Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Habari Gani......Ujamaa!

Happy Wednesday and Thanks for stopping by...

Today is the fourth day of Kwanzaa, Ujamaa (000-jah-mah'). Ujamaa is Swahili for Cooperative Economics; "to build and maintain our own stores, shops and other businesses and to profit from them together". In this economic climate it has never been more important to support the little "Mom & Pop" stores in our own neighborhoods. The dress shops, natural food stores, hardware stores, restaurants, and yes SCRAPBOOK STORES!

Did you know that African Americans make up about 13.4 percent of the American population yet we only own about 5 percent of American businesses? Now something is wrong with this picture, especially since we spend so much of our money on the clothes, shoes and entertainment that make other people filthy RICH!!.....Okay, I'm not going to preach but we really need to consider starting our own businesses and teaching our children to do the same...I'm just saying...

I started running my storytelling & drama programs as a business about four years ago and I am constantly talking to my sons about what types of businesses they might consider operating, some day. I show them examples of kids who are running businesses and actually making some serious money too!

Anywho, in honor of the Kwanzaa celebration I wanted to share a craft that I created for the Scraps of Color E:spire Great Kwanzaa Giveaway. So here goes.....

This was so much fun to make! I used a bunch of leftovers from my Christmas cards and some free clipart I found online, my copics and my embossing tool to create this Kwanzaa Tag Book. there are seven pockets; one for each day of Kwanzaa. Here are some close up shots.

I used many African and Kwanzaa symbols in this craft.
  • The Lion represents wisdom and strength in most traditional African stories.
  • The Kinara is the candle holder for the Mishuma Saba (seven candles)
  • The Kikumbe Cha Umoja is the Unity cup. During the Kwanzaa celebration, in your home each family member should take a sip of juice or water from the cup (from oldest to youngest) symbolizing unity.
  • The Djembe drum is a symbol of freedom and the original cell phone (haha) for communication in the village.
  • The dashiki represents African clothing and custom.
  • Finally, the bandera is the African American flag displaying the colors black (the people), red (sacrifice), and green (the land or success)
And here are the tags. I used my Rubbernecker stamps for these little cuties. Each tag has the Swahili principle and the meaning. I think I might make a few more of these Tag Books for some of my friends who also celebrate Kwanzaa....

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time...

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Habari Gani?......Umoja!

Happy Sunday and Thanks for stopping by...

One of my favorite sites Scraps of Color E:spire is having a Seven days of Kwanzaa GREAT KWANZAA GIVE AWAY! If you want to win some cool crafting papers, embellishments or stamps just visit the Scraps of color E:spire site and follow the instructions. The contest runs for seven days, so don't miss out. You never know, you could be a big Kwanzaa WINNER!

In addition to celebrating Christmas, our family celebrates the African American holiday, Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa is a seven day celebration that does not focus on any one religion or any one hero, but on our culture and community as a whole. Kwanzaa is centered around seven principles that we can live by to make our families, communities and selves stronger and better. The seven principles are given to us in Swahili; Umoja (ooo-moe'-jah) "Unity" is the first principle. Umoja means "to strive for unity in our family, community, nation and race". Unity is truly the first step in making any lasting changes.

When we greet each other during the seven days of Kwanzaa we say "Habari gani"? (hah-bar-ee-gahn-nee) which means "What's the news"? or "What's going on"? We respond by saying the principle for that day. Since today is day one we would respond by guessed it....UMOJA!

My family has been celebrating Kwanzaa for over 12 years. For several years my husband and I hosted a Kuumba (Creativity) Cultural Arts Camp for children. The camp would run for two weeks, during the Christmas break. We taught the seven principles through dance, dance, music and visual arts crafts. Each year the children from our camp were invited to present what they learned at the city-wide Kwanzaa celebration. It was such an honor to work with such beautiful, intelligent young people. My husband and I didn't really do anything for the program except show up. The young people did everything. They set the Kwanzaa table, lit the candles, danced, sang all the songs, and performed the short plays. It was amazing! Some of our former campers are grown-ups now, with their own families; celebrating Kwanzaa in their own way.

