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Sunday, 29 July 2012

Summer is here!

Well amazingly we have had pretty much a whole week of Sun in the south of the UK!

I even managed a beach trip on Tuesday!  We went to Studland beach and had to walk for almost 30 minutes to and from the car; in heat of about 29 degrees.  Now to those that are none UK natives, I am sure that 29 degrees is nothing.  To me however, it was hell!  Being beyond pale and covered in freckles and moles (one of which had to be removed in 2010 and screened) means that sun screen has to be re-applied religiously!  The traffic was hell and I needed to pee, but almost 90 minutes after setting out, we were finally there - and boy was it worth it!

I am actually fortunate enough to live a 5 minute walk from the quay and a 40 minute walk from the local beach, but we knew it would be packed; and there was no way I was carrying the picnic food and drinks all that way!  Besides, sometimes it is just plain nicer to be adventurous and deviate from the local!

There is talk of selling our home :( I am gutted, but sadly it is something we may have very little choice over.  The best I can do is try to increase the re-sale price as much as possible to ensure our new home is just as nice.

We have a lovely balcony that has dual sea views (or sea glimpses as I call them).  Although our balcony is 20ft long, for some bizarre reason it is only 2ft wide!  We have never been able to use this as functional space and it had been relegated to the doggy run (good thing we have narrow Chihuahua's to fit with our narrow balcony!).  I know that outside space = £ and decided to do a little research.  According to a few sites I found, the average New York balcony is a similar width but by only 8ft and they still manage to pack lots on!

After two days of trawling through design sites, I decided to set myself a budget of £50 and transform the balcony into something functional and pretty;

We have our appraisal on Tuesday and if we get the green light, I just know that having this will help a buyer see that with a little shopping around the space is usable.  If we don't get the green light then I have enough strawberry and mint growing to keep me in Pimms for the Summer and finally a lovely balcony to enjoy it on!

My neighbours are more more fortunate then I with their balcony widths, but other then a few scrappy lawn chairs, their balconies are empty!  I often gaze longingly at them, enviously picturing a free standing hammock in which to read in :(

Who knows, if we do have to move then perhaps the new flat will have more outdoor space, and a bigger kitchen!  Well a girl can dream.....

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Festive Feeling!

Today is turning out to be a bit of a nightmare day.  I was supposed to be working from home to try and clear a large back-log of main business and jewellery business items, but due to losing a contract in my main business, I am having to bite the bullet and go out to Nurse this afternoon.  Tuesday is usually the only day I get to spend any time with my husband so I always despair if work takes me away from home.
Trying to be positive and mature I decided to make the most of the morning and do a mass print-out that I had been putting off for the last week - sadly the printer ink decided to run out half way through the 1000 copies, after replacing the cartridges it has now decided to quit printing in black and magenta.  I have spent the best part of an hour on my hands and knees cleaning, cajoling and lastly being down right aggressive in an attempt to get it to work - no joy.  I am now stuck with a half complete mail-out that is unusable until the printer decides to work again.

On the plus side the sunshine finally made it possible to photograph some of the jewellery pieces I created last week!  I also learnt from a fellow Etsian that the unsatisfactory photographs that were getting me down, were due to a combination of too high an ISO and too low light source.  Have taken their advice on board and et voila!

Seeing as this is fresh from the camera with zero editing, I am actually pleased with how it turned out.  Downside to having to sit in the blistering heat to get the 'right' kind of light is that I am now the proud owner of a killer headache - and knowing that I have to leave for work in just over a hour has me sulking.

On a bright note my first Christmas related craft accessory arrived today!
Whilst having a browse on ebay the other day for silicone bake-ware, (inspired by the ease of use with the giant cupcake mould) I saw this and couldn't resist!

I am an absolute sucker for gingerbread men, and come Christmas time my home is covered in gingerbread men decorations, and piled high with the edible treats!  As soon as I saw the mould I couldn't stop imagining how cute it would be to make these from chocolate to hang on the tree, and give away as gifts.  Milk chocolate would be perfect for their bodies, whilst white chocolate would be ideal for piping their little buttons and features, along with a perfect base for the candy canes!!  I am pretty confident that some red gel icing would provide a vibrant enough colour when mixed with white chocolate to make these canes really pop, and provide a sweet button nose too!

So things may seem a little bleak today but I am trying to lift my spirits with thoughts of an amazing Christmas, filled with wonderful crafty sessions!