Heirlooms: Stencil a Memory!

Stencil a Plate

When my mother passed away, I inherited a large box of some of her Christmas decorations. After a few years of lugging this box in out and out of the attic and re-taping it each time, the box literally started falling apart.

Stencil a Plate

So last year as I was getting ready to recycle the box, I cut out my Mother’s precious writing of “Christmas” from it and tucked the piece away in my hutch for an entire year.

Stencil a Plate

I couldn’t wait to pull it out this year, because I knew I had plans for this cardboard piece. It also reminded me of this song, and the power that heirlooms can hold in a family. When Amy Grant sang this popular song years ago, my good friends Debbie Meador, Jane Houston and I also sang it at our Christmas service. Little did I know, a few years later, the impact of these words after I lost my mom to cancer.

Up in the attic
Down on my knees
Lifetimes of boxes
Timeless to me
Letters and photographs
Yellowed with years
Some bringing laughter
Some bringing tears

Time never changes
The memories, the faces Of loved ones, who bring to me
All that I come from
And all that I live for
And all that I’m going to be
My precious family
Is more than an heirloom to me

Wisemen and shepherds
Down on their knees
Bringing their treasures
To lay at His feet
Who was this wonder, baby yet king
Living and dying
He gave life to me

Time never changes
The memory, the moment His love first pierced through me
Telling all that I come from
And all that I live for
And all that I’m going to be
My precious savior
Is more than an heirloom to me

My precious Jesus is more than an heirloom to me
(Sung by Amy Grant, here.)

Stencil a Plate

My Mom, Millie, is very dear to my sisters’ and my heart, as we miss her very much. It’s very special how the memory of a loved one can live on through heirlooms, pictures, videos, letters, and even writing.

So this year, this is what I gave my sisters for Christmas.

I stenciled Mom’s writing of “Christmas” with a black Sharpie marker onto stencil paper.

Stencil a Plate

Then I cut it and glued it onto a white glass plate.

Stencil a Plate

I poured a high gloss finish onto the plate.

Stencil a Plate

And used a hairdryer to get the bubbles out.

Stencil a Plate

They are not perfect, but I think they turned out nice.

Stencil a Plate

One for my sis Di, my sis Linda and me, with black plate stands to display and to keep Christmas alive, through our mom, in years to come, which hopefully we’ll pass down to our kids!

Sisters Christmas 2009

More than anything else, I’m thankful for my family at Christmastime. I feel blessed. Yes. Very blessed.

What have you done to preserve your special family heirlooms or memories?

Mom and Grandma Dubs

(Thank you Kelli Novak, for the inspiration! You may also enjoy An Elegant Toga: Grandma’s Tablecloth, or a bit about sisterly love, or Can I please hold your hand? A Mother’s Day Gift. Above photo is my beautiful Mother and her mother, Grandma Dubs.)

I’m linking this post to Kimba’s DIY Day today, too! And adding to Nester’s Year End Party!

72 comments on “Heirlooms: Stencil a Memory!”

  1. Pingback: Home is … Wearing Aprons in the Kitchen and Hilda’s Kuchen!

  2. I absolutely love this piece. Thank you for sharing. I saw it on Skip to My Lou. What a perfect way to keep a memory. Thank you for sharing. BTW, where did you find your stencil paper? Would transparent paper work as well? Please let me know. [email protected]. I’m going to do this for my friend as a late Christmas present. Thanks.

  3. That is such a wonderful idea – you are so amazing Sandy, I would never have thought of that! It’s amazing how the simplest things remind us of people and how we can be recognised by our handwriting. It’s strange to think about the things that we will leave behind that will mean something to others.

  4. What a loving, living gift you shared with your sisiters and their families! I am going to use this idea… my own mother’s handwriting sample is small, but I will enlarge it and share it with my family too! Thank you for the gift this Christmas! Bless you for sharing.

  5. This is a wonderful idea.
    What a great gift to your sisters.

    blessings in 2010

    barbara jean

  6. Crying. Simply beautiful. What a beautiful way to preserve your mother’s memory.

  7. Oh I love this! How special to have her handwritten word! And what a remarkable gift you gave to your sisters…I can imagine their emotional response. I am about to post about a gift my mom gave to me and my sister this year…I will have to let you know when it’s up…such a great idea for any family to pass down.

  8. Pingback: New Year’s Linky Love!

  9. One can tell you are a person with a caring heart for coming up with something like this. I love the idea and hope it brought you some peace this season.

    Happy New Year!

  10. This is a fantastic idea. My mother just passed away December 11. I put a note she quickly jotted to me on my refrigerator to remember her handwriting but this would be a great way to save it forever…or until the children break it. Thanks for this post.

  11. You know of course, this will be cherished by you and you sisters for a lifetime. Another example of how I am constantly amazed by your kindness to others, your chic sense of style, and most of all your warm loving heart. Many Blessings to you and your family.

  12. This is such a wonderful idea. I have so many things that my mom wrote. I even kept a notebook of rummy scores that she kept when we would play.

  13. Hello!

    I just came across your blog last night and wanted to say how much I enjoy it. The Stencil a Memory tutorial is wonderful. Thank you for sharing and I look forward to following you in 2010.

    Happy New Year!

  14. I have to tell you, you words ring so clear in my ears. My two sisters and I lost our mom to cancer 12 days ago. We found out she had cancer on the 9th, brought her home on for hospice on the 12 and lost her on the 13. It was all too fast.

    I’ve decided to photocopy her hand written recipes to make memory/cook books for my sisters and niece. I’ve go a year to get the done just the way I want. Mom was great about writing the name of the person she got the recipe from on the back, so we’ll know which relative they were handed down from. Now that’s heritage in hand writing.

  15. Beautiful idea!! Hope I never forget this one!

  16. This brought tears to my eyes. What an amazingly creative and lovely gift. And it’s after midnight, so it’s officially Christmas! (I’m keeping my husband company while he assembles a dollhouse.)… Merry Christmas, Sandy!

  17. Oh That is the smartest sweetest thing ever. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!
    Hugs, Leanne

  18. What a wonderful idea. Such a great way to preserve a special memory. We don’t have much physically, but we always look at the old family photos around the holidays and recall the special times..most of my older relatives have passed away and I have such fond memories of them.

  19. This was a beautiful idea! It made me cry! What a cherished thing…her penmanship! I’m sure your sisters will be so touched. Does my mom know about this post? Merry Christmas…again! Love you!

  20. Yeah…I get it. I keep running my hands over Andrew’s keyboard, mouse, desk, anything he touched.

  21. Hi Sandy…what a great idea! I love the photo of you and your sisters and know they will love your gift. Have a Merry Christmas!


  22. The plates are such a wonderful idea, Sandy, and something that will be cherished by your sisters. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

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