Sunday, June 17, 2012

Inspired By . . . Thanking YOU!

I canNOT believe that we are on the final day of . . . 

I have had so much fun sharing my stories with you and have been
so very thankful for the heartfelt comments you've left along the way.
I know that giveaways always 'urge' comments, but most of you have
gone above and beyond sharing a simple answer to a question
that has been asked as part of those giveaways.

When the PRE-party began on Facebook last week, I was hoping for
1000 followers by celebration time.  Now I am ever so close to
1100 and am GOBSMACKED ! ! !

 Let's start off tonight's post with a few giveaways ! ! !

A little over a year ago, I met a fabulous designer online
who was starting her own company of dies & matching stamps.
She contacted me to ask if I would have time in my schedule
to come be a part of her company as their first
design team coordinator.  I was so impressed by the
vision she and her business partner had, that I absolutely
said YES . . . and that was the day I came on board at

It was time for me to move on in my creative journey and
I miss the designers who still create for them.
They offer some of the most unique dies & stamps and
now offer another stamp line as part of their catalog.

Here are a few of my favorite projects designed with
my favorite dies from their line . . .

 Look at what Lil' Inker Designs have offered TWO lucky people . . .

oh . . . but that's not all . . .

 My wonderful friend Michelle Ogdahl started a company
just a couple years ago that really hit the ground running
and I couldn't be more happy for her

The same day I met my friend Angelica over at MSS, I also got
to spend time with Michelle.  We met at CHA the summer before
and used the phone & Facebook private messaging
for the majority of our conversations prior to that,
so it was great to see her again.  Here I am doing a little stamping
while chit-chatting away with her . . .

Avocado Arts offers a stamp-set-of-the-month club & is a very
popular brand in the marketplace today.

How would you like to win . . .

 I've met a lot of people by way of connecting over at Facebook.
One of those people is Martha Pineda.  She has a sweet blog
called 'Creating is Fun'.
It's so fun to get to know so many people and learn about
their creative journeys.
Martha has offered one lucky winner this terrific prize . . .

A HUGE thanks to all of these fabulous folks who have offered
giveaways during the celebration.
There are more . . . but I thought I would share a few 'personal'
fun facts with you.

My favorite color has always been Orange.
When I was a teenager, I asked for my room to be painted orange
and my parents made it happen.  I loved that room !

When I was a pre-teen, I ended up being the proud owner
and caretaker of TEN freshwater aquariums in a variety of
sizes.  The biggest was a 55 gallon.
One summer day, I took what money I had, which approximately
EIGHT DOLLARS and walked down to the local Ben Franklin store.
I came home with a standard fish bowl, orange (of course) gravel,
fish food and a Black Moor goldfish.  Those are the brown, fantails
with big bug-eyes . . . and I was hooked.

My favorite action (?) movie is 'Twister'
My husband the movie-buff laughs at me because I call it
an 'epic'.  I know it's no epic movie.  But I love it.

My favorite comedy is 'Raising Helen'
I watched this movie for the first time on the last return
flight we made from the UK and fell in love.

My favorite movie of all time remains 'The Blues Brothers'

I also love movies that involve travel, especially when people
pick up and move to a new country.
'Under the Tuscan Sun' can be found on my DVD player quite
often when I am creating.
I also love the PBS series 'A Year in Provence' based on the
series of book written by Peter Mayle.

Which brings me to my dream destination . . . 
If you've been reading my blog for any length of time,
this is NO secret.  I love reading about the region and dream
about a life in an old farmhouse in the countryside.
HERE is a post I did about it just a couple months after
I started my blog.

How about some more giveaways ? !

My friend Jennifer Ingle, DT Coordinator over at
Skipping Stones is a gem !
She has arranged a fabulous prize for one of you . . .

Have you seen the stamps from this fun company ? 
They design a variety of photopolymer stamps that
specialize in humor using 'puns'.
They also share a line stamps which support causes such
as Breast Cancer Awareness.
Make sure you check out their website.

