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Runs with “So Special” Scissors

February 27, 2016


Can you believe we have seen each other through the month of February? Glad I didn’t have to go through it alone. Will March come roaring in like a lion?

Well, what has come in is the So Special release from Penny Black. Oh, my! More than thirty new dies and half a dozen brush stroke flowers … and then there are the clings and the transparent sets. Elegant, cute, lovely, adorable, beautiful and some humor, too.


The first stamp set I reached for when I arrived here this morning was the Fly High transparent set. This set includes three different birdhouses, two sentiments and a nest complete with eggs and mama bird. I used Penny Black designer papers for my paper piecing and matting. No problem coordinating Penny Black papers.


I could have spent this whole day playing with the Bow Set dies. The card on the left is my version of “the little black dress” that can take you anywhere. The one on the right would make a perfect note card or invitation. This simple design can be changed to suit holidays throughout the year. I can see it in red and white for Valentine’s day; red, white and blue for the 4th of July; red, green and white for Christmas; and green and white for St. Patrick’s day. How about a simple graduation card in school colors?

Note: Glue Dots have always been my friend, but never more so when assembling the bows and mounting them to your card. They make the process easy and trouble-free.


The Gentle Day transparent set features two larger images, one a rose and the other a collage. For this card, I chose the smallest image, the sweet floral spray. I seldom use the smaller images in sets, but this one called out to me. It complements the main focus of my card, the lovely sentiment. Penny Black treats us to beautiful sentiments for many different occasions using an incredible assortment of fonts.

Chapter 4: The Day Airplanes were Falling from the Sky

Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001 was a perfect September morning. Bright sunshine and clear blue skies made for perfect traveling. We had a five hour trip planned from Pennsylvania to Camping World in New Jersey. We started out early without R and S who needed to fuel up their truck. We would meet them later in New Jersey.

Mr. RWS and I were enjoying the quiet, choosing not to struggle with finding a clear radio station. We had been on the road for a few hours when the cell phone rang. I was so happy to hear the voice of one of my friends and began chatting immediately. She interrupted me to ask where we were. I cheerfully told her we were on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, heading to New Jersey, and continued to chatter about our recent adventures.

My friend interrupted once more: “Judy, you don’t know what’s happening, do you?” Well, no, I did not know anything was happening.

Holly then relayed the news that the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center had been crashed into by airplanes; an airplane flew into the Pentagon; and another airplane had crashed into a field in Pennsylvania.

At the time she called, no one knew how many more planes would be falling from the sky. Her voice was trembling and the fear was obvious. Quickly I switched from phone to radio where the news was confirmed.

I turned to Mr. RWS and said, “We have to go home.” Mr. RWS replied, “Judy, we have no home.” I then told my husband, “Life as we know it will never be the same.

My motherly instincts kicked in and I tried calling each of our kids. All cell phone circuits were busy and phone calls were impossible for the rest of that day. There was no way to contact R and S who were about an hour behind us. Did they even know what was happening?

Once again we had to find our own way. The reports from the radio were terrifying. Bridges and tunnels into New York City and surrounding areas were being closed. Traffic into the city was banned. I looked around us at the many vehicles speeding toward an unknown. What was the best plan in light of this devastating news?

Because we couldn’t reach R and S to discuss changes, we decided to stay with the original agenda and head to Camping World. But could we get through the tunnels before they closed?

I’m not sure either of us even breathed for the next couple of hours. Every few minutes we heard about this route or that route being closed. It was like one of those dreams where you are running and running but don’t get anywhere.

At last we pulled into the parking lot at Camping World and checked in with their service department. While our awning was being repaired, we spent time in the waiting room watching a small TV with poor reception, but good enough for us to see the horror that the rest of the country had already witnessed.

Later R and S arrived with stories of their own. Their puzzlement at the gas station when the credit card machine didn’t work and the owner said “something was going on in New York”. The rest stops were barricaded with park personnel making sure no one went past the barricades.

We had no hookups for water, sewer or electric so we spent the evening by lantern light, every now and then turning on the battery operated TV to check on any further news.  And then someone mentioned the couple we had met the day before at the rest stop. We prayed that their tour of the World Trade Center had not begun before 9 am that morning.

