Aloha for the Month of April!

Aloha, all!

     Aloha means many things here in Hawai'i. When I use it to greet you each time I write a blog post here, I mean it as a sense of wishing you an affectionate, "Hello." When people speak of "living the aloha spirit," they are talking about the sense that we should live in peace and with love and compassion.

     But today, I'm using it in another way, as I'm saying goodbye to you – but just for a very short time! My husband and I are taking an extended vacation during the month of April to visit family all over the United States mainland, including attending the wedding of one of our nephews in the Washington, D. C., area. Of course I've made a personal card for the bride and groom, and my last post until I return is featuring that card.

     When I first saw the Lucky Elephant Stamp Set in the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog, I wondered if it would be appropriate as a card for this wedding, especially as our nephew is marrying a woman of Indian heritage. Surely I'd be able to use it! Then, when my sister-in-law said that the bride was going to be wearing a "stunning gold tunic with a red gown" for the wedding reception, I knew JUST what I was going to do with this elephant – Emboss it in Gold on Real Red Cardstock.

     After that, I tried to use all kinds of other gold products in the Stampin' Up! catalogs. But every time I tried to add something such as the Gold Foil Doilies or the Gold Ribbon or Gold Twine, the card just started to look too gaudy. And gaudy wasn't what I wanted. I wanted something simple and, hopefully, elegant. I do think that the final card has that feeling.

     The gold embellishments, both the circles on the rug on the back of the elephant and the hearts in the background are from the Metallic Enamel Shapes assortment. After I matted the main stamped layer using Gold Glimmer Paper, I felt that was all I needed.

     The sentiment is from another stamp set in the 2017 Occasions Catalog, Beautiful You. I seems to fit right in. There is a bit of fussy cutting work with the rug on the elephant's back. For that, I stamped and embossed just that part of the Elephant stamp on Pacific Point Cardstock. I then cut it out along the outside edge of the elephant stamp and just above the bottom part of the rug. (My first try was to stamp/emboss on Whisper White and then on Very Vanilla Cardstock, and color in the empty spaces with the Pacific Point. After not liking what I ended up with, I had the "duh" moment that led me to stamp/emboss on Pacific Point cardstock itself. Well, duh!

     Here are the products I feature in this card. Even though Robin's Craft Room will be on vacation, don't forget that my Stampin' Up! store is open all year, regardless of my personal plans. Just click on any of the pictures below to go to that store, learn more about any of the products, and then buy them if you'd like!

     Aloha for a month!

    


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Posted on : Mar 30 2017
Posted under Announcement, Family and Garden, Stamping |

Happy Birthday, Margrit!

Aloha, all!

My husband's Aunt Margrit had a birthday this past Friday – the same day as my birthday! So it's always easy for me to remember to make and send a birthday card to her in plenty of time for it to arrive on her big day. And, of course, I always try to make the card I send her just a little bit over-the-top.

     What I wanted for this card was something elegant. As I went through my stash of Designer Series Papers, I found this sheet from the Affectionately Yours Specialty Designer Series Paper set. The "specialty" in the name of that paper set indicates that there's something in the set that's, well, special! In this case, there are two sheets in the set that have designs with Copper Foil on them. Each sheet is single-sided, but the sides with the copper foil are priceless.

     Once I chose the paper, the rest of the card just fell into place. Oooooh, lace! For that I reached for the Sale-a-bration Stamp Set, Delicate Details. Of course I had to emboss it using Copper Embossing Powder. Then, to separate the Designer Series Paper from the lace just a teensy bit, I added a strip from a Copper Foil Sheet between the two (the Copper Foil Sheets were in the Stampin' Up! 2016 Holiday Catalog, and they've carried over into the spring and are still available!). That created my main background layer for the birthday greeting.

     I always think of ovals as being just a tad more elegant that circles or squares. So out came the Layering Ovals Framelits, and layer I did! The bottom layer is Very Vanilla Cardstock. Onto that I added a layer made from the Copper Foil Sheets. Then I die-cut the flower into the copy Very Vanilla Layer, and added the stamped Happy Birthday greeting from the Rose Wonder Stamp Set. It seemed to have just the right font for this card. My last step was to add a heart that I punched using the Owl Builder Punch. I haven't used that punch much for the owl figure. But I sure have used it for all the little circles and the heart it includes!

