Monday, 8 February 2010

Art Jounalling Weekend - the verdict...

Phew! That was one amazing weekend! We arrived in Harrogate late on Thursday evening and collapsed into bed...woke up to a wet and rainy day but it didn't matter cos we were off to explore and shop...and shop we did! Found an fantastic vintage shop which was stacked with gorgeous things...fell in love with a refurbished pink dresser but at £695 it was slightly over budget! Settled on getting some old Enid Blyton books for Ellie, some vintage buttons, a french children's magazine (the pictures were cute) and a 1950's map of England (I liked the colour). The store is called Space and it's worth a visit if you love a good rake around - I could have stayed there for hours! Paid a visit to Cath Kidston too where the lovely staff helped me find lots of lovely things! Then it was off to Betty's for some lunch...

Betty's is a traditional tearoom that has been in Harrogate forever by the sounds of things! We had gorgeous open sandwiches and tea from a silver teapot - it was all very civilised! We also had one of there famous Fat Rascal's - a fruity sconey type cake that was so good! I have to say though, the thing that amazed me most was the toilets...took a sneaky photo of the seating area in the ladies loos complete with beautiful fireplace...

All public toilets should look like this!

Went for a wander after lunch round the Montpellier Quarter which is really nice - quaint little shops and cobbled streets...

After a bit more retail therapy (and a quick afternoon cocktail) we headed for home. Passing Cath Kidston, Paul ran in and came back out with a little bag...

...containing the button necklace that I had noticed in the window earlier - how sweet?!? Thank-you - I love it!

The course kicked off at 7pm and it started like it meant to continue - lots of talking, laughing, eating and getting messy...

I sort of tucked myself out of the way up at the back but I needn't have bothered...I was sat next to Mel and that meant that I was always in the midst of the action! She is like a force of nature and makes no apology for it...she was there with her sister Virginia and their Mum, Valencia and it turned out they were at the same hotel as us, staying right across the corridor! I had such a laugh with them...really nice girls.

Also got to meet the very pretty Sandra and her friend Shelley who were sat opposite. Sandra is one of my small band of Followers (one day, I WILL reach 20!?!) and it was a real pleasure to meet her in person.

She seems to be a lot like me in that she gets upset by other people's upsets...over the course of the weekend some of the ladies there shared stories about themselves that were very personal and painful which caused the tears to flow but it was fine...we were all experiencing it together and the whole point of journalling is to express honestly how you are feeling and let that help you grow, learn and maybe even move on. If there's a place where all that can happen then it's Art From the Heart and the reason behind that is Dyan.

On Saturday, we made our journal pages from scratch, explored colours and their associations (Mel SO does not like yellow...!), answered some really difficult questions honestly (then shredded the answers if we wanted), drank copious amounts of tea, ate like queens (thanks to the very lovely Pam) and (to quote Dyan) pratted about and had a fab time.

Mel Oh! Yellow...

Dyan explaining the wavy line principle...

...Shelley not getting the wavy line principle...

...and Sandra celebrating when she finally cracked it!

My 1st ever art Journal page!

And the 2nd one (image chosen by Mel)

On Sunday we did the anatomy of a page, our journal covers and then there was time to do what we wanted. As we were messing around I said to Mel that it was a pity there wasn't a degree in just, well playing with paint and cutting out pretty pictures - pratting about. She agreed (neither of us have degrees) and we decided we would make each other certificates - mine in Prattology and hers in Handwritingology (she hates her writing but actually there's nothing wrong with it at all). We mentioned this to Dyan and next we know she's off designing Prattology Certificates for us all to take home and colour are the highlights of the award ceremony...

I will be proudly hanging mine in my study once it's all properly coloured in! So proud that I have an Ology!

All too soon it was time to pack up and say goodbye. Here are photos of all the ladies...

Anne, Carole and Steph

Michelle and Bee

Emma and Janet

Sandra and Shelley


Got my picture taken with the Rotherham lot too but don't have a copy - could someone please send me one?!? So, after spending a small fortune in the shop and signing up for the Intermediate course in May, we said goodbye...

Me and Dy with our socks out...

Dyan's beautiful painting for the new studio that I sat nearby the whole weekend - how cute?!?

We arrived home sweet home at around 11pm. When I went to check on the kids, Molly was snoring peacefully, Ellie woke up and on seeing me burst into tears and said "Mummy! My Mummy!" then promptly fell back asleep. The boys were soundo but James wandered through to our room a while later and said "I missed you and Daddy really much, Mummy." Harry made a surprise appearance at 5am when I discovered him cuddled into my back...

This morning Mum let me lie in a while and when I came downstairs, there was the smell of springtime in the hall thanks to the lovely purple Hyacinth she had bought me...

We spent the morning in Turriff visiting Sean and Justine and seeing baby Georgia for the first time. Couldn't help but take lots of photos - she is just so lovely...

And on that note, I'm off to bed. Still shattered from the weekend but still buzzing from the experience!


  1. Jude! What a fantastic post! You've been so descriptive. I'm glad you had tea at Betty's - great eh? So very old English - ladies room and all. My husband LOVES fat rascals...he was very disappointed I didn't bring him one back! (It wouldn't have been very fresh by Sunday evning would it?) Those photos of your gorgeous neice makes me long for that delicious baby smell! (oh..I could journal about that!) We'd better get cracking and fill in our journals ready for the next weekend - yes....I'll see you again in many sleeps?