I 'met' Elizabeth Pujalka when I used some of her illustrations
over at EAD Designs.  She is the owner & illustrator of
Softpencil Studios and is generously offering THREE of my readers

Another fabulous company, who just happens to carry the
clear stamps featuring TinyTwinies is Latina Crafter,
owned by Diana Maldonado.
She is celebrating her First Anniversary with a June release
so I hope you will check out their fabby line.
She sent me one of my favorite images and I can't wait to
play with it . . . am hoping for some time this week.
Here is what Diana is offering . . . 

As I type all of these giveaways onto my post, I am just
stunned at the show of support for this celebration.
I feel so blessed to know that not only do I have friends
who want to celebrate with me, but I recognize as well,
that there are companies out there who know that my
blog is capable of bringing new business their way.

As someone who has spent more than half of my life
in retail marketing, it's so gratifying to take what I've
done in my professional life outside of my home and
make it work for me here inside of my home.

When I was 8 years old, I started going door-to-door in
my neighborhood (back in 1968) to sell Christmas cards
that were personalized.  Of course, because it was before
'technology', they had to be ordered nearly two months in
advance.  I managed to sell a couple of boxes, but that was
just enough to fuel a fire that never left me.
I love EVERYthing about retail and always have.
OK . . . the hours aren't always the best.

My dream as I got older was to own my own store,
but what 'type' of store that would be would remain to be
seen until my early 30's when Paul & I opened up our first
rubber stamp store.  That was back in the days of ONLY
red rubber on wood-mounts.  After two years, we expanded
into a second store.  I am proud to say our store was the
largest in Illinois & outside of my family, was the love of
my life.  I gave it up several years later because family life
was getting ready to make a shift and I knew it was time.

I would encourage you to HAVE a dream and then do
what you can to ACHIEVE it.

Speaking of which . . . 

If you're not familiar with the name Tanner Bell,
you SO should be !  Tanner is a 13 year old
entrepreneur who started his own stamp company
and has been sharing his love of stamping with the world.
I've loved getting to know him . . . I love his story and his
passion. He reminds me so much of me when I was his age.
He specializes in making videos and sharing all kinds of
fun things from his world.
I am very excited to know a BIG secret that Tanner
will be sharing soon . . . until then . . .
Here is what Mr. Cricut Crazy himself is sharing with you . . .
I love this next company because I love the people
who own it.  Kelly Marie Alvarez & her husband Mike are
two of the sweetest people you'll ever meet.
They are the owners of Lawn Fawn Stamps.
I met them last summer at CHA and I can tell you that 
Kelly Marie's smile lights up a room!

They have graciously offered . . . is a relatively new online store
that features some of top lines in papercrafting !
They have an amazing design team who bring you 
wonderful inspiration using products from the website.
Here's what you can win from 

 Another terrific giveaway is being provided by
Her Royal Highness, Theresa Scrapbooking Queen
She offers a beautiful variety of stamping sentiments
and paper crafting accessories in the
She is generously offering . . .


 We are almost to the end.

Well, I don't know HOW 
that photo got in there ; )
My grandson Finn's first Christmas . . . he will be one in July already!

Speaking of Christmas though . . .

The next to the last giveaway I have for you is a 
very special company

 Owner Korin Sutherland asked if I would be a guest designer
for them last December and it was such a pleasure to get
to know this fabulous company and their team.

They have such beautifully designed images and I am so glad
they are here with us for the celebration.

Here is the beautiful set of stamps being shared by 
Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps . . .

 Retail Value $11

Well . . . I know you've been with me for quite some time
on this post, but I saved the most precious story for last.

If you've been with my blog for at least a year, then you
will be familiar with this story.  If you visit every now
and again, you may have missed the update I shared last month.

Most of you probably recognize this photo from my blog

This was taken a little over four years ago while holding
my then, newborn grandson Alex jr.

You may recognize this photo from out and about as well

You also may have noticed that in all the other personal
photos of myself, that the 'smile' was pretty much the same.

This is me today . . .

and here is a BIG reason why . . .

