Spring Fever?! Sick of Winter?

LINK TO GARDENER’S BENCH CLIP ART KIT IN STORE  $4.98

Are you ready to head out into your garden (or wishing that you could?!)   Aren’t we all?  Well, this morning I put together this “Gardener’s Bench” Digital Clip Art kit that will bring a little sunshine indoors for you.

This is a BRAND NEW art kit that is hand water colored.  A beautiful painting of a gardener’s bench was the start of the collection.  There is a 4″ x 10″ painting image suitable for a card front or other uses as well as a smaller, rectangular composition from the same painting.

It was my desire that this kit would help bring a little sunshine indoors for you. There are 18 pieces in this kit, 2 card fronts, 4 borders, 1 tag, 7 art pieces and 4 coordinating papers.  The artwork is extremely detailed and life-like.  It can be used to create your own cards, craft with or for scrapbooking.

SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY:  1 John 1:5-10  This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.  If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.  If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.   NIV

DEVOTIONAL:  Continuing our theme of overcoming spiritual dryness and feeling far from God, I’m going to address the issue of sin.  Sin is considered by many to be an “old fashioned” kind of a word, something our culture has “grown past” and “evolved beyond.”  But guess what?  We all sin.  EVERYBODY sins, and everybody can be forgiven of those sins, but they have to humble themselves before God in order to have those sins forgiven.

Sin keeps us separated from God.  It builds a wall that cannot be breached, it must be removed and there is only one way to do that and that is by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross.  Again, and “old fashioned” concept, but one that has never lost its power to change lives!

The word sin, means among other things to “miss the mark” as in an archer shooting at the target.  I miss the mark every day.  I start each day with the desire to live it perfectly before the Lord, but guess what?  I miss the mark — over and over and over again.  Some days I barely miss and other days I miss it by a mile — whether by little or by much it is still sin.  I strive to live according to his instructions but lack the power on my own to accomplish this goal.  Here’s where I can begin to feel dry and pull away from Him.

If I’m going to “sin” (and I will) how do I keep that wall from building between the Lord and I?  I need to walk towards Him and his light each and every day.  I need to seek Him out, starting by confessing my sin and seeking His power to overcome that sin.  I constantly ask the Lord to show me where I am sinning.  I need Him to show me where I am “missing the mark,” as I’ve discovered that I am pretty blind to my biggest flaws.  I need His help to show them to me so that I can ask Him to help me change and grow.

Sometimes it is great sins that separate us from God — like King David who sinned with Baathsheba and had her husband killed.  Great sins can sometimes begin with a small disobedience where we have walked away from something God required us to do and headed in the wrong direction.  When we do this we walk straight into darkness and our heart begins to harden against the Lord.

Sometimes small series of repetitive sins begin to build the wall between us.  It can be as simple as being too busy to seek His will before making decisions, or telling little lies, or gossiping about someone you know or …  A great wall can be built up of very small stones.  We need to treat all sin equally and be quick to confess those sins and seek God’s forgiveness.  A clean heart is a heart that is free to come to our Heavenly Father with joy and abandon.

PRAYER:  Lord, I think that I have allowed sin to begin building a wall between you and I.  I want to live in your light and I ask you to show me any darkness that is lurking in my heart.  Help me to see sin like you do.  Show me my sins and show me why it is that you hate sin.  You hate the consequences of those sins in my life and the damage that I do to others and you hate sins because they separate me from you.

Thank you that you have promised in advance that if I confess my sins you will forgive them and PURIFY me from them!  Purify me Lord, make my heart clean and give me the power to live a pure life.  Help me to draw more closely to you each day.  AMEN

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Elegant Easter Egg Favor Boxes and Pillow Box Purse Set

CLICK HERE FOR LINK TO EASTER EGG FAVOR BOXES IN STORE  $4.98

While I’m working on kits I got on a roll this morning!  These Elegant Easter Egg Favor Boxes are just adorable!  They’re the perfect size to fill with a few Hershey’s Kisses or other Easter candies.  The three eggs work beautifully together and can add an elegant touch to place settings at a family dinner, a women’s Easter brunch or other Easter gathering.  Add your own tags to them for place settings or to add all of the children’s names in a classroom.

There are photographic instructions included so it’s very easy to figure out how to put these together and even an older child could do these.  Cutting and scoring are at a medium difficulty skill level.

SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY:  Matt 11:28-30   “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”  NIV

DEVOTIONAL:  Continuing on yesterday’s theme — when we are spiritually dry there are a few common reasons.  Sometimes we are in sin, sometimes we are disappointed with God or our perception of God’s “fairness,” sometimes we are caught up in the world around us and sometimes we’re caught up in worrying.  I’ll go over each of these in successive devotionals, but today I’m going to talk about the most common reason we get spiritually dry and that is we grow weary.

Weary, tired, exhausted, overwhelmed — these are the most common words I hear in my daily life when I ask people how they’re doing.  I bet you hear it/say it too.  We’re all doing too much, in too little time with little or no rest to restore ourselves.

Did you notice the “rest” in “restore.”  There is no restoration of energy without rest and there’s no shortcut to being refreshed.  Unfortunately you can’t plug yourself in like an electric car when you go to sleep at night to recharge in a few hours — it takes many consistent nights of adequate sleep to restore our bodies and with it our souls.

Jesus understands our weariness.  He wants us to come to Him, give him our weariness and burdens and find His rest.  I’ve discovered over time that His rest isn’t a magical formula, it’s a dramatic change about the way we approach all of life.  Are the tasks/assignments that you are stressing over, actually coming from the Lord or have you taken them upon yourself?  If the latter, His rest might come as you let go of the commitment.

Jesus pulled away from the crowds and sought communion with His Heavenly Father — even when it meant leaving the hurting masses.  Do you “leave” your family from time to time to go away and spend time with the Lord?  Most of us can’t physically get away, but we can go into our rooms each day and spend time seeking the Lord AND LEARN FROM HIM HOW TO FIND REST.

Start your time with Him with a simple prayer and ask Him to help you find out the root reason that you are weary and discouraged.  Then ask Him to lead you to the scriptures that will speak to your need.  It can be as simple as looking up “weary” in a good concordance and following the trail of scriptures.  Then I find that “pray-reading” the scripture is a great way to take it into my own heart and give the Lord permission to do the work necessary to change my heart.  The prayer at the end today is an example of how I like to “pray-read” the word.

If you are dry, or maybe you’re even in a long season of drought, you won’t feel restored over night.  You probably won’t feel different at all for quite a while, but I promise you, if you continue seeking His rest you will find it.  And with it you’ll find the refreshing rains of his living waters.  You’ll find the rains that bring forth the spring flowers.

PRAYER: Lord, you have commanded me to come to you when I grow weary and burdened.  I am so weary and dry right now.  I am so exhausted with carrying my burdens that I have come to you to find your rest.  Please show me what I need to do in my life.

You have told me that if I take your yoke upon my shoulders it will be a comforable and restful yoke.  My work will be less painfu, be more easily accomplished and lead to rest.  Help me to learn from you.  Teach me about where my life is out of balance and headed in a wrong direction and teach me what needs to be changed and perhaps more importantly, how to change it.

Thank you that you aren’t angry with my weakness, you understand.  You’re gentle and understanding and have a desire to lead me into your rest.  AMEN.

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Elegant Easter Eggs Digital Clip Art Kit, New in Store Today

LINK TO ELEGANT EASTER EGGS KIT IN STORE  $4.98

I have often had requests over the years for an adult Easter set.  There are lots of little bunnies, chicks and easter eggs, but what do we give to an adult friend or family member?!  So this spring I set about painting some elegant Easter eggs for my own Easter use and this is the kit that resulted.

The front image is available two ways, as a completed card front and every item is available separately so you can make your own layouts.  There are fifteen pieces to this kit and that includes 3 papers, one card front, 5 eggs, the hanging cord and gold attachment, one ribbon, one border and one frame.

SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY:  Jer 31:23-26  This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: “When I bring them back from captivity, the people in the land of Judah and in its towns will once again use these words: ‘The LORD bless you, O righteous dwelling, O sacred mountain.’  People will live together in Judah and all its towns — farmers and those who move about with their flocks.  I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.”  At this I awoke and looked around. My sleep had been pleasant to me.
NIV

DEVOTIONAL: I love that scripture, “I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.”

Do you feel dry in your spiritual life right now?  Are you weary?  Do you feel overwhelmed by the constant barrage of bad news on our economy?  Does the daily grind, grind even more when you are concerned about making ends meet or when you worry if you or a loved one will have a job tomorrow?

I have to answer “Yes” to a lot of the above questions.  I’ve been feeling dry and spiritually uninspired for a while and had to stop and think about why that was.  I realized a couple of things about myself that might apply to some of you as well.

I go in cycles.  I have long periods of great creativity and energy that are routinely followed by a short period of the blues.  This has been my history for decades, so I shouldn’t be surprised when the blues hit!  But I always am.  Rest is the key for recovery and resting in the Lord is especially key for me.

I work long hours at a career that I love.  Lots of times I find myself energized by the creativity, but over the period of weeks creating I will become physically depleted and guess what?  The spiritual being inside of me gets weakened and tired as well!

When I am worried, He commands me to rest in Him and to give those concerns over to Him.  When I feel dry and don’t feel like reading His word, that’s when I MOST NEED TO DO IT!  When I am weary and “blue” I find that I usually need to ignore my feelings for a while and do what I know is right no matter how it feels.

God is the same powerful, loving God whether I feel confident about that or not!  He’s still on the throne when the Dow is at 12,000 or if it dropped to 5,000.  The economy is so complex that no man can understand or control it, but God is in control of my personal economy and I have to trust Him to walk me through this season of fear and recession.

Oh yeah!  And one of the most wonderful things I’ve learned over the years is that God isn’t surprised or disappointed by my “blues!”  He isn’t upset with my human frailty, but He does want me to come to Him when I feel down.  He wants to comfort me and He can do that best through His word!

PRAYER:  Lord, sometimes I don’t even realize how weary I have become.  I also don’t realize how much that weariness impacts my sense of spirituality and closeness with you.  But you know this about us.  You know how frail our frame is and You have made a place of refreshing for us to come to no matter how we feel at the moment.

Help me Lord to remember to seek you through your word whether I “feel” close to you or not.  Help me to find comfort in you and draw from your strength when I feel weary.  Remind me that I need to REST — physically and spiritually.  AMEN

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White Matilija Poppy Fields Digital Clip Art Set

I’m now on Twitter if you want to follow me, I’m “AudreyJeanne”  I found Dixie already and if you’re on it make sure you do whatever it is you do to invite me to follow you.  I’m such a techno nerd at this stuff!

LINK TO WHITE POPPY FIELDS ART KIT IN STORE

Okay, okay, I lied sort of!!!!  I fully MEANT to get this up yesterday, but life got away from me!  This is my new White Poppy Fields digital clip art kit.

These poppies grew in my yard in San Diego.  We had about 25 feet of them lining our creek.  They grow to about 5-8 feet high and have the most amazing fragrance.  Each flower is 6″ to 12″ across and looks like crinkled crepe paper.  I’m pretty sure these were the inspiration for the Mexican crepe paper flowers you see when visiting the country.

To paint them, I have to take digital reference photos, sketch as quickly as possible and sit down and paint them in one sitting.   They literally change before your eyes and before you’re finished painting them, the flower that is before you looks nothing like what you sketched!

I am still working on my devotional, it isn’t finished yet so I’ll post this and hopefully come back to it later today.

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Red Poppy Fields Digital Clip Art Kit and the Winner!

LINK TO RED POPPY FIELDS DIGITAL CLIP ART KIT IN STORE.

This kit is priced at $3.98.  There are 13 pieces, 2 card fronts, 1 border, 8 art pieces and 2 coordinating papers. I’m running behind, as I finished this kit last week and got it up at a Aimee Asher (www.aimeeasher.com) and but didn’t get it up here at my own site!  I have another kit almost completed that I will be putting up a little later today called “White Poppy Fields” and I promise I’ll put it up here AND at AAE at the same time.

I love red poppies.  I remember growing them as a little girl.  My mother had a retaining wall garden on the side of our house where our play house and play kitchen were kept.  I used to pretend that the dried seed heads were pepper shakers and used them to “season” my pretend food that I served my dolls.  I used to pick them and put them in a “vase” (which was usually a clean tin can) with water and enjoy their fragile and fleeting beauty.  It’s amazing the way memories are tied to songs, food and special items isn’t it?

These poppies were lovingly hand water colored to be used in creating greeting cards, scrapbooking, or other digital crafting.  I wish I had photos from our play kitchen days with the poppies in the background, that would be so special to scrap!

AND THE WINNER IS:  The first comment on the 7th of February’s post.  LINK TO POST HERE She will win this kit if she hasn’t already purchased it.  Congratulations (and I’m sorry Lambie I really, really tried!)

When I post the White Poppy Fields Kit today I’ll also have a devotional.  It’s been quite a while since I wrote one — mainly because I just haven’t had anything to say.  I’ve been going through a little bit of a dry place so that’s what I’ll write about.  We all go through those dry and weary places don’t we?  See you later today or early tomorrow.

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Brand New Art Kits – Bargain Prices!

This kit has 16 pieces in it and sells for $3.98 in my blog store.  I’ve created a pair of art kits that are perfect for a little boy or baby boy.  Use them for scrapbooking, card making or digital crafting.  Every little boy loves frogs and bugs and every little boy’s mother is exhausted from chasing him while he chases the bugs!  The word art that is included with this set has been one of my best selling crafting items for years.

Included in the art kit is 1 border, 5 – 12″ papers, 2 frames, 5 art pieces, 2 word art pieces and one 5″ x 7″ card front.

LINK TO SON UP SON DOWN DIGITAL ART KIT IN STORE HERE.

Included in this alphabet are all upper case, lower case, numbers and most punctuation.  There are also blank alphabet bases that you can add your font on top of to create your own alphabet.

The alphabet was created using my hand watercolored art and my hand lettered “Whimsical” lettering.  It sells for $1.98 in my store.  LINK TO SON UP SON DOWN ALPHABET IN STORE HERE.

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Brand New Little Boy Card Making Kit

LINK TO CARD MAKING/INVITATION KIT IN THE STORE

This brand new kit is perfect to make for an invitation to a Baby Shower for a little boy!  All you have to do is add your invitation information inside the card.  This card can also be made up as a Welcome card for a new baby, a Mother’s day card or an encouragement card for a tired, young mother you might know.  The saying on the front is “Oh so true,” isn’t it?

I’m always on the lookout for quick, easy and different ideas to make card crafting kits for my customers.  This week I was searching my voluminous hard drives for something else and I stumbled on a large line of these designs I created years ago.

It occurred to me that they would make awesome cards and I am excited to start getting them to you!  There will be lots more of them coming soon.

Each card kit comes with a 3 3/4″ x 9 1/8″ card in two version.  With the text as shown and blank for your own text.  These cards fit a standard US Business size #10 envelope, so if you’re in a hurry you can make just the card or you can decorate a pre-made envelope with the included sticker set.  It also comes with a matching envelope you can print and assemble for yourself.  There are also two 3D bookmarks, one with text and one blank.  All of this comes for $5.98, which is just a little more than the price of a single store bought card and you can use them over and over again.

Let me know if there are any occasions or relationships you would be especially interested in and I’ll work on those first.  Now back to that hard drive to see which one I’ll do next, LOL!

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