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Archive for the ‘Unique Angel Crafts’ Category

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My sister-in-law has always been very supportive after the death of my stillborn son Tanner. I remember her sitting on my porch 2 days after his passing and saying, “Don’t they know what happened, why is he mowing the lawn?”.

The world should have stopped after Tanner died and as well as the death of every other wanted baby. Don’t the people around us know the magnitute of our grief? No, and most of us don’t want you too. What is important to us is remembering what should have been. Our angels now have angelversaries to memorialize the moment we found out they left us. Every bereaved parent has a date.

My sister-in-law created her own memorial to honor our sweet angel baby and her nephew. 5 years later and it still remains on their living room wall.

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Those are Tanner’s actual footprints and I have made copies for all family members for a keepsake. Some are placed in a scrapbook, some framed on a wall and others tucked away in bibles or journals.

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Our little angels aren’t here physically, but they are always present mentally. It is true I think of him everyday and everyday I do not cry but the only 12 pictures of him in existence, vividly adorn my memory.

Some family members hold a special place in my heart because of their warmth, love, support and just loving my little angel by honoring him with memorial keepsakes.

Who are the special people in your life and who has created a keepsake memorial honoring your little angel?

Peace Love and Hugs from Above

Diana
http://www.justacloudaway.com

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This angel craft can be given as a sympathy gift on the deceased baby’s angelversary or death date. No parent will ever forget the day their child left this earth. This keepsake gift can be handcrafted by you because of it’s simplicity. Take the time to remember a child forever loved and missed with the bereaved parents on this day.

Materials you will need:

  • A small glass plate
  • hot glue gun
  • magic marker
  • tweezers
  • elmers glue
  • wax paper
  • dried & pressed flowers & foliage
  • pearl necklace or other
  • decoupage
  • gemstones
  • engraving tool (optional)

Choose words for your plate and use marker and write. My handwriting is terrible but it is part of me, a mother of angels.

Take your engraving tool and gently trace over the letters then wipe off marker. This tool is inexpensive and can be foundat local craft stores. If you are not going to purchase this tool, simply take glue and go over the letters and sprinkle with glitter.

Now place pressed flowersand foliage around the plate the way you would like it to look. Flowers can be taken from your gardens, place between wax paper and put several books on top to flatten overnight. i have bought silicon gel to remove the water from the flowers, completing drying them. You can also do this isn a warm oven. Take the glue and adhere flowers with a small paint brush. Tweeters are very helpful to move your flowers.

Apply your angels gemstone to the center of the flowers and let dry for an hour before applying the decoupage substance. This will dry clear, so don’t worry that it is looking foggy.

Decoupage will form a protective seal for easy cleaning of your delicate flower blooms.

I chose hydrangea flowers, foliage from Russian Sage and blue gemstones for my son Tanner’s angel keepsake plate.

I have inherited many of my grandmother’s jewlery and used my hot glue gun to attach a broken strand of her pearls to the backside to hang Tanner’s plate.

These angelversary keepsakes can be hung from windows, on a wall or an angels shadowbox.

A lamp’s finial can even be the location for a deceased child’s keepsake plate.

Remember a friend’s baby on their angelversary, because parents do.

Happy Angelversary Sweet Babies

Peace Love and Hugs from Above

Diana  www.justacloudaway.com

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Angel Jars can be created as memorials for our babies in heaven. This is a simple craft to hold all of the Angel Pennies our sweet children leave us on the streets, sidewalks, doorsteps and other places. Living siblings, cousins or friends can also help create Angel Jars. This craft project may give younger children an outlet to express their love and their grief by creating a memory keepsake.

Here is a list of possible craft supplies you will need:

  • A glass jar with lid
  • Colored paper, stickers, and magazine pictures
  • Elmers glue (dries clear)
  • Paint brush
  • White spray paint
  • Glitter
  • Decoupage
  • Dried flowers
  • A button
  • Cotton balls
  • Needle and thread
  • Hot glue gun
  • Ribbon and cording
  • Piece of cardboard
  • Small piece of fabric

First, select a glass container you would like to use as your Angel Jar. I am using an instant coffee jar.

