Well Saturday was the day of the big Crop for Tornado Relief and I am happy to report we raised a whopping sum of money for Tornado Relief! I would've reported sooner but I needed a couple days of hardcore relaxing :) to recover!!
Before I tell you about Saturday I should first tell you about Friday and all the prep work that went into this crop...I should also warn you this post will be long...so get comfy.
So Friday...since the inception of this crop my buddy Jingle has been helping me out from her end of the state getting mega amounts of donations for this crop...well seeing she lives an hour away and gas is just a tad pricy ...we had to wait until the day before the crop to get together and go through all the packages she had received and the ones I had received. We met up Friday at my house around 1:00 p.m. and got right to work. It was both completely awesome and totally overwhelming to go through the huge stacks of scrapping goodness! The amount of stuff we had was just mind boggling! We quickly oohed and aahhed over each others stack of goodies...and of course we made notes of all the stuff we personally were hoping to win which was a lot! After a quick sort we packed it all up to deal with later leaving out only the goodies we needed for the goody bags. We then got to work putting together our amazing goodie bags which involved lots of measuring and cutting of ribbon and twine and endless counting of buttons and brads but it was all worth it because they were completely drool worthy. We couldn't finish them until we got them to the hotel because transporting them all full was going to be a real issue...as it was transporting them only 1/2 full was an issue and some of them got dumped more than once. After we had the goodie cans well on their way we had just enough time to get the van packed and get to the hotel. And when I say packed...I mean packed ...as in stuffed...crammed even. I still can't believe how much stuff we hauled...if we had any more I would've needed a special permit to cross city lines.
So me, Jen and my daughter set off for the hotel and on the way we stopped to pick up reinforcements ..my niece Laura. Once we got to the hotel it was time to unload...thank god for those luggage trollies at the hotel! We had so much stuff on one of them we gave it a flat! We made so many trips back and forth we got tons of odd stares from some of the hotel guests and the 2 clerks working the front desk just kind of gasped in awe with each successful load we hauled in.
Luckily waiting at the hotel was even more reinforcements...my good buddy Tina was there to lend a hand with all the chaos. After we got everything unloaded we set about the heavy duty work of setting up tables. We had to work with 4 different size tables and had to accomodate several different size groups of scrappers ...figuring it all out was like trying to solve the worst geometry problem evah! After some seriously heaving and hauling, we got it all set up the way we wanted.
Even though the heavy lifting and mathmatics were done we still had tons to do. I had to do some running around to pick up some last minute donations (cause we obviously didn't have enough stuff) so I left Jen and Tina to work on the goody cans. They had to finish stuffing the cans with goodies and then add the flower and ribbon. They were totally awesome when they were done..each goodie can had a bottle of Un-du (awesomeness in a bottle), a bottle of Plaid Paint, 9 yards of twine from Whisper Graphics (love!) , 2 yards of ribbon from Really Reasonable Ribbon, a catseye ink from Clearsnap, 12 assorted brads donated by Robyn from ClubCK and an assortment of buttons from Creative Imaginations. Like I said ...drool worthy!
And because all that scrappy goodness wasn't enough... they had to assemble the 2nd part of the goodie bags...yep there was more ...because we had stuff that wouldn't fit into the cans so we had to bag the rest so they set about making 60 piles of assorted goodies to put in the large bags to give to everyone. Those bags had Canva-Paper, Mi-Tients and Bristol paper from Canson (all provided by my rockin hubby!), a sheet of lace cut paper from Creative Imaginations (sweeet!), chipboard shapes, die cut shapes that Robyn for ClubCK donated, a border from Creative Memories, coupons for a local scrapbook store and discount codes for online stores. By the time I got back they had all the goodie bags under control and I had even more goodies to add to our humugous pile of door prizes!
Since the goodie bags were done it was on to the overwhelming task of deciding which of the amazing scrap goodies would be raffle prizes and which would be door prizes. It was seriously a daunting task! We finally selected our 50 raffle prizes...yes thats fifty...five-zero...and set them out on the prize tables ...our big prizes...a Sizzix Big Kicks and a Scrapping Easle from Contain-ya Crafts...
