Sunday, 28 December 2008


Aidan, originally uploaded by shazbucket103.

Aidan and his drums

Ashley hat

Ashley hat, originally uploaded by shazbucket103.

Ashley in her christmas hat

Todd and Ashley

Todd and Ashley, originally uploaded by shazbucket103.

One of my favourite pictures from christmas

Sunday, 21 December 2008

Waterfront Winterland

Sorry about being a bad blogger. I slipped on the ice walking to work a couple weeks ago, actually twice in two days and hurt my hand so I haven't been able to type.

Quick update, all my presents are bought but still to be wrapped.
So yesterday we had a girly afternoon. Carol, Claire, Mum and I all went to the Swansea Waterfront Winterland after we had been to see the eagerly awaited Twilight. (Great film although I'm not sure about the guy who played Jaspar).

Anyway here are some pictures

Then coming home to watch the final of Strictly Come Dancing. Tom's show dance just made me smile.

Have a great christmas
Shanna xx

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Busy Weekend.

I've had a busy weekend. I had to work yesterday morning then a group of eight of us went out for Christmas lunch yesterday. I was so full yeseterday I couldn't eat anything else for the rest of the day. It was great fun.

Then this morning we went to the library and shopping into town all morning, came home decorated for christmas. This afternoon my sister and I made a chocolate snowman, a gingerbread house and stained glass christmas tree biscuits.

It was a very festive weekend, now I just have to go to work tomorrow :(

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Game Night

Last night I got together with my brother and sister for a game night. My sister's husband was out playing poker with some friends.

We played the new version of Cluedo (Clue in the US), some of the changes in the game made me think about the version we had when I was a kid. We lost some of the weapons so we used to find little objects to replace them.

For example we lost the lead pipe so we used a small twig.

It also reminded me that there used to be a tv show version although why I'm not sure why.

It turned out I was the murderer, but who kills someone in the spa or the guest bedroom?

It was a lot of fun and it was nice to spend some quality time with my siblings.

Shanna xx

Sunday, 30 November 2008


Saturday, 29 November 2008

Why I Love Digital Scrapbooking....

So I have this cute picture of my nephew Aidan and my adopt-a-nephew Kieran (my sister's best friend's son) when my sister went to visit them at the beginning of the month.

I wanted to make a layout of it, so I spent some time editing out the digger and my sister's arm. I liked the idea of bringing out the orange hints in the picture so I choose an orange background paper, and then decided it was too much so I choose a cardboard paper to layer over and turned it blue. I spent ages picking the right frame, I knew I had the perfect word art title, adding a stitched frame and names and date. I added some buttons which brought out various shades of blue in the picture here's what I came up with.

I went away from the computer because I knew something just didn't look right. When I came back I realised that the orange was too distracting it was what instantly drew your attention the blue cardboard washed out the picture and the picture needed more pop as it was meant to be the focal point of the layout.

Now if I had been making this layout the traditional way, with everything stuck down I would have either had to try to unglue it or had to start all over again. But since I scrapbook digitally all it took was a few clicks of the mouse and I have a layout I much happier with.

I used auto level to give the photo more pop, changed the background paper to black and turned the cardboard paper back to it's original colour and instantly the photograph was the focal point of the layout. I am so much happier with it. Now it's all ready to print and put in my album.

Supplies used:

Buttons from A Whole Lot of Buttons (freebie download a long time ago)
Stiches : LBA-Stichsquare from Little Dreamers Designs Vintage Retro Kit
Title: from Scrapgirls His and Hers Kit
Cardboard Paper from Weeds and Wildflowers Jolly Holiday kit (coloured and uncoloured)
Orange paper from Weeds and Wildflowers Happy Garden kit
Frame from Raspberry Road Away In a Manger freebie kit

Shanna xx

Friday, 28 November 2008

And it spreads

After I became addicted to the Twilight books, I insisted that my mum read them.

She obviously read the first one yesterday because she appeared at my bedroom door at 7.30 this morning wanting the other three books, by the time I left for work she had read a good portion of the second book.

