Thursday, December 31, 2009

Close to My Heart January Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Happy New Year!

I'm so excited about the upcoming year and the blog hop! It is achieving two of my goals on my 101 List of Things I'd Like to Do in 1001 Days (blog coming soon - keep watching): write more and update my blog more often!

If you're following the CTMH Blog Hop you should have arrived from Shirley Ross's blog. Welcome! For those of you new to blog hopping, simply click on the link below to go to the next blog. If you started at Helen's blog, you've made it all the way through. Following each link will allow you to see over 60 different ways to use the January Stamp of the Month, True Friends (D1406). Below is my contribution to the hop (a total of 3 today!).

First is a Postcard Gift Pack. I purchased the vinyl cases from an online website for another workshop, but they are PERFECT for this project.

Inside the vinyl case is two slots. One is perfect for a decorated cover and the other is good for 4x6 postcards. To make the postcards, I simply random stamped one side of a sheet of 12x12 cardstock and trimmed it to the postcard size. You get 6 postcards from one sheet.

In addition to the January SOTM, I used the Grace Level II Paper Pack (X711B) and Copper Brads (Z1217).

(Vinyl case open)

(Postcards with open case)

The second project is a 4x4 Gift Card. The sayings on this stamp set was perfect for gift giving.

I like to try and use paper and color combinations that differ from the company suggested combinations. This card uses paper from the Tinkerin' Level II Paper Pack (X7113B) and the Designer Ribbon Rounds Sorbet (Z1123). I also added Just Blooms Paper Flowers White Daisy Variety Pack (Z1300) and Twinkle Brads Jolly Assortment (Z1220).

Finally, I altered a 2010 Planner that I picked up at my local Dollar General store for $1. The paper pack is retired now (Free Spirit Level II Paper Pack), but I loved the colors. I also used the Playful Flourishes set (D1212) and some brown ric rac I purchased when a fabric store was closing.

All of these current items are available to view on my Close to My Heart website. Click here and then choose the "Shop Online" button. You can search by item number for quick location of the products.

Be sure to join me again in February for the Stamp of the Month Blog Hop. A listing of classes, workshops and crops will be available on my website shortly after the first of the year. Subscribe to my blog to receive updates when I post.

If you're continuing in the blog hop, your next stop is Helen Onulak's blog.

Here is a complete list of blog participants if you prefer the jump around method:
Helen Onulak
Jena DeVries
Jessica Booth
Carla Ironside
Lori Miller
Misty Jackson
Jen Patrick
Susan Brooks
Kathleen Androlewicz
Dawn Ross
Amy McVey
Antoinette Herrin
Jill Lucas
Barbra Otten
Lori Brown
Brae Montgomery
Wanda Riley
Adeline E. Brill
Kami Welter
Judy Burger
Pamela O'Connor
Cindy Leek
Mary Eisen
Sylvia Jacquot
Laura Dame
Melissa Laverty
Haley Dyer
Terrie Dodd
Katy Donaldson
Chris Shouse
Tammy Lea Pinchard
Krista Ritskes
Shannon Pelletier
Deb Young
Amy Edwards
Sheila Bennett
Kristie Herdener
Jen Rubio
Jody Gustafson
Sarita Schraeder
Laurie Levnik
Debra Van Patten
Kimberly Smith
Michelle Nist
Karen Norman
Traci Godbee
Nancy Brown
Maricar Harris
Nona Davenport
Laurie Newton
Dawn Heuft
Melissa Burch
Kim O'Rear
Michelle Bourlet
Angela Tutton
Jenifer Benner
Shirley Ross
Latisha Haag

Monday, November 2, 2009

Getting what YOU want for Christmas!

Don't miss the latest from Close to My Heart. November's special is Buy 2 My Acrylix stamp sets, get 1 FREE!

Click image to view larger picture.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Remembering Adeline

Today we put Ron's mom to eternal rest with the Lord. It is my job to read the eulogy and I wanted to share with you what I wrote in memory.

