Monday, October 10, 2011

Swimming For Katie Blog Hop

***For my EAD post, please scroll down***

Hi friends! Today, I'm participating in a hop that is extremely close to my heart. I hope you will take the time to go through and read this post. I have my own story to post and it will be under this text I'm going to share with you written by Kate Baldwin of i{heart}papers.

TOMORROW, I will be posting a challenge in honor of Katie where you can win a big PRIZE! Please come back and check that out!

Here's the info about this hop from Kate:

From October 10-12 some of the best stampers are joining together to support and encourage our friend and fellow stamper, Katie Renz, who is currently battling inoperable gastric cancer. If you're not familiar with her, Katie’s cancer story started just before Christmas last year. This young, beautiful, healthy, vibrant mother of 3 with her infectious smile was suddenly diagnosed with an inoperable cancer, virtually overnight. A few tummy aches and then stage 4 gastric cancer. Her first post about it is here. The idea of “Swimming for Katie” came from her recent post here.

This exclusive stamp used in my sample, designed by Becky Oehlers is available as a clear stamp, as well as a digis or a dig and SVG cut file. 100% of the profits go to Katie's fund to help her and her young family. Her husband Kevin and her three young children need our help and support. In addition to the Keep Swimming Octopus, Marianne Walker and True =D Doodle Designs both also donated digis that are for sale. Direct donations are also being accepted (on the left sidebar). Information central is HERE. This is a permanent page that will stay active at i {heart} papers with current information and the full 3 day blog hop listing, as well as the donation button.

Here are all the items available for sale.

Keep Swimming Octopus
Peachy Clear stamp

$5.50 with free shipping

Keep Swimming Octopus DIGIstamp
$3.00 with instant download

Keep Swimming Octopus DIGIstamp with SVG cut file
$3.50 with instant download

Keep Swimming Mermaid DIGIstamp
$3.50 with instant download

Keep Swimming Ribbon Fish DIGIstamp and DIGIpapers
$5.00 with instant download

I hope you will join me in supporting Katie through a purchase or donation. The donation button is on the left side of my blog.

The following is a list of everyone who has projects posted today. I hope you will be inspired by them and moved to purchase or donate. If you would like to send Katie a card her mailing address is:

Katie Renz
PO Box 5913
Bellingham, WA 98227-5913

I met Katie Renz through Splitcoast Stampers as I'm sure many stampers meet their online friends. I followed her work because I loved the companies she designed for and we became Facebook friends. We got to meet up in Jan 2010. This is a picture of Katie and me at CHA-W 2010. This is the first and only time I'd met Katie in person and her sweetness is so apparent.

My heart broke in half when I learned about Katie's cancer. It hit close to home, she's a mother of 3 young boys. I have 2 boys myself. My heart aches for her and her children and her husband. I wish there was more I could do.

Katie and I have become a little closer over the last few months and I've seen how strong she is. She is an inspiration to me in so many ways. Every time I see a picture or video of her, she always has a smile to share with us. Even in all her pain, she is ALWAYS putting her children first. The epitome of an amazing mother. And she's still taking the time to create her beautiful cards for the special people in her life. She's grabbing life by the horn and taking motorcycle lessons. She inspires me at every turn.

Katie, I pray for you and your family with all my heart, everyday. Thank you for blessing me with your friendship! Let's make it a goal to see each other next Jan and we'll take this picture again. This time, I'll savor each minute more.

Here's the card I made for this hop. I bought the clear stamp and it works beautifully! I used Jen del Muro's Oct SFYTT for this card. I asked Katie how she wanted the octopus colored and she said "aqua with a blingy crown." I used Copics, Echo Park Paper, and Lemon Divine Twine.

If you'd like to make a donation, here's the button to do so.

