Wednesday, March 25, 2009

We've come SUCH a long way baby!!!!!


As you can see, the kids are SOOO small and Allison & I look a little younger too, he he. There's Mary Heintze, who is responsible for convincing me to take up scrapbooking in 1997, so it was only right that she be our first employee (the kids were free labor, he he). Look at the blood, sweat & tears these little guys put in for the opening of Memory Mania. They did a great job. we THOUGHT that was so much product, ha hahahaha. Check out the stickers on a roll and that double rack of paper was every paper we could find, the only manufacturers then were Frances Meyer, Paper Adventures & Keeping Memories Alive (this was even BEFORE Bazzill). IN fact, just to give you an idea of how NEW this hobby was, CK had just begun publishing their magazine just months earlier.

Mallory is sorting DIE CUTS, OMG. We couldn't even imagine a cricut back then.


Check out these Templates, can't recall , ____ buddies??? more stickers on a roll WOW-so much scrapbook stuff, who would have every thought (ha ha), they worked about 18 hours & then they were pooped. My favorite memory (wish I had a picture) was Becky Robichaux who lived in Alabama at the time peeking through the gates, (oh yeah we were in a small room behind Coffee House at Tanger Mall in 1999) saying "I just can't wait to come in, a real scrapbook store, I saw ya'll in CK". It wasn't long before she moved to Prairieville to be near her favorite scrapbook store-we love you Becky-can't tell you how that made our day-we were so nervous about spending that money in CK and someone actually read it-turns out alot of people read it!!! And guys, take a look around MM today, and look at this picture, in 3 snapshots i could show you every item in the store, and believe me in 1999 that was every item available-we had it all. if you look real close, you'll see Coluzzle hanging on the wall, that was the month it was created. When i quit my job at EATEL, people would look at my like i needed to be commited, "What are you going to sell besides scrapbooks". The puzzling looks were so funny. When we would talk to others, people didn't even know what SCRAPBOOKING was.


Check out those first 2 shoppers, that's Jill and our Asst Manager, JADE Templet -OK, so don't you agree this was a REALLY long time ago. Jade attended our first Junior Scrappers Camp that summer . Tina LeJeune was the 2nd of the 53 customers that day, and she is also still scrapping today!!!! And of course, i couldn't pass up this last photo of my CARLY, 5 years old making her first scrapbook purchase (ok maybe she didn't purchase it).

And with the help, support & encouragemen of all of these wonderful people, Allison & I took a huge leap of faith & opened this humble little scrapbook store of 500 square feet, March 24, 1999 (The opening was supposed to be April 1st, but we couldn't stand it, we opened a week early).

Seriously, I could never run this store without the love & support of my 3 boys & my BFF, Allison-you can't imagine how many sacrifices they have had to make for the good of Memory Mania. But as John says, "You couldn't LIVE without Memory Mania". So, thanks to all of you, you give me so much back!!!! What an awesome life, that my work is my hobby & my passion. I wouldn't say it was easy, but i would always say it was worth it!!!!!

And its OFFICIAL, we are business owners YIKES, we were scared to death, WILL THEY COME???? And they came, and they came, they continue to come 10 years later. We are told on a regular basis how awesome a store we have, that's it the best store in the nation (for real, they say that). I can't take credit for that though, its my girls!!! Its definitely a team effort. Its because we have always had the best people in the world working at Memory Mania!!!!! Tha BFF, Allison, she gets the word out to all of you through her emails & newsletter. The TEACHERS, you know we have the most awesome classes in the country-seriously-these are the best teachers& i've been to many classes across the country and I'm NOT being partial, ask anyone. AND "my girls" in the store, WOW, what can i say??? Its not just a job to them, its their passion too!!!! They give 100% all of the time, anything I ask and anything you need, they do it and with a SMILE. We have been so blessed through the years at MM, for the awesome girls that we've found to work at MM. Of course, these 4 walls changed to the 4 walls we call home in Prairieville, more pics of that later. There is so much more we want to do & provide at MM, stay tuned. As we all know, times are tough in the world today, PLEASE PLEASE support your local scrapbook stores-they are a blessing-can you imagine trying to match your pattern paper online?? !!!!! Let's stick together for another 10 years, don't you think? I HAVE scrapbooked before local scrapbook stores, believe me, you don't want to LIVE without a local scrapbook store!!!!!!

