Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Be A Difference!

Guess I'm still in convention mode.  My Paper Pals Sketch card this week is our convention theme - Be The Difference. 

What does Be the Difference mean to you?  

Stampin' Up!'s mission statement, called its Statement of the Heart, reads: "To love what we do and share what we love, as we help others enjoy creativity and worthwhile accomplishments . . . in this we make a difference."  Through the Making a Difference program, Stampin' Up! partnered with Ronald McDonald House Charities in 2003. Each year, they design an exclusive stamp set to promote the partnership with RMHC, and donate a portion of the proceeds from the each sale of that set. We received the "Tag It" stamp set this year at convention and I will be sharing cards made with this set soon.  It is a great one and by purchasing it, YOU will be making a difference!!  One stamp set can make all the difference. When you purchase the Tag It Stamp Set, Stampin' Up! donates $3 to the Ronald McDonald House Charities. The set is complete with decorative tag images for six different occasions AND the Tag It set coordinates with the Chalk Talk Framelits Dies.

Tag It

Here is a wonderful video made by Stampin' Up on being and making a difference.  The lady at the very beginning is Susy Miller who received the Statement of the Heart award this year.  This wonderful inspirational lady now has ALS and is in a wheelchair unable to stamp anymore but she has made a difference in all our lives by being an inspiration.

In researching this topic, I came across some good ideas on being the difference.  I love these images and maybe I'll try to do the first one with MDS one day.

Are you ready to make a difference in someone's life?  Seize the day and make the most of every opportunity. Be proactive and make a difference today. You can help someone in need or volunteer your time for a worthy cause. Be an encouragement to someone who's in need of a friend. Give a hug to someone who's hurting. Use your imagination and make a difference today.

Here are a few quotes that would be great to use in a letter, a note or an email.  Use one of them today!

"One person can make a difference and every person should try."
--John Fitzgerald Kennedy
"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give."
--Winston Churchill
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."
--Dr. Seuss
"You must be the change you wish to see in the world."
--Mahatma Ghandi
"You're the only one who can make the difference. Whatever your dream is, go for it."
--Earvin Magic Johnson
"I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world."
--Mother Teresa
I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again.
--William Penn
"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."
--Anne Frank
"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring: all of which have the potential to turn a life around."
--Leo Buscaglia
"Often we set out to make a difference in the lives of others only to discover we have made a difference in our own."
--Ellie Braun-Haley
"It's easy to make a buck. It's a lot tougher to make a difference."
--Tom Brokaw
"It's not what happens to's what you do about it that makes the difference."
--W. Mitchell
"The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit."
--Nelson Henderson
"Dare to reach out your hand into the darkness, to pull another hand into the light."
--Norman B. Rice
"If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one."
--Mother Teresa

Monday, July 29, 2013

Convention Name Badge Holder

Marianne made these wonderful Name Badge Holders for us for convention.  They were a big hit.  I can't tell you how many people commented on them and took pictures.  I told Marianne that she could have paid her way if she'd made a bunch of them and brought to convention and sold them.  She took a few orders while there.  Now she just needs to find the time to sew them!  They were great for us to hang on our necks with all our stuff in them and not have to carry a purse.

Front view of badge holder - even a zipper in the bottom pocket!

Back view - plenty of pockets
I took a few pictures of Sammie this week trying to help me!!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

More convention

Think I've finally caught up on my sleep!  We took my mom out Friday night for her 85th birthday.  It also coincided with Restaurant Week so we took advantage.  We went to Alton's in Cornelius and had a delicious meal.  They even put a candle on mom's dessert for her and we sang happy birthday to her. 

I thought I'd share a few more convention photos.

These were the most gorgeous flowers!  They are on the grounds of the Mormon Temple

One of the SU employees painting Marianne's nails.  We were trying out the "In Color" nail polish!

This is taken at the Riverton campus - SU's headquarters.  It would be such a fun place to work!

Shelli with Ronald McDonald!

This was the 25th Anniversary Party night!

Marianne has her seat and is waiting for things to get started!

