When was the last time you took some time for yourself? You did something to feed your soul? Something that helped your grow as a person?
For me, being a first responder, that concept is considered selfish. As a firefighter, we go to work, save lives and go home to our families. Many times, we do not think about the stress we place on ourselves or our families. The sacrifices we make to save others are huge.
Since my diagnosis of work related PTSD was given to me, I have learned that I am important. Important enough to take time for me. I took time off to feed my soul and enjoy life again. Its been tough but so enriching.
This card is dedicated to those afraid to let go and enjoy life. Do what makes you happy.
I intended this card to have calm and muted shades of yellow, greens and blues. I accomplished this by ink blending my card stock with tumbled glass and shabby shutters Distress Oxide ink. The paper was embossed with a technique using Altenew’s Geo Cover Die B. The paper was misted with water to prevent cracking because of the intricate pattern.
The muted flowers were cut from Altenew’s Wild and Free stamp set. I used my favorite shade of Blue Lagoon Crisp ink with Mango Smoothie and evergreen. The special 3D butterfly was a stamp cut from vellum and embossed with nuvo navy metallic powder. Dimension was created with foam tape.
Finally the sentiment from the same stamp set was embossed with the same navy powder to match and handwritten “be” was added with fineliner pen. Topped off with yellow and blue nuvo drops.
Its a simple reminder to take time for yourself. Wake up just a little earlier each day and enjoy the calm.
Thank you to everyone for all the comments and support.
Tell me what you think.
As always, Be still and create something beautiful. 💘
I was at the store the other day, picking up a few groceries. As I was leaving, I noticed an elderly woman in the parking lot struggling with a case of drinking water that had fallen off the bottom rack of her cart. Without a second thought, I put my bags down and helped her bt picking up the case of water and throwing it in my shoulder. I asked her where her car was parked and she gladly accepted my help. As we walked to her car, she proceeded to tell me that she was shopping for the homeless veterans that lived in a nearby shelter. The case of water was for those veterans.
Its interesting how things come full circle. I wasn’t just helping an old lady. I was helping a generous elderly lady that regularly helps others. 💘
This brings me to my inspiration for my most recent class project. The class taught me different techniques on how to add a little “shine” to my paper crafting. Me being, an “outside the box” kind of gal, enjoyed this class.
This card began with a wavy grid stencil over white card stock. I used antique gold paste over the stencil to create a shimmering background. The panel was heat dried and then cut to fit. Next used Altenew’s Rose Spray stamp set on a second white card panel. The stamps were inked with moss and paper bag inks for the leaves. I used peach perfect, buttercream and warm sunshine for the flowers.
The problem I had is when I went to die cut these, the stems didnt line up with my dies. It worked out great because I turned this into a second panel trimmed into a rectangle. This was a perfect fit for this card. Not too flashy but focused. I finished this off with the sentiment taken from my favorite Altenew Eucalyptus Jar stamp set.
Finally, I heat embossed the sentiment with a metallic green powder and added a few pale yellow nuvo drops.
Always choose kindness because you never know someone’s struggles.
I hope you find a little light and inspiration in this card. Drop me a comment and a follow.
Until next time….. Be still and create something beautiful 🌹
Perhaps, you still don’t know what makes you happy. When was the last time you tried something new? Are you afraid of failure? Are you afraid of what people will think? Who cares,
because at the end of the day, only YOU can make YOU happy.
I recently tried watercoloring. I was attracted to the forgiving nature of the ink and the bright colors. Coping with PTSD can be very challenging from day to day.
As most of you that follow me know, I have been exploring art as a coping mechanism. I have been searching for ways to learn and reach out to others in recovery.
Welp, here is latest project and very first watercolor design. I love this!
I started this with a teal layered card stock background on a 4×4 square card. I was looking for something a bit outside the box so I used shades of blue and green watercolor pens from Altenew. I sprayed adhesive onto the Altenew flowing hearts stencil and attached it to white watercolor paper. I wet the paper and filled the stencil with shades of blue and green watercolor.
Then, I let the paper dry before die cutting it with a scalloped heart die from my stash. I adhered it to blue card stock and cut a second heart base. Lastly, I taped the entire heart to my base card using 3D foam tape. I topped it off with matching sentiment from Altenew “A crafty life” stamp set.
