Wednesday, 24 November 2010

WOYWW?


How are you on this blue skied crisp and wintry afternoon? Me? Why thank you for asking, I'm flipping freezing.

So on my desk today -
Well the pile of pressies at the end has grown... but still not wrapped. Those green bags beside my keyboard hold beads and charms which postie delivered this morning. I shall be playing with those later, I can't show you the end results until after the big C day. But I will say... there are chess pieces. And apples. And wolves. And a crystal heart or two. Hmm.

And I don't know if you can see on top of my PC tower in my WOYWW easel - look what arrived this morning...
My gorgeous ATC from Donna's 50 followers collection. Isn't it stunning? And I can say without any bias - her best one so far. It really has to be seen to be believed, I just keep looking at it - I'm keeping her in my easel till I can get a frame. Thank you Donna - I love her to bits. Check out the 50 ATC's gallery here.

If you'd like to play along and flaunt your play space then get thee to Julia's and link up so we can all find you. I hope to do a better rounds this week, had a combination of sick kiddlewinks last week plus PC that is slowly but surely grinding to a halt. OH is threatening to put off the new tower purchase until after Christmas so that it counts as having it on the day or after... NOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Thanks as always for dropping by :)

Monday, 22 November 2010

What Would Kirk Do?


I won this book (after entering every comp I could find of it) from the New Classics website.

Night Of The Living Trekkies by Kevin David Anderson and Sam Stall

“Jim Pike was the world’s biggest Star Trek fan — until two tours of duty in Afghanistan destroyed his faith in the human race. Now he sleepwalks through life as the assistant manager of a small hotel in downtown Houston. But when hundreds of Trekkies arrive in his lobby for a science fiction convention, Jim finds himself surrounded by costumed Klingons, Vulcans, and Ferengi — plus a strange virus that transforms its carriers into savage, flesh-eating zombies!”

A disaster at a secret government location unleashes the virus that will result with a Star Trek convention in Houston becoming overrun with zombie Klingons and Captain Picards.

Don't pick up this book thinking it's going to be one gag filled poke at Star Trek after another - it's not. The writers are obviously huge fans and it shows. There's a TON of Star Trek in jokes and nods to the entire series and genre, some I got, some I didn't. Upon a bit of digging on the net for example - it had completely passed me by that the chapters were named after some famous episodes. However - you don't HAVE to be a die hard fan of the Star Trek series to 'get' this book. There is a good story in here, Jim Pike, the soldier with issues, just wanting the quiet life with no responsibilities ends up our reluctant hero. He's a like-able character you'll be rooting for from the get go. With the Captain title thrust upon him he battles through the pages with his sidekick dressed as a Star Wars Princess Leia in her bikini of all things, accumulating and losing various members to his crew just trying to keep those that he cares for safe and uneaten. Unaware of how bad the invasion is and how widespread it perhaps has gotten, he battles the demons in his head as well as the ones shambling towards him from every angle.

Do I need to tell you how much I loved this book? I had wanted to read it as soon as I saw, in my opinion, the best book trailer ever on You Tube. I was worried that when I finally got hold of it that it would be one of those I had built up in my head so much that it could only be a let down. How wrong was I? Such a pleasant surprise to have a book exceed expectations. I'll even put my hands up and admit I had a genuine jump in my seat moment about two thirds through - and yes I was embarrassingly in public at the time.

There was also a twist at the end that I didn't see coming - always a good thing. If this book isn't made into a film it will be a travesty. Humour, horror, romance, Sci-Fi, zombies and Trekkies...tell me, what more could you possibly ask for from a book? Or a film!

I was going to offer up my copy as a giveaway but... I will read it again which I don't say often so I'm keeping it. Ner, ner, ner.

ISBN-10: 1594744637

http://www.kevindavidanderson.com/
http://www.samstall.com/

It's life Jim... but not as we know it!

(Sorry, couldn't resist!)

Knitivity Winner & a Giveaway


Drumroll please...

First name out of the virtual hat was...


Congratulations Wipso. If you can email me your address (addy in my profile) I'll get your book out to you tomorrow. I hope you enjoy it.

To take part in another giveaway hop on over to Claires blog. She's offering up the chance to win a £35 voucher to spend online in the CSN store. Lovely jubbly just in time for Christmas :)

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Angel Giveaway...

She's doing it again! Marie over at Art From My Heart is giving you up to SEVEN chances to win one of her angels - depending how many people enter there could be up to three angels in the draw. I won one in her last giveaway and believe me - you don't want to miss out on this chance, they are even more beautiful and intricate up close... you have until December the 4th to enter.


What are you doing still here? Get your tush over there and while you are at it - wish her Happy Birthday for next week.

GO!

