Well, I must obviously be getting used to the weekly deadline, as I have now started the SAS Designer Challenge for those eliminated from the contest. I must be a glutton for punishment, especially since I drove 800 miles in 60 hours to take our middle son up University in Scotland over the weekend....

I thought when he went to University, it would be easier (on the heart) than when our eldest went. but if anything, it seems worse! Of course, time dims the memory and you tend to gloss over the bad things, so perhaps I'm forgetting the worry and concern we have when our eldest went to Uni, although I do recall several weekends where either we went up to see him, or he came down her.... But he was less than 2 hours away, whereas Sam is 8 hours away.... So maybe it's the distance, because we probably won't see him again until Christmas; maybe it is because I went to the same University and went through exactly what he is going through right now; maybe it's just because I love him and miss him and know he is having a hard time settling in. I reckon he will be a lot better when lectures start next week, as he will meet the others on his courses.

Until then, it is a case of getting to know people in his hall and trying to find a friendly face to talk to. Of course, having a roommate who is totally inconsiderate, always has people round and has already had people sleeping on the floor overnight (totally against regulations) when they spent a considerable time talking about Sam when they thought he was asleep is not helping either....

But St Andrews is a beautiful place and a wonderful University as you can see from the photos below.

This is one of his room, or at least his half of the room:

This is the view form the top of St Rule's tower. The grey semi circular building in the centre is the Hall of Residence where my son is staying.

The cathedral ruins:

The view from near the West Sands overlooking the town:

The castle:

Looking back up at the castle from the beach!

The Quad:

Sorry the photos are a bit dark. It was cloudy and overcast for most of the time and whilst I have tried to lighten the pictures, they actually look better on my screen than they do here on this blog!

So, whilst Sam is settling in, I've been busy designing my kit for the Designer Club challenge. We were given the colour swatch to start off with, the theme was boys and I had an awful time trying to decide what to do! The challenge was to create everything from scratch (no CU!) and since I take loads of photos (much to the dismay of my children as I keep making them wait while I take photos when we are out !) that wasn't a problem. My problem was what to actually put in the kit to make it useable... Anyhow, this is what I ended up with:

And here's the close up:

Let me know what you think. You can either download it following the links at the SAS gallery HERE or direct from 4shared HERE.

Happy scrapping!

Butterfly overlay

OK, well voting ends today in the SAS Designer contest round 2 and I reckon I haven't got through :(. Oh well, the first three rounds were all about getting people to vote for you anyway, rather than how good a designer you are. I know I'm not one of the best designers in the world, but I know I can come up with good stuff and I am by no means the worst. Looks like the way to get my own designs selling is to open up my own website and since this is being done even as I write this, I will just have to twist my son's arm even further up his back to hurry him along!

If you do feel like voting for me (and all votes are gratefully appreciated :), just follow the links in the post below to take you to the SAS forum where you will need to register first (if you aren't already registered), then wait for the email from the administrator to activate your account, then wait for the moderator to approve your account and then, finally, after all that, you can vote! What a palaver, eh?!!!

In the meantime, here is the overlay I used to make the butterfly paper in my Best Friends kit (my entry for round 2):

This is how it looked when I used it to make a paper:

You can download the overlay HERE and the download links for the papers in my kit can be found HERE.

Happy scrapping!

Just to let you all know that voting has now begun in Round 2 of the SAS Designer contest. Obviously, I would much prefer you to vote for me ;), but the polls are here:

There are some gorgeous kits there and they are all downloadable. Just go along and have a look and then take a couple of minutes to vote for your three favourite kits (even if mine isn't one of them ;)).

Well, I meant to get back here well before now to let you all know that I managed to scrape it through to round 2 of the SAS-y Lady Designer contest! Woohoo!!!! This is the first time ever I have got through to Round 2 of a designer contest so thank you to all those who voted for me :).

Life has been busy since the results were announced as one of my boys is off to University on Friday and so there has been all the preparation involved in that, making sure he has everything he needs. He's off to Scotland, so will be about 350 miles away and we won't see him after Sunday until Christmas, sob! I am hoping and praying he gets on all right as the first few weeks are always hard when you try to settle in, meet new friends and start lectures. He's doing a joint degree, maths and computer science, so of course I am expecting him to be able to solve all of my computer problems in no time at all. But he keeps telling me it's not that sort of a course....well, I am sure he will pick up all sorts of useful computer problem solving information on the way so will be able to fix my 'puter no matter what! He just has to prepare himself now for all those long distance phone calls when I can't get the internet to work or my computer crashes!

Anyhow, back to the SAS designer contest and round 2 is due in at 3 pm EST. I have just finished uploading my kit and here are the previews:

You can download it here so please go along and take a look. There are also lots of other wonderful kits in the gallery, all of them available to download.

Voting starts soon so I will be back to let you have the links for this shortly. If you like my kit, please consider voting for me as it really would be quite something if I got through to the next round. I don't think I will, but hey, a girl can always hope!

Happy scrapping!

Just a reminder to check out this Week's kits in the SAS Designer Competition.

Register Here: http://www.stoneaccentsstudioforum.com/forum/
View and Download Here: http://www.stoneaccentsstudioforum.c...ry.php?cat=964
Go Here to Vote: http://www.stoneaccentsstudioforum.c...ead.php?t=5782

There are some wonderful designs there and all the kits are free downloads. Voting finishes tomorrow (Wednesday 9 September) at midnight EST, so go over and vote for your favourite designer (even if it isn't me, ;)).

Well, it's finally come around, the day my youngest son goes back to school! Woohoo! Does it make me an unnatural mother to be glad?!!! I'm torn really, since whilst it is good for him to be at school, the hassle of the school run can be a real pain as I have to travel six miles in one direction, then reverse the journey, go past our home and travel six miles the opposite way to take our daughter to work. It's like an expedition every morning trying to get everyone out of the house on time and today, being the first day back after the holidays, the traffic will be so much worse. Oh well at least it should be quiet in the house today!

Anyhow, before I start preparing breakfasts, making packed lunches and getting everyone (including myself) organised, here is the cluster frame I made when doing the QP's at the weekend:

Feel free to download it HERE and let me know what you think :).

Happy scrapping!

I'm off to make breakfast for my children in a few minutes before going to see a prospective client and just have time to post this before I get everything ready.

I managed to get some scrapping time in yesterday and made these two pages with my kit from the SAS-y Designer Contest:

I've made them into quick pages and, as promised earlier, you can download them HERE.

Happy scrapping!

Just a quick post to let you know that voting in the SAS-y Lady Designer Contest has now opened. You can look at the entries HERE and vote HERE.

I'll be back shortly with two quick pages created with my kit for the contest ;).

Well, I actually managed to finish my entry to the SAS-y designer competition last night (well, strictly, it was early this morning as it was just gone midnight when I uploaded it!). That must be a first for me, to finish something well before the deadline (3pm EST today)! I normally lurch from one deadline to another and spend my life fighting fires, metaphorically speaking.

Anyhow, do you want to take a look at what I came up with? Well, here it is, Arbour Winds:

The colour swatch we were given is not necessarily one I would have chosen myself, but I ended up really enjoying working with it as it was a challenge to come up with something that didn't look like many other kits you see these days. I used some CU stuff, but the flowers you see in the close up here are mine, all mine (insert evil chuckle here, lol!) as I took the photos and extracted them, so can't blame anyone else for any loose pixels and whatnot in those!

I ended up making far too much to go into the kit, so there will definitely be freebies coming soon! I just need to find the time to sort them out and upload them! A surprising amount of time is always taken up when designing anything in just making a preview, uploading and posting so it's not just a quick two minute job.

So why don't you all nip on over to the Stone Accents Studio and take a look at what all the contestants have come up with? The gallery can be found by CLICKING HERE. All the kits are being offered as freebies and the download links are in the gallery. There's an amazing range of kits and styles considering we all started off with the same five colours so I am sure you will find plenty there to help build your stash!

Voting doesn't begin until later today, so I will let you have that link as soon as I get it - obviously I am hoping you will vote for me ;). Roughly half of us (probably this includes me, lol!) will be eliminated in this first round. You have to be registered in the SAS forum to vote, so please don't let that put you off and just get out there and vote (even if it's not for me ;))!

OK, I'm off to finish printing our church notices now as I only have an hour now before church. And yes, it probably is leaving it a bit late but I always end up printing them off at this time on a Sunday. I just don't know where the time goes!

Happy scrapping!

Yesterday was busy - the first "real" day back at work after a holiday is always hectic and yesterday was no exception. I seemed to have millions of phone calls when normally the phone hardly rings at all. I even had one very nice gentleman from Google ring me up asking me if I wanted to take out a month's trial on google search engine (only £3.30 a day plus VAT!!!) and when after several minutes of me saying I didn't want to take out any more advertising at this time, he slammed the phone down. I don't know who he was, but slamming the phone down on me is definitely not the way to get my business, especially as I was perfectly polite to him. He must have either been having a lot of refusals that day or was totally stressed out after the Bank Holiday weekend!

