Friday, 6 July 2012

Update on why I have been missing from my blog

Hello everyone

Well it is quite some time since I last posted on my blog so I thought I would just try and update you all as to what I have been up to recently - and what has prevented me posting and visiting other blogs.

Around March I decided to take the plunge and start a new group on Facebook for the users of the crafting sofware I use myself and absolutely love.  A push from Create and Craft who were offering a copy of this software as the members' free gift meant there were a lot of new users around and I realised that many of them were asking for help and information in other crafting groups and felt there was a need to have one specifically for this software.  I am pleased to say that the group took off with a bang and we now have 526 members. I must also say at this point Michelle Jackson -Mogford who promotes the software on C&C, and is also a member of the group, has been really good at promoting our group and it is thanks to her that we have grown as rapidly as we have.  But of course this means that I need to spend a good deal of time in the group.

Not long after I started my group, there was a new commmunity group formed where I live.  This group, Cramlington SOS, was formed to fight plans by developers to build 600 new houses on land behind our house which is used extensively by the community for a variety of activities and has been for probably in excess of thirty years.  The land comprises a large playing field which has been used for football matches for the whole twenty years we have lived here, as well as uncultivated fields and ancient hedges which date back to at least 1850.  It is home to foxes, badgers, rabbits, bats and owls and when walking there it is like being in the heart of the countryside - there is nothing like a walk with Paddy on a fine morning and hearing all the birds singing.  It also contains a number of rights of way.  Unfortunately Cramlington Town Council appear to have a very good relationship with the developer, who also now owns the land, and an extremely poor reputation for listening to the community.  After a series of meetings,  and a lot of visits to TC meetings which served to confirm the TC's lack of interest in the community they are there to represent, Cramlington SOS made a decision to apply for Village Green status for the land.  Part of this application requires us to present evidence that the land has been used lawfully by the community, without seeking permission from the landowner, for a period of twenty years or more.  And so began the start of knocking on doors to speak to householders and leave questionnaires for them to complete, followed by more knocking on doors to collect the said questionnaires.  So I don't really have a door knocker fetish as some of you were beginning to think!

In May Cramlington SOS held a fun day to try to raise some funds to finance all that is going on and the children designed posters for a competition.  After the fun day I took the posters and turned them into little printed cards to sell to help towards the fund raising.  And then I started to take the photographs of the dogs who had taken part in the doggie competitions and turned each of them into cards too, also to sell to raise funds - and so started a little cottage fund-raising industry in my craft room.  Here are some of the cards I have made for this (the previous post "Murphy" was one of these cards).

This is made using Olivia's poster - Olivia is 5 years old.

This was Rebecca's poster - she is 4 years old

This was made from Savannah's poster, which had real leaves and grass glued onto it.

There were another 9 cards made like this but I won't show them all here!

And a selection of the dog cards

This is Bandit

And here we have Charlie, complete with his winner's rosette

And Oscar

and the final photograph is Dakota.  There are many others but I think you will have the idea from the photos already posted!

I designed all of the cards using my Craft Artist software from Serif, and used elements from digikits or from my crafting cds.  The software is extremely versatile and once you start to use it then you can easily become addicted.  If you use this software or have a copy of it and would like to learn more, then feel free to ask to be added to my Facebook group Serif Craft Artist Users Group.

The cards I now make for raise funds for Cramlington SOS have their own Facebook page too and can be found here (Cramlington SOS Cards) so please feel free to have a look and even "Like" my page even if you don't want to buy.

More information about Cramlington SOS is available on their Facebook page here and the Friends of Cramlington Village Green page is here.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Catherine x