Monday, March 24, 2008

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter, despite the cold weather! After church, we had lunch at my mother's house. Drew was just getting over something, and Allison was coming down with something, so they were slightly droopy. By the time Drew had opened his Easter goodies, he was already fast asleep!

Two years ago, we had an Easter Sunday with weather nice enough to be outdoors. Drew was just a baby, and we all sat outside on a blanket and admired him! I keep thinking we'll have another day like that when Easter rolls around each year, but it hasn't worked out that way. I guess that's the wonderful thing about photos and scrapbooking -- they preserve those special fleeting moments that touch our lives and our hearts.

New stuff at Scrapbook Generation!
-- I just talked to the folks at Crate Paper, and all the spring collections are shipping to us today. I expect the shipment to arrive Wednesday or Thursday or Friday.
-- Tuesday, the new Bazzill "just the edge" strip sets will arrive. There are 12 (I think) color families of cool borders that match Bazzill cardstock.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

I didn't have time to do photos, but Scrapbook Generation has new clear, white, and black acrylic letter and shape sets by Maya Road, in cute metal tins, of course. We also received 16 new sets of chipboard shapes by Bazzill, and we keep adding to our selection of Bazzill's cardstock-with-an-edge.

On the way...every single one of Crate Paper's new spring items; all of BasicGrey's new collections; Bazzill's new cardstock strips with decorative edges and board-book mini-albums in cool colors; Doodlebug's new velvet cardstock, velvet (flocked) brads, and flocking powder sets.

Also, by Saturday morning at the latest, we'll have at least seven new kits ready for you. These are a new style of kits, called Pages-To-Go! I think you'll like them...they have a sketch instead of traditional directions. They got great reviews when we debuted them at the retreats!

Watch your mailbox! The April/May newsletters just went out today, and we have tons of great classes and activities planned for this spring.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Both of Scrapbook Generation's Fiesta Grande fall retreats are now officially over, although the pages created, pounds gained, and laughter shared will live on! I have tons of photos to share, and comments from the ladies who attended, so it will be a long post.

From my personal standpoint, I had a wonderful time both weekends. Karin and I have made so many friends because of the store, and attending retreats with all of you just adds to that bond. Thanks so much for being a good part of our lives! (Karin made all those homemade snacks you'll be reading about, and we had an outstanding caterer who did themed food for our event. Both Karin (who has no choice) and the caterer (who does) will be back for our two fall retreats!)

Here is what those attending our second retreat in Branson had to say about the experience...

-- "I had a great time. I loved the space in the conference room!"

-- "Catered food was awesome. Table set-up great! Classes were very good!"

-- "I always have a great time when I come to the retreat and look forward to the next. Great prizes, selection of products, great food!

-- "Loved the set-up and room at table. Good food."

-- "Everything was great -- good food, good selection of paper, supplies, etc. Lots of fun!"

-- "The first one I've ever been to and it was all really nice."

-- "Wonderful set-up! Love the table arrangements. Love your caterer. Music was great! Love the set-up of the mini-store."

-- "Great location. Love the space in the conference room. Your prizes are GREAT! Thank you so much for a wonderful retreat. See you in the fall."

-- "Love the location, the contests, and LOVE the 'Classes-To-Go' this time. Thank you, thank you!"

-- "Everything was perfect. (I enjoyed the people you seated me with.) They are all so nice. I really enjoyed the music also. You guys are the best!"

-- "It was great -- rooms on the same level and straight down the hall. Food was very good. Space was good, also. Hotel accommodations were great -- quiet weekend. I don't know how you could improve -- I enjoyed it."

-- "Ladies, I don't think anything could improve such a perfect weekend! You outdo yourselves each year -- excellent food, prizes, etc. Thanks for bringing so much in the store, and all that you do!"

-- "I love this retreat!"

-- "Wonderful weekend! Everything was great. Very large crop space, great food, nice rooms! Great decoration and snacks also!"

-- "This was a great weekend. Would not have changed anything."

-- "Everyone has been so friendly and helpful. The food was great, and lots of it! I enjoyed everything. I'll be back!"

-- "I've had a great time. This is a great place -- plenty of room. The caterer is great!"

-- "Great space with lots of light and no crowding. Enjoyed the classes. The food was fabulous."

-- "Everything was very nice, no complaints, very well organized!"