Here are the people on today's hop:

AJ Otto
Carolyn Mustopa
Dawn Burnworth
Deb Felts
Gretchen Belknap
Heather Jensen
Jen del Muro
Julie Ranae
Kate - i {heart} papers
Kendra Wietstock
Lisa Johnson
Loretta Lock
Lori Tecler
Lynn Mercurio
Marianne Walker
Michele Gross
Stacy aka Twinshappy
Tracy Schultz
Debbie Olson
Cindy Lawrence
Cindy Haffner
Julie Koerber
Christine Okken
Tammy Hershberger
Danielle Kennedy
Barbara Anders
Makiko Jones
Ashley N Newell (You are HERE!)
Shannan Teubner
Taylor Usry
Jen Tapler
Jenn Balcer
Jenny Chesnick
Jess Larsen
Jessica Knutsen
Jimmi Mayo
Joan Bardee
Joan Ervin
Julia Aston

Julie Day

Julie Ebersole


  1. Great project and what a wonderful thing to do for your friend. :) My thoughts and prayers are with her and her family...

  2. Oh Ashley. What a sweet photo of the both of you. I LOVE the card you created for the hop. Love the bright striped paper in the back and the image in aqua.

  3. SUPER card and what a fab event!!!! LOVE the pic of the 2 of you:)

  4. Thanks for helping Ash. Adorable card. Love the bright colors.

  5. Love the vibrant background on your card, super sweet :)

  6. What a darling aqua octopus, Ashley, and I love her blingy wonderful to make it just the way Katie wants it!!!

  7. Wonderful colors and coloring. Thank you for sharing, and the hop for support.

  8. This is such a sweet and beautiful card! I love the way you colored the octopus and did the background!

  9. This is so vibrant and cheerful! I love it!

  10. What a lovely photo of you and Katie! And your card is just so bright and vibrant - it's super!

  11. Amazing Ashley. Your card is adorable, and I love the color your chose for your octopus! (My favorite). Your picture with Katie is just the sweetest of memories...I am so glad you have it. Thanks for helping to promote this great event. You're just as beautifully sweet as you are creative! HUGS!!!

  12. Lovely card Ashley! xo I'll keep Katie and her family in my thoughts.

    Jessica Griffin

  13. What a sweet story. It is great that she has a wonderful friend like you. That photo is worth a thousand words. :)
    I know she just loves what you created for her.

  14. What a cute card- I love the stripes. Can't help feeling for Katie, I think everyone does. We're all pulling for her.

  15. Love the colorful background on this pretty card Ashley!

  16. Awesome card Ashley. Love the color. Thank you for doing this for Katie!

  17. great card Ashley!! glad to see so many come out to support her!

  18. Awesome card, Ash! Great colors and layout! Thanks for being part of such a wonderful cause and outpouring of support for our Katie! Love the picture of you two beautiful ladies, too!

  19. Love this card and you are such a great friend to Katie!!! Thanks for helping Katie and her family!!

  20. Your post brought tears to my eyes. I met Katie (not in person) when we were selling CTMH at the same time and I purchased something from her. My heart breaks for her and her family, especially her children. Sorry your friend is going through this. I did buy the stamp and I wish there was MORE I could do, too. {{{Hugs}}}

  21. Love that aqua octopus, Ashley!

  22. SUPER pretty! LOVE the papers and I LOVE your twine! So glad that you shared this blog hop! And I LOVE the pic of you two---SUPER gorgeous and crafty ladies!!!

  23. LOVE the picture of you and Katie! Her story breaks my heart as well, even though I do not know her. Love your card--very cheerful.

  24. being there for friends who fight this battle gives them the stamina and armor needed to push through. You are a good friend and your card is super bright and cheery. thanks for sharing.

  25. This just breaks my heart. She sounds like a wonderful woman. Thank you for doing this for her and sharing. Your card is beautiful and I'm sure she'll love it.

  26. Love your card and story of Katie! She is amazing and I am hoping this hop helps her family!

  27. Darling card Ashley! Thanks for sharing the photo of you and Katie :)

  28. Oh that is SUCH a sweet card Ashley!! I love the color blocking bg!!! And what a precious to be treasured by both of you!!

  29. Great card! Love the striped paper for the background.