Sunday, 29 January 2012

An Evening Of Golf

Spending time with my family is really important to me.  Life is far too short and you never know what is round the corner.  I like to try and make the most of what I have.
We spent an evening during the week at our nearest Top Golf.

an action shot of my brother

I did have a go but wasn't very good and felt a little out of place playing around people who were good at it.  I left it down to my dad and brother in the end.

another action shot, this time of my dad

Dan getting ready for a shot (is it even called that????)

Dad lining it up.

As the evening drew in further the temperatures really dropped.  There was nothing for it other then a nice hot chocolate complete with marshmallows and cream.

It was just what I needed and oh so yummy.

Love Gem x x x x

Saturday, 28 January 2012

An Afternoon On The Prom

OK so it is time to get my butt into gear.  I am slowly getting settled into my new job, the people are all so lovely but I have to admit to missing all my old colleagues loads.  It has been a bit of a strange week what with starting the new job and then my Grandad passing away and making funeral arrangements but I cannot sit and dwell on what has been and need to look forward and concentrate on what is to come.
I was supposed to be blogging about what I got up to on Sunday (last weekend) so thought I would begin with that today.

It was a lovely sunny day, very cold but very sunny.  Me and James decided to go to Maldon for the afternoon.

We had a lovely walk around the park and the prom, looking at all our surroundings.

And of course there was time for some chips.  Those chips were delicious.  After wandering for a little while we decided to sit down so we could enjoy the chips and the view.

After walking further it was time to warm up in one of the local pubs.  The pub was very busy so no photos of inside but I managed to get a few of the outside.

from the front

from the back

the front entrance again

the door to the tap room

We had a lovely day and really should do things like this more often.  It doesn't have to cost a lot to enjoy a day like this, in fact it doesn't really have to cost anything.

Love Gem x x x x

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Suffer No More

Early hours of this morning we received a phone call.  It is a phone call we have been waiting for, a call we have been expecting but nothing quite prepares you.

My Grandad sadly passed away this morning.  He is in a better place now and is no longer suffering.  He has suffered with Parkinson's disease for the past 25 years.  I never knew him before the disease began taking over his body.  For the past 5 years it held him prisoner in his body, he was unable to do anything for himself and relied on my Nan to care for him, other then times he was taken into hospital or for the past 5 weeks where he has been living in a care home. 

My Nan didn't want him to go into a home, but it was the best thing for both of them, his body had given up.

I was going to see him tonight, everyone managed to get to see him before he passed away, I was the only one who didn't get there in time.  I had missed him.  They lived in Mill Hill, North London.  the last time I saw him alive was Christmas Eve.  He was the best I had seen him for a long time, and we laughed a lot that day.  It was lovely to see him smiling and laughing again and that is a memory I will hold onto forever.

I have been to see him today, he looks at peace now and it was comforting to see him that way after so many years of suffering.

Rest In Peace Grandad, you will forever be in our thoughts and in our hearts.

Love you Always

 The funeral is a week on Thursday and we will be collecting for Parkinson's.  I thought it would be nice to see what I could raise myself in his memory and to support the thousands of people effected by this disease, whether it be the patient themselves or like me a relative / loved one.  I have created a Just Giving Page if you wanted to make a donation (although I know times are hard so if you can't donate please don't worry)  I thank you so much in advanced for any donation given no matter how small.

Love Gem x x x x

*Sorry for the type heavy post but I'm sure you all understand.  Normal service will resume shortly*

Monday, 23 January 2012

Upholstered Footstool Workshop

On Saturday myself and my mum had booked up to go on an Upholstered Footstool workshop.  We were both really looking forward to it and were not disappointed on the day.

Not only were we going to be covering the footstool but actually making it as well, I was very impressed and even more excited after learning this.

The equipment all laid out and my chosen fabric ready to start work.

Gluing the second layer of padding onto the wood.

Covering in polyester

And trimming the edges.

Cover with a firm and thick layer of material.

Following with chosen material, then adding some material to the bottom to make it look neat and tidy.

Mum stapling on her fabric.

Then screw the legs onto the bottom and there you have it, a completed footstool.

I am so pleased with my finished product.  I may take the legs off and paint them white but I'm not too sure just yet.  What do you think I should do?

So easy to make and such a great idea for gifts.  Plus I learnt something new so something to cross off my winter list :)

I have started my new job today, so far so good.  I am currently at home on my lunch break, yes I said it, at home on my lunch break.  I Know I can't quite believe it myself.

Back tomorrow with how I spent my Sunday .

Love Gem x x x x

Sunday, 22 January 2012

A Holiday Greeting In January

Back in December I signed up to Redhead Reverie's holiday card swap.  I cannot tell you how excited I was.  I have watched so many American films where the family get together to have the family photo taken ready for their annual Christmas card.  I was all over this, much to James' annoyance hehee.

We both sent off our cards with a couple of gifts bought locally.  The gifts weren't the original intention but as I like in the UK and she lives in the USA it seemed like a lovely idea.

I received my parcel yesterday, and although it was for Christmas I was so excited to open it up to see what was inside.

I love the little snowman, in the typical black and gold colours, go Hawkeye's - if you check out the Redhead Reverie blog you will totally understand this.  The holiday card was fab again in black and gold, with a family update on the reverse.  One of the chocolate lolly's has already been eaten it was delish, and I cannot wait to try the popcorn.

It was  a great and simple swap, I love being able to have my very own holiday card and gathering together a little taste of London to send across the ocean. 

Back tomorrow with an update of the weekend.

Love Gem x x x x

Saturday, 21 January 2012

A Great Send Off

I worked my last day in London on Thursday.  They made sure I received a good send off and I received some lovely gifts.

This gorgeous Laura Ashley Christmas Cushion.

I love the details and the different fabrics used on this cushion.  The person who bought it for me knows how much I love Christmas and sewing, so thought this would be perfect for me, even though Christmas has been and gone (well for 11 months at least).  She was so right and I absolutely love this cushion, I can't wait to be able to use it next Christmas.
I received some great books.  I was actually going to buy one of them, she knows my taste well :P  The other I wouldn't usually have bought for myself but I'm really looking forward to reading it - I like reading something different and the series on BBC looks great.

How cute is this little beauty?

She is so pretty, the colours are so me.  It makes me wonder if I am really that predictable, either that or everyone just knows me really, really well.

There was also a collection and from that I was given:

Some books on the language of flowers - this could come in handy for the wedding flowers ;)

A fab calendar full of photos of me and my colleagues

This is just one of them - I love this gift, it is brilliant.

I was also given some Amazon vouchers.  How lucky am I?  What fab presents and even more I have so many brilliant memories of my time working with such a great team of people.  I will miss them all but know I will be keeping in touch with most of them still, so things are not too bad.

Love Gem x x x x

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Moving On

Don't panic I'm not saying goodbye to my blog.  I am saying goodbye to my current job.  I have been here now for 2 years and it is time to move on.  I am looking to be able to develop myself and improve but at the same time quality of life and time to spend with friends and family, crafting and planning for my future.  it is something I had thought about for a long time and the time came to hand in my resignation and say goodbye.  Tomorrow will be my last day and I'm sure a very sad day.

I am privileged to work with a great team of very amazing people who have all taught me a lot over the past 2 years and have helped to to grow as a person becoming who I am today.  I am definitely a lot more confident now and not the shy little quiet girl in the corner (that girl seems long gone now hehee) 

I have been taking the opportunity to look around me at my surrounding where the office is based.  I am pleased to have had the opportunity to experience these sights in a way I have never experienced them before.  I had thought I would begin to take them for granted but still to this day I love gazing out the window and soaking it all in and taking walks at lunch time, I am going to miss that.  I guess no matter how much I dream of a country life there will always be a bit of a city chick living inside me. 

I went out for my leaving drinks this evening.  Until now it hasn't really felt as though I am leaving but as I have now emptied my desk and the last day looms ever closer it is starting to sink in.  I'm not quite sure how I feel about it all.  I know I am glad to be leaving but I am sad for those that I am leaving behind.  I have met such great people many of whom I know I will stay in touch with.

Thanks for reading,

Love Gem x x x x x

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

A Spot Of Baking

Wow that was quite a long and unexpected blogging break.  The truth is I haven't really had much to blog about and oh how I have missed my little space in this huge community of lovely people.

I enjoyed a bit of baking over the weekend with my neice we made this delicious carrot cake.  I forgot to take photos while I was making it but managed to get a couple before the rest of the cake disappeared.  It was very yummy.  Me and James both love carrot cake so it never lasts long.

Well that's all for now ladies.  I will be back again very soon.

Love Gem x x x x

Friday, 6 January 2012

Finishing Touches

January always seems to be such a grey month.  For some reason I haven't noticed it this year.  Things seem to be going well for me and I must say, I'm loving it. 
There are some small things making me smile at the moment, just a few little finishing touches I have added to things to finish them off nicely.  I thought I'd share them with you today.

Firstly using an old spaghetti jar to house all my pretty cupcake cases, I have seen this method used in a few places now and thought it seemed such a shame to hide away all that beautiful colour so they are now kept here.

I have even used the pretty heart that was in my Magic Ball Swap parcel sent from Pj at The Snail Garden just to pretty it up even more.

Something else from Pj were these gorgeous paper roses on wire.  I have wound the wire round my mannequin and I just love it, it really adds a bit of colour to it, I'm really pleased with the transformation even though it is only small.

Finally a little make for you.  And my first make for 2012.  I will be using this for Annie's Make A Month.  I have used an old travel sweets tin and added some paper from a magazine that I quite liked the look of, and a good old bit of modge podge (gotta love that stuff) I have then stuck on some buttons and other crafting realted items included some card making bits and pieces and some ribbon.

And there you have it, a cute little craft tin to use for buttons or pins.  I have not yet decided what I wil use it for but it was so easy to create and I'm really pleased with the finished product. 

I'm feeling rather quite organised this month, not a bad start to the year at all.

~ Gem x