Monday, 21 November 2011

Convention 2011

 
 So.... I’m back from Convention at Disneyland Paris and beginning to feel a little more human again. Was too exhausted to post anything yesterday. But it was a good exhausted as, just like last year, we had a fabulous time!
Here's as short a summary of the weekend as I could write -and some pix, too. Sorry no picture of the team, but I forgot to ask their permission to post them and don't want to delay any longer. 

I travelled by Eurostar to Paris in a group of six demonstrators – four of my downline (Alison H, Judie, Jacqui and Sue) and Ann, who lives nearby but has been adopted into our team because her upline lives on the other side of the country.

Convention is an exciting couple of days, jam-packed with great demos, inspiring business sessions, fun Make & Takes, swapping, prizes and presents - and some very, very exciting sneak peeks! This year's theme was "Grow", so there were lots of displays featuring flowers and plants, all made with SU products of course. 


And there are lots of display boards, featuring artwork by European demonstrators and SU staff. They range from simple to really complicated - but are always inspirational. I was delighted to see a couple of my own projects on the boards, too! 

On arrival, we all received a fabulous Convention bag. This year Stampin’ Up!® have excelled themselves, with a really handy business bag in practical black, with lots of pockets – and, as we discovered on our way home, a strap to slot it over the handle of a wheeled suitcase. In it was an Idea Book & Catalogue in a gorgeous binder, as well as our free stamp sets – Creative Elements (p67) and It’s Your Day (p104) - which we used for the Make & Take sessions. I’ll post the Make & Takes over the next few days – I’ve missed daylight again so don’t have photos of them yet.

During the two days of Convention, there are various sessions - some motivational, some new product demonstrations, special announcements, Make & Takes (we did four - two on each day). And, of course, there's Memento Mall (right), where you can buy lots of exciting goodies, including shopping totes, umbrellas, keyring charms, playing cards, an exclusive "Grow" stamp, pop-up bins, etc. It's very hard to restrain yourself! After each demonstration, there's Prize Patrol - and I'm delighted to report that Alison H won a fabulous pack of goodies – a stamp set, Designer Series Paper and fabric from the forthcoming Mini catalogue!

On the Friday evening, there's the Gala Dinner, where the top achievers are rewarded for their efforts. I didn't get to walk the stage this time, but I have to admit I was relieved about that! What was more special than any awards was our welcome from the French demonstrators, who lined the entrance to the dinner hall, wearing feather boas and straw hats, singing us in! I didn’t catch all of the song, but did hear the words “mes deux amours... Stampin’ Up! et Paris” (my two loves... Stampin’ Up! and Paris).

There isn’t a lot of down time at Convention but there was a little more than last year, thanks to our feedback, and we had some time to spare in between events, which was a great opportunity to catch up with other demonstrators from the UK as well as France and Germany, and enjoy hanging out with our own group.

Ann and Sue took the opportunity to take a tour of the park on the free bus service... only to discover that it was merely a shuttle to take visitors to and from the train station! I can still hear Alison H saying in exasperated tones: “You were supposed to take the little white train not the yellow bus!”

I asked my travelling companions for feedback and have received two so far.

Sue says: "A weekend of firsts: first Convention, first trip to Paris Disneyland, first outing with our team, first experience of a Stampin' Up! event and, of course, first trip on the yellow bus! A real sense of belonging and looking out for each other. Well worth the effort."

And Ann says:  “Convention was absolutely fantastic, and made even more so by the companions I had. I would like to thank all of you for adopting me into your team  and making me feel so welcome. I had a fabulous time and even enjoyed the yellow bus ride Sue and I took. We at least got to see Disney Station. The one thing about being a Stampin’ Up Demonstrator that really struck home over the weekend, apart from all the material benefits etc. is that you do feel part of one big family. Last year I went alone, but this year I was lucky enough to have been adopted by Helen’s team and they really made me feel part of it. Thank you girls.”

Next year’s Convention will be held in Mainz, Germany, from November 2-3. I don’t know if I will be able to go just yet as it falls in the school holidays so I may be going away with my own family (rather than my SU family!) or may not be able to get time off work. But if you’re free, I highly recommend it – you are guaranteed to have a great time! Of course, it’s only open to active Stampin’ Up!® demonstrators, so if you’re not a demonstrator yet, you know what to do and where to find me!


2 comments:

  1. Excellent post!! You've covered everything beautifully - I'm not quite rested enough to write this coherently, lol!!

    This was my first Convention...but I KNOW that I will absolutely be there in Mainz next year!!!! You are so right about the feeling of "belonging" and everyone looking out for each other. I was so grateful to have my Stamping Sisters there!

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  2. It all sounds wonderful Helen - and I know from last year how exhausting it can be! Thanks for sharing it with us.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I love receiving genuine comments - I do get bored of deleting dodgy links though!

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