Saturday, October 24, 2015

Happy Mail!!!

I just got a package that was a great surprise. Months before my art gathering, I wrote to Shanna from Illustrated Faith and asked if she might have a little printable that she would like to send for the ladies at my event. I thought even a little "hello" would be nice. Well, today I received a large package with the "Bloom" devotional by Stephanie Ackerman (Documented Faith founder) and stickers and pocket scripture cards!

Thank you so much, Shanna!

Friday, October 23, 2015

Art Gathering (supplies update added)

Well, this past Tuesday I hosted an art gathering for locals (Winnipeg and surrounding areas) involved in Documented Faith and Illustrated Faith. I love a good party and I think it turned out fairly well. There are always things I would go back and change or adjust, but that's my event management training and since I haven't decided to go into the event industry, I can take it a bit easy on myself, right? I will spare you all the thought processes and ideas that I sifted through and show you where I landed.

My first event weakness if food. I quickly solved this by asking people to bring snacks and thank you ladies, they were great. I made our traditional Christmas cider drink. I figured since it was cooler outside, it would be a nice cozy thing to sip. My next party weakness: pictures. Ugh! I really need to delegate picture taking to other people. I'm usually too involved in the event to think about pictures, and then when I do, I'm in such a fluster or hurry that they're not great. Sorry. This would be so much better to share with good pictures.

Probably my favourite thing about hosting events is making my guests feel a little spoiled. I could easily spend a fortune on giving gifts, but I try my best to have parties on a small budget so as to not stress out my dear David who works so hard to provide for our family. This means I get to exercise my creative gifts. If you're ever curious just how creative you can be, limit your resources. It's fun and surprising to see what comes out! In the end I made fabric cuff bracelets with "made to create" stamped on them.

Each bracelet was slightly different and imperfect.
I printed out free embellishments and quotes etc. from various blogs I found through Pinterest. I made little bags filled with fun post-it flags, shaped paper clips, hand painted star cutouts and other embellishments that could be used in everyone's Bibles and/or journals. Candy, of course. One of my guests brought bookmarks that she carefully stamped for us and another guest sent Illustrated Faith goodies to share. All to be put into cute decorated bags. I also made lanyard style name tags.

The evening itself included sharing our journaling stories. I asked everyone to share what kind of journaling they do (Documented Faith and/or Bible journaling), how they heard about it or began, what it means to them and anything else they'd like to share. This is a great ice breaker for those of us who hate icebreakers. It gave us each a chance to talk about something we all had in common.

We shared a group art project experiment and laughed our way through our insecurities. We started with a blank canvas and had about ten minutes to apply our base, then we rotated the canvases and added to each one as we continued passing them around ten minutes at a time. I'm not sure it was completely a success, but it was a fun experiment and a great opportunity to create and visit. Then we pulled out our Bibles and journals creating and sharing our favourite pages. 

These ladies are all lovely and I hope to get to create with them again. (boo! blurry! )

In the event invitation, I asked each person to bring a favourite art supply (under $10) to swap with another person. We drew names to see who got whose supplies. I shared a bottle of Martha Stewart acrylic paint and a Staedtler pigment liner in my favourite size.  I received a whole package of favourites including number paper clips, washi tape, alpha stickers, clips to hold the pages during the creative process and ribbon - spoiled, I know! Other items shared were watercolour pencils, washi tape and Illustrated Faith pens (I was slightly jealous over that one). 

Don't these all look so great?!

Sadly, four ladies were unable to make it and two others had other plans, but it sounded like everyone would be interested in another gathering. Who wants to host, let's say in January?

Hello, friends from Documented Faith. Thanks for stopping by. A question that I've been asked is how did I handle supplies. In the event invitation (I created a Facebook event - easy access to everyone) I asked everyone to bring their own favourite on-the-go supplies to use. I also put out my few paints, brushes, paper, ephemera and glue. I only put out items that I wasn't worried about being over or misused. Keep your best pens and markers to yourself if you want them to be in good condition by the end of the evening. Whatever supplies you do share, share with open hands and heart. If anyone has any specific questions, I'd be happy to answer either here or on Facebook. Again, thanks for stopping by.

P.S.  If you're curious about faith journaling, you can learn about Documented Faith here and Illustrated Faith here. You can also read about my DF story here and my IF story here and here. I post pictures of each week in my DF journal and all my Bible journaling pages on Instagram (user name: mrsgingras)

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Checking In - It's OCTOBER?!

Wow! Did September fly for you, too? It was an amazing September for us and I can't even express how grateful I am for it. Let's get to it!

  • Why was it such an amazing September? Answer: Abby. There has been such a remarkable difference in how she is handling change and this fall we've had a couple of minor incidents and no major meltdowns! This is the first peaceful back-to-school season we've experienced. Abby has had her fair share of behavior issues and the fact that we can finally reason with her and help to adjust to new situations without lengthly meltdowns is huge. I miss her now that she's in school for five days a week and I'm so glad to be able to say that. If you've had a child with behavioral issues, than you know that it isn't always easy to be around that child. Now, I look forward to her coming home each day and I don't have to brace myself for potential conflicts.

  • With such a change in Abby has brought a change in our family. We haven't merely survived September, but have taken the time to enjoy it.

  • My parents have had a lot to celebrate. Daddy has been through a huge battle and has a way to go, but he's alive and they celebrated the one year anniversary of his medical event (I don't know how to refer to the day he almost died and ended up in a wheelchair). Thank you all for your prayers, love and even financial support. We are all so blessed! 

  • We took our annual trip to a local farm's pumpkin cart. They decorate the yard with lots of picture worthy spots and it's a highlight of our fall each year. 

    cash wallet for budgeting
  • I'm still open to custom sewing orders and finished up a few in the last little while. I am still so flattered that y'all want to hire me and I love being able to personalize items to fit your needs. I am much more careful with your projects than my own, in case you saw my recent blunder on Instagram. 
Essential Oils Cases

  • We are in the midst of a federal election here in Canada. David and I took advantage of the advance polling station this year. We were both eager to vote and it was nice to walk in with no wait time at 7:00 in the evening. It seems to be a very pivotal and important election and I'm praying that the best people for our country will be in leadership.

  • We celebrated Thanksgiving this past weekend. Friday we had a traditional turkey dinner at "Auntie" Trudy's. We started a new #gingrastradition for Thanksgiving with a BBQ steak dinner. We enjoyed the warm weather by taking a nice walk at the park on Sunday and we stayed warm and cozy on the cold Monday at home. 

"every woman should have flowers for Thanksgiving" - my David
  • I'm hosting an art gathering for locals involved in Documented Faith and Illustrated Faith next week. This introvert is rather proud of myself for this and a bit nervous, too. It's going to be great and I've come a long way from planning a party that no one shows up for. I love a good party full of swag and good company, so I know it'll be great. Stay tuned for a blog post about that after the party.
"I'm so glad I live and world where there are Octobers" - Anne Shirley