September 2010

Its been a busy month
1. I published my book. "DISCovering the Ultimate Tool" Sales are going well and the feedback has been excellent.
http://www.lots-of-success.com/book

2. The family have been busy travelling the world. Louise to Fiji for a wedding, then to New Zealand to see Grandma and finally a stopover in Hong Kong to see the sights and visit old friends.
Vanessa and Derek relaxed and enjoyed themselves for 2 weeks in Mexico while Steph & Glen took in the sights of the Greek Islands.
Meanwhile Lindsay, Rebecca, Doug and I have been working very hard.

3. Visitors


Gordon came to stay, made himself very much at home and showed us his hobbies, definitely a follower of football teams wearing yellow.



Absolutely wonderful to spend time with Di and Lloyd after their holiday in Turkey before going back to NZ. Di and I have known each other 45 years and nothing has changed - well except some wrinkles.



Tomorrow I meet up with my friend from the baby years, Karen who is on transit from NZ to other friends in the UK. I'm looking forward to that.

4. Craft
Still finding it relaxing to sit at my craft table (aka dining table) of an evening. Last month I discovered ATCs - Artists Trading Cards - miniature pieces of art which we make and swap on swap-bot and they are quite addictive...but lots of fun.



Wishing you lots of possibilities
Beverly

I've been bad.....

Well what I mean is I haven't been blogging and I promised myself I would post regularly. Is it too late to turn over a new leaf?

There has been a reason....I've been very busy finishing my book and finally it is now published.



It's exciting and very satisfying to have completed that goal.

You can purchase the book by emailing me or directly from the website. Here is the link to DISCovering the Ultimate Tool (ID #8922122):
http://www.lots-of-success.com/book


Feedback from the book is excellent. It's an easy read and fascinating content.

Wishing you Lots of Success
Beverly

What's this then?

Can anyone help me? I saw this on our morning walk. It's too high to get close to but looks like some kind of mushroom or toadstool. Quite fascinating as I've only just noticed it. I'm sure it wasn't there a week ago and I can't see any others around it.




I hope life is being good to you..... Beverly

Gathering more Family



We spent a delightful weekend in North Wales with my (new) sister and our two uncles who are both in their 80s but you wouldn't know it. Family is precious.

Blog Visiting

On Swap-bot I'm currently in a swap visiting new Blogs. These are the ones I was assigned to follow

Australian Artist and crafter
http://anitamorris.net/

Jewellery designs
http://elizabethmdesigns.blogspot.com

An etsy shop with a wide range of lovely things
http://www.etsy.com/shop/gnormyle

Encouraging the lost art of letter writing
http://www.ecologicstoryteller.blogspot.com/

Comments on life
http://ladybug-blessings.com/

Knitting, sewing and various
http://knitgirl63.wordpress.com/

About Swapping
http://angeldivablogger.blogspot.com/

Weird & Wonderful Roadside finds
http://roadsidewonders.net/

Lots of links to other websites
http://wwwtrainmama.blogspot.com/

It is very interesting to see the huge range of interests and types of blogs that there are.

Affirmation Cards

One of my most recent swaps on Swap-bot was to make a set of 20 Affirmation cards. I saw my partner liked bright colours and clowns. Now a lot of people don't like clowns, I guess they were scared by them as a kid or find them sad but I have always found them cheerful, there to make us laugh. In fact, years ago I used to collect them everytime we went on holiday. I think I got to about 35 and my kids said to stop collecting. I left them all behind in NZ. So what am I doing now? collecting cats! I must be a collector, you should see my craft stash. LOL!
Here's the cards I made. I was very pleased with them and so was my partner. I wonder what the cards I receive will look like? Will there be the affirmation "I am in the process of decluttering my stash"?

Looking with New Eyes

During July I have been taking another of Shimelle's courses "Love your Pictures, Love your Pages" over at www.shimelle.com
The idea is to improve my photography. Shimelle's courses are always top class and I'm learning to look with new eyes.

The council have planted wild flowers in a roundabout at the end of our street. This was how it looked in June.

And now in July...

A great contrast.

This is the time when the spiders' webs are everywhere. Shimelle suggests getting down low and taking the photo looking up at the subject.


And to try getting up very close.

And last week I was looking out my office window and saw this pair of pigeons. The male was glaring at his mate and every now and again she tried to peck him which made him very angry. He kept attacking her very forcefully until she became submissive. We've called him wife-beater and we don't like him anymore. Is this normal behaviour for pigeons?



And finally, for no reason at all, a line of birdies on the wall. Don't they look cute?


I hope you enjoyed my post. Bye for now

Mid Year Xmas

Where has the year gone? Here we are nearly the end of July.

I apologise for not blogging recently. I got out of the routine and I know for me to accomplish things I need a system so this time I am determined.....

For the Kepple Clan we've just celebrated our 6th annual mid-year Xmas barbecue in London on a beautiful sunny July Sunday. Our group changes every year. Friends come and go from London, some back to New Zealand, we've now got a son-in-law and an Irish boyfriend. In 2008 we had a bump in the tummy (no, not mine) that was a babe in arms last year and the star of the show this year.

