Sunday, March 15, 2020

Regular Blogging Schedule Closed Until Further Notice

It is with great regret that I have made the decision to temporarily shut down my regular blogging schedule due to the "Pandemic".  I have made this decision for two reasons:   1) It seems so trivial now to do posts on fashion when most of our communities are "Locked down";  and to talk about Easter cards and home decor just seems insensitive when there is so much suffering right now. 2) My daughter and her husband and kids will be coming home to live with us until this nightmare is over.  I am super busy now preparing our home for long term visitors and I'm sure I will be so busy when they are here cooking, cleaning, and playing with the grandkids that I just won't have time to blog.

However, I do want to stay faithful to my commitments  so if "Ageless Style" still continues on with their link ups I will do another fashion post the first Monday of April.  I also realize that many of us will have more times on our hands as we are all stuck at home, and we may be spending more time at on the Internet and therefore the blogging community may be more important than ever.  I don't want to further isolate myself by not communicating with you.  So if I have time to post at all, it won't be about fashion, home decor, travel, or crafts, but it will be about how we're surviving the pandemic, our daily lives in isolation, or spiritual insight and encouragement.

Like many people, I don't know where this pandemic will lead.  Some times I think it's all a hoax and we're all over-reacting.  Other times I think it's for real and I fight back the fear with prayer and scripture.  I just don't know.  My thoughts and emotions go up and down like a roller coaster multiple times a day.  Like Y2K twenty years ago, I hope a few weeks/months now we will all look back at this and laugh and say "I can't believe we were all so worried about nothing!"  But until then, we have to be prepared for the worst and pray and hope for the best.

Instead of my usual closing signature of "Have A Great Day" I am leaving you with this encouraging verse from the Bible:

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with Thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."  Phil. 4: 6-7


Tuesday, March 10, 2020

A Handmade Sympathy Card and More "Colorful Blessings" Cards

It's been awhile since I've shared some of my handmade cards with you so I decided to do a "card round up" post before the Easter projects begin!

Well, first I had the unpleasant task of making a sympathy card.  I don't know a card maker on the planet who enjoys making a sympathy card.  We just hope and pray our handiwork brings comfort to the recipient as we make it.  This card was made for a good friend of mine who lost her father-in-law.  

I used retired Stampin' Up! sets to make this card.  I kept it simple and elegant by stamping the images directly  onto the main card base and coloring it in with Copic markers.  I then matted it on a black piece of card stock to make everything pop before I adhered it to a white card base.

The rest of the cards I have to show you were all made from my "Colorful Blessings" Card fronts I purchased on Amazon.  These are all pre-printed card fronts that you simply color in and mount to a card base.

The designs in this kit are usually very intricate so I almost always use my gel pens to color them.  This results in very bright and vivid colors.

I almost always mount the card fronts to a dark base first to make the colors pop and then I put them on a white card base.

The card below however already had so much white space, I chose a coral card to mount it on.

All the messages in this kit are very generic but encouraging so you can use them for a multitude of occasions.

Sometimes when I'm done with my Bible Journaling for the day, I just like to pull out a card front and color.  Like I do with my Bible Journaling, I try to mediate on the verse as I color.  I then make a card out of the front even though I may not have a recipient for it, and just put it in my stash so I have a card ready when needed.

This would be a cheerful card to give to someone going through a hard time.

I hope you enjoyed looking at my cards today.  Easter cards are coming soon!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Monday, March 9, 2020

What I Wore In February and a Sneak Peek of My New Easter Dress

I don't have a lot of outfits to show this month as I didn't get out much, and when I did it was so cold my outfits weren't blog-worthy, but because I'm all about keeping it real and showing you what I really goes!

This is an outfit I wore on a chilly day to the hair dresser and running weekly errands.  It was a cold day, so I wore tall boots.  I always save those tall boots for the coldest of days to keep my legs warm. With those boots, I wore black leggings with a long burgundy sweater.

Believe it or not, this ended up being my Valentine Day's Outfit ha ha!  I do all these posts on "What To Wear For Valentine's Day" and this is what I end up actually wearing.  However, in my defense, I ended up choosing this outfit based on our activity.  We chose to visit our local zoo and conservatory for our Valentine date.  This required being comfortable in a car for two hours there and back, so I wore eggplant leggings for comfort.  We would also be spending lots of time outdoors in 30 degree temperatures so I chose a turtleneck sweater to keep me warm.  And because we would be on our feet all day, I chose comfortable hiking boots.

