Tuesday, January 27, 2009

CHA Showdown!

What a crazy, but marvelous couple of days!

On Sunday I woke up at 4:15 am and caught a flight out of Page to Phoenix and then on to LAX. From there, I traveled to the CHA (Craft and Hobby Association) convention!

It was a fun couple of days meeting new friends, catching up with old friends, and seeing all of the hottest and greatest new products for this season in the crafting and scrapbooking industry.

I have been going to shows now since 2004, and have traveled with 3 different companies. One as a buyer, one as a manufacturer, and now as press. Each has been fun and brought a different view of the industry. When I went to my first show, my dear boss and friend, Brenda Birrell, made a travel log of the crazy things that happened at that convention. It was one show I will never forget! I decided that I would do the same thing for this particular convention to give you a little look into this awesome trip:

* Started out with MASSIVE head cold ... not so much fun!
* Airport at 5:30 - Hair moose exploded in my suitcase.
* Security made me eat my yogurt before going on the plane ... ate too fast ... drooled off the spoon, onto my shirt!
* Got onto a 2 prop, 10 seat plane ... closed my eyes and PRAYED that I would make it to Phoenix.
* Got to Phoenix ... heaven sent Einstein Bagel (potato with strawberry cream cheese ummmm) on my way to terminal.
* Have to go through security AGAIN!
* Stand in line at Starbucks. Man is determined that the tea MUST be green in color or all heck will break loose. Made an ABSOLUTE fool out of himself!
* Sit down to eat my bagel and see that the same man at Starbucks, happens to be on my plane ... and REFUSES to wait for his "Zone" to load. He must be on first.
* I load the plane, and find my seat is right behind this same looser guy. After listening to him yell at the stewardess because his I-Phone doesn't have service, and then quickly to find out it that he actually does have service, (he is just an idiot) ... he decides to wake up some employee at 7 am and tell her she is fired if she leaves the place in which she was staying.
* Before plane even took off, I decided the IPOD was going to be VERY useful this flight.
* Norah Jones, Coldplay, Rascal Flatts ... "What to expect the first year" as my reading entertainment.
* Arrived in LA only to sit down, look up and watch DAVID ARCHULETA walk up to his limousine driver ... tried to talk, couldn't speak ... realized 5 minutes after that my camera was sitting on my lap! Instead I thought this picture will have to do! (don't you love the long hair underneath?)

* Met up with Brian Tippetts ... White convertible pick up "supposedly" the only car available, wink wink (right Brian).
* Meanwhile must circle the airport multiple times because "Officer Friendly" wouldn't let us wait on the curb for Amanda Probst, (yeah we finally met!) and Erin Bayless, (SO much in common ... GO NORDSTROM).
* LAX to Anaheim, Quiznos for lunch!
* Hotel for refreshing, only to find rooms not ready yet. Washing hair moose out of skirt, blow drying in lobby bathroom.
* One room available until that evening .. kids suite for Erin, two bunk beds ... Party at Erin's Hooorah!
* Signing for Amanda & Brian. Brian's book is a no show.
* Make and Take at 3:00 pm ... autographs signed, new friends made.

* Walking the show with Maurianne, meeting old friends and new. AC friends and Pebbles friends all in one stop!
* Dinner with the CK team at Tortilla Joes in Downtown Disney ... Washing hands with Angie; Megan's pictures of Paris Hilton and using press badge to get it; television talk with the team; Wendy dessert extravaganza, so full I wanted to die!
* Taxi ride back to hotel, feet about ready to fall off, nice warm bath before bed, Lights out at 9:30pm.
* Breakfast at 8:45 ... ummm OATMEAL!
* Walking the show with Lori.

* Make and take at 11:00 am.

* Lunch with CK contributors.
* Taco salad ... eating in a circle upstairs ... Megan + Jane Seymour = one awesome meeting; duck, duck, grey duck? Meeting Brenda from Ogden, UT (GO APRIL ISSUE).
* Happy 5th Birthday Paper Crafts!

* Walking the show with Maurianne.
* Wanting ice cream, finding I threw away my cash card with my food, digging through two trashes, and chasing down trash carts. No such luck ... goodbye cash card :(
* Sizzix at 3:00 pm .... AWESOME pop-up dies.
* Walking, okay pregnant woman practically running, to the remaining booths I wanted to see. Didn't get to see them all, but amazed by all the new amazing products.
* Booth talk, who loved what, followed by walking back to Hotel.
* Jeans and Born shoes saved my life ... catching Taxi in front of Hilton.
* Taxi driver OBVIOUSLY didn't like palm trees in response to Erin comment "I love palm trees".
* Dinner at House of blues ... Strawberry lemonade with "one" strawberry, Salmon & Jambalaya, and the KEY LIME PIE that not only changed my life, but everyone's life at the table as well!

* Lego land for Amanda, ever seen a giraffe wearing a beret, 3 stories high, made out of legos? I HAVE!
* Back to the hotel lobby to meet my cousin Michael living in Anaheim. Talking until 12:30 am.
* Off to bed ... Breakfast at 8:30!
* Sitting with Cath and Susan ... two awesome women if I might say so myself.
* Pictures with CK gals ... and goodbyes

* Shuttle with ALL CHA attendees.
* Security line at LAX outside ... froze to death!
* CPK BBQ Pizza eh-okay. Missed Ty from "Extreme Home Makeover" by minutes!
* SMALL plane from LA to Phoenix ... sat next to old man farmer, obviously didn't want to talk, single, not married, never want to be married, got the clue!
* Read Lain Ehman's "Snippets book" on the way home. Snorting, laughing, and making note to tell all my scrap friends to go and buy one! It is a scrapbookers MUST have!
* 3 hour layover in Phoenix, met cutest older couple from Elmira, NY!

... and that is where I am right now ... waiting to go home to see my two boys ... CAN'T WAIT!
Check back for my favorites from CHA!


Lindsay Bateman said...

W0w! What a whirlwind! Great photos and cannot wait to see and hear about your favorites! That pie looked delicious!

julie.schellin said...

Whew - I need a nap from reading that, and I'm not pregnant. :) Sounds like you had a fab time.

Nicole said...

Sounds like so much fun. Everyone at the store that I work at got to go, but I again didn't get to go this year. Maybe one day I will make it to that event.
Extreme Makeover Home Edition is in my town this very week. I would love to run into Ty as well. :)
Have a great day.
Nicole M.

cpeep said...

Those Sizzix pop up dies sound great. Having made a zillion pop ups by hand, I could use a short cut for some. Especially that darn cake!

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting

Link to my cake:

the life of a teenage scrapbooker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
the life of a teenage scrapbooker said...

Hi mandy
Thanks so much for your reply and your input! it helped alot!
but i had just ine more question, were you ever good at drawing? or is it more based on computer knowledge, and computer programming?
Thanks so much!

Brenda Hurd said...

Hey Mandy - it was so great meeting you at the show! You seriously helped me feel welcome! Your a doll!

ScrapHappy said...

Well, if the Scrapbooker of the Year says it's a good book, it must be! ;)
THANK YOU! And so great to see you.

Debby Schuh said...

I missed seeing you at the show! I asked at the AC booth if you were there and they said no. I guess they meant no...you weren't in THEIR booth! :)

Brenda Hurd said...

hey - was hoping i could get you to email me! I have a few questions for you! bhurd1976@msn.com

ricksdl said...

you are a busy girl!

Jaimie said...

wow, what a trip!! haha, I loved the picture you photoshopped with David Archuleta, that was great :)

Queen of Paper said...

It was so fun to meet you face to face. Your such a delightful person ;) Keep up the amazing work!

susan opel said...

Aww - this was so cool to read!
And *gasp* about David A.!
And I think you are pretty awesome, too! :)