Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Something Scrappy :)

Woo hoo!!! Now that the patio is done I've managed to find a little time to scrap :) Firstly, thank you so much to everyone who has been leaving me comments during our project! There have been a few times that we've not wanted to keep going but reading your comments has really kept us both motivated. Dave is quite enjoying his 'celebrity' status too LOL Unfortunately we've had heaps of rain lately so we haven't been able to spend much time outside but as soon as we can you know that we're going to be having our patio party :)

I got a surprise from Irene (mrinz) too! She awarded me this: And here's what she wrote: I would like to pass this award on to another NZer, a teacher, a master of scrapbooking, and now a landscaper extraordinaire. Thank you so much Irene... blushing majorly here!!! I read (and try to comment as often as I can) on lots of blogs so making a decision about who to pass it onto was really difficult but I've chosen Ilka - her blog is great and she's definitely deserving and Excellence Award for becoming smoke-free :) Way to go Ilka!!!

This is just a small offering because one of the projects I've been working on will have to remain 'Top Secret' until after the weekend!!! (hint hint Katie!)

Dave's brother is getting married on Saturday and luckily they don't look at my blog so it's pretty safe to post their wedding card on here :) But before I show you that... Our school is raising money for the Walk for Life relay raising money for the Cancer Society. We had a sausage sizzle on Saturday and raised $583!!! Then I offered (as if I don't have enough to do LOL) to make thank you cards for all our sponsors so on Sunday night I was cutting, inking and gluing in front of the TV but I ended up with nine thank you cards that have been sent out... I was so busy making them all that I totally forgot to photograph them!

So onto the wedding card... I've never done a wedding card before but I knew that I wanted it to be really elegant and 'soft' so here's what I came up with for the front:
I made a card from silver card and then used some lightly patterned paper layered with white vellum. I used brads to hold it together, inked the edges and then added some ribbon with a buckle... never done that before but love the look!!! Then I made a tag with some stamps before painting them with Twinkling H2O's... very cool and love the sparkle they give! Then I mounted the tag with 3D foam and it was done.

On the inside I used some more of the patterned paper and used a rub-on love quote before layering it with some more white vellum and brads... and of course inking the edges LOL

Dave was impressed with the card and then asked about the envelope.... I totally didn't think about that and of course the card wouldn't fit any envelopes I had so I sat down with a ruler and bone folder and designed my own! I love how it turned out... and it's amazing how 'expensive' some cardstock, ribbon and a small embellishment can look :)

I really enjoyed doing this project (and the Top Secret one too!) Now I'm hoping to get my school work organised before the weekend so that I can spend a whole lot of time in my scrap room!!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

We've finished!!!

The last three weeks have been manic at school... setting up my classroom, making resources, doing planning, having meetings and somewhere in between actually getting to teach my new kids! I've got a bit of a rough bunch of Year 5 & 6 this year... (that's Standard 3 & 4 Mum!) but they are beginning to understand the concept of listening to the teacher and each other.

In amongst all that we have managed to finish our patio area (Dave had done almost all of the bits and pieces lately!!!) so it's time for a show and tell so grab a coffee cause this is going to be a long post... but with lots of eye candy!!! LOL

We got the second coat of stain on the outside of the gate and it really finished it off well:

Once that was done the look from the roadside was fantastic... and to top it off I can now park my car back in it's place again :)Then Dave put a stopper on the side of the house so that the latch and house wouldn't get damaged hitting off each other!We finally managed to come up with a colour for the fibro! In the end I bought some white paint and we mixed our own shade of grey... now known as 'fibro grey' LOL and did a couple of coats of that and it looks very smart!There is still one more 'little' job to do and that's to do the mowing strip on the neighbours side. We decided that we might as well do that when we do the retaining wall... which is going to be the next project! In the meantime the neighbour has got a lovely new fence!!!Then I think Dave wondered what to do with his time because I came home from work the other day to find my bbq table getting sanded LOLAnd the next day when I got home he had a big grin on his face and said... 'come and have a look at this'... yep he'd been busy again! This time it was with loppers and a saw:This is the bottom corner of my section and I've been a bit hesitant to do much there because a couple of the trees are native... but I have moaned about the fact that the sun was getting blocked and it was a bit of a waste of space so no more moaning from me!!! There's heaps to go to the dump though.... at least it's all green waste :)And while we've been busy on our side of the fence the council has been busy on the other side... installing a brand new playground... and it's FANTASTIC!!! The park is getting heaps more use now and even my own girls have been spending more time over there which is great :)This afternoon I got busy making a few mosaic photos so that you can see the before and after shots. We've been totally blown away by the difference and it's really hard to remember what it used to be like!I'm so pleased that I took so many photos of this project because I definitely want to make a mini album about all the work we've done... and what I wrote here on the blog will be the basis for my journalling!

On a completely separate note... I've been growing peace lillies for years... and gotten a bit of a collection of them... however, I've had no flowers at all for the last two years! I was over at Mum's before Christmas and she was skiting... (Yes Mum you were!!!) about how many flowers HER peace lily had and she said to pot it up into a bigger pot with new soil and see if that made a difference. I actually did follow her advice and now it's MY turn to skite!!! All of my peace lilies have got flowers now and here's my favourite one:

It's actually got 6 massive flowers on it now so thanks for the advice Mum!!! Right I'm off to do something creative.... YIPPEE!!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

The last week has really flown!

