Friday, February 15, 2019

The Caregiver

I have had a lot of people do really nice things for me in the last couple of months. Daily texts, flowers, cards, gifts. That caregiver personality is such a treasure. I hope you have some caregivers in your life.

These people all know how to give care without taking anything from you at the same time. Until something bad happens to you, you don't realize how exhausting just answering a question can be. Or the same question many times to different people.

If I could give you one piece of advice on how to best do something for someone who has experienced an illness or loss - it would be this: give what you have to give without expecting a response, and without asking questions about what's happening. The tiny amount of battery that person has left needs to be spent on just living. But send that card, or text or gift. It makes a huge difference, even if you just hear silence. DO IT. I have one sweet friend who just send me emojis every day and it makes my day.

One friend sent three AMAZING things right when I needed them. I did something awful to my back, and all I have are these completely ghetto 1970's plastic heating pads that wad up into a ball and overheat. I wasn't aware that this technology had advanced until I opened a box and found this LUXURIOUS, soft HUGE heating pad with auto-off and a fuzzy cover. I'm going to have to fight Maddie for it, but when we sit down to watch TV every night, I sit with it on my back and it's amazing. Everyone should have one.

The same day she sent me this massager - I call it my robot therapist - because it's exactly like getting a massage. It has little sleeves you put your arms through so you can position it wherever you need it on your back and still work or use your hands. It's incredible. She didn't even have one herself and put it in a white elephant exchange at a retreat we were attending, and everyone went nuts over it, so she got one and then sent me one. That's the kind of girl she is.

Finally, she knows my complete devotion to fizzy water - I can't drink plain water - it literally makes me gag. But I love fizzy water, so this water she sent me is like LaCroix 2.0. I love it. Surprisingly, the lemon is my favorite - I don't like ANY lemon fizzy water because it all tastes fake. Since this one just has a squeeze of real lemon in it it's perfect! Thank you Kathy! <3

Amazon is such an easy way to send comforts to people - so don't forget to use the gift option to lift someone's spirits.

So speaking of lifting spirits, mail cards! Just a hello is nice. Writing a short note is better. Writing a letter is best of all.

So in that spirit of sending uplifting mail, I have one of my spot style coloring cards for you today. I stamped this fun mail background in Intense black, and used just three markers to spot color the background - there is a Copic that is very close to manila envelope color! I used Y19, R29 and B04 and intentionally left white space. These new large sentiment dies are amazing. I got the hello and the thanks in December, and I can't tell you how many times I've used them. There's also a happy, and a birthday die. They're all about the same sized - card front size. All the products I've used are below my cards. I cut the hello twice from white and black and layered them with my favorite die adhesive.

This stamp was part of Hero's new Spring catalog release at Creativation, and you should have SEEN the samples in the booth - they were amazing. If you got your hands on their catalog, all the cards I'm showing you today are in there, and that is a huge honor. Did you know that Hero Arts will turn 45 this year? Stay tuned for some fun events around that important birthday. The reason there is a 45 year old company in our industry is that it is run by kind, honest and creative people who care about humanity in general, and particularly all of us in the creative community. It's a testament to who they are that they've thrived through the last 45 years of a constantly changing landscape around papercrafting. If you want to send them a birthday card, you can do so here:

Aaron Leventhal
Hero Arts
1200 Harbour Way South, Ste 201 
Richmond, CA 94804 

One of the style lines I love the most (you know this if you're a reader of my blog) at Hero Arts is the sort of wistful, children's book looking sets, like this moon one. This card used a lot of masking, so prepare for instructions. I did the following to make this card: I stamped the ladder FIRST and masked the whole ladder with masking paper. Then, I stamped the color layering moon in Soft Vanilla, Soft Granite and Charcoal ink on top of the ladder Then I used one of the larger of the Oval Infinity dies to cut myself an earth, and I placed that mask on TOP of the masked ladder. Then I stamped the moon again on masking paper, cut it out and placed that mask on top of the moon. You with me? The moon, ladder and earth are now masked. Then I took my Life Changing Blender brushes and brushed both Cornflower and Soft Granite ink all over the card panel for my sky. I then removed all three masks, and used the negative piece of masking paper from where I cut the oval for the earth. I placed that negative around the white space of my earth to protect the sky, and I used the blender brush again to brush Moss ink onto the earth. Then I removed that mask, colored the ladder with Copics and added white gel pen stars and highlights. The sentiment is from the same set. This set does come with matching dies - and the ladder die cut is adorable!
 While we are color layering, let's layer a Calla Lily! This is one of my favorite flowers in real life and in stamp images. I used Soft Vanilla, Butter Bar and Pumpkin Pie ink for stamping the layers, and then I used my Polychromos Pencils to do soft shading on the stem and the flower. I chose matching cardstock - they have NEW cardstock and its gorgeous - and cut a little slot out of the card panel to let a pop of yellow show through. The sentiment - LOVE the font - is from the same set.
Then since those were all neat and tidy - I went for some mixed media goodness. I created a Wrinkle Free Distress Oxide background (tutorial here), and then stamped this stunning background on top of that in Soft Granite - it's meant to be waves, but I thought it looked like both air currents, and as if the balloon were flying over cultivated fields. So make it whatever you want :).

I stamped the hot air balloon also in Soft Granite, I used my white gel pen to fill in the flowers and cover up my background, and then I used these amazing tools to apply a dot of gold glimmer ink to the center of each flower. The tools both hold the ink and release it perfectly and clean up easily. The sentiment is stamped and embossed on black cardstock. This set does come with matching dies.
Fun, right? At the end of this post, I'll tell you how you can win one of four $50 gift certificates to the Hero Store.

2019 Spring Catalog - Hero Arts
[ HA ]
Mail Jumble Background Cling
[ HA ]
Color Layering Calla Lily
[ HA ]
Ocean Waves Bold Prints
[ HA ]
Color Layering Sleepy Moon
[ HA ]
Color Layering Sleepy Moon Frame Cuts
[ HA ]
Hot Air Blooms
[ HA ]
Hot Air Blooms Frame Cuts
[ HA ]
Hello Message Fancy Die
[ HA ]
Thanks Message Fancy Die
[ HA ]
Birthday Message Fancy Die
[ HA ]
Happy Message Fancy Die
[ HA ]
Hero Arts Oval Infinity Dies
[ HA ]
Faber-Castell Polychromos Pencils and...
[ BLIC | AMZUS | SSS ]
Hero Arts Intense Black Ink
[ HA ]
Pumpkin Pie Mid-Tone Shadow Ink
[ HA ]
Moss Bold Ink
[ HA ]
Soft Granite Shadow Ink - Hero Arts
[ HA ]
Cornflower Mid-Tone Shadow Ink | Hero...
[ HA ]
Hero Arts Butter Bar Shadow Ink
[ HA ]
Soft Vanilla vShadowSoft Vanilla...
[ HA ]
AF236 Charcoal Mid-Tone Shadow Ink
[ HA ]
Heavy Base Weight Card Stock- White
[ GNK ]
Avery 6465 Removable Multipurpose...
[ AMZUS ]
Grafix Artist-tac
[ BLIC ]
Life Changing Blender Brush 2-Pack -...
[ PFS ]
Sakura CLASSIC WHITE Fine Line 05...
[ SSS ]
Colour Shapers Tools - BLICK art...
[ BLIC ]
GM100 Gold & Pewter Glimmer Metallic...
[ HA ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | HA | SSS | ELH | MFT | UNT ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC ]
LightView 2in1 LED Magnifier for...
[ BRG ]
Mudder 10 Pack White Buffer Sanding...
[ AMZUS ]
Xyron ADHESIVE ERASER 23675
[ SSS | ART | AMZUS ]
Teflon Bone Folder - Ellen Hutson LLC
[ ELH | SSS ]
Ink Off Cloth
[ INK ]
Essentials by Ellen Storage...
[ ELH ]
Die Storage - Clear Storage Pockets...
[ CHC ]
XL Stamp Storage Pockets
[ ELH ]
Cut Align
[ MSW ]
Lawn Fawn STAMP SHAMMY Cleaner LF1045
[ SSS | CST ]
Coloring Glove - Anti-Smudge
[ AMZUS ]
Derwent Battery-Operated Eraser
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]
Ipoint Orbit Pencil Sharpener, Turquoise
[ AMZUS | BLIC ]
Global Art Classic Leather Pencil Cases
[ BLIC | AMZUS ]
Staedtler Mars Plastic Erasers
[ BLIC | JGG | AMZUS ]
Sizzix BIG SHOT EXPRESS Gray and...
[ SSS | ELH | BMS ]
Paper - Hero Arts
[ HA ]

You can hit up Maria's blog for more Spring Catalog inspiration, and all you have to do to be put in the drawing for the shopping sprees is leaving me a comment telling me what your favorite spring stamp images are - the ones you reach for the most!

Loveyameanitbye.



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