Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

We would like to wish everyone a very Happy Healthy New Year for 2009

Heres to a creative time in 2009 !!!

Diane and Bill xx

Gloucester Arts Summer School

I have been asked to be a tutor at the 28th Gloucester Arts and Crafts Summer school on 20th and 21st of July 2009.
I will be able to take 8 students on each day.
On the 20th July I will be teaching the ever popular Birch Tree painting and on the 21st July we will do the Summer Day painting.

I will put more details on here as soon as possible.
Im still busy doing the new website, its all exciting stuff-not sure when it will go live just yet but shouldnt be too long!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Food Food Food!!!

We will defiantly be going on diets in the new year--we went out for a meal last night as we couldn't be bothered to cook after hitting the sales in Kidderminster yesterday.
We went to the local pub just a few hundred yards up the road from us.
Bill had the scampi and I had the steak and trimmings-it was perfect, the bottle of wine slipped down a treat too.
Now we don't normally do puddings but just for a change we fancied trying the Caribbean sundae--- oh boy it was to die for--double chocolate ice cream, coconut ice cream and rum and raisin ice cream, layered with toasted coconut and a chocolate sauce over the top with a flake and biscuit to finish.
We will be having that one again for sure!

We popped over to Churchstoke this morning to have a mooch around the car boot/market and ended up calling at the Craven Arms hotel for the carvery as we had forgotten to take the meat out of the freezer.The roast beef was beautiful and the garlic potatoes would take some beating anywhere-couldnt have fitted another mouthful!
As usual it was delicious and we were completely stuffed when we came out-- then realised we are going out to my sister in laws for tea at 5pm!
Don't think we will be wanting much food tomorrow some how!

Friday, December 26, 2008


Well Christmas Day is over-we are both knackered- we had lots of fun and hard work in the run up to it though!
We were making quiches and finishing the cakes at 10.30pm on Christmas Eve-enjoying the mulled wine with our friends who had called by, followed by some nice bubbly stuff!
I did manage to get my special stuffing done as well-it was beautiful-layers of sage and onion, followed by leeks and sausagemeat, layers of cranberry and all wrapped up in bacon and cooked slowly until it was crispy-the smell was to die for!
That could be why it all took so long mind!
Our little grandson Callum came round on Christmas morning to see us, Father Christmas had been very good to him and bought him lots of toys.

There were 6 of us for dinner , then all the family came for tea--we all sat around after stuffing ourselves with lots of food and drinks watching TV until it was time for the launching of the Chinese floating lanterns-it was great fun-we had one near miss with next doors shed almost getting it though-lots of ooohhhs and aaahhhhs from everyone as the first one left the ground and floated off into the night!
We are having a lazy day today--just grazing on the food that was left over and maybe opening some of the lovely chocolates we had-- weight watchers here we come in the new year!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Christmas Poem

A Christmas Poem

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house not a creature was stirring, except Papa's mouse.
The computer was humming, the icons were hopping, As Papa did last-minute Internet shopping.
The stockings were hung by the modem with careIn hope that St. Nicholas would bring new software.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of computer games danced in their heads.
PageMaker for Billy, and Quicken for Dan,And Carmen San Diego for Pamela Ann.
The letters to Santa had been sent out by Mom,
To santaclaus at at,
Which has now been re-routed to Washington State because Santa's workshop has been bought by Bill Gates.

All the elves and reindeer have had to skedaddle to flashy new quarters in suburban Seattle.
After centuries of a life that was simple and spare,St. Nicholas is suddenly a new billionaire,
With a shiny red Porsche in the place of his sleigh,
And a house on Lake Washington that's just down the way from where Bill has his mansion.
The old fellow preensIn black Gucci boots and red Calvin Klein jeans.
The elves have stock options and desks with a view,
Where they write computer code for Johnny and Sue.
No more dolls or tin soldiers or little toy drums will be under the tree, only compact disk ROMSWith the Microsoft label. So spin up your drive,
From now on Christmas runs only on Win95.

More rapid than eagles the competitors came,
And Bill whistled, and shouted, and called them by name.
"Now, ADOBE! now, CLARIS! now, INTUIT! too,Now, APPLE! and NETSCAPE! you are all of you through,

It is Microsoft's SANTA that the kids can't resist, It's the ultimate software with a traditional twist recommended by no less than the jolly old elf,
And on the package, a picture of Santa himself.
Get 'em young, keep 'em long, is Microsoft's scheme,
And a merger with Santa is a marketer's dream.
To the top of the NASDAQ! to the top of the Dow!Now dash away! dash away! dash away - wow!"
And Mama in her 'kerchief and I in my cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter's nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,The whir and the hum of our satellite platter,
As it turned toward that new Christmas star in the sky,The SANTALITE owned by the Microsoft guy.

As I sprang from my bed and was turning around,
My computer turned on with a Jingle-Bells sound.
And there on the screen was a smiling Bill GatesNext to jolly old Santa, two arm-in-arm mates.
And I heard them exclaim in voice so bright,

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Merry Christmas

We want to take the opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy New Year

We are both looking forward to 2009
Meeting new students and meeting up with previous ones too.

I shall be working on some new class subjects for the new year and the new "Painting My Way" website should be up and running soon.
The old one will remain on air until I'm ready to make the switch over,the updates of classes etc will be posted on the blog until the new one site is live.

Big thanks to Jane who has helped me get things sorted-I'm having great fun with all the new designs and layouts.

