ScrapHappy December: Wrapping a Starfish

What’s a Scrap Happy post?

It’s an opportunity or an excuse to make something entirely out of scraps. Our host, Kate, of Tall Tales from Chiconia, encourages the use of scraps to make something useful or beautiful or both.

If you would like to join us, please see the details at the end of this post.

Last month I helped put together a volunteer appreciation afternoon for Front Door Communities/Lifted Spirits. My friend Mary came up with the idea of a starfish keyring as a small thank you gift for our volunteers. The keyrings came packaged in a simple black box.

This is where my scraps come in. I had exactly two sheets of this autumn-themed paper, which I won at a scrapbooking event several years ago. I wanted to include “thank you” somewhere on the gift and came up with the idea of hand-stamping “thank you” and a couple of small stars on a band of paper. I needed 30 bands in all and had just enough to wrap 30 boxes, with enough left over for one bookmark!

Scrap-happy bookmark.

I assembled drawstring bags with the boxed keyring and the thank you band, then added small cinnamon-scented pine cones to help the box stand upright.

Gift bag and pine cones

Small bag, pine cones, black box and a strip of paper before stamping

This is what they looked like assembled on a tray.

Volunteer Appreciation gifts

Why starfish?  Here’s the story:

A young girl was walking along a beach upon which thousands of starfish had been washed up during a storm. When she came to each starfish, she would pick it up, and throw it back into the ocean.

She had been doing this for some time when a man approached her and said, “why are you doing this?  You can’t save all these starfish. You can’t begin to make a difference!”

She bent down, picked up another starfish, and tossed it into the ocean. Then she looked up at the man and replied, “Well, I made a difference to that one.”

Positive Promotions starfish key ring

Boxed starfish keyring with a parable

Our volunteers make a difference

These small crafty projects are about all I have time for of late, but they’re satisfying nonetheless.

If you would like to join us, please let Kate know.

Wishing you a happy, scrappy holiday!

Starfish Keyring: One Person Can Make a Difference

Starfish Keyring: One Person Can Make a Difference

Check out the links below on December 15th to see other scrap-happy posts.

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancy, Kerry, Claire, Jean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline, and Sue L.

28 thoughts on “ScrapHappy December: Wrapping a Starfish

  1. I love the story behind these gifts Alys and I’m sure all the volunteers were delighted with both their keyring and the way it was packaged.
    Happy Christmas to you and yours x


  2. Oh, Alys! What a perfect way to celebrate the special volunteers at Lifted Spirits! I’m certain that every volunteer appreciated your creativity and thoughtfulness. The starfish will be a tangible reminder of this beautiful story. Thank you so much for sharing your words, your creativity, and your loving heart with so many! YOU make a difference every day, dear Alys! 💗


  3. That’s such a great story and your ongoing work is testament to that too. Love these little gifts and especially finished off with the usual dab of Alys care that makes everything just that little bit extra special too 🙂 The keyrings are so special too – a daily reminder to the volunteers because we know it’s not always easy!

    And ha, Alys. You reminded me I did have a potential scrap happy post – I made some more bookmarks from the offcuts from painting papers and inky left overs and they are lying about on my desk …… I suppose there is always next month 🙂


  4. Alys, it really does mean something when a gift comes nicely packaged. Those are really beautiful. I like the keychains and the story as well. A little inspiration never hurts, especially when the problem seems so large.


    • The problem is daunting. I’m sure you see it as well in DC. I’m feeling so down in the dumps today with the current state of affairs, that I find escaping into my volunteer work and making a difference in at least one life, helps me stay sane. I owe you a longer note, Lisa. I’ve been too busy for too long. I hope you are doing well. I’m sure you are keeping your head down and counting the days. Sigh. xo


  5. These are lovely volunteer gifts, Alys. I would imagine these scrapping projects are very therapeutic and relaxing to you as you define their composition and lovingly produce! Very nice. 😀


  6. Well, this is a scrap above and beyond, dear, sweet Alys!! You always add that special touch to everything you do. These are wonderful and I’m sure everyone loved how they were presented. Hugs and Christmas Love. My cards just went out this morning. Behind again. ;(

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s a small thing, but impactful. I started with two sheets of paper, sorted out the width then using math…good grief, did I just say “math”, figured out how wide they could be to get the thirty that I needed. I love using my staming platform. I’m still tickled by the design. I can’t wait to see you. I’m counting the days now. Squeee

      Liked by 1 person

      • !!! eeeep! I’m also counting the days. Currently, with the windchill (you factor in the wind and temp and it’s what it ‘feels like’ to bare skin) is -27 C Ohhh and get this, the high on Friday when I leave is -29, LOL ! Phoenix here I come and running into your big hug !! mwah! xox


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