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A layout and a puzzle

I did this layout at the last Ludgershall crop.  I dutifully photographed it with the intention of blogging about it but then life, as it does, got in the way.  When I looked at it I noticed that 2 floating on it.  At this point, it has been so long I have no idea what it meant!  Was it TWO, as in the two kids?  Did something come off, like the rest of a date? 2012 maybe?  I have absolutely NO IDEA.


This is another one of those layouts I made from the debris in the bottom of my crop bag.  I had the photo, and a vague idea of what I wanted to do with it, but hadn’t made a “kit” to go along with it.  I just looked at the bits and bobs that were left from, I think, a card I made a few months back, and felt the colours went with the photo well enough.

I rather like the odd angled photo – I thought about putting the photo on point, so the kids were level, but in the end I preferred it this way.  The horizon is pretty close to resting on the line, from corner to corner diagonally IRL although it doesn’t look exactly like that  in the photo.

I am aware I still have my final BIG CARD to do, the Ace of Clubs, but to be honest, while I am feeling MUCH better, and able to sit at my desk for longer each day, I am not in the right head space to do that level of time-consuming crafting quite yet. I will do it, and photo the lot in suit groupings, and maybe review my favourite techniques, in the next week or so. For the moment it is all about UKS so bear with me.  I went from being totally on top of things, with a clear plan for getting all the sponsorship info and HomePage projects/classes for 2013 sorted when I went into hospital, to being laid up with my back and my recovery from surgery and once again a manic end-of-year rush to get it all set up.  It’s been more stressful than I hoped it would be but I’ve made huge progress in the last two days so I am optimistic it’ll be complete tomorrow – although I am still awaiting some of the class info, I think we have some nice things planned and will be sharing al that hopefully with the Monday Home Page next week.  Fingers crossed….


Snow Quilts

Artist Simon Beck  walks along the frozen lakes of Savoie, France in snowshoes to create these snow art “quilts.” It takes him 5-9 hours a day, and each one is about the size of three soccer fields! He says The main reason for making them was because I can no longer run properly due to problems with my feet, so plodding about on level snow is the least painful way of getting exercise. Gradually, the reason has become photographing them, and I am considering buying a better camera.

How amazing are they?

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Someplace Else, but not on a Sunday!

I am still finding it impossible to sit at my desk for any period of time, so no crafting for me. Bummer.

But I did finally manage to catch up with something I knew was coming and had on my list to check out that I will share. It’s called SockPuppet Theater.

In a nutshell, it is actual posts taken from various online forums, Facebook, YouTube comment threads, etc. which are turned into scripts then acted out by sock puppets.  The voices are hysterical.  April Winchell, who runs the Regretsy site, is a famous voice-over artist.  She has done MANY well-known character voices, including Miss Muriel Finster from Recess and Clarabelle Cow from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  She also did Cruella DeVille from 101 Dalmations (the series, not the movie) and Rob Paulsen is perhaps best known as the voice of Pinky from Pinky and the Brain.  Rob also starred as Raphael in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  There are others but those two are perhaps the best known. Regretsy always makes me laugh so I suspected SockPuppet Theater would as well.

Why? I’ve seen it happen, with no rhyme or reason, all over the internet.  I read what starts out as a seemingly innocuous forum thread, or comment string, or blog rant and all of a sudden my jaw drops, my brain spins, and I am thinking well, how the heck did we get HERE from THERE?? Check out the otter video sample in the FAQ to see that devolution in action.

Watching people dissolve into frothing rage over otter videos and pie recipes is some of the best human comedy around.

And there is no shortage of material, because the internet’s biggest commodity is your ire. The more upset you are, the more you post. The more you post, the more you click. The more you click, the more money the site makes. As long as the internet keeps getting rich by pissing you off, there will be bullies and meltdowns and flame wars.

And we’ll be here to put a sock in it.

Warning:  It is not for the faint of heart and if bad language offends I accept no responsibility if you ignore the warning and are, in fact, offended. BUT, some of the videos are on YouTube in a no-bad-language version so you can check them out there to get a taste of what it is all about if you can’t stand not knowing. Although the TOPICS may still offend, so keep that in mind.

The videos aside, I am in love with the puppets.  I love their wonky eyes, yarn hair, and the personality the voice artists give them. I love the way you can often see a puppet in the background, as if they had just wandered in to shot while going about their puppet-y business.   It makes me laugh, and I need laughs at the moment, cause I am trying to take as few painkillers as I can and it’s still painful.

Roll on Friday!  Can’t wait for the new episode…..



Happy and Merry Christmas to all the WOYWWers. I am actually composing this on the fly, as I lay on my little nest on the sofa, by the tree, in the lounge. It’s actually been quite an eventful holiday period for me. I ended up in hospital on Friday and in surgery quite quickly. All a bit of a surprise, but all sorted (I hope) and just the recovery now. Oh, and the visiting nurse every day. Amazing.

The knock on effect of this has been….interesting. For example, as I lay here and type, the turkey is, now, finally defrosted and ready to cook. You see, doped up on painkillers I mis-read the thawing instructions. It said “13 to 24 hours” but I missed the “cool room” part, as I have very little experience of frozen turkey (while my mom always bought them when I was a kid, we have always bought fresh turkeys) and I always remember being told it was dangerous to deforest a big bird at room temp. As warm as it is this year, no place in our house is under 40 degrees! So the bird got left to thaw for an extra day. Next, DH and DS are actually pretty good at housework. They did the weeks laundry over a few days, and after a few hiccups about WHY it needed to be done a certain way, to all progressed fairly smoothly.And the dishes! OMG, there have been sinks full of dishes and they have managed well.

A most interesting change, and nothing to do with my being unwell, is the fact the kids didn’t even get up till after 9AM, and wanted to shower before coming down to open gifts. It was all very peaceful and civilized, not manic at all. Not sure if I like it or not.

My desk, you ask? Exactly the same as last week. So here is just a holiday themed image to fill the gap.


We will work together to get the meal on the table, watch a few more holiday movies, play a few games (finally, after years of talking about it I got DS a copy of Illuminati!) and relax. Wishing you and yours the happiest – and healthiest! – of holidays.

Mary Anne


Spanish CD case calendar

I got further sidetracked by a couple of day in hospital – minor procedure but not expected.  It kept me from following up with these right away so I am going to quickly add them before I go collapse on the sofa!

This is the CD case calendar version – the PDF has 6 pages, two per page.  Hope they are useful! They are basically the same fonts etc. as the tear-off ones. Here is one page:



Spanish language tear-off calendar

I got sidetracked by a trip to the Dr. so not made it to any desks yet.  I will try to get to them now, while I rest up and let the antibiotics work their magic (I hope!)

I did want to add this Spanish-language calendar.  Only the tear-off version, so far, but I will get to the CD case sized ones as soon as I can.  The hard work is done, a Spanish speaker has deemed them acceptable. so perhaps a few people will find them useful.

They look like this:


Size-wise, the tear off sheets are 2.5 wide by 2 inches high.  I will mention what I told Milli when we were to-ing and fro-ing about them – I am aware that in Spanish, the month and day words/abbreviations are not capitalized, but it is a peculiarity of the FONT where you see an upper-case letter used and not a choice by me to capitalize the word!

Do the usual, cut along the faint grey lines then stack in order and apply a thin smear of glue to the top (or if you prefer, lower) edges, as I’ve shown before.  When dry, you can use the tear-off stack for many different uses.

I went ahead and spread out the rows, so if you want to make a matchbook calendar from this set you can.  That PDF is here.  Just cut along the line OVER each row  – the bottom row of months will need to be trimmed to the same height as the other three rows, below the gray line.  The cut between the months.   That will give you a set with a bit of space below  to staple the stack in a matchbook.  Like this one, with the not-Spanish version:


Expect the CD set hopefully before the new year!



My desk is a mess.  Leftovers from my BIG CARD on Monday, my Snorf Santa from yesterday, a new 3EB foldable (a little bird) that I am playing with today…




and a (just out of shot) calendar that I am working on, a Spanish language one.


Milli, of the Polaroids & Postcards blog, mentioned my calendar-making in her first ever post.  She was wondering about a Spanish version, which is something I had thought about but never followed through on.  Her musing got me started and I am planning on doing the CD case calendar version of that today. You can see my sample print there.

DS is back from Uni and only here for about a week and a bit.  We are trying to jam a lot of stuff into the few days we have free, so in fact I may end up being a bit AWOL.  Plus I have some more UKS stuff to sort out, and cooking and Christmas plays, and Drs. appts, and OMG SO MUCH STUFF.  But I hope to squeak in some blog visits today after DDs star turn in The Nutcracker at her school and before collecting DS from his eye appt.  I think I need a holiday from the HOLIDAYS!

Have a happy one, y’all.

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Snorf Ornament

I am just loving the Snorfs.  This morning I got an email from Maarten from 3eyedbear, asking if he could link to my blog post about the 12 Snorfs of Christmas, and kindly giving me a PDF of his new Christmas Snorf as a thanks.  It was sooooo cute I just had to do something with it. So I did.

First, I ironed a bit of fabric to some freezer paper so I could print on it.  I think this was not the best choice of fabric as it frays more than I would like, but it was what I had on hand.


