As for me and my blog, we will serve the Lord!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Passages for a Crisis {Scripture Cards}

Scripture Cards Peace

Yesterday I faced a possibility that was out of my control and frightening. I didn’t know how long the crisis might last. I asked for prayer from some close family members. My daughter-in-law sent me some thoughts she had read in a devotional that morning. It was a reminder that God is ready to supply his peace to His followers, if we only ask. He, in fact, supplies ALL of our needs, all of the time, in every situation.

There were three Scripture passages referenced in the reading she sent to me. I memorized those three and added one of my favorites (Isaiah 26:3) and prayed those verses repeatedly during the 12-hour period until God resolved the crisis.

God did give me a sense of calm and peace. In the end, He answered all my prayers about the entire situation, in such a short matter of time. I was left, once again, in awe of His greatness, His mercy, His grace.

Inspired by Patter Cross at TripletheScraps.com, I have decided to add to my “project areas” with Scripture Cards. These are like little miniature art journal pages. Mine will be done on 3 1/2” x 5 1/4” pieces of mixed media paper and stored in a binder with pocket page protectors. This is my first attempt, and I chose the four verses that have meant so much to me in the last couple of days. I collaged vintage music and vintage book pages on the cards and then stamped and painted.

These cards will always be a reminder of how God takes care of me. All the time. And how I don’t deserve His blessings. But then, that’s grace.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas Project {Block}

Sleep in Peace front

sleep in peace w top and side visible

sleep in peace back

Another Christmas project, made on a board my hubby cut for me.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Christmas Ornaments & Trees

Ornaments Round 2

I made a second “batch” of ornaments for my Tag Tree. These started as clear glass (the hearts are plastic) ornaments from Michael’s.

Here is the tree (lower level in my home):

tag tree full

tag tree closeup

Tag Tree w teddy bears

Tag Tree closeup 3

Here’s the tree in the upper level Great Room:

great room tree 1

Here’s the tree in the Music Room (it has some little grand piano ornaments):

music room tree 1

This is a nostalgic room for me, because family around the piano is so much a part of my life. Looking forward to Christmas when the “kids” (and their kids) will be here to join me in this room!

christmas music on piano 2

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Pray Without Ceasing {Bible Journaling}

Pray continually

Usually I do my own lettering and drawing in my Journaling Bible. This page was done using some stamps created by one of my friends in the Bible Journaling Community, Stephanie Ackerman. These stamps are from two of her sets: Pray Continually and Key to Truth. 

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

I Thessalonians 5:16-18

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Project Catch Up and Little Primitive Girl {Art Journal}

Since our arrival back in Missouri, my days have been happily filled with holiday preparations (Thanksgiving and Christmas), catching up in scrapbooks and Smash journals, and a few other Christmas crafts. I was excited to learn several days ago that Creative Memories, my go-to company for scrapbook albums, is back in business, and that gave new life to that hobby, for me. I was really in a funk with unsuccessfully trying to find a suitable substitute for their albums. With the news from CM, I ordered new albums and completely revised my two 2014 albums. Yep, that’s how I roll.

I spent many hours on an Advent book (altered children’s board book), but because I was not pleased with what I was getting from that study, I completely repurposed the book using a study that I love (Ann Voskamp’s The Greatest Gift). I’m happy with the outcome and now have an Advent book/art journal that is meaningful for me. I sketched and painted a 2x2 inch tile for each of the 25 days, so that was very time-consuming. Here is my book with yesterday and today’s pages.

Advent 9 and 10

Incredibly, I am caught up with all those things (still have a few Christmas menus to finalize), including the gift buying and wrapping. So, today it was time for some mixed media fun. I was beginning to feel like I might not know what to do with a blank page in an art journal.

The little primitive girls that I learned to draw, in Mindy Lacefield’s Sunday Mornings class, have really grown on me. At first I felt they weren’t “cute” enough, but it really is fun to create one of these little girls, without worrying about “realistic” features. Besides, it really is more fun to work with acrylic than with watercolor (for me), and with the Primitive Girls, I can use lots and lots of layers of acrylic paint and stamps.

Star of Wonder Primitive Girl

I did have Christmas on my mind as I painted this spread, although the colors that popped out of my head were certainly not Christmas colors.

So now I’m all ready for my siblings and then my children to come home for Christmas. The three trees are up and decorated, complete with all the wrapped packages.

I am so blessed.

God must be crazy about me.

He really is.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving with Family

IMG_0569

Glad to have our daughter and grandson with us to celebrate Thanksgiving. Enjoying appetizers of Light Lemony Cooler (white grape juice, lemon juice, sugar and club soda) with Cheese and Crackers.

