Saturday, 30 August 2014

I will leaf it with you....

Hi there
Thanks for stopping by.
Feeling a bit pants today. Typical.
So apologies for this late hour, but I just couldn’t get it together!

I was clearing up, moving my stash into the new Art-Studio, and I came across a box of fossil leaves. Remember these?


Mmm, I thought. Could have some fun with these.




So I tried an old trick, and put a new spin on it - as you do...


So because I feel so rough, this is what I am going to do:

first part today and the second half, the new spin, tomorrow! 


Take a dye based ink pad, a Cranberry Adirondack or a Fired Brick, or whatever you have in the cupboard.





Load your brayer, and roll back and forth over the fossil leaf.
It’s best to put a piece of scrap underneath....


Place the inky fossil leaf WET SIDE down on card. 
I used A5 Theuva Card.
Now we have to lay another piece over the top, 
to keep the white card white!


I worked out that if you sandwich the leaf between two good pieces, rather than just a bit of copy paper to blot, 
you can get two good pieces!


Here I used copy paper,


Here I used Theuva Card.


I got into various colours and different leaf shapes, too.



Did layers and all sorts.



And then I stared at it, and stared. But nothing happened.
Usually, it just flows.
That’s when I knew I was not 100%.
I know it’s not terminal! I went to see the doctor last week, because I am so tired all the time.
When he called me with the results, the only things that were 
off-kilter, were Vitamin D and Cholesterol. 
In other words, I need sunshine, and to lay off the cheese!
But the body is saying go back to bed, veg out. 

So here’s what I want to do:
Somebody said the other day on Facebook,
 that I should delegate more. 
Oh boy! Can I delegate !!! You have no idea.
Ask Dee, Jayne, Jim or Dave, Dozy, Beaky Mick and Tich!
So here’s the deal.
I want YOU to take over. Stare at the leafy prints, and see if you can work out where I might be headed....

Leave a message with an idea.
I can only assure you I HAVE finished it!
One clue: Fawn

Then tomorrow, I will post the rest of the story!

 Blogsale
As for the Blogsale, which has been going on for a couple of weeks, all the items I have been adding are listed together in one place on our website.
At midnight tomorrow, they go back to normal again.

Blog Candy.
We have also been having some prize draws, 
or Blog Candy if you like. 
So leave a message, tell me what you would do with these leaves now, and tomorrow, I will send a winner the card I have made, a pack of the Fossil leaves and 3 Adirondack or Distress ink pads of your choice!

The winner of yesterday’s blog candy is:
Gill Prescott
Gill, send your postal address to barbara@claritystamp.co.uk
and we will send you a £25 Gift Voucher!


Much Love,

59 comments:

  1. Sorry you are feeling crook. Think you do too much! I have been off this week with a funny rash and the doctor in his wisdom said it was viral!!
    My creative juices are not working very well. All I can come up with is - deer gambling along the bottom edge of the card and a word stamp e.g. Inspire or something of your choice - Memories.
    Looking forward to next Sunday's programme. Try and have some rest and some sunshine next week.
    Best wishes
    Anne

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  2. Oh Barbara! I can't imagine how you've been doing all that you have in these past few weeks if you are low on vit d - my Gp checked mine earlier this year and it was right down at 12. Have been popping blue pills (not those kind!) And it is up to 60 so far ... more to go I think. Consultant said that will have made my fibro fatigue far worse - so, knowing how little I've been able to do I can only marvel at all you have got through!
    I have not seen the skeleton leaves before, so shall do some pondering. As they say 's day without learning is a day wasted!'
    Right, get yourself resting in the garden. And please don't do what I did .... DON'T use sun screen! (honestly, you couldn't make it up ... )
    Hugs ((()))

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  3. Hello Barb. Sorry you're not feeling too hot. Wonder if it could be stress? Too much going on? Missing the kids? At least it doesn't sound too serious. Looked and looked at the leaves and really like them, but absolutely nothing comes to mind. That's why you're you and I'm me, just happy for you to continue giving the inspiration! Look forward to tomorrow to see what you did come up with. xx Margaret Col.

