From Obsession to Occupation
After becoming obsessed with the hobby of scrapbooking, my daughter informed me of a scrapbooking retreat that was being held at a hotel in her town. Without hesitation, I invited myself to fly across the continent to attend this retreat with her! We had such a wonderful time, learned so many new techniques, and accomplished so much in a short period of time that I came home thinking, “No one is doing that in my part of the world. I can do that!” Thus Crop-A-Lot Scrapbooking Retreats was born!
The ultimate way to work on your albums is to attend a retreat weekend where you leave all the responsibilities of home behind, meet with a group of twenty to five hundred scrapbookers where you have your own cropping space, access to a vast array of equipment provided by the host company, plus a plethora of supplies and services provided by vendors invited to the retreat. In addition, teachers come to retreats to teach specific techniques of scrapbooking. To top off a marvelous time, the host company provides numerous prizes, games, contests, and FUN!
Little did I know that owning and operating a company would consume so much of my life and provide so many personal rewards! Our retreats doubled in size during our second year of operation, and it appears that they could come close to doubling again this year. It is impossible for one person to accomplish so much for so many croppers that Crop-A-Lot is reinventing itself this year. We are hiring retreat coordinators to develop a retreat for their geographic area, thus we plan to spread Crop-A-Lots across the continent in both Canada and the US.
Crop-A-Lot specializes in pampering the attendees at an elegant cropping party with a Camelot twist. A Lady/Sir Crop-A-Lot costume contest is held with the idea that bathrobes make lovely gowns or tunics as well as comfortable cropping wear. However, I am always the only one wearing a bathrobe! The croppers dress in fabulous medieval costumes making this a very popular aspect of the weekend! Round Table discussions are held as a show and tell of individual successes or failures for assisting others. Cropping hours extend around the clock throughout the weekend, as the creative juices sometimes flow the best in the middle of the night. Sharing one’s work is a highlight of a retreat. We have daily surprises, themed layout contests, and Make & Takes.
Croppers leave a Crop-A-Lot Retreat having learned exciting new techniques, refreshed from having spent a weekend of relaxation and exhilarating fun, plus taking home products and embellishments which they won, purchased and created. The ultimate goal of having attended a retreat is to go home with considerable work having been accomplished on one’s albums. Scrapbooking is a medium for expression of personal joys and sorrows. It is more than a hobby. It becomes a way of life, a means of coping and reflecting. The ultimate goal of creating a scrapbook is not personal growth; it is creating a legacy for one’s children and one’s children’s children.
by Nina Walsh
Tomorrow at dMarie Daily: Not Just A Hobby, by Kerry B.