WELCOME!


Welcome to Squirrel's slightly nutty world of rubber stamping, papercraft, cats, Formula 1 and a variety of other off-the-wall topics. It's fabulous to see you and I hope you enjoy your time here. Please do pop back and visit me again soon!


Monday, 27 June 2016

You dig it?

There was some debate here at Squirrel Towers earlier in the Spring about what to put in the little bit of flowerbed we have by the shed.

Last year, we filled everything with flowers, which was very pretty, and Toad wanted to do the same again this year, but I dug my paws in (dug, geddit?) and suggested we grow a few veggies.  So, our tiny little bit of this earth is currently hosting a crop of sweetheart cabbages and patio peas.  

In fact, with a bit of luck, there might be some peas edible soon.  We're not picking them too early, I don't want green freckles on my dinner, but don't want to leave it too late either.

Anyway, this rambling leads me to this:


This dinky little card was made using one of the Vegetable Patch bunnies from Clearly Besotted
The sentiment is from an older CB set called Garden Fresh which I can't find on the website now so it looks like it's been retired
Papers are scraps of Nitwits
and yes, it's that MFT double stitched rectangle die again
Image painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers) and a small brush!

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx


Sunday, 26 June 2016

Just Saying ........

I had been wanting to use this little girl by Mo Manning (stamp from Stamping Bella) again for quite some time, and I happened to locate her during a rummage yesterday.

I think this speaks for itself.


Stamping Bella (Mo Manning) image Big Girl Pants
Sentiment came with the image
Forever Friends Best of Britain papers
Poppystamps simple bunting die
Image painted with Distress Inks (ReInker) and Polychromos Pencils for her hair

Just saying.......

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Sweet Treats

I have a sweet tooth, it's well known and definitely evidenced by my waistline.  However, there was one sweet treat recently that is not edible (unless you are REALLY hungry), and has no calorie content


I couldn't resist this release from Clearly Besotted!
Sweet Treats

Sweet Treats can be found here
and there is a matching die set if you're interested

I coloured my little hamster/doughnut with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
and used a sentiment from the set
The paper is Dovecraft Back to Basics and I have edged it with a Lawn Farm
Stitched Scallop Edge die
Darker matting layer to bring the image panel forward

and that's it, simple but sweet

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx




Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Wild Things WINNER

Yoo-hoo!
A big thank you to all you wild crafters who entered the
SRC Wild Things challenge

Now it's time to choose the winner from all the FABULOUS entries
OK, to be fair, it was too difficult to choose just one so we enlisted the help of
Mr Random, and after cranking up the generator, he chose....


So No 13 is very lucky and the winner is
this stunning card


and that's you LUCY WOODS

Congratulations hunny - could you email me please and we'll get your prize organised.

Thanks to everyone who entered - brace yourselves as there will be a new and more
regular version of Squirrel's Random Challenge coming soon.  Watch this space for updates.

Hugs to all
Squirrel & The Little Acorns
xx



Monday, 20 June 2016

Last Day of Spring

Well, that's it, today is the last day of Spring, so tomorrow will be Hello Summer!  No, really, summer.  Days of endless blue skies, hot sun, ice-creams, school holidays, Wimbledon, strawberries and cream, wasps ....... honestly, Summer.

Anyhoo, to celebrate the final day of 2016's Spring, I'm bringing you this:



So, we have Spring Medley stamp from A Random Fan
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
The birthday words collage is from Hobby Arts
and the rubbish doodling is all mine
I was going to mask this little lady to stamp the words but in the end I fussy cut her
and laid her over the top to get the positioning how I wanted it

So, that's me for now,  I'm about to head outside into glorious sunshine.  Just where did I leave my umbrella, shower jacket and wellies .......

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx


Sunday, 19 June 2016

Ahoy Matey!

It's Father's Day in the UK, and I had been wondering for quite some time what I would do for my darlin' dad this year.

After a rummage through my stamps, I came across this one and thought that it would make him laugh, and it did.


