Sunday, October 30, 2011

Ahhh an extra hour in bed......

Last night the clocks went back here one hour so it was lovely to have an extra hour in bed.  I didn't get up until gone 9am, but then again we were up late watching an episode of Foyle's War.....if you've never seen it I highly recommend this drama set during World War Two Britain.  Its an excellently made series, and the main character, Detective Chief Superintendent Christopher Foyle, is brilliantly played by Michael Kitchen.  The series is written by Anthony Horowitz who also wrote Midsomer Murders.  Here is a link to their website:

http://www.foyleswar.com/

Often when I watch this series, I think of the song With One Look from the musical Sunset Boulevard, because Michael Kitchen can REALLY act, often there's no need for him to say a word, you can just read what is going on by just looking at his face.  There's no wild car chases, no loud music in the background, just good old fashioned ACTING!!  As a dear friend of mine said of the series "I wanted the war to never end just  so as I could keep watching Foyles War!" And I know exactly what she means!

So if you get the chance, I really recommend watching it!

That aside, today was a beautifully sunny and warm day so I took some photos in the garden which I thought I'd share here.  Some were of one of my little dolls, but I also took these:

Interesting patterns in the sky:



Lots and lots of lemons on our tree but not ripe yet,
probably won't be ready until Christmas:


Lucy enjoying the sunshine:


 A couple of photos of Elfdoll Hana Angel, one of my older ABJDs:




We also have a lot more oranges this year,
but, like the lemons, it'll be a while until they are ready
for eating!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Is it Friday already???

I've had a relatively busy week although I've not produced that much considering!  I have finished and posted off a commission but haven't yet got on to my next sewing job as I've been busy doing a bit of faceup work!  Yes, someone actually wanted me to work on one of their dolls!!!!!  Soooo today I worked on a Dal belonging to a friend of mine here in Spain.....and I'm really really pleased with how she came out.  Here are before and after photos:

Before:


After:


 And as a blond:


Such a funny little doll to work on, but I did enjoy it once I got going!

I also did a bit of sewing for one of my own dolls, my Elfdoll Lovely Dami got a new dress set, consisting of a long sleeved knit teeshirt and knit smock shaped overdress.  I didn't use one of my own patterns this time as I found out that a pattern for 14" Kish worked really well for her.  This outfit has led to another commission, my friend Natasja in the Netherlands wants me to make her one just the same for her doll!  So we are trading, she's going to send me a cute Person outfit by ICan'tDance!  Yippeeee!


Weather-wise we woke to really heavy rain a few days ago and the weather had cooled considerably.....well bearing in mind we'd had temps up in the low 30s centigrade just a week ago.  So now I'm all bundled up in baggie tracksuit pants and fleecy!  I'm afraid anything less than about 20C these days and I'm COLD.....such a wimp!!!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Sewing and dolly arrivals!

I've had a busy week this week, what with getting back to my sewing commissions and working on my dolls.  I finished some sewing for a friend a couple of days ago and today I started on my commissions with the first name on my list!  Poor girl, she's been hanging around on there for months! 

On Wednesday I decided to give makeovers to two of my Blythes, so Heather Sky and Manuheali'i Paradise Girls old make up came off....and my goodness that was a job in itself to get the MSC off from previous makeup.  But eventually I got there, with a lot of hard work sanding and I gave them both new faces.  I corrected the carving on Paradise Girls' lips because I was never quite happy with them,  but I'm really pleased with how they turned out.



Heather is my favourite of all my Blythes, I just love this cute little face.  I actually gave her some freckles too yesterday, she looks very cute even if I say so myself!

Close up of the two girls.  Heather left and Manuheali'i Paradise Girl, both tanned RBL Blythes customised by me!


Today my new Iplehouse BID Elin arrived from the US.  I bought her secondhand last weekend and she was posted out on Monday.....I'm amazed at how quickly she got here, just four days in transit!!!  I wish all dolly purchases would arrive so quickly!

Anyway, I'm just delighted!  She is the most beautiful sculpt with a gorgeous faceup by ElfinHugs on Flickr......talk about bring the doll to life, she really really has!  Because she was so quick to arrive, I hadn't made her anything to wear so she is borrowing Volks Yosd Little Lorina's default outfit....I think it really suits her!!  Here are a few photos of her in the garden:

Her name is Evangeline, or Evie for short.....