Drop a comment below and follow me for more inspiration. Interested in art therapy? Reach out because your not alone.
Remember, Be still and create something beautiful 💘
I have been single by choice for a long time. Perhaps it was fear of something new. Low self esteem, thinking that I just wasnt good enough.
Either way, I have had many influencial men in my life. My adopted father who earned the title “Dad” through his actions. My maternal grandfather whom I recently lost. My bestie whom I also recently lost. My always helpful neighbor. My many firefighter and medic co-workers. Many of these men gained my respect and trust.
For that, I say thank you. This recent creation is dedicated to all of the men in my life.
This card was made slimline style. I started with a circular pattern Altenew washi tape that I placed on 80 lb white card stock and cut out the circles.
Then, 2 layers of card stock was cut for the front. One was heavy kraft paper and the other was navy classic card stock. The kraft panel was decorated with nuvo glitter paste through the altenew wavy grid stencil. The kraft panel was heat set and then placed on the navy panel using flat adhesive strips to smooth the paper.
Finally, holes were punched in the circles and craft thread was added joining all three circles together. Foam tapes was added to the backs and adhered to the panel. The sentiment was stamped in jet black and taken from the eucalyptus stamp set. This completes this card for today. 💘
As always, I thank everyone for all the support, comments and emails that I have recieved. I am excited for those of you discovery crafting and art as healthy path to recovery.
Remember, its not you, its what has happened to you. Be still, in the moment and create something beautiful.
Some of us just need to break the mold that we are expected to fit into. Its ok to do your own thing. Its none of your business what others think about you.
At the end of the day, all you have is you. Create your own happiness because your worth every bit of it.
This cool looking card broke the mold. I used Kraft card stock for the card base on this one with a double layer of cardstock on top. Most cards are made with a white card base.
Here is what I used to make this:
Kraft card base, sunflower card stock and rose color puffy heart cotton paper.
The flowers were stamped with Altenew “Airbrushed Flowers” which is one of the newest stamp sets.
The inks were Altenew Crisp Dye mini cubes of Permanent black, frayed leaf, fresh leaf, canyon clay, peach perfect, pastel sunrise, mango smoothie, warm sunshine and buttercream for a sweet muted look.
The card was put together by first stamping multiple layers of the image onto white 80lb card stock and then cutting them out. The leaf image was then stamped to cover the Kraft base. Next, the double layer background was carefully cut and added to the base. The airbrushed images were attached with foam tape and the sentiment was stamped and added from the same set.
I hope that this card brings you a smile and encouragement to create your own happiness.
As always, I can’t thank you enough for the support that I have received. If you haven t subscribed, go ahead so that you will get a heads up on all my new posts.
Its just 3 words. But, it has Proven difficult for some people to say.
I know because I grew up in a home like that. I never heard those words growing up.
I know, its just words. Sometimes you need to hear it, for a little reassurance that you are indeed, loved by someone.
My mothers last words before she passed away was, ‘I love you”. I had never heard them from her so, as you can imagine, it was a bit shocking.
As a result, I also find those words difficult to say. It is just something I never learned or practiced.
It was a major milestone, in recovery to learn to express myself better. I cant change the past. I can only move forward and shape my future.
There it is, the inspiration for my next project. This is pretty much “Me”. Straight forward, not too mushy but flexible.
A simple reminder that we all need to tell our loved ones how we feel and express our true selves every damn day!
This project showcases the ink blending technique which is typically a background. I added a fun twist by blending ink onto a doily and using that as my focal point.
This project started with card stock from my stash. Two layers were cut and the second one was covered in beautiful Altenew washi tape to create the background. A paper doily was then ink blended with oxide ink in hues of red. While that was drying, I fussy cut flower bouquets from the washi tape. It is time consuming but worth it.
I cut 3 layers of “hello” from the Altenew “Waterbrush Hello Die” from red card stock. I glued each one together to add dimension and stability to the “Hello” word phrase. The word was layered on top of the paper inked doily. The washi flowers that I carefully cut earlier were added around the center. The sentiment strip was added at the bottom from the “All the Hearts” Altenew stamp set to finish this project.
We all should say “I love you” a little more and remain silent a little less. Drop a comment and share this with someone who needs this today.
Remember, be still and create something beautiful. 💘
I don’t know about you but, I have been doing a lot of thinking the past few days. How far I have come and how far I have yet to go.