Now, there are some lines you won’t cut for this version that are marked for the PAPER version.  I cut all the assembly slits, the hat and beard curves, and cut the hands free.  I did NOT cut the nose or the ears.  I did score and crease the brow area but NOT the nose.  Can you see that in the photo? I also cut the lower edge with a 1/4 inch allowance. More or less. Experience seamstresses, look away now LOL!Like so:


I ran out of Fray Check so I just brushed a bit of Glossy Accents on the mittens,  That was the only part that I felt needed the fraying controlled.

This is a little tricky.  Because of the fraying issue I didn’t want to peel the whole thing off the freezer paper so I just peeled the 1/4 inch extra away and trimmed the paper back to the original black line. Leaving the paper in place kept the Snorf shape.


I glued all the tabs, leaving the freezer paper in place. The beard curve and the hands HAVE to be cut in order to glue the tabs.  I leave the hat loose at this point.


I cut a circle of felt – mine was actually too small at 2.5 inches in diameter – I thought it was ok till I stitched back to the beginning.  I thought 3 inches looked to big but now I am thinking it would have been perfect.  I folded the 1/4 inch allowance under and did a quick whip-stitch to close the bottom.  I ended up pleating the back slightly to accommodate the excess.


Now, stuff the body with fibrefill loosely.  The beard and hands are free so you don’t want the fibrefill oozing out!


I added a bit of trim around the hat edge and the base, to control any fraying and to disguise the whip-stitching.


Loop some baker’s twine, or ribbon and push it thru the hat, making a hanger.


Lightly stuff the hat with fibrefill and the glue the back of the hat to the back of the Snorf.


I wrapped a bit more of the trim around the top of the hat, over the hanger to finish him off. Isn’t he just the cutest thing?


I am still dithering whether or not to glue down the mittens.  There really isn’t much fibrefill peeping out – I might have added a circle of felt to the inside, just to contain it, had I thought of it before I stuffed and glued the hat.

Now, obviously this is going to depend on your printer.  An alternative might be to print the Snorf on to tee-shirt transfer paper then iron it on to other fabric.  That also might let you make a softer version without the freezer paper, but the paper adds some stiffness to the hat and beard so I’m not sure it would have the shape it has if you don’t have the paper layer.

The Xmas Snorf is not available for download as I write this.  Who knows if it will be available in the future?   BUT the other Snorfs are equally cute and there are a few of them that I think would be Christmas-y enough if you fancy giving this a go.

Have fun!

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BIG CARDS – 2 of Clubs

The penultimate BIG CARD.

I had an idea for the Distress Stains, so gave it a go. First I tamped on some of the white DS over the black card.  All over.  Alone, if give it an almost starry-night-sky look. I used this funny little brush – no idea where I got it, but the brush part is a bit like a scrubber – actually, it is very like the scrubbing square from the Indigo Blu foiling kit.


My thought was that once the DS dried then colours of stain over the top would not colour the black card, but WOULD colour the white stain. It is very subtle in the photo, more vibrant IRL.


I did the Tumbled Glass first then Worn Lipstick over that.


I also daubbed the white stain thru some sequin waste and let it dry.


Re-positioning the waste to match, I coloured the white dots with Distress INK, Peacock Feather and Picked Raspberry.


I added the words by printing two copies – the main box I coloured with the Peacock Feather then did the other on with Picked Raspberry. I cut them out and layered them.


I think this could make a nifty card or ATC background.  Worth playing around with a bit more, as the dried Distress Stain really grabs the colour, as you can see best in the close up of the dots.

Just the Ace left to do.  I already did the Doodled one for the Spades so I really need to think on that – and plan what weekly project I need to begin for 2013!

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Sunday-someplace-else (Foldify)

If you read my blog with any regularity, you know I am a huge fan of 3D paper sculptures.  And now, there is a App that lets you create your own!  It is simply the coolest thing I have seen in AGES. It’s called Foldify. It launched in the App store just a couple of days ago and is priced at $1.99.

There are a handful of templates which can be used to create some interesting projects from simple shapes.

Some of the sections have “stamps” that you can simply drag in and resize – eyes, mouths, etc.

I wish there were something as easy for my desktop – there are a few (like Sketchup) but they don’t look anywhere as easy as Foldify.  One, Pepakura, actually has a Cameo/Silhouette plug-in that looks interesting.

I think this is something well worth playing with and could be a fun thing for the kids over the holidays.  Check it out!

(well that was interesting!  WordPress has changed how it handles embedded video and it took ages to work out how to do it because how they SAY works is not how it works! Sorry if you were viewing the page and it was weird)