October Blog Hop – Pumpkin Spice

Pumpkin Spice
Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx:  79F, Overcast
email:  therushranch@gmail.com

My blog is filled with random thoughts this month.

 1.  My friend George died today.  He had been experiencing several health issues this past year.  He was a neighbor, and the former Treasurer of our church.  I took over the position when he decided that it was time to pass the work on to another.  I had been his Assistant Treasurer for about four years before I assumed the Treasurer positon in April of this year. 

Death of a loved one is greeted with both sorrow and joy – joy that they no longer suffer, that they have walked into the arms of a loving God.  Knowing that we shall see them again as they once were, healthy and strong.   Of course there is the inevitable sorrow at the loss of their companionship.  But we can use that sorrow to inspire us, to examine our own lives, to declutter ourselves from things that don’t really matter.  To grasp with gusto and hold dear to all that is relevant and important and LOVED.  Each passing of a friend or loved one should inspire us to make our own last years – whether that be 5 or 50 – to count.  To matter.  To make a difference.  To establish and nurture a perpetual wave of goodness and kindness, to flourish and thrive.  May it be so.  May I honor George with being better at what and who I am supposed to be in this world. 

2.  I have often thought that there are no downsides of teaching little kids in Sunday School.  But actually, there are two.  One is that I miss them very much, when someone moves away.  I get attached very easily to them – they feel like my own grandchildren.   I don’t have the ability to NOT love them.   The other downside is demonstrated by a conversation I had with one of the kids this Sunday.  I asked her if she had a good week at school, and she informed me that she didn’t go to school all week because she had strep throat!  Gads.  I hope the other kids don’t come down with it!  At other times my heart is heavy for one or more of them because of their tough family situations – but, I don’t consider that a downside – I think that I was placed there in that classroom to help them emotionally “weather their storm”.  To “be there” for them, and let them know that they are not alone in their trials, that I care, that I love them unconditionally, and so does the Lord. We always do a craft in the last half of our class to support our lessons, and art can be very healing, too.   

3.  I think that I use too many commas in my writing………Not sure why I use them at all, but I suppose it is a remnant left over from a very strict English Teacher back in the day.  I was not a good English student, because I never saw the value in diagramming a sentence – I mean, who does that in real life!?  I just wanted to write what my head and heart was saying, and forget the punctuation.   A stream of consciousness doesn’t care about such things.  I am a flawed human.

4.  Another flaw:  I have a hard time making decisions.  There.  I put it out there in black and white.  I didn’t have that issue on the job when a critical decision needed to be made, in fact I could make a decision within a second of reviewing the best options.  But ask me where I wanted to go for dinner, or where to sit in a movie theatre……..it wasn’t important enough to let my  personal opinion override anyone else’s. My decision-making skills have grown lax since I have retired.  I could use the excuse that I am just easy-going and affable – but I wonder if, depending upon the subject, I am just a little afraid of the outcome.

One of the issues that I am having regarding decision making, is regarding the promotion at Pixel Scrapper to a level 3 designer.  The regulations for that level say that any designs I post to the Commons on Pixel Scrapper become the property of Pixel Scrapper, and I can’t share them anywhere else.  (This doesn’t apply to the blog hops, unless I post the blog hop kit in the Commons.)  So, my dilemma is …… do I want to become exclusive to the Commons on all designs besides the blog hops, or do I focus on sharing the majority my designs on my blog? Am I being prideful and boastful by seeking designer advancement, or is that effort truly helping me to advance my personal goals?

My goal is always, ALWAYS to express kindness when I can.  I hope that I am making a difference in this world by providing free downloads to be used for any purpose, including commercial use.  My designs are humble and not at the peak of perfection, but it is what I currently have to offer. So, what would you do, if you were me?  Would you post exclusively to the Commons and continue your advancement level as a designer at PS, or would you choose to post the majority of your work on your blog?

