Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stampin' Sisters in Christ challenge 108 . . . Blessings

Happy Sunday stampers! It is time for another challenge from Stampin' Sisters in Christ, where our challenges are always linked to scripture. This week's hostess is the lovely and talented Grace, who selected this verse from John 16:33 "These things I have spoken to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." Her challenge for you is to create a project that either says 'blessings' or has an encouraging scripture on it. I couldn't find the word blessings in my stamp room, but I did have Blessed. Our sponsor this week is Pink Cat Studio and one randomly selected winner will receive five digital stamps from their collection!

Blessings--there is a lot of expectation we wrap up in that word. In human terms we tend to think of blessings only in the positive sense. We are blessed when we have good health, a good job, security, a family and possessions. What happens if all of those are stripped away? What happens to our sense of blessings then? Job experienced this. His whole world was stripped away in an instant as one messenger after another delivered the news that his herds were gone, his children gone and finally Job's body played traitor to him as well. His own wife told him to curse God and die. Nice.

Job eventually comes to the point where he realizes that God is God and he is not. He has nothing to say to the Almighty, but discovers that God alone is enough. Sometimes that's what life gives us. Not the blessings that bring us physical comfort, but the blessing of finding comfort from the only source that can provide a deep sense of peace when the world around us makes no sense. Jesus says in that verse from John that we will have trouble in this world. But He stands as the ultimate blessing. He overcame the world, giving us the greatest blessing of all, eternal life with God the Father through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. Sometimes we find ourselves in a dark place and when that happens that might be the only blessing we see on the horizon. I've been in a dark place before and that one tiny glimmer of light eventually was enough to bring me out.

We also are supposed to be a light in the darkness of this world, a blessing to other. We are meant to comfort others with the comfort we ourselves have received. If you can, try to be a blessing to someone in your life today or this week. If the spirit is nudging you to give someone a call of encouragement, do so. Send a card to someone who is lonely, or ill or grieving. Even a smile to a random stranger or a polite thank you to the clerk at the store can be a tiny glimmer of light in their day or their week.

For my card, I chose to try a technique, new to me, that Lisa Johnson highlighted on Papertrey Ink's Make it Monday challenge. She showed us how to 'frost' our images, by stamping first with a color, then overstamping with craft white ink and smudging the craft ink with your finger to create a halo around the stamped image. It is Fall on calendar but Fall in terms of weather and color changes here in Michigan and the fields often are filled with a light mist. The colors are variations of green, purple, rust, mustard or even straw yellow, caramel, and this is a great technique to allude to those misty, changing fields of grasses. I stamped in kiwi kiss, mustard, chocolate and plum pudding. The chocolate was most interesting, when you overstamp with the white it almost turns a purple shade with hints of brown. I really enjoyed trying this technique and had a lot of fun with it. I carried forward the imagery from the main panel into the green by using versamark and some of the smaller stamps from the PTI set Peaceful Garden, sentiment from the same, and added a touch of shimmer for the frost and mist with a light touch of gel pen around the oval near the sentiment and a vertical strip of scor-tape and glitter just on the left side of the ribbon. Thanks for looking and hope you can play along this week.

Stamps: Papertrey Ink Peaceful Garden, Blessings by Clear Dollar Stamps
Ink: versamark, chocolate, kiwi kiss, mustard, plum pudding, going gray, white craft ink
Paper: Kiwi kiss, soft stone, plum pudding
Other: gel pen, ribbon, scor tape, glitter

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Divas by Design challenge 12 . . . a sketch!

Hello, hello! It is time for another challenge from Divas by Design. The challenges run for two weeks, so plenty of time to ink up your stamps and enter right here. That's also where you'll see the amazing creations by the rest of the design team.

This fortnight's challenge is a sketch! I love sketches, they help get my brain in gear which functions in a very literal, very logical manner. Our sponsor this go-around is Stitchy Bear stamps which has some very cute digitals that one random winner will receive as a prize.

I was sorry to miss the last Divas challenge, I was on an epic journey of over 5,000 miles round trip to take my son to his college out west.

