September 11th has come and gone, but each anniversary of that date never gets any easier for me. While most folks won't understand, since I was not actually in NYC at the time, seeing it unfold from the very first minute of shock on the newscasters' faces ("Did you feel that?") and the camera panning outside their studio window... that moment began a surreal time in my life that has had long lasting effects. Nearly ten years of a 'spiraling down' that included 2 years of swiss cheese memory. Even though I could be a person considered to 'have it all' during that time, it hit like a ton of concrete that seemed to start with that very day. Since that time, there has been quite a bit of new information that led up to that terrible day. And, a lot of arguing, finger-pointing, blame, and all out dissent and discontent. The America that came together those weeks after 9.11.2001 has split into so many shards, I am not sure She can be healed and reunited. While I don't wish to go back to that day's events, I do yearn for a country that pulled together and showed brotherly love and kindness to one another; a country that held their Law Enforcement, Firefighters, Emergency Medical Services, First Responders, Paramedics, and especially our US Military (all branches of service)- not just in high regard- but in actions of giving, kindness, thoughtfulness, and ceaseless PRAYER!
I'm at the point where I am afraid that caring for our Earth is not going to matter very much since we seem to have a problem taking care of the LIFE on the Earth: what's the point if we can't care for living PEOPLE and ANIMALS?! After all, the plants were all pretty much provided for (if you are in agreement with The Bible as Truth) that it was all to be used for FOOD for the important parts of Creation: animals and people (Adam and Eve and then the rest of us). I just have this strange feeling that those mountains and oceans are way too powerful and too large for us to handle. We're pretty outsourced as puny humans to try to take control of it all. In short; GOD's got this! We all need to share in His command to "care for all" in His Creation. So, I do my share of recycling (and sadly; I think I'm pretty much alone in my community doing it, too), and trying to not make such an 'imprint' (but I do like mowing, and caring for my property), and do my share of stopping to pick up trash or put things right that someone else just cannot bother themselves to do. Most important of all: I've done my share- SO FAR, cause it NEVER ENDS- of taking in stray pets that have made their way into our lives and given them what obviously they didn't get from someone else; a Forever Home. I've tried to be friendly to others. I stand up; not for what I FEEL is right...but for what I KNOW is right. And I keep praying that in some way, each and every day, I can make at least ONE living being feel they are worth being LOVED.
I'm so tired of the arguing & division. I've done it a few times myself and it has sickened me to look at myself in the mirror afterward. I'm so tired of the finger-pointing, blaming, and especially the name-calling. I don't give a rat's butt who you voted for. I don't give another rat's butt what you stand for or who you love or hate. Those are YOUR choices. Those are YOUR rights in this America that gives you- and me- those rights. And I THANK GOD FOR THAT!! What DO I care about? YOU- your talents, your thoughts and ideas that lead to solutions of helping other living beings lead a better life. And THAT'S the biggest blessing we all get here in this USA! I THANK YOU if you've read this far- just for turning this over in your mind a bit. Whew! Soapbox put away.
Let's get down to the TAG!
It all began with a shopping trip
(after a usual 90 day visit with Dracula at the Lab for a blood draw)
where I treated myself to a Hobby Lobby sale on loose paper.
The left side sheet is a normal choice for me many times, but the right side is
a new one for me- it really SHOUTED OUT "U LOVE ME!"
and I wondered... could try making this myself with TH inks?
I gathered up a ton of things I thought I would use- and most of it, I did.
I really liked this spool of ribbon out of my ribbon stash, but it only 'pointed' in one direction.
So I cut off the gathered seam at the top, duplicated another piece the same length,
then used my Glider Tape to stick them together so they looked like one piece with
the scallops going BOTH up and down.
Here, you see the doubled lace,
and using the lace as the 'white stripes', I shaded in the 'red stripes'.
A lot of usual ink scrubbing, but it was really pretty easy to copy.
For making the odd-sized stars; my TH Alterations Bigz Die Crescent Moon and Stars
came in handy! I simply cut some out of regular white cardstock and used my
Glider Tape runner to add a bit of adhesive- that is easily removed!-
to mask the white stars. The Blender Tool is one of my FAVE tools!
The rectangular BT makes it simple to border things by just going over the area more.
Here is the result... on a regular 8 &1/2 x 11 white cardstock.
Making the stripes thinner was my plan and it WORKED!
Otheriwse, the tag would end up as large as the 12x12 sheet of the copied piece.
My Tag was cut from the middle of this sheet- so I had two nice edges & a bottom
leftover to cut some hole covers for the top of the tag.
I also flicked water all over and let the Distress Fired Brick Ink do its reacting,
heat dried, the repeated the process until the page looked more naturally blended together.
The two stencils, NY City scape, from a set of TYPO I purchased a few years back at
the Mall of America in Minneapolis, and another of the US States- greatly used-
allowed me to put some Ranger Texture Paste into the background.
Notice I typed "into" the background....not ONTO. I wanted it to blend into that Flag.
The Flag is the thing that holds us all together in commonality.
I did the same Ranger TPaste with the Lady Liberty
(but not the rest of the New York City scape out of the stencil).
