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Runs with Scissors… and Shopping Fantasies

December 19, 2015


Here we are, Penny Black friends, the final days leading up to the BIG day. In my house, if it isn’t done, or at least started, by now most likely it won’t be done by Christmas. I see that the Penny Black designers are not only up to the minute with their Christmas cards, they have their thank you cards finished, too. Ah, yes …you can be sure there is no running with scissors when those ladies are working.

Well, not to be outdone and just in case Santa brings me a present or two, I’ve made a couple of thank you cards, too. The Penny Black releases of this winter include so many stamps and dies that are not strictly Christmas or holiday. For sure they won’t be packed away until next year.


I’ve white embossed the Snowy Grove image onto white cardstock and then used an assortment of Distress Inks to create the background. Proving that the Penny Black dies are versatile and adapt to many occasions, I’ve used the Friends Frame die to cut this scalloped oval and stamped the sentiment from the Kind Words transparent set. All you have to do to use this card for other occasions is change out the sentiment.


Now, if you are part of a family that showers you with presents (lucky you), you may need to make thank you cards that are easily “mass produced”. The Evergreen die cuts all these trees at one time and all that’s left to do is add a stamped sentiment. I’ve stacked several diecuts here, but if you are a really, really lucky person and have to make many, many thank you cards, one layer of trees will still work! The designer paper is from Penny Black’s 6×6 paper pad Holiday Trimmings.


I am so glad to have a brother with a December birthday so I can send him this card. This image from the slapstick stamp set Brush Pines is great to use for winter occasions. The kraft paper gives it a masculine look and the card doesn’t look at all like Christmas.

Sometimes I wonder if I am entirely normal. Or is it that I just don’t learn from previous experience. Last week I had this amazing fantasy going through my head of Mr. RWS and I joining the hustle and bustle among the Christmas shoppers. Having sent off checks, gift cards and a few toys ordered online for the littlest people in our family I felt a bit left out and even a bit guilty that I had not experienced the pushing and shoving excitement of Christmas shopping.

Why in the world I thought it was a good idea to include Mr. RWS in this fantasy, I don’t know. He hates shopping, he hates Christmas shopping even more, and I do believe he is allergic to standing in line. With this knowledge in mind, one would think if I was totally normal I would choose a mildly stimulating shopping experience to share (like the plumbing section at a big box store with a quick sneak peek at the Christmas decorations for me).

In order that you fully get the picture of how much Mr. RWS hates shopping I must explain on the rare occasion that we enter a store together to purchase an object fully agreed upon in advance, I am always instructed that there is to be no “wander shopping”. This means I cannot slow down for anything colorful, floral, or sparkly. I swear, he even knows when I take a quick glance!

So, where did I choose to enjoy this Christmas shopping fantasy? None other than that great big, always-crowded, over-stimulating warehouse store that starts with a capital C and ends with a depleted wallet. And how did I get him to agree to such a shopping trip? I told him we were out of the refrigerated, individually packaged ruby red grapefruit sections that he loves. He also knows I hate driving there and he provides the transportation.

True to form, we entered the jaws of the Capital C store and Mr. RWS instantly disappeared and I knew he was headed to the refrigerated fruit area of the store. And I was on my own to browse the aisles, on my way to join him, remarking to myself over the yummy Christmas treats (a few ended up in my basket: try the cashew clusters), the ribbons, ornaments, gift baskets and decorations – oh, my! And honestly, I was heading back to the refrigerated section (stopping only to put the mango peach salsa in my basket) when a man went by with a cart topped off with the most colorful and beautiful stack of plastic craft “project boxes”, just the perfect size for storing my Penny Black stamps and dies. He was out of sight before I could ask where he’d found them and so I “wandered”. Honestly, I didn’t think it would take very long to catch up to Mr. RWS and fulfill my shopping fantasy. How did I know the Capital C management decided these magnificent craft storage boxes should be stocked in the depths of the office supply section, totally on the opposite side of the store from the grapefruit sections?   But there they were, five plastic boxes in a bundle, five different colors: perfect.


Of course, now there was no chance of finding Mr. RWS anywhere near the refrigerated grapefruit. So we spent the next thirty minutes doing a Keystone Cops routine of circling the store and just missing each other. I finally stood still for ten minutes or so near the cash register line (which can only be described as LONG) and we were soon reunited. Because of Mr. RWS’s allergy to waiting in line, I sent him to order a romantic lunch for two from the food counter while I checked out.