     Before I adhered the oval layers to the card, I added some of the Copper Metallic Thread to the card base. But with all that copper all over the place, even I can't see it any more in a photo. It's obvious in real life, but not here for sure!

     As you can imagine, I had a lot of fun making this card. I may just have to do something else with these products that I could frame and hang on my wall – when I have some free time. Hmmm, when might that be? Don't know.

     Here are the products I used for this project. You can click on any of the product photos and go directly to my Stampin' Up! store – not only to find out more about the proiduct, but also to order directly from me! When you make something using products you purchased from me, send me a photo and I'll post it, either here or on my Robin's Craft Room Facebook page!

 


Posted on : Feb 19 2017
Posted under Family and Garden, Punches, Sizzix, Stamping |

What I’ve Been Doing All Week!

Aloha, all!

     I had a fabulous Thanksgiving weekend, beginning with a lovely dinner hosted by a new, but already dear, friend at her home on the ocean. Oh, my what a peaceful time that was, even with 30 or 40 people milling about. All of us were delighted to be there, and we met loads of new friends whom we hope to meet again. All live not too far from us, so that should certainly be a possibility.

     But now we're seriously into the Christmas season.  My first priority is finally to get done with a project that I started back at the end of the summer that I hope to give to our 16-year old grandson for Christmas. I have been concentrating so much on that this whole week, that I've totally spaced on anything else. But rather than just telling you what I've been doing, I thought I'd share a sample of the Digital Project Life Scrapbook pages that I've been making.

2014page3small2

     I'm sharing this particular page because this layout design is part of the Project Life by Stampin' Up! set of products. Yes, not only can you buy Project Life products through the Stampin' Up! catalog, you can buy Stampin' Up! products through the Project Life website! That's where I found this template, called Stampin' Up! 5a. Of course there are dozens of other layouts available digitally, and I have been using them throughout my project.

     The scrapbook that I'll be making will be documenting Quin's summer vacation with us for the past 3 years. At the time these photos were taken, Quin was just a few weeks shy of his 14th birthday, and it was the first time he'd come to visit us by himself. So he was definitely doing some exploring – witness the little affair with the gecko! But he also came just after we had been hit by a terrible tropical storm, and we had no electricity for the first week he was with us. So no television or much in the way of electronics, and certainly no light to do Sudoku puzzles after dark. The only candle we had in a convenient place was on our table on the lanai (porch) in front of the house. I'm sure you can tell he "loved" that!

     Even though we had cell phones, first of all the cell towers near us were out of commission, and second we had no place to charge them at home. So another "fun" activity was to go to the local community pool which had electricity and use their electrical outlets. They were kind enough to have as many power strips hooked up to their outlets as they could. All we had to bring was a chair to sit and visit with everyone else up there charging their phones and other electronics.

     So now you get an idea of what a scrapbook can do when it comes to reminiscing about life in the past – good or not so good. So this will be a great Christmas gift for Quin – he's loved every scrapbook I've given him so far, and I'm sure this will be no exception!

     I'm taking a break from this project to get a few Christmas Cards done for posting here over the next few days. If I'm really good at that, I'll get enough done to keep me going with the scrapbook until it's done and sent off to the printer!


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Posted on : Dec 03 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Gifts, Project Life |

Remembering My Kitty on National Cat Day!

Aloha, all!

     As many of you know, our wonderful kitty, Cholla, crossed the Rainbow Bridge this past May after 19 great years, 17 of them with us. When a friend reminded me on Facebook that this was a day set aside for pampering our cats, I dismissed dealing with the day as I'm still pretty sad about Cholla not being with us. But then I remembered that I'd put all of the photos I had of her in a digital folder to get ready to make a scrapbook celebrating her life with us. I think I'm about ready to be able to do that, so I started it today with some Digital Project Life scrapbook pages.

chollaincraftroomsmall

     Since this is a Robin's Craft Room blog post, what better set of photos to put together to show how much Cholla enjoyed being in my Craft Room! If there was a horizontal surface on which she could lie – especially if there were papers involved! – then Cholla was there. I cringed when I saw her by the guillotine paper cutter one day because sometimes I used to leave the handle up. The "used to" part was before I caught the photo in the lower left. I still shudder to think what might have happened.

