Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant

If you’ve ever thought about becoming a Close To My Heart Consultant, now is a great time to take that leap of faith and sign up! Why? Well, during the month of October, you can get a deep discount on your New Consultant Kit—or even get it for free! Your New Consultant Kit includes several key business-building supplies as well as credit for purchasing additional supplies that you need to start your business off strong.

But signing up is more than just getting a kit: We know you’ll love being a Consultant. Just think—you’ll get to be your own boss, set your own schedule, make new friends, all while earning extra income to help your family (or to buy more crafting supplies! 🙂 ). And then there are the opportunities to earn even bigger rewards like free, all-inclusive trips for two to places like Mexico, Hawaii, and even Thailand!

We could talk all day about why being a Consultant is awesome, but you don’t have to take our word for it! We’ve asked two new Consultants to share their thoughts on the blog today.

Who are these two ladies? None other than our two newest Rising Star award recipients: Terry Holland and Brittany Rask! These two women have demonstrated incredible dedication and skill in their short time as Consultants, and we can’t wait to share their thoughts with you today. Take it away, ladies!

Terry Holland, Manager from College Station, Texas

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

What did you accomplish in your first year as a Consultant?
I have accomplished so much more than I ever imagined. I originally signed up to get a discount on my products, and now I have a monthly cropping group, a monthly card buffet, 1–2 Gatherings a month, but most importantly, I have met many wonderful new friends because of this fun, creative, giving company that I love being a part of.

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

How has your success as a new Consultant impacted your life? What has it meant to you?
I am reaching levels that I never thought possible. I am blessed and grateful for the opportunities and gifts.

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

What advice would you give to new Consultants?
Be yourself, have fun, don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Take advantage of all the information shared by corporate and fellow Consultants.

Brittany Rask, Consultant from Rochester, Minnesota

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

What did you accomplish in your first year as a Consultant?
When I joined Close To My Heart, I’ll be honest, I was a “kit-naper.” As a perk for signing up as a Consultant, I received several product lines that caught my eye. With more access to the materials, I learned more about the company. The products and atmosphere made me want to be a part of it. Previously, I had taught and sold at a scrapbook store, which I loved. I felt like this was a great opportunity to rekindle that passion and Close To My Heart would be the right fit.

In my first year, I hosted several crops and classes. In order to inspire business, I hosted a free monthly class at the local library. These classes included adults and children, first timers and frequent papercrafters. Another successful approach was vending at numerous events like craft fairs. Staying connected was a top priority. I followed up with Upline leads, established a Facebook business page, started a craft blog, and also sent out a monthly newsletter. Some of my favorite events included teaching a Valentine’s Day treat class to children and making Halloween bags with a group of disabled adults. My teammates also helped me literally reach new heights and overcome my fears this year by getting me on Tower of Terror during Convention.

I’m not sure how I fit it all in on top of a full-time job, part-time job, and planning a wedding, but I guess where there’s a will there’s a way.

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

How has your success as a new Consultant impacted your life? What has it meant to you?
Friends and family would joke about my obsession for scrapbooking and cardmaking.  But after winning Rising Star, individuals started to see my name in the community. They are intrigued with what I’m doing and how I’m doing it. It means so much having my hard work be recognized.

Why NOW Is the Best Time to Become a Close To My Heart Consultant #ctmh #closetomyheart #Consultant #crafting #workfromhome

What advice would you give to new Consultants?
Try, try again. If at first you don’t succeed, try again. Unfortunately not every event is going to be a success, but take it as an opportunity to learn what you can do differently. Follow your Upline’s lead. They’ve been there, done that. They can help teach you about their successes and heartache so you don’t make the same mistakes. Sometimes you will find that the simplest things can create success, such as making a gift or card for another individual.

Aren’t these ladies incredible? They are proof of how life-changing it can be to become a Consultant. Thank you so much, Terry and Brittany, for sharing your thoughts. We are so grateful for you and your examples!

Talk to your Consultant today to learn more about saving big on your New Consultant Kit. We know it’s a conversation you won’t regret! 

Looking for more reasons to become a Close To My Heart Consultant? Then take a look at these 10 reasons why Close To My Heart Consultants live the dream.

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I’m 22, and This Is Why I Scrapbook

I'm 22, and this is why I scrapbook #ctmh #closetomyheart #consultant #business #scrapbooking #inspiration

Howdy! My name is Mandy Petty. I am 22 years old, and I love to scrapbook!

I have been scrapbooking with my mom since I was 10 and have been in love with crafting since before I can remember! My reasons for scrapbooking have evolved over the years, but one thing remains constant…I love to craft.

In the beginning, it was just something fun to do. My mom and I would go to our local scrapbook store for the day to create, shop, and, of course, enjoy the company of our friends. As I have grown older, I have reached out to my peers, sharing my passion with them. It started out as friends coming over to make mini albums in our basement workshop and has evolved into crops, craft shows, and scrapbook conventions. Nowadays I share my love for crafting with anyone and everyone who will listen, which sometimes even results in new friendships!

While I was in grade school, I would create holiday gifts by hand rather than go out and purchase them at the store. I remember one of my favorite gifts was making a five-page mini album out of chipboard and Flip Flaps. Surprisingly it was by far one of the most impactful gifts I had given! I remember giving it to my teachers and friends and watching their faces light up. It was such a simple gesture, but their smiles showed they knew how much I appreciated and cared for them, all because I took the time to create their gift.

On top of this, I would create my own birthday invitations each year. It was always fun designing them, especially since it was cheaper than buying them at the store and they were personalized! Recently, I was delighted to learn that my best friend Chloe saved all of the birthday invitations I’d sent her over the years because she loved the artwork! It’s amazing how you never really know how your creations will affect people.

I'm 22, and this is why I scrapbook #ctmh #closetomyheart #consultant #business #scrapbooking #inspiration

Another reason I enjoy scrapbooking is the amazing community. Over the years I have met many wonderful people, some of which are now among my best friends and “framily”! In fact, this year for my 22nd birthday I chose to go to a scrapbooking retreat rather than have a party. Just like anyone else, I wanted to do what I love most for my birthday, so I chose to spend it scrapbooking with some of my closest friends.

I'm 22, and this is why I scrapbook #ctmh #closetomyheart #consultant #business #scrapbooking #inspiration

Overall, I love being artsy, and scrapbooking provides me with a creative outlet that will last! I can paint, color, design, and create knowing it will be preserved along with my memories. Scrapbooking allows my crafting to become part of my story in a format that will last a lifetime.

I'm 22, and this is why I scrapbook #ctmh #closetomyheart #consultant #business #scrapbooking #inspiration

All of our memories are treasures; unfortunately, they don’t always last. Years ago my band director told us, “A dull pencil is better than a sharp mind.” One day you may not remember all the little moments, but you’ll have your photos and journals to remind you of your accomplishments, challenges, goofiness, family, and friends. These moments are precious but fleeting, which inspires me to scrapbook and document them so I can treasure them for years to come!

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3 Reasons Why You Should Become a Consultant Right Now!

Being a Close To My Heart Independent Consultant has a lot of perks: You get to make money doing what you love, plan your work schedule however you’d like, meet women with similar interests, and save big on products with your Consultant discount, just to name a few. But during the month of July, there are three MORE reasons to become a Consultant: Adventure, Whimsy, and Enchantment!

What are we talking about? Our brand new Fundamentals paper collections, which feature 24 double-sided sheets of beautiful patterned paper. And we’ve also created Complements (stickers and die-cuts) that coordinate with each Fundamentals collection that have three themes—everyday moments, baby, and school.

If you join as a Consultant in July, not only will you get to preview these products before everyone else (they’re not available to the public until August 1!), and not only will you get to order them before anyone else, but you will get one paper collection and its coordinating Complements for FREE! You can choose any of these three collections you want!

Did we mention that it only costs $75 USD to join, and you get $50 in Select Product Credit, which means you basically join for $25? Yeah, it’s a great deal and super low risk!

Because seeing is sometimes believing, we want to give you an exclusive look at the beautiful layouts you can create with these new Fundamentals collections and their coordinating Complements. Ready to be amazed?