My Upline - Carol Bartle - and my downline - Marianne

Me and Marianne

Sitting on the edge of the stage (until we were all told to move!)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Convention Pics

I have been so exhausted this week.  I guess my body is still trying to get back to Eastern Standard Time vs. Mountain Time.  I ok until about 4-5:00 and then I'm making friends with my couch for a while.  I haven't even felt like stamping.  I've got all my new stamps put together just waiting.  But, I've also had Stamp Club on Tuesday and Thursday so I haven't had a lot of extra time to stamp ... maybe this weekend.

Today is my mom's 85th birthday!  We're going to take her out tomorrow night to celebrate.

I've been working on trying to label all the pictures Marianne and I took last week.  Wow!  What a job!!  But, in the meantime, I want to share a few of the display boards at convention with all the wonderful cards and projects.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Specials and New Promotions

Convention wasn’t the only excitement last week ...  Stampin’ Up! also announced some really great promotions and new products.  I want to share those with you today

****  THINLITS - There are some really great Thinlits in the Holiday Catalog, but these Thinlits take it all to another level.  With these Thinlits, you can make “flip cards”  (see below).  The Circle Card Thinlits Die comes with 10 total pieces; the Label Card Thinlits Die comes with nine total pieces.  Starting August 1, Stampin’ Up! is bringing Thinlits your way. Check out the flyer HERE.

***** UNDEFINED   Have you ever wanted a stamp but couldn't find the perfect image? Maybe one of your customers has a special family logo or a sketch she'd like to have as a stamp. Well now she can! Undefined is Stampin' Up!'s new stamp carving product line. You define the rubber stamp any way you want.
When you carve your very own stamp, you will have an entirely new and different creative experience. And when you're finished, you will have created a one-of-a-kind stamp!

**** -  PAPER PUMPKIN   Now is the time to try out Paper Pumpkin!  

This is why you will love Paper Pumpkin -
  • precut supplies to make adorable projects
  • stamps that are one of a kind and desired
  • a WONDERFUL surprise each month - cards, mini albums, home decor
  • adaptable to suit my style and needs - even if something isn't my style, I know it'll be perfect for someone!
  • very reasonably priced.....and now it's on SALE!!

In your first month's kit you will receive everything you need to craft for months to come - a clear block to use with future stamps, an ink pad and all consumables.  The only thing you need is adhesive!  How great is that!?!?!

Offer Dates: July 18, 2013 -August 31, 2013

Offer Details: Use the promotion code PUMPKINDEAL to join Paper Pumpkin before August 31, 2013, and pay only $10 a month* for the first two months.
*plus tax, where applicable. Shipping included!

The Fine Print:
  • For new subscribers only.
  • Promotion applies only to the first two months of a new subscription. After receiving two month's worth, the price for each month's kit will go to the regular price: $19.95.
  • You need to visit to join.
  • You must click "Add Promo Code" and then enter the promo code PUMPKINDEAL in the "Promo Code" field when you sign up on the website to take advantage of this promotion.
  • You must join by Saturday, August 31, 2013; 11:50 PM (MT).

AND here are a couple of specials going on now -

In the 2013-2014 annual catalog, SU offered the Stampin' Write Marker New Color Kit (item 130034, page 163) to help you update your Many Marvelous Marker pack. Now, they've sweetened the deal. For a limited time, from June 26 until October 31, you can buy any of the new colors in the pack or on their own! Go ahead, fill in the missing pieces in your collection or buy the whole lot.
Check out the flier HERE 


Offer Dates: July 1-31, 2013
Offer Details: Buy three packs of select Designer Series Paper and get one for free!
The Fine Print:
  • These items don't qualify for the offer:
    • Designer Series Paper Stacks
    • Specialty Designer Series Paper
  • No limits. Order six? You'll get two for free. Nine? You'll get three for free.
  • Check out our Designer Series Papers in the annual catalog pages 151, 153, and 154.

Life is Better at the Beach!

We took a week off from the Paper Players Challenge because of convention but we're back in full swing this week.  I designed my card using My Digital Studio and the hot summer in mind! 

