Thursday, 19 January 2017

A couple of Challenge Cards & Michele's Cheap Dies

Karen's Challenge card (last Sunday)

Sue's Challenge card 
(from week before)

Good Morning Ladies,

Well what a 'kerfuffle' of a day yesterday turned out to be, firstly I awoke with an agonising reoccurrence of my Sciatica, not the best start to the day, not helped by the fact that I had another terribe night, I must have drifted off sometime after 4.10 am.  So at 6.15am Matt comes in to ask me to look at his face, he had come home from work on Tuesday with a really sore looking swelling on the bridge of his nose like a small boil/spot, I advised him to put some Sudocrem (our family cure all) before he went to bed, well when he came in yesterday morning his eyes were all swollen and he looked really rough, he went to work though, but when he came home he walked in absolutely white as a sheet and sweating, so I packed him off to the Doctor telling him to not leave until he had been seen, (I panic a little as he has very little immunity due to his Arthritis medication), he came back about an hour later, they have given him a strong dose of antibiotics as he has an infection in his face, I think he has gotten himself really run down worrying about this hospital appointment today.  I will be glad when its all done and we can all relax, his lovely friend Jodie is going with him, she is really good at keeping him upbeat and his mind occupied.
It was Paul's last night of 4 nights shifts last night so I look forward to getting back to 'normal' for a few days, plus I felt terrible trying to not make a noise as I was lying next to him trying to get some sleep yesterday morning, I find when I have sciatica I can't help but let out a little 'oh' every time that pain shoots down my leg, poor chap, luckily he sleeps like a brick!

Now onto todays cards......

Karen, It looks to me like the couple on your card are doing the 'Argentine Tango' (one of my favourites), I guess this is a Serif Image that you have die cut, I really like the way you have embossed the background and sanded it back, revealing a little of the core of the card, it looks like the scraper foil board with a copper core, so effective (i hope thats what you did)!  The band across the card looks like embossed vellum, it ties the whole card together. Is the treble cleft a Scan & Cut embellishment?   Thank you so much for re-sending your card Karen and for taking part xxx

Sue, I love the colours you chose for your trifold card, the papers are pretty too, you matched your butterflies and flowers pefectly to the colours of your card, the gemstone trim really drew your eye in and finished off the edges of your card.  Thank you so much for taking part Sue, I look forward to seeing your Easel Card 😉 xxx

I am sure you all remember that Michele recently ordered some cheap dies from China, well they arrived and Michele has done a little review of them for all of us.......

My cheap dies from eBay (seller in China) arrived today-they're not very well packaged but not at all damaged. The three dies cost me €7.17 & no postage which I think is about £6 which I consider an absolute bargain . I cut them out using scrap card, various thickness and they cut like a dream. I used my Cuttlebug because it was on my desk already, the cutting plates really should be replaced as they're so marked & warped but the diecuts still came out perfectly, in one pass through. The only negative I can think of is how long the order takes to arrive, it did arrive when the seller said it would.

Thank you so much Michele for taking the time to give us a quick review on your Bargain Dies, I will include the link below to the seller that Michele bought the dies from.

Phew, another long blog post, but we all like to know about a bargain, don't we?  By the way if any of you don't do Ebay but still want some dies just let me know and I can get them for you.

Brenda, I hope both you and Ciara enjoyed the Young Voices concert at the O2, you must have been so proud, I expect you will be tired today so please have another blanket day, sending warm hugs xxx

Karen, I hope your throat is a little better today, does honey and lemon help?  healing hugs on their way xxx

Maria, I hope that your tummy has eased a little today, it must make you feel so miserable, not that I can ever imagine you being miserable, you always have a smile on your face, hugs xxx

Tracy, you must be sick with worry, I can so understand why you have no confidence with your GP, I hope you get seen and get some reassurance very quickly, we are all here for you xxx

Elaine I hope your GP visit went ok, sometimes when we get wrapped up in caring for someone else we forget about our own health, I hope than can help you quickly. I am sorry to hear that Andrew has reacted badly to his new medication, the set backs that these things cause can be so frustrating both for Andrew and yourself, hugs on their way xxx

Janet, I hope Marigny is a little warmer this morning, please thank Dobbie, he is doing a fine job in your abscence.  I should wrap up super warm for market day tomorrow, I hope your journey to shops was ok yesterday too, warm hugs en route! xxx

Have a lovely day ladies,

Love and Hugs



  1. Morning Everyone from an extremely cold Marigny. We are down at -7 this morning and to cap it all the back plate in the log burner slid down away from the back flue during the night and so until Jim can clean out the burner completely and then manage to get the large steel plate back in position and it stays there we cannot have a fire. We do have a couple of dimplex heaters but they're nothing compared to the log burner.
    So we both look like Zombies/Michelan Men at the moment.

    Anyway I love your CC cards Karen and Sue and
    Michele you just have to have the title of 'Super Saver Crafter' as you really do manage to find/obtain wonderful bargains.
    I have had lace and embellishments from China but never bought dies but I shall certainly be looking now. Thank you for the nod.

    BRENDA- I hope that you're not suffering from your outing last night but I know that as a Grandparent seeing our children comes before anything else. I'm sure that it will be a rest day today for you.

    LYNDA- You have really brought back memories for me this morning of having to go to 'Cardiac Rehab'. I had to do this five years ago after having a heart attack and a stent fitted. Mine was two visits a week and it lasted from the end of Sept to Dec. I have to admit that the Physios were wonderful and the group was a good set and we had some laughs along the way. Coffee and biscuits afterwards and one of the days we had someone to come and give us a talk on different things re our Hearts. It is a bind but it is really worth it at the end of the day.

    Jim has just arrived with breakfast which will be consumed quickly this morning so he can get on with the fire back.
    Hugs to all of you. The Café is looking as though it's ready for you all to pop in and have a warm and a drink. xxxx

    1. Hi Janet
      I do hope that Jim manages to get your fire sorted. As you say it's to cold not to have any proper heating.

    2. Hi Janet,-7 sound to cold not to have any heating indoors so hope Jim can sort it out asap. Hope for that temp to be outdoors tho next week. Can't wait to see some snow, thought I could borrow some child's toboggan but probably wouldn't get up again :-) Keep warm both of you xx

    3. Thank you Janet for your reassurance I'm am going to give it my best shot. All the various team seem very nice & easy to talk to. I'm very shy in meeting new situations & people stupid at my age but suppose I'm not as shy as I was in my younger days many moons ago.
      I hope Jim got the fire sorted -7 sound really really Cold take care Sending Warm Hug's for you both. Xx

  2. Morning Ladies

    Karen &Sue-lovely cards from you.

    Sandra-I hope Matt is ok & his hospital appointment goes alright.

    My cheap dies are great, I have a second batch on order and they're due hopefully next week. I tried to place another order last night but lots of sellers have closed for Chinese New Year. The link take you to the seller I use, when you've used that to log into eBay-if you scroll down there should be other suggested sellers with so much choice. I've saved quite a few as favourites. There's so much choice, nothing dearer than £4.99 that I've seen and free postage. The only negative is the length of time they take to arrive but even that was during the stated time.

    Yesterday's meeting was quite productive-it did last longer than planned though. Got back to chaos & my boss was flapping-goodness knows why! All sorted out then I had my computer training-I've written it all down in my own "language " so I might have a practice today.


    1. They really are some beautiful dies As you say they take time to arrive but it says this on the site I'm definitely going to take a look hot those prices It would be rude not to

    2. Hi Karen
      I'm glad your meeting was productive for you. However, sounds like your boss shouldn't be a boss if she's a flapper. My, wouldn't it be lovely to have a trip back to the roaring twenties to see flappers in action. I'm definitely going to look at the site.

    3. Good dies Michele, if not in a hurry to get them then the price is very good. Have a good day at work xx

  3. Morning all The sore throat/cough hadn't improved So another day off work Things like this muck up my diabetes a little
    Thank you for showing my card To put things straight The background was embossed and I gently rubbed (red) gilding polish over the top The band is a Serif image The dancers are a Google image and yes I cut the ovals and treble clef on ScanNCut In my opinion I cut the red mat too big So learned a valuable lesson
    Hope everyone gets on OK at Dr's etc and that sciatica calms down
    Can't wait to hear about your visit to O2 BRENDA
    Take care xx

    1. Lovely card Karen. I'm sorry but in my original post I said it was Michele's by mistake.
      Hope your sore throat eases soon.

