Welcome! I'm Melissa Gross, a dynamic and interactive teacher and speaker called to lead and encourage Christian women in their walk with the Lord through classes, workshops and retreats incorporating Bible study, devotionals, illustrated Bible journaling, paper crafting and mixed media projects that merge faith and art bringing God’s Word to life so you can find renewed excitement to dive into the Word, use your creative gifts, and apply the Truth as you draw closer to the Lord and serve Him in your everyday life. This site is where I share my everyday adventures, Bible Journaling pages, scrapbook layouts, handmade cards, and other crafty projects, as well as information on my upcoming workshops and events. I also post photos, ramble about books I'm reading, stuff I'm organizing, and other FUN bits & pieces of my wonderful life.
Sunday, September 30, 2012
15th - Shimelle declared it the second New Skill Saturday of the month and discussed how it is often cathartic to start with a clean table when learning something new. While I didn't have any crafty time this Saturday, I was able to stop by a local scrapbook store that is (unfortunately!) going out of business and pick up quite a few new dimensional embellishments. I was also reminded of the lesson that I like to clean up after every layout so I start each new project with a clean space.
16th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about how our relaxation time on Sunday differs from the rest of the week. This particular Sunday for me was extremely busy as I arrived at church early and stayed a little later as we are promoting our upcoming ladies' retreat. I rushed home to gulp down a hamburger and change clothes before heading to a friend's house to set up for the baby shower I helped coordinate for our pastor's wife, which turned out to be a great success and I was reminded that I truly enjoy organizing events despite how tired I might be when the clean up is all over. Here's a look at the diaper cake I made as a gift and the baseball themed decorations we used for the shower.
19th - Shimelle encouraged us to change up our routine and reminded us of the quote "if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got." While I like the idea of trying new things, this prompt reminds me of the fact that I like routine.
20th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about our signature color or signature elements of our personal style. It will come as no surprise to many of you that yellow is my favorite color, it makes me happy and has been my favorite color as long as I can remember!
21st - Shimelle encouraged us to think about those days that need a do-over, those days that just need to be left in the past (or recorded in a journal for future contemplation) and the day started over tomorrow. Today was a little bit of a catch up day for me and I was reminded that I should schedule catch up days on occasion in case there are things I need to do-over.
I'm hoping to complete the final week's prompts and lessons in the next day or so. How did you do this year with LSNED?
Saturday, September 29, 2012
I knew I would have to modify the sketch because I wanted to include this note that Pun'kin wrote along with her drawing of me standing (upside down it seems) on the sidewalk watching her ride her bike.
Sian for the inspiration!
Friday, September 28, 2012
I was still teaching 2 classes and working the ABC job in East Texas, but I drove back up to Dallas the following Thursday evening, and we closed on the Allen house on March 30. We cleaned on the house and hired painters to do all the ceilings before I headed back home. I taught my classes on Monday, finished my last day at ABC Tuesday, and Wednesday Daddy and I moved a U-Haul load of stuff to Allen. Daddy built a base for our new shed and helped us paint the front room before we headed back to Hudson. Robbie and I loaded up the Expedition on April 7 in the midst of an Easter weekend snowfall (in East Texas!!). We were in Allen for Easter Sunday and enjoyed lunch at Texas Land & Cattle. Monday I headed back to East Texas early to teach my classes. The mover arrived on Wednesday morning to load the truck in Hudson. (one vase was broken that day!)
our little happy home as we closed on it on April 13. I had to drive back four more times to finish the semester at SFA, but by mid-May we were well on our way to being unpacked and settled in our new home.
Thanks Tammy for the inspiration to get this story recorded!
Thursday, September 27, 2012
8th - Shimelle declared that Saturdays for the rest of the month of September would be New Skill Saturday and encouraged us to learn a new skill. The only new skill I learned on this particular Saturday is how to participate in an online chat (in the Dimensional Details workshop) with classmates who are in the same room (at the 2nd unofficial BPC Texas Get-Together). Honestly, it takes a lot of concentration to keep it all together considering the amount of online commenting, in person commenting, and volumes of laughter going on at the same time! So, my lesson for the day is that online chats and live commentary are great fun together.
9th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about lessons we've learned through listening, whether it be lessons we learned from our parents or listening to family stories or phrases you heard so often you learned them. I spent the day driving home from the BPC Get-Together, and then Robbie and I caught up on all the little details of our days apart that we couldn't fit into the numerous short phone calls, and I was reminded that it's always feels good to come home!
10th - Shimelle encouraged us to make a list of ten things we had learned from (a topic or person of our choice) and share it as part of the monthly Ten Things link up on her blog. I have been reading the prompts several days (or a week!) later this month as I strive to keep up with all the busyness in my life, so I actually posted ten photos of a great stamping store on my blog that day. However, Shimelle encouraged us to think about our reaction to creating lists. I already know I am a list maker - I love lists: to-do lists, books read list, layouts completed lists, etc, etc. My lesson for this Monday at home after several days away with friends who cropped well into the night was a reminder that I require more than four or five hours of sleep a night.
11th - Shimelle encouraged us to look back at our photos and pick a few favorites to help us analyze our photography habits. Robbie has always enjoyed photography, and with the anniversary of 9-11, I was reminded of a photo he took that week back in 2001. He propped up a photo he had taken in 1987 from the Staten Island Ferry of the World Trade Center and placed one of his Superman statues in front of it. Today's lesson is - We will always remember!
12th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about the lessons that make perfect sense to us even if they sound like a mystery to everyone else. All I can think to say to that is SAIDOK.
13th - Shimelle's topic for today was all about lessons learned the hard way and/or negative memories. She also discussed how we often leave these less than happy events/lessons out of our scrapbooks and that's perfectly ok. Over the past year or so, I've been trying to record some of the lessons I've learned as I look back over my life, things I wished I'd understood earlier in life or done differently - you can see an example here and here. My lesson for today is that it's never too late to apply the lessons we learn.
14th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about what we can learn by looking at the change of seasons. This time of year always means back to school to me, even if I haven't been in school or taught on that schedule for the past five years! However, I am currently writing curriculum for an upcoming ladies' retreat at our church and as I was doubting my abilities I received a phone call that reminded me of my lesson for the day - when God gives me a message to teach, He will confirm it in a multitude of ways. [If you want to see what the retreat is all about, click here to watch the promo video one of the youth at our church helped me put together.]
Another great week of prompts and lessons, even if I am a little behind in recording them. Are any of these lessons ones that you've learned or needed a reminder of recently?
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
I had a double page sketch (from the Double Take workshop) that I wanted to use, and I was searching for photos in my storage binders. I wasn't really finding what I was looking for until I decided to just use one side of the sketch to create a one page layout.
I found three photos of Robbie's dad as a young man working as a radio announcer that I knew would be perfect for the sketch. I even had a business card of Dad's from that time! It's one of those pre-printed ones that someone then added Dad's name in with a typewriter.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Week One of the workshop was about Asymmetrical structures. I started with an arctic print that was part of a place card I had saved. I added buttons in the opposite corner, then drew lines on the background. I wasn't thrilled with the look, so I colored in the background, added two dimensional stickers to the arctic scene and a twisted thread to tie the two sections together.
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Saturday, September 22, 2012
my original layout with this Starting Point.
Friday, September 21, 2012
On our trip to Taos this summer, Robbie once again captured his reflection in my sunglasses - this time while we were on the chair lift at the Taos Ski Valley.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
The sharing table was a wonderful place - filled with items that each of us brought to share. There were ribbons and candy dots and border punches and buttons and other tools to use to add the perfect touch to each layout. But I only had eyes for the washi tape as you can see in these three layouts I created for our 10th anniversary cruise album.
Friday, September 14, 2012
It's funny to me that the last item I photographed was actually the first one on the list: #1 - A Pier. I was on the lookout this week, and as I was sitting in the doctor's office for a routine checkup, I looked up and found my pier right there in the examining room!
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
1st - Shimelle encouraged us to complete this thought: My name is Melissa and today is the first of September 2012. The last big adventure of my life would probably be . . . the sleigh ride out onto the frozen Bow River for my wedding! Robbie and I were almost frozen when it was over, but that event changed my life and filled me with happiness as we became man and wife.
2nd - Shimelle encouraged us to think about the teachers in our lives and what they've taught us. I've recorded some of the lessons I've learned from various "teachers" in blog posts here, here and here. In my Storytelling Sunday post this month, I shared the story of my friend Josey, which helps me remember to appreciate and reciprocate real friendship.
3rd - Shimelle encouraged us to write down one or more things we would like to move forward with in life. An unexpected phone call that evening reminded me that things can change (in this case for the better)in our lives and relationships at any time. My lesson for the day - never stop praying for reconciliation with family members, something I would definitely like to move forward with in my life.
4th - Shimelle encouraged us to consider what home feels like, wherever that may be. For me, I feel "at home" in many places, but there's truly nothing like being at home with Robbie. My lesson for the day was a reminder that sometimes when I'm frazzled and overwhelmed, it helps to take a little time to just sit and craft with a friend. (Crafty Tuesdays have started at Ellyn's Place!)
5th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about whether we are planners or if we are more spontaneous. I am definitely a planner! My lesson for the day was a reminder that I can accomplish a lot by just doing the next thing on the list (pack clothes, pay bills, make goodie bags, pack scrapping supplies) & by letting some things go (exercise, grocery shopping, creating page kits).
6th - Shimelle's prompt was all about gratitude, and I was reminded that I have so much to be grateful for every day. I was extremely thankful to find our postal carrier several blocks from the house, and I appreciated her willingness to pull my mail out of order so I could take a package with me as I headed out of town. And even though I told him it was OK to skip it this time, I was thrilled and grateful to find a beautiful bouquet of flowers (& a generous gift certificate) from Robbie waiting for me when I arrived for the 2nd unofficial BPC Texas Get-Together.
7th - Shimelle encouraged us to think about all the "in between time" we have in our day - the time we spend waiting or getting from one place to the next. As it turned out, my lesson for the day involved planning and time - no matter how carefully you plan, someone will always show up at the scrapbooking retreat right after you've left for lunch and someone else will lock her keys in the truck.
How about you - are you following along with LSNED? What have you learned this September?
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
As an added bonus, we were able to do some scavenger hunting together! Cheri was on the lookout for a horse (which I'm sure she will be sharing soon), and I found four more items to share with you today.
First up was #2 - A Clothesline. In the neighborhood (and city) where I live, everyone has wooden fences, so if there was a clothesline anywhere I probably wouldn't be able to see it (although I think they might be against the homeowner's association rules!). However, I was sure I would find one in Corsicana, so after lunch on Saturday we took a drive (to the wrong side of the tracks, as Cheri says) to find one. Actually, Corsicana is crisscrossed with railroad tracks, so we were on all sides of the tracks throughout our drive.
recent post about out meeting.)
Later in the day, Cheri and I were able to sneak away for a walk around the surrounding neighborhood, which was filled with large old trees - surely I could find #20 - A Swing Hanging From A Tree. I was beginning to think that all the residents were not fully utilizing the potential of these great trees when Cheri said, "There's your swing."