Next, tear the colored paperand magazine pictures you have selected and adhere with elmer’s glue to the jar making sure to overlap.

I used green and yellow colored craft paper and pictures of flowers from a calendar. Paint on the glue to adhere your dried flowers. The blooms can be gathered from your child’s memory garden or even wildflowers on the side of roads. The smaller the better for this size project. Foliage is also used.

Butterfly stickers were placed onto the torn colored paper.

Don’t worry if the flowers are sticking out a bit, the decoupage solution will seal them in later steps. I wanted to mute and soften the intense colors of the flowers so I used white spray paint. Hold the jar 2 feet away and gently shower the jar with the spray paint. It gives the Angel Jar a cloudy look.

Let the jar dry completely. Now begin designing the lid. Place the lid upside down onto a piece of cardboard and trace. I used a shoe box. 

Cut out the circle and make sure to cut a little smaller to properly fit on your lid. Poke a small hole in the center for a needle and thread later on.

Gather your cotton balls on top and you may hot glue them, but it isn’t needed.

Cut your piece of material a bit larger than your circle. I have selected my grandmothers handkerchief because I just love the delicate fabric and the fact I am able to use them in crafts. Hot glue the fabric at one point and make sure it dries before moving on so you can pull it tight.

Pull tight and glue the next point directly across from the first. Keep moving around until the fabric is all secured.

You will not see this part, so do not worry about how it looks. Place the button you have chosen in the middle and sew into place. I made only one trip through with the thread and hot glued into place on the ugly side. Take your cording, ribbon or rope and glue onto the lid. This will hide any imperfections. I also glued a pink ribbon onto the lid under the cording.

When your Angel Jar is completely dry it is time for glitter and decoupage. I used my paint brush to gently apply the decoupage. This substance will seal your Angel Jar and protect the dried flowers. While still wet, white glitter was applied to the jar.

Because I have many memorial keepsakes for Tanner, I have wrapped one of his necklaces around the lid. It is a charm of a little boy with his gemstone, sapphire.

Angel Jars for Angel Pennies is another way we can create awareness of pregnancy and infant loss and remember our children. They are still a part of our families, even in their absence. Donate your angel pennies to your favorite charity on October 15th ( pregnancy and infant loss awareness day) or your child’s angelversary.

There are many different ways to create Angel Jars. Tear family photographs, gemstone colored papers, family fingerprints, sentimental pictures, pictures of the season your angel passed and others.

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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I loved him before he was conceived and his name is Tanner. My beautiful son was born still and 2 days before we would know of this horrific news, I decided to nickname him Tanner Nanner. His name was determined the day we found out he would wear blue and his name stands at the entrance of his Memory Garden.

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Hearing Tanner’s name, writing Tanner’s name and seeing Tanner’s name is important for me to move forward on my healing journey, with him in my heart.

My husband constructed a name plaque for Tanner’s Memory Garden. It is a simple memorial craft you and your spouse can create for your sweet angel baby. Materials needed:

  • Piece of pressure treated wood, 2x4x whatever length you need
  • A router tool
  • Copper pipe and fittings (connectors)
  • Strong adhesive, I think he used gorilla glue
  • A hacksaw
  • Table saw
  • Vice grip
  • Letter template to trace onto the wood

This project took a few hours because my husband needed the sign for Tanner’s name to be just perfect. He traced the letters onto the pressure treated wood and placed it into the vice to hold it still while he used the router tool to cut the letters. He then cut the access wood with a table saw. With the router tool he made a grove around the perimeter of the wood for the copper pipe to rest nicely. With a hacksaw the copper pipe was cut and fitted around the wood and connected by 90 degree elbows. Gorilla glue was used to permanently bond the pipe. We gently hammered Tanner’s name plaque into the ground and after a few months to dry (pressure treated wood needs to dry for months before you can stain or paint it) we will paint the letters. At the base of his name plaque are beautiful helleborus plants.  A name plaque can even be created for a memory garden at church.

