Guiding Star

Design Team:  We Believe
Theme:  Guiding Star
Designer:  The Rush Ranch

It’s late.  Almost midnight.  The wind is blowing the stars around tonight, not to mention every loose thing sitting on my porch.  Intermittent power, so I better get this posted before I lose my internet service.
I stood outside for a bit before I went to bed, just to see if the sky was clear enough to get a glimpse of the meteor shower – but it seems with every celestial event, I have a cloud-covered sky.  I have a star scope, but don’t get to use it very often.
I’m writing this as I snuggle under quilts on my bed.  Douglas the dog is asleep between us, and twitches every so often as he dreams.  Hubby is asleep.
Tomorrow I have an annual checkup with my dentist.  I am hoping for a clean bill of health, so that he can notify my orthopedic surgeon that all is well and I’m ready for my full knee replacement.  I had my medical checkup and tests this past Tuesday, and got the go-ahead from my GP.  Have you had knee replacement surgery?   What was your experience?  Any advice for me?
daisy_600pxI have been working on handmade projects for Christmas.  ALMOST done with a shawl.  My cat, Princess Daisy, insists on sitting in my arms as I crochet, so I don’t make progress as fast as I would like.  I told my husband that I need a kangaroo pocket on my shirt, to put her in.  She seems to need extra loving and touching these past few weeks.

Need to finish up a baby blanket, too.  I’m running behind this year!  My husband will take a quick three-day trip to Alaska next Wednesday, so hoping that I can use the time to finish up everything.  It’s tough when you have seven kids and fourteen grandkids.  LOTS of projects to accomplish.
Here are my designs for the We Believe Blog Train.  I apologize for the fact that a lot of it is just extractions rather than designs.  You are going to love all of the beautiful kits from my fellow designers!  The blog train role is at the end of my download links.

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Download Links:
ELEMENTS
PATTERNED PAPERS
SOLID PAPERS

Blog Train Designers:
A-M Designs
Dreamn4ever Designs
Songbird Scraps Designs
Nellie Bell
Crystal’z Colorz
Moore Blessings Digital Designs
The Preacher’s Gal
Lori Imel Designs

 

rr_dec18-frost_mouseMerry Christmas and have a wonderful holiday with friends and family.  Remember, during this special season, to do something kind for a stranger – Money in a parking meter, spare change in the Salvation Army can, pushing grocery cart baskets back to the store – you get it.  Thank you.

Sunny

Scrap Designer’s Blog Train – Dec 18′

Design Team:  Scrap Designers
Theme:  Touch of Frost
Designer:  Rush Ranch

Years ago, before I started my career with the Federal Government, I worked for a school District as their Finance Director.  It was in a small town in Alaska, and we operated out of a 2-story building that (I think) might have been a department store in its day.  My prestigious office looked out over the local tavern’s parking lot, where a big green dumpster was a popular place for the ravens to gather.  Oh yes. 

With such a prestigious view, I could either gripe about it to everyone and no one in particular – or, I could make it interesting to myself.  I began to observe the obvious, that a larger number of ravens gathered there in the summer.  The number reduced greatly in the wintertime.  The summer was filled with the usual raven arguments over a piece of pizza or half-eaten burger.  The winters were a smorgasbord for the hearty ravens that braved the cold.  An occasional squirrel would drop in for a tidbit or two.

Over the years, I starting linking the number of ravens I counted, to the temperature.  For example, a temperature of  negative 34F degrees was measured by approximately 1 raven an hour.  A temp of +34F degrees was measured by approx. 6 ravens an hour.  I had an entire gamut of temperatures linked to the number of ravens at the tavern dumpster.  Most of the co-workers were amused by my silly temperature conversion.  The Superintendent would pass by my office and say “It looks like it’s going to be a six-raven day”, meaning it was going to be a cold 30 degrees or more.  Eventually the whole office was doing temperature comments with the raven equivalency.Raven 2  I left the School District after a period of seven years.  My husband was taking a job in Washington DC, so I was relocating from one dumpster view, to another – so to speak.   Oh, I’m so sorry!  I should NOT say bad things.  I apologize.  About two years later, I received a call and the person calling says “It’s a 12 raven day here!” It was the Superintendent!  Bless his heart, it was good to hear his voice on the other end of the phone.  He was retiring, and saying goodbye to current and former co-workers.

