Monday, July 31, 2023


Yeah, well, thankful to get home today to the DH.  I would say I have so much to tell him, but I know he will have to be hearing about it for the next year so I will try not to talk his ear off for the first week,lol!  Missed him so.

 Hello!  I am adding this mid-day post to my blog, the shop has reopened and is having items added through the next couple days.....

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Guest Designer Gayle

 Here's a fun card from Guest Designer Gayle T. I love this heart felt card for your DH or other companion.  It comes from a kit by photoplay.  We did this fun kit together back in October.  I'd love to see your card creations and share them on my blog! email them to me

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Thanks Merve

Had a wonderful time in Istanbul.  Huge thanks to Merve for making my trip all the better and helping me so much more than any hostess is required too.  She's been my friend way more than any AirBNB hostess that's for sure.  HUGE Thanks.

 I am taking off for America now, i can't believe it.  But, I have been here two months and the time has come. I am very excited to see the DH.  That's for sure.

Friday, July 28, 2023

Last Day

 WOW, it's my last day.  WOW.  I will probably drop by and chat up some of the dealers that I know I would like to keep touch with before I come back next year.  Drop by my favorite restaurant and say goodbye to everyone.  Pack up and try to get some decent rest, but for some reason that never happens, I always end up going to the airport in the middle of the night Saturday morning dead tired and knowing I will be exhausted all the way to Austin.  SIGH.  Well, let's enjoy today!

Here's an awesome coffee bean shaker card using a stamp from Unity stamps and some wonderful Turkish lace on it!

Thursday, July 27, 2023

Llama think about it

 what to do today?  Llama think about it. Ha! just two days and I am off to the plane.  I guess I need to pack, and go to Sultanahmet.  I usually don't hang out there much but I will go see it right before I leave.  I don't know if I can bring myself to stand in hour long lines to go inside the Hagia Sofia, but being near it is awesome.  Hard being around them as the salesmen (meaning carpet salesmen are tiresome).

Wednesday, July 26, 2023


I have done a lot of talking about cats this summer but not much about dogs.  Dogs are basically the smae in Istanbul.  There's a huge population of stray dogs in the public eye that are taken care of by well, everyone.
The dogs are tagged by the city, tested and vaccinated.  You see the tag so you know they were checked by the city. I must say I have never seen a stray dog that was not tagged. I am sure there's some but none I have come in contact with.

Here's my personal story about a stray dog. So it was covid, Istanbul was QUIET.  Weird for a big city. Tourist areas were empty. I was sitting in the area between the Hagia Sofia and the Blue Mosque in awe of the view. Some man walks up and sits RIGHT NEXT to me.  This is weird and uncomfortable. (and generally not done culturally, esp in such an empty place, now if it was jam packed, i could understand anyone grabbing the open seat).  After a couple sentences a big huge dog plops down right in between us.  Thank YOU!! I pet the dog and got up to get the heck away. so weird.  Even dogs know when you need them.

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Last week

I still can't believe that this is my last week. I don't know what to do and see on my last week than to visit my friends and enjoy my favorite places.  Usually as the end comes i have already mailed out the last box of lace so I can't purchase any more AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

But, But, There's so much more I see that I need to take home with me, lol!


Monday, July 24, 2023

I am Thankful

 It's pretty much my last week, well, five days in Turkiye. I am happy but maybe a tiny bit ready to go home.  OK that's really not true.  I am DOUBLE ready to see my DH but not 100% ready to go home yet.  But alas I have to appear at work like next friday.  Eeeeek!!

the lace store will reopen not long after I get back, hopefully around the 3rd or 4th, definitely by the 5th!

Sunday, July 23, 2023

Guest Designer Taty

 Here's another wonderful card I received from Taty.  She made this adorable Llama card.  How adorable is this?  This was one of the prizes that she received back in February.  Thanks so much for sharing this card with me! I love it.

Saturday, July 22, 2023

Coffee Joy

Here's a cute image from Cat's Pajamas stamps along with a funny sentiment from Rubbernecker.  I added some great Turkish lace to go with it and used an embossed card background.  How quick and cute is that?


Friday, July 21, 2023


 Here's another Istanbul Kedi (kitty) card.  You will really see cats everywhere in this city. I mean it could be an expensive store, a really expensive store and there will be a cat inside sitting perched up on the display.  You can see cat "boxes" (homes) made and laid out all over the city.  You will see people everywhere caring for the cats by leaving out food.  There's an estimate of well over 150k cats loose in the city. Most are quite friendly.