Stamp is Pirate Boy by one of my favourite Whimsy artists, Krista Heij-Barber
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Whimsy corner dies
Gingham paper from Create & Craft
Red cardstock is Bazzil
Custom made gatefold card base

Right then, it's European Grand Prix day and it's a new circuit which could be a bit
of a challenge - I'm off to get the inks out and watch the race!

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Thursday, 16 June 2016

AYLI (DT) Favourite Die

Hello everyone, hope this finds you well and itching to get crafty.  So, it is a new challenge day over at AS YOU LIKE IT and the theme this time is rather tricky......... we would like you to use your FAVOURITE DIE.

I think they should have renamed this challenge as Mission Impossible.  I started off with a huge pile of "favourite" dies on my desk, and gradually whittled them down by the number of times they have been used, and practicality.  They I got some back from the discarded pile, threw out (not literally) some others, started all over again, and I still couldn't narrow it down to just one favourite.  So, this is what you are getting


So, for this I have used
CC Designs Nancy With Sunflowers stamp
painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers) with a few Polychromos for her hair
I have used two Crealies stitched rectangle dies
I believe the word die is an Impression Obsession word edger die
and as for the top border .......... hmmmmm (missing packaging)
Matting layer is First Edition cardstock

I made this for a very special friend who has been having a tough time lately
but she has received it so it is now safe to post here.

Our sponsor for this challenge is


£10.00

gif maker



So now you can go and give yourselves the same kind of headache I had, but don't forget to enter the challenge to show us what you made!

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx


Monday, 13 June 2016

And more elephants

There's a bit of a joke with a certain friend over a customer who wanted an elephant card.  Said customer is, fair enough, quite particular but not very forthcoming with information, so for her daughter in law's birthday I ended up with a surplus of elephant cards.......it took a few makes for her to choose one she really liked (which was nothing like the original brief!).

So when said certain friend's husband emailed me asked me to make his anniversary card to said friend, and he mentioned the elephants, it was a challenge I could not refuse.



I used the MFT Adorable Elephants stamp set, aren't they just the cutest?
The little twiddly heart between them is in the set too
Coloured with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Sentiment from Paper Smooches
Martha Stewart border punches, top and bottom
Purple papers are Nitwits and the pink is Dovecraft I think (but might not be)

I think said friend was happy, her husband certainly was

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Sunday, 12 June 2016

Sports - LOTV reminder

Hi all, just dropping by with my second design team inspiration card for the Lili of The Valley June Facebook Challenge - not many days left now to enter so you need to get your skates on!


So this rather colourful card was made using
LOTV Water Babies Little Folk stamp
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
The rather loud papers are a mixture from various Basic Grey pads
The ornate oval frame is a Spellbinders die
And the lettering done with the Memory Box alphabet soup die set
Pre-scalloped card base

The challenge closes at 6.00pm on 15 June so better get busy if you want to be in with a chance of winning the fabulous prize.

That's the happy part of this post.

The sad part is that this will be my last ever post for the LOTV design team.
I was over-the-moon when I was asked to join the Design Collective last year, but nothing stays the same forever, and there have been a lot of changes, so, after a lot of careful thought and conscience wrestling, I decided it was time for me to step down.  Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to leave comments or visit me for my Lili posts, it wasn't a decision easily made but c'est la vie.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx




Saturday, 11 June 2016

Some News, A DT Call, and a Reminder

Yoo-hoo chaps, just popping by quickly to let you know some news.

The Squirrel Random Challenge is going to be less random - we (that is, myself and my team of Little Acorns) are planning on this becoming a regular event every two months.

This really is a challenge just for fun, but there will undoubtedly be some prizes up for grabs along the way.  I will post a schedule of when the challenges will be throughout the year, so please put those dates in your diaries.

Which brings us to an important matter - the Little Acorns will be looking for a new member to join



If you feel you would like to become part of this small but perfectly formed design team, we would like you to apply.  I have added a Linky thingie for you at the end of this post.