I hadn't used blue much lately so was drawn to some softer blue tones to make a get well card for a dear lady at our church who just had a heart attack. Please note in the sketch, it calls for the sentiment in the lower right hand corner, I had mine enclosed by the image so I did put a flower on that side but moved it up a bit, looked lonely sitting in the corner by itself. (bad flower!) Thanks for looking!

Stamps: Mark's Finest Papers Hearts, Hearts, Hearts, Layers of Color (sentiment)
CS: white, soft stone, bashful blue, pear pizzazz, Melissa Frances DP
Ink: white craft and black
Other: twinkling H20s, ribbon, prima flowers, fiskars edge punch, embossing powder, pearls

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Stampin' Sisters in Christ challenge 107...Wings



Happy Sunday stampers! It is time for another challenge from Stampin' Sisters in Christ, where our stamping challenges are based on scripture. This week's hostess is the uber-talented Chris, who selected this verse from Isaiah 40:31 "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles." Her challenge this week is for you to use something with wings and a biblical verse on your creation.

Our sponsor this week is Our Daily Bread Designs and one randomly selected winner will receive a $15 gift certificate to their store, so we're hoping you find a chance to play along!

Isaiah is a wonderful book in the bible and there are so many nuggets of wisdom hidden in its pages. I know Chris is going to have some great thoughts to share in her devotional on the home page at Stampin' Sisters in Christ.

Waiting . . . that's something we do a lot in this life, isn't it? Especially when the economy slows down. We wait to see if we're going to get a job in response to that resume we sent out. We wait to see if any customers will buy our products if we own our own business. We wait for a paycheck to be able to pay those bills that are themselves, waiting on the desk.

We wait for test results, wait for the light to change, wait for the rain to stop, wait for the phone to ring with that special call that is going to change our lives . . . when what we're really waiting for is God. We pray and wait for Him to answer. Then we get impatient when that answer doesn't seem to come quickly enough. Then, in our impatience, we act--and when it isn't in God's timing, that action is often premature. When we act or move on our own, we're depending on our wisdom, our strength, our timing and our plan. I have done this often enough to know that God's plan is so much better than my plan, because when I get impatient--and that happens often--it doesn't work out so well.

This verse promises that when we wait on the Lord, we will renew our strength . . .why? Is it because during that time of waiting we've had a nice rest or perhaps a glass of lemonade? No, it is because we are relying on God's strength, not our own. God's strength and wisdom is inexhaustible and immeasurable. If we wait upon the Lord, He will give us the strength we need to meet the next day, conquer the challenges that face us. And in the meantime while waiting for an answer, do what is right in front of you. Clean house, bake bread, write a friend, play with the kids, weed the garden, tend sheep--do whatever it is that lies in front of you--waiting doesn't mean life stops, it just means we don't run ahead of the Shepherd.

What seems to take a lot longer than nine months is waiting for a baby. I made two baby cards for this challenge because I have two nieces who both had babies this summer, born one month apart . I changed up the design on the second card because my husband liked it better, which do you like better? Sorry the photo is a bit washed out.

We look forward to seeing your creations with wings and a bible verse in our gallery this week. Thanks for looking, hope you can play along.

Stamps: Crafty Secrets, Our Daily Bread Designs, Waltzingmouse
Paper: white and random DP
Ink: black, versamark, pink kaleidacolor pad
Other: silver gel pen, edge punch, nestabilities, prismacolor pencils, glitter, ribbon, prima roses, PTI impression folder

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Mark's Finest Paper September release . . . Get your Broom on

Emily

Nancyruth
Neva
Faith
Dawn
Marilynn
Patricia
Chrissy
Karen
Pam
Joanne
Markie

Carol
Mark’s Finest Papers


And here we are at day four of the Mark's Finest Papers September release! AGain, I am not part of the official hop today (and my photo here is rather crooked!) but you will find the hop order above to be able to enter to win this set, Get Your Broom On! I stamped and embossed the images in black and then simply used some twinkling H20s in deep blue and purple to paint a Halloween sky in the background. Have fun and happy hopping!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mark's Finest Papers September release . . . Covered Bridges

Welcome to day three of the new releases from Mark's Finest Papers. Please note I am not part of the hop, but I have the participants listed below. Leave a comment on each of their posts for your chance to win this newly released set, Covered Bridges. The trees in this stamp are so lifelike it reminded me of a photograph and of course, the vintage truck would have been in the era of black and white. So I did a colorized version of a photo in an album, coloring in the bridge and the truck and simply using frosted icicle stickles on the tree branches for snow.

