Monday, May 27, 2013

Many years ago I stopped watching soap dramas.  Quite honestly it was just too exhausting.  I have come to the conclusion that sometimes my own life resembles a soapy.  I seldom talk about the goings on at the Mission....and there are times when I believe we only need a big top covering the premises to have our very own circus ;-)  There are moments where we shed tears in compassion and times that we laugh until we cry at the antics of some of the people in our care.  When I get home, the last thing that I want to do is watch more drama on television. 

Having three adult children, two children-in-law and six grandchildren also has its moments.  I love my family to bits and lets face it the past few years have been full of real life drama.  Every year I pray for a drama free year.  I guess that is not meant to be.

Last week I found myself slap bang in the middle of a drama once again.  I should have seen it coming...but as usual I had my head planted firmly in the sand.  
My daughter has been engaged since November last year.  
It all looked good.  
He looked like the perfect son-in-law.  

I should have sensed that something was wrong when I received an e-mail from our medical aid while we were in the Drakensberg.  The e-mail was for approval for little Stefan to be circumcised.  I forwarded the e-mail to B with a huge ?  She had no idea what it was about and set about finding out what is going on.  The fiance (who is possibly circumcised?)  had decided that Stefan need to be done. He used our medical aid card, my hubby's ID details and set about obtaining authorization.  To say that I was extremely angry doesn't begin to describe how I felt.  I phoned him and told him that he was committing fraud, did not have Stefan's best interest at heart, had to cancel everything and that he would pay any expenses incurred.  

Now most of you who know me also know that I need my "space".  
I need quiet.  
I need privacy.  
Since the engagement I have had none of the above.  He sleeps in our guest room every weekend and uses DH's car to get around over weekends.  

I told B that they need to sort our the transport problem as they cannot continue using our vehicles.  He needed to get his own car.  Just then red flag number two popped up.  He has been black listed for bad debt.  OH.MY.WORD.  He cannot account for what he bought to incur the debt.  The word BIPOLAR was written all over this.  I also told her that this every weekend sleepover wasn't working for me.  If they needed to see each other every weekend, they should stay with his parents every second weekend.

On Friday B met his mom and it was confirmed.  He is bipolar.  He stopped taking his medication weeks ago and was becoming more and more erratic.  He told his mother that he would commit suicide is B leaves him.  He wanted to "kill" everybody in B's background.  He couldn't sleep.  He was always walking around with a long face. Three weeks ago his employer "retrenched" him and then last week employed him again....and he was even depressed about that.  After meeting his mom B told me she isn't capable of raising another child (meaning the man).  She felt that she can't trust him around her or Stefan, so on Friday evening she broke off the engagement.

to be continued....(in true soapy style)....

Leaving you on a happy note with a pic of me and my two littlest grandbabies.


Sketch N Scrap double page challenge

As most of you are aware  Sketch N Scrap is turning one this month and we are celebrating everyday of the month of May!  That means LOTS of inspiration, lots of fun, lots of eye candy and the best part...LOTS and LOTS of prizes!  Today I will be hosting the challenge. Today I am bringing you a sketch challenge.  This sketch is by the awesome Alison Davis (and permission was obtained from her to use the sketch):

You can download and print this sketch by clicking on the two-page sketches link found under the "printable sketches" tab on the right sidebar of the Sketch Support blog.   Here is a layout I made using the sketch.
Supply list - Cardstock: Bazzill; Printed Papers: Websters (Yacht club); stickers: Websters (Yacht club); Crystal swirl:Prima; Flowers: Prima; Alphabet stickers: Websters (Yacht Club): Other: Martha Stewart punch.

My challenge to you is:
  •  To use the sketch to create an awesome two page layout
  • become a follower of my blog
  • leave a comment with a link so that I can view your layout.
Challenge ends June 10 at midnight, Central Standard Time.A winner will be randomly drawn and the prize will be the following kit:
It is a Jillibean Watermelon Gazpacho Soup kit.

I can't wait to see what you create.  Enjoy!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Coffee - Sketch N Scrap - 7Gypsies Market Paper

 It is time for the Sketch N Scrap 15th May sketch challenge to be revealed.  Please visit the Sketch N Scrap blog for tons of inspiration.

Here is the layout I made based on the sketch:
Supply List:  Cardstock:  Bazzill; Patterned papers: 7Gypsies Market Papers; Die cut and title: Silhouette; Flowers: Prima;  Other: Texture Paste, Crafters Warehouse template, Rollercraft words stamp.
I cut my flags from different 7Gypsies papers, glossy accents on the edges and then white glitter.

 I cut the "Coffee" title from cardstock and then covered it with glossy accents and sprinkled glitter over it.

