December brings with it, the last Tag for 2013. I was somewhat...relieved??...as it actually looked pretty simple. This relief came as a result of too many things yet to get done before CHRISTmas Day gets here. For the first time since I've been doing paper cards for CHRISTmas, I am really late with them. Since our wedding in 1984, I was giddy over sending our first CHRISTmas cards out! Now, however...being a bit older and WISER...I almost dread it! Not the actual giving & getting of them- but just the work getting them finished and out. I make my own with several photos of how our year went. A twist on the usual- and rather boring- CHRISTmas Letter. So getting that Tag done was first in line since it was going to be my "Ornament" for our exchange in the Ladies Circle group of our church. It's always fun to see what everyone else makes... or buys if they're not so 'crafty'. This Tag didn't look too hard at all. Ahhhh...that word...."LOOK".
After looking into the instructions on the new technique Tim was showing, I knew right away I was going to need to modify my tag a bit from his. I didn't have the special plastic he has, nor the tissue material he used. But I did have the grungepaper and inks, etc...basically the rest of it all. So in place of the tissue, my heart went right to the main idea- CHRIST. I used an old Bible that I salvaged for just 25cents, and copied JESUS' birth story from The Book of Luke. (Matthew is better, but I actually used those pages on another project before I started copying pages as I kept wanting my same fave verses over and over.) Using paper copy holds up better for gluing to grungepaper than the regular Bible pages which tear easily and make gluing difficult. I used Glossy Accents to adhere the copied Scripture and then cut petals using TH's Alterations die Tattered Florals. No, I don't have the Poinsetta die, as I would never use it...until this tag came up, anyway. But I was able to cut the floral shapes more into pointy-looking poinsetta leaves and then color as he did his petals. So that was the only major change from his tag done to my own.
One could argue this tag is "too simple" but I think that just makes it stand out all the more lovelier! Simplistic & very pretty! I added a pair of miniture skates to the Tag I kept for my own collection, and for the one given into the Ornament Exchange, I added a few Ideaology pearls to the ribbon- which I chose to use an old crochet-like lace. Gave it a kind of old-fashioned but elegant feel. I think the December Tag may be at the top of my "Fave List" of tags.
The backside of the tag- which I usually also decorate- became a nice place to add a photo. Perhaps I will add our traditional all-humans&furries-in-front-of-the-tree shot. But for now, shown, is a summer photo (taken on the beaches of Emerald Coast, Florida). I used the Tim Holtz Alterations FAMILY Movers&Shapers die, then tucked a tied ribbon in between the two front and back tags for holding the photo.
While time is so short these days with so much to do (making gifts for others is usually what takes up much of my time) plus lots of baking and this year, I tried making my black raspberry pickings into jam. It turned out VERY NICELY, and I can't believe it took me so long to try it. I often say that the area we live in is "the Black Raspberry Capitol of the World" as they are so abundant and if you cannot find me at home in June and July...along the roads covered in purplish-pulp is where you will probably find me. I usually stash away into my freezer 5 to 10 gallons of them each year. Before that is Morel mushroom season- another thing we are well known for out here. ;) I also got the idea of a cushioning for the jars of jam gifts: crocheted hotpads for warm plates of toast to sit on. I used Jute binder twine- easily found in most stores, esp in farm supply stores. Those were difficult to do with the spun twine, but the result is a really neat and usable pad! Definitely can be great used in all our campers during joint trips we take together throughout the summers!
I plan to add more things I've done before 2014 blows in. But until then-