About Me

I'm a freelance artist, designer and demonstrator and have been involved in arts and craft my whole life in one way or another. I design stamps for top British company Personal Impressions, under the "Lindsay Mason Designs" brand, as well as papers, templates and other crafting products. I'm a certified Ranger Educator and my first book,"Stamping", was published in 2009. I also design regular projects for Crafts Beautiful magazine and have made guest appearances from time to time on QVC. I've recently joined You Tube under the name of LindsayMason1000 where I'm posting short technique videos and you can buy my paintings and hand crafted pieces from my Etsy shop. My work takes me all around the country demonstrating stamping, papercrafts and general inkiness! When I'm not working, I love gardening, church & community activities, nature watching, journalling, music and theatre and just relaxing at home. Email me at: ljm.design1@virginmedia.com

Sunday, 29 July 2012

My day of rest...

Well, not exactly a day of rest as it turned out, but more of that later.
On Friday, Heather came over to spend the day with me and to sleep over. In the afternoon one of my neighbours kindly offered to dig the hole for us to bury David's ashes and plant the rose, called "Moment in Time", which I got to commemorate him. Although it was very emotional, it felt like a positive and very important step and the rose will be a living memory of David.
It was a day of very differing ceremonies and Heather and I had decided to watch the Olympic opening celebrations together, so later on we treated ourselves to a Chinese takeaway (and a very extravagant bottle of Lambrini...which is about my level of alcoholic beverage!) before settling down in front of the TV.
I was pretty sceptical about what it would be like and was quite ready to cringe through the whole thing. However, we both thought it was good on the whole, amazing in parts and not so good in others. I really enjoyed the first sections...the almost steampunk industrial vision of towers and the forging of the rings, the Mr Bean Chariots of Fire sketch and, of course, the hilarious 007/Queen idea.We had sore throats from laughing out loud at that last one!

Being a square old thing, I didn't enjoy much of the "pop culture" section, which seemed to take over much of the remainder of the show. It was good to see that there were some spiritual moments included - such as Abide with Me in memory of the London bombing victims. Not sure who the singer was but we weren't impressed with her voice at all...shame there was no Bryn Terfell, Alfie Boe or even Leslie Garrett to show off some really good singers. We really didn't get the cycling birds - any ideas? Arctic Monkeys and Paul McCartney nearly made me turn the sound off! We really enjoyed the spectacle though and it was certainly different.
Yesterday the postman brought me a big parcel which had this pink and black beauty in it - the Sizzix Bigshot....
I was also sent a nice range of Tim's dies to go with it - you can just see a few of them on the left. Personal Impressions are now stocking Sizzix products, so I can finally use them! Tim's dies are definitely my cup of tea, so I shall enjoy working with them...I'll post pics when I've got samples made up.
Last night the rain here was incredible and the sound of the water hitting the conservatory roof was quite scary - Tara was very nervous indeed! Although I got to sleep reasonably quickly, the rain woke me up again not long after and I had one of those awful nights where sleep completely evaded me. At 3am I gave in and got up for an hour...to the sounds of Thomas and Tara both snoring away quite happily! I did finally manage an hour or so before they gave me an early morning alarm call for breakfast of course!
This morning I walked into the village to go to St Chads where the service was very uplifting. The rain had just about gone and the sun started to blaze down. A real rainbow day as I call them. When I got home I made a decision to start on one really bad area of the garden. It's one of two patches that David and I were beginning to sort out but they obviously got left. Every time I look at them they make me feel so sad but have seemed overwhelming really.
However, I sometimes make a decision to give myself ridiculous challenges and today was one of those occasions! I looked out at this overgrown mess and thought "I'm going to get this done today!". So, this was at 2 o'clock this afternoon when I had just made a start (then decided I should do before and after shots!). You wouldn't believe that we'd cleared this patch once looking at the state of it.
And here's a different view where you can see the area I'd just started on before taking the picture. At 3pm it looked like this...my hands were getting sore but I was determined to get it done! I was using the trowel as I find that easier to handle than a full sized spade. I was taking out all my anger and frustration on the weeds and stones which really helped! By 5pm it looked like this..... ......yes! Cleared, including the area beneath the Laburnum and shrubs at the back. I then sprayed the last vestiges of weed with a soil and animal friendly weed killer before pondering the stepping stones. They're pretty expensive to buy, so I decided to utilise what I already had. There were a collection of bits and pieces of paving stones that had been lying around so I tried them out until I found a shape that I liked with what there was. Some more digging and tamping in and by around 6 0'clock I'd managed to get to this stage. Okay, the stepping stones aren't exactly wonderful, but they look okay to me and they'll look fine when I finish the area off.
Now, that begs the question.....how shall I do that? Do I use the garish white gravel from the adjacent troublesome area, shall I add bark chippings? I'm veering to bark chippings and I'm going to make use of pots to bring flowers into this patch with bulbs planted at the back area. What do you think? Suggestions on a postcard please....or as a comment anyway!
So, I think I will sleep tonight what with the fresh air and the smell of lavender that has been wafting over me all afternoon. I've put some inside my pillowcase just to make sure. My hands are throbbing and covered in scratches, despite gloves, but it feels really good to have got such a lot done. The only thing that was missing was me running into the house like a big kid to drag David out to "come and have a look what I've done!", but I'm sure he was watching me and smiling with approval.
I have new drawings to start work on this week so I hope the hands feel a bit less painful tomorrow! I'm sure a good sleep will do the trick, so I am off for an early night now before I nod off in front of the computer screen............


Redanne said...

