Skip to content

Runs with Scissors

October 1, 2016

Happy World Cardmaking Day! We can’t think of a better way to celebrate than with the talented Judy Jung! And if you’re running with scissors and making cards today, too, we’d love to see your Penny Black creations– simply upload them to our Penny Circle Flickr Gallery and/or our Facebook page.  Now take it away, Judy… 


Hello and welcome! It seems unbelievable, but I just turned the page from September to October. Here in Alabama the weather fairies don’t seem to have a calendar. We are still hot and humid and need rain. If you are in a part of the world that is enjoying the change of seasons and the beautiful fall foliage, I confess to a bit of envy. It won’t be long, however, before Mother Nature turns the green mountains that surround us into a gorgeous tapestry that is worth waiting for.

All is right with my world. The new washing machine arrived and quickly caught up with the backlog. I am getting used to the different sounds my high efficiency washer makes as it scrubs my clothes clean and saves water at the same time. I am all for multi-tasking.

Speaking of multi-tasking, I was able to wash clothes and have fun on the Penny Black blog at the same time. Here’s what happened when I got to playing with the goodies here in the studio:


There are so many ways to use the assortment of stamps in the Spooky Fun transparent set. I love mixing the elements up. This time it’s a black cat and black bats and a blackboard.


In my futile quest to be more like Birgit, I recently bought some linen textured cardstock. I used it as the base for the Perfect Pear image. The pear and leaves were colored using Distress pens directly on the stamp.   By using my MISTI, I was able to stamp and restamp the image until I obtained the result I liked. This pear image is not just for Christmas anymore. Oh, and I realized Birgit has nothing to worry about from me!


The Festive slapstick stamp is a great help in making one layer cards for Christmas. Here I’ve stamped the image with VersaMark ink and then heat embossed with silver embossing powder. I added dimension to the dots with some silver enamel and a bit of silver ribbon with a bow. When using embossing powder on a dark background, be sure to prep your cardstock with an anti-static pad. And don’t ask me why I know this.

Another Happy Ending

Last week I wrote about my grand nephew Michael being married this weekend. I commented on how much I love happy endings, and certainly Michael and his bride are writing the happy ending to their story.

In a previous Runs with Scissors I wrote about my issues with the insurance company that provides our homeowner’s insurance coverage. The issue was that they raised my premium by 78%, but proudly announced that I now have hurricane coverage.

For those of you who are wondering how my efforts to have our policy reviewed and the premium lowered I am very happy to announce my very own happy ending.

As you may recall, my first phone calls to Customer Service were unproductive, resulting only in what sounded like a prepared speech given to any caller whose rates were increased. Even the supervisor’s response to my concerns was the same speech, perhaps spoken with a little more authority.

Finally a letter to the Vice President of Client Service resulted in a phone call about a week later from Clare from the office of Client Service. Clare was probably more cheerful than my other contacts, but still offering only the standard speech.

I am nothing if not stubborn. I viewed Clare as the obstacle standing in the way of what I needed to have happen. I met her sweetness with my stubbornness and stubbornness won. She finally agreed to have our policy reviewed and recalculated “by hand” and would get back to me.

Ten days later I called Clare to check on the progress of the recalculation as the date for paying the premium was rapidly approaching. She assured me the policy was still under review and she would call me in about a week or ten days when she expected the work to be completed. Evidently live human beings calculating a premium work at a slower pace than the computer normally assigned that task.

Imagine my surprise when at 7:45 last Wednesday evening my phone rang and Clare was on the line. The first thing I said after “hello” was “I hope you have some good news for me.” She hesitated, but finally said she had mostly good news, it was not pure good news. Our premium did go up but only slightly.

The really good news was that they lowered our premium by almost $500. Honestly, Clare spoke so rapidly and my heart was pounding in my ears so hard that I missed a lot of what she was saying. I do know there was no apology, just gratitude that I had brought this matter to their attention. Had they realized it later, she said, it would have caused them more work to straighten things out. (Insert eye roll here) It seems that somehow someone mistakenly determined that our address was located on the Gulf coast, thus the huge increase in premium. (Dear Reader, I did try to tell the very first person I spoke with that this is probably what happened).

I tried to respond to Clare in a calm and reasonable manner. But in reality, I had jumped from my chair in the den and raced madly signaling to Mr. RWS that the news was good from our insurance company. Mr. RWS is not very good at deciphering flapping hands waving wildly in the air, especially while in the middle of watching his favorite TV show. So I was eager to end the conversation with Clare so I could share the good news and do a happy dance in the living room.

I ask you, how often does David the customer win against Goliath the insurance company?