The Present Game is still the highlight of the afternoon ....




The age when the paper rubbish is more fun than the gifts.



I thank my family for their love and all the fun we have together and a big thank you to all our friends who share our lives.

Perpective on Mushrooms

On our walk in the mornings we pass these mushrooms growing in some bark chips. Nothing special about that you're thinking.



Are they mushrooms...or are they toadstools? I wouldn't know. I have no idea if they are edible or poisonous.

But they are very tiny....




But what say I change my angle. I love how they now look very large!



Have a great weekend and try looking at things from another angle.....

How many in a Football Team?

Football fever strikes England.

I have to get this off my chest....
After the game in the weekend when England lost, there was so much criticism of the goal keeper missing his catch. Yes he made a mistake but am I wrong in thinking that there were 10 other players in the team who failed to score goals in the second half? The team lost the match, not just one person.

Well that feels better now!

Our street has so many red and white flags. It does look great and adds to the excitement of the World Cup. So we added to the street display.



New Zealand plays tonight. Of course we're outsiders being a rugby nation and we call the game with the round ball, soccer. But we'll be watching, and cheering and may the Team that plays the Best, Win.

Postcards

Recently I joined www.Swap-bot.com so if you are visiting my blog for the first time.... Welcome and I hope you enjoy the various posts. My blog is a mixture of
Family Matters
Craft Interests and
Personal Reflections on Life.

One of my first swaps was to send a postcard to 5 members. These are the lovely postcards I received in turn.

This beautiful building is the Zwaanendael Museum in Delaware built in 1931.



An unusual artwork called Furious Wave by the French painter Lucien Levy-Dhurmer



From Holland and the quote reads "take a rest, especially when you don't have the time for it"



This is Kincardine in Canada. Interestingly, when we lived in Scotland we lived very near a village of the same name.



And here's Erin's feet in the sea in North Carolina.



Oh I'd love to paddle in the sea tomorrow! Enjoy the rest of your day.

Daily Journal

Back in January I mentioned about this idea for keeping a diary - writing just one phrase or sentence in each small square of a calendar page (printed out from Microsoft Publisher). It's June and I've completed every month so far. It's the first time ever I've managed to keep up with writing a journal!

I'm loving it. I can look back at each month and remember every day. And it's a great way to use up all those little bits of paper, stickers and other embellishments!

On the other page I printed out photos of the highlights of the month, following along with Shimelle on UK Scrappers and their "Document 2010" project, but doing my own variation.



On Sunday afternoon while everyone was at golf I was able to enjoy a bit of scrapping of some beauty around us. The pages are not entirely original - I lifted a couple of ideas from layouts in Scrapbook Magazine. I can never scraplift one page, instead I use ideas from several pages. Does anyone else do that?

Emotions

These are a couple of very special photos Ann had of our father.






They are special to Ann because they were the only photos she had before he left her Mum and her.

They are special to me because shortly after they were taken our father lost his left leg in WWII. I was born post-war so have never seen our father with two legs.

What a handsome man he was!

I think you can imagine that it's been quite an emotional time for Ann & me. A bit surreal really. But wonderful!

Dreams Do Come True

Yes they do. My brother is 7 years younger than me so there were not very many years that we played together. He was all boy and very sporty. And I was a bit of an academic girl.

All my life I wished I had a sister, someone who would share my girlie interests, someone to talk to, go shopping with and now I do.

About a month ago I discovered I had a half-sister Ann who lives in Wales near the village that our father grew up in. Yesterday we met in Chester......for the very first time. I was so excited and we had a wonderful day.



We talked non-stop .....well there was 60 odd years to catch up on! And we had fun, sharing stories, laughing, even taking a self portrait.



Dreams do come true. We can't anticipate how this will happen. We just need to believe it.

May all your dreams come true.
Beverly

Warning....When I am an Old Woman

I'm doing an art journal on-line course this year to develop my creativity and I must say it's been challenging at times..... I have also been learning some editing techiques for photos...cutting images out, removing the background etc.

This weeks Art Journal prompt was "Rebel" and I immediately thought of this poem by Jenny Joseph. And I thought it just right for practising some photo editing.

Enjoy!

"When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me,
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.

I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick the flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit.
You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and a pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street.
And set a good example for the children.
We will have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old and start to wear purple."



I'm going to have fun when I'm old - but I don't think I'll learn to spit thank you!

The Flight of the Penguins

Every now and again I see a TV programme that touches my heart and this one was amazing. In the Antarctica at a certain time of the year these Emperor Penguins come out of the sea and trek, mostly upright, 70 miles to the same place every year to find a mate.



Once the egg is produced it is transferred from the female to the male who keeps it warm and safe until it hatches. Meanwhile the female treks back to the sea for food. This is winter, bitterly cold and forever dark. The males huddle together for warmth until the females return with food.

Then roles are reversed again, the male going back to the sea for food while the female looks after the young penguin until they are ready to go out to sea.



Don't they look amazing?

Birds in a Bath

Everyday these birds arrive about 5pm for a wash in our bird bath. Its taken quite a bit of patience on my part to capture the moment on film.



