In fact, I am in my pj's as I write this, 5:19 p.m. and happy as a clam!  I'm off the roads, warm, with my pups, and happily await the New Year's texts from my cubs.  Truth be known, I'll be resting up for the all day Criminal Minds marathon tomorrow!  I know, you are probably thinking "does this womyn have a life?"  I do....truly I do!!! [*wink *wink*]

Ahhhh...A HEAVENLY ONE IN MY BOOKS!  And guess what....GOD IS SO CLOSE.  In fact....G-d is my date tonight!  Oh, right, G-d is usually my date....but but one on the block!! And I'm willing to share!!

So for all of you out there who are enjoying husbands and wifes, girlfriends and boyfriends, friends and families, I wish you the safety of the Angels and the best experience a New Year's should be!  SQUISHY HUGS.


This is a card I made for a Swap on Splitcoast Stampers (due on Jan 15th 09) - send 6 get 5 back. Can't wait! My first Swap on SCS. I'll post what I get back!!

Please double click picture to see details

Paper: Riding Hood Red, Tangerine Tango (Stampin' Up!) Green (Stash), Pattern (Stash)
Ink: Basic Black, Old Olive, Purely Pomegranate, River Rock, Dusty Durango (Stampin' Up!)
Stamps: Background (Stampin' Up!), Foreground (Stash)
Accessories: Die Cut (Stash), Ribbon (Stash) Scallop Circle Punch (Stampin' Up!)  Jumbo Eyelets (Stampin' Up!)



So, off I go to my World book of Prayers and offer the following, for THE LOVIN' TIME coming up - ST. VALENTINE'S DAY...

Pray not for Arab or Jew, for Palestinian or Israeli,
But pray rather for yourselves, that you may not divide
    them in your prayers
But keep them both together in your hearts.

Christian prayer

Even as a mother at the risk of her life would
watch over her only child, so let us with boundless
mind and goodwill suvey the whole world.

The Buddha (c.563 - c483BCE), India

...and now on with the art, WHAT IS LOVE?  the age old question...I will leave that for all of us to ponder, along with the poems up above.  SQUISHY HUGS.

Please double click to enlarge card


Paper:  Black Specialty Paper (SU), Words Paper (Stash)
Ink: Stampin' Glitter (SU), Uni-ball Signo Gel Pen (SU), Basic Black Classic Ink Stampin' Pad (SU)
Stamp: xox (Stash), Glittered Words (my writing)
Accessories: Red 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon (SU), Red Hearts (Stash), Red Label (Stash), White Round  Label and Ring (Stash), Die Cutter (Stash)




Oy we go again.  Typically I want to lose weight, but I just did that so now I have to think of something else.  Any suggestions?  Oh, I just heard about 100!  Yikes...  Where do I start?  Today's card says it all for me.  I want to "reach for the stars!" 

For me, that means a New Year's resolution to MAKE WISE CHOICES...[wisdom & experience combined.] I'm hopeful!! Do you ever find yourself saying "yes" when really, the answer should or even yet needs to be "no!"  I find myself in that situation LOTS and GUILT is the big factor here!  It is just way too easy to feel Major Guilt when that 2 letter word [NO] exits from the lips so out comes the dreaded YES [when we know it needs to be a NO] instead.

Well, I have a great book for working on this!  It's called FACING SHAME by Merle A. Fossum.  It sounds like a VERY heavy topic and an even heavier book, but once you break the cover of the book...there lies the crux of the BLAME/SHAME/GAME, also known as GUILT EXTRA-ORDINAIRE!!!  And, let me tell you [though I'm not sure how I'd really know this given I am Jewish] but I'm SURE you don't have to be Jewish to feel GUILT!!! And this book tells us that saying NO is absolutely essential for a healthy soul!  I'm up for that...