3 reasons you should become a Close To My Heart Consultant right now! #ctmh #closetomyheart #beyourownboss #startyourownbusiness #scrapbooking #crafting

First up is our Adventure Fundamentals and Good Life Complements. There’s no stamping on this layout—all the embellishments you see—including those flashy gold die-cuts—come with the Good Life Complements, which are designed for everyday scrapbooking.

3 reasons you should become a Close To My Heart Consultant right now! #ctmh #closetomyheart #beyourownboss #startyourownbusiness #scrapbooking #crafting

Here are our Whimsy Fundamentals and the Baby Girl Complements. If you choose to go with the Whimsy papers, you could also choose Baby Boy Complements instead, which feature silver foil instead of gold. And don’t worry, the papers can just as easily be used to create a layout featuring pale blues and greens instead of pinks!

3 reasons you should become a Close To My Heart Consultant right now! #ctmh #closetomyheart #beyourownboss #startyourownbusiness #scrapbooking #crafting

Last up is our Enchantment Fundamentals and School 7–12 Complements. And no surprise here, you can also choose the School K–6 Complements if you want those instead. Either way, you’re sure to have the supplies you need to create an A+ scrapbook.

Here’s a re-cap on why now is the best time to join Close To My Heart: If you become a Consultant during the month of July, not only can you order all of these new collections and see all of our other new products before anyone else, but you’ll also get one Fundamentals paper collection and its coordinating Complements for FREE.

If you’re ready to become your own boss and make crafting your living, talk to your Consultant today or visit closetomyheart.com to find one in your area.

Recipes

12″ x 12″ Hello Layout
Z3253 Adventure Fundamentals, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5930 Slate Cardstock, Z3264 Good Life Complements

12″ x 12″ Baby Girl Layout
Z3255 Whimsy Fundamentals, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5773 Pixie Cardstock, X5929 Whisper Cardstock, X5770 Glacier Cardstock, Z3272 Baby Girl Complements

12″ x 12″ So Proud Layout
Z3254 Enchantment Fundamentals, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5930 Slate Cardstock, Z3266 School 7–12 Complements
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Getting to Know Lynn Como

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercraftingWe’ve got an extra special treat for you today—we’ve interviewed Senior Director Lynn Como, who is a top performing Consultant and a truly wonderful person. We’re really excited to help you get to know her better and learn some tricks of the trade. 🙂

Q. What are your five favorite products?

A. Because I’m a dedicated scrapbooker, these quality products are my favorite:

  1. Post-bound albums
  2. Memory Protectors™—They are a fantastic weight and the extra 1/2 “ helps them lay flat in our books. Love that!
  3. Flip Flaps™—absolutely a scrapper’s solution to photo overload! My two-page spreads hold a lot more photos in the same amount of space. Yeah!
  4. My Reflections™ Papers—No matter what they are, I can always use the designs, embellishments, and coordination for my layouts. They are perfect!
  5. How-To Books—I use them all the time as my starting point in creating layouts. They help me scrap faster, and the designs are timeless.

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercraftingQ. Do you consider yourself a decorative scrapbooker, fundamental scrapbooker, pocket scrapbooker, cardmaker, or papercrafter?

A. In 1998 when Jeanette Lynton unveiled her “Close To My Heart” scrapbooking line, I had never scrapbooked before. I decided it was a good time to start since I was a Consultant. It was the best decision ever because from day 1, I’ve always used our products to scrap! I love to use a variety of My Acrylix® stamps for icons, titles and backgrounds, as they add so much more detail to a layout. Embellishing with chipboard, ribbon, bling and doo-dads kicks it up another notch. My photos are the focus of my pages, but the decorative details create an artfully designed page so they work well together.

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercrafting

Q. If you could give one piece of advice to those just starting their Close To My Heart business, what would you say?

A. What are you passionate about? Making cards, scrapbooking, or 3-D projects? Once you know what you love to do, that’s the avenue for you to share with your circle of influence. . You will attract people to you that enjoy your art form. When you are passionate about it, it shines through and people will want to do what you do! And always ask your circle, “Who do you know that would love to join you?” This helps you grow your circles faster, and you have to keep repeating this question to everyone you meet.

