Come and Gone. . .


Another convention—no, not convention, it’s our Inspire. Create.Share. annual event—come and gone. It’s always bittersweet when one of our events ends. . . we look forward to it, we work hard for it, and when it’s over, it’s good to be back home! I think most of our demonstrators feel the same way.

I thought (and heard many demonstrators agree) that the new format was very welcome. There was plenty to do (more than anyone could do in the course of three days) and that meant something for everyone, lots of options, few lines, ample space, and less rushing around. I definitely felt a more relaxed atmosphere as demonstrators were able to pick and choose what they wanted to do, and there was more free time to do it in.

I enjoyed watching demonstrators participate in our optional Wednesday night Paper Pumpkin Night out, as well as the Awards Night after party. We had tons of demonstrators attend—and stick around longer than usual. Lots of music, dancing, treats, and things to do—including stamping!  I didn’t even get halfway through the room during the after party. Chatted with demonstrators, took photos, and watched everyone have a great time. (Who tried the bull riding?)

I didn’t make it to all the classes, workshops, and Make & Takes, but I attended what I could and, as usual, was so impressed with what I saw and heard.

We also streamed three of the four main stage general sessions, which was a first. I heard that demonstrators around the world enjoyed it! I know that Shanna (now living in Florida) was looking forward to watching. This is the first convention she’s missed (other than when she was on her mission), so it was nice to have her participate in some small way.

An event highlight (for most of us, I think) was the announcement of this year’s incentive trip—a Mediterranean cruise! There was a lot of buzz about that, and I know that people are already planning ways to make sure they earn that.

And, everyone seemed to love that we unveiled the Holiday Catalog. In addition to simply holding the catalog and browsing through it, several presentations featured Holiday Catalog product PLUS attendees could actually purchase Holiday Catalog product at the store. Woohoo! It’s always fun to be the first to get your hands on new product!

The Gardner family ended convention as we have for the past several years—gathering for dinner as a family (the grown-up Gardners) on Saturday evening to celebrate Sage’s birthday (which regularly falls around convention) and then attending the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s Music & the Spoken Word on Sunday morning before heading home, ready to jump right back into things on Monday!

Hopefully you’re ready to jump right into things too!