Wednesday, 30 April 2008

You just have to check these out!!

For all you crafters out there, 3 sites to check out....where do I start? Well here no particular order......Jak and other team members of La Pashe have a new project. It looks fantastic and will be available very soon.

Next...Susie has some blog candy to give away. Pop over there to find out how you could win this.

Last but not least..a card I made for a very dear friend's birthday who just happens to like sheep. I must say thank you to Martine for the image which can be found on her blog.

Her favourite colour is blue but I wanted to make it pink....but she isn't really a "pink" lover so I compromised and did it in shades of lilac and purple.....with a bit of glitter card added to the sheep and flowers....she does love her glitter. I hope she likes it. I must say that I think she will....she is my biggest fan! It's her birthday on Saturday, and as she is going away to relatives tomorrow for a week, we met up today for a "ladies wot lunch." We really don't do this often enough. Although we talk on the phone it's great to meet up for a good old gossip and a laugh. The weather was fine to start with but ended up with didn't deter us though....and she keeps me sane.!!

Saturday, 26 April 2008


I think I'm coming back down to earth now. It was such a delightful surprise to receive an award... (see previous post)...I never expected anything like that, and it is comforting in a way to know that people are reading my blog, and are, hopefully, being helped or gaining insight to a worldwide condition that is all too often ignored by some medical professionals.

The last few days haven't been particularly good for me. Wednesday I managed to cut the lawns which wasn't too hard a job as they didn't need too much work. I use the term lawns very loosely..they are more moss, buttercups and daisies than grass. As long as they are cut regularly they don't pose a big problem. Anyway, who am I to deny my grandchildren the joy of making daisy chains and testing to see who likes butter? The trick with lawns is little and often. Thursday I went over to eldest sons as he wanted to borrow some of my crafting stuff, and I some of his. It is an advantage having another crafter in the family....we can swap and most crafters are only too willing to do. Crafters, I've found, are a caring, sharing community. I set off from the house in sunny, warm weather. 5 minutes into my journey the heavens opened and the downpour continued until I reached my son's home. I felt and probably looked like a drowned rat. My DIL lent me a pair of her trousers while she put mine and my coat in the dryer. I arrived home later feeling cold and shivery even though it was quite warm. Needless to say I didn't get much sleep....and I couldn't lie in because I had my doctor's appointment. Now this is the part where I'm not sure if I should be a bit put out or grateful. My blood tests were normal...good...I could be in the 20% of people tested for rheumatoid arthritis that don't get a definite result....not so good. So my GP has decided that because of my family history I probably do have she can't prescribe ibuprofen because of my stomach problems....she is "going to pass me onto the experts." In other words... she has referred me to the rheumatology clinic at the hospital and I should expect to hear from them within 4 to 6 weeks. OK..I can live with that. I might actually be getting somewhere. Consultation over I walk out into the reception area, where I was accosted by a very polite young lady asking me if I could spare a few minutes to talk. Fine....I was in no great hurry. She then started talking about age concern and would I like a representative to visit me to discuss how they may be able to help me. Now I know I'm no spring chicken....I do use a walking stick and I tend to dress these days more for comfort rather than fashion....but surely I don't look that old!! I? The young lady must have seen how mortified I looked and hurriedly assured me that age concern now helps people from 50 upwards. She asked a few questions about my condition and told me that they may be able to get me some aids to help me around the house. I don't have a lot of problems with mobility in the house except for the stairs....I have fallen a couple of times ..and I never take a bath if I am alone in the house just in case I fall. This could mean an extra banister rail on the stairs and safety rails for the bath which I think would be a good thing. Another wait and see what happens scenario. Now I have to try and be a patient patient. Patience isn't one of my strong points I'm afraid. If something needs doing, get on with it has always been my way. Unfortunately....or maybe not...that isn't always possible now.

Arte Y Pico Award

I got an award!!! How chuffed am I? Totally gobsmacked and elated that someone thinks that my blog is worthy.

The award has come from Peejay.. a wonderful member of the Imag-e-nation forum. Thank you so much...I feel very honoured. I now know that there are some rules I have to here goes and I hope I get it right. If I don't I'm sure someone out there will let me know.

The rules!
1. You pick five blogs that you consider deserve this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribute to the blogging community, no matter what language.

2. Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.

3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and the link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.

4. Award-winner and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of Arte Y Pico blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.

5. Show these rules!

Now for my 5 nominations.....this won't be very easy as I could list more than 5 that I find inspiring.

1. Pam .....Indigo studio...the ribbon blossom is awesome!

2. Nichole..... great tutorials

3. Silvercustard....a very busy lady on the CB forum

4. Louly ....Dottie is so sweet!

5. Julie ...inspiring.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Lily's back!

Who's Lily I hear you's not who but what. Lily of the valley is what. Regular visitors will know that last year I had a real battle with this beautiful woodland plant. It was over-running my front garden and choking out the other plants. I managed the mammoth task of digging most of it out. I have been keeping a close watch for signs of it reappearing. A couple of weeks ago I tidied and weeded the front garden and could see no sign. This morning however I noticed that it is back. It's only a small area but I will have to get it dug out before it takes over again. The weather has been beautiful today and I was hoping to get out there and cut the grass. All the rain we have had has meant that the grass is growing at quite a rate of knots. Unfortunately my hands and knees are not up to it. The swelling had gone down due to me having a very relaxing weekend physically....but now they are swollen again. So much so that I couldn't get my shoes on to go to the shop today...I had to resort to my very worn and shabby trainers...not a good look for a woman my age. I was hoping that my first thought was right..that the symptoms are not due to rheumatoid arthritis....seems I am probably wrong. Friday is the day that I find out. I have an appointment and this time it is to see my own GP. I've never actually seen her since she took over from my last GP who retired. I've always been seen by another doctor in the practise.

I've got my ATC's done for the CB swap even though the list isn't closed for another few days. It does seem though that the theme will be butterflies..if it changes I will have to make some more. Well I had to get them done while my brain was still churning with ideas! They are all ready to post and I'm getting impatient. I love receiving's a nice surprise because you don't know who's you're going to receive until they arrive.

Sunday, 20 April 2008

Safe and sound...

All my crafting files are safe and sound. The external hard drive was waiting for me when I got back from shopping on Thursday. I wasted no time transferring my files...and there is plenty of room for more. The protective sleeves for my ATC's turned up as well. I'm really starting to get addicted to them. I've signed up for another swap on the Crafts Beautiful forum as keeps me out of mischief I suppose. I'm still looking for a way to keep them well stored but within easy reach. I keep looking on blogs with card challenges and thinking about taking part, but I'm not sure if I'm confident enough to enter those yet. Think I'll stick with the ATC's for now.

The weather has been wet and miserable all the weekend. I'm hoping that it will brighten up in the next few days so that I can cut the lawn. The grass is growing very rapidly and if I leave it too long I'll have to rake it all again and I really don't want to be doing that!

Wednesday, 16 April 2008


I'm feeling happy today. The weather has been cold and wet..but it hasn't bothered me today. Even the joint pains..which always seem to be worse when it's cold and wet...have been reasonably bearable. Why am I happy?...'cos the ATC back stamp that I ordered on Monday night arrived early this morning....what service is that then!!...and my computer is running a lot faster. Son came over yesterday and tweaked it a bit and now it's running a lot better. It's not cured..that will happen, hopefully, when the external hard drive arrives and then I can take of all my files and son will be able to cure it .

I'm off shopping tomorrow and just hoping that the wet weather will hold off until I get back home.

I was so excited at the arrival of my new stamp that it gave me the mojo to get this month's Imag-e-nation swap started....and done! Just waiting for the little protective sleeves that I ordered to turn up now so that I can get them posted. They should be here tomorrow or Friday at the latest. I've also managed to put the slide show back on....fingers crossed there will be no hitches this time.

Monday, 14 April 2008

Retail therapy.....

I've been on a bit of a spending spree today. I've bought an external hard drive for my computer, perhaps this will stop my kids complaining that all my "junk" is slowing it down. Eldest son is coming round tomorrow hopefully and see if he can sort out the memory problem. If all goes to plan I should end up with a computer that runs at a decent speed. I sometimes think it would be quicker on dial-up the way it runs at times. I've also bought an ATC back stamp and some protective sleeves for my ATC's. It would be a shame to have them spoiled by handling them too much after all the work that has gone into them. ATC's are addictive and if I'm going to get into them properly, I though I might as well go the whole hog and buy the stamp. (Well that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!) The stamp only cost me £2.50..unmounted. It took me a good hours surfing the to find the best price....but it was worth it...and I was very good. I resisted the temptation to buy more stamps! I've just got to wait for my goodies to arrive now. The money I have spent today was my Cuttlebug fund...I've been saving for one for a few months but I reckoned that saving all my precious crafting files was a tad more important. The fund restarts tomorrow..I will get one..sooner rather than later I hope.

I went for my blood tests this morning,.....and guess what?....I was right about the date!! I duly arrived at the appointed time to be told that the appointment was for last Monday and I might not be able to be seen. It was at this point that I pulled out my appointment card....a hasty apology followed and was asked to sit down and wait. I didn't have to wait long though. When I got in there the nurse took 4 phials out....why 4 for one blood test? The doctor had ordered 3 more as well as the rheumatoid arthritis one.....blood count, sugar level and kidneys. I don't know whether to think that they are being very thorough or grasping at straws. I will find out next week.

Friday, 11 April 2008

Card slideshow

I've removed the slideshow of my cards .....temporarily I hope. It doesn't want to play nice....probably a hitch with surprises there! It was beginning to really hack me off.

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Gardening and ATC's

It's been a beautiful sunny day although a bit cold.....perfect for gardening though, and that's what I've been doing most of the day. I managed to get most of the front garden done until rain stopped play. I could have done with another 20 minutes to finish off. Hopefully I will be able to finish it within the next few days.