Next, you have to be consistent and dedicated. Create what you love and share it weekly, bi-weekly or monthly through social media and email. People love to SEE (and are such visual learners), so photos of artwork is KEY. It’s like being a kid in the candy shop—you “ooh” and “aah” over the selection, but you can’t make a decision because you want it ALL! So, the more you show visually, the higher your return on your time invested. It just looks so good!

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercrafting

Q. Why do you love crafting?

A. I look at crafting as a challenge, and I love challenges! I want to craft something unique, different, classy, and stylish that doesn’t look like anything I’ve created before. So each month I craft a new Kit of the Month, which incorporates My Reflections™ paper packets, embellishments, stamps, and ink into 6-8 scrapbook pages (and sometimes even cards). I try to think outside the box, creating ideas that are useful, classic in style, clean without clutter, and will still host 7 or more photos (thank you, Flip Flaps™!). I don’t want my projects to look the same, and I get excited when I’ve pulled off another unique look. That’s the challenge: to continually push my creativity while also enjoying the crafting aspect of what I do. It’s so rewarding!

Q. What do you do to get inspired?

A. I find inspiration by looking at other Consultants’ artwork, browsing Pinterest for ideas, or reviewing my own scrapbooks (I have 15+ albums). I may use bits and pieces and tweak them to get my own design, or I may wake up in the middle of the night with an idea. Here’s a layout where it kind of hit me to create 3″ x 3″ swatches of paper and use a 6″ x 12″ Flip Flaps™ in the middle. I love the colors and the distressed look of these pages. The photos really POP:

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercrafting

What keeps me inspired though? I have the best customers who compliment my artwork and tell me how much they enjoy what I create. Their enthusiasm and approval is what inspires me each month to try to artistically design fantastic layouts they will want to duplicate! It is so rewarding to hear or read someone’s “stamp of approval” when they comment on a creation. It totally makes my day and validates my creative process. The art I create doesn’t happen in one day—it takes time to design. So when I get acknowledged for my effort, it keeps me motivated and inspired to continue.

Q. Can you share with us one of your favorite pieces of artwork you’ve created?

A. Here are some photos of my Kit of the Month for Regatta. I love the variety of layouts you can create with this paper packet: It’s great for pictures of the beach, vacations, adventures, the 4th of July, boating, cruising—the possibilities are endless!

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercrafting

Q. What is something most people don’t know about you?

A. I was a jock! During elementary and high school years, I competed and was captain for our basketball and tennis teams. I also participated on the cheerleading squad. When I worked in NYC, I joined the women’s softball team, and we played our games in Brooklyn. I learned how to ski when I was 20 and enjoy being outdoors, hiking, and occasionally kayaking (I love being closer to the mountains in New Hampshire). Life is good!

Get the inside scoop from one of our top Consultants! #ctmh #closetomyheart #lynncomo #Consultants #scrapbooking #papercrafting

Q. What’s the most exciting thing that your Close To My Heart business has paid for?

A. Vacations that are FREE! Because of the fantastic support of loyal customers and a company that rewards hard work, Rick and I have enjoyed 12 incentive trips. When possible, we try to piggy-back and add on a few extra days to lengthen our time away. We’ve visited Hawaii (twice), Alaska, New Zealand, Mexico and many tropical islands while cruising. One of our favorite incentive trips though was the Mediterranean Cruise, which let us enjoy Malta, Italy (Rome, Positano, Florence, and the Cinque Terre) and Nice, France. Each trip is so memorable!

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Consultant Spotlight: Tonya Sheridan

Here’s the last 2016 incentive trip earner we interviewed! Tonya shares her approach to earning this year’s cruise and her thoughts on memory keeping.

Tonya Sheridan, Executive Manager
Time as a Consultant: 10 years
6th incentive tripTonya Sheridan shares her thoughts about memory keeping and running a successful business on the blog! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #Consultant

How did you earn the incentive trip?

I do a lot of different things.  My business is focused not on a single avenue, but many avenues that make it well-rounded.  I assist my Upline, and several of my sister sidelines, with their expos.  I hope to have my own in the future, which makes this not only a great learning experience for myself, but helps them achieve their goals and dreams.  Additionally, I am a vendor at some larger crops of typically 100+ people along the East Coast. I have traveled with these groups and established myself with them. I also run my own crops. I have three weekend-long crops per year and then a monthly crop at my church or a local hotel. I also do fundraisers for different organizations, one Workshops Your Way™ event once per month, and sometimes specialty classes for flair, depending on what’s new or what I’m excited about!

