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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

SALT Challenge - And God saw that it was good...

This week it was Hazel's turn to set the challenge on the SALT blog and she choose the theme, "and God saw that it was good," which is making reference to His creation. You can read Hazel's entire write up on the SALT blog.

Since I was on a roll with my "sun/moon landscape" look from yesterday's post, I decided to continue that trend on today's post as well. Because first, I felt it would go well with the creation theme, second, well, because I really liked the technique, and third, I needed to ink up my new Cornish Heritage Farms sheep stamp!

I used three of the stamps found in the Primitive Beginnings stamp set, the "hills", the wee tree, and the wee sheep. (PS - this set is fabulous...a must have!) I stamped my hills first on white cardstock and then embossed the lines with black embossing powder so I could sponge ink around without smearing the ink. I then cut out a circle from scrap paper and then cut that in half to create my "sun setting" mask. Then I went to town with ink, sponging yellow, orange, and a deep red onto the background around the semi-circle. The grass was colored with Copics and I aged all of the edges with black ink. I needed my Stampamajig to position the tree, which is simply stamped in black. The sheep was stamped on a separate scrap paper and cut out. I used that puffy paint, the name of which is completely escaping me at this moment, to create his coat and then he was attached with dimensionals. The whole ATC was then fitted into a punched piece of black cardstock...kind of like a wee painting, no? :-)

The verse that served as my inspiration, a portion of which is found on my ATC, is from Isaiah 40, where God declares His greatness and goodness. Here is the entire passage:

To whom then will you liken Me,
Or to whom shall I be equal? says the Holy One.
Lift up your eyes on high,
And see who has created these things.
Who brings out their host by number,
He calls them all by name
By the greatness of His might
And the strength of His power;
No one is missing.

Why do you say, O Jacob,
And speak, O Israel:
"My way is hidden from the Lord,
And my just claim is passed over by my God?"
Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the Lord,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall.
But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

To look around us and see the beauty of all of nature...This is visible proof that there is a God and provides us with just one reason to praise Him for all that He is and all that He has created..."Lift up your eyes and see!"

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Papertreyink Challenge - Week Two

My apologizes for being MIA for a week! I went on a mini vacation to NY (more on that later) and ended up with no internet access for four long days! Oh the agony! ;-)

This is a card I created in response to the PTI sketch that was posted for the week of 7/15. I've had it completed since then but am just now getting around to posting!

The style of this card was inspired by Michelle Zindorf. If you have never visited her blog, do so now (her name is linked to her blog)! Her creations are simply stunning and she provides step-by-step tutorials on how to create many of the techniques she uses on her cards. I plan to try out some more of her tutorials...really amazing and simple!

The sketch from the PTI Forum is listed below and I again changed the design just a bit to better fit with my design. Inspired by Michelle, I wanted to create a "sun" on my card, using the branch from the Beautiful Blooms set to overlay the sun image. A tiny butterfly was added from the Butterfly Kisses set and I used a sentiment from one of the Borders and Corners set as one of the circles in the lower left hand corner. A button served as the circle in the upper right. The background paper, in the curvy shape, is from a batch of Basic Grey, the remainder of the card uses SU! supplies.

To achieve the background "sky" color, I simply punched out a circle and laid it on top of white cardstock, and then sponged a yellow, orange, and brown dye ink on top of the circle until I got a look I was happy with. I used the direct to paper technique (basically swiping my ink pad across my paper) for the background on the card base.

Want to play along? Check out the sketch below, create a card, and leave me a comment with a link back to your blog or gallery...I'd love to share!! (You can also post your creations on the PTI Forum as well!)


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Fly Me to the Moon...

Who is now singing the song from Frank Sinatra in your head? That's what I was singing the entire time I was making this card. As a matter of fact, I'm singing it now!!

This adorable little owl hanging out on the moon is compliments of justjohanna's Odd Bird Planet, as are all of the stamps used on this card!

I used my Cuttlebug to create the scalloped circle base and then layered it with a few Crate papers before attaching my ribbon (from SU!), images, and sentiment.

