Wednesday, 17 October 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 489

Well mine's still a mess of stuff, but at least it looks a little more of a productive mess!

The little house/shelf kit thing has been pushed back and will probably end up being re-filed for another time; I consulted my diary and realised that I need to be doing stuff other than faffing for a while! There's a pile of cards in cello bags that form part of my kits for this year's Marython. I need them to be finished this week so I can concentrate on getting other stuff sorted. It's all a matter of prioritising the deadlines! 
The box of Sharpies was there because I needed to address a parcel earlier. There's bag of Dolly Mixtures.I bought them to take to share with my Mama when I visit, but they were on my desk and so I opened them yesterday. Fortunately, I have a conscience and did manage to save her some! 
Hanging from the arm of the light is the result of my first Christmas workshop..look, I made a bauble. Horrid photo, but I deserve it because I'm showing off! It was all done under the direction of the amazing Sandra, in just under 3 hours and 2 cups of coffee.
Come on then Deskers, show and tell. Bet some of you are doing much better than a 20 card kit and a bauble over a week! Please put WOYWW in your blog post title and link here. Lovely.

Friday, 12 October 2018

You are invited....

What's on Your Workdesk? Wednesday - WOYWW - has been a weekly thing for ten years next year. Ten years, can you believe it. I can't! 
Week 520  is on Wednesday 22nd May 2019. Next year's WOYWW Crop will be on Saturday 1st June in Shrewsbury.
Our hosts for this crop will be Twiglet and Wipso - you know who I mean, Jo and Annie. 
The hall is booked and some plans are actually being hatched! Our hosts for this crop will be Twiglet and Wipso - you know who I mean, Jo and Annie. 

Now, the reason for sharing our excitement over this is simple; we want you to come! 

We're hoping that this amount of notice will give you time to consider, plot, plan and ultimately, say yes! (one of our number has already booked a holiday nearby so that she can come. *cough - LLJ - cough*)

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday 488

Well, multi-tasking or Jack of all Trades...for once, it looks tidier than I think it really is. There's an accounts file because it's been a month-end sort of week. Some Christmas tree decorations because Mum's care home has asked for donations for a winter raffle and a small house shaped tray kit that I bought in a fit of mixed media intent some years ago. At about the time we called it painting, cutting and sticking other stuff on! I need to do it, if only to get it off my desk. We'll see, huh! 
I took the photo yesterday, to show off the sun, it makes me so happy. Even if it shows off the filthy windows, there's nothing like autumn sun, it's a wonderful thing. 
Talking of us your wonderful work desk will you? Link your post here and we'll pop round. Today it will be after the sun has gone down before I get to yours, I'm lucky's going to be beautiful and I am happily going to be outside for some of it!

Friday, 5 October 2018

More domestic matters.

This blog is turning into a record of Mr Dunnit's building! He's doing an amazing job, improving our home. The irony is not lost on us. We've lived here and raised our daughter from the teeny kitchen that I have hated with a passion for twenty odd years. Now Miss Dunnit has flown the nest, and we head towards some sort of slow down if not retirement, we've decided to extend and have a kitchen/dining room. Slightly mad, but still very much easier than moving. I think we're both a bit scared of the monumental clear out that moving house would cause. We've told friends that the actual costs involved in moving far outweigh the extension costs. And they do. But I suspect it's the clearing-out fear that made the decision for us! (It's OK, he doesn't read this, so it's safe for me to admit).
Those of you that suffer my nonsense on Facebook or Instagram may have seen these pictures already. Some of you who WOYWW have asked about it which is very kind. The roofing work has briefly coloured and shadowed my workdesk see, so it's a minor talking point!  I'm so jolly proud of Mr Dunnit, all his own work and our combined design ideas. You can see the lantern in all it's glory now, glazed and ready for winter.
This is the view from my bedroom window. That impressive flat fibre glass covered roof has been applied by hand with a 4" wide roller. Lots of watching a You Tube video about how to add a fibre glass roof and some advice from Miss Dunnit who used fibre glass in one of her modules at University. It's not actually as flat as it looks, there's a slight tilt to the front to allow rainwater to run off. Still, it was the devil's work and for the first time in my life with him, when he'd finished, Mr Dunnit's only words were 'never again'. So I knew it had been hard. The glue type stuff (that stinks enough to make your head ache for days) goes off really fast so it's a fine art just adding the right quantity of hardener, it's affected by dryness, temperature - very fickle stuff. The roof had to be dry before coating and the first layer of fibre had to be dry for 24 hours after coating. Talk about love and a prayer. Still all's well that ends well. 
We'd like to get the folding doors in before winter really sets in, then we can work inside; there is masses to do, and it's being done in 'spare time', so we don't anticipate 'moving in' for months and months. The window at left will be where the kitchen sink goes, so that gives you an idea of the layout. It causes heaps of changes in the existing downstairs too, and to be frank, I'm not even thinking about that. Upheaval of that sort does not need to be anticipated! 

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 487

I'm doing stuff! Hurrah! See on the card that is supposed to be standing upright against the box of Sharpies that it has square icons on it? Well, I've cut five sheets of the patchwork style card up to achieve a lot more of the square icons. For this is one of the cards that I'm kitting for the Card Making Marython. All of a sudden, it's next month. Good grief. The rest of my desk is just pushed back junk and badly needs sorting out. But I'm in the mood to cut and kit, so I must make hay! 

