My Version; Gather Together

I know… I know! …it has been far too long since my last blog entry or since making a video or stamping!    I don’t know what I’ve been doing since May, the date of my last REAL post.  I do know that during the months of September and October we did a great deal of traveling.  My husband and I spent the month of September in Florence, Italy.  We talked about going to Italy for an extended stay for quite few years and finally decided to make this year be the year we did it.  My 88-year-old mother made the trip with us during the first week of September.  She was born in Italy in Villa S’ Angelo, L’Aquila well…88 years ago. (DUH! 🙂 She immigrated to the United States when she was 15.

There is a story there.  She was 15 when she first met her father face to face.  My grandfather came to the United States years before the rest of his family, around 1916 at the age of 16 to work.  On one trip back to Italy, he married my grandmother, turned right around, and came back to the U. S. to continue working.  He sent money back to my grandmother and on occasion went back to Italy for a visit.  Nine months after returning to the states from a visit, another one of his children was born! My mom is the youngest of three.  During World War II, my mother, grandmother, and uncles were stuck in Italy. Many Italian Americans were treated as poorly as Japanese-Americans were during the war.  Some were even sent to camps here in the states; even some who were naturalized citizens.  Italians, even though they served in our military and fought in World War II for the United States were viewed as a threat to national security during the war; especially if they spoke Italian.   I’ve heard many stories from my mother about how poor they were while in Italy during the war; how they went without food because the Nazi’s took everything everyone had, and how often the money my grandfather sent back to them never made it through.  After the war, my grandfather was finally able to send for his family and they immigrated to the United States.  Therefore, at the age of 15, she finally met her father face-to-face for the first time on U. S. soil.

However, I digress!  We took my mother back to Italy with us in September.  She had been back several times before and on many of those occasions, I was fortunate enough to be able to go with her.   Her first time back was in 1976 thirty-five years after arriving here.  However, this last time we went she says will be her last time since she is 88.  I told her to never say never, because we do not know what the future holds.

My mother, husband, and I spent our first week in Rome with a friend.  The friend is from the same village as my mother, but she is only a few years older than I am.  Her parents purchased the home that belonged to my grandparents after everyone had finally made it to the states.  She and her late parents and her brother and sisters have always treated us as if we are members of their family.  After the first week, my husband and I traveled by high-speed train to Florence and left my mother with her friends in hometown.

We rented an apartment on the website vrbo.com in the center of the city.  There was a farmer’s market just around the corner from where it was situated.   We visited it on almost a daily basis as we usually had breakfast and dinner in our apartment.  We saw and did pretty much everything you can see and do in Florence. And there is a lot to see and do! We also took a one-day tour by bus to Pisa, Sienna, and San Gimingnano.  Another day we took a bus tour of Cinque Terre.  During our second week in Florence, we took another high-speed train to Milan so we could tour Lake Como.  We spent two nights there after which we returned to Florence.  During our last week, we did a wine tasting tour in Tuscany and we took a cooking class and learned how to make homemade pasta.  I grew up watching my grandmother and mother make pasta, but I never learned how to do it.  It was truly the trip of a lifetime!  At the end of our fourth week in Florence (our fifth week in Italy) we took another high-speed train back to Rome and the next day flew back to the United States.  We dropped my mother off in Ohio and spent two more days there, finally getting back to our home here in Colorado exactly six weeks after leaving it.  It was good to be home!

So today I am sharing my version of the framed “Gather Together” piece that you will find on page 46 of the current holiday catalog.  I used most everything in the Come To Gather Suite.  The one item I did not use are the Tags & Feathers Elements because I usually buy those kinds of things and never end up using the.  What I did do instead is stamp a few leaves in Crushed Curry using the retired Vintage Leaves stamp set and I cut them out using the Leaflets Framelits.

 

The frame I used measures 5-1/4″ x 9-1/2″.   It is about 1/2″ wide.  It isn’t a shadow box frame.  It was originally intended to frame three 2.5″ x 3.5″ photos.  I removed the mat that came with the frame and threw it away.  I’ll probably regret that one day, but I just can’t hold on to everything.  Something I realized once the project was finished is that a smaller frame, perhaps a 4″ x 6″, might be better because there would be less blank space on the background.  Or I could possibly stamp a few pumpkins in the background .

 

All of the colors I used are the recommended colors that coordinate with the Come To Gather Designer Series Paper except for the Crushed Curry.  It is not a recommended coordinating color but it does fall into the same color palate.

Hope you enjoyed reading about and seeing some of what I’ve been up to lately.  I don’t know where the summer went, but it sure did go by quickly and here I am getting ready to get my house ready for Christmas!

If you have any questions about this project, feel free to message me!  Until next time…

Happy Stamping!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas Lantern

I’ve been gone for a while and there is no excuse!  I’m not really sure what has been keeping me so busy lately, but I have been.

The peach tree in our back yard provided us with a bumper crop this year.  Compared to last year’s 5-peach harvest, if peaches were dollars we’d have a million.  After giving as many as we could away, eating many fresh ones, and making a cobbler and a pie, we’ve frozen about 23 quarts.  We started making peach jam with them this week.  As I write this, my husband is out back and is now picking a bumper crop of grapes from our grape vines. We again got very few last year.  (He insists on planting these kinds of things.)  He will be spending the day washing, bagging and freezing them until I can get to them for grape jelly at a later date.  I pray to God the apple tree he planted a few years ago never produces fruit! 🙂  We start with strawberries from a small strawberry patch (it continues to grow)  we have in June, cherries from our tree in July, August is peach month, then grapes…I don’t want apples, but…shhhhhhhhh!  Please don’t tell him I said that.  Oh, we can’t forget the tomatoes from the garden that make great pasta sauce!  All kidding aside, there is nothing like the taste of a freshly picked piece of fruit or vegetable.

I’m getting ready for a very busy end of the year beginning with next week.  I will be traveling without my husband to visit my daughter, her significant other, and my grand-daughter in Virginia Beach.  I am looking forward to the adventure as I have never been there before.  I mean, how could anyone not LIKE the beach!  From there, my daughter and I will drive with the baby to Ohio to visit my mother and the rest of our family.  We will celebrate Stella’s first birthday there.  We will celebrate it again when we return to Virginia with her other grandmother who is set to arrive two days before I head back home.

Two weeks after returning to Colorado, my sister and brother-in-law will be visiting for three weeks as we plan a road trip to Yosemite National Park…or whatever is left of it after the devastating wildfires in Northern California this summer.  I’m sure it will be fun!  There are always wineries and Reno, Nevada and Lake Tahoe are only an hour away from where we will be staying.

November means…you guessed it…a week in Orlando, Florida with my bestie Carol for Stampin’ Up!’s 30 Anniversary Celebration at On Stage Live!  Can’t wait! Can’t wait!  I’ll get home and I will be very thankful that I DO NOT have to make Thanksgiving dinner this year as we have been invited elsewhere.  So that means I’ll have a month to get ready for Christmas!  Hopefully January will not be too much of a let down.

So this little project I am sharing today has been in the works for a while.  I think I created it in July and decided to hold off awhile before sharing it.  But then things started happening and I was almost afraid I wouldn’t get it posted at all.  This is probably the best time for it, because it is well in advance of the Christmas holidays, which gives everyone time to react and actually make it.  I had intended on doing a video, but when I started I just couldn’t seem to get my act together.  Maybe it has been too long since my last one.  So, I opted to do this the old-fashioned way by doing a written tutorial with a million and one photos to guide you.

The inspiration for this came one day while I browsing that web site that sucks your time away before you even realize it…what’s it called…Pintrist! 🙂 I saw this photo of a Christmas lantern and wondered why I couldn’t make one myself?!

So, one Sunday afternoon, I closeted myself into my tiny stamp room (my husband forgot about me until dinner time) with a pad of grid paper and a ream (there are 500 sheets in a ream)  of cheep card stock on the desk in front of me. (I should have taken photos of my process, but I didn’t).    And this is what I ended with.

There is no stamping in this project.  Just a lot of measuring and cutting and gluing.  I am very pleased with how it turned out.  As I’ve mentioned before, sometimes I impress myself.  It is amazing what we can do when we set our mind to it!  And I think I realized in the creation of this lantern why I like paper crafting so much.  When I was  kid I didn’t do a lot of cutting and pasting, and making a big paper mess.  We weren’t allowed because my mother always said it was wasting.  “Don’t waste the tape!” or “Don’t waste the paper!” was what I heard.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaming Mom.  Times were different, money was tight.  Paper was needed for homework or school.  My mother grew up in Italy during World War II when you didn’t even think of coloring, or cutting, or pasting!

Any way…here are a few more photos and the link for the written tutorial.

If you have questions about it, please let me know.  I am willing to help.

Until next time…

Happy Stamping!

 

 

 

P.S.  I got the pine cones from a local craft store.  Or if you are lucky, you can go out to your own back yard.  🙂

Price: $110.00

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Mason Jar Paper Flower Terrarium

Monday, June 4, 2018

Yes!  I’ve been absent for quite a while and I am so glad that I’ve had the chance to stamp this past weekend and create something that I’ve been wanting to do for a long time.

My husband and I went home to Ohio and Pennsylvania to visit our families for the last week of April and the first week of May, and I’ve been going non stop ever since we got back into town on May 8th.  I’ve been babysitting my grand-daughter at least once each week since we got back; sometimes twice.  Each session includes a trip to Denver  to pick her up on Sunday afternoon, an overnight as my daughter works nights, (she’s an RN and her boyfriend moved to Virginia Beach to start his new job at the end of April). Sometimes it also includes a trip back up to Denver to return her to her mother on Monday.  The last few weeks, my daughter has been coming down to get her and then staying for a few days.  Getting in some of that last-minute mother/daughter/granddaughter time before they move at the end of June!   We forget quickly what it is like to get up at night with a baby and how much work it really is.  That is why we have our children while we are young!  I finally got her to sleep for the night and thought I’d spend some time on this blog post.  I probably won’t get it finished until tomorrow as I still need to photograph the project I created.  For the lack of a better name for this, I’m calling it my Mason Jar Paper Flower Terrarium.  I’m providing a brief written tutorial at the end of the post.

I wish I could claim this idea as my own, but I can’t .  I received one of these as a gift a few years ago from a friend and fellow demonstrator; Amanda Waugh.  I thought it was one of the neatest things I’d ever seen, so I decided to try my hand at making one of my own.  The one that Amanda gave me is the purple.   I love it and I love the colors.  Unfortunately all of the colors she used and the dies she used to cut out the flowers have retired, so when I started working on mine,  I had to improvise a little.  I think my terrarium turned out pretty well.  I have to admit, there were times during the process when I wasn’t sure what I would end up with, but I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Okay, so my daughter and grand-daughter have just left for home and I miss them already.  I probably won’t see them for two weeks because they are headed out on vacation on Monday.  Once they get back from vacation they will be packing up their home and will be  on their way to Virginia by the end of the month.  What am I going to do without my grand-daughter near by?  Or my daughter, for that matter.  😦

I’ve finally photographed my project!

Isn’t it cute?!

Here are photos of the one my friend Amanda made.  She used a pint-sized wide mouth Mason jar instead of the quart-sized like mine.  I love the colors she chose for hers!  Purple is one of my favorite colors and I think I’m going to have to make a purple one next with some of the new purple shades Stampin’ Up! has.

 

I don’t believe Amanda used a styrofoam cone to build her flowers up.  It looks like she managed to crumple up paper and attach it to the jar lid.  I didn’t want to pull it apart to find out.  I love the one she made as much as mine…I think more.

I’m also including a photo of the sticky moss that I used to cover the styrofoam cone just so you know what it looks like.  In the list of supplies I specifically included a pair of “old” scissors which you will use to cut the sticky moss.  The scissors will get glue on them, that’s why I suggested “old” ones.

Here is the moss!  🙂

Well I hope you enjoyed your visit  today.  Hopefully it won’t be so long between this post and my next one.  Until next time…

Happy Stamping!