I have accomplished so much and many things that I never thought I would. My dream job as a firefighter, raising 5 beautiful children as a single parent, a healthy lifestyle, two college degrees, adorable grandbabies and at some point it seemed impossible. I worked hard and made more sacrifices than people know.
I have been physically sick, felt helpless, became homeless, abused and lonely.
I have been a teacher, a mother, a caregiver, a paramedic, a daughter, a secretary, a wife, a firefighter, a coach, a mentor and an actor.
Keep dreaming because it gives you something to work for. You will get there but you have to work hard. There will be sacrifices, heartache and frustration but, you will get there.
This was my inspiration for creating this card as my class project. This class “Clean and Simple Boutique Cards” by the Altenew Academy.
I started this card by using specialty teal mirror paper, watercolor paper and a black card base from my stash
The mirror paper was trimmed and mounted on the black card base. The watercolor paper was stamped with the Altenew “Happy Dreams” stamp set and altenew permanent black ink. The stamped image was then painted with Altenew “Lagoon” and “Persian blue” watercolor markers.
Once dried, gold gel pen highlights were added to the feathers for some detail. Gold splatter was scattered for some extra sparkle. The watercolor panel was then cut with a scallop edge and mounted with foam tape for dimension.
The sentement from the same stamp set was stamped on matching white card stock and added with more foam tape. Gold Nuvo glitter drops were added for more interest. That completes my creation.
While working on this project, I used several techniques taught in the class. I used watercolor for the first time ever and some gorgeous colors! I played with specialty paper and gold accents. I am very happy with the outcome.
I hope that you find some joy and inspiration in your life as much as I do. This past year has been very difficult for many of us. Keep looking forward and let your accomplishments guide you….. Not your failures.
Drop me a comment below. I cant thank you enough for all the love and support that I have been given. 💘
As always, all my creations will be donated back to the IAFF Center of Excellence for Firefighters experiencing PTSD, addiction and mental illness.
If you are a firefighter in need of help, reach out because your never alone.
I like to title my class projects. This was named “Love and Hope”.
This amazing card was inspired by all the single girls I know. 💘
As we approach Valentine’s Day in a few weeks, most of us are planning and sneaking around for that perfect gift or moment.
Some of us aren’t going to have any of that pomp amd circumstance simply because we are single.
I have been single by choice for a long time so this day of reds, pinks, kisses and hearts well, its just another day.
My project was crafted using my favorite rose gold paper for both the heart and the sentement. I chose a classic shade of pink and black card stock from my stash. I used an A4 size black base for this one. I was aiming for a toned down classy expression of both love and hope here.
The gorgeous flower came from the HOPE flower stamp set. I chose Altenew inks in 3 shades of pink and 4 shades of muted Grays. This is where the layering comes in. I added a touch of “wink of Stella” clear pen to top the flower off. The flower was put together and popped up with foam tape.
The 3 hearts were cut from 3 papers using the “Illusion Heart” Die Set. The “love” sentiment was cut from my favorite rose gold.
Lastly, washi tape also from Altenew, was added to tone it down even more.
This card expresses my Hope that someday I will find a Valentine of my own. But, it also gives me some strength and love in return. This will be one of many being donated to The IAFF Center of Excellence for Firefighters experiencing mental illness.
Because, they will not be forgotten.
I certainly hope you enjoy this card.
Comment and follow my blog. 💙 Great things are about to happen. 💙
I had one of those “aha” moments while I was out with my girls celebrating their birthdays. Traditionally, me being a single parent, I take my 2 younger girls out to a dinner date the week of their birthday. They fall within a week of each other and it has just been more affordable to put them together. This has slowly evolved to one dinner with both of them and now a second dinner with each one of them.
I am just realizing that they are polar opposites and deserve to have separate evenings with Mom.
A new goal for this year will be to recognize my kids’ differences and individuality. Its time to stop looking at them as my kids and start looking at each one for their strengths and personality.
As parents, no matter how old your kids are, its important to allow them time and opportunity to establish their own path.
This project was inspired by my girls.
Created with Altenew “Hawaiian Coral” stamp set, layered dyes, glitter paste and nuvo pearls.
As always, thanks so much for the support. I have had an overwhelming response to my blog.