Also today I received a couple of dolly heads from Mo, a friend of mine in Granada.  Mo, also known as Feltland on Flickr, makes lovely dolly knits and so we are doing a trade.....I'm going to give faceups to Mo's two heads and she has sent me some pretty outfits for my little dolls!  I love trades!  And now I just hope that I can do faceups that Mo will love!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Opinions are like belly buttons....we all have one!

Today I was thinking to myself, I wonder if people are ever completely honest on their blogs?  Do they write their innermost thoughts and opinions without a care for who reads them?  Do they touch on, or delve deeply, into subjects that can offend, without worrying that offence could be taken by people who actually know them or others who might comment on their blog?  I have to say that in my head I can be quite opinionated, I even express those opinions quite often to my hubby and son, but very rarely do I share them with other people, not even my closest friends.  And yet, aren't my opinions every bit as important as the next persons?  So why? Well I suppose deep down I'm afraid that my opinions may differ from theirs and they might dislike me for it!  I know it's really really silly because do I dislike my friends for their opinions that are different from mine? No!  I accept that we are all different and that goes for opinions too!  I guess I should just learn to be myself and perhaps develop a thicker skin!!!

Or perhaps I should just get back to the safety of my dolly hobby and SHUT UP!!!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A great dolly 'grab'.....

Earlier in the week I made enquiries to buy an Iplehouse BID Efreet, but unfortunately I couldn't afford him as I will only spend what I have in my Paypal account.  Having said that, I really would have preferred a girl but they don't seem to become available all that often.

Then today I just happened to be looking on Flickr when lo and behold, one of my contacts had just posted a photo of her beautiful Elin girl with a caption stating 'looking for a new home'!!!!  I was excited and almost got my fingers in a knot typing a message to her......I knew that such a lovely doll would be snapped up quickly if I didn't act fast!  So a gorgeous little real skin Elin is coming to live here from the US, and she has the most beautiful custom faceup by her seller, Elfin Hugs.  I'm really excited and want to share her photo, with Elfin Hugs' permission of course!


Isn't she the prettiest little thing!!!  I'm very excited and can't wait until she arrives and I can see her in the flesh, so to speak.  Elfin Hugs faceups are beautiful and very sought after, I'm delighted to be able to have, not only a lovely Iplehouse BID but one with such a special face up too!

My Paypal account is officially EMPTY!!!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Dreams and photos.....

Have you ever had a dream that stayed with you all day?  Usually when I dream I remember some of the details very vividly for just minutes after I wake up, and then it just goes.  But last nights dream has stayed with me all day....it is really bugging me.  I wouldn't have minded so much if it were a nice dream but it wasn't, it was a horrible one......I hope it soon goes away.  The thing is, when I close my eyes, even briefly, I can still see some of the scenes from it.....not nice, not nice at all!

Today I did a bit of sewing, nothing much, just some leggings and a tulle skirt for my Secretdoll Persons.  Here they are in the garden: Percy (dark hair) is wearing a long sweatshirt/dress by ICan'tDance, which was a present from my lovely friend Sue in the UK.  I made the stripy leggings and socks to go with it.  Kobi, the red head, is wearing a heart patterned dress with jeans and hat, all made by me.  The other leggings and the tulle skirt will be for another day!


Afterwards I took some photos of them and then some of my Little Fee Ante, Fiona, who is one of those dolls that can't take a bad picture!  Fiona is wearing a tee shirt and denim skirt made by me and the lovely froggy helmet was crocheted by a friend of mine, Julie, in the US.



I also bought a cute sweater and hat set from Maisiedoats on Etsy!  I couldn't resist it when I saw it.  Now that I can actually get on to Etsy here at home I'm going to make the most of it.  Anyway, the cute little brown set will look great on Michael, my Lati Yellow Ruki.

Apart from that, I did a bit of gardening and that was it.  It has been another beautiful day with the temperature reaching the low to mid 30s centigrade.  I hope winter is a long time coming!