Today, in Oregon, we don’t have ravens – but I have lots of quail.  Today is a six quail day.

The Scrap Designer’s Blog Train rolls out on the 10th of each month.  Our theme this month is “Touch of Frost”, a lovely winter theme.  Please visit the blog train roll at the end of my downloads, to pick up all of the lovely kits!

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DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS
DOWNLOAD WATERCOLOR PAPERS

BLOG ROLL:

Promethean Concepts
KJD  Designs
Skinni’z Statz, Scrapz and Stuff
Songbird Scrap Designs
AnnieC Digitals
Joy’s Creations
Made by Angelhaze
Lady DG Scrap
DigiJen Scraps
Moore Blessings Digital Design

Please note that there are blizzard conditions in some parts of southeastern USA, that may have an impact upon the designer’s ability to update their website.  Songbird Scraps is one of those designers, at this time.  No electricity or internet service.  If her site is not updated as of 12/10, please return for her update.  Thank you!  

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Merry Christmas, dear friends!

Sunny
therushranch@gmail.com

Scrapbook Downloads – Dec ’18

Design Group:  Pixelscrapper & Scraptwist
Themes:  Retro Holly, and Thinking of You
Designer:  The Rush Ranch

Laura Ingalls Wilder - She wrote the first books I stayed up late to read. The first books that made me dream with my eyes open.

Reset.  Renew.  Restore.  Revive.  Refresh. Reenergize.  Refill.  All of those things, I am gifting to myself in January.

The days and weeks seem to pass at an incredible speed, especially when we transition into the Holidays.  I don’t participate in “Black Fridays” and “Cyber Mondays”, because – to me – the holidays aren’t about shopping and gifting “things”.  They are about giving and gifting of myself, my time, and most importantly, using and sharing the gifts that the Lord has blessed me with.  Volunteering, crocheting baby blankets for the Women’s Shelter, chemo hats for the hospital’s cancer unit, etc……….I have a desire to fulfill these needs as a part of my own personal “ministry” during the holiday season.

I have opted to take a break from several blogs in January of the new year.  Those blog trains are:
– Pixelscrapper
– Scrapping Your Heart Out
– We Believe

I will pick those back up in February.  I will continue to participate in the January Scraptwist Blog Train, and the Scrap Designer’s Blog Train.

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The Pixelscrapper Blog Train theme for this month is “Retro Holly Jolly”.  It would have been a perfect opportunity to put together some 50’s and 60’s papers and elements for you, but – I put together what I could.  If you visit the Pixelscrapper Blog Train Forum, you’ll find a wealth of creative kits that reflect this month’s great theme.

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ELEMENTS
SOLID PAPERS
PATTERNED PAPERS
JOURNAL CARDS

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We have a lot of fun in the Scraptwist Forum every month.  It’s a great place for learning and sharing – and getting free stuff!  This month’s theme is “Thinking of You”, and I had to try my hand at drawing a bear with my shape and warp tools.  I have a lot to learn about forming animals in my photoshop program, but I hope with practice I will improve.  I also tried my hand at designing “flat” elements, like flowers.  Normally I stick with more realistic items, but I liked the creativity that went into designing what my own world of flowers might look like, in the flat style.  Hey, please visit the blog train role for the Scraptwist Designers, at the end of my download links.

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ELEMENTS
PATTERNED PAPERS
SOLID PAPERS
WATERCOLOR PAPERS

BLOG ROLE:

No automatic alt text available.Marniejo’s House of Scraps
KJDdesigns

Nellie Bell
Songbird Scraps Designs
The Brown Owl
Moore Blessings Digital Designs
LEA Art Designs
The Preacher’s Gal
Lady Digiscrap

 

If you participate in my December challenges over at the Scraptwist Forum, you will receive these free corresponding mini-kits:

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And finally, I ask if you have any opinion about writing or receiving Christmas Letters.  Do you write a letter to distant friends and relatives, summarizing the happenings of the year?

