The Most Important Thing

Hello stampers and happy Monday to you. What is the most important thing in your life? That was the question we were asked in church yesterday and it really made me think. Sometimes we get so busy with our lives and the day to day things that need to get done that we forget to ask ourselves that question. At the beginning of a new year, indeed a new decade, I think it is a very good question to ponder. What do you spend the most time doing? If you have extra money where does it go? What do you spend a lot of time thinking about? When you answer those questions, you get closer to finding your “dioko”, the Greek word that means to seek after eagerly, earnestly endeavour to acquire.

There are lots of things that I love and that are very important to me and card making and stamping is at the top of the list. Traveling, baking, reading, pickleball, walking, wine, those are all great, but without my faith, without salvation, they would mean absolutely nothing. That is a sobering reality but also a deep comfort. What is your most important thing? What do you believe?

 

Happy Mail from Janis

 

On Friday I received this beautiful card from Janis Taylor from Chatham, Ontario. Janis is also on my team and I happen to know that she sends a LOT of cards to a lot of people. I first met Janis when she came to my Hearts for Haiti fundraiser. At that time Janis was still a public health nurse. Now she is a regular volunteer at the Chatham-Kent Hospice. We also play pickleball together once in a while and when we pair up we make a pretty mean team that I affectionately refer to as “Tall and Small”. Janis is convinced that all Dutch people are giants!

 

Important reminder

 

Here you can see some more detail in Janis’ card. The touch of silver thread in behind that gorgeous embossed frame from the Heirloom frames collection is so pretty. A few shiny black sequins add just the right added interest. I’m pretty sure she also ran the patterned paper through the Subtle embossing folder for a truly subtle touch. If you want to kick up your card a notch, this is a great way to do it! The focal point of this card is actually a Memories and More card from a few years ago. If you are looking for fun and easy card making, be sure to check out our Memories and More cards, they are definitely  for more than just memory keeping.

 

 

Janis’ card fits in so well with what is on my mind today. It is so true that if you begin each day with a grateful heart you will be so much happier and your joy and gratitude will spill over to others that you meet. I am so grateful to Janis and to everyone else who has a sent happy mail to Holland. Your cards are a vivid reminder of how important card making really is. I am firmly convinced that it is so much more than just a hobby. What are you grateful for today?

 

Grateful

 

I am so grateful for the added benefit of being close to my extended family while I am in Holland visiting Gerard. For most of my life my cousins have been people I saw only rarely and I often missed having family near by. Now it’s time to make up for lost time!! This weekend I visited with these cousins and my Dad’s youngest brother. Have you noticed that as you get older differences in age matter less and less? Staying in contact with my relatives is super important to me.

 

 

Being surrounded by centuries of history never gets old either!! Pardon the pun. Zierikzee is the beautiful city that is very close to the village where my Pap was born. This past Saturday I was able to show it off to Gerard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This scene captures what I love so much about Dutch cities. They all have large open squares that serve so many purposes. It allows restaurants to have large terraces (patios) so people can sit outside. This space also serves as the location for the weekly farmer’s market and also for other town celebrations. It is just the perfect place to be gezellig. This time they had a skating rink set up for the kids as well as an “oliebollen kraam” where you get fresh treats and another booth where you could get a shot of Jagermeister or hot mulled wine or hot chocolate. So nice to see everyone outside together enjoying themselves.

 

 

 

 

 

#itsallaboutthetreats

 

Dutch people might not bake a lot at home, but there is no shortage of good food. All those lovely cheese shops!! Be still my heart. We did go into a bakery, but only to look. Carrying around pastries for a few hours didn’t seem like a great idea. Self-control was necessary because I was planning to bake an apple cake for my other cousins the next day!

I love seeing all the detail in the old architecture as well, so traipsing around an old city on a Saturday afternoon and ending with dinner in a small Thai restaurant was definitely a great way to spend a weekend. The weather wasn’t great, the sun had disappeared but at least it wasn’t raining and the wool hat that I bought at #OnStageQuebec has served me very well.

 

Free Tutorial with $50 order

 

Just a reminder that with a $50 purchase you get an amazing pdf tutorial with 16 cards from the demo design dream team. With a $60 purchase you get a free saleabration product. I am so happy to be able to offer you this little perk for shopping with me. I hope you have a super day. Thanks for dropping by.


 

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Happy New Year!

Hello stampers. I am writing this Happy New Year blog post while my oliebollen dough is rising. My heart is once again happy with the arrival of more happy mail. It really makes me feel so close to all of you and it is a joy to share your work with everyone. Today I am sharing a card from Prince George, British Columbia which is half way up the coast to Alaska. Thanks Sandy Allman for this stunning card! Tomorrow or the next day I will share the second card. I’m going to keep you in suspense!

 

Happy Mail

 

I love the story that the outside of the envelope tells as well, don’t you? #itsinthedetails  The handwriting, the return address, the postmark, the stamps, they all tell a story and I love that. You don’t get those vibes from an email or a text, that is for sure! Take a look:

 

Happy Mail Contest

 

Do you see how the one post office has a special Christmas postmark with a wreath and Happy Holidays?

 

Sandy Allman’s card

 

If lots of layers means lots of love, then I am definitely feeling the love with this card. I had also forgotten that we had copper glimmer paper! There was one detail that also almost evaded me. Sandy even decorated the back of the card. Oh. My. Goodness. Sandy used the NIght of Bethlehem framelits which I just love. They just happen to be on the clearance rack right now in case you missed out when they first became available.

 

NIght of Bethlehem

 

Here is the inside:

 

Night of Bethlehem inside

 

Finally the surprise detail on the back!

 

 

The Little Details

 

The last thing I love about Sandy’s card is that she signed the back of it and included the year. That can really mean a lot when you discover this card in your box of Christmas cards years later. It was a lot of fun showcasing Sandy’s card. Thanks for participating in the happy mail contest Sandy.

I hope that all of you are having a fantastic last day of the year. It is hard to believe that tomorrow it will be 2020. As a teenager in the 80’s the year 2020 sounded futuristic. Now it is our reality. It is time for me to begin baking oliebollen. This blog post was supposed to be done hours ago but I was having technical difficulties on the home computer. Picmonkey was only allowing me to edit one photo and then it balked. No fun!!

 

Thanks so much for stopping by. I may do a little live video of everyone enjoying oliebollen. We have a perfect day for it. Sunny and 8C. Blessed beyond measure.

 

 

 

 

 

Snowman Season Double Tri-Fold Shutter Card

Hello stampers and happy Wednesday to you. Today I have a tri-fold shutter card to show you. I made it two weeks ago for my Upon Request Club. Trust me, this is NOT the card to make if you are pressed for time. That will take all the fun out of it. You want to make this card when you have time to fuss a little.

 

The Inspiration

 

Normally I would not make a card like this for a class since it is just too much cutting and scoring, not to mention all the little pieces and layers, however…. For my Upon Request Club the host gets to request what we do so I could hardly say no! I’m glad we made the card since it really is lovely. The important thing is that you need to have the time to actually enjoy the process. Be sure to make a bunch of bases right away while you’re in the groove and then you will be all set to make more when you need them. Teri Pocock from the UK was the original creator of this card and her tutorial was super helpful. You can find it here.

 

My Card

 

shutter card

 

When you see it all closed up like this with the cute belly band it looks like a pretty box.

 

Double tri-fold shutter card

 

It is a gray, rainy November day here so the conditions were not great for taking pictures. Please excuse the shadows! You still get a good idea of what the card looks like. This paper is so, so cute! The combinations are endless. I followed Teri’s tutorial but I balked at adding more little layers in the tiny squares that you see are just pure red. Follow your heart as to how much layering you do!

 

shutter card

 

Here you can see a close-up of the middle part of the card. The felt hat and scarf and other embellishments are from the Let it Snow Embellishment kit which is so much fun to use! I used some Snowfall Accents puff paint and ice stampin’ glitter as well.

 

Double tri-fold shutter card

 

In the picture above you can see how the fold actually looks. If you go about it slowly and breathe deeply AND follow Teri’s tutorial, you will have no problem at all. This beauty definitely deserves a place of honour among your Christmas decorations this year.

 

A Reminder

 

I just want to gently urge you to order any Christmas items from the holiday catalog as soon as possible as things are beginning to sell out! I hate to see you disappointed. Be sure to tell your loved ones that I offer gift certificates that can be redeemed for product or classes. Have a super day!


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Free-Standing Pop-Up Card

Hello stampers and happy Tuesday to you. Today I am going to show you how to make a free-standing pop-up card. How is that for a mouth full? It sounds complicated but when you make it step by step without worrying about what is next, you’re all good. I love the way this card looks and the way it folds up to fit into an envelope. Sometimes it just feels really good to make something a little different.

 

My Card

 

My inspiration came from my friend and fellow demonstrator Elizabeth Green. We met at the Canadian Business conference a few years ago over a glass or two of wine! What fun. Anyways, I received a beautiful swap card from her which inspired me to finally make one of these beauties. Two years ago I had another swap card using the same technique from Rachel Tessman. That’s how long it took me to finally do it myself!

 

Free-standing pop-up card

 

I made another one of these using the smaller banner so that more of that gorgeous paper would be seen.

 

Free-standing pop-up card

 

Here is the back side of the card. I used the detailed trip punch to do the corner rounding and the detail in the corner. It really adds a special touch and is so easy to do.

 

Free-standing pop-up card

 

Finally here is the card that Rachel Tessman gave me all those years ago! I held on to it even though I didn’t actually recreate it. She used a window sheet for the pop-up piece and she embossed the base piece. Do you see all the possibilities?

 

Free-standing pop-up card

 

How to do it

 

Would you like to know how to make this free-standing pop-up card? Sometimes there is no need to reinvent the wheel, so I am going to share this great tutorial from Splitcoaststampers. You can find it here. If you find it difficult to follow then of course I will do a video! Just let me know.

 

Thanks!

 

Thanks so much for popping by today! If you do end up making this card or one like it, be sure to send me a picture, I would love to see your work. On a personal note, my Pap is still in the hospital. They are going to keep him for a few more days and run more tests to make sure all is in working order. Thanks for your thoughts, prayers and well wishes. I know some of you are sending him a card. If you want to do that too, here is his address:  Kees Boot 0534 South River Road, Elora, Ontario N0B 1S0

 


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Ghoul Friends

Hello stampers. I love words and I love puns so it is only natural that I love the saying “Ghoul Friends”. This saying is part of the stamp set Spooktacular Bash which is part of the Monster Bash suite. You can find it on page 54 of the holiday catalog.

 

The Card

 

I don’t send out Halloween cards but I do love dressing up and handing out candy. Someday I hope to throw an epic Halloween party complete with fantastic ghoulish treats and fun costumes and of course scary games. This lovely card was a swap card that I received from Christina Walker.

 

 

Do you see all the lovely details on this card? The gorgeous ornate frames die and the Stylish Scroll embossing background? The glittered black organdy ribbon is the perfect finishing touch for this card. Here is a closeup picture so you can see it even better.

 

 

More Time

 

Do you ever wish that you had more time? I sure do!! Maybe it could also be a matter or prioritizing things. I know that I absolutely love Christmas so I often jump right into Christmas card making and I forget about fall cards or Halloween. If I would make a point of making all kinds of fun things for Halloween then perhaps I would host a big Halloween party and we could use all the fun stuff I had made. There’s always next year, but maybe I have inspired you to get creative for Halloween.

 

 

Share Your Story

 

If you have fun Halloween traditions, I would love to hear about them. Share your stories in the comments below and I will choose someone to get this fun card in the mail. Blogs are more fun when they are interactive don’t you think? If you do have a fun tradition, maybe you want to scrapbook it too. There was a fun sample in the holiday catalog and I’m going to share it here too.

 

 

Thanks!

 

I’m so glad you stopped by today. I hope you have fun decorating for Halloween, even if it is just a few pumpkins on the porch. Celebrating death is not my thing at all, but dressing up and sharing candy, well that is something quite different. Enjoy the little things and remember, #itsallaboutthetreats.

 


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Snow Front with Nature’s Beauty

Hello stampers. I absolutely love stamp sets that allow me to play. Snow Front and Nature’s Beauty are perfect for that. Nature’s Beauty has some great images in it and I really wanted to make some great cards so that you would all want to buy it. Why you ask? Well of course I want you to want ALL the stamp sets in the catalog, but this one has a special place in my heart. Nature’s Beauty is a stamp set that has been especially created to raise money for mental health organizations. Four dollars from each set will be donated to different mental health organizations in each country so that the money raised in each country remains there. Thank you Stampin’Up! Nature’s Beauty is a lovely stamp set with beautifully drawn animals: a deer, a rabbit, a fox as well as several different groupings of trees and grass. It will be great for many different occasions and just because.

 

Snow Front

 

When I was ready to make my third card using Nature’s Beauty I knew that I wanted to create a scene for the deer. I also knew that I wanted two deer facing each other. That means that I needed to use a really cool but simple technique involving the stamparatus and the silicone mat. I will share this technique during my Facebook live next Tuesday. Having only limited supplies on hand forces me to be a little bit more creative. Snow front has so many different stamps that allow you limitless possibilities for winter scene making. Time was of the essence and this card was actually very quick and easy to make, it came together on the first try!!

 

 

You can see that I used only three colours: soft suede, mossy meadow and seaside spray. The seaside spray is very subtle, it is found in the small patch of ice at the feet of the deer. It also ties in with the patterned paper in the background that comes from Come to Gather.

 

 

The deer on the right is the one that was reverse stamped using the silicone mat. This technique gives the stamped image a totally different look which may cause you to think that it is an entirely different stamp! I would love to spend a romantic evening in that cabin by the woods watching these deer? I hear the nightly rate is good, so you might want to stay there too!

 

Nature’s Beauty

 

This stamp set has only image stamps in it but it will coordinate with any of the sentiments from our other stamp sets. I also think it works very well for blank cards. Sometimes the only words you need are the heartfelt letter you write on the inside of the card. They are priceless. I would encourage you to use this stamp set to send random acts of kindness cards. Cards that can be sent for no reason at all but to send happy mail. If we all did that more often the world would be a better place. Mental illness would decline and that is the purpose of this stamp set! I hope you all get on board and buy the set. In fact I believe so strongly in this that EVERYONE who orders this set from my online store will get a card from me in the mail using this set. The only catch is that you must use the current host code:  ZQKK7SAB.

Remember, four dollars from every set sold will be donated to the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Canada. That is a significant contribution and I am excited to see how much money we will raise. It would be amazing if we could keep tabs on how many cards are sent using this stamp set! Together we can make a difference, one small step at a time, one stamp set at a time, one card at a time.

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to tune in to the Facebook live on Tuesday at 9am EST or 3pm European summer time. I will be making this card and two others using Nature’s Beauty.

 


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