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Mad Hatter.....

Today I had the desire to sew....which is good, as I've not had a lot of sewing urges recently!  Or I should say, I've had the urges but I go and sit in front of my sewing machine, switch it on......then after a few minutes, switch it back off again and leave my sewing room.  I have no idea why this is, but it has been happening on and off since the beginning of May.  I've not done a single commission since then although I have sewn things for my own dolls.

I've thought and thought about why this could be and I can only come up with one theory.  Leading up to May this year I was sewing like a mad thing.  Jeans, jeans and more jeans, as well as other items of dolly clothing.  I have to admit that I became a bit stressed with all the requests and it got to the point that I wasn't enjoying it any more.  Then I got ill, a normal cold turned into bronchitis and I felt really rough.....then whilst I was unwell I more or less forced myself to make some outfits for a friend of mine as a gift.....I made five really cute outfits, sent them off and lo and behold, the package never arrived.  I felt gutted as I'd put a lot of effort into them and they were to be a surprise for her!  And the stupid thing was, because of the bronchitis and the meds I was taking, I made the simple mistake of sending them as normal letter post instead of certificated.  So I couldn't even check where they might be!  So I think all this contributed to my aversion to sewing commissions.

So today I made a hat....actually I made almost TWO hats!  I've still not started any commissions but I feel that very soon I may get back to them!  I still have some very patient people who want me to sew for them....I thank them for that!  And a few newbies who have come along recently.  So again, that is good!  Lets hope it won't be long until I can get started.....I'm not sure I could have been so patient as some of these people have been with me!!

One of the hats that I made today....this is the 'finished' one!

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Persons are happy to be home....

Percy and Kobi are happy to be home after their trip to the UK where unfortunately they spent a fair bit of time sleeping in their box!  So as a special treat I let them share some Blythe Con UK goodies.  Kobi got the tee shirt from the special BCUK goody bag and Percy got a new long stripey tee shirt from 'Auntie Sue' and she's nabbed my badge, just to prove that although they may not have been seen there much, they certainly were at Blythe Con UK 2011!!

Tuesday, 4th October.....Oh what a change in the weather!

Tuesday dawned with awful grey skies and a definite threat of rain, I could hardly believe the difference a day could make...but there you are, that is the UK for you,  where you really can experience four seasons in one day, if you are particularly lucky!

We didn't do anything much Tuesday because I'd developed a really painful head cold which immediately affected my sinuses.....I think I caught it from my brother, he is particularly generous when it comes to sharing his colds!

So I packed my bags instead for my journey home and worried about whether I should have bought pressies for several people .... then promptly forgot about them again!  Ooops!  That's what cold meds do for you, isn't it!

Another friend, Jackie, came to see me for a short while in the afternoon, and I said my goodbyes to her!

I had a lovely, lovely time in England, visiting with my mum and brother, and meeting up with old and new friends....I couldn't have asked for better weather or a better time there!  I don't know if any of my friends will read my blog but if you do, Sue and Jo in particular, thanks so much for our time spent together....I really, really enjoyed it!

Southend, just made for you.....

.....from your first cup of tea to your queue for the loo....!  (as sung by Cleo Laine in 1962)

I've no idea if they are the right words, but yes, on Monday, 3rd October, my mum, brother John and I took the train down to Southend on Sea for the day!  It was such a beautiful day with temperatures in the high 20s/low 30s centigrade, so we wanted to make the most of it!  It is not often that they get temps like that in the UK.....especially in October!!

My mum and my brother John on the train to Southend on Sea:


We had our lunch in a restaurant....of course I had to choose Cod because you can't go to the seaside without eating fish and chips, can you?  LOL!

Afterwards we went on the little train to the end of the pier.  Southend pier is famous for being the longest pleasure pier in the world and is 1.33 miles long....stretching out into the Thames Estuary.  Because it was such a beautiful day, we sat on the end and had a nice cup of tea!  What more can a person ask from life, eh?

This is my mum on the little train that goes to the end of the pier....she looks a little startled in this photo, I have no idea why!!