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Scrapping Your Heart Out – Nov ’18

Design Team:  Scrappin Your Heart Out
Theme:  Book of Dreams
Designer:  The Rush Ranch

Gathering memories, gathering friends. In such intense pain, an eternity is born.  He lives on, carried within the strong and protective arms of angels to once again walk  whole and complete, in paradise. I am convinced of it. God’s perfect plan, to welcome the faithful into eternity.   Not just forever, but for EVER.

The funeral for my Brother-in-law was rather nice.   It was short and sweet, just how he would have wanted it.  The morning after we sat with our adult children at the hotel’s restaurant and tried to enjoy the last few moments with each other, before we had to leave for separate destinations.  North, south, east, west, we had all distant directions covered.  But for a moment in time, we were once again gathered around the kitchen table, timeless, as a precious family.   I love those kids so………

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The Scrapping Your Heart Out theme is “Book of Dreams”, and we were tasked with picking out a favorite book and designing with the book in mind – Well, I blew it.  I tried to pick the most favorite of all books (Besides the bible) and I think that I lost my mind trying to decide!  The Dr. Seuss books from childhood?  Treasure Island?  Little House on the Prairie books from my youth?  Jayne Eyre, Rebecca or Pride & Prejudice from my teens?  Or a few favorites from adulthood?  No.  I’m only human.  I can’t make decisions like that.  I would choose a title, and then the very next day wonder why I chose this book over that book.  So to be fair to all of my favorites, I don’t choose.  Therefore, my designs this month are rather general in nature.  In fact, my “patterned” papers aren’t really patterned at all, just some Bokeh splats of light across their width.  I apologize in advance for my weirdness.

Please visit the other designers via the blog roll at the end of this post.

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DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS
DOWNLOAD WATERCOLOR PAPERS

 

Blog Train Role:

Check out our Blog
and if you are a designer and would like to contribute to the train with us come and join ourFB Page (designers only and make sure sure to answer the questions please)
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We Believe Blog Train – Nov ’18

Design Group:  We Believe Blog Train
Theme:  In All Circumstances
Designer:  The Rush Ranch

Many, many years ago:  A few weeks after my grandmother died, my mother and her sister stood in the middle of Grandmother’s home and tried to figure out what to do with all of her beloved fluff and furnishings.  You know, the cuckoo clock, the butter dish shaped like a chicken, the Americana lamps and her favorite mug.  Hundreds of things both precious and bold with thick memories of life and death, war and peace, depression and plenty.  Grandmother’s generation passed through some of the hardest times of our nation.

After the horrors of World War II, my grandfather had built her a paradise with his own hands – a lovely house in the valley, with more than three acres of flowering gardens. Maple trees lined the driveway.   He built lovely stone paths that wound throughout the gardens and trees.  He built stone bird baths that were in direct eyesight of where she sat in the kitchen window, with her coffee and milk every morning.  She was his precious treasure.

My Grandmother and I had been very close, more so than any of her other grandchildren.  I don’t say that as a brag.  After my grandfather passed away, I would visit often.  I think it was because I didn’t mind just sitting there in the quiet with her.  To just BE – To listen to the birds, to breath in the scent of flowers and freshly mowed lawns.  To appreciate the gifts of nature.  We both loved caring for the gardens, and after a day well spent, we would retire with books in hand and read until bedtime.  I didn’t need attention, and she didn’t need authority or ego.

After Grandmother passed, Mother called me and asked me what I wanted from the home.  I didn’t have to think about it, because the most precious times I had spent with her were when we were reading together in her study.  So I asked my mother for Grandmother’s set of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s “Little House on the Prairie” books.  As a child, throughout the years I must have read the complete set more than a dozen times.  I didn’t want paintings or china.  I didn’t want the cameo brooch she wore to church every Sunday or lace doilies.  I didn’t want the superficial.  I wanted books full of memories.  Grandmother’s books.  Grandmother – with her flowered dresses and gingham aprons. With her long, dark hair wrapped up in a chignon at the top of her head, laughing about some memory.  Her scent of baby powder and violets in early morning sunbeams, as she dipped her toast into milky mugs of coffee – looking out upon those bird baths………

I kept those precious books until my granddaughters were old enough to appreciate them, and then started our own tradition of reading together.  I hope that they will love the books as much as I did – but more importantly, treasure the time we spend together.  Generational traditions – pass it on.  Thanks for listening.