Adeline “Addie” Ann Haag was born August 20, 1929, in Fredonia, ND to Daniel and Caroline Mouldenhauer. She was the youngest of 5 children and the only girl. Her brothers were Elmer, Bill, Clarence aka Nut-Nut, and Heinz. She spent her childhood in Fredonia.

On Sept. 19, 1947, she married Lawrence “Larry” Haag in Aberdeen, SD. After one year in Fredonia, they moved to Hansen, ID, where Larry worked as a farmhand. In 1954 they moved south of Hansen to a farm; three years later they moved to Eden to farm. In 1958, the purchased the home place in Heyburn where Larry farmed until his retirement in 1971 and lived the remainder of his life. Adeline owned the farm until 2006.

In the early 70s, they built the Haag’s Country Court and owned/operated it until the late 80s. She was employed by the State of Idaho as a potato inspector when she was not a homemaker and wife. Adeline was a member of the Congregational Church in Paul.

Adeline leaves behind 3 children: Richard and spouse Marsha, Carol and spouse Gary McConnell, and Ron and spouse Latisha as well as 7 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren. She was preceeded in death by her husband, Larry, her parents and her brothers.

While these are the factual bits of Adeline’s life, they are far from the most important or most memorable. This mother, grandma, and great-grandma

left us numerous memories, which we will always treasure; I’d like to share a few with you now.

Adeline’s life could be placed into four categories: a wife, mother and grandmother, a spunky woman, a great cook, and a Christian.

Let’s begin with the first category: wife, mother, and grandmother. Many say the Beaver Cleaver family did not exist in real life; however, Larry and Adeline Haag defied that myth. The fell in love, married, had children and stayed married – through good times and bad. Between the 2 of them, they had 10 years of education yet managed to build a successful life, raise 3 children, and touch the lives of more people than can be counted. She can boast of a marriage of 49 years to the same man and no divorces among her children or grandchildren.

Of course, the last point is an area of debate. Most of you know Adeline suffered from dementia in the last few years, leaving her to forget many of the details of recent years. Just after her heart attack a few years ago, Ron and our family were gathered around her hospital bed. She remembered Ron and her grandson Zeke but after Ron re-introduced her granddaughter Kaydawn, she glanced at me at the end of the bed. She asked Ron, “And who is that?” When he replied that I was his wife, she exclaimed with relief, “Oh thank goodness you got remarried!”

Family vacations consisted of fishing and camping or visiting her children and grandchildren, whether that was in Idaho or Oregon, California or Germany, Nebraska or Kansas. Her walls were covered with pictures of her children and grandchildren and she was quick to boast of how her oldest was in the Air Force, her daughter was married to a pastor, and her youngest was an outstanding wrestler and coach and the “inter-murial” director at a college.

Now, some of those pictures didn’t last long, though. When Carol brought Gary home to meet her parents, they took a picture of the young couple. When Gary returned to visit Adeline after his training in the military, he returned as a much slimmer and clean-shaven young man – not at all what Adeline saw in the picture. Not wanting to hurt the feelings of Carol’s new beau, Adeline slid the picture discreetly to Carol and told her to get rid of it so Gary wouldn’t know about the old boyfriend. What a surprise to Adeline when Carol told her that the man sitting with her that day WAS Gary!

She worked hard to teach strong morals and values in her children, even to the point of perhaps protecting them from the real world. One memory Carol likes to share about this fact is how Carol learned what the meaning of the middle finger really meant. As a freshman in high school, she saw several times in the hall how other kids her age expressed their anger towards another. They would argue and invariably flash the middle finger. Carol didn’t know what it meant, but it always happened when someone was angry. Well, one day she was angry with her mother – very angry and decided the best way to show it was to give her the middle finger salute. Carol learned very quickly what that was the wrong thing to do!

Some of these stories could very easily fit into the next category but there are others that exemplify it better. Adeline was a spunky woman, not letting many things slow her down. Perhaps it was an innate need to go fast – but fast she did go. Her grandkids Mike and Angie liked to tease her that she was the little old lady from Pasadena! But the title fits because she liked to go fast, no matter what her mode of transportation was.

The last car Adeline owned was a Pontiac Bonneville SSEi. A pretty little silver sports car that had a strong engine in it that Adeline knew how to use. One of the last times she drove that car was when Rick and Ron moved her back to Nebraska. Just outside the hills of Lava Hot Springs, Rick let her climb in the driver’s seat. Ron was leading and she had let him get quite a bit ahead. When Rick said something to her about this, she gently accelerated to catch up. That car was smooth and before long her acceleration reached near 100 miles/hour and she didn’t even notice!

Even when she wasn’t speeding in her car, she was finding the fastest mode to get where she was going. When she was living with Carol and Gary in Oregon, she purchased a fold ‘n go motorized wheelchair. On the speed setting there was a picture of a turtle and a picture of a hare. I’m sure you can guess what setting she kept it on! Carol and Gary took her to an RV show and were soon embarrassed by her “need for speed.” She was taking people out left and right and would get to going so quickly she’d knock herself over! And it wasn’t just with Carol and Gary that she did this. One July 4th Rick and Ron took her to boot hill in Dodge City, KS. She zipped all over the little town at the highest speed. When she was left alone for any amount of time, she would find the spot in the walkway that was most uneven and tip herself over. But she had a need to get somewhere and get there fast!

She also set her grandchildren on the fast track. When her granddaughter Kaydawn was just barely crawling, she “taught her how to walk.” It was Christmas and she was holding Kaydawn on her lap in her wheelchair. Most everyone in the room was busy with different tasks so when Adeline had tired of holding Kaydawn, she promptly stood her next to her wheelchair and patted her forward. Kaydawn stumbled and was fortunately caught by her daddy.

She was also good at getting “lost.” If you asked her, she knew where she was going, but she left those with her in serious mental turmoil over “losing” her. Shortly after Larry passed away, Ron took her Las Vegas so the two of them could get away and relax. They spent the first night at Circus Circus but had to change motels the second night. Knowing it would be easier to leave her in one spot close to the door and pick her up rather than have her walk, Ron left her with strict instructions to “stay put.” Of course, she got interested in the nickel slots and soon was moving from machine to machine. When Ron returned, she was nowhere in sight. It took nearly 3 hours to find her, all the while Ron was thinking how best to tell his siblings he’d “lost” their mother in Las Vegas and she was never to be seen again!

I, too, have a similar story. My husband Ron was selected as an official to do an NCAA Division II National Championship in Greeley, CO – quite an honor. The 3 of us all attended and my job was to get his mom to and from the gymnasium. Between sessions, she and I decided to go get a bite to eat. Because of the number of people attending, I wasn’t able to get a spot close to the door to park. I left her inside the door since it was snowing with strict instructions to “stay put.” When I returned, she was nowhere to be found! I began wondering just how I was going to tell Ron I’d lost his mom! Mind you, we weren’t yet married so this was a terrible predicament for me. I eventually find her. She had decided to walk to the car even though she had no idea where I’d parked since I’d dropped her off earlier that morning!

Adeline was also known for her cooking. Living most of her life in Idaho, there were always potatoes on the table in addition to her German dishes. One of those signature dishes was her Cream Gravy Strudelah. Her cellar was full of jars of jellies and jams as well as many other popular canned foods. At Christmas, she’d make taffy and other candies. She’s passed down recipes to her children for favorites like cream puffs and pheasant with sour cream gravy. If she wasn’t cooking, she always loved having a hamburger, especially at “Apple-eggs.”

And while Adeline is known for all of the things I just mentioned, it is the last that is the most important – her strong Christian faith. Adeline accepted Jesus Christ as her personal savior and lived her life instilling this belief of Christ in her family members. Her legacy is evident in even the youngest members of her family.

On Friday night when Ron told his children about Adeline’s death, he did so like this:

“I have some good news and some bad news about Grandma. The good news is that Grandma can walk again.” As he paused, both Kaydawn and Zeke cheered at the good news, so excited their prayers had come true.