Now she is reading and waiting for the film as much as I am.

So the vampire love spreads....


Tuesday, 25 November 2008


Okay, I wasn't going to get sucked in. I put it off but practically on every blog I've read someone said something about the books, I broke down last week and bought the first one, I got half way through before I order the rest and read them all twice.

Now I'm waiting (not so) patiently for the film to come out in the UK which doesn't happen until 19th December. That's three weeks.

Now I'm obssessively watching the trailer and this clip

I think I need help

Shanna xx

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Top Gear

I'm not a car person, well not really. I mean I love the Ford Thunderbird Convertibles and have absolutely no idea why.

But recently I have developed an addiction to Top Gear, I don't know what it is about the show may it is the cheap car challenges or The Stig or the Star in a reasonably price car but I can't help but watch it everyday on Dave.

Back in May I went to an old car show with my grandfather. We didn't stay long but it was great to look at the old cars.

Shanna xx

Saturday, 22 November 2008

At 25

Journalling reads: When I was younger and thought what my life would be like at twenty-five it is very different to what it is now. I thought I would be married possible have a kid or two. I'd have my dream job and my life all figured out.
But here I am at twenty-five single, no kids, a job I can live with and no idea where my life is going.
But that's okay, life is not what I planned but it's what I've got and I may as well enjoy now who knows what will happen tomorrow.
This was created using a template and papers supplied by Jessica Sprague as part of the Stories in Hand class.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Bucket List

Did you ever see the film the Bucket List?

When I saw it it got me thinking what things did I want to do before I die.

1. Ballroom dance - I've always wanted to learn to ballroom dance, I'm not wild about the costumes but something about the elegance of it gets me.

2. Sign Language - I've always wanted to learn but just never had the time.

3. Brooklyn Bridge - I've seen pictures of the Brooklyn Bridge at night with all the lights of New York City glowing in the back ground and thought it was something I'd like to see.

4. Pyramids - Egyptology has always fascinated me the idea that thousands of years ago people built the pyramids and it a place I've always wanted to see.

5. Great Wall of China - Walking the Great Wall of China always seemed like a great idea

6. Route 66 - I love the idea of being able to drive down road across the country.

7. Barrier Reef - I love the idea of swimming with the fish in crystal clear blue oceans.

This layout conveys all of these ideas, now my fear of heights and flat out refusal to get on a plane may hinder doing something these things, but dreaming big is part of why it is my bucket list.

Shanna xx

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Judge Judy

I have a small confession I'm kind of addicted to Judge Judy. It's funny to watch people humiliate themselves on TV because they are after some money. I know America has a more litigious society than the UK but some people need to get over themselves rather than humiliate themselves on National TV.

In the UK we're currently getting episodes from 2001 but that doesn't stop me tuning in everyday to watch.

Some people have legitimate complaints and get the money that they deserve but some people should have just asked someone, anyone with common sense whether they should sue but they would get laughed at rather than get laughed out of the court room on TV.

But I guess it makes good television.

Shanna xx

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

First Computer.

When I was a kid we had some sort of Atari and we had SNES where my brother completed every game under the sun in a matter of days, but it is the memory of our first proper computer that stays with me.

In primary school we had one of those really old computers that had the six inch square discs and I have great memories of play a game called Granny's Garden.

But the first proper computer my family had was bought around in the mid nineties. The year is a little fuzzy but I remember it was a few days after Christmas my mum and I caught the train to Exeter and decided to walk to the Marsh Barton trading estate where PC World was housed to buy a computer. She had borrowed the money from my grandparents. I remember feeling excited as we walked, what we didn't realise was that it was over a two mile walk.

By the time we got their we were exhausted. I remember how big the store was and how many options we had. We spent about an hour choosing which model we wanted, and then I remember waiting as she filled out the paperwork. The excitement as we walked back to the train discussing our new purchase. The excitement when it arrive a few days later, setting it and figuring out how it all worked.

