28 June 2011

I'm having another manic week at work, so exhausted and wish I had another pair of hands...  So anyway, this is a quick post of a card I made recently as a Good Luck card.

I quite like how it turned out.  Lots of inking using Black Soot Distress Ink pad by Tim Holtz/Ranger.  PApers were in my stash, as were the tiny round letter stickers.  Chinese letter stamps from my stash - made in South Africa by a lady called Jennifer Duvenage.  Coin was in my stash, bought from a local craft shop.

I also just have to say that the police man who left two dogs in his car in Kent over the week-end, and they both subsequently died, is not only irresponsible but an absolute disgrace to humanity.  I am so sick and tired of excuses being made for these people - we all know common sense dictates not to leave babies or children in a hot car.  So why does the same common sense not prevail for animals?  I am disgusted and this sorry excuse for a person needs to lose his job without remuneration or benefits of any kind.  You can read one of the many news stories from the link provided here:

25 June 2011

My sister in law is Korean, and as such we had a 100 day celebration today for my little niece Victoria.  This is an old Korean custom and you can read more about it here:

This is a little card I made for the occasion.  As white thread should be given as a gift to imply a long life, I thought I would copy the shape of a vintage thread holder found at a market and decorate it accordingly.  I used Black Soot Tim Holtz Distress Ink around the edges, stamped the butterfly with black StazOn ink and stamped and hand wrote the letters/numbers for the message.  Something simple to be kept for when she is older.

Cupcakes - yum
 Hello Kitty cake - my brother iced the '100 days' on to it
 Isn't she just gorgeous?  :)

It was Armed Forces Day today.  I can't say it better than I already did on my Facebook status - Let us all remember the brave souls who fought for our freedom during the two World Wars and those who are fighting now.  But also mourn and honour those who have lost their lives in more recent conflicts.  Bless our troops and their families.  Maximum Respect.


22 June 2011

Become a person of value

I received this lovely e-mail recently and I just had to share the inspirational message it contains.  I am unable to give credit to the author as I don't know who they are - if anyone happens to find out please let me know so I can credit them with this.

The Pig and the Horse
There was a farmer who collected horses; he only needed one more breed to complete his collection. One day, he found out that his neighbor had the particular horse breed he needed. So, he constantly bothered his neighbor until he sold it to him.

A month later, the horse became ill and the farmer called the veterinarian, who said:
Well, your horse has a virus. He must take this medicine for three days. I'll come back on the 3rd day and if he's not better, we're going to have to put him down.  Nearby, the pig listened closely to their conversation.

The next day, they gave him the medicine and left. The pig approached the horse and said:  Be strong, my friend. Get up or else they're going to put you to sleep!

On the second day, they gave him the medicine and left.  The pig came back and said:
Come on buddy, get up or else you're going to die! Come on, I'll help you get up.  Let's go!  One, two, three...

On the third day, they came to give him the medicine and the vet said:
Unfortunately, we're going to have to put him down tomorrow.  Otherwise, the virus might spread and infect the other horses. 

After they left, the pig approached the horse and said:

Listen pal, it's now or never!  Get up, come on!  Have courage!  Come on!  Get up! Get up! That's it, slowly! Great!  Come on, one, two, three...  Good, good. Now faster, come on.... Fantastic! Run, run more!  Yes! Yay!  Yes! Y ou did it, you're a champion!!!

All of a sudden, the owner came back, saw the horse running in the field and began shouting:
 It's a miracle! My horse is cured.  This deserves a party. Let's kill the pig!

Points for reflection:
This often happens in the workplace. Nobody truly knows which employee actually deserves the merit or success, or who's actually contributing the necessary support to make things happen.


If anyone ever tells you that your work is unprofessional, remember:
Amateurs built the Ark and professionals built the Titanic.  Look what happened to the Titanic!


21 June 2011

I'd been wanting to buy a 'chair mat' (as they call them) to place on the carpet under my chair in my crafting room because I was worried that even though I had a rug under my chair, rolling from one desk to the other would damage the carpet.  As I live in rented premises, this would not be a good idea.  So I do an extensive search online, get baffled by all the choices, finally make a selection and place my order (and pay for it).  So I wait and wait - website promises three day delivery which I think is fantastic.  Nine days later, the mat arrives.  Hehe.  It's nice and big (120 x 130cm) and fits nicely between my two desks so I can wheel around to my hearts content =)  Strange bit of course is that I bought it from a company in the UK with a address - but the invoice attached has a Mannheim, Germany address.  That may explain why it took more than three days to arrive.....

Even though I haven't been posting on my blog very regularly, I have been making cards and working on other craft projects.  Here are a couple of cards I've made recently.

This was for my friend Sue's birthday on Friday 17 June.  We work together and we both love dogs - so I thought she'd appreciate this.  Die cut, coloured image is from Lili of the Valley, as is the sentiment stamp.  Paper flowers are from Wild Orchid Crafts.  Card, papers, lace & ribbon all in my stash.

