Saturday, May 20, 2017

I'll be back, hopefully.....

Maybe it's the "having walked on eggshells since January", maybe I'm just too damn tired to get excited, but it's been a calm couple of weeks....... of sorts :-)

I was perusing "the net" this morning, and within 20 minutes, I found the following 2 pictures.... Maybe the universe is trying to tell me something.....

The one with the Panda's is telling the Panda's that arrived in Ouwehand Zoo to have fun with "inburgering", which translates into the legal adjustment to Dutch laws, regulations, customs and language, before being able to stay in the country......
De second one is advise to have your animals chipped and not let them become Asylum Seekers. The word "asiel" means both asylum and pound......

I know both signs are meant funny, and 6 months ago, I probably would have been rolling with laughter at the play of words,  but after the last couple of months, the puns taste a little sour. I never thought I would lose my sense of humor, mainly because I kept it through the worst of time.... but I think I sadly have to admit, that it's happening. I'm too tired to fight anymore, too far down the hole to claw my way up again, and no end in sight of the downs-piral. Every step I take to make our life better, even if it is in the (forseeable) future ends up biting me in the backside some other way. Not enough time in the day, or energy left, to fight the battles that need fighting and although I'm not giving up,  I think for everybody's sanity, it's better that I'm closing down the blog for a while......

Signing off......
Don't forget to hug a loved one for a long long time!?

Love and hugs,

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

What do you get

when you take a Ford Fiesta, and slap ugly all over it?
The new Ford Ka+ 😕

Maybe if they hadn't called it a KA, it might not be so bad, but to call this thing a KA, is an insult to the name :-) IT IS UGLY! It is NOT a KA...... Whoever thought this was a good idea, needs to go back on his medication.  I hadn't seen one "in person" yet, you can't find them in the dealerships, so when I had to go to check on the name of a part for my baby, Mike took a stroll thru the showroom, and showed it to me on the way out. Except for the signature eyeblinding yellow they put on it, it looked nothing like a KA, improved or otherwise.
The KA is not meant for families, speedcontrol for parents that have young drivers (controlfreak much?), voice activated ANYthing or being able to plug in every gadget on the planet. It is meant to get you from A to B in a fun way, easy to handle, easy to fix, and fun to kick around in, and especially in a country that figures that a 1.5 lane 2 way street, with parking on at least 1 side, needs planters every 50 feet to slow traffic.... easy to park!

To illustrate....

The original

The "improved" version

What is funny to me, is that on the page where they introduced it, in the middle of the text, were 2 adds..... one was for a foil to change the paint job on your car, the other was "wanna get rid of your car fast?" next to a picture of the KA+..... 

Maybe I'm not being fair,  (I'll admid, I'm not impartial by any stretch of the imagination) maybe it's not as ugly as I think it is, maybe it's a good car..... Just don't call it a KA and think you're going to endear KA-lovers to it.   One thing I've learned since we've had ours...... There are 2 kinds of people. Those who absolutely LOVE the looks of the KA, and those who absolutely hate it..... So who knows, maybe the people that absolutely hate the rucksack version, will end up driving a KA afterall.......... Silverlining? LOL.

Well, this is all I had to "get rid off" this morning...... There's more, like how I lost 3 weeks of work in 3 minutes, and the special event at the castle on the 22nd and 23rd of April, but that will keep till after "work hours" :-)

For now, I'm going to work, so don't forget to hug a loved one?

Love and hugs,

Friday, March 3, 2017

Another day in the jungle.....

Not a whole lot of news to tell. There's a couple of pictures I want to share with you from our Bird of Pray workshop last Sunday. Finally got around to downloading, distributing and organizing them. My computerstudent didn't show, so I'm freed up. Just discovered that our fuzzy roommate has food in his bowl, but no more than that, so as soon as the petshop opens up, I'll be heading there...... But the highlight of my day is that I get to go visit "Lars" in Maastricht. Remember I told you that a couple of the tourguides were going to the History Museum in Maastricht, and that I might be able to "see and feel how things are done"? Well, TODAY IS THAT DAY! I'll be picked up at noon, and will not hit the house until about 5..... And in between? BLISS!!!  (Information on the museum and Lars )

It's always a joy to see the faces of people when they're doing something they never thought they could... and the workshops are no exception. The kids are the most obvious, because the grin won't leave their face the whole time they are there, but if you look closely at the adults, you see the same thing in their eyes :-)  The group was really small this time, There were about 10 people signed up and 2 didn't show, and it completely changed the dynamic of the workshop compared to the first one. I think I like the smaller ones better. It's less hectic, and more personal, but we'll take however many people sign up :-) The photo-workshop is not happening this spring, but it's a good possibility for the fall, since we'll have a full 6 months to make it happen, instead of 2. I'm quietly planning ahead, keeping track of castle to-do's, and what people are saying they would like to see. The trick is going to be to set a date to talk to Wim about things, after he closes for the season at the zoo, and in time to get things figured and going.

