Thursday, May 31, 2007

Friends at Play

First layout done with Club Scrap Friendship kit from April 2004. Gin-X alpha rub ons and an alphabet template from the early days of scrapbooking for the title.

Second layout is all Chatterbox stuff that I am desperately trying to finish off. Why oh why do I buy so much!!?! The title I finished digitally because I could not find the right colour chipboard. I have some raw ones which I shall colour some other time. This layout inspired by one in CK of last month, I think.

It is not easy for Ricky to find playmates, especially outside the school environment. Which is why he has a fantastic time when he gets together with William & Matthew. They are just as boisterous as Ricky and they have a great time together!

Lily's seventh birthday. We had a 'Dress Up' tea party. Everyone wore their prettiest outfits, ribbons in their hair and even some jewellery! These little girls usually live in tees and shorts. It was so nice to see them all dolled up. Of course, some refused, even for the party .. LOL! See if you can spot the one very angry face!

Since there is not much journalling involved in these layouts I will leave you with the following to read. Do take the trouble of clicking on each image and squinting through the print and also the handwritten comments. It is well worth the effort .... Peter at least had a very active imagination.


This following video does not really have much to watch - rather more to listen. Some jokes by Demetri Martin.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Zhuhai, China

First layout done with Club Scrap Culinary kit from April 2003. Also used Cherry Top chipboard and Heidi Swapp chipboard alphas. And one photo holder.

Second layout is with papers and tags. Both layouts inspired by ones in the current CK.

Over a long weekend we decided to visit Zhuhai, which is an hour by jet foil from Hong Kong. It is part of mainland China. Zhuhai is famous here because it has a racetrack but more importantly (for us) for its food. We went on a gastronomic holiday! We tried every kind of Chinese cuisine. And other kinds too like Thai and Vietnamese. Every meal was fantastic. Is it something about the place? Or the water? I really do not know! I cannot wait to go back and sample Zhuhai food again.

And in between meals we visited spas! Tons of them around and we were spoilt for choice! One of the most interesting spas has a series of hot water pools built into niches in the mountainside. You meander along the pathways and perhaps come across a pool that is a milk bath to make you fair ~ Chinese like fair skin. Then some paces away there is one with rose petals and orange peel, which maybe drains the toxins from your liver or something. And so on. To all purports if you bathe in all the pools you will come away completely healthy!! LOL! One pool that I will never forget is with Ginseng tea and some other herbs that I cannot now recall. This is the only pool that is ice cold. And the sign says, and I quote, 'it will take away your horn*iness' ~ I kid you not! Such entertainment there is to be had in China!!

Some more photographs from our dinner to celebrate Lily's birthday. This layout is for her album.


A video of a pastel painting in high speed. I found it most interesting to watch.

And a parody of a well known song. It is called 'White and Nerdy'

and in case you want to watch the original which I think is so much darker: Ridin' Dirty

ETA: Did you see Donny Osmond in the White and Nerdy video? Thanks Tracey for pointing that out! :-)

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Rugby Sevens!

I tried to keep both layouts as flourish free and 'sporty' like as possible. Which meant simple to me. First layout done with Club Scrap Weather kit from April 2003 and Hero Arts alpha stamps. This is a kit I fell in love with at first sight but strangely enough never used except to make one wall hanging.

Papers for the second layout are from the Shortcake Collection by Paper Heart Studio. And some QK alphas. The design is inspired by a layout from the current CK magazine.

The Rugby Sevens in Hong Kong has to be the most popular and anticipated sports event here every year. Teams from all over the Rugby playing world attend. The teams are only seven a side. This makes the games fast and furious. It is amazing to watch! For three days the audience is held in a thrall of action and movement. Because the games are so short, the players give it their best. It is really one of the most fun sporting events for the spectators. Almost as exciting as football!

And some people can actually sleep with all the noise around them! Amazing!! Joe gets only a single page layout. Folks that sleep at games do not merit double page layouts! So there!

Keeping to the 'Sports' theme, here is a very strange Table Tennis match!

And an ever stranger race!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Team Yamaha!

First two layouts done with Club Scrap Mosaic Twist kit from January 2005. I choose this kit just for the colours, which are a perfect match for the Yamaha colours. One rub-one word, Sticko alphas, CM alpha stickers and alpha stamps complete these two layouts.

Second layout is done with sei papers and stickers. The larger alphas are traced and cut from Gin-X Imagination Project extremely large alphas stickers.

Joe & Lily are great fans of MotoGP. The fact that they sometimes can join the teams during the races is great too. Especially for getting up close & personal with the mega motorcycle stars! It is always a thrill to meet Valentino Rossi. Lily is a huge fan. What we all love about The Doctor is that he has not let his unbeatable talent and incredible success go to his head. He is the nicest guy ever! He always has a ready smile and friendly word for everyone he meets. He is quite simply awesome! Colin Edwards, another Yamaha rider is a swell guy too! And of course both are incredibly talented riders. Yamaha have a great team now and we are rooting for them all the way!

A school play of Ricky's which I quite did not 'get'. All about gangsters, guns and the mafia. Shooting and driving stolen cars. The storyline quite escaped me too. Oh well ... the songs were very nice and the children were obviously enjoying themselves. Ricky looked so cute - a very suave and handsome mafia person, if you please. And he delivered his lines perfectly! Actually, even though I did not understand the whole thing, I quite enjoyed myself!


A message from those very funny blue guys, whose show I could not get tickets to in Vegas, about Global Warming:

And a slightly longish video of a guy flying multiple kites. Okay ... so I watched only half of it. It was entertaining but it should have been shorter.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


First layout done with Club Scrap Science kit from September 2005. And some large chipboard letters which I painted in brown & red acrylics.

Second layout is with Basic Grey papers. And a couple of rub-on words. Heart is cut free hand. And a word sticker strip.

Malaysia Moto GP: Lily was a huge fan of Casey Stoner. And of course, she is a bigger fan of Valentino Rossi, but this story is not about him.

She was there with Stoner’s team, watching him get ready for his race etc.
We usually are in the paddocks with the teams. The time came for Stoner to go out on the track. And the teams usually have someone holding an umbrella over the riders head. Those that can afford it have long legged pretty models doing the job. Those who cannot, make do with wh
oever they can find. And since Lily was around the team manager asked her if she wanted to go out on the race track with the umbrella. Lily was in seventh heaven! Can you imagine how excited she must have been! Everyone on the team thought it was a good idea till Stoner heard of it. He simply refused to have her hold the umbrella! The reason? He said his girlfriend would not like it!

Lily accepted with very good grace because she is a beautifully behaved girl. But, boy was she mad!! When she got home she was most critical of Stoner. I had to listen for hours when she criticized everything from his behavior to his riding. Nothing the poor guy did was acceptable anymore! And even today, for every race that she watches, she actually loudly vocalizes her support for any rider who challenges or beats Stoner. LOL! I find it funny to watch her. She is so angry ~ even today!

And now she is a bigger than ever fan of Valentino Rossi ... but that is another story!

A surprise birthday dinner. We thought we were going to a normal dinner but Joe surprised us by taking us to Isola at the IFC where we had an amazing dinner and a cake too!

The following video is a medium high speed chase with a twist.

And a video of the Northern lights or the Aurora Borealis. The video was shot over a long period of time and then speeded up. Apart from the lights I love watching how the stars slowly move during the months.

A link to another video, though it is actually just still photographs (awesome ones) set to lovely music.

Friday, May 25, 2007

No Limits

Old layouts today because I have to rush, doing 'mommy' things with Lily. I have no idea who makes the paper in the first layout but I like the effect. The second layout is all Basic Grey.

Both layouts from school field trips. I used to be able to accompany Ricky before. And I got some really nice photos and an understanding of what the kids were studying etc. Now that I have to work during the day, I miss out on this aspect.


The first video has some one smoking a cigarette but it is interesting to watch. Just so you know. The guy would not be able to do the trick if he did not smoke.

This second video is an advertisement for knives and some minutes long. I am very happy with the knives I have but after watching this I actually went to see if the knives were available in Hong Kong! Not to buy because I am a ceramic knife gal ...
Anyway, he has some good tips on taking care of knives, which is applicable to any kind of steel knife, not just the brand in the video.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Easter 07

Today is the birthday of Buddha. It is a public holiday here so I had time to complete 3 layouts and watch the last 4 episodes of Grey's Anatomy. Tonight I shall watch the latest episode of the Tudors. Interesting serial, that. Love the casting of Anne Boleyn. Naughty stuff kept the Tudors busy ... ROLF!

Three layouts for three different albums, all from our Easter lunch with friends this year.

First layout is done using Club Scrap Impressionist Art kit from Aug 2000. I also used 'Thickers' alpha stickers from American Arts, Making Memories rub-ons, Hero Arts alpha stamps & Paper Pizazz ribbon stickers. 'Pasqua' is Italian for Easter.