Views back to the shore from the little train:



My mum and my brother John, enjoying the sunshine at the end of the pier:


Some people come to the end of the pier to fish......didn't fancy the chances of this pair (below, not above LOL)  already in a bucket, poor things!


Afterwards we strolled along the promenade and I had, of all things, a pink candy floss! (Cotton candy for my American friends).  But it was too sweet for me and my brother ended up finishing it for me!  I guess we grow out of these things sometimes!  Wish I could say the same for chocolate, which is never too sweet for me!

And there's more......

On Sunday, 2nd October, we decided to stay home because to be honest my feet still ached a bit from the previous days exploits in London....yes, I'm getting old I think! LOL! (If only in the body!)...so my mum cooked a lovely dinner of roast beef, roast potatoes, fresh runner beans from her garden, followed by plum pie and custard!  I was very spoiled!

In the afternoon, one of my 'oldest' (as in length of time) friends came to visit!  Jo and I have been friends for, well it seems forever....far too many years to count!  We met  when we were about 13 years old and worked after school in a sweet shop!  I think this may be when I developed my sweet tooth!  (Well that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!)  Even now I remember how Jo and I used to chat so much when we were supposed to be working that the manager used to separate us into different ends of the shop....but it didn't stop us from becoming really great friends!  In fact Jo is one of those people who, even if I don't see or speak to her in ages, we just can pick up where we left off...as if we'd never been apart!  I love that about her, she is great fun and I love her to bits!  So poor Jo had to suffer hearing all about Blythe Con and the dolls....it must be awful being friends with me if you're a non dolly person!!! 

I don't know if Jo will ever read this blog of mine but if she does, then the photos below will bring back many memories to her, I'm sure!!!

Pink candy shrimps!


White chocolate mice!

Saturday, 1st October 2011...Blythe Con UK London

Today was the day that I'd been looking forward to for ages!  Blythe Con UK!  My ticket had been booked for months and I was really excited to be going and meeting other dolly people!

I met up with my friend Sue (SamsonSue on Flickr) at Barking and we travelled up to the venue together.  It was being held at Baden-Powell House at Queen's Gate,London SW7and the theme was "Let's Have An Adventure!"....well I didn't dress for an adventure but it was an adventure in itself that I got to the event without needing to stop for the loo....which is the norm for me! LOL!  Yes, I have a reputation!


When we got there the place was heaving and Sue and just wandered round in awe looking at all the dolls....I don't think either of us had ever seen so many dolls in one place at one time.  Sue is new to Blythe so I was keen to share with her, what is for me, a relatively new part of the doll hobby.  I think she enjoyed what she saw!


We met so many lovely people!  It was fantastic to be able to put faces to the names of many friends on Flickr, friends from all over Spain, the Netherlands, the US, Italy and of course the UK!  Oh and we even chatted with a lovely girl who had flown in from Dubai, just for the event!  It was great fun. 

And the icing on the cake, as they say, was when both Sue and I won raffle prizes!  I usually cannot win a jacket for a gooseberry but I won a DOLL!!!  Yes, a Middie Blythe Milk & Honey!  And Sue won the cutest little pink haired custom Blythe too!  So now she has her own Blythe......and I believe she has started to shop for her already!  Ooops!

Here is my cute Middie Blythe, I was absolutely amazed to win her!!!








Heather and Noelle can't believe that we're bringing someone new home with us!



And of course Kobi is worried that this new cutie will steal some of her limelight!





   
The hall showing the stalls around the outside and tables for sitting and chatting, down the middle:


This photo shows just a part of the table which was laden down with lovely raffle prizes.  The pink haired girl in the centre, ended up going home with my friend Sue!  Yes, she won her in the raffle, which was fantastic as she'd been admiring her from the beginning!


More raffle prizes!


The Group Shot!  I have never seen soooo many dolls in one place before, it was amazing....and all of them so different and unique!  My two girls, Noelle and Heather, managed to squeeze on the very end of the lowest step:


Here you can see them more clearly, Noelle is wearing her glasses and Heather is next to her,  taking a sneeky peek towards the camera!


Afterwards, Sue and I went for a lovely meal in a local restaurant where we ate juicy steaks and lovely jacket potatoes!

It really was a fantastic day, one that I'll remember for ages I'm sure!!