Tomorrow I have to go to the CAB to see about an appeal against the decision for DLA. They don't have an appointment system so I will have to get there early to be certain of being seen.

Here as promised are the 2 ATC's that I received from the Imag-e-nation Easter swap. Thanks go to Karen for hosting the swap and Dimples and Nikita for the lovely ATC's.

Tuesday, 8 April 2008


I'm feeling a little better than I was when I last posted. The beautiful weather we have had today, after the cold winds and snow showers over the weekend, have helped to lift my mood. I received 2 ATC's this morning from the Image-e-nation forum Easter swap. I'll show you them when I've scanned them. It would be better to photograph them but I am rubbish with a camera.

The appointment I thought I had on Monday..and notice I say thought..never happened. I don't know if I dreamed it or if it was one of those senior moments again. When I made the appointment last Thursday I'm sure the receptionist said "next Monday." Well I duly set the alarm early for Monday and was about to go to the appointment, and noticed that I had the appointment card in my coat pocket. It's a good job I checked it...the appointment isn't until next Monday..the 14th. I was so annoyed with myself. Such a simple thing and I had managed to get it wrong!

I've finally sorted out my favourites list on my computer. It's a little bit shorter, but the important thing is that it is in nice neat folders and I can find stuff!

All in all not a bad couple of days. Oh...and notice the new sig at the bottom of this post? Managed to get that after reading about it on one of my absolute favourite blogs..thank you Allison. She has some really easy to follow blog tips, even a computer numpty like me can follow them.

Friday, 4 April 2008


I'm feeling so down at the moment. It feels as if I have taken 1 step forward and 3 back. Wednesday I made a start on the garden and felt that I had achieved something. Thursday morning I went to the doctors hoping to sort out my painkillers. He decided that the night ones are too strong for me regarding the side effects and has told me to stop them and just rely on the lower strength. Not too happy about that as it is at night that I need most help with the pain. He then noticed that my hands and feet were very swollen. I told him that I had been gardening and that was probably the reason. Then he asked if there was any history of rheumatoid arthritis in the family. The answer to that is a big fat mother, 2 sisters and my eldest son. He has asked for a blood test to determine if I have got this condition....and I'm not happy. Firstly this is probably my biggest nightmare. I lived with, and saw the effects of this disease on my foster mother. She died when I was 20.....15 years on from the onset. My natural mother started with it when she was 48 and suffered for 20 years before dying of lung cancer. My older sister started with it at the same age as my mother (she is 15 months older than me) and is now crippled and a wheelchair user. My younger sister (14 months younger) has also suffered for the last 5 years. Eldest son has been diagnosed within the last 2 years. His was brought on early because he broke his back 19 years ago. Of course the blood test might show that I don't have it, but i think that is fairly unlikely. The second thing that is really annoying me is that my own GP knows about the family history. I have had regular blood tests over the last 3 years in trying to determine various symptoms of M.E. Why haven't I been tested before? Now I am wondering if my symptoms are due to M.E. or rheumatoid arthritis. I have the blood test on Monday morning and have to see the doctor in a week for the results. I got home feeling a bit upset only to get more bad news. The condition management course has been cancelled due to not enough people signed up for it. I have been offered a place at another venue but have turned it down due to the distance. It is in town and quite a walk from the bus stop. I don't think I would be able to manage the travelling and the time I would need to set off from home. It would make it a very long day. The next scheduled local venue is not until June.
After that bit of news I felt really down and tried to console myself with some more gardening. Just got the front to do now. I don't know when it will get done if we have the expected wintry weather that is forecast.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

I'm organizing..

I've been de-cluttering. My favourites list on my computer is so long and disorganized that I've started to try and bring some order to it. It is taking longer than I thought. The list seems endless. Well you know how it come across a site that looks as though it could be interesting and save it for a better browse later. Well later has finally come. Why I ever saved some of the sites is beyond me. I must have had a lot of "senior" moments. I'm about halfway through. It wouldn't take me so long if I didn't browse a few sites I had forgotten about. Quite a lot has been deleted though...I am being ruthless as far as the computer is concerned. I've also had the courage to delete some programmes on the computer....some have not and probably never would have been used.

With the spring weather that we are being blessed with at the moment I've also managed to get out into the garden. Only done part of it but I really enjoyed myself. My type of gardening is very hands on...I rarely wear gloves....which doesn't do my nails much good. I've cut the grass, turned over the soil in the flower beds..much to the delight of the local Blackbirds and Robin, re potted the mint and moved a pot that contains dwarf daffodils and a pole for the bird feeders. I can see the plants now. I'm hoping that the wintry weather that has been forecast for the weekend doesn't happen and that I can get a bit more done over the next few days.
I've an appointment with my GP in the morning to see if I can try and get my painkillers sorted.
The strong ones I have for the night time do work except for the side effects of a massive hangover in the morning.....and I don't even drink alcohol....wouldn't mind so much if I did. It's like going to a party and not having any fun!