Now then gentle Deskers, if you visit this page and hear gentle rumblings, do not be alarmed. It is simply the sound of others, more organised than I. There's an idea to have a WOYWW Crop at around the time of the tenth anniversary. Week 520 of course. Don't panic, it's not till next May. But think would be fab if we could give enough notice to make it a mega-meet! Fun stuff will occur online too, but foundations must be laid and seeds of ideas must be planted. Talk to me if you have an idea or yearning!

Meanwhile, as is normal on such Wednesdays, please link your lovely WOYWW blog posts here so that we may visit and be nosey  inspired.

Sunday, 30 September 2018

A collaboration.

When I write a blog post, I don't consider who might read it. Is that selfish, normal, odd? I don't know. I was very surprised a couple of weeks ago to receive communication from a bloke who had read this post about a vacuum cleaner. Allen, he is called, wanted to use or link to the post on the website that he runs. His website is all about tips tricks and articles for keeping a lovely house, Cleaning, keeping, products, you name it. It's called home viable and is super slick. Of course, it features some amazing properties (amazing photography too). And these properties are clean. Man they are clean. They remind me of some of the paper crafting celebrities houses - you know when they post about how busy they've been decorating with all their new products to celebrate that the third fence post from the left had a bird on it this morning. I know, I'm just jealous.
Allen and I had a to-and-fro. I pointed out that his proposal to have a presence on each other's web pages would cross the Atlantic Ocean. No problem said he, he is in the process of adding UK products and recommendations too. I did not point out that the kitchen pictured is almost the size of the ground floor of my home. But he might have heard me shriek at the inclusion of a high chair. It's not something I'm any longer associated with - babies in residence. Oh how tiring.
I also pointed out that there is a weekly thing on my bog that exposes the current state of my uncared for, neglected, unpolished, slovenly looking desk. Often featuring filthy windows and an unswept floor. He said that his site visitors aren't all perfects, it's a place to find tips and tricks (which it has, in abundance) for when us not-so-perfects need to ask questions. Well in the end, his enthusiasm flattered me and I think it harmless. After all, I can aspire. So for a while at least, one of these lovely photos will appear on my blog, acting as a link to home viable. I might get some more readers from it. To my eternal disappointment this 'deal' didn't come with a cleaner for life, a house that resembles these two pictures or even a pot of turquoise paint, which it would seem I need if I'm to be a trend leader. Nothing. But now there's a bloke called Allen, somewhere in the US, who thinks I'm joking about my domestic propensities. Meanwhile, there's an article  which bears further investigating - how to keep my 1975 Shag rug looking shaggy. You can't make this stuff up - me and domestic bliss! 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 486

It's not looking good. For so many reasons, this desk is neglected and superficially unchanged from last week. The photos are still spread out on it and horror, some stuff has been dumped on top of them. It's OK, I can sort it today. The boxes are still on the floor and will require a little more motivation, but I suspect that won't be too far behind, simply because I'm getting sick of the sight of them! 
I've scheduled this post. It's currently late on Tuesday night, and I'm engaged early in the morning and don't trust myself to remember to do everything I need to before leaving the house! And I really need to have a coffee and get dressed as a priority on an early day!

So as usual friendly Deskers, please link here and show what you're up to; I feel it's been an age since I was up to anything of any usefulness, so your input will be appreciated. Please put WOYWW in your post title before linking up here. I thank you. We all do.

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 485

Lots of us have been thinking of Deskers caught in or helping others as a result of the  hurricane and typhoon that have dealt harm and hardship. I don't know what, but am pretty sure that if any of us can do anything to help, we'd like to. 
That's not an icy, snowy morning out there, it's the early morning light coloured by a blue tarpaulin. The glass will go into the lantern this weekend and thus replace this ghostly ghastly colour. I shall record it for posterity. And scrapbooking. Which may well be the same thing, actually. I'll show you though, because several of you have been kind enough to wonder about it. Don't worry, I'll include a warning for those of you that don't want to read about my everyday domestic life! 
Meanwhile - look at my desk. I ordered some more prints (to add to the 8 kerjillion that I'm behind with) and was sorting them into rough categories. That's the most creative thing that's happened at my desk since last week. I was absolutely sure I would spend Saturday ignoring everything else to get a bit scrappy, but it didn't happen. Despite giving myself permission, I couldn't summon up the mojo! These new photos may do it though, I love scrapping recent stuff. Share and tell then gentle Desker, it's been a week and you know how I thrive on routine.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 484

It's been wonderful to see your photos and posts from the Crop at the weekend, I really loved them all, and the feeling that I knew exactly what kind of a day was being had. Looked like fun and I'm not in any doubt at all that this WOYWW community is a success because of friendships. 
Now on to the part of having a friend like me that you'll never understand... my 'working' method.

This is a very sad state of affairs. The 'new stash' and tool bag are still where they lay last week. I honestly haven't done anything crafty since, it's been a right old whirlwind.You don't often see this full frontal angle, so I've labelled. The three boxes are filled with inherited stash from Mary. It's mostly card blanks and A4 sheets. So it's a lot. The clear stamps in the blue drawersare perfectly at hand but very higgledy piggledy and need a better storage solution. But that isn't going to be sorted in the foreseeable, I can tell you! The cup clip is useless unless you have a tin or a cup without a handle. Mor often than not, I hang a bin bag from it! The mess of wrapping paper is usually stored in a long thin duffle-shaped bag. It happens to be a great bag for transporting my Scan&Cut, and as yesterday was S&C training morning, I emptied the bag and...well, you can see...apparently I don't need the chair! Just the sight of it is driving me mad, so today is tidy up time. Again. Sorry to be unproductive and boring. I look forward to your non boring desks, I can tell you.

Sunday, 9 September 2018

It's Who You Know...

My kind and gentle Father in Law died in July. Unexpected and therefore quite shocking. My sweet Mother in Law has been bouncing off the walls between what needs to be done and not wanting to do anything, as you can imagine. She found catharsis in sorting through Dad's wardrobes and drawers about a fortnight ago. She was content to let his clothes go to charities and a couple of big jumpers were snatched up by grandchildren. Even though he retired from work about 20 years ago and weddings and funerals were the only occasions that he needed them for, Mum was a bit reluctant to let go of Dad's ties. Of course, we encouraged her to keep whatever she wanted and the ties were no exception. After all, they weren't exactly taking up space! By coincidence, my sister was telling me about a girl she knew who had scoured charity shops for ties and made a waistcoat out of them. PING. I suggested to Mum that we could use the ties to make each of the grandchildren a gift. And when I say we...I mean Annie, Wipso to you and me.
Off they went. And in four days flat, back came a box full of little Brian teddies. Mr Dunnit and I were quite choked, all over again. Then, when I took them to Mum, so was she. We had a good Boo hoo and a little argument amount which Grandchid will get which bear. Meantime, I'm looking after them. What's the collective noun for a box full of Brian Bears?

Friday, 7 September 2018

Excuses, excuses

I am not going to be at the WOYWW Crop this year. There's been a lot going on here, and you'd be forgiven for thinking that it's because I'm doing the decent thing and spending more time with my Mum. But it's not. Some time ago, when he realised the clash of dates, Mr Dunnit revealed that he'd bought us tickets for an event on Saturday that frankly, we can't afford to let go. I am looking forward to a 'day off' from everything and a day basking in the attention of my husband who will not talk about the work that takes up 6 days of his week or the extension that takes up 5 evenings and one day a week. We have been living together in parallel lives and I'm happy to be breaking that routine!
You may want this in your head as you eat my share of the prizes for guessing who sent me this after nearly collapsing with laughter when she found it!

I won't half miss all the chatter and buzz of being at the Crop, but there will be other dates and locations and apart from standing on a chair and bossing people about at mealtimes, I'm not exactly indispensable to the day! Margaret has it all in hand, as she did last year, so you lot just have to turn up and chat. Oh, and eat! There will be a raffle, the charity to benefit will be of Margaret's choice. As usual, we will ask for subs to cover food and hall hire. And as usual, there will be the odd spare table for swaps, give-aways and I small sales.  Have fun. Take pictures, and remember, I will be asking questions!

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 483

You get a twofer today, because it made me laugh! I've been getting in a stitch over fitting stuff in and over the weekend spent a ridiculous two hours producing one card. And I made a huge mess. I whined about it on Facebook. I had to clear up, because last night I went to a 'Marython Inspiration' meeting at Shopkeeper Gal's lovely shop. I had to take some stuff with me and it would have been impossible to find anything in the mess.
So here's the 'tidy-ish' version that greeted me today. Then a little swing left and you can see why it's tidy. I seem to have dumped all the clear stamps I was thinking of using on or around the 'cutting station'. I didn't even realise. Which proves that for me, tidy just means space on the actual desk!
As I thought, I needed last week off and will probably not make many visits this week - today is the culmination of lots of miles and a few sleepless nights I can tell you - we're moving my lovely Mama into another care home. Poor Mama is deep into 6 years of life-robbing dementia and needs more care. The difficulties of wrenching her from an environment that she is even vaguely familiar with fill me with sorrow and dread, so please hold her in your thoughts over the next few days. The plus side is that she will be 6 instead of 56 miles from me, and I intend to share all my scrapbooks with her as we spend more time together. I can see my younger sister's eyes rolling at the thought! 
Show and tell will you, you may just provide the distraction that Penny and I need at some point today!

Wednesday, 29 August 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 482

I snapped a pic on Tuesday late afternoon because there was light! The new roof has been covered in a tarpaulin to defend it against the worst of the weather and my word, that plunged my workroom into daytime darkness. All temporary and in a good cause!
From this angle the ATG gun looks huge doesn't it! Lovely Kathy asked if I use it much, and the answer is all the time. It's not heavy at all and it took a bit of getting used to, but it's what I look for as sticky, I really like it. I caved in and bought stronger readers too, but I don't think I need them really; my sight is affected on the right by the 'gunk' I have to put in my eye to keep it moist - it's a bit like vaseline and blurs my vision horribly. That and my eyes are 54 now, and that's not good for fussy cutting! So you can see the fifth re-make of a little card. Honestly, I'm finding them so difficult. The round acrylic thing is the lid for my glitter glue carousel (just behind it) and the basket at right is stuffed full with bags of sequins and random stuff that I just couldn't be bothered to put away properly.
Gentle Deskers, presently, my life is not especially my own and I know you will understand if I appear even more absent than of late. It's a family thing and family first huh. It will be a very relaxing and cheering thing to visit your desks at some point - so please join in! Put WOYWW in your post title so that we can find it easily, and post a link here. Or use #woyww on Instagram! Get me, swinging with the tech!

Friday, 24 August 2018

Life on the wonk

At the risk of boring you, I thought I'd make some more excuses for myself. Since 2016 when I had that brain tumour safely removed, my balance is shot, because all the ear tubes and stuff had to go to allow access. It gives me a seriously different perspective I can tell you. If I look in shop windows and keep walking, the perspective changes very quickly to being from the gutter. I simply cannot walk, look up and turn my head simultaneously without coming over all wonky, and at this age and this round-ness, it's not a good thing to be seen grabbing rails, staggering and erm,  very occasionally, plopping onto my butt! I do seem to have it down now,I know where to avoid - slopes, very damaged uneven surfaces, and building sites (which as a Joiner's apprentice I do actually get to stagger about now and then!). Generally though, two years on, you wouldn't know unless you watched closely. Or walked beside me. Ask Jan, she gets pushed into all sorts of gutters and buildings!

At workshops, amongst other things, my preamble contains an excuse for every single mount or embellishment being slightly wonky. I simply cannot get straight stuff straight any more. So it's definitely a 'do as I say not as I've done' with the sample cards!

I can't place something straight,and in this case I tried to use the camera to try to adjust and lo..even wonkier! Luckily the friends pictured all have a certain lean on them anyway, so I'm doing rather a good job of covering for them, don't you think! Do you know these people? That would be Doug Silverwolf, Lunch Lady Jan, Shaz Silverwolf and LLJ's wonderful Gordon. And WOYWW brought them together. You can meet them in LA at the Crop. And judge the lean for yourselves.

My wonderful in-laws. Who did not spend the wedding breakfast leaning gently to the left!
The funniest thing is corners and corridors. I can walk down a street in a reasonably straight line. But an enclosed corridor - not a chance. I just zig zag down it and pretend it's funny to be bouncing off walls and causing any hanging artwork to end up on the wonk too! Corners are weird;  I often end up going in a large arc, it definitely takes longer and I cannot explain the compulsion to walk the long way at all! I have this compulsion with sticking things on straight, I think. Or I am just no longer seeing straight! 
It's my new signature, so I've learned to like it or measure it. You can guess how often my craft works involve measuring....

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 481

I took this yesterday at tea time because I heard a weather forecast for gloom, so I thought ahead. Then it turns out I've had to edit the picture to add light because it was actually quite gloomy in here anyway! You can tell it's been edited...that light flare is so unreal looking! 
Drag your eyes away from Mr Dunnit's mini sandpit (he SAYS he mixes concrete in it for the bricks) and look at my desk.  There's to be another Marython card making day,which is the only reason I'm entertaining Christmas thoughts. And they are not thoughts of JOY believe me, whatever my desk seems to say! Centre is a new Distress Oxide that I treated myself to, and next to it a new Encore! Gold pigment ink pad. These are getting rare in the UK, so I bought another for reasons of Just In Case. Apparently yesterday I was keeping my fluids up like a good gal, although of course this morning it's all about the Java. The ripped up book is a Concordat. It's over 60 years old and according to someone  Reverend, very out of date. So, re-use, re-cycle, re-invent. Or something. I bet not a scrap of it ends up on the card I'm trying to pull out of my head!
Show and tell then friends, and inspire us (me) do!

Saturday, 18 August 2018

LA Again

The thing about a WOYWW Crop day is that it's immensely sociable. I was lying in bed this morning wondering what I should take with me to do. Then I remembered that I don't ever actually get anything done. I trade ATCs, make a few cups of tea and coffee, try to help in the kitchen, introduce Deskers to each other and spend the rest of the time talking. 

Last year, I sat with Annie and did some dumfing. It's fair to say that I concentrated long enough to make a nice basic flower, and I was thrilled to do it. But I chatted more than I worked and Annie soon had a queue, so I moved to the seat next to Elizabeth and chatted. I also spent quite a while sitting opposite Sarah and Eva. They worked and told me what I wanted to know about them. It was chatting, combining what we knew about each other from our online presence with our new, 'in real life' meeting.

I like to help in the kitchen if I'm allowed.I find it's a very useful way of eyeing up the grub and making sure that there's enough left for me. I enjoy the tidy up part of lunch because it's very often an opportunity to chat with the partners of the Deskers. Interesting lot indeed, intrepid, even! They drive, carry the bags, spend the day with us all and then cheerfully wash up.  And LLJ's Gordon takes the photos...Important to us all in so many ways!

The venue always involves tables put into a horseshoe shape so that we can all see each other. I can then sit opposite people, block their view and force them to let me get to know them. Chatting. Chat is what I will bring. However, if you are planning to come, bring something to work on. Anything you can do whilst chatting. I promise, you'll be more exhausted from chatting than crafting, but in true WOYWW tradition, we would very much like to see what you're working on, and hear about how you do it. 

This year's Crop in LA (Llandudno, again) is for a very specific reason. For other completely non specific reasons, we'd like to plan next year's crop in another location. Fancy using your local hall? All we need you to do is suss out a hall and parking and we can talk. You don't have to do catering, we can organise a Pot Luck or lunch truly is all about the get-together! 

Wednesday, 15 August 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 480

Bam! Straight into the business of the day! See the precarious looking balancing act of the glitter carousel...on top of its lid, in a tidy tray which is on top of some wood mounted stamps. The tip of the heat gun is supporting it all. Sigh. There's signs of Christmas card making. Not a lot, it has to be said, they aren't coming easily. I don't know if you know, but behind this desk is another worktop with the PC on it, which we use primarily for business. And blogging, because of the ridiculous situation with Blogger and iPad. Anyway, that means there are two seats in this room. In order to sit at the PC to type this very post, I had to move a bunch of stuff from one seat to another. Yesterday I attended a fun and useful Scan 'n' Cut 'training' workshop. So there you see the bag containing mats, cut papers, spare papers and a carrier bag with purchases, mostly just waiting (begging) to be put away. For once in a very very long time,  the purchases are not for me. My niece wants to make a scrapbook for a friend. I will be hosting her starting session on Friday and hey, you can't successfully indoctrinate the next generation if you don't provide a goodie bag to start. Yikes. That makes me sound like the child catcher!
Show and tell, please do. 

