Author Archives: janygb143

Christmas in August

At our last Spark a Smile party, we celebrated Christmas in August by making blank Christmas cards for Operation Write Home, which sends boxes of blank greeting cards overseas to the men and women in the military, so they can write home. We came up with a few “stick it down” designs, which had specific templates to follow, like these two:

For the rest of the cards, we pre-cut backgrounds, strips of paper, and scalloped circles in various Christmas-y colors (all from scraps or donated cardstock – we didn’t buy any new stuff specifically for this project!). We also printed three different sentiments on cream-colored cardstock and used a 1.5-inch punch on them: Happy Holidays, Joy, and Merry Christmas.

Using pre-prepared items made it easy to create a lot of great-looking cards in a short amount of time! Even though all the cards were made of the same basic shape, since we used various colors, they all look completely unique! Here are the rest (79 and counting)!

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Join us next Wednesday, September 12, 2012 from 5-7PM as we help Miss Marlene make “we’ve missed you” cards for the kids at her local church!


School’s starting soon! What better way to ring in the new school year than by celebrating our local teachers? I LOVE these pink, black, and sparkly mini-cards that we made at Spark a Smile last month! What do you think? (Click to enlarge)

Join us next week for our free Spark a Smile party: Wednesday, August 8 from 5-7PM (Yang & Horsley Dentistry, 325 E. Cottonwood Lane). We’ll be making cards for the military, care of Operation Write Home. What an easy and fun way to support our troops! Hope to see you there!

Happy 4th of July!

At Spark A Smile in June, we celebrated the 4th, early! We had a great turnout! Here’s just a sample of the mini cards we created. Aren’t these tiny firecrackers cute? Miss Linda came up with that ingenious design!


Miss Marlene and I collaborated on these – she cut the stars by hand (on the center and right cards), and then used the scraps to make that fun shard pattern on the left card! I added the handwriting.


And finally, Miss Talissa made this cute one on the left. I can’t remember (sorry :)) who designed the flag out of these two patterned papers, but I thought that was totally clever!!


Click here to see the rest! 

Join us this Wednesday, July 11th, for a rockin’ summer party in honor of the CG Elementary School teachers. As usual, our free card-making parties are hosted at Yang and Horsley Dentistry – 325 E. Cottonwood Lane, Casa Grande, Arizona. Hope to see you there!

Card-making Podcast

Check out this awesome podcast about card-making! Well, all of the Paperclipping Roundtable episodes are great, but this one specifically has tons of ideas about our Spark A Smile specialty… making cards!

Flowers for Ama


Just a few days after my last post, my sweet grandma (I call her Ama) took her last breath and joined the angels. She was my constant friend, companion, and one of our biggest Spark a Smile supporters. Even at age 81 with poor vision, she’d still participate and help us make cards! I will miss her every day, but I love knowing that I can’t make a card without thinking of her… and that definitely sparks a smile.

(Photo courtesy of my uncle Charlie)

May: In Bloom for Hospice Compassus

This month, in honor of my grandma (the face of Spark a Smile) who will need hospice care someday, we created Mother’s Day cards for Hospice Compassus of Casa Grande. Miss Marlene and I had been browsing Pinterest (feel free to follow me!) and created these inspirational samples, but I don’t think anyone needed them… everyone was on a creative roll that night!

Love this color combination from our awesome assistant, Janie:

Marlene (and her helper Paula) mass-produced this awesome design with fun colors and coordinating button brads:

Miss Linda added these fun 3-d flowers with teeny rhinestone centers:

I made this flower out of a regular scallop punch! It was fun (and super inexpensive) to make.

Join us Wednesday, June 13th between 5-7PM (at Yang and Horsley Dentistry: 325 E. Cottonwood Lane) as we create 4th of July cards!

April Rainbows

We helped the Pinal County Juvenile Court celebrate National Volunteer Month by donating 150 of these fun cards! We went with an “April showers” theme. These are probably my favorite of all the cards we’ve done in our 2.5 years of sparking smiles! I love these bright, happy colors!

The pictures don’t do these justice, but we used Cuttlebug embossing folders to create the big dots on the metallic blue cardstock, and convenient squares of adhesive cardstock to create the rainbow. “On a cloudy day” is punched out of glittered white cardstock!

We had a great turnout last month, including a surprise visit from my brother-in-law and two nieces, who came all the way from Surprise! We also had some help from my friend Amy, who worked remotely from home since couldn’t make the party! My cousin and her roommate also helped out while we were hanging out at a half-Ironman triathlon to support my brother-in-law. 🙂

When we delivered our stack of cards to Donna McBride at the Juvenile Court, this is what she emailed me:

“Oh my goodness… they are BEAUTIFUL!!  Thank you so very much for the awesome cards!!! The volunteers will love them…. And what a wonderful community service project. You are the best!!! – Donna

PS – I would send you a thank you card – but I imagine you don’t need any more!! haha”

Thanks to everyone who helped out! Now it’s your turn – join us on Wednesday, May 9, from 5-7 PM to help us make Mother’s Day cards for Hospice Compassus. Our theme this month is “In bloom”.

Upcoming Spark a Smile Events

Wednesday, September 12, 2012 5-7PM

Oct 10

Nov 14

Dec 12

Jan 9 (2013)

Feb 13 (2013)


We’ve decided to migrate the Spark a Smile blog from Blogger (blogspot) to WordPress (highly recommended by this guy)! Bear with us while we make the big move…

March – Garden of Sunshine Youth

For Spark a Smile (March) we created cards for the Casa Grande Youth Commission and the Garden of Sunshine Youth Memorial Garden. To honor the Eide children who passed away in an accident during a dust storm in 2009, the Youth Commission is raising funds to create a special place in Casa Grande where parents can go to remember their children who have passed. Spark a Smile had the honor of donating Thank You cards to this cause! We chose a cheery garden theme, to help remember all those beautiful children whose joyful spirits inspire us all.

Find out more about the Garden here!