The closing date for DT applications will be 11 July.

You would need to have a blog, or an active Facebook page, on which to promote the challenge, and be able to take reasonable quality photos of your work.

We would ask you to make something for each challenge (one every two months) with a midway reminder on rotation.

Oh, and you must like chocolate and have a stash of cake handy.

I think that's it except for the

FINAL REMINDER FOR THE SRC WILD THINGS CHALLENGE
Closing date is this coming Friday - 17 June

Hugs to all
Squirrel and the Little Acorns

Thursday, 9 June 2016

In The Pink (DT) Photo Inspiration

Good morning pinkies!  How are you all today?  Feeling fine and dandy I hope.

For the new challenge over at IN THE PINK we would like you
to be inspired by a rather delicious photo


How you choose to be inspired is up to you, it could be simply cupcakes, it could be the colours (naturally we want more pink than anything else), it could be the flowers or the bows, lots to choose from

Here is my DT make
I was inspired by the cupcakes and the pink/cream colour theme



Isn't she sweet?  I was so chuffed with how she turned out.
This is CC Designs Roberto's Rascals Cupcake Twila
There are three sentiments with the image stamp, and this is one of them
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers) with Polychromos Pencils for her hair
Matted with a piece of pink Crafts Too paper
and finally finished off with a tiny Tapestry flower stamp dotted around the image panel

Our sponsor for this high calorie challenge is



We would love to see how the photo sparks your imagination, remember you have two weeks to enter and you must use pink!

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Flower Frenzy

At the weekend I hoiked out some of my under-used flower stamps as I wanted to make a batch of small cards to keep at work for emergencies.

I used two sets of stamps from Clearly Besotted "You Are Wonderful" and "Delightful Day".

Looking at these now, whilst I am pleased with how the colouring went, especially on the tulips and roses, I think next time I shall place them slightly lower down in the vase so they don't look like they are floating.

With apologies for the poor quality photos, these were taken on my phone and had to be tweaked in PIXLR.  My old Nokia takes much better photos but I didn't have it with me at the time.




All three stamps have been painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Matting layer from scraps box
Custom sized card bases

Has anyone else had really bad hay fever this year?  Normally I might snuffle for a few weeks, early on, but this time I have been sniffing and coughing for what feels like months!

Anyhoo, that's me done for today.  See you again on Thursday.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx


Monday, 6 June 2016

Half Cat / Half Lizard

You can tell the weather has warmed up when the cat spends the whole weekend basking in the conservatory like a lizard.

OK, an upside down lizard.


And don't you believe the lies that tummy tells - that is not an invitation to fluff!

Hugs to all
Squirrel, and Rosie
xx

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Man's Best Friend?

I hope I am never put in a position of having to choose between cats and dogs, it's not a choice I could probably ever make.  They both have their pro's and con's.  However, what is undisputed is that dogs are always considered to be man's best friend. Thankfully my best friend doesn't drool on my slippers, and she's not a dog either!!

Anyhoo, there is a Man's Best Friend challenge over at Fantasy Stampers so as I already had a suitable stamp out on my craft bench I shall take my chances and enter.


So, this is Harley from Whipper Snapper Designs
(available at My Mum's Craft Shop here)
Painted in Distress Inks (ReInkers)
with a Personal Impressions sentiment
and bright stripy paper from a Papermania collection
the yellow gingham is from the scraps box

Hope your Sunday is as sunny as Harley's seems to be.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Saturday, 4 June 2016

SRC Wild Things Challenge Reminder

There are two weeks left for you to enter the Squirrel's Random Challenge of Wild Things - there haven't been that many entries so far so anyone who does have a go is in with a very good shout of winning a fabulous prize.

As a reminder of what the challenge is about, it's anything wild - animals, plants, weather, party people - so there is plenty of scope to play with.

Here is my reminder card


That talented photographer, Squinty McSquint, has been busy again

So, a CAS layout from me
A Whimsy stamp from Krista Heij Barber called Hanging In There
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Sentiment from Clearly Besotted
Matting layer is from a Dovecraft Christmas collection!

I go ages with hardly any postings at all, and suddenly you get two in one day, you can tell the computer has been fixed, ha ha!

Right then, off you go and have a wild weekend, but please do enter it into the challenge.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx




Sports! Lili of The Valley FB Challenge

Hi all, if you haven't seen it already, there is a new challenge running over on the Lili of The Valley Facebook page for June, and the theme is Sports

Lots of the Lili stamps feature sports, or can be adapted to be sporty, so although this seems like a more difficult challenge than usual, it's really not that bad.

My first design team make for inspiration features a retired image......


I love this little karate kid, and I don't know why I haven't used him more often
I think I had it stuck in my head that his outfit had to be white, but I did some research and it doesn't!
The colours I have used are student colours - painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers are leftovers from my scraps box
and white cardstock edged with a yellow Copic marker
and I really should stop removing my sentiment sets from their packaging!

So, be a sport, join in the challenge - the ball's in your court
Challenge closes at 6.00pm on 15 June

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx




Thursday, 2 June 2016

AYLI (DT) Favourite Food or Drink

Hello chaps - it's another Thursday, and that means another new challenge from

This time the challenge theme is FAVOURITE FOOD OR DRINK
(and you must tell us about your choice)

Here is my DT make

Oh I do like me grubs, but I find nothing perks me up more than a delicious coffee, hot if the weather is cold, or iced if it is a really hot day.  My current addiction is a Costa Flat White (other brands are available)


So, for this I have used
Image stamps from Your Next Stamp - Hammie: Coffee and Tea
and the die word is Your Next Stamp - Fancy Coffee Die
Happiness is a good... sentiment and the coffee beans from
Sugar Pea Designs Espresso Yourself
Papers are BoBunny Double Dots
Image painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)


Our sponsor for this challenge is



Prize - £15 voucher

I very nearly resigned my DT position so that I could enter the challenge and try and win this prize!

Right then, it's over to you to go and get delicious - looking forward to seeing your makes.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Chocks Away

Morning all - well, I hope it is when this appears, Blogger took four hours yesterday between my pressing Publish and the post actually showing up.  I know one or two of you are also having this problem.  It's happened before, but it seems quite random.  Hey ho, never mind eh.

My stash of male cards was getting quite low so I thought it was time to do something about it.  Having had a rummage around, I found this neglected Lili of The Valley stamp.


I think the stamp is called Aeroplanes and it was retired quite some time ago.
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)
Papers are all Basic Grey from the Kraft pad (not sure if this is still available, I've had it a long time)
MFT double stitched square die
Old LOTV grunge word stamps
Actually, most of the stuff on this card is out-of-date except the die and the inks
but I'm not going to stop using my old stuff, just because it's no longer out there!

So, that's me for today.  I'm back to work and already counting down to the weekend again.

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx



Monday, 30 May 2016

End of May Weather

Morning all.  How are we?  We seem to be suffering from typical end of May weather.  It's a Bank Holiday in the UK, the kind of day where everyone expects to be able to get out and about with the family in the sunshine.  However, England doesn't always play by the rules.  It may be sunny for some parts, but here in the east it is cold, grey, and starting to rain.  The forecast isn't exactly encouraging either!  Toad and I are still planning a little outing, even if it is only to our favourite garden centre for a cuppa and a fresh scone!

Rosie has demanded entry into the conservatory where she normally spends the day basking.  I have to say that she looked a little puzzled this morning by the waft of cold air when I opened the door.  But she's an optimist, she has taken up position in her chair, ready and waiting.  

So, what can I bring you with a touch of sunshine about it ......  how about this?


I love this Caped Cuties stamp set from Clearly Besotted
There are dies available, but I fussy cut this little chap instead
The sunshine is the Sunny Skies die from MFT
Cloud paper is from Nitwits/LOTV (now retired)
and the lettering is Marker Micro alphabet from Die-Versions
The arched die is also MFT from one of their Stax sets
Image painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers)

I suppose, if we are going out, I really ought to try and make myself presentable.  I'm not sure nightie and slippers is the accepted look for garden centres.

Have a happy Monday all

Hugs, Squirrel xx


Sunday, 29 May 2016

Need A Hug?

Well, would you look at this - two posts in a row, ha ha!  I have just successfully managed to transfer all my picture files from Toad's desktop, via a USB, to my laptop (don't worry, I didn't delete the original files) so I am all ready to blog from my craft space again!

Let's start with a card that I made for a friend who has been an absolute rock to me over the past couple of years.  I ought to say that she is a distance friend, as we haven't met yet, but she knows more about me than most of my local friends, and she still likes me, so how cool is that?!  I'm not going to name her, for fear of embarrassment, but if she is reading this she will know who she is and how much I treasure her.


So, the stamped image is Heidi Needs a Hug from Stamping Bella
Painted with Distress Inks (ReInkers) and a scribble of Polychromos for her hair
Sentiments are from My Favorite Things
The stitched cloud die is from Lil' Inkers
and the papers are from a retired LOTV/Raspberry Road pad

What shall I do with the rest of my Sunday then?  I need to finish my Father's Day card, a couple of birthday cards, cook dinner and, most importantly, park myself in front of the TV in time for the Monaco Grand Prix!

Hope you are having a wonderful day

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx

(bet you have missed this little chap too)


Saturday, 28 May 2016

Water Water Everywhere

Happy Saturday all!  Are you having a sunny weekend?

A lot of you have noticed that I have not been around much for commenting and visiting your blogs of late, and for that I apologise.  There is a very good reason and that reason is *****ing technology.

We bought me a laptop about two and a half years ago.  Brand new, from a well known UK computer store.  There was an issue on the day as the one we wanted was the last one in stock and the "display" model.  I asked to speak to the manager to negotiate on price as we had no idea how long it had been on display or what kind of punishment it had taken.  He was the most miserable and uncooperative person, certainly with no customer service training that's for sure.  He offered us a £20 reduction.  I wasn't happy but Toad was agreeable as it was already at a reasonably good price.  So we bought it.

All was going well until about 12-14 months ago when I started having trouble with repetitive key strokes.  You would press, for example, the letter A just once and would get AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.  It was a nuisance, but I could work round it.  Then the problem started to spread, across the whole keyboard, until it got so bad that I couldn't even get through the password stage.  Aarggh.  Toad offered to take it up to the repair place.  Fine.  Except it has taken all that time to get it done.  Him to deliver it I mean, not get it fixed, that only took a week!

I've had to beg, steal and borrow computer time to do the few postings I have managed, but (everything crossed) that should no longer be a problem because I HAVE MY LAPTOP BACK!!  Hurrah hurrah hurrah!

Anyhoo, while Toad was out this morning collecting the laptop, not only did he call in to the bakery next door and come back with two of the fattest cream cakes you have ever seen, but he also called into the neighbouring charity shop.  For the princely sum of 50p he bought me the cutest little porcelain pot that he thought I could use as a water jar for my painting, and he's right, I can!


I imagine it probably had a lid at one stage of it's life, I reckon it was probably a sugar bowl or something similar, but it is really sweet and as I only use bottled water these days for painting, it won't get ruined with nasty limescale inside.  When you hold it up to the light, you can see through it, it is that delicate.  Maybe a mistake giving it to me for holding water then, lol!

Anyhoo, I just wanted to say hi, let you know I am properly back in blogland, and hope to see you all soon!

Hugs to all
Squirrel xx

PS.  DON'T FORGET THE "WILD THINGS" CHALLENGE IS STILL RUNNING UNTIL 17 JUNE SO YOU HAVE BAGS OF TIME TO ENTER




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