Friday, 10 August 2018

This is a domestic tale...and it might be whiney..

I figure that if I share this with you, I will then have expunged it from my mind and I'll be over it. We'll see.
First of all, let's get over the language. I'm going to talk about a Vacuum cleaner.  No matter what, everyone in the UK refers to their vacuum cleaner as a hoover, and the act of cleaning with a vacuum as 'hoovering'. This is directly a result of fabulous marketing way back in the middle of the last century (that is the 20th Century!) by the American company Hoover. Amazing that it didn't catch the same way in the US. Anyway.

After a few years of service, my hoover fell apart. Quite literally; the handle snapped off. I'm not into hand beating and sweeping carpets, so I immediately replaced it with a machine that had good reviews and indeed, colour me lucky, was £100 cheaper than it's recommended price at the time. It was a Vax branded vacuum. My word, it was the best vacuum I've ever used - talk about vacuum! It sucked up anything and everything and really, the see through dust collector thingy made me rather ashamed. I soon got over that though.

The Vax stopped working last week. It still sucks, but it won't let me move it around the floor without appalling, heart attack inducing levels of effort. You probably heard my yell of gratitude and delight. I have never wanted an appliance to fail so much in my life. Never wanted to replace something so soon after I'd bought it. Man, it may have been the best sucker ever, but the rest of the 'design' nearly broke me.
Relax. Have a scoop of gelato. A decoy photo of course, I mean, who wants to see my broken vacuum cleaner!
I was attracted by the extra long flex, certainly enabling me to use it without changing sockets in each room. Great. Not so. Waaaay too much wire to handle when not using it fully extended. Not enough room to stow it altogether successfully on the back of the machine meant it just unwound as you used it. Which meant that more than once, I hoovered over the damn thing and damaged it. But that's nothing compared to the location of the bloody flex. It came out of the machine's centre back..which meant that every time I stepped forward in that hovering 'forward-backward' motion, it was low enough and trailing sufficiently to step on. The machine then got whipped from my hand and I inevitably crash into it or lose my balance. I can't tell you how angry it made me! There IS a hook on the underside of the handle, designed to get around this problem and hold the flex out of the footstep area, but it doesn't work; one movement and the flex drops out of it.

Then there's the over sensitive upright mechanism thingy. You're familiar with the 'forward-backward' movement used when hoovering. The Vax would lock into upright mode and stop sucking every time I pulled it back past my hip. Oh the rage! 

The handle doubles as storage for a flexible hose, like a Dyson. Then the crevice tool can be popped on the end for stairs and those hard to reach domestic places that until you're responsible for cleaning you don't discover till your house is full of friends and judges. Oh the horror. Except it's not like a Dyson: the crevice tool is hard to click on and almost impossible to get off. The flexible hose has to be extended in order to hoover a whole flight and leave the machine at the foot of the stairs. Extending it means unclicking, re-clicking and fighting with the extra hose that hangs on the side of the machine. I broke one of the storage clips on day 1, whilst trying to work out the 'simple click' motion. The extra hose did forever then swing like a purple and plastic pendulum, timing my cleaning efforts.

Is it unusual to hate an appliance so? I don't know. Mr Dunnit and nearby friends have laughed like drains at my misfortune and complaints about it. I did not tamper with it, or destroy it on purpose. But I am so glad to see the back of it. Meanwhile, I will be collecting data before any other necessary appliance purchases. I will not be reading the manufacturer blurb and the 'reviews'. I will be asking friends for plus and minus points on the widest range of domestic equipment. And then I'll decide. Chime in, if you have any opinion, on any appliance. Eventually, we could review everything!

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 479

Oh yes. That month end, VAT quarter, tax update and general half-way-through-the-year-overview is underway. My poor desk, it looks as if I'm working for a living. Ha. It looks, on some level, as if I might know what I'm doing. See how I shoved stuff aside and up the sides rather than totally part with the crafty feeling. All is not lost however. Hard left, upright behind the yellow file - right there in white and purple. My first 2018 Christmas card. There. I said it. Shopkeeper Gal made me. You can see it's dark outside. Just...I remembered to take this before bed last night. The only morning time change will be the addition of a large mug of coffee. One day more (oh, that would make a great song title) and I'll be clearing up and just leaving a small envelope file within my line of vision for purposes of guilt. Actually, it just makes me do something eventually, I get so sick of the sight of it!
No doubt, absolutely no doubt, that you are doing something much more interesting in your work desk space today. Please share and tell. 

Saturday, 4 August 2018

I've got a blue one and three pink ones...

