Sunday, 30 April 2017

A New Feathered Friend...

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in today.
A rather overcast Sunday, but lovely nonetheless.

We’ve had a super afternoon!
We have a new feathered friend in the garden -
a lovebird! When we first saw him yesterday morning, I dashed over the road to the neighbours, because they have an aviary, and I thought he must be an escapist.
But no. Not from there. They only have budgies. 

He (or she) has been trying out the box Dave made last year, 
but it’s a bit tight; the opening is just a tad too small.


he’s been gnawing away at the opening, 
but he kept looking over at Dave as only a lovebird can, 


until eventually Dave decided to help him out, 
pulled up a ladder,


made a little ledge for him to stand on,


 and widened the opening.


You can see him here, watching from a distance....


Ladder put away, pot of tea made,


and then we waited....
Had Dave frightened him off with his loud drill?


Nope!
He was back on that little ledge and investigating 
before we could even pull up a seat!


In he went,



Perfect size. Not too big, not too tight.


Back out again. We did the in out game a few times, actually!


Now, he’s sitting on his new home even as I write, 
calling out for his mate to come.


Now I’m no lovebird expert.
Anybody got any ideas about the type from these photos?
Not that it matters what his name is! Won’t it be amazing if there’s a pair and they decide to have babies in our garden!!
He has a peach-coloured cap and chest. I have googled and the closest I can find is the Peach-faced Lovebird.


Cor! 


So we have spent hours watching and enjoying this little fella.
I shall keep you informed...

Before I forget, we need a winner for the quiz.
Many of you sent in your answers, 
and THANK YOU for joining in. 

A few people got all the answers
- even down to the name of the dog!



Here are the 10 questions and their answers:

1. 
Which ink pad should I use?
If I want to use Dye-based inks and Distress markers to colour in, which ink pad should I being using?

ANSWER: Archival or other permanent ink



2.
If I wanted to colour in with alcohol inks, or Promarkers, 
or Copics or any of those pens, which ink pad should I use?

ANSWER: Dye Based ink. (Artistry, Distress or similar)


3.
What do you think would happen if I spritzed water at this coated card at this stage? Would the black ink bleed? 

ANSWER: No

4.
Would the card blister?

ANSWER: YES

5.
What have I done in the next step?


ANSWER: Added a further landscape layer at the front using the same colour as for the sky

6.
Which size paintbrush would you recommend?

ANSWER: No. 2 Sable hair.


7.
Would you add water to the ink?


ANSWER: YES, a tiny amount, just to help it move.

8.
What can I do with this card to get rid of the blotchy inkwork?


ANSWER: Buff it with a tissue.

9. 
How have I made the background paper?


ANSWER: Spritz the ink left over on the blending mat lightly with water, and mop up with a piece of stencil card.

10.
What’s the name of the dog?


ANSWER: MAYA, 
Lynne Hammond’s chocolate lab is called Maya.


A £20 Clarity gift voucher goes to 
drumroll......close eyes....pick a winner....

MAGGIE CRANER

And Maggie, 
I shall send the Clarity Voucher to you inside the card in question.
xxx

10 perfect answers.

Well done Maggie.
Thanks again to everybody who joined in.

Love & Hugs,
Barb
xxxx

53 comments:

  1. Congrats Maggie!! Good job Dave!!

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  2. Well done Maggie - very well deserved. And what a bonus to receive the voucher in such a gorgeous card too. How fabulous to have lovebirds in the garden - well done Dave on the alterations. 😊😊 🐦🐦🐦 xxx

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    1. Thank you, Dawn,and thanks for pointing me to the blog. I am really looking forward to a real Barbara card, and to the pleasure of deciding how to spend that voucher. xxx Maggie

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  3. I am so pleased Maggie has won. Well done. This will make her day a lovely lady who is suffering for cleaning her patio at the moment. Never moans though and still turned up for parchment class today. It will be great if you get a pair of lovebirds and that is just what Fred would have done, adapted the box. Hope we get to hear that you have a family in your garden. X x

