Ahhh CHA the lure of new products, the thrill of trying new techniques, the fun of seeing friends. CHA "week" is also a bit crazy. Early long days and even longer crazy nights but I wouldn't change it for the world!
My first day of CHA started rather early. I wanted to finish getting photos and certificates into envelopes for our crop sponsors. We had so many wonderful manufacturers and retailers sponsoring the last crop we did for Operation Christmas Child I needed to recognize them because they are what helped make the crop so fabulous. Each of our sponsors received a certificate and letter from me thanking them along with some photos of their part of the event.
My goal for the day was to personally hand out the certificates to each of our sponsors. Little did I know my day would have even more fun in store! I got to the show at 8 :15ish to run into Fiksateers Mandie Wade and Lori Brown... and then saw Miz Maxine and none other than Lead Fiskateer Cheryl Waters! Hugging, and talking and a few pix and then...
The acting prez of the Craft and Hobby Association says "who's been here the longest waiting in line" My hand pipes up with WE HAVE and then I get escorted up to the front of the line and am then introduced to the Mayor of Rosemont! "This is Betsy Burnett she's an educator/demonstrator member of CHA and she is our VIP of the day!" Before I knew it, I'm in line with him and Lori and Mandie posing for photos before the press to open the show. What a fabulous experience!!!
After the "running of the crafters" (translate crafters running for whatever "good" freebie a manufacturer is offering at the time. This time it was Studio Callico for a new collection pack. )was done the pace of the show slowed down a tad for me. I had such a good time going from one sponsor to another thanking them for help with our Operation Christmas Child crop. Creative Options, Unibind, Craftwell, Epiphany Crafts, Contain-ya-Craft, Fiskateers, Lori Brown, Scrapbook Chick, Xyron, Hydrangea Hippo...there were so many companies to thank. It was great to be able to thank them in person for their help with the event!
In my wanderings I ran into my friend Karen working with Scrapbook Royalty as well as Fiskateer Legend Stephanie Hamen who was demoing a really nead fabric glue at Beacon Adhesives. Then hugs with lead Fiskateer Tami Bayer and while there Sarah Podzell (our wonderful community coordinator and Fiskateers.) I stopped to do a make-n-take with Lead Fiskateer Angela Daniels and her wonderful orange go-go boots at the I Love to Create booth with the NEW punches (yup the scissor one !!!) While there someone near and dear to my heart N50 Jane Hasty (who trained me all those years ago as a Fiskars demonstrator.)
Towards the end of my day I ran into Fiskateer legend Wendy Jo Avey at the Craft Fusion event where she competed for some fabulous prizes (sorry that' Wendy Jo's story to tell but I may be able to be bribed for the photos :) I also got to sit down and do a make and take with Ken Oliver from Unibind (he was on the sponsor list so it was great to be able to sit down and chat with him for a few.)
Even though I had seen all sorts of wonderful people, I was missing one Lead Fiskateer on my list. Have no fear though, at the very end of the day I ran into none other than Rebecca Peck at the Upholstery Studio. The fun part about that was I had won an awesome staple gun from them at a Ustream chat Rebecca hosted. (I did have to confess mom took over the gun and I haven't seen it since though :) it's only fitting cause she's redoing a chair for me)
As the day wound down. I was excited that it was only the first day and I had already seen so many of my friends. I couldn't wait to see what day 2 would have for me!