Then I took some TH Regular Distress Ink in Pumice Stone- less than half a dropper-
and just a tiny swipe of the TH Distress Oxide in Old Paper.
I do have the Old Paper refill but was afraid I'd drop too much out of the dropper
than I wanted, so I used just a tiny 'swipe'.
Sprayed water and swished it together and then just laid Miss Liberty
down into it to soak up the color FROM THE BACK SIDE.
This was going to give her a background color darker than the front.
Don't worry- that Ranger paste will soak up the inks and not get mushy!!
Flip her over and heat dry her.
Then, after I inked up her entire front side (sorry I forgot a pic of that)
with the Distress Oxide Old Paper and another heat set,
I applied a thick layer of TH Clear Rock Candy Distress, re-heat-dried,
which left a nice crackle all over her;
I used TH Regular Picket Fence Ink to fill in those lovely cracks!
I set her aside for now...
… and went back to the Tag background to add a bit of TH Month Embosser
with Distress Oxide in my fave Vintage Photo...
… made some nice Spritzer marks with the Distress Walnut Stain Marker.
And for a bit of highlight- the TH Stencil Dot Fade made some awesome dots
randomly with Distress Oxide in Antique Linen.
It still needed something more to tie the entire theme in with that day...
The entire WORLD was involved with September 11th;
it affected EVERYONE in some way- physically, emotionally, spiritually, & financially.
So the other piece from TH Stamp Set CMS226 "Documented".
(This world plane map is also a fave of mine that Tim
uses in several of his things- paperie & ephemera- as well as this stamp piece.)
I used the leftover practice pieces of stamped/inked cardstock to
make easy toss-out masks. The pieces were dried and already had
the very same stamps on them- which I fussy cut around to match on top of their mates.
That other piece of inspirational paper?
I folded it in half to make a 2-sided backing for the Tag.
I cut it to the tag's size with just a slight overhang, and sanded the edges to
smooth the paper and fade out the pattern as it left the paper edges.
The backside was a perfect touch for the most iconic photo of September 11th.
This was the resulting project:
(I make no claim whatsoever on the photo used on my Tag.
It's rightful owner has already copyrighted it.
I am only borrowing the image for my own use and not financial gain in any way or form.
Ditto for all other September 11th images used other than my own Tag work.)
A few closeups...
The ribbon was white, but I added Regular Distress Pumice Stone Ink
to make it appear 'smokey' looking.
The ribbon symbolizes the smoke from the WT Towers as they filled the sky over Manhattan.
The tri-colored string symbolizes the prayers of the AMERICAN people
IN ALL COLORS AND CULTURES
as we came together that day in shock, fear, and mourning,
over what a comparison handful of people filled with hate managed to do.
The Trade Towers were not just filled with concrete, steel, and paint...
that morning, they were filled with PEOPLE.
And those people had NAMES.
From earlier on when I bought this stamp set from a Crafty Sister on a destash sale;
I saw those Twin Towers in this stamp and wanted an opportunity to make this.
While I used the TH Stamp Platform- which easily gives precise, clear. non-blurry
stamping... I really, really rubbed this stamp in, picked up, slightly moved,
and restamped- several times- till I got a very bold look I felt matched what I wanted.
This is what they were, and STILL ARE.
I want to shout it out: respect that... please!
She still stands for The Great American Melting Pot.
No matter how we disagree on who we let into this country, and how we let them in...
EVERYONE has to abide by the laws of this land.
Or we are just as lawless as those "other countries" we consider to be so.
Can you see them?
I circled one in light green to show what I mean...
I used Glossy Accents to put help the Towers stand out.
But just glossing over them didn't seem enough; it was 'too perfect' looking.'
The Twin Towers looked far from perfect that day,
so I not only added drips here and there for a sense of "falling apart", but I also
added fingerprints that covered both towers in the glue.
The towers were ALIVE that day, and so many never made it back to their Earthly home.
Whatever choice those folks up in the towers made that day- it was the right choice
for them and I am thankful I have not been faced with anything of that like.
The texture did just what I wanted- it's added on TOP of the inks,
but it fades into the inks just right.
but are we really better for it?
Or did they all die in vain?
I wonder...what if there is a next time...will the USA survive?
We don't need a next time to destroy ourselves; seems we're doing a pretty good job of it now.
My HOPE is we can change it- GOD willing- before it's beyond hope.
My humblest apologies if I have offended anyone with this post. It was never my
intention to do so, nor to make anyone feel 'depressed' in the frank wording I have typed.
My heart is totally screaming out in prayers for each of us to embrace
and remember the things that brought us
And in a large way- crafting and artistic talents bring us together in more
peaceful and happy ways than a lot of other topics do these days.
I have quite a few "crafty friends" out there in the world
-not just here in America!-
who can make something out of paper with a little glue and a set of scissors,
and bring a smile to EVERYONE over the entire Earth!
And- a HUGE "THANX SO MUCH!" to the Sponsor,
for their AWESOME SERVICE from their Shop,
and the VERY TALENTED Design Team
who really blew me away with so many GREAT MAKES this year-
and there's still quite a few left to go that YOU can join in on!!!
Until next time:
Be Safe &