Thursday, November 27, 2014

The Canvas of Life

“Such is my relationship with God: on my gigantic canvas of life, I am the one throwing all of the brightly-colored paints, creating genuine splatters, authentic whirlpools of color, beautiful patterns, wonderful streaks and stains and wild accents; God is the one with the paintbrush who stands beside my canvas filling all the intricate and amazing details in between the whirlpools and the streaks! We're happy together!”     ― C. JoyBell C.

Yesterday morning I woke to the news that a dear cyber friend had just lost her husband and best friend...he was only 44 years old.  I just cannot stop thinking of them and my heart aches for her and her 4 year old daughter.  At times like these I am brought to a standstill to reflect of life and the joy and pain it brings.  I have no idea how one deals with this sort of loss and I cannot imagine losing my darling husband who is also my soul mate.

Some time ago I wanted to write a blog about "what defines me" and it has been sitting in drafts all this time.  The right words just did not come.  Reflecting on my life up to now and the joys and the pains it brought made me realise that One defines who I am...and that is my relationship with the Lord.  Over the course of my life until now we have had much joy and peace.  We also had a lot of hardship and storms that nearly destroyed us.  We have had to make hard choices regarding the calling on our lives and our Ministry that caused us to loose many of our friends and some of our family.

We have learned that there is no one to turn to but the Lord.  We have experienced Him holding all things together when it felt as if our lives were falling apart.  We have felt His love and compassion when our children were all affected in one way or another.  We have learned that without Him we could never make it.  We never choose the storms but we are forever changed when it is over.  He will always be the One I will run to in time of trouble, fear and doubt and I have faith that He will carry me through it every time.  I am on His easel and He is creating the painting of my life...when things are hard that is where I must stay and He will make something beautiful of the pain.

My prayer is that He will carry Lisa Marie and her little Bluebird through this and that they will know His comfort and love.


Saturday, November 15, 2014

The International Scrapbook event in Jeffreysbay

Hallo there,  I want to share the awesome projects we made at last weekend's Scrapbook event in Jeffreysbay.  Two blissful days of scrapping!!!!  Our first class was taught by the awesome Kasia Krzymińska (the Prima educator and a mixed media artist).  Her most memorable words "DON'T THINK JUST DO".  The thing that I will never forget:  SHE CUTS UP FLOWERS....gasp!!!!!  I loved learning all the new techniques and the result was this canvas:

This is one of my favourite photos that I took of my darling man while we were in Plettenberg Bay last month...and one that I couldn't resist putting on canvas to hang on the wall.  The only things I added after the event was the shells and the title.

Kasia taught us the rules of basic design and then the lesson started.  "Don't think...just do" and that is what we did.  After choosing a design layout we liked we tore papers and pasted it to the canvas and then covered the whole canvas with a layer of gesso.  We then build our photo stack and pasted it down.

 We then continued with the embellishing.  Cutting up the pretty Prima blooms (gasp) and building clusters.  We then dabbed some gesso onto the flowers and I also dabbed some gesso onto my photo stack and even on the edges of my photo.  Very brave, don't you think?  The next layer was using some watercolour pencils and misting through stencils.

The last step was stamping randomly on the background with permanent ink and clear stamps.

 It was fun getting those hands dirty...and it was even more fun to see that each person's canvas looked different and unique.

The next morning we were back for more...this time the lovely Jowilna Nolte stood in for Marion Smith that cancelled a month before the event.  Step by step the following double page layout came together:

There is so much detail in this page that I am sharing a stack of close ups.  The page isn't my regular style, as I prefer to put more photos on my pages...but I always love to try something new...and I enjoyed scrapping photos taken at my 50th birthday.

 I didn't even mention that Cariena Basson put us through the paces of making beautiful little flowers with the Marion Smith bloom tool.  So pretty!

All the stamps and papers are Marion Smith designs.

 A lot of fussy cutting and a lot of layering within the folded envelope.

 Love all the quaint and feminine touches.

 The page looked a tad bare so I added a Silhouette cut title.

Some more little details and another bloom tool flower.

Thank you for visiting my little blog and thank you for your lovely messages.


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Currently I am...

...running around like crazy.  I cannot believe that we have been back at work for more than four weeks.  This year is really running away from me at the moment.  I don't get time to blog.  I don't get time to play in my scrap studio.  So I am just writing a quick catch up blog.
Reading:  I completed three books during our time at Plettenberg bay.  "The little old lady who broke all the rules" by Catharina Ingelman-Sunderberg.  The mammoth "The Goldfinch" by Donna Tartt and "The collected works of AJ Fikry" by Gabrielle Zevin.  At the moment I am not reading anything...
Listening to:  I am loving Matt Redman's "10000 reasons" and Chris Tomlin's "How great is our God."  and yes....they are on repeat in my car too.
Laughing at:  Our grandchildren are our constant source of joy and laughter...never a dull moment with them around.
Swooning over:  A plot in Seaview...sadly I don't know whether it is meant to be.

Planning:  A way of stealing some time (somewhere) to just catch up on my blog buddies.  Other than that I am planning to get to the end of the year with my sanity in tact.  We have just finished a 4 week long "Leadership Training School" at the Mission and it was a very emotional journey with some of our leaders.  We have already had our first Christmas party last week when Santa Shoebox spoiled our little ones at the mission and there is still a couple of parties to go.
Eating lots of:  Junk!!!!  This is seriously a pattern.  When I am tired I tend to eat way to much sugary stuff to get the energy levels up.
Feeling: That what ever is meant to be...will be. Que Sera Sera.
Discovering:  That I quite enjoy the idea of training up our children to take over from us at the Mission.  I am looking forward to a lot of down time (somewhere) in the future.

Looking at:  Ways to incorporate mixed media in my scrapbooking.  We had a stunning international event in Jeffreys Bay last weekend with Kasia Krzymińska (Yup...the Prima Educator) giving us a great mixed media canvas class called "Harnassed Chaos".  On the Sunday Jowilna Nolte stood in for Marion Smith and we made a double page layout.  All in was a great weekend for me...and for hubby who played golf for two consecutive days.

Wearing:  Some warm casual clothes.  I think the wind blew away summer this year.
Cooking:   Hubby's turn to cook some lovely fillet steak...which we will have with baby potatoes, veggies and a lovely creamy mushroom sauce.
Wondering:  Where the year went????  Seriously...the older one becomes the faster life goes...scary stuff.  Another thing I would love to figure out is how it is possible for a mother to abandon the children that she carried for nine months and birthed in pain.   We have had two instances where mothers have abandoned their children at the Mission...and it is heart breaking to deal with the little ones.

Hopefully I will have time later this week to share the projects we made in Jeffreys Bay...and maybe read a few blogs.