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Carving the turkey. I can’t keep from making copious amounts of food, whether there are 10 of us or 4!

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IMG_5643Russell’s new Honda Side by Side was delivered in time to take some fun rides with Dawson (and the rest of us).

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My baby and her baby!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Art on a Christmas Tag

Glitter Snowman Tag

Front

Back of Glitter Snowman Tag

Back

A few years ago I started making Christmas tags (inspired by Tim Holtz). I started the tradition of hanging them on the tree as ornaments. We have three trees in our house, and the one on the lower level is the sort of “fun” one. Under that tree is my husband’s electric train (2012). It is that tree that is decorated with tags and handmade ornaments.

When I first started making tags (2011), I had never drawn or painted anything. Since that time, I play around with sketching and painting, so some of the more recent tags actually have some of my “art” work on them.

I’d Rather Be Creative

…than to hit the stores for Black Friday sales. In fact, this is the one day of the year I am least likely to even get out of the house!

Here is a tag I made for my Tag Christmas Tree, as well as an art journal page snowman that I sketched and watercolored (inspired by an artist friend who does hundreds of snowmen)!

O Christmas Tag 2014

O Christmas Tag 2014 Back

November Snowman

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Trust in the Lord {Bible Journaling}

Prov 3 Bible Journaling

Sometimes I just need to get something “artistic” accomplished. Sometimes I am in “simple mode.” Today, I combined both and put together a quick and simple Bible Journaling entry in my ESV Journaling Bible. I used a stamp, pencil and Pan Pastels.

This is one of my favorite verses, and I wish I could live it more fully. It seems to me to be a promise: if I trust in Him rather than myself, HE will make the way straight for me.

Wonderful promise. My responsibility is the IF part—the first three words: TRUST IN THE LORD.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.

 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (NASB)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Preparing for the Holidays {Favorite Books}

fave books

A few books that I have recently added to my personal library are just so awesome that I want to share about them.

A couple of years ago, my daughter-in-law gave me Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts for Christmas. I love that book, and it is teaching me the importance of thanksgiving—not the holiday, but the practice.

I recently purchased Ann’s devotional book based on her best-selling One Thousand Gifts. It is awesome, and I am challenged to fill in the one thousand blanks in the back, with things that are blessings to me, and worthy of thanksgiving. That book is One Thousand Gifts Devotional.

As I prepare for keeping my focus on Christ during this Christmas season, I am enjoying Ann’s two books for the Advent season, The Greatest Gift and Unwrapping the Greatest Gift. Both books are beautifully inspiring.

When our children were still at home, we loved to read books aloud together as a family, during the Christmas season. The book Unwrapping the Greatest Gift is designed for such a purpose, and is really for all ages.

Just wanted to share what is on my coffee table today!

Be sure to check out Ann Voskamp’s blog, A Holy Experience, one of the top Christian blogs.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Mixed Media Advent Journal

I altered a children’s board book to use for my Advent Journal. I am using a devotional planned by Diane Marra and Bernice Hopper in the Facebook group Pause, Ponder & Prepare. They provided the devotional studies for each day and the Scripture verses to go along with the thought for the day.

Each day as I read the devotional, I will journal on the back of each Scripture tag (which I left blank for that purpose).

Altered Board Book for Advent Journal

Pages covered with gesso and a few layers of paint; letters for cover painted and embossed

Pockets and Tags for Advent Journal

Kraft pockets and tags that I had in my stash (edges inked with Vintage Photo Distress Ink; seam binding stained with Tarnished Brass Distress Stain)

Cover of Advent Journal 2

Finished cover

advent journal open page

Days 7 and 8

Advent Journal open

Days 15 and 16

open journal

advent journal back

Back of Journal

This is my first time ever to do a special project for the Advent season. I have another Advent project I am working on as well (I am such an extremist). More about it later (hint: Ann Voskamp).

Monday, November 17, 2014

Handmade Christmas Ornaments

Homemade Ornaments

One of my Christmas trees is decorated with some of my “art” projects. I came across an idea (inspired by Stephanie Ackerman) for making ornaments, and it fit “my style,” so I went for it. They were a little more involved than I anticipated (always the case), but I do like how they turned out. We won’t put the tree up quite yet, so they are waiting in a basket.

Meanwhile, I am over-involved (as I always am at this time of year) with art projects, Bible studies, and holiday preparations. Now that I have the ornaments finished, I’ll focus more on the Advent Journal I am making, using a children’s board book. It has been quite a project,  just to “prep” the journal. I know the time I spend on the devotional studies for the journal will help me focus on the real meaning of Christmas.