Hi Lindsay, another lovely post. I too, watched the opening ceremony and was, like you, prepared to cringe but, surprisingly, I quite liked it. The bicycles with wings were (I think!) meant to be the doves of peace that are at every Olympic ceremony (or perhaps they were Harry Potter themed??). When Sir Paul came on I switched off and went to bed - that man really should retire (sorry if people love him). You made a good job of that patch in your garden and I like your new path very much. I would go for bark, it does help to keep the weeds down. Hope you have a good week. A x

Gez said...

Oh, WOW! Lindsay I pray you aren't too sore tomorrow.xx You have done a fabulous job in the garden, can't wait to see how it progresses. Good luck with the drawing this week. More exciting designs to look forward too :o)) Please send my love to Heather. Wasn't Mr Bean the BEST! He had us laughing out loud. Just marvelous! Hope you get a good nights sleep.xx

Diane said...

It#s a shame when we have to turn on nature when she takes over, but boy it's good to see were we have been !! I would use woodchip......

Isin't it lovely to be woken with a ball of fluff in your face !! You can't roll over because you then get a wash !! My two dogs usually want to go out so I have to get up and then the two little buggers jump back into my bed !!

hugs Diane xx

Paul Browning - The Artsider said...

Blimey! Great work on your garden. It looks like all your hard work has definitely been rewarding. And your stepping stones are perfect! We have lavender in a front garden and it is indeed a gorgeous scent. Hope you slept well. Pxx

Clare said...

Hi Lindsay, I am so glad that you managed to lay David's ashes to rest in a beautiful spot in your garden. I know how much you both love your garden and it is so fitting for David's ashes to be there. I bet the rose is just beautiful. We have Mum's ashes in Dad's garden and we got a gorgeous Red Robin tree to commemorate Mum. A few months before Mum passed she had said how much she loved the tree so we knew we had to have it for her. I have planted a blue rose in my garden (I live opposite Dad) as I wanted something in my garden for Mum. It absolutely flourishes Lindsay and has the most beautiful blue roses you have ever seen. Understandably I would have been incredibly emotional for you hun but at least now you have somewhere that you can go sit, talk and treasure. Although David is all around you it is still nice to have that special place.
Your garden by the way is looking amazing. You have worked so hard lovey and David would be so proud of you. I have bark in my garden which I really love and it looks really nice to and would highly recommend that. Make sure we see more pic's as it progresses.
Want to say a big thank you for my beautiful card and your lovely words. I just think that you are so brave. My Sister is doing ok and her and the boys are coming over to visit us from OZ in September which is the first time we have seen them since the loss of Matthew.
Wow am certainly loving your new toy Lindsay!!! those TH dies look lovely. Can't wait to see all of your creations!!!. Tara and Thomas sound like they are well. They are such wonderful company aren't they. Don't know what I would do if I didn't have my two. I have my little girl furbaby climbing all over me as we speak lol!.
Love reading your posts and look forward to the next instalment. Take care hun, hugs Clare xxx

Hazel (Didos) said...

Oh Lindsay , you brought back memories of when We scattered Grandads Ashes. It will be nice to go into the garden and know he is there. I wander up Grannys Garden when I go out there and have a chat with Grandad.
I was sadly sleeping on Friday night so didnt see the Ceremony. I had a fall on Thursday and boy has it taken a lot out of me!! OUCHY!!!
Im hoping you are not sore today after all the gardening you did, Well Done you, Love Hxxx

trish said...

Hi Lindsay, my goodness you were a busy girl, a job well done. Remember if you are putting down stones or chips on top of the soil you will need something down first to stop the weeds forever coming through. You probably knew this anyway, but just in case. Love to hear all your stories, keep them coming please.

angie's blogspot said...

wow you can come and do my garden any day, you've done well Lindsay, just a tip and I could well be wrong, but before you put bark chippings down, you might need to put a membrane sheet down first to stop any weeds re appearing
take care
Angie x

Lindsay Mason said...

Thanks for all your advice everyone - very helpful. I've got the weed suppressing mesh and it's going to be bark chippings. The other patch has now been cleared of the awful white gravel - my neighbour said she could use it, so her grandson and I shifted it all last night. He's going to get the ground levelled out with top soil and I've decided to have the ready to roll turf and have a little lawn there which it used to be. Hopefully it won't take too long and I'll show you the results when it's done.
Thanks again for all your uplifting comments...don't think I'll be taking gardening up professionally though, my poor hands feel like they've been through a mangle! Great exercise though! Lindsay x x

Joanne said...

First of all my lovely, I'm glad you have finally made the decision about David. I know that was hard but it had to be done. I too watched the opening ceremony and thought the BBC coverage was rubbish especially if those pictures were going round the world. This is my country and I couldn't understand some of it. As for PM, well I just put my fingers in my ears and thought - why?? For me the best bit was when I switched it off and went to bed!!! Glad the Big Shot arrived and can't wait to see your samples. Take care of your hands, they are precious tools.
Big, big hugs,
Joanne & T

Mel said...

Hi Ya, you've done an amazing job on the garden ! im a bit concerned about the bark chippings though, as i used them once and although they looked great - all the neighbourhood cats continually pooped in them ! I had to switch to stone chipping - which they dont like to walk on and/or dig up.
Dont get me wrong i love cats - i have 4 myself but it did get a bit much having to dig it up, not to mention smelly. Why is cat poo so smelly anyway !!!?? Hmm imwith you the Olympic ceremony was very different, interesting and enjoyable with some weird bits in it! I thought they were butterfly on the bikes ! Shame they dragged up Paul McCartney that was the most embarrasing moment. Loved the PM & Queenie humour. i wonder what the closing ceremony will be like. Take care. Love Mel x