Monday, 18 June 2018

Artline Monday - Plans for the summer holidays in my bullet journal

I started counting down the weeks until the summer holidays some time ago, I just can't wait for the schools to break up and to have my children home with me!  We are going to have so much fun whatever the weather is like (but I'm crossing my fingers for lots of sun!) so I thought I'd jot down a few ideas in my bullet journal to keep me going until they begin. 

My summer plans made with Artline Stix & fineliners

I split my pages into two sections, things to do on rainy days and things to do on sunny days and then I used my Artline Stix brush pens and Fineliners to create this spread.  The Stix brush pens are great to use for larger cursive writing and pairing them with the much smaller nib of the fineliners makes a nice contrast and my lettering look more interesting.

I don't actually mind the occasional rainy day over the six weeks, especially if I don't have to leave the house.  It's quite nice to curl up on the sofa with the kids and watch a film or read a book together.

We also have lots of board games packed away for wet and windy days, our favourite is Pay Day but if we have a lot of time to kill then we get out Monopoly.  Splashy the Whale isn't really a board game but it's still lots of fun if you don't mind getting squirted with water!

Summer fun on rainy days

My girls enjoy doing all kinds of arts and crafts when we are stuck inside, the last time they were off and it rained a lot we painted some #ArtlineRocks and made lots of colourful pompoms.

My youngest daughter still loves to build forts, I give her blankets, sheets and pegs and she will cover the room until she is happy with her creation.  I sometimes think she will be an architect when she grows up as she makes different areas and rooms inside the fort like bedrooms and reading corners.   

If we have to go outside in the rain then we will wrap up warm, put on our wellies and grab the giant umbrella to keep us dry or just the wellies and jump in the puddles, it's still fun to do even as an adult!

Summer fun on sunny day

I am looking forward to the sunny days the most though, I love spending time outside with the kids!  This summer we are going to go rock hunting and explore new places we haven't been before.  We will pack a picnic and take our dogs to the forest near us and have an adventure, I'm picturing some kind of Famous Five story but without the smugglers or crooks!  Oh and definitely no ginger beer, I really don't like that!

Long sunny days were made for barbecues so we will be having quite a few of them over the summer.  My favourite thing about a BBQ is that my husband does all the cooking and I am just on salad making duty while the children play football or tennis or their own version of cricket which no one really knows the rules to or how to win!

I really enjoyed creating this spread in my journal, it was lovely to spend some time day dreaming about the holidays and then using my pens to write and doodle all my plans.  Putting pen to paper makes them all feel more real and within reach, I hope the next five weeks go by quickly! 

If you are interested in setting up your own bullet journal then take a look at my Bullet Journal Basics post to get you started or if you'd like to give hand lettering and calligraphy a go then read this post for some ideas.

Have you started making any plans for the summer yet?

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Kids crafts with Artline - Fathers Day card

As it is Fathers Day this weekend I thought for today's post I would show you a quick and simple way for your children to make a Fathers Day card!


All you will need is a piece of card, some washi or masking tape and a few Artline poster markers in different colours.

The first step is to fold your sheet of card in half so it looks like a greetings card and then use pieces of tape to mark out the word Dad on the front of it (or Father or Daddy, just make the letters smaller for longer words).  I used two different thicknesses of tape to make it look a little more interesting but you can use just the one if you like.  It doesn't matter if the tape is patterned or plain as we will be removing it once the card is finished. 

Use tape to spell out the work Dad

Once you are happy with how the word looks it is time to start painting.  Use the poster markers to colour over the front of the card.  Do one colour at a time and then let the paint dry between each new colour.  These poster markers dry quite quickly on cardboard so you only need to wait a couple of minutes   

Colouring in with the poster marker

You need to colour in the whole front section of the card including over the top of the washi or masking tape until you are left with something like this.

Completely covered

You can skip this step if you like but I added some polka dots over the top of the paint with my white poster marker and then left it to dry for a couple more minutes.

Adding polka dots

The last step is to very carefully remove the tape from the front of the card.  If any of the paint still seems wet when you try this put it to one side and leave it a little while longer before you try again.  