Thanks for looking and happy hopping!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mark's Finest Papers September blog hop . . . Boo to you!

Hello! Welcome to the September 2011 MFP New Releases Blog Hop!

This week's new releases are:Autumn Glory. Boo To You, Covered Bridges, and Get Your Broom On.For your convenience, all these sets are available TODAY at Mark's Finest Papers.

So, do you want to WIN today's Featured Stamp Set: Boo To You? (If you don't want to wait to win, you can always purchase the sets right away! We'll substitute a set from NEXT month's release if today's winner has already purchased this set!)

For your chance to win: Comment on the following Design Team members' blogs TODAY before midnight EDT. There will be ONE random winner chosen from the comments on today's Blog Hop blogs. That winner will win Boo To You. We will announce the winner's name on tomorrow's MFP blog post.

Lois

Vicky
Dawn
Anne
Peggysue
Connie
paynehollercards.blogspot.com/">Linda
Karen
Patty
Liz
Geri
Lynn

djchrist71.blogspot.com/">Debbie
Mark’s Finest Papers

Monday, September 12, 2011

Mark's Finest Papers September blog hop . . . Autumn Glory




Hello! Welcome to the September 2011 MFP New Releases Blog Hop!

This week's new releases are:Autumn Glory. Boo To You, Covered Bridges, and Get Your Broom On.For your convenience, all these sets are available TODAY at Mark's Finest Papers.

So, do you want to WIN today's Featured Stamp Set: Autumn Glory? (If you don't want to wait to win, you can always purchase the sets right away! We'll substitute a set from NEXT month's release if today's winner has already purchased this set!)

For your chance to win: Comment on the following Design Team members' blogs TODAY before midnight EDT. There will be ONE random winner chosen from the comments on today's Blog Hop blogs. That winner will win Autumn Glory. We will announce the winner's name on tomorrow's MFP blog post.

Lois

Vicky
Dawn
Anne
Peggysue
Connie
paynehollercards.blogspot.com/">Linda
Karen
Patty
Liz
Geri
Lynn

djchrist71.blogspot.com/">Debbie
Mark’s Finest Papers



Just a quick note of explanation for what I created above; I posted 2 cards using the pumpkin/fox image to show two different coloring mediums, but when they're on the blog post itself its really hard to tell there's much of a difference! The top one uses watercolor crayons while the bottom image uses copic markers. That's all.

As for the third card, I stamped the leaf image in versamark and then shook a bit of three different embossing powders on the stamped images; gold, silver and copper. Sometimes when the sun comes through the trees onto the ground the leaves are just illuminated in a way that makes them look like they're metal, not real leaves . . .that was the thinking there. Thanks for looking and happy hopping!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Stampin' Sisters in Christ challenge 105 . . . the open door

Happy Sunday stampers! It is time for another challenge from Stampin' Sisters in Christ. This week's hostess is Rebekka and her verse is chosen from Matthew 7:7-8 "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened."

Our sponsor this week is Simon Says Stamp. Becky's challenge is for you to use a door somewhere in your creation, on the patterned paper, in the image, somewhere a door. I am using an old but favorite Stampin' Up set and this is the first of my holiday cards, and I kept it deliberately CAS. I'm going to be scrambling in December!