-- "This weekend was great! Accommodations were much better than last spring! Food -- delicious! Decorations -- so cute! Great job!"

-- "We had a great time. Thank you for the pizza box (of prizes). Loved the kit in it! Food was very good. Love the cookbook and goodie bag! As always, your food goodies are great!"

-- "It was great! Great snacks/food! Lots of room to work. I loved it!"

-- "My first retreat and I had a great time! Thanks for all the work you gals did to make this such a successful retreat."

-- "The facility, decorations and classes were terrific! Everything was well organized. I thought the 'store' was a good idea. Loved it!"

-- "Great products available. Great classes."

-- "Homemade snacks were great! Love the little cookbook."

-- "Thanks for the pizza boxes and album! We appreciate and enjoy this retreat and all your attention to theme and to detail."

-- "I had a great time at my first retreat. It was very well-organized and I felt like royalty. Good food, good friends, and a great time."

-- "The retreats keep getting better. Great place, great food and great classes. The onsite store had all the latest and greatest products."

-- "Thank you all for a wonderful scrapbooking weekend! The food was great. There was plenty of room for cropping. I can't wait to come again."

Thursday, March 13, 2008

I don't have time for photos today (doing last minute stuff for Scrapbook Generation's retreat #2), but I did want to let you know what's going on with products.

-- Bazzill: We've added about 20 styles of In Stitchz cardstocks which are already perforated for stitching. There are hearts, stars, flowers, and scallops. We also have their sets of stitching floss, six colors per package, complete with needles.
-- Timeless Touches: new supply of all the templates, cork boards, and piercers.

On the way: black, white, and clear acrylic letters, flourishes, and shapes in cute metal tins by Maya Road.

Next big things:
-- Within the next couple of weeks, all five of the new BasicGrey collections will arrive. As soon as I know a firm date, I'll let you know.
-- Ditto for the four new Crate Paper collections. They sent samples, and the new papers are gorgeous.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I think I've caught up on my sleep now, and we're so glad that Scrapbook Generation's first of two fall retreats in Branson went so well. The ladies attending were lots of fun, and the pages in the layout contests we held were just outstanding. We also managed to infect lots of people with glimmer mist mania!

Here are some of the comments made by those attending the retreat...

-- "Thanks, ladies! It was great! Food was awesome, work areas were great. It made a nice relaxing weekend, a much needed rest!"

-- "I love the pizza boxes (prizes). I like the natural light in the scrapbook room. I like the quality of the store. I liked seeing the pages of the contest winners held up when they were announced. All-in-all a very nice experience. Great job overall. I will be back!"

-- "I really liked the space provided for each person! Freebies are always awesome!"

-- "This was my first time here and I had a blast. I look forward to coming back next year! Thanks for all the work you put into hosting this event for us!"

-- "Really appreciate that everyone wins something (pizza boxes)."

-- "Love the 'mini-store' and contest criteria. Love that there is plenty of food and drink! Can't wait until the next one!"

-- "I think it was fabulous!"

-- "This being my first retreat, I'm not sure I'm very qualified to give you adequate feedback. However, I can tell you I've thoroughly enjoyed my introduction to scrapbooking and the facilities and food you ladies provided helped to make that so."

-- "Wonderful organization, run smoothly."

-- "I always enjoy your retreats. They are well-organized and fun. Fiesta food was great! I'll be back in the fall."

-- "I enjoyed having more room. Good job as usual."

-- "Another great weekend! Keep up the good work! I appreciate all you guys do to make this such a fun, memorable weekend!"

-- "I really enjoy these retreats. Job well done."

-- "Love the store. Excellent space. Loved the place settings. Pizza boxes are awesome!"

-- "Good food. Good product selection."

-- "I think you guys have done a great job preparing this weekend. The snacks were wonderful. Thanks for all your hard work. I wouldn't change a thing!

-- "Loved the products you made available for purchase. Food was wonderful!

-- "Really enjoyed it! Can't wait to come back."

-- "Loved it all!"

-- "Loved the retreat, enjoyed both page layout classes. Food, snacks, location good."

-- "Outstanding -- it will be an annual event. You guys couldn't have been nicer!"

-- "I love your retreat and can't wait until the next one. Have you ever thought of having a summer retreat? We would love it! The only thing we need is more retreats!"

-- "This was my first retreat ever and I loved it! I want to come back every year."