We had one slightly warmer day last month where I could leave the down-filled parka at home and just get by with this heavy cardigan from Stitch Fix.  It looks kinda funny in the photo as it's sort of a wrap too.  You can check out this post HERE to see other ways I styled it.

I paired the cardigan with a black tank, grey skinny jeans, and black suede 3 buckle booties.

And finally, I wanted to give you a sneak peek at my new Easter dress!  I don't want to show any pictures of me wearing it just quite yet, but I wanted to show the dress now in case you're shopping for dresses.  Items at TJMaxx disappear so fast, so if you need a dress, go now!  They have some pretty ones.

I really wasn't looking for a new dress, I have plenty already.  But as always, I go to TJMaxx to buy a mattress protector and I end up coming home with a dress. 🤣 TJMaxx is my danger store.  I really need to stay out of there.  Anyhow, I do have a wedding in late May too and I was starting to think about what to wear.  They always say "Don't buy a new dress for a special occasion, you will never wear it again."  But you know what the problem with that thinking is?  You take pictures at special occasions and if you don't wear something new, you are wearing the same dress in every picture of every special event.  Trust me.  My husband is the perfect example.  Every picture we have of him he's got the same outfit on.  Someday my grandchildren are going to ask me "Grandma, were you and Grandpa poor that he couldn't afford more than one shirt?" ha ha!

Anyhow, this dress is by Tommy Hilfiger and cost $40.  It is absolutely stunning on.  The halter neck line is so flattering and the belt really accentuates the waist line.  It is T-Length which I am so happy about.  It's so hard to find a dress that is below the knee these days.  I realize it could be really cold on Easter Sunday and I might have to wear a white cardigan with it or scrap wearing a dress altogether, which would be a bummer, but it's happened before!  But I'm sure I'll be able to wear it to the wedding at the end of May (fingers crossed!  We've gotten snow in May here too!).

So have you found your Easter dress yet?  I'd love to hear from you!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Some Of My Favorite Keto Recipes

One of the most popular diets on the planet right now is Keto.  I went on the Keto diet last fall and absolutely love it.  The food is delicious, because unlike traditional diets which removes fat leaving the food bland and tasteless, Keto leaves the fat in!  I also love Keto because my husband will eat Keto food too!  In the past whenever I went on a diet I always had to cook two separate meals:  one for me and one for him, because he "doesn't eat rabbit food".  But Keto meals are man-hungry dinners, so my husband really enjoys them too.  I just throw a baked potato in the oven to complete his meal, while I eat mine with a salad.  But the main reason I love Keto is because it makes me feel great!  I use to feel unsatisfied with traditional diets, but the fats and protein in Keto always leave me feeling full.  I've also had a lot less digestive issues.  Before Keto I struggled with heartburn, stomach aches, bloating, and indigestion;  all of that is gone now.

Now, I'm not a scientist so I'm not going to explain what Keto is and how you put your body in Ketosis by eating certain foods and eliminating others.  You can use your web browser to discover that.  What I am going to do is just share some of my favorite recipes.  When I decided to try Keto I bought three books from Amazon:  "The Complete Keto Diet For Beginners 2019", The Essential Keto Diet For Beginners 2019", and "Keto Diet for Beginners 2019".  Notice a pattern in these three books?  I've made most of the recipes in these books, but I also scoured for free recipes off of Pinterest.  I have a friend that is also on Keto, and if she tries a recipe she really likes, she sends it my way and I do the same for her.  And finally, I also joined a Facebook Group called "Lean Keto Recipes" where members not only share recipes but helpful tips.

Now, on to some of my Favorite Keto Recipes.  A typical breakfast on Keto is Bacon and Eggs (although there are lots of great Keto Pancake and Keto smoothie recipes out there too!).  Well, eating eggs every single morning can get boring fast, so people have created lots of egg based Keto recipes to break up the boredom.

I can not share the recipes I got from a book, you will have to purchase the book for that, but the books are very inexpensive.  I will tell you which book the recipe came from and I will provide a link to alternative recipes available on line.

Veggie and Sausage Muffins
from "The Complete Keto Diet For Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line version HERE.

These are so simple and easy to make and taste delicious!  They are filled with breakfast sausage and lots of veggies!  I make the entire batch at once and freeze the leftovers for a fast, easy breakfast on-the-go!

