Sunday, November 29, 2020

Growth, Gratitude, and Gold


Well, my crafty friends, fall 2020 has certainly been a period of growth. In the spring, educators were hit with an emergency, but by fall, we had had time to plan for the online learning environment. As many online classes as I took over the summer to learn about online teaching, nothing really prepared me for the special challenges of teaching on Zoom. 

The best teacher is experience. And I learned so very much from on-the-job practice! For instance, I learned that I can teach about one-third as much on Zoom as I can in a face-to-face classroom. That means my Zoom activities need to be especially robust and efficient, and my homework assignments need to pick up the slack. I also learned that some in-class activities migrate to Zoom easily, and others don't migrate at all. 

At. All. 

Sigh. My go-to theme for the semester was "We're all learning together!" And boy, howdy, was it true. 

My biggest regret from the past four months has been how little time I made for stamping. That needs to change. My quest to be the best virtual teacher I could be took over my life in not entirely healthy ways. This semester ends Dec. 16 when final grades are due. Deep breathing and healthier boundaries will need to be in place by the time the new term starts in January. 


Several stampers helped brighten my term, most especially Eddie, who sent a few DOZEN Christmas cards to me. These cards will be used by our church's card ministry to brighten the holidays of our shut-ins and members in nursing homes. Thank you, Eddie. 

I'm also grateful to Joan B. and Francie M. for their encouragement and support throughout the semester. If you're looking for a StampinUp consultant, email me and I'll put you in touch with Francie. She recently rejoined StampinUp and is just as kind and creative as you want a consultant to be!

Marcia P. sent me a lovely card inspired by one of mine and a cool distressing tool because she read that I use scissors to distress the edges of my paper. She also wrote me a letter, which was so special! No one does that anymore. 

Marty and Jo Ann sent me fabulous birthday cards, and several others reached out in email or messages on Facebook. You've made me feel loved. Thank you all! 

If I missed anyone, I'm so sorry. 


In the past four months, I've made cards here and there...most of which ended up in the circular file. But last weekend, this happened. 

I used some fabulous shimmery gold cardstock, the StampinUp subtle textile embossing folder, and a bunch of dies from various manufacturers. It was inspired by a number of foliage cards I've seen on Pinterest and Instagram with lots of die cuts artfully wodged together. 

I denominalized that word. Wodge. It's a noun meaning a wad or mass of something. But in crafty terms, it needs to be a verb, doesn't it? 

We crafters wodge a lot of different things. To wodge. 

Whatever. It's a pretty wodge. I pearled the wodge, too. 

I do hope you all are staying healthy and sane in all the craziness right now. Today's the first Sunday in Advent, and our church celebrated it as Hope Sunday. (How convenient it would have been if it were Peace Sunday...but my pastor doesn't organize her church calendar around my card themes. Such a pity.) 

We need hope right about now, don't we? Hope that the vaccine is available soon. Hope that our nation starts healing after the insanity of this last election. Hope that 2021 will bring us together instead of continuing to tear us apart. 

Y'all, we are all on this spinning dot in the big universe together. We all need love and safety and respect and freedom from fear. Let's commit to giving those to others as we hope to receive them for ourselves. 

Mercy, grace, peace, love, and kindness,