Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Adlington - Leeds and Liverpool Canal

We picked up a passenger at Haigh Hall!

We moved up to Adlington where we arranged to meet David's sister and her son for lunch.

Then it was just a quiet afternoon, resting after yesterday's toils.
Anenomies are one of my favourite flowers, I love the deep, vibrant colours.  This lilac one is a favourite of mine.

I used a piece of backing paper which I was experimenting with.  I have no idea what I did but it had a sort of translucent look where the colours were.  Anyway, I matted it onto some lilac patterned paper and wrapped a lilac ribbon around it.  Then I added the flower, a bow and two lilac gems. 

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Haigh Hall - Leeds and Liverpool Canal

There were 5 boats waiting to go up the locks when they opened at 8 o'clock.  We managed to be one of the first with a couple we had arranged to travel with via the Wigan Flight Crew Facebook page.  (Well worth looking into if you are traversing these locks, it can match you up with other boats and the volunteers know who is needing help.)

Well we set off and got to the middleish bit where the boats on the previous afternoon had to spend the night, to discover that there was no water in one of the pounds above and we had to wait about an hour for the water to be stabilised.

Meanwhile David discovered the insides of a duvet around the prop which took him and the man in the boat behind quite a while to removed. He had a Prop Mate which was a kind of long hook with a round handle.  It was definitely the right tool for this particular problem.

So by now we were having to empty the locks first.  We did meet Ariandare on the way down though, but that was only for 1 lock.

The volunteers were excellent, they all worked very hard and it made a difficult journey almost a breeze.  I still ached all over by the top.

There is a metal structure at the top lock to keep the doors from collapsing (or something) and in the joint this wagtail had made a nest.  She kept popping back with food for the brood inside.

We arrived at the top of the locks at a quarter past one and went on to Haigh Hall for the night.  My, the trees have grown.  You used to be able to see right across to Preston previously.

I cheated slightly with card, the house and sign are bought toppers!  I diecut the pink patterned paper and the green one (which is dry embossed) and fixeed them to a white panel, matted onto orange and green card and then onto a white card blank.

Monday, 7 May 2018

Bottom of Wigan Flight - Leeds and Liverpool Canal

We got to the bottom of Poolstock Locks at a quarter to seven to be met with this site.  Apparently someone unscrewed the collar of the lock gate and threw it away yesterday afternoon.  The CRT team arrived this morning, found the collar and were able to fix it. 

At noon we were able to set off, but not before there was this queue for the locks.

Once through the locks we turned right at the junction and moored up ready for the Wigan Flight tomorrow.

I used some pretty handmade paper for this card.  I used a wet paintbrush to make a general rectangle shape the size I wanted and wetted the paper.  It is then soft enough to tear apart.  When dry I stuck it down onto a white card blank and added the pink daisies, green leaves, a pink ribbon and the "thank you" banner.

Sunday, 6 May 2018

Dover Lock - Leigh Branch, Leeds and Liverpool Canal

Some people are really unbelievable.  What a mess.

An uneventful day, we were hoping one of David's sisters would have met us at Dover Lock but she couldn't make it.

It is the first time we have been here when there have been no boats moored up.  We had the whole place to ourselves all day.

Maybe the closure of the pub has got something to do with it!

Where do I start?  I dry embossed a  white card panel and stuck it onto the bottom of a larger orange piece of card, brown/orange/yellow/white stripy card was added above and a strip of orange lacy card covers the join.  Orange and white butchers twin is wrapped around this and tied in a bow.

The sentiment is printed out and added to the top of the card with dimensional foam stickies and the whole panel is fixed onto a white card blank.

Saturday, 5 May 2018

Trafford Centre - Bridgewater Canal

Some of the rubbish that floated past us today.  Not a pretty sight.

We had a lovely surprise today, Caroline phoned to say that they would come up from Birmingham to visit us for lunch.

So we walked to the Trafford Centre and met the family outside John Lewis and then went for lunch at Carluccio's.  It was lovely to see the gandsons again, they seem to grow up so much - even after only a couple of weeks of not seeing them.

After lunch they went off to visit their Best Man and his family who live in Sale.  Two birds with one stone as they say.

Here is a Congratulations Card which could be used for almost any contratulation.  The sentiment is matted onto a brown circle.  The stary paper has inked edges with brown ink and matted onto brown card.  This is fixed to the middle of a white card blank and the sentiment added towards the bottom.  Glass type stars were then added at randome over the front of the card and a holographic star in the centre of the star.

Friday, 4 May 2018

Trafford Centre - Bridgewater Canal

The long mile at Sale and the usual scullers.  This couple were novices and ended up in the bank when they panicked an saw us.

Apart from that an uneventual trip to the Trafford Centre.  I got the bus into Manchester for a bit of retail therapy and David had a rest.
Lots of signs on the Bridgewater telling the towpath users what they can and should not do.  As usual there is dock shit on the towpath, cyclists pushing their way through pedestrians and the odd motorised bicycle.  Didn't see any swimmers or horses though.

This type of card is called a "card in a box".  It actually folds flat to go into a regular envelope and when it is taken out it "pops" up.

This one has lots of golden (brass?) die-cut musical instruments.  The blue panels fixed to the sides were dry embossed with a musical score and dark blue ink rubbed over the embossed parts.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Ye Olde No 3 - Bridgewater Canal

The Bridgewater Canal looking charming in the spring sunlight.

After the usual early start we stopped in Lymm for shopping before 9 o'clock.  We then moved on to Ye Olde No 3 where we planned to stay but there was only room on the water point, so we got some water and then worked it out that if  shuffled up a bit we could moor on the edge of the water point.

Don't think we got in anyone's way.

This was a commission card, but the commissioner never came back to pick it up.  I got the images from the internet (Jacob was a massive Transformers fan) and matted it onto gold, red and green card and fixed it to a white card blank.  The name was done on the computer and the age number is a peel-off, both were matted and then added with dimensional sticky pads.

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Moore - Bridgewater Canal

Bluebells!!  What can I say?  Wonderful.

A family reunion day today.  First of all one of David's nephews came to pick us up to take us to Runcorn to see David's eldest brother and his wife (who has just fallen down the stairs and broken a hip and a wrist).

She is doing remarkably well as she is almost 80 but determined not to let it hinder her in any way.

Later on another one of his nieces (there are 8 in this particular family) and her husband met us in the Red Lyon for supper and lots of laughs and reminiscences.  Later they came back to the boat for a nightcap before walking back home.

This lovely little chap with a butterfly about to land on it's nose is matted onto dark and then light brown card with the corners rounded off.  Brown gingham card was wrapped around a panel of pink card (again with the corners rounded) and fixed onto a white card blank.  To finish it off I added 3 pink pearl gems to the bottom right hand corner.

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

Moore - Bridgewater Canal

Forget-me-nots on the bank.  Lovely.

We were up at dawn's crack (yet again) and through all the tunnels by 8 o'clock and sharing Preston Brook tunnel with a duck who paddled on before us, quicking furiously.

There was a boat already moored up by Moore Post Office so we used the one spare ring put a pin in for the back rope.  Later this boat moved and we were able to move up and moor on the rings at Moore.

I took the opportunity to catch a bus into Warrington and then another from there into Liverpool.  I wanted to see the Chinese Terracotta Army but would have had to have waited until 3.30 pm before I could get in.  So, after a wander around the shops I caught the train back to Warrington and then the bus back to Moore.  It is such a handy service a bus goes past the mooring every 1/2 hour.

One of my Big Wishes card (I think I made about 4).  A jolly lady with her jolly ginger cat.  I cut them out and stuck them onto a blue background with dimensional stickers.  The edge of the card has been edged with dark blue ink, as has the blue dotty paper behind it.  The whole panel was then added to the white card blank.

Monday, 30 April 2018

Anderton - Trent & Mersey Canal

Today we visited the breech at Middlwich.  You can see what the locals feel about donating towards it's repair!

We were off very early again and were at King's Lock Middlewich for 0745.  We walked up to see the breech, which is pretty spectacular.  I can't find the pictures at the moment, but will update when the come to light.

After buying diesel from a very unhelpful and uninterested member of staff at the chandlry below the lock we carried on down into Middlewich, stopping off to go to Tesco to stock up and then set off again.

Arriving at Anderton we filled the water tank up and then moored on the first visitor mooring for a well earned rest after yet another long, arduous day.  (And we said we would take it really slowly this year!!!)

How about a bit of seaside?  I just matted this picture onto silver card and then onto the white card base, adding the sentiment which was also matted with silver card.

Sunday, 29 April 2018

Wheelock - Trent & Mersey Canal

Still coming down the Cheshire Locks (Heartbreak Hill).  Today we got as far as Wheelock.  This time doing 14 locks in 3 1/2 miles and taking 3 hours.  I feel like a rag doll.  I was promised a pub lunch but it never materialsed (again!)

Still, the weather has been good to us and this is the beautiful sunrise this morning.

I love this picture, it was taken outside the Bishop of York's palace on the River Ouse just outside York.

The moorhen is sat on her nest inside a tyre fender.  This time I used the picture I matted it onto silver, black, pink and then more black card before adding it to a pink card base.

The sentiment I made using a computer and matted that also onto pink and black card.

Saturday, 28 April 2018

Rode Heath, Trent & Mersey Canal

The ferns growing on the lock wall were all spread out and looked like stars, very pretty.
We were up and off by 6.30 and then waited 1/2 hr for the tunnel to open at 0800, we were in it by 5 mins past and out again by 40 mins past.  Coming down Heartbreak Hill we met a nasty single hander who complained when I tried to help him and then started shouting and swearing at me, then he had a go at David when he came to my defence.  We just let him get on with it in the end and left him to it. Meanwhile there was a queue of boats waiting to come down.

Today we did 6 miles and 12 locks in 3 3/4 hrs - no wonder they call it Heartbreak Hill.  

Saw a kingfisher today, a very rare sight 

One of my waterways themed cards.  On this one I matted the photograph onto holographic silver card and light blue card.  I created a banner to go behind with patterned paper and plain blue card and added a 3D butterfly to finish it off.

Friday, 27 April 2018

Westport Lake - Trent and Mersey Canal

This boat looks wider than a narrowboat, or is it just an optical illusion.

We set off around 0530 and did the horrid Stoke Locks.  As usual the top lock was the worst, very stiff and awkward.  Why are the locks closest the the CRT maintainance yards always the worst.

By now it was raining hard so we moored up by Westport Lake around 0900.

This is a simple card made with some pretty gold foiled card.  I wrapped a piece of gold ribbon through a die-cut buckle and fixed it to the back of the panel and stuck that onto a white card blank.  The sentiment was made on the computer and the numbers were die-cut in glitter card.

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Barlaston - Trent and Mersey Canal

 We left around 0454!! David couldn't sleep.  So we were in Stone by 0645.  I left David filling the water tank and walked to  Morrisons for milk, bread and a paper etc.  By the time I got back he was in Star lock and beginning to fill it.

One or two of the locks were a bit iffy.  I decided not to try and walk across this one.

 I always love going past this back garden.

We were moored up at Barlaston 0945 and then had a great lunch at The Plumes

All the locks on the T&M have a little bridge over the bottom lock which makes it easy to get around the locks, unfortunately when the gates are open they close off the bridge and you have to clamber over the lock beam.

They are pretty though, and this card was made using a picture of one.  The picture was matted onto white and green card and fixed to a white card blank then several colourful butterflies were added as decoration.

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Flute Meadow, Br 84 - Trent and Mersey Canal

 This pretty bridge is at Salt (not the one above Middlewich).  It has really pretty stonework.

We left Rugeley around 0545 arr moored up abovb Sandon Lk around 0945, but the TV did not seem to be working so we moved on to Bridge 84 arriving around 1215.  The TV worked here for a while and then stopped again.  David has ordered a new aerial which is being sent to his sister who we will meet up with later on the trip.  Hopefully that will work.

Fortunately we have this new 3 4G Mifi gadget on board and the reception has been excellent.  In fact, much better than on our moorings in the centre of Birmingham.  So we have been able to download the TV programmes we have not been able to watch.

Congrats * Congrats.  I printed the sentiment onto the card blank using a computer then added the die-cut stars using silver holographic card.

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Rugeley, Trent and Mersey

A short cruise today because of the weather.  We left around 0630 and were moored up near Tesco's at Rugeley by 0845.  It then rained all afternoon.

At least I had time for a good walk around the charity shops in  town.

This card uses a bought topper which I matted onto more red card.  A panel of dry embossed white card was also matted onto red card and some red velvet ribbon was wrapped around it and tied in a bow.  This was then fixed to the front of a white card blank.

Monday, 23 April 2018

Above Woodend Lock, Trent & Mersey Canal

 One or two holes along the waterline on this shell.

We left our moorings around  0830 and arrived at Streethay Wharf 0845, just as they were opening.  We had arranged for someone to look at the horne and it was replaced by 0915 and we were on our way.  Not bad for a boatyard, normally you have to wait that long just to sees omeone. 

We were at Fradley Junction at 1015 and with the help of a couple of volunteer lock keepers were moored up above the top lock by 1115.

I have left this card blank (with no sentiments) as it could be used as an engagement congratulations card or an anniversary card, or even something else I have not thought of.

The figures are decopaged and the base card is red, to match the dress.

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Huddlesford Junct, Coventry Canal

 We had quite a storm last night but the morning was bright and sunny.

After a fifteen minute stop at Fazeley Junction while I went to Tesco's to get a newspaper and stuff we set off along the Coventry canal heading for Fradley Junction.

Passing The Plough at Huddlesford Junction we saw a gap in the moorings and dived in.  That was Sunday lunch sorted. A huge plate of fish and chips for me and a steak for David.  I slept away the afternoon again.

The wild flowers were out in profusion, bluebells and wood anemones inWhittington Wood (we always call in Miles' Wood as a dear friend of ours used to be the Commanding Officer there).  The back gardens we sailed past were also looking good with blossom, bulbs and spring flowers.

Here is an exploding box with a pair of baby bootees inside.

The outside was covered with pink gingham paper, matted onto pink card with a die-cut topper on each side and a rose and die-cut leaves on the lid.

 The box opens out when you remove the lid to show off the bootees.  Each of the four inside box sides was matted with either gingham or spotted paper, again matted onto pink card and 4 die-cut ovals or circles added with leaves and roses.

The bootees were stuck onto the card with glue dots, just to keep them in place, and can be peeled off for use.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Drayton Brick Bridge, Birmingham and Fazeley Canal

 The bottom of Curdworth locks, always very pretty but unfortunately, not today - there were no flowers in the flower boxes on the bridge!

Another late start (for us) and a boat in front, so locks against us again but met a couple of boats coming up.

Another lovely, sunny morning though it is now raining, so Spring must be over.

Moored up on visitor moorings before Drayton Manor Swing Bridge and having a quiet afternoon and even managing not to have to go and have a snooze today.

I was asked to make a very special wedding day card for a friend.  I decided on a "shadow box card" and as I had never made one before I had a trial run.  This is the result.

First the front of the card using computer generated sentiment, die cuts and dry embossed card.

The inside is covered in a lovely thick, floral vellum and more die cuts.

Then the box itself.  I watched several U-Tube demonstrations first and it was really quite easy to construct.

I added more vellum at the base of the "box" and then added roses and die-cut leaves.  I was really pleased with it, but realised on closing the card that the rose in the right hand bottom corner was too high and the card would not close properly.

It isn't too much of a problem as I made a box for it to fit into and decorated the lid like the front of the card.

I then went on to make the actual card, which I will publish at a later date as I don't want anyone to see it yet who should not.

Friday, 20 April 2018

Wiggins Hill Bridge, Birmingham and Fazeley Canal

We set off today at 0730 (late for us, but whatever).  Set off down Farmers Locks, all but 2 against us.  Hadn't realised until today that you can see the Council House and Museum from Saturday Bridge.

The weather was lovely and sunny after a slightly chilly first thing and mist hiding the top of the BT tower, so the lock wheeling was fairly pleasant.

We did not pass a boat until after the bottom of Aston Locks and that was a single hander who dropped his dog off for a crap on the towpath!

We were absolutely knackered by the time we got to bottom of the Milnworth locks and stopped just after the winding hole on pilings, a bit shallow, but as there were no boats around we didn't get grounded.  And it was straight to bed for a couple of hours to recover from all those locks.

It was so nice to be out in the country again (apart from being under the flightpath for Birmingham Airport), and got to see a proper sunset for a change.

I know it's long gone now, but here is a Mother's Day card made with a Flower Fairy picture, lots of flowers and a yellow bow.  Mind you, looking at it again, with that sentiment, it could be a birthday card or a thank you card as well.