Fun Pop Up Cube Card

I saw this card on Dawn’s Stamping Thoughts and thought it was adorable..

To make a pop up cube card….

I used one piece of 12 x 12″ white cardstock and trimmed 1/2″ off one side.

Put the paper in your score board on the 11 1/2″ length and score at 2 3/4″, 5 1/2″, 8 1/4″, and 11″.

Using your paper trimmer, put the paper in the trimmer on the 12″ length, and cut it at   9 1/4″, 6 1/2″ and cut, and then cut at 5 1/2″…You’ll have a 1″ piece that you won’t need.

You’ll need 12 pieces of each of the following:

2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ colored cardstock

2 3/8″ x 2 3/8″ silver (optional)

2 1/4 x 2 1/4″ white…six you’ll need to decorate and six will be plain.

You don’t need to do the silver layer, it’s optional.

I used two stamp sets: Winnie and Walter You’re So Tweet

Inspired by Stamping Birthday Sentiments

I colored four images from the You’re So Tweet stamp set with alcohol markers and stamped two sentiments all on the 2 1/4″ x 2 1/4″ squares.

You’ll need one more small sentiment. I chose Happy Birthday…

You’ll also need: Two pieces of white cardstock that are thinner and shorter than your sentiment..In my case, my sentiment was 1/2″ tall and about 1 3/4″ long, so my two strips needed to be 1/4″ tall x 1 1/2″ long….You’ll fold these two strips in half and later I’ll give you more information on these.

Taking one of your 2 3/4″ strips you cut, fold all of your scores and then put tear tape on the outside of the 1/2″ scored area…then fold your box with that strip inside the box. Do the same to the other 2 3/4″ piece as well as the 5 1/2″ piece. Next, you’ll want to take the 5 1/2″ box and make sure the glued corner is facing you.

Take one of your smaller boxes and flatten it and make sure the glued end is facing you (in the center) then glue the bottom half of the back of it to the bottom half of the bigger box on either the left or right side. Do the same with the other small box, on the side you didn’t glue the first one to..

Next, glue all of your images and sentiments to the squares of the box. I used Plus Corporation Heavy Duty Tape Runner to adhere mine.

The plain squares you’ll put two inside the top, the back of the 5 1/2″ box and you’ll put two inside the 2 3/4″ boxes, facing you, and two on the bottom of the inside of your 2 3/4″ boxes.

Then you’ll get your Happy Birthday and two white small strips…on the small strips, put tear tape on half of the strip and wet glue on the other half (the same side)..do that to both strips…then put one strip folded in half with the wet glue facing inside and lay it inside the center of the two small boxes..hold it until it sets up..it should be a flap that sticks up…do the same with the other strip on the other side, then lay your sentiment on the strips and make sure it’s even and centered..

It will fit into a 6 x 6″ envelope..

Fine Tip Glue Applicator Decorated Pin..Never Lose Your Pin Again!

To make a fine tip glue applicator pin attachment (so you don’t lose your pin)…

You’ll need a 30mm  .7mm 21gauge 304 Surgical Stainless Steel (silver color) Eyepin Eye Pin link: Ebay: https://tinyurl.com/y6ft23m3

You’ll also need a 2″ long flat silver head pin (Link: Ebay: https://tinyurl.com/y5gm742o)

Pliers and round nose pliers and wire snip.

Ebay 4 in 1 tool. Link: https://tinyurl.com/yxqa4rol   (Cheaper than Walmart version.)

or a three piece tool kit on Ebay, link: https://tinyurl.com/y5bmlb37

or a kit like the one I bought at Michaels, link: https://tinyurl.com/wlua8xp

Beads..I recommend you going to your local craft store and find some smaller beads as well as one larger bead to make one pin….or look through your old earrings to find dangle earrings that you no longer wear, or one that you lost the match to..

4mm silver jump rings Ebay link: https://tinyurl.com/y6jzzrdb  You won’t need these if you don’t want to add additional dangle, as you’ll be creating one loop with the head pin.