But you didn't stop by to hear me think, now did you? LOL. Enjoy the pictures. (Someday they'll show up as scrapped pages, just don't ask me when....)  I adjusted my camera with higher ISO and depth, but looking at the pictures on the computer, I may have sacrificed a little in quality. Something to figure out before the next workshop.....

My favorite moment of the show was when Wim brought out the Great Horned Owl, and told me to get in line to hold her.... SO SO COOL!!  I protested only ever so slightly that I wasn't part of the workshop, just the fotographer, before I gave in. These majestic birds always have had a fascination for me, but I never, ever been this close to any of them.  I'm interested who's in the "mystery box" on the 19th :-)

My favorite picture of the show..........

Couldn't believe how soft the paws were, and how much they reminded me of the wolfspider you see in zoo's! LOL.  Paul told me that she used to fly over tables at a restaurant to show how little air displacement a big bird like her has..... so maybe we can incorporate that when we have the owl-workshop in the fall........ It's a thought :-)

Well, my ride is going to be here soon, so I best get going :-)
Don't forget to hug a loved one?

Love and hugs,

Monday, February 20, 2017


 Nope, not a newborn or a puppy, and  (gasp!) not even a kitten, but a Chiliean Eagle!

Yesterday was the first of 3 Bird of Prey Workshops at the castle, and I was one of the "contestants". IT WAS AWESOME!!

My sister was in on it as well, and even though we didn't get to sit and talk (I had duty at the castle as well, so I was also doing the coffee, cake and general running interference) it DID feel like an impromptu sisterday. She asked I didn't post any pictures of her on line, so I kinda found a way around it, just to share the fun. LOL.

I don't think anybody'd recognise her, so it's ok...

Harris Hawk

Boobook owl  (Ninox Novaeseelandiae)

Bengal Oehoe (Bubo Bengalensis

Fisher Eagle

Redtailed Hawk (Buteo Jamaicensis)
and........ SARAH!

It was sooo much fun to watch the little  (and not so little) kids' eyes gleam when they were holding the birds. One little one would not let go of the boobook owl, thru a piece of pie, cup of soup and glas of soda! He kept the glove on, with the owl attached thru a cord looped from the "shoe" on his leg to a ring on the glove.

It was a great day, and there are 2 more to come before the falconer has to go back to his "day job" at Planckendael Zoo in Belgium...... Already can't wait till he gets back in November. LOL.

Life may suck on so many levels right now, but yesterday was a "definite awesome" on this slippery rock we're on! You HAVE to love "friends" who, when you tell them  your life is coming apart at the seams, simply look at you and ask what this will do to their computer-class or a ride you promised in the future..... You reschedule a  class, because you just can't handle the histrionics that day, and you get a complete meltdown that "you've changed, and what, oh what did I do wrong, for you to do this to me?" Let me tell you, there's a lot of  things that would make not having "friends" a real good feeling right now.... At least I would know I was in this alone. Whatever happened to thinking of a friends wellbeing before your own?

Signing off to do a little coding and redesign on my website. Haven't heard from the coach since I turned in my homework a week ago, we're off to a Motorcycle show on Friday, castle on Sunday and in between, I keep learning :-)

Don't forget to hug a loved one?
Love and hugs,

Friday, January 27, 2017

We're somewhere between


and sometimes I think it's just more humane if somebody would just take us out and get it over with...

As you can tell, I'm not having a good time right now. The Tuesday after inventory, everybody got called in a meeting, and it was announced that within 18 months, they have to be down to 9 jobs. One job is considered somebody that works 20 hours, meaning you take the 40 hour people as 2 parts (being management), and you guessed it... that leaves actually 3 people out of 18 with a job.
Top that with.... "We don't know if the lay-offs start next Monday or June of next year" and "performance will not be taken in account" and you really know you're screwed!