Do you think an owl could actually survive on the moon minus some sort of space suit?? ;-)


Sunday, July 20, 2008

PTI Sketch Challenge

Finally! I made a card just for fun! LOL! I just recently started a gallery on the Papertreyink Forum and part of the Forum consists of sketch challenges. I love sketch challenges because it takes a lot of the work out of creating a card and allows you the time to just play around with the images. With my sketch challenge in hand (you can see the sketch below), I had this card done in mere hours instead of days! hee hee OK, the only reason it sometimes takes me days to finish a card is because neither one of my little ones will allow me a moment of peace when they are awake! They like to stamp too and that can be pretty distracting with a two year old who likes to run his hands across all of the ink pads!

My creation is a bit of a twist on the original sketch. I intended to put my bow and sentiment in the middle but after I was done with my card, I realized it covered up too much of the trees. My apologizes on the crummy photo...I'm definitely not a photographer and was doing my best to capture the tiny rhinestones on the bottom tree and the embossing on the top tree. I tried to add a little something extra to each tree. The paper is K&Co. (love them!) and the ribbon, brads, and other goodies are all SU! The PTI set that I used on the card is Out on a Limb.

Here's the sketch if you'd like to play along...
I'm off! To more stamping!! Only this time it's for DT projects...but they are very fun projects and I can't wait to share!! More later this week...

Blessed Sunday!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

SALT Challenge - Patience

This week it was Esther's turn to set the challenge on the SALT blog and she picked one of my favorite topics...patience. You can read her write up here.

Now you may be wondering why patience would be a favorite topic. Well...only because I have none and have to constantly pray about having more patience and confess my sin of impatience! Why when I was creating this very simple ATC card I was about to crumble up the word "patience" in a fit of annoyance and toss the whole thing in the trash! Ever try to fit a little piece of paper into one of those metal label brackets? It was trying my patience last night! LOL! Darn thing still isn't on there completely straight!

Like all of our struggles, the Bible speaks volumes on the topic of patience. To be patient in times of trials or illness, to be patient with one another, to be patient in waiting for something...And isn't patience one of the more difficult things to acquire, especially in today's day of instant gratification. We want what we want, when we want it. Is always having what we want when we want it the best thing for us? Maybe God uses the trying of our patience to teach us things or to drive out sin that is in our hearts. One of my favorite verses on patience is:

Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. By whom we also have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that tribulation worketh patience and patience experience and experience hope. And hope maketh not ashamed because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost, which is given unto us. (Romans 5:1-5)

I know God constantly uses my children to point out my own sinful ways. To my shame, being impatient would be at the top of my list. But I am thankful that He has also used them to help me learn to be more patience, not only towards them but towards others in general. Ultimately, God has used the struggles of motherhood to produce good fruit that has been for my benefit and His glory, so it's all worth it! That is the power of the Holy Spirit in action..."all things work together for good for them that love God..." (Romans 8:28) Now about my very impatient four year old....

Feeling inspired to create something based on this week's topic? Jump on over to the SALT blog and leave us a comment with a link back to your blog or gallery.

Enjoy and thanks for being "patient" with my very long blog post! :-)

Monday, July 14, 2008

Round Inchies

In the "official" rule book, can inches be round? :-) I adore inchies but thought that with this card I'd try to use a circle that was approximately an inch in diameter vs. a one inch square.

The image I used for this card is from a long retired SU! set. It's a great set with four large, detailed images of children's nursery rhymes. This image is based on the "Three Men in a Tub" rhyme. Since this is a large image I only needed to stamp the picture once and then use my Spellbinders circle die cut to cut out each inchie, which focused on each man's face; the butcher, baker, the candlestick maker. I then backed my inches with a blue that matched the blue in my patterend paper. The base of this card is black, which is a change for me but I really like the contrast of black and should try to use it more often. I thought that the strip of Cuttlebug'd yellow looked like bubbles! My only regret is that I did not emboss the sentiment as it's a bit difficult to read on the striped paper.

So how about you like inchies too? How about trying out a creation with round inchies this week!!


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Odd Bird Planet with a Touch of Flair

My goodness, have I been absent from my blog lately or what?? I've been on single parent duty this week as my better half was out of town on business so I have been one busy girl without much downtime! Add to that busy days filled with visiting with friends (Hi Julie!) at the lake, visiting with friends (Hi Martha!) here at home and I have had no time to attend to my blog duties! And because I have been so neglectful, I shall now leave you with not one, not two, but four cards for your viewing pleasure!

All of these cards were made using justjohanna's Odd Bird Planet stamps and Flair paper. Adore the Flair must go check out their goodies! I'm using the "What's Cooking" paper collection on these cards.


Saturday, July 5, 2008

Papertreyink Picnic

A week ago I had the pleasure of attending a picnic in Maine, hosted and organized by my friend Julie Masse, where we had the wonderful experience of meeting Nichole Heady of Papertreyink, as well as some other local stampers. I arrived a bit late so I missed some getting to meet some ladies but it was wonderful to get to visit with Nichole and the women who waited for me (thanks guys!) I did, however, make it in time to feast on the most amazing chocolate covered strawberries, guacamole, and spinach salad. Yum, yum!

A group of us participated in a Papertreyink swap, which was so much fun! I just love seeing what other folks create and then coming home to look at all my great new cards! My creation is below and you can see the rest of the beautiful cards on Chris's blog.

It was so great to be able to meet people in person that you know from blogs and online stores. Stamping is such a great industry and I'm grateful for all of the wonderful people that I've met and friends that I have acquired through my blog and crafting!!

Thanks Julie for a most memorable time!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

SALT Challenge - Freedom

This week at SALT, it was Casey's turn to set the challenge and she choose Freedom. You can read her entire write up, which is excellent, on the SALT blog.

I enjoyed thinking about real freedom with this challenge. I imagine that many folks would consider being free as being able to do whatever you want and to some extent this would be an accurate description. But are all people truly free? Certainly, in our country, we have freedom to do just about anything, even without regard to anyone or anything else. Is that all there is to real freedom and is that freedom where true and lasting happiness is found?

Anyone see the movie Braveheart? I was reminded of that movie when Casey presented this theme. At the very end, as the main character (William Wallace) is being martyred, he yells out "Freedom!" It's a powerful moment. Wallace is crying out for freedom for his country and people, certainly something worth fighting for. As Christians we can cry out "Freedom" as well but our joy comes from being free from the bondage of sin and it's ultimate end, which is spiritual death. This is even more important that physical freedom. Freedom from sin means we are no longer bound to constantly live a sin filled life, serving only our own desires. It's freedom from outwardly damaging sins, such as addictions, to those that destroy us on the inside, like envy or anger. Outside of Christ we are literally bound to these behaviors. We harbor crooked thoughts and behaviors even when we know it's wrong or bad for us. Yet the moment we trust Christ, we are instantly set free from that vicious cycle of sin. Oh, we do still sin but it's no longer our regular habit and our hearts are now broken when we do those things that are wrong. We can call upon Christ to strengthen us in our struggles and know that He is faithful and just to forgive us and to help us on our spiritual journey. As the Bible states, "if the Son shall set you free, you shall be free indeed!" What a glorious promise that offers such hope!

I had two scripture verses in mind for this week's challenge, both from Romans:

Romans 6: 16, "Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one's slaves who you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? But God be thanked that though you were salves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness."...."For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness." ..."What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Romans 8: 1, "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death."

I used the verses from Romans 8 to create a background on transparency paper, which was then adhered to the larger purple card. And this week I decided to forgo actually stamping and instead used a portion of a scrappin' kit from SU! The picture on the front of the card and coordinating shells are both stickers. I choose the image of the Father and son because it made me think of how God views us as His children and how He keeps His protective arm around us at all times, helping us in times of trouble and encouraging us when we struggle with sin. It's a beautiful picture of God's transforming love and amazing grace. The ribbon is a random scrap that I had tucked away in a box and the tag simply has the word freedom written on it as a reminder that if we are in Christ, we are free indeed!

Feeling inspired to create something based on this week's theme? Then hop on over to the SALT blog to check out the beautiful creations the team has made and leave us a comment with a link back to your blog or gallery. We'd love to share in your God-given creativity!!