New Layout - Italian Sunset

* Edited to add - This layout was accepted for publication in Scrapbook Inspriations Issue 58!!)*

Just posting a recent layout I did ..... Italian Sunset.

Really happy with it, though hard to tell what it looks like properly cos my photos are so bad. I miss my photoshop! I do not have any photo editing program on my laptop :o(

Layout title - Italian Sunset

Products used: Scenic Route Patterned paper, Scenic Route Die cut arrows, journal blocks and chipboard words, Prima flowers, Bazzill corduroy button brads, Pink paislee letter stickers - black and orange, Doodlebug frills - black, Lace - orange (from cute little lace store in Venice), Bird - picture story book.

I have a busy weekend ahead of me - Clint and I are going to the Killers Friday night, Saturday I am volunteering all day at the New Zealand Toast Festival, Sunday morning I am volunteering at the Race for Life helping to set up, then we are going to the Aussie Toast Festival, then Monday night we are going to see Regina Spektor!!! I cant wait to see her live! :o)

The Ritz - Saturday June 20th

On Saturday June 20th I went for Afternoon Tea at the Ritz with some girls from work.

We had organised to go quite a while ago as it was something I wanted to do whilst over in London. So a group of us (around 9) decided we would book and go.

I went and shopped for a new outfit; new dress and jewellery. Got my hair blowdried and cut, even matched my nail polish to my outfit and had cute little gems on my nails too!

We met up prior to when the tea begun and had a drink in The Ritz bar - just cos you have to! If you are going to go to all the trouble of dressing up and paying for afternoon tea, you may as well make it worth your while. So I chose a champagne cocktail - £16 later - haha (that's approx. 30 aussie) but was worth it.

The afternoon tea itself was lovely, couldn't have left there hungry- that's for sure!

We went out to a club for a drink later. Was just the loveliest night!

Out the front of the Ritz

The yummy coffee and champagne

Ohhh yum, the cakes!

The whole platter

Jo and I

The table, so posh - nice silverware

The bathroom - very swisho!

Photos of Me from night

Group shots

Egypt - May 23rd to May 31st

Day 1 - Saturday May 23rd - London to Cairo

So we caught an early flight from London to Cairo - via Zurich in Switzerland for a changeover. The tour company collected us from the airport and took us to the hotel. I was looking forward to the accommodation side of the trip cos most of it, apart from the felucca, is hotel accommodation! Another cool thing was that we could see the Pyramids from the hotel....we were looking forward to seeing them tomorrow.

We got into our room and met our guide - Pete - and our tour group - who all seemed really nice. Pete told us about the tour, what things we would be doing, answered questions we had and told us about the optional extras that we could do on the tour. Celna, a south african I teach at school with, also went on our tour, so we had dinner with them and headed to bed reasonably early as we knew what energy we would need for the tour ahead.

Day 2- Sunday 24th May - Cairo - Giza Pyramids - Aswan

After breakfast at the hotel we started our tour by visiting the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. The pyramids were pretty cool to see and we took lots and lots of photos. We also did a camel ride from one pyramid to another. There were lots of egyptians there trying to sell us thing, get us to pay for a photo with them etc, which was a bit to get used to.
An Egyptian transporting hay, yes, on a donkey!
Clint had to pay this dude for the photo, but it is cool, Clint's signature pose!

Shepherding cattle, on the side of the road

The Pyramids of Giza

Getting mummified...

Camel Ride

We tried to do the tourist thing and when seeing the Sphinx - which is just massive - get the cool photos with it, tried anyway!

Then we took the overnight first class train up the River Nile to Aswan. This train was not too nice really considering we had to sleep in it. But the funny thing was it had a full on bar in it, where we spent some time and some people on the tour got fairly tipsy and loud. I found it difficult to stay in there cos you were allowed to smoke, and there was just no air in the carriage - I felt like I was smoking too and it was not very nice. So I headed back early to sleep......Clint come back quite a while later and snapped this photo....he thought he was very funny!

Day 3 - Monday 25th May - Aswan

We arrived in Aswan around 10:00 and were transferred to our hotel. From there we visited the Philae Temple, the Unfinished Obelisk and the famous High Dam of Aswan which after completion in 1971, created Lake Nasser. Some people in the tour, who either had a rough journey and not enough sleep or too much alcohol, decided to stay by the pool in the hotel and didnt go to the temple or high dam. I found it hard to understand why people would not want to go and visit the temples and places in Egypt, after all thats what we were there for, but anyways!

Philae Temple

We then had a lovely traditional Nubian dinner in a nubian village.....yum yum.
The boat ride to the village

The Nubian House and view of the village

Clint holding a baby croc....a real one!

Our dinner....
Getting a henna tattoo

Smoking shisha
Not a real one!

Day 4 - Tuesday 26th May - Felucca cruise from Aswan

After breakfast, we got up very early to see Abu Simbel - this really amazing glad we chose to see this as an extra. You will see why in the pictures.

Then we went onboard the Nile Felucca and sailed around for the day. Was such a relaxing experience, with all meals provided on board there was truly nothing to worry about. Everyone had such a nice time, and we ended the night with a bonfire and tradition Nubian men dancing, singing and playing their drums....loved it.

Day 5 - Wednesday 27th May - Kom-Ombo, Edfu to Luxor

In the morning we got off the Felucca after a nice breakfast and then continued towards Luxor. We arrived in Luxor and were transferred to our hotel. In the afternoon we had a tour of the East bank of Luxor and saw the massive Karnak temple.

Day 6 - Thursday 28th May - Luxor to Red Sea

After breakfast we toured the west Bank of Luxor. And start the tour off with the World famous Valley of the Kings. After that we headed straight to the Red Sea Hurgharda, had dinner with the tour company and back to the hotel.

McDonalds Delivery - couldnt believe it!

Day 7 - Friday 29th May - Hurghada, Red Sea

Today we had a free day at Hurgharda, I chose to snorkel as I had not done that before and Clint went for a dive. He was in his element completely and just loved it..... he could not wipe the smile off his face afterwards!

Got so sunburnt!!!!!! Ouch!

Day 8 - Saturday 30th May - Hurghada, Red Sea

We spent this day doing all sorts of fun things, we went on buggys, had a camel ride, ate a nice egyptian dinner, and saw some bellydancing.

The buggy we drove together

The camel ride, these poor kids do this everyday

The other buggy ride, we had to get all covered up for this one.

Celna and I

We had an overnight bus to Cairo......hate overnight buses but was ok.

Day 9 - Sunday 31st May - Back to Cairo then flight to London
Arrive in Cairo early morning, had showers at the hotel and headed straight to the Egyptian museum - where we got to see some cool stuff. We had to leave the group earlier than usual to get our flight back home to London.

In all ...... Egypt was awesome!!!!!!!! So many beautiful sights, we really loved it and are so glad we finally got to go there!