Friday, December 30, 2011

Top 10 Highlights of 2011

Today I'm highlighting my favorite parts of 2011.  They're numbered in the order they happened...not necessarily in ranking.  I was very fortunate to travel a lot and meet a ton of people.  The only thing I wish I could of done is spent more time with Brent.  Until we went to Las Vegas for his birthday, we went on separate trips and vacations this year.

As you'll see, this year really was a crafty fulfilling year.  For 2012, I am shifting more towards a business and personal year. 

1. Winter CHA/Anaheim, CA (January) - I started my year out by attending Winter CHA.  I had so much fun meeting and hanging out with everyone!  Ashley Newell and I grabbed these coolio hats from DCWV and while I was goofing off in the TGF booth, Jessica Diedrich took this silly picture of us.

I also got to meet up with my fellow DT members while I was there.  In the photo is Stephanie Kraft, Shaela Odd, me, Kim Yu, and Lisa Hjulberg.  It was fabulous spending time with them and cruising around the show!  I had the pleasure to meet Kelly Purkey, Tim Holtz, Emily Block, Shannan Tuebner, Pat Serrano, Angela Magnuson, Mona Pendleton, Nina B, Tiffany Johnson, and Joy Kennedy.

2. Pajama Crop/Gig Harbor, WA (January) - The following weekend after CHA, I was crazy and drove down to spend the weekend at Corinna McGregor's for our annual Pajama Crop.  I had the pleasure of meeting Danielle Lounds, Angela Thomas, Kim Teasdale, and Jessica Knutsen.  We shopped, crafted, and laughed all weekend!

Corinna sure knows how to be the hostess with the mostest!  We loved and cherished the coffee bar all weekend!  This year, they finally came out with Starbucks K-cups!!  So, I'm even more of a happy camper! 

3. Family Photos (May) - The last family picture we took was at my wedding in 2008.  And that doesn't really count, lol...since it's really a wedding picture.  At the time, Emily was 2 1/2 and Michael had just turned 1.  In this photo, Emily is 5 and Michael is almost 4.  Seeing the kiddos at Christmas this last week, they've grown so much already since this photo was taken.

4. Summer CHA/Rosemont, IL (July) - My vacations this year consisted of going to CHAs, lol.  I went to Chicago for Summer CHA and had a blast again with everyone!  Lisa swears she looks green in this picture, lol...  We had a blast doing make n takes and eating.  Pizza and ice cream really made this trip for us!  I also spend a bit of time with my friend Sandy Allnock from Operation Write Home.

And another homie pic with Jess, lol.  This woman cracks me up.  I really wish I lived so much closer to her and Lisa.  I only get to see them every 6 months.   I also had the pleasure to meet Jenn Shults, Taylor VanBruggen, Karen Giron, Kim van der Sanden, Joanne Basile, Maria Guzman, Leanne Poe, and Kazan Clark. 

5. Visiting Catherine and Katie/Chicago, IL (July) - As most of you know, my BFF lives in Washington, DC. Living across country, we only see each other about once a year.  In reality, my core group of sorority sisters from college are all spread out over the country.  Luckily, Katie also lives in Chicago.  It was wonderful to spend 4 days after CHA with them and catch up.

While we were in Chicago, we also celebrated Catherine's 29th birthday.  We went to this cool dance club, but once we got there, we saw clowns and balloons.  They told us that is it Muhammad's birthday and that he loved clowns.  People started to show up in clown gear, lol, and it was just the beginning of a silly night.  The rest isn't really appropriate for the blog, lol.  But it will definitely be a memorable birthday celebration! 

6. Meeting Blog Friends (August) - Aileen came down to Seattle for work and Peggy tagged along.  On their last day, they came over so Suzanne and I could take them to Impress Rubber Stamps.  After craft shopping, we went to go eat Thai food at my favorite restaurant, Mali Thai.  We ended the night at Starbucks and had such a wonderful evening of laughs and fun!

Laurel also came down to Seattle to celebrate her anniversary and I got to spend a couple of hours with her.  We had a yummy dinner in downtown Seattle at the Hardrock.  Laurel and I have been friends for years, as we both started CTMH about the same time.  It was great to finally meet her.  I look forward to seeing her again this February when she comes back to Seattle!

7. Meeting Kim, Becky, and Karolyn (August) - Kim Hughes and Becky Olson came to Seattle this last summer.  I had the pleasure of meeting them and spending a crafty weekend together between hanging out at Impress and Ellen Hutson's.  Karolyn, Kim, and Becky are definitely a fun bunch to hang with!  PS...Karolyn was this years Paper Crafts Stamping Royalty I really was surrounded by crafting queens!

I also hold a special place in my heart for Kim, as when my company was only 1 month old, she created and highlighted 2 Sparkle Creations cards on her blog.  This was long before she started Paper Smooches, but I will always be forever grateful for her helping out the little guy.  Kim has such a gracious heart and I'm so glad to have gotten to know her a little bit better.

8. 4 Weddings (September and October) - This fall Brent and I went to 4 weddings.  At Allison's wedding, they had a kid room filled with fun props and things to do.  Brent stole corn dogs off the children's dinner table and we stopped to take this fun picture. 

9. Intermediate Copic Certification/Langley, BC (October) - I signed up to do my Intermediate Copic class in Langley.  I got to spend the weekend with Thanh, Aileen, and Peggy!  Such a fun group of gals and I loved the class!  I'm still working on those light sources, lol.

10. Brent's 30th Birthday/Las Vegas, NV (November) - I had been planning this surprise party since July 2010.  You can bet that I was super excited to finally get to tell Brent and hit the road!  I am so blessed that Brent's friends have lovely significant others and I always have such a great time with these ladies!

And here's a picture of me and Brent in our matching outfits.  Overall, it was a good trip for Brent and Scott.  While I was down there, I did get to eat lunch with Shaela and pick up our aprons for CHA!

I'm getting ready to start it all over, lol.  In 30 days I'll be flying down to Anahiem to exhibit at Winter CHA!  Even if your year wasn't as eventful or cheery, I hope that you all can have peace with 2011 and start fresh for 2012!  Everyone have a safe holiday weekend!


  1. So fun to see all the pics and recaps again. But sheesh, you're right - you DID do a lot of traveling and meeting people, lol!! I think you should do another Vegas trip next year too... but a girly crafty one instead, hehehe. ;)

  2. What an amazing year--I can't wait to see what 2012 brings! FAB pics of you and all your friends/hubby!!!! <3

  3. What a fun year! You know I am watching that light source of yours! lol Can't wait for this summer for our crafty girly weekend!

  4. How super fun... You were B-u-s-y!!!!!

  5. Hey!!! I made it into your review! :D Sparks... you've had one heck of a busy year! But it's been a fun one and you did SO many amazing things. I wish you all the best going into 2012. I hope to see you more often, too!

  6. GREAT Memories Spark, Happy New Year to you and your Family.


Thanks for visiting my blog! I truly appreciate you taking the time to read and comment! Love, Sparks