Friday, 29 June 2012

My life on board!

Hello everybody!

Finally a blogpost from me, Dennis! Sorry for the huge delay! (Especially sorry to Matt, whom I promised to write this ages ago!)

As you might have read, I'm working on a cruise ship at the moment. Since 2 and a half years this has been my job, ever since I left the musical Tarzan where Matt is still working. It's been a big adventure in many many ways!

Ocean view in the middle of the night on the way to the North Cape - Norway

The first amazing part about this job is of course the travelling! I've been so many places over the last years. I started my first contract in Asia and visited Thailand, India, Malaysia, Brunei, Sri Lanka and we made our way to Africa: Egypt, Morocco, Israel, Jordan. After that we went up north to Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

I've also been sailing around the Canary Islands, Madeira, Lisbon, Barcelona, Mallorca.

The contract I'm doing now has taken me to Iceland, Norway (even the highest point, North Cape) and Scotland.

Our ship from a distance in Akureyri - Iceland

Besides the traveling I also love my job on board!
I'm one of the 6 lead singers on the ship. Three girls and three guys. Besides that there are 8 dancers, 3 artists/acrobats and 2 actors. Together we're the show ensemble. There are 4 shows played every evening, of which I normally only play 1 and sometimes 2.

As a singer you have about 14 shows to learn, and this happens in Hamburg, where we have our rehearsals before going on board. In 6 weeks all the shows have to be in your head, which is quite crazy and intense!

Bergen - Norway

I sing many different styles on this ship, from Meat Loaf to Phil Collins, from Bon Jovi to the Beatles etc... It's such a great challenge to perform something else every night! 

Me in my Solo Show

Besides all these shows I also have a show all by myself. Each of the singers have to create their own solo show, in which you can perform the songs you like best. My solo show is very much Michael Buble, Frank Sinatra, and Josh Groban. I'm always very very nervous before performing my own show, but afterwards I feel great!

It's a great experience to work on a ship! I've made a lot of great friends and I'm always having a good time on the ship! The only hard part of course is when you have a special someone at home! I'm lucky with the length of my contracts though, because I never sail longer than 3 months in a row!

My next contract will start in September and will take me to the USA! I will be in New York and we'll also sail towards the Caribbean! Very exciting!

I've also been knitting on the ship but I don't have anything to show you guys yet! So I will just show you all a lot of pictures of some of the places I've been and some of the shows I've been doing!

There's obviously too much to post, so I've decided to only post pictures from the countries I've been to this contract! Enjoy!

Dennis xxx

Beatles Show

Elton John Show

Me and some of my colleagues

On a Quad to the North Cape - Norway

My roots: Amsterdam!
In Bergen - Norway
Gulfoss - Iceland
Gulfoss - Iceland
A crazy jump in Iceland!
The heat coming from the earth in Iceland!

Geysir - Iceland
Meeting an ex colleague in Oslo!
Canterbury Cathedral





Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Summery Seaside RainBOW jars!!!

Hello GORGEOUS people!
I do hope you're having the most spendid week?
My weeks of to a good start, as I managed to fit a lovely couple of crafty and creative hours into my Monday afternoon. I had such a lovely time with my music playing, singing along to my favourite songs.
Not only was my creativness flowing, the wine was also!! Nothing better than a glass of RED when your playing happy hooking! :-)

I've been working on a mini project. Using some scraps of 'Creative Cotton', I've been making lots of tiny but bright crocheted rectangles.

Any ideas what these rectangle swatches are going to be???

BOWS!!!!

A few weeks ago a friend asked if I could make her a crocheted bow for her hair. I've been having a little play around with the idea and came up with this very simple design.


I made two different sizes of bow. Small and large, to match the different sized hair clips I bought from the supermarket.


I glued the bows to the hairclips and (of course) added cheery buttons to finish them off.


I think they're cute! They remind me of pasta bows :-)

They are also fun to decorate other little projects with, I think I'll be making a few more of these in the future!




Once I had finished my friends bows, I continued to play around with the 'Bow Theme'
I had some left over jam jars, so I though I'd give them a makeover.


I wrapped some old string around the jars and secured it with a little blob of glue. A very simple look! I added some cute flowers and rustic wooden buttons. OH MY!!!!!! What a transformation!!

I'm so very very happy with how they turned out!!!
Very simple, quick to make and totally inexpensive!

I wanted to add some 'Bow' decorations to the jars. Something similar to the felted hearts or crocheted pegs I had made before.

 

I had some cute little fan things (not sure what these are called?) that I wanted to incorporate.


It turns out I made little jam jars full of Summer Holidays!!  These little jars of joy remind me of vacations at the seaside! Probably something to do with the sand I used to prop the sticks up.



I think these jam jars are going to be with me for a long while! I'm totally in love with them! I love the thought of changing the theme of the sticks or simply using the jars for my crochet hooks or even just for flowers! So simple, but totally satisfying!!!


I hope you're all having a very crafty and creative week!!!

Matt xxx

Thursday, 21 June 2012

A Moment To Catch My Breath.

Hello Lovelies!!!
How are you all doing?
It seems like it gets harder and harder to find a free moment to spend with you guys. I'm just going through a phase.......a busy phase.
I've been longing to come and chat with you for days, to share a project or two and to see how your all doing? The truth of it is, now is the first moment I've had. I've got no projects to share, as I've not had a moment to work on any. SHAME! OH WELL! We all have busy moments, I guess now is mine!
Today is my first free afternoon and I'm using it to catch my breath. I've finally cleaned the apartment as it was looking rather like a bomb had gone off. I did my washing and finally cleaned the dirty plates that I'd been stacking on the draining board. I've opened the windows and the fresh air is taking over from the stale air. I feel so much better when the apartment is clean and tidy.