 

 

 

SUPPLIES:

  • Wide mouth Mason Jar with lid and ring
  • 6” Styrofoam cone
  • Mossy Mat Peen ‘n Stick Moss
  • Marker
  • Old pair of scissors (They will get gooey when you cut the Mossy Mat.)
  • Multipurpose liquid glue
  • Glitter Enamel Dots
  • Falling Flowers Stamp Set
  • Card Stock
    • Cajon Craze
    • Crushed Curry
    • Old Olive
  • Ink
    • Cajon Craze
    • Crushed Curry
  • 5/8” burlap ribbon
  • Tear & Tape
  • Glue Dots
  • Dimensionals
  • Stamping Sponges
  • Bouquet Bunch Framelits
  • May Flowers Framelits
  • Big Shot

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Cut off approximately 1” from the wide end of the Styrofoam cone. I used a cutting board and serrated kitchen knife.
  2. Cover the cone with a piece of the Peel ‘n Stick Mossy Mat.
  3. Trace a circle the size of the jar lid on a small piece of the Peel ‘n Stick Mossy Mat and cut it out. Attach it to the inside of the jar lid.
  4. Glue the base of the moss-covered cone to the moss-covered side of the jar lid and set it into the ring using the Multi-Purpose Liquid Glue
  5. Stamp flowers with the Falling Flowers Stamp Set and cut them out with the May Flowers Framelits. I cut eight each large and small flowers out of Crushed Curry and seven each of the large and small flowers out of Cajon Craze.  I also cut several flower bunches out of each color using the dies from the Bouquet Bunch Framelits.  Sponge around the edges in their coordinating color ink.
  6. Layer flowers, one small over one large, using a dimensional.
  7. Attach to moss-covered cone with Multipurpose Glue in random order.
  8. Add a Glitter enamel Dot to the center of each flower.
  9. Fill in spaces between the large flowers with the smaller ones.
  10. Cut five leaf branches using the smaller die from Bouquet Bunch Framelits out of Old Olive card stock and place randomly into the flowers.
  11. Carefully insert decorated cone into jar and screw lid tight. Since you glued a piece of moss to the lid, it will not tighten down completely
  12. Cut a piece of burlap ribbon to fit around the jar ring. Attach it with a piece of Tear & Tape.
  13. Tie a bow with a piece of ribbon and attach it with glue dots.

 

 

Price: $110.00

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Last Chance Stuff

This week has been an emotional one!  I learned early this week that my daughter and her partner along with my 6 month old grand-daughter will be moving cross-country because he has found a job.  Although I am thrilled that he has found work, (he’s been unemployed for a while), I am saddened that they will be moving so far away.  Currently they live an hour away in Denver and I’ve been averaging about a trip each week since she has been born just to hold and love on that sweet little girl.  Now we will be back to video chatting at least once each week like we did when my daughter visited India for six months several years ago.  That was nice, but it can never take the place of holding that sweet little bundle on my lap and repeatedly kissing those chubby little cheeks.  If you are a grandparent, you know how I am feeling.  We love our children with abundance, but when the grandchildren come around there is no feeling of love in the world that is greater.  I’m not sure I can explain it.

Okay…enough of feeling sorry for myself.  🙂

This week, after going to OnStage Las Vegas last weekend  and looking at the retiring list, I decided to create a little project using some of the retiring card stock.  Sorry, no video this month.  I decided that gift tags are always a nice little thing to have on hand because I am always giving some sort of gift.  Little 3 x 3 cards make the perfect gift tag size.  You can punch a small hole in the top corner, add a piece of twine and tie them to a gift bag handle.  Or you can place them into a small envelope and drop them inside the gift bag or attach them to the top of a wrapped gift.

I chose to use the retiring 2016-2018 In Color card stock; specifically Peekaboo Peach and Emerald Envy.  I could have used more, but I wanted to coordinate with the retiring Naturally Eclectic Designer Series Paper. So…I made a little gift of…gift tags!   There are 4 in this set.  Four 3 x 3 envelopes would fit perfectly in the wood crate box along with the cards.  Heck, you could probably get 6 cards and envelopes in there.

I also used Teeny Tiny Wishes stamp set.  I’ve had this set for so long!  Even though it is retiring, I will not part with it.  It has always been my go to set when I needed just the right sentiment.  It is so old, it’s wood mount.  I bought it before Stampin’ Up! ever started offering anything other than wood mount.

If there is anything you want that is retiring, order before supplies run out!  Here is a link for the retiring list from the Annual Catalog and the Occasions Catalog

As soon as I’m allowed, I will post a list of the stamps sets I have that are retiring and will be for sale at 50% off their original price.

 

 

Anyway, I hope you like it and I hope you enjoyed your visit today.  Until next time…

Happy Stamping!

 

 

 

 

Price: $16.00

Price: $110.00

 

Shop online 24/7

http://www.fancyforstampin.stampinup.net