See A Victory

My friend Annie recently celebrated a birthday. Annie has always been such a kind and loving friend to me. She is always there to lend an ear, to give honest feedback and to be a source of encouragement. I feel so thankful and blessed to know her and call her my friend.

Annie loves plants and flowers, so for her special day I created a birthday card using a new stamp set called Floral Essence.

Floral Essence Card

Floral Essence Card

The colors that I chose for this card were inspired by the wrapping paper I bought to wrap her birthday gift in. You can see the gift in the photo below, behind the card.

Floral Essence Card

Floral Essence Card

Although the flowers are different, I thought this set coordinated well with the wrapping paper. I just love this color combination!

The sentiment in this set says, “All day are beautiful that begin with you”. This is a beautiful sentiment that reminds the person you are giving the card to how valuable they are to you. By saying this, you are communicating that time spent with them is time that truly makes a difference in how your day will be.

In the season of life I am in right now, I know that it is important for me to begin each day spending quiet time with God. As I read my Bible, I find wisdom, strength, encouragement, direction and peace. Those are things that I’ve really needed in this season as I still am facing an undiagnosed health issue.

Many of you have inquired as to how I am feeling? To be honest, over the past couple of days I’ve been up and down. My faith, trust and confidence in God is strong and I am working hard to keep it that way! However, when any of my symptoms begin to flare up (and over the past two days, this has happened) I sometimes respond with frustration and discouragement. To be honest in a weak moment I sometimes say, “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired! Responding like this is definitely my down!!! What can I say, I am a work in progress! It has been a challenging road but I am confident I will learn and grow stronger during this season!

That is why starting my day reading God’s word and meditating on his promises is so important. It truly does make a difference and it reminds me that I don’t have to fear because the battle isn’t mine, it belongs to the Lord. Here is a verse I memorized this week.

The Lord will fight for you, you just need to be still. Exodus 14:14

I don’t know about you but being still has not been something that comes easy to someone like me. I am used to always being on the go. These past few years my life has changed a lot in this area as I’ve learned the importance and value of rest.

My friend Annie is someone who over the years has often lovingly reminded me of the importance of rest. She is a very wise woman. After going through some challenging circumstances, I get it. It is SO important to slow down and take time to rest.

As I end today’s post I want to encourage any of you who are facing a battle in your life right now. It’s normal to react with fear or frustration but don’t allow yourself to stay in that mindset. Remember that you are not alone! As you begin each new day take time to pray and talk to God about your circumstance. Read His word and allow His spirit to give you peace.

This new song by Elevation Worship has really encouraged me this week. I have been listening to it over and over and it has really helped me! The song is called SEE A VICTORY , you can click on the name to listen to it. I pray that if you are facing a battle in your life right now that as you listen to it, you will feel encouraged and can along with me begin to walk in victory and not in defeat because the battle isn’t ours, it belongs to the Lord.

Inspiration In The Kitchen

I find inspiration in many different places. In my last post, I shared how I was inspired by a design on a dish towel. Well, the card I want to share with you today was ALSO inspired by a dish towel. Who knew that dish towels could be so inspiring??

In the Fall, my friend Natalie gave me this adorable pineapple dish towel (pictured below). I used this towel to inspire the birthday card I created for her.

Bloom By Bloom Card

Bloom By Bloom Card

I probably wouldn’t have thought to mix Coastal Cabana Card Stock with Grapefruit Grove Card Stock, but the combination really works. I love the color combinations pictured in the flowers too! They are Grapefruit Grove and Calypso Coral flowers with Garden Green leaves. The flower and leaf images come from the Bloom By Bloom Stamp set.

Instead of a pineapple center, I stamped a bold sentiment from the Life Is Grand stamp set. Do you see how I outlined the sentiment with a Pineapple Punch Stampin’ Blends Marker? That brought in the yellow color. I also used a bunch of the yellow Gingham Gala Adhesive Backed Sequins and put them all over the front of the card to add texture and sparkle.

Bloom By Bloom Card

Bloom By Bloom Card

I hope that when Natalie opened her card she liked it as much as she did the boba tea I introduced her to at Teapresso, Kapolei.

Teapresso Kapolei after a fun beach day!

Teapresso Kapolei after a fun beach day!

I liked this card so much that I decided to make it a part of my monthly Stamp A Stack class. In order to make it work for the large number of guests who attend my class, I had to alter it. I didn’t use the sequins and instead of designer paper, I textured the Grapefruit Grove card stock with the Simple Stripes textured impressions embossing folder.

Bloom by Bloom Card

Bloom by Bloom Card

I think this simplified version of the card works. I had a lot of positive feedback from my class attendees this past weekend.

On the day that I was designing these two cards in my studio, my friend Kristy was there. As Kristy saw these cards coming together she looked at me and said, “So, all I have to do is bring you a dish towel and you’ll make me a card”?? Too funny!!!

Cards and Towels

Cards and Towels

I don’t think I told you that Natalie works for Stampin’ Up! and we’ve known one another for many years. She is one of the reasons I love Stampin’ Up! as much as I do. She has always been there to support and encourage me along the way.

Natalie and Cindy at Brink Canvas

Natalie and Cindy at Brink Canvas

Natalie truly is an inspiration not just to me but to everyone she meets!

I hope that she liked the card I sent, a card that she probably had no idea that was inspired by something she gave to me!

So, the next time you are struggling to come up with a card design, remember that there is inspiration all around you. In your closet, in your backyard and even next to your kitchen sink!