Why Are There So Many Cats In Istanbul? – Turkey Nomad

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Two hearts in love

Here's a cute heart theme card from PhotoPlay.  Two hearts together in love.  DH & Holley.  How sweet is that.  I hope he's watching.  I'll have to send him a text so he see's this today.  Love you babe. Have a great day.


Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Happy Birthday Cemil

 Wishing my Dear friend's son, a very happy birthday today.  He is also in Turkiye, in Istanbul where i am.  I can remember back in Lubbock when you were born Cemil, wishing you a very happy birthday today.  Huge hugs I hope you have a very special day today.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Days to Remember

 What a cute squirrel from Jollees. I paired him with some great Turkish lace and a perfect sentiment, "These are the days to REMEMBER"  I think you need to add a little extra, "and be grateful" to the end of that.  What an amazing trip this has been and oh how grateful I feel for having this experience.  How wonderful.

Monday, July 17, 2023

You are my happy

Here's a card for the DH today.   You are my happy dear.  You always make me smile and feel good.  Well. Turkiye is a close second :)  thank you so much for buying me a ticket so I could come here and enjoy it. I really appreciate that.  You are the best!

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Guest Designer Karin

 Here's a stunning card created by Karin of KarinsArtScrap.  She has an amazing blog and does wonderful cards everyday.  Here she is using a lovely tree die from a Sizzix set that I sent her for my February celebration.  Thanks for sharing, Karin.

Saturday, July 15, 2023

Only you Dear

Here's a little MISSING YOU card for my DH.  Missing you lots dear, just a couple more weeks and I will be home.  Love you lots.  Kisses


Friday, July 14, 2023

End of week 7

 Wow, coming to the end of week 7 now.  At this point my DH is getting ready for me to come home.  Dare I say he misses me a little by now?  I miss him, but I don't know if I am ready to leave Turkiye yet. I wanted to share this lovely card using Turkish paper today

It says, I {heart} Pretty stuff  

How perfect is that. I am using great handmade paper that I got in Turkiye.

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Cute cats

Here's a cute cat card to continue along with the fun info about the cats of Istanbul.  I added some light blue Turkish lace to this card as well.  This is one of the cat themed circular emebllishments that I got from the last scrapbook convention.

 In Istanbul, Cats Are Sacred - Here Are Photos of the City's Cutest Stray Cats (

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Summer card


Here's a great Summer theme card, "nothin' but GOOD VIBES"  isn't that how you should be feeling on vacation.  I am generally feeling that was all the time.  I don't usually get stressed at the typical things that I see most people get upset about.  overcrowded trains, lack of ice and air conditioning, long restaurant lines, lack of bathrooms,.i just work around all these things.  A lot of people, say my DH might be annoyed and hate this place.  Ok, maybe hate is a strong word, but also wouldn't visit here.

for me, I just wait for the next train, what am I in a hurry for? I goto a different restaurant, I know where the bathrooms I like are and I walk a long way to go to them.  I know it's hot, that's life. It's certainly not as hot as Texas, but then again in Texas you have AC everywhere.

that being said, people ask me all the time if I would live there, I have to say probably not because these things that are easy to avoid or ignore in summer when you are time free are not so easy if that's your place of work and business.

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Happy Birthday Kathy

 Wishing my dear Mother in Law Kathy a very happy birthday this year.  I hope you have a wonderful day filled with your wishes!

The winners of the Unity stamp GIU week prizes are Gaye Valle and Taty

Congrats!! Contact me for instructions on claiming your prize.

Monday, July 10, 2023

Guest Designer Jan

 I didn't get a chance to share a guest designer card this past weekend because I was the GIU Girl for Unity Stamps.  so today I am featuring a guest designer, Jan from Texas.  She and I got together in Irving for a scrapbook convention and made cards together.  Here's one of her creations:

Aren't these birds just lovely?  this wonderful card comes from a kit by PhotoPlay.  Hugs Jan. Miss you.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Travel at heart

I thought I needed to end my GUI week on this wonderful stamp since I am a lady of travel.  I didn't mention before, but a lot of people ask me, why I travel by myself to Türkiye.  My DH has to work so he can't come with me.  It's a great country with wonderful people and I don't have any issues (though occasionally with language.  I really try to learn Turkish but beyond minimal words, it's so hard for me.)  

Thanks so much for following me during my GIU week!  It will take a couple days for me to pick a winner and get that winner approved.  The name of the winner will get announced on the FB group Growing in Unity-CardMaking-Rubberstamping CLICK HERE.

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Big Sunflower

Here's a great sunflower image from Unity Stamps today.  It's so beautiful and makes me think of summer.  Did you all know that Turkiye is a huge sunflower seed producer?  They are 6th in world with over 2 million tons!  (The USA is 11th at 0.8 tons!)  When I went to northern Turkiye and saw the amazing fields just FULL of sunflowers it was so beautiful.

 Be sure and leave a comment to be eligible for the Unity stamps prize this week!

Friday, July 7, 2023

A Day to Remember

Here's a great couple stamp with a lovely sentiment that I added saying "A Day to Remember."  This wonderful Unity stamp.  I just love this sweet couple.  I colored her up with long brown hair and him with blond hair like my DH.  I used some lovely brown Turkish lace on the bottom.  While here in Turkiye, I often post cards during days for my husband so he can check my blog and often there will be a card posted that i just for him (like this one)!

Don't forget to leave a comment today as a winner will get chosen and get a prize from Unity Stamps!!

Cheers, Holley

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Hello Sunshine

 Happy GIU day number four!  I am sharing this card with some gorgeous Turkish Lace and a wonderful Unity Stamp set called Hello Sunshine Girl.  You can find this great stamp set HERE.  I colored her up today with Copic Markers and added the simple Hello Sunshine Sentiment.

Be sure and leave a comment on my blog today for a chance to win a prize from Unity Stamps!

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

My Favorite

For my GIU card today, here's a fun stamp and sentiment combo from the March Kit of the Month, Never Lose Hope. You can find it HERE.  It had so many cute stamps that I just loved. I am coloring with Copic Markers.

Be sure and leave a comment today as a winner will be selected to win a prize from Unity stamps at the end of the week!

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Begin Anew

For my GIU day two I had to create a lovely monotone theme summery card in all oranges. I just love oranges.  I am using a wonderful stamp from Unity Stamps called "Begin Anew."  Click HERE to find it in the Unity Store.  I am also using some beautiful Turkish lace on this card.  As I mentioned yesterday, I am actually in Turkiye now enjoying a lovely summer.

 Don't forget to leave a comment on my blog this week as the winner will get a prize from Unity Stamps!

Monday, July 3, 2023

GIU Week begins, Day 1

 Hello all! I hope you are doing great I am so excited to be the Growing in Unity Girl this week. I am currently in the wonderful country of Turkiye (where I have been spending every summer for many years).  I buy tons of wonderful lace here and sell it on Etsy during the regular year.

I have some amazing Unity projects to sharing with you and I hope you will love them.  Please forgive me if my time is off, Turkiye is 8 hours different than America.

For Day one I have to share this beautiful girl stamp, the sentiment on the card says, "All I want is to be together with you."  Another thing I do in summertime is leave a lot of cards on my blog for my DH to see.  That way he gets a little message from me.

This stamp comes from a set called "Your Future Needs You."  You can find it HERE.  It's just so very expressive without even seeing her face.  What a great stamp!

Be sure to leave a comment on my blog everday this week for a chance to win a prize from Unity Stamps!

Did you see my GIU introduction? It was posted on the FB page but I thought I would share it here for my followers who missed it


Hi!  My name is Holley.  I am a big crafting fan who came across card making 24 years ago when I went into a little scrapbook store in Austin, TX.  Man, was I hooked after that!  Who knew one tiny brass stencil set would bloom into a such a fun hobby?  I started my blog for stamping 14 years ago and I post a new creation everyday.  Wow is it fun to look back and see how I have changed and what I have learned. 

I currently have the pleasure of working at my local Elementary School as a Special Needs Paraprofessional for the Deaf-and-Hard of Hearing Department.  I work with 2 year olds for half a day.  It's my pleasure.  I'm a former Electrical Engineer who worked for huge companies like Dell, NASA, US Military.

I am a HUGE Unity stamp fan, I adore all their amazing artists.  Their quality is top notch and they have the best variety.  I can't wait for you to see my creations this week.

Cheers, Holley

 p.s. This photo was both taken then made for me by a dear friend in Istanbul, Turkiye who calls me the lace queen because I travel there for 2 months a year to buy amazing lace for my store on Etsy.  In the picture I am looking down into my Turkish coffee cup to read my fortune.

Sunday, July 2, 2023

Guest Designer Sue

 Here's a delightful card that I got from Sue in Austin Texas.  She mailed me this lovely thank you card for her prizes from the February Celebration.  She's using some of her die cuts on this gorgeous card.  Thanks so much Sue!

Saturday, July 1, 2023

Hey There

 Happy Saturday everyone. Sharing this cute card today for the DH. I hope he's having a good weekend to start off the month of July. I can't believe July is already here. WOW. I am about to the the UNITY guest designer and will be giving away a prize starting tomorrow, so be sure to tune in next week and leave comments as someone will get a Unity stamp prize next week.  Cheers. Holley