Creating Smiles, One Child at a Time

Operation Smile #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #everybitofwonderful #medicalmissions

At Close To My Heart, we are passionate not only about crafting and memory keeping, but about spreading joy wherever we can. As a part of this endeavor, we’ve partnered with Operation Smile™ for over a decade to help create smiles, one kid at a time.

Sadly, there are millions of children across the world who are unable to smile, due to a cleft lip or palate. A cleft palate is an opening or split in the roof of the mouth that occurs when the tissue doesn’t fuse together during prenatal development and often includes a split (or cleft) in the upper lip. Many children affected by this condition do not have access to adequate surgical care to restore normal function to their mouths and tend to suffer from various complications, including malnourishment, speech impediments, and even social stigma.

Operation Smile™ is an international non-profit organization dedicated to helping children all over the world receive safe treatment for cleft lips and palates, allowing them to lead healthier, happier lives. By providing access to timely surgical care, dental care, and medical equipment, children in more than 30 countries are able to receive the treatment they need.  

Operation Smile #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #everybitofwonderful #medicalmissions

One surgery can be done for just $250 and takes minutes to perform, but the need always outweigh the resources available. Many families will travel a considerable distance—sometimes on foot—with the hope that their child can receive treatment, and often, there are so many children in need of treatment that volunteer doctors and nurses aren’t able to attend to everyone. Many families will go to multiple Operation Smile™ mission sites before they get the gift of a life changing surgery. On top of this, many children require multiple surgeries before their cleft lip or palate can be fully repaired.

Operation Smile™ relies primarily on charitable donations to acquire supplies and support medical volunteers as they provide treatment to children who desperately need it. To help raise funds for this life changing charity, we offer a special stamp set each year, where $7 USD are taken from the proceeds of each sale and donated directly to Operation Smile™. This year, the stamp set we’ve dedicated towards this effort is the Every Bit of Wonderful set.

Operation Smile #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #everybitofwonderful #medicalmissions #cardmaking

This delightful floral set includes a variety of flower images and heartwarming sentiments, perfect for any project. From cards to layouts, this special stamp set is an ideal addition to bring some extra beauty to your artwork.

Operation Smile #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #everybitofwonderful #medicalmissions #scrapbooking

Along with this beautiful stamp set, we also have two limited edition Operation Smile™ t-shirts available for purchase on the Close To My Heart website! For each t-shirt purchase, we donate $5 USD directly to Operation Smile.

In addition to the stamp set and t-shirts, for the next week only, through October 6, we’re also offering a special CTMH Kids Crafts SVG file for anyone who donates at least $1 to Operation Smile™ through our website, here. This file is compatible with most standard cutting machines and is a super cute way to add some extra flair to a layout, album, or shirt! You’ll only be able to receive this SVG for your donation through 11:59 pm (MDT) on October 6, so if you want to make a donation, now is a perfect time!

CTMH Kids Crafts #ctmh #closetomyheart #ctmhkidscrafts #borntoshine #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #storytelling #photoalbum #minialbum

We also offer the option of rounding up your order total to the next dollar for an Operation Smile™ donation, or you can visit our website and donate directly to Operation Smile. Even the smallest donation of a few cents can have a big impact and adds up quick!

We’re proud to announce that, so far this year, we’ve been able to raise $167,274.68 USD thanks to the incredible generosity of our customers and Consultants! We are thrilled to see the selflessness and kindness demonstrated by each donation to Operation Smile™, and we look forward to being able to offer continued support to this amazing organization as they provide treatment to children who desperately need it.

Operation Smile #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #everybitofwonderful #medicalmissions

To help support this cause, you can purchase the Every Bit of Wonderful stamp set or t-shirt, round up your order, or get on our site and make a donation directly to Operation Smile.

We want to bring as much joy as possible into this world, and we’re honored to be able to partner with Operation Smile™ to be able to bring smiles to children’s faces all around the world.

12″ x 12″ Every Bit of Wonderful Page
D1977 My Acrylix® Every Bit of Wonderful Stamp Set, X8015S Lovely Paper Packet + Sticker Sheet, X6036 Ballerina Cardstock, X6048 Blue Belle Cardstock, X6035 Lemonade Cardstock, X6045 Sage Cardstock, X6051 Sundance Cardstock, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, Z6519 Blue Belle Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6520 Flamingo Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6504 Sage Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2848 Sapphire Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6521 Sundance Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z7001 Blue Belle Glitter Gems, Z4213 Silver Embellishing Thread, Z1799 Silver Shimmer Trim, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape, Z2089 Glue Dots® Micro Dots

3⅛” x 8″ You Are Beautiful Card
D1977 My Acrylix® Every Bit of Wonderful Stamp Set, X8015S Lovely Paper Packet + Sticker Sheet, X6036 Ballerina Cardstock, X6051 Sundance Cardstock, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, Z6519 Blue Belle Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6520 Flamingo Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6504 Sage Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z6521 Sundance Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z7001 Blue Belle Glitter Gems, Z4213 Silver Embellishing Thread, Z3293 Clear Shimmer Brush, Z3784 Bright Bitty Beads, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z4259 Stitched Square Frames Thin Cuts, Z4313 Square Shaker Window Foam + Acetate, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape, Z2089 Glue Dots® Micro Dots, Die-cutting & Embossing Machine, Cricut® Artbooking Collection, Cricut® Basic Shapes

Cricut® Shapes:

Basic Shapes

Leave a comment

Operation Smile™: Consultants in Santa Cruz, Bolivia

On October 11, 2018, a few of our Close To My Heart Consultants embarked on what was to become an experience of a lifetime. They traveled for 20+ hours to arrive in Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where they were immediately given instructions and put to work. After many long days in hot, humid, and very humbling conditions, all of these women, who are our Upline, Downline, Team members, friends, and family, would gladly do it all over again!

