Tuesday, 19 January 2021

What is your Why?

Why? The question we all dread when there is a toddler in the house, that never ending question “WHY?”

How often do we ask ourselves that question once we are adults? More often that not we use the safe comfortable answers. Why do you do that job? why do you live where you live? Why Why Why? I do it for the money, I live here for my family.

So in a world of whys, why do I craft? Simple, because sometimes I need to create something. Believe me I spend many hours in my craft room staring at a blank piece of card, or twiddling my thumbs or even worse scrolling through my phone! But sometimes, just sometimes I’m hit with a wave of creativity, and I have to make something. More often than not I don’t know what I’m sitting down to make it just comes to me and those are the best days. So what sparks this creativity? I haven’t got a clue! If I did I would switch it on every day.

So ok I like to make things but why Stampin Up? Many Many years ago my best friend dragged me to a Stampin Up workshop, we made a shadow frame and I was useless, I didn’t know how to use the big-shot, I smudged all my stamping and I was useless at fussy cutting but I went home with a finished frame and despite the fact it was wonky and there was glue all over it I loved it, I still remember the colours I had used, Coastal Cabana and Crumb Cake, and you know what it all coordinated, the paper matched the ink and the ribbon matched them both, it literally made my heart sing! So that was the start of my journey. Why then, you may ask did I become a demonstrator? In all honesty for the discount, isn’t that why anyone does something like that? Be it Avon, Scentsy or even back in the day Tupperware. I wanted some paper and inks and I had a small child at home, a mortgage and bills to pay so hey if I could get it a bit cheaper then why not? It was great, I loved it, each month I would allow myself to make a little wish list and I would be delighted that when I popped it all in the computer it would be a lot less than the catalogue price.

I started crafting on my kitchen table with a box to hold my little crafty stash, then I moved into the box room on a old desk wedged next to the single bed where my creations would often spread out to, now I have a dedicated room, which is officially called “the craft room” original eh?

So that is why I joined, but why have I stayed? Well the same reason still stands, I love that is all coordinates, but now its something more. A couple of years after I joined a friend asked me if I could show her how to make things, I did and I loved it, she then suggested I should run classes, I honestly thought she was crazy, but at the same time I was tempted, but where would I start? Well that was the first year I attended a StampinUp convention, and they literally told you how to run classes, how to do different techniques, what the upcoming new stamp sets and colours would be, I returned home full of passion. I then found a card design course and signed up for it. Some months later I held my first workshop, we made a valentines picture and a valentines card, everyone that attended was delighted with their makes, they all went home overjoyed with what they had created, and that my friends was it!

So now I don’t just create for me, I create for the lovely ladies that attend my card classes be them virtual to pre Covid in person, I create to see the delight on their face as they go home with something they have created, I create so they have some sense of normal when the world is anything but normal, I create so I can share something I love and hopefully they will love it to. I create so I am part of something, Stampin Up is a huge world wide network of Demonstrators who cheer each other on and share hints and tips, I create to find a place I belong.

So why am I telling you all of this? Because if your floundering during this lockdown, reach out. I don’t have all the answers but I would love to chat to you and give you that feeling of being part of something, of that feeling that you belong even just for a short while each week.

I’m going to leave you again this week with a photo of the gorgeous Mr Chewie......

and of some cards which were created during one of my inspiration strikes , I’m kinda hoping for another one some time this week.........please!

Sunday, 10 January 2021

The world isn’t what you planned

2021 was to be filled with such purpose, such intention. I was starting the New Year with a determination to share my love of Stampin Up with the world, I was starting new classes, I was going to blog, and then it happened! Lockdown 3.0. So instead of getting everyone ready for school and work we were back to the world of uncertainty. I will admit it threw me, I wasn't sure how this lockdown would work.

During lockdown 1.0 I embraced the opportunity to be at home, to have my boys at home, to work in the garden, to take what felt like never ending sunkissed walks, I organised EVERYTHING! Hubby said if you stood still too long you ran the risk of me labelling you, in short I thirved. I took comfort that in a world of madness there was beauty all around me and I didn't have to look far to find it, the sheep nonchalantly grazing in the field outside my house, the friendly horse's I would fuss over on my daily walks with my gorgious Yorkshire Terrier Chewie, the trees slowly coming out of their winter slumber, the reflection of the tree's in the calm river, part of me didn't want it to end. 

Lockdown 2.0 came and new challenge needed, the never ending rain stopped the walks, the garden was entering it's winter slumber so this lockdown saw us tackle a unloved lounge which we had negelted for far to long, we painted, us! We hadn't painted in many years, we forgot the craziness of the world and made another area of our home cosy and welcoming, the truth is I now love that room more than any room in the house. We prepared for Christmas, we knew it wouldn’t be the same as previous years but we knew it would still be special and precious moments would be spent once again together.
So here we are lockdown 3.0, school is cancelled, exams are cancelled, I have a 15 year old floundering in uncertainty, hubby is back to working from home, my classes are cancelled, so what about me? 

Where do I go from here? I've spent the last week thinking hard, what do I want to achieve, what is stopping me from achieving those goals? After ALOT of soul searching and procrastination (we all love abit of that don't we??) I realised the only thing stopping me from achieving those goals was me, not the broken laptop, the cancelled classes, the lockdown, just me. So here I am. I am hoping you will join me on this journey, I promise I won't ramble like this every post, I do promise I will share copius photos of Chewie, of the views from my window, of my messy craft desk and hopefully some crafty things that might inspire you or you might just like. I don't promise you to set your world on fire, but I hopefully might make the odd day a little brighter for you.

I will finish this by a shameless plug of telling you any crafty things I share with you are available to purchase from my online store, also if you are tempted to order something make sure you take advantage of the current Sale-a-bration offer. Also I have a small team of Happy Crafters and if you too would like to become a Stampin' Up Demonstrator then I would love to have you in my team. Plug over. Hopefully I haven't bored you too much and I will leave you with a photo of the adorable Chewie.
As always, Happy Crafting