Friday, 29 January 2010

CHA, power cuts and crocs .... Oh My!

Hi cyber buddies ... tis me ..... I’m alive and have returned from an awfully big adventure!!! So as you know I was lucky enough to get to go to the CHA and all I can say is WOW! It is mahoosive and for a country girl from the UK sensory overload became the phrase of the visit! I had the BEST time in my brief visit and will try and share my experience with you now without writing the biggest blog post in the history of blogdom LOL are you sitting comfortably?? Ok then I’ll begin!

We arrived in California on Sunday night flying into America at Houston .... tip here if you ever connect through Houston check the gate departures before you start running the half a mile to the supposed gate only to have to turn round and run back again!!!!

Finally we got to California. We had a great deal on a room .... not 5 star but heh it was cheap and I was so excited to see the convention centre on the doorstep as we pulled up! A trip out for food, glass of vino then bed before the on slaught!!

Monday morning

I was actually finally there!!! When I walked in I was dumbfounded! Booths as far as the eye could see, headless chicken comes to mind LOL But I was led to the Purple Cows booth and tried to get my bearings. I met some of the fab Purple Cows DT and have made some new found long lasting friendships. (I will post links to my lovely cow girls in the next post, you can always catch them on under create if you want to nosey now!)

And I met the bosses ..... Oh we had a blast together and laughed the whole time we were there, hubby being a big hit with them.

As I wasn’t on the booth until the afternoon I got to explore. There was so much STUFF!!! I had to stop looking at one point my poor little brain had started to develop so many creative ideas and there’s only so much space in there LOL I did however get to meet the lovely Claudine Hellmuth, one of my inspirations

While on the Rangers booth I also met up with the lovely Dyan from Art from the Heart who was busy prepping for a dem but alas Sir Tim remained elusive to me, he was either surrounded by people or off round the floor with his amazing make and take stand.

I also spent some time with the Glitz girls this is the gorgeous Laura

And the rest of the Glitzy girls

Ginger, Laura, me and Erin.

They are so lovely as are their husbands who were also on the booth! And you have to check out the new releases and all the gorgeous things to be had, I am sat in my hotel room with a big bag of Glitzy goodness .... Lucky me!!!

So the afternoon saw me on the booth and after the initial ‘what do I do???’ panic I got into the swing and chatted to people from all over the world and from all walks of the craft industry! We left the floor about 5.30 and trotted off to the Anabella where the Purple Cows held a drinks reception, just before I left the booth however a very familiar, lovely face appeared to say hi .... twas our Shimelle. She came to join us for drinks

And a fun evening was had by all. At the reception I also met the gorgeous Jan Mollet Evans who then introduced me to the Craft Diva herself and of course the Duke from the Diva craft lounge. Again Hubby was a great hit here too with all the theatre connections and we had a blast. By the end of the evening we had a little British contingent going as Becks Fagg and Jo from Design Objectives, Sue (Crafty Stash) and Tracie Hudson joined the party! Finally we all gave in and bed was a welcome rest!

Tuesday morning bright and breezy I was on the floor ready to demo by 8.45am (very early by my standards LOL) And suddenly a very bizarre thing happened! Creativity Knocks came by the booth to film a tool demo as part of their top 10 tools segment and you guessed it yours truly was told she was doing it aaarrrgghhhhh (was going through my head) but I guess not having a lot of time to think about it helped .... right???? I did my best swan impression calm on the top paddling furiously underneath and did it ... The result will be posted on the creativity knocks website in February ... I guess I’ll tell you when! Rick (the boss) asked if I was nervous and said he could tell as he thought there was an earth tremor the counter was shaking so much ..... how very dare he! (But I was shaking rather a lot LOL)

After my morning demoing the afternoon was mine and in a slightly calmer (if not exhausted) state I had a wander .... there is some gorgeousness being released .... you have been warned! I didn’t manage anywhere near the whole show but tried to take in as much as possible, I did take pics but 1. This post is long enough and 2. Pictures don’t capture the scene really .... hey you’ll just have to visit LOL.

Tuesday evening my bosses at Purple Cows very kindly moved me and hubby into their hotel the Anabella and the extra luxury was a real treat it’s just we had to share the room ..... with Sadie Purple Cow!!!!

After a long day of meeting and greeting she had to have a lie down LOL I can’t repeat the note that was left just suffice it to say it was HILARIOUS! And as you can imagine this is a whole other story and after going to dinner and drinks at the Marriot with Rick, Gary, the Diva and Jan I have a whole story board of the adventures of Sadie LOL

Good food, good wine and good company, we were very ‘happy’

And so it was goodbye to California on Wednesday and Hola Mexcio once again!

However our return to the hotel was a whole other adventure. We returned to a blackout, the whole of the lagoon area had a power cut and the hotel was pitch black. We were in hysterics calling hola through the door to be answered by a little voice from the darkness illuminated by the light of a mobile phone! We infact saw our way up the stairs to our room by the light of my phone ... HILARIOUS! So dinner plans changed and we trolled off to the first restaurant with lights on and had a wonderful dinner and on the way back we actually saw one of the elusive crocodiles that live in the lagoon. We’ve been told they live in there but after 7 years it’s the first time we’ve seen the evidence, it was quite speactacular! Isn’t life funny with it's twists and turns??!!

There are a few gaps in my adventures but these I will share at a later date. I was sooooo glad we took the trip up there and wish you could have all been with me to join in the fun!

Well I guess it’s more sun, sand and sangria for me now sorry to all my UK cyber buddies I hear the white stuff is back ya boo sucks! I’ll try and get another post done soon and I’m back on the 8th so normal service will resume! Thanks for stopping by and trawling through this epic LOL.
I hope you’re all well and happy and until next time Happy Crafting!


Ps As I said in my last post apologies for lack of links but slow connection and internet cafes and all that are not helpful, I will get sorted back in blighty! M x

PPS almost forgot the lovely Bev over at Banana Frog is looking for some new froglets to join the team!!! Call ends 14th Feb so what are you waiting for? ... get stamping!!!! M x

Thursday, 21 January 2010


Hi cyber buddies or should I say Hola! I’m still alive and finally made it to our beautiful Mexico Phew!!!

Before I go on welcome to my new cyber home! The mjm blog will reside here now, I know I promised it would be decorated and pretty but hey what ya gonna do? Christmas holidays, snow and deadlines has kept the decorators away ... but soon! I’m in the picking pattern stage LOL

It felt like it was getting a bit touch and go last week as to whether we would make it here to Mexico or even out of the village ever again!... the normal chaos of my life seemed to treble suddenly and thoughts of snowbound us, cancelled holidays, hospitals and heads exploding became a distinct possibility!

I have a load of pretty snow pics but at the moment can’t really bare to look at them, being trapped in the village as I was had me developing a distinct disliking for snow, this is a gratuitous photo of the snow bound lane.

It’s the same shot of the lane as in my Purple Cows Autumn layout if you want to see it not white!

This is the same shot again a few days later but including hubby on his return from his panto run .... Oh! the glitz and the glamour of show biz heh! He managed to get a taxi to the end of the lane and me and Stan walked the mile and a half to meet him to help carry the essential supplies of ham for Stan and wine for me home! You may notice a slight clearing of the lane, well a miracle did happen that day. After a week of snow a man turns up in a tractor type vehicle with a bucket thing on the front and started to clear some white stuff. He didn’t however go as far as our end of the village and then suddenly disappeared job half done. We found out the next day he had driven too close to the edge of the road and ended up in the ditch ... that’s councils for you! With the clearing of the lane we could see an escape plan forming so I continued with some deadlines to clear the decks....

This is a Purple cows project I made for their spot on HSN (Home shopping network USA) It is one of my wishing houses (DIY project available on my website) with a polymer clay roof that is cut and textured with the ever so fabulous Purple Cows freestyle mouse and decorative click blades!

This was my Banana Frog stamp school on the 11th. A nod to the snow but with colour!!! The step by step instructions can be found over at the lilly pad.

And if you go and check out the It’s a creative world blog you will see the start of the 2010 project that I am proud to be guesting for and the hope chest I made for the project! The post was on the 16th of January. I don’t have pictures with me I’m on Hubby’s laptop and didn’t copy all my files to the hard drive DOH!

......Happy I was until the snow came again ..... and didn’t stop, our hearts were sinking! PMA was put into action (positive mental attitude) and we silently preyed! A thaw did start and hubby went to clear the drive in anticipation of an escape, more disaster, he twisted his back! After hours of screaming and not being able to move I left him in bed to get some shut eye myself on the settee and laid there wondering how you cancel a holiday! BUT me being me and bloody minded, Friday I bundled him in the car and we went to the docs. I was TERRIFIED driving on the now slightly melting compacted 6’’ of ice outside our house but we made it, he got knock out drops and we went home to load up, having to rely on a neighbour to get the car back to the house for me than having to do the terrifying drive out of the village all over again BUT we were FREE!!!

We took our Stanley Dervish up to Mum and Dads in Yorkshire for a holiday with his sister Ruby then we drove down to a friend in Croydon to leave the car and toddled off to Gatwick, Mexico was finally in sight! And here we are

Views from the balcony
We are alongside the Nichupte lagoon in Cancun, we normally stay down town but our lovely Mexican friend has rented her apartment long term now so we found an alternative. A very quiet hotel that is self catering, a little rough round the decor edges but oh so Mexican and we LOVE it! And the restaurant on site is to die for, yay us!

This was the first night, a bucket of cocktails each LOL

And this was yesterday on Isla Mujeres. The sea is so blue and clear and you can walk out for miles without it getting deep.

And this is cocktails (yes again!) at the sunset grill before we got the ferry back to the mainland.

Today is a trip downtown and fajitas tonight at el Crucero. A real Locals bar where they find it hysterically funny that we would want to go as tourists. But the food is so good and cheap and the Mexicans are so friendly why would we want to be anywhere else?
I’m starting to gear up for our trip to the CHA on Sunday, very excited and a bit nervous to be demonstrating there .... I’ll keep you posted!

And finally .....

Our Stanley LOVED the snow and disappeared regularly in the garden!

Our little snow ball!

We miss our boy but know he’s being well looked after and having a ball with Ruby!
Ok cyber buddies, I’ve sat in this internet cafe long enough, off to catch some sunshine and maybe a cocktail!! And I’ll report in soon. Thanks for stopping by and moving to the new blog home with me remember my website is still going and I have just updated the galleries so don’t forget to check it out!

I hope you are all well and happy! See you soon and until then, happy crafting!
M x

PS sorry there are no hyper links at the moment, I'm trying to beat the battery running out on the lappy and fighting against some very annoying jazz music in this cafe ... I'll update post next time
M x