Welcome to my blog!

I invite you to share your thoughts, but I do ask you to keep your comments appropriate. I won't feel badly about removing comments that are offensive. That doesn't mean you can't be honest—I want honest feedback—but I also like to fill my life with positive people and positive things. I guess that means if you have to say something negative, say it nicely! :-)

More than anything, I want you to leave here feeling inspired and valued—and like we've had a fun chat!

 

Wednesday
Oct012014

Stamp, Chat, and Snack with Shelli October CASE Event

I’ve been sharing a Stamp, Chat, and Snack CASE event on my blog every month since convention, and this is my October event, which features a project for November. Since November is a month of thanksgiving in North America, it's only appropriate that my event features projects made from Another Thank You Stamp Set.

Guests at this party will make this vibrant Many Thanks card—in fact, they will make two of these cards. Be sure to point out to your guests that they can go home and keep making more of these cards—in lots of different colors—that will work for every and any thank-you they need to send!

Here's my invite information:

Stamp, Chat, and Snack (SCS) at Shelli’s
Thursday, October 23

Saying thank you is always a great idea, but this time of year it’s especially appropriate. Come create two thank-you cards to have on hand whenever you need them!

And here’s the Buy & Provide information so the demonstrator knows what she needs to provide for guests to make two free thank-you cards:

Demonstrator Provides

  • Another Thank You Stamp Set
  • Blackberry Bliss Cardstock
  • Whisper White Cardstock
  • Striped Scallop Thinlits Die
  • Envelope Liners Framelits Die
  • Blackberry Bliss Classic Stampin’ Pad
  • Circle Card Thinlits Die
  • Blackberry Bliss 3/8" Satin Stitched Ribbon
  • Linen Thread
  • Park Lane Designer Series Paper

Because the whole focus of these events (besides creating projects that people NEED and will USE) is to show the versatility of a single stamp set, I’d suggest that at your event you show people this blog; I’ve shared several projects you can make from the Another Thank You set.

Then, instead of making one of my projects, you could create an additional project or two to show at your event, which just reinforces the idea of the versatility of this stamp set. Display or pass those projects around so your guests can touch and feel them!

I love this time of year—especially the emphasis on being grateful, and I have plenty of people I can send these cards to. 


Monday
Sep292014

The Bridegans' New Home

We just got back from a great weekend with the Bridegans!

Things started off a little hectic and stressful—knowing we were coming, they had scheduled family pictures. They scheduled them on purpose so we could be there to help out. In fact, both sets of grandparents were there helping, and it was probably a good thing; it took all of us to keep tabs on those two little two-year-olds! (Although we did manage to snap a few quick pics to share with you here; official photographs are Shanna's to share.)

Watching Shanna this weekend reminded me that being a mom of a two-year-old is a handful, but being a mom of two two-year-olds is absurd! (That’s Sterling’s word.) Whether we were home (which was most of the time) or eating out or grocery shopping, those two were always going! They’re adorable, but you can’t let them out of your sight! They’re up and down and all over the place. . . they’re climbing and playing and pushing and pulling. . . . they just never stop!

We loved the time we spent with the babies (toddlers now!), but we also really looked forward to naptime and the evenings after they went to bed. It was nice to just catch up with Shanna and Jared and see how happy they are.

Both Sterling and I commented when we left this morning how much easier it was to leave them this time. All four of them picked us up at the airport (the twins were so cute—the minute we climbed into the van, you could tell they were thrilled to have us there) and dropped us off. In the past, saying goodbye has been heartwrenching; I’ve sobbed as we’ve left. This little family has moved three times in eight months, and it’s always felt so unsettled when we’ve said goodbye. I’ve felt like we were leaving them all alone.

This time was different. Shanna and Liam went to the specialist a week or so ago, and she’s thrilled with the progress Liam is making. They love their new house and their new neighbors, and they are close to Jared’s family. We can tell they finally feel like they’re in a place that they can call home! As a parent, you’ve gotta love it when your children find their home.

 

Wednesday
Sep242014

In Good Hands

I know I say this every year—but I MEAN it every year! Just finished our annual Advisory Board Retreat, and all I can say is it’s going to be a fabulous year and our demonstrators are definitely in good hands!

