Saturday, March 31, 2012

That Phone Call (and 365)

This will be a different Project 365 post, and a lot more personal.  I hope you can hang with me through the explaination, it's been a long week.  It was Spring Break here for the kids and some friends invited us out to a place they had for a week in BC (province west of us).  We were excited to spend a few days with them.  On Tuesday we took the kids skiing to a hill near the time-share that would be easier for my kids (they're just learning to ski).  My friend and I brought them lunch at the hill and I was at the bottom of the hill taking a few pictures of our youngest skiing (he was doing so great!), when my husband skis ahead of him calling out to me, "Christine, answer your phone!  Christine, it's your brother and you have to talk to him!".  I put down the camera and picked up my cell phone which I hadn't even heard ringing.  It's the phone call you never really want to have.  My Dad was in the hospital in ICU, pneumonia in both lungs, blood sugar sky high (he's diabetic), and a very weak heart (he's had a quad by-pass) and it looked like another heart attack, they weren't sure if he was going to make it through the night.

Many of you have probably had that kind of phone call.  Life just sort of stops right there, and accelerates all at the same time.  Within the hour we were off the ski-hill, packed up and in the van for the 7 hour drive home, wondering if we'd see my Dad alive again.  Our kids were really shaken, I felt like it was surreal.   You wonder if there's anything you left undone, or unsaid, how my mom is, and what the next hours will hold.  You spend a lot of time talking with God about the realities of this life, and pray for Him to meet all of you there, and I have to say that He did, though I was shaken I had a sense of peace as well.  Later I found out that my mom was also admitted to the hospital with pneumonia as well but treated and released.

We arrived back at the hospital by 8:30 that night, my mom was so weak, my brother took her home and my husband and I stayed at the ICU while the kids went to friends'.  He was in isolation so you had to gown up and mask up etc. (Influenza B).  A ventilator in, heavy sedation and looked very weak.

In the days that have followed God has brought a lot of healing to him.  He is no longer at "death's door" as they had called him before.  His blood sugars are normal, they took him off the ventilator yesterday, and though he had a massive heart attack due to the pneumonia, they are saying there isn't more damage then there already was to his heart.  He has about 25 % heart function, but has lived like that for a year or more.  In the next few days he'll probably get moved to an internal medicine floor out of ICU.  My mom is improving, but the reality of the stress and emotion is hitting her.  And it's a bummer but my husband and I have also developed this cough, and today is the first day I'm not at the hospital.  Dad will be there for another week at least as they re-access his heart and what protocol he needs to be on now, and help him get rid of the pneumonia.

So, a lot going on behind the scenes here.  I had cards pre-posted so that's why you "saw" me at all this past week, but may not "see" me again for a week or so.

I actually do have some pictures to show you...but they have no rhyme or reason and are all from the trip before my  Dad went into the hospital.

This is my 90 year old uncle at his Birthday party, my mom's second oldest brother.  (he doesn't look 90 does he?)  We went to the party right before we left on our mini vacation.  This uncle reminds me most of my Grandpa, and though this isn't the cheeriest picture of him ... :)  he's such a good man.  I call him a Rennaisance Man, he's been a successful crop farmer, dairy farmer, cabinet maker and craftsman, painter, local government leader, has raised pheasants, was a horticulturalist growing trees and grapevines, husband, father, grandpa and great-grandpa.  You name it he's done it with a faithful, loving and joyful heart.  

These shots were taken as we were heading to BC, if you click on this photo above you'll see that it's a herd of elk along the highway resting, and eating.  

My FAVOURITE mountain range, they're called the Three Sisters, near Canmore, AB.  We spend a lot of time there.  Sorry, it's taken from the van :)  Lots of snow still in the mountains.  

Fun at the resort.  There were 7 kids between our 2 families.  They love being together.  

The day of skiing, lunch at the hill, it was in incredibly beautiful warm sunny day.  

Some of the gang at lunch, it was really bright, they're all squinty :)

The bunny hill at the ski-hill.  It's a great hill though as my kids could do most of the runs.  

Our youngest and his buddy.  They've been good friends since birth and she's a go-getter!