I even managed to buy a bargain bunch of flowers to brighten up the home. 5 Euro for 40 flowers.....not bad eh?


I've put half of them in a jug on the kitchen table:


And the other half are in the bedroom spreading amazing orange sunshine across the room.


When the apartment is organised, I feel like my thoughts are also. I find it important to get reorganised from time to time.

As most of you know I've been going to German Language school for the past four months. That's taking up A LOT of my free time. It's going well though! I only have two more months left, then things will be a little more back to normal. I'm looking forward to having a little more free time to work on the blog.

I've also had a big focus for the last couple of weeks. I've been preparing myself for an audition. An audition that has been causing me quite a bit of stress, but at the same time it's been a great focus for me.
Last Wendesday I auditioned for the role of Terk (Tarzans best friend) in the show. I was soooooo nervous!! I had to sing two German songs from 'Tarzan',  plus act a scene from the show.
I'm not a big fan of auditioning. I don't really know anybody who is? It's just one of those things that comes with being a performer.
The audition went well. I felt like I had sung the songs better, but with nerves I did the best I could do at that moment. I was extremely relieved to have got it out of the way.
Once the audition was finished it was just a case of playing the waiting game. Waiting for an email to say if I was going to be invited to the final auditions or not.
The day after my audition I went into work as usual. I was asked to go to the office and speak with my boss.....my heart sank!!!
My boss told me that I wasn't being invited to the finals :-(
I was being offered the job instead!!!!! WOOOOOOOOOOOOP!!!!!!
This is a major thing for me!!! It means that I will now learn the role of 'TERK'! Once I've learned everything, I'll be one of the understudies for that role.
It is going to be such a big challenge. The obvious thing is that there is a lot of German text to learn (challenge number 1). The second thing is that I will sing 4 solo songs when I play this role (challenge number 2) This is a first for me as I've only ever danced on stage before.
Despite the obvious challenges, I'm soooo sooooo sooooo exctied and I'm over the moon that all of the hard work has paid off!!! It's going to be a busy and exciting couple of months.


So now you know what I've been busy with over the past couple of weeks. Hopefully I'll be able to stop by in a couple of days and chat about something lovely and creative!!! Lets see what I come up with :-)
Hope your all having a sunny week!
Matt xxx

Thursday, 14 June 2012

SCRUMMIER!

Hello lovelies! Thanks for all of the lovely comments we've had in regards to our 'Blogiversary". It really is so special to read each and everyone of them. You're all so kind!

Today I've got a quick project update!!! An update on the blanket I'm making for a friend at work.
Look how it's coming along..... a flowing waterfall of rainbowness!!

As you can see, I haven't exactly been sticking to my initial plan of one stripe a day.
Now I think of it, one stripe a day was probably a little unrealistic! When I get the passion for a project, it's very hard for me to ration myself and limit how much I work on it.
So it's been working out roughly two stripes per day. It's so exciting to see how fast this project grows!


I am loving the simplicity of the stripes. It's so easy to sit down at my laptop and do a stripe or two without having to focus on the pattern. It keeps my hands nice and busy whilst I spend a free ten minutes reading through some of my favourite blogs. Very soothing and completely and utterly relaxing!


It just screams HAPPINESS!! The Stylecraft is not failing to impress. It's working up even scrummier than I remember! (I know "SCRUMMIER" isn't a real word, but can we just appreciate that my spell check wanted to change it to "SCUMMIER", not really the best word to describe this yarn :-)).


As you can see it's coming along nicely! I'll keep you updated as it continues to grow!
What projects are you all working on? I bet something Fabulous?!

Matt xxx

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Blogiversary!!!


Yay!!! I'm sooo glad you could all make it!!!
So, I guess your all wandering what the big cake/party/celebration is all about? Some of you have guessed correct and some of you were WAY of the mark :-)

Today is the 1st Birthday of our blog!!! So come grab a drink! A glass of Champagne maybe?


 Or perhaps you'd prefer a cup of tea? And let's all celebrate together!!!


I know it probably seems a little "over the top" to be celebrating the blogs Birthday. I just couldn't let it pass without acknowledging the FAB first year Dennis and I have had working on it!

I prepared enough nibbles to munch whilst we chit chat over all things crafty!

 Jammy Dodger, anyone?



Enough party food for all!!!


When I started the blog this time last year, I really had no idea where I was heading. I didn't plan on this purely being a craft blog. In the beginning I tried to keep it much more general....it turns out you can't keep me away from the crochet and crafts!!!

It was really fun to have Dennis join the blog in December. Not only has it been a great hobby that we can enjoy together, It's also been lots of fun working creatively with each other.
Using each others ideas and finding a balance between what I like and what he likes. It's been interesting to say the least. Sometimes we had arguments ( I can get stressy at times), but most of the time we worked just fine and would encourage each others ideas.

So who's for Birthday cake?

I've been working on this cake for the last week or so. I tried to keep it within the style of the blog......I think I succeeded! :-)
Each of the layers has a different theme. A theme based on some of the projects we have made throughout the past year.   
We've had a lot of projects on the go, here are some of my favourite projects and post from our first year. (you can click on the pictures to go to the original posts)



Peg Perfection



Crochet O'Clock

Felt Hearts


Jammy Dodger Tutorial



So there you have it! Our first year of blogging, project making and creative craftyness! It's been a great first year! Thanks for all of the support and inspiration. For reading, commenting and giving us lots of LOVE!!!
So glad you could come along and celebrate with us today!!!


Matt and Dennis xxx