I really like this color combo of pink and green.  I was one of those "preppies" years ago that liked to wear Izod, weejuns, madras and pink and green while I was shagging on the beach to beach music.   I found out today that one of the theme nights on our cruise is going to be "going for a drive, back to the beach, back in time... going Back to the Bowery with 70's Theme Night!"  My days of going to the Bowery (club at Myrtle Beach) is more like the 60's though!  I was getting married and pregnant in the 70's!!  (married in '73, pregnant in '75 and '78) ummmmm .....

OK - back to the card - I used the kit, Anchors Away for this one.  Check out what the other gals have done with the sketch this week.  There are some really great cards HERE

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Convention Samples

I thought I'd share a few of the great display cards I took pictures of at convention.  There were so many great ideas!  I have been working on trying to get my pictures in some kind of order so I can refer to them during the year.  It's proving to be quite a task!!  I'm about half way through.

This is a Paperbag Album made by a German demonstrator, Jenni Pauli.  Her blog is in my sidebar.

This card I saw when we toured the home office.  It uses the Morning Post Alphabet.

This was one of Shelli's 25 projects that she shared with us.  I love the snowman!  If you do too, you can check him out on page 25 of the Holiday catalog

This butterfly is just gorgeous!  Another one of Shelli's projects using the Swallowtail stamp.

Some of the cards I captured on one of the display boards.  A lot of good ideas here!

Share board
Isn't the display board great? 

Well the toothpicks that are holding my eyes open are poking me.  Think I am going to make my way upstairs to bed!!  Stamp club is tomorrow and I have a lot to do.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Convention Video

Here's a video from the Opening Night ceremony.  You can see how heart warming this company is and how much they make you feel like you are a part of their family. I hope you take a few minutes... to watch this to get a feel of what Stampin' Up! is really all about.... it's so much more than stamps.  It is Being the Difference, making incredible friends and spreading wonderful creativity around the world.

Look for Marianne and I dancing with our bags in the first part of the video!!

Here is a picture of some of the things I came home with.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Back from Convention!!

I'm home!!  It will be good to sleep in my own bed tonight.  I'm not saying the hotel bed was bad - it was actually quite comfy but by being in my bed tonight, I won't have to get up tomorrow at the crack of dawn!!!  Just hope my body understands that and lets me sleep.  Our flight left Salt Lake this a.m. at 7:30.  We had a 2 hour lay-over in Detroit- enough time to grab some lunch and charge our laptops.  Then boarded our flight to Greensboro.  That plane was reallllllly small - 2 seats on one side and 1 on the other.  As we were approaching the Greensboro airport, there were storms in the area so the pilot made a few circles.  The storms were not moving so we headed north and landed in Richmond, VA to refuel.  Then back to Greensboro - luckily that was only about a 30 minute or less trip.  Then we got our bags and drove home and met our hubbies for dinner.  I haven't even unpacked - tomorrow
will be plenty of time to do that!!

Here's a little thumbnail of our convention highlights:

The first general session began Thursday night with an emotional, heartfelt welcome by CEO and cofounder, Shelli Gardner, who was thrilled to kick off Stampin' Up!'s historic 25th anniversary party by welcoming demonstrators from all over the globe--some of whom joined the event via a live streaming broadcast on YouTube.

Shelli began the session by sharing how Stampin' Up! started--with her sister, Vonna--and the incredible way it went from a small start-up based in Shelli's living room to a multimillion dollar business spanning the globe. As Shelli said, "It all began with a genuine desire to meet our needs and offer the same opportunity for others . . . whether those needs were social, financial, creative . . . [or the need for] recognition."

From the very beginning, Stampin' Up! was founded to make a difference--and it has--including their philanthropic Make a Difference program. Over the years, Stampin' Up! has raised money and donated to many worthwhile causes worldwide. Shelli was especially happy to announce during this session that Stampin' Up! is now a global sponsor of Ronald McDonald House Charities. (Ronald McDonald himself made an appearance, to the delight of all!)  Marianne and I have decided to look into doing something with Charlotte's Ronald McDonald House.