I wanted to add a touch of red to lift the page..and the Prima flowers were the perfect touch.

The journaling is in Afrikaans and I will translate it for you as follows:  
"Teacher Mignonne says:  Dewan greeted me with a heavy heart this morning.  I asked "What is wrong Dewan?"  He replied: "Miss, I never drank my coffee this morning before we left for school."  (tears just below the surface). So I took  him to the kitchen, made us each a lovely cup of coffee, and together we drank it before the music class started at 8am.  His little face was just to precious to behold.  The child was happy once again and his teacher had a double dose of caffeine to start the new week."

Visit the Sketch N Scrap blog and upload your layout before 31 May 2013.


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Taking a deep breath....

....and deleting all unread blog posts (all of 622) in my bloglovin reader. Thank you for this advice Cat, now I no longer feel totally overwhelmed. Now I am also ready to jump right in and start blogging again.  I will start reading blogs as it comes into my reader and then backtrack to see what else you wrote.  So please extend me some grace.

A few months ago my dear blog friend Cat e-mailed me and another blog friend Shayne with an invitation to meet at San Lameer.  My darling man could not quite understand why 3 girls want to spend a week on a golf estate when they don't even play golf...but he knew how much it meant to me to spend time relaxing with the girls.

This collage that Cat made perfectly captures our week together

On Saturday afternoon I returned from a stunning week away with Cat and Shayne to a very happy husband. (Seriously, he missed me...there was flowers in every room to welcome me home)  On Monday last week we met at the King Shaka airport in Durban and then drove down to San Lameer on the South Coast.  IT WAS AWESOME.  We talked, and talked and talked some more.  We shared many laughs and needed no television to keep us entertained.  Shayne cooked most of the meals and one evening Cat "braaied" (BBQ) some of lovely Woolies sticky ribs. We strolled around Mac Banana buying things we don't really need.  We visited the Waffle House at Ramsgate for divine waffles.  What more could a girl want?

 What happens when three keen photographers spend time together?  Well it is obvious isn't it.

 We went for long walks on the beach and talked some more....and played with our cameras.

 I love this photo taken by Cat...of me and Shayne taking photos of each other taking photos.

 My favourite shot of Shayne

 The beach at dusk.

 I think that this might be one of my favourite photos taken.

 A glimpse of the San Lameer resort

 Another photo I love

 My favourite of Cat by Shayne

This little wooden heart that Shayne bought described our week perfectly.

Having fun like children on the beach.

I really believe that we should make this an annual event and quite frankly not wait to spend time together with these two special ladies in my life.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The book of LOVE has music in it - Canvas - Scrap Africa

Morning Everyone, I am greeting you from the lovely San Lameer resort where I am spending a few days with two of my blog friends.

 It's also the start to a super new challange on Scrap Africa. This challenge is to use at least 1 chipboard on your project!

We received a package of Design Worx' chipboard embellishments.  The challenge at Scrap Africa this month is to use chipboard on your project.  I made a canvas for Laura as a wedding gift.  I wanted to use the music chipboard on the layout.  Here is the completed project.

 Supplies used:  Canvas: 12x18 inch; Pattern Papers - a mix of My Minds Eye Lost and Found, Bo Bunny and Flair Designs; Cardstock: American Craft; Chipboard:  Design Worx; Flowers: Prima; Bling: Prima; Stickels: Ranger; Title: Prima. Other: Mists, Texture Paste, Tim Holtz Distress Inks, Glossy Accents, Glitter.
 I love how delicate the Silhouette cut doily is behind the photo

 I decided on this colour combination because I wanted to also enter this project for the "Scrap around the World" challenge.  This is what the inspiration board looks like.  The sketch was also used as inspiration for the canvas:

So imagine my surprise when I some of the wedding photos were uploaded and I saw that this was also Laura's colour scheme for her big day.

I first painted the chipboard with copper paint.  I then spread glossy accents over the entire piece and while wet sprinkled glitter onto it.

The title of the canvas was also Laura and David's wedding song.

This challenge is sponsored by Design Worx, who not only have sponsored the prize, but also chipboards for the DT to create with! Thanks so much to Yola for this super opportunity.

Challenge no.17, due 14 May

Design Worx offers decorative lazercut material in exceptional and original designs.

Design Worx scrapbooking range originated from the scrapping tables of passionate scrapaholics, and their ever increasing product range, aims to capture the finest detail of every special moment.

Design Worx can produce tailormade products on demand, from any laserable material.

Please visit their website and gallery to see their wonderful products. We would love it if you would take part in this challenge.  You have until 31 May 2013 to upload your project.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Happy Birthday Sketch N Scrap!