They have a very definite technique in washing themselves. First one wing gets flapped very vigorously in the water and then the other wing. Its quite funny to watch.

We can do nothing... or we can do anything.

I received an email yesterday with this quote from the late Jim Rohn a well-known mentor, motivator and public speaker...

"What we ponder and what we think about sets the course of our life. Any day we wish; we can discipline ourselves to change it all. Any day we wish, we can open the book that will open our mind to new knowledge. Any day we wish, we can start a new activity. Any day we wish, we can start the process of life change. We can do it immediately, or next week, or next month, or next year.

"We can also do nothing. We can pretend rather than perform. And if the idea of having to change ourselves makes us uncomfortable, we can remain as we are. We can choose rest over labor, entertainment over education, delusion over truth, and doubt over confidence. The choices are ours to make. But while we curse the effect, we continue to nourish the cause. As Shakespeare uniquely observed, "The fault is not in the stars, but in ourselves." We created our circumstances by our past choices. We have both the ability and the responsibility to make better choices beginning today."

I thought it a timely reminder for myself. This is my office.


The quote reminded me that I have lots of opportunities sitting in and around my desk, ideas that haven't been explored fully and half finished projects, like my DISC book.

I could do nothing but I choose to change, to develop and grow my businesses. Which is it for you?

Family Gathering

How wonderful to be able to spend time with Uncle Geoff, my father's brother. He was a little apprehensive about coming to Milton Keynes from Flint in Wales for the weekend. He and his wife Edna were married for 54 years and since she died 4 years ago, he's been lonely and not wanted to go out much. We got him a train ticket and on he came down. Great for 86! This is the family for lunch:



And my brother's daughter and partner for dinner.



Of course I couldn't wait too long to create some scrapbook pages




Uncle Geoff showed us photos of his parents and my cousins, none of whom I had ever met. We talked and laughed and loved all weekend. Family is forever.

Gratitude

In my Behavioural Profile, using the DISC system, I have a lot of C for compliance. One of the characteristics of this way of behaving is wanting everything to be perfect and when it isn't this can lead to feeling a bit down in the dumps. Which I have been of late ....and it's probably due to getting tired with the packing and moving for the 9th time in 6 years. That's why there has been no posts from me, together with not having Internet connection for 2 weeks.

However, life isn't perfect.....it's an adventure, not unlike a roller coaster. The ups with the downs and it's a whole lot fun along the way!

I read recently that you can't get what you desire or dream of until you are truly grateful for what you have.

I am so grateful for a wonderful husband and family. Friends who care. Springtime and fields of daffodils.

Scrapbooking Supplies

Tomorrow Shimelle's latest course "Something for Almost Nothing" starts where we use up lots of our supplies (stash) that we have lying around (sometimes hiding) in drawers and cupboards. Shimelle has already set us a pre-course challenge....to photograph our stash of supplies. We move on Friday so I've been packing mine. Here are some of the boxes (with another 4 already in the garage)



And here's the rest of my supplies still to pack. On the right there are 3 cupboards also full. Since this is the 9th move in 6 years perhaps I should have just kept in all in the boxes?


I'm not sure one course is going to be enough to reduce this hoard!

Junque Journal

This year I decided to improve my creativity by signing up for an online Art Journal Course called Art Journal Caravan by Angie Baxter.
http://tangiebaxter.typepad.com/tangies_blog/art-journal-caravan/

I have been finding it so hard. My mind goes blank when we get the prompt for the week. I could write it down as a little story but draw/paint/collage it? Where do these wonderfully creative people get their ideas from? I'm in awe as I look at their pages. So far I have completed every session (8 in total) but not game enough to publish any of my "art".

What I discovered is that I am very left brain, logical and ordered. I like my things to all line up and be balanced......tidy with just a few colours that go together.....that was until I discovered Junque Journals!

On the forum for this course, was a post from Angie about creating a book where you put all your memorabilia, greeting cards, menus...whatever you collect and hang onto for the memory or sentimental reasons. This should give you the link to the first video which shows you how.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpZ-tv5TsjM

Well I thought I would give it a try. A quick trip to the supermarket to buy a cheap school book and I was underway.

It took me a couple of hours to make. But it was wonderful fun! I just love it, the look and feel of it.



Nothing is precisely measured. I loved crunching up the pages. I used up lots of my old stash. When it was finished I decorated the cover with pretty paper and embellishments.



And then I started filling it. I had a shoe box filled with all sorts of things so they are all in my journal now which stands in a corner of the lounge.

Do you want to try it? Or let me know if you'd prefer me to make you one.

wishing you lots of possibilities....
Beverly

Morning Walks & the Things I See

I haven't got the right kind of camera for these dawn photos but they capture certain momemts.....like our footprints in fresh snow.



And those birds again. I thought we had missed them as there was no noise and then out they came from the tree. Of course my camera was in my pocket and by the time I got it out to click and shoot they were on their way....





And for those of you who are sick of winter...signs of spring are around.



Enjoy your day...filled with lots of possibilities.
Beverly