So, I'm going to REACH HIGH and DEEP INTO MY SOUL and learn that "NO" IS A VALID WORD.  Yes, at 53 years old...this dog is going to learn a new trick!  This is my New Year's Resolution for 2010.  SQUISHY HUGS.

Paper: Kiwi Kiss Notecards - Spring/Summer 2009 (SU)
Ink:  Stampin' Write Markers (SU)
Stamp:  Front and Inside (Stash)
Accessories: Stampin' Glitter (SU), Die Cut (Stash), Goldleaf Outline Pen (Stash)



The Holiday was Perfect - both Chanukkah and Christmas.  My cubs were amazing!  They were SO LOVING and GIVING and FULL OF GRATITUDE for everything I offered them.  There wasn't a moment were they weren't together in love, being themselves, laughing or just being so dang sincere, funny, spontaneous, that they were absolutely irresistable!    And for me (self-praise coming up...) the secret I discovered...pick recipes for the meals that can be prepared AHEAD OF TIME. 

Gosh, I wondered how my friend's managed to spend time with their guests and family and actually SIT DOWN WITH THEM on the couch during the holidays for long amounts of time and SMOOZE.  Now I have the Secret!  I had loads of time to love my children, to listen to their stories, to look at my daughter's pictures from her travels, to listen to my son play his composition that he entered in his recent trip to Spain, and spend time hearing the truths from my 11 year old's heart about spending time with his big sibs who he doesn't see all that often.  IT WAS A SUCCESS.......YAY!!!!!      

My lifetime angst about this Season is finally over.  WaHoo!!!

So how timely (because it is all about me....right?  lol) that VALENTINE'S DAY and the "ALL ABOUT LOVE" are on the horizon now.  My heart is SO FILLED WITH LOVE and SATISFACTION for my "GOOD WORK CUBS",  for their willingness to travel and to make time in their abundantly busy schedule, to be here with their MOMMY, their MOM, their SAMARA, SLAVE and MAID (she says laughing) - as I am lovingly and jokingly referred to!!!! (guess you have to be

Today's card is dedicated to coming out of a Season that is A CONSPIRICY (in the best use of the word) TO UNITE THE WORLD IN LOVE and to going into another holiday that symbolizes...MAGIC FOR LOVER'S.  SQUISHY HUGS.

Please double click for details

I made this milk carton after "hours" of trial and error.  I was determined to make a pattern myself and not use anything that was pre-done.  It isn't perfect, but I felt great that it was "mine!"
Perhaps you could view the multiple score lines as "part of the pattern" lol!!!  Cool disguise huh.

Small detail glitch "how was it going to be held closed?...hmmm."  I finally came up with a candy stripped paper clip and was SOOOOO happy (looks like it was meant to be right?) 

Well, there you have it.  My one and only self invented "big box!"  But I must does inspire me to go on the assembly  (kidding!)


LABEL:  thank you thank you Stampin' Up!


THAT IS WHAT I'M IN THE MIDST OF I wait to hear from my daughter Ayla who is now on her 16th hour of a 24 hour plane trip from Asia.  I am dreaming of scooping her up in my arms and giving her the SQUISHIEST HUG POSSIBLE!!!  Man, this has been a "SKINNY MINNY MOMMY" month with both of my older children out of the country.  MOMMY HAS BEEN IN WITHDRAWAL from hugs, talks and general xox !!!  But thankfully there is another cub-lette at home who makes up for the HUGS when his brother and sister are away.

So what are YOUR DREAMS for today?  ARE YOU DREAMING BIG?  or piddle-pup size?  Do you let yourself dream big?  I know for me, it has always helped when I have someone around me who believes in me, is positive and reinforcing of my dreams and not critical or judgemental of my big dreams!!  My children are my "dream-catchers" and I am theirs...along with their closest loves and friends.  It is a wonderful thing to have this relationship with your be able to share openly your dreams, hopes AND fears!!

