Sunday, January 3, 2016

Warm Winter Comforts

Unless there's tragedy or true peril (tornadoes, flooding, hurricanes, icy roads, lightning, etc.), why do we complain about the weather? What purpose does it serve? How do our thoughts about the weather make it feel worse than it is?

Our first winter in Ohio years ago was gray and wet and cold and dreary. I found myself complaining along with everyone else. It was depressing. So our second winter here, I decided to try a little positive thinking and self-talk. When I noticed the gray dreariness, I would say out loud, with a big smile on my face, "What a beautiful day!"

Sometimes, I would cheerily chirp this affirmation to perfect strangers walking past, huddled in their winter coats and scarves, under umbrellas. Surprisingly, no one punched me in the face or tried to have me committed to the loony bin. And the positive thinking and self-talk worked. I truly was much happier that winter than I'd been the previous, whiny winter.

Now, there are people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder for whom winter poses a serious health problem. I'm not making light of those with a real problem. But the rest of us need to stop griping and start chirping. This fall, I even purchased a happy orange umbrella to remind me that (unless it's flooding), rain is good.

This positive attitude prompted me to start my 2016 Use-My-Stamps Resolution with a box of wood-mounted, winter-themed stamps. This card makes me particularly happy.

The scribbled tree stamp is from Hero Arts, and it sort of annoys me how the scribbles are tight at the top and become looser toward the bottom. The stamp feels a tad top-heavy to me. Then it occurred to me to overlap the sentiment (also Hero Arts, but a long ago, discontinued stamp), and balance is least in my eyes. Perhaps I'm just too finicky.

The border punch is from Martha Stewart, and I used three layers of white to evoke layers of snow.

We have a 40% chance of snow in the wee hours of Monday morning, which might prompt a snow delay on our first day back at school. Whatever happens, we'll deal with it...chirpily.

And with the warm comfort of hot coffee. Ahhhh. Warm winter comfort, indeed.

stamps: Hero Arts
ink: Impress Fresh Ink Basil, VersaMagic jumbo java
paper: Papertrey white
accessories: Martha Stewart border punch 

PS While my post is somewhat flip and silly, please take a minute to think of and pray for those seriously affected by the weather in the past few weeks. Tornadoes and flooding have taken lives and destroyed homes and businesses. Kudos to the relief agencies and non-profits and churches working to help those in distress. 


  1. Susan, I agree with you 100% on the weather. We have lived in Illinois for 25 years, and yes, it can be brutal, but there is no point in complaining. I actually complain more about the heat in the summer. My husband is the opposite, lots of griping every winter.
    Love that tree branch punch, but I ruined it this season :(

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  3. Susan, here in Florida the weather-griping season is reversed but still tiresome to hear. Why share your discontent in conversation with the all-pervasive "Hot enough for you?" I hear Alaska is nice.
    Isn't it fun to re-discover your own stamping gems? That Martha Stewart punched border still looks fresh and design-perfect.
    I also have resolved to use more of my own supplies in 2016. The excessive seasonal buying frenzy of the past few months really made a negative impression on me. Felt like a million waving hands reaching out to mess with both my mind and wallet. I'm going to shop my own store.

  4. Good points about the weather, Susan. It makes me weep to see so many people lose their lives and their homes.

    I love your cards, but I seldom comment. Guess that makes me a lurker.... I have occasionally altered my stamps when I like the main section but really dislike a small part of it. I recently bought a bird stamp with a paisley design in its tail—and I hate paisley. So I used a small gouge to remove it. Voila! Problem solved and I'm happier now.

  5. What a beautiful card for the winter. The layers evoke banks of snow, and the sentiment takes us inside by the fire.

  6. Weather....the one thing we absolutely cannot control. In California, we're enduring a multi year major drought, but the flip side is we've had a banner year of spectacular days! And still, people insist on complaining about the need for rain. So I continue to tell these people to relax and enjoy the can't change a thing but your attitude! Works. Clever addition of the punch branches...never would have occurred to me!

  7. Love this card! It has the perfect feel to it. I need to make something with an evergreen in it and this is awesome inspiration. I have SAD and it's no joke. I live in Southern Arizona so people think I shouldn't have a problem but by mid-December I'm a weepy wreck. The sun is barely peeking up when I'm driving to work and is down when I'm driving home and I'm in a cement box all day. But you know what, so many folks have it so much worse. I know the sun will shine again and I'll see it. I didn't lose loved ones, my home, or my belongings over it. Life is good!

  8. I agree with you about complaining about the weather, we moved to Singapore 6 months back and I spent a major part of those months complaining about the intolerable heat and humidity....I have resolved not to do it this year!
    Your card is gorgeous. Love your idea about balancing the heavy top with the sentiment.


Thank you so much for taking time to comment!