Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Having hope and not loosing it.

Hi dear Stampers. Thanks for taking the time to stop by today for a quick visit on my bog.
I made this card for a dear friend of mine. Her dad past away about 2 weeks ago. He had cancer for so many years. I hate that disease with such a passion. So many people are fighting this disease and my heart just goes out to them.
My sister Fleurine died 15 years ago in the night of September 30/October the 1st.. She was 24 at the time. For 5 years she had cancer. Those years have been the most painful years in my life. She was so athletic, fun and caring and loving to people. She truly is my hero. The way she carried herself through it all. How she fought this unfair battle of cancer.. I don't know if I could do it that way. She was so brave and strong. She did not want to die. She wanted to live, travel, marry, have kids.. just be Fleurine. I remember she told me.. You know Pauline, in my mind I am still healthy.. just my body is not the same anymore and I have such a hard time connecting to my body.. it's like 2 different people in one.. I am not sure if I translated that well enough for you to understand what she meant there.. But she still felt so alive in her 'heart / head' and then she would look at her life and see that it all was so SO wrong. It did not make any sense..
I couldn't do anything for her. How wrong is that! So frustrating.. Feeling like my help was never enough.. because it didn't take her cancer away.. I now see that support is also a real help and amazing.. but at that time.. I couldn't accept that that was the only thing I could really do for her and that for the rest I was powerless in every possible way.. I remember how she would brush my hair. She couldn't brush hers anymore, because it had all fallen out.. I cried, trying not to show her. You know, I hated every commercial on TV that was about shampoo's and beautiful hair products. I saw her looking away from the TV when these would show up.. Everything was just so painful after that cancer came into our lives. Normal wasn't normal anymore. This made me angry.. and I felt so sad for her.. But she tried to live a normal live and hide her cancer from so many people. She did not wanted to be treated differently..
Yes! I hate this cancer with such a passion. It took my sister away from me.
She loved the poem.. 'The Footprints in the sand', where it explains so well. how God carries a person through all the storms in life. Maybe you know this poem. One day I asked my sister. 'Aren't you angry at God?' She looked at me and said.. "Why.. He didn't give the cancer to me. He is the One Who is helping me to go through all of this. Why would I get angry at Him?
Last August 22nd it was my sisters birthday. She would have turned 39 years old if she would have still lived. I always find it hard to be away from my family in the Netherlands in the weeks before and after. Canada seems so far away on that day from her and of so many people I love. Nobody in Canada has ever met Fleurine, this is still so weird to me. Not my dear hubby, my kids.. MY KIDS.. they have never met my sister.. just sad.. Anyway.. We were in Fairmont on August 22nd. And in the evening, I looked outside and saw a rainbow.. A huge one. I posted some photo's I took of it. I ran outside with my camera and stood there and was so touched by Gods love for me. On the day that she died, there was also a huge rainbow in the sky! She saw it from her hospital room in Utrecht. My aunt saw it in Rotterdam, I saw it in Ede. And now I saw one on her birthday 13 years later in Fairmont, BC Canada. I felt loved and connected. Just after I felt so disconnected and alone. It is not the first time I saw a rainbow on her birthday.. So I felt really spoiled and again loved.
God has hope and life. A rainbow is such a beautiful reminder of that to me. I cannot make my trust in Him depended on my experiences in life. That is to fragile. He sees the bigger picture.. I so don't see the bigger picture. His way of thinking is probable way different from my way of thinking. He is way smarter than me. And that is good.
It doesn't mean that I don't have a lot of questions to ask Him. But then again He is so genuine and real in so many other ways. He took the pain away behind all my questions. So it is not such a force in me each day in dealing with the loss of my sister and my life without her. I now can live with not having all the answers to my questions.. For now.. :)

Anyway.. thanks for reading this. I appreciate it. This is also me.. And If you are in a situation where someone you love is sick, or someone you loved passed away.. then.. stay close to Him! I know He is sad for and with you. And please always keep the hope. Whatever that means. Hope has many faces. Having no hope in what you're going through is a very heavy load to carry. Especially on your own! So.. yeah.. Stay close to Him.. He can make a way where there seems to be no way!
A big hug, Pauline

Monday, August 30, 2010

Greeting Card Kids by Stampin Up and me

This weekend we were in Sundre to spend some time with my hubbies brother and his sweet sweet family. While the 2 men of the households were on their quads watching the deer, the wild horses, the black bear and many other wildlife creatures with our oldest kids, me and Diana made some cards. It was so much fun and so relaxing. With a warm cup of coffee and some good conversations (she is such an amazing friend to me) I was able to make 4 cards. All for the holidays.
Here is one of them. It was hard for me to catch the real red in the photo's I took. In real life the colors are so crisp and catchy. Anyway..