Our youngest is on the left skiing and that's my husband in the center in the green/blue coat telling me to pick up my phone.  

And that was all the pictures for the week!  I'm out of words now gang.  Just wanted to let my cyber world/friends out there know what's going around here.  Appreciate your prayers for continued healing and restoration!  

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Signs of Spring

The Senior Design Team is doing a special focus on a perfect set for spring today, Signs of Spring and we're showing off some Easter and Spring creations today for you.

It's just the sweetest little Easter Basket isn't it?  I've used some new papers from MME, Miss Caroline Dolled Up as the spring palette and then a brand new Embossing Folder Diamond Shadows behind the main panel to match the dp, as well as some pretty MME Buttons to accent.  

The sentiment is from the Tag Lines set, it just seemed to suit the design.  So cute right?  

Pop on over to see the rest of the DT today and their Signs of Spring designs.  And great news!  This set is 10% off through this weekend!  

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Go for the Icing

When I read this sentiment I always want to say it in a "faggeddaboudit" accent kind of way :)  
We're all big fans of icing here so I think this is the cutest sentiment on this The Cat's Pajamas set called Forget about the Cake.  We're still in kid BD season here so this is one I can have on hand for the next birthday party.  

I took my palette of colors for the image from these fun papers from Authentique - The Gathering.  And I've added some sizzlet buttons to jazz it up but still make it workable for a boy.  What you may not be able to tell from the angle is that the cake is popped up on another layer and the bunny is behind.  

Back-atcha later this week, have a great day!

Copics: W1, W2, W3, W5, W7, BG72, BG75, BG78, R01, R02, E74, E79

Monday, March 26, 2012

Wonderful Teacher

A few weeks ago our daughter had a high-school course that required her to job shadow someone who's career she might be interested in.  She chose to go back to our elementary school and job shadow one of her favourite teachers from Grade 2, and this lovely teacher graciously agreed.  Our daughter was able to spend the day observing her former teacher, and she was able to also work with students, mark assignments, and talk about education and students.  Such a blessing from such a special teacher, and our girl had a great day.   

So to say thank you to her for helping our daughter our and inspiring her to consider teaching as an occupation I made up this little card for her.  This TSG set Believe in You is perfect for the occasion.  

Colored up with Copics and I used a retro sketch from a few weeks ago that was fun with the 3 thin panels along the side that I zig zagged.  Papers are MME Rosy.  

Thanks for stopping by today!  

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Project 365 - Week 12

Wow, I can't believe it's been 12 weeks that I've been doing this project already!  Thanks for your many kind comments last week.

This week the photos have more of a "photo-journalling of the week" rather than wonderful photography theme.  It was a really busy week here, and I didn't have as much time to be artsy. :)

March 18 - Pennies to Pesos.  In the end of July 2012 we are leading a group of 33 students and leaders on a Missions Trip to Mexico City, doing 2 weeks of Vacation Bible School there.  We did a pancake breakfast fundraiser after the services today at Church and my husband is getting ready for the next fundraiser which he's calling pennies to pesos.  People can dump their loose change in a jar and we'll convert it to pesos for the Church in Mexico.  So we started with our loose change jar, this is all Canadian coin :)

March 19 - Pretty Pillows at Pier One

March 20 - Happy 1/2 Birthday to You!  In our house we celebrate half-birthdays too :)  You get to chose the menu for supper and sometimes there are treats for dessert too, but no presents!  Since we were away when it was our youngest's 1/2 BD, we celebrated on this day....he chose homemade pizzas for supper.  His favourite food.  So, we made some mini-pizzas and each person can choose their toppings.

March 21 - Trampoline!  The tramp was cleared off of snow and it was a warm day so the boys took advantage of it and jumped and wrestled and all the things brothers love to do, which is good, they have too much energy and I need them to burn it!

March 22 - 4300 lbs of Fruit and Cookie Dough - Another of our fundraisers was selling Florida/California oranges and Florida grapefruit and cookie dough.  This was the day it all came in and we took the 4 pallets of boxes and sorted through all the fruit and re-packaged it so the orders could be dispersed.  It smelled like an orchard in our youth building, and it was wonderful, because it started snowing like crazy outside!

