Recently, I had the privilege of creating this card below for Katie. The daughter of some good friends of ours. This was really a labor of love. We have known her and her family for almost 7 years and the love that they have for God, family and life really is a blessing to see . This family really has been an encouragement to us over the years and Katie always was our babysitter until our guy got to big for that! So to have them ask me to make a card for their daughter meant so much.
Katie just graduated from university and was heading to Guatemala on a missionary trip just 3 days after her convocation. So exciting, but yet so fast! Wow! She is now there working for the summer and really enjoying what God is doing in her life has she teaches at one of the local schools.
When I was asked to create the card, I was also asked to incorporate scripture in some way. Well their favorite verse, like so many, myself included, was Jeremiah 29:11" For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." This verse holds so much power and greater still, how much God has for us and cares about all that happens in our lives on a daily basis. Today and tomorrow! This verse has been a strength to me during very difficult times and I knew that it would mean something special to Katie as well.
So I printed the verse using my word processing program and played around with fonts, size and so-forth. I had the family pick some styles and colors from other cards that I have made in the past, and they seemed to like my distress cards the most. They love purple and yellow. So that is what I did here, along with adding the color brown. I never thought that brown would work with these colors, but it worked great. The flowers were stamped in a deep purple using the STAEDETLER watercolor makers. I actually brushed it over top first then stamped the image on paper. Once dried, I went back in and used that same color to add shading around the center of each flower piece.
Close up of layering of flowers and use of distress inks.
I used pop dots to add more dimension to each flower and added brown silk ribbon for a bow. Pearls and sentiment were added to complete the creation. I am happy to report that when the mother came by to pick up the card she actually cried. I was almost in tears myself because I didn't expect that response. I really wanted to do a beautiful job for this family and I was so happy to later find out that Katie loved it also.
I have to be honest in saying that it meant the world to me, because after submitting 18 - Yes! I said 18- cards to the Gallery Idol contest and all of them rejected - I was very sad indeed. Not because of rejection so much, but because there were so many and because I worked hard on those creations and thought maybe at least one would get picked. I guess I really don't know what they are looking for. Sometimes I think that politics can play a role in the paper crafting world as well and I am wondering if that was the case here! Maybe I am wrong, I sure hope so, but one can never truly know. Oh well! I am just super happy that some of my Flickr Group friends got in the running! I read another lady's blog about the feeling of defeat when she didn't get picked as well. I guess lots of folks were disappointed! I am not really sure if I submitted correctly or not and if that played into the equation. Your wondering maybe what I mean by that! I was under the understanding that you could submit cards that were previously made and seen elsewhere. It was once you were selected that all submissions had to be new. So I submitted a bunch that I had made before that fit the categories that cards were being asked for. So maybe I misunderstood there submission deadlines. Not sure!!
Okay, so where am I going with this!?! Lol. I say all of that, to say that it was this reaction from my friend Cheryl that reminded me of why I started making cards in the first place. Admit it! We all like to have our work recognized and rewarded because at the end of the day, free scrappy supplies is a plus. Especially when you don't have to pay for them and it helps you to save money. But truly, and I mean truly, it is the ability to use the gift that God has given me to reach out to others, to minister to those around me that means the most to me. I kind of started to lose sight of that somewhat, due to trying to spend less money on supplies and to win things. But God through His wonderful mercy and grace has shown me through the tears and happiness of a good friend that my work is appreciated, that I do have a ministry that cheers the hearts of others. That it is God and God alone, my audience of One, who remains in the center of my caring for others and if that is in a card that is being sent to bring a smile, to say hello, or just to say someone is special, than and only than, have I used my creativity to make the world a better place.
Praying that today is a day filled with sunshine and happiness. No matter the place or time, why not bring a smile to someone today to make their hearts happy!!
Hugs & Blessings