Thursday, 26 September 2013

Looking on the bright side


George was sick at school yesterday so, after a 33 mile journey and typing one email, I got a phone call at work to go and collect him from school and take him home. Heck of a round trip for 10 minutes work! But hey, let's look on the bright side...

I had George home with me, snuggled up on the sofa in movie, iPod and Bionicle heaven.

I could ping the wheat bag for his sore tummy whenever required.

I got to eat lunch* with him on a Wednesday (only reserved for holidays usually).

I got lots of cuddles over the course of the day.

Thanks to having a laptop and connectivity to the company network, I got to work in the comfort of my own home, in my jeans, supping tea out of my fave mug.

No commute home after a day of work. I simply switched the laptop off and went downstairs to my boy.

This morning I got a lie in.

I'm eating a leisurely brekkie before commuting upstairs to my laptop.

George is feeling much better.

I get to type this mini post.

No dashing off at 4:50pm tonight to beat the traffic, to get to club in time to pick George up.

George doesn't have to go to club (big win in his book).

Oh, and I got to do a quick pedicure before starting work.

Can looking on the bright side help you today?

Have a good one!


*oh more sick but a voracious appetite and a sore tum.

Hey ho, at least he didn't vomit all day <- that s me looking on the bright side again! :)


Monday, 23 September 2013

Hello Monday

Good morning and happy new week!

Today started misty up North...I like mist, it adds an air of the magical to an otherwise ordinary day.

So the beds are stripped, the washer is on, breakfast has been had and George has been safely delivered to school. What's new for today then?

Well, I have decided to try and improve my skin and am using a new to me facial product...Elemis Papaya Enzyme Peel. Lovely to apply and my skin felt smooth and clean afterwards - I'll let you know how I go on with it over time.

Then it was on to searching for a replacement for my usual spray sealant as I can no longer find a supplier for hoo. It looks like the local DIY store might be my best option!

And now? Now the audiobook is on and I'm about to gesso up some wooden dangly hearts ready for inking before taking Mum to the docs later on.

Not hugely exciting but this is my Ditsy Bird life :)


Have a good day



Friday, 13 September 2013

Mid week mani...

...and a smiley acorn!
I realise this is a bit late but hey, the polish is still going strong so I thought I'd post a pic.

Prune by Innoxa
Sparkled Wild Shine by wet n wild

Friday, 6 September 2013

Perfect crafty weather

It's a damp but lush Friday morning in our village today...perfect crafty weather! - It's too wet for a walk
- There isn't glorious sunshine to tempt me outside
- It's dark enough to light a candle, make a brew & toast a currant teacake.
- It's the kind of weather that makes you hunker down & take stock...or, in my case, get inking.

See, perfect crafty weather!

Happy Friday

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Accentuating the positives

The older I get, the more trials life throws at me, my friends and my family...some days it can really dampen my spirits. This is because I allow them to be my main focus - even if I'm washing up or driving to work, these little worries are nattering away at the back of my brain.

I've always been a firm believer in looking for the silver linings in life's grey clouds...there is usually a spark of positivity to be found even in the most dire of situations. I'm not saying that they compensate for the situation itself but, that they may only have occurred as a result of it and with them they bring a little joy. And they should be celebrated. Heck, some days we need all the boosts we can get! Sometimes it's just a little moment of cheer, a "stop and smell the flowers" respite, that does the trick.

I've decided to try and remember, note down, & enjoy these little moments or by-products...these shining haloes to life's clouds. When I do, I will do a (sometimes wordy, sometimes tidgy, sometimes photographic) post here to help me keep track of them. Hopefully, by focusing on life's positives, I will dilute the effect of the obstacles I must navigate.

Today's little lift? Thunderstorm raging outside, rain pouring down the windows and me sat in the lounge with George, watching a crafting and him building Lego. Simple pleasures. Comfort. Company. Love.


Tuesday, 25 June 2013

stockist! & a place to visit

hello there!

I have good news, oh yes! I have a new stockist :)

my tin of goodies on a beautiful dresser in the gift shop

Thanks to a stall at Threshfield School Summer Fair, my wares were spotted by the lovely Amy of Kilnsey Park who then asked if I fancied stocking my Ditsy delights in their gift shop. "Oh yes, I would!", thought I, but hopefully I was outwardly more controlled and professional than I was feeling inwardly. I mean, what a compliment...being approached by a potential stockist not only shows that they like your products but, that they like them enough to share with their customers. A fair compliment indeed, in my book.

view of the shop towards the entrance

So, up I ventured with my bag full of goodies and a very patient boy (we had to go straight from school on Friday without giving George prior warning). Whilst I chatted with Amy, George was lucky enough to wander the grounds, feed the fish and fall in love with some ducklings (who very nearly adopted George & he them).