Good to be back in Missouri and readying for family to be with us for the holidays!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

My Strength is from God {Bible Journaling}

Strength from God

There are several places in God’s Word where I have read lately about God’s strength and how He gives it to His children. I love this reminder. Today, I was “of a notion” (my mother used to say that!) to use free-hand lettering and no color.

This Bible page (ESV) actually has two references to God’s strength.

He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Isaiah 40:29

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Flower Doodles {New Mercies}

new mercies

Doing some flower doodling in my altered book, the happy promise from Lamentations came to mind:

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23

It’s a good thing. I feel like I need a new round of His mercies each day!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Bless the Lord {Mixed Media Art Journal}

Bless the Lord mixed media page

Having created a fun many-layered mixed media background from a tutorial by Terri Kahrs, I was inspired to use a praise silhouette with some of the words from a wonderful praise song as the focus on top of the background.

I have mentioned here before that one of my favorite songs is Matt Redman’s “10,000 Reasons.” I love the verses, and I love the chorus. I especially love the last verse, as it calls to mind my Mother’s last days, when she was so ready to go to heaven.

Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name

The sun comes up; it's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes


Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name


You're rich in love and You're slow to anger
Your name is great and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness, I will keep on singing
10,000 reasons for my heart to find


Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name


And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
10,000 years and then forever more


Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name


Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name
I worship Your holy name
I worship Your holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I worship Your holy name
I worship Your holy name
I worship Your holy name

--Matt Redman, “10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Promise of Seasons {Bible Art}

seasons promise

I just love the changing seasons. My overall favorite is FALL, although I am sometimes heard to say that spring is my favorite, on the first warm, sunny and green day in the spring. Or, I might say that about summer, when soaking up the warm sunshine on a walk where lots of flowers line my path. Well, then there’s winter, with a beautiful snowfall outside and a warm fireplace inside.

Admittedly, I love the CHANGING seasons, more noticeable in some locations (Missouri!) than others.

This is a verse that I used in my art journal recently, but still on my mind, I decided to illustrate it in my Journaling Bible.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Fall Pumpkin {Art Journal}

Fall Pumpkin Gen 8-22

I love autumn. It is my favorite season. I’m not into Halloween, but I do love pumpkins and all things harvest.

Today is a rainy day where I am. As my baby sister was known for saying, “What a wonderful day for coloring.”

There is something comforting about the seasons. Maybe it’s because the seasons are a biblical promise!

Linking to Dion Dior’s Friday Sketches.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Happy Birthday to Him Whom My Soul Loves

I found him whom my soul loves.
I held him, and would not let him go…

Song of Solomon 3:4 (selected portion)

My Valentine for 54 years

Happy birthday today to my husband Russell. Of his 69 years celebrated today, I love loved him for 55. Yes, I fell in love with him when he was 14. I was 12. True story. Of his 69 years, we have been married 49.

He is the best husband in the world. God gave him to me. God must be “especially fond” of me. That He is.

My deepest wish for my granddaughters is that they would follow God’s plan for their spouse and ultimately be blessed with a man like mine. My deepest wish for my grandsons is that they be like their grandfather, a strong man of God, a “man of steel and velvet,” who loves unconditionally, and with biblical proportions.

Russell and Barbara small framed photos

Russ Curt Dave

Russell is the oldest of four, two brothers and a sister. He and his brothers Curtiss and David must have been quite a handful for their mom! “All boy,” that’s what they were, for sure.

Curt Dave Russ at Scotts

Russell junior 1962 guard 257 points all year

High School Basketball

 

Russell's studio senior  hs picture 1963

High School Senior 1963

 

Bride and Groom

Our Wedding 1965

 

Russ at supply whse 1-13 DaNang

USMC Officer 1967-1970
(Viet Nam 1968-1969)

 

1973 Oct Family of 4

Two children: Mark (1970) and Sharida (1971)

 

Conner 1996-025

First three grandchildren: Tory Elise (1993) Alyssa Megan (1993) and Conner Russell (1995)

 

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Fourth grandchild: Dawson James (2006)

 

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Our family Christmas 2013, L to R: Barbara, Russell, Sharida, Alyssa, Kristy, Conner, Tory, Mark, and Dawson in front.

Even if I didn’t have my own heart as a measuring stick for the picture of love that is this man, I have the verses in First Corinthians that define love—and that describe him—him whom my soul loves.

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails. – I Corinthians

Happy Birthday, Honey, and thank you for loving me even when I am not loveable, for putting up with all my faults, and especially for wearing those rose-colored glasses through which your view of me has been filtered for 55 years! I love you.