Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Salthouse Docks, Liverpool

 I have not been able to get into my blog to publish new posts until today (13 May!).  So bear with me while I try and catch up.

 We moved off to the swing bridge were we were to meet the CRT men who are going to help us through the next 2 swing bridges and down the 4 locks into Stanley Dock, and then through the 2 locks into Canning Dock.

Eventually there were 6 boats waiting to go through, and to our surprise, Gill from Hotelboat Periwinkle came running up the towpath!  They were coming down too.

The convoy set off at 0915 and we reached the Stanley locks at noon.  We were soon through the locks and travelling through docks and "Sid's Ditch" and arrived in Salthouse around 2pm, and in no time at all we were all moored up and hooked into the electricity.

Sailing past the Liver Building.

This is the 4th time we've done this trip, and it has been thrilling every time.

Fathers' Day is coming up soon, so here is one for the men.

I cut out the silhouette of JB and stuck him onto a white card panel with sticky foam.  I matted this card onto a black panel and then onto the white card blank.  The circles I just stuck down with double sided tape. 

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Holmes Swing Bridge, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 No trouble with the bridges this time, and some had even been updated and were completely electrified. 

This one had hand push barriers, though you had to put the key in first and couldn't remove the key until the barriers were closed.  I managed to leave the key in.  The crew of the boat behind brought it on to us.  Considering I stopped to take the photo of the conundrum of how to get to the box and the keys can be seen remains to be seen.

As usual, the folk of Maghull were so friendly and welcoming, especially where they are waiting for a bridge to close. 

 We are moored up with two other boats, one has gone on to Bridge 9 and one more is on the other side of the bridge, so there are at least 5 boats going down to Liverpool tomorrow.

 Have been having a run of creative juices lately.  I played around with this "card in a box".

It folds flat to go in an envelope so can be posted easily, but it opens up and sort of "pops out".  Instructions on //   if youre interested.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Near Halsall, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 The canal is so lovely up here.  The land is very flat and the canal is slightly raised so you can see for miles.  And, on top of that, the edges on the towpath side are neat and tidy.  Might not be much use to the animals, but great for the boater.

Just a short day today, left at 0745 and moored up again at 0830.

Now I just have to contemplate the many and varied swing bridges tomorrow - only 6!

The doors and side hatch are open, the sun is shining and the birds are singing.  Bliss.

I spent the afternoon making cards.  Sometimes the mood just takes me.  I can go for weeks without wanting to make anything.  But today, the time was right.

This Christening card uses a pre-printed topper from Penny Black.  I used a die to cut out the shape and another one in green which I stuck behind at slight angle to make it show  (it was the same size).

The leaves are die cut and also the smaller flowers (which I actually made this time) and the larger ones were bought.

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Great Score Swing Bridge, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 Only 24 miles to go......

A bitty sort of day.  We left at 0700 and stopped at the junction with the Rufford Arm to take on water.  Then it was on to Burscough to get rid of the rubbish and get milk, bread and a paper.  I left David and walked over the bridge for the Spar shop, and bought bread from the excellent bread shop by the wharf.  Somehow, the rubbish got forgotten.

Then we travelled on to here, 4 swing bridges later.  At least they are all electric now and only two had to have the barriers closed manually.

 The view from the bridge looking up the Rufford Arm.  We were going to zot up there and back, but with 6 locks and 1 swing bridge (and reverse), we decided against it.

Saw my first swallows this morning.  It's official.  Summer is here!

A simple anniversary card using a peel-off stuck onto a square of red card and then matted onto some gold card, then stuck onto a white card blank.

Parbold, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 More bluebells!

An early start, in the rain (no I don't know why either).  More bluebells, but surprisingly, no ducklings.

We were moored up in Parbold by 0830 and I was on the train to Southport by 0930.  I love the serendipity of this life.  Southport was never in the plan.

David found the enthusiasm to watch Manchester United play football with their new manager, and they actually won.  Attack! Attack! Attack!

We were moored by this "shrine"

You are meant to take one of the special stones to put in your pocket, they are supposed to be lucky.  Hope it's not true 'cos I forgot to pick one up before we left.

A get well card.  I stamped image of a doctor, matted onto gold and green card.

I covered the right side of the white card blank with green paper and stuck a strip of outline sticker over the join.

The sentiment was then matted onto silver and green card.

Friday, 25 April 2014

Below Dean Locks, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 There have been complains recently about there not being any room between some of the lock ladders and the lock side, so you can't get a toe hold.  Here, the ladders have been extended into the lock by several inches.  Lots of room for feet, but David managed to hit it as he brought the boat in.

Four more heavy locks and we are in the Dean Valley, a beautiful strip of canal with bluebells woods on the right and meadows on the left.

Saw my first Kingfisher of the season and there was wild garlic where there were no bluebells.

Take a gold heart, wrap some metalic cord around it and add a sequin flower.  Mat it onto red, black and gold card and stick it onto a red card blank.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Wigan,Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 I've moaned about this lock before.  It is a typical "Sod the Boaters" lock.  David dropped me off on the off side and I set the paddles.  To get to the towpath side I would have to walk up to the concrete bridge in front, across the bridge past the towpath and down the ramp on the right hand side.

I only did one side!

But because you cannot get back on the boat from the off side (see the metal fence), I had to hitch a ride on the boat across the lock to do the bottom paddles.

Then, of course, the gates have their own large windlass to open and close them.  This is a canal for the ruffy tuffies.

We moored up by the car park for the CRT offices completely nackered after 3 large, heavy, difficult L&L locks.

I cut a strip from the right hand side of the front of this white card blank and then decorated the edge with a punch.  I then did the same with a strip of red card and stuck it behind the white card.

Then I added two paper roses and a silver bow. 

A card that could be used for any occasion.

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Gerrards Bridge, Leigh Branch, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

 The alternator was inspected and nothing found wrong with it and it was suggested that one of the new batteries might be at fault.

So we left our cozy mooring and the electricity at noon and set off for Leigh.  Just as we were entering the town we saw a new retail park with a large Tesco, and several canalside restaurants.  AND one long, impenetrable fence to keep their customers OUT of the water and the boaters OUT of their establishments.

Lots of ducklings around today, all fluffy and cuddly.

Still, at least you can moor by the Aldi!!  We arrived just as another boat was leaving, so slipped in and did a big shop (wine mostly).

Lots of "art work" by the canal on the way to Plank Lane (picks on the way back), and then the biggest shock.  There is no longer a bridge keeper.  You have to lift the bridge YOURSELF!  You actually get to play with the traffic!  And, boy, is there some traffic!  Fortunately, there was a boat in front and they got to open the bridge.

A moody blue card.  I matted the photo onto silver and light blue card, wrapped some light blue ribbon around the blue card blank and tied it in a knot.  Added the photo with sticky fixers and a blue teardrop gem in the bottom left hand corner.

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Bridgewater Marina, Boothstown, Bridgewater Canal

 Languishing in the marina.

The washing machine went non stop all day.

Tomorrow someone is coming to look at the electrics.

I walked into Boothstown to look for some shops and found an Italian, an Indian and a Chinese restaurant, a cafe, a hardware store, a dry cleaners and a Sainsburys.  It was a longish walk up hill though - at least I got to carry the heavy shopping downhill!

This picture was matted onto silver and light green card.

Some yellow card was embossed using the Cuttlebug and I smudged the edges with green ink, then wrapped some green ribbon around it and tied it in a knot.

A small daisy was stuck to the bottom right hand corner and the whole panel was fixed onto a green card blank.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Bridgewater Marina, Boothstown, Bridgewater Canal

After a slightly noisy start to the night - the boat behind started running the engine at 8.30pm and there was loud music coming from somewhere, we had a good night's sleep.  We were up and away by 0745 and off to Worlsley.

The entrance to the Barton Swing Bridge.  I see Peel Holdings have abandoned the bridge keepers, cottages.

The view west, from the bridge showing the road bridge and the M6 road bridge in the distance.

 A lighthouse to guide you on your way...

We moored up at a very busy Worsley waterfront.  The Sale Boat Club were out in force.  And at 1130 we were invaded by family.  11 of us sat down to a disappointing lunch in the Bridgewater Hotel and then David took some of them on a quick cruise along the canal (making them walk back!)

We said goodbye to the family and went on to the marina at Boothstown and purchased a couple of nights with electricity, and asked for someone to check out the electrics as something is not quite right.  The washing machine has been going mad ever since.

More waterways cards.  This picture I matted onto silver, green and red card. 

Then I used an edge trimmer to make a card ribbon and wrapped some green ribbon around the centre of it and then added the green gems.

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Trafford Centre, Bridgewater Canal

Castlesfields can be a bit noisy, so we decided to move off to the Trafford Centre, stopping for water on the way.

David loves this fountain.  It is soo tacky and not weathering very well.

We have spent most of the day hanging onto the furniture and fittings on the boat as the local boaters go speeding by.  I know the Bridgewater is deep and there is not so much pull on the moored boats, but there is a limit.

Idle women.  Matted onto silver and blue card.

I decorated two edges of the patterned paper with a border punch and used some ink to wipe along the two straight edges.

White lace ribbon was wrapped around the paper and the panel was stuck it onto a blue card blank.

To finish off I added a blue butterfly and three glass gems.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Castlefields, Bridgewater Canal

Today we took the tram to Bury Market.  David said it wasn't as big as he remembered it, but it seemed big enough for me.

I stayed on the tram on the way back and went on to the Lowry Centre (now called Media City UK).  More bad news, the two craft shops that were there last time (3 years ago) had gone too.

I was on a roll with these canal themed cards.  This one was matted onto silver, red, dark and light green card.

I made another red "ribbon" using a border punch and wrapped some red gingham ribbon around it.

I finished it off with a glass gem and a red butterfly.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Castlefields, Bridgewater Canal

David set off at 0645 (I stayed in bed for a bit longer).  As we approached we were passed by two boats, so, hopefully, there would be room.

Past the Old Trafford stadium.  David did his obeisances. 

There were two boats on the water point and one more waiting, so we went straight down the side arm, winded and found a mooring.  It was very busy with boats.  Then it was into Harvey Nicks for lunch.

This photo was matted onto silver, red and blue card.

I only used the paper punch on one side of the red card and covered the centre with some floral paper and wrapped the twine around it, tying it in a knot.

This card has a glass gem in the left hand bottom corner.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Lymme, Bridgewater Canal

We were in Lymme by 0815 and there was a space next to Graham on Hakuna Matata.  We caught up on gossip and then he set off South.

It was a lovely day, so I put the cards out.  And guess what?  I actually sold one!!!!

This time I matted the photo onto gold, red and green card.

Again, I made a paper "ribbon" using a border punch and wrapped some twine around it.

Finished off with a red gem in the bottom right hand corner.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Cliffe Lane Underbridge 18A, Bridgewater Canal


I took the bus into Warrington.  Bad news.  The craft shop is closing down.  That's another one gone.

When I got back we set off along the canal to a quieter spot we know, moored on the off side.  Moore is a great mooring, with 3 rings, but it is very close to the road and, consequently very noisy.

More boats.  This time matted onto silver, red and green card.  The paper "ribbon" was punched out and twine wrapped around it.

Two sets of green gems are stuck to the top corners.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Moore, Bridgewater Canal

Into Preston Brook Tunnel at 0800 and out 15 minutes later.  We got diesel and a £20 pump out at Claymoore, and then into Midland Chandlers for a water pump and a look around.

We moored up outside Moore Post Office at 1030 to await the first lot of visitors at lunch time.

The second set arrived at tea time and we went off to the Red Lion for a meal before it was back to the boat and a couple of bottles of wine.  

Boats in the mist.  Green base card, maroon, silver and white matted photo and maroon punched "ribbon" tied with twine.  Finished off with three green gems.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Dutton Breach (2012) Near Bridge 212, Trent and Mersey

 We rounded the corner, and there was this lovely new mooring!  The site of the breech in 2012.  The view is terrific, but in a couple of years there will be a thick hedge to hide it a bit.  You can just see the lock on the River Weaver to the left and the railway viaduct in the centre.

The two tunnels held no gremlins, the first one was empty, so we sailed through and got to the second one dead on the hour so we could go straight through.  Last time we met three boats in Salterford and missed the time slot for Barnton.

I bought a bunch of "wooden" roses some time ago, well years actually.

I made this anniversary card with one by matting some silver card onto red glitter card and then red card which had been cut with scalloped scissors.  I stuck down the flower with glue dots and then made the sentiment with a peel-off matted onto silver and red card.  This was stuck over the end of the stalk to cover up the rough edges. 

I finished it off with a red heart gem.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Anderton Boat Lift, Trent and Mersey


Just a quick jaunt around the corner into Anderton.  We took 3 attempts at finding the right spot for mooring the boat because Caroline was bringing Ethan up from Birmingham for a visit and we wanted to be near the car park.

In the end she parked the car in Anderton Marina and had to walk the length of the canal up to the boat lift.

Still, it was lovely to see them, and Ethan changes every time we see him now.  He has learned to crawl since we last saw him, which was fun.

Hey Tigger!  I used a sticker which I stuck onto a square of silver card and matted it onto mustard and white card.

I stuck some mustard spotty paper along the bottom of the white card blank and wrapped some pink spotty ribbon (which matched the spots on the paper) around the spine and tied it in a knot.  The topper then went onto the card using sticky fixers.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Marbury County Park, Trent and Mersey Canal

 We got to the junction at Middlewich by 0745.  Maureen's lock cottage is looking very sad.  Windows broken and boarded up.  And, of course, we had to do the lock ourselves.  No Maureen to help us any more.

After the locks David took on water while I walked into Tesco, my the traffic is frightening in Middlewich.  There is nowhere safe to cross the road.

Then it was on to Marbury. Saw the first ducklings on the Wardle Canal and three swans sitting on their nests and bluebells everywhere.

This is a card I made for Maureen in 2009.  We took the photo of her helping us with the locks on the way out and I delivered the card on the way back.

And now for a mouse.  I took a piece of patterned paper and matted it onto pale pink card.  Then I wrapped some spotty pink ribbon around the top and tied it in a knot.  The panel was then stuck onto a pink card blank and the topper added.  The sentiment was also matted onto pink card and a row of pink pearls were stuck underneath.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Normans Bridge 26, Middlewich Branch, Shropshire Union

The Middlewich Branch of the Shropshire Union is almost entirely lined with piling and there are numerous mooring areas.  So why moor on the end of the lock landing?

 And, the obligatory plastic bag full of dock sh**.  What is the metality of someone who takes the trouble to scoop it up, but then leaves the bag lying around.  At least if it is out in the open it can decompose.

Just one lock and a couple of hours cruising today.  Noticed horse chestnut and sycamore trees in leaf, there are lots of cowslips and wood anenomies around.  Though the weather has turned a bit cold again, but there was some sun around lunchtime.  David ate his mussels on the front deck.

We are booked for the Liverpool Link on 30th April.  We got this message today:

An issue has been brought to our attention regarding un-secured third party building material stored above Stanley Dock, posing a health & safety risk to users of the navigation.  
Boat passages through the area are suspended until the relevant third party secures the site. 
An update will be issued on Monday 14 April 2014.
Please follow this link to view photos of the area:

Hey Ho!

Simple card using a photograph of a pony.  I matted it onto silver, orange, white and green card and then fixed it to the front of a white card blank.  The ribbon was tied in a knot and stuck across the front with double sided.