I love this time of year!  Spring is just around the corner, and yet, overnight we received a new dusting of snow and today the sky is gray.  A perfect excuse to stay home in pj’s and get messy with paint.
My one small change goal for the month of February is to return to using cloth grocery bags.  They’ve been sitting in the backseat of my car and I keep forgetting to take them in.  I foiled my plan this past week when I found myself in the grocery store, yet again, empty-handed.  I felt bummed as I walked to the car holding three paper bags.
As a way to make it up to this poor tree and to stay creative every day, I decided to repurpose the bags into vibrant Valentine’s Day cards!
I started with very simple supplies:  the bags, scissors, acrylic paint, water, brushes, scrap paper and magazines.
I put on my Ani DiFranco Pandora station and went to town covering the paper with a mixture of background colors.
I played with my brushstroke and added swirls on top.
I used white fabric paint (Tulip Matte) to add some texture.
After the paint was fully dry, I cut out a variety of hearts of different sizes.
Then, I used the colorful paper and hearts to make my cards.  Here I stitched an outline with my sewing machine and glued the painted paper to a scrap piece of card stock.
I cut the brown paper bag in card shapes and added fun sayings from magazine clippings.
I loved this project because it gave me a wonderful opportunity to slow down.  As I played with paint,  I enjoyed memories of how much I loved Valentine’s Day as a kid.  I remember the excitement of decorating the boxes to collect candies and cards from the boys I had crushes on.  I thought about all of my friends and family that I care so much about.  I thought about my grandma, living in a nursing home, and that her biggest excitement of the day is when the mail arrives.
I’m so excited to write messages and send my colorful love notes the old fashioned way.  I’m happy that using paper bags wasn’t a total waste.  (Although I’m still planning to use my cloth bags next time!)

Your Personal Reflection:  Receiving a handwritten letter in the mail is the best, and it rarely happens.  Think of someone you love and surprise them with a handmade love note today.  

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