There's Mom, upper left here, looking gorgeous at Emily's October 2008 wedding ... and just four months later, Mom suffered a near-fatal brain stem stroke. Most people don't survive an occlusion in the basilar artery; Mom not only survived, but she's come all the way back to her vibrant, beautiful, able self. In September, she and Dad will celebrate 59 years together!
Mom taught me over the years to "bloom where you are planted." And she's instilled an eye for art and has placed value on creativity. So for "BIG-O" birthday, I wanted to give Mom a garden. Mr. Smiley and I flew to Florida for a five-day weekend with Mom and Dad, and bought Mom a large ceramic planter for her patio, crammed full with flowers. And here is the card I made for her:
The card is an "Explosion Box" that I've seen done on several of the inspirational blogs I've followed over the past few months. The base (royal blue, here) is cut from a 12"x12" piece of cardstock. I made a "party favor" box from brick-colored paper to serve as the flower box. I hot-glued it into the center of the base, then cut dozens of assorted flowers to glue into the box. The leftover paper from which I cut the flowers (I call them "gadribbles") were so pretty that I stacked them together to use to decorate the inside of the box. I found a nice card print/clip-art picture online that applied ("Bloom Where You Are Planted"), so I used it for the center rear of the box. Happy Birthday text was cut from Cricut's Calligraphy cartridge.
I kind of guessed at a box lid (didn't follow any templates), and decorated its edges by cutting it with one of my go-to Martha Stewart Around-the-Corner punches, this one in double loops. Folded up the edges, capped it with the lid, tied it with some ribbon and VOILA!
I hope you like it as much as I had fun remembering how Mom's helped me blossom throughout the years.