Wonderful, Brilliant, Fabulous Friend

December 2017 is turning out to be a month of BIG celebrations for my family.  My son is getting married, my husband will reach a milestone birthday and of course there is Christmas too, my most favorite holiday.  Although there is much to do to prepare for all of these occasions I love that I had the opportunity to focus on friends yesterday when we gathered together to celebrate Cindy's belated birthday.

We woke up early and went to Egg's and Things on Piikoi street, near the Ala Moana Shopping Center.  We planned that strategically so that we could spend some time shopping together after we ate.   You can see by the shoes we have on that we all have different ideas on the most comfortable footwear for a day at the mall.

Friends Footwear

Friends Footwear

Breakfast was really great and afterward we gave Cindy a card I had created for her using our brand new Party Panda's set.  

Party Pandas

Party Pandas

Eeek!  This set is so adorable, I couldn't wait to use it.  This set is a part of our Saleabration promotion that begins in January 2018.  With a $50 order of Stampin' Up! product of your choice, this set can be yours for FREE.  As a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, I was able to get this set early, which is one of the "perks" of being a part of Stampin' Up!  

The words on this card sample come from another brand new set that will be available in January, its called "Picture Perfect Birthday". The sequin embellishments are also a new product "sneak peek".  They are called "Tutti-Frutty Self Adhesive Sequins".  They were the perfect accent for this happy panda card.

There are three adorable panda bears featured in the Party Panda's set.  I fussy cut two of them several times to create a bunch of pandas who are definitely ready to party.  This bunch of cute pandas "pop- up" when the card is opened.

Party Pandas

Party Pandas

It was good to see a smile on Cindy's face when she opened the card and read our hand written messages inside.

Cindy's Birthday Breakfast

Cindy's Birthday Breakfast

We had a wonderful day of shopping together and helping each other check a few names off our Christmas lists!  

I am so thankful for my sister and friend Cindy who is such a beautiful person inside and out.  As I have spent time with her over the years I have learned a lot by her kind and loving example.  I love watching her intereact with her kids.  She is one of the most amazing Mom's I have ever met and it is good to see how much her kids realize that in the way they miss her even if she's just away for a couple of hours.

I am grateful not only for Cindy but all the other wonderful friends God has placed in my life and allowed me to "Do Life" with.

Cindy's Birthday Breakfast

Cindy's Birthday Breakfast

During a crazy, busy season, like this month will be for me, its important to remember the value of relationships.  Whether it be time with God, our family, friends or others, we can experience times of refreshing when we invest quality time together.  

I am thankful I was able experience quality time with friends yesterday, celebrating (as the stamp set says) our Wonderful, Brilliant, Fabulous Friend, Cindy!

Lunch Date at Cafe Lani

Several weeks ago I posted about going to eat at Cafe Lani which is located at the Ala Moana Shopping Center.  My friend Mary read that post and said that the next time she came to Oahu, she wanted us to go there.

Cindy and Mary at Cafe Lani - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Cindy and Mary at Cafe Lani - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Mary was in town last week so she coordinated a lunch date not only with me but with our friend Pam too!

Pam is the one who told me about Cafe Lani and the bread service they provide which is one of her favorite things about the restaurant.  

Cafe Lani has a bakery on site where they bake a wide variety of delicious breads and bring them to you fresh out of the oven throughout your meal.  They also bring you dipping sauces to try with the bread.  Each one is unique and different.  The croissants melt in your mouth, they are so delicious.

Pam and Mary at Cafe Lani - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Pam and Mary at Cafe Lani - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Pam blessed Mary and I with the absolutely beautiful leis that we are wearing in the photo below.  The three of us had a really nice time catching up and enjoying spending time together at this fun restaurant!

Mary and Pam also surprised me that day with belated birthday gifts so that made the already special gathering even more memorable!  

Cafe Lani with Pam and Mary - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Cafe Lani with Pam and Mary - www.stampedwithaloha.com

This week I created Thank You Cards to send to both Mary and Pam with our Basket Bunch stamp set.  Now that I own the coordinating framelits I was able to use them to cut out three of these cute bunnies to represent the three of us and the blessing of friendship.

Basket Bunch Thank You Card - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Basket Bunch Thank You Card - www.stampedwithaloha.com

This card is folded in such a way that the stitched oval lays on top of a hidden white oval where you can sign the card with words of gratitude.

Basket Bunch Thank You Card (inside) - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Basket Bunch Thank You Card (inside) - www.stampedwithaloha.com

I just love this sweet stamp set and am glad that I can use it to create many different types of cards.

I hope Pam and Mary will be blessed to receive this card and when they do know how much I appreciated our lunch date at Cafe Lani and the very special blessing of their love and friendship.

Source: www.stampedwithaloha.com

Diamond Head and Dragonfly Dreams

Well, we did it.  We hiked Diamond Head on February 14th.  It was an absolutely beautiful day and one that was filled with love, laughter and the making of more happy memories.

Diamond Head Hike - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Diamond Head Hike - www.stampedwithaloha.com

The Diamond Head hike is fairly easy.  The only challenging part is a couple of steep stair cases at the top but as you can see in the photo below, we handled them with a smile.

However, there could be some truth to the fact that sometimes stopping to take a photo can be a great excuse to allow some time to catch your breath while climbing a steep part of a hike.

Diamond Head Hike steps - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Diamond Head Hike steps - www.stampedwithaloha.com

The view of Waikiki that day was stunning, so stunning that I completely forgot to pass out the Victory Chocolate I promised and had carried up there in my bag.