A thousand years ago, I owned a craft shop. The introduction of the trays to catch the embossing powder occurred and were prompted I think, by a snap together tray from Judikins. It was a sheet of incredibly static stiff vinyl with good scores that could be folded and snapped together with big old silver snaps. At that time, there were very few UK wholesalers representing all of the American brands and I recall it costing nearly sixteen pounds. Yikes. Mind you, the first heat gun I put into stock were for sale at £25 each. It was a hard sell, until yo demonstrated the magic of embossing. With gold powder. Anyway, as with so many things, the idea of the powder tray was begging to be improved, reproduced and sold at a more attractive price. It took a while.
This incarnation with the funnel on one short end is the Woodware version, called a 'Tidy Tray' which is what I call anything of the sort, even if it's folded paper. There are versions with square funnels on the corner, versions that have a rubber cap to go over the hole, etc. Initially, this woodware version sold at £6.95, which was still a bit of a 'yikes' for a tray to put powder in. But, in use and as with s many things, they became indispensable for all sorts of jobs and when I abandoned retailing, I kept all of the ones I had in the workshop. 
There was some discussion last Wednesday about them. Mostly negative, people telling me that they are too static and powder ends up being wasted. I agree, to a certain extent, and no, I don't run an anti-static bag around it before I use it - my word, that would imply that I know when I'm going to emboss something and have the tools at hand! What I do, despite my desk slovenliness, is wash them frequently in hot soapy water. They are a bit paler for their experiences because sometimes that means a short holiday in the dishwasher; but they are very, very much less static and therefore very, very much more useful.
I could live without one, sure. But 99.9% of my stash falls under that phrase. 

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 478

478. 1st August. LLJ's birthday. Monumental statistics don't you think. Happy, happy birthday to you, Jan. Am in no doubt that you  will spend quite a lot of your day out and about. I'm already looking forward to next week for the photos! My desk is a familiar tip.
I've been toying with some Christmas cards. I haven't got very far and as you can see, haven't even bothered to pour embossing powder back into the safety of the jar before abandoning the desk. My lovely pockety craft bag (made by LLJ) is on the surface because I was rummaging through it late yesterday. After I had abandoned the crafting. I didn't find what I was looking for. The stack of Distress Inks (which were a gift from Darnell) are remnants of a previous card attempt. The one you can see is just stamped about a thousand times and cut into pieces. No good for a workshop....way too long a make for one card. Didn't even notice the stapler till now. Can only assume that Mr Dunnit has used it for work papers and found that space the only surface available in this room! I'll be back late from all the real life visiting today, so please don't be cross if I'm late to your place.
Share and tell please, it's what we do here.

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 477

The temperatures are staying high and I'm enjoying the fact that having the roof on the extension throws my desk into permanent shade! The desk will eventually move, but we're a long way from that, so I barely even consider it a reality!
I was chatting to Margaret (Glitter and Glue) about the WOYWW Crop . There was a lot of digression and she said that she hoped to see pictures of all the scrapbooking I've done recently. Well, not to keep anyone in suspenders, but here's the desk in non-scrapbook mode! Last evening I had a desire to do something for no reason at all. So  I stamped and coloured in for an hour while tea was cooking. Yes, cooking. Despite the heat, every now and then, you need a meal that involves vegetables and gravy. According to Mr Dunnit, anyway! You can see a cross stitch kit that I purchased in a sale. The box belies it's teeniness! You can't see the new readers I had to buy so that I can see the blooming weave on the fabric. Of course they are on my head, in use as a hairband. They are strong enough to improve colouring and make fabric look woven, but sure do make me stagger when I try to walk about in them! 

Forgive me if I didn't get to you last week....I hope your kettle didn't boil dry whilst waiting for me. This week will be better. And on that basis, please show what you're doing. It may well be the post that prompts others to try it.....Marit and Jan will be today's examples.

Monday, 23 July 2018

A forgiving bucket.

At the beginning of the month I went to a bucket painting workshop. I know, I can hear your reaction, it's probably the same as mine was. But it turns out, it wasn't like sucking eggs at all. And, the end product was very pleasing. Because the 'mistakes' aren't immediately obvious, and the bucket has the finished look about it. That's a good thing, because if I leave a workshop with a project unfinished, that's usually how it stays. Forever.

I popped a glue pen into it to give you some sense of proportion. Fat lot of good, huh!
If you haven't met Kay Carley (she's a name in the business you know), then I recommend you take the chance if you're presented with it. She is a sparkly eyed, patient, softly spoken young woman who, with a will of steel, will guide you into doing things her way and at a pace which means you'll finish. This is a huge skill. As I've just implied, unfinished project workshops aren't overly satisfactory, and Kay was having none of that!
In creation glad was I not to be doing it all straight onto the bucket. Now there's a sentence I never thought to say..
I'm not going to go over the workshop in detail,my memory and your patience aren't up to it. I used rice paper, stencils, dry painting techniques, stamps and wax crayons. And a scarey amount of wet glue and varnish type mediums. Stamps are by Paper Artsy, of Kay's design. Told you she was clever.
And we stopped for a proper lunch. Shopkeeper Gal was great and kept the fluids up and ran around in the heat to place our lunch orders. It was a lovely day. I'm undecided about the use of the Bucket. You may want to make a suggestion. Most of my ideas involve sweeties or pens. Well, that would be my only two ideas. You can probably do better!

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 476

Well, this is a photo taken yesterday but my desk looks absolutely unaltered this morning. And will remain that way until tomorrow! I'm not complaining about the life that I'm leading, just how it seems to compresss whole days into just a few hours!
My lovely daughter has been home for a few days and I made her go through some of the photos waiting to be scrapped (the Snapfish envelope). She had to annotate names and such on pictures of her University friends etc. Very helpful because even if I leave room on a page for her to journal, it rarely gets done! So while she was doing that, I went through yet more old photos and made a quick LO, as you can see.  The Yellow Ziploc baggie at the end of my desk contains Project Life cards that I use for journal cards. I'm never going to do PL and could smack myself for buying them to be honest. But they were pretty and I thought Project Life and I would work together so well. Nope. Not sure why. Answers on a postcard please, if you know!
The bluetooth speaker is on the iPad stand because I had it in my hand when I picked up the ipad to take the picture. It's still there and probably minus any charge now. 
Share and tell will you? It's nice to see that other desks are actually in use. I have a lunch date with a special family driving up from Wales......catch you at your desk later!

