Friday, 30 April 2010

Raffle for Cancer Research

Abby at Mutterings from the Moor has organised a fantastic Bloggers Fundraising Raffle in aid of Cancer Research.

There are no ancient tins of baked beans in this raffle! All the prizes have been donated by Bloggers and there are lots of gorgeous handmade items which could be yours when you make a donation to this good cause.
I'm donating one of my personalised artworks and there is even the chance to win one of Abby's famous bears.
So please...

- make a small donation. Even if it’s only £1, it all goes to a fantastic cause.

- if you are a maker, crafter, photographer…consider donating a prize towards the raffle. It doesn’t have to be huge, just something you have made. If you can offer something, please email Abby at abby@bubsbears.com

Please note that acccording to the rules, as this is a raffle, it is NOT seen as a freewill donation so Gift Aid CANNOT be claimed. Just need to be clear otherwise donations may be returned and the charity will lose out.

To be in with a chance of winning ones of these beautiful items, just click the link and donate a minimum of £1:

www.justgiving.com/Abby-and-friends

The raffle will be drawn on the 23rd May - good luck!

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Winners

The winners of the personalised artwork giveaway are... Zooarchaeologist, Kelly, Muddling Along Mummy and Erin (who were the only ones to enter which saved having to draw names!)

Congratulations ladies, I look forward to creating your designs for you and will be in contact soon.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Learn something new


Today I'd like to share a website that I think is very splendid indeed. Learn something new every day  gives you a daily, illustrated nugget of information to wow your mates with. I've just noticed that you can email them a fact to use - I'm off to fetch my thinking cap...

Friday, 23 April 2010

Job interview jitters


I've got a meeting on Monday (a sort of interview) with an employment agency that places designers. I am cacking myself. I know it'll be nowhere near as bad as a proper job interview but I feel so unprepared and lacking in confidence.

My mum is coming down to look after K, and this weekend I need to sort out my portfolio and something to wear. My portfolio needs a bit of rejigging, in fact it needs a complete overhaul but I don't have the time. I also don't know what to wear. For design jobs you aren't expected to wear suits (one of the upsides of the industry is that you can turn up in jeans and flip-flops and no one bats an eyelid) but I've got to look like I've made some effort. My pre-baby smart clothes are a bit snug to say the least.

I'm also thinking about how I bring up the fact that I have a baby and therefore don't want full week contracts and that I won't be able to take on jobs at the last minute. What if this puts them off using me because I sound awkward?

By going to this meeting I'm acknowledging that I need to go back to work and that someone else will be looking after my daughter which makes me feel nauseous. How am I meant to get any work done when I'm wondering what she is doing or if she is ok? I can see me spending my first day back at work in tears (if they actually decide to give me any work).

Sorry for the long and rambling post. I know I will be fine. The worst that can happen is that they hate my portfolio and don't end up finding anything for me and then at least I'll know what to do differently next time.

Anyone know any good (non-chemical!) confidence boosters?

Thursday, 22 April 2010

It's all 'me me me'


Thank you to Chic Mama for the Kreativ Blogger award and to Magic Mummy at The Diary of a Frugal Family for the Honest Scrap award. You should pop by their blogs and say hello if you don't already!

I'm meant to tell you 7 things I haven't told you before and 10 honest things about myself. You might start nodding off if I list 17 things so I've amalgamated them and come up with 10...

  1. I look like the love child of Katie Puckrick and Vanilla Ice if I don't fill in the scar on my eyebrow with make-up. I got it from falling over a stool (a chair not a poo) when I was 2.

  2. I lived in Hove for 5 years next-door to Nick Cave. It took me two years to work out it was Nick Cave and not just someone who looked like him.

  3. My favourite childhood toy was a raccoon and I made up a little song about her. I only sing it when I'm drunk.

  4. I've always wanted to see what I look like blonde but I'm too scared to bleach my hair.

  5. I won a Blue Peter badge when I was 6, it's at the bottom of this picture.

  6. I didn't learn to swim until I was 10 and I'm still a scaredy-cat when it comes to swimming.

  7. My nickname at school was Concorde because of my pointy nose.

  8. I've been arrested for public disorder*

  9. I had a Brummy accent until I moved to London aged 9. I was teased so much that I quickly lost it.

  10. I've been likened to these 3 ladies but I can't see the resemblance myself. Mind you, I've also been told I look like Prince Charles!!
 * It was a policeman friend who arrested me 'for a laugh'. After a minute or so he un-arrested me for my good behaviour! Explaining the handcuff marks to Mr was interesting.

I'm meant to tag 17 people! Well I tag you all. I'm very nosey so I hope you join in :D

    Monday, 19 April 2010

    Personalised artwork giveaway!


    Click artwork to see bigger!

    The inspiration for this giveaway came from these stunning hand-printed posters that I spotted over at Bambino Goodies. I'm a bit of a typeface nerd (I can name a font at twenty paces) and retro poster typefaces are having a revival of late.

    I'm giving away 5 personalised artworks


    These will be supplied digitally so you can print them out to the size you want; perfect for framing or making into cards.
    The winners can specify any colour they like and I'll choose the fonts to suit the length of the names (alternatively you could pick a short phrase or motto, ideal for a badge for your blog!).

    To enter just leave a comment below and a way of contacting you.
    If you are a follower let me know and you'll get an extra entry.
    I'll pick the winners at random on 28th April.


    (All information you supply will be treated as confidential).
    Good luck!


    Friday, 16 April 2010

    Gallery: 7 deadly sins


    Can you guess which sin is which? (Click image to view it bigger!)

    Tara's theme for The Gallery this week is 7 deadly sins. I've missed the last couple of prompts so while K was napping I seized the opportunity to dash round the house snapping my sins.