I got a real shock when I saw that it's been almost a week since my last post!!! School is officially busy now... we've had stationery orders arriving throughout the day and my maths, reading and writing programmes are in full swing :)

We haven't been ignoring our D.I.Y. project though... although Dave has been doing most of the work while I've been at school. He got busy on Thursday and Friday and stuck all the tiles on the front edges of the steps and they look pretty good:

And here's a closeup:The front of 'my' step looks great too :)They've all been grouted now and the job looks fantastic! Then Dave built me a gate... it took a bit of working out because we didn't have an old gate to compare measurements with but he did a really great job!I found some gate hinges that I really liked...And a latch...And here's what the gate looks like from 'inside' the patio area:I really like the look :) I took this photo when I got home from work on Thursday and then on Friday Dave stained most of that side of the gate... we ran out of stain so it was back to Bunnings for some more stain and since we've bought it the rain has been stopping us from getting it done:On Saturday we decided to spend the day doing something fun :) We were going out to have a look at a classic & vintage boat show and got ourselves completely lost! But we ended up 'finding' ourselves at Lake Rotoiti so we had a lovely picnic in a beautiful setting:We really are very lucky to have such beautiful scenery in New Zealand!Then I finally got to do something that I've been wanting to do for over 20 years!!! When we moved to Whakatane as a teenager we used to pass Hongi's track every time we went to Rotorua and we never had time to stop and do the walk so I talked Dave and the girls into doing it on Saturday and it was great!!!Dave and Mikayla were totally amazed at how big some of the trees were... and they made up lots of stories about swinging through the forest on vines LOL... the imaginary visuals of leopard skin speedos had me cracking up until my ribs got too sore to laugh any more :)And here's my favourite photo of the day... just love the way the light comes through the tree tops and the colours are simply stunning!!I'm working hard on getting some balance in my life so Saturday was perfect!!! Hopefully I'll have more D.I.Y. to show you as we work on completely this job!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The fences are finished!!!

Yes it's true!! Today we actually got all the fences around the patio and driveway finished! All the pailings have been painted twice... all the capping is on and it looks great!

On Monday Dave got the rest of the pailings nailed up while I was at school :) Was so nice to come home to this: And this:And this:On Tuesday I got home and Dave had done the second coat on the capping and the first coat on the last three sections and I got the second coat done. Still working as a team... it's just that we seem to be working in split shifts LOLThe neighbours side has had one coat of stain but even that looks pretty good:Then today we did a bit of a clean up and I took some 'finished' photos... here's the driveway:Behind the driveway fence (inside the patio area)... LOVE how my yukkas look against the brown of the fence!Here's one leading from the patio onto the deck:And one going back the other way from the deck to the patio:And the final photo for today shows photos taken from the same spot... before and after!Can't wait to hear your reactions to this one!!! I'm going to get some more 'before and afters' over the next few days.

So what's left to do???

  • tiling and grouting the fronts of the steps
  • painting the fibrolite
  • building (and staining) a new gate
  • and concreting the bottom of the fence on the driveway and making a mowing strip for the neighbours side

We are so close to being finished now :)

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Painting, painting and more painting!

We've been really busy here working on getting the fences up before school starts! We ended up doing very little D.I.Y. on Wednesday because it took so long getting stationery, school uniforms and groceries but it was well worth it. On Thursday Krystal had a half day at school attending her first assembly for the year and confirming her choices for NCEA. I still can't quite get over that she's up to that level already because it doesn't seem that long ago that I was in the 5th form myself LOL

While Krystal was at school, Dave and I carried on with getting more fences up. The fencing goes up pretty quickly... it's the painting that's taking a lot of time but it looks great when it's done! The new fence at the back was the first to get finished on both sides. The black capping really finishes it all off nicely:
As each section of the fence goes up it's painted on one side so then Krystal and I have to get two coats on the other side. Each time we put on a second coat we can't help but comment: "Doesn't it look cool with the second coat"... it's become a bit of a catch phrase!

Then Dave started on the side fence:And we get painting again LOL

We've become very good at making sure everything is ready to go... which involves making sure we get two coats of Charcoal on the capping while the Liquid Amber is drying! The capping is really making the fence stay straight as well :)

As soon as Krystal got home from school on Thursday she got into her painting gear and away she went:

She made the comment that she 'kind of missed' her painting clothes and on Friday I found out what she meant! Mikayla had her first day at high school on Friday and I had my teacher only day... I got dressed in my 'clean clothes' and went off to work and all day I felt funny because I've become so used to looking like a 'ragamuffin'... it was almost a relief to get back home and put on my painting clothes again LOL

We actually got HEAPS done on Friday afternoon and worked right up until 9pm again with awesome results:

Yesterday we carried on with the painting and Dave got the batons up for the front fence where the driveway is:

Then there was more capping to go on:And more painting to do:We also made our first real mistake and it's a doozy!!! We thought that the fibro would look good painted black... and it so DOESN'T! So now I have 10 litres of black paint that I'm not really going to use... EXPENSIVE!!! Yes Mum, I know I should have tried a test pot!!! We still haven't decided what we're going to do with the fibro but I'm sure we'll come up with something:We've been getting through the paint too... it's quite funny looking for which buckets are full and empty so we'll have to have a bit of a tidy up soon!We're having a bit of a quiet day today... just chilling out together because tomorrow the girls and I are back to school. I'm so pleased that it's daylight savings because it means that we can still make good progress each day... especially now that we're getting towards the end of the project :)

On a final note... Bon Voyage to Mum!!! Mum and Richard are heading off today on their much awaited cruise. She's going to miss the birth of her new grandbaby while she's away too! (Trac and Hau are expecting their third baby any day now!) Anyway they're going all around NZ and then over to Australia and she's been looking forward to it so much! I hope you have a great time and remember to text when you can!!