As we sat outside our RV’s that evening and all through the night, the roar of fighter jets patrolling the coastline filled the air. That sound emphasized for us the seriousness of the situation we were in.

Our plan had been to travel the next morning to Washington, D.C. for our scheduled visit to the Holocaust Museum. Well, Washington, D.C. was closed. All tourist attractions, National Park Service sites, the Metro, the Capitol, the White House … everything was off limits to visitors. Streets were barricaded, the public was told to stay away.

We were distraught. It didn’t seem right to go ahead with our RV trip in the wake of such tragedy. We couldn’t stay parked in that parking lot, either. It seemed almost sacrilegious to go on ahead to Williamsburg, the next stop we had planned after D.C. Faced with few options, we journeyed to Williamsburg.

It turned out to be just the right place to spend time during those first few days. I have a vivid memory of the costumed “Patrick Henry” giving his “Give me liberty or give me death” speech. It was as appropriate on 9/12/2001 as it was in 1775 when he addressed the Second Virginia Convention asking for support to raise a militia and fight the British. His impassioned plea to do what was necessary to protect the young America and her freedom was most appropriate in light of what our country had just experienced. It was a sober but united group at Williamsburg that day.

To Be Continued: Winding Roads and saying farewell


Trees, birds, flowers … nature’s organic images that are suitable for so many occasions. Feathers is the name of the die I used here. I blended several Memento Luxe inks on watercolor paper and then cut the feathers with the die. All three feathers cut at once, a real convenience. Once again, glue dots hold the trio together and attach the gem and hold the arrangement to the card.


When I saw the Jubilance cling image of a bouquet with a bow, I knew just what to do. Sunny yellow flowers colored with Copics and tied together with the sweet bow made from the Bow Set. It was also a perfect time to add a tag from the Circle Tags die set. There are four different dies in this set ready for your own message or use the one I did, perfect for any occasion.


Since Runs with Scissors has been about RV’ing lately, I could not resist this camper image from the older transparent set Bon Voyage.   Since I could not find a stamp showing rows of parked RV’s, I decided to park this camper in the woods. The cling stamp Snowy Grove provided my National Park campsite. Hooray for versatile stamps.


It is a happy day for Cooper when any package arrives, but especially when a box is delivered from Penny Black. Cooper sniffs and snoops and pokes and paws until he is convinced there is nothing to eat inside the box. He then turns the box over to “she who plays with Penny Black stamps and dies”.

Well, Penny Black friends, I have one more RV adventure story and then it is back to the present. I appreciate your hanging in there with me and all of your comments. The RV stories have gotten us through the month of February, no small accomplishment. And now we have the So Special release to see us through until spring. I can’t wait to see your work in the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery. Good-bye until next time.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies:

Stamps: 30-341 Fly High, 30-340 Gentle Day, 30-350 Sentiment Collection, 40-436 Jubilance, 30-106 Word Express, 30-224 Bon Voyage, 40-418 Snowy Grove

Dies: 51-212 Bow Set, 51-204 Circle Tags, 51-214 Feathers, 51-027 Triple Banner

Designer Paper: 80-008 Gentle Whisper, 80-012 Wintertime

30 Comments leave one →
  1. Mary Lehett permalink
    February 27, 2016 4:06 am

    RWS: you are a great story teller and love the cards…..especially ‘tweet’ birdhouse.

  2. Diane J permalink
    February 27, 2016 4:15 am

    Well this story is a sad one. Sad for the entire county. However I still look forward to the next one. Your cards are wonderful. Love the camper one!

  3. Mary W permalink
    February 27, 2016 4:37 am

    i enjoy your writing so much. You can do light hearted, funny and serious equally well. Thanks for the story.

  4. February 27, 2016 4:53 am

    a gorgeous selection of cards using the awesome Penny Black supplies! A very moving story. I remember the day vividly – my daughter and I were visiting a good friend and saw what was happening on news broadcasts. We are in the UK and were filled with horror at what was happening to our American friends. We were feeling your terror, pain and shock. Still do. Your story really helps me understand how it was for you all at the time and I feel so sad. You tell your stories wonderfully well and I look forward to the next one. xxx

  5. Linda Page permalink
    February 27, 2016 5:07 am

    I think we all remember where we were on 9/11. I was riding the bus to work in downtown Dallas, listening to my Walkman radio when I heard the news. The entire country was in shock. You should write books as you are a great storyteller. I love the cards today, especially the birdhouse, the “little black dress” and the camper! Can’t wait for the final installment. Love to Cooper!