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 475

Sunshine. Sunshine will be on my workdesk after lunch. I am loving this weather! Meanwhile, my desk is groaning with the chaos of book work and scrap book work.  

I piled everything at the left end that I didn't need to help get the accounts done. And on the floor as you can just see. I work in a ring binder and an accounts book, so apart from the area where the glass cutting mat sits, I worked on top of the pens and other detritus at this end. Lazy. Sigh. Yeah. Too old to change, it's only me that has to put up with it! Just between the open jaws of my mini paper cutter at the back, you can slightly see the bucket that I decorated in a workshop conducted by Kay Carley. It was a lovely day, and I'll brag a bit more about it in a separate post! 
I dropped out of sight last week and didn't visit many desks or blog again, sorry about that. This week will be more gentle on my lovely family and things will be as normal as a wonky woman can make them! 
Join in then please, if only to take my mind off the football tonight (Do It England!), I can hardly bear to watch, but I can't look away! I think that might be a syndrome....or something! Put WOYWW in your post title so we can find your revelations without delay!

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 474

Still a glorious, sunshiney Britain. I know lots of you don't like the heat, and I'm sorry if it makes you suffer. I love it, revel in it, enjoy being in it or looking out on it, sleep like a baby and generally feel it's good for me. It hasn't magically made me any tidier though! 
The desk shows an ice cream tub full of Sharpies. Actually, possibly the most useful coloured pens I own. They live on a high(ish) shelf at left of my desk....high to stop certain male folk borrowing them. I keep ONE in a pencil pot on my desk and often found it's strayed to another home. You get my point. Under that is a piece of 12x12 from the Bohemian Dream collection from Cocoa Vanilla.  (Oh, these names!). I was going to make a LO with it, but was interrupted by the need to do real work (involving using the Sharpies) and this morning I have completely forgotten why I thought I could make that huge bold pattern work for me! The polythene boxes at left are how I store stickers and embellishments and I tend to do the paper part of a LO and then randomly sort through these boxes adding bits until I feel the LO is finished. It's highly technical.
Thought you might like a step back view so you can see why my desk is newly in permanent shade....still not obvious what we're doing, but you can see a big box taking shape with a white frame in centre top..that will be glazed (called a lantern). Other light will be gained through folding doors that will form 2 of the 4 walls. All in good time, people. So I've had Mr Dunnit at home for ad hoc hours here and there whilst waiting for paint to dry on a job in the workshop, anything that could be construed as a reasonable break time. Playing havoc with my nerves, guilt and supplies of squash and tea! 
So that's almost a twofer, huh! Show us yours now, you know how we neeeeeed to see.
Happy and peaceful and glorious Independence Day, cousins. Hope it's a lovely party!

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Today, I'm wearing blue for BANA

BANA is the acronym for the charity that I turned to when I had the diagnosis of the brain tumour. British Acoustic Neuroma Association. Well, today is the day that they ask us to 'Wear Blue for BANA' to raise awareness. It occurred to me that my blog  might help!

Something I don't like to do...selfies, mirrors....but it's for a good cause. No enlarging, please, I think you'll find I'm large enough. (More interesting: the artwork on the wall is by Patsy Paterno, a Desker. I bought it from her just after the surgery - it says 'every day is a journey' and it is so true.)

BANA have a support group of fellow Acoustic Neuroma patients. We refer to them as ANs. Bearing in mind that no tumour is the same for anyone, they are called Acoustic Neuromas because they rise from the hearing tubes, usually attach themselves to the facial nerve and erm, grow. They are benign. That is to say, they are not a cancer. They are life threatening - after all, they grow in your brain, taking up room that isn't actually there, causing the brain to be squashed against the brain stem. Slowly, functions go haywire. have to have it removed, one way or another. As you know, I had surgery. I joined the BANA group on Facebook and the depth of knowledge and the 'after surgery' stories frightened me to death. I very quickly made up my mind to recover and be well, and I'm very grateful that for once, I had the will power and great fortune to be able to do that.
I have side effects, but no symptoms, I am not ill. The palsy on my right side is due to the trauma the facial nerve suffered. It has improved vastly, and it might continue to do so. It would be very nice not to have half a numb face. But it is easier to live with than a tumour in your head! The palsy means though, that drinking from a can, bottle or sports cap is a very messy dribbly affair. When I come to your house, please can I have porcelain for my coffee or tea cup and a nice thin glass for other drinks? They are no longer a problem. The thicker the rim, the more I dribble. But of course, there's a way round everything. And there's always someone to help you research those ways...……

Everything looks wonky. No idea why. 

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 473

It's a slower start to the day for me - we've been looking after Buster, our God-Dog, while my sissy had a holiday. He went home yesterday and so this morning I'm sort of revelling in the fact that I could stay in my unshowered state till lunchtime if I wanted to! I don't, because I've got plans, but it's strange not to factor in a walk before it gets too hot! 
This side of the house is in it's own shadow until lunchtime, so quite cool to work in. You see the detritus of another scrapbook page, day 26 of the challenge yesterday and when I'd done it, as I so often do, I walked away without clearing up! The heart cookie cutter is one of three that I use as a template to dot gems or liquid pearls around. There's a photo of Mr Dunnit and I on a plane...last summer. It's horrible quality; all bad light and grainy, but I do like it! It will find itself on a layout eventually! Despite having a building site outside the door, I still have a bit of garden to look after, which accounts for the hose end in the basket at top hose, waaay too many end choices! 