Start by taking your 2″ long head pin and adding your beads to it, then about 1/8″ from the last bead take your plier and make a bend in the pin, then turn the wire in the opposite direction and use the round nose plier to create a loop and snip off the excess wire. I like my decorated pin to dangle, so I add two jump rings. To do this, simply using your pliers bend one side of the opening away from the other…Don’t spring the opening, just bend it away from the other side as I show in the video. Then close the opening once it’s been woven through the loop you created. Do the same to the second jump ring, but don’t close this one until you’ve also added the surgical steel head pin to it as well. Then close the jump ring and your pin is ready to go into your glue bottle.

8/7-8/10/2020

I’ll be honest…I’ve spent the end of last week in doctors’ offices, so didn’t accomplish much in the way of craftiness.  I have really light colored skin, and back in the 1960’s and 1970’s, sun block wasn’t available.  I remember I had Coppertone SPF 4 while I was in college in the late ’70’s, and my girlfriends wondered if I was trying to remain the whitest person in America.  SPF of 4, seriously?  Today, most woman are using SPF 15 in their daily moisturizer, and up to SPF 100 for a serious summer outing.

The end result from a childhood spent without sun block, is that I struggle with spots on my skin that are irregular.  I’ve been given the pamphlet on what skin cancer looks like, and my advice to you, is don’t use that as your benchmark.  If you have a spot of skin that seems weird to you, get it checked out.  I’ve had so many spots removed, and many of them pre-cancerous, and one big spot on the very top of my head that was  skin cancer  (I know, you think my scalp would have been protected by hair, but the sun doesn’t stop for hair, it burns right through it.)   I had to have some major repair for that spot, and now there’s a small spot on the front of that area that needed to be frozen…And I had a spot on my face that needed to be biopsied and another spot on my face that needed frozen and one on my forearm that also needed frozen, as both appear to be pre-cancerous.  I’ve had a lot of biopsies, and they don’t bother me, as the doctor numbs the area and removes the spot.  I’ve never had anything frozen before, and definitely not on the top of my head.  The dermatologist warned me that freezing my head might give me an ice cream headache and he wasn’t kidding.  I normally wiggle my toes when something hurts from a procedure, but my whole foot was moving….Ice cream headaches never hurt like that.  I think it hurt more than normal because it was freezing over the scar from the first procedure… But then he moved on to the spot on my face, right above my eyebrow.  It was a small spot, maybe the size of a pin head…He froze it longer than I anticipated, then moved onto my forearm.  That spot was roughly the same size as the one above my eyebrow, but didn’t hurt nearly as bad when he froze it.  Once he was done, the spot above my eyebrow still really ached, and it felt like a terrible sunburn.  When we left his office, I really wanted to put something cold on it, as it was the only one that hurt.  You’d think the one on top of my head would be the one to hurt, as he froze it the longest, but apparently the hair protected my head a little (at least that’s what I’m telling myself.)

Of course I was whining a little and Rich said “Let me see it…”  and when he looked at it, he was surprised at how red and swollen my forehead was.  By the time we got home, I needed an ice pack on it, and within the next hour or so, I had a big blister there.  I’m not talking the size of a pin head, more the size of a dime…and it’s really raised and full of fluid, so I’m worried about it breaking open and not healing.  Yeah, I’m that kind of worrier.  I called the dermatologist today for a prescription refill and mentioned the blister.  They immediately called back and said I should come in to have it drained, so I did.  Now I’m sporting a huge gauze patch (above my eyebrow) and a band-aid (on my cheek) and look like I’ve been in a car accident. I told a man we know that Rich pushed me down some stairs, and he snickered and said he figured that’s what happened.

On the other hand, I had the open wound on my tongue that hasn’t been healing and went for the second follow-up appointment with my oral surgeon.  On my last visit, he’d prescribed a mouth rinse and it works perfectly to assist in healing the spot.  This was the first time the oral surgeon didn’t look perplexed when looking at my tongue, and said it looked like it was finally healing.  He said he didn’t think the rinse had anything to do with it healing, but said he thought it was because I was taking less prednisone (a steroid I take for my arthritis) and that was why it was healing.  Regardless of the reason, I’m thrilled it’s finally healing…  After all, it’s been over six months now, and that’s long enough to have a boo boo like that…in my opinion.

And that’s how my week has gone…some weeks are better than others.

8/2-8/5/2020

The impossible has happened…..I finished making our great niece’s college album!  I know, it’s shocking!   It was truly a labor of love, and it is huge!!  I can’t believe how much it grew in the time it took me to make it.  It just kept getting bigger and bigger..I can’t wait for you to see the video.  I decided to only put bits and pieces of the making of the album into the video, otherwise, you’d be watching a video that would literally be hours long, and let’s face it, I can’t imagine anyone wanting to spend that amount of time watching a video.

In the last couple of days, I made some fine tip applicator decorated pins.  I always lose the pin that you jam into the top of fine tip applicator bottles, and that makes me crazy.  I’ve seen people selling them for (more than they should cost,) so I decided to make my own.  It was so simple, and I made a video walking you through the process.  I didn’t make a huge dangle (as a lot of people do), as I just wanted to be able to find the pin.  Mine are like a large dangle earring, simple, but easy to find.  I made one for my friend Rebecca from Rubber Stamp Tapestry, as she said she loses her pins but doesn’t like the idea of a big beaded dangle….So I used sea inspired pieces, and hung a sand dollar, a sea shell and a piece of sea glass to hang from that pin.  I hope she likes it. (At least she won’t be losing her pin now.)

Since I was playing in my jewelry making supplies, I decided I should organize them, and boy did they need organizing.  It took me several hours, but I also got sidetracked and made a bracelet and some earrings while I was organizing.  I can’t just do one thing, because it’s more fun to do a few things at once.  Either that, or I’ve got ADD, and I think it’s more that I like multi-tasking.

Did I tell you about the hole in the side of my tongue?  I had a tooth that rubbed a pretty significant hole in the side of my tongue, that just didn’t want to heal.  When I went to the dentist, six months ago, he noticed it, and wanted me to see an oral surgeon about it.  I made the appointment to have the tooth ground down so it wouldn’t rub my tongue. It just so happened the appointment was two days before everything shut down for Covid.  I didn’t get another appointment with them to follow up, until July…and things hadn’t really healed, even though my tooth was no longer an issue.  The oral surgeon was concerned it might be cancerous, but knew I was on steroids for my arthritis, and that causes slow healing.  He was considering doing a biopsy, but said biopsies often don’t heal for up to two years….TWO years?  Oh, and he said sometimes the stitches rip open and you have a big gaping hole in the side of your tongue.  No thanks….So I asked if there was any kind of medication I could take and he suggested a mouth rinse.  I don’t know what was in that rinse, I’m assuming fairy dust, because I started using it less than a month ago, and already my tongue looks a million times better.  So much time has passed, that my next six month dentist appointment was earlier this week, and my dentist was really happy with the way it looked.  I went for a follow-up with the oral surgeon this morning, and he looked relieved…but doesn’t think the rinse caused it to heal, he just thought it was from not taking as many steroids.  I guess I can understand why he’s thinking that, but it’s pretty coincidental that my tongue only started healing once I used the rinse… I’m no doctor, but it seems fairly likely that the rinse had something to do with it.    Just my two cents on it.

And best of all, the oral surgeon says I don’t need to see him again unless it stops healing.  He still thinks it will take up to another six months for it to completely heal, as tongues are notorious for healing slowly.  I’m just relieved it’s on the road to recovery.

Making a New Size Card, Using a 6 3/4 “Personal” Envelope

I bought a box of envelopes at the Dollar Tree link: https://tinyurl.com/y4569olb for sending letters, and realized we don’t seem to use these envelopes in card making…And why not? I’m not sure.  The envelopes are much cheaper than the A2 size envelopes and 6 x 6″ card stock pads are perfect for layering on these card bases….so let’s give this a try.

I took the larger die from InLoveArts.com (Double Circle Dies Link: https://bit.ly/34LwhBT) and die cut the circle.  I cut matching apricot colored cardstock from Stampin’ Up (retired color) and cut the card base to 6 3/4″ across scored at 3 3/8″ and 6 1/4″ tall.

I cut the origami paper that I got from InLoveArts (link: https://bit.ly/3binny9) to 3 1/8″ x 6″ to line the card base.

I stamped from the “Congrats” die and stamp set from Hero Arts link: https://tinyurl.com/yyooxj57 the words “on your graduation” in Stampin’ Up’s retired Only Orange die ink and then used a Distress Ink marker to make it darker, then I added clear embossing powder and heat set it. I die cut the “Congrats” out of white cardstock and then used Black Enamel Accents (link: https://tinyurl.com/yy4b8l2y) from Ranger to make Congrats shiny and raised. I folded the apricot circle die cut around the card base and used Plus Corporation tape runner (link: https://tinyurl.com/y4js94uz) from Amazon to attach it to the card base. I used a Zig 2 Way Glue Pen link: https://tinyurl.com/yxo3qzzn to add glue to the tiny outside lines of the circle.

I used Martha Stewart’s Birds on a Wire border punch (retired) link on Ebay: https://tinyurl.com/y596855a on white cardstock and used a length of it for inside the card.  I added washi tape to the envelope and glued a row of the white punched birds on top of the washi tape. Make sure it’s well adhered or it will come off while going through the mail.

7/30-7/31/2020

I decided I need to get rid of some of the things I don’t use, and probably never will.  I could sell them on Ebay, but that’s so much work, that I decided to put them on Splitcoaststampers.com.  It’s a lot easier, and there aren’t any fees involved, but there’s a much smaller audience.  So I listed a bunch of border paper punches and corner rounders and all-over-the page paper punches, as well as a ton of retired Stampin’ Up cardstock.  When I first started stamping, I went on Splitcoaststampers and bought a lot of retired colors of cardstock that I really liked.  I don’t know what I was thinking, but there’s no way I could ever use this much paper.  I’m seriously over-the-top with cardstock.  The colors are great, but you can only use so much 8 1/2″ x 11″ cardstock.
I wasn’t sure how much to charge for the cardstock, so based it on what another seller is charging for hers, but I think it must be over-priced, and I’ll reduce the price in a few days.  (I feel kind of dumb, changing the price in the first couple of days that it’s listed.)  What advice do you have?

On a less than happy note, Rich had his hip replaced last Halloween, and felt terrific until January…Since then, his thigh and knee have been hurting and they can’t seem to figure out why.  The surgeon injected his knee with cortisone, and that didn’t help.  He said he’s doing one test/procedure at a time to try to eliminate what’s not wrong, since he doesn’t know what is wrong.  So this morning, at 5:45AM (can you believe the timing), Rich had an MRI.  We’re not sure what that’s supposed to eliminate, but I’m hoping one of the tests he has done will reveal what is wrong.  Rich says it feels like tendinitis, but the surgeon doesn’t think that’s it.  It’s really frustrating for him, and I’m hoping it starts to feel better soon.

I went to a bunch of garage sales this morning, and the crowds were unbelievable.  This summer, there haven’t been a lot of people at garage sales, but today, every sale we went to had at least ten cars, and that’s a lot for around here.  I’m a sucker for little kids selling anything, and today they were selling “monster bars,” that were like a chocolate chip cookie with M&M’s instead of chocolate chips, and cut into bar shapes.  They were still warm out of the oven when we bought them….You can’t beat that.  The house was four houses away from ours, and if Rich hadn’t been back in bed to make up for his early morning, I would have brought one home for him right then…Instead, my girlfriend and I ate ours before we made it to the next sale. (Sometimes you have to take one for the team, haha) The only other thing I found, were sofa and loveseat dog covers for furniture.  I’ve bought several sets of them from stores, and the backing always seems to fray.. I think it’s because I wash them so much, because I don’t want my house to smell like dog hair (and I convince myself that it does, even though we are obsessive about it.)  I figured since I never have good luck with the ones I buy from stores, maybe I should try buying them from garage sales instead.  The woman I bought them from said she never used them (and they looked like it.)  I’ll let you know if the work out well or not.

Today, I uploaded the kite video that I collaborated with Rebecca from Rubber Stamp Tapestry, the pegstamps.com owner.  We both really struggled making these cards, and I was impressed when I watched her video, because she explained the layers so much better than I did.  The big issue was the card size.  The card we were using for measurements gave the wrong scoring measurement.  The length of the card (that folds in half to make two kites) was supposed to be 11″, and scored in the middle at 5″…and that’s where the problem originated.  It should have been scored at 5 1/2″, but I decided maybe the length was the problem, so I changed my length to 10″ and stayed with the 5″ score….Rebecca on the other hand, read the notes below the video, where the cardmaker said she gave the wrong score, and it should have been 5 1/2″….From there on out, our cards are sized differently because we went in two different directions.  I had to laugh because at one point, Rebecca referred to the kite as a puzzle from hell, and she wasn’t wrong.  I’m just happy I finished my card and the video, and we both decided, sometimes an easy fun fold card, isn’t as simple as it looks.

Beach Card w/ Real Sand & LillaRose Giveaway

I wanted to make a card that incorporated some sea inspired bobby pins my friend Debbie sent me. She graciously has agreed to give a $17 store credit to a lucky viewer on August 5th.

To be eligible to win, you need to go to her website and create an account with them. To do that, all you need to do is go to lillarose.biz/alwaysJOY and in the top right corner, click on “sign in” and then you’ll create an account. (No purchase is necessary to be eligible.)

Debbie Berndt’s contact information is:

Cellphone: 269-414-6090

Email: dberndt57@yahoo.com

Address: 63476 Pierson Rd Cassopolis, MI 49031

Lilla Rose link: http://www.lillarose.biz/alwaysJOY

I started with a 4 3/4″ x 6 3/4″ piece of white cardstock and a 5″ x 7″ card base. Using the  4 3/4″ x 6 3/4″ cardstock, I took blending brushes link:

Aliexpress link: https://tinyurl.com/ybxlyo8v Cost per brush: $1.43 + .73 shipping (from China)

Ebay linkhttps://tinyurl.com/y7aoxyk2 Cost per brush $1.46

and Distress Oxide Tumbled Glass with a mask I made from cardstock and cutting mountains and valleys.. I blended the inks into the card front and moved the mask and inked again. I probably inked about 1/3 of the length of the card front. I used Broken China to add more dimension to the clouds, then went to the mid section (the ocean) and colored it with Salty Ocean. I created a straight line for the horizon, and then colored straight down about another 1/3rd of the card front. I decided I wanted 3-D waves, so cut cardstock to 4 3/4″ wide by 1 1/2″ tall and then cut waves out of one, then put that image up against the other strips I’d cut, and using a pencil, traced the waves, then cut them out so all of the waves were the same. I added fun foam to the back of the waves. I used Antique Linen Distress Oxide ink and rubbed the ink pad over the bottom 1/3rd of the card stock to create a beach. I dried it then added Collage Pauge over the sand portion of the card, and then added sand to it. I should have punched out holes to put the other bobby pins in it on the card before adding sand, so if you attempt this, made sure you punch the holes out first before adding waves or sand. I die cut clouds and originally put a sentiment on the largest cloud, but didn’t like it, so die cut more clouds and laid them over the first set. To add the turtle bobby pin, I didn’t consider how long it’s “legs” were, so had to take all of the clouds off, and put the wave with the turtle on it at the top of my waves, then lay the other waves below it, cutting out the fun foam behind them where the legs of the bobby pin would go. On the 5″ x 7″ card base, I used Antique Linen distress oxide ink and rubbed it around the edges so when I glued the card front to it, the edges wouldn’t be white. I had added fun foam and tear tape to the back of the card front so the bobby pins were protected, then decided hot glue might be the best way to adhere it to the card base…and it worked. Yay!!

After I finished the video, I thought it would be fun to add a shark fin to the waves, and added inside the card, the theme from “Jaws”…Ba Da Ba Da Ba Da…I think our niece will get a kick out of it.  You can see the shark fin in the photo for the video.

The sentiment came from a Hero Arts set called Hello.

7/27-7/29/2020

I have been working late into the night for the last two nights on projects I’ve made.  The first was a card I made to fit in personal size envelopes.  They’re call #6 3/4. If you never knew where the term A2 sized cards comes from, it’s from the size of the envelope.  I guess I could have called my card a #6 3/4, but that sounded kind of weird, so I called it a personal card instead, as that’s the other name given to this size envelope.  I wanted to call it something like “short and fat” but it was neither, and since there’s already a slim- line card, I couldn’t use tall and skinny, as basically, that name was already taken.  I could have called it a little taller and a little skinnier than an A2 card, but that was just confusing to me…so, I went with personal…I hope viewers come up with a better name for it..I sure couldn’t think of one.

Then I made a kite shaped card that my friend, Rebecca, from Pegstamps.com is also making with me.  I’d seen it on Mixed Up Crafts, and had already tried (and failed) to make it twice.  I was obsessed with making it correctly, so made it for the third time last night.  The problem was two-fold.  I used heavyweight cardstock (kiss of death) and couldn’t get the folds to work properly, and the Mixed Up Craft channel gave the wrong card dimensions.  She said to make the card 11″ long, but her center score was 5″ which doesn’t work out mathematically.  So I tried scoring at 5 1/2″ (which was right), but I did it with heavy card stock so it didn’t fold right.  Then I changed the measurement to 10″ long and my score mark stayed at 5″ so the folds were right.  The thing she doesn’t show, it cutting out the kite to ensure they fold together correctly.  The way I finally made it work, was to draw the lines for the kite on one side, (it’s two kites folded in the center) then I pinched the two halves together and holding them tightly, cut out both kites at once..  It worked and I can’t tell you how relieved I was that it did.  I was up until 1AM trying to make it work.

And lastly, another 1AM night, I made a card with real sand and bobby pins of sea life attached to the card front.  It took a lot of trial and error, but I finally made it work.

I spent more time on my great-niece’s album, and now I’m down to the front and back covers and it will be finished.  Just wait until you see how thick it is.  It’s probably 4″ thick at this point, and I’m sure, after she adds her photos, that it will get thicker.  I hope she likes it.

 

7/24-7/26/2020

Friday is the day my girlfriend and I go to garage sales.  Some days are much better than others, and this one, was a big dud…I spent a whopping 50 cents for some charms you hang on cards.  I know you’re thinking “That’s Amazing!!,” or something similar..  It wasn’t good.  It’s fun to spend time with other people (wearing my mask, of course,) but it’s still disappointing when you can’t even find stuffed animals for the dogs.

Saturday was all about craftiness.  A company asks me to review their hot glue gun that was $26, a lot of money for a glue gun.  It came with three finger protection rubber pieces and ten glue sticks, and still, I thought the gun was overpriced.  My initial thought about the gun was this…Why is it smoking?  Then I decided the glue was too hot…I’m talking, melt wax paper hot.  I tried testing the finger protectors by putting a drop of glue on my craft mat and touching it with the finger protector..  The hot glue was going to burn me, so I removed the finger protector before it did.  There were other issues with the gun, and let’s just say, I won’t be making the video, as the company thought they should take my concerns back to their engineering department…Good idea!

I also tried figuring out how to make a card that looked like a beach, with real sand, and fake 3-d waves.  I thought I could make the waves look 3-d by using Oxide inks and different colors, but that didn’t look good.  So I cut wave strips and put some fun foam behind a few layers, and I’m still not sure how good it looks, but at least it’s better than it was with just using inks.  I tried making a cloudy sky with inks, but decided since the waves and sand were three dimensional, the clouds needed to have that component as well.  So I die cut three little clouds and stamped “thinking of you” on the biggest cloud for a sentiment.  Now all I have to do is hope the waves can be glued in place with wet glue, otherwise I’m going to have to resort to using hot glue, and I’ve already had enough hot glue gun usage for one day.

I wanted to make this particular card idea, because I was given bobby pins with metal decorations on them.  One is a sand dollar, another is a sea turtle, and a third is a starfish.  I figured out how to weave them into the card so they look like they belong, but the card needs to have quite a bit of dimension, to accommodate the bulk you get when you use a bobby pin underneath the top card layer.  I thought it would be simple to add the sea turtle into the “waves,” but I failed to take into consideration how much length the “legs” of the bobby pin would need, and had to rip all of the waves off, and make a second set of waves…Then I got wet glue on one of them, and had to remake that wave.  Let’s just say this…If this card ends up being cute, I’ll be amazed.  I was up until after 1AM this morning, trying to finish it, and still, it’s not done..I’m hoping today is the day where it all comes together, or goes in the trash (minus the bobby pins, of course.)

Rich and I have been watching a series on NetFlix called the “Politician.”  It was created the the same people who made “Glee.”  Watching this show makes me realize how old I am.  In the series, they’re talking about climate change and what needs to be done to fix the environment.  One of the things they suggest, is taking cold showers and then using the water from the shower for other things, including drinking water.  All you have to do is boil it, seriously?  It’s lucky we have our own water well, because there’s absolutely no way I’d consider doing that.  Gross!

7/21-7/23/2020

We have a local church who has a clothing giveaway once a year, that I think is a truly wonderful idea.  Rich saw the note about this year’s giveaway on facebook, and we decided we were going to go through our closets and our drawers and get rid of anything that doesn’t fit or we don’t wear.  It took us three days to complete, and in the end, I don’t think you can see much of a difference.  On the other hand, we used industrial size garbage bags and completely filled our car and trunk and partially filled my girlfriend’s car.  The church was thrilled to have the clothes, but Rich and I were embarrassed that we have accumulated so much.  It’s ridiculous, the amount of clothing we owned, and continue to own.  I tried to be particularly picky, choosing to get rid of anything that I was on the fence about, and still my dresser drawers are full.  I keep telling myself that I didn’t just buy all of these clothes in the last year, and that they’ve been accumulating over at least a decade, but still, it’s embarrassing.  The ladies at the church were thrilled to get them, and that made us feel a little better.

Today I went dress shopping with a close friend.  Her son is getting married the beginning of September, and she hadn’t shopped for her dress yet.  We started in a wedding dress shop, and after trying on several dresses, my friend decided bridal stores might not be right for what she’s looking for.  Sadly, bridal stores are the only stores that allow you to use their dressing rooms, as every other retailer has closed their dressing rooms.  I heard someone ask when the dressing rooms would open in a large retailer, and the salesperson said, “Maybe in a year and a half.”  Wow, I guess I didn’t look at this long term…So are we also assuming we’ll be wearing masks that long…how depressing.  It was a big wake up call for me for how long Covid will be infecting our lives.

The wedding is in a church and the reception at the mother-of-the-bride’s backyard under tents.  It was supposed to be a wedding for 200+ people, and since Covid, has been reduced to 80.  I feel sorry for brides, not knowing if their wedding will be cancelled at the last minute if we go back into quarantine, and even more sad for the businesses that make their living from weddings, like photographers, who live or die financially, by what happens next with Covid.

This wedding went from a very large upscale event, to a backyard intimate affair.  The mother-of-the-bride told my girlfriend, she hasn’t found her dress yet, and continues to buy a bunch online, try them on, and send them back.  Her idea of the right dress is something floral and lightweight, and not matching the wedding colors.  My girlfriend wants to do this traditionally, and is trying to come close to the wedding colors that are navy blue and burgundy.  Those aren’t traditional colors for that time of year, but originally, the wedding was mid-November, when those colors are more appropriate.  We had fun trying to find dresses that were in the colors of the wedding, and also a bargain, as my girlfriend loves a bargain.  In the end, she went home with seven or eight dresses from four or five stores, and we’re hoping one of them will fit her and make her happy..  Not just happy, the goal is to make her feel pretty, and when you get to be in your 60’s and 70’s, that’s not always easy to achieve.  We both have high hopes for one dress in particular.  It’s navy with a flowery flowing over cape?  (I’m not sure what you call those see-through over-the-head pieces that are being paired with simple dresses.)   The dress is really simple, but that cape (we’ll call it that since I’m not sure what it’s really called) is a navy, white and burgundy floral pattern, so matches all of the wedding colors.   We couldn’t have been luckier, finding it at the first store (after the bridal shop.)  It was on sale for under $20, so my girlfriend’s need for a bargain was also filled.  All in all, if that dress works out, she couldn’t have found anything more fitting for this wedding.  If it doesn’t, she’s got a bunch more to try on, and hopefully, one of those will work.  If she’s not happy with any of them, we’ll try again (although when we got home, I had to take a two hour nap to get over it.)  Let’s cross our fingers that she finds one in the stack that makes her feel pretty.  I really hope she does…