Shelli also spent a few moments distinguishing between making a difference and being the difference. Shelli explained: "Making a Difference looks back at our history--the things we've done and the legacy we've created as a Stampin' Up! family. Be the Difference, on the other hand, embodies where we are right now and where we are going. Moving forward, how are we as a group and each of us individually going to be the difference?" Over the next few days, Shelli said that we would explore the possibilities together--how we can make--and be--the difference in peoples' lives.

Pam Morgan, vice president of demonstrator and employee development, followed Shelli with a fun stamping presentation. She gave tips on gorgeous cards demonstrators could make using the free stamp sets they received at convention.  We got Gorgeous Grunge, Tag It, and Hello Lovely and at the end of the session, they gave us all another set, Tags for You from the Holiday Catalog.

After the session, we participated in an Opening Social which included a Guinness World Records challenge--with the goal to send as many cards from a single location as possible. We also had the opportunity to put together special birthday kits for children who are patients at Primary Children's Medical Center.

During the Opening Social, we enjoyed Learning Labs, including a Social Media Lab, a Recruiting Lab, a Booking Lab, and a Paper Pumpkin Lab.  Finally, the karaoke stage was a big hit--where demonstrators showed off their musical talent (not us though!!)
What a fabulous first day of convention! 

Day 2 kicked off early Friday morning with thousands of demonstrators thronging the Salt Palace Convention Center for one of the biggest events Stampin' Up! has ever held--celebrating its twenty-fifth year anniversary in fabulous style!   It was almost a stampede when they opened the doors and 5,800 people rushed in to find a seat!!

This year Stampin' Up! also welcomed demonstrators from all parts of the globe--some of whom joined us on their way to Grand Vacation 2013 in Park City, Utah.

The Friday morning general session began with Sara Douglass reminiscing about the first convention she ever attended in 1993, when she was twelve years old. Growing up as she did--with Stampin' Up! being such a big part of her life--Stampin' Up! conventions just seemed "like a family reunion--a very LARGE family reunion," said Sara. "Who else can say they have 50,000 family members spread around the world?"

Stampin' Start achievers were honored in the Friday AM session, as were annual personal sales award achievers, recruiting and leadership achievers, and Getaway and Grand Vacation earners.

Shelli Gardner followed Sara with a stamping presentation featuring 25 projects (for 25 years)! She introduced two new products and demonstrated exciting, innovative ways to use these fun new products.  (Details coming soon!!)

Shannon West also introduced two new products - one of them being the new Undefined Stamp Carving Kit and she showed us her fun stamps--which she carved herself using the new kit!  (Again, more details later.)

The General Session ended around 11 a.m. and we had time for lunch, make and takes, mini classes, new product demos, etc.  It was such fun!  Marianne and I took over 500 pictures!  So we had to make a run back to our hotel and charge our phones/cameras for about an hour before heading back for Awards Night.  Due to changes in recognition, Friday evening's Awards Night was short and sweet but just as fabulous.  This year's Awards Night achievers were also presented with gorgeous Hawaiian leis--and little did they know--those flowers were a hint of good things to come! Scott Nielsen announced that for North American and South Pacific markets, Grand Vacation 2015 will be held in Oahu, Hawaii.
Awards Night was followed by a truly exciting 25-Year Celebration which included aerial ballet, photo ops, live music, interactive activities, and delicious refreshments.

Day Two of Convention 2013 could not have been more exciting. 

Here is one of the cards I took for swaps with Sketched Birthdays.  I was in need of a new birthday stamp set and really like this one.  I used all the new In Colors on the card.  But this set has so many possibilities!!

 OK - I am falling asleep at the keyboard!  This gal is going to bed!!  Night!

Almost home

Marianne and I are at the Detroit Airport almost home. the internet connection at our hotel was not good so I was not able to blog while I was away.  We had a great time at convention and have lots of good stories and cards to share with you.   Hopefully I'll have time tonight when I get home 2 get on the computer if not you'll hear from me tomorrow

Thursday, July 18, 2013

We are in Salt Lake City!!

