Tuesday, December 29, 2009

December 28, 2009 Hello Kitty as... The Cat In The Hat...

This weekend was my daughter's 4th birthday. The theme was "The Cat In The Hat and Other Cats, Too", but it ended up mostly being the Cat In The Hat and Hello Kitty, which was fine, because they are both fun. My daughter loved the very idea of having cats all around, and I surprised her with some fun activities all related to "cat-ness". With that in mind, I thought of how I could make her birthday card a good balance between the two characters, and this is what I came up with .

M, mamma loves you so much! I hope you had as much fun at your party as I did getting it all together. Hugs to you, my sweet girl!!!

(I am a little disappointed because I messed up Hello Kitty's nose and eye placement, so she does not look much like herself. Oh well, it was intended to be her.)

Hope you like it. Have a great day!

Click to view larger...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

December 22, 2009 Christmas Greetings: John 1:4...

John 1:4 (see below in bold and italicized print...)

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1

"In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him." 1 John 4:9

"In Him was life, and the life was the light of men." John 1:4

"...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God..." Romans 3:23

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:23

Praying that you "...may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height- to know the love of christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God." Ephesians 3:18-19

"The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace." Numbers 6: 24-26

2009 Family Newsletter

Dear Family and Friends,

In a world where gratitude is quickly becoming a lost form of communication and attitude, I am struck by the fact that 2009 has had innumerable moments and challenges which have prompted us to thank God for His continuing faithfulness and help to us and to our family. Just as in preceding years, we have had to face this truth: While we may feel weak, lose control or never have had control to begin with, God is always in control, always trustworthy, always faithful, and never unjust. This understanding has been valuable in our journey in learning to wholly trust in and surrender to Jesus.

“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13

Trusting and surrendering, I am learning, must become a lifestyle, a daily habit. So must thankfulness. I am still learning and growing, but here are some of my “Thank You’s” concerning this year:

Thank You, Jesus, for providing a way to go and visit our families and friends in the States last winter; that we were able to celebrate the Holy-days together with them; and that the memories we made still linger sweetly in our hearts.

Thank You, Jesus, for Your peace, wisdom, direction, and help when Dario was hospitalized with pneumonia in February, and for being there for all of the other bouts of illness that have passed our way. For… eventually, they have passed.

Thank You, Jesus, for giving us, me, peace and confirmation to make so many important decisions to change our lives for the better so Anthony and I could be more available to our family; that these decisions released us from things that were important but needed to take a back seat to our spouse, our kids and other things that needed to take precedence. And, thank You for holding my hand along the way.

Thank You, Jesus, for allowing the paperwork and permissions to finally be approved to add on the addition to our home, and for getting us to the point of having walls completed for what will, eventually, be our basement/kid’s play room.

Thank You, Jesus, for providing for all of our needs, in every way, and even giving us some of our heart’s desires.

Thank You, Jesus, that Your Word is true and “never returns void”. We have begun to see the sprouting of some seeds that were planted many, many years ago. It causes our faith to swell in hope and joy.

Thank You, Jesus, for our beautiful family, for my husband who loves me and helps me, and for such great children. Thank You for using them to make me laugh a little every day. “Laughter is like a medicine”, after all.

Thank You, Jesus, for Your inspiration and creativity, which I have asked for more of, and that You have given. Thank You for helping me to use it in encouraging my husband, raising our kids, organizing our home, and in my creative ventures.

Thank You, Jesus, for family who loves us and keeps in touch with us, for kindred spirits, dear friends, and surprise phone calls or letters in the mail.

Thank You, Jesus, for monkey hugs, repeat kisses, and each sweet childish moment that I know will only last for this short season. Thank you for helping me to RELAX and ENJOY my family…

Thank You, Jesus, for needed vacations to the beach, for the escape from every day routines, for the chance to be healthier, and for the chance to make memories with travelling buddies.

Thank You, Jesus, for saving me from my sins, accepting me as Your daughter, loving me no matter what, and for teaching me to appreciate myself for who You have created me to be. We are each “fearfully and wonderfully made.” He has a purpose for each of us in His “Grand Master Plan.” I want to be a part of it, don’t you? So I must, and do desire, to trust in, cling to, rely on, and believe in my Lord.

Thank You, Jesus, for HOPE… that I can know that someday You are coming back for Your children; that I can know that you will take us to live in a beautiful, new home where nothing will ever deteriorate, rot, fall apart, or break again; where there will be fullness of joy, peace and love in Your presence; and where I can be together again with those whom have gone on before us.

On that note… Thank You, Jesus, for Nonna Nunziata (Anthony’s paternal grandmother). When I married into this family she willingly and wholeheartedly adopted me as her grandchild. With a strong will and an amazing perseverance in her faith, we were not surprised to be able to celebrate her 103rd birthday with her in October of this year.

We were saddened, and also full of ironic joy, too, when Jesus called her home on November 10th.

Life has been so full. There is so much more that I am thankful for. As I “count my blessings”, and as I really dwell on every area of my life, I see that the blessings truly are endless, especially when we consider the simple, everyday things that God has given us to enjoy and that so clearly express His love for us. Consider these things: rainbows, sunsets, flowers, waterfalls, etc…

Well, I hope you have enjoyed our family news. And, I hope I have not overwhelmed you with all the words I have inside to share.

We hope and pray that you will have a wonderful Holy-day season. May Jesus encourage and strengthen you to draw closer to Him and to seek after Him with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength.