Second layout uses Sassafrass Lass Tickled Pink papers, a ribbon, some mini alpha stickers from Sticko Bookworks and a photo holder. Layout design copied from one in a CK magazine. The scalloped edge is done with the Basic Grey notch tool.

Third layout uses Basic Grey Skate Shoppe papers & Alphabets. Paper Pizazz ribbon stickers and Hero Arts Alpha stamps complete this straightforward layout. The ampersand is hand cut from this very nice thick velvet paper. Again, layout inspired by one in a CK magazine.

Will is shy and does not like getting his photo taken. I was lucky that he did not run off but he does look serious, does he not? Ricky on the other hand ... :-)


If snakes bother you, maybe you should not watch this one. But it is quite funny!

And I am sure most of you have been to Las Vegas and seen the fountains of the Bellaggio. It is something I must see every time I visit. I have recorded some snippets but none as good as this following video. It is a decent recording and the song is so lovely! Enjoy!!

The same video as seen from a Lake View room at the Bellaggio.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Rock Climbing

First layout done with Club Scrap Moody Blues kit from March 2002. There is something magical about this kit. I love every single layout I have seen with it ~ and not just mine! I used word stickers form Creative Imaginations which are almost of similar colour tones. A long sticker with the word 'courage' written on it and a green ribbon. The layout design is copied from this months' CK.

Second layout is done with base paper from Basic Grey Scarlet's Letter. Swirls are hand cut from 7 Gypsies Clermont & Saratoga papers (now I know that I do need the Bo Bunny 'whatsitcalled' tool to draw curves). Stickers from Art Warehouse and Nostalgique. Chipboard corner element painted with iridescent acrylic bronze paint.

Lily spent a week on the outlying islands of Hong Kong doing all kinds of crazy stuff. She enjoyed every minute of this week, organized by her school. Here she is at a place called Tung Lung. She is wearing bright green pants so in real life you can actually identify her in this photograph. She right on the rock face!!

Mel is a very good friend of mine. She got married in 1998 and does she not look radiant? And now I am scrapping the photograph, the marriage is already ended. She is the sweetest, kindest and funniest person I know. And that's not just because we share a birthday ... ;-) I knew from the beginning that the guy she married did not deserve to even know her, let alone have her love him. Which is why I chose to scrap the photo of her only.

Another 'Just for Laughs' video:

And another bit of useless information, but makes for slightly interesting watching:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


First layout done with Club Scrap Outdoors kit from November 2000. A Nostalgiques sticker, QK alphabets and a stamp from the Down to Earth kit complete the layout. Inspired by Sue's beautiful layout yesterday I decided to stamp on my layout too! Of course, mine is a much simpler affair using just the stamp from the kit and Ranger Adirondack 'Mushroom' (surprise!) coloured ink. I used a felt tipped pen like thing to rub some 'Meadow' green onto the images.

Second layout done with paper by Sarah Milne for Scenic Route. Red alpha stickers are Thickers by American Crafts. Sei rhinestone brads and Hero Arts alpha stamps complete this layout, inspired by one from a past issue of CK.

Late in summer, usually in September when the conditions are just right, with the full moon and some showers, the forests in the Apennines abound with the king of all mushrooms, the cêpes. We are avid collectors of these mushrooms and everyone in the family takes to the wilderness, hunting for these elusive edible delicacies. And what elation there is when we return home with our baskets full with porcini, as they are called in Italian. We then gorge ourselves on fresh porcini salads, pasta with porcini and tomato sauce, and of course sun dried porcini to last us the rest of the year. Buon Apetito!

Nothing much to say about this layout except I realize now that I used to dress my daughter very often in red! LOL!

This is in Portland. I was in a similar situation once in Vancouver, many years ago. Still scares the daylights out of me when I think about it!

And do not be too hasty to judge ... LOL!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Tough Guy!

First layout done with Club Scrap Wild Wild West kit from 2005. All items except epoxy stickers & fancy staplers from the kit. I had fun doing the 3D belt from the Scrap Rap.

Second layout done with American Crafts papers. All part of a kit from Scrapologie.

Since wearing this hat is the closest we will get to the wild west, these photographs are the best thing that I could find for this kit, one that I had not touched till today. Ricky looks so cute wearing his Papa's hat, which we got in New Zealand. And I just love his 'Tough Guy' faces (top left, top right & bottom centre)!!

