Saying Goodbye

We’re always looking for great cards for the men in our lives, and here are two of those cards. I meant to share them a while ago and forgot…sorry. Even though some of the products will be saying goodbye in a few days, the ideas are still worth seeing. Enjoy!

Memorial Day Morning

It was a beautiful day to attend a stirring and probably once-in-a-lifetime Memorial Day Ceremony at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, which is commonly called Punchbowl.

We arrived early and walked through the cemetery among the thousands of graves, each decorated with a lei and an American flag. I felt a reverence difficult to describe while standing on this sacred crater high above the city.  Photos can’t do justice to what we saw and heard.

The band and musical performances were patriotic; the remarks made were insightful and inspiring, and the posting of all the flags by the JROTC was moving. The event began and ended with prayers, and there was a fly by as well.

Afterward we walked up the stairs, read names of the fallen, and enjoyed the cut-glass murals that describe the historical wars of the Pacific.

I am so grateful for all those who serve our country, and I was particularly pleased to attend yesterday’s service to honor those who died while serving in the armed forces of the United States of America.

Hamburger Helpers

I’m generally not a fan of hamburgers (fries are definitely a weakness for me though!), but these hamburger boxes have helped celebrate several special occasions, and I thought you’d enjoy seeing them!

Stampin' Up! in Hawaii

Even though we didn’t attend the entire event, this year’s Stampin’ Up! incentive trip to Hawaii was a real treat for Sterling and me! Demonstrators who had vacationed here before and many who had never been to Hawaii told me they loved it too.

The welcome dinner was poolside with lots of visiting and a Maui Jim sunglass fitting. Our official first gathering was at the Polynesian Cultural Center the next afternoon following a morning filled with hula dancing, coconut cracking, and the famous Canoe Show.

Aside from one rainy day, it was beautiful weather with a light breeze and plenty of sunshine…perfect for sunbathing by the pool, swimming in the ocean, and hiking nearby Diamond Head. Among other things, activities also included excursions to Pearl Harbor, a service project, and stamping demonstrations, of course.

The final evening event was dinner at and a tour of the USS Missouri…a pleasant evening and a special farewell for special people!

The week went by way too quickly, and I’m not sure we had a chance to visit with everyone to thank them and congratulate them, but we enjoyed spending what little time we could with demonstrators (and their families and friends) from North America and the South Pacific. Mahalo and aloha!

Precious Family Time

We didn’t request where we wanted to serve our mission, but I think God knew what He was doing when He called us to Hawaii! This week was a tender mercy for us, getting to see some of our family and lots of demonstrators and their families.

I’ll blog about the incentive trip tomorrow, but tonight I want to focus a little on family. Although we didn’t get to spend as much time as we would have liked (I don’t know if I can ever get enough of them!), we felt so blessed to spend some precious time with our family.

During the days, they were usually with demonstrators on excursions or at the pool while we fulfilled our mission responsibilities. A few of the evenings we ate dinner together, and on Wednesday, after meeting with demonstrators and their families at the Polynesian Cultural Center, we took the opportunity to attend the Laie Temple with our girls and their husbands. It was a sweet experience…one we’ll always remember. 

We now understand better why missionary’s parents are asked to not visit their children while on their missions. It was hard to say good-bye tonight! Thankfully we have a busy week ahead and hopefully won’t have too much time to miss them…too much!

Happy Mother's Day!

I hope your day was filled with love and gratitude for the women in your life. It certainly was a happy day for me!

Lucky for us, Stampin' Up!'s incentive trip happens to be here on O'ahu this week. Megan, Nate, Shalae, and Jon came in a couple days early, and Sterling and I have thoroughly enjoyed spending time with them this weekend!

We're also looking forward to seeing Sara, Sean, Sage, and Jason (as well as our incentive trip achievers and their guests) in the next couple of days. The only thing that would make this week better is if Shanna could be here too (bummer for all of us)!

Although Shanna can't be here, we sent her a care package including several food items from Hawaii. And we gave each of our girls a simple Mother's Day gift enclosed in this envelope wrapped in beautiful springtime colors and flowers. I asked my artist for an over-the-top wrap, and a I think you'll agree that this fits the bill!

Inspire.Create.Share. 2015: Gold Coast

Hi everyone, this is Sara again. I’m taking over the blog today so that I can share a little bit about our most recent event in the South Pacific. I love having a chance to spend time with our amazing demonstrators! And the day we arrived in Gold Coast could not have been more beautiful. Check out the beach!

We began our event with a leadership day where we discussed the new Compensation Plan in detail. Demonstrators commented that the presentations really helped them as they prepare to transition to the new plan in October. It was a great event for our demonstrator leaders.

That evening we boarded buses to attend Managers’ Reception at the Australian Outback Spectacular. We visited a bit before the show, then entered a large arena where we enjoyed wonderful food and a fun show about the high country and famous Australian historical characters. Good times!

Thursday morning I was honored (and a little emotional!) to open the first General Session. We unveiled the new catalog and enjoyed some amazing stamping presentations. The session was available online as well, so that all of our markets could watch the unveiling. I love how excited demonstrators are to receive the new annual catalog every year and I have to say . . . I’m SO happy we’re bringing these launches back to our events! 

Over the course of the event, we had three Inspire. Create. Share workshops and Make & Take sessions, a demonstrator panel that discussed their strategies regarding the new Compensation Plan, and In a Nutshell classes. I really appreciated being able to learn how demonstrators approach their businesses in different ways. All of the classes provided tools and ideas for demonstrators that were both applicable and actionable. Loved them!

Awards Night is always a highlight for me because I truly appreciate being able to recognize our top-performing demonstrators. They inspire me (as I’m sure they do everyone else)!

Our After-Party was 80s-themed and lots of fun! I was told the band was super-popular in the South Pacific during the 80s and demonstrators were ecstatic to see them there. This crowd definitely knows how to have fun! The dance floor was hopping, the photo booths were packed, and there were smiles all around. Pretty sure there were sore feet, too! It was a great night!

We wrapped up our last day in Gold Coast with more stamping, plus a hilariously fun game show with demonstrator participation. It was an amazing finish to a wonderful convention.

What a pleasure to be with our demonstrators again in the South Pacific! I loved being able to spend time visiting with them, snapping pics, and learning side-by-side with them. Our demonstrators are the best!

High Five

At convention last year, I mentioned that even though Stampin’ Up! introduces new catalogs (and products) throughout the year, there’s always something in the annual catalog to love...all year long! May’s set sampler, the last of the series featuring sets from the 2014-2015 annual catalog, showcases High Five.

Speaking of high fives, with the NEW annual catalog hot off the press, I want to give an enthusiastic high five to all who worked so hard to produce such an amazing publication and to bring to us some fabulous new products! We really do have a wonderful team of creative people who dream of ways to please you. In fact, just about everyone in the company plays a role in bringing about our Stampin’ Up! “store” and deserves accolades!

I was especially pleased to read the string of comments posted on Stampin’ Connection. It’s obvious you feel the same! Thank you for taking the time to share your praise. It means more than you know. I’m so proud to be a small part of an organization filled with wonderful people around the world—employees, demonstrators, and customers alike!

Sending High Fives and hugs from Hawaii to everyone at Stampin’ Up!