This is the time of year when we see people we haven't see all year.  Usually this is tremendously exciting, although there might be that particular individual in attendance that we find it difficult to be around. Can you still KEEP YOUR DREAMS in tact? Can you STAY IN YOUR CENTRE? Do you have a PLAN how to handle THIS YEAR's Challenges (should you have any?) Everyone of us has to find a way to keep our DREAMS SAFE and PROTECT OURSELVES AND THOSE WE LOVE from being slayed "BY THE DRAGON." 

And, this time of year is ALSO a perfect time of year to look around and find people who are amazing - who totally astound us with their generousity, kindness and ability to welcome us into their home...even at a moment's notice...The true spirit of THE HOLIDAY SEASON!!! They are the people who usually are experts at helping us KEEP OUR DREAMS BIG!!! 

And Hopefully they will all be sitting at your HOLIDAY TABLE or invite you to SIT AT THEIRS, whether it is what you've done for years, as YOUR SACRED TRADITION, or something you do SPONTANEOUSLY for the very first time!!! 


If not that, then what is THE HOLIDAY SEASON all about?



Let us live joyfully.
Let us form a community of love, in a world full of hatred.
Let us live without any kind of hatred.

Let us live joyfully.
Let us form a community of Spiritual Health, in a world full of illness.
Let us live without any kind of spiritual disease.

Let us live joyfully.
Let us form a community of peace, in a world full of rivalry.
Let us live without any kind of rivalry.

Let us live joyfully
Let us form a community which possesses nothing.
OLet us live on spiritual bliss, radiating spiritual light.

From the Dhammapada, (c.500BCE-c200CE). India


Paper - Papertrey
Ink - Ranger - Distress Inks, Papertrey Inks, SU
Stamps - Inque
Ribbon - Satin - Michael's
Bling - Basic Grey
Punch - Martha
Pearls - Basic Grey
Rub On - Bo Bunny
Article - THE BOOK OF BIOLOGY (National Geographic)


FOR THE ONE'S YOU LOVE.  I don't know about you, but I've found (in my old age!) that making gifts becomes more and more appealing.  I also find that many people seem to appreciate homemade gifts much more than bought gifts (Hmmm - maybe not so much the weee chicklettes.) 

Perhaps it is because it is something they can cherish forever, or because of an appreciation by the recipient that time AND LOVE (and not to mention that sometimes homemade is MORE dollaros!) went into the gift.

When I was a child my mother used to say to me "MAKE ME A GIFT."  I used to think "UGH! I WILL NEVER SAY THAT TO MY KIDS!!!"  And, yet, I find myself LOVING the gifts that my children make for me, for exactly the same reason my mother did...memories.

I haven't EXACTLY ASKED MY KIDS if they are OK with my MAKING THEM GIFTS but...I know they have an appreciation for both my art and also "my finances!!!!"  Although, who are we kidding....Stamping and Crafts are cheap??  Hello....

So, I am encouraging all those who have not YET TAKEN THE PLUNGE to really consider MAKING A GIFT OR TWO THIS YEAR!  It is hard initally...."will they like it, will they think I'm cheaping out? will....(fill in the blank)"  But NO!!!!   THEY WILL LOVE IT....BECAUSE IT IS FROM "YOU!!!"

AND "YOU" ARE GREAT!!!  Oh Yes You Are!!!! Have fun, feel the love - as you create it, and most of all...STAND TALL as your loved one opens your creation.  After all,  OUR CREATOR STANDS TALL WHEN LOOKING AT YOU!!!!  SQUISHY HUGS.

 THE BRIDGE OF STARS (LINK): 365 Prayers, Blessings & Meditations from Around the World

The Magician

We admire the magician who makes doves disappear.
In defiance of what some people call common sense,
And what other people call being true to one's feelings,
I make my grievances disappear.
I do not admire myself for this,
nor expect anyone else to admire me.