Outside of these scrapbooking events, I also teach a card club once a month (two during the fall) that keeps me grounded. I love all of my events. They are each very unique, but this card one brings me “home” every month—most of the ladies are retired and have become like grandmothers to me. Such a blessing!!! Online, I do online sales, offer kits by mail, and maintain a blog. I blog, not as often as I’d like to, but I do try to keep it semi inspirational and keep a balance of talking about work, event, specials, and also some of my personal life. I’m not really shy about posting pictures of my children—I think they’re pretty cute and many of my customers have developed relationships with my children so they love to see what’s new with them. Tonya Sheridan shares her thoughts about memory keeping and running a successful business on the blog! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #Consultant

My business is indeed a family effort—they play a large role in my successes. My daughter is the best Bingo caller ever and can do the little twist-twist-tap-tap-tap dance to teach stamping skills better than any adult. My boys help my croppers load, and unload their vehicles and love to help make up kits. My mom and husband help whenever needed, and my dad babysits during my events. Having their help and support has become a true blessing. Tonya Sheridan shares her thoughts about memory keeping and running a successful business on the blog! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #Consultant

What was your favorite part of the trip?

I think it’s just getting to see friends and acquaintances. A lot of us follow each other on Facebook but haven’t been able to sit down and have a full conversation; here I can sit down at breakfast and ask Brandy how her child is doing in school because I have established a relationship with her on Facebook. And I have found that most people are really open about sharing ideas and sharing business, so we kind mix both together in conversation.Tonya Sheridan shares her thoughts about memory keeping and running a successful business on the blog! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #Consultant

Why is memory keeping so important to you?

Well, for me it’s the journey; it’s not just keeping the particular memories. I enjoy scrapbooking with my kids. They get to journal along with me. My scrapbooks are not ones that stay on the shelf. We go through them all the time because it’s important to us. If I leave our photos on a digital card, then that’s where they’re going to stay. Our family has unfortunately had a flood and we lost lots and lots of pictures—that in itself made the memory keeping all the more important to me. I also see memory keeping as a healing tool. We have many family members and friends who have dementia, and our scrapbooks have been an invaluable tool to revisit memories with them.

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Consultant Spotlight: Casey Spinks

Here’s another one of our 2016 incentive trip earners! Casey shares her approach to earning this year’s cruise and her unique perspective on memory keeping.

Casey Spinks, Director
Dacula, Georgia
Time as a Consultant: 12 years
9th incentive trip

Learn more about Casey and her unique perspective on scrapbooking! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #Consultants #scrapbooking

How did you earn the incentive trip?

I tried to expand my business and do some different things. I often host weekend-long retreats where I have product for cash & carry, and my guests work at their own pace on all kinds of crafting projects. Working toward earning the incentive trip, I decided to offer more instruction-led events. I called them Boot Camps! They featured “intense training” or specific projects that used some of the latest techniques.  Those have worked very well for me.  People really do love the fact that we can show them how to use our products, and that we really are the “Let Me Show You How” company!

Learn more about Casey and her unique perspective on scrapbooking! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #Consultants #scrapbooking

What was your favorite part of the trip?

To pick just one thing is hard, but it was probably the time with my friends because we rarely get to see one another.  Convention is AMAZING, but it’s definitely a jam-packed event, so you see people but you don’t really have time to sit down and talk with them. I’ve certainly enjoyed “treating” my husband to this trip.  To earn an all-expenses-paid vacation for the two of us to cruise on the newest, largest, most amazing ship has been absolutely fabulous!

Learn more about Casey and her unique perspective on scrapbooking! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #Consultants #scrapbooking

One of my ALL TIME FAVORITE “old” photos of my family

Learn more about Casey and her unique perspective on scrapbooking! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #Consultants #scrapbooking

My parents’ 50th wedding anniversary

Why is memory keeping important to you?

