Tuesday, August 19, 2008

About The Heart of Stampin Up Award...

I recently had a comment from a reader and talented stamper who wanted to know HOW I came to be awarded the "Heart of Stampin' Up! Award".  I guess I should have explained what the award was, why Stampin' Up! gave it to me... Oh boy, this could be long.. (sorry for the long email Kevin).. but I'll try to keep it short.

I should begin by sharing with you, the  Stampin' Up! "Statement of the Heart"... which can be found written on the inside cover of each and every catalog:

"To love what we do and share what we love,

as we help others enjoy creativity and worthwhile accomplishments...

in this we make a difference!"

Basically, I am a lifetime member of Girl Scouts.  I began as a brownie when I was seven... I sold soooo many Girl Scout cookies that my mother was not happy.. and subsequently earned a free summer camp (or nearly free).  As an adult, I also became a Girl Scout Leader and ultimately a lifetime member.  One of the basic credos in Girl Scouts is to "Help where I am needed"... and that credo is one I've not only taught the girls in my troop, but also lived by example. 

When I first became a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator, I wasn't sure what I would do with my demo-ship... like others, I simply began as a hobbyist who would support her habit with outside sales, and purchase quality and coordinating supplies with a substantial discount.  I've crafted all my life, and was soon to become an empty nester too.  I knew I wanted to share my love of stamping, make a difference, and to help where I'm needed.

My Girl Scouts had all grown up, graduated from High School and gone on to college.  I still maintained my Girl Scout contacts, but didn't want to commit to troop leadership.  I had lunch with my old friend Antwinette, and she had an idea.... (she always has ideas... ).  The next thing I knew, I was traveling to all the middle schools and high schools in my county, teaching card making to at risk teen girls... 2 to three schools per week.

The following year, I added work with a group of trainable mentally retarded girls, thru a special education teacher whom I had met thru the Girl Scout program.  Mrs. Green basically told me she needed a special project for open house, holiday, teacher thank you's, etc... and then I designed something meeting her criteria and subsequently teach the girls.  The girls are then tasked to teach the projects to their classmates.  They are a wonderful, fun and fresh gSharonroup and I enjoy every moment... and again, help where I am needed.

I've worked with seniors for a few years now.. many are in their 80's and always have an interesting story or two to share.  I have to admit they've taught me a thing or two about teaching too!  (My first senior session was 4 hours, and they were glassy eyed when I was done.... don't do that again!)  It was only natural to go to the senior center and start a senior stampin' group.  Both men and women join us for card making, they're always happy to see me, and always have wonderful stories to share!

So, when I was nominated for this award... I was quite surprised.. you see, I was just helping where I'm needed and in the spirit of Stampin' Up!, sharing what I love, helping others enjoy their own unique creativity, and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others.

Thanks again, Shelli for the award... and thanks to the Alden Road Girls, the Girl Scouts.. and everyone who nominated me!


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Marie said...

Sharon what a wonderful why to help were you are needed. I think it is wonderful that you are able to help seniors and children through crafting. My daughter is medically complicated and subsequently developmentally delayed. I stumbled into SU because it offered me a hobby that I could do while taking care of her. Your story hits home and my heart. Thank you for helping these kiddos and those in need. Crafting is a wonderful hobby that can truly help so many. From someone one who has benifited from it greatly, I know home much you are giving these people. Thank you. - Marie

gayle said...

just beautiful!