March 23 - Eat the Icing First - Supper with my family, my mom made our niece some chocolate covered cookies for dessert and the priority was the icing first :)  She had it everywhere!

March 24 - Lego Shoes!  Aren't they cool?  It's ball hockey season beginning here for the boys and my husband had to get our youngest some new equipment, and he found these cool shoes too, I love them!  They even have lego piece "treads" on the bottom of the shoe just like the side of the shoes.  

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Hope for a Young Lady

Welcome to another lovely Friday at Flourishes!  Yesterday we had a spring snow storm and our world is white again.  Today the team has another look at the gorgeous March Releases for you!  I know you'll love them.  And it's your last chance today to pick these sets up at a 10 % discount!

I created this wonderful Magnolia frame for this especially meaningful sentiment.   This is going to a lovely young lady who could use some extra measures of hope and encouragement.  I stamped the magnolia blossom thre times in a circle-ish-triangle shape and trimmed out the middle of the circle, leaving room for the popped up flowers to frame the sentiment underneath.  I love how it turned out!  

This young lady's Mama is spectacular at vintage and shabby designs and her daughter likes them too, so I went a little vintage and shabby with the sponging on the embossed panel, the distressed and sponged designer paper and the pretty Spellbinder's edging on the card. 

Copic Collections Used....

Now go ahead and join the rest of the Design Team to see their wonderful creations today:

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ode To - Chairs to You

It's been a while since I posted an "Ode To..."post, looking back at some of the older by "gooder" sets from Flourishes.  I had some time this month to pull out my Chairs to You set and play with it and some new paper.  I'll show you the new card and then pull out the older creations to remind you of some things I've done in the past with this great set.

The showstopper in this great set is this wonderful queen anne style chair.  Today I thought I'd paper piece it with one of my NEW favourite paper pads Authentique's Gathering, wow-wee gang, this is one gorgeous pack of paper, and I love that on every reverse page is a soft pattern that goes with every other design of pages.  

I wanted to make this look like a fancy chair sitting up against a chair-rail and wall that has been wallpapered with gorgeous stripes (botom) and texture (top).  So I used make a "chair rail" out of paper to seperate the two sections and embossed the top with a new embossing folder in the store Flamingos and Hedgehogs.  It's fantastic and a larger 5 x 7 size as an embossing folder which gives you more versatility.  I colored a bit of the paper pieced chair with copics to give the feeling of depth in the upholstery.  

I've colored up some of the icing sugar candy with a B11 copic marker to accent the Spellbinder's die.  It has an elegant and airy feel to it I think. 

Now let's open the vault and look at some oldies but goodies with this set!

This was my very first card with this set, early on in my Flourishes career, and I used the other great images in this set, the three different styles of chair and in the bottom right the cute pampered pup on a pillow.  The chairs are watercolored and the sentiment reads "A house needs these chairs, ones for solutide, ones for friendship and those for society!"

A few years ago after I borrowed my mom some books, she discovered that she actually really enjoyed reading!  So I made her a special bookmark to celebrate and to use in her books.  I put a lot of work in to this one, watercoloring the chair and adding gold accents to the upholstery tacks and the book edges. I wanted it to be a really rich bookmark.  

And this last card was part of a tutorial I did for the Flourishes Blog about how to create texture in your copic coloring.  I added a paisley background to the copic colored chair giving it the look of crushed velvet paisley upholstery.  The tutorial is HERE in case you missed it the first time around.  

Another great Flourishes set to show off once again!  Hope you've enjoyed the tour.  Don't forget that tomorrow (Friday) is the last day you can order March's New Release Bundle at a Discount!  Don't miss out!    I'll be back tomorrow with another peek at a March Release Creation!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Promises to Keep

Everytime I read the Word I find great Scripture and I think, "oh, I should remind my kids of this verse".  Well I finally did something about that!  I've had this Triple Clip Board from SU for so long with the intent of doing something with it and I finally found the right project.  So, here is a clip board to display Bible verses for us as a family to be reminded of.  And it hangs on the cupboard on the breakfast bar where they get their dishes each morning for breakfast.  

