Joy in the Journey

Hello stampers and happy Monday to you. Today I want to talk to you about joy in the journey. I realize that it has been more than two weeks since I have blogged and an absence like that hasn’t happened for a long time! A lot has happened in the last few weeks. Let me tell you about it, perhaps you can relate.


The Many Hats of a Woman


Now I am not talking about real hats, although I have quite a few of those as well, not only because I love hats, but because I really need to keep the sun off my face. Vitilago and sun are not good companions. I’m talking about all the roles and commitments that we have to juggle. For me it’s mom, oma, daughter, sister and fiancée as well as friend and upline.

Traveling during COVID is a privilege but it also means lots of quarantining. On June 24 I was out of quarantine. That meant I could finally visit my parents and I could hold my grandchildren. We squeezed in an “oma day” and I had a lovely overnight visit with my oldest daughter. At the beginning of July Rachel my youngest, was finally able to move back to Ottawa. We packed up the car (actually she did that all on her own) and we stopped by for a goodbye visit to my parents and made the long drive to our capital city. Sadly there were no fireworks on Parliament Hill largely due to the residential school tragedies that have come to light. I was supposed to go on to Montreal to visit my second oldest daughter, but that ended up not working out. The bonus to that is that I was able to have a longer visit with my parents and  I could tackle some gardening projects for my mom.


The Challenges


In the background I was trying to figure out a way that I could travel to North Carolina and avoid the mandatory hotel quarantine. This meant flying out of Toronto and flying back into Detroit. I looked into an airport shuttle service as well as the train but neither option could get me to the airport on time and I had a mid-afternoon flight!! My daughter-in-law ended up accompanying me in my vehicle which she drove back to her place. I arranged for a cab ride back to the border on the way home and had friends ready to pick me up in Windsor. It was enough to make your head spin!!

At the end of this journey I discovered that I could have arranged a cab from Detroit to pick me up in Chatham so I could have flown out of Detroit all along. So much for the myth that the borders are closed. Suffice it to say that there wasn’t much joy in this journey, but there was  lots of joy in the stay in North Carolina!


Joy in the Journey


So what am I talking about if there wasn’t much joy in the journey? Well, thankfully I am talking about the bigger picture, the joy in the journey of life. I came across a great quote by Joanna Gaines:


“Consider the way we begin a new year, thinking about the goals we want to achieve, asking ourselves where we want to be at the end of that year, at the end of five years, at the end of 10 years. The last scene of a movie, the final page of a book the finished meal on the table – we judge a lot of things by how they turn out.

And through all of this it seems like we’ve learned to glorify the outcome of something far more than the defining moment that got us there:  the spark that caught our heart’s interest in the first place or even the beauty of all that happened in between – the courage and belief and intention it took to pick up our brush and paint, only to repaint the very next day. I can see how I’ve judged my own commitments this way, forgetting that all things are shaped during the journey. That is the essential part.”


Type A


I am a bit of a Type A personality. I can be driven and competitive and that means that sometimes I do lose the joy in the journey and that makes me sad. These past few weeks have allowed me to refocus, to re-energize and to take a step back. Sometimes you have to let something go in order to find it. Covid has been a challenge for small business owners including me. I have tried new technology and am pleased with what I have learned. What I am not pleased with is the numbers and the reason is that I simply can’t understand them. I am going to be super vulnerable and transparent here so please be kind. By doing this I hope you can shed some light on this topic for me and perhaps even point me in the right direction.


YouTube Mystery


For the past year or so I have been posting regularly on my YouTube channel. I have 3690 subscribers which makes me very happy. The part that mystifies me is that I often have less than 100 views. I would love so much to change that but I have no idea how but I need to let it go because it is robbing me of my joy in creating and sharing. The mystery is that when I was just starting on Youtube I had more viewers per video than I do now. The only thing I can think of is that there are a lot more people now using this platform and maybe it is just saturated. Who knows? All I know is that I need to let it go!

On Saturday I was in my stamp room all day making beautiful cards and I would like to share them with you today. These cards will be the feature of my August virtual coffee and a card class as well as an in person class on Tuesday August 17.


Measure of Love Cards






I was so pleased with these cards and then I realized that there are five Tuesdays in August and I made one card for each Tuesday so I can do a video tutorial for each card on YouTube! Here is card number five.




Measure of Love Bakery Window









This card was inspired by The Kitchen Table Stamper. I didn’t have the tags dies so I used a punch instead and drew around the hole with a Black Blends! Here is her blog.





This card was inspired by Cheri Stojcovich. Here is her blog post.





This last card was inspired by fellow Canadian demonstrator Tina Zinck. Here is her blog post.



How to Get these Cards



I am excited to now be able to offer you three options for these cards.

  1. $25 for just the card kit including postage.
  2. $50 for the card kit and the stamp set including postage.
  3. In person class on Tuesday August 16 with both of these options.

Please remember that  my card kits cannot include any stamped images so you will need the stamp set to complete them as shown.



More Joy in the Journey


In order to have more joy in my journey, I will only be blogging once a week for the foreseeable future. I do love writing but I love stamping more and I am hoping to do more spontaneous videos. As always I treasure your feedback.  If you want to add a little joy to your journey, check out my tutorials page for some instant gratification. You can also choose a free tutorial with a $60 purchase. I hope you have a super day and I wish you joy in your journey.


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You’re A Peach

Hello stampers and happy Thursday to you. I know, I know. I’m a day late. Usually I do blog posts on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Today I am going to be sharing a card with you that I made using You’re A Peach as well as a beautiful card that came in the mail yesterday.


You’re a Peach with Prime Time


Have you seen the You’re a Peach paper? It is so beautiful and it lends itself beautifully to mixing and matching. Take a look!


You're a Peach paper


Yesterday I did a video, after many failed attempts with technology, and I showed my design process for this card. You can see it here. In the video I explained that I am very limited here in the Netherlands with my dies. Normally I would use a die for my focal point but I didn’t have any current ones that would work. The solution? To make a tag using the Fancy Tag Topper Punch!


You're a Peach


More About Prime Time


Why am I so persistent with Prime Time? It really is all about consistency and value. I am dedicated to my Prime Time group and that means you know that you get a live video tutorial every week on Thursdays. When I am in the Netherlands it is at 9am EST and when I am in Canada it is 3pm EST.

On Wednesdays I post the supply list and measurements. This lets you get ready to stamp along with me. When you stamp regularly you are more likely to use the products that you invested in AND you will improve your techniques.

The other most significant added value is the monthly pdf tutorials. You get a 14 project tutorial which is worth $25! Even if you never watch a video tutorial or win a prize (did I mention there are weekly prizes?) it is STILL worth it.

From my perspective, it gives me reliable income from my followers. I can only sell SU products to Canadians, but in this group anyone can join. This allows me to focus on what I do best, to teach and create. You can be a part of that! Just click here.


Happy Mail


It was so lovely to find a tell-tale envelope in the mailbox yesterday. By the size and shape of the envelope you know it is a hand made card. Thanks ever so much to Jennifer Plaat for this stunning engagement card. It is still sinking in that in just over a year we will finally be official!




A Quaint Little Soap Shop


Last week I had the opportunity to browse around this adorable little soap shop. I am having a little buyer’s remorse that I only bought one piece, but truthfully I am more of a liquid or foam soap kind of girl. Maybe I need to change that. This was the real deal and the smell was divine. There was such attention to detail everywhere that I just wanted to linger and absorb it all.





From this picture you can see that they use essential oils and other natural ingredients in their soaps. Oh, the smells!!





It’s sort of like baking with similar tools and ingredients like lemon zest.





This soap looks like slices of cake. Don’t you just love this vintage stove?





I really wanted to get one of every kind of soap, but then I remembered that I rarely use bar soap. Maybe if I had this kind, I would.





I am too young to remember sunlight bar soap for laundry but I did know of its existence. I love how this little shop shows the history of soap and soap making.



Everything is Lush and Green


I am convinced that the Netherlands could give Ireland a run for it’s money for the title of “the Emerald Isle”. Although Holland has many islands, the country itself is not an island, but it sure is green! The drawback of course is that this lush greenery is the result of significant amounts of rain and a cooler climate for the most part. Compromise people, compromise.







In just one week I leave this idyllic place to go home. I am hoping that this will also put my technological problems behind me. Scenes like this help me to stay zen!! I hope it also brings some tranquility to your day.




Thanks so much for joining me today, I really do like spending time with you. Several of you made me very happy during the video by giving me “stars” on Facebook. This is something new and I know very little about it, but the affirmation was great. I hope you seriously consider becoming a member of the Prime Time group. Remember, there is no commitment. If you find after three months that you are not getting enough value from it, you can just leave the group.

Have a super day and happy stamping my friends.


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Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Team

Hello everyone and happy Saturday! I am so very excited to announce the brand new Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Team. Our team features talent from all over the world and each tutorial will have a specific focus so that you get the most bang for your buck. To put that in a more genteel fashion, it will help you get the most value for your investment.


How to Get This Tutorial Bundle?


The next question will of course be, how can I get my hands on this bundle? Let me tell you. There are two ways. You can get for FREE with a $60 purchase and this purchase can include online orders for Stampin’Up! products or a combination of other things like Parcels in the Post, Virtual Coffee and a  Card class or other tutorials.

