So I have finally caught my breath and can now share photos of the wonderful time we had in Alaska on the Incentive Trip.
What a fantastic opportunity and an amazing reward for working hard and having loyal and supportive customers as well as a fabulous team! Alaska was breathtaking, the scenery was beyond my expectations! So sit down, make a cuppa and take a look at what we got up to.
So on my wish list of things to see were iceberg, bears and whales. The flight from Heathrow to Seattle was long but the scenery en-route over Greenland and the North Pole was spectacular! Most people had their window shutters down and tried to sleep but I could not believe what I was seeing from the air!
Can you see all those icebergs?
It makes you feel very very small when you are seeing nature from the sky! Brian King also made me feel very small. I wasn’t even sitting down in this photo. It was lovely to spend some time together getting to know Jeremiah. That is my husband Simon on the right. We had lovely Thai food (as you do when in the US :))
We went to the famous Pike Place Market and took in the sights and sounds and were in awe of the HUGE seafood! We also managed to have some amazing seafood at one of the restaurants but I was too busy stuffing my face to take a photo. I keep the guy in the photo for scale, everything was HUGE!
And no trip to Seattle would be complete with taking in the views from the Space Needle.
We boarded our cruise ship the Explorer of the Seas in Seattle and the weather was beautiful and sunny. We all stood on deck and watching the skyline disappear. Once onboard we stopped to say hi to so many friends, unpacked and got a feel for the ship. We had a lovely dinner with our fellow demonstrators Linda Bauwin and Karen Barber. It was an early night for all of those from Europe as jet lag was making us all wake up at 3am!
The weather on our trip was unusually sunny and warm. So much for all the hoodies and layers we had taken with us 🙂 It did mean that it was t-shirts and blue skies most of the time which made for simply stunning photos.
Our first full day included a Stampin’ Up! gathering where we received the new seasonal catalogue (coming out on 5th September), some presentation and demonstrations and news on where the Incentive Trip in 2020 will be! You are NOT going to believe it when I tell you it is going to be in Maui, Hawaii!!!! Seriously what are you all waiting for, join my team now and get sharing the Stampin’ Up! Love!
I got the chance to have my photo taken with the gorgeous co-founder of Stampin’ Up, Shelli Gardener. She is such an inspiration to me and seeing her on these trips is a real highlight. On each Incentive trip, Stampin Up create a space for demonstrators to meet, get treats and just be thoroughly spoilt and spend time with one another and staff. This year, they called in Base Camp and had decorated the room with lots of props to give it the Alaska treatment. Here is me *pretending* to eat all the sweets and Simon and I taking a moment in the tent 🙂
This is most of the UK group of Demonstrators. Trying to get us all together for a group photo was like hearding cats.
This is the Mendenhall Glacier. We got a bus from the cruise ship and took a 3 mile hike around the beautiful forests to see Salmon running, nature, waterfalls and this spectacular glacier. We were able to walk up the waters edge and see icebergs floating past.
The waterfall was just to the right of the glacier. To see so much frozen water and then so much fast flowing water really messed with my head. You can almost see the beautiful blue of the calves (broken off ice pieces) which are thousands of years old.
You can see how warm it was as we only had t-shirts on! Not a hat or fleece in sight! Such a spectacular view.
After exploring the Mendenhall Glacier we stopped in Juneau for a bite to eat. Whilst we sat and ate our salmon burger we watched the seaplanes take off and land. So cool and so close to the ship too!
Back on the ship we had a team dinner. I am so fortunate to be able to have 7 of my team on this Incentive trip. 4 of them direct to me and 3 in my extended team. They bought along their partners and families and we enjoyed dinner in the Japanese restaurant.
The sight of the seaplanes got Simon and I both thinking. We really wanted to experience a sea plane and see more of the landscape so once we docked at Skagway we walked to the local airport (yes walked, that is how small it is) and enquired about tourist flights. There was a sign on the wall with a phone number and when we called they arranged to come and pick us up in 30 mins. Little did I know they were actually flying from nearby Haines to get us and take us flying over 4 Glaciers.
I couldn’t believe my eyes. The sights we saw will always remain a fantastic memory for me as the photos did not do justice to what I actually saw. I felt like crying as I was so overwhelmed by the beauty.
Some water was frozen and snow and right next to it there were lakes and waterfalls. The colour of the water was stunning too!
Look at how big this glacier is? Can you see where the glacier meets the water and how tall that must be?
From the plane I saw this beautiful waters mixing together in the currents. I also saw an Orca. I could make out a big black shape and wasn’t sure that I was really seeing a whale when it dove down and I saw its flipper disappearing. Spectacular!
Paul our pilot flew the plane through a gulley/channel and we got to see the mountain ranges, with the snow capped mountains reaching our for miles and miles.
The flight was a real highlight of my trip. We saw 4 glaciers and the 1 hour flight felt like 5 mins. I am so blessed to have see the beauty of Alaska this way.
Our last excursion was in Victoria, Canada and we opted to go whale watching with a group of Stampin’ Up friends. Amanda Fowler organised a great trip and we got kitted out in all this gear to make sure we kept warm but truth be known that this was only worn for the photo because as soon as we boarded the boat we stripped off and enjoyed the sun on our faces and the wind on our hair.
Our guide knew exactly where to take us to see several pods of Orca’s and we were not disappointed. The boat ride was fine for me but as soon as we stopped to observe the whales feeding and I looked through the binoculars I started to feel sick. So unfortunately I did not get the chance to take too many photos as I was trying to keep it together and not throw up. Thankfully Sean in our group took this amazing photo with his DSLR and his zoom lens. To see (and hear) these magnificent creatures in the wild was an absolute honour.
This was the last night and we had a desserts reception to say farewell to everyone at Stampin’ Up! This is another UK group photo with one or two people missing which was a shame.
We departed the ship and headed straight home from our trip ready to battle another round of jet lag. But it was so worth if!
And did I share with your the pillow gifts we received each night on the cruise. Seriously the most thoughtful gifts to make us feel pampered and special which were simply the icing on the cake of a wonderful trip.
You could also experience these amazing Incentive trips. I knew thought that I would earn an Incentive trip, I simply joined to earn the products at a discount. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain, get in touch to find out more.