Remove the tape

And here is our finished card!  If you pair it with a big bar of dad's favourite chocolate then you will be on to a winner this Sunday!

The finished card

My favourite thing about this technique is that it is almost mess free, there's no painting hands or feet to make prints of them and there's no brushes to wash up afterwards.  Just put down a sheet or two of newspaper to protect your tabletop and you are good to go!

Thanks for stopping by and have a great Fathers Day!

Monday, 4 June 2018

Artline Monday - Summer rocks with Artline

Is it raining where you are?  I feel like we've had nothing but rain for weeks and we have been stuck inside, dreaming of summer!  As it was half term and my girls were home with me we decided to make some summer themed #ArtlineRocks to distract us from the weather and for us to hide at the beach when next go.

I scream, you scream, we all scream for....

One rainy afternoon last week we divided up the rocks I had left over from our previous rock painting adventures and I got out our Artline pens.  We find these ones work the best on stones:

Because our rocks are white they didn't need a base coat, if you have darker coloured rocks and stones then it is easier to give them a coat of paint before you start so you have a lighter surface to work on.  

Painting the sea with a poster marker

My youngest decided to paint the sea on her first rock and a lovely bright yellow sun.  When it was dry she added some details using the Artline 853 OHP pens and a white paint marker for the waves.

The sun and sea, how I miss them both!

I had a bit of an odd shaped rock to work with so I turned it into a ice cream cone.

Drawing the cone

I drew the outline with a black 853 OHP marker and then coloured it in with yellow and white paint markers.  

I used these pens for my ice cream rock

When the paint had dried I added raspberry sauce with my pink Artline Supreme marker and the waffle pattern to the cone with an orange 853 OHP pen.

Kick your flip flops off!

My eldest daughter drew a pair of flip flops on her first rock and wrote a fun message on it!

Strawberry and blueberry ice cream

My youngest thought my vanilla ice cream was boring so she drew her own with strawberry and blueberry scoops instead!

I love ice lollies

She also made this I love ice lollies rock, it's a little abstract looking but she really enjoyed drawing it!

Can you dig it?

Our last rock has a bucket and spade on it, my eldest girl painted the sand with a yellow paint marker and then drew the rest with the 853 OHP pens. 

Written on the back of each rock

On the back of each rock we have written #ArtlineRocks, share online, keep or rehide so anybody who finds one will know what to do with it.

Our full set of summer rocks

Here is the full set of our summer themed rocks!  I am going to varnish them this week and then put them away until our planned trip to the beach.  

Tips for hiding rocks at the seaside

If you are going to make your own rocks and are thinking about hiding them at the seaside here are a few tips for you....

Do not hide your rocks on the sand.  If the sea comes in too far then your little work of art will be wash away and may never be seen again!

You could hide them on the wall along the beach if the weather is good and the sea is calm.  

Hiding rocks on rocks!

If there are rocky walkways or piles of rocks near the beach but not the water then these are great places to hide your stones if you want them found quickly.  The brightly painted rocks standout beautifully against the natural stone!  If you want to make finding your rocks a little trickier then try hiding them up higher instead of low to the ground.

Standing out against the rocks

Some other good places you can hide your rocks are parks, cliff tops, benches and the ornamental gardens and flowerbeds that are usually spotted around beaches and seaside resorts.  I like to hide stones among the flowers and as long as you have varnished them they will still look great when someone finally spots them nestled in there.

Please let me know if you decide to make some of your own #ArtlineRocks, I would love to see them!

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Wedding Wednesday with Artline - Wedding favours

I'm still feeling all loved up after the royal wedding celebrations and it's my own anniversary soon so I thought I'd fit in another wedding themed post.  I got married on a beach in Jamaica and didn't have to plan anything other than my dress and shoes as it was all done for me (which I am grateful for!) but it's kind of nice to write these posts and go through the process as if I was arranging my own fantasy wedding now.   

Today I'm thinking about wedding favours, they are a lovely little thank you for your guests who have taken time out of their busy lives to get dressed up and come and celebrate your special day with you.  They don't have to be expensive but they are a nice little touch for the tables at your wedding reception.