We are in Salt Lake City!  We got to our hotel room about 1 a.m (3 a.m. EST though!) and in the bed by 1:30.  But we were both so keyed up, it took a while to fall asleep and of course, my body woke up at 6:30 since it thought it was 8:30!!  Hitting the bed pretty soon tonight for our full day tomorrow.  But thought I'd share a few pictures from our day.  We went to the Mormon Tabernacle today.  All I can say is WOW!  Words can't describe how beautiful that place is.  Of course, we could not go into the Temple but were able to go inside the other buildings.  We listened to an organ recital in the tabernacle that was just wonderful. 

We won't be doing any pub hopping here though.  We arrived to dinner about an hour early (didn't realize there had been a last minute change in our reservations) so decided to find someplace to have a drink.  We ended up at the Macaroni Grill's bar.  The bartender brought us a menu.  We told her no, we just wanted a glass of wine.  Well .... it is a Utah LAW that you have to order food in order for them to serve you alcohol!!  She recommended a $3 small bowl of olives!!  Marianne told her she didn't like olives but that was ok - I would eat them.  The bartender said to her - you will have an olive, won't you (or else she wouldn't get her beer!!)  So funny!

At Grreensboro airport trying to get organized!!

Mormon Temple

NC Demo swapping group

 And to give you a good laugh -----

Marianne found her some glasses!!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Lollipop Swaps

This is one of my favorite cards at the shoebox swap at Allison's a few weeks ago. I ended up CASEing it and making several to take to convention for swaps.  Just punch 1" circles from Polka Dot DSP and arrange in a circle.  Glue together and add a circle in the center with a pearl.  I colored the white pearls in various colors.  I bought the lollipop sticks at a big box craft store and tied a piece of ribbon around it.  Easy Peasy!!

I am all packed.  Got all my swaps done.  My suitcase is UNDER 50 lbs!!  And I am waiting for Marianne!  We have a 6:30 flight from Greensboro (about 1 1/2 hours from here) to Atlanta.  Then we have a 2 hour layover in Atlanta before boarding a plane to Salt Lake City.  We arrive in SLC at midnight .... 2:00 AM our time (EST).  Marianne will have been up almost 24 hours by that time.  I'm sure by the time we retrieve our luggage, find our shuttle and get to the hotel and checked in, she will be a zombie!  She's not used to late hours so I am going to have to work on her this week.  Luckily Wednesday is a "do nothing" day for us.  We are going to take in the sights of Salt Lake before meeting our NC demos for dinner.  I will do my best on blogging this week but my laptop was not cooperating with me last night so we'll see!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Ice Cream??

I'm making progress with my swaps for convention!  Finished up a few more this morning before heading over to the Soup Kitchen to do a little volunteer work.  Marianne and I met up later for dinner.  I don't think we've seen each other in about a month!  It was funny.  I stopped off at Belk's to browse while waiting for her to get off work and get her hair cut.  She called me right after I got to Belk's and asked me where I was.  When I told her, she said, "no way - where are you?"  Turns out she was in Belk's too - right across the aisle from me.  The sales girl got a big kick out of it - she could hear both sides of our conversation!  After she got her hair cut, we went to Chili's for dinner - one of favorite places.  

This is one of the cards I have made for a convention swap.  I saw a card similar to this somewhere on the internet and made my own version of it.  Doesn't it look like a yummy ice cream cone?  It was so easy to make - I used my scallop circle punch for the three "flavors" and cut the come free-hand and embossed it.   Then I used the ticket punch to punch out a few tags.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