I might seem a little bit selfish with my memory keeping, because I am preserving my memories for ME.  People used to ask me ALL of the time, “Since you don’t have children, what do you scrapbook?” Even though I don’t have children, I still have a FABULOUS, FUN-filled life FULL of opportunities to scrapbook.  I’m not as concerned about preserving my memories to pass on to future generations as I am about preserving the many memories I have from my childhood and my precious time with my parents, brother, cousins, and grandparents.  So, that’s what my memory keeping is about!  I enjoy documenting and preserving all of our family milestones, time with my friends, the terrific places I have visited, life with my new husband, and having a large “fur family.”  We have A LOT of fun with our pets!  No matter how you look at it, I have PLENTY of things to scrapbook!  I’m really just preserving my many blessings and having a really great time doing it!

Learn more about Casey and her unique perspective on scrapbooking! #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #Consultants #scrapbooking

Hawaii 2015 Incentive Trip: Brian and I were literally on our honeymoon!

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Consultant Spotlight: Jennifer Smith

Another one of our 2016 incentive trip earners shares her experience earning this year’s cruise and her perspective on memory keeping.

Jennifer Smith, Manager
Time as a Consultant: 4 years
1st incentive tripRead Jennifer's thoughts about the incentive trip and memory keeping. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #craft

How did you earn the incentive trip?
I try to do a mix of everything in my business. I hosted multiple events, including retreats, hostess clubs, workshops, and trade shows.Read Jennifer's thoughts about the incentive trip and memory keeping. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #craft

What was your favorite part of the trip?
I had never been on a cruise before, so the whole experience was amazing. Close To My Heart made the experience unforgettable. Being spoiled with cute gifts and royal treatment is a motivator to never miss another trip! Getting to spend time with the other Consultants and put faces to names was awesome as well. We have such a great group of people at Close To My Heart—it really does feel like a family!Read Jennifer's thoughts about the incentive trip and memory keeping. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #craft

Why is memory keeping important to you?
I really enjoy the art aspect of memory keeping. My photos deserve a beautiful page to showcase my great life! I love being able to do my own thing creatively and inspire my customers and friends to make beautiful projects of their own!Read Jennifer's thoughts about the incentive trip and memory keeping. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #craft

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Consultant Spotlight: Megan Elizabeth Gravener

As you know from Monica’s post last week, we recently returned from our Eastern Carribean Cruise incentive trip. On the cruise, we pulled aside four of our awesome earners and asked them a few questions. We want to share these pearls of wisdom with all of you. Up first is Megan!

Megan Elizabeth Gravener, Executive Manager
Time as a Consultant: 2 years
2nd incentive trip

Read Megan's touching story about why memory keeping matters to her. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #cricut

How did you earn this trip?

Well, I’m so thankful and blessed.  I spent the last several years building my blog, which was very Cricut® focused. When Close To My Heart came out with these amazing Cricut® cartridges, those cartridges just captured my heart. Melanie Brown, who is now my Upline, was like, “Megan, come on, you can’t not do this!” So I joined! My big focus in the past two years has been on doing social media and YouTube tutorials and just really working on building relationships online. It’s not easy to connect when you’re not one-on-one with people, but it’s a lot of fun to try to figure out how to do it and watching the trends that are going on, since it is kind of a newer niche within the business. It has been amazing to see people from all over the country say, “Yes, we want to join your Team.” Team building has been one of my biggest strengths. I don’t know any one of my Team members face-to-face, not one.  Read Megan's touching story about why memory keeping matters to her. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #cricut

What’s been your favorite part of this trip?

My favorite part of this trip has just been connecting, I think. I have felt that because I’m so “virtual,” I haven’t put faces with names, so I got to spend time with Krista and Michelle and people in my line, and just giving them a hug face-to-face has been awesome! And Close To My Heart does so much to spoil you, I actually cried! Alex & Ani is such a huge thing, and when I got the Alex & Ani bracelet on my bed, I had tears rolling down my cheeks. So, every part of it I’m just so thankful for. I feel so blessed!Read Megan's touching story about why memory keeping matters to her. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #cricut

Why is memory keeping so important to you?

