Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Confessions of a Paper Ho - Part 1

Hey everyone! Yes, I'm back from CHA and finally have a day to kind of get caught up!!! My seasonal job is winding down so I will soon be home a LOT more! But, I will still be super busy... I'm not only teaching scrapbook classes at the Michaels in New Lenox, IL but I am also starting on the ground floor with an awesome new Direct Sales company, Pink Whimsy. If you are interested in becoming a consultant, please send me an e-mail! I will do a longer post about Pink Whimsy soon...

So I wanted to share some of my CHA experience with all of you! So this post will be VERY photo heavy... but I used my iPhone camera, so the pics aren't huge files and I will also apologize that some are a bit fuzzy or dark but it's hard to lug a huge camera with all my goodies, LOL!

Where to start? How about the beginning! The show officially started on Tuesday July 19th but the Monday before is full of classes and workshops that you can sign up for. Many of the workshops are given by manufacturers to introduce and teach you about new products. There are also classes and workshops during the show as well but if you take those you are also taking away from time you can spend on the show floor scouting new products.

My very first CHA class was the StampingScrapping workshop. We made two beautiful cards as well as a rosette to wear on the show floor. If you were spotted wearing it, you would win a set of stamps! And we got to KEEP the amazing EXCLUSIVE stamp set!

I was lucky enough to get to take this class with Kim from Cutters Creek! We had a ball together in this great class! The above photo is Kim hard at work, while I'm goofing around snapping photos, LOL!

We decided after our morning class to actually eat a decent lunch so we walked across the street to the Hilton and had some AMAZING food! I'm not normally one who photographs food but I felt this delicious ham and cheese sandwich and French onion soup were a work of art!

After lunch I decided to wait-list for a class. My fellow design team member, Laura and I were disappointed that we didn't get into our first choice class, and decided to give the Asian Knot Tying class a try. This is my "good" knot, LOL! Had they had a dozen teachers this class probably would have gone a bit more smoothly. Let's just say it was a semi-fiasco but I did learn a little something....

After class, Lori and I (my roommate, neighbor, fellow DT member and best scrappy buddy) meandered on over to the Hyatt to meet up with a friend. On our L O N G walk through the tunnels we spotted a window over looking the show floor!

You can see many of the companies setting up their booths! It's amazing how fast they can set up and tear down the booths.

Did you know about 5 minutes after the closing announcement for CHA the Convention center starts tearing up the carpets to get ready for the next event? It is chaos, but kind of fun when you are on the sidelines!

Anyhow, after our little adventure we headed back to the Convention Center for "The Taste of Rosemont". This was a fun event that had free food samplings from many of the local restaurants as well as an open bar! The only bad thing is the event started at 4:30 and most of the food was gone by 5! Happily, Lori and I got there right on time and were able to taste many wonderful dishes... including several little chunks of cheesecake... Mmmmm..... Anyway, we had a fun evening and the next day was OPENING DAY!

We decided to hop on the 8am shuttle from our hotel to get over to the Convention Center area and avoid traffic. Well, that took all of 10 minutes to get there and the show opened at 10 so we had a bit of a wait... but it turns out that we did the smart thing... we hung out at the front and started the "line".... (BTW, did you notice my shirt... more on that in tomorrow's post...)

So we laughed, talked, played on Facebook and took lots and lots of photos of the growing mob in the lobby! We were also quickly joined by our good friend Betsy who took this lovely photo for us...

Well all watched excitedly while people from all of our favorite scrapbook companies streamed through the growing mob and into the show.

Westcott Brand even came out into the lobby handing out tote bags. Some of them even had a fabulous new pair of scissors in them! I was lucky enough to snag a pair of these pretty purple shears!

As it grew closer to 10 they set up this ribbon. Then one of the people asked, "So who's been waiting here the longest?" to which I shouted "US!" and then they invited the Lori, Betsy and I to help cut the ribbon!!!! WHAT?!?!?!

How stinking cool, we all got a hand on those giant scissors and took off for the show floor! First stop... Echo Park Paper's booth...

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