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Runs with Scissors

June 18, 2016


Here I am again, hiding out from the Alabama heat and humidity. My scissors were almost too hot to handle today, but I did the best I could.

Happy Father’s Day tomorrow to all the dads, granddads, step-dads and surrogate dads everywhere. When the Dad job is done right it is a beautiful thing to see. I melt when I see a Dad being tender and caring with his children. There is no job more important than parenting, no work more honorable, either.

In spite of my efforts to use up my stash of paper, I know you will understand when I tell you I’ve added a new pad of designer paper; it’s from Penny Black titled Golden Moment and it works perfectly with the Penny Black stamps and dies. And the designs coordinate with each other, too. I will gladly dispose of at least ten paper pads in order to keep this one.


How awesome is that Scroll Hello die? It’s awesome enough to be the star of any card. Here I stacked three diecuts onto a base of designer paper from that new Penny Black designer paper pad Golden Moment. The little birds and flowers on the paper match the birds and flowers from the die set Tweet Things. How tweet is that?


For this card, the first thing I did was to blend an assortment of Memento Luxe inks on a large sheet of white cardstock and then cut my images from that, placing the dies on the colors to suit the image   This time I did not pop out the little pieces from the Swirl Squares diecuts, just to be a little different. Using the four squares together makes a great background for the Coy diecut or other images.


I used the Bed of Roses background stamp with an area masked off for a sentiment to make this card. I have collected a large assortment of Penny Black sentiment stamps and appreciate not only the sentiments they convey, but also the beautiful fonts that add so much to a card. Casual, formal, cute, serious … whatever the need, it’s been met. The Bed of Roses background has been heat embossed with silver and I kept the coloring muted.  I wanted the sentiment to be the focus.


All Girls Road Trip Part Three:

It is time to rescue stranded London sightseers Judy and Judy who have been put off the bus somewhere in Piccadilly Circus. In this instance, the word Circus is from the Latin meaning “circle” so we were not stranded among tight rope walkers and elephants, but rather at an extremely busy coming together of several streets forming a public space. Perhaps it will help if you imagine a smaller version of Times Square in New York City.

A very important bit of information to be aware of while in London is that the cars drive in the opposite lane than they do in the U.S. This means if you are stepping down from a curb into the street, the danger zone is to your right, opposite of what you are used to. I learned this lesson early on and owe my life to Anne who yanked me back onto the curb in just the nick of time.

The Underground entrances in Piccadilly Circus consist of a stairway leading directly under the street; there is no small station over them so we had difficulty locating an entrance to the Underground. The entire time we were running around the circle, Judy kept calling out to me that we needed to find a phone. (Thank you, Captain Obvious!) When we finally found the stairs to the Underground lo and behold – a pay phone. This may sound unbelievable, but the two of us stared at the telephone in total confusion, not able to figure out how it worked. We decided to abandon the telephone idea and just take our chances that we could find the right train to take us to the Underground station near our hotel. In the interest of full disclosure I admit to some very loud and heated discussions taking place before we abandoned the pay phone. Something on the order of “If I knew how to work this blasted thing, I would happily call Anne!”

There is a happy ending to this tale: dear Anne had stationed herself at the exit stairway of the Underground station near our hotel, anxiously praying that we would find our way home. I do think she had some twinges of conscience about leaving us to find our way on our own. All’s well that ends well, and a beer never tasted as good as that first beer at our first Pub that evening.

After a few days in London we packed our bags and boarded the high speed train to York, a city north of London which is about a four hour drive. The train reduced travel time to about two hours. The train ride alone was worth the entire trip. We met many people on their way to Scotland and marveled at the luggage and other items people boarded with: strollers, bicycles, wicker hampers, even a portable sewing machine.

York began as a fortress in AD71. It is home to The Minster, a cathedral first built on its site in the 7th Century. The existing Minster is the fourth on that site, with building begun in 1220 and completed in 1470. Anne, Judy and I had the privilege of attending Sunday service and joined our prayers and singing with echoes of those who came before us hundreds of years ago. Truly, it was a goose bump experience.


We walked on the walls that surround the city, toured the Viking Center, and climbed the 110 steps from the street to the top of Clifford’s Tower. Oh, and back down again.


After two days of exploring and appreciating the wonderful city of York, it was time to return to London. Our last evening in London was spent attending the stage play, Agatha Christie’s “Mousetrap” which at the time had completed forty-five years of continuous performances. It is still running, now in its 62nd year.

Our last day in London found us in various frames of mind. Anne and I were perfectly happy being tourists and had not even thought of being homesick. Anne was not married and had no worries about returning home to domestic life. I, on the other hand, had left husband and teen daughter and all the responsibilities of home and work and loved the feeling of only having myself to care for.

Judy, on the other hand, was suffering. Judy’s husband had anointed Judy Queen of their home and as such, she was not responsible for cooking, cleaning, laundry, yard work or even grocery shopping. One of Judy’s complaints during our hotel stays was that she no longer had her husband to pick up after her or pack or carry her suitcase. She became homesick for the royal treatment she experienced in her home and was ready to return.

My beloved Grandmother used to say, “All good things must come to an end”. It was said in Polish but we all understood what she was saying. And indeed, our lovely all girls road trip came to an end after an amazing ten days.

It has been a joy for me to relive my all girls road trip by way of the Penny Black blog. Anne, Judy and I have since retired from our careers at the Department of Agriculture in Madison, Wisconsin. We stay in touch and meet at retiree luncheons when I visit Wisconsin. And to think, it all began because someone left their newspaper on the lunch room table.


This card was so much fun to make! I sat with the transparent set Floral Fusion in my hands, trying to decide which floral image to use. And then that little burst of brilliance that happens every now and then made me decide to leave ALL the images on the plastic sheet, and press my paper onto them as if it was one large background stamp. I heat embossed with white and then used an assortment of my Luxe inks to do the emboss resist technique. I used the medium doily from the Doily Trio die set and chose a sentiment from the Happy Snippets set. The burst lasted long enough to realize I could thread a ribbon through those holes and use it to attach the sentiment. Of course, all those flowers attracted that tiny butterfly from the Flights of Fancy die set.


This little guy makes my heart melt. All little boys want to be like their Daddy and this tyke has borrowed Daddy’s shoes and car keys and is ready to face the world. This image is from the mini-set correctly named Daddy’s Shoes. I’ve made it into a birthday card here by cutting the number two from the By the Numbers diecut. I think this little guy would make an awesome image for a Father’s Day card, too.


This is Mimi from the transparent set The Best. She is enjoying a trip to Hawaii with her ukulele in hand and the hibiscus flower in her hair. I backed this fussy cut image with the largest doily in the Doily Trio die set. And that awesome background paper is from the new designer paper pad Golden Moment. See how the patterns go so well with the Penny Black images? I added yet another Snippet sentiment in a fun font.

Never, ever, ever, underestimate the value of the person who grooms your dog. Due to my lack of planning, Christina was booked solid and unable to take Cooper last month to be groomed. It’s been a long four weeks looking at his bad haircut.


Here is Cooper ready for the ride home after his appointment at the doggie spa. It may take another time or two to get Cooper’s cut the way we like it. You can be sure I won’t forget to book in advance again.

Oh my, it’s time to stash the scissors, sweep up the scraps and put away the stamps and dies. I like to leave things tidy for the Penny Black designers and the guest designers. I sometimes like to sneak into the studio to watch the magic happen. (Shh, they don’t know I do this). I also enjoy the magic on display in the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery where you post your Penny Black work. Cooper and I read all your comments and appreciate them more than you know.

Shop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies:

15 Comments leave one →
  1. knurse22 permalink
    June 18, 2016 4:05 am

    Sweet cards, Judy! And loved hearing the end details of your amazing London trip!
    Oh, and Cooper, you handsome boy!