This could be an activity for a grieving father. My husband didn’t talk much and just wanted to fix things with his hands. The mortared stone benches in Tanner’s garden, the name plaque, and the shadowbox were all his way of comforting me and also helping himself on his healing journey.

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Naming a deceased baby loved before conception helps family and friends by enabling them to purchase mementos when they feel helpless. My brother and sister-in-law bought us a wind chime for Tanner’s 1st angelversary with his name and heartfelt words to blow in the wind, making angel-like music for our ears.

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Several girlfriends and women I have met through support groups have named their miscarried and stillborn babies. There are also bereaved families that chose not to give their children names. It is a personal decision.

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Another way to add your child’s name to their memory garden is on an engraved memorial brick.

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The names chosen for my children who have died are just as important as my living child for the mere fact of my belief and faith in heaven and the opportunity to hold my children again someday.

“While we were dreaming of your baby ways

God was planning your heavenly days”

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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Flowers, foliage or berries of plants within your babies’ memory garden or plants received as a sympathy gift can be dried and preserved. Early pregnancy losses, stillbirths and infant death are losses with horrific pain to follow. Flowers are the one thing I wanted delivered everyday after the death of our stillborn son Tanner. I love flowers, the colors, the fragrance and just being surrounded by them. Maybe I thought they would have lifted my spirits. They didn’t, however I was able to be visually content while I grieved for my son.

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Drying flowers did not enter my mind after Tanner died. Since we have 2 memory gardens for him and several house plants given in his honor, I am able to dry flowers and foliage whenever I’d like.

This is an easy craft and doesn’t require any special tools or knowledge. Flowers reminiscent of your sweet child can be framed, placed onto handmade cards, create bookmarks or placed into shadowboxes in honor of your baby. If you have flowers from your babies’ funeral or memorial service and they have dried already,they are unable to use in crafts at this point. The flowers need to be dry and flexible to be pressed or flattened.

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If you do not have a memory garden, pick flowers that remind you of your child, gemstone colors or some favorites you love.

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Make sure they are blotted dry with a paper towel. Place the flowers on wax paper and lay another piece on top. Take several books and lay on top to press. I would keep them overnight so they are nice and flat in the morning.

If the flowers are very delicate I use tweezers to move them. I purchased silicon gel to dry my flowers in the microwave within 30 seconds. If you do not purchase drying gel just keep them in the wax paper for several weeks. It is important to remove all excess moisture from the flowers and foliage before creating your tribute memorial. When removing flowers from the gel, use a paint brush to remove the excess gel.

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The flowers I’ve chosen are Helleborus (the large purple blooms), Purple-Leafed Plum, Daffodils, Vinca and the foliage of Loropetalum and Gardenia.

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I love to emboss and have invested in a light board, embossing tools and templates. You could easily write your child’s name, use stamps and ink, or purchase scrapbooking or wooden letters. A decorative corner punch was also used.

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A frame, paint brush, glue and backdrop paper is needed to finish your angel babies’ artwork. Just a dab of glue is painted on the backside of the flowers to hold. If you have a  steady hand, the glue isn’t necessary.

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There are some many wonderful crafts to utilize the flowers from your babies funeral, memorial services or those given as a sympathy gift. The blooms provide a tangible memento of your angel baby to frame, create scrapbook pages, handmade cards, or decoupage onto tile and decorative plates.

Preserve your angels’ flowers as a keepsake reflecting your love and their precious life

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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The art of Scrapbooking should be relaxing and therapeutic. Documenting pregnancy loss and other baby related deaths through scrapbooking is an activity bringing people together to share thoughts, feelings and love for children always in our hearts.

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If you are not an avid scrapbooker, these freestyle techniques and ideas may motivate you to start a few pages for your little angel. The craft of scrapbooking will allow you to connect with your inner most thoughts and compose a unique piece of art honoring your baby. Try to get the hang of it first by scrapbooking some favorite images of your animals or vacation pictures. Torn pieces of paper can come together creating masterpieces forever treasured.