It was totally exhausting...Jen was whooped...
We finally decided we had done as much as we could do we set off for home around 11:00. Once we got home we had to finalize the seating chart and make sure we had all the sponsors listed on our brochure. Plus we had to finish some last minute food prep and Jen and the girls made pretty table numbers for each table. Finally we finished all that but then I still had to pack my own scrappy stuff for the crop...yikes. I had considered not packing at all since I was predicting I'd have very little time to scrap but I got talked into it and hastily packed 2 big crop bags. Finally we got to bed around 1 a.m. with plans to get up at 5 a.m.! Major yikes! Unfortunately with only 4 hours to sleep I spent about 3 hours of that time fretting about what I had forgotten or still needed to do. :(
So Saturday morning Jen and I were up bright and mega early ...we got ready and packed what was left to be packed and headed out. We had to make a quick stop at my office to print out the brochures and then we hustled to the hotel to finish set up. We double checked the seating and then set up for breakfast after a quick last minute trip to the store for some juice and a dash to Starbucks to pick up the coffee they donated.
By the time we opened at 9 a.m. we were ready to go...my hubby had dropped off my daughter and my niece and they were put in charge of checking everyone in and they did an awesome job!
We had 56 people attend ...which is considerably less than the 90 I originally planned for ...but it was still a very respectable number and it made for much more spacious cropping for all. Once everyone got settled we welcomed everyone and it was time for breakfast...lots of delicious yumminess provided by Panera and coffee provided by Starbucks. After breakfast the girls set about selling raffle tickets...with all the great prizes we had ...they were pretty busy! Around 10 we started pulling names for the 1st of many door prizes. We handed out about 10 an hour!!! While I was managing all that the fabulous Jingle was busy on the other side of the room doing a make and take with some beautiful ribbon provided by May Arts.
The time was really flying by before I knew it it was already time for lunch...we had a beautiful and tasty pasta salad from a local caterer, pizza from Dominos and subs from Subway. My hubby and son took care of getting all the food for lunch picked up for us and getting it to the hotel. After lunch it was time for more door prizes and for my favorite part of the day...at 2 p.m. we had a masseuse show up!! She was fabulous and I was her very 1st customer of the day! I so enjoyed every minute!
After my massage it was back to work...we gave away tons more door prizes. In between I did manage to find 15 minutes to sit down and try to scrap but didn't get much more done than getting stuff out of the bag but I did have a chance to chat with my friends for a bit and get some pics...unfortunately like the ones above they were all blurry.
I did get some time to check out the make and take offered by the Stamping Up rep and to shop with the local scrapbook store, Paper, Paper. Bought 4 packs of journal spots...cause I needed more LOL. After that it was back to more door prizes and then it was dinner time.
Dinner was amazing...a local caterer donated roasted chicken and potatoes and we had bread from Panera and my sister made us a garden salad. My sister and my mom took care of dinner for us which was great. We did have a little issue and ran out of chicken and left 8 people without dinner but luckily we were able to get more from the store next to the hotel so it was all good.
After dinner we stepped up the door prize drawings. Even with all that we had to give out we still had some ladies who hadn't won anything so we made the executive decision to pass out prizes to anyone who hadn't won. Even after that we still had more to give out!! After the door prizes were finally all gone it was onto the raffles!!! We had lots and lots of happy winners ...including myself who won an awesome prize pack from EAD designs and a fabulously awesome kit from Front Porch Kits. I shared my prize pack from EAD designs with Jingle but the kit from Front Porch Kits was all mine!!
After the raffle we had a small tag sale of sorts...we put out some previously loved scrap supplies that were donated to the crop as well as the extras from the goodie bags and sold it all to make some more money for Tornado Relief.
Before I knew it it was already 9 and time to call it a night. I was thrilled to hear lots of great comments about how much everyone enjoyed the crop which just made my night! I was thrilled everyone had a great time.
Of course once it was all over we still had to clean up and pack up and get home...it was grueling because we were all so tired but we got through the mess in pretty good time.
It was all worth it though...when we got home I tallied up everything and after our expenses we made a whopping $2500 for Tornado Relief!!