There is a lesson here, dear Reader. It is easy to Google any company and find someone’s name that appears on their letterhead or is on the Board of Directors. They may not be the one that handles your issue, but they will assign it to someone and they will make sure the issue is dealt with. Poor Clare thought she could just check off my name on her to do list by explaining to me, once again, how all Alabama residents experienced a rate hike. She had no idea I had my slingshot armed with the smoothest, roundest stone I could find. Because she called my home with my good news long after normal business hours, I have to believe poor Clare was overwhelmed with customer complaints about rate hikes; probably most of them from residents of Alabama.


I love bird images. The transparent set Winter Joy includes this bird on a branch as well as the holly leaves. I blended Luxe inks on white cardstock and then stamped the bird and holly stamps onto the appropriate colors with fussy cutting following. I really appreciate that the stamp designer included a “left” and “right” set of holly leaves so that it is possible to encircle or frame an image with the holly. Thanks, Penny Black for thinking of that! This set also includes a gorgeous poinsettia and corner frame of holly, as well as a beautiful sentiment. I will be using this set again!


The large slapstick stamp Rendezvous is a gorgeous stamp, filling up an entire card front. However, there are so many gorgeous sentiments and fonts in the Penny Black sentiment sets that I wanted to incorporate the tree and a sentiment onto a card. The solution: half of the tree. Again, embossing in white on a dark background … I think sometimes the embossing powder is just floating in the air and lands on the dark cardstock when you are not looking. I have no other explanation for having to redo this card several times due to stray embossing powder.


I have a long way to go to complete my challenge of using the Snowy stamp every week until Christmas. I believe this is Snowy number seven out of a total of eighteen. I have less than a dozen more to go. This time I used a tree from the Woodland Beauty transparent set along with a snow bank from the Prancers set. I love how easy it is to cut Snowy out using the die from the Frosty’s Snow set. Snowy and I are still friends. We will see what happens twelve cards from now.


Cooper is relieved to see the empty space in the laundry closet once again occupied by a washing machine. However, he is a little puzzled because this washer does not have an agitator up the middle. He does like the window in the lid, though.

I have learned that after the picture of Cooper, it is time to say good bye until next time. I do want to thank all of you for the good wishes for Michael and Kaley as they begin their married life. I will be seeing them later today at the wedding and will pass those kind thoughts and comments along. In the meantime, I am savoring my victory and basking in the thought that I have hurricane coverage on my entirely land locked home surrounded by mountains. Please share your Penny Black art with all of us in the Penny Circle Flickr Gallery.

shopShop for today’s featured Penny Black supplies



22 Comments leave one →
  1. October 1, 2016 4:23 am

    I idolize Birgit also but I want to say your pear card is truly beautiful.

  2. knurse22 permalink
    October 1, 2016 5:20 am

    I guess I shouldn’t relay my request that you continue to find creative ways to continue Snowy after the new year, huh? LOL—such an endearing stamp! All your sweet Christmas cards again remind me that I haven’t made one card yet. I promised myself I would get my cards done early this year, since we had just moved into our new home last Christmas and I didn’t do cards. This rainy weekend might be the push I need!
    Glad your perseverance won with the insurance company! And best wishes with your new washer!

  3. Marliese permalink
    October 1, 2016 5:23 am

    Love the retelling of your encounter with your insurance company.
    As always, your cards are beautiful. Will have to try the white embossing on a dark card keeping in mind your instructions about avoiding stray embossing powder.

  4. Fran Gumprecht permalink
    October 1, 2016 5:36 am

    Thanks for all the inspiration of your beautiful creations!
    So happy you won the battle with the insurance giant! Enjoy the wedding! I’m sure you will!

  5. creatingincolors permalink
    October 1, 2016 5:59 am

    Once again, I so enjoy your writing, and also take away inspiration from your cards. So glad you made progress with the insurance company. It shouldn’t be that difficult and they can sure put customers through the wringer. Hope Cooper enjoys his new washing machine with a window. And blessings to Michael and Kaley.

  6. mjmarmo permalink
    October 1, 2016 6:30 am

    Congrats on winning the fight against Golliath! It does work to keep going up the chain to find someone to talk to! SUch lovely cards! Have fun at the wedding!

  7. October 1, 2016 7:43 am

    Great cards….as always. Hooray for you Judy!!!! Your little round stone hit the mark! I am sure sharing your story will help a lot of other folks in the same situation!!!! Again, HOORAY FOR YOU!!!!
    Paper Hugs,

  8. DebbieP permalink
    October 1, 2016 7:52 am

    Another week, another month…this year has gone by so quickly. No offense, but to think ANYONE can compete with Birgit or Mimi is just silly – they are not human!. I love your Festive card, probably because you chose the purple background color. Of course I watch each week to see what Snowy is up to as well. Glad to hear the washer has been replaced and you can catch up. Why is it that laundry piles up so quickly, for just 2 people??? I miss one day of doing laundry and I feel like it takes 3 or 4 days to catch up. And congrats on winning the battle with the insurance company. Best wishes to the bride and groom.

