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2011 Countdown to National Conference

raebates

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Today is April 8. There are 90 days until the start of National Conference!


Can you believe there are only 90 days? If you’ve never gone to NC before, you’re in for a real treat. They treat us well. Soon there will be all kinds of things on CC that you can download. You might not need them all, especially if you've been to NC before. It doesn't hurt, though, to read things over. After all, things might have changed since last year.I’ll be sharing travel and NC tips in the coming days. A few of the more important things I mention more than once. Feel free to ask questions. Feel free, too, to add any hints or tips you can think of.
 

raebates

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Oops! I was a day late.

Today is April 9. There are only 89 days until the start of National Conference!

Have you filed your taxes yet? Speaking of taxes, remember that much of your National Conference trip will be tax deductible. Be sure to keep track of everything. Now, while taxes are fresh in your mind, is a good time to set up whatever system you'll use for categorizing your NC deductions.
 

esavvymom

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Sep 8, 2008
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YEAH!!! It's Rae's Countdown time!! :)

 

raebates

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I'm glad you like it, Bobbi. It makes me kind of excited, too.
 

NooraK

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Feb 6, 2008
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I'm bummed. I finally sat down and did some calendar planning. Unfortunately, because of our trip to Finland and the days our daycare provider is taking off, I will not have any vacation days to use to go to National Conference.

Maybe next year.
 

otisbg

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May 5, 2008
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This will be my 3rd year going to conference and I get sooooooooooo excited when I see Rae's countdown. For everyone - please take the time to read her posts as the information is priceless! :D
 

raebates

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Thank you, Linda.

Noora, I'll miss your smiling face.
 

raebates

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Today is April 10. There are 88 days until the start of National Conference.


I haven’t seen anything about dress code for this year, but I’ll assume that it will be similar to what it’s been in the past. Here’s the official word from past years:

Pampered Chef requires that at all official Pampered Chef functions you dress business casual. No denim or shorts. Chicago can be hot in the summer, but keep in mind that you are indoors most of the time and the air conditioner can be chilly. Packing a light blazer or sweater is a good idea since you can easily take it on and off when needed.

There are those who will argue that they should be allowed to (or always have, or by golly intend to) wear either denim or shorts. Be that as it may, the HO has set the rules, and I am an inveterate rule follower. (Remember, I’m not trying to start a fight or a huge discussion. I’m just trying to offer helpful hints so the countdown doesn’t get boring.)

Start now to take a good look at your available wardrobe in light of the rules. If there’s something you need to add, you have almost 3 months to search out sales, resale shops, and consignment shops for whatever you need. If you start now, you won’t be as tempted to spend a lot just to get something.
 
Mar 14, 2011
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I can tell this is going to be incredibly helpful! Thanks Rae! This is going to be my first year at Conference!
 

wadesgirl

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Jul 25, 2007
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Today is April 10. There are 88 days until the start of National Conference.


I haven’t seen anything about dress code for this year, but I’ll assume that it will be similar to what it’s been in the past. Here’s the official word from past years:

Pampered Chef requires that at all official Pampered Chef functions you dress business casual. No denim or shorts. Chicago can be hot in the summer, but keep in mind that you are indoors most of the time and the air conditioner can be chilly. Packing a light blazer or sweater is a good idea since you can easily take it on and off when needed.

There are those who will argue that they should be allowed to (or always have, or by golly intend to) wear either denim or shorts. Be that as it may, the HO has set the rules, and I am an inveterate rule follower. (Remember, I’m not trying to start a fight or a huge discussion. I’m just trying to offer helpful hints so the countdown doesn’t get boring.)

Start now to take a good look at your available wardrobe in light of the rules. If there’s something you need to add, you have almost 3 months to search out sales, resale shops, and consignment shops for whatever you need. If you start now, you won’t be as tempted to spend a lot just to get something.

Another nice thing is to bring 2 pairs of nice pants/slacks/khakis instead of three. You can wear one of them twice and not have to pack more or spend more!
 

atpchef

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Mar 29, 2011
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  • #11
So how does this work? So you can get your registration free, but what about the hotel fees? And then I assume you pay for your flight? I've never been before...I'm new! Also, I'd have to leave on July 8 and wouldn't be able to stay til July 9...is that an option? Thanks for the info!
 

ChefBevShu

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Aug 10, 2010
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Thanks for the countdown Rae! It's my first year for conference so I'll need all the help I can get! First question: can we wear capri pants? I have several outfits for summer that are capri pants and they are sooo comfortable!
 

ChefCKHall

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Jan 30, 2010
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  • #13
Yea for Rae's countdown! I am so excited cuz this time I will have some TEAM with me!

Got the tickets, got the room, got the registration! Got to GO!
 

PCLaurel

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Jul 13, 2010
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  • #14
Thanks for the countdown Rae! It's my first year for conference so I'll need all the help I can get! First question: can we wear capri pants? I have several outfits for summer that are capri pants and they are sooo comfortable!

I'm interested in the answer to this as well. Thanks!
 

wadesgirl

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Jul 25, 2007
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Thanks for the countdown Rae! It's my first year for conference so I'll need all the help I can get! First question: can we wear capri pants? I have several outfits for summer that are capri pants and they are sooo comfortable!

Yes as long as they aren't demin. It's all I wear in the summer so it's what comes with me to conference.
 

otisbg

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May 5, 2008
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Capris are fine - and you will see shorts and denim even though it is frowned upon. No one will ask you to leave based on your attire - you just need to remember that this is your job and dress accordingly.;)
 

raebates

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Dec 6, 2005
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Beverly's question has already been answered.

ATPCHEF, we're each responsible for our own transportation and housing. This year housing at the official NC hotels will open at 10 a.m. on April 18. They fill up quickly. Those hotels usually run about $250/night, give or take. I'll be arriving the day before and dividing that with a couple of roommates, so it comes to about $250 for the whole stay.

What I usually do is sign up for Conference Club as soon as I can, setting aside enough to cover the room and some spending money. Once I've registered for NC, they refund anything I didn't use.


Remember that transportation, housing, registration, and food are all tax deductible.
 

raebates

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Today is April 11. There are 87 days until the start of National Conference!

Keep an eye on CS to find NC roommates. Many of us room with team mates, but there are often people looking for roommates. Be sure to discuss a few things, though, before you make a commitment. Are you a morning lark or a night owl? Are you looking for a conference buddy to keep you company or simply someone to share room expenses? Knowing these things can help to make your experience pleasurable.
 
Mar 26, 2009
148
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  • #19
This is so GREAT!!! I am loving all of these tips, Booked my flight TODAY!!! This will be my first time at conference. I AM SO EXCITED!!!!!
 

kittychef

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Mar 16, 2009
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  • #20
Love the countdown!! I'm so excited!! This will be my 3rd year going! First time I was 6 months pregnant and I fractured my ankle, second time had just had back surgery and this time I'll be walking the stage as a director YAY!!!:cheerleader::cheerleader: Yeah I'm a bit excited!! LOL
 

cookinforyou

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Nov 4, 2009
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I am super excited too. This is my first NC and I can not wait! Rae thanks for the great countdown, when I joined conference club I read last years thread in its entirety lol
you Rock!!
Jan
 

cookinforyou

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one question the general lunch on Thursday is that on our own or will that be provided?
 

Becca_in_MD

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Jan 9, 2009
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The optional lunch on Thurs. for Consultants, SCs and TLs is new. I don't think I've seen anything that definitively says whether it's free or not. It may be an option on your registration form and it will say whether you pay additional for it or not.
 

Shawnna

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Feb 2, 2005
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I can't wait!!! My hospitality director was getting our train tickets today. We have flown...which I love, but it is expensive. Last year we took the MegaBus...which I will not do again, not even if they gave me a free ticket. This year we are going to try the train. I have never rode on a train before so I'm kinda looking forward to it.
 

raebates

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Today is April 12. There are 86 days until the start of National Conference!

I wonder if there will be any way to earn extra ribbons this year. For newbies—when you get your name badge you'll receive a first-timer's ribbon to attach to your badge. Team Leaders and above have special ribbons. There are buttons, ribbons, and lanyards for things like earnings, recruiting, and charitable giving. At least, that’s what they’ve done in the past. Keep your eye on CC for announcements.

And, once you're at NC keep your eyes open for people with lots of stuff on their name badges. These are the people with great ideas and maybe some answers for you.
 

atpchef

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Mar 29, 2011
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Great, thanks for the information! Maybe next year I can make it :-(
 

KCPChef

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Oct 15, 2009
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YAYAYAYYA!!! The agenda and everything posted this morning!!!!! I am just sooo super excited to be going to conference this year!!!! I am not one to rush time, however, JULY PLEASE COME SOON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HAHA
 

raebates

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Today is April 13. There are 85 days until the start of National Conference.

You'll probably only have a few cluster/team meetings between now and NC. Write down anything you want to discuss with your clustermates so you can ask at the meetings. What do they usually do during down time? Do they usually move about as a group or will you be mostly on your own? Do they usually choose expensive restaurants, mid-range meals, or cheap & cheerful cuisine? Your roommates and travel buddies will be good sources of info.
 

debbieskitchenhelper

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Apr 3, 2007
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I will definately need to find some buddies to hang around with, I am not in my directors click,, she definately has her favorites and I am not one of them. Ever since I became a consultant, I have felt like I am doing this all by myself. Oh well,, if anyone does not mind me hanging around them I would appreciate that. Never been to conference and feeling really scared to be honest.
 

crystalscookingnow

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Jan 17, 2006
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I will definately need to find some buddies to hang around with, I am not in my directors click,, she definately has her favorites and I am not one of them. Ever since I became a consultant, I have felt like I am doing this all by myself. Oh well,, if anyone does not mind me hanging around them I would appreciate that. Never been to conference and feeling really scared to be honest.

One of the great things about conference is that you aren't alone! Even people who go with their clusters benefit by breaking from the pack once in a while. Meet new people and find a new friend! You won't have to do it alone!! :D
 

PCLaurel

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Jul 13, 2010
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I might have mentioned this elsewhere in another conversation about Conference, but never ever eat a meal alone! Always find someone else to sit with - whether it's another single person or a group who happens to still have seats at their table. You'll meet someone new, get some great ideas, have fun, etc. And even if you're shy - just start things off by saying, "Is anyone sitting here?" - or - "Is this seat being saved?"
 

debbieskitchenhelper

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I love this site,, everyone is so helpful. Thank you everyone for all your tips and ideas and friendship.
 

raebates

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You'll find a lot of helpful people at NC. It amazes me how free people are with advice about how to succeed.
 

raebates

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Today is April 14. There are 84 days until the start of National Conference.

Are you getting excited? I am. I’ve printed off the agenda. I’ll be checking CC every couple of days for more tidbits of information. For the past few years they’ve given a few nuggets at a time.
 

KCPChef

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Oct 15, 2009
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  • #35
Thank you so much Rae for all of the wonderful tips that you give us! Do you know who makes the conference binder? Will anyone be making that this year? I think that its wonderful!!! :)
 

raebates

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I'm not sure who does that, but I imagine they'll share it soon.
 

raebates

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Today is April 15. There are 83 days until the start of National Conference.

Begin now making a list of the things you hope to learn at NC. If you’ve never been before, think about what you most want to know. What areas of your business would you most like to improve? Write down your questions. Read them over frequently. This will plant them in your brain, and you’ll be more likely to recognize an answer when you hear it. That’s one of the best things you can do to prepare your mind for NC. It will also help you to decide which workshops to choose.
 

raebates

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Today is April 16. There are 82 days until the start of National Conference.

You can ride the shuttle to McCormick no matter where you stay. Your name badge will act as your shuttle pass. Just remember not to wear your name badge while walking around Chicago, since it really pegs you as a tourist.
 

pchockeymom

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Jan 1, 2011
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  • #39
Today is April 16. There are 82 days until the start of National Conference.

You can ride the shuttle to McCormick no matter where you stay. Your name badge will act as your shuttle pass. Just remember not to wear your name badge while walking around Chicago, since it really pegs you as a tourist.

Is this for safety reasons or "don't look like an idiot reasons?" I am curious about the safety of the area we will be staying. Big city vs. little woman, need to know how to handle myself.
 

PCLaurel

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I've never been to conference so I can't speak to that particular area, but I have traveled by myself. I would say both your reasons are correct, but the biggie is safety. Anything that pegs you for a tourist will make you an easy target for things like pickpockets.

Don't be scared off - just be smart, use common sense, and be aware of your surroundings. It also helps to walk around with a buddy if you can.
 

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