Monday, May 29, 2017

Power Poppy Challenge~ Frame It Up!

Hi and welcome to my blog!
Today I am sharing a couple of framed water colored blooms I made for this month's Power Poppy Challenge~"Frame It Up!"
Both use one of Marcella's images from Flourishes, Lenten Rose.  I wanted some practice water coloring. I am definitely still a beginner; but I love the look!

I think this one, in a variety of  amethysts and purples is my favorite. I framed it very simply and just used a few pearls for embellishment.

I wasn't as happy with the actual coloring of this one; it became muddied after too much work trying to apply layers of color. So I stopped (good idea!) and then went over some of the blooms with prisma pencils for shading. I also used a sweet bow to "frame" the image...kind of a fun look and adds a bit of whimsy!
Thanks so much for looking and always look forward to your comments! Have a blessed day!

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Mustard Faith Challenge~Friendship

If you knew me well or even just a little bit; you would know the value I place on my women's friendships and cultivating relationships that grow stronger in the Lord and closer to each other through women's times of fellowship and prayer. I never set a goal to do this...but it was necessitated through my own loneliness after moving many times while being a stay at home mom and finding church ministries somewhat lacking in providing an atmosphere where true friendship can flourish.
Over the past five to seven years...I began looking for concrete ways to invest in the women God brought into my life and find deeper levels of living our lives transparent and sharing authentically our real needs, hopes, and dreams.
I believe the process of developing friendships is so important...and for me it has been a lifeline through many difficulties and life stages I have gone through. The women in my groups have echoed this same sentiment back to important our times are together. I could possibly write a short essay on the who's, why's, where's and how if you are looking to develop something more meaningful than the light chatter that occurs when women gather...but I think the most important first is to let God choose your friends. He will and He has for me. The saying goes that we choose our friends...but in my life that hasn't been the case. I ask God to help me have eyes to see the woman who needs a listening ear, a friendly smile, an invitation for coffee...and I take a deep breath, overcome my own timidity,and reach out to them. God has always been faithful to guide me.
And then...after reaching out to one or two...the circle broadens to 3 or 4 and God begins to weave hearts and stories and prayers together and you have a bond of Sisters in Christ!  I began inviting a group of 4 women over for Bible study in my home over six years ago, then prayer, sometimes a spontaneous brunch or coffee...and over time it has turned into a Book Club with new members able to join. Our group changes depending on our current needs...but now, if one of us doesn't initiate within two weeks, someone else will. Our time is that important.
One of my favorite ways to spend times with a friend is over coffee at a local shop. We meet, I order the strongest Americano with lots of cream while my friends have Chai tea...and I may have a pastry too...and we just enjoy may be our most recent vacation, the way God answered prayer, something exciting happening in our lives, a decision we need to make...but my heart just brims over with gratitude that I have my friends.
I've made wonderful friends over connecting through stamping also...and when I am able to meet a friend I've only known over the is so heartwarming. I think friendship has to be one of God's greatest gifts.
I know that God is the one who can choose our friends because He alone knows our futures and who we need to walk this earthly walk with...and He is so faithful to provide others along the way that can call from ahead and encourage me on! He also uses us to encourage the young mothers on or the ones with the rebellious teenager, or ill parent.
And so often, when I've felt the Lord's nudging to befriend someone and pursue them as God would pursue us...I find that I am the one who is blessed in the end.
Whatever gifts you may have, stamping and card making, a favorite other hobby like knitting, cooking, baking, letter writing, or a vacation  home getaway you can share with others...reach out and be generous to others with your time, talents, gifts, hospitality and cultivate friendships!
And let's not forget...God gave us a friend in Jesus. One who never leaves our side, who is always steadfast,who is there to pray to while  reading and studying His word, the Bible. He loves us, is tender towards us as a Mom is with her own child. He is the greatest friend and the one from whom all other gifts flow!!
My card was made with a Simon Says Card Kit (available a few months ago.) Since it had these darling cup and saucers and "coffee and friends" sentiments I knew it would be the perfect set for a quick, cute card! The cup and saucer were paper pieced, and the little journal card carafe and mug and heart are 3 D stickers. Too cute! I need to get this one in the mail!
Thanks for your visit! Please don't forget to visit our main blog on Mustard Seed Faith Challenges and we hope you will join us for this bi-weekly challenge. Our challenge is based on God's faithfulness to us as believers based on the book of Hosea.  This time we are to make a card celebrating friendship or other union like anniversary or wedding! I can't  wait to see your entries on the blog at Mustard Seed Faith Challenges!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Mustard Seed Faith Challenge~Psalms

Hi and welcome back to my blog; this week featuring Mustard Seed Faith Challenges and the book of Psalms!  The Psalms contain prayers, petitions, thanksgivings, supplications, appeals for deliverance and help and many other poetic writings. The words were written with the purpose of being set to music with stringed instruments such as the harp, lyre, and lute.
Our challenge at Mustard Seed Faith is to make a baby card as the Psalms are like God's soothing lullaby to us.
We are also asked to choose one of our favorites to focus on and share with our cards. One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm 91...also featured on my last card entry on the front.
Another, Psalm 139, speaks to me especially when it comes to anxiety and soothing and these are just some of the excerpts. I would encourage you to read the entire Psalm.
"O Lord...Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence?...If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast..."

This Psalm would make a wonderful bedtime prayer and praise, wouldn't it?
I have my verse written out in chalk on a chalkboard to see when I awake at night with any anxious is always good to read God's word aloud and pray over it!
So for my niece just had her first baby ...a I made this card to celebrate the new life with my niece and her husband.

I have had this stamp image from Lili of the Valley for quite some is so adorable when colored in! I had a lot of fun with this card...adding the yellow gingham, buttons, and scalloped notecard die! It makes me wish I had more babies to fashion cards for!
Thanks so much for your visit today! I invite you to join in the challenge and visit our blog for a short devotional and to see all the fabulous Mustard Seed Faith Design Team creations!