some beer mats and challenged me to do something with them so I decided to make a minibook of my ponies. I'd managed to make a page for each pony but hadn't added any journalling or embellishments before it disappeared into thin air and I still can't find it. These pictures are all I have of it!

Two Gone, Eight to Go!

My two beautiful boys have been sold and I'll really miss them. I've had them both since they were six months old, straight off Dartmoor and into the Drift sales. They're both fabulous ponies - little Tinker such a sweet, gentle little character and Biscuit so eager to do anything and everything asked of him. Hopefully, I'll be able to follow their progress as they're not going too far away. Just can't afford to keep them all anymore and now they're fully grown they need to be in work instead of standing in a field getting fat. Only another eight to find homes for now!

Inspiration from Shimelle

Haven't updated the Blog for ages and have only managed a few posts in the past year but have just signed up to one of Shimelle Laine's on-line classes 'Blogging for Scrapbookers' so if I manage to follow it and keep reasonably up-to-date then perhaps I'll be more consistent. Here's hoping!

One of the things which stops me blogging is the name I chose for the Blog. I feel I have to produce pics of some wonderful piece of craftwork before I can enter anything but I've decided just to write about any kind of 'stuff', mainly farm animal life.