I know everyone's idea of heaven is different. Some think of puffy clouds and angels flying about as in the Philadelphia cream cheese ads. Others think of seeing loved ones who have passed and living amongst days gone by. And still others take comfort in the knowledge that heaven is more like a Salon Spa. All the facials and full body massages one could ever dream of having...forever. For my sisters and I heaven is a big old home just over the IL Wisc. border...it's name you ask? The Scrapbook Manor. This is a place of creative bliss complete with comfortable double beds and three delicious meals that are prepared for you and cleaned up after you. Our little heaven has a Cricket machine, a Sizzix and as many die cuts as we can ever want. It has a quaint little store that is available 24/7 with papers and chipboard and stickers galore.
Our type of heaven doesn't come cheap. We are lucky enough to have a "Sugar-Momma" who foots the bill for her daughters to have a weekend of bliss. I secretly think she loves the idea of her son-in-laws having to "figure it out" for a weekend with kids and meals and the occasional nightmare...something she never got as a young mom. But she also revels in the idea of her daughters having such a good chunk of special sister time each year. I believe she says (and I quote) "It warms my heart."
During this special weekend we start out full steam ready to accomplish book upon book of wonderful memories. We set goals and arrive ready to work work work. But our little heaven has a very sneaky way of settling us down and helping us understand that the creative process is the destination. All that paper cutting, ribbon tying, journaling and eyelet setting has a certain calming and renewing affect on us that we Bell girls have never found in anything other than ice cream. We take time to revisit old vacations, holidays and everyday photos that make us smile and laugh. We remember that we really do love our children and by Sunday at about 3pm...we actually miss them. It revitalizes us in a way no Day Spa could ever (but just to be fair there is the massage option that 2 out of the 3 of us usually partakes.)
And then there is the Sunday we get home. Since I am the baby sister I come home to the littlest people in the family and I am always greeted with happy little faces anxious to see what I have created. That really is the cherry on top of the weekend sundae! People who actually want to browse through the finished products and "ooooh" and "ahhhh" over each page the way people should over such art. But what they don't see is the happy times and memories that are created during the creative process...with my sisters! (And this year with my bestest cousin Sara...brave girl!)