5.  Over at the Pixel Scrapper site, the Blog Hop theme for October is “Pumpkin Spice”.  I love that title for fall!  The palette was a bit of a challenge as there was none of the normal golden brown, rust, burgundy and yellow colors normally associated with fall.  And I think that was the whole idea, to challenge designers with different palettes and see what develops!  You can find the rest of the Blog Hop designer links here, at the Forum.

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PSOct2017_pumpkin-spice_elementsDOWNLOAD ELEMENTS

 PSOct2017_pumpkin-spice_papers
DOWNLOAD PAPERS

PSOct2017_pumpkin-spice_watercolor-papers
DOWNLOAD WATERCOLOR PAPER

PSOct2017_pumpkin-spice_journal-cards
DOWNLOAD JOURNAL CARDS

PSOct2017_pumpkin-spice_frames
DOWNLOAD FRAMES

Wishing you a very special October –
Sunny

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
………….. 
Ephesians 4:32

 

Free Digital Download

Stacked Papers
Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx:  85F
Listening to:  Soundtrack, Intersteller

I wanted to provide you with another small download of four stacked papers that I did for a Pixelscrapper Challenge in the Designer Forum.  It made me think about my humble designs, and how this forum is challenging me to become better in many ways.  My designing started with small steps, and one of those steps was taking the free tutorials from Cheryl, AKA “Hummie”.  I was very happy to see that she is going to be starting those up again, so if you are an aspiring beginning designer, she can help you get started, and again, it’s free of charge.  Please see her facebook page, “My Corner Online”  for details, and sign up with your email.  You will really enjoy her immense knowledge, her teaching style, and her sweet personality.  She is such an inspiration to so many, and there are many designers that can point to her for their skills.  She also does a weekly challenge for people interested in those.

I did a small challenge over on the Pixelscrapper Website, for Stacked Papers.  The challenge was to make four, and since it was a small amount I was able to fit it in between drilling a new well and teaching Sunday school.  I made them all different, for a variety.  In hindsight, I wonder if I should have made them all with the same color scheme and theme?
PSJUL2017_rushranch_sstacked papers_cu
Download Stacked Papers Here

I got some feedback from one of the members of the Pixelscrapper Community that she didn’t really like my pop-pom flowers, but I can’t help it!  I love them!  They look so fluffy and soft……..So, I am trying not to keep using them on my designs, just every so often….

Well, I wish you a very special week, one filled with wonder and kindness.  Don’t forget to share kindness when you can!

Sunny

 

New Download Links for Yesterday’s Post

Hopes & Dreams
Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx:  80F
Listening to:  Piano In The Dark – Brenda Russell

Good Morning, Sweet Ones.  I am providing you a download link to my mini-kit “Hopes and Dreams”, because the Pixelscrapper website is having some tech issues with access, and it’s just so…….complicated.    I will never ask you for that favor again, to pull my designs solely from the Pixelscrapper website.  My sincere apologies for the inconvenience.

Preview_rushranch_hopes-and-dreams_papers_cu

DOWNLOAD PAPERS

DOWNLOAD ELEMENTS

Again, apologies for an idea that just wasn’t viable.

Have a lovely week,

Sunny

 

 

Free Digital Download

Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx:  100F
Listening to:  My brain melting……..

It’s hot – But there are so many other things to be thankful for, so I shall pass through this weather and give praise for what I have.  The well is being redone, so fresh water is on the way soon.

When I drive through the valley to get to the city – about 15 miles away, I am always amazed by the beauty of each divergent field.  And I want to photograph EVERY SINGLE ONE, because they each have their own beauty.  The photo below is of a field owned by our neighbor, and he is growing seed for Canola Oil.  Look at this bounty!
Rape-Seed-Field_Canola-Oil3
So the next time you are in the baking aisle at your local grocery store, remember that the Canola Oil is made from fields of beautiful yellow flowers.  Those are the Blue Mountains, in the background.

I am working on getting a promotion to a “level 3” designer, and one of the ways I can earn the points to do that, is to have my blog readers visit the Pixelscrapper website, from my blog.  So if it is not too inconvenient, could I impose upon you to click on over and take a look at the site?  It’s free.  Downloads are free.  And there are lots of forums, challenges, and tutorials to make your scrapping even more enjoyable.  By the way, being a designer in the Pixelscrapper “Commons” is not a paid position, so I am not compensated in any way by directing you to the site.  Well, except points to enable progressing through the various levels of a designer.

One of the small kits I have loaded up on The Commons, is called “Hopes and Dreams”.  It uses the black and pink palette, which was a new thing for me.  You can find everything I have uploaded there just by clicking on my user name “Sunny Faith Rush”.  As of today I have uploaded about 200 designs.  There are more talented designers than I that are posting their designs, so you may find a new designer that specifically appeals to your own sense of design.

Preview_rushranch_hopes-and-dreams_papers_cu

I have not put a download link here for this particular mini, in hopes that you will be ok with this rare request to visit the website, from this blog.  Please feel free to leave me feedback on how this works for you.  Thank you –

Blessings to you,

Sunny

 

 

 

Free Digital Download

Bee Sweet
Rush Ranch, Eastern Oregon
Wx:  Hot.  Hot.  Hot.  Dang.
Listening to:  The Best of Firefall

Early morning is such a wonderful time for me.  The rest of the house is asleep, but everything outside is awake and celebrating the day.  As I write in my morning journal, I watch the birds visit the feeders.  The pheasant family is out in the field, and the male always honks his alerts as they make their way toward their feeding station.  It makes me chuckle, because it always sounds like he is complaining. He probably is…….

Sometimes I use this time to write letters to friends (Yes,  real paper you put in the post office mail…..and in cursive, too!)  Or I design something new for scrapbooking.  My drink of choice in the morning is a Chai Tea Latte, with a splash of milk.  My cat is usually in his loving mode, so I rub his ears and pet him until he grows sleepy.  Then he makes his way to his little bed next to my chair, and falls asleep. Outside my back window I can see the horses in their field as they graze on the soft grass.  They nuzzle each other in affection.  I am content to just sit and watch the world unfold in the morning sunlight.

              Oscar “The Grouch”
cat 5
I continue to upload designs to The Commons at Pixelscrapper.   I am working on earning a promotion to the next level of designing, so I am making a real effort to learn how to make things just a little better than the last graphic.   I’ve had a few areas identified where I could improve, so I have been learning/doing/fussing/practicing and I am learning so much.  I think that unlearning bad habits are the hardest. Well, perhaps not the hardest part – that award goes to learning how to accept feedback critiques in a gracious manner and applying that information to your future designs.  It is easy to take critical comments personally on something that you have spent a lot of time on.  It’s easy to get frustrated.  But by changing the “filter” in which you receive these comments, you can see the immeasurable value in the information.  Take out the emotion – work the solution, not the problem.  I applied that strategy throughout my career, and it served me well.  Time to get that filter out, dust it off, and apply it to my personal passions.

I have placed some of my designs that I have uploaded to The Commons, into a package for you that can be downloaded from my dropbox account – But I would encourage you to visit Pixelscrapper.com to download more cool (and free) graphics to use in your layouts.  This set I call “Bee Sweet”

preview-sheet
DOWNLOAD HERE

preview-sheet_papersDOWNLOAD HERE

As usual, these are for commercial use.  Please see my TOU below:
tou_good-karma

Blessings to you –

Sunny

 

 

Digital Download – Collaboration

Gamer Girl
Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx:  51F, cloudy, windy

My husband and I have some lovely grandchildren – Well, don’t all grandparents have lovely grandchildren?  Aren’t they all kind, intelligent and talented children?  I believe so.  Our young grandson Jack has learned how to address a mailing envelope, so he has been writing letters to us, and they could not be more precious to us.  Jack lives in Alaska, by the way.  He usually includes a drawing of an animal or people in his letters – let’s see…….he drew a wolf in the last letter.  I have scanned them and intend to add a little color to them and then print them out for framing.  This may sound silly but when you reach my young age of 65 years old, the framed letters from grandchildren are more precious than a framed Rembrandt or Reubens.

