Friday, July 17, 2015

Connecting

Hello lovelies!  

It is Shay here.  I am going to do something a bit different today (warning: this is a very text heavy post).  I don't often take up a whole post (although I have done it more of late) because our Talent and lovely guests are incredible and do a fine job inspiring.  Plus it is hard to put yourself out there, right?

Still I love to connect with others that love to create too and I am the first to admit I am a papercrafts fan girl.  I swear it is not stalking, just a sincere admiration and love of crafting, style, creativity and the like.  I watch videos, read blogs, listen to podcasts, subscribe to various kits, take online classes, covet products and buy crafty necessities (aren't they all?) like I don't have a burgeoning studio stuffed full (and needing a hefty purging).

In fact Julie and I bonded over "talking shop".  We would meet at baby showers, parties and the like and end up spending hours talking about stamping, scrapbooking, companies, blogs, videos, crafters and magazines.  Most everyone else in our lives could not stand more than a few minutes of this sort of conversation without their eyes glazing over.

Our talk eventually morphed into spinning dreams of working on our own designs where we could expand on our ideas.  We did this for years.  Enough was enough and it was time to do something before we whiled away the years without doing anything.  Waiting for the right time means time slips away from you.  We made definitive plans and strategies.  We put them into motion and we started Winnie & Walter!  

We still can't believe we are doing rather than simply talking.  We have to remind ourselves that we run a growing crafting business...this dream has become a reality.  One of the most positive parts of running our own crafting business is that we have the chance to give back, to create relationships and to help others to strengthen their relationships too.

Running w&w as a second job is not easy along with balancing having a life outside of work, but having this chance to connect with you through w&w is so meaningful, so worthwhile and so very amazing!  We are unbelievably grateful that we have the opportunity to be a part of your lives through our shared joy in making.  

Crafting for me has not only been about creating and artistic expression, but a way to connect, share, care and help heal.  It is a way to reach out to others in the good times and bad.

I am not sure if you are aware that our dear Lea and her husband are grieving over the loss of their sweet little one, Arabella Grace.  These two are a lovely couple who have endured so much.  Julie and I are full of sorrow for their pain.  You can find out more on Lea's blog HERE.  If you feel so inclined, please leave a little love on her blog.  If you would like to send some love the old fashioned way, you can send cards to Lea & Josh Lawson, c/o Winnie & Walter, 14350 Northbrook Drive, Suite 220, San Antonio, Texas  78232 and we will happily forward them on. 

As many of you are probably aware, Heidi Swapp lost her 16 year old son recently.  I found out from Jennifer McGuire's call to cardmakers HERE.  I spent many hours with Heidi Swapp watching her live weekly classes online when she was part of House of 3.  She was warm, real, funny, talented and giving.  It is apparent that her family are her heart and center.  I don't personally know Heidi, but she and her family have brightened and enriched my life and I am certainly not alone.

If you would like to send a card to the Swapp family, Persnickety Prints are collecting cards for them at Persnickety Prints, 44 West Center Street, Orem, UT  84057 USA.

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Via Persnickety Prints


Also Becky Higgins is collecting messages of love on 4x4 squares to be added to an album (or as many as necessary to house all those squares) for the Swapp family.  More information can be found HERE on how you can participate.  
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Photo from beckyhiggins.com (click on the photo to reach Becky Higgins' post)


Any loss of a child is heartbreaking.  I am not a parent, but I am someone acutely familiar with a lot of helplessness, hopelessness, desolation and isolation not only personally but also experienced by friends and family.  Lain Ehmann wrote eloquently HERE about the power of reaching out to others.

Perhaps one of the reasons I am writing this long-winded post is that I feel motivated to reach out and let you know how important you are to Julie and me.  

This need to connect with you guys has me wanting to do a monthly post which I am calling {Mis}Adventures in Crafting.  I hope you will come along for the ride as I share various forays into crafting.  

As always, please do not hesitate to share your opinions, adventures, projects, thoughts and questions.    

Last thought for today: making and giving of a card is an act of grace.  You are sending your love along with your handmade card.  

Keep on crafting and spreading love,
Shay.


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17 comments:

  1. How sweet, sad, eloquent, and meaningful, Shay. Thank you so much for sharing the good, and the sad ... that is life. I never take it for granted, and am thankful every day. I can't imagine the loss, and broken-hearts in either family. I will send cards, Shay. Thanks for spreading your love ....
    =] Michele

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  2. Lovely, thoughtful and kind post! xxx

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  3. Shay, your post is, as Michele and Craftychris, noted,, a most timely piece, written from the heart. Touching, thoughtful, genuine, eloquent. Thank you for reaching out to 'connect' with us over the realities - the joys and the sorrows - of life. I will send cards once I'm home from our travels; I 'need' to do this; I 'want' to do this...a chance to 'pay-it-forward' from all the incredibly support I received - in comments, notes and actual cards (over 50!) I received when my father passed away in December. Thank you for caring about all of us...and know that we {heart} you and Julie, too!
    Hugs~c

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  4. Thank you for your openess. and info on people in our community of crafters.

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  5. What a beautiful post. It is definitely hard to put yourself out there. So wonderful that you and Julie were able to create a business together. I am sad over the recent losses. Giving back is a great thing to do, considering how supportive and generous the industry is to begin with... especially winnie & walter! Prayers and hugs for those grieving and experiencing tragic losses. <3

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  6. A beautiful and touching post, Shay ... my heart goes out to the two families ... and my prayers too, that they will find comfort in the support of this wonderful community. Thank you for putting yourself out there ... and for helping us all to give something back to those who, in many ways, are part of our daily lives. An act of grace indeed. Anita :)

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  7. I too Watched the Home Web Shows that Heidi did while being part of the House of 3!! I remember every once in awhile she'd have the Kiddos there helping or telling us ALL Hi!! Capri and Connor even Blew Kisses and Colton and Cory ran the Tech stuff when her Husband wasn't there to help!! I can remember thinking what AN AMAZING FAMILY!! It made me LOVE her even MORE!! That's why I think those of us who have watched her are FEELING this SO MUCH, on top of the fact that like you say the Loss of ANYONE is HARD, but a CHILD well there are just NO WORDS!! I'm GLAD you SHARED and APPRECIATE your Text Heavy Post!! That Family Photo makes me CRY everytime I see it!! SENDING THOUGHTS and PRAYERS and I'm SO THANKFUL to be a PART of this AMAZING Industry!! I have been LUCKY enough to MEET her and she is just as AMAZING in Person!! She told the story of what made her begin to scrapbook!! She LOST her Baby Brother from an accident!! They were at a Cabin in the Mountains and the Snow Fell off the Roof and Buried him!! They dug to get him but it was too late!! He died!! She remembers a Book that was kept on their Coffee Table Growing up and it had all of the Pictures and momentos from her Brother in it and she just LOVED looking through it and remembering him!! That's what made her LOVE Scrapbooking!! I'm sure I have some of these details wrong but this was the just of the Story!! Her Parents/Family were all there when she told this Story because they were Honoring their Anniversary and there wasn't a DRY EYE in the Place!! It was just ANOTHER event that makes me LOVE her and makes me HEART BREAK for her and their FAMILY!! THANKS for the ending Quote and I hope you too have a FABULOUS WEEKEND!! THANKS THANKS THANKS for ALL that you Ladies do!! You're AMAZING!! HUGS!! =)

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  8. Beautiful post Shay. My eyes are filled with tears at all this heartbreak and loss!!!
    Life is so precious and it is so easy to get distracted from what is really important - THANK YOU - I feel driven to get working on cards that have been sitting, waiting to be completed due to recent losses of our own, you have reminded me just how important our cards and the messages they carry really are!!!
    {{{ HUGS }}}

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  9. I'm in total agreement with TraceyM about how lovely this post is. I too am in tears hearing about Lea and her heartbreak with her baby girl. Have also seen all the messages around blogland about Heidi and her gorgeous son, her family must be in such turmoil but sound like they have wonderful friends and family supporting them. Blogging is sharing a part of your life with everyone, whether you hear from them or not and I cry and laugh along with everyone else's stories. You can't help but feel like you know people thru their blogs and crafting. I think it would be lovely to mention monthly whats happening with everyone and if there is anything we can do to help. Your so very thoughtful.

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  10. What a touching post Shay...there has been so much going on out there lately. Thank you for sharing.

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  11. Thanks a lot for this post Shay. It's really great to know a bit more about you two and how this whole adventure started. And also it shows what a kind person you are.
    I heard about the Swapp family loss and it's so heart breaking. And Lea and her husband's loss...well, that touches me even closer since I'm expecting my first kid very soon. Sending prayers to all of them.
    Hugs

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  12. Heart-felt and loving. So devastated to hear of Heidi's loss and now Lea's. Will add her and her husband to my prayers. This is a very sweet post and it's good to get some insight into your's and Julie's collaboration and you warm and welcoming outreach. I think most of us would say, "We love you two".

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  13. Heart-felt and loving. So devastated to hear of Heidi's loss and now Lea's. Will add her and her husband to my prayers. This is a very sweet post and it's good to get some insight into your's and Julie's collaboration and you warm and welcoming outreach. I think most of us would say, "We love you two".

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  14. I love this post. I love the feeling of community within the papercrafting industry, and as awful and sad as these recent events are, it goes to show how we all can pull together in good times and in bad. Thanks for that reminder, Shay!

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  15. Thank you for such an honest post...its so hard and sad to hear about both Lea and Heidi losing their children. My prayers and thoughts go out to each of them and their families. I totally agree that our card making community has the power to life the spirits of those who are suffering. It is a gift of grace.

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  16. Thank you for reaching out to the crafting community with your beautiful and honest words. Having others to touch during difficult times is the most precious thing we have to help us get through the tough times. Even when the touch is virtual through a computer, and even when it is with people that we do not actually know, the human connection is still there and vitally important.

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  17. Cardmakers carry a lot of love in their hearts. Or they wouldn't be cardmakers! Thanks for letting yours spill over onto us.
    Having been on the receiving end of this bunch's support, I'm more than happy to share some "hugs with folds."

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Your comments make Winnie's and Walter's tails wag in happiness.