Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Project Life :: Week 15

Hello, and welcome to Week 15. I'm catching up today, so there will be another post today soon with Week 16.
This week things were pretty much back to Everyday Life as we know it, with the new school term starting. The "Hello Everyday Life" card is a freebie by Ali found here on Becky's blog. I've been meaning to use it for a long time.
This week I documented: Me and the kids having our cereal together on the last day of school holiday. Each one having his/her own preference.... I also told the story of attending a VLU meeting with a friend. I'm not even sure what the correct English name is, Women's Agricultural Union? Something like the movie Calender girls, without the calender. We had such fun. (I hand-drew the "tuesday" around the card.)... Then some readingtime with the kids in their Teepee... And Reuben practicing for a chess competition on the computer (he was through to the next round). The original photo's colours came out terrible, so I  played with it on my Microsoft photo editing program and ended up with something that looks like a line drawing. Hmmm ok... The selfportrait by Reuben was done on a freebie found here.

This page documents : A brollie in our pool - Liam was walking outside with it, "forgot" about the pool, and fell in. I've recently been inspired again by this wonderful collection of foot photo's to take more "from where I stand" photo's as a way of telling my story...A star that came home on Liam's forehead. He gave it to me and ask that I put it in Project Life, on a nice picture, so I had to take one of him for the star to find a home... Our comfort creature, wire haired terrier, Basjan.... And some fun jellies I made for Sunday school. Our theme for the week was "colour". And boy did they look forward to those jellies at the end of the class. ..It also tells a little husband-appreciation story, and of our braai at friends ( I often forget to take photo's when we socialize). The heart card seems to have vanished from my PL freebie board on Pinterest. But the Milk & cookies one is from here.

And that's the week. Thanks for stopping by.

I'm using the Cobalt kit from Becky Higgins.
I'm linking up at The Mom Creative.

Monday, 29 April 2013

Kid's Birthday Parties :: Our story so far.

Around here we are approaching another kiddies Birthday Party at dazzling speed. It made me think of all the parties so far....So, instead of working on said upcoming party, I've put together a brief party history:

Reuben's first birthday party theme was Nautical. We celebrated it at a cafe overlooking the Durban harbour entrance. So close to the water's edge that he was entertained by fishes he saw swimming in the water. (Sadly it no longer exist). I ordered the cake and it callopsed on one side on the way there. Shipwreck?

We celebrated his second birthday at home in Gillits. The theme: Animal farm. This time I made the cake, and loved decorating it. I worked out of a book called: "Party Magic" by Stork/ Woman's Value (it's from Tafelberg Publishers)  inspiration for a few of our parties, and most of the cakes I made.

For his third birthday we had a small "Pirates & Pizza" party at night. This cake's decoration required intervention by my husband. We just couldn't get the red red, and a pirate with pink dots just wouldn't do. We eventually used about three bottles of red food-colouring, which later seeped out of the red bits (edited out here). Well, as they say, to err is human, and to arrrgh...pirate. And we'd rather have a bloody pirate than a pink one. (Lesson learned: use powder form food-colouring for intense colours.)

Enter Liam..and we find ourselves away in the Kwa-Zulu Natal Midlands over his first Birthday. I found a nice picnic venue that catered with deluxe picic baskets, a spot in the forest, and an arranged area with cussions and blankets. They didn't quite manage to deliver on my cake vision, but they did the cake as an exception, so that was ok. It was bitterly cold that day (the midlands get much colder than Durban), but the kids loved having their own play-area.

Reuben's fourth birthday party, and we decided to go the party venue route, with cake and party-packs included. The kids loved the trainrides, maze and play-area. I loved how easy it was, but a (crazy) part of me missed the home-made party feel.

Liam's second birthday and I'm back to doing it all myself. We went for a "Rumble in the Jungle" theme and an outside venue (at a nearby nature reserve). I loved doing that cake again. Looking back I should have allowed more time for setting up. It was complete in time, but rushing wasn't fun. 

Reuben's fith birthday party was all about firestations and fire-engins. We even paid a visit to the firestation in Umhlanga where the staff were extremely accomodating, and gave us a free tour of the station. Another favourite cake.

I loved Liam's third- a Circus party. It was in our backyard, and just one of those where everything went right. The cake took quite a while to decorate but I was so happy that I managed to pull it off.

With Reuben's sixth birthday (now living in Jo'burg) I discovered another beautiful party book: "Children's Party's" by Rose Hammick & Charlotte Packer. The photo's and all the handmade ideas are a feast for the eyes. But books like these are dangerous, because you want to do it all, yourself. We went for the Cowboy theme in this book. I made bunting, cardboard Cactusses and bar-doors, we had hay bales, a teepee tent, potato races, corn on the cob, hamburgers, and a treasure chest cake with chocolate coins spilling out. 

