Monday, March 15, 2010

This post is intended for those of you who are attending the "There's Something About Spring" Weekend Crop up here in beautiful downtown Wellsboro. This post will be chock full of information about a bunch of things, some for all croppers, some for traveling croppers and some for local croppers. Hope you can find something of help for you here. This is a LONG post...sorry!

What to expect, temperature wise:

-I am going on the weather history from Weather Underground. Having never been up here in April, that is the best I can do.
-In 2009 the high was 52 and the low was 27.
-The average high is 62 and the low is 36.
-When I ask locals, all say we will have green grass. There are different responses about green on trees.
-Some locals warn that they have had snow on Easter. Even snowed once on Mother's Day. Just FYI!
-You WILL need cooler weather clothes!
-The air is much more "dry" than we Florida girls are used to. Make sure to bring GOOD moisturizer!

What supplies I'll have available:

-QuicKutz Revolution and Squeeze.
-QuicKutz shape and alphabet dies.
-Cricut.(I have never used this machine, so someone will need to tell me what accessories I'll need to bring.)
-A few of Cricut cartridges. (If you need a list, let me know) One of the local gals who may be attending on Saturday is in an informal "swarm" and may be persuaded to bring more cartridges.)
-Punches. These are cumbersome, so if you know you will need a specific shape, just let me know and I'll bring it along. I mostly have basic shapes, not fancy ones.
-Two notebooks of acrylic alphabets and shapes.
-A few peg stamp alphabets.
-Circle cutter.
-Un-du. (It will be confiscated from your luggage.)

Of course, I have tons more supplies, so if there is something you KNOW you will need, just let me know and I'll add it to my list. Please do not feel like you have to bring your own, heavy tools. I am more than happy to bring what I have!

Suitcase Packing Tips (from a very frequent and varied traveling cropper!):

-For airplane travel I always pack my basic and most used tools and supplies in a Cropper Hopper Flat Pack. You can get them sometimes from Target or ask Jill/Jo to order for you. These close flat and fit easily in a suitcase. They hold a lot and stuff doesn't fall out. They hold a 12" trimmer! If you have one and decided to use it, let me know and I can take some photos of mine all packed up and send them to you.
-Make sure that ALL of your liquids or gels are put inside baggies. Even in your luggage. This includes glue, Stickles, inks, Glimmer Mists, etc. Listen up! This is very important! Any OPENED bottles of Scrappy Glue (in their original bottles) will ooze. I have had Scrappy Glue cover the inside of my case and glued the zipper on my Flat Pack closed! My suggestion if you want to travel with Scrappy Glue is to either transfer it to a new bottle or find a new top that twists to open and close. And do NOT bring (carry on or checked) any Un-Du. They will take it from you!
-Do not take any tools in your carry on. They will confiscate most anything, so just check it all.
-I have an over the shoulder (long strap) tote bag that holds 12x12 sized items. This is one of my carry ons. It usually holds an album or planned out pages. I also slip a couple of magazines in this tote. Just remember that the connecting flight is a schlep, so don't pack so much that it's a burden to carry! For this reason I suggest a small rolling cart to help tote your luggage between terminals. I think a few of you could share one. Here is a nice one, the Micro by Samsonite.
-Shoes take up a lot of room and weight. My advice is to plan your clothes around two pair. One on your feet, the other in the suitcase. It is hard to do, but worth it!
-Put all your toiletry items in Ziplocs. Especially if you are packing your scrapbooking supplies in your suitcase. All gels, lotions, liquids, powders....all of it.
-With all the weight restrictions, I never take full size anymore. Get some refillable bottles to add your shampoos, etc. into. The things you cannot transfer over get the travel size of. I know it is expensive, but it is more to check a second suitcase!
-If you plan on shopping or going home with more than you come with you have a couple of choices. One would be to under pack coming up here (HA!) and using the extra space/weight for going home. Another would be to pack another suitcase/collapsible that you can fill and check as a second piece of luggage. Between all of you, you could share the suitcase and the extra cost. Or you could take over anything "extra" to the post office and mail it back home to yourself.
-Use very distinctive luggage tags. Or spray paint a big "S" on the side of your suitcase. -If you have not flown in awhile, remember that in your carry on you are restricted to 3 oz. containers of liquids/gels. These containers must all fit into one quart-sized Ziploc. This needs to be pulled out and put in the X-ray bin by itself. Their rule-3-1-1...3 ounces, 1 baggie, 1 person.
-Snacks. Well, you know that I love snacks. Airplanes do not feed you unless you purchase their snack boxes. Don't do this! Depending on your layover and what time you are traveling, you can usually grab something in the terminal. I love Au Bon Pain shops. Their food is fantastic and QUICK! I don't know if they are in every airport, but watch out for them. You do not need to pack snacks for the crop. If you need them, get them up here!