Even when a shop/gallery owner declares an interest in your designs, there is still that "will they/won't they?" apprehension when you finally meet. I'm happy to say that they did and thanks to Amy being thoroughly lovely and oh so calm, the visit was an entirely pleasant one.

the fresh food pie, smoked salmon to name but two delights

It just so happens that when George was born, we actually lived in Kilnsey, in a cottage backing on to the park and the trout is such a beautiful area with the magnificent Kilnsey Crag dominating the scenery. I had forgotten how lovely it is up there and especially at the park - there have been a lot of changes (all good!) since I last visited and it is now on our "to do during the Summer hols" list! (for me, mainly because the cakes looked scrumptious and the cappuccino that I had was, indeed, delicious...more sampling required, I feel!

fresh food, ice cream, homemade cakes, fresh coffee & a tummy rumblingly good restaurant menu

The park itself is a working trout farm as well as offering other activities for visitors, such as:
fly fishing; fun fishing; adventure playground; nature trails; gift shop; restaurant; red squirrel conservation programme; and the rare and beautiful Lady's Slipper Orchid.

my Ditsy Bird Designs rainbow trout brooch exclusive to Kilnsey Park

Whilst I was there, the park was preparing for a Herbs & Potions weekend as part of National Herbal Medicine Week...I only wish I'd known in advance as I would have loved walking through the grounds, looking for herbs, and then making up herbal vinegars and oils! Their next event is The Mad Professor's Bug Weekend (6th & 7th July) which sounds like great fun for bug fanatics, and then it's their 35th birthday weekend (10th & 11th August) celebrating 35 years for this family run business.

So, if you should find yourself in Upper Wharfedale, do pay them a visit and perhaps have a look in the shop for the tin of Ditsy Bird goodies.


Friday, 24 May 2013

My week in pics


So we've reached Friday again and we have the extra treat of a bank holiday to look forward to...the weather forecast is actually looking hopeful, too, which makes a refreshing change! It has been positively chilly and blustery up North today...roll on sofa, fire & movie time tonight so I can hunker down under my blanket and get warm for the first time today.

It's been a funny week...Paul has had his second week in his new job after a (shocking) three month gap between contracts. This is a major deal for the chap who has worked (& worked away) for the best part of 28 years. Trust me when I say that, the three months were a trying time all round...but also a lesson in appreciating in what you have & the strength you have within you - to adapt, persevere & prevail.

So, not having Paul around is still relatively new, and then we add in to the mix the fact that George had his first residential trip with school! Two nights in York sans parentals...a fab time was had by all judging by this afternoon's presentation in assembly :) Monday morning, 9:05 and I was totally alone and it would stay that way until 3:40pm on Wednesday. I was a little lost to say the least. Answer? Kidnap Mum for a tearoom visit to sup, scoff and peruse the artworks and products they stock there. Cracking answer, that one.

As my son departed for the train, it became apparent that he'd packed my arty mojo in his case too! I was unable to doodle! Oh the horror.
{I can confirm that said mojo returned with child...thank goodness}

So, yeah funny week.

But both chaps are back in the Birdhouse tonight so all is right with the world - it's an evening of tasty food, cuddles and watching The Hobbit again for us. And doodling. Obviously ;)

Here are a few pics from the week that was...

Have a lovely weekend!

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Paper cut bird card

I posted a photo of this in my last post but thought I'd give a teeny how to, in case anyone else fancies a do.

I was massively inspired by a beautiful paper cut bird mobile in the Made In Paper* magazine, that I bought in Durham on our Easter weekend getaway. I never seem to end up following tutorials through but, instead, poddle off down my own creative track.

I traced the basic design of a bird I'd previously doodled, onto some thick white paper. I then cut out bits n bobs that I thought may look pretty, whilst trying very hard not to tear it, and correcting any tears/whoopsies with a smidge more cutting ;)

I liked the idea of a contrasting paper behind the birdy in order to show off the cuts...this lead to my gluing said chirper to a bit of black card, then cutting around the bird shape. Then the urge to doodle was too strong so I *had* to add the white dots in the gaps - I know, I need to control these urges but hey, I like the little dotty additions.

At this point I had intended to string him up but I changed my mind and stuck him on a card with some foam tape to lift him a little and give him the elevated position he deserves. A bit of text later and there we have it, a cheery, chirpy birthday card for my beloved god mum!

*This is my favourite crafty mag I've bought by far - ever! But I do love paper & have always loved's quite steep at £7:99 but, truly, it is more of a large paperback book - so many beautiful projects to try. Not much in the way of non-girly/flowery designs could apply the knowledge learned, to your own ideas & schemes. I plan on trying out many more of the projects in my play time...pretty pom poms & bunting for a party perhaps? I luffs it & have been found stroking the cover before now.

Thanks for popping by!

Easter roundup thus far


We're into week two of the Easter fortnight here in North Yorkshire and it's fairly flying by in a flurry of overnight stays; work; chilly walks; trying out my new/old bike; crafty mags; wonderful old doors; Spring swap treats & family time.

Here is a photographic round up thus far...

Friday, 22 March 2013

snow day


a boat load of snow fell overnight so we are all at home today - thankfully I had the good sense to stop on the way back from work yesterday, for essentials such as hot cross buns and a bottle of fizz, so all is not lost ;)

currently the boy is downstairs on the PS3, texting his pals to see what they're doing today and the mister is still snugged up in bed - I foolishly left my alarm set, even though I knew we were going nowhere as George has been off school sick this week. I tried to doze back off but my brain had others ideas - it fired into action, shooting images of all the things I could make and draw like a slideshow of handmade colour bursts and that was me sold! Here I am in my little room (hovel) drawing, blogging, supping tea and planning. I love planning and plotting...two of my all time favourite things to do.

I've been playing with ink and watercolours recently

I have a wonderful commission to get on with, for an equally wonderful friend...some whimsical Easter decoration ideas and I quite fancy making a few more of these darling little chicks from the Myrtle & Eunice tutorial...they are so utterly dinky, and perfect for keeping your hands busy whilst your eyes oggle the tellybox - you should really give them a go!

tutorial is here