Sunday, May 28, 2017

Gifts from far and near

This is a scheduled post.  I am out of town putting flowers on my Grandparents graves and will be back soon.

Today I want to share some gifts I've received recently.  I feel remiss because I simply should have shown them sooner.

I was so mad when I found my postal carrier had marked through these beautiful stamps.  I couldn't understand it, because they had already been canceled.   She told me it was acceptable to mark through ANY stamp with a magic marker, whether canceled or not.  She told me to call the PO and they would tell me the same thing.  The PO wants to make sure they aren't reused.  She did the same thing when I received a birthday gift from Chris in England.  I practically got down on my hands and knees and BEGGED her to not do that again, because some countries charge extra for real stamps, but not metered mail.  And since my friends sent stamps that I could use in art, these were now worthless.  I'll try to get off my soap box, now. 

This package came all the way from Germany, and it was resent after the first one was lost.  It came from Gaby at Colorful Adventures, but more on that soon.

Here are the gifts I have received recently.

I took 12 photos of this gorgeous post card that Cindy at Pink Bird Studio sent me, and it never got into focus.  Not sure why, since everything else came out crystal clear.  I know you can't read the sentiment, but it reads "All too often."  She sent it to cheer me, since it's been such a hard month, and it did!  I simply adore the beautiful abstract she created.  Check out the image above this one to see it clearly.

I actually received this last.  It is from Pamela at Cappuccino and Art Journal.  I think I'm going to start a campaign to eliminate metered mail!  We artists like postage stamps.  However, I DID like the kitty stamps she used.

I won this pen/pencil case when I left a comment on her blog.  She had two different styles she was giving away and, since I visit every time I see her blog is updated on my left sidebar, I must have been lucky.  Of course, Bleubeard and I chose the kitty.

Here are the front and back sides of the case, as well as the front of the envelope she mailed the note in.

She even sent me some awesome masking/washi tape.  Isn't it grand?  Bleubeard loves it.  He thinks Squiggles is on the right at the bottom, but I know Squiggles has a pink nose.

This is the package I received from Gaby at Colorful Adventures.  I was SO lucky to win this giveaway from Gaby's blog.   She announced I was the winner on Feb. 13 and sent all those goodies shown in the photo on her blog a couple of days later.

We both waited and waited and waited and . . . . well, you get the picture.  At the end of April, I finally concluded the package was lost.  I was sick and so was Gaby.  I know whoever has the package had a field day and must have thought they were receiving manna from heaven.

Although I told Gaby she didn't have to send anything, I was thrilled when she said she had mailed a second package to me.  I know she took as much time and care with the first package as she did the second one.

I wish I had photographed everything as I unwrapped it, but I was being so careful not to tear the beautiful paper and washi tape she wrapped everything in, it didn't occur to me to stop and photograph each package I opened.

All these beauties were in the incredibly beautiful Match Box.  The pen nibs and the locket were placed carefully and wrapped in tissue.  It was quite obvious I was unable to get everything back in after they were removed.

All these beauties, with the exception of the frozen Charlotte and handmade book, were in the bag to the left (the one with the tiny Monopoly house sitting on it).

Although the lighting is terrible and the glare is unbelievable in my craft room, I simply couldn't believe everything that was included in the one package alone.

And of course, I fell in LOVE with the frozen Charlotte.  I can't wait to use it in some way.

I fell in love with the little handmade book

that is filled with papers I can write on.

Later, as I was putting it on my dresser to display it, I was shocked to see I had been photographing the back before.  Some days my blond is showing!

I have never had real foamy foam.  I've made my own using a cut up garden knee pad, but the purple stuff is absolutely incredible.   I can't wait to try it.  If you aren't familiar with it, you heat the foam, then press various pieces into it.  Once cool, you remove the pieces and the indentations are left.  You then use your dye ink to create a made to order stamp.  Don't like what you got?  Simply wash the product in soapy water and heat.    All traces of the original stamp image is gone.  I look forward to using both of these.

Also shown are what appears to be tiny monocles on the left.  The packages on the right

contain various and sundry items I can use in mixed media or assemblages.  Another thing I simply adore is Gaby separated everything.  That was SO thoughtful.   I especially look forward to using some of the metal pieces.

Each package was carefully wrapped and held together with bits of clear tape and washi tapes.

Since I'm the Queen of Free, I saved every piece, including the mostly postage inspired washi tape.  I know I'll be using it in my 7 Continents altered book.

I am so grateful to Gaby for sending this second package.  Thank you beyond words.  And thanks for my gifts from Cindy and Pamela, too.  And thanks to all my readers for sticking with me through this very lengthy post.  I will be around to visit once I'm home.

19 thoughtful remarks:

Valerie-Jael said...

Glad you got such lovely presents and post, all filled with so many good things. I have had a parcel from Gaby, so know just how delightful her wonderful packages are. I have had wonderful stamps sent from the USA, also cancelled with a black marker, and was really angry, so understand how you feel. Have a wonderful day, and enjoy all your goodies! Hugs, Valerie

chrissie said...

Lots of terrific goodies in your Happy Mail Elizabeth. Such a shame that the stamps were spoilt.

Have a good day-with happy memories

Love Chrissie xx

Gibby Frogett said...

Sorry to hear about the lost mail Elizabeth and that was so kind of Gaby to send again - and what lovely delights too!
Yes - that's so annoying when beautiful postage stamps are marked in that way - but seems to happens everywhere I think.
Gill x

Helen said...

gorgeous gifts, what treats - look forward to seeing your results.

Gaby Bee said...

Dear Elizabeth, I am so glade that the second package has arrived safely and that you are happy with all the goodies. Happy creating!

Have a wonderful day!


CJ Kennedy said...

Such wonderful trinkets. I liked all the kitty things and the nibs. Can't wait to see what creations you make will all the treasures.

My name is Erika. said...

Wow- you had some FUN mail Elizabeth. But here's what I don't get. How could you use a foreign stamp in the US anyhow? It wouldn't work. I think that postmaster just doesn't like foreign countries. Glad to see all the fun mail you got and I hope you have a lot of fun with it!!!! Hugs-Erika

Sami said...

Love the kitty pencil case, how pretty!
That's sad that the Post office crosses out the stamps, it also makes the stamps ugly or stamp collectors like me.
Never noticed that being done here.

Nancy said...

What wonderful, wonderful treasures! Lots of creativity just waiting to happen. Oh, that lost package... it hurts to think of all those treasures languishing in some out of the way place. You're right- stamps are part of the goodies, too.

Cindy McMath said...

I'm glad my card arrived. Thanks for showing it. I think the flash is hitting the silver paint and causing the blurring. To get a better picture with a flash you could take a picture from a distance and crop it. Not that I think you need to for my card! I'm just saying that approach has worked for me with photographing stuff with a flash, especially when there are dimensional and /or metallic items involved. Your other envelopes sure contained some treasures. I love the cat-themed stuff. And all those mixed media goodies! I had a package take almost three months to arrive from the UK that I sent to a friend when I was living there. It had no clues on it, and no damage (and it hadn't been opened). We think it might have gone via Victoria Australia before they realized they were on the wrong continent! Oh and I'm really annoyed by your post office scratching through the stamps! I have seen that occasionally, mostly in stamp grab bags I've purchased at used book stores or stamp collecting shops, and wondered why. And as someone already mentioned I'm really scratching my head on the foreign stamps - it's not like you can reuse them to mail stuff from the US! I hope your visit gives you a day of pleasant memories.

froebelsternchen Susi said...

Amazing presents dear ELizabeth! I am happy with you! Sorry that the stamps were spoilt!

kathyinozarks said...

Such wonderful gifts Elizabeth-loving the little handmade book the most-hugs to you and enjoy all these goodies

Sandy said...

You certainly received a lot of goodies! Can't wait to see what you do with this wonderful stuff!!
Sandy xx

Rita said...

Wonderful prizes and so sweet of her to send another package when the first one was lost! Tons of goodies to play with. Enjoy! :)

sheila 77 said...

What great gifts, Elizabeth. I wonder what Bleubeard is going to do with the super washi tape. Will he let Squiggles have some to play with?

pearshapedcrafting said...

What wonderful gifts Elizabeth! How annoying that the stamps were ruined! Hugs, Chrisx

Dianne said...

wow, what a generous package! really beautiful things, and that frozen Charlotte is beautiful...yes, several of my stamps from the swap were ruined by markers...what a shame. :(

Jeanie said...

Wonderful things! I can't wait to see the art you make with so many treasures! And I know what you mean about the stamps. I hate it when they mark through, though they don't do that often here. But it is terribly annoying!

Divers and Sundry said...

Making sure stamps aren't re-used is why the PO _cancels_ them, for pity's sake. This black mark across a canceled stamp makes no sense at all.

So many treasures! I can't decide which would be my favorite.... I look forward to seeing what you do with them.