  6. Diane permalink
    February 27, 2016 5:52 am

    Your recent 9-11 story made my heart pound again. Such a disturbing time. And you are right, things have never been the same. I will always remember all of the lives that were lost or forever changed on that day. And while it is true that is a different world today, reaching out to others can make our world a better place. The small act of sending cards shares kindness and remind us that we are all connected. Connection encourages empathy and understanding and decreases fear and anger. Expressing creativity is one way to bring more peace to our world. Thank you for sharing your stories and creativity.

  7. Jan D., FL permalink
    February 27, 2016 5:55 am

    I still cry when I see clips of the towers coming down. I was in the air that morning when the towers were hit….thank God I had a fairly short flight that morning and our pilot got us on the ground quickly. Since NYC and NJ were part of my portfolio, I was so thankful not to be flying north that morning. In the midst of all the tragedy, everyone seemed to be working together and there was a sense of family even among strangers. People were kind to each other and helpful. Sad that it sometimes takes a tragedy for people to be kind to each other.

  8. February 27, 2016 6:09 am

    Another fine installment in the card making/telling of life series Judy. I appreciate your including your 9/11 story. We were active duty at the time and knew what it would mean for us personally. Checking our vehicle everywhere we went [identified with base stickers], the absolute quiet and lack of contrails in the skies for so many days after the attacks, and wouldn’t you know–the very first time I was leaving my children ages 6 and 2 to fly up for a ‘fun’ ‘get-away’ house hunting trip to our next duty station–I was fraught with deciding whether to stay or go. I ended up going on one of the first commercial flights to take off after the hiatus. Talk about surreal. Wasn’t even on any of the original flights I’d booked; everything was fluid/changing as I was traveling. Even had to detour into New Hampshire instead of Maine and drive the rest of the trip by rental car. And the stories I heard from fellow travelers…how quiet and solemn the airports were as we walked by the tv monitors showing the still burning towers…I will always remember the great relief of my friends in Maine who welcomed me to their home after that journey. And I will also remember the couple I met in the security line who went out and booked a trip flying ‘just because’ they wanted to show terrorists they weren’t going to stop our way of life. America…land of the free and home of the brave.

  9. Marliese Zimmerman permalink
    February 27, 2016 6:20 am

    A very moving story!
    As always, your cards are beautiful. Now, how many great new dies and stamps can I afford to buy and still pay my rent and eat!

  10. Judy permalink
    February 27, 2016 6:33 am

    It was a scary time even being at home! I can’t imagine what you went through in your camper!
    Loved your cards. As always!

  11. February 27, 2016 7:12 am

    Reblogged this on Spreading Sunshine with Paper & Ink.

  12. February 27, 2016 7:15 am

    A great reminder of the solidarity our Beautiful Country came together on, Judy! So adore every card you make and these are just awesome. Hmmm, love the way Cooper inspects your boxes for you…Mr. Protective! Guess I’ll start letting my Zoey start inspecting mine and see if she does a good job, LOL!

  13. karenajo permalink
    February 27, 2016 7:40 am

    I am sure most of us remember exactly where we were on that fateful day- you were just almost too close to the events !!! Thanks for sharing your travels and all your super cards today – always look forward to your creations ! Can tell Cooper is nearby wherever you are – he is adorable !

  14. February 27, 2016 7:41 am

    Thanks for sharing your art in card-making, Judy. You make these smaller stamped images come to life. 9/11 is one of the saddest chapter in human history, I think it is most appropriate to remember that tragic day since we all live through it. Looking forward to hearing your next RV adventure.

  15. February 27, 2016 7:55 am

    Oh how I adore your birdhouse card, Judy! You could enter it at CCCB
    And the last card is wonderful–although we do avoid taking our trailer out in the snow. We were in a houseboat on Shasta Lake on 9/11 & had no idea what was happening until we went into a store & I happened to hear the radio. It was terrifying & so sad to get a lesson in evil. We’ll never forget laying on top of the houseboat that night as we always did but not one plane in the sky. Thanks for another great post & I’m looking forward to the last chapter! A pat on the head for sweet Cooper!

  16. Jan permalink
    February 27, 2016 8:20 am

    First, we have a black version of Cooper. His name is Gizmo and he lives up to that name. I think you should seek to publish a book(s) of Cooper’s adventures. I see lot’s of book sales because your stories (and pictures) are so very entertaining. The camper adventures might also be a great book. We have been campers and can relate so much to those stories. Lastly, as always I look forward to seeing your cards. Keep make my day.

  17. DebbieP permalink
    February 27, 2016 8:50 am

    A very moving post this morning. I think we all remember the horror of 9/11, and in the aftermath, the American resolve to not change our way of life in spite of the attack. It’s one of the many things that makes America so great! If only our current politicians running for president could reflect on those feelings again and stop with all the dirty politicking?? Sorry, I have stepped off my soapbox….Your cards were all lovely today. I am a bird person, so love the birdy one. And my Border Collie, Chloe, also inspects everything coming into the house before we are allowed to unpack, un-bag, or undress! Thanks for getting my Saturday started.

  18. Sheri K permalink
    February 27, 2016 8:50 am

    Gorgeous cards-and thanks for the next “chapter” of the great RV story!

  19. Harriet permalink
    February 27, 2016 8:51 am

    Wonderful cards and thanks for the RV memories. 9/11 will remain an enormous tragedy that knit all of us together albeit for a short time. I know each of us has a memory of that day that will live with us forever.

  20. mjmarmo permalink
    February 27, 2016 9:17 am

    Wonderful cards! Thanks for sharing your travel adventures!

  21. February 27, 2016 9:38 am

    Your cards are really very happy. Love the yellow one the most (no surprise there, as it’s my favorite color). The bows on the notecards are adorable, loved how you framed them. And who could resist that little trailer. Adorable.
    I remember the days after we were attacked vividly. Everytime I think of them, all those feelings come rushing up in me. Prior to that time, I didn’t think much about how I felt about my country. Let’s just say that has changed dramatically.

  22. Kathy B permalink
    February 27, 2016 10:35 am

    Always enjoy your cards. The RV stories are memorable. And I always look forward to what is happening with Cooper. He has a lot in common with my Sammie and Geena Bea. Boxes are always of great interest at our home for the same reason!

  23. quilterlin permalink
    February 27, 2016 11:02 am

    I echo everyone’s sentiments, Judy – you are a wonderful story teller…you had me on the edge of my seat! What a perfect place Williamsburg turned out to be for the days following this awful part of our history! I ADORE your first card today; the bird house condo and your paper-piecing are perfection! Sending along warm hugs, my friend!

  24. Dianne Crowe permalink
    February 27, 2016 12:16 pm

    Thanks for sharing your work with us, love Penny Black stamps. What a time you hade with travel and camping that day. Cooper is quite adorable.

  25. February 27, 2016 2:46 pm

    I guess we all remember that sad day vividly!!!!!
    Thanks for sharing your projects and your story.
    Paper Hugs,

  26. creatingincolors permalink
    February 27, 2016 4:58 pm

    Our emotions of 9/11 are as fresh today as they were in 2001. Peace.

  27. February 27, 2016 6:42 pm

    Oh, how I look forward to your stories, Judy! And, like everyone else, I will always remember that day and how I spent my time. The camper card is perfect for your written series, love the brown with small red accents. And the paper pieced bird house is adorable! So glad Cooper gets to come visit every week – I so look forward to seeing his happy face! Hugs to you!

  28. February 28, 2016 6:06 am

    Lovely cards. I am enjoying your camping adventures writing, even though this one was a sad time in our country.

  29. jan metcalf permalink
    February 28, 2016 6:27 am

    I really like your “happy camper” card! Although your camping experiences do not sound all that happy for the beginning of your journey.

  30. alexandra s.m. permalink
    February 28, 2016 5:25 pm

    Great post dear!
    Your cards are beautiful 😉
    Thank You~

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