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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

aaah, the convention memories!!! I got to experience an "Island Paradise" in Salt Lake City

Who knew that Salt Lake City could house an Island Paradise for stampers? I was very fortunate to be able to attend a gathering for stampers co=hosted by my up-up-up-up-upline (yes, that's pretty far up!) during convention. In the Stampin' UP! world, you can be in "formal business" contact with people as far as 5 lines up or down from you which meant that I got to meet my "great-great-great SU grandmother" this year at convention. To be truthful, I didn't even realize it but she is one of the very first demonstrators who ever signed up 20 years ago when Stampin' UP! got started and she is a real life aunt to Shelli (our CEO and co-founder) so that was a fun thing for me to get to do.

Anyway, she hosted a gathering for her downline in cooperative with several other ladies, and I had a wonderful time enjoying a special "stamp camp" for us and having a lot at some great display boards and projects they put together for us to see as well. Here are a couple of photos of the display boards which I was able to snap before zooming back over to the convention center for a swap I was hosting. Made for a bit of a rush but I was still glad to be able to participate!

The gathering was held at the Marriott Hotel right across the street from the convention center in one of the suites on an upper floor. When we arrived, they had everything all set up for us including a light lunch and some great projects. I was one of the first ones there so I was able to get started quickly and amazingly, I finished ALL of my projects! Because of the need to return to the convention center, I was very motivated to finish! When I got there I started chatting with another demonstrator who was also there by herself so we followed each other from table to table and worked together a little bit which made it go faster as well as being a lot more fun stamping with a new friend.

Once I finished the stamping part, I snagged a White Chocolate Chip Macademia nut cookie (yes, it really WAS an Island Paradise! yummmy!) but I didn't take time to eat lunch. Luckily my convention roomie and I had split a sandwich after we returned to the hotel and unloaded all our purchases from a Memento Mall shopping spree earlier in the day. MUCH earlier! I just didn't want you to be worried that I might have been starving myself for the benefit of my swapping group! ha, ha...not likely!

I enjoyed walking around checking out the displays and taking photos here and there and believe it or not, they had some absolutely wonderful quilts which had been made with, of all things, the Big Shot! I never would have thought to use the Big Shot dies to cut out fabric for quilting but they had some amazing quilt samples. I only wish I had taken time to snap photos of those quilts but I did see a link somewhere on line with photos of the quilts so I will try to find it and post it later along with the rest of the photos from the display boards and maybe I'll even manage to snap pictures of the projects we made.

One of the VERY cool things they had set up for us was a raffle drawing for A Big Shot and all of the Build a Bear diecuts as well as a bunch of other new product from the Holiday Mini...wow! They must have placed the order and expedited it for delivery to the hotel to have it in time for the drawing. I didn't even enter since I knew winning a Big Shot would be a very bad thing for me when it came time to pack my bags and head home BUT I had the good fortune of talking to a really nice gal named Jo who works in demo support (customer service for the SU demonstrators) shortly after convention and somehow that event and drawing came up in the conversation....and SHE was the winner of the Big Shot basket! Amazing! She told me that she had been riding the Trax bus downtown for convention since she lives nearby and she had to call her daughter to come pick her up that night or she never would have managed to get the basket home. How cool is that???

After enjoying a bit of Island Paradise, I realized it was time to head back to the convention center for my swap. Halfway back to the convention it dawned on me that I had completely forgotten to bring a handful of American Flags from in my hotel room! Yikes! The flags were the "signal marker" to the rest of our swap group so they would be able to find us more easily for the swapping. I don't ordinarily make a habit of sprinting, but I did make record time zooming across the street to my hotel and up the stairs (yes, I was REALLY in a hurry and didn't even wait for the elevator...thankfully we were on a lower floor) to nab the flags and then back to the Convention Center just in time to start checking swappers in for my Totally Insane Christmas card swap.

Interesting name, isn't it? Why in the world would I name it that? Well, the truth is that only a few weeks before convention I started having swapper's remorse (otherwise known as FOMS...fear of missing something!) and decided that I wanted to join a holiday card swap to get new ideas for Christmas card classes. Wouldn't you know it? ALL of the existing organized swaps were already closed...so what choice did I have? I had to host my own! The swap name came from a post I made on the SCS demo forums in mid July wondering if I was totally insane for wishing I could find a Christmas swap....I rec'd enough supportive posts from many others encouraging me to host a swap and promising they would join. All told, we ended up with about 35 other Totally Insane Swappers! It was great fun swapping and getting to meet everyone and well worth the effort...yes, even the part about missing the Island lunch and having to trot over to the hotel for the flags! I will definitely be hosting this swap again next year so if you are an SU demo, be on the lookout for Insane Swappers and if you usually attend my classes, you can look forward to some absolutely wonderful Christmas cards at upcoming classes! Jan

1 comment:

Twila said...

Sounds like you had a great time this year at convention!

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