Friday, 30th September 2011.....MORE shopping!!!

On Friday my mum and I went shopping again....did I mention that we like to shop?!  This time we went to Romford because I really wanted to go to HobbyCraft, which is probably the only craft shop chain in the UK.

Firstly though we went into the West Ham United shop and I bought a couple of things for Brendan....how could I pass that shop without buying something for the lad?  He is, after all, their biggest fan!



After that we shopped to our hearts content....I spent far too much money on myself!  We also went to the craft shop and I bought a few odds and ends that looked like they might be useful....however, I was a bit disappointed because I felt that their range of goodies had gone down since I was last there in September 2009....but it was nice all the same!

For lunch we had my very very favourite Pie and Mash with eel liquor...oh boy, I'm sure I could eat it every week without getting fed up with it!!!


On Friday evening we went to the Queens Theatre in Hornchurch to see a preview show called Up and Under.  It wasn't something I would have chosen for myself but have to say that it was quite funny and well done, considering the cast had just 6 members!



It was a very full day, I was glad to see my bed on Friday night!

Friday purchases: Lightweight jacket for me!  2 shirts for Brendan; bra for Magdalena; lots of craft things! John Freida Sheer Blond hair mousse x 3 for my friend at the coast!  Can't remember what else now!  Oh yes, chocolate covered fudge from Marks and Spencer....yum yum!

Thursday, 29th September 2011....shop shop shop.....

On Thursday morning my mum and I went food shopping.....to Tesco!!!!  However, what should have been a quick hour getting the few things my mum needed, ended up being an epic 4+ hours wandering around and chatting to several friends of my parents!  It was nice though as I've known them all my life and hadn't seen them in some 7+ years since we moved to Spain!

Unfortunately I made the silly mistake of wearing new shoes without socks or tights and my goodness you should have seen the size of the blisters I developed!  OUCH!!!

Home we went and that evening, my mum, brother John and I went to a local pub/restaurant for our dinner, where I had a lovely meal of scampi....I took ages going through the menu as I really wanted to have something that I generally didn't have the opportunity to eat here in Spain!  And as expected, we bumped into more friends of my parents....so a short meal turned into a much longer one, but it was lovely all the same!

We decided to walk home as it was such a beautiful evening.  I was really fortunate with the weather whilst I was there!

Thursday purchases: 2 large bars of Cadbury's chocolate for my neighbour (1 x Caramel and 1 x Fruit and Nut); 2 x 500g bags of Pearl Barley (for putting in stews); Vaseline Intensive Care cream deodorant; John Freida Sheer Blond shampoo; Imperial Leather Shower foam......ALL items that I can't find easily in Spain, if at all!!!!

Ahhh back to normality!

I arrived home to Spain on Wednesday evening, from my trip to England , tired, bunged up with a head cold, but happy after spending a week enjoying myself!

I wanted to blog each day whilst I was there but unfortunately I was without an internet connection for the whole week!  I have to say that it is weird not being able to log on to check my emails regularly and on my return found my inbox stuffed with almost 300 emails, mostly dolly related! LOL!  This hobby is such a big part of my life!

So I shall do a little diary below and add some photos as I go along!  I hope it's not too boring!

Wednesday, 28th October

My journey to London City Airport was uneventful.  The plane was not full so I had a spare seat next to me, it was nice to spread out a bit.....I have to say though, those British Airways seats are nice and roomy, so I didn't really need to spread too far.  I mostly read my Kindle during the flight and took a few photos of the scenery below when we were flying over land.  My flight arrived perfectly on time and it was lovely to see my mum waiting there for me in arrivals!  Here are some photos taken from the plane.....

I'm not entirely sure but I *think* this is Lake Vinuela just north of Malaga....such a beautiful colour turquoise!


When leaving Malaga airport the planes usually head out over the coast and the Meditteranean, this is taken just as we flew out over the coast....


 

England here we come!!!  This of course is the White Cliffs of Dover!  How could it be anywhere else!!


I took several photos of the view over London but they were very hazy, so this one shows the view towards Stratford and the Olympic Stadium in the background, it's the white circular structure shown just left of centre....