Friday, 25 August 2017


Good Morning lovely people, tis Friday time for 

I was awfully tempted to work from home on Friday but after receiving various advice from different people saying don't because I'd worked enough, I decided to down tools and stop.  In hindsight this may not have been the wisest of moves because I ended up ill.  I think the statement "burning the candle at both ends" comes to mind, I have most definitely been doing more than I should have done recently. So why am I telling you this on a rocking post - when I'm supposed to be finding the silver linings? So what did I do instead?  Well I made a little space on the craft table ready to scrapbook, having received the first photo order in forever recently, it was time to get my head back in the game! 

I also enjoyed sitting outside - the plants are coming along a treat and this photo made me mighty happy!

I enjoyed the light-bow (like a rainbow but with light) from the refraction of the roof on the covered pergola.  We also enjoyed the fact it was covered, when it decided to rain mid-barbecue!  We still managed to stay out despite the crazy weather! 

My pots are coming along a treat, I think the sheltered spot is really encouraging them to grow.  I've got a great view from the kitchen window of the viola's happy smiling faces! 

I'm also loving my distorted garden mirror and the reflections we are enjoying with the same!

So scrapbook wise - did I manage some layouts - the answer is yes I did!  

Here was the first (and boy did I feel rusty when I started out), I still think it needs something, I just can't make my mind up what! 

I finished one from said 16 year old's trip to New York

I then dug out a two old layouts as promised to a friend.  The first was a layout created in a scrapbook class years ago with Sandra, it worked really well with the photo (and yes that is said 16 year old back in 2009!)

And the other 

Said 16 year old was working on Saturday although it will be his last shift for some time as there are no holidays booked where he will be needed to fill in.  He was quite sad when he came home and initially I thought it was the money he was going to miss (although he has actually just been saving it so that didn't make a lot of sense), but he said it wasn't it was actually doing the work that he will miss.  Hopefully they might consider him if something more permanent comes up, he said he was going to pop and have a chat.  We talked about it and agreed that it would be OK at the moment, given that things are about to change, but I think he really does want to spread his wings a little!  

Sunday saw said 16 year old book in a lie in with permission for us to toddle off on our own (we don't like to exclude him at the moment, but thoroughly appreciated when extra sleep hours might appear more advantageous). 

Me and hubby needed to blow off the cobwebs and enjoy some fresh air so we tootled up to Yorkshire Sculpture Park on Sunday.  We saw several new pieces (well new to us), this table with the marble pieces on down by the river by Mikayel Ohanjanyan was stunning! When you got up close, the marble was cut through with steel cable and inside the cracks the artist had document every single person he had ever met.  I don't know if I could recall every single person I've ever met - so I though that was a feat on its own!

Up close you can see the names and the steel cabling!

Next up is the Jaume Plensa piece, I wasn't sure where it was situated and to be honest it was fluke that we found it, but it is stunning, hubby in photo so you can see the perspective of the piece!

This stunning sculpture by Matthew Day Jackson called Magnificent Desolation - in bronze was mesmerising!

Zak Ove's Invisible Men and the Masque of Blackness are awesome!  

One of the reasons for the trip was to see Ai Weiwei's Zodiac Heads and we weren't disappointed!

They are also known as the circle of animals and the heads represented the different Chinese zodiac heads. 

I don't think its easy to get the perspective, thankfully hubby was happy enough to be in the photo, no idea whose the pram was. 

We also got to see the indoor exhibition by Alice Pattullo called Of House and Home - most of the items are screen printed, no easy task if you've ever tried.  I loved the vibrancy of the colours

I also love to see inside an artists sketch books, seeing how the ideas develop

Other positives from the week, hubby making biscotti! 

A lovely place to have a staff meeting for the afternoon!

Said 16 year old spending an evening baking for his NCS charity and happy to wear a rather loud t-shirt in support of the same. 

Hubby taking the day off on thursday to come up to school with me and said 16 year old to get his results.  For those that have been following this over the last few months and have had children go through the same, you know how nervous it is!  Well this morning was that day, said 16 year old was excited - yes I repeat that excited to get his results, I was nervous (actually had butterflies), I wasn't that nervous for my own results all those years ago! 

Anyway the boy did good, he got an A*, 6 x Grade C's 2 x 4's and a 3 and he has what he needs to crack on in his course in college which is exactly what we wanted!  And the A* was in - GCSE Art Textiles - I've just scrapbooked the photos from one of his pieces!

So overall a fabulous set of results and a brilliant week, I can now start sleeping again! 

I hope you all had an awesome week, if you fancy joining in, pop a post together, mention us in the off chance that we might get a few more people joining in and then come back and link up so we can come and visit. 

Friday, 18 August 2017


Good morning lovely people, 'tis Friday and when the world seems to make no sense and we are reminded of the fragility of humanity it is time to remind ourselves that there are still beautiful people in this world.  Remember always that we can be the ones that make the difference - be that person, clock those silver linings and positives so that you can see what is   


Well Friday was a grand day because I collected said 16 year old from his residential trip to Leeds University, he came back with a First Aid certificate and a heap of happy memories and despite being utterly shattered was more than happy to sit and have a natter about his week - so that was my first happy of the week! 


New bedding, I went looking for some recently that had to be a certain purple colour (as I didn't want to have to replace the curtains, lampshades etc) and found a lovely set on Amazon, but it was almost £30 and I always like to have a spare for when I'm washing the first one, so I hesitated, low and behold a few days later they told me the same cover was now just over £14 - so I ordered 2 and was so pleased that the colour was what I was after (it had to be a pink purple not a blue purple if you know what I mean).  

Anyway as you can see from the Instagram shot, I was more than happy with the purchase, fingers crossed it now washes up OK! 


Well I actually had my hair cut on Friday, but managing the style (you know what it's like when you have it done at the hairdressers and then have a go yourself and it looks nothing like)!  So here is a selfie showing I managed it, I've had quite a lot lopped off, but it feels and looks so much better and I've had a fair few compliments which has been lovely! 

The Weekend Generally 

Thankfully said 16 year old wasn't working but he was adamant that we were going to finish the neverending garden project, thankfully we had some blue skies, actually at times I was hiding under the umbrella because it's too sunny and I was getting burnt (again)! 

And after an awful lot of work, it is complete (well as complete as can be at the moment).  The idea was to remove the grass completely and hard landscape the area providing different seating arrangements!  It seemed like such a simple plan - but needless to say - it turned into an epic transformation that cost quite a bit, I'm hoping not to have to spend money on it for some time now if I'm honest and yes before you ask I think there is more slate in our garden than Blaenua Ffestiniog in Wales!

So here is the first deck that we built at the beginning of the summer, I've retained my water feature and the plants that lived in the original border so there is at least some greenery.  We've also planted up the two big pots with Rosemary and they seem to be doing amazingly well!

The water feature and the relaxing chairs near the french doors. As you can see the fence has now been painted completely in cream.  As our garden faces north east the light levels are limited at times during the year, my idea is by painting it country cream, it will hopefully stay light, even when the days are darker! 

The middle deck is the cooking deck with the new (but hidden) barbecue, You will also see the new water butt (painted cream), that was a last minute addition, it isn't the prettiest of items, but means we can conserve water, I may look at ways of disguising the pipework but we shall see!

The final deck which is a little higher than the others provides a covered pergola, the original summer house was much smaller and never did quite meet the criteria and became something of a dumping ground if I'm brutally honest. Many years ago my hubby built an outdoor shelter for my Mum and she had years of use of it, it was lovely to sit under even when it was raining.  

Plus we've managed to upcycle quite a bit too.  The french doors from inside the house have been attach on the two corners.  the back panel of the shelter has three of the original summer house panels in them (filling the window area with an acrylic mirror).  

We have a new garden fire and you will also see that hubby has made me some planters to go in front of the deck, the first two painted grey to match the deck!

And the second two painted cream, there is still a little titivating to do on this side, I didn't want to block the end off completely as that is how Ruby (next door's cat) comes through to visit). 

I also painted up several of the old garden ornaments, the grotesque, in between the planters and some little faces, I initially thought they'd be going to the tip, but once painted up they took on a whole new life, so for now they will be staying.  I also painted up the green garden store in cream!

I'm grateful said 16 year old was more than happy to dive down to the garden centre with me to buy extra compost and some plants, very late on Sunday and that he was quite happy helping me pop the plants in! 

There is still items I need to sort but as I stand at the minute, I don't intend on doing any work in the garden this weekend, which means to me that it's finished!  So that's the biggest grateful this week. 

We managed to spend an evening sat chatting on the new chairs under the covered pergola, just enjoying the evening and on Sunday we did the same but with a barbecue and my sister came over.  I also love love love my solar lights and yes I know it looks like Christmas but as someone who seriously struggles with light levels in winter these are going to be a fabulous help! 

The rest of the week summed up

Grateful for - 
  • Helpful colleagues
  • Hubby helping me sort the main TV room (now we've finished the garden)
  • Said 16 year old providing plenty of hugs - he gives the best hugs ever! 
  • Said 16 year old being open and frank about what has been going on with his group of friends over recent months.  We were already aware of things changing before we went on holiday but we had a good natter this week where he opened up a little bit, I think boys find it incredibly difficult to articulate their emotions in things and I'm keen that he doesn't become a closed book.  I was glad that he realised that sometimes chatting things through makes you put things into perspective, I'm also grateful that he realised we don't judge but try and offer advice when needed but that he was free to ignore it and that we would always be his strongest and most loyal supporters.  I think he felt happier as a result and we had a better understanding of where he was at.  As the door on school closes and college looms and the shift in friendship groups occurs I think it will be difficult for him, but I also think that he is entering a new chapter.  His school friends will hopefully always be his friends despite them scattering to different colleges and different courses, but I think it's time he starts to spread his wings.  I remember how difficult that period of time was to manage myself and I think it is significantly harder now with the introduction of social media and the constant contact factor, so I'm glad he's got such a level head.  
  • Said 16 year old making some new amazing friends on NCS, he is enjoying it so much that a huge group of them went bowling yesterday afternoon after the NCS day had finished, just because they can! 
  • Celebrity Big Brother - because when you want to watch nonsense on TV this show is it! 
  • Watching the last episode of the Last Leg, Al Gore was on and it really was a fantastic show! 
So there you go lovely people, my week, I hope yours was just as positive, if you fancy joining in the therapy of clocking your positives, pop a post together, pop back, link up and we shall come and visit. If you aren't a blogger, just clock them anyway, noticing the positives moments in life, even the smallest ones can make a big difference to your outlook on life! 

Until next week 

Friday, 11 August 2017


Good morning lovely people, t'is Friday time to clock the positives, happy moments and silver linings.  

Time for 

Thursday night

Well we celebrated our 27th anniversary of us meeting on Friday and as I mentioned in my post last week, we were heading out for a meal on our own (date night), as said 16 year old was still away, some people think its strange for us to mark this anniversary but it was such a pivotal point in both of our lives that we love to celebrate it, plus it was 8 years later before we actually got married! 

So here we are 27 years on ready for our meal out!

Having had a lovely meal at Bella Italia at Center Parcs, we were delighted to find there is one local to us, so we booked a table, I'd let them know we were celebrating an anniversary so we got an awesome corner table out of the way, complete with balloon and confetti hearts!

I had decided to drive so had a mocktail whilst hubby had an aperol spritz cocktail - which he confirmed was lovely!

The meal was lovely and when we got home, we enjoyed a glass of wine and curled up on the sofa together, twas fab. 


Hubby was off due to our anniversary and said 16 year old was due home, we picked him up around lunchtime.  For those that haven't been following it, he has started wave 4 of NCS (National Citizen Service) and he had had a fantastic week at the Youth Hostel in Castleton.  He'd walked Mam Tor (on a rather rainy day so the views weren't great), abseiled, done some bouldering, raft building, den building and caving - here is the photo we found later in the day - how awesome is that and how much fun am I going to have scrapbooking that! 

The rest of the day was spent on the neverending garden project, hubby was making planters and I was pottering about, painting again - I have spent so many hours painting things - the garden is devoid of plants but there is plenty of cream and grey paint - hopefully I will be able to show you photos of it completed shortly, I'm hoping it will be done soon (it better be, it has been renamed the money pit and every time I think we inch closer to the end, do we decide we need to resolve another problem (usually one we didn't even know we had).   


Happy post, I belong to a craft declutter group and these gorgeous stamps came up for grabs from the designer herself Tracy Scott who I did a class with recently, these stamps really are gorgeous, I can't wait to use them!  Oh to get to my craft table and throw paint at things again!

These two, they make my heart sing, it wasn't long after his return that he was showing his Dad the latest You Tube videos, they really do make me giggle - two peas in a pod! 


Was operation day two of the garden project, thankfully said 16 year old wasn't working so we managed to get some serious amounts of work done on the garden with his help; I was painting things cream and grey again!  However, a bit of background music, a dry day etc, all made for a rather pleasant afternoon!


Back to work a split day between both jobs due to a board meeting, so I worked from home in the morning and was able to drop said 16 year old for his next instalment of NCS, this weeks Leeds University! 

Monday evening in the garden, the planned activity halted due to pooling water, sigh, so hubby and I spent the evening (well I stood at the foot of the ladder), resolving the issue, no more pooling water but apparently now we need some guttering - what did I say about the never ending garden project! 


We came home to this very close to the house, we could get on our drive, but as you can see neighbours really couldn't.  There was no one on site to ask what the issue was and no note through the door and it was raining all day, all evening and all night and guess what the electricity board had done to the rain drain, that's right covered it with that big pile of rubble.  So now hazard a guess as to what you think happened to the hole - yes that's right it was rather full the following morning, I'm not sure electrics and water are a good mix if I'm honest! 

So you'll be thinking why oh why has this made the post, well because we weren't affected, our poor neighbour had no electricity for a considerable amount of time, so my grateful is that I didn't come home to that issue! 


Busy work day but an evening at Chatsworth was looming as we had tickets to see the Comedy of Errors performed by the Lord Chamberlains Men.  We've seen them several times in different locations, I was grateful that the rain had stopped, I was grateful hubby picked a picnic up on his way home, as my meeting overran.  I'm grateful he fathomed how to make a flask of drinks when you have no water, yes that's right the electricity board turned the water off, making a picnic proved harder than expected!  

Hubby's genius idea was a flask of hot milk, a jar of coffee and a jar of hot chocolate - win win!  

I joined Snapchat whilst said 16 year old has been away just to see if I could catch up with his day, not that I have a blinking clue what I'm doing, however, I found a few photos there this week.  This was their come dine with me night, homemade pizza, when I asked what they'd done for starter and sweet the reply was kebab starter and chocolate fudge cake dessert - talk about a heavy meal! 

Anyway I digress back to Chatsworth, so here is our little picnic set up. 

The sun behind our backs (which we were grateful for because quite a lot of people were sat there squinting at the play for quite some time due to them facing the sun). 

Oh to finish the garden so we can come and visit again. 

They were as ever awesome and hysterically funny and despite the large crowd, because of the acoustics off the house, everyone could hear really well. 

We were treated to an awesome moon on the way home, not that my photo makes it look awesome, but I loved it all the same! 


A productive day at work, always makes me smile and a great conversation with a board member about some things we are sorting at the minute, so that made me grateful.

Then my biggest grateful of the week was hubby being quite happy to set to and sort the house, because we've been so garden focused it really had got into a complete state and was really starting to get me down.  We both set to sorting things, he picked some things up for the garden, broke some things down for the tip, I cleaned the bathroom, and then worked through each room and we worked and worked and worked having started at 5pm after a full day of work, we stopped at 9pm, dashed to the supermarket to get some tea, shared a glass of wine and collapsed into bed. 


And here we are full circle at Friday again, so my next grateful is for you sitting and reading my posts, I'm always a bit bewildered when the comments are that I do so much, doesn't everyone do this amount of 'stuff' in their week?  I'm confused.  You never know what is around the next corner so I squeeze every ounce out of every single day! 

I hope you've had a beautiful and blessed week, if you fancy joining in, pop a post together pop back and link up, mention the post so others can find us and we shall come and visit.  We are a tiny group of people who acknowledge the benefits of clocking the positives, until next week my friends