I want my kids to be surrounded by Bible verses that encourage them, speak truth and help them each day with reminding them of God's promises, and this way I can add new verses each week.  I've combined SU Sale A Bration papers, modge podge and buttons to the base of the board, pretty ribbons and twines to accent the clips and then the individual cards are stamped with an MFT letter set.  I'm not wanting it to look too perfect in the lettering so you can see it's not all perfectly lined up.  

A shot of the buttons and verse card details.

The pretty ribbons are seam binding and twine.

Center shot of this Bible verse.  The best thing?  Just the other day our son reminded his Dad about one of the verses on the board this week :)  

Here's one last shot that I took as I was working on the project a couple of weeks ago, you might recognize it as one of my Project 365 photos.   This is the board without the verses on top.  So pretty!

Sunday, March 18, 2012


It seems to be the season of Birthday's again.  This weekend it was our youngest son's best friend who turned 9.  They had a nerf gun war party.  You can just imagine that household right?  Brave mother I tell you!

The Birthday boy's favourite color is red, and I had to quickly whip this one up on Saturday morning before he left for the party.

It's all SU.  I was digging through some old SU items and found a kit I didn't use for a 2009 calendar ....realizing that the 9 sticker would work perfectly for this card, as well as those little sticker arrow markers.  Super simple details, a little sewing, a little border punch, and a cute clothes pin told hold on the bDAY sentiment.  

And there you have it!  

Stamps:  SU - Extreme Skateboard, Calendar Cues;  Ink:  Riding Hood Red;  Paper:  Riding Hood Red, RHR Patterned paper;  Accessories:  Sewing Machine, Calendar Kit, mini Clothespin, Dimensionals, Pinked Hearts Border Punch.  

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Project 365 - Week 11

Hello again friends?  It was a great photography week for me.  One of my high school students lent me some of his lenses and I have to say...A-MAY-ZING :)  I had  portrait lens and a medium length lens and a telephoto, plus his external flash to play with.  So, there's more than the usual number of pics today, first I'll show you my seven days pics and then I'll add a few at the end from a "photo-field trip" I took.  

Mar 11 - Spring is coming back to Canada!  The Canada Geese are flying back north.  I caught these two at a little park/lake we have near our house.  

Mar 12 - Streetlights and bi-planes - The City was replacing all our streetlights in the area with new LED lights that are brighter and use less power.  This guy was up on the cherry picker in front of our house, and I happened to catch a bi-plane flying above.  

Mar 13 - Thoughtful - My first playing around with the portrait lens on our older son.  Doesn't he look thoughtful?  Such a beautiful kid :) This week his Basketball team played in the City Finals and won gold!  

Mar 14 - Field Trip - I took the lenses and myself on a field trip to a spot in our City that has cool shops, cool architecture, and also has so much potential for shooting great photos. This is an old fashioned phone booth on the avenue outside a bookstore.  

Mar 15 - Tomato Soup and Goldfish - Lunch time with our youngest. I had to include two pics :)  He's just so cute.  He had just fallen at recess that day on the ice and got a fat lip.  My poor little guy.  You can see it a little in that first shot.  So soup was in order for lunch that day.  I love the smile in his eyes on the second shot.  

Mar 16  - The beauty :)  Our daughter sat for me for a few last shots with the portrait lens.  I love this natural look for her.  She's so precious, and she has amazing eyelashes too :)

Mar 17 - Tulips - They are one of my very favourite flowers.  I took this one with the portrait lens as well and I love the bokeh in the background!  It's so fun to take some shots and feel like you've accomplished something new!

Extras....hopefully you'll indulge me for a few more shots that were fun to take this week....

I love the detailing on this building.  

the old Post Office, now a restaurant
Pretty ironwork detailing

Love the rounded front corner on this building.  

And lastly a couple of Basketball City Finals shots

City Champs!  A great season, my husband coached the Junior High BB team this year, they played so well!  It's so fun to see these kids go from knowing very little about basketball (grade 7 & 8's), to being able to run an offence and play excellent defense, and go to the finals and win!

And this shot isn't photo spectacular because I couldn't get my camera flash ready in time, but it captures a sweet moment when our youngest son jumped up into his brother's arms to give him a great big hug after they won :)