Around the World AGAIN: Monica in Australia and New Zealand

Fitting right in with this month’s travel theme, Close To My Heart CCO Monica Wihongi would like to share some travel adventures of her own after presenting at the Product Premiere Roadshow events in Australia and New Zealand earlier this month:

The timing of my trip to Australasia worked out just perfectly because I was able to fly with my daughter to Hawaii to drop her off at her dorm room for her first semester of college. It was hard to say goodbye, and I already miss her so much!BYU-Hawaii

On my flight from Honolulu, I struck up a conversation with the gentlemen seated next to me. As I talked about my work at Close To My Heart, he mentioned that his sister is an avid scrapbooker. After a bit more conversation and a quick search on Facebook, we discovered that his sister is in fact one of our Close To My Heart Consultants! So of course I had to take a picture with him!IMG_7484

This chance encounter filled me with pride for the great company that I work for and the wonderful people I had come to Australasia to see. I had a full and somewhat daunting schedule ahead of me, but I felt encouraged by our simple conversation, and it helped me see the wonderful progress that Close To My Heart has been making throughout Australasia over the past two years.IMG_7252

My trip began with Product Premiere Roadshow events in Christchurch and Auckland, New Zealand. My husband, Jody, was raised in New Zealand, and I was happy to have him accompany me on these early stops. I am always amazed by the natural beauty of that country but even more so by the beautiful people that live there. Our New Zealand Consultants are an incredible crew, and it was an honor to spend time with them at these events.

These events were our venue for showing off the brand new products we unveiled last month at our North American Convention. There’s so much to be said for seeing products and artwork first-hand, and, even better, getting to create with them! Event attendees at all our stops got to make this beautiful layout using a new paper packet that I absolutely love called Kaleidoscope. This is my example featuring my youngest daughter, Maya.
maya creative insider
From New Zealand, we flew to Perth in Western Australia. Through all my stops, I was accompanied by our incredible Australasia corporate staffers, Australasia Managing Director, Brian O’Callaghan and Events Manager, Meredith Blakemoore. We were also joined by Anna Williamson from Consultant Services for the last few stops. Working alongside these individuals over the course of these events, I was so impressed by how much they care about the Consultants and how much heart they put into everything that they do. They are truly remarkable individuals, and I am grateful to have them as part of our Close To My Heart family.
From Perth, to Adelaide, to Hobart, Tasmania; then on to Melbourne, Brisbane, and Sydney—everywhere we went, we were greeted by groups of enthusiastic and joyful Consultants who were incredibly excited for our new products and eager to learn as much as they could. There was such a positive energy at every event that I felt rejuvenated after each one, despite the rigorous travel schedule!

And boy was the schedule rigorous! We put on 8 different events across New Zealand and Australia in less than two weeks! But we still somehow managed to squeeze in some site-seeing opportunities. I just felt that I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to enjoy the rare beauty of this incredible part of the world. So what if I missed out on a few precious opportunities to take naps—it was so worth it!

And then, before I knew it, the Product Premiere Roadshow was all over and I was flying back home. I was exhausted, but invigorated at the same time. I just have to say this: I am proud of how strong Close To My Heart has become in Australasia, I am proud of the people that we have working with us, and I am proud of the difference we have been able to make in the lives of so many people in this part of the world. I look forward to going back for our Australasia Convention, which is only a month and a half away! It is going to be a wonderful occasion for us to celebrate the two years we’ve had together so far and the many years that lie ahead of us.IMG_7914

In honor of our first two years in Australasia, we actually have something special lined up for next week—I don’t want to give it away, but I promise you’ll want to be sure to check the blog early next week for a new contest open to all of our readers.

Thank you to everyone who helps to make the Close To My Heart family the amazing community that it is!

With love,


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17 thoughts on “Around the World AGAIN: Monica in Australia and New Zealand

  1. I couldn’t believe how much energy Monica had by the time she got to Sydney. She is a wonderful story teller & even though she was very tired & had to fly back home very early in the morning, Monica just shared her love for the company, her enthusiasm with all the wonderful new products & inspired us to be happy. I am very happy that Monica was able to join us here in Aus.

  2. Monica, your enthusiasm and story telling was amazing. it was like Melbourne was your first and only stop and never did you make it feel like you were over it or exhausted like you must have been!. We value the time you give us here in Australia knowing that the time you give us takes you from your wonderful family. My team will never miss an event that you are at because we are such fans of all that you do! We <3 Monica.

  3. Looks like a great time! One day I hope to travel there. My husband goes on business and loves it!

  4. Thanks Monica! We love your visits here, it’s so nice to feel connected to the company and not just an offshoot overseas – we are truly part of the heart of CTMH and treated just like our North American sisters. Looking forward to convention!

  5. Monica, you are amazing! It is such a small world and how wonderful your seatmate’s sister is a consultant too! Love love love NZ and would love to visit again some day!

  6. I love your blog post about Around The World! We are moving there and it will be so sad for me to leave CTMH when we move. So, hopefully SOON there will be a new office in Indonesia 😀 That is not too far from Australia… Might be a great opportunity there 😀

  7. It’s a tough job, but you’re da best gal for it Monica! Jeannette was soooo right when she said you could do this! We’re all so proud to share you with the world as you sprinkle glitter and our company with our CTMH sisters around the world!

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