     Of course, whenever a Stampin' Up! box would arrive in our home, Cholla was right there, scowling if I tried to open it to get things out of it. Oh, and she loved that paper that used to be the filler for the boxes. She never did get into the bubble wrap that's used today.

     And I don't even have to have dates on these photos as it's been a long time since I've had my stamp pads in the Color Caddy (it's still available, but I have my stamps in Stamp-n-Storage shelving now). Oh, and all those brads and eyelets and buttons that were in the little round cases and stashed in their own carousel! We don't have many of those any more, and the carousels (yes, I had two) are long gone from my craft room.

     I still have that guillotine cutter, though. And I still put the handle down even though Cholla's not around anymore. And I can get right into my Stampin' Up! boxes without interference. I'd really give anything to have that interference again!

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Posted on : Oct 29 2016
Posted under Family and Garden |

Happy Birthday to My Brother, John!

Aloha, all!

     This year marks a special birthday for my second youngest brother, John, who has finally just retired from his first career. As he is a real go-getter, I have no doubt that he will be thoroughly involved in another career before too long. I can hardly wait to hear about it!  But for now, I'm just happy to be able to make him a hand-made birthday card.

johns2ndcard

     I wanted to make this card a bit on the masculine side, and I also wanted to make his card showing off some of the Stampin' Up! Designer Series Papers that are on sale (Buy-3-Get-1-FREE) all this month. For this card, I'm showing off the Blooms and Bliss Designer Series Paper set. No, it's not all flowers! There are several prints in this set that are fairly plain, as are the two prints I used in this card.  My original card design included a plain Mint Macaron oval behind the banner. That made this card just too plain. So I pulled that layer off the larger oval and remade it using the Festive Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. Then I put it back together, making a couple of other adjustments. It's amazing what seeing a card in a photograph can do in terms of making adjustments! Just for giggles, I'm including a copy of the original card at the end of this post.

     The creative part was looking at that 2-1/2" strip of coordinating Designer Series Paper and reversing the patterns when I die-cut the large oval mat behind the sentiment layer and its mat. I need to work on this a bit more to get everything lined up a bit more closely. But I do like the idea!

     This set of papers includes the two main solid colors I used – Island Indigo and Mint Macaron. My camera seems not to want to capture either of these colors the way they look in real life. But then, the Stampin' Up! catalog photos don't do that great a job of capturing these colors, either! But believe me when I say that, whatever shows up on the camera, the colors in this paper set are just luscious!

     The stamped images – the banner and the sentiment – are both from the Birthday Banners Stamp Set. I stamped the banner using Island Indigo Ink and the sentiment using Mint Macaron. Then I die-cut the banner using the Bunch of Banners Framelits set, before adhering it to the ovals, both cut from the Layering Ovals Framelits set.

     Before layering everything up, I tied a bit of Mint Macaron 3/8" Sheer Linen Ribbon around the main layered area. Then I adhered the oval layers using Stampin' Dimensionals. The final touches were two small Island Indigo Enamel Dots (from the Regals Enamels Shapes set).

     Here are the links to the products I used in today's card. Just click on any photo to go to my Stampin' Up! website to learn more about the product, and even to buy it if you wish!

 

johnsbirthdaycard     And here's the original card. I hope you agree that the texturizing worked to spiff it up a bit! Besides the texturizing, the other three adjustments I made were:

  1. I moved the right side of the banner up a bit so that the sentiment was more on a level line.
  2. I reattached the banner using Stampin' Dimensionals to give the card even more depth.
  3. I adjusted the knot in the ribbon so that it was more centered in the space between the right side of the background oval and the edge of the card.

     So that's it! Watch for another design using this layout in a couple of days!


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Posted on : Oct 15 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Sizzix, Stamping |

Happy Birthday, Jadon!

Aloha, all!