 Rather than share the ENTIRE story here, I will invite you
to read the post about this most amazing benefit HERE

I had 100's of people to thank . . . 100's . . . 
People who donated $5 up to $100
People who donated time to participate in a blog hop
Companies & Designers who donated $2500+ in prizes
and the person & company who helped me to regain my smile

I was blessed to be asked to be a guest designer for this brand new
stamp company & it's very first release. Within a couple of months,
owner Nicole Rixon asked me to be their Design Team Coordinator.
It wasn't long after that I found myself in a terrible state with missing
front teeth and what turned out to be the need of $14K to 
'create' a new smile.  As you'll read, this community came together
to help make it a possibility.
I was finally able to have the dental surgery just two months ago
having 17 teeth removed.  I have said publicly that having my 2 children
and the labor that went with them was 100 times less pain than this
experience.  I am still adapting of course, but I am truly, truly
thankful for my new smile.

I will NEVER be able to thank everyone properly and I will forever
be grateful.  Even now as I try typing the final words of this
celebration post, I am moved to tears for the outpouring of love.

I saved the last giveaway for this story because it's from my
dear friend Nicole over at Sweet Stamp Shop.

She offering one lucky winner . . .

This wonderful collection is a $57 value !

So how can you win one of the 
giveaways from this post?
Simply leave a comment.
Period.  End of story.

Before I go, I just wanted you to know
that the goal of this celebration was to
thank you. thank those who support me.
to make it all about what you have done
in my blogging life.
To inspire you to always . . .

Don't forget . . . you can still have an opportunity 
to win giveaways from
any of the other posts between Friday, June 14th and today.
Just read the posts and follow the instructions that pertain specifically to that day.
Deadline to leave comments to win on any of the posts is
11:59pm EDT, Monday, June 18

Because there are so many prizes up for grabs, please give me the better
part of the week to make the announcements of winners.
All will be chosen randomly and shared in a post here on my blog
and over on Facebook no later than Friday, the 22nd.
All giveaways will be coming directly from the sponsors
but I will be asking you to contact me to claim.
{Because all prizes are coming from the sponsors, there will be
14 days for you to claim your prize}

All that I can say is . . . 

Thank you.

A BIG thank you to:
Lil' Inker Designs
Sweet Stamp Shop
Avocado Arts
Skipping Stones Design
Latina Crafter
Mr. Cricut Crazy
Theresa Scrapbooking Queen
Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps
Action Wobbles
Softpencil Studios
Lawn Fawn Stamps
Martha Pineda/Creating is Fun


Lyndal said...

All we can say is Thank You too Julie :) :) :)

Arnoldo L. Romero, MLA said...

May you have many more years of creativity. Blessings!

jengd said...

"Oh the places you'll go!" -Dr. Seuss. Sorry but your post just made me think of that. :) Congrats on all of your accomplishments and making it over a pretty recent and significant hurdle- lovely smile!! :) Thanks for sharing all of this with us!

Veronica Z said...

Julie, I have to tell you I have loved reading your posts this week. They have all been so well thought out and written with such love and sincerity. Thank you for sharing all of this with us, and thank you for being you.

arlsmom aka Lynda said...

Thank you for sharing so much of your story through your blog...having had extensive dental work myself I know the tole it takes on you personally and financially... so happy to see your beautiful smile! Thank you for the wonderful giveaways...thank you for your heartfelt post of thanks...made me smile and be thankful for what I have.

arlsmom aka Lynda said...

Thank you for sharing so much of your story through your blog...having had extensive dental work myself I know the tole it takes on you personally and financially... so happy to see your beautiful smile! Thank you for the wonderful giveaways...thank you for your heartfelt post of thanks...made me smile and be thankful for what I have.

Cyndi said...

WOW...that is some list of amazing! COngrats on your anniversary!!!

Anonymous said...

Your new smile is beautiful!!

Congrats on your anniversary!!

I am pretty new to your blog. Follow you on Facebook!! You are a beautiful person!

May you have many more successful years of blogging and sharing your journey!

Sheri (a.k.a PaperCrafty) said...

What a fabulous recap to such a FUN celebration!! I'm so happy for're new smile is beautiful!!

Linda R. said...

Your blog and stories are amazing! I wish you many more years of blogging and creating. Thanks for sharing so much of yourself with us.

Jennifer said...

What a beautiful smile and person! I am a new follower and I am a forever follower now. Your cards are so inspiring and beautifuland your stories are amazing.

Thank you for sharing your life, family and friends as well as all these awesome giveaways. It really says something about the type of person you are to have so many people help you celebrate and I really think you're pretty amazing!