    2. Wish you better Karen and do take care. Like your CC ,fun background and picture is perfect for any dancer xx

    3. I hope you feel better today, thanks for clearing up the method of putting your card together! I can work out most cards construction!
      I must sit and work out the Scan and Cut Canvas, I'm not great at computer based things!
      I must try harder!!

  4. Hi Sandra
    I'm sorry to hear your Sciatica decided to pay you another visit. So frustrating for you. As you say good job Paul sleeps like a brick. I'm glad that you made Matt go to the Drs re his face, and he was given some medication. ( now what about you ?).
    Michele love you card, I do love your images you put on cards, and of course your bargain buys. I'll definitely be looking at that sight.
    Tracy I hope your appointment goes ok, everything crossed for you today.
    Elaine hope your visit goes ok as well. I'm sorry to hear that Andrews new medication doesn't agree with him. Luckily for Pete he's had no adverse reaction to any of the needs he's been put on. Hopefully they'll find someone that agrees with him better.
    Hugs to all who need one today.

    1. Thank you Pat ,Andrew has now been taken off his Iron tablet it was a very strong one as he had no iron in his blood at all in March last year, he still has to have the daily injection for the blood clot but hopefully any side effects will settle down. . xxxx big hug

  5. Morning Ladies,

    Finally, a few moments to myself. Hospital visits for collection and return of equipment for Jamie and sewing duties for the panto costumes have taken precedence lately from morning to night. Waiting now for the next lot to arrive and also the tabs for the flats.

    Some beautiful cards from Karen & Sue and gorgeous dies from Michele. A long wait but worth it.

    Tracy, plug away at your doctor. When I found my lump our practice nurse pooh-poohed the idea of cancer and said 'it was nothing to worry about' but when I reminded her I had already had one kidney removed due to cancer, she reluctantly agreed to fast track me. She later apologised when it was confirmed as BC. I am still annoyed though whenever I hear the words 'You are too young to get Breast Cancer'. No cancer is age related and it is the mind-set of the GP's who need to re-train on this subject. Enough said as I could go on forever lol

    Gentle hugs for all our poorly girls, you are still going through the mill aren't you? Let's hope that today will bring some relief and treat you kindly.

    Back today to finish clearing out my writing bureau. It has become somewhat of a dumping ground over the years for all the 'things' that haven't got a home. And as the new desk unit for the computer is in my craft room, there is plenty of room to store the things that I wish to keep. I can understand Tracy saying yesterday they have 'a load of crap' to sort out. I have been very strict with myself though and my charity box is getting fuller by each day and I have empty drawers! Jamie keeps laughing at me when I say, 'but there are some funny memories in this draw of my children and grandchildren' so I am going to take photos of said items and put them in my memory albums. Takes up less space and the story behind the item will become something they will read about in later years, Jamie has already had his memory jogged over a few items that I found of his. The albums will become part of our family history in a way.
    I've rambled enough today so.........

    Love 7 hugs
    Cheryl xxx

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Sorry Cheryl pressed publish by mistake. You are busy at the moment hospital trips and making costumes for the panto. Sounds lovely that your transferring all your wonderful memories into an Album. Like you did sometimes you really have to insist that you have a second opinion.
      Petes daughter was told that Cancer isn't heriditry when we persuaded her to go to the Drs. Seeing as her Mum died of Cancer, Petes on his third lot of Cancer, his son had testicular cancer and his niece died of cancer I'm not convinced.
      Hope you have a lovely day.

  6. Sorry Karen I realised it was your card after I'd pressed publish. I really must read what I've written before I press publish.

  7. Elaine,

    My sister sent me this adage when I was diagnosed with my second cancer.

    You are stronger than you seem... Braver than you believe... and Smarter than you think.