*****

The We Believe Blog Train is here:

1 Thessalonians 5:18
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

Please visit each designer in the blog role below, for more great stuff!
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DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS

Blog Role:

A-M Designs
Nellie Bell
Dreamn4ever Designs
Songbird Scraps Designs
Crystal’z Colorz
Lori Imel Designs
Moore Blessings Digital Designs
LEA Art Designs
The Preacher’s Gal

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Scrap Designer’s Blog Train

Design Team:  Scrap Designers
Theme:  Kindness
Designer:  The Rush Ranch
Location:  Eastern Oregon

November 2nd, he let go of everything – the needle sticks, the sound of beeping monitors,  the smells of antiseptic and the memory of Monday morning traffic.  And then he let of of gravity.

“Slowly, gradually, he detached himself, breathing less and less, fainter and fainter; then he was off and free, like a dry leaf from the tree, floating down and away.”   Author, Helen Nearing.

He is free, at last.  My husband’s brother passed away in the morning.  It was a sad passing as he lay in the ICU, strapped to a multitude of machines and IV drips.  The man we knew had moved on a long time ago, but this shell of a great man still remained, sustained by feeding tubes, blood transfusions, oxygen, and a multitude of meds. Bless the coming and going of him.

I think that grieving is one of the hardest processes to go through, simply because it is a conundrum.  On one hand you are sad to lose a loved one, and on the other hand you know, without a doubt, that they are in a better place.  The two emotions don’t necessarily meet in the middle. It doesn’t make logical sense to our human brain – how can something so painful to us, be a good thing?  Oil and water.  The emotions float back and forth in your heart and mind like the weather – one day stormy at the loss, the next peaceful at the thought of heaven and the end of pain.  So we must “weather the storms”, until there are more peaceful days than hard ones.

As we sat at the dinner table that evening with our youngest daughter, she remarked that some families don’t openly talk about end-of-life choices like we do.  But isn’t that a final act of love, to have everything understood by all, from a legal and personal standpoint?  As you graduate to heaven, your loved ones will be in great distress.  Therefore, it seems a loving gesture to ensure that they know exactly what needs to be done.  Get those end-of-life directives and wills done, people.

On to the Blog Train.  This is the Scrap Designers Blog Train, and the theme is my favorite!  Kindness!  So I made you some cards that you could post on your social media, or send to a friend, etc.  They are meant to be shared.  Download links at the bottom of the previews.  And thank you for stopping by!

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DOWNLOAD JOURNAL PAPERS
DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS
DOWNLOAD WATERCOLOR PAPERS

BLOG TRAIN:
Angelhaze
Lady DG Scrap
AnnieC Digitals
Joy’s Creations
Moore Blessings
KJD Designs
Songbird Scrap Designs
LEA Art Designs
Skinni’z Statz, Scrapz and Stuff
Promethean Concepts
DigiJen Scraps

Thank you for visiting my blog and being so kind with your comments!

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November ’18 Digital Downloads

Theme:  Family Traditions & I’ll Owl’ways Be Thankful
Design Team:  Pixelscrapper & Scraptwist
Designer:  The Rush Ranch
Location:  Eastern Oregon

This morning the fog from the valley below rolled up the mountainside like a fast-moving sandstorm, racing the wind to reach the summit first.  One moment I was enjoying the rain and how it made the fall colors seem so brilliant, and then the next moment I watched the fog roll over the ranch as if I was at sea.  When we fed the horses this morning we could hear their hooves thunder as they ran down toward us from the far corner of the ranch.  They had been visiting with the neighbor horses (They talk over the fence), but we couldn’t see them up there because of the fog.

Douglas, our adopted German-shorthair fella wants to sit on my lap this morning, all 80 lbs of him.  He is such a big cuddle bug.  He is actually a real good napping buddy.  If you need something to curl up to when taking a nap, Douglas is at your service in a flash. He will even bring along his own favorite blanket.

I’ve been doing a bible study with some girlfriends.  We are going through a study of Psalm 23, led by Jennifer Rothschild.  I have a string tied around my wrist to remind myself of one important thing –    That I am a lamb of the loving Shepherd.   When I feel anxious or worried, I just need to look at that string and remember who I am.

Still, still…..I’m in a hazy, muddled place right now.  Don’t really understand it.  Can’t focus.  Haven’t done any of my bible study homework this week, nor worked on building a new scrapbooking kit.  I haven’t worked on a crochet project, or read a book, etc.  I can’t seem to focus.  I *think* it is because I am feeling overwhelmed right now with what is happening at my church.  We’ve lost our pastor, so we need to form a selection committee and go through the process of finding a new pastor.  But none of us have ever done this before, and it is hard to know where to start.  I have searched the web for info regarding selection committee processes, and interview questions, etc. – Thank goodness for the resources available because I did find some great information.  I suppose that I am also feeling that we don’t have much to offer – our funding will be small because we are a very small church of approximately 30 people, the majority of them on Social Security.  We have a parsonage, but it is an old place that needs repairs.  But I also need to remember that I don’t have to worry about any of that – because the Lord will take care of it.  He will bring us a new Pastor that will fit right in.  I have a string around my wrist that reminds me, HE is the great Shepherd.  HE will send one of his teachers to our church.

My husband is in Portland right now, about six hours away.  His brother, who has been in the hospital for several months now, has asked that all medical interventions be stopped.  The brother wants to go home, he is tired now.  He has a disease that has made his major arteries and aorta frail and thin as paper, and he keeps bleeding internally.  His brain doesn’t get the blood it needs to operate, so he has had several strokes.  He can’t eat so he is on a feeding tube and dialysis.  His organs have been damaged beyond repair and some of them no longer work.  It’s time.   It’s hard on my husband to see his younger brother so frail and ill.  Harder to let him go, but see’s the wisdom of it.  My husband and I promise each other that we will not drag our own end-of-life medical care out like this.  Those of us left behind will miss our loved ones enormously, but the one that passes will be in the presence of a loving God.

By the way, you and I both know that the world is in a troubled place.  violence, politics, etc.  Each one of us, you and me both, need to be the change.  It starts with us.  So do something kind for someone today.  Buy them a coffee, let them go in line in front of you, pick up the trash in your neighborhood gutter, deliver a meal to an elderly person in your neighborhood…….please.  We can do this.  We can make our little space in this world a whole lot better with simple acts of kindness.

So I’ve rambled away here, enough already.  Thank you for listening.

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I made a “Birthday Board” that you can see in the second preview.  I don’t know how useful it will be.  At home I have one made out of wood, and I love it.  I hang tags under each month with the person’s name and day of their birthday.  A paper one won’t be of must use, but if you fortify it with a stronger cardboard background, it just may be ok.  Paperclips would work to hang the tags from the board, and each other.   Here is the link to the blog train on the Pixelscrapper website.

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DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD BIRTHDAY BOARD
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS

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For the Scraptwist Free4All Team, I made three different owls for you with my shape and warp tools.  You know that making animals is new to me and I have a lot to learn.  Some people can make some really cute critters, and I don’t know how they do it – perhaps a more sophisticated design program, or talent – so I stick to my shape and warp tools.  I’ll eventually find a way to do it better, but in the meantime, here is “Olivia”, to welcome you to the Blog Train.  She is wearing a fancy feather hat and her favorite button.   rr_nov18_owl_owl 5Be sure to visit the designers in the blog train list below my kits.

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DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS
DOWNLOAD SOLID PAPERS
DOWNLOAD PATTERNED PAPERS
DOWNLOAD WATERCOLOR PAPERS

BLOG TRAIN ROLE:
Marniejo’s House of Scraps
Songbird Scraps Designs
KJDdesigns
Nellie Bell
The Brown Owl
Moore Blessings Digital Designs
Lady DGscrap
LEA Art Designs
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