     Happy Birthday to Jadon, a young man whom we several years ago adopted as a grandson. Oh, he has "real" grandparents, but there was a time when he saw more of us than he did of his other grandparents. So we became Grandma Robin and Grandpa Harry, and we're quite happy with that. These days, as we don't travel to the U. S. mainland as often as we used to, we don't get to see him all that much either. But we keep in touch, especially when his birthday comes around in October!

sublime

     Even though this is Jadon's second year as a teenager, I still really like to try to make him something cute for his birthday that will make him smile. He has just the best smile in the whole world for a young man of his age. We won't be there when he opens this card, but I'm sure I know what his smile will look like!

     Originally, I'd planned to have only the one stamped image on this card – the fun crab from the You're Sublime Stamp Set. The stamp consists of the crab outline and the "Have a Snappy Day" sentiment. To create the background, I inked up only the crab image, being careful not to get ink on the sentiment. Yup, it happened anyway, but on one of the stamped images that's hidden behind the large crab in the middle. Love how layers can cover up a multitude of smudges and such! But once I had the card pretty much done, I thought a little bit of color on the background layer would add a nice touch. So I went hunting for the Seaside Shore Stamp Set and one of the little Starfish images in that set. I used the smallest starfish, and that filled up some of that empty space nicely.

     To make the central image, I stamped the whole stamp – sentiment and all – and then colored in the crab using Real Red Classic Ink and Blender Pens. If I'd just used a Real Red Stampin' Write Marker by itself, I know from experience that I would have done a great job of hiding the expression on that cute crab. The color is just too deep to let the black lines show through. Blender Pens do the trick of adding the color, but not as deep as the marker would.

     I cut the oval around the crab, as well as the scalloped oval that makes up the mat, using the Layering Ovals Framelits Dies. Then I finished off the card with a piece of Real Red 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon. All of the products in this project, by the way, are in the Stampin' Up! 2016-2017 Annual Catalog. Somehow I managed to make a card this time of the year without anything from the Holiday Catalog. Wonder how that happened?!

     Anyway, here are the products I feature in this project. Just click on any of the pictures to go to my Stampin' Up! Website Store to get more information or to buy the products listed!

 


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Posted on : Oct 09 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Sizzix, Stampin' Up! Tools, Stamping |

A Belated Happy Birthday Wish for Carson!

Aloha, all!

     Last weekend was the celebration of our youngest grandson's 8th Birthday. Happy Birthday, Carson! We actually got this card made and sent out in plenty of time for the birthday, but I put off posting it on my blog until his birthday, then ran into a particularly busy weekend and totally spaced on it!

carsonscard

     I got the idea for this card when I saw another Stampin' Up! demonstrator stamp the Jar of Love Stamp Set with the little fireflies escaping. I immediately remembered that I'd taken a photo of Carson earlier this summer, and he was playing with fireflies out in a field in Ohio. Oh, this photo would be perfect to go with the jar and fireflies images to make a birthday card!

     There really isn't a lot to say about this card as it's pretty obvious to see that I simply stamped the jar, then the fireflies, using Memento Tuxedo Black Ink. Then I stamped a round stamp that comes with the stamp set, using Daffodil Delight ink, to mimic the lighting of the fireflies. In one of those "well, I already had it on my workspace" moments, I picked the sentiment from the Mixed Borders Stamp Set to go with the card – it fit in that little space so well!

     As happens on occasion, I used a product that's not included in the Stampin' Up! collection of products to finish the card. I love making a stitched-looking edge, and I happen to own a set of these border dies made by another company. I think they finished off this card beautifully!

     Just one mesage for today – don't forget photographs! They can make beautiful elements on a greeting card! And here are the Stampin' Up! products I used in today's card:


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Posted on : Sep 29 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Sizzix, Stamping |

A Quick Detour for Something Different!

Aloha, all!

     You all know that I am a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, and I truly love all things Stampin' Up! when it comes to papercrafting. You can probably also tell that I don't scrimp when it comes to stocking up on Stampin' Up! products because I certainly do show a lot of what I do with all of them right here on my blog. But every once in a while, I see something somewhere that's not Stampin' Up!, and it turns out to be the perfect thing for a project that I need to make right now. Today's project is made up of non-Stampin' Up! – or retired Stampin' Up! – products, with a sprinkling of current product. I can tell you that I had a lot of fun with this project, but I'm not about to make a habit out of it!

unicorn

     The "right now" project that I need is a birthday card for my favorite niece. Actually, she's my only niece, but she'd still be my favorite if I had more than one, I'm sure. She is a full-fledged adult, with multiple Master's degrees and a high-powered job. But she still loves her unicorns. Yes, Stampin' Up! had a lovely unicorn in their catalog several years back. But, like most retired products, I didn't keep it. I now know better.

     I'd decided on the card I was going to make for Margie, but then I just happened to walk into my local scrapbook store yesterday, and there was a sample card made not only with this stamp set, but also with the great die-cut card front. Yep, I bought them both!

copics     As long as I was going non-Stampin' Up! with this project, I pulled out some Copic markers to rainbow color the unicorn's mane and tail. Ever since I tried out Stampin' Up!'s former Blendabilities product, I've really enjoyed using alcohol markers, and I felt I had a better chance of getting these colors to blend together with alcohol markers.The paper in the background is retired Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper (DSP), and I picked three of the colors from that to use for the rainbow of colors for the unicorn.

     Once I had cut out the image, stamped the greeting on the front and adhered the DSP, I needed to finish with some embellishments – and those had to be Stampin' Up! because I don't have any others! First I used some Melon Mambo and Bermuda Bay Thick Baker's Twine to wrap these layers and tie a bow. Then I added heart shapes from the Brights Collection Enamel Shapes – the same two colors with the addition of Pumpkin Pie.

     The final touch for this card was a light brushing of the unicorn with some Wink of Stella. I used Gold on the unicorn's horn and Clear on the rest of her. She really does shine nicely in real life.

     And this year's card for my niece is done! Not only that, but I have two other images in this stamp set that will make fun unicorns for at least two more years of Margie's Birthday. Now if I can just remember this time next year where I put the stamp set.


Posted on : Sep 21 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Stamping |

Happy 16th Birthday to Our Grandson!

Aloha, all!

     Today is the 16th birthday of our grandson, Quin. Of course I had to make him a special birthday card. I've already made him a scrapbook page to use with pictures from this special teenage birthday. But he still definitely needed a card!

Quin BD

     For this card, I felt that his name had to be included. I wouldn't want ANYone to think that I'd made just any old card and sent it off for this birthday (I'd never do that to our kids or grandkids!). I really like the size and fun shapes of the letters in the Layered Letters Alphabet Stamp Set. So that's the set I chose for this card. The set does not include numbers, so I had to leave the numbering to the scrapbook page I made for the birthday. More about that later.

     I looked through all the papers that I have that are current Stampin' Up! products, and didn't find any that screamed birthday (Stampin' Up! has such sets, but I've not yet bought them. Gasp!)  But as I was going through what I did have, I came across this sheet from the By The Shore Designer Series Paper set. OK – that's masculine enough for a 16-year old. And the colors work. So off I went with this as the color scheme: Dapper Denim, Mint Macaron, Calypso Coral, and Pool Party.

    I'm showing off two punches in this proejct. The first is the Balloon Bouquet Punch, used to punch balloons in Dapper Denim and Calypso Coral. Then there's the new Duet Banner Punch, which I used to punch the banner for the Happy Birthday Greeting. Both the banner and the sentiment stamps are from the Thoughtful Banners Stamp Set. If you are looking at this stamp set, you might note that the words are all straight-line stamps. However, it's quite easy to bend photopolymer stamps to give them a light curve, as I did with the word "Birthday." "Happy" is a  short word, so I did not need to bend it to make it look as if it was meant for this banner stamped image.

RM17Scrap

     Now for the Project Life Scrapbook Page! I made this last Spring when I first thought about Quin's 16th Birthday. So the papers are now retired. But what is a lot of fun is the page with the small 2" squares in the Project Life Variety Pack 2, 12 x 12 Pages.. How perfect are these squares for inserting year numbers to mark a particular time period – such as 2000, the year Quin was born, and 2016, the year of his 16th Birthday. I'm going to send this to his mother for her to rummage through her photo stash to find pictures of this other birthdays.

     Oh, and those numbers! These are the numbers from the Number of Years Stamp Set. New in the 2016-2017 Stampin' Up! Catalog are matching letters, Letters for You. I could not use the letters from this set as well as the numbers in the first stamp set on a card because they're just too big! Yes, the "I" is thin. But the other letters and numbers are not. It would be a REALLY large card! So I've left the "16" to the scrapbook page!

     Here are the current products that I used for these projects. I hope you'll think about these when it's time for a special birthday celebration in your life – and come to my Stampin' Up! Store to buy what you need for YOUR projects!

 


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Posted on : Aug 27 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Project Life, Punches, Scrapbooking, Stamping |

Happy Anniversary to Mary and Tom!

AnniversaryCard2Small

Aloha, all!

     A Fiftieth Wedding Anniversary is definitely an occasion to celebrate. And it certainly calls for an extra-special card. This anniversary is being celebrated today by my husband's sister, Mary, and her husband, Tom. If all has gone as planned, we're with them, our nieces and nephews and other assorted family members spending the weekend at Mary and Tom's favorite Bed & Breakfast not too far from their home in Cincinnati, Ohio.

     I knew from the start that I was going to use gold – it is a golden anniversary, after all! And I also was pretty sure that I wanted to use the Botanical Builder Framelits. But at that point, I was almost paralyzed in deciding how to put the two together. Finally, as we got to the week before leaving on our trip to Ohio, I just started cutting paper.

     To begin, I chose to make a larger card than the commonly-used A2 size. As I have some envelopes that accommodate 5" x 7" cards, that's what I chose for the size. I definitely wanted to stamp Happy Anniversary on the card, and stamping it on the Gold Glimmer Paper is simply not possible. So the Gold Foil Sheet became the default base layer on this card. If you've used the Gold Foil, you know that it tends to curl – it's not a very thick, sturdy paper-crafting medium. To keep that from happening, before I even started with the rest of the card, I adhered the foil to a Whisper White Thick Cardstock card base, using Fast Fuse Adhesive placed as close to the edge of the cardstock as I could get it.

     The next step was to figure out where the border leaf element from the Framelits set was going to lie on the front of the card. I tried that thing every different way, and finally chose this arrangement. I cut the Gold Glimmer Paper to size, including cutting with the framelit and laid it onto the foil without adhering it. I positioned the two words from the Number of Years Stamp Set onto one acrylic block and chose the spot to stamp it. Just before stamping, I slipped the glimmer paper out of the way – I didn't want it in the way of the stamp! The ink is Jet Black StazOn ink, which stayed on that gold foil and didn't smear the least little bit.

     Choosing how to distribute flowers and leaves was a continuation of my "hmmm, let's see how this works" approach to this card. Just to give myself a lot to work with, I ran a lot of the framelits through my Big Shot using both the foil and the glimmer paper. Then I arranged and rearranged until I found what I liked. I adhered everything except for the main flower using Glue Dots, which worked amazingly well. I adhered the base of the main flower with Stampin' Dimensionals.

     The final parts of this card were the 5 and 0. I knew that I was going to use the Large Letter Framelits, and at this point it looked like the best bet for the medium was the Gold Foil. But I wanted a good, solid set of numbers. So I adhered a 2-1/2" strip of Gold Foil to a piece of light cardboard and then cut the numbers. Here I ran into a problem as, with the extra thickness, the metal bars in the zero that hold the inside and outside cutting pieces together showed up much too much on the foil. So I recut the zero with the Gold Foil facing down, and that made it a bit better. The good news is that my cutting pads weren't so badly marked that much of the scrapes showed up on the foil. If they had, I would have pulled out a new set just for this (I said this was an important anniversary, didn't I??). Even with this way of cutting, the bar images showed up a bit. So I gave that zero a workout with a bone folder until they pretty much went away.

     The final touch (not shown here) was the envelope. As this will be given in person, I had absolutely no reason not to use the "leftover" glimmer and foil flowers and leaves to decorate the envelope. Love it!  And I'm sure Mary and Tom will love that we spent the time to make this very special card. (Oh, the "we" includes my husband, who came and went during the design process oohing and aahing to encourage me!)

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Posted on : Jun 11 2016
Posted under Family and Garden, Sizzix, Stamping |