Friday, 19 November 2010

What's Rocking My World Friday :)


Yeeep
! Thanks to Donna for reminding me what day it is - I'm actually going to post RYWF on a Friday! Whoop!


First of all is my middle bubba reaching a decade this very day. Yep - doesn't seem possible but I only have one ratbag in single figures now.So proud of the way she is turning out and she's showing such a quick wit lately, am so glad to see she has inherited my love of sarcasm and stating the obvious.

Happy Birthday Phoebe-jeebee.

Next up to rock my week is my mental family... They've driven me NUTS since Wednesday. After my disagreement with the cropadile, my Dad, my sis and Craig have all been fussing around me like I'm some invalid. They've been trying to drag me up the hospital and all sorts. (I still had a headache and some nausea yesterday... but the bump had gone down, so my argument was I'd be wasting hospital time when they could be seeing someone who needed seeing.) At one point they've all been here and I did wonder if they were going to go for a leg and arm each and carry me out. BUT for all my whinging at them to leave me alone, it's given me a warm fuzzy feeling to know they care so much... don't worry, it only hurts now when I brush my hair or if I prod it to see if it still hurts.

And to be fair if it had happened to one of them they would have been in the car before the cropadile had finished bouncing. But that's my prerogative to be contrary. So to you fusspots, thank you - and Craig I could hear you whispering on the phone to Dad. You are rubbish conspirators.

Next up is a win. I blogged a giveaway the other day - you still have chance to enter until Monday - just click here and leave a comment. But what really made me smile was that within half an hour of posting my giveaway, I received an email telling me I had won this...


Comping karma? Or the Comping Fairy? Whatever - it did make me smile a big old smile and it means I can carry on my zombie infatuation for a wee while longer.

Tonight we have been scoffing Malteaser cake for Phoebe's birthday, we've Children in Need on in the background and I'm doing this post and some online Christmas shopping on the sly. So a pretty relaxed evening all in all.

What's been rocking your world this week? Let us know and link up with Virginia :)

Thanks as always for stopping by!

JLS Card

What do you do for the JLS obsessive in your life who is about to hit the momentous double digits?

Download a piccie from Google. Head to Picnik, play around a bit and add a sentiment.

Print.

Slap on uber pink card.

Sit back and bask in the forth coming slobbery kisses and adoration.


Excuse it's crumpled state and the grainy picture. Pheebs was so chuffed she took it to school today and the light is now really bad for getting a picture.

Ain't I just zooming up the ranks eh? From non-card maker to reluctant card maker... very soon I could class my self as... *gasp* actual card maker! That's about 3 in a row I've made and liked! I think I just have to stop comparing myself to those that do works of art loaded down with product. Just because I don't do mine that way doesn't make me not one.

*ping* Light bulb moment!

Did you feel that?

I think I just graduated up.

***Happy Birthday my Phoebe Monster!***

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

A Little Tip...


...when the metal, unprotected bit of a Cropadile hits you full whack in the head after falling from a great height... it flipping well hurts! And it leaves a golf ball sized lump along with a lingering feeling of tenderness and nausea. I don't recommend it.Good news is though - when it bounces off your skull and smashes into your glass topped desk... it wont smash the glass. Oh no - you can rest assured that wont even chip! So - yeah, win on that count!

Ouchie!

What's On Your Workdesk? Wednesday.

Hahaaaaaaaa! I managed it! And on a Wednesday too!


Not an awful lot of creativity at the moment. The pile of stuff at the end of my desk and on the chair is Christmas pressies waiting to be wrapped. The pile at the other end is clothes my youngest has outgrown that are on the momentous and long journey to my fabric box. (That's code for - when I can be harsed to take the two steps to my shelf to put them in the box!)

There are two books next to that, one of which is the one for my giveaway (to enter please see the post below this or swivel eyes to your right and click the pic in my sidebar) the other is the journal book in Sian's Pass The Book which I'm nearly finished and hope to be offering that up at the end of this month. It's fabby it is! The book above the pile of clothes is the latest zombie one I'm reading - Night Of The Living Trekkies. Oh 'tis so good! Will review, will definitely review.

And that my lovelies is that! I am being creative but still most of it I can't show till after December the 25th.

Thanks for stopping by - get those kettles on, I'm on my way! What? You don't know what I'm waffling about? Why not head over to Julia's and see what all the fuss is about, then photo the area where you play and link up. Now, go get that kettle on and chuck a few hobnobs in there as well please :)

Monday, 15 November 2010

Book Giveaway :)

I'm going to mention the dreaded word again so cover your eyes now if you aren't ready.

CHRISTMAS! Yes Christmas is a coming folks. I thought as it's such a crisp and frosty morning out there, making me feel all seasonal and festive, I'd offer up a giveaway.