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    1. Thank you Lynne for tipping me the wink with the name of the dog, although i wasn't entering as I was not quite sure of all the answers! Xx

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    2. Thank you, Lynne, and thank you to you and Fred for your help with my bags today. Winning Barbara's lovely card is a great and positive start to a new week. There was never a possibility of not coming to class today (apart from wondering if I could get on the motorway). We learn so much and it is so much fun. See you soon. xxx Maggie

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  4. Lovebirds they strip wood and carry under their wings to weave into the nests. We had some with our budgies and cockertails in our aviary, but they are a bit aggressive to other birds so we sold them

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  5. Well done Maggie ! I knew you'd win it as sure as eggs were eggs - had a feeling in my water LOL !!!

    What pretty birds, look forward to hearing if his/her mate arrives ! We would have done the same to the box if we'd seen him struggling too ! Xx

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    1. Thank you, Jackie. I never thought I would win so it was a lovely surprise, and I enjoyed doing it anyway. xxx Maggie

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  6. Thank you so much, Barbara. What a great start to a new week and how lovely to receive that beautiful card, which I will treasure. While I was doing the quiz, I could hear your voice in my head, telling us all these great tips about card and ink. Now I have the pleasure of deciding how to spend that lovely voucher. I might hang on till the Open Days .... maybe ... we will see. Thank you again. xxx Maggie

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    1. Well done Maggie, enjoy spending your voucher. Isn't it funny that we all have voices in our head and they are usually Barbara's ! Xxx

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    2. Congratulations Maggie, well deserved. Enjoy spending your voucher - it won't be difficult!! Love Alison xx

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  7. Wonder if your bird is a parakeet, they are found in Sussex, Surrey, Kent, but creeping further. I saw two yesterday at Essex Wildlife Trust, Hornchurch, Essex, inside M25.

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    1. We have a lot of parakeets who nest in our parks in Bromley, Kent. We can hear them flying over because they have a very distinctive screech. They are all a very bright green all over though, so I don't think that is what Barbara has in her garden. They also seem to always be in groups rather than flying solo. Don't we get interesting challenges on this blog?

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  8. Well done Maggie!! I couldn't remember the doggy's name. Crumbs, I would be thrilled to bits to see a bird like that in my garden. Unfortunately our little green wagtail hasn't been for a few weeks to visit our pond, so we are hoping he's busy nesting and the cat hasn't got to him. Must admit I'm loving watching all the activity of twig gathering and nest building. Think Spring has to be my favourite time. X

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  9. Congratulations Maggie!
    Barbara, that Love bird is gorgeous. How wonderful to have him/her adopt your birdhouse. It obviously recognises a good des res when it sees one..and a good odd jobs man too. I look forward to reading about how he settles in and whether your garden becomes home to a nesting pair. What a conversation piece that would make. Love and hugs Jeanette xxxx

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  10. Great to see different birds content enough to inhabit our gardens. New to our garden this year are Siskins - no, not a lot, but very many and they take it in turns with Goldfinches to feed from the nyger seed feeders. Another welcome visitor, back for the third year are Blackcaps, two pairs this time round. ;~}

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  11. Congratulations Maggie! You have a wonderful garden. We have bird feeders in our garden and get some lovely birds feeding too.
    Hugs
    Linda xxx

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  12. Hi Barbara, been doing a wee bit detective work, I think it's a type of Slate Lovebird. Hope it's not escaped from somewhere as it might not know how to feed itself, protect itself, keep warm. But I'm sure you'll be sussing out what it needs to eat and keeping a keen eye on it's health. What a lovely guy you are Dave, not many folk would have gone to that bother. Love Brenda xx

    Congratulations Maggie

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    1. Does someone know if oil pastels work the same as dorso crayons on parchment? It's not something I can try out because I don't have any way of comparing them. Thank you xx

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    2. Brenda, we were talking about oil pastels and dorsal crayons today at parchment class. Our lovely and very experienced tutor said that as far as she can see, the oil pastels will work in the same way. The only difference is that the dorsos were created for parchment and in some cases will be more vibrant than other oil pastels. You can use the dorsal oil or Zest-it as a blending solution to smooth them all out in the same way. I have to admit to not trying them out for myself as yet. Hope this helps. xxx Maggie