  2. A brilliant post - Love all your pics :0) Have added myself as a follower so 20 is a bit nearer now! Thanks for a fab time and see you in May x Janet

  3. 102 sleeps to the next one - not that I'm counting - LOL- what a fabulous post, numpty me didn't take camera but there were enough photos being taken so may have to sneak one or two for my blog. It was awesome wasn't it! Loved it all absolutely amazing - biggest frustration not had time to play with paint since I got home - planning on remedying that tomorrow night as tonight I help run a volunteer group! Love how your fabulous family welcomed you back, from the tears and the cuddles in bed to the gorgeous spring flowers in your hall! I would write more but I've got breakfast club run to do before reading a document about 2 inches thick - promise to come back and write war and peace soon LMAO!


  4. Aaw! Thanks you three for your comments - it was worth staying up till the wee small hours getting it finished then sleeping in this morning as a result! Thank-you all too for becoming Followers - much appreciated! Hoping to get the paints out today and have a play - trying to wear Molly-Moo out this morning so she has a long afternoon nap! Missing you all. xx

  5. Hi Jude, just read your blog at work and thought I'd post a comment for the first time. It was a great weekend away, and even with my constant phone calls from work, it was very relaxing too. I thought your blog was brilliant - but I'm not sure about the photo of me you included!! Love you millions, Paul.

  6. Jude your weekend away sounds brilliant!!
    I loved reading your post and looking at all your fab photos....x

  7. Sounds like you guys had a great time... you are now officially on the art journal journey...xo

  8. Beautiful pictures, it was like I was right there with you.

    Can I have that button necklace? Pretty please? Hehe :)

  9. oh I am sooooo jealous of your fab weekend (saving for but thanks for sharing about your experience and the fun you had... I'm even more determined now.
    Love all your pictures and you obviously had a fab time.
    chris xx

  10. Hi Jude, just read your brill account of your journalling weekend and can't wait for ours at the end of April. My pal Diane sent me the link to your blog. We often go to Dyan's workshops. We're the 2 from Bradford and Triangle who are usually late.....oops!
    Lovely pics and nice to see our fellow Yahoo pal, Anne, was on the weekend with you. Haven't seen her in ages.
    Also nice to see some of the other ladies we've workshopped with in the past.
    I've added myself as a follower so perhaps you'll make that 20 mark soon.
    Glad you had a nice time in Harrogate shopping, so good for the retail therapy, Alison, x

  11. Thanks Alison - you're my 20th!!! I'm so happy!!!

  12. ha ha told you it wouldnt be long before you got 2o.. Nice write up babe I feel like I want to go myself, lmao. Missing you tho :-( xx

  13. I am so, so jealous! Very jealous. Green with jealousy! looks like so much fun was had by all and some beautiful pages made too.

  14. Look whose got 21 followers!!!!!! Woohooo!!!!!!!!

  15. Hello I am also a follower now so I am able to write a message, don't get too excited though I can definitely talk faster than I can type so will leave War and Peace to Virginia! Well I loved the write up and how good are your photo's unfortunately you can count all 15 of my double chins but still there really great pictures, your camera is fabby! Since I have been back from the most awesome fantastic weekend ever, I have had a very busy week but have managed to squeeze a good few hours of journalling in. Including an hour in bed, your right Dyan brill place to journal! But I now have a list as long as my arm of supplies I need!

    An you never know may even get my own blog going!PS Jude wish you lived closer! xxx

  16. Hi Hun

    Missing you can't believe this time last week we'd not even met - how mad is that! Come home this afternoon and showed other half how to make pages from scratch so now we're covered in ink and gesso - most fun! Bought a sci-fi book from our Charity shop at work for 30p this morning from 1978 - it's lovely - can't wait to start cutting it up! And yes you'll be glad to know I've paid the deposits (your comment on my blog prompted me - thank you)

    Hope you're having a fab Friday!


  17. Hi Hun just got your message on my blog and so I thought I'd come and say hi - missing you too hun - we had such fun and it was so amazing to see you and Melanie sparking off each other! Your Mum and Dad must be amazing, haven't mamaged to nail down the idea of babysitting - I wait to be asked if we would like a babysitter and they sit and wait to be asked so it never happens LOL. Melanie on the other hand has managed this point the - "I've got a life outside of this so your services are required mode" keeps her sane and that's awesome because I omit to do it until things get a bit tense and think "sod I should do that" and it's usually Melanie who comes to the rescue - she's an awesome sister and I love her to bits - John our brother is the same, but different but the same! Notice she wrote less than war and peace previously so I'm trying to make up LOL! Strictly come dancing - bewildered - don't really do reality TV but we're off to see Stomp tomorrow so will be updating on that this weekend! Hope you have a great weekend - say hi to Paul for me and hi to all your beautiful children! Have a good one


    Virginia (Little Miss War and Peace)

  18. hi Jude loved your comments on our awesome weekend with Dyan I loved it all I now try to colour code everyone I know even in my sleep well you now have a new follower I have tried to post a message more than once I will now try again love to you and your family the newest senior citizen Valencia xxxx


Thanks for taking the time to comment - I love reading them all!