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  5. Whoops! Let's try again.
    Barbara you work too hard. I know you've had to in times past and it's habit forming. But even good habits can catch up with you in the end. We all love your blog, your generosity in giving your time your skill and even your feelings, but we would all survive if you had the odd day ( or several) off. I believe it's called a holiday.
    Look after yourself and feel better soon

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  6. Sorry to hear you are feeling rough i know how you feel i had my knee op tuesday and i have never felt so ill i dont know whats wrong i find it hard to just get out of bed. loving the leaves on this card. hope you feel better soon. xx

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  7. Oh so sorry you not feeling good, if body telling you to rest listen to it. Sun is supposed to be making a comeback next week so maybe you can get some fresh air. For the life of me I can't see where you going with this card so will just have to wait and see. I like the technique though and I have some leaves so might give it a try. Now go rest and delegate if possible . xx

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  8. No-one would ever guess that you're not firing on all cylinders, but rest is vital. Let Dave take care of you for a few days. The card ? It's a beautiful start but have no idea where you're heading either. I would stamp one of your naked tree stamps at the top coming in horizontally from the right using one of the darker colours with just a few leaves attached using the heart shape seed heads from the heart grasses stamp. The Just To Say line sentiment hanging from the branches. I like the idea of the stag from the Woodland Animals set ( his antlers would reflect the tree branch shape at the top.) Finally stamp some co-ordinating grass at his feet to ground him & a little more grass along the base of the design. I don't think your final piece will look anything like this but it was great to sit here & get the crafty cogs working..... such fun. Take care

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  9. Sorry you have been feeling unwell I always feel if body is saying need rest it does there has been times when I have carried on. Because had to and one way or other body has forced rest take it easy we all care a lot about you and don't want you warn out your health comes first you give so much to us all if anything can do to help just say. I have been bit love but it's nearly a year but have been to are clarity East Midlands Sazz is of on hols popped in we had wonderful first task was the vase dolls we all struggled a bit to start with it had fanatic time shared lots of how important our craft family has become to each if us and you coming to our first workshop just love you and whole clarity family it's amazing and it's all your building. Don't forget anything can do xxx

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  10. Hi Barbara. Hope you feel better soon. I love working with these leaves, I must remember to buy more.
    How about this: ink up skeleton leaf, lay on Theuva Card, lay on one of your leafy aperture stencils, lay on next piece of Theuva Card and press (maybe even in a machine).
    This way you could get two different leafy patterns from one style of leaf.
    Then you could use one of the skeleton prints on a card or journal page with one of Clarity's sentiments and the aperture print would look lovely with mini trees and a baby deer in a lightly shaded landscape. Or even have the baby deer offset from the print looking in at the trees.

    We do all love your blog but your health comes first, so please remember to take your own advice and...delegate, rest, delegate, rest....
    Sending you hugs to get you better ( hopefully NOT with my lurgy attached, had a chest infection for nearly a month now and can attest that the medicines don't work lol).
    Take care xxxx

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    1. Silly me...I didn't put where I think you were headed Barbara...not firing on all cylinders either lol. I think you have gone with the woodland set but giving it an autumnal look using the bare tree and the little deer. Bound to be some tearing of copy paper and stencil brushes being used in there too. X

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  11. Sorry to hear you are feeling so rubbish. Just take more time to relax and allow your body to heal itself. As the doctor said. more sunshine and less cheese. Eat more cherries - they are apparently good for lowering cholesterol, no great hardship to eat those! Sunshine can be tricky. We are warned not to spend too much time in the sun and cover ourselves with factor infinity cream.
    I found this info which might be relevant - "When the sun’s rays enter the Earth’s atmosphere at too much of an angle, the atmosphere blocks the UVB part of the rays, so your skin can’t produce vitamin D. This happens during the early and later parts of the day and during most of the day during the winter season.
    The closer to midday you expose your skin, the better this angle and the more vitamin D is produced. A good rule of thumb is if your shadow is longer than you are tall, you’re not making much vitamin D. In winter, you’ll notice that your shadow is longer than you for most of the day, while in summer, your shadow is much shorter for a good part of the middle of the day." Perhaps you need a little table outside your little house to sit in the sun and read, write or craft for a while each day.
    More delegation, more relaxation, more walks with Dave in the sun. Take more care of yourself. xxx Maggie

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  12. Sorry you are off colour, take a break as all your rushing about seems to be catching up, thin you need to recharge and take care of you
    I am picturing the deer friend image in an autumnal setting, love the colours you have used Take care xx

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  13. Lordy Barbara it's little wonder you're feeling off kilter with your workload over the last few weeks, pouring buckets of ice over your head, and trying to keep all those balls in the air with your bad neck! Have a duvet day and enjoy it with a big box of choccies and a rubbish film on DVD!!! I have no idea where you're going with this, but think it would look wonderful with those little woodland characters - I can just see a squirrel and a fox and some birds rustling around in those autumn leaves, and maybe some zentangle in distress markers with a hidden poem about the autumn colours. Look forward to seeing the final result, but really only if you're up to it - I'm sure we can all wait a few days for the grand reveal whilst you recharge your batteries! Get well soon, Susan x

