As a gift from my husband, my sister Julie and I were able to attend the 6th (and final) Creative Escape. Creative Escape is a scrapbooking/crafting weekend extravaganza in which over 500 people work on 10 different projects. It is put on by Bazzill Paper and Heidi Swapp. It is always held here in Phoenix and I was able to attend the very first as a volunteer and the final year as a guest.
This post could be 10 pages long as to what I enjoyed and experienced but in essence these are the things I want to remember…
I want to remember that I got to have a weekend creating things with my hands with my sister, Julie by my side.
I want to remember how amazed I was at the overall evolution of scrapbooking since my first Creative Memories party in the mid 90s.
I want to remember how much I love my gray Tom’s wedges and how I must have had 20+ compliments on them.
I want to remember how I love photo booths and that my sister was a jackass. I love that.
I want to remember how I love mini books and the joy of finishing a project.
I want to remember how thankful I was for Jeff paying for tickets for both Julie and I to go to this conference at the last minute.
I want to remember how Jeff had business cards made for me before this conference since I had just started my blog. And not just any cards, but cards with pictures…
I want to remember how blessed I am to have a husband and sister who both know what brings me joy.
I want to remember how I was amazed at how many people traveled to Arizona when it was 115 degrees outside. And where they came from- London, Australia, South Africa!
I want to remember how I got to meet Ali, Becky, and Margie in person. I had been in contact with them through email and twitter. I was so genuinely happy to see them as real and authentic in person as I have read from them on their blogs. I love real people.
I want to remember how I was perplexed at people asking for the teacher’s autographs. I had never seen anyone ask for an autograph outside of a sport’s arena so I just wasn’t expecting it. Again… the evolution of scrapbooking.
I want to remember how I never tire of taking classes with Amy Totty and Pam Black. I love them as teachers but even more as friends.
I want to remember how hard I laughed at Margie announcing the raffle winners. Her exclaiming “I know her” over and over again, just made me smile and giggle. And who doesn’t need to giggle?
I want to remember Heidi Swapp’s keynote address, where I kept telling myself, “You will not cry!” as I knew the story of her little brother dying. I used to take classes from Heidi from Memory Lane years ago and she had shared her story.
I want to remember the feel of my most fluffy pillow at the hotel and opting to go to bed early. I love sleep. I must be old.
I want to remember encouraging my sister to start her own blog, only to see her do just that when she returned home.
I want to remember my parents surprising us with a “free” hotel stay because they were touched that Jeff paid for the conference. Love that my parents still enjoy surprising my sister and I with goodies.
I want to remember how much I love making things with my hands.
I want to remember how I’m so ok with making mistakes when I make things now and how liberating that is.
I want to remember how much I love peeling glue off my fingers and playing with wax, crayons, fabric, glue dots, and paint.
I want to remember that I have just checked another item off of my list, but have need to add another 100 things I want to do.
I want to remember that the more I live life and experience things, the more my mind is open to try things I never dreamed of.
I want to remember it all and never forget how immeasurably blessed I am to be alive. Not merely a pulse, but truly sucking the marrow out of life.
I want to remember how thankful I am for those of you following along on this crazy journey and how I need to be here even when it is painful and raw. I owe that to myself and to you.
I want to remember that great things are often happening even in the midst of trials. This blog reminds me of my blessings.
I want to remember that life is good. Life is good friends. I’ve missed you but I’m back.
Below are pictures of my completed mini book from Ali Edward’s Remember This class. I love that 5 stories are recorded in this album and that my older 3 kids have already read them. Does it get any better than that?
The cover of the mini book is the picture above of Emily at the Desert Museum investigating a cactus. I added a small #5 to the bottom right hand corner with the words remember this stamped right next to it.
Journaling: I want to remember Emily @ Grandma’s house floating in the jacuzzi, drinking Hawaiian punch, smiling at the camera as she states “This is the life.” I want to remember to enjoy life with this same joy and level of enthusiasm. I want to remember not to take myself or life so seriously. I spend so much time worrying about the future when I should be floating along enjoying my Hawaiian punch. I want to remember that pillow fights and belly giggles are just as important as getting my oil changed or brushing my teeth. I want to remember that out of all my kids, Emily is the most like me. She is a perfectionist, a competitor, and a people pleaser. I NEED to remember to remind her to suck the marrow out of life and not get bogged down in the details or attempting/striving to make others happy. I want to remember that Emily and I are learning a lot from one another and I want to be a great example. I want to remember how much I love her.
As always, Ali taught a class where the story and the words take center stage. But what I also love about this album, is that the little kid in me who wants to create and make a mess is still satisfied too. Stamping, repetition, and different techniques on each number make it even that much more fun. Simple, yet fancy. But the best part- it’s done, on my bookshelf, and being read. So cool. Thanks Ali. And thanks Mr. Bazzill and Heidi Swapp for the grand weekend.