Kara Lynne said...

You really put your heart and soul into all that you do, and the way you encourage others is amazing. Thank you for sharing your stories and obviously touching the lives of so many!

callyannc said...

I cannot believe how wonderful everyone is donating! Super cool. My fav color is Orange too! I love your grandson and all the wonderful projects again. I remembering reading about the operation smile for you and soooo wish i could of donated, but as it is still struggling. I am so glad you are doing well. ! CallyAnn

Percilla G said...

Julie reading this last post ahhh it touched my heart.
Thanks for an opportunity to participate and possible win.
On to another fabulous year.

Piali said...

Happy 3rd Anniversary!!
Looooooove your new smile...its beautiful !!!!
Really enjoyed reading this post...
love your creations!

Ruza's Craft Corner said...

Such a lovely post!

After working full-time for many years I was laid off almost 3-yrs ago. I went to CHA in Rosemont and knew I found something to inspire me to move in a new direction as a stay-at-home mom for a special needs child. I enjoy receiving and reading your posts in my email.

I'm happy that I was able to help, in a small way, to get your smile back!

Your really look amazing! ;o)

Emily H said...

Wow Julie! You are so precious! Thank you so much for taking the time to write this post! It was worth every word. I havent "known" you very long but I did notice the big change in your profile picture. You are so much more beautiful with a smile. I cant imagine not being able to smile. It seems like your true self can finally come out again. I am so happy to hear that you were able to have the surgery done with the help of lots of friends. Thank you also for sharing about all these awesome companies! Some of them are new to me and I definitely want to check them out!

Emily H said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christine said...

Wow, you have had some amazing journeys in the paper crafting community and have accomplished so much. It also seems that you are a very giving person of your time and creativity!! So many people have reached out to you and you've said yes over and over again. I am glad that you were able to get help when you needed it. Being new to your blog, I didn't hear your story about your smile but it is a testament to the giving hearts that paper crafters possess. This has been a wonderful and inspiring event Julie. Thanks so much for inviting me!
xoxo, Christine
Now get some rest! You must be exhausted! :)

HeatherLynn said...

Wow wow wow! There are so many generous people in the crafty world! Thank you to all of the sponsors and thank you to you, Julie! Love your stories! :)

Becky G said...

Thank you, Julie for sharing your love of crafting with us! You are a true inspiration! Congrats on surpassing your goal for your Blogaversary! Here's to many more celebrations!!!

=) Becky G

Angi Rankin said...

What a fantastic celebration with so many companies celebrating with you. I love it!! I've loved reading all of your personal stories as much as looking at all the beautiful projects you've shown us. I wish you all the best.

Tonya said...

Julie, I have only been with you for a short time, but I have learned so much about you in that short time and it is wonderful. Your stories really touched me. My husband had a similar problem with his teeth due to a childhood accident. My heart ached for you while reading your story. I am so happy you have your smile back!

Oh goodness if you love orange you would loved to have gone my daughter's high school (she just graduated on June 8). Her school colors are orange and black. The girls gowns were orange.

Thanks again for being so open and sharing so many wonderful stories with us. You are so loved in the crafting community. It is apparent through all of the wonderful and generous sponsors.

Tammy V said...

Julie, it's just wonderful to see you smile! I'm so happy that OJS was able to give you it back! ;) Take Care & I can't wait to see what you have in store for us next with your endless creativity!

Sandy said...

Dear Julie - your smile is as beautiful as you are sweetheart! Thank you for the inspiration you have shared, the stores you have showed us and the lovely stories. You are a joy to know (even if it is only on the computer).

Amy said...

Congrats on getting your smile back!

Ceal said...

Julie thanks for sharing your stories and I loved getting to know you through this celebration, Your work s amazing! hanks for a chance to win some fabby prizes and God bless!

Alina said...

Wonderful blogoversary! Thanks for sharing this wonderful stories and for making possible so many giveaways! Have a wonderful week! Hugs! Alina

Amy said...

Julie, first of all.....I have to say that you sharing all of your history here had to take a lot of courage as did your teeth story. I was a part of that journey and I am finally excited to see you smile! Here's to many more! Second, I have to say that Twister is still one of my favorite movies and you reminded me that I need to see it again!

Karen L said...

I have been following your blog for some time now and I remember the blog hop and fund raising to help you regain your smile. Loved hearing all about you (especially the part about Twister being your favorite movie...Mine too!!!). Thanks for all your amazing inspiration (both creatively and as a warm and giving person) and thanks for these awesome giveaways!

Sassy said...

I loved your stories and being able to learn so much about you in such a short period of time. Orange was my favorite color back in 1969 - so much so I had bright orange hip-huggers!

I wish you many more years of happiness and joy, smiles and laughter, love and memories.

Keep shining girl!

Jay Gee said...

Wow, how generous and caring is this crafting community of ours. I have really enjoyed reading about your story Julie, thanks so much for sharing :)

Madeleen said...

I've been following your blog for some time now, and remember the fund raising for your new smile! Although I don't always comment, I always peek at your posts as they pop up onto my news feed. Thank you for the inspiration you provide to so many paper crafters like myself! You are an amazing lady!

Sandra said...

Wowzer - great post and great prizes! Thank you.

julie e said...

Thank you for sharing so generously.

Miriam Prantner said...

I hope you can feel the love, because it's obviously here all around! Great sponsors who are cheering you on, and lot of followers who love you too....I'm guessing these are posts/comments you'll look back on later. Thanks for the chance to win, but more thanks for all the inspiration and the impact YOU have on the community!

jessica said...

WOW Julie!! What a way to end an awesome blogaversary!!!!! I have enjoyed going back and reading your past posts and learning more about the amazing designer "behind the scenes". You have been an inspiration clearly to so many including myself!! Thanks for sharing so much of "you" and thanks to all the amazing companies that have sponsored your celebration!

Lisa's Creative Niche said...

Wow... this is a wonderfully written blog post... it had me smile, come to tears ( don't worry happy tears ), and it has definitely inspired me. Thank you for all of your hard work, inspiration, and dedication to our wonderful crafting community... people like you are the ones who keep others going when they feel down about their craft or are just going through a rough patch... I'm truly honored to follow your blog, thank you so much!!!!

Denise Bryant said...

Wow.. It's been a fabulous week of seeing your stories! You certainly have had a lot of interesting experiences. So fun all your giveaways and stories! Thanks for sharing them with us!

beadz said...

I've really enjoyed celebrating this milestone with you! So fun to get to know more about you.

rlovew said...

So many beautiful and inspiring stories and a post filled with the loving support the crafting community gives one another. What a blessing to read and hear about. May the coming year be filled with even more blessings and new friendships.

Lizscraps said...

thanks for a fun filled week of posts and tidbits -- I enjoyed it all!

SmilynStef said...

Glad you exceeded your goal ... and glad you got your smile back.

Lisa said...

First did the dog rescue lady miss Tanner's stamps before? That is just wrong! :)

I firmly get OUT of life what you put into it. And the whole smile campaign was one of the most powerful examples of that....positive energy attracts more positive energy...

Thanks for taking us along for the ride. :)

Jennie said...

Wow Julie....what a special person you are and the connections you have made via paper crafting/retail are amazing. Love your smile and here's to many more years!!!

Bumblebee said...

Great post Julie, loved reading about your childhood as an entrepreneur, it reminds me of my childhood (buying things at auction then selling at school, clearing snow from peoples drives etc!). I have always said that if money were no option I would open a craft shop and cafe, but for now I just love to craft for pleasure. I'm so glad to see how much of a difference your smile makes, you really shine when you smile :)

Tami said...

As one who read your story- way back when I am thrilled to see that beautiful smile! It lights up your entire face! Your cards and sponsors have been amazing! Thank you to you and thank you to them!

Chriss America Real said...

Oh Duh! I was involved in Operation Julie's Smile through Crafty Sprout..where did she go? That is where I first met you! So glad you were able to get your teeth fixed! Just lovely!



Viji Siddharth said...

You are such an awesome story teller! Loved reading everything! I wish more good comes your way and you are always blessed .

Jingle said...

Julie, you are amazing! Your smile is beautiful and YOU are beautiful! So happy to see you so happy!!!!

Lin said...

Great final post for your celebration, and I love your new smile! Here's to many, many more years in this industry for you!

Jessica Pascarella said...

It has been fun reading about your blogging adventure! You have had quite the ride! Congrats and I look forward to seeing what you do in the future.

Sue D said...

This has been a fun few days celebrating with you--I have enjoyed your stories and being introduced to new companies. Your smile is gorgeous!
Thanks for all you do!

Pattie said...

I have so enjoyed reading your posts these past few days. I did in fact participate in the blog hop and donated to your very worthy cause. I have myself recently had almost $9K worth of root canals and crowns so I can relate! Have a great week!

Houses Built of Cards said...

Wonderful celebration! And since I got to know you from Operation Julie's Smile, I have to add, I just LOVE your new smile!!! Congrats on 3 years - and hears to many more!!!

Ruby Taylor said...

I just want to say your "new" smile is awesome! I am almost 60 and in the same boat with missing teeth (too many to mention without embarrassing myself totally). You truly look beautiful smiling! Congratulations! You have such amazing people and companies offering prizes....again, awesome. Thanks so very much!!

Margie said...

You totally deserve all of the love that has been shown to you and so much more! Thank you for sharing all of the crafty inspiration with us, and I am so happy to see that you have your smile back!

Jessica S said...

Julie., meeting people like you are the entire reason I continue to blog. The Art, the stories, the "realness", the support. It all is heartwarming to know how people, who are complete strangers, can impact the lives of so many others without knowing them personally. Blogging is an important part of my day to day. I want to Congratulate you on an achievement only a few can say they have reached. Your followers, your compassion, your words of advice. I love the new smile and am happy that you shared this story with all of your readers and friends. You may have opened the doors to others with the same predicament to overcome the battle just as you have. I am happy to be here and look forward to all of your future posts and projects.
Happy Blogaversary!
Jessica S

Meagan Vaughn said...

thanks for sharing your life, stories and art everyday! Its such a pleasure to read. These giveaways are insane thanks so much for all the chances to win!

Anonymous said...

I was really touched by your story regarding your teeth. A good friend of ours had serious issues with his teeth due to health problems. He had to have them all removed and have upper and lower dentures put in place. He was embarrassed at first (he was 34 at the time) but now he is pain free and has a great smile. What a blessing modern medicine can be. (but the price tag can sure be a curse)

nancyparker55 said...

Lovely cards, wonderful blog and a very beautiful smile. Really have enjoyed this weekend journey with you.

Romaine said...

Thank-YOU, Julie for being an inspiring designer! Thank-you for sharing your life with us! Craftiness was. Iran into you from the sound of your story growing up!
Many of the companies, I am familiar with, but there are a few that I need to check out! I have to catch up on your posts for today (Monday)! :0)

Jackie said...

What a fabulous post, I love all the support you have had and how you sing praises for so many....congrats again :)

Tracy said...

What a great and inspiring post! Your smile is beautiful! Congrats on all of your blogging successes so far and best wishes for the future!

Kaylee Snyder said...

Thanks for the fun party, Julie. By the way, I love your create card-especially the twine added to the bobbins.

Angela Crafty Spot said...

Happy Anniversary!! And Thank you for all the ideas and chances to win!!

Susan Martin said...

I want to thank you for this wonderful weekend of sharing. It has been good to meet you and I look forward to getting to know you better. I'm really glad that I found you before you started your celebration. You have a wonderful blog and you are so talented. I hope you have a great day.

Anonymous said...

thank you for sharing
what an inspiration you are to many women
and such a beautiful smile


Anonymous said...

not sure if you can reach me if i do win so here is my email


Jennifer Scull said...

what a beautiful post, so filled with love and friendship. I'm just smiling over here, right along with you!

as someone who is currently going through treatment for a fairly rare and agressive form of breast cancer, I know how much the outpouring of kindness from the craft community can touch your heart. we are blessed to call some of the most wonderful people in the world 'friend'!!! :)

Lisa said...

Ok...I thought I was the only person who loves the movie Twister LOL! There's just something about it ~ DEBRIS...right...left!!! Oh I know you get it Julie!

LOVE your beautiful new smile and sassy hair cut!

Ashley Pearl said...

