THIS IS A TRUE STORY: how joining the CHA (Craft & Hobby Association) changed my life.
Grab some popcorn and send the children out of the room...
AT the CHA retreat in June I was asked to speak at the end of the conference to 'share my story' and explain why I think belonging to CHA is so important. Alas, we ran out of time, so here is (basically) what I was going to say:
1 1/2 years ago I was crafting away and wondering what I wanted for myself? I had few professional commitments and having a problem focusing on what I really wanted to do: what would make me happy?
I decided to invest in myself and register for the first CHA retreat in Canada.
|*Roberta: BEFORE CHA. So Sad.|
It promised to be a weekend full of workshops and creativity. I didn't know what to expect, who I would meet, or if I would even 'belong' in that group.
In a nutshell, 1 1/2 years later, EVERYTHING I am doing now is because of my decision to become a CHA member and attend that first CHA retreat!
Not only did I participate, learn, grow and network, I milked every single last drop out of that opportunity. Let's face it: we have opportunities presented to us on a daily basis- it is what we do with those opportunities (if we even recognize them in the first place) that determines our path and defines who we are.
I decided to set myself a first goal
: Become a Designer Member, start getting paid for my work, and attend my first CHA Mega Show in Anaheim, CA.
|Today - I am happy and smiling and discovered I look good in tangerine :)|
who I knew from the industry and online, and I met in-person for the first time at that retreat. There was something about Ann that drew me towards her and I recognized this as my first opportunity: Ask her questions, get advice, and figure out how she might be able to help me and ask for that help.
Check, check, and check.
So what am I doing today?
- I am on 3 design teams: I am leading one of them and overseeing the Blogs and SEO editing of the other 2
- I have had multiple projects published in magazines and books.
- Helping edit a magazine
- A contributing Blogger for ETI Resin
- Regular contributor to Prime Publishing: FaveCrafts and Cheap Eats & Thrifty Crafts
- Virtual Assistant to a Craft Publisher
- Plus, after being introduced to Powertex at that first retreat, by Brigitte Thompson, I am now: An artist and Certified Instructor and Distributor of Powertex.
...and getting paid!
Not bad. Not bad at all.
...in 1 1/2 years...
Did I inspire you today? I hope so. I"d love to hear from you.
|Brigitte introduced me to Powertex|
|MANY helpful and inspiring workshops|
|DecoArt has been helping me and supplying me with free product for years!|
|Ann Butler Designs|
|Sponsors of the CHA Events are BEYOND generous!|
um...not really... that was from a Halloween Party at Blissdom one year :)