Modern affirmation from Helsinki, Finland

(please double click photo to see detail)


Paper: Taylored Expressions Monthly Kit - March PLUS stash
Stamps:  Unity (LINK)
Letters:  Dollar Store
Chipboard: ? (I am SO sorry - I received this as a door prize at a crop)
Thread:  Basic Grey
Beads: Michael's
Glitter/Beads: Michael's + Dollar Store
Pearls:  Liquid Pearls
Star Gem:  Michael's (Amazing deal! Not in scrapbook section but in Xmas Section)
Bling:  Same as above - Michael's is hiding all kinds of great card stuff in the Holiday Section!!!
Basic Shape:  Cricut (LINK) Expressions:  Wild Card Cartridge (Door Hanger with Blackout)



FROM WORLD LEADERS.  When I was in Theological College I seemed to collect the most wonderful prayer, meditation and reflection (theology) books, right alongside the more academic (gruelling) and difficult research books.  Among them is one of my favorites.  It is called A BRIDGE OF STARS, 365 Prayers, Blessings and Meditations from around the World.  The forward of this book is by His Holiness The Dalai Lama; that in itself is a treat to read.  The Editor of the book is Marcus Braybrooke...can you see I am encouraging the purchase of the book?

Anyway, this book got me successfully through plenty a hard time - both in school and since school.  When I am "in doubt" of any sort, whether about my own theology, my life path or even my art - I grab this book....which I have (don't tell anyone) dismantled.  I have used it for many a "faith-booking" which, if you aren't familiar with that is, taking the piece of inspiration and building a page around it, or working backward and taking your theme and finding a theological piece to highlight the theme.

This book ALWAYS seems to hit the empty and longing spot inside of me.  So...I thought for the next THIRTEEN DAYS I would do my "SECRET" thing (which I am about to release to the public!!!) and close my eyes and open the book (dismantled remember) at a page.  I will write what is on that page in my blog that day, along with my art piece.  I hope you find some way to bring the words into your own life.  SQUISHY HUGS.

A Prayer of the Heart

The prayer of the heart is the source
of all good, refreshing
the soul as if it were a garden.

St. Gregory of Sinai (d.1360), Egypt

(double click picture for details)


Paper:  Taylored Expressions Monthly Kit - March
Paper:  Papertrey
Stamps:  Sugar Nellie Christmas Stamps
Ink: Stickles and Jewel Glitter Ritz
Buttons:  Basic Grey
Ribbon:  Taylored Expressions Monthly Kit
Coloring:  Copics



AT THIS TIME OF YEAR.  I don't know about you, but I find this time of year there is both an excitement AND a dread that seems to be looming around.  People I meet on the street, like on my way to the dentist today (I live in a small town so everyone knows everyone or are friendly anyways!)... the first question they ask is "so, are you ready for Christmas?"/Chanukkah/etc. (with a kind of depressing tone of voice.) 

I've find myself so many people ask this question because they are REALLY interested or because of the pressure TO be ready?  When I answer back, and ask back (with my curiousity as explained above in mind) I find people are sad, anxious, disappointed or struggling with how to go about BEING ready "on time!"

Do we set the expectations for this time of year SO HIGH that DOING OUR BEST just isn't good enough any more?  When we say "only gifts for the kids," does this rob the person who LOVES giving gifts to their special loved ones of THEIR gifted time of showering other people with specialness?  Or, would it be OK and accepted to just say: "if you want to do it...a gift would be fine, if you can't (for whatever reason - no questions asked)...that is perfectly OK to."  Christmas is about "being authentic" and about "being acceptable" and about "being truly loved."  It isn't meant for feeling "less than" or "inadequate."  Yet somehow, for many people, the whole occassion is anti-climatic because of pressure - before, during and after (debt especially.)

For those fortunate people who have this whole thing I am talking about licked, and who are able to say, feel and celebrate this holiday as their FAVORITE holiday - and they act that way - and they pass that joyfulness onto others....WHAT IS THEIR SECRET?

Have they found the REAL meaning of Christmas?  Is it that they are SUPER ORGANIZED?  Are they loaded and able to withstand the financial pressures of the holiday season, or were smart enough to do all their shopping on boxing day - for the next year?

It all remains a mystery to me.  What I do know is that it isn't right that so many people are walking around asking...."are you ready yet"....hoping that you will be a co-hort with whom they can share the woes of NOT being ready, the pressures of getting ready and the angst they feel "about the whole darn thing."

WHAT ABOUT MAKING THIS YEAR DIFFERENT?  What about reaching WAY down deep into our heart (not into our pocket books) and asking ourselves...."WHAT WILL MAKE THIS EXPERIENCE MEMORABLE IN AN AUTHENTIC AND POSITIVE WAY?"

What about having a family meeting and asking that question.

What about phoning a girlfriend/family member and asking that question.

What about....sitting silently in the middle of the room (literally)....until something comes to you.  And then, still sit the middle of the room....until something else comes to you....and until all the chatter goes away....and until you have a plan....where you can breathe, see yourself happy, see yourself satisfied, see yourself in surroundings that aren't hairied.....

For me, when these big questions come up, I talk to a person who knows me who can remind me who I REALLY AM, I sit in the middle of a room and focus on my breathing and ask what is really important in the whole scheme of things, I journal, with the same intention in mind - asking "what am I forgetting?" (about what is really important rather than what I "think" is important in my chitter chatter) and what really works (and maybe this is for you too) my art.  I always feel authentic in my art...I feel myself, centered, real and I feel represented by everything around me.  This is a good place and a safe place so I ALWAYS SOMEHOW EITHER BEGIN OR END THE introspective PROCESS WITH A CARD.  I hope you like the results of my journey of asking "what is really important - what is it I really need to remember."  SQUISHY HUGS.

This is the part where you get up (from sitting in the centre of the room) and step (out) into the plans for the Holidays...the plans that "you" can be calm, comfortable and peaceful with.  Because, like all good things, it is the BELIEF that "you" will be OK....that will MAKE IT SO!!!

Happy Sitting.
Shapemakers:  Creative Memories
Paper: Stash from Michael's
Hardware:  Stash
Book Pages:  Stash (a collection of 100's of poems I've collected throughout the years written by world leaders


And when it is dry and ready
A dreidle I shall play.
A dreidle, dreidle, 
I made it out of clay
And when it's dry and ready
A dreidle I shall play.

TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF CHANUKKAH - Last evening being the first night of lighting candles, the first of 8 nights.  Chanukkah is a wonderful holiday of renewed dedication, faith, hope and spiritual light.  It's a holiday that says: "NEVER EVER LOSE HOPE!"

It is a holiday that commemorates the victory, through the miracle of LIGHT (of the oil) of a small band of Jews over the pagan Syrian-Greeks who ruled over Eretz Yisroel (Israel) at the time.

While there was only enough oil in the latern for only one night....Hashem (G-d) provided the miracle for enough light for 7 nights!  There are many differing theologies why one more night was added to the 7nights the oil lasted, in order to arrive to the celebration of 8 days of Chanukkah.


It is a great feast of Potatoes and Grease!!! Literally, one eats a humongous amount of Potatoe Latkes (recipe below) and sour cream and apple sauce and gambles with a "dreidle" (the song is up above and the game instructions would be on-line) with chocolate coins and pennies. 

THIS GAME IS FOR THE KIDS...but many an adult has enjoyed the favors of the chocolate coins...dark AND light chocolate...before Chanukkah even begins!!!*wink wink* 

So, this time of year, similar to Kwanza and Christmas is about Hope, Faith, and about dedication and renewing faith and belief both in oneself and in something greater than oneself - be that family, friends or far reaching beyond that.  Everyone will have their own way to bring in what is important and appropriate to their choices and lifestyle.  From our family to yours....Happy Chriskwanzmakkah!  We will be enjoying wonderful latkes and gambling our little hearts out Sunday evening!!!  SQUISHY HUGS.

