Tucson or Bust

6a00e54f95df928834011570bd9341970b-200wi For those of you who were getting concerned (thank you), about my absence from blogging the last fiew days,  I haven't fallen off the planet. First,  I'm surrounded by a sea of newly arrived Stampin' Up! 2009-2010 Idea Books & Catalogs, getting them ready to go to customers.  Need a new catalog, CLICK HERE! 

Second, I'm moving to Tucson from Wisconsin!  My husband, daughter (age 15) and I were born and raised in Madison and love everything except the weather.  The past two winters have been especially tough and we retreated to Tucson on vacation.  This past Spring, the decision was unanimously made for more year round sunshine (my daughter is a swimmer) and an attractive winter climate in Tucson (although it's currently horribly hot in both AZ and WI). 

My daughter is determined to go to the University of Arizona Tucson and we want to establish in-state residency to take the bite out of tuition.  My husband has been wanting to move to a warmer climate for 20 years.  He had no hard feelings about saying good bye to his snow blower.  Finally, I'm a big nature and birding buff and would adore living someplace where I can comfortably spend more time outdoors hiking in the mountains and singing with the coyotes (just kidding on the coyotes, sort of).

For those of you who have already learned about our move, you chief concern wasn't so much about me but rather the fate of My Stampin' Pretty Zone.  Good news!  The new Tucson home has a wonderful, light-filled loft (even a fireplace) and view of the mountains.  I think I'll survive.  I have sketched out every piece for Zone #2 and it fits beautifully.

My Stampin' Up! business and on-line presence won't be going away one bit.  My customers are currently from all over the U.S. and my virtual business model will remain unchanged.  Blogging will be a touch more sporadic during the next few weeks as we prepare for the move.  However, I still plan to create and post as much as possible (my sanity will depend on it)!

JUNE 30 IS THE DEADLINE!  Click here for all Stampin' Up! Retiring Products.


  1. Congrats, Mary! So happy to hear you are moving to a warmer climate! It will be lovely to create in a loft with a view of the mountains… I’d love to live by the ocean since we are so close! Good luck on all the packing which won’t be that much fun… Also thanks for getting my catty to me pronto! I’ve enjoyed leafing through it and have some favs picked out! Have a great day! Hugs, Monica

  2. What a wonderful opportunity, Mary! All best wishes to you and your family. I look forward to seeing your endlessly amazing creations with some Tucson inspiration!

  3. Hi Mary! I recently found your blog and really enjoy it. And how great to see this post about you moving to Tucson. I live in Tucson and I absolutely LOVE it. I’ve lived here since I was a little girl, went to college in Flagstaff and got the “snow thing” out of my system and have been here ever since. I’m one of the weirdos that actually likes the heat! In fact, I think the winters are too cold. LOL! Anyway, if you are a nature gal, you will have lots to do and see and I know your daughter will love the UofA – its a terrific university. Best wishes on the move. Fall is wonderful here so you’ll be settling in at just the right time… 🙂

  4. Candy Heathman

    Welcome to Arizona!! I live in Hayden, a little mining community. We are right between Tucson and Phoenix.

    It is definitely HOT but that doesn’t stop us from anything. We just had my grandson’s first birthday party outside under a ramada and it was 107!

  5. Dear Mary,
    I understand about the weather. I am up north near the BIG POND (Superior.) I spent some time in AZ when I was in my 20’s, a quarter century ago! Looking forward to viewing your creative space when you get settled. WI is losing a very talented rubber fanatic! Stamp On! lorijane

  6. Welcome to the WEST! — and plenty of sunshine.
    You’re going to be so much closer to California.
    Have a safe move! 🙂

  7. Best wishes with your move and new hime, I am a new “follower” and look forward to your continued posts!

  8. Wow!! Good luck Mary to you and your family! What an exciting adventure and if anything I am sure it will make your inspirations and projects even better(although they are top of the line now).

  9. Welcome to AZ, Mary. I live 20 mins. outside of central Phoenix. Yes, it’s HOT at times. But as the saying goes, “It’s a dry heat”. Tucson has more scenery than Phoenix and is a bit more laid back. Phoenix has developed into a quite a metropolis since I moved here 14 years ago…to away from harsh Northeast winters. I havn’t regretted it and havn’t even been back for a visit. Keep us posted and don’t overdo it.

  10. Good luck with your move and settling into your new digs! … Patricia

  11. All the best Mary, in your move west! Leaving all us midwesterner’s here with our lovely winters 😉 My DH and I visit AZ and CA often in the winter for golf, so, maybe, just maybe! All the best in the coming weeks. Good luck getting settled. Your new view sounds wonderful. Calgon .. 😉

  12. Wow! Sounds exciting & a very inspiring place to move to! All the best! I love checking your blog often – your cards are stunning!

  13. Mary, I’m so excited knowing you’re moving to Arizona! You KNOW that once you’re moved in and settled I’m going to be begging you to drive to Phoenix so we can meet in person!