I used the 'Greeting Cards Kids' Stamp set by Stampin Up. The card base is Early Espresso and Real Red. I colored the little girl in with the coordinating colors of the retired Christmas DSP from SU. I stamped the sentiment in silver ink and I added 3 tiny pearls on her red winter coat. The real Red Grosgrain Ribbon really added that extra texture that this card needed.

I just had to post a photo of our 14 month old/young little girl.. I know it is still August.. but out there in Sundre, close to the mountains, it was close to zero degrees.. (sigh, summer where art though?) She was just so adorable with her little winter hat.. I had to share the look on her face with you.. Naomi just melts my heart with her cute little face. I hope she brings a smile to your day as well.

Well.. that's it for today. A new week. One day at the time.. We can do it! Right?

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Big Bold Cupcake turns into a flower pot by Stampin Up and me

Hi everyone. Thanks for checking back with me on my blog. I hope you had a great week. The days go so fast. Oh my! I am so excited to show you this card I made.

I used the Big Bold Cupcake Sizzlits die from Stampin Up. But instead of making the traditional cupcake I created a flower pot. The candles are now the stems and the leaves of the flowers. The cup ,of the cupcake is now the flower pot, which I trimmed a bit. The flowers came with the sizzlits die. So I am sure I am not the first one, who tried this out. (smile) And the scallop border you see, is the cake turned upside down. I love this card. The happy yellow is such a great catch for the Basic Grey.

Again I hope that the pictures will help you to get a good idea of making this card. Have fun casing this idea!

Enjoy the rest of your day. The weekend is almost here! Fun, fun

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Cold and Cuddly by Stampin Up and me

Good morning, I hope you are having a beautiful day. In about 2 hours I am off to the swimming pool with the kids. There is so much sun out here. They love it. They jump and splash and swim and I will join them. I love summer.

Last night I made this cute, cute card. I know this card doesn't remind you of the sunny days of summer, it probable reminds you of the winter. So sorry about that one. I brought many stamp sets with me, I just forgot the clear mount blocks. I did bring this wood mounted stamp set from Stampin Up, called: 'Cold and cuddly'. I am so happy how the card turned out. I used the 'Soft sky' card stock together with the 'Very Vanilla' and the 'Only Orange'
I inked up the polar bear in Marina Mist and the ice plateau in Basic Grey. I hope the photo's I took do justice to the card. Because it really is CUTE! Don't you love his cozy warm scarf I gave him. I used a piece of Very Vanilla Grosgrain ribbon. It is just the perfect little touch to give this card some texture.
Bless you today and I hope you stop by soon. A big hug, Pauline

Monday, August 23, 2010

Mojo Monday #153 by Stampin Up and me

Welcome to another week in August dear Stampers. We have beautiful weather here in Fairmont Hotsprings today. I just love the mountains. Between riding the bikes, going for a walk and having a nice drink at the Smokey Water Coffee Shop, I had some time to make a card this morning. I used the sketch Challenge from Mojo Monday #153. But I have to tell you, it is never the same, working on an idea when you have only a limit amount of tools and card stock to make a card with. I also forgot to take along all my clear mount blocks.. so much for stamping.. sigh..
Oh well.. this is what I was able to make. I am not sure yet what to think of it yet. I love the orange.. Nice and bright.
For the base of the card I used the retired 'Soft Sky' Card stock. The next layer is 'Early Espresso', followed by 'Only Orange' I used some left-over Christmas themed Designer Series Paper from a couple of years ago. This will be a nice card to give to someone when it gets colder outside.
But.. the sun is shining, so I better get out there with the kids.. I will look back at these warmer days and ask myself.. what were you thinking.. sitting inside the house behind the computer when the sun was outside so nice and warm? Yip..
Have a great day everyone. I would love to hear from you. It always makes me smile to hear from you. A big hug, Pauline

Friday, August 20, 2010

Funky four by Stampin Up and me

My friend Diana would smile if she would see this card.. I just told her the other day that it was enough for me with the colors brown, blue and olive.. she smiled.. 'Yeah' she said.. I noticed you like these colors..' sigh..Well I tried using other colors for the last couple of days, it was good.. but certain stamp images have these 3 colors written all over it. I am sorry.. if I would use any other color, I would feel I would make these cute mushrooms kind of handicapped. (I hope I didn't offend anyone with what I wrote there.)
So today here it is.. welcome to another lovely card in the colors 'chocolate chip, old olive and Very Vanilla'. Do you remember those little flower brads that you were able to order around Valentine this year.. It just fits perfectly on this image.. So clever, right.
As a base for this card I used the Crumb Cake card stock from Stampin Up. A piece of the 'Elegant Soiree' Designer Series Paper gave it some nice Jazz.
Well.. I love it.. love it, love it! and I am happy to share it.
Have a great weekend everyone.. We're off to see some mountains this weekend and to be with my hubbies parents, our kids lovely Grandparents. They are both so sweet and loving toward our kids and us.. The kids are counting the hours.. I still have to do some packing and cleaning and so much more.. But it's going to be good.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A Russian PPA 56 Challenge

Hi dear Stampers.

Today's card was inspired by a Russian photo posted on Pals Paper Arts Challenge. Their challenge site has a elgant, classy new look. Congratulations PPA. I love your new site.

My mom is actually in Russia right now. She goes there about 3 times a year. She loves the country and it's people. Since she was a little child she dreamed about helping the Prisoners in Russia who were there because they had faith in God. This all changed in Russia now, but she still has a deep love and passion for prisoners and ex-prisoners. She is helping to set up a rehabilitation house for about 15 people where they can stay after they come out of prison. It's so hard for these people to start up a new life. In this new home they can have the time to connect to the 'outside world', find a job, get new friends, reconnect to their family and work. I am so proud of my mom and dad and on how they have worked so hard to make this happen. Together of course with many other amazing people.

Do you see the Russian Samovar in the picture that PPA 56 posted? This Samovar is a huge part of the Russian tea culture. It is a metal container that is used for heating up water. This water is then poured over some concentrated tea. This Samovar has a special place in our home.

You know, my love for making cards started with Russia in mind. My mom would send about 10 cards each day..(seriously..each day) to encourage prisoners who were in prison because of their faith in God. She would write them to let them know that they were not forgotten. That someone in Holland was thinking of them. I was the one who was making the cards fro her. I loved doing that. And the prisoners would sometimes write back. she knew the language.. I only know a little Russian. She would also write the President each week a letter about the injustice that was happening to these families. And she would write specifically about one man that was there . Year after year each week. And one day.. this man was released from prison. He later told my mom, that nobody in that prison could explain to him why he was released. Nobody understood it. It came from higher up they said. So instead of 20 more years in prison, he could go home. My mom and us have our happy thoughts about this one. If you know what I mean. (smile) God is good. He seeks justice for the poor and the orphans, the widows and the prisoners. It is good to have compassion for them and to reach out!

Wow.. all that writing, because of this one gorgeous picture. Thanks PPA :)

Anyway.. So here is my card. Stampin Up offered this cute cute Russian Matryoshka stamp set about half a year ago. It is a set of dolls of decreasing sizes, placed one inside the other. I had to use this set for my challenge today. Please refer to the many pictures I took for more details. I hope they help you to see all the wonderful details.

Ja ljubliju tebja (I love you in Russian) Mama Atie. I wish I could be there to pick you up from Schiphol when you're coming back to Holland in a couple of days.

Dos Widanja (See you later in Russian) everyone and thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sweatheart and Fancy Flower Punch by SU and me

Good morning dear Stampers. How are you? I hope your day is cruising by nicely! Here the sun is out, kids are outside and happy, Naomi is sleeping and I have a bit of time to post on my blog. I so love my blog. I love my hobby and what I learned in the last 3 months about blogging. I found great blogs with challenges and met so many amazing people from all over the world. What a gift. Their little notes really blessed me and encouraged me and made me smile, even on the harder days. Thanks everyone for making me a part of your daily hop-blog-thingy :)
Last night I went to my dear friend Diana. Our kids were in bed and we had the whole house and table to ourselves. I don't think we ever made cards without the kids around. I have to tell you, this was a whole new experience for us. We had time to chat and create. I am so thankful she is part of my life. She is such a joy to be around. She is honest and so genuine. I love that about her. And her children are the cutest EVER! Our kids adore them and as soon as they wake up, they want to play with them and ask me to call them to see if we can arange a playdate.
Anyways... :) I created these 2 cards with the Sweatheart Stamp set from Stampin Up. This set has 5 of the cutest stamps. I also used the Fancy Flower Punch from Stampin Up . I think that I used most of the circle punches that SU has at the moment. I inked up the images in Early Espresso. I love that dark dark rich color. For the 1st card stock I used Pumpkin Pie, Basic Grey and Very Vanilla. For the second card I used a retired SU yellow and Taken with Teal and Basic Grey.
I Love the layout. I think that it brings out the best of all the details in these cards. Not to busy.. Just simple and elegant.
I guess that was it for today.. Remember.. Take time for the things you love! (my dear friend Colleen would always write that at the end of her email.. So true Colleen, you are a wise woman :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The perfect alignment for your square scallop trim punched cardstock

Hi Stampers. Thanks for visiting again.

I just wanted to do a quick post to help you lining up your corners and borders with the Scallop Trim punches. I think that the trick to perfect alignment starts with specific card stock measurements. Here I have for you the measurements for both the Scallop Trim and Pinking Hearts punches.

To get a perfect Scallop Trim square use the following measurements:

1 15/16″ x 1 15/16″
2 3/8″ x 2 3/8″
2 7/8″ x 2 7/8″
3 1/4″ x 3 1/4″
3 13/16″ x 3 13/16″
4 1/4″ x 4 1/4″
4 3/4″ x 4 3/4″

To get a beautiful Pinking Hearts square use the following measurements:


2 7/8″ x 2 7/8″
3 1/4″ x 3 1/4″
3 5/8″ x 3 5/8″
4″ x 4″
4 3/8″ x 4 3/8″
4 3/4″ x 4 3/4″

If you want to make some rectangles with your punches on your cards or scrapbook pages just combine any of the sizes mentioned above. For example, to make a Scallop Trim rectangle start with 2 7/8″ x 4 1/4″ card stock. To make a Pinking Hearts rectangle start with 3 1/4″ x 4 3/8″ card stock. It's that easy.. (smile)

Don't give up after trying it for the first time. It takes practice to get the hang of it but the look will be so stunning and you will be so happy you gave it a try. Enjoy playing with your SU punches!

Aviary from Stampin Up with a bit of Mojo 152

Hi dear Stampers. How is your day going?
I am sure you know the feeling, when you miss someone.. I am having one of days today.. Sigh..

Today I heard that my grandma in the Netherlands got robbed. Seriously, I am so so angry and feel so helpless on this side of the ocean! She is the sweetest lady and is 85 years old. 1500 euro.. all gone.. She is not rich, she lives of a tiny little pension and turns every coin a couple of times to see if she can afford it..
They stole her wallet and probable watched her while she took some money out of the bank machine.. I feel so so sad for her. She already feels so vulnerable on the street, because she can hardly not walk... Oh I wish I could 'talk' to those people that stole her money.. And you know what.. The bank doesn't want to give the money back.. because she can't proof that her pin-number wasn't in her wallet.. Seriously.. shall I call the bank and let them proof that this little note was in her wallet? They cannot proof that as well.. that is what I am thinking..It is the biggest nonsense I heard of in a long time..

Anyway.. Thanks for letting me vent here..

I made this card for her today.. It may take a while before she gets it.. Holland and Canada .. that is a whole lot of miles..
Sometimes I feel like that little bird in that tiny cage. Canada is huge and fun and beautiful, but the ocean makes it for me into this 'cage' feeling.. I can't just get out of it! Cross the ocean.. take the train, the bike, car.. to visit my family and friends.. It all needs to be planned and saved up for. If you ever immigrated in your life.. then you know what I am talking about..

And yes.. one of the cages is empty.. that's why this little birdie is a bit sad and lonely.. I hope my Oma gets the message.. She is pretty clever.. and so loved!