June 1991: A very good friend of Joe, Dodo (short for Alessandro - and do not ask my how that is) and his wife Roberta went to Micronesia for their honeymoon. On the way there, they stopped over for a few days in Hong Kong. Here we are at a restaurant called Someplace Else where we used to go quite often. It has closed down now. I took the photo so I am not in it. The other photo is of Roberta, Cindy and me at the peak. I am the one with the very short hair and dressed like a gypsy. Sometimes I look at these old photos and wonder why I dressed in this funny manner ... LOL!

Today the first video is cool clay animation:

And a really nice advertisement.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

The Scissor layout

Layout done with the DIY Croppin' kit from September 2003. Also used some alpha rub ons and QK letters.

As part of his occupational therapy Ricky had to learn how to use scissors and to cut correctly. First he learned how to cut along straight lines. The he spent hours practicing cutting along curves. Because Ricky really enjoyed this activity, we took it a step further and I gave him my decorative edged scissors. He had a blast with them!

While Ricky was doing his cutting during one therapy session, I showed up with my camera. I took a lot of photos. And I love his expression in every single one of them. I simply could not choose or discard. So I decided to make a layout with all the photographs. He looks so adorable in all of them!

Yesterday I had a dinner party at home. Cooked Thai food and I was pretty liberal with the hot green chillies! LOL! Love the really spicy food. And for the first time I made Sangria at home. And it was the perfect accompaniment to the hot Thai dishes. Try making a pitcherful yourselves and then tell me if it is not the yummiest thing to drink on a hot summer evening!

Sangria: Half fill a large pitcher with ice cubes. Add 1 bottle of red table wine (I used a Merlot), 150 ml (5 fl.oz) freshly squeezed orange juice, 50 ml (1.7 fl.oz) freshly squeezed lime juice, 115 gm (4 oz) caster sugar and an apple and a pear, diced into small pieces. Stir till the sugar dissolves. Enjoy!
ETA: Here is a link to a website that will help you do conversions very easily. WWW Unit Converter. Or another website specifically for food conversions.

I am not sure if this video is the real thing or from some TV show. There comes a point in the proceedings when I cannot help but get skeptical, especially at the behavior of the policewoman. But it is fun to watch anyway:

The guy in the video below is really good at what he is doing. Worth a look-see :-)

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Pen Pals

Both layouts done with Club Scrap Literary Kit. A couple of stamped images of a pen and I was done! Well - I did do a bit of Xacto cutting: the designs from the white page (lower layout) cut and pasted onto the brown page (upper layout).

My mother taught me to ignore chain letters. And of course, I applied the same rule to e-mails and now forward neither letters nor e-mails. Especially if they are threatening or promise miracles. However one time I broke this rule of mine. When I was about eight or nine I received a friendship chain letter. What this letter wanted to do was help you make Pen pals. So I forwarded it to ten people, added my name to the bottom of the list of ten addresses, removed the top address, and then wrote to the person whose address I had eliminated from the list. I am sure many of you have had a chain letter sometime in your life and actually carried on the chain :-) so you know the procedure!

And that is how I made a wonderful friend ~ Debi in Australia. She was my age, had a younger sister called Jenni, a dog called Ben and a cat whose name I now do not remember. She was born and lived in the UK for a while, then moved to Australia. We wrote with great frequency for quite a few years. I really treasured every letter that I received. And she sent a lot of photos, which was so wonderful! She was my first real pen pal but I do not remember her family name anymore. All I have left are these photographs and memories of being so excited every time a letter came! Our correspondence died out when we reached our teens.

Just as I had written to Debi, Minoo from Amritsar, India wrote to me. I wrote back and thus started a friendship that lasted for almost a decade. She was a few years my senior. She wrote beautifully, describing her life, so very different from mine, her city which I had never visited, and many other subjects which we found a common interest in. Her letters were sensible, educative and she is probably the best correspondent I have had.

What I never understood is why our friendship ended. One day she wrote to me saying she was getting married ~ an arranged marriage, most common in India. I was very happy for her, sent her my congratulations and was convinced that she would keep writing to me even after she was married. But it was not to be so. After the wedding I never heard from her again. I wrote to her family asking for the new address, then I wrote to her new home, all to no avail. She never wrote back. I was very saddened by this loss. I still miss her friendship.

And now for some dance lessons:
ETA: The guy below is a motivational speaker and uses dance to motivate (Thanks Debi!). He appeared on the Today show. Well, he is very very good at dancing!!

If you have not seen this video, please do not freak out! It is funny in a 'give you the heebeejeebies' kind of way. This is no kid, but a midget. It is a scene from an Indian movie ~ a Tamil movie, a language I do not speak. So I too have no idea what they are saying.

ETA: A very kind soul has translated the conversation for me :-) Right in the end, the little fellow asks the reclining fellow for a bidi (Indian hand rolled stinky cigarette). The recliner says 'Hey, you are a kid, you cannot smoke'. The little one replies 'I am older than you. Now give me the bidi or I'll leather your backside'. Or something to that effect ...

Well, now I know!! Yay!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Pantheon, Rome

Can you tell I am in a bit of a hurry today? One old layout & the new one could not be simpler! I am meeting with friends for dinner at a restaurant called Beirut. Lebanese food ... YUM!

First layout uses paper from the Mosaic Twist Kit. And a 'Travel' themed sticker that was a RAK, Alpha stamps & black acrylic paint, and some light blue alpha rub-ons for 'the'. The little slide holder is coloured with alcohol inks.

The second layout is one that I have posted before, but a long time back. It is done with the travel themed kit called 'Journeys' (thanks Pamela!) that Club Scrap came out with some years ago. Love this kit!

The Pantheon was a Roman 'Temple to all Gods'. It was designed by the Emperor Hadrian (AD 118 ~ 125). In the middle ages it became a church. This amazing structure is a symbol of Rome itself. The huge dome has the same height and diameter. It has only one hole on the top of this dome through which light enters and illuminates the interior. The master artist Raphael is buried here, as are many of the modern kings of Italy. I tried to get a photo of Ricky inside the Pantheon, but low lighting and his constant high velocity made this an impossible exercise! In case you are wondering what the photograph in the slide holder is - Ricky in high velocity!

Summer 2003: We are at the main railway station of Milano, waiting to board the train to Venezia. We spent three amazing days exploring this beautiful city.

Now to learn something interesting:

And if you have about 10 minutes to spare to brush up on your geography:

Thursday, May 17, 2007


First layout is done with By The Seashore kit by Club Scrap. The only thing I added is the Art Warehouse sticker 'Perhaps' I love this kit. Every layout I have done with it I have really been happy with!

The second layout is done with papers and die cuts from A 2 Z Essentials. Papers are 'Essentials by Kate'. Both layouts inspired by the design of one LO in the current CK, page 52. And I just realized that one of my gulls are crooked. This seems to be happening to me more frequently now. I can see the wonky only after I have scanned it! Grrrr!

Both layouts are with photographs from the same trip to a beach here in Hong Kong, back in June 2000. One is for my album, one for Lillys'. And when I sat down today with these photographs I realized that June 2000 was the last time we visited a beach here in Hong Kong. I was shocked!

There are lots of very nice clean beaches here, especially on the outlying islands. Our home is but five meters from a beach. Why do we not go spend the day playing in the sand more often? We need to take an airplane and fly to some expensive resort to spend time on a beach. Why? I believe because it gives us more of a 'Holiday' feeling, the beaches are private, we do not think about work. But I have decided that we should try and find more time to spend on Hong Kong beaches, watching the waves, the gulls and the playing in the sand. Maybe not swimming because I am scared of the sharks and jellyfish. But the sun and the sand are fantastic!

This video is about a blind kid who can see using echo location! It is an amazing thing to hear him clicking away. What is the human mind and body not capable of!?!

And for some fun, Just for Laughs, a very popular series that I have watched so many times on Alitalia (they do not like to spend on movies). Just so you know, this is about ten minutes long:

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


First layout done with Club Scrap Bugs kit. Design inspired from the current CK. Heidi Swapp chipboard alphabets. The ribbon is paper, cut from a printed paper but not sure who makes them. I converted the photographs to sepia but two of them were so old that they did not turn out very well. this layout is one of those that just came to mind when I was looking through photographs that I wanted to discard because I had already made pages for the main events.

Second layout uses paper from Fancy Pants. The Paisley stamp is from a kit from Scrapgoods. The metal tag is from a Club Scrap kit. Letters are QK.

A very important event among Bengali Hindus in India, Mukhebhaat literally means 'Rice in Mouth' and is the celebration of the first time the child is given rice to eat. Also, the child is presented with a choice of articles like a book, a pen, some coins, etc and then everone waits to see what he child will pick up. Lily picked up the book ~ which is good. Actually none of the choices are bad ... LOL! We had 400 guests to lunch! That is a relatively normal celebration by Indian standards.

The design on the floor is hand drawn by my mother. She used a paste of rice powder and something else (not sure what) to draw this design freehand. It is called 'Alpana' and is a dying art in Bengal. I wish I had taken a better photo of the full design.