Happy Birthday to us!  Sketch N Scrap is turning one this month and we are e celebrating everyday for the rest of the month!  That means LOTS of inspiration, lots of fun, lots of eye candy and the best part...LOTS and LOTS of prizes!  Today I will be hosting the challenge. I wanted to break away from the making or card making.  I dressed up my caddy with scrapbooking goodies:

This is what my caddy looks like now.

Before I started "dressing" looked rather drab and sad.
I am going to give you pointers on how to alter your item.  First you have to clean it very well.  Then use your item to trace the sections onto patterned paper.  I used the gorgeous Pink Paislee butterfly garden that has been sitting in my stash for ages. Then apply some acrylic gel medium to a section at a time.  Acrylic gel medium is basically the same as Mod Podge, but it has self levelling properties and you get a smoother finish.  I worked in section or else parts of your item will dry out before you can apply you paper.  Once the gel medium is applied, apply your cut out traced pattern paper to it and smooth it down well with your hands to get any bubbles out.
Once you have your entire article covered in pattern paper and it has dried apply a thin layer of gel medium over your paper to seal it....when this is properly dry the fun begins.  It is time to bring out those large and bold embellishments that have been sitting in your stash and is too big for layouts.

I first glued the lace right around the top edges of the caddy and then let it dry again.  The fun part is to choose the embellishments you want to add.  I chose some large fabric Prima flowers for the center front and back of the caddy and then added leaves and birds (K & Co) to the one side and a pearl swirl to the other side.  

I added the large bling butterflies to the sides.    This lovely tag with the quote and ribbons was on a kit that was given out on a retreat.  It was so pretty that I wanted to keep it and now it has find it's perfect place.

My challenge to you is:
  •  to alter an article. It can be elaborate or it can be as simple as a pencil holder.  
  • become a follower of my blog
  • leave a comment with a link to where I can see your article.
Challenge ends May 31st at midnight, Central Standard Time.A winner will be randomly drawn and the prize will be the following kit:
It is a Jillibean Watermelon Gazpacho Soup kit.

I can't wait to see what you create.  Enjoy!

Friday, May 3, 2013

Dancing with the family skeleton

My children and grandchildren are everything to me.
There is nothing I wouldn't do for them.
When we were young parents we had all these wonderful dreams.
We would raise our children with so much love that love will be the thing that comes naturally for them.
We would always be close and do a lot together.
We thought that the bond that we nurtured between our children would be unbreakable.
Forever friends...that is what they would be.

Then one day you have to face the reality that it didn't work as planned.  Your children grew up and married.  You are faced with the fact that the girls don't get along.  In actual fact they can't stand each other.  When you invite them and they know that the other is coming they will find an excuse not to come.

For a while you will dance around the issue, not wanting to confront.
Then you confront and you become the enemy.
You are accused of taking sides...of expecting too much.
You have to listen to accusations against the other party.
You are expected to understand how they feel.
...and you don't.

I have tried and failed to get my whole family around the same dining room table.  We tried debating the issue.  We tried to force the issue.  It just left us frustrated and hurt.

I remember as a child how my mother used to get us to do things we didn't really want to by saying:  "Just do it for me."  Just thinking about it brings back bad memories, feelings of resentment and being used... and that would be the main reason why I would never expect the children to "become friends" for our sake.

So a few weeks back we were forced to make peace with this thing that we cannot change.  We decided to enjoy the time we spend with them separately.  Having dinner dates, braais and even weekends away.  We often have all our grandchildren at our home and then the cousins play...the way only cousins can.

Tomorrow evening we have a Benefit Dinner and art auction for the Mission.  We have invited all our children and they will ALL be sitting at the table we are hosting.  I am a wee bit nervous but then again...maybe I would like to see them squirm ;-)

What do you do when your children don't want to socialize?


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Loving these Moments - Scrap Africa - My Minds Eye Miss Caroline

The May sketch reveal is up at Scrap Africa.  Please go and check out all the cool projects by the design team.  Here is my layout using photos of Lukas and Oupa on the tractor on Wynand's smallholding.
Supply list:  Cardstock:  Bazzill; Patterned papers: My Minds Eye (Miss Caroline Dilly Dally); Brads; My Minds Eye; Silhouette triangle cut designed by Kinsey Wilson; Title by Studio Calico and cut with Silhouette.

I am loving the Silhouette and the beautiful cuts it makes.  I have added some stitching around some of the triangles.
I love the bright colours of this paper line.

Here is the sketch by Evgenia:

We also have a random giveaway from Fabscraps. Look at those super goodies!!


You have until the 14th May to upload your projects.