    It became my mantra throughout my treatments and still is now.
    Healing hugs and little prayers for you and Andrew
    Cheryl x

    1. Lovely comments Cheryl and so true.

    2. Never a truer words spoken Cheryl, your sister is very wise!
      Great idea about photographing those special, sentimental items. We have loads with having 4 children! Thanks for the idea!
      By the way, I love your 'ramblings)

    3. Aww thank you , i have made a note of this for Andrew and will txt it to him later tonight. xxx

  8. Hello All, another beautiful day here.
    Sandra so sorry your sciatic has returned, hope it eases soon.
    Hope Matts appointment goes ok.
    Get well wishes for all who are not well.
    Hope all the appointments go well.
    Not much on today, going to try Janet's fold card, I'm not the best at following instructions, so we will see how many go in the bin
    Sorry forgot to say two lovely cards, and fab dies Michele., must have a look at those dies.
    Cheryl love those words, will keep them with me.
    Have a good day all, hugs Lilian

  9. Hi Sandra and everyone.
    Oh I hope your day and the sciatica gets better and have a little nap when you can. Hopa Matthew's meds will help him to feel better soon.
    Nice cc's from our Karen and Sue and some nice dies bought by our Michele. Will have a look at the site later, have been told tho not to bye any more for a while but ooooh so hard not to. Have just seen Sue's new dies and stamps, some I like to have.
    Had a better night but still feeling queasy so the friend I was meant to see for coffee had to be cancelled. Will have a go at decorate the double zz and send my cc in. love and warm hugs to you all, Maria xx

    1. Hi Maria,
      Sorry you had to cancel Your meet up with your friend today. You must be so frustrated, sit and some crafting instead.
      Sending hugs
      Sandra xxx

    2. Such a shame Maria , i hope you feel better today. big hugs xx

    3. Hi Maria
      Such a shame you had to cancel meeting up with your friend. Hope you feel a bit better tomorrow.

    4. Hi Maria
      Sorry your feeling unwell & you had to cancel meeting your friend 🤗
      Hope you feel better tomorrow. Please take care many warm Hug's coming your way xxxx

    5. Maria hope you feel better tomorrow & have a good night's sleep sending

  10. Afternoon Everyone
    The log burner was sorted out by 10.30 and a rabbit stew is now cooking nicely on top of it.
    Have to say Jim did a sterling job xxxx

    1. Jim, you are a star, take the rest of the day off!!
      Mind you I expect you are sat in front not the log burner thawing out!
      Hhhmmm rabbit stew?! I'm just not sure, I'm sure it will taste divine, but there is something too cute about rabbits! It maybe that I was traumatized as a child, haha, whenever we used to go into Dad's garage /workshop as a child we were frightened half to death by either a 'brace of pheasants' or a pair of rabbits 'hanging', gives me shivers now just thinking about it! What do you put in the pot with the rabbit ? I. Guessing it would be onion, carrot, celery et.
      I think you both need it to warm up, do you make dumplings??

    2. Hi Janet, love rabbit, used to have it a lot as a child, used to help out with meat rationing.

    3. SANDRA- into the rabbit stew goes - leeks, carrots, turnip all roughly chopped and then of course there's the good old fashioned thick gravy.

      When I was a child I was brought up on rabbit, pheasant and hare as living in the middle of a wood Dad had shooting rights and as you say LILIAN it certainly helped out with meat. Mum always had a stock pot on the back of the fire -one of the black leaded ones with water boiler on one side of the fire and the oven on the other. This was her only way of cooking. We only had a cold water tap and of course toilets (middens) way round the back of the cottages. Our only lighting was paraffin lamps. Those were the days. xxxx

    4. I too remember every Friday night sitting in front of a blazing fire with my brother helping dad to skin the rabbit brought into work by the farmer , Happy days x

    5. Hi Janet
      I'm glad that Jim managed to sort your fire out for you. Janet we to gad all the things you had as a child. We lived in a camp like this when my dad came out of the war as we had nowhere to live. We were on farmers land so it was heaven helping in the holidays. Milk straight out of a churn that was waiting to be picked up. Wouldn't be allowed nowadays.

  11. Hello Sandra and all,

    Sandra sorry to here sciatica has decided to pay another visit, you must be feeling absolutely exhausted, I hope you will be able to take life easy today. At least Paul has finished his night duties and you won't have to worry about disturbing him.
    Sending caring thoughts to Matt for his hospital visit today. For such a young man he really has a lot to cope with. Sometimes life deals us things that are so unfair, although he is lucky to have such a supportive family and girlfriend.

