Runs with Scissors and… LIQUIDS!
Oh, I hope I haven’t been ignoring you. When I am stamping, coloring, cutting and pasting here at Penny Black’s I get lost in a world of my own. No cares or worries are allowed in this stamping paradise. Welcome, so glad you could visit.
Now that it is February, the Valentine decorations are up and there are dishes of those little candy hearts set about. They make a great “munchie” while making Valentines from the Love Always release. Hmmm, let me read one of those hearts before I share the cards I’ve made: “Get to Work”. Wow! When did those sweet love notes turn crabby?
As fantastic as this release is for making Valentines, I love that it is also versatile enough for making cards for birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, thinking of you, and sending love notes to kids and grandkids.
I’ve used my favorite emboss resist technique blending Teal Zeal and Sweet Plum Tsukineko’s Memento Luxe inks (they blend like creamy butter!) over my stamped and white embossed beautiful heart image from the Love and Hugs transparent set. I wanted to make the card less of a Valentine and more of a “just because” card so I added the white butterfly diecut from the Flicker and Flutter die set. The combination of hearts and butterflies made me happy.
I know I have talked a lot about the versatility of this release, but this card is 100% pure Valentine! The Valentine Wish die produces that bold sentiment and I added a border made from the Love Always die. And because I run with scissors, it’s ok to put a butterfly on my Valentine. I stacked a white butterfly on top of a red one just to calm down all that red. The Love Always border will also be at home on spring- and summer- themed cards when cut from happy-colored cardstock.
I eliminated the hearts hovering above the heads of these sweet mice from the Critter Love transparent set and used the image for a “just because” card. Who wouldn’t love to receive a hug in the mail from a friend (or a Mom or Grandma). Simple Copic coloring and some heavy duty pop dots make the mice in the moon seem to float high in the heavens.
“How we Followed our Dream and Nearly Lost our Way.”
Chapter 2: Trouble with Liquids
When I left the story last week, Mr. RWS and I had bid good-bye to friends and family and were leaving the apartment after spending the previous two weeks sleeping on a mattress on the floor.
We had planned ahead and disposed of the used mattress that came with our used RV, believing it would be like sleeping in our own bed if we could put our mattress from home on the bed in the RV.
Note: A bed (like many other things) in an RV functions differently than your bed at home. The base of the bed is a queen-sized box with a cover that opens upward with the help of hydraulic lifts so that one can access the storage space created by that box. Little did we know that an RV mattress weighs weigh significantly less than a regular mattress. Are you following me? Once we put our mattress on the RV platform we learned the hydraulic lifts were no longer able to assist with lifting the now-too-heavy mattress.
This became important to me because the space under the bed was where I stored my stamping supplies. (Yes, dear reader, all my supplies fit under the bed). From that day forward, accessing my stamps was a lesson in brute strength and imaginative body contortions to hold up the mattress with one hand and reach for things with the other!
Not to let such a minor inconvenience deter us, we hitched the RV to the truck and off we went to our first destination on this lifelong journey. Keep in mind that my husband’s only experience driving a truck towing a 35 ft. trailer was in the parking lot of the building where we worked. A friend with over-the-road trucking experience set up a course with empty milk bottles and after an hour or so of tutoring declared Mr. RWS capable of being the captain of our RV (and our lives!).
Our maiden voyage was to a campground an hour’s drive via the Interstate from Madison to, ironically, Watertown, Wisconsin. The plan was to wait there until we could meet up with Mr. RWS’s brother (R) and his wife (S) who would journey with us in their own RV to New England. This first stop gave us a chance to try everything out, learn the lessons we needed to learn, and then have smooth travels thereafter. You need to know I held my breath that entire hour’s trip, not so sure the trailer would stay attached.
The route we drove took us past the building where I worked and because I let them know we were on our way my former co-workers all gathered around the floor to ceiling windows to wave us on our way. It’s the closest I will ever experience a ticker tape parade.
We had a lovely campsite on the river shore, the only drawback being we were not hooked to a sewer line so we needed to be aware of the limits of our water holding tanks.
Note: an RV has two distinctly separate water storage tanks. One is for “grey water”, the water that’s been used for showers and dish washing and the second tank is for “black water” which is the waste from the toilet. RV parks and campgrounds have very strict rules about using only a dumping station to empty those tanks.
Once we had parked the RV, set up the dish for the TV and put up our awning, Mr. RWS set out for the golf course, leaving me to occupy myself with my stamps. (Oh, dear Reader! I have no words that could adequately share with you how important my stamping hobby was to me during the years we traveled. It was something familiar when nothing else was familiar; a comfort during worrisome and lonesome times; and a reason for being excited to arrive at the next destination with a stamp store.) But I digress.
I was happily sitting on the floor of the RV, (I was younger) doing my stamping thing when I noticed some wet paper on the floor. Looking up toward the “kitchen” sink I saw that I had left the faucet running and the sink was overflowing. Wait a minute! If the sink was overflowing, then the faucet had been running for quite a while and the grey water tank was full.
Note: Water pressure in an RV is lower than at home and running water is very quiet.
This was a problem larger than forgetting to turn off the faucet and wiping up the floor. Properly emptying the tank at the dump station meant having to rehitch the trailer onto the truck. This also meant having to pack up everything we had just unpacked. I knew Mr. RWS would not be a happy camper. Thankfully a security employee stopped by to welcome us and I tearfully explained what I had done, how new we were at this RV stuff, and how upset my husband would be. And like we say in Alabama, “Bless his Heart”. Knowing it was all clean water and would do no harm, he bent the rules and opened the valve that let the water flow onto the ground. I do believe he saved our marriage.
Little did I know this was just the first of our “troubles with liquids”, and that some sage advice from that security employee would profoundly affect the next few years of our life.
TO BE CONTINUED
Once I discovered how beautifully those Memento Luxe inks blended, I had to do another emboss resist card. This time I used more traditional Valentine or love-themed colors, Dandelion, Rose Bud and Rhubarb Stalk. This could be an “un-Valentine or a card for the young women in your life. I love that designer paper from the Penny Black 6×6 paper pad Painted Blooms. I used my distressing tool with the same ink and gently went around the edges to give the paper a more vintage look. That sweet little stamp set is going to be used throughout the coming spring and summer.
I think this card is my own “Secret Garden”. The bright pink blossoms from the Love Always die are bursting from the brick wall that surrounds their garden home. I stamped the Brick Wall background using smoky grey ink after having wiped off the ink in the center of the stamp. I used dimensional tape to set the oval frame up a bit so the flowers appear to be coming through the wall. The Brick Wall stamp is one I’ve used often when I need a hand-stamped background. It works well with so many of Penny Black’s focal images.
And last, but in no way least, is this sweet miss from the mini set XOXO. I went all out with the red and white theme this time so she could be “Little Miss Valentine”. If you changed the color scheme, she can be “Happy Birthday”, “Thinking of You” or “Just Because”. She is fun to color and just the right size to be the star of the show.
Mother Nature treated us to balmy 67 degree day on the last day of January. Cooper was so happy to spend time in his favorite chair on the patio. Cooper hopes you are enjoying balmy weather, too.
It is time to put away the stamps and dies along with the RV memories for now. I plan to spend a few more weeks sharing some of the more significant events of our years on the road. If there were mistakes to be made you can be certain we made them. One problem I had to solve was how to mail the defective aluminum wheels back to the RV company when we discovered they were the cause of our multiple flat tires. And why did the closet pole keep collapsing; and why were the cupboard doors coming off. Ahh, yes; there is more to come.
Before I go home I am going to stop by the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery to admire your beautiful work. So happy you stopped by today.
Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies:
- Stamps: 30-324 Love and Hugs, 30-331 Critter Love, 30-329 Tweeting Love, 30-326 Happy Hearts, 40-137 Brick Wall
- Dies: 51-110 Flicker and Flutter, 51-186 Love Always, 51-189 Valentine Wish, 51-025 Love Expressions, 51-181 Love is Growing
- Designer Paper: 80-009 Painted Blooms
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