Then he continued with, “But we won’t see Grandma walk until we’re with her in heaven because God healed her by taking her to heaven with him.” And as he paused again, his son cheered again because even as young as he is, he understands that she has eternal life in Christ. For you see, the Bible says, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Adeline lived her life exemplifying this statement. And the good news is, those of us who believe in Jesus Christ as our personal savior will see her again and we will walk with her again.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Chatter from the Heart - June 2009 Close to My Heart Newsletter

Chatter from the Heart ~ June 2009

It's hard to believe that summer has arrived, but it's here! My family and I are excited about the upcoming month of June, not only for the summer fun, but because we are expecting the arrival of our third baby! Like any stamper and scrapbooker, I look forward to another opportunity with the arrival of this baby to preserve my family's memories and legacies.

Arrival of Baby Haag
You can join in the fun of this arrival and win $10 in free Close to My Heart product with no purchase necessary! There's many unknowns with this baby:
we don't know if it's a boy or a girl;
we don't know what day it will arrive (due date is June 20);
we don't know the weight or length;
we don't even have a name chosen!

Here's what you do:
Send me an e-mail with the information you think fits the categories above. The entry that comes closest will receive a $10 gift certificate that can be used on any Close to My Heart product. You may even help in choosing the name of this new baby! Again, submit this information via an e-mail and you'll be entered to win!
Sex of the baby
Day baby will arrive
Weight and length

June's Special: Deal-A-Day

While you may not be anticipating the arrival of a new baby in June, this month could still be your favorite month! Close to My Heart is offering a unique special called "Deal-a-Day"! With qualifying purchases, you can receive FREE Close to My Heart products and on 6 days of the month, you can purchase a goodie box full of both current and retired products at 50% off retail value! The deal changes daily and is only available on MyCTMH website. Visit my website to see the full explanation of Deal-A-Day (under "Calendar").

June Stamp of the Month - Tender Tags

Don't miss this month's Stamp of the Month, Tender Tags. Featuring a variety of tags with select sentiments, you can earn it for FREE with a qualifying purchase. Visit my website to learn more. Information about the set is under "Calendar"; to view artwork featuring the set, click "My Art."

Wishes Card Confidence Program
This month also features the release of Wishes Card Confidence program. If you have used either the Reflections, Cherish, or Imagine scrapbook programs or the Originals Card Confidence program, you know how fast, easy, and simple these how-to guides make scrapbooking or card making. Wishes is no exception! This program will make your card making just as elegant with less guess work involved for you. Visit my website for more information.

June Events
I hope June is a great month for you. Because of the impending arrival our baby, there will be no classes or workshops in June. Watch for July's schedule to be released soon. As always, events are available on my website under "Calendar."

The Ellis Public Library Free Crop is still scheduled (if I'm unable to be there, someone else will be available). Join us for a night of cropping from 7 pm to midnight. There are plenty of tables to spread out and we happily share tools and ideas. Come join us! (Please RSVP if you plan to attend.)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pink Sweetheart

Kaydawn danced in her first dance recital this past weekend. She was SO proud up on the "big stage" of Beach Schmidt auditorium. She did very well, emphasizing her positions and movements - and claimed her favorite part of the whole recital was where she got to "rock 'n roll" in the song "Do you believe in magic."

Probably the funniest part of the whole weekend was when she and her friend Taelyr had a stare down on the stage. Kaydawn was supposed to stand on the second row during the second dance. She DID NOT want to be there, apparently, as she found a way to work to the front. At rehearsal, she put herself next to Taelyr. Despite Taelyr's efforts to get her back in the second row, Kaydawn wouldn't budge. She even continued to dance with a determined look on her face. She did move herself to the front row during the actual recital, but not as much as during rehearsal.

What fun it was to watch her!

Close to My Heart's June 2009 Stamp of the Month, Tender Tags

Each month, Close to My Heart offers a stamp of the month. This set is only available during the month it's offered and can be purchased at full price or discounted cost depending on purchases. This month, the set Tender Tags, really has some cute and unique tags that can be used in different ways. Here's a sample of the set in different artwork.

If you'd like to see more artwork featuring this set (after June 1), visit the Close to My Heart website.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Metamorphosis with Christ

It's hard to believe it's been one month since I last taught children's church, but the first weekend in May has arrived. This means this morning, I once again sat in front of the church and tried to teach the children a lesson about being a Christian.