I'm hoping that there will be a forum on the new site , although when I will get that up and running who knows?
Its not a priority at the moment, as I know a lot of my students keep in touch with each other via email and texting anyway!!


Here are some of my cats that have been kept out of the boxes!
I must admit it is better now there aren't so many to move to dust!I have around 400 cats in my collection!
As you can see I have replaced the cats with Santa's for the Christmas period!

Busy Times!

Well we have finally finished the decorating, the front room and the hall look lovely now, fresh white paint everywhere!
The tree is up and looking great and we sat down and enjoyed a glass of bubbly at 9.30pm.
Ive had a major sort out of my collection of cat ornaments--have put ,most of them into boxes out of the front room--the parrots create so much dust all the time and I didn't have time to keep moving them to clean, so Ive kept my special ones--limited editions etc in the hallway on my grandads sideboard.
I beginning to feel a lot more like Christmas now!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Meet little Teddy-isnt he just gorgeous. Hes a Westie x Welsh terrier and belongs to our dear friends Jan and John.
He had a visit to the vets today and Jan called by with him-he was into everything bless him.
He was fascinated by his reflection in the mirror, climbing up my plants to have a better look!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Last Craft Fair of 2008

Well the weather was kind to us yesterday on the last craft fair of the year. It was cold but not too much so!
Its funny how we dont get it set up the same way twice!
Looking forward to the break now. Probley wont do any more until March,so the paintings can be packed away tidily until then!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Craft Fair Tomorrow

I have spent the evening catching up with some bits and pieces that I had run out of for tomorrows craft fair.
The encaustic bookmarks always go well-each one is a miniature piece of original art in itself---there are never 2 the same, due to the nature of the medium of melted wax.
I managed to make 45 while the X-factor was on, so hopefully that will be enough for tomorrow.I might just take the blank bookmarks with me and do some more in between customers.
The forcast is not bad at all-considering its the middle of Dec, got my warm clothes ready as well. No doubt we will be seeing some of our students up on the Castle Square

Serenity In Green-Jan 31st---FULL

This class is now full--I will be doing it again at a later date in the year-watch this space!

Todays Class-Mellow Moods

We had a lovely day today painting Mellow Moods.From left-Linda,Doreen, Bev, Pauline and Chris. Everyone had been before except for Linda who was painting her very first painting ever!
You would never have thought it to see her finished painting though!.
We hadn't expect Bev to turn up today after Doreen had told us that her friend Bev was poorly-but it just shows how addictive the classes are-Bev turned up and although she was really quite poorly painted a beautiful painting.
We wish you a speedy recovery Bev.

Christmas cake

Christmas Cake Ingredients: * 2 cups flour*
1 stick butter*
1 cup of water*
1 tsp baking soda*
1 cup of sugar*
1 tsp salt*
1 cup of brown sugar*
Lemon juice* 4 large eggs*
1 bottle wine*
2 cups of dried fruit
Sample the wine to check quality. Take a large bowl, check the wine again.
To be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.
Repeat. Turn on the electric mixer. Beat one=2 0cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl.
Add one teaspoon of sugar. Beat again.
At this point it's best to make sure the wine is still OK. Try another cup... Just in case.
Turn off the mixerer thingy.
Break 2 eggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit.
Pick the frigging fruit up off floor.
Mix on the turner..
If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a drewscriver.
Sample the wine to check for tonsisticity.
Next, sift two cups of salt. Or something.
Check the wine.
Now shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts.
Add one table.
Add a spoon of sugar, or some fink.
Whatever you can find.
Greash the oven.
Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over.
Don't forget to beat off the turner.
Finally, throw the bowl through the window.
Finish the wine and wipe counter with the cat.
Bingle Jells!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Craft Market Dec 14th

We have the last of the craft markets this Sunday. Im really looking forward to it--we shall have come Christmas lights to decorate the stall and the atmosphere will no doubt be bright and cheery!
Then it will all be packed away until spring time-We may need to have some new stands built if the council live up to its promise of new stalls, so Bill will be kept busy in the shed if thats the case!

Serenity In Green Jan 31st

There are only 3 places left for this class on 31st January.
If you would like to join this class please get in touch via the website
The class is suitable for all abilities even first timers!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Painting My Way Website

My regular viewers to the ''Painting My Way'' website will have realised that it hasn't been updated for some time---unfortunately my webmaster can no longer deal with the site due to unforseen circumstances, so a brand new one is in the making.

It will be along much the same lines as it is at the moment with maybe some interesting extras-but the guest book and students snaps as well as all the dates for classes and demonstrations/craft fairs will be there too.

I will continue to put the class updates onto the blog in the meantime, but the new website shouldnt be too long becoming live on the web.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Oriental Dawn

I had a lovely time today with Tina (left) and Wendy (right) today. Tina was bought a gift voucher for the class by her sister for her birthday earlier in the year, but because of the floods couldnt make it to the class! So it was second time lucky for her today!
Both ladies were kept very amused during the class's by Jake the parrot who didnt shut up all day--although he is in another room he is quite loud and so comical-"Merry Christmas" "I love Bill/Di/ Sparky" "Daft Bugger" "Your Nuts""hello Carl--shut the door"" Coughs, sneezes-says oh dear -its a bugger innit" Etc Etc ."shut up" to poor Paddy (other parrot) whenever he opens his beak to say anything! never a dull moment with them!