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IMPORTANT NOTICE!

With the coming drawdown, OWH will be in need of fewer cards in the future – that includes upcoming holidays. PLEASE READ THIS PAGE before proceeding to make cards, organize events, etc – it’s really really really really important. Did I say really important? :)

READ ME FIRST

Sketch Challenge 243

Posted by on Nov 22, 2014 in Sketch Challenge, Stars and Stamps | 1 comment

“Good morning peeps!”

This is Sandy here today bringing you your sketch in my best Marlene impersonation….did you guess it was me? Marlene’s been busy with life stuff, so I’m hopping in with this week’s sketch for you. Lots of yummy layers to play with – or simplify it by removing one or two!

243

This sketch was inspired by this card sent in by Laurie….it doesn’t look like so many layers when some are white, right? Love how white on white can create the illusion of a CAS card even if it has all those delicious layers. And Laurie’s has such lovely texture as well!

sample243
Now it’s time to get your card created and linked up….let’s see what everyone does with this sweet sketch!

2 out of 3 satisfied customers

Posted by on Nov 21, 2014 in Hero Blog, Note from Afghanistan, Note from Airman | 4 comments

I just wanted to say thanks for supporting our unit with Operation Write Home.

I first saw the cards your team created last month at Bagram and was very impressed with the craftsmanship and dedication. I can’t believe how quickly you were able to send cards out to my group in Kabul, and how many you sent. This will really help the way we keep in touch with our families.

I have three children, Madden is a 7 year old girl then Tyler and Aubrey are 4 year old twins. I sent cards to each of them from what I found at Bagram last month. Madden, who is an avid reader really enjoyed sharing her card and reading the ones sent to her siblings. Aubrey was excited to get mail of her own and loved the pictures. Tyler was upset that there was no present with the card. 2 out of 3 satisfied customers isn’t bad!

Thanks again,

-G.L., Capt, USAF

Featured Friday Card Maker Tara B., Long Beach, CA

Posted by on Nov 21, 2014 in Featured Friday Cardmaker, Stars and Stamps | 16 comments

Helloo and happy Friday to all!!!!!  WOOHOO the holidays are almost upon us and it’s sooo exciting!!!  I took one of those highly scientific polls which roam around Facebook something like “Which holiday are you?”—even the title sounds scientific—(laughing) and not surprising I am Thanksgiving!!!  Forget all the reasons as to why, but I just like the season, like giving thanks and the history of the holiday.  Not really a big turkey fan, but love that stuffing, brown gravy and mashed potatoes and yes—I really do like the green bean casserole!  My mom use to make this dish/casserole with rutabagas, turnips, celery and butter and other stuff.  I tried to get recipe once but it was enough for 50 (Mom was a caterer) and she couldn’t cut it down to family size—Mom just didn’t cook that way.  Me—I’m little miss follow the recipe to the “T” kinda cook.

Thanks again for leaving such great comments for our FFCM last week, it means so much to our nominees and quite frankly I like reading the comments to see what y’all pick up on that I’ve missed.  Tara has a blog so you may leave comments on it as you read about her and look at her closet or leave comments in the section below.  Tara’s cards are great, bright, cheerful, embracing a hint of shabby chic mixed with clean and simple.  The tri-colored heart card—love it!!! want to make one—oh and that’s a great example of a general love card; love how she “targeted” the heart U card; perk me up makes me rethink distressed DP and the cow—oh my granny, love the cow!!!  Y’all know what’s coming next—sit back, relax and get comfy as we learn about Tara in her own words….

 How long have you been stamping/card making?

I have been making cards for over 30 years. I started in high school just drawing and coloring hand made cards. I grew up in a small town in Washington state that was 70 miles from the nearest large town so craft store visits were few and far between. One of the first techniques I picked up on one of those rare visits was embossing. I used to heat the powder over my toaster oven since they did not have heat guns yet. About 17 years ago, I attended a stamp party with my sister. Oh my goodness, it was like the clouds parted and the angels were singing ” Aaahhhh” . I found a demonstrator that would deliver stamps directly TO ME! I have been stamping ever since and was a demonstrator for a stamp company for five years. Now I can’t be limited to one company and purchase from a variety and stamp whatever tickles my fancy.

Do you have a craft room or specific area where you stamp/craft?

I have a walk in closet that I have turned into my crafting closet. ( you can see it on my blog) I am not a big clothes person, but I have to create. I pulled out all the hanging bars and shelves, painted it a soothing color of blue and had a closet company install new shelves and a work surface. I put up pictures of my family, an inspiration board and love working away in my little closet. I am constantly working on perfecting storage for my crafting items and it is constantly in flux. It is definitely a happy place for me. And, best of all – it has a door:) I can close it to hide a mess or just get away for a bit.

What are your favorite stamp/craft products?

My favorite product is paper, paper and more paper. I love all the lovely designs and have to keep myself from buying too much since I don’t have a lot of space in my craft closet. I really like the 6×6 pads since they contain coordinating paper and have the right amount of it. I love grabbing a sketch, a 6×6 pad and stamps for quick cards.

Tara B6

Do you have a favorite  technique?

Coloring – I have loved it since I was little. I love to color with all sorts of mediums – Copics, water colors, inks, colored pencils etc. It is so relaxing to sit with a cup of tea and color in an image.

Tara B3

Have any particular OWH sketches or tutorials served as  inspiration for your cards? 

I am a follower on Facebook and I see so many designs and featured cards that inspire me. I really seem to gravitate to the masculine themed cards since they are always such a challenge for me.

I absolutely love the technique videos on OWHtv. – I can’t wait to try the texture paste and stencil technique.

Tara B4

 Do you prefer digis or stamps?

I prefer stamps but I use both. If I have an idea and can’t find the right stamp, I will create something digitally especially for larger holiday projects.

Do you have a  favorite theme?

I used to love romantic, distressed and very fussy but now have definitely changed to clean and simple. Not only do I like more white space, I also like brighter, clean colors.

Tara B1

Are there colors you love to include on  your cards?

I love bold crisp colors especially blues and greens. I think my favorite combination is aqua and red. When making a card for a friend, I will try and use his/her favorite color or something that reminds me of that person. 

Tara B2

How did you hear about Operation Write  Home?

I saw OWH on another bloggers website in 2010 and had my first OWH party. I invited all my stamping friends to my home, had some lunch and we stamped away the afternoon creating side by side. Our group is getting smaller every year, but we still enjoy making cards for our heroes.

Tara B5

What motivates you to make cards for our  heroes?

My father and brother-in-law are veterans and we are quite a patriotic family. I understand the sacrifice that not only the heroes make, but their families as well. I love the fact that these cards are made for our soldiers to give to their loved ones at home. I may be providing  just bits of paper, ribbon and glue, but I have hopes that they not only offer comfort to the families of our heroes, but the heroes have a sense of peace and connection when they send a card to those they leave at home.

What a joy!

Posted by on Nov 18, 2014 in Hero Blog | 3 comments

A note left here on our site…yay!

My husband is deployed and our 5 daughters and I received cards in the mail today from him made by OWH. What a joy! Thank you, the cards are beautiful!

OWHtv Week 166

Posted by on Nov 16, 2014 in OWHtv, Stars and Stamps | 2 comments

Hello, friends! I hope you had a great Veteran’s Day week…how did you celebrate? Did you go to any events or shake a hero’s hand?

OWH sponsored a luncheon for veterans on Tuesday, and the first video shows the gifts made for those who came…they loved them as always! It’s such a treat to see their faces when they receive a heartfelt thank you. Thursday’s video is an Americana Snowman…it’s as if Whipper Snapper Designs came up with a patriotic ball of ice just for our heroes! On Casual Friday, a quick thank you for all the lovely sympathy cards…it’s great knowing so many talented crafters during times like this.

I’ll be taking off for a little travel and family time, leaving later this week and returning after Thanksgiving; please be patient with receipts, I’ll get caught up as quickly as I’m able when I return. Thanks!
Sandy

Veterans Day Ornaments:

——— S U P P L I E S ———

• Hero Arts Fancy Die THANK YOU  ——  http://goo.gl/xKrlp0
• Sizzix Framelits Circles  ——  http://goo.gl/AXUWUH
• Sizzix Big Shot  ——  http://goo.gl/Og4513
• Quickstik Precision Pickup and Placement Tool  ——  http://goo.gl/2oz8DC
• May Arts 1-1/2-Inch Wide Ribbon, Navy Silk  ——  http://goo.gl/mAvJI7
• EK Success Medium STAR Punch  ——  http://goo.gl/kvZRhY
• Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue  ——  http://goo.gl/0gTHUW
• EK Success HEART & STAR Punch  ——  http://goo.gl/ELPiLv

Americana Snowman Card:

——— S U P P L I E S ———

• Americana Snowman  ——  http://goo.gl/QpR7O8
• Copic Sketch Marker B000  ——  http://goo.gl/xZWTkF
• Copic Sketch Marker B00  ——  http://goo.gl/yy7dtT
• Copic Sketch Marker B24  ——  http://goo.gl/gdoxUN
• Copic Sketch MARKER B26  ——  http://goo.gl/h84hjn
• Copic Sketch Marker R14  ——  http://goo.gl/yQQStI
• Copic Sketch MARKER C5   ——  http://goo.gl/PkUwBA
• Copic Sketch MARKER C3  ——  http://goo.gl/WnGsWF
• Copic Sketch Marker C1  ——  http://goo.gl/sQ4mlU
• Copic Sketch Marker YR04  ——  http://goo.gl/B4WwCD
• Copic Sketch Marker E39  ——  http://goo.gl/9LMg2E

 
Dog cards…and a thank you!

 

Mid-Month Throwdown: Winter Love You

Posted by on Nov 15, 2014 in Midweek Throwdown Challenge, Stars and Stamps | 8 comments

Welcome to November’s Mid-Month Throwdown Challenge. On the calendar, Halloween is behind us and we’re closing in on Thanksgiving and Christmas, but here at Operation Write Home, we don’t follow the traditional calendar with our card creations. Our cards have a long way to travel and have to make it overseas and back again in time for particular holidays, so even though it’s November, we’re asking you to work on WINTER LOVE CARDS.

Our Valentine’s Day cards deadline is December 31, but as our troops draw down, we’re unsure of how many specific holiday cards we will actually need. So please, make mostly general-themed LOVE CARDS that can be used at any time of year. And don’t forget, if you still have unused Christmas cards, you can turn them into AnyHero Christmas cards simply by writing an uplifting message inside for our troops. That deadline is November 30 so don’t delay – get them mailed soon!

Our sample card maker this month is Kathryn B. who blogs at Kathryn’s Cards. And here is her perfectly Winter Love Card:

November-KathrynB

And a little about Kathryn in her own words:

I make cards for OWH in honor of the veterans in my family, in particular my grandfather and his five brothers who all served. Grampy sent letters home to his parents and even recorded himself on a few records while stationed overseas. While modern technology has made it a bit easier for our heroes to get a message home, many heroes still prefer to write a card and I’m pleased to give backby putting my hobby to good use.

THINK WINTER AND LET’S SHOW OUR TROOPS SOME LOVE BY SHOWERING THEM WITH WINTER LOVE YOU CARDS!

Featured Friday Card Maker: Frances B., Sharpsburg, GA

Posted by on Nov 14, 2014 in Featured Friday Cardmaker, Stars and Stamps | 23 comments

Helloooo card makers and Happy Friday to YOU!!!!  North GA had SNOW at Halloween—what in the world???? I have a feeling this does not bode well for a mild winter.  Personally I do not want another snow episode involving me, the car, the driveway if y’all remember that harrowing post from January. Didn’t this week get off to a great start with the Marine’s 239th birthday on Monday, Veteran’s Day on Tuesday—makes you just proud to an American!!  Some housekeeping tidbits—as OWH in now in the “Winter/Valentine” season, please pay attention to the shipping deadline—this means the box arrives at Sandy’s door on or prior to December 31st for these cards.  The difference between a “valentine” card and a “general love” card—is the sentiment i.e. the word valentine—if that word is on the card it’s a valentine.  If the card says “I love you”—that’s general love card.  If y’all have watched the November 2014 Sit Rep video you’ll remember general love cards are the big need as those can be used year round and can be sorta valentiney by use of colors and appropriate embellishments.  Other needs are birthday, thank you, missing you and then thinking of you.  Any questions, go here and watch the 6 minute video as you ohhh and ahhhh over the cards Sandy is sorting.

Y’all were great leaving comments a couple of weeks ago for our FFCM and I’m certain this week will follow suit when y’all flip over Frances’ cards.  As she doesn’t have a blog please leave a little OWH love in the comment section below.  The flutterby card is great—notice how the busy DP is toned down by the image—great job!  I really like the sunset card—not only how the sun’s rays were made, but also the inside of the card; the black and white thinking of you—classic; the vibrancy of the…..well enough of me talkin’ about the cards!  Time for y’all to grab a cuppa, prop your feet and take a gander at Frances’ cards and learn a little about this prolific crafter.  Here’s Frances in her own words……

I consider myself a “transplanted Texan”, spending most of my growing up years in South Texas.  I have been living in the Atlanta, GA area for almost 40 years. Sharpsburg is a suburb south of the Atlanta airport. I love down “south”; not as much bad traffic. I have been married for almost 44 years, and have two grown daughters; and 3 grandchildren, 1 girl & 2 boys.  And I’m thankful we all are within 20 minutes of each other, and see each other quite frequently. We go to dinner, shop, and take vacations together. We are a “tight” family.

How long have you been stamping/card making?

I started out making a  scrapbook for my granddaughter for her 4th birthday that we spent at Disneyworld. Got hooked on paper crafting and continued making scrapbooks for her and the two boys when they came along.  Somehow, I would see cards online and tried my hand at that. So, that was about 5-6 years ago. I really love making the cards most of all. But I still scrapbook all the milestones in my grandkids lives, so far 35 books between the three of them.

Do you have a craft room or specific area where you stamp/craft?

Yes, I have a guest room that has become the “scrap room”.  It is a bit small, but it has a huge closet so I can hide most of my “stuff” in there. Would love to move it all downstairs to the basement but hubby doesn’t see the need to finish the basement, maybe some day.

FrancesB1 

What are your favorite stamp/craft products?

Right now I have become a big fan of Gina K Designs products. Love her stamps and cardstock. I also have a Cricut machine. The first one was given to me by my husband, boy he didn’t know what he started! And I have recently purchased the Cricut Expression.

FrancesB4

Do you have a favorite  technique?

Favorite? No not really. I get inspiration/ideas from a lot of blogs and Pinterest.

FrancesB2

 Have any particular OWH sketches or tutorials served as  inspiration for your cards?

I have used several of the sketches, and I really like that the measurements are on the sketches. It saves time and experimentation trying to figure out what will fit where. But I guess my real favorite is the pinwheel card. I have used that a lot…when I’m stumped that’s my go to layout. 

Do you prefer digis or stamps?

I do the stamps. I have never tried the digis, it seems a bit too much technology for me.

 Do you have a  favorite theme?

No particular theme…just whatever I may see online or have a particular need. For OWH I make mostly thinking of you, miss you etc.

FrancesB5

 Are there colors you love to include on  your cards?

I use a lot of the teal/turquoise & brown/black colors. They just look so pretty and crisp together.

FrancesB3

 How did you hear about Operation Write  Home?

I really don’t remember. Probably off some blog, but I’m so glad I did. I have only been sending in cards for about a year  and hope that once a lot of the military personnel come home after the present wars, there can be somewhere else Sandy can find to send these cards. We all love making them!

FrancesB6

What motivates you to make cards for our  heroes?

First, wanting to give back to the heroes of our military. My father was a military career man, and was in Europe during WW II. So I have a soft spot for those who serve. My son-in-law was in the Army and served in Iraq…that was before he was my son-in-law. So my heartfelt thanks and admiration go to all that serve all over the world!

A lot easier

Posted by on Nov 10, 2014 in Hero Blog, Note from Afghanistan | 1 comment

I got the box of cards and everyone wanted to give a huge thanks for making it a lot easier for us to write home! We appreciate you guys and love all the support!!!!

V/R

A.R.

 quote70

Veteran’s Day week

Posted by on Nov 9, 2014 in Stars and Stamps | 6 comments

Hi everyone! Sandy here…with a little story and some encouragement.

A few weeks ago, I created a large quantity of blank thank you cards for my church…they circulated them among the congregation, and also had the children draw pictures and make cards for veterans as well. Then at all the services, Chaplain Rick Bulman, a Marine veteran, invited veterans to stand and be recognized. The packets of cards were handed out, and he read some of the church’s letters from up front….and I was blessed to see some of these veterans wiping a tear from their eyes. :) Between all services, over 200 veterans were honored; what a blessing to see just a tiny bit of their responses as they opened their “AnyHero” mail!

2014-11-09 09.13.36

I know many of you will be honoring veterans in your community this week – please post pics on our Facebook wall! And if you don’t know any veterans or are unaware of places to go on Tuesday to honor them….try patronizing the restaurants that offer free meals for veterans! Walk around and shake hands. It’ll mean the world to our nation’s heroes!

Sketch Challenge #242

Posted by on Nov 8, 2014 in Sketch Challenge, Stars and Stamps | 10 comments

Goooood Morning Peeps, and Happy November. Oooooh, do you feel that chill in the air? Yes siree Bob, I’ve had to have my furnace on already. With temps down around freezing you have to fire the burners up. But, on the bright side… colder weather means being indoors more, and that means more crafting time. Yep, there’s always an upside to the downside.

Today’s sketch would be a great one to mass produce. Maybe finish up your Christmas cards or, like me, get a late start on them?

242

 

This fun and cheerful card by the talented Susan is today’s inspiration. Susan sent this card in and thought it would be a good one for a sketch. Yep Susan, you’re right! So here it is!

242 samp;

 

I hope you have a great day no matter what your weather is like. I also hope you have a chance to try today’s sketch.