Tuesday, December 21, 2010

thanks for the memories...

Thank you to everyone who stopped by my annual Creative Memories Open House/Customer Appreciation Event!  Over $2,000 of albums and supplies were sold and my shelves are empty! After 16 years in this business I am thankful for all of you who support my business and who visit my website.

For those of you who weren't able to stop by in person, I wanted to share with you a few of the highlights. Of course, there were cookies...but there was also Albums on Parade:

In years past I have had my customers bring their albums for display. But this year, I put out all of my Creative Memories Career albums for a special celebration of the past 16 years! Nine career albums completed!  And probably enough recent pictures and memorabilia to do about three more!

When I first started my Creative Memories business in 1994, I was living in a little 500-square-foot apartment. I kept my inventory in two cardboard boxes in my closet. I only had room for 2 scrapbookers at a time so I thought it would be easy to fill up my workshops! I scheduled workshops all summer long and no-one came. I never cancelled though and instead I worked on my own albums. Then I would send out newsletters saying, "It was so exciting at last month's workshop, 26 pages were completed!"  No-one knew it was only my 26 pages! Eventually people started coming to find out who was getting so many pages done. That was the beginning of a very exciting, challenging, and rewarding career.

Soon I had a team of Consultants joining me in this business and I was promoted to Unit Leader. My husband and I bought a condo and had a little more room. I started holding monthly meetings for my team. My workshops were growing and we started having at-large events at local colleges and athletic clubs. My meetings were soon filled-to-capacity and people were sitting on our stairs just to fit. We had to move our meetings to a local hotel ballroom.  It was a highlight when doing what I loved (scrapbooking, writing, taking photos) turned into a rewarding career. The company sent me on several all-expense-paid Incentive Trips as well as on-stage recognition and exclusive Leadership events.

In 2001 I reached my dream of promoting to Director. I had a team of leaders and over 200 Consultants on my team with over a million dollars in sales! I was living the American Dream. A highlight that year was picking up all of my leaders in a stretch limousine and taking them to our annual Christmas Tea in a limo - all paid for by 'my little home business.'

The biggest highlight though is personal growth and the friends I have made along the way. I was so shy when I first started this business! Oh my. I couldn't even stand in front of a small group of people so I would sit alongside them and teach how to scrapbook. Never would I have imagined that years later I would speak at National Convention in front of 4,000 women and feel completely comfortable and excited doing it!  My customers and my team are some of the most amazing women you will ever meet. Many of my team members have gone on to other direct sales companies and have reached the highest levels of leadership through what they learned with Creative Memories. I have stacks of cards and letters from customers and clients who have shared what an impact their scrapbooks have made on their family and their relationships. 

I have enjoyed the flexibility of owning my own business. Thanks to you, I was able to add four babies to our family while still ordering $1,000+ per month during my four 'maternity leaves'. Thanks to you I was also able to maintain my business while my husband was deployed with the military for 9 months. Thanks to you, I have had an amazing career with Creative Memories. We still have the very best scrapbook albums and refill pages, made in the U.S.A. We still have an important mission: preserving the past, enriching the present, and inspiring hope for the future.

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

Thanks for the Memories...

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

December Daily update

I've been having so much fun with our December Daily album! It sits on our kitchen counter and the basket of supplies is within easy reach for a quick update. Yesterday I enjoyed lunch with my very creative and talented friend Jennifer C.  Jennifer showed me her December Daily album and I was so inspired I came home and gave mine a makeover!  Just added a strip of paper on the top of my title page, then a strip of silver ribbon really jazzed it up! I wish the photo could show you all the glitter. I'm a big fan of glittery paper!

This weekend our family enjoyed a Holiday Concert by a local community band. When we got home I cut up the program and added bits to our December Daily album.  This seriously takes about 5 minutes...anyone can do this! I will use the journal box to write about the concert...we learned that Sleigh Ride was written by Leroy Anderson in 1948 and it consistently ranks among the top 10 most performed songs during the Christmas season. It happens to be one of my all-time favorites.

This weekend was also Family Day for the Navy and I enjoyed spending the day with My Hero learning about how to make our military family unit stronger. I glued a bright red felt ribbon down the side and used pre-lined paper to decorate this page. I'll be journaling the highlights of the day as well as my thoughts on being a military wife. I'm so thankful My Hero is home for Christmas this year as I know so many who are serving overseas. We are grateful.

Have you started a December Daily??  Wanna share your thoughts? Post a comment or link to your blog! Would love to see how you are recording this most busy time of year!

Friday, December 3, 2010

December Daily 2010

Some of you may remember my December Daily album from last year.
It's a small album you leave out on your kitchen counter - each page is numbered and you add photos, journal thoughts, add ticket stubs, etc... all throughout the December holiday season.
I just put our 2009 December Daily album out the other day - it's a treasure...I'll share some of my favorite pages soon.

For now, it's time to prepare and fill up December Daily 2010!  I spent some time this week putting it together:

Trim card stock any size (I chose 6.25" x 6.25")

You can use other materials too like chip board or acrylic. I used chip board as my pattern and then used a hole puncher on my card stock:

the acrylic sheets are something new I am trying this year. you can find them precut and punched for convenience. I used an acrylic sheet for my cover - title stickers show up nicely on them:

Some people just make pages for December 1-25....but last year I included the entire month and I also added some extra pages in the back for miscellaneous photos and notes (like the kids wish lists).  After you put all your pages together, use rings to secure, then for a finished look I tied the rings with some festive ribbon:

Next I fill a basket with supplies we can use to complete the album:

the basket includes:
journaling boxes/prompts
tape runner (adhesive)
holiday paper scraps
title stickers
123 stickers (for labeling the date)

Have fun!!  Enjoy!!  Happy Scrappin',