  2. Dianne Crowe permalink
    June 18, 2016 4:19 am

    Love your last 4 cards, the little children are really adorable. Cooper looks like his old self again, although I don’t think you showed us his bad hair days. Thanks for the trip to London, especially York as I do believe we have relatives their. Dianne

  3. June 18, 2016 4:37 am

    Lovely Cards. As a British person I loved your visit story, it was so funny but I bet it wasn’t for you at the time. We have similar problems when we visit other Countries that drive on the opposite side of the road to us, lol. Just a little tip if you ever come back to London, don’t ever try to cross the road without using a proper crossing, lol.

  4. Diane T permalink
    June 18, 2016 5:24 am

    Loved your London story! Thanks too for the beautiful card ideas. I have a six pound Pom and also know the value of a good dog groomer. 🐶 Cheers!

  5. barbara lassiter permalink
    June 18, 2016 8:24 am

    Great story! Your adventures are amazing. Love the cards and especially, the Believe card.

  6. June 18, 2016 8:40 am

    Cooper’s looking great & looks like he knows it! Great end of the story, Judy–I’d have probably freaked out! Think we missed York, but I have lots of wonderful memories of the cities we visited so long ago & am so thankful I bought a small woven picture in Coventry that hangs by my vanity still. Your cardmaking skills are on full display today–love them all! Brilliant idea to stamp the entire set Floral Fusion set & it may be my favorite! Enjoy the weekend–hope you stay cool!

  7. June 18, 2016 8:57 am

    Good thing you bought the knew paper pad although, I’m sure your were torn due to your existing stash. The results are so terrific, it would be hard to regret the purchase. Love all the cards but I admit a penchant for florals. So happy you’re not still hanging around Piccadilly Circus…that wouldn’t be my idea of fun, especially with all those card zipping by. I just bet that 1st beer tasted better than the nectar of the Gods. Actually, Cooper is going to look fabulous no matter the hair cut but I do know what you mean. We recently had to change groomers and the new one really didn’t understand our instructions. We think our Beau was completely disconcerted for a few days after his grooming session.

  8. June 18, 2016 9:53 am

    What a treat your blog was today! Your London story AND a picture of handsome Cooper. I have a friend who went to Japan with her husband and son for business. While her husband was working, she and her son went sight seeing. When they were ready to return to their hotel, they did not remember their hotel’s name. In Japan, not knowing the language, and lost! Long story short they contacted the police department and finally were reunited with her husband.

  9. kellybooth permalink
    June 18, 2016 10:21 am

    Such wonderful cards and stories Judy… We had a bad from job too and I can hardly look at our sweet girl. I need to find a new groomer though 😦

  10. donna mikasa permalink
    June 18, 2016 11:39 am

    So glad everything turned out well, especially being saved by Anne off the curb! I love your masculine cards but the Mimi one has my heart! Tell Cooper that his fur will grow back and I think he still looks handsome! Happy Father’s Day to L!

  11. mjmarmo permalink
    June 18, 2016 1:07 pm

    Gorgeous cards! Glad you made it back safely. Cooper looks wonderful even with short fur!

  12. dawnnz permalink
    June 18, 2016 3:36 pm

    As usual Judy, another set of stunning cards. Loved your adventures in London and York. What memories to look back on.

  13. Cath M T permalink
    June 18, 2016 3:56 pm

    Your adventures in London remind me of my own trips there, especially the first, when I was 18. Still in all, fun. Love the Bed of Roses card, and the sentiment is, indeed, in a perfectly lovely font.

  14. Kathy b permalink
    June 18, 2016 6:48 pm

    Absolutely love the swirl die cut card! I need that die! All your cards are great. Loved your travel story…can’t wait for another tale! Cooper looks great! I know all about that not getting on the schedule at the groomers thing. I’ve got 2 schnauzers and hate it when I haven’t called earlier enough and have to wait weeks to get in. My pups LOVE their groomer, so she’s worth the wait, I just need to plan better! Thanks for sharing your art, stories and Cooper, I look so forward to Saturdays!

  15. Jan Castle permalink
    June 18, 2016 11:17 pm


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