(click on card to magnify details)

 has 20 different recipes for latkes

This is one of the most famous of Jewish foods and a specialty of Chanukkah.  The latkes are served as an appetizer, as a side dish and even with tea with a sprinkling of confectioners sugar.  They can be yummy delicious if prepared, just before eating.
2 lbs (1 kg) of potatoes
2 large eggs
oil for frying

Peel and finely grate the potatoes.  Put them straight into cold water, then drain and squeeze them as dry as you can be pressing them with your hands in a colander.  This is to remove the sharchy liquid, which could make the latkes soggy.
Beat the eggs lightly with salt, add the potatoes and stir well.
Film the bottom of a frying pan with oil and heat.
Take serving size spoonfuls, or as much as 1/4 cup (50 ml) of the mixture and drop into the hot oil.
Flatten a little, and lower the heat so that the fritters cook through evenly.
When one side is brown, turn over and brown the other side.
Lift out and serve very hot.

You may add black pepper, chopped parsley and fineoly chopped onion (very yummy) to the egg and potato mixture.
Adding 4 tablespoons of potato flour binds the fritters into firmer, more compact cakes, easier to handle but not quite as squishy light to eat.

There is a big debate, just like over "the bagel" about which type is better!!!!  ENJOY!!!!


Paper:  Papertrey Ink, Taylored Expressions Monthly Kit March 2009
Ink: Copics, atyouspica
Stamps: Sugar Nellie
Glitter: Jewel Glitter Ritz
Fleurs: Stash
Buttons: BG
Glam: Blue Rhinestones (Taylored Expressions), Liquid Pearls (Taylored Expressions), Pearls (SU Pretties Hardware Kit)


I have fallen in love with The Vintage Look.  Never thought I'd be bitten by this particular artistic bug...but...I am stirred with excitement beyond my own belief.  It is permission to be wild (again.)  It is permission to get away from the neat freak-ish-ness that pervades my stamping experience (most of the time.)  And most of all...I love how it found me, when it seems like moments ago I thought it wouldn't.  Gosh, what a great metaphor...

"I love how it found me, when it seems like moments ago I thought it wouldn't."

Faith, trust, belief...'tis the season to be.....  And, (once again), my art has arrived on my doorstep with a lesson.  Seems when I feel dry and wonder where my Artistic-Meditative-Chaplain-ee side has gone comes and gets me and says "here I am!!!"

So today, I am going to let it all be, I am going to get my faith in order, my trust in G-d in line and my belief that G-d knows exactly what G-d's little Samara needs.  What "I" need to do is just pick up my pen, or my copic, or my ink pad, or my...."new and exciting Vintage materials"...and KNOW that I am safe and cared for...and perfect...right where I am.  G-d knows I know so.  Today's card is dedicated to all of us knowing we are safe, cared for and perfect...right where we are...because G-d knows so!!!  SQUISHY HUGS.

(for close up, please double click on picture)

Tim Holtz products other than Hardware, which is SU


IT'S A WINTER WONDERLAND HERE IN ONTARIO!!! is so beautiful outside...fluffy and white.  Just in time for the reindeer to begin to hoof it down...  Today's card is a tad mysterious.  I tried working with some dark colors again...YUMMY IN THE TUMMY! 

Started out stamping thinking, once again, "not me."  Ending up thinking "could be me."  Moral of this card's never too late to teach an ol' dog new tricks!  SQUISHY HUGS.

Please double click to see details


Stamps:  Dove, Peace (Unity), Candy, Snowflakes (Inque)
Ink: Papertrey
Paper: Black that is in the Naturals Pack (SU)
Punch: Flourish (EK)
Heart Shape: Creative Memories Heart Cutting Frame
Stickles: Gold
Wire: Stash
Button:  Just a plain old button from my sewing stash that I covered with Gold Stickles (a new discovery - Yipee! - a cost saver cuz I have a bazillion buttons like this from a rummage sale)
Gold verigated background: Dollar store gold pack'
Fleur: Stash



ESPECIALLY WHEN IT'S AN ANGEL! I love this angel by Unity Stamps.  She's so fun yet choral.  This was my first day using the shipment of Papertrey Products I received.  YAY!  I {heart} them. 

