Thursday, May 26, 2011

Rainy Days are for Stitching

There have been a lot of rainy days in my neighborhood. That usually means I can be found in my favorite chair creating cards to send to loved ones and shut ins.
I love to work on dark cardstock because it makes the colors "Pop".
I began making cards by using rubber stamps. Paper Embroidery became a passion for me in the last while. Then just lately I decided it would be great fun to combine the two of them. I usually color the images with colored pencils and sometimes water colors. It has brought new excitement to my card making. Combining the two mediums has opened my mind to other possibilities. Isn't that what keeps us creating?

I am so thankful to live in a time when there is such a wide range of colors and different kinds of threads to choose from. My colored pencil box is huge too. I have the rainbow at my fingertips. It seems the more I do, the more ideas that come.

Hope these will brighten your day.

Have a great weekend.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A new kind of Mother's Day

Darkness has fallen on Mother’s Day 2011. I am ready. I knew the first Mother’s day without Mother would be difficult. You just don’t live for almost 70 years with your mother in your life and not feel a deep sense of loss when she is no longer with you. She will always be in my life because she will always be in my heart but it is different.

I knew it would not please or honor my mother to have it turn out to be a day of mourning and tears. But I also did not want it to be a “business as usual” kind of day either. Some wise soul told me that it is sometimes a good thing to embrace our pain. At first I thought this sounded like a lot of craziness. But I decided it was worth a try.

I had made plans to make a memory garden in her memory so earlier this week I picked up the perennials to do that. I chose flowers that I knew that she liked and a few that would remind me of her. As I can no longer get down on my hands and knees I decided I would put them in containers and have them near my little deck table where I often have morning devotions.

Then this afternoon I went out to the deck and began to plant the flowers and at the same time buried some of my tears into the soil. There were no deep sobs, no lost feelings, just a sense of love and peace that seemed to come from my mother. Once they were planted, I sat in the sunshine for a while just feeling it’s warmth and the presence of God. . I find myself wondering how my own mother worked through her time of grief when her own mother died. I realize it is a cycle we all take and yet we do not seem to learn from those who have gone before. It is a personal thing and we must each walk the road relatively alone.

My reality is my mother has died. We will not see each other again until we meet at the feet of Jesus. I know she is at rest and I need to continue my way to find peace about that.

It is time for me to find a new part of myself, new growth and hopefully a way to bloom once again.

Mother’s birthday was June 11th so that is my next hurdle. But I have learned things from today and I hope I will manage as well as I did today. I am truly relieved that this first Mother’s Day is over. I cannot but hope that next year will be just a bit easier.

So tomorrow I will return to dong the creative things, cooking meals and gardening, hoping I will grow and bloom and all the love and hard work of teaching me the best she could will be rewarded.

I had hoped to post photos of the new memory garden. It will have to wait until I can shoot pictures in the daytime. Perhaps I will let them settle in just a bit.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you, even those who are missing their mothers. Memories can bring us close


Sunday, April 3, 2011

April is here, Spring is not

Well it is warm enough here so that we are getting rain instead of snow, but I still need my winter coat. I am planning a celebration for the day coming when I can hang it in the closet for a few months.
I so want all the things that come with spring so I have been putting some of those things into my cards in the last couple of weeks. I love the baby bird! It is one of a set of bird clear stamps that I bought this last month.
I also found some lovely quilt block patterns in paper embroidery that reminded me of all the joys I found in quilting in years past. And just as pretty on paper with threads.

The little Lily of Valley flowers were just what I needed to work on on the first day of spring as flurries of snow fell from the skies.

I am so thankful that I have art to express myself and to share with others. Hope all of you enjoy them as well
Hope you will all find ways to embrace a season you love.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Last of the hummers

These are the last of the humming bird cards that I will be making for a bit. I am looking forward to the real ones coming when the weather warms up some.
I really love the paper embroidery design to be used with ribbon. It is a nice touch.

My goal for the coming year is to use more of the supplies I have on hand, which includes printed scrap book paper, ribbon and embellishments. I was able to do that with these cards with a little imagination. Sometimes it takes a little effort and imagination to stretch the borders of what we have become comfortable with.
I had not used my Twinkling H2O's in a forever and it was fun to pull them out and add glimmer and sheen to the humming bird. When I begin to poke into the depths of my art room, I am amazed what I find there.
It is not unlike poking around in the flower gardens that have lay dormant for these last months. I have started clearing the beds on days that are warm enough for me. It is so much fun to pull back the dead leaves to find the first shoots of daffodils and tulips in their fresh greens and yellow tinges. What promise they hold of spring coming and beautiful blooms to come. The soil is soft and nice to work with.
It is the same in the art room as I pull open drawers to find treasures of beautiful paper I had forgotten I had and a box full of embellishments that would add such a pretty touch to a greeting card.
There is that same promise of wonderful possibilities in my art room as in the flower gardens. Creativity is everywhere for the taking. We just need to take the time to discover them.
Hope spring and creativity is headed your way.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Little Things in LIfe

Things are still pretty lifeless looking here in Michigan. Not even a sign of buds on the trees yet. I looked for the hint of crocus in the flower beds but they seem to still be asleep too.
So I decided it was time to poke around in the art room and see if I could see any signs of spring there.
I found a stamp that I had purchased a few weeks ago but had not put it in ink yet. Sure enough, there was this lovely little hummingbird!
I have been trying to get myself back into stamping and coloring and this little fella just buzzed right into my heart. I used Twinkling H2O's to color him. I haven't used them in a while and had forgotten what a treat they are.
But of course the Paper Embroidery is still calling my name so I decided to combine the two mediums.
Now this little guy is ready to "flutter" through the mails to hopefully cheer someone else of the winter doldrums.
Hope spring is winging its way to you.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

In times of Sadness

A Dear Aunt of mine passed away in the last week She has 5 children that live all over the U.S.A. I live far from her home too so I was unable to attend the funeral. I decided to make each of them a card and send a personal note with each one. I chose 3 different designs to stitch and stamp. Making Sympathy cards is not something I want to do all the time , but I hope that the ones I have made will convey the love I have for my Aunt and her family.
This second card had a soft cream base and was a bit difficult to scan because you could not really tell where the card borders were. So I placed another piece of paper behind it.

It is hard to lose one loved one after another as we grow older. I realize that I have become the "older generation". It means that I need to make some changes in my own life and my way of looking at things. I realize that my own time is growing more limited and that I want to live those days touching and blessing others as best as I can. I hope that these cards will do that for my cousins in their time of grieving the loss of their mother.

A Stitch in Time.

Snowy winter days in Michigan has meant that I have been spending a lot of time in my art room or sitting in my favorite chair.
I have been doing a lot of paper embroidery and am not attempting to compliment the work with things like embossing or painted images with paper embroidery as an embellishment.

This pieced began with a embossed border design with an area in the center waiting for a stamped image, a stamped verse and in this case an altered paper embroidery design.

This one had the added feature of bead work.

I think the thing I love about making cards is that there are a million different ways to design and make them. There is no time for boredom because you can only do a few selective things.
The world is truly my oyster when it comes to making cards. This reminds me that spring is just around the corner and the real flowers will soon be in bloom.