I just enjoyed two amazing days at Stampin’ Up!’s headquarters in Sandy, Utah. Each year Stampin’ Up! awards Rising Star to demonstrators in their first full year with Stampin’ Up! who achieve certain sales and recruiting goals. Five North American demonstrators reached this milestone this past year (four from the U.S. and one from Canada) – I am one of the four from the U.S. We were invited to Stampin’ Up!’s headquarters for intense training and extreme fun. Four of us made it to the event, and 100% of the attendees loved every minute of the experience.
Anyone can expect that Stampin’ Up! would have the best invitations to a party and the best event decorations, but they really pulled out all the stops when they rolled out the red carpet for us. We spent the first day in meetings with Training, Marketing, Development, Technology, Social Media and Stampin’ Up!’s top leadership. They genuinely wanted to hear our stories, so we shared openly with them. What a blast! Here’s what’s really cool – the entire day was tailored to what WE defined as important to our business – the things we wanted to know more about. As they gathered information from us, they really delivered on everything we wanted.
It all started with an incredible breakfast. Our tables were festooned with snowflakes stacked on snowflakes – with LOTS of glitter. You know I loved that, right? 🙂 We soon learned that these deocrations were assembled from a kit that would soon be released (and, in fact, was released Tuesday). I received an awesome leather satchel, also decorated with a piling of snowflakes.
Immediately following breakfast, we toured the packaging facility. I was able to step just inside the area during my tour at Convention, but today they put us to work! I worked Area 1 for about 20 minutes. As your boxes dropped into my area from the central conveyor belt, I packed catalogs, card stock, candy dots and Stampin’ Caddies. I then sent the boxes down the belt to gather the other goodies at the other stations. If you placed an order this week, I might have dropped in some of your goodies. You’re welcome!
At the end of the night, the four of us were whisked away to dinner WITH SHELLI GARDNER! Shelli was in a very bad horseback riding accident this summer, so we weren’t sure we’d even see her – we were thrilled when we learned we’d join her for dinner! She was still very cautious in her movement, but her spirits were high. She really wanted to get to know us, and we were happy to share. We enjoyed a delicious meal and fun conversation with Shelli, Sara, Donna and Shannon. Pictured below are Janet Holmes, Heather Cooper, Shelli Gardner, Julie Skotzke and me:
After a long day of meetings, professional development and a wonderful dinner, we returned to the hotel for MDS (My Digital Studio) training with Shannon West and Donna Griffith. What fun! I was blown away by the printed sample items. I’ve dabbled in MDS, but the finished products were divine! I didn’t know it could be this easy. I’ll be soon sharing one of the projects we completed, so be on the lookout!
And all of that was Day One.
The second day started with some amazing Make and Take projects with papers and stamp sets and accessories from the Occasions Catalog. You will not believe how gorgeous this stuff is – I cannot wait to dive into this catalog. Unfortunately, I can’t share pictures from this experience because it’s from the yet-to-be-released catalog.
We experienced a wonderful behind-the-scenes tour of Stampin’ Up!’s video room with some great tips for filming and editing our own videos. After a surprise fire alarm forced us to gather in the parking lot, we returned for downline training with Brian Pilling and Brandi Barnard. Since all four of the Rising Stars have very different businesses, this was a great discussion – we were able to really learn from each other. Later in the afternoon, we met with Business Development and received some expert advice on Time Management from [the amazing] Bonnie Thurber. Pam Morgan gave us a very warm send-off with words of encouragement and praise. Here’s my parting gift:
Oh! Were weren’t done yet. After we were carried away from Stampin’ Up!’s headquarters, we were surprised with a night out at the movies. The group had rented out an executive suite at the theater for a private viewing of “Thor.” With dinner, snacks, desert and a reclining leather seat – we were in the lap of luxury!
I cannot begin so express how much I enjoyed this trip, and I cannot possibly express how grateful I am to Stampin’ Up! for hosting us. I have covered some of the things we accomplished, but I couldn’t fit it all in. I know there are folks who are not thanked here (it wasn’t my intention to include everyone’s names in this post) but who contributed greatly to my experience. It was my connection, though, with these three women that will forever bond me to this experience. I am so happy to know them and to continue my amazing journey with Stampin’ Up! with a friendship and a professional connection that can never be duplicated. It was the amazing retreat that Stampin’ Up! hosted that allowed us to connect in such a wonderful way.
Thanks for stopping by my blog today!