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What an emotional experience to write the blog I write today. The task? To look back on the last 15 years and reflect on my life and experience with Creative Memories. Not even sure where to begin.  My children were 4, 5, 9 and 10 years of age when I signed up to be a consultant.  They are now 20, 21, 26 and 27 and I have 1 and 3 year old grandchildren.  They’ve all grown up being the focus of my life and my camera. It was a perfect fit with Creative Memories and their mission.  I joined Creative Memories to only purchase products at cost to help me be frugal with my new found hobby and get lots of stuff to make lots of photo albums.  What I got was so much more.  What began as a hobby evolved over the years into a successful career.  Creative Memories gave me opportunities to grow as a person and a business woman.  They gave me training to help me grow a business. They offered me opportunities and allowed me to serve on their committees like Design Team (both traditional and digital)  Marketing, Recognition, Branding, Training and more.  Those opportunities led to speaking at Regional, National and Leadership Conventions.  While those are all awesome opportunities by far the best things that have come out of my Creative Memories career have been the gifts of so many friendships. There are so many friendships that I am unable to count them all so I am truly blessed.

In addition to those friendships many Creative Memories employees instilled vision and allowed me opportunities to achieve many, many goals. Some of which I did some of which I did not. But I always had the chance to be my own boss and to work as hard (or as little) as I wanted around my family schedule.

Susan Iida Pederson from the Home office taught me to “Choose Joy”which helped me be content with my life no matter what “problems” arose.  I also served on the Branding Committee with the same group of women for many years.  Many of those women are still good friends. My best friends, then and now, are still people I met thru Creative Memories. Pam Winn and I see each other every year even though we live on opposite sides of the country. My prayer partner, Anne Barnby and I met thru Creative Memories years ago and with our spouses just finished traveling together for our 30th anniversaries.  We don’t live near each other either but have walked thru both good and bad times together. There are so many friends I have because of Creative Memories and not just from the USA but from Canada and Australia also. I also have found so many “fans” from around the world that have inspired me throughout my journey.

I met Jan McCallum at a Showcase Convention and we all know where that led!  I am now part of a wonderfully fantastic group of women collectively known as pixels2Pages. None of us live close to each other either. CM was the reason I call these women both partners and friends.  CM brought us all together and while we all had to make the tough decision to leave Creative Memories as consultants we have worked alongside Creative Memories to help you learn about the software you invested in and push it to it’s limits while creating StoryBooks and recording the awesome moments of your families lives.

As Creative Memories re-defines themselves I want to thank them for the opportunities and gifts they gave me. Thank you to the friends I have from the Home Office and thank them for allowing me to meet life long friends. I also look forward to the adventure just beginning as we at pixels2Pages continue to do what we love and by working together to provide you inspiration to record all those things in your life that are important to you.

So, fasten your seat belts and get ready to be part of the next chapter in our adventure. You won’t want to miss this trip!





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23 Responses to Blog: The Adventures and Blessings of the Journey

  1. Natalie says:

    Hard to believe its been more than 10 years since that first crop at your house! I have loved getting to know you and share our life events while enjoying a favorite hobby. Thank you for all your help throughout the years. I’m so happy that I can call you a friend. I’m ecstatic for you and your partners at pixels2pages and wish all of you so much success. Can’t wait to see what’s next!

  2. Jan says:

    Oh, Mary…and to think that you tried to cancel that meeting with me at Showcase 2008…. So glad that it all worked out then, and even gladder it’s still working out now. I agree, some of my best friends ever are CM friends, and I can’t imagine life without them. So glad that we are friends! xx

  3. Janice says:

    Mary – if not for Creative Memories, p2P and Jan, I would never have met you, and what a loss that would have been. Meeting you in person was like clicking that last puzzle piece into place! I already knew you from many calls and communications, but meeting in person was one of the best days ever! You are a kind, generous, honest, true and beautiful friend – and I love that our friendship will continue, even if it is from one continent to another!

    • Mary says:

      Ditto Janice. So many laughs, fun times (and a few tears) so far in this incredible journey and friendship! My world is so much better with you in it! (And Laurens wonderful smile and dessert!!)

  4. Katrina says:

    Love your blog and adore your page! Mary my fond memory of you will always be taking a picture with you at showcase and you put your wonderful black cowgirl hat on my head. What fun times I had interacting and meeting leaders in CM.

  5. Mary…the adventure continues! So glad to have these connections with you virtually and in person! Can’t wait for your visit to the NW next year! Thank you for all the inspiration you offer!

  6. Deanna Emmert says:

    Seat belt fastened! Think I’m hearing the “engines revving.” Am awaiting the forward motion of this p2P vehicle with a smile on my face and my eyes looking out the windows! 🙂

  7. inekeloux says:

    Mary, although we have not “officially” met, you have been such an inspiration to me from afar for many years. I have loved your designing style since CM had idea books. I remember looking through them and picking out favorites to copy/tweak, and so often when I looked at the creator — it would be Mary Browder, TX. And that has continued with your becoming a Pixie. (Actually I so appreciate ALL you Pixies for your wealth of creativity and knowledge.) Just shows that people can be a blessing no matter how well you do or don’t actually know them; and how CM has touched so many lives in so many ways. And now the adventure continues . . .

  8. KatieK. says:

    Choose Joy! Thanks to Susan Ikeda-Peterson, lots of us have tiny reminders of that simple action with powerful effects. I still have the Choose Joy button she gave out at conventions and meetings.
    Love reading all these stories as it brings back to mind so many adventures.
    Thanks Mary.

    • KatieK. says:

      Oops, please excuse my misspelling of Susan’s last name. Typing too fast.

    • Mary says:

      Yes! My life mottos:Choose Joy, Embrace Change, and the last part from my daughter…Struggle well….as that is a bigger testimony than anything else! I always loved it when Susan spoke.

      • KatieK. says:

        Mary, would your daughter mind if I added the “struggle well” to my list of words to live by? Haven’t heard that but it’s a good one.

        • Mary says:

          Katie, I’m sure she would not mind. She was about 22 at the time when she shared that in our Bible Study Class that she and her friends had had the discussion that they knew they would have struggles and the key to living for God was struggling well not avoiding struggling or getting mad during struggling but struggling well. It’s a hard when to live by but a goal I work at!

  9. LoriMorris says:

    AH, love your blog and I am so glad that I have had a chance to meet when you were in Naples. Love all you pixies and what you do. I have learned so much from Pixel2Pages. I am addicted. Thank you.

    • Mary says:

      Thank you Lori. Our lives are always enriched as we travel and train and meet new friends. How lucky we all are and our lives are so much better for it! Thank you for being part of that.

  10. Carolyn says:

    Mary, you have been and will continue to be such a blessing to so many people. I’m thankful you’re in my life. 🙂

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