The colors of their paper are out of this world exciting...ribbon to match...inks to match.  And simple because they keep it to a minimum of colors...just the best ones!  Ahhhh finally a simple system. 

Today's card is dedicated to the angel in all of us...especially the gals over at Papertrey! (and you all know Unity is my love too.)

Don't forget to double click to see the details!

Paper: Papertrey
Stamps: Unity
Shapes: Nestis
Felt: CTMH
Glitter: stash
Ribbon: Michael's
Pin: SU Hardware Kit


...ARE AT IT AGAIN!  My Jordan is in Spain, taking a 2 week music workshop with a famous dude.  It sounds so great..."breaking patterns, beginning again" is the theme.  What a fantastic opportunity for a good musician.  And my Ayla left Australia, finished her school term of University, headed for New Zealand for some extreme sports week (good thing I didn't know ALL the details), is now in Thailand again and will be home December 22nd. 

I will have all 3 under one roof (mine...mwahahahaha) on the 22nd for Taylor's 12th birthday.  On that day, we celebrate Chanukkah, Christmas, Taylor's Birthday and Taylor has added Kwanza this year.  We are now Chriskwanzmukkah!!  Hey, if my kids are happy, in love with life and good contributors to society...bring it on.  We are all multi-faith in this family, which makes it utterly delightful at this time of year. 

So, in light of all the above, this card is dedicated to what HOME is all about...and to my 3 cubs...who I can't wait for them to walk up the walkway so I can eat them up!!!  SQUISHY HUGS. 
p.s.  this is going into a shadow box for Ayla for her holiday gifti so that she can take it to Japan with her next year.  Do you think she will like it?  I sure hope so because she is impossible to buy for!!!

Paper: Bloom and Grow (My Mind's Eye), Papertrey Ink, Lasting Impressions
Stamps: Around the Block (CTMH)
Accessories: Punch (Border - EK) (Corners - Martha), Liquid Pearls, Copics, Copic Glitters, Felt (CTMH)


This saying reminds me so much of a tradition in the Jewish Faith called PURIM.  On Purim, there is a tradition for children to get all dressed up, according to the story upon which Purim is based (I won't go into that...too long.)  The part that reminds me of "Holiday Hugs" is the best part of Purim, as far as I am concerned.  It is a wonderful family tradition for each family to gather foods that each have a different blessing said upon it - for instance - bread has one blessing said upon it before eating it, grapes (according to how they are grown) have another blessing, root vegetables would have another blessing, meat get the point, nuts, wine, sweets, etc. etc. The family puts together a gorgously decorated basket of two or more different blessing foods. Yes, there are lots of blessings to remember as one eats a meal!  But it is really nice because one is completely conscious that the food comes from somewhere other than the fridge.  Each family makes a list of who they want to give these baskets (a Purim Basket) to and as a family, on this special day, families go around and deliver the baskets to one another.  Some families may have 50 or so baskets to deliver!!  But it is a beautiful tradition.  It is exciting for the kids to make them, great to gather the type of basket, type of decorative materials that will adorn the basket and to make the final decision of what festive food will go into the basket.   So today's card, with the sentiment "Holiday Hugs, from our house to yours" dedicated to just that...each family giving the next family a great big Squishy Hug as a blessing for a great holiday!  SQUISHY HUGS from me to you!

Paper: The Christmas Stack (DCWV, Black (SU)
Stamp: Christmas Doodles (Inque)
Ink: Barn Red (CTMH)
Accessories: Ribbon (Michael's), Silver (Starform)