Happy Stampin’

Cindy

Hello, Dear Friend

Meet my happy friend, Missy. She is a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator from New York and the head of the Glad Heart Stampers group! Missy is such a positive, happy person! Missy is one of those people who brighten a room when they enter it.

This very sweet and happy friend recently celebrated her birthday.

Missy at Brick Canvas in Utah

Missy at Brick Canvas in Utah

Last summer, Missy and I shared a fun adventure in Utah together. We have been friends for many years but the quality time we shared together during this trip allowed us to get to know one another even better.

Cindy and Missy at Brick Canvas

Cindy and Missy at Brick Canvas

After finishing our work with Stampin’ Up!, we spent time hiking in a couple beautiful places.

Hiking with Missy

Hiking with Missy

One of the highlights of our time together was a day spent with Donna Griffith. We visited her beautiful home, saw her stamp studio, and then headed to her cabin for an afternoon of fun and adventure.

Adventures at the Cabin

Adventures at the Cabin

Donna and her husband Jeff are such a lovely couple and were truly amazing hosts. We had such a wonderful time with them both.

Donna and Jeff

Donna and Jeff

While at the cabin we saw so many beautiful creatures like moose, rabbits and deer.

Deer

Deer

I also spotted several squirrels. Missy thought it was funny that I was excited to see a squirrel! I explained to her that we don’t have squirrels in Hawaii. Missy told me that at her home there are tons of squirrels and they make a big mess! Needless to say, she is not as big of a fan of these furry creatures as I am.

A couple months ago, Missy mailed me a package and inside was this cute squirrel dish towel. Now, I could see a squirrel anytime I went into my kitchen!!!

I used Missy’s thoughtful gift to inspire the birthday card I created for her.

Card and Dish Towel

Card and Dish Towel

Missy’s Card was created with the set Fable Friends. I used Real Red Card Stock as the base of the card since it matched the red on the squirrels scarf.

Life Is Grand Birthday Card

Life Is Grand Birthday Card


I absolutely love the sentiment on this card! It comes from the stamp set Life Is Grand. I used a Gold Faceted Gem to place in the center of the daisy flower. It added a little bit of texture and sparkle to Missy’s card.

I used other images from the Life is Grand stamp set on the inside of the card. There was also a pocket in this card where there was room to place a gift card.

Life Is Grand Card (inside)

Life Is Grand Card (inside)

After receiving her card, Missy texted me and said, “Happiness is a smiling squirrel and a delightful birthday card!” I’m glad receiving this card made my happy friend even happier!!

Surf's Up!

My friend Alec celebrated his 50th birthday in January. Since Alec loves to surf, his wife Lynne threw a surf themed surprise party for him at Duke’s in Waikiki.

The Shimizu Family at Duke’s

The Shimizu Family at Duke’s

Creating a card for Alec gave me the opportunity to dig into my retired stamps and use two oldies but goodies. I used Surf’s Up and Do the Hula to create this card.

Surf’s Up! Birthday Card

Surf’s Up! Birthday Card

The sand was created with Crumb Cake Card Stock that I ran through the Big Shot with the Sequins Textured Impressions Folder. After I ran the card stock through the Big Shot, I tore it with my hands so that the torn edge would look more like sand. I did two layers like this so I could position the surfboards in between the layers of “sand”. The large boards were made with the Surf’s Up stamp set and the small board with flowers on it comes from Do The Hula.

I textured the background to look like water using the Seaside Textured Impressions folder. The sentiment “surf’s up” comes from the retired Surf’s Up stamp set.

When you look inside the card you will see that this is actually a recordable card, another vintage Stampin’ Up! product. I just happen to have a few of these left over from many years ago.

Recordable Card

Recordable Card

I sang a funny version of the song “Surf” and recorded it inside Alec’s card. Alec has a funny memory from when he once heard this song, so I tried to recapture that moment to make him smile on his special day. When I played the card for Lynne she laughed and told me how much she knew Alec would love this card.

Alec’s 50th Birthday Party

Alec’s 50th Birthday Party

And as you can see, it did make him smile!!

In addition to stamping him this card, I also stamped some toppers for the party favors. The toppers looked like this.

Cookie Topper

Cookie Topper

The wave was from the retired set Surf’s Up and the sentiment “Life is Sweeter with Friends like you” comes from a current set called Detailed With Love.

My extremely gifted and talented friend Cindy of Zoe, Hawaii, created the most adorable Surf Board cookies! Here is how they looked after we added the hand stamped topper.

Surf Board Cookies by Zoe, Hawaii

Surf Board Cookies by Zoe, Hawaii

Cindy decorated the cake with 4 of her beautiful cookies. Just look at all the creative designs she came up with. Her cookies are not only beautiful but they taste so good too.

Alec’s Surf Cake

Alec’s Surf Cake

Cindy cut up the cake so that everyone could take a piece home.

Cindy cuts the cake

Cindy cuts the cake

We didn’t eat cake at the party because we had Hula Pie instead. Hula pie is a yummy mud pie dessert that is a must have when you are at Duke’s.

Alec is like a brother to me. We have been really close friends for many years and I feel so grateful to have he and his family in my life. I know that he is not one to want a lot of attention so I think Lynne did a fabulous job planning a small intimate gathering of family and a few close friends to celebrate him on this very special birthday.

Alec and Lynne

Alec and Lynne

I captured this impromptu moment where Alec gave Lynne a big hug. I know he was really thankful for all the hard work she did to bless him on his special day.

I am glad that Alec celebrated his 50th birthday knowing how much he was loved and appreciated. It was a blessing to be a part of his special celebration.