  9. Verna Angerhofer permalink
    October 1, 2016 9:32 am

    All your cards you created are all so beautiful and I am glad the laundry dilemma is resolved now for you. Also, congrats on winning a great victory against an insurance company. I am doing a happy dance for you too! (Well, not really) I can barely walk so I guess dancing is out of the question pretty much unless it is a mighty slow one. But I am glad it was resolved in your favor.

  10. October 1, 2016 10:16 am

    Well, that victory glow is certainly working wonders on your creative mind. All the cards this week are little masterpieces. Apparently, though, you insurance company has never seen a map of Alabama…sad, isn’t it. I’ll bet Clare wishes she’s paid more attention in high school geography. Anyway, congratulations on your winning ways. And, here’s to David & Kaley’s happiness.

  11. Linda S in NE permalink
    October 1, 2016 10:45 am

    I want to offer a huge “Congratulations” on your victory and perseverance with your insurance carrier. I am very proud of you! As to your new washing machine, what happened that appliance manufacturers think we need a window in the lid of our washing machine?? Is there some recently discovered hanky-panky going on inside there that we best keep an eye on? Heaven forbid our machines may start cranking out itty bitty baby socks instead of completely eating a lone sock every now and then. Best keep an eye on things for at least a couple of weeks. Enjoy the wedding, and I send my happy wishes for the new couple.

  12. Denise Sullivan permalink
    October 1, 2016 7:32 pm

    My adult children often find it amazing to them when I complain about a problem or issue and then later tell them problem solved. As a single mom I learned early on not to take no for an answer. I don’t, I’m not sure if I simply wear them down or say just the right words to change the mind of the person on the other end of the line. So your story is one I will pass of to them. I am so glad you didn’t just accept the first answer you got. BTW I love you referring to your husband as Mr. RWS that is so cute! Love your posts! Happy Fall to all!

  13. Patt H. permalink
    October 1, 2016 8:09 pm

    Gorgeous cards, as usual! I especially love the pear card. Such beautiful coloring ! I am waiting for my Misti right now. After seeing soooo many wonderful creations using one, I finally decided it is a “must have”.. Thanks for the insurance story. Just think, you saved a lot of money by not giving in & you might need that extra money for a few new stamps!

  14. October 1, 2016 8:29 pm

    Beautiful cards.
    So glad the insurance has worked out! A lesson for us all.

  15. dawnnz permalink
    October 1, 2016 11:57 pm

    Gorgeous cards Judy. well done on the insurance front.

  16. Dianne Crowe permalink
    October 2, 2016 5:02 am

    Love your first card but I do love your Christmas cards much more. Glad your insurance company finally saw the light.

  17. October 2, 2016 1:22 pm

    Hurrah for David–I mean Judy!! Apologies to insurance agents, but I do hate the whole system. So happy you got what you deserved! Love the variety of cards in this post–love the elegance & simplicity of the fancy tree on purple!

  18. Sharon Russell permalink
    October 2, 2016 2:55 pm

    Beautiful card, as usual, and glad Cooper is happy once again. Congrats, too, on winning with the insurance company! My line is usually “really? Well my next phone call will be to my attorney…”-gets results pronto every time!😉

  19. Swendner Kathryn permalink
    October 2, 2016 9:07 pm

    Could you tell me where you get the linen textured cardstock?

  20. October 3, 2016 2:45 am

    I love your art and your wonderful colorful stories equally, and that is saying a lot for your stories, as I’m a craftaholic. LOL Thanks for sharing so much with us, your readers. It really is lovely and means a lot. Hugs, Kristina

  21. October 3, 2016 3:37 am

    What a super duper post for WCMD. Adorable cards, humor, tenacity and a cute dog. Judy, you and I have to give up on ever being a Birgit or Jill…just ain’t gonna happen girlfriend. You have your own style and it is completely gorgeous. But you could tell us where to get the Linen cardstock in case we want to keep trying. 🙂
    So happy you were bullheaded enough to get your way with the insurance company. YOU ROCK!!! Thanks for another fun post…they always make my day! HUGS!!

  22. BeverlyBL permalink
    October 3, 2016 5:30 am

    I enjoy Birgit’s works so much and do understand, as she has nothing to worry about from me either. But I think you are much closer to being a threat than I am. Love your silver on purple card, your white on navy, and of course, Snowy. He and Cooper are the cutest. Glad you were able to get them to lower your insurance rates. I know how challenging that can be. Thanks for all of your beautiful samples.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: