Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Haloween fun

Joining the Halloween party as mermaid witch. The youngest has been somewhat restless, so I will be doing my craft books tomorrow
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Monday, 29 October 2007

I'm back

We came back late last night from a wonderful time in the Netherlands. Our main reason to go was that our very good friends had their son baptised.
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After the church we went to Humphrey's to celebrate and this cafe/pub is absolutely gorgeous. I'll post more pictures of this magical place later this week

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We also visited Blijdorp, a zoo which is 150 years old. This Zoo has a nice personal story, which I'll tell in more detail also another day

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Pretending to be bulls

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The beach

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baking cookies at Tante Welmoet's home

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This was in Naturalis, where you can see my little son's shadow on the wall

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Visiting Opa in Veere, which is one of the oldest places in the Netherlands to be granted cityrights, but has hardly changed in size in more than 750 years, so in my estimation must be one of the smallest cities in the world

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Nice walks with Opa

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Seeing wonderfully Kitsch Postcards

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encounter with a cow

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Now on a different note, I just caught up with a few of my favorite blogs and read onAbby try again that there is a wonderful bookreview week going on. I love books and though a bit late, I'll join today with two of my favorite art books.

Rik Wouters, a Belgian painter.
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August Macke known for his gorgeous watercolors.
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Both painters I like for their use of colour

I'll be back tomorrow with my favorite craft books

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Art of Blogging

I'm wondering after my last post got two reactions, whether a) my blog really doesn't get read that much, b) people do read it but don't like what I make. I know I'm not the best with words, so perhaps not the best person to keep up a blog. Anyway I'll give it one more chance after reading this post. So now with much pleasure I'll make something, but the question is who will want to receive it and take the challenge to put the same challenge on their blog. Because the condition of the challenge is the following

"I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this Pay It Forward exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog."


Sounds like fun to me. Another fun thing to do is going on holiday. We're off to the Netherlands for a week, so that means no blogging for me during that time. I'll be returning with much anticipation, to see who (if anybody) has signed up for the challenge). I should be back in time for the Halloween party

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All snailmail is always welcome


Oh and not to forget, since darling Constance and Sparkling SomePinkFlowers left their lovely comment, both will get a pair of my halloweenies. Mail me your addy and I hope they make it in time before the 31st!

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Invite to a ghostly Halloween party

There is a stir going through Bloglandia. Everybody is getting ready for the Gasthliest, Ghouliest, Ghostliest party of the year
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Everybody is invited. I'm getting into Halloween mood.

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I made these last year, but they were all given away, now I'm going to make another series to keep. I'm making one extra boy and girl skeleton. If anybody is interested, leave a comment and they might be on their way to you

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Babies

I love blogging. I love the challenge I've set myself. However I find that too many people have been busy in the past and babies are being born around me. So now I find myself busy making things for little new world citizens. Also with the approaching holiday season it will be getting busier with making things in general. So I've decided to finish the challenge a bit earlier.

Without really blogging about it, but inspired by SPF's stolen moments in time, and these beautiful photographs, that's how I've stumbled upon Blipfoto. This is my new challenge. I'm trying to upload a picture a day (you're only allowed one a day) and I'm making sure I don't overlap with this blog photowise (might do storywise). I love the community there. They are very supportive and the pictures everybody makes are amazing.

To round my design round off. I'm leaving you with this last design, which is actually a bit of a cheat, 'cause I made it already in March after stumbling on this gorgeous site and being inspired by the song, which ever since has been a daily listen on my ipod with or without kids listening with me. The design hasn't been on my blog before, so I feel I can use it today.

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Tuesday, 9 October 2007

A little bit of spring?

I'm thoroughly enjoying autumn. I think if I were to choose (quite happy that I don't have to) it would be my favorite time of year. I love it that the trees turn into bright colors, I love it that the weather turns a bit cooler, giving a sense of coziness when you're warm inside the house. I even like it when it rains, like it did today. So I don't know why today's design is something spring. Perhaps it's because my son was asking when it would be Summer again, which actually made me think about Spring and looking forward to be able to do some sowing of seeds.

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Monday, 8 October 2007

To eat or not to eat

When we had just moved here, the little one decided to take a bite out of mushroom from our new garden. I have a mushroom book, but could not identify it. So we rushed to hospital, they could not identify it either. So he was fed charcoal and it took 7 hours before we were back home. Luckily all was well and he was fine. Despite me having a mushroom book, I'm not too sure about identifying them. It's on my list of wanting to do, learn more about identifying mushrooms, so possibly I can go on a mushroom hunt in the forest and try to find some edible ones. This garden keeps being full of wonderful mushrooms. However I'm quite sorry that because of his eagerness to explore the unknown, I have to get rid of all the mushrooms in the garden, or I can't leave him unattended for a second to play by himself. It's quite a pretty sight.

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Btw, this wasn't the mushroom he ate

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And today another hearts inspired design

Sunday, 7 October 2007

Garden Bliss

Today I was browsing for things to do in the area we live and I stumbled upon the RHS Garden Wisley. Less than 5 miles from where we live, it looked very nice to visit on a lazy Sunday afternoon. I wasn't wrong. We had a wonderful time. We took a membership pack and received a wonderful book, which I didn't know I'd get as a gift by becoming member and almost bought. The kids received a backpack with some wonderful stuff. The best was a card with things they had to find in the garden, like lavender, sunflowers, tomatos, bumble bees together with a felt tip pen, which on the opposite side had a stamp with the image of a ladybird. So the kids had a lot of fun running around trying to find these things.

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walking around

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somewhere in the background you can see me walking with my son, trying to find the toilets

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Isn't it beautiful

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Being envious of such a gorgeous vegetable patch

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My youngest also enjoying the garden

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Savouring all the colours autumn has to offer

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beautiful recycled (from pressed wood) and recycable wooden cutlery in the cafe

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On a different note, having moved from the US to here, it's fun to rediscover UK favorites. Somehow I don't remember which jam we liked best, so I thought it would be fun to do a test and test several jams. I bought five to try, I'll let you know the result

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And to finish today with a simple design
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Saturday, 6 October 2007

Friday, 5 October 2007

Photoshop

I can always kick myself if I forget to change the WB on my camera. Just a tip for someone like me who doesn't have a clue what white balance is, is to just take several pictures (hurray for the digital age) in different white balance settings (also the auto settings) during broad daylight and just look at what you like. Do the same when using a lamp at night etc. So since I haven't set it on auto, I have to remember to change the settings manually after I've taken evening shots into broad daylight, otherwise the pictures turn too blue. I never really tried to chance them in Photoshop, but just took another few pictures. Today I decided to try to change them. I'm very happy with the outcome. First I hit the autocolor button, which already improved the picture to an acceptable level. Then I highlighted everything in the background (actually selected the wee fellow + car he was driving and then hit the "reverse selection" button, which then is everything in the background) and lowered saturation in the background (yes the grass really looks this dull this time of year). This is the result (followed by the unchanged picture)

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the adapted version

before
the before picture

And today's design is inspired by my daughter who desperately wants a fish as a pet

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Wednesday, 3 October 2007

stars

Day 2 of the challenge. Not my best, but I'm enjoying the challenge.
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Tuesday, 2 October 2007

challenge

Thanks everybody for the well wishes. The ball was wonderful. It was so much fun meeting so many new people. I thank everybody who left a comment. Lately I've been wanting to set myself a challenge. I've been playing with several ideas, but this one won. I want to make a graphic design for the next month. Since it is the 2nd today, I'll continue till November 1st. Reason for me to do so is because I always like making my own cards for any celebration or mentionable event, but most of the time I run out of time. Partly because I don't have a "library" of my own designed things, even though they are roaming inside my head. So hopefully by doing this challenge, I'll end up with my own library of patterns, I can use whenever I need them. I actually made a few designs last year and I've been using them with great joy (if you look closely at the background pattern). I had the vague intention of doing more, but to my surprise today, almost a year has passed and I haven't. So another incentive to start doing things.

I heart cupcakes, tea and flowers

The "Chinese" character actually means new and is pronounced Shin, which is my name.
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