The following video is a bit dated. It was made with data collected in 1990. So some numbers may be off but not so much that it would alter the idea presented by it.

And a cute Yellow Pages ad:

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Natale 99

Layout done with Club Scrap Evergreen kit and chipboard elements, painted with acrylic gold interference paint. Card is done with some Club Scrap card stock. Stamps are from Hero Arts, Club Scrap and CTMH.

Christmas 1999: This year was the only time Joe & I ever did manual labour to make a Christmas gift. Earlier in the month we were in New York and Massachusetts. And in a small town we came across a very quaint shop selling doll houses. I fell in love with them! So we decided that this would be Lilly's gift for Christmas. After we got back to Italy we had one week to get it all fixed. Neither of us are very handy but we set up a temporary workshop in an empty office. And for one week we worked so hard - starting early morning and staying up late into the night. And we managed to get the doll's house ready in time ~ just to see the smile on Lilly's face!

For you LOTR fans .....

And if you like coffee, here is something that not many folks know about Espresso.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Make Up

First layout done with Club Scrap Art Deco kit, Gin-X rub-on alphas, Heidi Swapp chipboard alphas, negative of chipboard design used as a template for stencilling & hopefully 2 flowers when I find some that I like, similar to these digital ones.

Second layout uses paper from Daisy D & 7 Gypsies. I think the cardstock flower is also from Daisy D and the sticker strip is 7 Gypsies.

Lily discovered make up. But she was not too keen on putting it on her face. So she tried to convince anyone who was at hand. And here she has managed to trap Ricky's baby sitter into being a model. She is very pleased with her handiwork!

The colours of the dress and the red paper actually gel better IRL than in the scan. Oh well ... cannot be helped, I guess. And I made a mistake with the date. It should be early 1996. Both Lily and I loved this dress of hers. A gift from a friend in Italy, it was one of the few dresses that my tomboy daughter wore happily. It had an adorable little hat with a matching scarf tied around it. The pearls are Lily's own touch of class! LOL! Very Chic!

The following videos had me laughing out loud. I have no affiliations or preferred ideology where politics in the US is concerned. But when something is this funny ... well ... I must share :-)

And now watch this guy ... he is an amazing impersonator!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Chinese Doll!

Layout done with Basic Grey Romani papers. This print is called Romany and I really fell in love with it! The red Chinese sign is hand drawn and cut with an Xacto knife. I have not yet found alpha stickers that I like so just for this post I finished up the title digitally. I could not resist the Chinoiserie paper clip either :-)

Lily in a little Chongsam suit for Chinese New Year. She looked adorable!!

A couple of videos about some new ideas inventors have come up with. I find these things so interesting! People can be so creative - such genius!!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

One Cool Dude

Today was a busy day! I had to leave the house early to go help my BIL measure up his new apartment. He is moving to Hong Kong and has just rented a place on the 22nd floor of a high rise. It is a nice enough apartment.

After we finished measuring everything and had a quick lunch, we headed off to a building called Horizon Plaza in Ap Lei Chau. If ever you are in HK, this is a place to visit. Almost 30 floors of warehouses for furniture and home and garden furnishings of every imaginable kind. At prices at least 30% to 50% cheaper than regular stores. We were there till almost 7 pm, measuring and pricing beds, dining tables and sofas. Then we had to go buy food for dinner, pick up Lily who was with friends in another part of Hong Kong and the head home to cook dinner. All this with the heat and humidity at critical levels. I am feeling destroyed! I am going to hit the sack!

So I will just post two layouts that I did some time back.

Till last year Ricky's school required me to go along with him on all his school trips. While this was at times difficult because of work, I loved it because it gave me a chance to really be a part of the learning process for him. I also volunteered at his school weekly as an Educational Assistant. I really value these times I spent with Ricky especially now that I am not needed and realize that I actually miss it!

These photos were taken with a regular film camera during a school outing. And when I saw this photo of Ricky I thought 'Hmmm ... what's the tough guy look for?' No reason really, but it gave me the idea for the layout.

This particular outing was organized when it was still very cold. This was good since we had to walk all the way up Beacon Hill, right till the summit. When it gets hot in HK, like now, it can be terrible. The humidity is oppressive. So it is best to do all these strenuous activities while it still is cool. And as we kept walking and walking, all the children had but one thing on their lips : Are we there yet? I immediately thought of the Making Memories rub-ons that have been sitting in my stash for years perhaps!

I think many of you may have seen this video already. But It always makes me laugh! And I think the guy with the Tee 'Insufficient Memory at this time' is one smart guy!!