At last, time to sit together, discuss Christmas, admire the craft boxes and fulfill my fantasy of a Christmas experience together. Wrong! Mr. RWS’s menu item of choice was the Polish sausage on a bun, topped with mega mustard and onions. Truly, the smell was more than I could bear. Mr. RWS noticed my pale green complexion and kindly moved to another table to eat his sandwich. Ahhhh, true love. And the end of my Christmas shopping fantasy.

Obviously, I need to rethink my plans for next year!


I love many of the Penny Black stamps from a Christmas past. This image is called Winter Swing. Since the temperature is in the 70’s in Alabama this week, this could easily be happening. This is simple Copic coloring with a touch of Glossy Accents and a background of designer paper from the Holiday Trimmings paper pad.


I’m always sure to make a supply of Christmas cards using a nativity scene. This is a woodblock stamp The Manger, also from a Christmas past. I’ve Copic colored and fussy cut the image and mounted it onto woodgrain paper along with Noel from the Exultations die set. A touch of glitter glue for the halos and a few stars for embellishment complete the card.


This card reminds me of New Year’s Eve in Times Square. Back when the kids were little, we would do our best every year to stay awake and watch the ball drop in New York City. Thankfully, it happened at 11:00 pm in Wisconsin and we usually made it! That Happy New Year die is a quick and easy way to make a fun and colorful greeting for the New Year.

While I vowed to keep things simple this Christmas, I didn’t totally neglect decorating. I knew I would miss having a Christmas tree if I didn’t put one up. So I did:


And look who followed me home from my trip to the home improvement store:


Evelyn and Jack are a great age for Christmas this year. They had a great time in the snow.


Cooper has learned this year that packages are fun. He loves to sniff and snoop and as you can see here, he is practicing for the big day.


Mr. RWS, Cooper and I send our very biggest and best wishes to all of you for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. This New Year’s Eve marks the second anniversary of the first time I hacked found my way onto the Penny Black blog. I have loved every minute of the two years I’ve spent on the blog with all of you. Your comments, encouragement and kindness mean a lot to me. I am grateful to everyone at Penny Black for allowing me to run with my scissors and occupy this space on Saturdays. And especially to Jill Foster who slips me the keys each week.

May your holiday be filled with everything and everyone that makes your heart happy. I wish for all of us Peace and good will toward men. Love and Merry Christmas, Judy

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black Supplies:



39 Comments leave one →
  1. Helena Stanser permalink
    December 19, 2015 12:40 am

    I love your cards and i love to read your text every week.
    Thank you!
    Merry cristmas and happy new year to you and yours

  2. December 19, 2015 12:44 am

    Nice cards, fun stories and lovely tree and snowman. Hope you all have a lovely Christmas.
    Janine x

  3. Diane J permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:05 am

    You certainly are creating some good memories with Mr. RWS! He sounds like my husband only we go to the Big M store. Also I hope that you continue posting all your creativity for us to see and your wonderful stories. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and may God Bless you and your family.

  4. December 19, 2015 4:15 am

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you, Mr. RWS and Cooper. I always love your art work and the PB products (which I seem to have a lot of, too) that you share with us, your groupies!! I do look forward to your Saturday posts. May your Merry be very!

  5. Michel E permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:17 am

    Merry Christmas.

  6. lindapekrul permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:34 am

    Oh gosh… thanks for some much needed giggles over your shopping trip. Just what I needed today! 🙂 I’m ready to dive back into the “fun” of Christmas madness now!

  7. Jan D., FL permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:52 am

    You always make me laugh so hard….I could totally relate to your Big “C” store shopping experience and getting seperated from hubby. Our roles are reversed from yours, however. It is hubby who, every year, wants to get into the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping. Every year, at the last minute–it’s a tradition now–he decides we haven’t bought enough for the kids and we have to go out and buy more. I get so stressed that I almost start hyperventilating. But, I always survive it. More than the crowds, I hate getting into the traffic…all those people texting and driving. Yikes!!! Just not my cup of tea. LOL

    But, since I like wrapping, making beautiful bows and embellishing packages, I do get something out of the whole experience.

    Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

  8. Cyndee permalink
    December 19, 2015 5:03 am

    Merry Christmas to you too! and thanks for showcasing your pretty cards and for the giggles 😀

  9. Ruth G permalink
    December 19, 2015 5:29 am

    You are a true jewel, Judy. If you had a blog and posted every day about your real life “adventures”, I would read it and love it. May you have a peaceful and joyful holiday. Please know how much your readers appreciate you.

