Believe it and your halfway there.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Do you have that one friend that will tell you the hard stuff? Do you have that one friend that will help you to believe in yourself even when you don’t? Who’s coming to mind? Is it more than one person?

Whoever that is make sure they know that they are important, needed, and loved by you. Without a good friend sometimes it just seems that life is not bearable. It’s amazing what a cup of tea or wine will do with a couple of hours and a good laugh.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Friends see you for the diamond you will be.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

When I say that a friend sees the diamond in the rough who do you think of? Who accepts you for who you are and helps you to become a better person? Who is in it for the long haul with you?

For me I have a few that I can say this about. Is it several people or just one? Who comes to mind when I talk about going through life together?

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

True friendship.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Have you ever thought about the definition of friendship? According to dictionary.com friendship is the… “noun the state of being a friend; association as friends: toΒ value a person’s friendship. a friendly relation or intimacy. friendly feeling or disposition”.

Other definitions bring in that reciprocity needs to happen or a mutual doing for one another. While these are often part of friendship I am not sure that they define it.

While friendship is not always about action or doing it often speaks volumes. I wanted to remind you that sometimes the best of friends are made during the worst of times. I have known this over the years to be the case.

So who do you call a true friend? Who has been there when the tornado blows through? Send a card telling them thank you.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Who do you turn to?

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

So, I have to ask you, who do you turn to when the going gets tough? Who is your one that you don’t need to look up the number, you just dial? Who knows you so well that you can be completely yourself and still be accepted?

For me I have just a few. Without naming names I will tell you that they have seen me at my worst and my best. They have seen me cry when I thought my husband was dying and when I have won the award. Some have come and gone but a few are still here. I hope they can say the same for me.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

How to be present.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Recently my girlfriend lost her husband to cancer. They had been married over 20 years, he was a retired Marine, and had led a very similar path to my husband and I. He was 53 and had retired just two years after my husband. But shortly after he retired they found a tumor. He conquered it once but not the second time.

So why am I talking about this? Well, because it makes me wonder what I can do to help her. And, honestly, not a lot. It’s part of life, unfortunately.

Instead I started to search online for how to be present, how to be a friend, or what to say when someone is grieving. There were some interesting things listed but here is what I found.

The number one thing that was written about was to listen. Be present. Don’t interrupt. Just listen.

And the other thing was to ask how you could help. Instead of jumping in and doing, ask first.

I hope these help you. For me they are a great reminder that the best of intentions may not always be received well, so make sure to ask and then listen.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Sometimes you have to look backwards to know you are going forwards.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

The Stampin’ Up! year finishes September 30 and I am so grateful. Grateful to still have a business. Grateful to still be working. Grateful to still be creating. Thank you for making it possible. Thank you for the laughs, cards, and encouragement when I saw things falling apart all around me. Thank you to the ones that call to check in and celebrate when things are good and give hugs when things are not so good.

So I am setting my goals for this next year and this is one of the first years that I am actually looking at possibly earning the trip. After 14 years I am looking at working my way up to the top 20% of the company. I would have never thought this would happen. Thank you!

My point is this…there is so much in this life to be grateful for. There is so much to look forward to. There are goals to set. There are the little things that matter. There are the big things that matter. Don’t let life weigh you down. You only get one shot at this life.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Do you remember?

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Today’s a bit different as it is 9/11. I have to say that this single day has changed my entire life. I’ll explain.

It was in the afternoon since I was living in Naples, Italy at the time. I was complaining a bit about not wanting to do my cardio at the gym and my husband was “encouraging” me to get started and get it done. I looked up to stall and see what was happening on the wall of televisions. Just then all of them went to the same picture. A plane hitting a tower. Then a bit later another. At that moment I knew my life was forever changed.

For the next few days it was complete lockdown. I don’t mean run to the store to get milk. I mean stay in your house and do not move and the military police made sure of it. Four days of this. Then it was constant inspections and barricades and questions for months on end.

Then came the moves. We moved five times in less than four years with two countries and three states involved. Throw in a deployment to Iraq too. It was all about the needs of the Marine Corps and the country. It didn’t matter if your kid was sick, having a baby, etc. The times he did come home he couldn’t remember which key was his house key since he hadn’t been home for so long. The mission was hyper focused on getting the country back on track and all other things didn’t matter.

And still to this day he is gone well before dawn to ensure that memorials still happen.

So where were you? How are we as a country ensuring that this is a better place for the next generation? It is time to start working together again to get the mission and the country back on track.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Cute is still in style.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

If you are a crafter or just like cliche gifts then this post is for you. Sometimes having a sense of humor, keeping it light or corny, or just simply being silly is what needs to happen. I know in the past my husband has sent or dropped off some crazy things. For example, “I got you the biggest flower I could find to symbolize my love for you” and it was a cauliflower.

I have sent sunshine boxes to encourage when someone is down. Everything in the box is yellow.

And some of my favorite gifts are for my Team. Thanks for sticking with us (stampin’ seal refill). You are a cut above (paper trimmer cutting blade). So glad you stick out (luggage tag during OnStage so your bag can be identified).

Remember it’s the little things that make a difference. It’s the details and the couple of extra steps that often mean the most.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Taking care of our own.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Most of the time we are focused on giving back or paying it forward outside of the “crafty” family. Well, today we have an opportunity to give to one of our very own.

Shawnie has been in the hospital for some time now and still has a long recovery to go. Would you make a card for her, pretty please?

If you don’t have her address then please just send to me with a care of for the address line.

And, there’s a second part to this. Her daughter left to go back to college last week. Usually she gets a goodie box to wish her luck for the new semester. So if you want to donate to the box please let me know. I would like to pack it with the usual junk…candy, jerky, etc. But I would also like to mail her some blank cards so she has some to mail back to Mom. So if you would like to donate a favorite snack, money for me to purchase something for you, gift card, postage stamps, or cards please contact me. I will be mailing it out by Wednesday, September 9.

Thanks again for all you do and being a part of this crafty family.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

Giving back by shopping.

It’s Friendship Friday! This is the day to focus on giving back or paying it forward.

Not only are we tasked with taking care of ourselves, checking in with friends, and giving when we can but also knowing where everything comes from. Now it’s not enough to know where it was made. You also should know who exactly created it and under what circumstances.

After you purchase from whatever company do they give to somewhere else as a result of your purchase? Where does that go?

If you type in your favorite company…Bank of America, USAA, Walmart, whatever…and add foundation to the end of it you will know if they give back.

Some companies even have separate websites to help you shop philanthropically. A good example of this is Amazon with Amazon Smile. You designate who you want to donate to and every time you order the designated portion goes to that charity.

Gone are the days of just going to the corner store. The nice thing is that you can choose where to shop and where to give at the same time.

Happy Crafting!

With inky fingers,

Joni πŸ™‚

P.S. Just a quick reminder that I am still looking for a new place to donate cards to. If you know of a place that needs cards please contact me.