Jay Leno - Phony Photo Booth - For more amazing video clips, click here

And a very short but very cool video of a water balloon in space.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Girls Night Out

First layout done with Fancy Free papers from Fancy Pants. A 7 Gypsies sticker, acrylic flower, 'laughter' sticker & white alpha stickers (which I just felt like digitally plumping up). The second layout is with Club Scrap Steppin' Out kit from Nov 2004. Basic Grey rub-Ons, a couple of stamps and alpha rub-ons from Flair Designs Inc.

Every now and then we have a girls night out, and as I am sure you all know, it is great fun! Here I am with some of my really good friends in Hong Kong from a couple of evenings in 1998 and 1999. Unfortunately all of the people in these photos have left Hong Kong. This place is so transient - it is difficult to make long term friendships. Everyone is here only for the short term. It is sad when people leave. But memories remain :-) And now I have friends all over the world!

31st December 1998: We celebrated in a very posh restaurant in Italy with our cousins. The food was some the most amazing I have ever had, the chef having a couple of stars Michelin under his belt. The wine was perfect and everything planned very well - all in all a great party! Unfortunately I still like letting down my hair on New Year's Eve so I am back to partying hard here in HK! I can do elegant most of the time but not on NYE!!

Here is a reporter trying to file a report about soldiers burning drugs

And just a word of warning to the fishermen out there!


Thursday is when I leave work early and accompany Ricky to his swimming class. Till last term I was paying huge amounts of $ to have Ricky coached privately. And he was doing very well indeed. Except that he always swam alone. So I asked his coach to let me know when he thought Ricky would be ready to join a swimming class. And this term the coach said that he thought Ricky could handle being in a class of 5 or 6 children.

I was thrilled! And we started 3 weeks ago. Everything was fantastic! The swimming school accepts children with all sorts of disabilities. And the instructor knows Ricky for a few years now and felt that he was ready for a group lesson. Ricky was paying quite a bit of attention to his coach, he was enjoying the company of the other children and best of all - he was competing with them. I could see how he was trying to improve his technique, and swimming strongly to try and get ahead of the others. It was wonderful to see him like this and I could not think of a better way for him to learn!

Until today ... Ricky wants to be friends with the other children. Unfortunately for him, his approach is not always very easy and children who do not know him get a bit scared because he does not yet understand the concept of personal space very well. His social skills are not what they should be, but they are not so bad either. Left to their devices, these very same children, after a while, actually start talking to Ricky and get pretty friendly. Over the last few years, with encouragement from concerned teachers and parents, some children in his school have become good friends with Ricky.

But sometimes things turn nasty. The mother of one child in the class came up to me today and asked me to control my son since he was a threat to the other children. She said that she saw him bump into her son twice. She had seen him swimming too close to the other children. She told me that she had already complained to the instructor but he apparently did not agree with her. (Mind you, I have also been watching every lesson and I did not see one incident which could be construed as 'Dangerous') She informed me that my son was a menace and if I was not able to control him, she would complain to the swim school and have him thrown out. I have experienced this kind of treatment from the time Ricky was a toddler. I should be immune to it by now. But by golly ~ it hurts!!

There ~ got that off my chest and now on to nicer things: The first layout is Club Scrap Aromatherapy kit and K & Co chipboard letters. The second layout is with Club Scrap Bugs kit, a few buttons and an Art Warehouse sticker.

The photograph above somehow emphasizes how sweet Lily always is with her brother. She keeps him company, plays with him, makes him laugh, puts up with his tantrums and is really the nicest little big sister anyone could ask for! Now all I have to do is figure out some nice words to do the journaling on the right hand side of the photo ~ in little strips. Will have to finish that later. The design is inspired by a layout in a CK magazine.

This photo is my absolutest favorite photo of Lily and Ricky. There is just so much naughtiness in his face and so much niceness in hers. Really shows them as they are. The photo just had to go into my 'Book of Me' ~ they are my treasures. This is how I see them even today.

Now watch this and you cannot ever again say that women can't drive!!

And I just have to share this one ... OMG!!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


Seems like déjà vu - wait it is! I have a work dinner to go to this evening and so I am able to complete just one layout. Yesterday we had Japanese Yakitori cuisine. I love this style of Japanese food. It is fun to eat tiny kebab like morsels on sticks slightly bigger than toothpicks! And hot sake ... yum! We had everything - from traditional chicken wings to quails eggs rolled in bacon to grilled shitake mushrooms. I thought we had ordered just right but halfway through we were so full! Little bits and pieces fill you up without you realizing it.

Layout done with K & Co papers, Kambly rub-ons , Magic Scraps sticky rub on alphabets & gold leaf, Heidi Swapp crystal stickers and some digital prints that I cut out.

Halloween of 1998: We were invited for a really nice party. Lily dressed up as Princess Anastasia. That was the year the movie was released and so at the party there was every version of Princess Anastasia! Poor Lily! She wanted to be special. Instead she became part of a large crowd of princesses. LOL! The redeeming factor was a really great party for the kids. Lots of fun & games and treats.

Now, if you are a cat lover you will adore this video ...
ETA: There are a few shots of cats jumping out at kids just in case that bothers you.

And if you love both cats and Jane Austen, like me, this one is for you!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

B'day Morning

I have a work dinner to go to. So I leave you with a very simple layout done with the Club Scrap Music & Fine Arts kit from Feb 2001. Art Warehouse stickers. And the swirly thing is a foam stamp. I am not sure who makes it but MM would be a good guess.

The morning of Lily's second birthday she was so excited! She was running all over the place, not staying still and working herself into quite a frenzy. Finally her Yaya had to threaten her with 'No Party' to get her to calm down! I got that on film and I love her expression in it.
Her gift from us that year was the little kitchenette, table and chairs. This became her favorite corner. Not because she played house, but for reading, playing games and using the kitchenette as a storage unit for her treasures.

Today I am going to try and stay safe with the videos. Apparently yesterday's was a bit too risque' ... LOL!

I cannot figure out if she is like this or faking it!

And this one is really scary. Happened in 1991 in South Africa.

Fortunately, no one was hurt!

Monday, May 07, 2007


Layout done with Club Scrap Down to Earth kit from April 2005. Some 'macaroni' brads and QK letters. The mesh is from Magic Scraps because I found the kit mesh too heavy for this 8 X 8 layout.

Thats me, in the centre, always posing ... LOL! Even back then I knew how important the camera was and I was always making love to it! I do not have any photographs from the age 5 to age 20. My family had a camera but the developing process must have been so bad that all the photographs deteriorated within a few years. And there are no negatives - folks used to throw away the negatives once they had the prints!!!

Anyway, recently I started searching online to see if I could find any of my friends from University. I could remember the full names of only a handful of them. I left India in 1989 and it had been impossible to keep in touch. Of course, I will admit that I did not try very hard either. But the Internet, and the passing of years, is an amazing thing! I suddenly found myself thinking of the good old days when I was a student and consequently I wanted to find my friends. I was successful in finding two of them on the net. One of them had this photograph and sent me a copy. (thanks Shiroy!)

In the photo we are at a beach outskirts of Bombay (or Mumbai as it is now called). I cannot remember the name of the beach. (Info rcvd: It is called Marve beach) I can remember the full name of only one guy in the photo and only the first name of the girl next to me (P.S. I just got an e-mail with the names of everyone in the photo! Thanks to the guy who, thankfully he says, was behind the camera!! Buwahahaha!!). The only thing I can remember when I look at this photo is how happy and carefree we all were. Everything was so much fun!!

Now my quest continues for other photographs. They can surely help to jog my memory about friends and good times. How strange the brain is ... how easily I forgot everything!

Layout below is done with the Creative Imaginations line of papers. Stamps are from Hero Arts, I think. Word stickers are Rebecca Sower.

This is Lily at her second birthday. We had a little party at home. What I will always remember about this party is my choice of entertainer. I hired 'Cat Woman'. And when all the kids were assembled, the door bell rang. We opened the door and there was Cat Woman. She was dressed all in black, with a black mask and a long black tail. She was tall and slim and when the door opened she miaowed really loud. Guess what happened? All the 2 year olds totally FREAKED! Including Lily. What chaos! It took all the adults (thank heavens I was not alone!!) at least 10 minutes to calm everyone down. After that Cat Woman slowly took over (it was not easy) and soon it was what I had expected - a fun party with a great entertainer. This taught me to always be careful about which entertainer I hired. And I have always given advance notice to my little guests. Lesson well learned!

Card below is going to a young girl who is having her confirmation. I hope the sentiment is appropriate. I could not find anything else more fitting. I should buy one. Any ideas of what words I should look for? What does one say for a confirmation? Or a Baptism?

Be careful with this next video. It is funny but hold your breath at the end, okay? I almost gagged!

And staying on the topic of needing eyeglasses ... OUCH!!