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Here is my deformed 6 legged spider my husband laughed at. Tearing paper may help us figure out the proper anatomy of bugs.

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Poinsetta flowers and leaves were torn for Christmas scrapbook pages and then inked.

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You can create beautiful, 2 page scrapbooking layouts just by tearing  craft paper.

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Here are some red roses made from crumbled paper and then inked with white for added dimension. How fun is that and it’s so easy your husband can participate too.

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Simple frames can be torn so you don’t even need a straight edge or scissors.

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The green torn strips provide a unique area for my comments and journaling. It gives the entire page more depth and interest.

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I made a “Thinking about You” card for my friend who miscarried her much wanted baby. Patterned paper is also wonderful to incorporate into your tearing sessions.

Let’s rip and tear scrapbooking paper today! I say scrapbooking because that is the technical term for paper acid and lignin free to last generations. I really could care less because if I like a paper enough I will use it regardless of its properties.

I do not throw any little bit of paper in the trash. It can be used somehow on a handmade card, scrapbook page, a framed picture, or in an altered book. Torn or ripped paper adds dimension and texture to your artwork, plus you can do this watching HGTV (my favorite channel), this really is so easy, try it.

Not only is the art of ripping or tearing paper a stress reliever, it creates unique and one of a kind designs. You can rip:

  • Frames
  • Backgrounds
  • Animals
  • Clouds
  • Grass
  • Flowers (love this one, wonder why)
  • Shapes to journal on
  • and anything you desire

To add even more interest to your torn pieces, try inking the feathered ends because the frayed surface loves the ink, adhering nicely. Pastel chalk is another option to create a softer appearance around the edges. Since I was an art major 18 years ago, my acrylic paints come in handy to soften my torn edges. No it hasn’t dried up after all these years, probably because you pay for what you get, $$$$.

To further add texture, crumbled the paper, straighten back and then apply ink. I love applying ink using the thimble like applicator with a sponge on the tip. This thing a ma jiggy puts the ink directly where you need it, so there is acurracy and no waste.

Pregnancy and infant loss are devastating. Take time to think about how your precious angels have touched you and your family. The season your child passed is also a significant time to include in your scrapbook pages. Zodiac signs and symbols, music and  other ideas can also help you create beautiful tributes honoring the baby always in your hearts.

Beginner scrapbookers need to start somewhere. Let your heavenly children guide your pages, expressing yourself through them. One of a kind memorial pages can be created to honor the precious lives sadly missed.

Sympathy Card

Peace, Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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If you have lost a baby or early pregnancy loss, spreading awareness is recognized by displaying pink and blue ribbons. I will show you how to create magnetic handmade ribbons, honoring your precious baby.

This craft is not difficult and could  be given to grieving parents as a remembrance tribute or Love Memorial™ for their baby.

Materials needed:

  • Cardboard
  • Trace paper or thin paper
  • Soft pencil
  • Something to cut on
  • Exacto blade
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • White, Pink or Blue yarn
  • Stickers (blue and pink)
  • White paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Glitter (blue and pink)
  • Decoupage

You will find that other materials will work just as well. These are just suggestions. This craft project will take no more than 2 hours, not including drying time.

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On your piece of trace paper, sketch out a ribbon. You may even find one to actually trace, being the desired size. It doesn’t have to be perfect, we can adjust later.

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Now darken the ribbon, outlining the shape.

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Flip the trace paper over onto your piece of cardboard or another sturdy board. Go over the ribbon with your pencil so the image is now on the cardboard.

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Lay the cardboard on a cutting surface. Gently take your exacto or razor blade to cut out your babies ribbon. Don’t worry about rough edges.

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Take a nail file to smooth the edges. It won’t really matter because we will cover it later. I am just a perfectionist at times.