I'm so messed up right now, I'm crying half the time, and pissed-off he other half. I didn't want to come back here, but I'm finally settling in and figuring out how things are done, and building some kind of normalcy in a place that feels more alien to me than The States did when I first got there but I have my family within reach and a little bit of my passion back, and I'm working on getting my business going, so we have options..... but obviously that was way too much fun and something needed to be adjusted...... We don't know if he's losing his job, we don't know when we'll know whether he has a job or not, unless you figure that if we haven't heard by September of next year, we're good......  I'm scared to death that Mike will have another heart attack with the stress that it's putting on him.  He's convinced that losing his job in Iowa had a big part in his heart-attack, so even thinking that puts him at risk for another one....And I'm not even considering what the thought of his feeling this way does to me, aside from the uncertainty and no safety-net what so ever. We don't have another income, or a pension to fall back on. This job is not so we can shop on base, and no big deal if it goes away. We're completely, utterly and royally screwed without his job, because we'll have 3 months to leave the country, and no place to go, or money to get there if we did.... So to spare you my rantings, ravings, doubts and outburst,  but also because I'll be busy going crazy.... I'll probably won't be around much for a while.  Wish us luck, and if you have an opportunity, if you could send some good thoughts our way, it's appreciated....

Don't forget to hug a loved one? And remember.... hug them twice if they're fuzzy :-)
Love and hugs,

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Happy New Year.....

Our little gumdrop never liked winter. Pretty much like the cat, when the temperature drops, she didn't want to leave the house. LOL. It got to the point, that we needed a jump twice in the last month, and while trying to start, she sounded like she had a bad cough.  Yes, I'm still talking about our KA. LOL. So Friday, I called my "go to" guy at EDAC, and he could check her out this morning and yesterday, I arranged for a jumpstart this morning, in time to get me to the garage to have her looked at. By the sounds we heard,  the little harder start every time until it finally wouldn't start, the fact that she doesn't like cold weather,  and putting that together with what I found online.... we were afraid, that the engine was losing compression, which would have meant that we would have to put a "For Sale" sign in the window, so I went to the garage preparing to lose my baby....  I'm pretty sure Edwin has never seen anybody happier when he showed me the battery test, that read 185 out of possible 395 of whatever he tested, and told me that I needed a new battery. LOL.  It wasn't really a decision that needed lots of thought, without a new battery, I would have had to leave the car where it sat, because it wouldn't start, just from doing a 3 minute full load test, until we got a new one..... so he ordered it, handed me a cup of coffee, and said it would be there in about an hour while I sat in the car and made my weekly plan....

When the battery got there and he started to take the old one out, I heard him mumble, so I went to look. He is used to me hovering when he's working on the car, asking questions and wanting to know what he's doing and why. Not because I don't trust him, quite the opposite, actuallly, (if he tells me it needs fixing, I KNOW it needs fixing, because he will also tell me if it doesn't need fixing, just cleaned, adjusted or what have you).  I want to learn how our KA fits together, and he gets that, and happily answers questions, and points things out if I don't get the connection right a way, but for a simple battery swap, I figured, I'd done it, seen it done, and honestly, I didn't really want to leave my seat..... When I get around to the front of the car, he is holding up the battery, looking at it from all angles and points to the Ford logo on one side of it........ IT WAS THE ORIGINAL BATTERY!!! The "born on date" of our Lady in Red is January 2000....... so that battery lasted 16 years, and more than 100000 KM! I considered taking a picture, just for a second :-)   The new one has a 2 year warranty, and as far as everything I read on batteries these days, if you get 5 years out of them, you're a lucky duck, so she did good :-)

On a castle note.... Bird of pray workshops are set for February 12th and 19th, and more will be added if there is a need. I will be there, so I will "report" afterward.

Mike is in the middle of inventory this week, it's starting to snow, (well actually, there's 10 raindrops followed by one snowflake that melts with it hits the ground, but I'm not complaining.  LOL)  and I should be getting back to work. I found this really cool looking menu for my website, but I have a hard time getting it to work, but I am also adjusting my logo and colors, to see if there is a more professional way that still looks like "me" .... If I'm not happy with anything I'm coming up with, I'll stick with my first idea..... I think.....maybe...... Oh, I don't know. LOL.

This is all I have to tell you today, so I'm signing off. Don't forget to hug a loved one, may they be human or of the furry variety, and enjoy your day :-)


Thursday, December 29, 2016

I should already be "at work"

but I wanted to share yesterday with you..........

It was cold, but there was no wind, and even the sun showed up, ever so briefly.......
We had SUCH a good day at the castle. I don't know the exact figures, but the castle was bustling. Our poor parkinglot couldn't handle the cars. SO COOL!