We didn't get to go to the Kwanzaa celebration tonight because the weather is quite snowy and frosty here in Charlotte. But we still lit our first candle at home and talked about ways we could work together with more unity in our family and the community....good stuff!

I'll be making some Kwanzaa crafts with my boys, this week. I'll share them soon!

Thanks for stopping by!
See you next time...

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Fairy Holly is Ready for Christmas!

Happy Tuesday and thanks for stopping by...

Christmas is so close, I can taste it! My son's are sooo excited and today is the last day of school before the Christmas break so now it's on to baking and more decorating with them. We have to have our Christmas cookies. YUM!

I'm going to enter a few more challenges before Christmas. Here's my entry for Mo's Digital Pencil Design Team Fantasies and Fairies Challenge. Hope you like it...

She is colored with Copic Sketch and I'm still using my Ellen Snowflake Christmas Paper Pad. I used just a touch or two of Crystal lacquer for her snow globe and used a very simple card sketch. It was so simple, in fact, that I made four cards before 10 A.M. !! Wow! Now that's easy peasy.

I'm also entering this card into a few more challenges: Fab 'N Funky Quick and Easy Does It, Friday Sketchers Challenge #133, Stamping for the Weekend "Christmas" Challenge and
Cute Card Thursday "One for the Kids" Challenge

I hope your holidays are blessed and beautiful!

Thanks for stopping by...See you next time!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Michelle Perkett "Holiday Magic" Blog Hop

Happy Weekend and Thanks for stopping by...

Welcome to the Michelle Perkett Studio Holiday Magic Blog Hop! The blog hop is Saturday and Sunday. If you just happened to visit my page and don't know about the MPS blog hop, you're in for a treat! Michelle has so many fabulous images to choose from. They're so much fun to color and make the most amazing cards. Stop by her blog page and to see the creations from her design team and fans like me! You can find her digital images in her Etsy shop.

Here's my latest creation with the lovely Christmas Blessing Angel.

I'm entering this little card in the "Have a Merry Little Christmas" Challenge this week. She is colored with Copic Sketch (of course) and I used lots of Stickles (Christmas Red, Green and Frosted Lace) to add some shimmer. You know an angel has to have her sparkle. I used my trusty Creative Memories circle cutter and Recollections paper flowers; also colored with Copics. The ornaments are from Stampendous and they are covered in Stickles as well. It's the holidays. Why not??? Finally, I have really been enjoying my Ellen Snowflake Christmas Paper Pad, this season. That's where this mixture of paper comes from. This card makes me feel very festive! Pass the eggnog!

Your next stop on the Michelle Perkett Studio "Holiday Magic" Blog Hop is ....

so hop on over and check our her fabulous creation!

Thanks for stopping by! See you next time...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

On the Second Day of Christmas

Happy Tuesday and thanks for stopping by...

For twelve days I am revealing the hidden messages for Christians in the song "The Twelve day of Christmas. We're on day two.

{Card image from Mo's Digital Pencil Too "Dani with Gifts"- colored with Copic Sketch markers}

On the 2nd day of Christmas my true love gave to me...

{Two Turtle Doves}

What's the hidden meaning?
The Old and New Testaments, which together bear witness to God's self-revelation in history and the creation of a people to tell the Story of God to the world.

Hope your holiday season is blessed and beautiful...

See you next time!

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Happy Monday and thanks for stopping by...

"On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...." You've heard the song, maybe you've tried to remember all the words; searching the corners of your mind with a flashlight. Well I was surprised to find, a few years ago, that there is some hidden meaning to this little nonsense ditty (or so they say). And technically, the FIRST day of Christmas is December 25 and the twelfth night is January5th, but I'm not going to stretch my holiday out that far, so I thought I'd share the hidden meaning of the song that teaches the basic principles of the Christian faith, with you on the twelve days leading up to Christmas and of course a Christmas card for each day. So here we go.....

"On the first Day of Christmas my true love gave to me....."