Ironically, this lesson came to me in my sleep. Those of you who've experienced pregnancy first-hand know how strange your dreams can be. Well, this lesson came to be in my dreams last night. I was really dreaming about the verse in the Bible "...I knew before I formed you in the womb." And there were butterflies in this dream.

When I woke, the first thing I did this morning - as I do every morning - was head to the recliner downstairs with my daily Bible reading. The New Testament reading was John, chapter 3, which finished off the inspiration for my lesson today.

I couldn't help but share this lesson here. I hope it touches you as I believe it touched many during church today. Here it is:

"Metamorphosis of a Christian"
#1 - It's spring. What are some of the things you notice about spring?
*Green leaves and grass again
*Fresh air
*New insects and animals

#2 - We as Christians go through our own kind of springtime. Did you know that? Let me read you a verse from the gospel of John.

"I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You must be born again." John 3:5-7

#3 - I bet that doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? Let's look at another way we see life "born again." We're going to use metamorphosis to explain how a butterfly is born again. Can you say that big word?

Here is a butterfly. Does anyone know how a butterfly gets to be so beautiful? Let me show you.

#4 - (Use caterpillar picture) Here is how a butterfly begins. It doesn't look like a butterfly, does it? What is it? (caterpillar) Is it very pretty? It's okay because it's a creation of God, but it's not as beautiful as it's going to be.

Well, this caterpillar is like us as children. At this stage of it's life, the caterpillar goes around eating and eating and eating. As children, we come to church and Sunday school and VBS and read our Bibles to learn and learn and learn and store up, just like the caterpillar eats to store up.

#5 - (Use picture of chrysalis) Then the caterpillar spins a chrysalis, sometimes called a cocoon. While the caterpillar is inside of the cocoon, it uses all that food it stored up to make an amazing transformation.

Now, as children we don't spin a cocoon. But that doesn't mean that all those lessons you learned aren't working an amazing transformation in you. Instead of a cocoon, the holy Spirit is working an amazing transformation on you.

#6 - (Use butterfly picture again) Once that amazing transformation occurs, the caterpillar emerges from the cocoon as a beautiful butterfly - it has, in a sense, been "born again."

In people, we can be "born again" as well. But when the holy Spirit has worked it's transformation, we emerge as Christians to share eternal life in Christ. It means we have been saved from the not so pretty life and now have access to a beautiful life with Christ. It is the gift of salvation.

In Romans 10:9 it says,
"For if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."

#7 - So while our transformation into Christians isn't always as simple as the metamorphosis of a butterfly, we still emerge in a new life.

Let's pray: Heavenly Father, your work in nature is amazing. You take a lowly caterpillar, not so beautiful to behold and transform it into a graceful butterfly. Fortunately for us, you do the same when we are born again in you. Help us to learn so we may transform into a beautiful Christian. In your name, Amen.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Close to My Heart's April Stamp of the Month: World's Best Dad

Resurrection Easter Eggs

Since Easter is this weekend, I just had to share my lesson from Children's Church this past Sunday. On the first Sunday of each month, the children of our church come forward while I present a simple lesson. I wanted to impress the importance of Holy Week on the children, for it is important in the lives of Christians to understand why we have salvation.

I can't take credit for this concept as I found it in my quest for good topics for children; however, I felt it so good I had to share. Ron and I have decided to use it throughout the week to keep the information fresh in Zeke and Kaydawn's minds as well as impress upon them the importance of the week.

This is a picture of our "Resurrection Eggs." Inside each egg is an object or picture directly linked to a verse in the Bible that tells of an event leading up to, during, and after the crucifixion of Christ.

Here are the items/pictures in the eggs along with the explanation of each:

1. (Bread) Matthew 26:26
While they were eating Jesus took a piece of bread,
gave a prayer of thanks, broke it, and gave it to His disciples.
"Take and eat it," He said, "This is My body."

2. (Coins) Matthew 26: 14-15
Then one of the twelve disciples, named Judas Iscariot, went to
the chief priests and asked, "What will you give me if I betray
Jesus to you?" They counted out thirty silver coins and gave
them to him.

3. (Purple cloth, representing a purple robe) Mark 15:17
They put a purple robe on Jesus. . .

4. (Thorns) Matthew 27:29
Then they made a crown out of thorny branches and placed it on
His head, and put a stick on His right hand; then they knelt
before Him and made fun of Him. "Long live the King, of the
Jews!" they said.

5. (Scourge-a small piece of rope or thick string) Mark 15:15
Pilate wanted to please the crowd, so he set Barabbas free for
them. Then he had Jesus whipped and handed Him over to be

6. (Cross) John 19: 17-18a
He went out, carrying His cross, and came to "The Place of the
Skull," as it is called. (In Hebrew it is called "Galgotha.") There
they crucified Him.

7. (Nails) John 20:25b
Thomas said to them, "Unless I see the scars of the nails in His
hands and put my finger on those scars and my hand in His
side, I will not believe."

8. (Sign) Luke 23:38
Above Him were written these words: THIS IS THE KING OF

9. (Sponge) Matthew 27:48
One of them ran up at once, took a sponge, soaked it in cheap
wine, put it on the end of a stick, and tried to make Him drink it.

10. (Spear) John 19:34
One of the soldiers plunged his spear into Jesus' side, and at
once blood and water poured out.

11. (Rock) Matthew 27:59-60
Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a new linen sheet, and
placed it in his own new tomb, which he had just recently dug
out of solid rock. Then he rolled a large stone across the
entrance to the tomb and went away.

12. (Empty) Matthew 28:6
He is not here He has risen just as He said.

I wish all of you a blessed Easter!

That's Amore Acrylic Album Clock

Here's my latest project - an acrylic album altered to become a clock. I first saw this idea on another Close to My Heart consultant's website and was inspired. (Thanks, Tracy Mason!)

I used the That's Amore paper pack and chocolate rub-ons as well as one of the 4x4 Foundry Frames.

Hope you enjoy!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Big Boy Haircut

I've been on a mission to complete pages before the baby arrives. I've been quite neglectful about my 2006 and 2007 albums and here were are in 2009! Thanks to a week-long retreat last week, I did accomplish many pages, but stil have many to go. This set of pages I power-paged but hadn't gotten around to doing so I put them together. I really like how they turned out! It's of my DS's first and only barber shop haircut (his aunt is a hair dresser) and he did such a good job of being a big boy!

I used Close to My Heart's Good Times paper pack and the Friendship Alphabet.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The 6th Picture Challenge

I've been challenged by Elaine at Times Captured

These are the challenge instructions:

•Go to your photo folder in your computer.

•Go to the 6th folder of the photos.

•Go to the sixth picture.

•Put the picture on your blog and description of it.

•Invite six friends to join the challenge.

•Link them in your blog and let them know they have been challenged!

The 6th thing didn't quite work out for me because there were only 2 pictures in my 6th folder, but by far pictures some of my most favorite scrapbook pages. I posted both pictures since there were only 2. The pages are of my son Zeke in his cowboy garb - he doesn't go anywhere without those boots or hat (well, a little more now without than before, get the idea).

Tagged in this post:
Staci Roe: Paper Heaven & Stamp Obsession
Leanne Eisler: Scrappin' with Gamma
Laura Bohall: Just Gathering Pieces
Mary Carrell: Scrapbook and Stamping With Mary
Debra Van Patten: Deb's Not-So-Daily Ramblings
Mary Vogel: On Life & Creating

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Back to posting...FINALLY!

It's good to be posting once again. After my laptop crashed TWO times before Christmas, it took some time to get back on track of all the e-mails, downloading/uploading pictures, and finishing paperwork. I'm glad to be back to having only a few pictures on the camera (which makes it easier to download and upload to Winkflash) and I'm caught up on paperwork so that gives me more time for creating and sharing.

This little project is my January workshop which is this Saturday. It's a fun little desktop calendar using Close to My Heart's January Stamp of the Month, Moments in Time. The workshop isn't full (I know it's only a few days before, but you can still RSVP if you like) but it's going to be a quick one and a good price! Only $6.