We moved house a few days before Liam's fourth birthday, so I didn't go for a big/themed party. But I discovered Sweet Paul's go-to chocolate cake. I made two double batches for a four layer cake. It is so easy, yummy and brownie like, and just about fool-proof. A favourite ever since.

For Reuben's seventh birthday we went for "Rockets & Robots" as a theme. The cake was very
ambitious to say the least... rocket science to be more correct :). It had to be baked in a bowl and came out as heavy as a log. I added extra height with iced over caramel rolls that went down very well. Other memorable things about this party: that his best friend arrived wrapped in a foil suit. The fact that we had it in the circle down our street, that we had a jumping castle, that the day went from sunny when the party started, to pouring with rain within about half an hour. Everything had to be rushed indoors. And the kids had the best time playing in the street in the rain. (As in flat on their tummies in the water in the street).
With Liam's fifth bithday we were away on holiday on the South Coast. We had a small celebration a few days before, while with family in Durban. On his birthday we filled his room with balloons to wake up to, and spent the day on the beach.

This year when Reuben turned eight he opted for a trip to Sun City (they have a man-made beach) in stead of a party. Cool. Liam' sixth birthday is coming up, and a party had to had. I'm very grateful for my celebration board on Pinerest for party inspiration.
Handmade parties are as rewarding as it is hard work.  But the most important thing with kids parties, as with Project Life and scrapbooking, is that we celebrate our kids and their lives.

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Project Life :: Week 14

Welcome to week 14. That would be the week my Mom and little niece spent with us, and the kids were at home for another week of school holidays. And Easter Monday. I just couldn't resist the "Keep Calm" spoof. (Freebie hopefully somewhere here.) Very much the theme this week. With all the indoor weather and cabin fever we had, keeping calm was at the top of my list. Taking photo's strangely wasn't really. Too focused on making big meals, crafting with the kids, spending time with my Mom, etc.. But I did manage to get a few photo's that captures the week.

 Monday we went to the Walter Sisulu Botanical gardens. We discovered a man blowing huge bubbles- much to the kids entertainment. I have tried to make our own giant bubble maker before, but to no success. He apparently experimented for years to get the formulation right. (Difficult in South Africa where one doesn't have access to all the stuff in recipies online). The afternoon my Mom paid a visit to other family in Jhb, and we had friends join us for the neighbourhood's annual Egg hunt. The drawings were spontaneously done by Chanel (my niece). I journaled around about getting to know her a bit better, and that I love how creative she is. Craft time the kids made some beaded keyrings (SA readers : I found them for R25 for a packet of 3 at Jasmyn, near Harties, well worth the busy time the kids get out of it). We also went to see The Croods in 3D. I googled "Christian movie krits" and found a nice review blog (didn't keep the link, but there are a number of good ones that tells you if a movie's ok to watch.) Croods were pretty harmless and entertaining.

On Thursday we desperately set out in the cold to play Putt-Putt. It turned into a great (and much sunnier) day. After Putt-Putt we went to Brightwater Commons for some shopping and treats at the Spur. Friday another quick shopping trip and a stop at Pappachino's for play and cake (and taking out my jeans for the first time this year.).

And Saturday it was time for another goodbye. We took my Mom and Chanel to the airport. She was very excited about her girly outfit and flying for the first time. Loved having them here.
I enjoyed (inspired by the monthly kit users) adding some sequins here and there. And that was week 14.

I'll be linking up at The Mom Creative.

Want to know more about Project Life? Go to Becky's Blog.

PS: Great news for "international" Project Life'rs (ie not living in the USA) , Scrapbookers Innercircle is having a lot of PL give-aways on their blog over the next couple of days.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Project Life :: Week 13 (b)

Hello, and welcome. This page basically covers Saturday and Sunday of our very full Easter Week-end.
Sat. we all went to the Jhb. Zoo. That is us and my family visiting from Durban. We were there quite early and enjoyed all the monkey's morning calls.

Love that every time we go there, I get close-ups from different animals . This spread is very photocentric. Just included a card from the Clementie kit (to which I added a Geo-tag) and a card I made myself (adding a little tab freebie.)

On this side it's mostly about Sunday, which included an egg-hunt, a stop at MacDonalds, and a visit to Delta Park. Good cousin-fun. Good day card was a freebie. You can check out my very well populated Pinterest PL freebie board here.

Two more photo's were added inside a flap. I just use celotape to adhere an extra flap and it seems to be working fine.
Photo tip: Try to keep a good mix of Portrait close-ups vs other photo's (including far-away shots, people from behind, and non-people photo's. )

And that's it. Short and sweet!

Project Life is a memory keeping system developed by Becky Higgins.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Project Life :: Week 13(a).

Welcome to Week 13, which will again be delivered in two intallments...
This week we celebrated the long Easter week-end with a family visit.
But lets first look at the first half of the week...
A few glasses of freshly made orange, carrot and celery juice to document the fact the we now have a juicer and love making our own interesting juice. A Zoe moment, a Reuben commment, and kid's play over the school holidays at home. The date card (where I stapled the "to" line for fun), and doodled card is from the Cobalt kit, but I digged into the Clementine kit (which I'm using to slowly work on a backdated album for 2008) for the other cards. This week I was also in the mood for tabs to sit on top of photo's and cards, so I printed out some of my digital supplies and stapled or pinned them on.

This page had a half-page insert. I used a fabric clothing marker tab for a page turner. 
Hello card was a freebie. I couldn't find the link anywhere now. (This sometimes happens when I downloaded it a while ago and already saved it amongst my digital files. So sorry, but you are welcome to have a look around my PL freebie board on Pinterest.) The "yumm" was added with a white pen.

This page documents the arrival, on Friday, of my brother, SIL, Mom and little niece, who drove up from Durban. (We are originally from there before we moved to Jhb almost three years ago.) I had so many plans to do for Easter, but didn't get around to many. I did enjoy printing these cute free bunnies that I found here on Pinterest.  (And filling them with chocolate eggs). The "cake" is a Jamie Oliver Christmas Bombe (basically a bowl lined with sponge cake and the icecream added inside ( mix in all kinds of treats like nougat etc). Once frozen, turn out, pour melted chocolate over and decorate with sparklers etc..)

The dotted card is also from the Clementine kit.

Insert turned over. On the "So funny" photo I added text to the photo before printing it and then added the rest by hand afterwards. These two cousins really get on like a house on fire. I enjoyed adding Protea's (love them and they'e our national flower) to our Easter bunch. The "8" is another freebie that I unfortunately can't find the link for...

The egg is cut from a banner Chanel (my brother's daughter) made for us. She loves crafting almost as much as I do! Love seeing my brother so happy. A bit of their story:: His wife is from Cuba, and they met while she was working in South Africa as an architext (towards the end of her time here). She had to return to Cuba, and overcome a number of obstacles (think lots of red tape, and buying plane tickets twice, because when - on her initial trip back here- arriving in a connecting country, her yellow fever certificate was in the wrong language etc etc. ), but their love prevailed and she made it back and they arranged their wedding in a matter of days (as her visum almost expired with all the delays). Anyway, that was almost a year and a half ago and they are so happily married now, and perfect for each other, really.

I downloaded the "Easter Blessings" word-art from Ali's blog. The plan was to use it with the background, but the colour didn't go with my page so I handcut it to just show the words.

And there's the spread with insert turned over. Thankful for a blessed Easter time with family!
I'll post the second part soon.

If you'd like to learn more about Project Life, you can visit Becky's Blog.

I'll be linking up at The Mom Creative.

Friday, 12 April 2013

South Africa | Through my lens

                                                Table Mountain with the V&A Waterfront.

I've recently realized that most people visiting my blog probably don't know South Africa that well. So I've decided to include a little visual tour of some of the beautiful places in South Africa we've been fortunate to visit. I'm not a photographer and didn't want to spend too much time selecting or editing these photo's, so please don't see this as a tourism post :) Also, South Africa is a very diverse country, so this of-course doesn't even scratch the surface of all there is to see here. Enjoy anyway.

For this post we look at Capetown...

The Cape is spectacularly beautiful. I've been there a few times and would love to live there someday.

                                                                   Love the people...
                                       The beaches...(and our family-holiday memories there)...
Especially Blouberg Strand, takes my breath away every time...

I even love the sand on Blouberg Strand...

Love the penquins on Boulders Beach...

All the history in Simon's Town....

The sunsets in Houtbay...

Just love the fact that the sun sets over the sea here....

I love all the Cape-Dutch archirtecture...
The Winelands...

The interesting shops...

The colours...

The Neutrals...

The old...

The renewed...

Love that I have friends there & the memories of our get-togethers there.

Too many photo's to show! Hope you enjoyed Cape Town through my lens.

You are welcome to send me a request if you want to use my photo's, but please don't use any of my photo's with-out my permission.