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Saturday, August 4, 2012

Awning Card for a Special Little Girl

Happy Saturday, my crafty friends! I hope you're having a gorgeous weekend. In lieu of the Sweet Saturday recipe I had lined up to post, I'm sharing a card that is far sweeter. (And a wee bit difficult for me to write about.)

See these lovely people?
This is Olivia (now 9 years old) and her mom Erika... they mean the world to me. Erika and I met on the first day of kindergarten. The first day of a lifelong friendship. We gravitated to each other and I'm pretty sure the HUGE 5th graders felt our fear as we huddled in the kindergartner hallway. As it turned out, we lived in the same small neighborhood. The memories we shared from that day forward are permanently etched upon my heart. It is a blessing to grow up with someone and never lose track of each other.

Over the years we shared everything from school desks to dreams, from first crushes to forever loves. Sometimes when we were little my mom would have to send us to my room when we'd get in trouble with my older brother, scheming around the house... but it was fun punishment because his room was next to mine, so we sent notes back and forth through the register vent thingy. Ha! Kids can always find a way. ;)

I'll never forget the day Erika shared the news of her cancer diagnosis. I didn't know how to handle it. She was not expected to live long, but she is a fighter. Against all odds, she battled that wretched disease for years to make memories for Olivia and in the process showed us all what inspiration truly is.

Erika passed away last year. I was devastated, angry, and sadder than I'd ever been in my life. Sweet little Olivia has had a hard time, but she is a fighter like her mom. Shortly after our dear Erika passed away, Olivia founded Kids Involved in Cancer Research. At merely 8 years old, she was determined to do all she could to fight the disease that took her mother at such a young age. She is strong, loving, and inspiring... just like Erika.

Many of you know Madison of Funky Cards, the creator of the I Feel the Love Project of which I faithfully participate. Each month she highlights a particular person, family, or organization in need of some extra love and sunshine. This month she is honoring someone in my life... and words still fail me at that incredible blessing. Olivia is the new recipient for August and it fills my heart with indescribable joy that cards will be created just for her. Knowing that people are thinking of her will be such an encouragement when she opens that box of crafty love (and long after).

I certainly will be using some Create a Critter cuteness on another card for her.. those critters are magical. But I had it on my heart to create a new-to-me card style first. I made her an awning card, as if she and I are strolling downtown, enjoying the summery sunshine, and stumble upon a sweet bakery for cupcakes and hot cocoa. (It's never too hot outside for any form of chocolate.)
The interior and a peek at the "shelf/counter" that sticks out below the goodies, as well as the love I tucked below the awning:
The creative process was extra special and I pray that Olivia feels healing love in every millimeter of it. My heart was even sappier than usual. Since the story behind this took quite a bit of space, I'll only give the bare minimum in terms of details here. The images in the 'bakery' are from Whimsical Designs sentiment stamp sets, which I colored with Copics. I made the cupcake stand with pretty pink rhinestones, used glittery SnowTex for the cocoa's marshmallows, and sparklified the cupcake hearts because my love for her and Erika will forever sparkle.

I used a Spellbinders Fancy Tags Three die for the Whimsical Designs sentiment and added some cute Blossom twine from My Craft Spot. The bottom is lined with Wild Orchid Crafts sweetheart blossoms, as though the flowers are along the walkway of the bakery. The final touch was the little butterfly resting atop the awning... clearly drawn to the beautiful heart and fighting spirit found in Olivia.

Challenges entered:
 * Crafty Catz~ Use Pink
 * Die Cuttin' Divas~ Anything Goes
 * Divas by Design~ Flowers
 * DL.ART~ Happy Birthday Linky Party and a chance to win Pretty Pennants. Happy Birthday, Diana! :o)
 * I Feel the Love~ Cards for Olivia
 * Make It Monday~ Anything Goes
 * Moving Along with the Times~ Summer (downtown walks in the sunshine!)

Thank you for fluttering on by! I hope your day is filled with love and blessings. :o)


  1. This is so adorable I am amazed this is all colored and so beautifully. I love the striped pink and green awning, that little girl is just going to love it. You did a fantastic job.
    Thanks for joining my linky Birthday party
    DIANA L.

  2. Hello sweet Karen. I am astounded and amazed at this gorgeous card. It's beautiful and love the awning. Sorry to read of your friend. Life is cruel and works in mysterious ways. I know as my dad who's nearly 100 had bowel cancer when he was 92 and two weeks to live. We decided on major surgery, three in under a week, now he is still we are not in charge of our destiny. Your friend is in Heaven having a cuppa with my mum...
    oh btw, get the rozette cart, it has lots of gorgeous things on annie

  3. Hi Karen.
    I feel so moved by your story of friendship, sadness but also of very deep love. It sounds like Olivia is such an inspiration and indeed very strong and loving too.
    Your card is gorgeous, I love the clever design and the colours are so beautiful.

    Thank you Karen for your very kind comments on my blog, it really does mean a lot to me. I love to visit your blog too.

    Take care
    Hugs Sue

  4. Especially like the style of the card with the awning opening. Would like to know more about how you made the awning?
    "Sunshine HoneyBee"

  5. Oh Karen, I am so sad to hear of the loss of your friend. You have so many beautiful memories of your wonderful friendship that God blessed you with for so many years..
    I am so sure that Olivia will feel the love you have poured into this beautiful card. I so wish I could make her a card, hoping to try, but not sure if I will be able too. She will feel so very loved and special by all the cards people will be making for her. Hugs

  6. What a touching and beautiful tribute for losing a dear person in your life. A lovely card for Olivia and may each day help ease the pain. Olivia sounds like a fantastic little girl.

  7. I am saddened but your card is as beautiful as she.

  8. This is really beautiful Karen! I love the awning design and the fab cocoa with marshmallows and those cupcakes look yummy! love the stand with the rhinestones… it's a fab card!
    Thanks for joining us at MAWTT for my 'Summer' theme and Good Luck in the Challenge!
    Hugs Sue xx

  9. I"m sorry to hear of your dearest friend... What a touching story.. Hope Olivia is adjusting she indeed looks like a smart little girl.... Your card is just perfect I can see the sweetness in your creativity when you made this..
    Beautifully made and I know she will treasure it just as much....
    Enjoy your weekend!

  10. My sweet friend, I am so, so sorry for your loss. I am writing this through tears and prayers for Olivia. What a strong, brave girl she is. This card is beyond words gorgeous. I'm sure it will mean so much to can tell the love and care you put into making it. Every detail is fabulous...from the awesome awning to the beautiful flowers. Big HUGS my dear friend and I hope you have a wonderful weekend :)

    A Mermaid's Crafts

  11. Karen, this is amazing! I have never heard of an awning card. Not only are all your cards beautiful, thoughtful, loving, and so meaningful, but I learn something new when I see them:) Oliva will be so happy to see this:) Thank you for sharing your story with us.

  12. I saw your beautiful creation on Make It Monday and had to visit and take a closer look. Gorgeous! TFS! My entries are: #84, #129, #157, #159 and #277.
    I would love to have you visit my blog!

  13. What a blessing to have had such a long, loving relationship, sorry for your loss. It's also a blessing for your friend's daughter as you can keep her memory alive with memories, photos etc. Hope she enjoys reading all those cards that will be coming her way.
    Your awning card is gorgeous and so much love put into it.
    Thanks for linking up with MIM this week.
    Remember, to be in the running to win the prize from our sponsor this week just leave a comment for another entry. Be sure to mention you saw them on Make It Monday. The more entries you comment on the more chances you have of winning!
    Sandy :)

  14. this is terrifc
    thank you for joining us at Crafty Catz challenge this week hugs sassyx

  15. Hi Karen, Oh this is such a special card for a very special girl. Thanks for sharing your very touching story and also Thanks for playing our Summer Challenge on MAWTT this fortnight, Love Hazelxo

  16. What a lovely card Karen, and for such a brave and inspiring little Girl. Thanks for sharingg your story xx
    I know the pain of losing a close friend very well.
    Thanks for joining MAWTT Summer challenge
    Hugs Mau xx

  17. Such a sweet card for Olivia! I love everything about this card. :)

    Hugs, Sheena
    Dew Drops & Glue Dots

  18. Karen I visited you when you posted this card and was so moved by your story I couldn't comment.Beautiful card my friend.
    Jayne x

  19. Hi Karen, such a beautiful card - I have never seen an awning card before, it's a very clever idea.

    Must have been a very difficult story to write, best wishes to Olivia and yourself as well.

    Thanks for joining in with us this week at Divas by Design.


  20. Karen, I love your blog and have been inspired so much by your work. I selected you for a Liebster Blog Award. Please check out my link at to select your badge and carry on the tradition!! Thanks so much Karen. You are a joy. Have a fantastic day!!

  21. Oh Karen, I am so sorry for your loss. Your story is so touching and just gives me goose bumps and hard to know what to say. I hope you know what an amazing person you are and how blessed we are to know you. You are amazing!
    Your card is breathtaking and so beautiful down to every detail.
    Big hugs to you Karen!

    Sherrie K

  22. "Yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands...lift up your eyes all around and see..." Isaiah 49:15

    My sweetest Sunshine...I can't even begin to express just how much this card means to all of us. To know all the love that inspired it and all the love that it will continue to inspire is just something SO incredibly special. I wish so much that I would have been able to meet Erika. Her heart sparkles in her eyes just as it does in yours, sis. Her sweet Olivia is SUCH a precious gift to this world and it makes my heart soar to know that she is the recipient of such an honour this month. God bless you Sunshine for making the healing journey of this little one that much more sparklie because of your continuous love and support. You are truly a hero to sweet Olivia, sis. And I know her mom sees you in the exact same way. She is with you always, Sunshine. And today she is smiling down on you and thanking you with all her heart for this most gorgeous huggle filled gift for her bravest little girl.

    *squishers you with my entire heart and beyond*

    God bless you always my sweetest sis!!!

    *forever sparklie heart cupcake squishies from your number one awning card fan forever* TEE HEE!
    ~~~ Christina :)

  23. How amazing is this card!!!! Loveeeeeeeeeeeeeee it

  24. Karen, I'm sorry to hear about your friend! I am so glad her daughter is the I Feel The Love recipient this month. This card will certainly brighten Olivia's day! I really like the sentiment and the little flowers on the bottom are so pretty! I love it! :)


  25. Hi Karen,
    What a tribute to your friend, Erika and her sweet daughter, Olivia. The story really touched my heart and only confirmed that we can learn so much from the behaviors of children. What a special little girl Olivia is. And it is through her that Erika still lives in so many hearts and minds.

    Thank you for the kind remarks you wrote about the card I made Oliva. It was such a joy to create this card for her. I wanted to make it very personal for her, so that is why I added her name to the card. I admire her for being so courageous and working to help others. It was an honor to make this card for Oliva. Thank you for sharing the story of your dear friend and her daughter.


  26. Thank you so much for joining us at the Crafty Catz Pink Challenge with this superb creation,

    I do hope you will come on over and join in the fun with us again next week,

    Have a lovely day
    Hugs Bridget :0) x

  27. Karen, you may want to head to and enter your card in the challenge. It is perfect for the challenge:)

  28. Hi Karen , you will be happy to know that Olivia's Card has been posted!

  29. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


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