Sunday, January 13, 2008

Asela 's New Stamps

I was blessed this week by Asela Hopkins (Hop Art Studios). She sent me all of the new tree stamps she drew for CHF (Cornish Heritage Farms)! Oh my, was I tickled! Big hugs are going out to Asela right now. This woman is uber talented and I can hardly believe I've got her new stamps in my hot little hands! I think I inked them up the very day they arrived in the mail:).

I don't know about you, but I think there is something so relaxing and peaceful about trees. Now, I can translate that sense of peacefulness onto the cards I make with Asela's new tree stamps. I think these trees will be perfect for sympathy cards, thinking of you cards, and of course, for masculine cards. Since sympathy cards are always in demand with my customers, I got busy on a simple design using Asela's Bare Oak Tree stamp.

I wanted the card very subdued, which is why I went with the yellows, golds and creams. I stamped the tree with Colorbox Fluid Chalk Ink in Creamy Brown. I used my Nestabilities for the scalloped rectangle as well as for the tree panel. The sentiment is from SU!'s Words of Wisdom set.

The second card I made was using Asela's Date Palm Tree stamp. I don't know anything about palm trees since I live in the tundra (MN), so this card was a little bit of a stretch for me. Palm trees remind me of Mexico, Jamaica, and Florida, which are places of relaxation for most of us. I thought the sentiment "relax" fit perfectly with the palm tree, don't you? I ended up stamping the tree once on a cream panel, and then I stamped the top of the tree again on another piece of cream cardstock. This one though, I cut the top of the tree only out and mounted it on the palm tree I had stamped on the cream panel. This gave the tree a two-dimensional look. The card was looking a little dull with the kraft card base and kraft colored designer paper, so I added the big, bright strip of orange striped designer paper diagonally across the card, underneath the tree. It really added the pop I was looking for! I can't wait to make some more cards using these new stamps. In all, Asela has 6 new tree stamps coming out....Bare Oak Tree, Saguaro Cactus, Date Palm Tree, Weeping Willow (my favorite, since I've got a humungous willow in my backyard), Row of Trees and an Ash Tree. The new stamps will be available next week, so be sure and head over to CHF if you're interested in Asela's new stamps!

Well, be sure to stop by tomorrow when I show you a few cards I made this weekend using the sketch from this weeks SCS sketch challenge. We had to make kickstand cards, and I had a BALLLLLLLLL making a few. I'll share those with you tomorrow, you won't want to miss them.

It's been a few days since I last blogged because I've been having a hard time of it lately. For some reason, the other night I basically lost it and cried, cried, cried. The job search has been rough to say the least, things seem so dismal right now. It seems like he'll never find another job. I've been trying to hold it together for my husband's sake, but I couldn't hold it together any longer the other night. I also don't feel like I'm doing a very good job as a BSF discussion leader, so the two combined together did me in. I shared my feelings with my BSF leader and she really did a great job lifting my spirits. She reminded me I am not doing this alone, God knows what is happening and he will lift me up through my difficulties.

“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there is diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.” - 1 Corinthians 12:4-6

and this one...

"Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." - Isaiah 40:28-31.

It is hard to maintain a positive attitude and keep my eyes on the Lord every day, but there is no other choice. I know His way is the best way, but tell that to my earthly mind. It keeps focusing on the negative, hopeless things, instead of the promises of God. I'm feeling better today, but there's still that underlying sense of sadness that we are suffering this way. I just want to scream out "tell me what it is you want me to learn Lord, so we can speed up the process of all this pain!", but He just chuckles and says "In time, my child, in time". It is in times of trial we grow, but I sure wish the amount of time we have to struggle would shorten up a bit!

Thank you for hanging in there with me, friends. I need your support more than ever these days. I value each and every comment you leave me. And I look forward to sharing happier times with you once God has steered us through these difficult days.

Hugs,
Amy

18 comments:

  1. I can only imagine the stress you are under. It has to take a toll, sooner or later. I admire the fact that you're trying to be strong for your family...isn't that what moms do?

    Chin up.....it's in His hands.

    Be well, my friend! I know you have faith that He will work it all out for you in His own way.

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  2. Hi Amy, I have been a long time "silent reader" of your blog. You are extremely talented and your work is gorgeous!!!
    I just wanted to let you know that I'm sending prayers for you and your family. This difficult time will not last forever. God has a master plan for you, he is just waiting for the right time to show you your new path!!! When something goes wrong in my life, I remind myself that everything always works out for the best!!! It may not seem like it at the time, but it is all part of his plan. Hang in there!!! Sending hugs and prayers your way. :)

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  3. I started admiring your beautiful card and finished by sharing your tears! I am sorry I don't know how long hubby has been out of work but I know first hand it can be tough. There are only the two of us and the dog but when he was made redundant on two occasions it was emotionally exhausting. You think the world is against you. Work did come and now we both work for the same company again and can travel together most days - so there is a big plan but God doesn't let us see it too often. Take care and take each day as it comes.

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  4. jennibell1:10 PM

    Amy,
    Thank you for sharing your talent and your heart with us. Your BSF leader had a lot of good verses to share with you and that's what we need to cling to in these times of trial -- the LIVING WORD. Let the tears out then tell them to "take a hike". Even though we don't know one another personally, we are sisters in Christ and my prayers are with you. What beautiful friends you have in the paper crafting industry!

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  5. Amy, your cards are beautiful! I'm so sorry you hurt! I've been there - Mark was laid off a few years ago during a time we had already cut all of our expenses and were living paycheck to paycheck. Oh, the stress! But God provided, and though the road was hard and the battle LONG (longer than I had hoped and prayed about, and WAY longer than I thought I coudl bear!), we eventually came out survivors. Mark is now in a job that he would never have DREAMED he would land before the lay-offs, and would not have been possible if he hadn't been in the right place at the right time while he was out of work. God totally guided Mark's path, and I know he is doing the same for your husband. HUGS!!!

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  6. *tears* Your post hits too close to home as we are just now recovering from a long spell of unemployment. Just when I didnt think that I could bare another day with my broken and weak husband, my bare nekkid checking account and my dwindling food supply God DID come through for us...and like Julie said...landed us a job that we never would have EVER dreamed of. In fact when he brought it home to me, I shrugged it off...rolled my eyes and started saying the...HERE WE GO AGAIN...line.

    Hang in there. Remember just cause it is your nature to be high spirited and uber inspiring, its ok to feel HUMAN too. We love you and are praying for you!

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  7. Anonymous4:12 PM

    Amy,

    Nine years ago I was battling cancer (I was "fired" as a patient by one doctor because he didn't want me to die on his watch) and pregnant with a baby the doctors pressured me to abort. (LOOOONG story) Anyway, I was in BSF at the time doing a study of "walking in faith"; I believe it was the study of Abraham. It was uncanny how that study spoke to me.

    It was also helpful for me to think of people who I felt were in worse situations than I. I constantly read about people who were paralyzed, those suffering from hunger and poverty, those who had incurable diseases more dibilitating than cancer (I refused to concentrate on the death part...that happens to all of us), those who lived in an abusive home situation and those who had lost one or more of their senses. Believe me...thinking of people in these situations made me feel better, helped me to not feel sorry for myself and lifted my spirits. I felt that if these people could do it, so could I. My son was born a happy, healthy baby boy and is a joy and a blessing to my family. I am not cancer free but have learned to live with my prognosis and trust in the Lord.

    My prayers are with you. May he show you the blessing in your suffering and lift you up through this tragedy.

    In Him,

    Mary L.

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  8. Lovely cards!!! It seems that you have a wonderful support base, great family, friends, and Bible group. Hold on to them, which I am sure you are, and lean on them for their support. You will get through this, and make you stronger. I have been in your shoes. About 8 years ago, my hubby lost his job. I was at home with my 2 kids, and wasn't bringing any money in. I had to take COBRA because of the circumstances with Cortney. He got a job delivering pizzas and painting people's basements! He had to swallow his pride to just make some side money, while hitting the pavement with looking for a job. He did after 6 months. And actually the job he took he hated! He worked there for awhile to pay the bills, etc. He now works for a company he loves. It has made him a better person. He is more appreciative of all the things we have. So you guys WILL get through this! I will say my prayers for you both!

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  9. asela5:05 PM

    Amy you are always in my thoughts and prayers. My heart goes out to you and your family during this time of transition and hardship. I know how hard it is to sometimes trust in the Lord and put it all in his hands. To feel a sense of calm in knowing that He is truly in control of it all. We want so badly to "be" in control and not give it all over to Him. He does have a plan for you and your family and I know that in the end it will be a good one.

    I'm glad you are enjoying the stamps and your cards are just beautiful. Big hugs.

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  10. Love that first one Amy! My dad lost job after job when I was in my teens (turned out he had bipolar so which explains his interaction problems!)...it was a challenge needless to say. At last he got treatment and retraining and now he works as a system administrator (which he loves) versus retail (which he hated). Chin up babe!

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  11. What loving comments & so encouraging! I have been through a couple of situations (one I can't give details about). I broke under the pressure too - 3 years worth! But God was so faithful & one evening during prayer, He brought a verse to my mind - what comfort & peace I had because I knew it was from Him - shortly thereafter, the problem was resolved! We serve an awesome God - There is NONE like Him!

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  12. Hang it there! Things will get better.
    I love your first card...it's simple and elegant. Also, I want to let you know that you should check out my blog...I've nominated you for an award :)

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  13. My thoughts and prayers are with you, Amy, during this ever-trying time. Also, just want you to know that the creativity that you share with us is so very appreciated and your eloquent words, including your day to day struggles,remind us that life has cycles of good times and bad and that we need to truly remember to thank God during the goodtimes! As for your cry (or as we say in the south "come apart"), well, sometimes we all need to let loose pent up frustration and anger- it's therapeutic (occasionally even better than stamping- ooh did I say that)! Love and warm hugs to you!

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  14. Amy, I have gone through the feelings you describe this past year. And I think you are heading in the right direction, Spending a little more time in prayer and devotional Bible reading (not lesson reading--though that helps, too). I will keep you in my prayers.

    And about being a good bsf leader, I was in bsf for 7 years, and I had leaders who had to *stufs* going on--and though you may not think so--the Holy Spirit may be still using you in a way you cannot see to these women. For when we are weak--He is strong.

    Hugs--and don't forget Romans 5:1-5. Hope.

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  15. Hello Amy,
    I just wanted to say that I love these new cards. Your work is so beautiful!
    I sent you an email because my comment was way to long to post here!
    Thanks!

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  16. Amy, you know that I am always here if you need me...I am just an email or a phone call away. I know I can't make the situation any better, but I can be a shoulder to cry on. You have always been an inspiration to me...your strength, your optimism, and your talent. Don't give up...There are times when the grief needs to take hold and you need to cry...but then you just need to haul yourself up again and carry on...as you are doing.

    Hugs to you...I know they don't ease the stress, but maybe they can ease the tears.

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  17. Wow, what GORGEOUS cards you made for Asela's latest release. I love the first one - so soft and serene and lovely. I'm sure I'll be casing that card when my stamps get here. Thanks so much for sharing with all of us!

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  18. I love what you done with Asela's new stamps! Beautiful!!!!

    Hang in there, Amy! You have lots of friends praying for you (myself included). Hugs!!

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