 There was a beautiful breeze up there too, so we felt nice and cool.

View from the top of Diamond Head - www.stampedwithaloha.com

View from the top of Diamond Head - www.stampedwithaloha.com

It meant a lot to me that my friends who really aren't into hiking would take the time to go with me because they knew I really wanted to.  They are just wonderful friends like that.

Top of Diamond Head with Karin - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Top of Diamond Head with Karin - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Just look at the colors of the ocean behind us.  It was so beautiful to see.  Being out in nature is always so inspiring.  To witness God's creation up close and personal is so amazing.

 After seeing the colors of the ocean that day and spending time with wonderful friends, I was inspired to create this Dragonfly card below.

Detailed Dragonfly Card - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Detailed Dragonfly Card - www.stampedwithaloha.com

To create this card I used the Detailed Dragonfly Thinlit Dies.  I cut out one Dragonfly using the precision base plate and my Big Shot machine.

The watercolored background technique was created by taking a clear block and coloring it with three different stampin write markers.  After I colored the block, I spritzed it with water and stamped it to my card stock to create a colorful back ground for the die cut dragonfly.  

The words on this card say, "to a wonderful friend" from the set Dragonfly Dreams which offers lots of other sentiments that you can put on the inside of this card to coordinate with the front. 

After we hiked, it was time to refuel.  So we went to one of our favorite local cafe's that is close to Diamond Head.  It is called Sweet E's.

Sweet E's cafe on Kapahulu Ave in Honolulu - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Sweet E's cafe on Kapahulu Ave in Honolulu - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Karin enjoyed one of the house specialties, blueberry cream cheese stuffed french toast.  YUM!

Karin and her Blueberry Cream Cheese Stuffed French Toast at Sweet E's.  

Karin and her Blueberry Cream Cheese Stuffed French Toast at Sweet E's.  

We really enjoyed sharing our morning together, hiking and then eating and fellowshipping in this wonderful cafe'.

Breakfast at Sweet E's with Cindy - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Breakfast at Sweet E's with Cindy - www.stampedwithaloha.com

When I think of my friends aka my sisters, I feel really blessed because they are in my life.  It is wonderful to have the opportunity to "do-life" with them and share memorable moments like we did this day.  It is something that makes me so happy.

I hope that they had SO much fun that they will want to hike with me again soon.  We have so many beautiful places to hike here in Hawaii and doing that with wonderful friends makes the adventure even better.  

Source: www.stampedwithaloha.com

Pink Pineapple Blessing

One day while shopping at the mall this Christmas season, I came across a beautiful pink pineapple ornament and immedeiatly thought of my friend, Kim Williams.  She loves Pink Pineapples and even named her blog Pink Pineapple Paper Crafts.  I knew I had to get this ornament for Kim and since her birthday is just a few days before Christmas.  So I decided to make her a small gift that was inspired by the ornament I found.

Pink Pineapple Frame and Ornament - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Pink Pineapple Frame and Ornament - www.stampedwithaloha.com

I used our Stampin' Up! pineapple stamp to create this artwork for Kim.  Did you know that if you have a good pair of scissors you can cut that stamp in half to make using it easier.  That way you can ink up the pineapple base and crown in separate colors and stamp them both at the same time without having to clean the stamp.... easy peasy!

Kim LOVES Bling.  Besides our love of pineapples, we actually share that in common, too... but if you look at her jewelry collection, I think Kim takes it up a notch compared to me with all her beautiful sparkly treasures.  Since I know she loves Bling, I wanted to make this Pineapple as sparkly as possible, so I added almost 40 jewel rhinestones in various sizes that I colored with a pastel pink sharpie pen.

Pink Pineapple Frame - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Pink Pineapple Frame - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Do you like the Designer Series Paper I layered this gift on?  Well, it's new and it will be one of the items you can choose free with a $50 order during our upcoming saleabration.  Its called Inside the Lines (item #143830).  I JUST love it.  It will be fun to color for those like myself who LOVE to color but it also works great just as it is and it provided a great background for this jeweled pink pineapple.  

For the sentiment I used the set Flourishing Phrases because it reflected so well how I feel about Kim.  God certainly did brighten up the world when he made her because she is such a beautiful person who just sparkles with love and I am so blessed to call her my friend.

The one thing I really like about the finished project is the frame itself.  It is mirrored so that when Kim passes by it she can see a reflection of herself and remember how special she is.

 Speaking of special, Kim and I were both surprised to see that on the back cover of our newest Occasions catalog there is a photo of she and I.  When my catalog arrived, it was the most fun surprise to see that we were there on a page that is dedicated to sharing about friendship as one the benefits of becoming a Stampin' Up! demonstrator.

Join Stampin Up! and Make A Friend - www.stampedwithaloha.com

Join Stampin Up! and Make A Friend - www.stampedwithaloha.com

As I look at this photo of us in the middle of the page I am reminded that one of the greatest blessings of becoming a Stampin' Up! demonstrator 17 years ago was the blessing of meeting special friends, many who have become family to me like Kim has.  I am truly grateful for the $99 investment that not only enriched my life by providing me a job opportunity that I love but it gave me the opportunity to make amazing friends like Kim along the way.  People who truly have made a difference in my life.

Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas to you Kimberly Joy!  I hope you know how grateful I am for the blessing of your continual love and friendship.  

Source: www.stampedwithaloha.com