MDS Challenges

 This is my card for the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.  #50 - can you believe it??!!
 I tried to post it last night but my laptop just wouldn't cooperate.  Our lights kept flickering and we could hear thunder in the distance so I just gave up and called it a night.  Someone must have gotten a storm but we never did.  And (I don't want to say this too loud!) but the sun is shining today.  We are supposed to meet a group for dinner on the lake late this afternoon - weather permitting.  So, back to the card .... of course, I used My Digital Studio.  A couple of tricks with this card - the three brads in the center.  They actually had different colored little hearts on them and not in my color combo.  SO, I inserted a circle punch and shrunk it down to fit on top of the brads; color filled them with the DSP and voila! three custom brads to match!  The two little flags are from a bow that I cropped and just used the two ends.  The butterfly is one of my favorites.  It is from the Flores Suaves stamp set - which was offered in the Spanish catalog several years ago but now I can get it digital which makes it great.  It is an open stamp meaning if it were an actual stamp, you would have to use markers, etc. to color in the butterfly wings.  I used the Freeform (add brush) technique; colored in the butterfly in Soft Sky and Pistachio Pudding and when I was finished, brought the stamped image butterfly to the top.  The script behind the butterfly (in white) is also from the same stamp set.

While I'm talking about MDS, I have entered a SU color combo contest.  I would love your comments on my pictures on Stampin' Up's site.  You can check them out and leave your comments HERE.  Just click on my two layouts and comment.  Stampin' Up says "it doesn't hurt your chances of winning by having a lot of comments!"  Thanks!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Birthday Chalk Talk

I just love the stamp set, Chalk Talk!  Here is a card I made for a friend's birthday last month.

Aren't those colors great - Daffodil Delight, Coastal Cabana and Strawberry Slush!  How about that polka dotted background?  A good way to use up your scrap rubber bits!  The big circle is from the circle that is punched out from one of the Chalk Talk stamps!  And the small polka dots are from a pencil eraser!  I made the flower using the clay and flower mold and decided to keep it white instead of coloring it.  Ummm - maybe I'll whip up a few of these for convention swaps.

Quick post tonight - I have to get to bed.  Early wake up tomorrow to go to the Soup Kitchen.  I have to be there at 8:30 am which is my normal time to wake up!!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Backyard Basics Swaps

As you probably know, Stampin' Up is celebrating it's 25th anniversary this year.  Each month they are featuring a "best of" stamp set.  We' ve had flowers, hearts, and now Shelli's favorites.  Who better to pick a “Best of” stamp set than the person who helped start Stampin’ Up! out of her garage 25 years ago? Shelli Gardner, our CEO and co- founder picked her favorite stamp images from the past 25 years and helped combine them into a single set just for you. 

Best of Shelli Clear-mount Stamp Set #133488 $14.95
Even better, this set includes a never-before-seen flourish image, and the flower image coordinates perfectly with the 3/4” Circle Punch.

Shelli has some samples on her blog of projects she created with this Best Of Set.  Check them out HERE and HERE.

I got a few more swaps done today.  I think I have about 60 now not counting the 40 for the "January" organized swap and the 15 cards for the NC Demo dinner and swap.  So I'll be coming home with a bunch of new ideas! 

This one is my favorite though!  I think this is called the stained glass technique.  Whatever ... I love it!  I think we will be doing this at club this month too.  I stamped the butterfly from Backyard Basics in white on vellum paper and embossed it.  After cutting the butterflies out with the matching framelits, I used my markers to color the back of the embossed butterflies.  I did a few of these cards using one of the flowers from Secret Garden too but I like the butterflies the best.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

My Convention Swap

I think we may be building an ark here soon if this rain doesn't let up!  It has rained the whole week.   But that has given me a good shot at staying inside and working on my swaps for convention (which is next week!!)  We went to the movies on Thursday, the 4th and saw The Heat.  I really liked it and got a few good laughs in but I'm a big Sandra Bullock fan.  I heard some people complain about the language (the "F" word was used a lot.)  But it didn't really bother me.  I don't use that word and don't like to hear others use it, but I'm not a prude about it either.  I think we may go see White House Down this afternoon in between the rain drops.

Here is the card I finally chose for my organized swap at convention.  I had to make 40 of them and they had to be something for the month of January.  My hopes of doing a snowman card was dashed when Stampin' Up did not include any of them in the big catalog.  So I borrowed Zoo Review from my downline and made this card.  It turned out pretty cute.

The sentiment is from Chalk Talk (pg 12) - probably my favorite set in the catalog!  It's hard to see but I put a bit of Dazzling Diamonds right under the bear's paws.

Well, back to the drawing board - I have more swaps to make that I will be sharing with you soon.