    They are...
    (Top row, left to right)
    Gluttony - this is all that's left of a huge pile of Easter chocolate

    Wrath - Mr's overflowing wardrobe that drives me mad. The door has fallen off so I can't even hide his mess

    Envy - (although it could also be pride) I wish I could have lovely daytime naps like her

    Greed - cash from Mr in lieu of a cancelled spa day

    (Bottom row, left to right)
    Pride - my make-up

    Sloth - my excuse is that I don't have a dishwasher!

    Lust - this picture is on my fridge. I tore it from an interiors magazine and would love my living room to look like that


    Thursday, 15 April 2010

    Secret post club - April


    This lovely lot arrived in the post yesterday. It appears that Mrs M from At home with Mrs M has tapped into my stationery addiction and sent me lots of goodies from Paperchase. I love that place; have you ever been to the flagship store on Tottenham Court Road? The top floor is full of amazing handmade paper and they even have a cafe so you can take a break from hyperventilating over the merchandise. By the way this isn't a sponsored post ;)

    I can imagine K will pinch the stamp set off me as soon as she gets a chance! The tissue paper reminded me of this image I bought from Istock to go in the nursery. I just need to print it off and find a frame.


    Thanks again Mrs M. Now I've taken a photo I can start on those sweets!
    If you want to join the Secret Post Club click on the badge in the sidebar to visit, the very patient, Heather at Notes from Lapland.

    Tuesday, 13 April 2010

    Badge of honour


    Here's a photo of the picture that I finally got finished. It's the one I blogged about here, made out of old pin badges. It was much harder than I thought it would be – I imagined it would be easy to get lots of little circles to fit together – how wrong I was! I'm pleased with it although it's not quite as good as Brigitte's original version. But I did manage to get all the members of New Kids on the Block in there ha ha!

    Apologies as I appear to be a bad-weather blogger: I only like to tap away at my computer when it's grey outside. I also haven't got much to write about lately that I haven't mentioned before like teething and going back to work (still causing me a major headache). I've decided to take on some freelance work in the next month or so but keep my eyes out for a part-time job.

    Thursday, 8 April 2010

    Baby on board

    No, I'm not pregnant! I'm talking about those yellow signs you stick in your car. 

    I originally thought they were to alert other drivers as to why you might be driving slowly or to warn them to keep a distance.

    Then I heard it was in case you had an accident so paramedics would know to look for a baby (wouldn't they spot the baby seat?)

    With the introduction of 'Princess on board', 'Future millionaire on board', 'Grandchild on board' etc. it seems to just be a badge for a proud parent or grandparent.

    Personally I've never wanted one of these signs; very few drivers (especially those in London) are likely to make any special allowances for me even if I do have a baby on board, I trust those first on the scene at an accident to be able to locate my baby in her car seat and I don't feel the need to tell other drivers that I have procreated. But I realised today that there is another reason for having one – it stops people in other cars thinking you are a nutter because they see you nattering away to yourself. So, Mr White-Van-Man who was behind me in the traffic today, I wasn't crazy after all. Tired and scatty but definitely not crazy.

    The story behind 'baby on board' is here on Wikipedia.

    Wednesday, 7 April 2010

    @&*$%*!!

    I'm worried that unless I clean up my act, and more specifically my language, I will be the Mum that utters an expletive in front of a group of children, and that when little Summer/Dylan/Finn says "F**K" at home it will be because she/he heard K's Mummy say it.

    I don't often swear in normal conversation but if I hurt myself or get a shock I just blurt it out. It's a reaction, and a habit I can't seem to break. The worst thing is when I don't even realise that I've said it. This is what happened last week at St Fagans Natural History Museum in Cardiff (which has free entry and I recommend a visit).

    The museum has dismantled and reconstructed old Welsh buildings including shops and a school on its grounds. The first one I came to was a tiny, red thatched cottage. I was asked to leave the buggy outside and as I turned to the doorway I whacked my head on the low door frame. I stumbled into the dark room and muttered something about Welsh people being very short in the olden days to an elderly couple who were looking about. Mr came over and informed me that I'd also said "F**K!" when I banged my head. Oh god, now I'm swearing in front of my own child AND pensioners!

    I've tried saying fudge but that doesn't work. Any ideas? I'll be more than a little upset if K's first word is a swear word.

    Saturday, 3 April 2010

    I'd like World Peace

    What with being in Cardiff last weekend and Mr having the week off, I seem to have taken an unplanned blogging break.
    While I've been away The MAD Awards have sprung up. These are 'celebrating the UK's best Mum & Dad blogs'. I'm not sure how I feel about these and the idea of being judged by others. Saying that, I have just cast my votes for some great blogs that I would love to see win. I'd also like to thank whoever nominated me for best looking blog. I told Mr and he asked how they know what I look like - he thought I said best looking blogger! That made me laugh but I also thought it was sweet that he thought I might stand a chance in a blogging beauty contest!

    K's had a few more firsts: her bottom front teeth have come through amid much drooling and crying, and we took her swimming for the first time yesterday. She's not a big fan of bathtime so I was dreading a screaming fit in the pool but she loved it which was a relief. At least worrying about her took my mind off the fact that I was squeezed into my pre-baby swimming cossie like an overstuffed sausage.

    K also had her first ride on the Underground on Thursday. Even with Mr helping and a new collapsible buggy this was still exhausting and I'm not in a hurry to do it again. I had a 'did I say that out loud?' moment when I called a commuter a cock. He had spotted the tube waiting at the platform and shoved past me (I'm struggling down stairs holding the buggy), pushed Mr aside (he is carrying K) and then barged the old man with a walking stick in front of us. He missed his train (ha!) and stood sheepishly avoiding eye contact. I too avoided eye contact in case he wanted to shove me in front of the next train for calling him a cock.

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