I actually won this book from The Book People when they ran a craft competition on Twitter. T'was my Journal inspired Duckie made for the wonderful Sandra that did it for me. *Yay!*

The book I won was Knitivity by Fiona Goble. It's a lovely book, but I don't knit. (Yet!) I was doing a little happy dance just for the simple fact that they chose Duckie so am more than happy to pass on my good luck."In times of thrift, shop-bought stuff can feel a little meaningless. Surely it's more satisfying to create something all your own that can be handed down through the family, carrying memories with it? And where better to start than with the ultimate family craft project, the Christmas decorations. This book provides a fresh slant on the traditional Nativity scene. In it you will find all the knitting patterns you will need, including the Baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, the Three Wise Men, the Shepherds, the Angels and the animals.

The book contains patterns for sixteen projects and a cardboard stable and a manger.

It is suitable for all levels of knitting skill and includes instructions for the basic knitting stitches as well as the special stitches for the finishing touches.
The Nativity story is retold alongside the knitting instructions for all the family to enjoy."

You don't have to follow me to win - to be honest I would rather you only did that if you really do want to come back. Lurkers are more than welcome. Everyone who comments gets one entry... so spam away if you like, you'll still only get one entry. (Scrooge? Moi?) I will post internationally as well. I'll put the names in the virtual hat and draw a name... say next Monday? Yep Monday the 22nd. That gives you a week to enter.

I would ask that if you win and knit up a storm from the book, I'd love you to show me a piccie or a link to a piccie - I bet The Book People would love to see too. Their Twitter page is here.

Good luck and thanks as always for stopping by :)

Saturday, 13 November 2010

What's Rocking My World Friday :)


...On Saturday again! I know, I know!

Here we go...

This week I'm loving the free, free, FREE but absolutely fantastic journalling class I've been doing. I'm just about to start week 2 but think the actual class is up to week 4. However on the (did I say FREE?) downloadable video's Tam, the class creator, says that the classes will most likely be kept up indefinitely so it's not to late to join up and take part.I find this so generous, the classes are so detailed and I'm definitely enjoying messing about with paint and FINALLY getting my journal pages started. Loving this class!

Next up - feeling Christmassy in a slightly panicked "aaaargh it can't be so near already" kind of way. I'm signed up to a couple of Secret Santa swaps with some crafty people. Fabulous and totally sneaky way of my getting round my stash ban I thought - AND stash shopping for other people is, I've found, equally if not more pleasurable than it is just doing it for myself. Have had a couple of bits arrive today and (after finishing drooling and stroking) I'm going to be wrapping those up later. Craig and I went actual *shudder* shopping center shopping during the week. And although we both said we probably wont do to much more of it - preferring the less chaotic and more unusual gifts you can find online... we did get a good chunk out of the way.

Now - I really need to crack on with making some pressies as I have so far made a grand total of... one! Eep! I wanted to try and make sure that everyone had a handmade gift this year whether made by me or something that I have bought handmade buy someone else - I really love getting handmade gifts myself . I have bought four so far and made the one so am on my way to my mission.

I may have to dig out my Nat & Dean CD later for when I start wrapping (Who's that laughing? Shaddup!)

What else do we have... oh yes, Craig as usual for just being himself and being supportive when lumbered with this emotional car wreck of a girlfriend that he has *g* I'm a tough cookie to live with, I know that myself and quite honestly I think he's mental to have stuck it out this long but there y'go. Obviously insane and that's why we rub along so well together.

My girls - we are having a crafty sesh this afternoon. And although this week we have had our moments - oh my word have we had our moments... One is well and truly into hormone combusting teenagerdom, one is a 3 year old railing against the world who can't understand why we don't acknowledge her supreme ruler status and one nearly 10 year old kinda stuck in the middle... who I can glimpse is about to step over into that hormonal teenage phase and I'm desperately holding onto her shirt tails to stop her going. ...But we still manage, just, to play together nicely for a couple of hours. Thank the heavens for this past time of ours eh?

Oh, oh and all the lovely comments received on my first bloggy book review earlier in the week - Thank you. I've really dived back into my books this year, I was using the "I don't have time" excuse for ages but now I'm making time and realising how I missed my old friends within those pages. Expect more! (Your own fault!)

What rocked your world this week? If you fancy playing along then come link up with Virginia so we can find you :)


Thanks you as always for stopping by!

Monday, 8 November 2010

Me, Me, Me!

I finished my first week of the free Art, Heart and Healing class last night. (Only a couple of weeks behind everyone else!)
One of my Rocking Friday friends Jo told me to prepare for a roller coaster emotional ride. She wasn't wrong - and if this is only the first week?? Well... watch out is all I can say. Luckily I have noticed the definite shift in my mood this week has been for the positive and I didn't attribute it at all to this course... until last night when I finished the page.

You have to start off by writing down a list of all the negative thoughts and feelings about yourself and then think about what positive things your self conscious might be trying to say with the harmful feelings. Then Gesso over the negativity and start sketching an image to represent yourself, a positive image - not a full on perfect photographic image (thankfully) but an image to represent yourself. There are fabulous step by step instructions on how to do this within the class. It is so detailed it's hard to believe it's free.Then you build up layers and layers and layers and then more layers and then another layer for good luck until there is no trace of negativity left on the page.

Finally you go back and look at the positives list and bring it together into one phrase and one word that your own self is trying to tell you.

All sentimental tosh I thought, but I did it because it was part of the lesson.She looks quite pleased with herself about something doesn't she? I don't think it's sentimental tosh anymore - so maybe she has good reason to.

My phrase - You are stronger than you think you are.
And my word... confidence.

It encompasses so much.

The background is Gesso, watercolour crayons, stamps AND watercolour pencils. Yes, The watercolour pencils. I didn't have a brayer so that side of it was done with a rolling pin.

Next up, the last circle journal I was working on asked for people to, if they felt like it, cartoonise themselves on the sign in page. I used to do this all the time when I was a teen. Draw cartoon charicatures of myself and my sister - mainly my sister so I jumped at the chance to play at that again. This was the result... I was quite chuffed with how she turned out so scanned her in and uploaded her as my avatar before I prepare to send her (me?) on her (my) way.

I used Copics and Sparkly Micas to colour her in - hence the grainy look, it's the sparkles caught in mid twinkle.

Thanks as always for stopping by :)

Friday, 5 November 2010

Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews

Bare (bear?) with me, it’s been a loooooong time since I attempted to review anything and I'm very rusty.

This was a book I won over on the Gollancz Dark Fantasy Facebook page.
Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews


“Atlanta would be a nice place to live if it wasn’t for the magic…”

This book is set on Earth but way, way in the future. Magic and mythology are no longer a thing of fiction and legend. Kate Daniels lives in a world where Magic and Tech fight for co-existence. When the Magic flares up, everything technological fails and dies - cars, phones, lights, guns etc. When the Tech kicks back in, the magic is not so strong - things like protective wards will fail. Kate is a skint mercenary for hire who cleans up the problems caused by Magic, however she is not prepared for the power struggle she finds herself caught up in when her Guardian is murdered and two magical fractions, The Masters of the Dead (necromancers) and the Pack (shape-shifters) collide.

First of all I’ll explain a bit about my reading habits. I used to have time to sit and just read solidly. Obviously since having the girls and with everything else going on - my reading habits have changed drastically. Now I take a new book over to the car. I read it in snatches between waiting for the kids to come out of school or clubs etc. and judge how good a book is by how fast it comes back over to the house and time is MADE to read it. At first I just read snippets of Magic Bites over a few days. But as more and more characters were introduced I was finding it hard to keep track and so it came back over to the house.

Once I sat and gave the book proper attention I was pretty quickly hooked into the story. I love the different take on vampires than we‘ve seen of late - you’ll find no inter human/vamp romance here. Vampires are powerful, vicious un-dead controlled by the necromancers who use them as weapons and scouts. The longer the vampire has been dead the less human-like and more monstrous and blood hungry it evolves into until with the oldest vampires - they are unrecognisable killing machines with not a hint of humanity. No rugged good looks or shiny sparkliness here then.

I find myself comparing this book a bit to The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Kate almost reminded me a bit of Dresden (a Warlock PI for hire) in her attitude and bolshiness which in turn ends up putting those she cares about at risk. The Earth of the future is a scary one, inhabited by all sorts of powerful beasts that we had presumed to be those of fictional stories.

I did enjoy this book and I like how, as the climax drew closer, the imagery of the violence got more descriptive with a few ‘ew’ points that I hadn’t been expecting. It made the right impact and wasn’t over done in my opinion. There was a lot of humour and not to much schmaltzy romance. There were hints at sexual tension between Kate and a few of the male characters (both human and otherwise) but not so much that you know instantly who or even if she’ll end up with anyone in the next book Magic Burns. I like that - I get fed up sometimes of reading these genre of books for them to just come down to a romance in the end - I like that there is a story.

I would say that if you like things like the True Blood books or The Dresden Files then you would definitely like this. Lots of action, lots of humour, some sexual tension, a kick arse heroine and skip loads of mythological and paranormal beasties - vampires, shape shifters, zombies… oh my!

Recommended :)

ISBN 978-0-575-09393-5
www.ilona-andrews.com

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

If you'd like to have known more - have any pointers on future reviews or simply have recommendations of similar books you think I'd enjoy please drop me a comment.
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