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This is where we personalize the ribbons for our children. Yes, the colors should be pink and blue pastels, but doesn’t need to be a solid color. The season your child passed, their zodiac sign or gemstone, the nursery color, and other elements can help you choose stickers reminiscent of your precious baby. Make sure half is blue and the other pink. Let the stickers hang over the sides, we’ll fix it. Turn the ribbon over and take your exacto blade or scissors to trim off any excess sticker.

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Place your ribbon on a paper plate of your choice. I favor the elephant style plates. This is done to catch any excess glitter, not to waste an ounce. You may want to place a small amount of glue on the plate and mix in a drop of water. This consistency is easier to work. Any areas not covered with a sticker, paint with glue. Only do one color glitter at a time so they won’t mix. Both the glitters I have used are mostly white with hints of blue or pink. Sprinkle the glitter and gently tap off into the plate and return to glitter container. Now do the same for the other side.

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Now choose a yarn that is thick enough to completely cover the edges of the cardboard. You want to start this process when you have uninterrupted time. Begin the yarn at an intersection, shown above. Carefully glue and push the yarn onto the glue. This will take a few minutes.

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If you want to seal the ribbon for protection, paint on the decoupage substance and let dry for a few  hours. Turn your beautiful ribbon onto the reverse side to glue on magnets.

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October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, with the 15th being the actual day. If creating this craft is not possible, ribbons are available for purchase on the Internet.

Enjoy making your angel baby’s ribbon. We are  creating the awareness our children deserve.

For other simple crafts visit Easy Scrapbooking Ideas for Memorial Pages.

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana 

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shadowbox-2-w.jpgWhen your child becomes an angel, gifts of sympathy, keepsakes, Love Memorials™, and mementos are given to comfort bereaved families of pregnancy and infant loss. Shadowboxes can easily be constructed to place all of your deceased child’s special and unique keepsakes.

I never wanted to put anything away after the stillbirth of our son Tanner. He has changed my life beyond words and the thought of his keepsakes and special mementos not being displayed was not an option. His beautiful shadowbox hangs in our family room for all to see, designed by me and built by my husband.

My husband is my handyman and I have the creative brain that never takes a break. The style of our family room is more relaxed and casual where Tanner’s box is displayed. It is the shabby chic ambiance, in other words, placing affordable findings using the principals and elements of good design.

Some fathers of pregnancy and infant loss may find comfort in building a special box for their angels. Grieving between men and woman are so different and participation in one activity honoring a deceased child could give a platform for open communication. Your baby’s box will have a piece of mommy and daddy in its creation.

The materials used were; a window, odd lumber, screws, new hinges, malted milkshake paint and bead-board. We found these treasures on the curbside or in my husband’s uncle’s barn. The tools used were; a level, tape measure, paint brush, skill saw, power drill and open fire. Yes, an open fire was used to burn the hinges. Being new, they were a bit on the shiny side and did not have the desired patina. We threw them into the fire to singe and they turned out nicely.

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This shadowbox is a very sacred piece of art. It contains, one of a kind memorials, his small amount of ashes, the clothes he wore (with a little blood stain) and all of the things only for my little baby Tanner.

The grief of losing Tanner was also the energy provided to create many memorials for him, including a memory garden.

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Part of our healing journey was to “do” things honoring him. If you do not feel this is an activity to be accomplished with ease, ask a friend or family member to help design and construct the shadowbox. Maybe mommy and daddy could shop for just the right color paint for your baby’s box. Other suggestions are embellishments to adhere to the exterior of the box like flat wood cutouts available at craft stores. Stars, fish, moons, rattles, flowers, letters and many others can be painted and attached to the outside of the shadowbox to personalize for your baby. Here is a shadowbox smaller in size.

If your baby died early in pregnancy as miscarriage, ectopic or molar pregnancy or other tragic losses you can still provide a place for their things. Please visit other articles to help you, “Sky Journals” and “Zodiac Signs for Pregnancy Loss“.

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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Sympathy Card “Love Memorials™” are very personalized sympathy gifts given to comfort bereaved families grieving the death of someone significant. This gift comes straight from the heart without the possibility of ever being repeated. A “Love Memorial™” can be sent immediately after the death, on death anniversaries, angelversaries, birthdays, approximate pregnancy due dates or holidays. There is no timeline for a gift honoring an adult or baby who is very much missed. 

At least three people are involved in the creation of a “Love Memorial™”; the person grieving, the deceased individual and you. There are no rules to compose a “Love Memorial™”, only the depth of thought for its conception. When you take the time to understand the relationship of the bereaved and loved one passed, a precious and unique keepsake can be composed. 

“Love Memorials™” can be a simple handmade card, poems, journal entries, or scrapbook pages. Other forms of “Love Memorials™” are virtual memorials, memory gardens http://justacloudaway.com/nav-sidebar-ideas/garden.html  or drawings. 

A handmade card is a wonderful and considerate way to send a heartfelt “Love Memorial™”. The card located above was created for a couple who lost their daughter Abby at 22 weeks gestation due to miscarriage. The photograph of a golden sunrise, the yellow butterfly and lemony cloud the angel is resting on, symbolizes the gemstone citrine. Abby’s approximate due date was December second, providing the information needed to help create a card reflecting the color of her gemstone. To find your baby’s zodiac sign, symbol and gemstone select the category “Scrapbooking for Bereaved Families” on this blog and scroll down. The flower and butterfly stickers and angel baby on the cloud are included in the Just a Cloud Away Remembrance Kit for pregnancy and infant loss, available here http://justacloudaway.com/kits/index.html 

If you have a talent for writing, compose a “Love Memorial™” in the form of a letter or poem. This type of gift would be highly treasured because of the amount of thought required for its creation. My girlfriend created a “Love Memorial™” for us after the stillbirth of our son Tanner. A poem called, “If he could tell you…” http://justacloudaway.com/nav-sidebar-personal/ifhecould.html. At my request, I had her also read the poem at our Memory Garden Dedication for Tanner. My girlfriend was also a new mother of a 3 month old when she composed this comforting poem that touched my heart. Her words also reflected a very real pain for her too. 

If you are creative and have either an organic or symmetrical style, try designing a “Love Memorial™” in the form of scrapbook pages. This “Love Memorial™” created from your perspective could comfort bereaved families while providing a memorial keepsake  reflecting  hope and love. My sister-in-law created a beautiful “Love Memorial™” for us honoring little Tanner, http://justacloudaway.com/nav-sidebar-ideas/basket.html. One could even create scrapbook pages from the perspective of the loved one that passed, reassuring the bereaved that they are doing just fine and love them deeply. 

Decoupage is another medium to use in creating “Love Memorials™”. Decoupage usually comes in a plastic container and has a consistency of glue. I created a “Love Memorial™” for myself. 2 years after my son was stillborn my dear uncle was diagnosed with cancer. He fought a tough battle until the end. Before he passed, with his eyes closed, holding my hand whispered, “I am going to teach Tanner how to fish”. I am crying even now while typing. This vision was created and memorialized http://justacloudaway.com/nav-sidebar-ideas/other.html on a decorative plate and charger plate to hang on my wall. 

Virtual memorials are another way to express your support for bereaved families. By working through the logistics and set up of an online memorial, unnecessary stress for bereaved family members are alleviated. These “Love Memorials™” allow you to write short stories, poems or anything else about the deceased or those grieving the loss. Memorials can be personalized by background colors, music, and significant photos, making this online tribute unique http://www.catholicmemorials.com/default.asp. 

Typical sympathy gifts usually involve you and the individual grieving the loss, such as a sympathy card. Sending such gifts would be fine if it is distressing or uncomfortable to send a “Love Memorial™”. After some time passes, ideas and thoughts may emanate helping to compose a “Love Memorial™” for your friend or family member. These types of sympathy gifts will be truly cherished because you haven taken time to think about their special relationship with the deceased and the undying love within their hearts.

Peace Love and Hugs from Above  www.justacloudaway.com

Diana

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