    KAREN and SUE, love your cards. xx

    The O2 was brilliant 7495 Young Voices, all singing so beautifully and really enjoying every moment. When the performance was over the organisation to exit all of the children and teachers was amazing, the schools had previously told parents/careers where they could pick up children if they were not returning to school on the coach. There was a exit path for the children created by staff in high visibility jackets. Bearing in mind Ciara's school were very high up and one of the last few schools to exit, we were all at the pick up point about the same time. Ciara was so excited telling us about her day.
    The journey home was good. And one little lady went to bed with a big smile on her face, a very happy bunny.
    Hope you are having a good day, Love and hugs Brenda xxx

    1. Hi Brenda
      I'm so please that you had a fantastic time seeing Caira at the 02. Proud parents and Grandparents. She multi talented isn't she.

    2. Hi Brenda what a talented granddaughter you have I'm so pleased you enjoyed the performance so many children to exit but sounded very organised. Glad journey was good. Sending warm Hug's xx

  12. Hi Sandra and crafty friends.

    Loving the card. Thanks for the well wishes everyone I really appreciated it. Had my boob checked and an ultrasound confirmed that it was just a cluster of cysts. Phew!!! I was so relieved I can tell u. No more worrying for a while.

    Cheryl. Loved the tip about the memory album. I never thought of that!! I'm already gathering photos of my hubby from his family members to make a this is ur life album for his 40th birthday st the end of the year!! So I'll just need to make another. Super tip cheers xx

    Sandra. Hope ur sciatica does down soon. I'm a long term sufferer of that too. I just seem to manage the pain well it's been that long and I still refuse the operation as it would be a 50/50 chance of success/ fail. So until I'm desparste enough I'll just suffer lol xx

    Love to all xx

    1. Hi Tracy,
      I am so pleased for you great

    2. Great news for you Tracy, at least that's one thing off your mind.

    3. Wow Tracy fantastic news so pleased for you.
      I'm also a sufferer of sciatica I didn't know you could have a operation for it. Not that I want one thank you very much 😭Good luck for the year book for Graeme's 40th great idea. Are you still doing full time at work are they your contract hours or just doing overtime.
      Take care lovely lady xx

  13. Hi Sandra, aww sciatica is most painful i do hope yours clears quickly , try to rest as much as you can.
    I hope Matt appointment went well .
    I still had hardly any sleep last night and my Dr is not keen on giving me anything to help tablet wise because of all the medication i am on already .
    Andrew had his treatment today he said it was a tough long day , but could still joke that Helen was taking him home , then she was going to stab him ,,,
    Lovely cards and great dies . xx
    Take care everyone and big hugs
    Elaine H X

    1. Hi Elaine
      Sounds like Andrew hasn't lost his sense of humour. Hugs on there way.

  14. Hi Sandra & all in cafe,
    Sandra sorry to hear your sciatica has returned, please take care, hope Matt got some answers today & his face is responding to antibiotics, healing hugs on
    Karen & Sue both of your cards are lovely well done, Karen hope you are feeling better & Sue fingers crossed that we can see you tomorrow, sending hugs to you
    Michele your dies were well worth waiting for must check them
    Brenda pleased you enjoyed your trip to O2 & hope no after
    Lynda sounds as if you are going to be busy with clinic etc, hope you feel better, xxx
    Janet thank goodness Jim was able to sort log fire out, thank goodness for handy-men husbands, imagine if you had to call a man in every time!! Xxx
    I managed to cut out my Cc yesterday but not had a chance to put it together yet, then will have a go at zig zag card.
    Sending hugs to all who need them live

  15. Hi Sandra & everyone
    Lovely cards Karen & Sue gorgeous
    Sandra hope the scientific has eased today I suffer with it so I know how painful it can be please rest. Hope Matt got on ok at the hospital & got some answers. How is his face hope antibiotics are helping he has been through it sending him some healing Hug's 🤗🤗 & some for you too my lovely 🤗🤗.
    Went round Margaret's today & she has had another sort out & I have another large bag of goodies not had a chance to see what's in there yet as still in the car. Did you watch the Pebeo mixed media one day special on Hochanda today well that's what I got from Margaret last week it's never been used can't wait to have a go so pleased it was on TV as didn't really know what too or how to use well chuffed with it. So looking forward to rummaging in the new bag 😌😳. I have commented on way down. Hope you received my CC Sandra as the first time I sent it it came back. So resent it hopefully you got it.
    Take care love Lynda xx