It was a pleasure to get to know these six new board members better. They are bright, thoughtful women, and I could tell as we interacted that they’ve already established great relationships as a group, that they share a desire to do all they can to help Stampin’ Up! and their fellow demonstrators and that they want to make a difference.

Much of our time during the two-day retreat was spent in a variety of meetings. We meet with individuals from the corporate team, demonstrators training, product development finance, and sales; board members also got to spend time on the pickline and chat with call center and business development agents.

While I enjoyed it all, one of my favorite parts of the retreat was, of course, My Favorite Things. I typically host board members at my home for a casual (we’re usually wearing jammies!) dinner, and following dinner, we usually spend a few minutes getting to know each other by sharing our favorite things. What a great way to gain insight into these amazing demonstrators—I love seeing this personal side of them. 

Sunday
Sep212014

Home for the Holidays--Founder's Circle Retreat

Best Founder’s Circle Retreat ever!

At least one of the best, that’s for sure. And everyone I talked to agreed.

I think one of the reasons it was so amazing was because of the theme. I mean, who doesn’t love the holidays?

The minute we walked into the welcome dinner, I knew we were in for something special. The room was simply amazing—bright and golden and elegant, a formal atmosphere. Hopefully our demonstrators felt special when they walked in.

And that holiday feeling continued throughout the week. The gathering place (called The Holiday Lodge) created a warm, welcome environment where we gathered together throughout the entire retreat. Wreaths on the windows, leather couches, cozy pillows and blankets, pine boughs and Christmas trees, holiday music playing in the background. . . every minute I spent in the Lodge just got me more and more excited for the holidays!

All the gifts that we gave (and that was a LOT of gifts) were gift wrapped—can you imagine the time it took for our staff to wrap all those gifts? There were pillow gifts every day, as well as daily gifts that demonstrators received in the lodge. The hand-stamped tags and festive packaging on the gifts were definitely a heartfelt expression of appreciation for our demonstrators.

And all that wasn’t enough, the opportunity to visit with demonstrators while stamping was the perfect finishing touch. Sara and I spent most of our time in the lodge, chatting with whomever was around. Many of the demonstrators took excursions, went shopping, and relaxed by the pool during the free days (Thursday and Saturday), dropping in to have a holiday treat, stamp, and just relax whenever they could. I loved the opportunity to chat with just about everyone (I think), although I never get as much time as I want with everyone!

Thursday night was our swap and business share. . . cozy (everyone wears jammies) and warm and casual. Lots of treats and lots of sharing of great projects and business ideas!

Friday was the visit to our manufacturing plant in Kanab—always a highlight for me. This year the demonstrators had a special surprise for our Kanab employees—they had created and signed a thank-you banner and brought gifts. The employees gather together to welcome the demonstrators as they get off the buses, and they were so touched when the demonstrators handed them favors and scrapbook pages and other thoughtful gifts. Demonstrators took a tour, ate lunch with the employees, and did a Make & Take. That night, most of us went to “The Wizard of Oz” at the Tuacahn Amphitheatre, a simply amazing outdoor theater! It was unusually warm (the weather cooperated throughout the entire retreat); I even took off my light cardigan because I was warm, which is unheard of for me.

On Saturday, Sara and I invited everyone who was around to go to lunch with us. . . kind of a spontaneous demonstrator lunch. A couple dozen of us walked to the restaurant, and Sara and I got to introduce many demonstrators to a Utah favorite—Café Rio.

Last night was the closing event—another group dinner (this one was more traditional, with plaid and pine and wood),  a white elephant gift exchange, and an evening spent stamping and decorating trees for the Festival of the Trees, a popular philanthropic event in Salt Lake City that benefits the Primary Children’s Medical Center.

I enjoyed ending the event with a service project because it tied in so well with the theme—sharing and caring and giving. That’s really what the holidays are all about. The entire retreat captured that idea so well, and everyone I talked to said they had enjoyed it so much and didn’t want it to end!

All I can say now (except thanks to our amazing Special Events team and home office staff who helped out) is bring on the holidays!

 

Friday
Sep192014

Sara and I are at Founder's Circle in St. George this weekend and are having a delightful time with many of our leading demonstrators! I'll post more about this weekend, but I thought I'd share the swap that we (Sara and I went in together on them) handed out at Founder's Circle. 

Enjoy!