Wedding favours and place cards

I love arts and crafts so I would definitely make my own instead of buying premade or filled favours.  I brought some packs of favour boxes and matching place cards from my local Home Bargains but you can find them at craft shops and online places like eBay and Amazon too.  I decided my colour theme would be gold and bronze and I got out my metallic Artline Supreme markers to add some colour to the plain white products.

Colouring in the favour boxes

I have said before that I love colouring and I find it really relaxing so I would do a few of these in batches each evening until I had enough for all of the guests.  I used the Supreme markers to colour in sections of the cut out design on the boxes and then did the same on the matching place cards.  Colouring them in means you can make them fit the colour scheme of your wedding and makes them a bit different to everyone else's who brought the same sets as you.  You can make them all unique to your big day!

I also used the Supreme markers to write the guests names on the place cards after I had coloured them in.

Adding a touch of colour to the place cards

Unless you have a lot of space to store the favours I wouldn't assemble and fill the boxes until much closer to the wedding, I'd probably invite a few friends around to help me as well!  They are easy to fold into shape and fill with some kind of sweets, I went with sherbet lemons because they're my favourite.  Then it was just a case of threading the ribbons through the top of the boxes and tying them with a bow.

I would also keep the place cards flat and unfolded until it was time for them to go onto the tables as this way they are less likely to get damaged.

My unique favours and place card

I think they look really pretty and much nicer than plain white, what do you think?

If you are looking for more wedding inspiration check out my previous posts here and if wedding planning is making you feel a little stressed then I have some ideas about ways to relax for you too!

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 25 May 2018

Planner Friday - May

I'm making plans for my perfect summer over on the Trendy Twine blog today!  

Summer is just around the corner and I can't wait!  Spring has been a mixed bag this year, we've had a lot of rain and even some snow this side of the pond so I am looking forward to spending time outside in the sunshine more than ever right now.  Today I thought I would document my ideal summer in my travellers notebook using some of my favourite APB stamps to really get me in the mood!

Products used:
Used but not pictured:

My perfect summer

So as you can see most of my favourite summer activities involve some kind of food!  Whenever I think of summer I always picture BBQs, ice cream and chilled glasses of wine, get togethers with family and friends and adventures!  

You can read the rest of my post here.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 21 May 2018

Artline Monday - Artline Heroes

Is it a bird?  Is it a plane?  No it's a pen.... actually it's an Artline Hero!  If you are looking for some super fun activities to keep your children occupied over the upcoming school holiday then you are going to love the Artline Heroes!

Artline Heroes

 have just taken over the Artline website and there are games and printables you can print off to keep your little ones busy during the break.  There is also a great competition to design a superhero mask and win a big bundle of Artline goodies.  What's not to love?

You can find the game sheets here, there are a maze, wordsearch and follow the line activities.  Just click on each sheet you want to print, it is really simple to do!  I have printed mine off already but I'll be saving them for next week.

Fun and games with Artline Heroes

The competition is here, print off the templates and let your children get to work designing their own superhero masks.  Get them to pop on their masks and take a photo of them striking their best superhero pose and then share your photos online with @ArtlineOfficial and use the tag #ARTLINEHEROES for your chance to win the big prize!

Designing the masks

Here is my youngest wearing her mask, she's Star Girl and she is ready to join the Artline Heroes!


You have plenty of time to get your entries in, the competition is open until the 31st August.  My girls loved making their masks, in fact they have asked me if they can make some more so I have printed off a few extra templates and they can get creative again over the holiday.  

I can't wait to see everyone's photos!

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

New Japan Candy Box - Review and giveaway

Hello!  I've got some exciting news for you today, Japan Candy Box have recently turned three years old and to celebrate they have redesigned and updated their boxes of treats!  They have sent me one of the new boxes to review and are going to give away another box to one of you too!  Pop your details in the widget at the bottom of this post for your chance to win.  Okay, now let's see what's new and what is inside this month's box!

Fab new style box

The boxes have a fresh new design and the address label is now on the reverse side so it doesn't hide any of the logo or images, just in case you wanted to share a pic on Insta without hiding your personal details!  The biggest change is on the inside though!

New information booklet

The old boxes used to come with a postcard inside which listed the contents but didn't give you any information about the products.  Now you get a super-duper booklet that is jam packed with illustrations of each item along with their names, details about the flavours and some facts about them too.  

Useful info about the products

Each box now contains 10 Japanese candies and savoury snacks and has a wider variety of products than ever before. There will be more exclusive and limited edition treats like Japanese Kit Kats, seasonal Pocky and Hi-Chew sweets too!  A one off box costs $19.90 USD which is about £14.70 or 16.70 Euros and that includes worldwide shipping .  If you subscribe to six or twelve monthly boxes you will get them for a lower price and you can find all the information about that here.

Some of my yummy treats

My box has a Japanese exclusive dark chocolate Kit Kat, a bag of Meiji peach flavour gummy sweets, Koikeya BBQ corn snacks, Tomica Ramune candy and Tohato caramel corn snacks.

There was also a Popin' Cookin' Kuru Kuru Takoyaki DIY candy kit, a pot of Kabaya chocolate puddings, a box of Strawberry Pocky, a Yaokin Umaibo corn snack and a bag of Kasugai rose flavour candy.

DIY candy kit and more

Out of these my absolute favourites are the Meiji peach gummies, the Tohato caramel corn snacks and the Kasugai rose candy, they all taste so good!  My children also tried everything and their favourites are the strawberry Pocky, Kabaya chocolate puddings and they loved the peach gummies too.  My husband loves dark chocolate so he took the Kit Kat and gives it two thumbs up!

Taste testing!

We haven't had a go at making the DIY candy kit yet but we've always had a lot of fun when we have done them before so I'm sure we'll enjoy it!

On to the giveaway!  It's easy to enter, just fill in the sections below to be in with a chance of wining a box of treats sent directly to your door!  Or if you just can't wait you can treat yourself to a box here (but still enter, you might win another one!).

She's Eclectic Japan Candy Box Giveaway

Good luck everyone!

Monday, 14 May 2018

Artline Monday - Royal wedding celebrations

I couldn't do a series of wedding posts this month without mentioning the royal wedding!  I am super excited to watch the whole thing on TV this Saturday and see the dress, the ceremony, the outfits etc and have some kind of celebration at home with my girls.  This got me thinking about street parties people might be throwing or celebrations and get togethers that will be happening to mark the occasion.

Making plans for the royal wedding

If you are planning a street party then you probably have everything sorted by now but I have a few ideas for when it comes to adding some finishing touches to your tables or if you are just having a small gathering and want to make it extra special, after all it's not every day we get to celebrate a royal wedding!

Mini chalkboards and Artline pens

These mini chalkboards were only 49p for a pack of four and I thought they would make cute little keepsakes of the day.  Now I could have written on these with my Artline chalk markers but I wanted the messages to be permanent so I used my gold Supreme marker and Artline 999XF metallic pen instead.  

Chalkboard keepsakes

I think these boards will look so cute dotted around the table/s among the food and drinks and the guests can take them home as a memento of the day if they like.

Decorating the milk bottles with chalk markers

As well as the chalkboards I brought some sweet glass milk bottles for us to use and I have personalised them with a purple Artline chalk marker.  I wrote Harry and Meghan along with the date of the wedding on some and on others it just says Royal wedding.  Being a chalk marker this will wipe off with a damp cloth so if you wanted to decorate any of your glassware for the party you could wash it off afterwards.  Artline have glass markers you can use too which are also easy to remove once the event is over.

If you wanted to permanently decorate your glasses then you could use the Supreme markers and Artline 999XF pens I used on the chalkboards instead.

Artline Stix are great for colouring in & playing with

If you are having a lot of children around then you could also print off some free royal wedding colouring in pages for them to do while the adults watch the ceremony or are having a chat.  I found a few different ones online including this one from eParenting.  You could add these pages to the table/s along with a pot of pens to use, I recommend some Artline Stix because not only do they colour really well but they are also really fun to play with!  You can connect them together side by side or end to end and see who can make the biggest construction, they are just like building blocks you can colour with!

Do you have any hints, tips or ideas for the wedding celebrations to share with us?  Leave me a comment below, I love to read them!

Thanks for stopping by!