Thank you so much for this fun celebration weekend!!! Congratulations on your anniversary!! I'm so happy that I found your blog, so much inspiration here :) I hope that one day I'll be as good at keeping up on my blog (I'm VERY new to blogging so I'm still learning EVERYTHING lol)!!

Stephanie said...

And a Beautiful smile it is!

Tenia Nelson said...

Where to start girlie.....I just LOVE you to pieces dearie!! I remember being preggers and you always had the greatest advice and always helped out!! It is even cooler that Theo and Finn will be ONE next month....OMG......Tempus!! I remember when you started up The Play Date Cafe.....I just LOVE this challenge and I always try to play when I can!!! You are one of the most creative and awesome people that I know and I am so so glad to know you dear!! I am so so glad to help you out with your smile ....what a gorgeous SMILE you have too!!! Much love to you and so so proud of you girlfriend!!!! Love yous!!!!

Tana said...

Julie, you inspire me to follow my dreams. I am going to find a way to make them come true and be able to wake up each day knowing that I get to do what I love to do!

I am so happy for you and your new "smile"! You deserve it! Your eyes always had a sparkle but now that sparkle is 100 times brighter!

Congratulations on ALL of your accomplishments and can't wait to see what you do next! MUAH!

Kelly Sas said...

Random thoughts as I read this last post: You are one inpirational lady; I had an orange kitchen once, I am so honored to be a follower of yours, you are so very loved, thank you for being a part of this crafty world!

*Alison* said...

You are so inspiring and I loved reading/getting to know more about you :) I have to say.. I LOVE your new smile :) I had a blast with your celebration.. HUGS

Nancy said...

To paraphrase Anne Frank, people really are good at heart!

allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

Tabitha said...

Congrats on your anniversary and here's to many more. Your smile is beautiful as you are as well. ;0)

Jamie Lane [Cripps] said...

This has been such a fabulous celebration! I love reading all the pieces about you and all of your ties to these wonderful companies and talented people!

Thank you so much for the chance to win!

April said...

It's been SO cool getting to know all about you!!! :)

Lisa Arana said...

I has been a joy to celebrate with you. thank you for your wonderful creations and stories.

Jessica Fitzgerald (aka MommaJess) said...

Julie, I have truly enjoyed each and every day of your Anniversary celebration. What a great way to get to know more about you and your love of crafting. Thanks for all the inspiration you have provided as well. Hugs to you and keep on creating.

Cristine said...

Amazing post, Julie. It reminded me that I first heard of you through the Operation Julie's Smile event. I am so happy to see your new smile. It suits you well. :) HUGS!

sparkles said...

Congratulations to a lovely lady I call my friend even though we have never met!
Your smile takes years off you LOL
love and Hugs

Tina said...

Holy wow Julie! You really know how to throw a party, it's been fun being part of the celebration! Congrats to you! And, thanks for all the inspiration you provide.

Stephenie said...

You have truly been blessed with GREAT Friends!! Your story is a testimony to the generosity and love in the crafting world! I am so thankful to be a part of this world, even if it is a small part. Thank you for sharing your life and your AWESOME talent with us!! Continue to share your Smile as a testament to the Goodness in your heart and in the hearts of those you share your life with!!

Lindsey said...

The crafting community we belong to is really amazing, isn't it? What a show of support for you, Julie! So fun that you shared your crafting (and personal) journey!

Karen B. said...

Such a beautiful new smile you have, and I'm so glad that I had a tiny part in making it happen!

Becca said...

There are angels among us. So much love - thrilled that you were able to have the oral work that you needed with minimum embarrassment of missing teeth. What a blessing to smile the way you really mean to! Keep stamping and sharing -you are so inspiring!

SandiB said...

Julie, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading all the posts for the last couple of days. Such wonderful stories and learning more about you. I did gain some invaluable inspiration along the way and I thank you for that. Also, love your smile. Thanks for the chance to win some awesome prizes.

donna mikasa said...

This year has been such an incredible journey for you, Julie! Your new profile pic captures the spirit of new beginnings with your bright smile! Keep enjoying the ride!

Deborah said...

I'm so happy for you, Julie, with your beautiful new smile and your fantastic blog!

Patty or Grandma Patty Ann said...

Earlier in the celebration I said I was going to try to make a list of all of the stores and blogs you mentioned. Boy my head is spinning and I sure behind pretty quick :-) It may take me all summer to make that list up :-)

I have really enjoyed your posts Julie and look forward to the next 3 years at least! :-)

Love, Patty

patti said...

Thank you for your posts and inspiration!! I know the how it feels to be embarrased to smile, you look beautiful,Keep smiling!!!!

SHartl said...

Oh Julie, I have enjoyed your stories so much and have to say that this post, with that photo of you and your beautiful smile actually made me tear up! I always love your projects (this card with the creative use of the bakers twine is amazing!!) and now I know more about the crafter behind the cards!! Thank you so much for sharing your creativity with us!!

Suze said...

Thank you for sharing so much of your personal life with us. I have enjoyed reading about the events of your life and how you got to where you are today. Love the cute photo of your grandson too.

Dorina D said...

what a great blog and your stories are so inspirational. I'm so glad I found your blog because of all that you share. I'm having fun reading some of the older posts. Great projects and so much fun. Thanks for sharing.

Christa Krebs said...

Thank you, too! Thanks for presenting such a beautiful and inspiring website for others to enjoy; thanks for all the work you put into providing your followers with such awesome giveaways; but most of all, thank you for sharing yourself with all of your followers

Cyndee K. said...

Thank YOU! Such amazing projects and many more to come!

Handmade Creations by Stephanie said...

Thanks so much for sharing your amazing projects and all the amazing people you have met along the way!!!

Jen Carter said...

That is a lot of great people that you thanked today! What a wonderful journey you've had!

Anita Rex said...

What a fabulous post!!!! Loved reading all of it! And wow SO MANY prizes! Wow Julie what a celebration!

Donna said...

I love your projects that you shared today. Your use of twine is so fun! Thanks for the stories and the giveaways. Congrats on last time. Hope you have a wonderful week!

Brenda Smith said...

Wow! Sounds like you are truly blessed to have so many wonderful people in your life. And what a beautiful smile you have. Thanks for the opportunity to win :)

melllisssa said...

I am a new follower and am so excited to congratulate you on your anniversary! I've been browsing around and your projects and writings are so creative and heartfelt. Thank you for sharing your personal stories, it shows that you are truly passionate about what and why you do it :)

Thanks so much for sharing!
misshoanggg (at)

melania deasy said...

Congrats on your anniversary...Thank you for sharing!! I'm a new follower. Have a nice day!!

Amy C said...

Congrats on your anniversary here at Julie's Open Window. So much creativity!! It is also nice to see your smile back.


Annette said...

What an inspiring post...congratulations on three amazing have inspired me in so many ways...

Vera Yates (Ling) said...

Fab post, Julie! And, I am thankful to have met you in person and happy that I was part of Operation Julie's Smile. It's great to see your big smile. :)

Diana Maldonado said...

Love the way you express your feelings and NOW I know where I get to know you, it was from the fundraising, guess it was though Jen Carter's blog! Congrats on this event, your accomplishments and all the great things that will come to you!


JustYolie said...

Congrats on your achievements!! I'm a new follower...thanks for the chance to win! :)

Anita Braddock said...

This has been fun and Congrats for your 3yrs such a accomplishment.
thanks for sharing and for the chance to win

Thienly Azim said...

Wow, what a great post! Thanks for sharing with us your journey and congrats again on your anniversary! What a fantastic way to celebrate, and thanks for making it so exciting for us!

Alicia said...

So many wonder ful things to learn and love about you! Fantastic post, so very heartfelt. Love ya sister!

Ruby said...

Aw I missed the deadline but it doesn't matter because it was fun popping by and learning more about you, fabulous post and some amazing sponsors!!

Annette Witherspoon ♥ said...

Wow! You look beautiful. I mean absolutely gorgeous! (Not that you weren't beautiful before this.) I'm so glad you were able to get the necessary procedure and start smiling again. I remember participating in Operation Julie's Smile last year. I just happened across your blog and saw your beautiful smile. So wonderful!! Oh, and I love the Color my world card with the twine!! Very clever!

Mike Evans said...

This has been a fun few days celebrating with you--I have enjoyed your stories and being introduced to new companies. Your smile is gorgeous! Thanks for all you do!