Thursday, 25 October 2012


I've recently taken over making the cards for the choir, and B's birthday is on Sunday. She and her husband keep chickens. We give them our used egg-boxes, and every so often she returns one with fresh, free-range, family pet eggs inside. A perfect barter, except that I think we get the better deal!

I found this adorable image on The Digi Street, and teamed with my new Bo Bunny Apple Cider papers, it made the cutest card I've seen for a while. Sketch Saturday's sketch and Simon Says Stamp's leaves challenge made a perfect combination. Cute Card Thursday's challenge of "scary" seems to fit too - this poor chook looks pretty scared.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

A hodgepog for BIL

It's our brother-in-law's birthday tomorrow and I was stumped for card ideas. He likes hedgehogs, Bristol City and tropical fish. And posh watches, but I couldn't find a decent Tag Heuer die anywhere...

I did the red-and-white scarf last year, 6-year-old nephew is doing a fish hand-print as suggested to his mum by Auntie, and 9-year-old niece made an adorable red and white woodland scene card when she came to stay with Auntie last month, and played with all Auntie's toys instead of her own. Ahem.

Mind blank. Then the hodgepog Twinchie came to my rescue and grew into this:

Cool eh? Those dots are delicious chestnut-coloured sparking gems, and the leaves are smothered in frosty Stickles. I have to explain this because I had the choice of getting the card square or showing the sparkles, and I need the sparkles for Basic Grey's challenge. The leaves are punched from Bittersweet, Indian Summer and Ruby Lemonade amongst other scraps. I hope that counts? I've made this week's Sketch Saturday sketch into a masculine version.

I'm entering it into Simon Says Stamp's photo inspiration challenge as well - the leaves look a lot like the M&Ms and all the orange echoes the house and the tree background. My thumbnail is small!

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Every cloud has a silver lining

The weather has been 'orrible this week; miserable, dark and soaking wet through the whole of the South West in particular. Poor Clovelly suffered flash floods with a red torrent rocketing down the steep streets where donkeys carry people's groceries. It has been double-speed wind-screen-wiper, and lights-on-by-4:30pm weather. Proper mingin', as they say around 'ere.

I've been thinking about Christmas - well you have to cheer up somehow, don't you? Less Is More wants silver this week, and Creative Card Crew are requesting birds, and I have some Hero Arts stamps which get trotted out every year because they're so cute and useful. I think I've found my Advent Craft Fair design:

Friday, 5 October 2012

Orange, you are so terrible that it's funny

I have never before used my blog to call out companies for shocking service. But this is so outrageous that it made me laugh. Does anyone else remember the That's Life saga with the "but I've got no gas!" craziness when British Gas tried to bill a customer for gas when he wasn't even connected? If That's Life was still on, I would be sending this in to them so that everyone else could have a good laugh.

Here is my original e-mail to them, using their own "contact us" e-mail system:
"I am no longer an Orange customer, although I am still receiving text messages from Orange about promotions which I am not able to enter, and I am unable to unsubscribe from them. I would like my number removed from your database.

I have tried to go into an Orange branch with my request, and they were unable to help. I have tried calling your Helpline, but not only was there no number to press for anything close to my query, but the recorded message told me that there was an hour's wait to speak to a customer service representative. There isn't even an option in the obligatory subject line above which is close to my query.

I shouldn't have to point out how unacceptable this is.

Please would you remove my number from your marketing database?
Thank you"

Today I received this response:
"Please accept our apologies, we are in the process of improving our e-mail service, and cannot deal with your e-mail enquiry at this time.

For the moment, can we ask you to use one of our alternative Customer Service channels, where our advisors will be happy to answer any question or resolve any enquiry you may have.

You can contact us, between 8am to 10pm by :- 

  • dialing 150 from your Orange handset or
  • calling us on 07973100150 from a landline*
  • If your abroad you can also contact on 07973100150**
  • You can manage your account online, 24 hours a day at Your Account
  • You can also manage your account and get answers to most questions, using our Your Orange app, available to download for all smartphones
  • You can talk to one of our agents using our Click to chat services on our website
  • Alternatively, our Orange helpers are always ready to provide support if you visit our social media sites @OrangeHelpers on twitter or search for Orange Helpers on Facebook
Apologies once again, but we hope to be back soon with an even better email service, so we appreciate your understanding at this time.

*calls are charged at local rates if you're a BT customer, but if you're with another provider it may cost more so do check
** calls are charged at international rates.

A-hahahaha! You've GOT to be kidding me!

OK. You goaded me.

They're so short-staffed at Orange that they've given the job of writing the official apology e-mail to one of their kids who hasn't passed an English exam yet. Advisors? Dialing? My abroad? Haha!

In addition, my complaint is that I am NOT an Orange customer so I can't do any of that stuff except the part about sitting in a queue for an hour being charged at local rates. But since they have suggested taking this to Twitter and Facebook, I might just do that....

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Was that thunder?

What a delightful day it is today! Grey skies, dismal heaving sea with white-tipped swells, and rain coming in parts of the greenhouse which don't normally leak. Lovely.

The new challenge on Show us your Twinchies is giving us free rein to do anything we like, so in defiance to the rain, here's my entry. I made it using Stickles, a copper eyelet, a black brad, gilding flakes and a stamp that came out of the clearance bin in my favourite LSS in Perth, Australia.

Take that, miserable day!