An email isn’t as personal or as creative as a letter.  A letter conveys much more than pencil or ink upon the page – time, energy, thought, expense, choices of pen and paper, the artful craft of words, etc.  I can’t explain it, but it seems a mighty lost art. A beautiful form of communication that gets lost in the massive wave and dash of emails.

So we are gathered here today because a team of Pixel Scrapper designers got together and made a collaborative kit to share.  You can also find the links to the other Collaborative teams here.   There are three teams.   Our group was able to come to an agreement on a color scheme and theme.  Since most of our lovely designers are much younger than I, they chose a theme that I am not as familiar with as I should be – the world of gaming.  In my day there was Donkey Kong and the Mario Brothers video games, but now – my goodness!  They have become so popular that movies are being made about them!  I saw the previews to “Assassin’s Creed” just the other day.  And remember “Laura Croft, Tomb Raider”?   I’m sure that there are others that I am not remembering.

The most important thing to tell you is that because this is a collaboration of several designers, these items are intended only for Personal Use.  Normally downloads on this blog are for open use, but due to the different designers involved, these must be classified as Personal Use, only.  The individual designer TOU’s are included in the downloads.  I hope that you have fun putting together some scrapbook pages for your own sweet “gamers”!

The download links:
alphas
paper dolls
Elements
Papers
Clusters

Let me know if you have any issues with the downloads or graphics.

PTK2017A-GamerGirl_Elements2-PrevPTK2017A-GamerGirl_Elements-PrevPTK2017A-GamerGirl_PatternPP-PrevPTK2017A-GamerGirl_ThemePP-PrevPTK2017A-GamerGirl_WA-Clusters-Prev

ts_PSSpring2017PTK_preview01_PaperDolls-1000PTK2017A-GamerGirl_Alpha-Prev

Be well my friends.  Hug the ones you love.

Sunny

 

 

Digital Scrapbooking – April Blog Hop

Raindrops and Rainbows
Rush Ranch – Eastern Oregon
Wx: 45F, raining, wind

They fall.  First one, then another.  My husband points them out to me as we drive by.  I turn my face away.  I can’t look.  The neighbor is pulling out his cherry orchard.  15 acres this year – maybe more next.  With each fallen tree, my heart sinks lower.  For years we have marveled at the beauty of a cherry orchard in full bloom.  Playful chickadees have darted within the clouds of white and pink spring buds.  A small semblance of heaven.

But the new laws are in place this year to protect migrant crop workers, and the economy is bad for fruit sellers.  Our neighbors have hired the same family of workers for two generations.  They are provided with a clean and attractive bunkhouse for their two week stay.  It has a restroom, showers, bunk beds, etc.  Picnic tables outside provide a place for playing cards or reading.  Last year I baked cookies for them.  Sometimes they come to our church.  But the new laws state that each individual family must have their own, separate housing.  I don’t make a judgement call on that law – I wish everyone had the opportunity to have everything they require.  In my neighbor’s case, they just don’t have the funds to build new bunkhouses for individual families.  Along with that mandatory law, the market for Bing cherries has fallen considerably.  The heartbreaking decision was made to pull down the trees. A little bit of my heart falls down with them. Sigh.

The Pixel Scrapper Blog Hop for April is called “Raindrops and Rainbows”, a fitting theme for this time of year in Oregon.  Lots of early rainfall.   I am excited to see what the other designers at PS have designed.  I went with a watercolor theme, and stayed away from bright, primary colors.  Please visit the link to get access to all designer creations for this Blog hop.  And remember, each designer will have their own particular terms of use for their designs.  My designs are free to use, as you wish.  I just ask that you do a random act of kindness for someone else, in return.  My official terms are at the end of this post.

PSApr2017_raindrops-and-rainbows_papersDOWNLOAD PAPERS

PSApr2017_raindrops-and-rainbows_elements

DOWNLOAD PAPERS

tou_good-karma

Be well, my friend.  Hug the ones you love.

Sunny