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    3. Dratted predictive text! I meant to say dorso not dorsal. xxx Maggie

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    4. Thanks Maggie. It's just for backgrounds so don't need vibrant colour. I'm going to use baby oil as I am hypersensitive to VOCs, which blending type oils tend to be very high in xx

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    5. Not sure about the baby oil, Brenda. I have a feeling that I heard of some reason why that might not be good. Perhaps someone who knows much more than me could advise the right thing to use to avoid the sensitivity issues. I am sure that Barbara, Linda Williams, Rossella, or one of the other experts can help here. My tutor uses a product called Zest-it which is available to buy on the internet if you are unable to get out and about. xxx Maggie

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    6. Hi Brenda, I am dredging up a memory from about 15 years ago when I did some parchment classes and we used oil pastels and blended them with white spirit. We cut up a bit of sponge and put it in a little jar(one of those mini jam jars is ideal) and just moistened it with a little white spirit and used the folded up kitchen roll method to blend. I also vaguely remember using clear shoe polish or lavender oil to blend. Maybe one of the parching experts will be able to confirm if my memory is correct. Hope this is useful xx

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    7. Hi Brenda,
      I used to have some Christine Colman DVDs on parchment craft and she used oil pastels. She blended them with maths or surgical spirit ( or something like that!!) I know she put the spirit in a little jar with sponge which soaked it up and then she used paper towel to blend the pastels. I'll try to see if I've still got the DVD to check on what the spirit was. Hope this helps, love and hugs Alison xxx

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    8. Thanks Mary and Alison. White spirit etc. is very high in VOCs too. VOCs cause my throat to swell a bit and get very sore, sinuses too, bad headache, and feel unwell! That's why I'm always trying to avoid/ask here if things contain VOCs or for alternatives.

      And I can't use essential oil type things either. Even perfume is a no no! There had to be a rule that no support worker came wearing perfume. They cause sharp pains in my nose and trigger my hay fever type allergies!

      Hence the baby oil!!!

      Maybe just as well I'm housebound and rarely see people eh!!!!

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    9. You are right to keep clear of essential oils, Brenda. They are far too strong on perfume to use under those circumstances. xxx Maggie

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  13. You are so lucky. Wish we had a visit at work by such a lovely looking bird. x

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  14. Well done Dave for becoming a "property developer" The lovebird will be so cosy. It would be wonderful if he or she has a mate. Congratulations Maggie. I am sure you will enjoy your prize and treasure Barbara's lovely card. X

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  15. Yes, it's a peach faced lovebird -my mum kept them in Australia where they are quite common. I hope he has a mate, as, if he is an escapee, he might be on his own. Glad he has a home as he may not survive a cold winter without one.

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  16. Looks like a parakeet to me. London is awash with them. Very beautiful and love to chatter away in the early hours.

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  17. Well done Margaret so leased to see you got it enjoy spending yourvoucher x. Barbara my dad kept birds and love birds normally impairs seems quiet tame so would think he comes from someone's avairy or indoors if so don't always servive out side if couorsour bright is a is a male bird males are prettier than females itsfallen on his feet with you and Dave looking after him also has he's ring on his leg that would say werehe is from a avairy as most captive birds would xx

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  18. Hi Barbara
    What a treat to gave a love bird in the garden, well done Dave making the necessary alterations. I hope there is a mate so you can enjoy watching the couple become a family. We have blue tits nesting in our box and they are such a delight to watch, you become protective parents towards them don't you. Well done Maggie on winning the quiz, I didn't get round to entering but was quite pleased to see I had learnt a lot from you. Enjoy your extended weekend.
    Love Diane xxx

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    1. Hi Diane,
      We have blue tits nesting and tree sparrows. I love watching them bustling in and out of the bird houses. The blue tits are fabulous little acrobats on the bird feeders too. Love and hugs Alison xx

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  19. Hello Barbara

    What a lovely way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Here's hoping you get baby lovebirds.

    Love
    Roz.x

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  20. Hey well done there Maggie! I'm so glad you won!
    How lovely that you have this little bird coming to live in your garden... I hope it's mate joins him soon! But I have to say this...what a difference a Dave makes!
    Have a happy day tomorrow keeping your eyes peeled for more love birds!
    Love and hugs xxx

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    1. (Groan, your puns get worse and worse Jane��)

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  21. Hi Barb,
    Well done Maggie.
    Well done to Dave too for making the necessary building alterations! The lovebirds are lovely aren't they - I don't think we get them up here(I'd have to check that with my Dave mind you!) I couldn't remember what the Labrador was called otherwise I'd have entered the competition - I did get the rest right though( I was quite pleased with myself!). Love and hugs Alison xx

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  22. How lovely to have a lovebird in your nesting box. Hope he finds a mate. I put seed, fatballs etc out for the birds but all I get is crows, magpies and a seagull who scrambles about under the bird feeder to pick up what is dropped and digs up the plants in the process. They scare the little birds away although I get a couple of collared doves and the odd sparrow or blue tit at quieter times. xx

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  23. Hi bloggy friends,
    Hope you've all had as good a day as possible. It's been really nice here today. We had a drive up to Weardale to see if we could see the white tailed sea eagle but it must've known we were there - cos it wasn't!! Anyway we did have a nice drive around. Had a little play with my ODS plates this morning and I really do like them. I'm not one for doing small cards but I reckon I could do some lovely 6x6 ones with these - great for posting. Love and hugs Alison. X

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  24. I do really love your cute lovebird/parrakeet or whatever it turns out to be Barbara, and it looks as though he is very happy with the alterations. You may soon find you have a lot of the little beautiies chattering away in the trees which will make you think you have moved to Australia or somewhere similar. Congratulations to Maggie for winning. x

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  25. Yay, well done Maggie! I know you will have fun spending the voucher! Lovely story today, I didn't know lovebirds were garden birds! How lovely to gave them nesting in your garden(hopefully)! Wxx

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    1. Thank you, Wendy. Hope to see you at either the Open Days and or the Retreats. xxx Maggie

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  26. What a lovely blog today. I love watching the birds at this time of year but never seen a love bird. How thoughtful Dave was to adapt your nesting box for the new visitor. We went dog walking in our bluebell woods today and the birds were singing away enjoying the spring sunshine.......this has to be my favourite time of the year...love it!! Xx

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  27. Congratulations Maggie. Well done! Barbara, love your lovebird story. So good of Dave to help the little fella. Love to listen to the birds singing in the morning and also watching them. My Mum used to have lovebirds years ago (she rescued them from someone who'd neglected them). They are lovely but canot be a bit of a nuisance. xx

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  28. Congratulations Maggie, enjoy your prize! As for the new resident in the garden well done Dave for doing the 'loft' conversion - lol - I'm sure your new feathered friend appreciates the upgrade xxx

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  29. Hello Barb, what perfect answers, Maggie obviously pays close attention. Well done Maggie, enjoy your voucher. Let's hope that the lovebirds are a pair Barb, and well done on the renovations Dave. Have a great day all. Bx

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  30. Well done Maggie, you really have listened to all your teachers and learned all there is to know about stamping. What's more, you have remembered it all, a skill of which I am very jealous. I have a great forgettery these days!
    Thanks too Barbara for setting a rather unusual challenge. I too took to the internet (whatever did we do without it?), and studied page after page of lovebird species. Who knew there were so many varieties with such amazing colours? I came to the same conclusion as a couple of other twitchers on this page, and decided that it was from the slate family, the peach faced variety, probably an escapee from an aviary but should be able to live in the wild if it can find enough of the right food.
    Now I'm off to find my lovebirds stamp, I haven't used that one for ages. Good luck with the real bird you little lovebirds xx

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  31. Well done Maggie on your win, gorgeous card x x x

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Thank you for your kind messages and I hope you get inspiration from my ramblings.

Barb x