Halfway up the tower, looking at the second island......You can see the lean-to that will hold our beehives in a couple of months.

I took a couple of pictures, but my camera is not much of a match for what I wanted to show you.....

Paul with the Harris Hawk

A very young falconer in training... (I didn't get his name)

The falconer with a Golden Eagle and 2 of my co-volunteers

The falconer with his little volunteers to hold the birds.
Like a well oiled machine, Wim and Paul divided the kids in 2 camps and flew the birds from one group to the other, so they could accommodate every one. I did see some of them go around and join the other group after their turn. LOL (Can't blame them, really)

Paul with his little helpers

It was so much fun. The group you see in these pictures were only part of what was there during the  show. As soon as the falconer said that was the end, and if there were little ones that wanted to hold a bird, or anyone with questions was welcome, most people bailed in favor of warmth and coffee.

The birds will fly really close to the ground, as to not give away their position to others, so they really skimmed the crowd sometimes. You should have heard the kids squeel  (and try to get in the path of the birds at the next fly over)...... :-)

Next time, Wim promised to fly from the tower....... when he has had time to practice and after the birds are used to the premises. All flew with a tracker yesterday, and will for a while, just in case they get spooked and don't land in the right spot......
What I really liked about the show, was while he was flying the birds, Wim would be explaining their habits, how old they were vs how old they can get, their habitat and even how they use thermal currents to float..... Very interesting stuff. Even if a little bit of it sticks, you'll learn something.

Wim also mentioned that he would be open for foto workshops...... 

Well, I'm well past my start time, so I best get to steppin' LOL.
Don"t foget to hug a loved one, and have a safe "rutch" as they call it in Limburg. Meaning "slide safely into the new year"

Love and hugs,

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

YEEHA! It worked!

The castle officially has a falconer!

You may remember that I was working on getting a falconer for the open days in September? Well, my favorite one contacted me right before winter close to see if we were still having a Christmas market this year, and if he could come up with a couple of birds and test the waters for workshops at our castle..... I sadly had to tell him that we weren't going to have one this year, but we would love the workshops. So he came by the castle, we talked, and walked the grounds. The minute he hit the gate, I could see his mind starting to work and the more we talked and walked the grounds, the more engaged he became. We set up a meeting with the big boss, and he was on board as well. So "all" that was left to do, was figuring out the details. I made a list of possible questions we could get asked, questions that needed answers before we even started, and possible thoughts on what else we could do, and set another meeting, and another. I arranged for our resident photographer to come and take pictures of the falconer, on site, with some birds, because I couldn't really get the extractions the way I wanted them. Somehow they kept looking "put together".

Last Tuesday, the falconer came by, with a couple of birds to figure out the best place to do the show from. By the way, did I tell you that he's giving two shows on December 28th?  Sorry :-)
We were having a conversation about the glove he uses, and how to train the birds to come and go and he puts the glove on my arm.... I didn't really think about it, figured it was part of the conversation, to show what it feels like, but imagine my confusion when I was halfway thru that thought and I had a Harris hawk about 5 inches off my face and on my arm.... It was unreal, and SO so awesome! He flew back and forth a couple of times, and I was surprised how light he was on landing and take-off, for such a big bird. I know their bones are hollow, but you would figure they'd way atleast a little bit more than nothing.....  Later on,  I also got to hold a Horned Owl.  No matter what the rest of the day would have brought..... I had a great day! (and pictures..... LOL)

Wim (with Steppe Eagle) and Paul in the courtyard

Wim and Grey Eagle Buzzard on our castle wall-walkaround

Wim picked up his Blue Eagle 22 years ago from Chili..... 

Some lady with a Harris Hawk
Our photographer photographed with a Horned Owl

I'm not sure yet how to pull it off, but I'm going to try and sign up for one of his workshops.... Maybe I can talk Mike into doing it together for our anniversary :-)

In closing, I want to wish you a very merry Christmas, and the best year yet for 2017!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

found this on facebook.....

and it's pretty accurate in expressing what I feel!

Love and hugs

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Got a minute? :-)

PFFFFFF! Turkey is cooking, coffee is made, snacks are within reach........ Time for a chat!

Life has been a whirlwind of learning, adjusting, adapting, more learning, adjusting and adapting for a while now. We're not done yet, but I have high hopes that the light at the end of the tunnel is indeed a light, and not a freighttrain. LOL.

As most of you know, I don't like change, and I don't adapt very well, but learning I LOVE, so I guess the last little while hasn't been a total downer :-) After chemo and the culture shock of moving back to Holland, I just don't do the changes in course like I used to. Don't know what it is, whether it is everything put together, ages inflexibility kicking in, or just being tired of having to shift gear whenever somebody thinks it's that time, but I wish I could hit a nice tranquil stream, do my thing and just float for just a little while. BUT we all know there is no such thing, so I'm going to have to be OK with life as it hits me! LOL.

After finalizing my schooling in July, I started on the hard part of being a webdesigner... The business side. I'm not bad at it, I just don't have a clue LOL. So, I'm learning. Babysteps all the way, with lots of detours, because my silly mind is never happy with the information given, it always wants "more input". The upswing to that is that I get a way better understanding of what's waiting for me, mainly better reading glasses and lots of paperwork :-) The downside is that there is so much stuff in my brain right now, that I'm sometimes wondering if I'm not heading for total harddrive failure. Usually that happens right before our fuzzy roommate lays on the keyboard and demands attention though, so it's all good.

I went to the powers that be, after the chamber of commerce scared the bejeebies out of me, by telling me I couldn't, not with the approval of the Gemeente, get the permit to register my businessname, so I could build my website and "get going". I had my interview and was told that it could take up to 10 days before I heard back..... not quite. I barely made it home when I got a call from the company that would evaluate my plan and person as to wether it was ok to do. They made an appointment for Monday. Mind you, this is Thursday late afternoon, and at this point, my office is still squarely positioned on the kitchen table, because my desk is buried under boxes and whatnots that didn't have a place in the house, or missed the oneway trip to the dump/thriftstore.... We kicked butt that weekend, and got my office all done! Mike was great! He was soooo tired at night, that we had 4 days of sandwiches for lunch and dinner, because neither one of us had the energy to make anything that involved more than slamming a slice of bread on a plate, spread some speculoos or nutella on it, pour  a glass of milk and chow.  BUT we got it done, all went well, and within 3 weeks I had my "You're good to go" letter in the mail, followed by my first coaching session a week later. So I'm now officially official :-)

So far, it's been so cool, but I haven't had much time to code or anything, and it's beginning to worry me a little. I'm afraid I'll have to start over, but I'll start sneaking a little fun in here and there. Still have to be able to show a website before too long, so I best get started on it. I've decided fro the beginning it's NOT going to be a WP site, and I'm going to code it from scratch. I will also follow all the steps I should take when I'm building a site for a customer, so I know how long things will take (I'm sure that will help in the part of my training where I'll have to explain what I want to charge and why....) and what snag I might need to try and untangle at different points in the process.

I'm really chomping at the bit to get going on the "doing" business, but I am learning that I can't get away with not "learning" and "setting up" business.  It's fun, but a different kind of hard work than I expected. Not complaining though I'm just in that "I want to BE there......" whiny fase of the project. LOL!

We're watching Giants Football right now, followed by the Bills football, followed by Pumpkin-pie with hot chocolate. Dinner a little after that, and meeting at the castle around 6...... Mike has to go to work at 5 for Black Friday, and I give a senior computer-class at 9 so we won't make it late... but it's nice to have a "forced" down day. No books, no school, no webinars for me today, just fun. I may do a little scrapping, or website prep, but no "have to get it done today"-things.

Thanks for visiting, and I hope your Thanksgivings day is what you want it to be. As for me, I'm thankful to have my best friend next to me no matter what happens, be alive and be able to try and make a difference in our lives, by working my tail off :-)

Don't forget to hug a loved one, twice when they're off the fuzzy variety and enjoy the day.

Love and hugs,

Monday, October 17, 2016

It's over

for me at least. I didn't advance to the next round in teh LayOut Artist challenge. There were a lot less voters this week I think than last week, but that was not the reason I didn't make it...... I got 2 votes, there were 24 contestants and only 20 were going to the next round. Three people had 1 vote, and I was next...... I'm a little disappointed, and if I'm honest, I probably wouldn't have had the time to be a CT for the site anyway. But it was fun while it lasted, and I wish all that are still "in it" the very best of luck :-)

I'll keep creating for Diane, and catch up on the pages for Boo, and call it good. Maybe, God forbid, scrap some of the photo's I have and make that Life-Book I've been working on for going on 10 years now. LOL.  NAH! Something will come up and throw a rod into the mix somewhere....

But my main focus has to be to finetune my coding skills. No news yet, whether I'll be looking for work, or working for me, but I need to expand and keep up with what I know, so that will be my 35 to 40 hour workweek, until I know more. I will get on with it next week, when Mike's going back to work, so that will give me a couple of days to revisit my plan of attack.

Well, you're as up to date as life ever gets here! It's 10PM, I'm (barely) functioning on 3 hours of sleep, so I'm going to see if my head recognizes my pillow, and if I can get some zzzz's for a couple of hours. Tomorrow, we have racks to put together, closets to take apart and shit to shift, so........ I'll leave you to it. :-)

Don't forget to hug a loved one?


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Week TWO

of the LayOutArtist contest 2016.........
I made it thru week One. First I thought I made it, because there were 20 people going to round two, and we didn't have 20 entries, and than I counted, and saw that I actually would have gotten in on votes.... SOOOO happy about that :-)

Week TWO was a little less nerve wrecking, because I read the rules first... AND didn't have the deadline to contend with, because I'm actually a day early.

This week was all about the template. I used the one by Jenn Maddox called Artisan Favorite  but I mixed it with the mask of the other possible template we could use A little bit Arty. As soon as I saw the possible templates, I knew which one I wanted to use, and what picture to use on it, but I wanted a mask behind the template parts.

The kit used had to be from a Studio Designer, and I picked AKIKO by Diane Birrel. I tried to make a mask, but it didn't work, so I "stole" the mask from the other template. I hope I don't get disqualified for doing that, but I DO like the result, so.........

The shards and lamp are extracted from pictures I took at the exhibit.
Come look at the entries, vote for your favorites and maybe pick up s freebie or two?

Don't forget to hug a loved one, twice when they're of the fuzzy variety?


Friday, October 7, 2016

"You shall read the rules.......

before you post!" LOL.

Blondy here :-) I posted my entry for the Layout Artist contest, the way I had written up to do it... you know, post it here, that way etc.  and was very proud of myself but after a while I decided to read the rules, and discovered that the picture I used, and therefore most of the page, was not allowed........ So I spent the last 2 days to find a picture that would fit the layout, instead of having the picture and building the page around it, the way I usually do........ Now my pictures are spread out over 3 tera-drives and over a couple of folders, and even than, not in any particular order, so I'm very surprised I even made the deadline of finishing, and "all" I have to do now, is to get it posted everywhere it needs to go.......... again. LOL   You know, having the change the picture after you're happy with the page is a little bit like expecting enchiladas and getting hamburger-helper. It's still good, just not what you planned on..... This page is a little like that for me.

Voting will start in about 2 hours I think, so I hope you help me out :-)

Don't forget to hug a loved one, and enjoy Di giorno de Colombo :-)


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

I must have too much time on my hands.....

Or I'm just plain nuts. LOL. 
Now, before you hit that responds button......... This is a statement, not a question so it does NOT need an answer :-).......

I signed up for the  Layout Artist Contest at The Studio this year. It's not that I don't have anything to do,far from it, really, but it's a reflex! I miss scrapping, but I'm on the computer so much, that when/if I'm done with what needs doing, I check email and turn it off. I want to get back into scrapping, fit it back into my schedule. Every time I fall into bed at 3, knowing the alarm goes off at 5, with the fuzzy alarm going off at 4..... I think about giving up the CT duties, but I know I don't want to, so I'll have to find a way to "work it in".  I figured with the strict deadlines in the contest, it's a good way to get back in the habit, and lets face it.... It's just too much fun NOT to go for a contest like this!

There is a slight "hitch in the giddy-up" in that you need votes to proceed to the next level..... Not sure how I will work that in, but I'm hoping that everybody that knows me, will vote for me, if they think I should advance. If I don't stack up to the other contestants.... so be it :-)  Just in case, voting starts on October 7th and ends on the 10th. Not sure how the voting works, if you can vote on the page itself, or whether there is a separate thread per week..... but it should be fairly easy to follow the breadcrumbs around to the voting page. The other thing is, you have to sign up at the site, I believe.

So, here's my first weeks layout.
I always loved the car in Miss Fishers Murder Mysteries, so I had a picture of the car saved, but hadn't done anything with it, but have it as a background for a while...... 

I used the scatter and a very fuzzy circle as a mask for the picture.  I cropped the hood-ornament and ghosted it into the page and also used the Peonies and some of the butterfly to make it look like they belong on the white grungy sheet. The font used is Empire and I will have to find out which designer created which part of the rest of the page before I post it in The Studio

Here you go............... Hope you like it :-)