Please share your choices and crafty areas if you have any, we wanna see what you're doing this summer....

Monday, 25 June 2018

That one sheet idea theory

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I'd had this idea to see how many cards I could get from one sheet of 12x12 scrapbook paper. Well, as usual, it wasn't my idea, merely something that had entered my brain and resonated in my creative cortex. (Sounds convincing doesn't it!) One quick search on Pinterest will lead you to eleventy million suggestions, and some of them get many many cards from their piece of paper and show you a cutting pattern. 
Well, of course, I got bored. Having to be exact and follow a pattern isn't in me, especially when some of the shapes don't suit my cardmaking. (The long triangle to fill a corner of a card particularly gives me a mental blank!
So I made a few, and still have some paper left, but probably won't finish the exercise.
 At the workshop, I threw these on the table as ideas. Workshopeers picked their choice of paper from the vast selection that Shopkeeper Gal stocks and they went to work! It was great. The average was eight cards and some of the ideas were absolutely lovely. 
I can't show you those lovely ideas because I didn't photo them. And besides, they may turn up on this very blog as a straightforward lift with some lame excuse about not crediting the designer because I can't remember. Although the remembering part would be true!

Friday, 22 June 2018

Taking on a Challenge

A good friend made me join a Facebook group called Inspired by Memories. It's for scrapbookers and memory keepers. It's ideal for me because it's not as fast moving as some of the really big groups, and I find that very helpful! I was lulled into a false sense of security about my desk-time earlier this month and decided to 'sign up' to a 30 day Challenge. A sketch every day in June. The theme, in my mind, is 'try to keep up'. 
I'm not doing too badly, but of course I'm not up to date It took a crop last weekend to make this pile look erm, pile-ish. I can't bring myself to put them in the album yet, I like to see how I'm doing. If I'm productive. Or smug. Or both in all probability.
I really enjoy scrapbooking fairly ordinary and very current things. It means that I have to do a deal with myself. For every up-to-date photo I scrap, I try to do an old one too. But they have to speak to me before they get onto a LO. So for example...….

 Miss Dunnit's summer footwear made it onto a page, three days after I took the photo. (all of these are sketch interpretations for the challenge). So then I had to do this LO, featuring her being scarf monitor in the workshop at Uni, last year. Quite recent really.
Earlier in the challenge, this photo finally spoke to me. It's definitely 10 years old, possibly 12. I can flick through the same pile of pictures for a year, and eventually I can think of something to do with one or two, a title, or a sketch will appear that just suits a pic that's been hanging around for ages. 
I can get a little fixated in my 'one job at a time'-ness and so I am happy to report that this challenge is still fun, despite my being behind. I'm not pressuring myself so much as spending time at my desk that I otherwise probably wouldn't. A positive of it is that when you do manage to climb onto the 'every day' wagon, it's quite intoxicating. For a procrastinator I feel as if I am the wheel on a roll!

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 472 (really, 472)

It seems that between checking the number and typing the next number, I forgot it, and last week was in fact 471. I have double checked and apparently, double remembered this week. Good grief.

My desk, untouched by human hand since Monday. That will change this morning, but only to tidy it. Which will as you can tell, be a monumental relief to all. I've perched my first coffee in about the only empty space. Which suggests that space had a drink in it whilst I was putting this LO together. whilst avoiding football on the TV- watching England play makes me twitchy!  The pile at left begins with my patterned scraps in a blue plastic envelope file. Then my alphabet stickers that are in several expandable file pockets, within a large file. Wedged under that, the Moon Sparkles pens - I used the yellow to colour the old Basic Grey alphabet which although in the yellow pocket, were very pale.  
As usual, I'm out most of the day, but unusually, will be home in time to actually make a few comments this evening, so I look forward to that. I think I've got Instagram sussed, so we'll see how we go!

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday 472

It's a bit dull this early. My desk isn't exactly over exciting either! 
I've finished this LO but can't quite decide on it being finished. So I'm walking around it for a little while. More old pictures being scrapped here - 1996 I think! I'll need the desk for workshop preps later, so it hasn't got long!  At far right you can see the little tool bag that houses my Scan&Cut tools. Yesterday I went to another training session and decided in my wisdom not to take the bag (or indeed, it's contents. Or indeed, the electrical cable. Huh?). Weird really, what you decide when you're in a bit of a hurry! Of course I needed them all! Anyway, all's well that ends well and I think I've learned a couple more valuable methods. We'll see how long they last in my memory!
Meanwhile, in the real world, my lovely friend Kathy took part in WOYWW via Instagram last week. This is thrilling. So, I decided to join Instagram. I waited till we visited the-child-who-knows-everything and I asked about it. I was a bit amazed to discover that #WOYWW is already a thing and quite a few non-bloggers do it! More amazing, it sounded pretty easy. Well it's not, because my iPad/Facebook/PC and me don't understand each other. But I am going to sort it out. Just as soon as I get more than one hour at home. Which won't be today. Or tomorrow. 
So please, be patient. Whichever way you join WOYWW, please join in today, it's very important that I'm not alone and uninspired!