Blog Name

My blog called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of covering up mistakes. My fumble fingers drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly. Hence, the giggles and smiles of creative patience all throughout my crafting process. xx

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Cards For Little Hearts - Card Drive for Children's Hospital

It's approaching that time where the 
card drive takes place!

All the details are found here for card guidelines and fabulous prizes.

Not only will you cheer the heart of a hospitalized pediatric cardiac patient (ages 0 thru 19),

but you'll have chances at winning several great prizes donated by a number of sponsors.

I will be having blog candy here as well, 
kindly donated by Bugaboo Designs accompanied by fun, new sentiments, 
during our blog hop which will begin on August 1!
The card drive is from July 1st thru August 25th so get ready to make those cards.

Please be sure to read all the guidelines before sweetly creating for little children!

Here are two cards I'll be sending, just to give you an idea of how simple these thoughtful gestures can be:

Precolored snowman with additional shading and coloring with pastel chalks:

Here is the same snowman in pink and brown, sporting a heart on his vest, and shedding a little hopeful light with the starry night and candle. I love those rosy cheeks!

On a personal note:

Thankfully, about 2 weeks ago we came out of our Fire Season (drought) with wonderful daily rains, so well known in Florida's hot, humid summertime. Today's unusually overcast morning provided the perfect opportunity to show a few photos of what happens after 3 or 4 days of drizzle and/or rain. (apologizing in advance for my very shaky hands)

The cap on this white mushroom is about 4" across. It was not here yesterday.
It grew so quickly, that the damp leaf and twig debris covering the ground is sticking to the cap as it grows!

Despite the severe drought, the 8 foot-tall (2.5 meter) gardenia bushes are amass with fragrant blossoms. Each blossom is about 3 inches across (7,6 cm). Mmmmm, smells yummy!
The older, yellower blossoms don't look as pretty, but they are far more fragrant!
Kind of like the people and pets in our lives! (giggle)

These staghorn ferns are over 35 years old. They have moved with us 3 times and adjusted to their new environments. Even here when the temps dip below freezing, they not only survive, but allow squirrels to make winter homes in the middle! The squirrels climb down into the "hole" in the top center of the plant. It's way too hot for summertime habitation, but perfect in the winter. The ferns are at least 6-7 feet across (2 meters) during the "end-stage" of winter. Their fronds will thrive in the summer humidity, and grow even more. The remnants of our winter/spring vegetable garden are in the background:

For my favorite part!
I love the wood mushrooms. They are colorful and always artistically arrange themselves. They usually grow out of a lightning wound in a still-living (oak) tree. But sometimes, we have to take trees down as they age or are damaged. These mushrooms were growing out of a tree "stump" remnant from years ago:

The cluster grew in a matter of days because the old stump was damp, and ripe with "rot".
In case you cannot see the stump, it is below ground level. The following smaller cluster is from the same tree, but growing out of an old "surface" root a few feet away:

Such interesting color patterns - each cap growing from ivory to rusty hues. I wonder if a wood mushroom's coloring is similar to the interior of a tree, since that is what it is feeding on?
Whatever, they are amazing, and prolific, too!

Wishing you loveliness no matter what the weather or circumstance.
We can usually see beauty if we take time to look for it.

Challenges I'd like to support:
  1. The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #8 anything Christmas Goes 6/28
  2. Christmas Card Challenge #14 anything Christmas 6/25
  3. Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge #337 Non Traditional Colors 6/17
  4. Jingle Belles Christmas Challenge (June 9) All Bundled Up (using more than 3 layers) 6/22
  5. A Snowflake's Promise #41 Anything winter/Christmas Goes 7/11
  6. Crafting from the Heart #163 Anything Goes 6/19



Jackie T said...

Hi Donna your cards are gorgeous I love them both the snowman is so cute. Thank you for sharing your photos. Take care. Hugs Jackie

Beebeebabs said...

Beautiful cards as always - the shading is a perfect touch. Thanks for sharing the lovely photos my friend!!!

Sue said...

Hi Donna, So glad the fire season is over.

Mother Nature sure knows how to put a smile on our faces.

Hope you are having a nice week. Sue

craftieodmae said...

Absolutely gorgeous!

Lisa said...

Your cards are so sweet and beautiful, Donna!! I love the snowman!! The designs of each one are gorgeous!! Your photos are beautiful!! Wow, those ferns are amazing!! I'm glad you got some much-needed rain!! Have a great day!! Big hugs :)

A Mermaid's Crafts

Lori Kobular said...

Donna I love your snowmen cards! The children will love them too! Did I miss something? Did we start this already? I think some of Christina's messages are going to spam!

Babs said...

Hi Donna, what two really beautiful christmas cards and for a very good cause too, I just love snowmen there my favourite things at christmas. These will be well loved. Thank you for sharing your fabulous photos too Donna.

Hugs Babs x

cotnob said...

Fabulous cards Donna, such a super snowman - a wonderful cause to support.
Great photographs, thank you for sharing.
Pauline - Crafting with Cotnob

Donna Phelan said...

So fun and cute! You are such a good soul! I am having internet issues, sorry this is so short.....just happy I got this far! xo~

Ann Greenspan's Crafts said...

Beautiful cards, Donna, each with it's own color themes making them look so different from one another. Love the background paper you've used and the shadow effects you've added. What a great cause this card drive is.

Stampsnob. said...

Now my head is singing Frosty The Snowman. Very nice cards I must get busy on Christmas cards.....your yard looks great .......Lis.....

NanaConnie said...

Oh, my gosh, Donna, I don't know where to begin. Love both the cards with that darling snowman. I'm going to go check out the Card Drive info but you can count on me to get something done amidst all my home-and-gone-again summer travels in July and August.
I love your mushroom photos! Really well done and the colors are so vibrant. Your stag horns are magnificent. I tried growing some once but it's just not humid enough out here on the West Coast. Not that I'm complaining. If I have to give up the ferns in order to have dry heat and no cloying humidity, that's fine with me. :-D
But I do envy you the gardenias. They were my mom's favorite flower - she even carried them in her wedding bouquet. I have looked for a gardenia plant ever since she passed on in 1992 but haven't seen them in any of my local nurseries. Maybe our climate just isn't good for growing them. But I do know what you mean about the heavenly scent of them.
Wonderful post and you generated so many delightful memories for me. Thank you.

Verna Angerhofer said...

Beautiful cards. I have been working on some as well here and there. And, thanks for the pics of your beautiful yard. Nature is so gorgeous!

Creating with Susan said...

I'm a sucker for snowmen and yours is adorable!! Thanks so much for joining us at Christmas Card Challenges.

Janice said...

Fabulous photos Donna, cute snowmen! Thank you for sharing your photos, amazing what grows through! Your garden looks beautiful.
Janice x

Unknown said...

How cute do these cards look and snowman are also my fave thing at Christmas.

Gosh your garden is amazing thanks for sharing these photos with us Donna.

Warm crafty hugs from Shirl x x x

Lori said...

Both of your cards are really cute! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Christmas Card Challenges! Lori DT

samantha's cards said...

Lovely cards, thanks for playing along at CCC.

SD pooja said...

Lovely snowman cards Donna,innocence they have and little kids are going to love them :)Our harsh summer has ended and its time for monsoon,rainy season in India !

KarinsArtScrap said...

these 2 christmas cards are cute and very beautifulllllllllll Donna. put it in my challenge facebookgroup.
Gr Karin

SmilynStef said...

Lovely holiday cards ... so glad you got all bundled-up with us at jingle belles.

lauren bergold said...

oh my gosh! TWO incredibly beautiful holiday cards, it's amazing how different you've made the two images look, just with chalks and a different set of papers! thanks for joining our layery fun at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥!

KraftyKoolKat said...

Two such endearing and gorgeous Christmas cards Donna for a very worthy cause. I am so glad you are out of the Fire Season and with a bit of rain you are getting your lovely foliage back.
Hugs Cathy xxx

Leslie Miller said...

Well, first of all, your cards are absolutely sweet and precious for the children. Such a wonderful cause, too. Now... I'm enchanted by your photos from around the yard and garden. Those Staghorns are amazing! And love the rich colors of the mushrooms. We had a white one like your first photo pop up in a geranium pot and as it aged it looked like leather. Also kind of like humans, right? Tee hee! Interesting that the Gardenias get more fragrant as they age. I'm glad your fire season is over. Thanks for sharing these photos, Donna. I always love to see them!

Hazel said...

Thanks for entering your lovely crafting for CHNC challenge 337 – you could also enter this into my CHNC challenge extra for June - I'd love to see it there too x

Conniecrafter said...

Your cards are so cute, there is just something about a nice plump snowman, Frosty was always my favorite Christmas video as a kid :)
Glad to hear you are coming out of the drought, so nice to see all the pretty blooms!

crafty-stamper said...

Beautiful cards and love the cute snowman image and different papers used-love the wood mushrooms and the fabulous staghorn fern we used to have a stagshorn tree and all the branches were covered in soft velvet feel covering
Carol x

Christina said...

This little fellow is full of cuteness Donna! Sweet design layout too and love the Heart die! Oh the children will love these! Thank you dearest Donna for sharing your big beautiful heart with us. And thanks for sharing the pretty pics of the mushroom. I know very little about mushroom. Are these edible? May you have a lovely week ahead. Hugs.

Sue said...

I do love me a snowman. he is adorable. Children will enjoy these cards
so much.


Monica said...

Awe, these snowmen cards are so so so cute. The kids will love them and how kind you are. The photos of the 35 year old flowers and the mushrooms and all are fascinating.



Cazro said...

Hi Donna, Your two cards are amazing, I love snowmen on Christmas cards, these two are so adorable. A wonderful cause for the children. if I lived in the States I would support this cause. We don't have anything similiar in the U.K our hospitals don't allow cards to be displayed. Such a shame. Thanks for sharing at The Holly and the Ivy Christmas Challenge. Caz. DT

Maryvonne Coussé said...

Gorgeous cards Donna !


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