Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Opening a Window

Earlier today, I ran into someone I had not seen for almost thirteen years.  We were in our local bank, an old fashioned Savings and Loan not much different from the Bailey Building and Loan in "It's A Wonderful Life." The teller said her name and I turned around to see my sons' pre-kindergarten teacher. As I said, it had been thirteen years and she had not changed one bit in all that time. For her, it seems as if time has stood still, more or less, since she looks the same and still teaches little tinies who are all of four and five years old.

Yet my little tinies are now 17 and 20 and are hardly tiny anymore.

Oddly enough, I just finished putting together the layout for our last first day of school for my 17-year-old is a high school senior with just five months between now and the final last day of school, a day I am looking forward to with both glee and dread. He and his classmates are impatiently waiting for the letters from college and universities which they think will determine their fates while we, their parents, know they will end up wherever it is they are destined to be.

I distinctly remember the four years I spent driving my children to and from their pre-K classes at our local Catholic school where the woman I saw today still teaches.  I remember the Fischer Price Little People toys and Weebles strewn around the room.  I remember the plastic slide and tiny desks over in the corner.  I remember the little girl who followed my son around the classroom. I remember the pageants at Christmas and the end of the year. I remember the last time I saw their teacher, someone I missed terribly because of her endless kindness, patience and wisdom.

I miss it all - every last drive and every last minute of those early, simpler years when everything was a first.

Now we are in the midst of so many lasts - the last soccer game, the last bowling tournament, the last college letter, the last homecoming game, the last prom, the last day of school. 

But we are not quite there - yet.  So, instead of waiting for the end, I will share with you the beginning.

My son refused to let me take his photo before he left on the first morning.  So, I snapped these photos as he drove away.
These photos are for the yearbook.  He did not enjoy having them taken.  (Photos by Prestige Portraits).
While it is hard to believe we are in the home stretch, I am reminded of a piece of dialogue from my favorite movie: "When God closes a door, somewhere He opens a window."  So, now we wait to see where that window opens up.

Layout Notes

The (Last) First Day

Using a tag as a template, I cut the tag out from Tim Holtz paper, stamped the phrase on a Tim Holtz ticket, and punched the edge of beige cardstock.  The title was cut with a Cricut machine, but instead of using the letters, I used the negative, inking the edges with a blending tool. Ink was also used on the red test paper to tone it down a bit.

Supplies: cardstock - unknown; patterned paper - Cosmo Cricket, Bo Bunny, Tim Holtz, K andCompany; tickets - Tim Holtz; ink - Ranger Adirondack, Ranger Distress; stamps - Tim Holtz (Stampers Anonymous); steering wheel - 7 Gypsies; key unknown; fortune - Anima Designs; markers - Yand C Gel Extreme, Micron; punch - EK Success; ribbon - unknown; eyelets - unknown;title - cut with Cricut Mini using a variety of fonts.


For this layout, I manage to pretty much use up what little school paper I had left.  The small blue tags were made by running blue metal tags through a diecut machine in an embossing folder.  I then sanded the high points to reveal the gold- tone underneath and then coated them with Glossy Accents.  They are adhered with Glossy Accents as well.  The red letters (G and R for our hometown) match the varsity letters each varsity player receives down to the color.  I took a C and a R from a set of Thickers, trimmed the C and then put them together. The chipboard letters were painted and then edged with a gold pen.  I glued a sliver of the book paper on the letter I.  The 14 was punched from some Tim Holtz paper and edged with the same gold pen.

Supplies: cardstock - unknown; patterned paper - Basic Grey, Teresa Collins (Moments), Tim Holz (school book, number 14); chipboard letters - Creek Bank Creations; paint - Folk Art; marker - Y and C Gel Extreme; metal tags - Fire Mountain Bead and Gem; embossing folder - unknown; Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents; sticker letters - Thickers by America Crafts; brads - Tim Holtz Mini Brads. Photos by Prestige Portraits.