For over a decade, Close To My Heart has partnered with and supported the work of Operation Smile™, an international medical charity that provides free surgeries to children and young adults in developing countries born with cleft lip, cleft palate or other dental and facial conditions.

In an effort to increase our support for this cause, Close To My Heart hosted the Share a Smile Challenge last year. The winners of the contest would earn a spot as a non-medical volunteer in the Santa Cruz, Bolivia Operation Smile™ international medical mission, from October 11 through the 19. Announced in our North American Convention, the prize winners were none other than the generous and tender-hearted Avis Latimer, Holly Veselenak, and Brenda Rose. Canadian Consultant Jennifer Smith was awarded a fourth spot on the mission due to the extraordinary amount of donations brought in by her artwork donation at our Convention. (To read more about the Share a Smile Challenge and its winners, visit Operation Smile™ for the Win!)

We’ve reached out to all of our medical mission volunteers and collected their thoughts and insights into what it was like to be part of something so awe-inspiring. Here are their experiences:

Operation Smile Consultant Report #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #ctmhoperationsmile #scrapbooking #scrapbook #charity #medicalmission
Avis Latimer (Glenn Dale, Maryland)

“I’ve always wanted to do a mission trip but figured it would happen once I retired. I wasn’t sure what kind of trip it would be, I just knew that I wanted to help others and broaden my personal perspective. Now, I know my skill set and wasn’t sure how I’d find a fit, but, as always, when you let go and let God take over, amazing things happen—like earning an Operation Smile mission trip to Bolivia! I wasn’t prepared for the wave of emotions that would overwhelm me…”   continue reading

Operation Smile Consultant Report #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #ctmhoperationsmile #scrapbooking #scrapbook #charity #medicalmissionHolly Veselenak (Macomb, Michigan)

“It blows my mind, still to this day, that I went on a life changing mission for Operation Smile to help little babies, young toddlers, young teens/tweens and even adults, when in actuality, my life was changed. I’ll never forget landing in Santa Cruz with my mission buddies, Avis Latimer, Brenda Rose, and Jennifer Smith. We had no idea what we were about to embark on and we were all so humbled and blessed to have been the ones chosen to go…”  continue reading

Operation Smile Consultant Report #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #ctmhoperationsmile #scrapbooking #scrapbook #charity #medicalmissionBrenda Rose (East Bethel, Minnesota)

“Some time back, Bill and Kathy Magee spoke at our Convention. I fell in love with Operation Smile, and I respect every little thing the organization and volunteers do to help children and adults that so desperately need it. It has been a dream for me to go on an Operation Smile mission…”   continue reading

One of the great things about this cause is that we don’t all have to leave our house and fly around the world to help these beautiful children. All they need from us is to make donations to make the medical missions possible. Close To My Heart is fully committed to helping Operation Smile™ receive these donations. Did you know that it takes as little as $240 to perform one of these life changing surgeries?

“Operations Smile changes lives. We can help by simply rounding up our order or buying a t-shirt or stamp set. So simple, yet it allows Operation Smile the ability to continue the very important work they do!”
Brenda Rose

With each donation from you, whether from rounding up your order or by purchasing the Operation Smile stamp set, My Acrylix® Your Best Self, you are making a difference in someone’s life.

Operation Smile Consultant Report #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #ctmhoperationsmile #scrapbooking #scrapbook #charity #medicalmission #beyourselfstampset

You may never get to meet or see them, but these children will never forget your generous heart. To learn more about how you can help Operation Smile™, talk to your Consultant today or find one in your area by visiting and clicking Find a Consultant under the What We Do tab.

“If you’re looking for a charity to rally behind and support, this is it. You are impacting not only one life, but the lives of those who surround this person. We are making a difference one smile at a time.”
Holly Veselenak

Thank you for helping us make a difference! And a special thank you to Avis Latimer, Holly Veselenak, Brenda Rose, and Jennifer Smith for your continued support and extraordinary commitment to Operation Smile™!

“In the end, it’s about having faith, hope, love and doing what we are each led to do in order to improve the life of another.”
Avis Latimer

(Due to scheduling conflicts, Jennifer Smith was unavailable to contribute to this post.)


12″ x 12″ The Faces of Moses…Layout
Avis Latimer
X7242B I Heart Us Paper Packet, X7242D I Heart Us Coordinating Cardstock, X7242C I Heart Us Complements, Z4270 I Heart Us Sequins

12″ x 12″ Smiles for Miles Layout
Holly Veselenak
X7241B So Much Happy Paper Packet, X7241D So Much Happy Coordinating Cardstock, X7241C So Much Happy Complements, Z4254 So Much Happy Puffy Stickers, Z4271 So Much Happy Washi Tape, Z3230 Flip Flaps™ Memory Protectors™ 3″ × 4″

12″ x 12″ Be the Reason Someone Smiles Today
Brenda Rose
X7240B Something Fierce Paper Packet, X7240D Something Fierce Coordinating Cardstock, X7240C Something Fierce Complements, Z4221 Mink Twine

Leave a comment