I know, I know . . . it sounds like a scam. But my son was a missionary in Tanzania for almost 3 years and this young artist, Juma Chomba, is someone he knew who is earning money on the side to likely pay for schooling. And I really loved the picture! It will arrive through a mutual friend who is traveling to the USA. Will it be slightly complicated? Yes. What if I never get it? Possibly that’ll happen, but not likely. I’ll post again once it’s arrived and framed but, in the meantime, reach out to Juma Chumba on Facebook Messenger if you’re interested in his other artwork. We used SendWave to complete the transaction securely.
What a tragic thing to have to highlight some of your best work. One of our son’s friends was killed in an ATV accident and I had to do something — so I did what I do best — created a logo in his honor and offered to do the funeral program. I was able to create the layout and donate the printing for the funeral program for the Bartlesville, Oklahoma service and provide a digital, print-ready funeral program for the service in St. George, Utah. This kid had THE BEST smile. I hope you’ll find these graphics inspiring.
The circle social media icon / logo above was made into stickers and used for social media profile pictures by Burk’s family and friends to honor him.
The program used in Bartlesville, Oklahoma was printed 4 over 1 (CMYK/Black) on house stock by a local printer (yes, again with Bartlesville Print Shop’s Shawn Roberts — simply the best!), and donated to the family in honor of Burk and his friendship with our son for his funeral. The version above was the print-ready copy for the St. George service that had a few different speakers and participants.
⏰ One of the things it took me far too long to learn 🎓 is that 🔥 “done” is better than perfect 🔥 . . . except for maybe brain surgery and rocket science. If I could go back and redo this pro bono 2020 religious invitation for a special day of prayer and fasting (needed now even more than during the pandemic!) I would absolutely request higher-ups change the verbiage to “It consists of abstaining from . . .” but likely they requested it and I was preoccupied with my full-time humanitarian role. Does the message get across? ✅ Does it still bother me it wasn’t perfect? ✅ Can I live with that? ✅
Two prayer and fasting invitation options below that I had designed for the Bartlesville Oklahoma Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) below.
Most of you know I’m working full time for a “higher cause” this year and haven’t been doing much designing at all but was asked to put together some possibilities for a stake logo for church. Oklahoma City had designed one for their stake — story has it from a reliable source that the stake executive secretary just did it one day and it was quickly adopted — and it’s a great logo. The Bartlesville Oklahoma Stake, however, doesn’t lend itself to easily using an acronym for a logo. Pitfalls include derogatory connotations of letters similar to BOS, etc. ad nauseum. At any rate, one hasn’t been chosen so maybe they’ll pursue other options but here’s the contenders and a flyer that was created for a stake conference around the same time. Skills are rusty – it’s amazing what a year off from designing can do for that to happen! It took me twice as long as it should have to come up with these passable designs…
These invitations use some lovely artwork of a young woman in armor originally created by Judy Cooley. She graciously gave us permission to use them for our stake events (auxiliary conference and women’s conference) this year. I love the ENLISTED adaptation of her work. You can find more of her work if you search for Judy Cooley Deseret Book and Altus Fine Art.
I designed this stake conference invitation for the first semiannual conference of the Bartlesville, Oklahoma Stake! So nice of the stake presidency to put out an official invitation like this. I hope it helps boost attendance and clarifies meeting times, attendance and info for all involved. I tried to make it match the ward mission plan and the stake mission plan that I had created earlier. I’d better watch out or the stake will have inadvertently created its own press kit and style guide soon! Kidding…
I used the floral artwork from lenlis at BigStock for the flowers and then added the “Put on the Armor of God” text and made a few changes to use for a themed presentation at auxiliary training. It was so cute, I left it up at home for a week after the event! I’m including pics of the wonderful cookies with labels and chocolate covered strawberries served. I don’t know if anybody else liked it but the strawberries alone were worth it for me!
The 2015 Ward Mission Plan was such a success, I got roped into creating a Stake Mission Plan. The text wasn’t as conducive to a great layout but I think it’s nice enough, anyway.
One of my most popular posts is a Jesus is the Living Water Bottle Labels here. I’m not sure I quite understand the craze of custom water bottle labels but they are kind of fun! Here’s an Armor of God water bottle label quoting parts of Ephesians 6:11-17. Just print, trim, wrap on the bottle and tape. Enjoy!
Ben’s baptism was a rushed one. We had a small crowd for our last baptism but it was beautiful. He is such a one-of-a-kind kid. He chose the 4th Article of Faith for his favorite “scripture” and so I quickly typed it up a little bit prettier than average for the program. I am offering it here as a FREE download for your personal and church use, should anyone be so inclined.
I have projects to design pretty much every day. Unless something family, church or kid-related has taken over. But usually one or two projects is hanging over my head just waiting to be done. Right now, I’m procrastinating a cute little custom drawing for a local festival that works with kids. I have time to get to that yet today (that’s what I’m telling myself, anyway!) but I wanted to share this 2015 Ward Mission Plan that I drew up for our local church congregation. It was so easy — mostly because they provided me with perfect text. I mean absolutely-perfectly-clean-never-happened-before-especially-in-church-wonderful text. Hallelujah! Seriously, people, knowing exactly what you want to say before you send it to a designer is a gift. One design rule to follow: the more concise the text, the better. If only I could follow that for a blog post, right?! I know, I know, but this blog is my therapy therefore I can ramble and nobody has to read it. It’s a win-win.
Anyway, 2015 is the year where I will catch up on some online posts of what I’ve designed but, realistically, it will probably NOT be something I did just that day but in weeks, months and years past.
I didn’t want to throw a “real” party. It’s Christmastime and who, really, has time for all that extra cooking, cleaning and prep? Not me. So I decided that I wanted to start a new tradition: caroling around the neighborhood and then serving hot cocoa afterward. It was so simple and so much fun! I’m not sure which was more fun: watching the kids have a blast or singing the carols (which I love!). I think watching the kids has the edge, though. They were so excited but tired easily.
Next year we’ll limit it to one chosen street instead of trying to go around the block. We were able to sing 10 to 12 times. I used the collection of sheet music that good ‘ol Martha Stewart put together. It was a nice mix of Christian and more secular Christmas music (e.g. Up on the Housetop and Jingle Bells in amidst The First Noel and Silent Night). I was smiling about it for days afterward and hope that those who went with us had as much fun as we did.
Afterward, I made Crockpot Hot Cocoa (this filled my 7 qt crock pot!):
- 2 c. heavy whipping cream (not whipped!)
- 2 – 14 oz cans of sweetened condensed milk
- 1 gallon of milk
- 2 tsp. vanilla powder (or regular vanilla, I used Thrive’s vanilla powder)
- 4 c. chocolate chips (I used Hershey’s dark chocolate chips)
- 1 c. powdered sugar
I also made White Hot Chocolate:
- 4 c. heavy whipping cream (not whipped!)
- 4 c. milk
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground cardamom (removed from pods)
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 2 T. vanilla powder (or regular vanilla, I used Thrive’s vanilla powder)
- 16 oz white chocolate (I used the melting wafers from Hobby Lobby)
The White Hot Chocolate was the bomb. Seriously. I did not know it would be so good or I would have doubled the recipe. Three or four people asked for the recipe!
Here’s the selection of marshmallows and additions including maraschino cherry skewers, spray cream cinnamon and chips of almost every kind:
Before everyone showed up (we had two more families come after this shot!).
The teenage girls who participated just INSISTED that “Let it Go!” was a Christmas song. Ahem. I disagree but they sang it with gusto (along with a few parents!).
The best part? Everyone seemed genuinely welcoming and happy to see us! It’s definitely a new tradition. Next year, I’ll make the boys bring their drums and bells from percussion.
It’s been a busy year and a particularly busy month — but not as busy as the month Cole graduated and getting him off on his mission to Manchester, England! That was insane! But one of the highlights of August 2014 has been the Tulsa, Oklahoma Stake Relief Society Women’s Conference where we, with our fearless leader, held a preparedness conference which I will post about later with downloadable graphics, etc. As part of this conference, though, we held a diaper drive for a Tulsa non-profit called Emergency Infant Services. We collected diapers and packaged them up in bags of 20 or so according to size and will be delivering them this week. Hooray for clean bums! It was an easy, effective, and necessary service project and one that everyone seemed to wholeheartedly support. I love getting out in the community with service projects outside of our own little homes, wards, and stakes. So fulfilling!
It’s been a long time since I blogged. Almost a year, in fact. I’ve missed it! In my time away, I’ve done many things and learned quite a bit. Let’s see how much of that I can get documented down the road but, for now, here’s some recent work I completed for Theater Bartlesville — even though I’m no longer serving on their board this year. Last year was so much fun, not to mention meeting some pretty amazing people, but I simply don’t have time to do it again. I won’t be doing most of their items but as a huge Josi Kilpack fan, this poster design I just couldn’t resist. Can’t wait to meet her at the fundraiser. And, for all you font nerds out there like me, the font is My Aunt Celia and you can buy it at MyFonts.