13 comments:

Refresh My Memory said...

Getting a little misty eyed here. In 1999, my husband and I were living in Arizona and had one visitor the entire time we were there. It was Allison's mom. She made my day by taking me out for lunch and looking through my one completed scrapbook. She couldn't wait to tell me all about Tammy and Allison's store that had just opened up the month before. A couple of years later, when we decided to move back to Louisiana, one of my sticking points was that I wanted my house close enough for quick trips to MM. Now that I'm out of state again, I can't tell you how much I miss those quick trips! Even if I'm 800 miles away now, it's still my Local Scrapbook Store. Congratulations for ten years of service, product, and memories!

Nelle said...

I have a tear too. I first found this store when it was just about 2months old. I remember feeling like I could stand in the middle of the store and reach everything. Never in that moment did I imagine that years later I would be living in this area, much less, teaching at this store. I have said it before and I will say it again, Memory Mania had/has become an instant family for me. Tammy welcomed me with open arms right from the start and Macy gave me the courage to teach. And Natalie, well I just adored her. And the other big girls have become friends that I know I can talk to if needed or just when I need that friendly banter. This place has become my "Cheers." A place where everybody knows your name and they're always glad you came. (Maybe we should toast with a beer.) Congrats on 10 years and wishing you many more to come.

P.S. I bought those Border Buddies!

Vanessa said...

Those were the days when we had crops in the coffee shop and even in the lobby next door. I remember when I was at a crop (Berthelots hall) and you announced the opening of this scrapbook store. I couldn't wait to have a place where we could get supplies at any time. You have made scrapbooking so much easier. I hope you will be around for many more years. I bought the coluzzles and the border buddies!
I agree you have some of the best and friendliest employees. They are so helpful and have wonderful ideas.

Heather Banker said...

Memory Mania is the BEST scrapbook store ever. The staff is awesome - very friendly, creative, and helpful. I stop in frequently to see whats going on and take a stoll down the "new wall" isle to check out the new goodies. I think MM gets new stuff in daily!! They keep us up on all the latest greatest!! I have made great friends while attending CCL and MMU. It is priceless to share this awesome hobby with such great people. Tammy and staff - Thanks so much for the hardwork and dedication that is put in everyday. I can't imagine life without Memory Mania!!!!

Western Family said...

Ok Tammy, Prego here cries at everything so lets just say I am a mess after this post. It is awesome to see how the store has grown over the last 10 years. I guess I met you and Allison about 2 years after it was opened. It really seems like yesterday that Julie and I went to a Camp Crop Alot (Embassy Suite) to give chair massages and no one wanted them. You really do have the best store. Moving to Houston was so hard because I knew I would miss ya'll and the Friday night crops. Guess that is why I still drive back every year for CCL. Great job done! Look forward to seeing Memory Mania's 20 birthday pictures!

Darlene said...

Since I have only been scrapbooking a few years, I didn't have the privilege of seeing Memory Mania--the early years!! It is fun looking back at these pictures & going WOW!!! Thank you, Tammy, for taking that leap of faith & fulfilling your dream!! You and your wonderful staff are such a blessing to each of us. You make us feel like family!! Thank you for all you do!! Can't wait to see the exciting changes over the next 10 years!!! We just can't live without Memory Mania!!

Jackie B said...

I LOVE Memory Mania and could not live without it. I did not even know what scrapbooking was in 1999, but I can say that I started with you all and will never stray. Bad economy or not, you will still see lots of me!

Christy said...

Well it's my turn to get mushy I guess. I did not scrapbook back when Memory Mania opened but I'm so glad it did. I started scrapbooking about 6 years ago and was introduce to Memory Mania through one of my best friends who was a frequent customer. We started taking classes together and then before I knew it I was not only a customer, but I was the store manager and a teacher. And ya know what, I wouldn't have it any other way. Memory Mania has become a second home for me. I never feel like it is "just a job". It is my Love and passion. And just like all of you as customers love to come into the store, the staff loves to see you. We love to get to know you as a person and not just a customer. We know your families and your kids and we watch them grow in front of our eyes. Ya know, you just can't get that at Michaels or HL. So just as much as you love to come into Memory Mania, the staff loves to see you. It's nice for us to be able to know someone and not have to guess what their style is or what their likes and dislikes are. That is what we love about YOU! Thank you to all of the customers that make Memory Mania what it is and Thank you to Tammy for creating Memory Mania because without Memory Mania, not of us would be where we are right now, talking on the blog about our LSS and it's 10 year anniversary!

Steph said...

I can't believe it's been 10 years since those days behind the coffee shop! I remember those hair do's too!! Thanks for keeping the store going through all the ups and downs. We appreciate you.

Pam B said...

Congratulations Memory Mania on your 10th anniversary. I know scrapbooking is considered a hobby, but somehow I rarely ever think of it that way - it's so much more than that to me. Nor do I consider Memory Mania simply a scrapbook store.

Of all the things I love about MM, my favorite thing has to be the people - employees AND customers that I have met shopping, cropping on Friday nights, attending MMU classes, and at CCL.

Tammy, your "girls" (both past and present) are the greatest and it's always fun getting to know them. Our original "Cream of the Crop" bunch had so much fun cropping on Friday nights with Natalie and her crazy stories (and Brandi had a few crazy stories too!). Then along comes Christy, who always has a great story to tell guaranteed to make you laugh - never a dull moment when Christy is around! Yes Tammy, you really know how to pick them. I've seen "up close" how hard you and your staff work and I appreciate all that you do supporting our habit - I mean PASSION!!!

I cherish the friends I have made because of Memory Mania. Oh, and along the way I managed to preserve a few family memories, too - you know, scrapbooking!
pamb

teri d said...

I can't believe it's been 10 years! I do remember shopping the store at the Tanger Outlet Mall and wondering what I was getting myself into. I did not have any children at the time and had no idea what I was going to scrapbook and boy did you open up my horizon. I love shopping Memory Mania and little did my husband know your current location was a major factor in picking the location of building our current house 5 1/2 years ago. You have done a wonderful job and I look forward to shopping Memory Mania for another 10 years...

shondell said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MEMORY MANIA!!!!!!!!!!
What a tear jerker this post has turned out to be? i feel like I just sat down and read a good book. Hats off to Tammy for taking that leap of faith, even when others thought she was crazy. I had been in prairieville one year and only scrapbooking a few months when I found MMM. Thank God! I give you guys the credit for getting me out of my postpartum and relocation depression. My husband recently seriously talked about relocating AGAIN. I cried. It works everytime (haha). He thought it was because I didn't want the relocating and redecorating drama but it was all because of MMM. I already know for a fact that I will not get this anywhere else. The store, service, owner and employees rock. I know it takes a lot and I WISH I COULD WORK THERE!!!!!!!!!! Can you imagine going to a job like that everyday? In a world where I am everything for everybody, MMM sustains me. Tammy I can't thank you enough for that. GOD bless you!

Becky said...

Oh, Tammy, Allison & all MM employees past and present - where do I begin?? You know full well my history with MM - starting off with peeking through those iron bars at Tanger! I COULD NOT WAIT to drive up there while we were home for that visit and go check out this scrapbook store in LOUISIANA!! I remember it like it was yesterday - I had just begun my addiction to punches and you so graciously and willingly supported that addiction that day and every day since!! Yes, I STILL have every one of those Border Buddies, Coluzzle templates, and some Francis Meyer paper! Memory Mania has always been more than my ONLY local scrapbook store - it's my home away from home! Since the day we met, you have been family. Tammy, thank you for becoming one of my dearest friends. You single-handedly got me over my self-consciousness regarding my 8.5 x 11 scrapbooking and feeling like I didn't fit it because I didn't do 12 x 12. As a teacher and one who values education, you provided a vehicle for me to continue to educate my creative side and in doing so, I met my BFF. You've also allowed me to teach for MM and through that I have been able to meet so many wonderful MM employees and customers. Thank you for giving me this opportunity! I really cannot imagine my life without Memory Mania or YOU! Thank you for welcoming my WHOLE family into your store, including Oda Mae and Descartes! We ALL LOVE you and that one-of-a-kind MM smell! Thank you, thank you, thank you. And Congratulations on 10 years of living your dreams!! You know I'll be wanting the latest and greatest punches 10 years from now and every year in between!