{A Partridge in a Pear Tree}
The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus the Christ, the Son of God, whose birthday we celebrate on December 25, the first day of Christmas. In the song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge that feigns injury to decoy predators from her helpless nestlings, recalling the expression of Christ's sadness over the fate of Jerusalem: "Jerusalem! Jerusalem! How often would I have sheltered you under my wings, as a hen does her chicks, but you would not have it so . . . ." (Luke 13:34)

Card image from "A Day for Daisies". Colored with Copic Sketch.

Thanks for stopping by. See you next time!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Once Upon A Time

Happy Friday and thanks for stopping by...

I want to tell you a story and this is no fairy tale. Once Upon a time in a land not so far away a man and a woman met. The woman was a mess and had been hurt many times. She was afraid to give her heart to anyone ever again. The man was a true prince, but not yet a king. Despite the fact that they were quite different they became great friends. They laughed and spent hours on the phone sharing secrets and even more hours walking by the lake and singing love songs to each other under the moonlight.

When the storms began to rise up they learned to love each other through good times and bad. Learning to forgive each other's shortcoming was a challenge but they learned to do that too. One day the prince asked the woman, "have you ever been in love"? The woman thought about it for a moment, remembering all the times she thought she had experienced real love only to find she had been deceived, hoodwinked, tricked and she replied "No. I don't think I ever have". The prince gently replied, "If I had time, I would take you there". In time they became husband and wife and God blessed them with two handsome and intelligent sons, who are on their way to becoming princes themselves. And they are living happily ever after...

This is my challenge entry to the Michelle Perkett Studio Once Upon A Time challenge. Hope you like it. The digital stamp image is called Soulmates and I just love them. I didn't color them to look exactly like my husband and I but the passion is a perfect match...

Colored with copics...

Have a creative Friday!
See you next time!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas Is On Its Way

Happy Wednesday
and thanks for stopping by...

Brrrrr! Hope you're staying warm, wherever you are! I was off work today so I spent the morning doing the breakfast dishes, some laundry, general straightening up to prepare to put up our Christmas tree. Tee hee! I'm so excited about that! This is truly the "MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!" After all my chores were done I rewarded myself by creating a card for a few challenges, with an image from one of my favorite stamp designers...(drum roll please!) she is...

  • This is Snowbunnybella by, you guessed it, Stamping Bella. She is colored with Copics (E35, E13, R29, R27, C1). The sentiment comes from Inkadinkadoo's Warm Holiday Wishes clear stamp set. The DP snowflake paper is by Anna Griffin. The Christmas tree paper is from my favorite Christmas paper pad, this year; the Ellen Snowflake Christmas Paper Pad. I used silver and Christmas red Stickles to add a little bling and the Christmas PRESENTS are from The Paper Studio.
I entering this card into four challenges this week:

Bellarrific Friday
Stamping for the Weekend
Friday Sketches
Stamp Something

Hope you like it....Thanks for stopping by! See you next time...

Monday, December 6, 2010

Oh Baby!

Happy Monday
and thanks for stopping by...

I interrupt your regularly scheduled Christmas-ness for this very important announcement...Babies are coming! Babies are coming! So, on Thursday night, after dinner, my husband says to me "Do you have any baby shower cards"? THREE ladies that he works with are having little ones very soon. My husband works in a school, so this is not too surprising. After his question began to sink in, I kicked myself because I always intend to make some "various occasions" cards just to have on hand, but I keep putting it off. And because I put it off "various occasions" come up and I HAVE NO CARD READY!!

I rolled up my sleeves and began the mad dash to make three quick and beautiful, baby shower cards. You know, coloring, cutting, pasting, die cutting, cuttlebugging, more pasting...Until....

My scanner was casting a great deal of shadows late that night, oh around 1 A.M. when I finished, but I thought I'd just share my gift to the moms-to-be at the middle school. Even though it's nearly winter I stayed with the pastel "baby" color scheme. Maybe one day I'll step out of that pink and blue box, but it's just so stinkin' cute...LOL

Card recipe:
(This really is difficult because all of this stuff came from my stash)
Image from Stamping Bella (Pregabella I think)
Recollections Craftable Paper flower colored with copics
Sentiment created on MS Word Art (something I just recently learned...wooo hoo!)

Hope you like it.

Now, back to your regularly scheduled Christmas Festivities!
But don't forget....babies ARE coming!!!