About your motel and surrounding area:

-The motel is located directly across the street from the Fire Annex Social Hall. The street is busy for our area, so you can cross there and risk it, or walk a 1/2 block to the intersection.
-Directly (and I do mean directly) behind the Annex is a grocery store, a CVS, Dunkin' Donuts and McDonalds.
-The hotel offers free Wi Fi. I do not have a working laptop to offer, so y'all may want to talk amongst yourselves and decide if you need a laptop and who wants to bring one.
-Also at the hotel is an indoor, heated pool. A dry sauna. Workout equipment. In each room a hairdryer, a mini fridge, a mini microwave and a coffee pot. There is also a TV w/ VCR and in the lobby they have videos to borrow.
-I am sending y'all a link to an area map that I created with our "hot spots" marked.

About the crop room:

-It is big. More than big enough for us!
-I will set up separate tables for cropping and eating so we won't have to move our crop stuff around to sit and eat.
-The tables are regular "rental" tables. If they look too bad, I'll be covering them with kraft paper. If you own a craft mat, you might want to bring it.
-Chairs are padded folding chairs.
-Lighting looked good for cropping, but there are tons of electrical outlets so if you need to bring your Ott light, go ahead. I'll bring some extension cords.
-There are three bathrooms for ladies. There will be no men folk, so I guess we could use theirs too if necessary!
-There is a big, commercial kitchen that I'll be using to prepare your meals.
-There is a hut that is used as a bar. I'm sure we'll be using it as a bar too! This is totally BYOB, so feel free!
-I will have background music playing.

Tips to make cropping more comfortable:

-Dress in layers. My motto is: When you get 2 women in a room you can never get the temperature right for them all!
-Once again, I do not have control of the thermostat, so please bring a light (or heavy!) sweater. Wear socks! Maybe have a long sleeve shirt. Just be prepared!
-Sitting for long periods of time puts strain on your lower back, so I always suggest to bring a small "something" that can be used as a foot stool. A shoebox, a rubbermaid tote, whatever. It really saves your back!
-The Annex has drink ware, but they do NOT have lids. I know most people do not like open containers on crop spaces, so if you want to bring an insulated (no drips), lidded cup that is always a good idea.
-I will have plenty of food, but if there is a snack that you NEED to crop, then by all means bring it! Or if you are flying in, then there is a CVS, a grocery store (Bi-Lo) and a health food store very nearby, so you can stock up on what you need.

Packing for the crop:

It is a proven fact that the more you bring, the less you get done. I have seen this over and over. The girls who bring everything except the kitchen sink, they spend all their time sorting and going through their stuff. If they had just spent some time at home in between loads of laundry, while watching TV, etc. putting together their page/album kits, they would get much more accomplished. Here is what you should be doing NOW!
-Getting either Pages In Progress envelopes from Cropper Hopper or gallon-sized Ziplocs.
-Get your photos (if you are doing layouts).
-If you are like me, get your "inspiration". Copy a layout from a magazine, sketch out your own layout, etc.
-Match your photos to your blueprint.
-Now go "shopping". Either in your own supplies or at your favorite store. What you are doing is matching your paper, cardstock, embellishments, titles, etc. Once you have all that, add some journaling points and put it all (including photos and blueprint) into your Ziploc/Pages In Progress envelope.
-If you are doing layouts, I say that for basic layouts I can do one, two page spread in 1 hour. 2 if it is complicated. Calculate how many hours you will be in the crop room, then divide by 2. I will use the 2 hour formula, because at crops I do a lot of socializing too, so I have to figure that in too! So if you plan on being in the crop room for 10 hours, then you should have 5 kits. I always add in an extra one or two just in case I either work fast or loose my mojo for a layout.
-Bring a sticky note pad, so that if you forget something or need to add something from home, it will be easy to remember.
-If you are planning on doing a mini album or projects. Do the same thing. Just get a deeper envelope (Cropper Hopper has these too!) to hold your papers and embellishments.
-If you plan on working on your Project Life book, what I did for mine is I "shopped" my supplies and slipped the little embellishments directly into the page protectors. I make another Ziploc with sticker letters, ribbons, word rub-ons, etc. in a general theme and colors that match the book. Then I just went page to page and got TONS done at the last crop.
-However you pack, just try to do as much pre-planning as possible!

Airport transportation:
-I am still waiting on flight information from Cynthia and Julie. I need to know when you arrive so we can plan your pick up. It costs a LOT more if you are traveling alone on the airport shuttle! Please send that information ASAP!
-As is stands right now, I have the loan of Charles' company van. I will be able to pick up the group traveling together and all your luggage when you arrive. Y'all will just have to chip in for gas. This is subject to any of their salesmen needing it, so if it changes I will let you know. Be prepared to bring some cash if we need to get the shuttle van.

Miscellaneous tips:

-Wellsboro is a walking city. Be prepared to walk a bit. Everything is very close and easy walking distance, but just be ready to walk.
-Wellsboro is also a safe city. Let's put it this way...since 2001 there has been 1 person murdered (tenant on landlord deal...sorry Kim!!). You are perfectly safe walking around in the evening/night, back and forth from the motel to the annex and around town.
-Everything except the couple of bars in Wellsboro close up at 8pm. There are no late night DQ runs. If you need a late night WalMart run (they are open 24 hours) then you'll need to drive 1/2 hour into Mansfieild.
-There are a couple of local coffee shops in Mansfield and some more shopping (2 great junktique stores). But again, this is 1/2 hour away and you'll need a car!
-If you are flying in, then you need to know that the leg of your flight that is to/from Elmira will be on a smaller plane. Not a big deal until you connect. You have to get from the "little plane side" of the airport to the "big plane side" I barely made it in a 45 minute connection. If you connect in Detroit, make sure to GET ON THE EXPRESS TRAIN. Also if you connect in Detroit, enjoy the weird tunnel!!

I think that is about it! Whew! If I have forgotten anything or you still have some questions, please feel free to ask. You have my email address!

See you guys really soon!


  1. Thanks for all the info, the only item I have ready is the 'signature' luggage.

  2. Jen,

    I've never heard of this before can you give me an idea what this is in layman terms. I'm thinking it's a scrapbooking event. It looks really fun. I just started scrapbooking and ATC making so I don't have a lot of supplies but it might be something to see. Are spectators aloud? ;)

  3. Hi there,
    Yes, it is a scrapbooking weekend. This is a group of women (mostly) who get together to work on their projects and albums in a fun, party-like setting. It is called a "crop". Some stores host crops at their locations and are usualy on Friday nights or Saturdays. I've just turned it into a weekend! The original post tells you all about it, what is happening and the cost. If you want to check it out, go here: Scroll down past the post you read, and you'll see the menu and further below that post will be the original. I have local people comeing (PA) and some friends flying in from Florida. It is going to be great fun!

  4. wow, i am so sad i can't come :(
    i DO own two flatpacks if you know of anyone who wants/needs to borrow one for travel as not to spend money. i would be happy to let my flatpacks attend the crop. just lmk.

  5. Thanks Jax, that is super nice. I'll pass on the word.