Let me give you an example. Our first tutorial will feature the Sweet Strawberry bundle. So if you order this bundle online AND you also get the Virtual Coffee and Card class for June which just happens to feature this same bundle then you will get this tutorial bundle for FREE.

The other way to get it is to simply pay $25 for it. All members of the Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Team are charging the same price to keep it fair. The tutorials go “live” on the first of the month and then you will be able to find it on my tutorials page here.


Introducing The Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Team


Here is a photo collage of all of us and below you will see all the names and links to their blogs.


Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Team


Jan Mansor Brown .
Caroline van der Straaten
Julie Gilson:

Sneak Peek For Our Sweet Strawberry Tutorial


Here is a little teaser of what you can expect with our first tutorial. Looks pretty awesome doesn’t it? If you go to this blog post you will see the first card that I made with the Sweet Strawberry bundle.


Create With Us International Tutorial Bundle Sneak Peek


Coming May 1


On May 1 I will have a PayPal button so that you can purchase this tutorial. If you choose to place an order instead that’s awesome too. I will then send you the pdf as quickly as possible. Right now I am not set up to have it sent automatically but if this becomes necessary or possible I will definitely do that. Thanks so much for joining me today and I hope you participate in this amazing new venture. Have a super day!!


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Saleabration begins today!

Hello stampers and happy Friday to you. Today is the official start of my favourite sale of the year:  saleabration!!  What does it mean for you? Well, with every $60 you spend you will get a free saleabration item. The starter kit also has some great bonuses with it right now: a free mini paper trimmer, any stamp set in the annual catalog or mini catalog for free plus a free paper pack assortment. How awesome is that?


Happy Mail from Carla van der Mei


I could tell right away that this was a European card. Their cardstock is known as A4 and is longer and narrower than ours in North America. I rather like the look of it. Carla tells me that she made this card at a workshop taught by Janneke Dijkstra-deJong in Friesland which is the most northerly province of Holland. It is a little bit like the Quebec of Canada. In Friesland there language is completely different from Dutch and they are proud of their distinct heritage as well.


Brightly Gleaming card by Carla


I really love how Carla used tiny strips of copper foil paper as the string for the ornaments. The greenery and the sentiment are from the Itty Bitty Christmas bundle which you can see here. 


Rhonda Gump’s card


I love Rhonda’s bright and cheerful card. I don’t have an annual catalog with me here and simply don’t have the time to do the homework on this one. If any of you loyal followers want to help me out with the names of the stamp  sets used here that would be great! Just when you think you know everything, you find out it isn’t so.


Happy New Year by Rhonda Gump


Rhonda coloured her bright balloons with granny apple green and mango melody. The star bursts are embossed in silver and she also added some more sparkly detail with our shimmery crystal effects. What a happy and cheerful card to start the new year. Thanks for your happy mail Rhonda. Rhonda is from Fort Wayne Indiana. I am guessing that it is about four or five hours away from me, right between the southernmost tip of Lake Michigan and Lake Erie and then a bit south.  My geographical searches are proving to be most rewarding!


Saleabration Begins Today


Do you know how saleabration got started? Let me tell you. When Shelli and her sister first started the company more than 30 years ago they had humble beginnings. It all started in their kitchen when they saw a need for scrapbooking and card making supplies. Their first year went quite well and they thought their second one did too. Their accountant had a different story. After their second year he warned that they were about to go bankrupt. What to do? Have an amazing sale right after Christmas. That is how saleabration was born and it has kept going ever since. I am impressed with their tenacity. I am also very excited to share a special bonus present to you from me!


Free Little Ladybug stamp set with qualifying saleabration workshop


A New Freebie!


I am ever so excited to share with you that I have a very special gift for you if you place an order through me of $50 or more. Since you need to be in Canada to be able to do that, I also want to give you another way to get this free gift. If you are a fellow demonstrator I will also give you this gift if you join my Pampered Stamper Training Group. It is only $5 a month, but you pay in 6 month instalments. Message me if you are interested. My team members also get this gift. So does anyone who attends a retreat with me. My next retreat is Februrary 20-23. What is this freebie? It is a pdf from the Dream Demo Design team with 16 cards. All the cards feature brand new product from the new mini catalog.


Botanical Prints Product Medley Tutorial


So much excitement today. My second pdf is now available. I have made a pdf tutorial with ten cards all using the gorgeous Botanical Prints Product medley. Just click on the buy it now button below and I will send it to you. Here you can see all the cards that are featured in this tutorial.


Botanical Prints Product Medley pdf tutorial




Thanks so much for joining me today. I am about to go to the mail to check for happy mail. Yesterday I received one from Ann-Marie Paré from Quebec. Tomorrow you will get to see her card. I hope you have a super day and also a fun time placing your first saleabration order or even better yet, joining my team!! Remember, the starter kit is  the very best deal in the catalog.


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