You know, it actually started for me when I was experiencing post-partum depression. I had several miscarriages and was put on bed rest with my second child, and I thought, “Okay, I need to do something with my time.” I could kind of just lay in bed and start journaling and putting pictures together, and that is where it started. I realized, “Hey, there is this whole other world of scrapbooking.” The Cricut® machine is what really pulled me in because it doesn’t matter if you’re a very beginner who has no crafting abilities whatsoever to, you know, a super expert designer. And that’s why I got really excited about Close To My Heart because they capture every aspect of that and really make it easy to help anybody at any stage and any level, and I think that’s what it’s all about. It’s about the personal journey, the personal story. My tagline is “enjoy the moments” and there’s no better way to enjoy the moments than by capturing them!Read Megan's touching story about why memory keeping matters to her. #ctmh #closetomyheart #memorykeepingmatters #scrapbooking #cricut

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Katie Colla: Some Thoughts on Giving

Katie Colla was the recipient of the Spirit of Close To My Heart award this year at Australasia Convention.
Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #service

I am humbled to have been asked to contribute to this month’s blog post, with a piece about the act of giving.

I have pondered over what to write for weeks, as I struggled to put into words what I’d like to think were acts of kindness that most people would undertake daily.

I really am no different from any other mum, wife, or daughter. I lead a busy life with three young children, I have my own Close To My Heart business, I work as the Community Liaison Officer at our school, and I’m employed casually as an Integration Aide. But all this doesn’t mean there isn’t time for giving back or helping others!

For me, helping others comes in many forms. It might be helping with major fundraisers for community groups, a special family friend, or Operation Smile. It might be dropping off a home-cooked meal for those who might need a break from hardship or just a busy time in their life. It might be a quick little card popped into a letterbox to brighten someone’s day or just a smile and friendly face as you go on your way.

We are all leading busy lives as we cram more and more into each day, but what I would really like to express is that helping others doesn’t have to take weeks to plan or cost you your life savings. Everyday kindness to all is so important. So hold that door open for the next person, smile at the people you pass in the shopping centre, practice patience and have grace in your everyday encounters. You’ll be as blessed by the feeling it leaves you as will the people you share these moments with.

When I joined Close To My Heart and learnt of the company’s connection with Operation Smile, I immediately felt eager to support the cause. Growing up, I had crooked teeth and a huge overbite and felt self-conscious about my smile. But unlike many, I was fortunate to have great dental care that Mum and Dad worked hard for, and I was grateful for it.

My experience was nothing in comparison to how the children and families that Operation Smile works with must feel after receiving their life-changing surgeries. These surgeries are not just cosmetic but are essential to the child’s survival and nutrition.

I am so proud that I have been able to convey this to my customers who purchase our exclusive stamps and regularly round up their orders so that they can contribute to Operation Smile and help make a difference.

In May this year, my team and I held a 12-hour “MAYKE-a-SMILE WORKSHOP” where we auctioned items we had crafted by hand and held a raffle. We also included a balloon pop activity in which someone could buy a numbered balloon for $15 and receive a prize corresponding to that number. We provided dinner, and everyone enjoyed a fabulous day, knowing that we were working towards something much more than just completing our pages and cards. Together we all made a difference, raising enough money for two life-changing operations that day alone.Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #service

Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #service

Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #service

Sometimes we have a bigger cause, and we can’t muster up the time, energy, or ideas to do it alone. Don’t let that deter you. Gather some like-minded, passionate friends and make a difference together.

A great example of this was the time my beautiful mum rang me, distressed that her work colleague was suffering with terminal cancer while trying to raise three children on her own. Together with a small team of ladies, I helped Mum coordinate a wonderful Ladies Night, where we raised $8,000. This wonderful outcome would never have been possible without a group of empowered women working to change another’s circumstances.Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #service

Be inspired to give back to you community— read this blog post by Katie Colla! #ctmh #closetomyheart #operationsmile #givingback #serviceSo as we all enjoy what many see as the giving time of the year, Christmas, I ask you to consider how you can give something throughout the year. Give a smile, give a random card, give yourself to a cause and help move a mountain. Give thought and actions to those who need compassion and help bring light to the world.

Much love to all,

Katie

If you would like to know more about Operation Smile , Close To My Heart’s involvement with Operation Smile, or how to donate,  please contact your Close To My Heart Consultant today.

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