-- "This was one of the best scrapbooking events I have been to! The themes and food were awesome! The prizes and snacks were great! The wide space and people were amazing. I will definitely be back. Thank you for all your hard work and energy you put into it!"

Sunday, March 09, 2008

I'm not usually here on Sundays, but I stopped in on the way home from the first of Scrapbook Generation's two spring retreats in Branson. We had a great time, and when I'm back on Tuesday I'll share comments from the ladies who attended. Photos will come later, after the second retreat. I don't want the ones of you who will be attending the second one to see all the decorations before you arrive!

New products...
My Mind's Eye: The "Just Dreamy" collection arrived Thursday, and is ready for purchase. This group has two bright color schemes, and matching die-cuts, paper packs, and buttons.
Maya Road: We've overflowing with chipboard! You'll need to check out their alphabet sets and shape sets, all packaged in metal tins with handles. We also received some cute chipboard purse albums, but Stacey tells me they are already gone. I'll order more as quickly as possible!
My Tattered Angels: There are new seasonal, limited edition colors of Glimmer Mist, including Robin's Egg Blue, Spring Mint, Pink Ink, Daisy Yellow, Red Passion, and more. We also have lots more Gingerbread, Sapphire, and Candy Apple Red.

Creating Keepsakes...
Friday was a big day for Allison Davis, and all of her family. The April issue of Creating Keepsakes arrived, complete with Ali's first article. The five-page article she wrote starts on page 89 and features four of her layouts as well as some by others to illustrate her points at how to turn one-page layouts into two-page layouts.

When I was grading Ali's freshman English papers and her junior and senior journalism stories, I never imagined she would someday write an article for a national magazine (not because she wasn't a good writer, which she was, but because that's not an easy feat to accomplish). I'm so proud of her, not just for creating beautiful scrapbook pages, and not just for being a great mom and wonderful daughter, but for setting goals and working hard to achieve them.

Anyway, while I'm saying nice things about her on MY blog, if you happen to read hers you'll find out that she's making fun of some of my clothing choices. In addition to the dress pictured, Ali and Stacey have never let me live down my ill-fated purchase of metallic gold tennis shoes sometime during the late 80s! I only wore them once, but the infamy has lived on.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

It's here and it's spectacular! You'll want it all. I know I do!

My Mind's Eye's Wild Asparagus 4 and 29th Street Market (almost 100 papers and probably over 300 matching embellishments) are both out on the shelves and tables (I ran out of paper trays!). We also got more of the die-cut Bazzill cardstock, and the Loveland collection by Scenic Route. The third group from My Mind's Eye got separated during shipment and will arrive Thursday.

Weather Update...
After hearing the weather forecasts for Tuesday, we were fairly sure we wouldn't be able to be open Scrapbook Generation. I was going to work from home that day, and since I didn't have to get out, I was all fired up to sit in my scrapbook area, work on some kits, drink some hot chocolate, and watch it snow.

When I got up Tuesday morning, I walked to every window in my house just south of Mansfield and looked out. I finally found three flakes of what appeared to be snow huddled together near the front entrance. I tried to call the store a couple of times like I usually do, and didn't get an answer. I called Karin at home and inquired as to why she wasn't at the store. Kind of with a tone, as in why in the world is the store not open! Karin quickly told me that Springfield had eight inches of snow! I couldn't believe it. I don't ever remember having different weather than Springfield, and this forecast had Mansfield in the 7-12 inches zone. Anyway, I just want to let all of you Springfield people know that I feel cheated by this whole thing!

Actually, I'm glad it wasn't any worse than it was. We've already lost four business days in 2008, and I could do without more.

Marti Blattert's Scrapbook 101 classes cancelled on Tuesday will be held at the same times a week later -- Tuesday, April 11.

New stuff...
The My Mind's Eye shipment will be here today (Wednesday). It should be here by 2 at the latest, and then it will take us at least a couple of hours to get it out on the shelves. As I've said, it will fill almost the entire front area of the store. In the three groups, there are probably 40-50 collections, with all kinds of topics. I can't wait to see it all! One thing you might want to know...the little extras (titles, quotes, journaling blocks, transparencies, etc.) now are shipped to us in sets of 10 instead of sets of 15. That means that those will be gone much quicker than before. If you like to get all the matching goodies, I suggest shopping early!