It took us a few years to get the Internet as my mum kept refusing but eventually broke down. It opened up a whole new world to us and led my mum to meeting my stepfather.

In the intervening years I've had three lap tops and now my own desktop but I'll always remember that computer.

Shanna xx

Monday, 17 November 2008


We're not a very religious family, I mean I was christened into the Church of England faith a month after I was born, we went to Christmas Carol concerts, the usual weddings, christenings and funerals but nothing major.

My primary school was directly opposite the church and half the Christmas plays I was in were held in the church. I remember the grave yard creeped me out but it was and still is a beautiful historic building (if not a little cold) that played a part in my childhood.

One of the services we went to when I was younger was the Christingle. It was held at the during advent we were each give one these.

The orange represents the world, the red ribbon tied around it represents the blood of Christ, the four sticks with fruit on them represent the fruits of the earth and the four season and the candle represents Jesus the light of the world.

This ceremony wasn't mandatory, but we went as a family.

Now onto the point of this story as part of the journey for the class I'm taking it's about recording our memories, I remember one distinct Christingle ceremony the children would go up to the front and receive their christingle. At the time I had a very bushy fringe, when I received my christingle I held it too close and singed my hair, whether it was a sign I don't know but burnt hair smells for quite sometime. As I grew older we stopped going for some reason but I will always remember the fact that the light of the world tried to set me on fire.

Shanna xx

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Books, Books and More Books.

Ever since I was a child I can always remember being addicted to books. From the Fuzzbuzz books I was taught to read by in primary school, followed by the Johnny Redhat and Billy Bluehat series, through the pirate books into a world where I could pick my own stories I have always been fascinated by the way a book can just take you away from everything and draw you into someone else's world and breathe life into your imagination.

When I was a kid we had this substitute teacher called Mrs Hawkins the things I remember her about was she had black hair, she could play the piano, the fact that we always made green cabbages out of play-doh and fact that whenever she taught us she read us a book called Burglar Bill. Now Bill stole by night and one night stole a big brown box with lots of holes in, inside there turned was a baby who it turned out belonged to Burglar Betty they end up living happily ever after. Then there was Dinah Price in Ten in A Bed where fairy tale character such as three bears come to visit and won't get out of her bed until she tells them a bedtime story which shows them in a good light. Both of these books I own and can take me back to those childhood memories.

Then there was Winnie the Witch which my friend Emma gave me for my tenth birthday and the Big Blue Balloon (which is one of my sister's childhood favourites).

I remember being read The Machine Gunners and Goodnight Mr Tom which led me to images of war to Shakespeare and his classic elegance. To Jane Austen and wonderful characters such as Elizabeth Bennett, Mr Darcy, Emma, Fanny Price and the rest. Pride and Prejudice is still one of my favourite books.

Somewhere in there was an addiction to the Babysitter's Club series, Enid Blyton books and a whole host of classics.

In secondary school there was poetry the works of Ted Hughes and the like, more Shakespeare. The ever hated Enduring Love which was such and endurance that the whole class wanted to burn the book after the second week of reading. The classic works of William Blake, the play The Country Wife, war poetry of Sigfried Sasson, Rupert Brook and Wilfred Owen.

I got sucked into the crazes for books like the Da Vinci Code which took us through how clues could be left by the past which lead us through mysteries in the present, which lead to reading a whole host of other books in similar vein which took me through the mysteries of Alexander the Great, the Egyptians, Motzart and others to name but a few.

I'm not ashamed to admit that I read Mills and Boon novels, the romantic in me likes the happy ending no matter how much gets in the way. But I also like solving the mystery which is the Bone Collector is my favourite book. The whole Lincoln Rhyme series allows you to follow along as they put the clues together.

Then there was Harry Potter. I remember the first time I heard of Harry Potter, we were on holiday at Butlins, my Mum had brought the book to read to my little brother, this was just after the first book came out before Pottermania swept the world, my sister and I would sneak in to hear the adventures of the boy wizard, in the end we just stole the book so we could see how it ended and the addiction began.

I recently read the first book in the Twlight series, and by recently I mean this morning, and before I was half way through I had already ordered the rest of the series. Some books catch you like that and before you know it you're at the last page wishing the story never ends.

There are books that make you think, that make you questions, that change your world and or that simply let your mind wander for however long you allow it. Some of my best memories can be counted by the books I was reading at the time. I hope my love of the written word never leaves me and always leaves me asking which world can I escape to next.

The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it. ~James Bryce

Shanna xx

Saturday, 15 November 2008

What's In A Name?

The first prompt on the list asks: What is your full name? Were you named after anyone?

My name christian and middle name is Shanna Marie.

I occassionally get called Shanny, or Shanny Me by my Mom when she wants something, I get called Shan at work sometimes but pretty much it is always Shanna (pronounced Sh-Anna although my grandmother does pronounce it SHA-RNA).

A taxi driver once told me it sounded very American but where it originates is anyones guess. says The meaning of the name Shanna is Form Of Shannon Or Shana The origin of the name Shanna is American. says it's Hebrew from Shoshannah, the Hebrew form of Susanna. The name comes from the Hebrew shoshan, meaning "lily". says it is a variant of Shannon meaning Little Wise Owl says it Irish and means God is Gracious says it is Irish meaning Small wisdom, Slow-moving stream. says it is Hebrew meaning beautiful says it is a Place name - refers to an Irish river. Also means "Ancient". Once extremely popular especially with Irish families.

Even though I'm English in America apparently Shanna was the 237th most popular girls name in the year I was born and fell to 837th most popular by 1997 and now it is not in the top 1000.

Whatever it means it's my name.

I was actually named a character in a book called Shanna Trahern from a book called Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss which my mother was reading when she was pregnant with me.

The story is set in 1749 where Shanna marries convict named Ruark Beauchamp (which by the way is what I would have been called if I was a boy, which makes me glad I was a girl) so she doesn't have to marry any of the suitors her father wants her to marry because he only has a few days to live before he is hanged. She abandons him to set sail back home to the Carribean telling her father who she is a widow. Ruark escapes death when he is purchased illegally to work for Shanna's father. Where he pursues her despite Shanna's rejections. It all works out in the end.

Having an unusal name always leads to having to spell it out for people, (I have to do that with my surname as well) but I wouldn't change it for anything.

So to answer the question What is in a name? Everything.

Shanna xx

First entry

My first blog post. Wow!

I've been thinking about starting a blog for a while as a place to write down all the thoughts that run through my head everyday. Whether anyone reads it is a different matter but at least I know it's there.

There is this quote I once read that has always stuck with me know matter what I do it always seemed poignant and well thought out, so here I'd like to share it with you.

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember professionals built the Titanic and amateurs built the ark!.

Just because you have never done something before doesn't mean it won't work out if try.

That being said I have plenty of hang ups not to mention a MAJOR fear of heights but that's a story for another time. But onto the reason I made the decision to start this blog today.

I am currently taking this class over at called Stories In Hand. The idea is to find a way to preserve your memories. Now I'm a digital scrapbooker when I have the time and patience to create a page I love to preserve the memories of my life and my family. This hobby has made me research my family tree and find out about a lot of relatives I barely knew existed. I guess in all of us there is a need to know where we came from and why we're here I guess this allows me to do that and express my creative side.

Well back to the class, today's assignment is to take one of the memories we have and write about it from a section of prompts called ROOTS. I needed somewhere to record this memories for prosperity and a blog sounded like a good place to start. I mean I have tried keep a journal in the past but I tend to loose it or draw a blank when I stare at the blank page and have to write about my life. Ask me to write a story about characters from my favourite TV shows and I'm all over but ask me to write about and a I draw a blank.

So with this in mind I will endeavor to write a second post to day following one of those prompts to record my thoughts and memories.

Wish me luck.

Shanna xx