Happy Monday, friends! How are you on this last Monday of September? Are you in one of those areas that have a long, lovely autumn? (LUCKY! <-- say this like Napoleon Dynamite would) Or are you in a different part of the world, where it still feels like summer or has already rushed into winter? I'm always amazed to read Laurie Schmidlin's blog when she talks about snow. Laurie lives in Montana, where it was snowing this past May 31st. Recently, on her Facebook page, she mentioned the first snow this year was on Sept. 11. Crazy!
Here in southeastern Oklahoma, we're still well into the 80s and on a couple of days this week, it's supposed to get into the 90s. Laurie's snow sounds pretty good to me, right about now. I could totally live in an area with lots of rain and snow as I am very indoorsy. I like being stuck at home due to the weather, so long as I'm warm & dry, with a good internet connection and plenty of groceries (read: wine).
Moving right along... For my birthday a couple of weeks ago, I treated myself to new die storage from Stamp-n-Storage. It arrived last week, and I've been organizing my dies ever since. I had been using various binders and storage systems. That worked well enough, but I like the idea of having them all in one place with room to grow, so I purchased two of the large, covered wooden die totes with two extra magnetic card bundles. Now, I have all of my dies together, organized by manufacturer and motif. During the course of this project, I realized how many dies I have that I have yet to use.
It reminded me of something I'd read on Susan Raihala's blog that she calls the "Use Your Stamps Challenge." (UYSC) To summarize, she suggests the INSANE idea that we use every image of every set we own (use of all sentiments is optional), and that when we finish using a set, we record such usage to acknowledge that set has been used (she writes a little note inside the stamp set storage that says "You did it!").
I have to say, this challenge both inspires and frightens me. When I consider all of the stamps I own that have yet to be used, I wonder if starting this challenge would inhibit me from ever purchasing anything new. Anticipating and getting that box of new crafty product in the mail is one of life's greatest pleasures, for a certain type of weirdo (if you're reading this, you're probably the same kind of weirdo. Don't take that as an insult -- own it! :) ). On the other hand, trying to live by this challenge would necessitate mindfulness regarding the acquisition of new products and determining which products deserve the valuable real estate they take up in our craft spaces. That can't be a bad thing.
Food for thought!
With the UYSC in mind, I created my card for this week's Mojo Monday sketch (#365) using a lovely stamp set from Taylored Expressions called Discover Your Wings:
I love the art-deco-esque butterfly graphic, which I stamped out in MFT Blu Rasperry ink, then stamped over in VersaMark, and then heat embossed with Powder Keg Crystal Embossing Glitter. After the image was dry, I die cut it with TE's coordinating Discover Your Wings - In Flight die.
Okay, okay, you're saying. I used a stamp and die set -- what does this have to do with getting all worked up and wordy about the UYSC? You'll have to come see me tomorrow for the answer to that question, my pretties! Trust me, all will be revealed.
In the meantime, though, ponder what I've given you, and head over to the Mojo Monday blog for information about how to play along in today's Mojo Monday challenge. Then, to inspire you further, visit these lovely ladies' blogs for their interpretations of today's Tall & Skinny sketch: