Today is my two year anniversary as an Independent Consultant with Close to My Heart!
What better time to share my story. I was first introduced to scrapbooking about 20 years ago when I was invited to a Creative Memories party. I thought it was a cute idea and it looked like fun but honestly as a struggling single mom I just couldn't justify spending money on scrapbooking when I was having a hard time paying the bills.
Fast forward a couple of years and I am doing better financially and even managed to take a spring break trip to visit a friend and explore the Oregon coast. I bought a new camera for the trip and took tons of pictures! It was on that trip that my friend took me to her sister in law's house. She was a Creative Memories consultant and was having a huge clearance sale. I bought a few things and took them home to tackle my first project. My daughter Ashleigh's baby book was done in those old peel and stick albums that were so prevalent in the 80's (little did we know we were ruining our memories with those albums). I decided to take it apart and re-do it to make it better and make it all archival in the process. That project got me hooked! Here are a couple of pages from that very first album.
I look at that album now and I cringe. I did so may things "wrong" by today's scrapbooking standards. It is full of stickers and photos cut in weird shapes with fancy scissors, but I do still treasure it because it was the first scrapbook I ever made.
As the years passed I continued to scrapbook major events like birthdays and vacations and enjoyed making our memories into beautiful art filled books. I even got Ashleigh hooked and she created her first scrapbook of her trip to England in the 8th grade.
I was first introduced to stamping at a Stampin' Up party about 12 years ago. I had stamped before but never made cards or used stamping in my scrapbooks. It was lots of fun and I loved the possibilities. My cousin had joined D.O.T.S. which was the predecessor to CTMH and I enjoyed going to her house to play with her collection of stamps, papers and inks. By then I had started my own collections and before long I was scrapbooking and making cards on a fairly regular basis.
In 2006 when my daughter was heading off to college I decided that I needed something to fill my time as a "empty nester" so I took a part time job at Archivers teaching classes and hosting crops. It was at Archivers that I fell in love with clear stamps. I loved working there and made many good friends that share my passion for paper crafting. Some of those friends are my best customers today. I loved the people, seeing all of the new products and getting paid to craft but I didn't like working 16 hour days (I still had a regular full time job too) standing for hours on end and cleaning public toilets. I quit Archivers in June of 2009, but really missed my creative time.
One of the people I met at Archivers is Vicki Price. I knew she was a CTMH consultant and had always admired her work, plus we got along really well. In September 2009 I called her and asked what I needed to do to join. I think she was probably surprised because she did not recruit me at all, I sought her out because I knew she had a local group and that was important to me. I really just wanted the discount and a group of friends to craft with. What I got was so much more! Here are a couple of the cards I made at my very first CTMH consultants group meeting.
|Not sure why this one is sideways, but you get the idea.|
As they say, the rest is history. I am so glad I joined this wonderful company! It has kept me sane during my time of unemployment. I have made some amazing friends and I even got to go to convention in Disneyland this year. I am growing my business in hopes that someday I will be able to support myself doing what I love.
Now, if you have made it through that long winded story you deserve a prize! Post a comment here and tell me how you first started paper crafting and one week from today on September 19th I will choose a winner to receive a fun prize including a mini stamp set, embellishments and more!