  10. Sandra Andersen permalink
    December 19, 2015 6:13 am

    Your posts are a highlight of my week, and I love Cooper. Blessings to you and your family.

  11. Donna Whitten permalink
    December 19, 2015 7:26 am

    Always love your posts, Merry Christmas!

  12. mjmarmo permalink
    December 19, 2015 7:51 am

    I am still laughing about your trip to the big C. Only difference is my husband wanders with me. That way he can fill the cart with items he wants. And we also dine on a romantic lunch every time we are there. His choice is the hot dog – or two. Have a Merry Christmas!

  13. jane middleton permalink
    December 19, 2015 8:13 am

    Happy Christmas to you all and a big hug to Cooper who I love. x

  14. Diane F. permalink
    December 19, 2015 9:33 am

    I really enjoy your posts and look forward to them especially the photos of Cooper. I can totally relate to hubbys and shopping – we have to be devious ! Merry Christmas to you all and hope 2016 brings you joy and happiness all year through.

  15. December 19, 2015 9:44 am

    Based on this post, I do believe my husband has a second life…with you. Big C store, polish dogs and the hated shopping/browsing. I just can’t figure out how he gets back and forth between the two residences, Maybe he’s got tiny reindeer like Santa. In any case, other then the correct grammar and punctuation, I could have written parts of this blog post. Thanks for the inspiration to get started on my thank you cards and the tears of laughter you’ve provided thus far this year. Always so happy to see “Runs With Scissors” here. May you, Mr. RWS, your family and Cooper enjoy the season and wishing you all the best in the coming new year.

    • judka permalink
      December 19, 2015 12:41 pm

      I checked with Mr. RWS and he assures me that I am more wife than he needs and could not possibly lead a double life! He does have a brother though …….

  16. Sheri K permalink
    December 19, 2015 9:51 am

    Your Mr. RWS sounds just like my Mr. CM (creative manipulations)! He is not a shopper, except when we have our romantic “dates” to the big C store! I have learned to try to entice him to different areas, because we have the Keystone cops situation too! I love your cards this week and I’m jealous of being slipped the key to that studio, how fun would it be to spend the day playing in there! Thanks for the humor and Have a Blessed Christmas and Happy New year!

  17. December 19, 2015 9:56 am

    Once again, you inspire and entertain….thank you so much!
    Have a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!
    Paper Hugs,

  18. December 19, 2015 10:01 am

    Merry, Merry Christmas & wishes for a Happy, Peaceful New Year to you, Judy, & Mr RWS & Cooper! Love your posts & your cards–always! Your first card is a stunner–wonderful choice of colors & now I “need” the snowy grove stamp! I was just at C yesterday–one good thing about being in a small town it’s actually possible to go there without it taking 1/2 day! I found a wonderful $15 fleece jacket & now I’ll have to go check out the plastic boxes!

  19. Marilyn Valadez permalink
    December 19, 2015 10:07 am

    Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to you and yours, Judy! Your card creations are beautiful and I love your commentary, which is always so much fun to read. I love your Saturday musings and I look forward to them so much, nothing like a smile, a chuckle and a big ole belly laugh! Thanks for the good times dear Judy!!!

  20. DebbieP permalink
    December 19, 2015 10:51 am

    I don’t know how you do it. Every time I read your post, I find myself laughing, sometimes crying, and always happy I’ve read your musings, and of course your beautiful card creations. I am so glad I found RWS and Penny Black. I hope you and Mr. RWS, all your loved ones, and Cooper, have a blessed Christmas. May the new year be filled with joy and many more posts…

  21. December 19, 2015 11:54 am

    How FUNNY!!! I LOOOVE your cards too!!! LOL I have to say, I have those kinds of fantasies too. I kind of gave up on the kind of shopping fantasy with pushing & shuving though. My shopping fantasies have turned to just holding the credit card as I punch buttons on this machine. LOL It will have to do for now. Your home looks LOVELY with it’s decorations!!!! MERRY CHRISTMAS dear lady!!!! 😉

  22. Kary permalink
    December 19, 2015 1:36 pm

    I so look forward to the weekends to get your post. Yes, the cards are wonderful – absolutely gorgeous! But to hear your stories and the humor you bring makes my day. My husband and Mr. RWS were probably separated at birth. I don’t know if I’d know what to do in a store by myself without a time limit! Thank you for all you bring to the PB following….

  23. judy G permalink
    December 19, 2015 2:21 pm

    Merry Christmas Judy. I always enjoy reading your stories and even shared this last one with my husband, we had a good laugh. Have a wonderful Christmas!

  24. Deb L permalink
    December 19, 2015 2:55 pm

    Merry Christmas I love reading your stories and hearing about Cooper, not to mention looking at your lovely cards.

  25. Sherry permalink
    December 19, 2015 3:39 pm

    I’ve just recently started reading your blog. Cooper drew me in, so I always look forward to his antics. But, your stories about Mr. RWS are really funny. I’m going to try one of your card techniques with the distress inks. That card is very pretty!

  26. Linda S. in NE permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:01 pm

    I want to wish you, Mr. RWS, and Cooper the best of Christmas. I hope the Penny Black powers that be realize what a jewel they have found in you. Not only do you WOW us every Saturday with their products, but the love of your sense of humor is beyond huge. Thanks for sharing ALL your talents, and your family with us.

  27. barbara lassiter permalink
    December 19, 2015 4:48 pm

    Thank you for always bringing a smile to my face and I wish you and Mr. RWS, other family members and Cooper the very best Christmas and the happiest New Year!

  28. Cheryl Robertson permalink
    December 19, 2015 6:11 pm

    I absolutely love your posts! They always make me laugh and cheer me up. And your talent for card making is remarkable!
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  29. Michelle Sissom permalink
    December 19, 2015 6:48 pm

    I look forward to your cards, Judy and I can hardly wait to read your articles. I just love Cooper and I am sure Mr. RWS is wonderful because my husband is just like him, (hates to shop. I hope you and your sweet family have a wonderful time as we celebrate the greatest Gift ever given. Blessings Michelle Sissom

  30. Sheila Lile permalink
    December 19, 2015 8:12 pm

    I look forward to every Saturday when I get to read your stories and see Cooper. It’s best to travel alone to stores in order to keep the peace. LOL I love Cooper. Merry Christmas.

  31. December 19, 2015 10:10 pm

    I hope you all have a wonderous Christmas and New Year. So wonderful when the grandchildren are there too. I look forward to many more interesting posts next year, I always enjoy your tales. Your husband sounds so much like mine when it comes to shopping but unlike you I learnt many years ago it is much more fun to shop alone.

  32. alexandra s.m. permalink
    December 19, 2015 10:16 pm

    I hope you have a beautiful and happy Christmas dear Judy!
    Thank You so much for the continuous inspiration and for sharing your art and parts of your life with us!

  33. December 20, 2015 3:03 am

    Mrs. RWS…love the card you made for your brother…it looks like the pine cones were stamped on canvas. You know your stitching gets me every time. Love it!!!! Great column today…loved the story of you and Mr. RWS in the big box warehouse. Did you get their fudge too? YUM!!! I hope you, Mr. RWS and Cooper have a wonderful Christmas and look forward to more wonderful Saturdays with you here on the PB blog. HUGS!!!

  34. Kathy H permalink
    December 20, 2015 9:49 am

    I have so enjoyed your musings this year. Thank you! Reading about Mr. RWS’s feelings about shopping is like reading about my own husband. I have to report ahead of time the number of minutes it will take me to purchase something! Have a wonderful holiday!

  35. dawnnz permalink
    December 20, 2015 9:42 pm

    fabulous post as usual Judy. My hubby would so be with yours. He hates the crowds when we shop. We did our Christmas shopping quite early to avoid the late shopper crowds of the last couple of weekends. Merry Christmas Judy and Mr RWS… have an awesome time.

  36. December 21, 2015 9:05 am

    Just wanted to say I look forward to your posts very week. Hope you hubby and Cooper have a wonderful Christmas

  37. December 21, 2015 11:18 am

    Dearest Mr. and Mrs. RWS and Cooper,
    Must tell you how very, extremely very, much I enjoy your postings, your marvelous sense of humor, your love for your family (fur and skin) and your craft. Merry Christmas!

  38. Lisa permalink
    December 22, 2015 10:57 am

    Hi Judy,
    I love reading your post every Saturday. Ahh isn’t marriage wonderful after so many years together. You could be describing my hubby, he has the same behavior when it comes to shopping ,thanks for the chuckle .

    Your cards are beautiful and your house looks very festive. Enjoy the Holidays with Cooper, your family and those cute grandkids. Merry Christmas.

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