Saturday, 26 January 2008

Giant African Land Snails!

So I finally have some photos to share of my daughter's snail!

She has called it 'Slipper' and is very attached to it! I even had to email the ebay seller to get it's date of birth/hatching, so she can celebrate it's birthday later in the year!

So the slimy details: the shell is currently around 5cm long, it's an Achatina Fulica - which basically means it's an East African Land Snail, it hatched on 10th August 07, his or her mummy is called Tweedle Dee (Tweedle Dee is is 4 years old and a very large snail at a 7 1/2" shell.) It likes to each fruit and veg - especially cucumber and pears, and has to have some form of calcium like a cuttlefish bone (for its shell.)

I now know why folks in the States haven't heard of them - apparently it's illegal to have/keep them as pets over there - as they are simultaneous hermaphrodite and very invasive as it only takes any 2 and they breed like wildfire! We are certainly going to just keep to the one as I don't want to wake up one morning to find 100s of eggs in the tank! (Lots are sold on as reptile owners buy them to breed - for feed!) Having said that I have just read 'Instances of self fertilisation are rare' - so I had better not be too complacent!

Cleaning out is like a military operation - done out the back with a hose pipe, rubber gloves and lots of face pulling (uggghhhh!) Would I recommend one? Yes, my daughter loves it and it's not too hard to clean I guess. Certainly easy to feed! The good news - it was only 99p to buy on ebay - the bad, it cost around £50 to buy a tank and kit it out - but still pretty cheap for a pet!


Wednesday, 23 January 2008

It's a Challenge!

A couple of weeks ago I had a search around and was surprised that I couldn't find a challenge site for us UK Newbies to Stampin' Up! As we are only on our first stash of SU stamps/first UK SU Catalogue, I thought a weekly challenge would be great to get us going!
Of course, there are a lot of fantastic cards with Stampin' Up! stamps out there, including more and more from UK stampers each day, but it would be nice to have a central blog/challenge showcasing just the Stamps available to us in the UK (so for now, just from the first UK SU Catalogue)? So I set up a separate website/blog for this and you can find it, along with all the details at

I hope you like it - and that you'll rise to the challenge and join me every week! So - the Card, ATC, gift or papercrafting item will have to use a Stamp or other product from any UK Stampin' Up! Catalogue (of course the first and only one at present!) based upon the challenge.

Naturally this doesn't exclude any of you from outside the UK - and I expect most of the stamps we have in our SU UK Cattie are already out there in America, Australia and NZ, etc. So please join in the fun!

To give you a flavour - here is this week's challenge layout and the cards samples I used for this week's challenge:

The solid flower was stamped onto pink passion card, using a Versamark ink pad - with glitter added in the centres. Wide pink organza ribbon was wrapped around the pink card before it was matted onto the white basecard. Another flower was stamped onto a scrap of pixie pink card using a pink passion ink pad, then cut out and all the lines on this flower were glittered apart from the outer edge. This was then stuck to the card using 3-d foam.

The Elephant card sample uses the cute elephant stamp from the Year After Year Set, along with the greeting from the Birthday Best set - using the same techniques as for the pink card, but using Tempting Turquoise card and ink, with the white grosgrain ribbon.
I have to say I really like this layout, as the possibilities are endless for a lot of the Stampin' Up! sets - especially the Year After Year one, as all the stamps will work (and I got to use my fab new SU Round Tab (109974) punch!

Sunday, 20 January 2008

Happy Birthday Samm!

Here is the card I made for Samm, a blogging friend at SBS8. Happy Birthday Samm!

Samm set a birthday blog candy challenge and this is my entry - Samm's blog is at and is well worth a visit.

I used the Stampin' Up! Feathered Friends set, along with a Stampin' Up! Nature's Seasonal Border set.

The images were coloured in using pearlescent watercolours. A white organza ribbon was added before the blue card was matted onto the white base card.

Hope you like it Samm!