Keto Dark Chocolate Almond Park With Sea Salt

Keto is a no sugar diet, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy your treats.  Pinterest is loaded with chocolate Keto recipes.  My favorite is this dark chocolate bark.  Just mix all the ingredients together, freeze, then break into pieces!  So easy, and so delicious!

Scotch Eggs
from "The Essential Keto Diet For Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line version HERE.

These eggs were the strangest thing I ever made in my life, but boy were they good!  It's basically pork sausage wrapped around a hard boiled egg with bacon wrapped around the entire ball.

Here is what it looks like in the middle.  I think this would be a fun breakfast item to make for guests or children.  They will get such a kick finding a hard boiled egg hidden inside.

Delicious Breakfast Casserole
from "The Complete Keto Diet For Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line version HERE.

Pinterest is full of Keto breakfast casseroles, and I have yet to meet one I didn't like.  This one is delicious and packed with nutritious vegetables and protein.

The inside of this dish is as yummy looking as the outside.

Instant Pot Keto Tuscan Soup
from EatWell101

You may remember this recipe from my "A Sweet Labor of Love Recipe Swap" post.  This is my FAVORITE soup in the world!  My family is crazy for it and they can't believe it's Keto because it tastes so good!

Bacon Cups
from "The Essential Keto Diet for Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line recipe HERE!

These adorable little things are so delicious.  You basically take a muffin tin, lay some bacon inside the tin, then drop and egg inside with some cheese.  Yum!  So, so good!

Spinach Eggs & Cheese
from "The Essential Keto Diet for Beginners 2019"
Alternative recipe HERE!

This casserole, unlike all the other casserole recipe I tried, has cottage cheese in it.  It's pretty yummy, and I like that it fit into a single serving casserole dish.

Keto Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Breast
Moscoto Mom

This is a recipe my friend sent my way.  It is a chicken breast stuffed with cream cheese and spinach and wrapped in bacon.  The plate you see below would be a typical dinner for me:  a portion of meat with a side salad.  For my husband, I would give him the same piece of meat, but add a potato and cooked vegetable.

I just love the cream cheese filling inside!

Basil Tomato Shrimp
from "The Complete Keto Diet for Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line recipe HERE!

Out of all the Keto seafood recipes I've tried, this one is my favorite.  It has a Tuscany taste because of the sun dried tomatoes and unique Gruyere cheese.  The base is made with heavy cream.  All sauces taste so much better when made with heavy cream instead of something lighter.  

Mmm, it makes my mouth water just looking at it.  I love shrimp!

Tomato Basil Frittata
from "The Complete Keto Diet for Beginners 2019"
Alternative on-line recipe HERE!

I love a good frittata!  This one is made right in a cast iron stove so it's easy clean up too.

The frittata is filled with feta cheese and cherry tomatoes, making oh, so good!

Well I hope you enjoyed my "Favorite Keto Recipes" even though I couldn't share the actual recipe.  The on-line alternatives I provided are very close.  You don't need to spend a dime on Keto to start.  There is so much information on-line.  There are also so many recipes!  I would suggest Pinterest to start.  I've been collecting my own Keto Favorite Recipes on Pinterest HERE!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

February Bible Journaling Pages, Part I

It has been so long since I shared any Bible Journaling pages as I had so many Valentine crafts to share last month.  With Easter right around the corner, I though I should squeeze another Bible Journaling post while I can.

First up, is a pre-printed page that I colored with a mix of pencils and gel pens.  I have found that is my latest favorite way to color:  use the pencils on the large spaces, and save the pens for the small, intricate designs.  I created an ombre effect in the words "good" and "love".

Here is a page I created myself using music stamps and stickers.  Using an ombre effect again (I'm just crazy about the way it looks), I colored the background with gelatos.  Then I just stamped and stickered away!

This is a pre-printed image I colored with a mix of pencils and gel pens.  I used a pencil to color the background blue, then I used gel pens for everything else.  I colored the clouds with a white gel pen to make them pop.  I really love how this page turned out.

Isn't this a pretty pre-printed image?  It was a joy to color it in with gel pens.  What a lovely verse too!

This pre-printed image page was colored entirely with pencils as most of the images were large.

Here is a page I created myself.  I colored the background using a sponge and an ink pad.  The rainbow and clouds are MFT die cuts that I colored in.  I stamped the flowers on the bottom using a retired Stampin' Up! stamp.  I hand wrote the Bible verse and then I added a sticker on top.

I colored this pre-printed image in using all red and pink gel pens to emphasize the heart.

Every chapter in the Inspire Bible always has a beautiful chapter header.  I used pencils to color in the background,  all the large spaces, and the landscape.  I did the words and intricate parts of the design in gel pens.

A good white gel pen is a necessity for Bible Journaling.  Here I used a white gel pen to accent the words "Adore", "One", and "Things".  The banners were colored with pencils, and all the words and greenery was done in pens.

I just colored in this simple pre-printed image with pens.

Here's that ombre effect again!  I told you I liked it!  I colored the background peach using a pencil, then did the ombre effect with pens.

And finally, another page I created myself.  The background was colored with inks and a sponge then I stamped flowers all over the page.  I did the verse with a variety of stamps and my own handwriting.

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Monday, March 2, 2020

Ageless Style - Spring Forward

The Ageless Style Link Up-  The first Monday of every month a group of over forty fashion bloggers pick a monthly theme and show different ways of styling it. 

I don't know about where you live, but spring is in the air even if the ground still has a little snow on it.  We have been enjoying very mild temperatures here in Wisconsin.  It was a gorgeous 50 degrees on the day we shot these pictures, and it's expected to be in the 40s and 50s all week!  Hooray!  Spring is almost here.  Shelly's theme of "Spring Forward" could not have come at a better time.

For the "Spring Forward" challenge I am showing that I am "springing forward" with color, a classic trench, and shoes that are NOT boots!  I am always so excited to lose the booties and boots and start wearing pretty shoes and sandals again, aren't you?

Everything I am wearing in today's post is old except for the top; but as usual I will link up to similar items at the end of the post.


This stunning, hand made top is by Solitaire and I found it at TJMaxx.  I have been shopping for clothes at TJMaxx a lot lately.  You have to be patient, dig, and frequent the store regularly, but if you do,  you are sure to be rewarded with a great find.  I just love what a unique piece this top is.

The slightly mustard yellow color with the white embroidery is perfect for spring and cooler summer days.  I love the scalloped bell sleeves.


My earrings are also handmade and made of rattan.  They are so lightweight that I can't even feel them when they are on.  They make a great statement without pulling down my ear lobe.

The top has a beautiful scalloped edge.

Because it's kinda still winter in my neck of the woods and I wanted to keep my spring look more "transitional" I wore my new top with old black ankle length pants from Stitch Fix.  But I can't wait till the weather warms and I can try this top with my light blue cropped pants or white denim.


I chose these black suede wedges because I'm not quite ready to expose the toes yet!

To add even a bit more color to my outfit, I carried a coral bag by London Fog.

On my wrist, I wore a large jeweled bracelet (old).

It's still cold enough that one needs a jacket.  I chose this classic trench that I purchased at TJMaxx years ago.  A trench is something everyone should have in their closet.  It's a great investment piece as a classic trench never goes out of style.


 Yellow Embroidered Top - TJMaxx,  similar HERE and HERE,  Black Ankle Pants - Stitch Fix, similar HERE,  Black Suede Wedges - Famous Footwear, similar HERE,  Trench Coat - TJMaxx, similar HERE, Coral Satchel - London Fog, similar HERE,   and Rattan Statement Earrings - Amazon.

And now, be sure to check out all the spring fashions the other ladies are showing and link up your own outfits below!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

Amy ~ Amy's Creative Pursuits BlogFacebookInstagramGoogle+Pinterest
Bettye ~ Fashion Schlub BlogFacebookInstagramYouTube
Daenel ~ Living outside the stacks BlogInstagramPinterestTwitter
Debbie ~ Fashion Fairy Dust BloglovinBlogInstagramPinterestFacebookTwitter
Jennie ~ A Pocketful of Polka Dots BlogInstagramFacebookPinterestTwitterBloglovin
Jodie ~ Jodie's Touch of Style BlogFacebookInstagramPinterestBloglovinTwitter
Julia ~ When the Girls Rule BlogFacebookPinterestInstagram
Kellyann ~ This Blonde's Shopping Bag BlogInstagramBloglovinTwitter
Shelly ~ The Queen in Between BlogInstagramBloglovinPinterestFacebook
Shugunna ~ Nzuri N* Simplicity BlogPinterestInstagram

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