We hope that you can play along with us. Please be sure to stop by the home page to read Rebekka's thoughts on her chosen verse. And you cannot post on this day without remembering the events of ten years ago. God bless America.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Make it Monday . . . backgrounds

Hi peeps! First day of school today for my daughter and I found some time to stamp. This card uses the technique from the Make it Monday challenge on the PTI blog, to use ordinary stamps from a set as a background stamp.

I chose the acorns and oak leaves from the Autumn Blessings set and worked my way up from the bottom of the insert piece starting with dark chocolate, pomegranate, really rust, pumpkin and then mustard. The vase of mums works the colors back down the other way, from purple to yellow.

The glitter stripes I worked in because I was in the mood for glitter and they are supposed to mimic the stripe in the vase. This also means I actually made a Papertrey Peeps challenge card (don't faint) for Carol's challenge for September to do an autumn inspired card. We had frost last night, I'm surely feeling inspired by cooler weather!

CASEd a layout that Nerina used a little while back, thanks for the inspiration ! And that's it! Thanks for looking!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Stampin' Sisters in Christ challenge 105 . . . quiet colors

Happy Sunday stampers! It is time for another challenge from Stampin' Sisters in Christ. This week's sponsor is Clear Dollar Stamps, they have a great assortment of not just stamps, but all kinds of products, be sure to check out their store front. Please be sure also to check out the home page for Stampin' Sisters in Christ to see all the creations from the design team there.

I am the hostess this week and I selected this verse from 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 ""Make it your aim to live a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to earn your own living, just as we told you before.12 In this way you will win the respect of those who are not believers, and you will not have to depend on anyone for what you need."

My challenge to you is to use nothing bright this week. Use 'quiet' colors in your creation, either pastels, or low key earthtones, soft, muted shades of beige or neutrals. I chose pastels and quieter, softer tones, using this Layers of Color stamp set that I won in their last blog hog, the teacup and sentiments, I am having fun using it. And you can either find my thoughts on that verse on the SSIC home page, or here, and other design team members usually share their own thoughts as well, so be sure to visit their blogs:

I chose this verse from Thessalonians in particular because it represents almost the exact opposite of what we see in society today. I don’t recall a time period when there were more ‘reality’ shows-- voyeuristic invitations to intrude upon the private lives of stars or aspirants in a desperate bid to garner public attention.

And what an odd juxtaposition of words in the first phrase…make it your ambition to lead a quiet life…isn’t it everyone’s ambition to be famous, wealthy, popular like the people on these TV shows? But how often do we witness tragic results from the toxic combination of wealth, self-promotion, boredom and fame?

Some people are called into the spotlight naturally or by accident, through a heroic act, public service or the display and use of special gift or talent given them by God, such as music or athletics.

We might long to be in the spotlight, at least once in a while. However, most of us lead a “quiet life,” raising a family, going to work, going to church, cleaning house, cooking dinner, leading Awanas, coaching Little League, visiting elderly parents and the list goes on. Can you see the value in these things? This passage affirms that God does.

God’s plan has work for us all and the quiet life can accomplish much within a family and a community. I have a friend who purposes to live a ‘quiet life’ and in this life has given gifts of the work of her hands that have blessed many people. Creating a happy home where a healthy, godly family can grow in love and in service to others in their community is a gift in and of itself. Working with your hands to support yourself and your family without having to rely upon others, unless in times of tragedy or misfortune, is of great value as well.

In addition, a quiet life leaves room for reflection, to meditate on God’s word and His promises, Psalm 19:14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

While you may win the respect of outsiders, even living a quiet life however, does not guarantee that you will always fly under the radar of notice when it comes to faith. As it says in 2 Corinthians 2:15-16 (NLT) Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing. To those who are perishing, we are a dreadful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved, we are a life-giving perfume. And who is adequate for such a task as this?

We are all adequate for, or will receive God’s power when needed, to walk the path laid out before us, most often a path of little notice and quietude. The ultimate purpose of our lives after all, is to bring glory to God, not to ourselves.

Psalm 46:10

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; 
 I will be exalted among the nations, 
 I will be exalted in the earth.”


We hope you can find the time to join us in this week's challenge. Thanks for looking, have a blessed week.