I tried working with the Mojo Monday #152 Challenge today.. Now that was a tricky one.. A beautiful one for sure.. I hope they will not delete this card from their their blog.. I really tried using the sketch.. but got lost so many times.. I don't have an oval die, so I used the Top Note die from Stampin Up. But that shape brought a whole different challenge in itself to this card.
I did use the Aviary Stamp Set from Stampin Up. I inked it up with some silver ink and some Kiwi Kiss ink. Wow.. Silver ink takes a long time to dry! Beware of that one. I also used the Elegant Lines Embossing folder from Stampin Up. As you can see I dove in my pile of retired embellishments from SU. One of my favorites is the Baja Breeze Grosgrain Ribbon and that cute cute Brad in the same colors as my card.
I love close up photo's of my cards, but sometimes I think it is better not to take any close up pictures.. with this one I guess.. silvery fingerprints all over.. Oh well.. I can just pretend that it was meant to be like that (smile)

I guess that's it for today.. I wish I could call up my Oma.. but she will be sleeping now.. There is a 8 hour difference between Canada and Holland. I am off to make dinner! Whatever you will be doing... Watch your wallet :) and just keep Stampin'.

A big hug, Pauline

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sock Monkey Pals Paper art Challenge 55 card

Hi dear Stampers!

The lovely and super creative Pals Paper Art Challenge ladies and man :) came up with the combination of the following colors. 'Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight and Tempting Turquoise' from Stampin' Up. These colors were totally out of my loop.. If you browse through my blog, you will see that I hardly ever used the combination of these colors.
But here is the thing.. I love them. What was I thinking? For some reason I stick to my blues and greys and browns.. That's why it is good for me to be a part of these challenges. They open my eyes to different colors. And that is good!

I used my beloved Sock Monkey stamp set for this card.' The 'Peek-a-boo.. someone new!' - sentiment I used from the 'Build-a-Roo' stamp set from Stampin Up. Don't you love that little flower on the monkeys head.. that was just the perfect touch.
And the cool thing is.. I didn't case this card.. While I was working on it.. I thought of the idea all by myself.. Yeah.. that is fun..

Psss:.. Please check out all the other cards that were created for this PPA 55 challenge. So many wonderfull ideas. And I have to say.. these PPA 'people' are so so sweet. Seriously.. they leave all these encouraging comments on all these blogs.. Make sure you pay them a visit as well. You will not regret it! Promise! I wish I could figure out how to leave comments.. Half the time it doesn't work for me.. Sigh.. Computers.. yip....

All that to say.. a big hug, Pauline

Simple Ornament Punch Christmas card by Stampin up and me.

Hi dear Stampers, Happy Sunday!
Do you need a quick Christmas card? Then this might be the card for you. I created this card in less than 3 minutes.. These punches make it so easy to create simple and elegant cards. I love how this one turned out. Just find yourself some beautiful paper and punch away.

There is a whole lot of sun out there here in Calgary.. so I am on my way to the outside world.. away from my basement with all my crafting goodies.. Seize the day right..

Stampin hugs from Pauline

Friday, August 13, 2010

Two step owl punch by Stampin Up and me

Hi dear stampers. Welcome back to my blog. I always love it when you pop by. Today I made this super cute card for one of my friends. I used the Tow step Owl punch made by Stampin Up (#118074 in the new catalog). After today it's my new favorite tool from the new catalog. Love it, love it.

I used 2 different patterns from the Elegant Soiree Designer Series Paper made by Stampin Up. Do you recognize the Baja Breeze, Soft Suede, Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla and Basic Grey in this gorgeous paper? I love these these colors. I also used for the first time my 2 3/8 Scallop Circle extra large punch (#118874 in the new catalog) I love how this scallop circle helps this card to frame my owl and give it just the right touch to not get lost in my card. If you know what I mean.

To give it that finnishing touch I used one the Very Vanilla Hodge Podge Hardware 'frames' .. to yes :) frame the little 'hello' I punched out with my oval punch. Oh so many more details in this card.. and oh.. so little time today. Please contact me if you have any questions. I would love to hear from you.

Have a great day, evening, morning or night, depending on where you are I guess :) I love how I am able to meet so many sweet people from all over the globe.. How cool is that.. just by having a blog. I feel blessed meeting so many talented people and new friends.

A big hug, Pauline