Anyhow, despite being busy, trying to get my own accounts finished for once (!!!!), I managed to make a September desktop using my part of the ADSDesigners School Daze blog train:

I am afraid it is only in one size (1280 x 1080) but hey, one size can be made to fit all, eh? Just like those trousers in the Colour Purple?!!! If you really need it in a different size, just let me know and I will see what I can do ;). Oh, and in case you are wondering, the birds will be offered as a freebie hopefully sometime later this week (depending on work commitments as I do have a large set of accounts to get done for Friday so time is at a premium at the moment) - I just didn't have room for them in the original zipped file of the kit.

To download the desktop, CLICK HERE.

Happy scrapping!

Well, it is that time of the month again - release day for the ADSDesigners September Collaboration, School Daze. I have been busy zipping files an uploading to 4shared this morning but am going to make you wait a bit to catch you up on what has been happening since my last post.

Well, where to start? Firstly, we (i.e. me and the guys - two of our boys and our daughter) have been in the Lake District for a much needed holiday. Of course, I took my laptop and some work with me but, as usual, didn't get anything done, or at least, hardly anything, so I guess it definitely was a holiday for me then! Much to the perpetual disgust of the children, I took millions of photos and I will probably bore you silly with the photos as well as I intend posting some here once I actually get them off my laptop and camera onto my desktop.

I actually managed to get some decent photoshopping time in whilst we were away, which is something almost unheard of! Mind you, it didn't please DD as she wanted to go on the internet (which I paid a small fortune for to get access for the week so we were all determined to get a much use out of it as possible) and could only do that once I'd finishing photoshopping for the night which was usually well past 11pm if not later!

The Lake District, as usual, was stunning. I just love it there and we spent a lot of time around Lake Windermere and Coniston Water, with the guys getting soaked as they had fun in the water. You wouldn't have thought the eldest two were 20 and 18 as they behaved more like their 12 year old brother than anything else! In fact the elder boy even braved the water completely to go swimming! Admittedly, he was frozen afterwards but he was determined not to leave the Lake District without having swum at least once.

The weather was mixed - after all, this is summer in the UK, and we were on holiday in the Lake District. Most of the rain was either overnight or early in the morning and oh boy, was it heavy! It was literally bouncing off the roads and you couldn't even stick your head out of doors for one second without getting soaked. But we managed to get in lots of walking, plus plenty of time strolling around just doing nothing in particular, as well as lots of paddling time for the guys, reading and photoshopping for me plus a memorable visit to the White Scar Caves :). Photos to follow once they have been transferred to my desktop and hopefully you won't find them too boring.

We finished off the week with a trip to Blackpool, thinking the illuminations were on. But no, despite having the internet and reminding each other to check, not one of us bothered to actually find out when the lights were switched on. As a result, when we got there on Sunday they were still putting some of them up! So no lights for us, apart from the lights I saw when I tripped up on the pavement and went flying, ending up with very badly bruised hands and wrists, one of them so bad that even now (Tuesday) I can't put any pressure on it. Of course, hubbie was all sympathy when we arrived home (not!). For some strange inexplicable reason, he seems to be convinced I am accident prone and always tripping or accidentally cutting myself when baking and so on....the children also seem to be of the same opinion!!!!!

So, back to the photoshopping and the reason for all this time spent designing. Well, apart from the ADSDesigners blog train, I have also entered the Stone Accents Studio (SAS) Designer Contest, mainly for the experience and to learn some more tips. I honestly don't expect to get past the first round but everyone seems so friendly, and I have already learnt one or two useful things. Round 1 of the contest has just been posted, and since the deadline is Sunday, I really need to get a move on!

But here (at last, I here you say) are the details for the blog train. I split my previews this time with one for the papers and another for the elements:

and you can download them here.

Included in the kit are:

  • 6 papers;
  • School bus;
  • 3 ribbons;
  • 2 styles of buttons in 2 colours (4 buttons in total);
  • 1 stitched line
  • 1 messy stitched circle;
  • 4 crayons (red, blue, green, orange);
  • 2 red patterned photo frames, on with a ribbon;
  • 1 blue patterned photo frame;
  • 1 pin;
  • Bookworm;
  • Homework folder; and
  • An apple for the teacher
I have a desktop almost ready for you too as well as a few other bits and pieces that wouldn't fit in the zipped file, so keep coming back over the next few days and I will try and get everything posted.

The other designers taking part in the blog train are as follows: