Sunday, December 19, 2010

A quick hello

Just a quick hello from Laos.

Well we did planes, trains and automobiles all on the first day. Singapore was a revelation for us - just loved it. So easy to get around on their train system. getting out of Singapore was an entirely different matter. It took us four hours to travel possibly 20k across the border - i have to say i hate bus depots...

Another two hours on a fairly dodgy bus (keep repeating 'it's all part of the adventure...'), closed eyes when bus driver got out his passport to flip through it to show his friends where he had been, it wasn't raining that much...

Malacca wasn't quite the sleepy undiscovered town we were led to believe. But the hotel was great, right in the middle of the old section. More photos later. Half of the tricycle drivers thought that full on house music was a bonus, very strange. Ours didn't and was fairly informative.

Two nights there and then onto KL. Posh hotel, kids loved it.

This was right down the street.

Finally onto Vientiane, Laos. I will tell you of the farce that is the low cost terminal at KL another time.

Laos has a completely different feel, very laid back. From our balcony we can see the Mekong and Thailand is in the distance.

they set up night markets which we have indulged our love of shopping. So many cheap scarves, so little luggage allowance..

And today we wandered the many Wats to be found here.

And it was here we took one of my favourite photos for the trip, not of any great building or landmark but it shows how well the kids have been getting along this trip. They are at this moment playing cards, which has become a daily favourite in our down time. After Matt's last year in school, they have hardly spent any time together, so this has been very special for them.

It is worth every cent and inconvenience just o see them together like this.

Off to Luang Prabang tomorrow, will be there for Christmas, although we mat miss it as it is so hard to keep track of dates..

have a great week xx

Friday, December 10, 2010

Only two more sleeps

and we are off.

If only I was packed

If only Henry wasn't sick

If only the house was cleaner

If only all the washing was done

If only all the shopping was done

If only I knew that someone other than me had to deal with all this before we left (Geoff is flat out at work)

If only I wasn't struggling to get out of first gear...

But enough whinging, we are going on a fabulous holiday, seeing new things, and I have made a pact with Matt not to say no to new experiences (with the exception of throwing ourselves off cliffs and eating bizarre things..).

We all traipsed off to the travel Dr last night, and after faithfully promising the kids that they probably wouldn't need to get more needles. But no- we all did need new booster shots (who knew typhoid shots only lasted three years - and the last time we got them - yep 3 years ago..). Hep A for the kids, and Meaghan had her tetanus etc a few months earlier than required. So add sore arms all around. No malaria tablets this time but we do have to watch out for the dengue mossie - love that, and apparently the repellent we have will keep away the leeches as well (eep).

Henry has missed his last two days of year 2, we will head in shortly so he can pack up his desk and say good bye to his lovely teacher. he always get very sad to say goodbye.

Got none of the scrapping done this week that needed doing, Failed to take into account having children home there, Matt had a hockey tournament and a writing course on, so my week was spent more in the car than out of it. But they came second and it did get him running around.

My mind has gone, must go do stuff. I will possibly be popping in occasionally as we are taking a little laptop (have to wrestle it away from the kids during down times).

But either way have a happy Christmas, it has been a good year. I have met new people who I have become friends with, my friendship group in Canberra has become stronger (love those girls so much - esp as a couple of them are tag teaming to feed the cat while we are away xx) and my family has ended the year healthy (ish).

Matt has tackled year 12 with the minimum of fuss, Meaghan has survived year 8 (next year will be interesting..), and is still talking to us. And Henry is still Henry.

I leave Canberra happy with where we are at.

Hope you all have a great Christmas and 2011. xx

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A mixed bag

Matt finally got to wear his new suit tonight. The weather was not the most glorious, actually it poured all afternoon, lots of water everywhere, not the best weather for the girls to be showing off their formal dresses..

Yep, I'm pretty proud of my (not so) little boy!!

Next, I have finally gotten around to making a Lo for Yyam's Do more with Less blog, for a chance at a Guest designer at My Favourite Things challenge site. Every busy Julie was a guest on Yyams blog and is offering this wonderful opportunity (I love this site, and would looove to be guest designer there one day..). The challenge was to use old and new stash on a LO. As I had a rare cleaning up of my scrapping area, I had piles of old papers to use.

There's some old rusty pickle papers in there as well as some new Crate paper (yum). The photo is of Henry's school junior playground after some heavy rain (I'm thinking it looked the same tonight), Henry looked on but lots of kids could not resist jumping on in!!

Lastly, I want to show off my gorgeous friend Jo's work. She has been working all term on it (through much hardship). This is her Affluenza Chandelier, for a full explanation see her blog.

It is made from old metal Flan tins and plastic spoons. The flowers have been made from the tins as well, astonishingly good. Isn't it fabulous?? Go visit her blog, she has some wonderful stuff.

Time to stop thinking for a while now. have a great night. xx

Heating it up for The Southern Girls

Most years this would be an appropriate challenge for December, but this year is unseasonable cool and wet!! This is the forth morning in a row I have waken up to rain, I cannot in my lifetime remember such an occurrence happening, esp as it has continued to rain throughout the day.

Anyway onto our latest challenge, heating it up for Southern Girls. When I first saw this challenge I immediately thought of a heat gun, I am not very proficient with mine yet, but then other possibilities also came to light esp when i saw which way all the other Dt girls went.

They have used burnt paper edges, candle heat to make flowers (love this idea, will have to give it a go!), hot glue guns and of course the heat guns with embossing powders.

I used my heat gun on the green stamp -

as well as some melted wax on the cardstock (not particularly archival safe but smells very yummy, it was a christmassy scented candle..)

The story behind the Lo is from a couple of weeks ago on a Friday night. I had put Henry to bed saying he could read until dad came to say goodnight. I went upstairs and put a movie on to watch. Geoff followed a little while later. I assumed he had seen Henry but he had been distracted with work matters and had forgotten. After a few hours, midnight to be exact, I went to check on Henry. I walked in (through his suspiciously closed door) and his book fell off his bedside table. Henry jumped up to replace it, I thought he was startled out of sleep by me checking him, until I saw the huge triumphant grin on his face. Yep, he'd finished a whole Deltora Quest book that night.

He still made it to cricket the next morning...

Ok enough talking, go check out the Southern Girls Challenge site, great prizes again. For International entrants there's a chance to win some of Karen's Doodles - I have used one of her images on my Lo, that very cute little reading critter in the circle,

and NZ/Aus girls there's a generous voucher from Scrappin Patch.

Have great day xx

PS I did get into trouble when Meaghan saw I had used the banned photo for a Lo, sigh. I just won't show her next time ;)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

My travel journal

I needed a travel journal and looked high and low for one similar to my old one. It was wonderful, a nice thick cover with a lovely whimsical cover (by Lorelei Jenner), spiral bound, lots of plastic pockets for tickets etc and lots of space to writye in. It went every where with us last trip and I was desperate to find the same but alas, the company no longer make pracctical travel journals.

So I found the next best option which was this - the cover is not to my taste at all.

I glued some plastic folders in the back and redid the cover. And as it is my last guest spot for Designer Dollies, Layer it up, that is exactly what I did.

First gesso over the original images, sorry old men...
then paint, mist a few tags and then another thinner layer of gesso. more misting, some rubons, the lovely picture of an unknown lady (I like her - she seems to be ready for adventure with a stiff upper lip!!) and then some bling.

I am quite prepared for all of the bumpy bits to be dislodged, probably before we leave Singapore, but that's OK.

Oh and this is the back. Does not match the front at all, but I like it. It is nice and flat and I used an image from Glenn Baxter who cracks me up with his illustrations. Go check out his site, even if it is purely for the first illustration.

The map paper is from Digital Designers, not sure where the quote is from.

So I quite like the finished product, all in all. I hope it can stand up being constantly shoved into my back pack!!

Go check out the latest Dollie challenge, lots of layers are always fun to play with.

I'll be back tomorrow with the latest Southern Girls Challenge.

And I have the house ALL TO MYSELF - HOORAY!! For a few hours anyway, first time in an age, so very peaceful with the rain falling outside.

ahh, feel the serenity.