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  14. Hi there B, sorry you are not feeling too great but not surprised as don't know how you do everything you do. Hope you feel better soon. As for the leaves, it looks kinds forest like to me but my mojo has left the building so I cannot think what to make of it
    I am sure you will have plenty other ideas
    take care
    xx

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  15. I have long thought you are a heart attack waiting to happen, Barbara! I remember you saying once that you were suffering chest pains which rang alarm bells with me.You are doing too much! Chasing the green back isn't worth it. Spending quality time with your family is. You have perfectly able staff now to cope with the business. Step away awhile and take stock! x

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  16. Love the leaves, have never seen them before(OH rolling eyes saying 'not more stuff you 'need') but might combine them with the 'autumn the years last loveliest smile' word stamp? And the deer of course! You need to rest, rest, rest! We are having new kitchen - work starts next week and the house looks like a bomb has gone off - so I can imagine how you must feel with your nonstop work schedule! You need some sun, sand and. ....whatever takes your fancy- but Dave doesn't start with an S! You might have to improvise! Hope you feel better soon.

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    1. Great idea for the sentiment :-)

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  17. It sounds like you could do with a holiday somewhere nice and hot - Malta springs to mind, but there are so many wonderful places which could help restore you and put you on the road to good health. I hope you feel better soon. I have some if these leaves and often wonder what could be done that's a bit different, then end up putting them away again! So it was excellent to see your blog today! The first thing that popped into my head was Edith Piaf's 'When Autumn Leaves Begin to Fall' so I imagined a scene of trees (various amounts of leaf-loss) with a small dear/fawn prancing around. But, of course, the song was about memories, love etc so perhaps there could be something more whimsical/en'dear'ing!? Anyway, it will be great to see what you have done as I'm sure it will be wonderful. Take care

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    1. hey Tauricrafter, i agree with you re Malta. lots of vit D to be had there. good place for a rest and a holiday. i can vouch for it xx

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  18. I hope you feel better really soon you work yourself hard maybe you need a complete break for a couple of weeks as I suspect you never switch off completely.
    I shall wait to see where you are headed with the leaves tomorrow
    Take care
    Jackie x

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  19. Hi Barb,
    I'm so sorry to feeling under the weather, I was advised by Dr that 20 minutes per day sunshine, no sunscreen, is enough to supply your vitamin D, I also eat about 5 walnuts a day, full of vitamin D.
    You were so happy yesterday with all your news so give yourself a break from us and rest up, and spend time with the family.
    Skeleton leaves, my goodness they are a blast from the past. I think I've got a packet, or maybe a hundred packets, in my "not used much" drawer!! Looking at your stamping I see underwater seaweed but if you say think fawn - I fawn over you far too much, I'll be licking your shoes next - I think you have in mind a misty treescape. Cue maybe darkening sky, and mother and baby fawn nestling in the trees.
    Then again, I'm probably completely wrong. But if it's a day or two before you get back to us, so what, we'll survive. Stop putting pressure on yourself.
    Take care, rest up, and let Dave and Mark fuss around you. Go to see baby Evie and let your heart feel full.
    Love xx

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  20. Hi Barbara sorry to hear you are not feeling well it's rot ton when you feel rubbish but don't know why but sunshine and rest seem to be in order we won't mind if you have a real break for a while. We all go sunscreen mad but we do need the rays to get in the skin sometimes! Have been looking round Edinburgh art gallery today and some of the paintings make you feel very humble. We found two beautiful Canaletto s that just shone and put a smile on our faces- beautiful. Right skeleton leaves, the veins could be hills so have to have some trees, stag and fawn looking from the front a moon in the sky and stencil brush chipped Safire . Hmmm knowing you though probably grunge paste and shaving foam swirls with the leaves at the top and boy with birds and inspire word stamp???!!! Haha I can't wait until tomorrow to find out, but only if you feel up to it mind. Take care and have a relaxing evening. Love Diane G xxx

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  21. Hope you feel better soon!
    If i had some leaves I think I might ink them up for a backgrounds as I have a lot of nature photos for scrapbooks. Maybe use them for bunting across a scrapbook page with some letters on. Use them as trees on a card with little animal stamps in the front.

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  22. Hello Barbara. So sorry to hear that you are not firing on all cylinders. Please spend more time on yourself and let all the capable people around you keep things running for you. If you need a break from the blog we would all understand.

    I love what you have done with the skeleton leaves. I see a woodland with the little woodland creatures, and as you mentioned Fawn, perhaps in a scene reminiscent of Bambi!!! :-) As the colours are autumnal perhaps finish with one of your autumn verses. Sending you a huge hug and wishes to get well soon. xx

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  23. Sorry to hear you aren't feeling well. It might be your bodies way telling you to slow down and rest a while; you are always so busy your body has gone 'thank you' as you've taken a couple of weeks off fast paced work and slowed down a little. If you've not already had it done i'd suggest that you ask your GP to do a blood test for TSH to check thyroid function - the usual range is 0.4 4.5 mU/L - if your result comes back towards the lower number prompt your GP to consider that you might have been at the higher end of the range previously so even a 'normal' result might actually be 'low' for you.

    As for the car, I think you are boing to turn the prints of the leaves upside down so they are at the top of the card and that you could add naked tree stamps to make autumnal trees with your Fawn/s wandering through the trees

    I am sure your part 2 and finished card will be much better than my suggestion and I look forward to seeing your blog post tomorrow

    Hope you feel better soon

    Tracey

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  24. Oh Barbara, listen to your body, and take care of yourself. Sounds like you are in need of a well-earned holiday [in the sun of course]. I love the idea of this leafy background and wait with bated breath to see what you have come up with.

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  25. Barbara please listen to your body. spending time with your family is more important than everything else. you need to have a few days away to recharge. somewhere hot and sunny to top up your vit d. please take care, hugs xx

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  26. Time to rest a bit Mrs!!! You know you have to when your body starts playing up so please take notice of all of us telling you to take care.
    I do remember these from the first time around but I never brayered them - thanks for the tip - will have to see if my local craft shop still sell them Karen x

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  27. So sorry to hear you are feeling tired all the time. Perhaps take some supplements and book a short break in the sun. Apparently, the weather is going to be good in September, so perhaps a short break to the Lakes or Scotland. I'm not sure where you are going with the skeleton leaves (I have some). Perhaps they are a canopy or minarets. ( st Petersburg style), or they are little fairy houses. Hope you feel more invigorated soon.

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  28. So sorry to hear you don't feel on top form, hope you are soon fighting fit again.

    I would turn the leaves into crinoline ladies, or use them to make bird cages by using one of the bird stamps behind the printed leaves.

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  29. Oh my dear Barbara, am so sorry you feel low, this getting older lark is no fun at times is it!!! What you need is a proper holiday...somewhere in the warm sunshine - just you and Dave - we will all understand if you need to take a break from blogging too - whilst it brightens my day and I love reading every blog you do - I also very much appreciate that the time energy and effort you put in to it is huge! So you must never worry about missing the odd one, or blogging late - we love all that you put here xx
    As to what comes next in the sequence I need to have a think!!!!
    Any way....hope you have rested up - had plenty of fluids and hopefully feel better tomorrow - if not just say - feel pants - catch you all later xxx
    Much much love my dear friend
    Kimxxxxxx

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  30. Hi,
    Sorry to hear that you are tired, rest. I am at the San Antonio Airport... Yipeee

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  31. Sorry your not feeling like yourself you should take time out like you say delegate to your wonderful clarity team your body is telling you to rest ,your lovley little animals would look lovley in the leaves with a lovley verse along the top like to a dear friend .take care clarity hugs .just going to order some blog offers xxx

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  32. Hallo liebe Barbara,

    es macht mich traurig, zu lesen, es geht dir nicht gut. Ich glaube es ist ein wenig zu viel Arbeit daran Schuld. Du solltest auf den Körper hören und dir auch mal eine Pause gönnen. Immer nur Arbeit ist nicht sinnvoll. Genieße auch mal eine Auszeit. Ich musste lernen langsamer zu werden. Immer wenn ich schnell wollte, streikte der Körper. Wenn man langsamer nacht genießt man viel mehr die schönen Dinge, die so wichtig sind.

    Deine Blätter sind schon so ein wahrer Hingucker. Sie erinnern mich an den Indian Summer. Ich kann mir gut vorstellen, das du ein Reh mit dem Kitz in die wärmende Sonne stellst und sie den Indian Summer genießen können. Ich bin schon sehr gespannt auf morgen.

    Ich wünsche dir von Herzen gute Besserung. Ganz liebe Grüße Hugs Silvi

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  33. Hi Barbara,

    I´m very sorry you are not feeling well.

    Tomorrow on sunday you stay in bed as long as you can sleep.
    Let Dave bring a tray with a full breakfast and a lot of orange juice!!!

    I guess you will use the deer & fawn bauble stamp because the deer´s antlers look a bit like a fossil leaf. But I have no idea how you will bring them together ;-))

    Gute Besserung

    Rolf

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  34. Hiya Barb - sorry to hear you're not firing on all cylinders - hope you're feeling better now! I don't know where you're going with the fawn but the leaves made me think of your fabulous mushroom stamp and seasonal word chain words - I know they don't exist - just been buying a couple of sets! Anyway - I was thinking of autumn obviously - but no - maybe the seasons of mists stamp would be even better - yes I like that!!! Hugs to you! Rachel x

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  35. Sorry you're not feeling too good Barbara and hope you'll soon be back to full strength. No idea where this is heading but I am positive that the destination will be absolutely beautiful. Pat x

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  36. Hi Barb,
    Really sorry to hear that you aren't feeling too well. What you need is a good rest somewhere hot. Whilst I love your blog and I do appreciate the time and effort that you put into it, if you need to miss it for a day or a few days then just do that. Your health is far more important. Love the skeleton leaves, but I have no idea where you are going with the art work I'm afraid! My brain isn't working too well - been decorating all day which I hate! Please take care of yourself. Love Alison xx

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  37. Sorry to hear you are feeling unwell, lots of rest and pampering. For the card I would turn it up the other way so the leaves look like they are falling down. I would then ink a hill at the bottom and use the toadstool stamp (coloured in) and a bunny. I know it's not the fawn but could look good - well in my mind it does anyway! Hope you feel on top form soon. Love Donna XX

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  38. Oh Barbara, please take care. You know what to do... go somewhere nice to charge up those batteries ready for the autumn... Ah - there now! Methinks a good theme for the card maybe... a landscape in autumnal colours with deer and a later summer sun. Blessings. Gill xxx

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  39. Get well soon, if all these best wishes winging their way to you don't make you feel better, don't know what will!
    As for the challenge, agree with the others about the woodland set, expect there will be a few hills and branches there too. Will have to dig out my old pack of leaves too, if they haven't turned to dust. Having moved recently and having to sort out my new craft room, I know exactly how exhausting it is. I had the luxury of someone packing it for me too! Apparently the poor guy doing it spent all day in my old craft room, packing box after box, they nearly lost him in there! Anyway now in the new place and keen to get going on various projects, just need a million more hours in the day. Look after yourself and take it easy. Karen

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  40. Oh you must take care! I used to do too much and that contributed to my now suffering with ME/CFS and feeling pretty lousy every day! Being busy is good but, as I found out, rest is important too! Can't wait to see what you do with the gorgeous leafy background. I am guessing deers and trees are involved but my brain won't come up with anything else at the mo! Take care! xxx

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  41. I hope you are OK. Not so hot myself lately? Something in the air maybe, Age? It wasn't long ago that you fell downstairs? Xxx I bet nearly everyone has some of these in the cupboard, you never saw them used very often. Another little thing on the pile of "why did I buy that agains! Until and then Barbara comes along and rescues them, us! Great idea. I reckon you use them a bit like a watermark background and do a verse stamp in the middle and fancy lines on the edge but then you will add a twist that no-one will think of. Xxxxx Big Hugs.xxxx

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  42. Sorry to hear your feeling under par, rest up and delegate! Feel better soon.

    At last another idea for using the skeleton leaves, I love it and am looking forward to seeing how you finish it off.

    For the card, the addition of 'fall memories' done with masking individual letters from the word chains, maybe the naked tree stamps and winter wonderland deer/fawn.

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  43. Hi Barbara, sorry to hear that you are feeling so under the weather, although I'm pleased that it has a simple remedy ( well in theory) Maybe you need that holiday to Grace to come sooner.I'm afraid that I need to pass on the task tonight as I'm in rather a lot of pain although I did have a wonderful day with Maria at Catterick. What a lovely bunch of ladies they are and it was lovely to see Heather again (minus the kneepads too).
    Your leaf design looks cool so far and I look forward to seeing the finished work tomorrow. I have melted these leaves into a candle using the wax paper technique. Works a treat!
    Don't work too hard when you return to work and make sure you continue to delegate.
    Gentle hugs
    Jeanette xx

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  44. Sorry to hear you're feeling so bad. Apart from the discomfort it's always such a nuisance for active people who fill their time with activity. My wise mother ( miss her loads) would have said 'It's natures way of making you rest' More or less what everybody else has said. Think of yourself for a change.

    I have no idea of your plans for the card but just an all over background like this would do for me.
    Please take care. x

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  45. Hi Barbara, sorry you are not feeling the best at the moment but hope you have been taking it easy today. Your body is probably telling you to slow down at the moment as you have had a lot on your plate recently. As for what happens next with the skeleton leaves, and with the clue you have given us, I think that looks like a clearing in a group of winter trees, so I think you have placed the fawn there and then perhaps a little extra shading and perhaps a path going through the trees and perhaps a few hills in the background. I'm probably completely wrong, but anyway look after yourself and take a bit more time out. x

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  46. Hi Barbara, so sorry to hear you are not feeling too good. I hope you have managed to get plenty of rest today, you really should take a few days, recharge your batteries, and don't work until you feel 100% again. I hope you feel much better soon.
    As for the card, I am completely stumped, will just have to wait to see what you do, whatever it is will be brilliant as usual.
    Take care! x

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  47. I'm a bit late but hope your feeling better . Love those skeleton leaves I think you will have loads of trees in the background with little fawns in front ! For mine I think the scarecrow would be great on this with corn peeping in from the sides and maybe a few little insects all scurrying to find shelter in mr scarecrow for the coming autumn/winter x

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  48. Sorry to hear you are not 100% - Missed your blog yesterday - I think i would use the horse stamp - love it and use it at every opportunity - maybe do the leaves in more fantasy colours and a unicorn

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  49. Hope you feel a bit better today. I think I would continue with the tips of the leaves round te edge stamp some trees and have the fawn peeking out from behind as a scee in the middle. Best wishes AliJ

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  50. What a great idea. I used this leafs or print of leafs for backgraund on my card. Have a nice day.
    Marjeta

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  51. Hello Barb, sorry to hear that you are not your usual 100% bright as a button self. Please get some rest. As to the card, I would think a lovely autumn scene with a fawn in a forest glade, dappled with a touch of sun, and some inspiring word from the word chain sets - perhaps magical? Well done Gill on winning the blog candy. Have a lovely Sunday, and looking forward tot he 2nd part of this. Bx

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  52. Hello our Barb, definitely sounds as tho a few days of complete relaxation and sunshine are in order if you tear yourself away perhaps after next sunday. You've had alot going on and sounds as tho it's caught up with you.

    Right as for the artwork which is looking lovely so far, I would be tempted to carry on with the pattern you have formed and add the autumnal augment "Autumn s last smile" as previously suggested or seeing as you hinted at the word fawn, perhaps you've turned the artwork upside down and added a skeleton tree and a fawn hiding ??? I look forward to show and tell. Take care, glad you're getting the hang of delegating xx

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  53. "augment" oh dear meant sentiment of course ;-) x

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  54. Hope you are feeling better soon Barbara. Not quite sure where you are going with this card, but would imagine it will involve a woodland scene with the Fawn peering out from the trees.

    Take care of yourself and spend the time relaxing and let Dave spoil you!!

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  55. Hi Barbara. I am sorry that you aren't feeling 100% at the moment, but glad that you have seen the doc and that you know what is going on. After working so hard for so many years your body is asking for a little bit of attention. A proper holiday where you get away from it all for a few weeks somewhere hot would set you back on the right track.
    My parents worked like you do with their own business 24/7 but twice a year they would go away on their little boat and deliberately not read a newspaper, listen/watch the news (they didn't know there was a petrol strike one year until they got home!) They had a mobile phone that only we had the no. of so that if there was a REAL emergency they could get us or we could contact them (luckily never had to) otherwise we spoke once a week for 5 mins on strictly family stuff. Those holidays rested their bodies and their minds, and they came back like new people. They didn't have any staff so had to close the business during these holidays but it flourished for over 25 years before they retired! Have a think about what is really important Barbara. Blimey, I feel lie your Mum nagging you : )
    The leaves are looking good so far but I haven't got a clue where you went after this stage so I will just have to wait and see. Sorry, I have no imagination, so seeing where you go next is a part of why I admire you and your fantastic artwork. If you do decide to have a real break we will quite happily wait until you are back refreshed and rearing to go : ) Take care x

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Thank you for your kind messages and I hope you get inspiration from my ramblings.

Barb x