In the good times or in the bad time, I will praise You, Jesus!!! Happy Birthday!!!

Click to enlarge the picture...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

December 20, 2009 My Niece's Birthday Card...

Bloom And Grow In The Light Of The One Called Love... (Lengthy but suits it...)

Today is my fourth niece's birthday party. Here is the card I made her...

S, io ti voglio tanto bene. Auguri e Buon Compleanno!!! :-)

S, I love you so much. Congratulations and Happy Birthday!!! :-)

Friday, December 18, 2009

December 18, 2009 Christmas Post in Italian...

Here is my new Christmas papercut card!!! I love it and am so grateful to God for the inspiration of it.

So... Here is my first of two different Christmas messages. This one is in Italian, and the other I will post at another time (before Christmas Day... hahahhahah!!)

“In questo si è manifestato per noi l’amore di Dio: che Dio
ha mandato il suo Figlio unigenito nel mondo, affinché, per
mezzo di lui, vivessimo.” 1 Giovanni 4:9

“In Lei era la vita, e la vita era la luce degli uomini.”
Giovanni 1:4

“…tutti hanno peccato e sono privi della gloria di Dio...”
Romani 3:23

“Se confessiamo i nostri peccati, egli è fedele e giusto da
perdonarci i peccati e purificarci da ogni iniquità.”
1 Giovanni 1:9

“…perché il salario del peccato è la morte, ma il dono di Dio
è la vita eterna in Cristo Gesù, nostro Signore.” Roman 6:23

“…siate resi capaci di abbracciare con
tutti i santi quale sia la larghezza, la lunghezza, l’altezza, e
la profondità dell’amore di Cristo e di conoscere questo amore
che sorpassa ogni conoscenza, affinché siate ricolmi di tutta
la pienezza di Dio.” Efesini 3:18-19

“Il Signore ti benedica e ti protegga! Il Signore faccia
risplendere il suo volto su di te e ti sia propizio! Il Signore
rivolga verso di te il suo volto e ti dia la pace! Numeri 6:24-26

Buon Natale e Felice Anno Nuovo

Thursday, December 17, 2009

December 17, 2009 More Crafty Creative, Homemade Gifts and Decorations...

(Got the idea for the Gift in a Jar from Lisa Whelchel's book “The ADVENTure of Christmas”)

(Got the idea for the Gift in a Jar from Lisa Whelchel's book “The ADVENTure of Christmas”)

Christmas Choir/Carolers... http://familyfun.go.com/ (I personally scoured some internet sites for some thumbnail pictures of sheet music and then just saved and printed out the teensy pages to use for these. My friend's two favorite pieces of music are "The Carol of the Bells" and "Angels We Have Heard On High".

The Nativity set up close... (This baby Jesus is one that Antonio made in his 2's class at church nearly 7 years ago. My favorite baby Jesus!!)

Using things I already have, I made a safe section to put out the Nativity set. No little hands can reach, but they can enjoy with the eyes.(Sorry so blurry...) sigh...

What wonderfully colored stockings!!! And they sparkle, too!!! :-)

So pretty!! We are all excited about the stockings... Thanks, mom!

The star has been mounted above a doorway. (Sorry, fall theme crafts are still up. Most of the winter themed crafts have become gifts or are mounted in Luca's school workbook.)

This is my favorite star. Giosaia made it in Pre-k.

The Cat in the Hat is ready for the Holy-days and Miranda's coming party... :-)

Luca with our collaboration... (Mr. Plush Snowman for Papà's Christmas present.)

I love to make gifts!!! I love to brainstorm ideas!!!

click to enlarge...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

December 16, 2009 Christmas Card...

I am very excited! I designed my own Christmas Card!!! Okay, it is only for personal use, but I love it. I will be unveiling it soon, after I complete our family newsletter. Until then, thank you for checking in.

Have a wonderful day and a very Merry Christmas!!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

December 9, 2009 Christmas Tree Decoration Gifts (Part 1)...

Inchie Cube Christmas Tree Decorations... Done by my first three kids

Close up of Inchie Cube Christmas Tree Decoration

My two wire art Christmas Tree Decorations...

My first attempt at a wire Christmas tree decoration... extra pieces were tidbits from broken shoes or an old little girl's t-shirt

Close up of one of the Christmas tree decorations... made from an old Christmas card

Candy canes... made from wire and Christmas ribbon

Well, I have not done many papercuts over the last week or so, but... I have been busy nonetheless. Here are some of the projects I have been working on. These are for gifts. The recipients do not check on here often, so those of you who know who they are going to... don't tell! :-)

I found these ideas on the following sites:

http://familyfun.go.com/ (candy canes... I did not do it exactly as they did)
(Wire Christmas Tree decorations... added my own details)

http://bitze.wordpress.com/2008/11/17/inchie-ornament-tutorial/ (Inchie Cubes)

I have some other things I may be finishing up soon. Keep on the lookout!

Have fun being creative in any way you know how!!! Happy Holy-days!!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

December 3, 2009 Serenity Paper Collage...

****** Geometric Collage: Serenity... (the stars are in place of the name of the person who will be receiving it)

Well, this piece isn't really a normal papercut. It is more of a paper collage. I like it, though. It was a nice change and brought satisfaction to accomplish it.

I made it for one of my family members for Christmas. It reminds me of the Serenity Prayer, "God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."