This was just a quickie, plain-and-simple card for my Dad for Father's Day on Sunday 19th.  Papers were all in my stash, used a lot of inking with Tim Holtz Distress Ink in 'Vintage Photo'.  Stamped greeting was done with 'The Little CLASSIC Rubber Stamp Mini's Alphabet Set' (can't remember where I bought them).

This card was for my friend Ang's birthday which was yesterday, 20th June.  The stamp is a Lili of the Valley one which I coloured with ProMarkers and I used the Ranger Stickles ' Star Dust' to colour the ribbon on the present.  Sentiment stamp is also Lili of the Valley.  Flat-backed self-adhesive pearls are from The Hobby House.  Paper flowers and leaves are from Wild Orchid Crafts.  Paper is from My Mind's Eye 'Quite Contrary' Summer papers 6x6" paper pad.

I saw an ad on the local 'Freecycle' website I belong to (where people advertise items they are giving away, or items that they need) - someone was looking for pc's or laptops working or not.  So I sent an e-mail saying they're more than welcome to my old PC - they can salvage the dvd burners x 2, the RAM, wireless card and other random bits and pieces.  Just the hard drive is missing.  He's really keen and wants to collect.  Awesome.  Sweetest part of all?  He offered me a working PC which someone gave to him - he thought I didn't have one and wanted to help me out.  How wonderful is it to know there are kind people in the world?  Such a wonderful, kind gesture. 

Well, today is the Summer Solstice - longest day of the year.  It's been lovely.  Sunny on and off, and warm.  Here's hoping for plenty more sunshine in the weeks to come.

20 June 2011

Whew!  Can't believe how long I haven't posted an entry for.  I have good reasons, but time has also flown past as usual.
My computer which travelled all the way to the UK with me, finally died several weeks ago.  The motherboard decided to join all the gadgets in the sky.  Of course that left me in a predicament.  You know when you think you've backed up everything recently, only to realise it's been about 6 months since you last backed up anything??  So I was feeling rather sorry for myself and worried that all the photos (amongst other things) were lost to me forever.
I go online and buy a new PC from a company called Misco.  I pay for next day delivery - which does not happen.  It finally arrives two days later, late in the afternoon.  I get home from work, connect it all up, and . . . nothing.  Yes that's right.  Absolutely nothing.  I try several different power cords, try another monitor just in case my monitor has packed up too . . . still nothing.  It slowly sinks in that the new PC is a dud.  Lucky me.  Not.  Contact Misco and get no joy whatsoever about what will happen.  No explanation is offered as to their collection/returns policy, no apology received, nothing.  Whilst I know there is a one in a hundred chance of this happening, you would think that staff would be trained in how to deal with this sort of thing - and at least keep their customer informed as to what happens next.  It took almost two weeks of constantly chasing and following up before I received a credit after the machine was collected. 
I then decide to try my luck with PC World in Cambridge.  I drive there on a Saturday morning (chaos!) and believe that dealing with people face-to-face is far better at times than the auto-generated crap from buying direct online blah blah blah.  I get a very helpful chap who I chat to about my disappointment with the first PC, how I received appalling service from Misco, and how I would like 'x' PC which I've viewed on their website.  We discuss pros and cons of various machines, I look at several others, then end up back at the one I selected originally.  Buy the PC and bring it home.  Set it up and I'm styling. . .
A week later and it's Sunday and I'm still trying to download various freeware packages and set up my computer the way I like it.  My brother is busy & unable to help me recover my files from my old PC just yet.  I'm working away on the machine, and all of a sudden a blue screen comes up with some weird message that Windows has an error and cannot fix some files.  I think the worst - VIRUS - and shut down my PC.  Discuss it with my brother who has a degree in Comp Sci and we decide sad as it is, even though I've saved loads of stuff on the hard drive, I will have to lose it and install the system restore discs I created when I first got the machine.  Go through the painfully slow and long process to do this.  Things seem ok and I slowly start accepting that I have lost all the work and files I've created, but no matter - I at least have a good PC.  A day later, the blue screen and faulty windows files message appears again.  Two days after that - the PC is on but it won't recognise anything & I have to forcibly shut down and restart to get it to work.  A day later, again I have to forcibly shut down and the PC doesn't want to restart. . . . . .  Call PC World and have a very helpful chap explain that due to the purchase being less than 21 days old, I should take the PC back to the shop and exchange it for another one.  I can only get there on the week-end, so I have another four days worth of no computer or computer problems before I can get there.  Show up with said machine - have very sympathetic staff who not only feel sorry for me, but go out of their way to rectify the situation.  Wow what a difference to Misco!!
So I now have a working PC again - third time lucky eh?  My brother kindly helped me salvage the hard drive from my old machine & installed it in the new one.  So I now have two hard drives - and have moved the necessary info/files/photos to the new drive.  Needless to say I have already done a full backup onto my external hard drive of everything.  I do not want to go through this agony again.  Ever.
So here I am at last - a happy bunny with not only a working PC but all my precious photos etc saved.  Whew.  Thank goodness for a knowledgeable brother.  :)