    I’m quite impressed … only YOU could continue blog business as usual during the big move like this! GOOD LUCK !!!!!!!

  14. Mary, That’s great good luck on your move.
    My oldest son will be moving there in August (he currently lives in D.C.) He’ll be attending the University of Arizona Tucson for his under graduate.
    We were there in April and I loved it.

  15. Hi Mary, Although moves can be stressful I am sure the excitement of moving to warmer climate will far outweigh the stresses. Enjoy your move, good luck with it all. Look forward to seeing your new craft area and photos of your new area.

  16. Mary
    Congratulations on the move! Too bad we never met here in Wisconsin.
    However, my husband graduated from Arizona State – Go Sun Devils – and we spend quite a bit of time out there. And, have always planned on retiring in the area, so who knows, maybe a meeting is still in our future!

  17. Mary, I hope you and your family have an easy move! If you’re going to teach any classes in Colorado, be sure to list it on your blog … (One can always wish, right?)

  18. Well, you’ll be in my “neck of the woods”, Mary! I live on the outskirts of the Phoenix Valley, in Gold Canyon, which is actually about 90 miles from Tucson. 🙂 I’m glad to know that you will still be blogging, as I thoroughly enjoy spending time here, soaking up all the inspiration. 😉

    Have a safe move.

    Lisa Beeman

  19. Congrats on the move! I am happy to learn of this exciting event. I live in California, La Quinta, to be exact and this gives me an opportunity to visit when and if you have Stampin events; hopefully you will have these open not only to those on your downline. I send you all my stength, prayers, and wish you a quick and sane move.

    Veronica 😉

  20. These past two winters have been especially yucky!! I live by Madison too (I didn’t know you were so close!!). Let me know if you need help packing your stamping stuff!

  21. Wow, Mary… congratulations on your move!! I love Tucson. I visited for work a few years ago and fell in love with the city. I plan to return someday for a vacation with my husband as I’d love to spend more time exploring. I hope your move goes well and your new stamping space gets set up quickly. Can’t wait to see the new space and your vision for it. I know it will knock our socks off! Best wishes for a smooth move!!

  22. Congratulations on your move Mary! I’m a birder too and I know you’ll have fun seeing new things!

  23. colleen kramer

    I’ll be thinking about you in the next few weeks and wishing you well! SOOO exciting! I’ll be waiting for the first glimpses of The Stampin’ Pretty Zone (Tucson, style)!!!

  24. I am so jealous of you! We live in Ontario, Canada and last winter was enough to last me a life time! Sure wish I was movin’ with you! I love your blog~ your style is so chic! Good luck with the move!

  25. How exciting to start your life over. I am so happy for you. I will be checking on you to see you in your new place. I am happy for you.

  26. Wow, exciting news for you & your family, Mary!
    It’s funny, but the very first thing that popped into my head when I read the first line telling us you’re moving was… oh, and she just designed that BEAUTIFUL stampin’ zone!!! LOL! Well, I’ll bet this one will be even better!

  27. Oh Mary, congrats on “MOViNG closer to CALIFORNIA”! And on your new place in AZ. So happy for your family. Good Luck!

  28. Congratulations on your move Mary! I’m JEALOUS!!! My sister lives in Tucson, but I don’t get to visit as often as I would like. I wish you all the best in your move and your new environment.


  29. Mary

    Want to wish you all the luck to you and your family on your new journey….cannot wait to see your NEW STAMP ROOM!!! Although I’ll miss your everyday posts, I’ll look forward you posting from Tucson….

  30. Hi Mary – I don’t comment often but I check out your blog daily……love your style and your approach

    I wish you all the best in AZ and hope your move goes smoothly



  31. Goodbye snow storms….hello Sunshine! I wish you the best for your move and a safe journey. I am so excited that you are moving closer! Being a WI (Racine) girl, I so know what you are talking about. Winter there are just, well, yuck. I hope that you love your new digs. My girls are already fretful asking me if I planned to relocate to the college state of their choice. Hmmm, hadn’t thought about it before…but maybe (insert evil mommy laughter) Anyways…can’t wait to see new pics of your new stampin’ studio!!

  32. I live in Casa Grande, AZ. It is just about an hour north of Tucson. You sure did pick a fun time to move to AZ!!!! It is HOT!!!

  33. Welcome home to the West 🙂

    I live in California, but you’re only a skip, hop and an airplane trip away! Not that I go to Az, it’s just to dang HOT for me!

    Glad you’re moving West young one!

  34. Mary: YAHOO for you (and me too). I too live in Madison and will be moving to Tuscon in August (I know the hottest month of the year). I agree with you on the winters – Older I get….harder it gets.

    We will be living in SaddleBrooke (just north of Tuscon) and would love to connect with a fellow InkBig Buddy once I get out there. Give me a yell at my email addy – not sure when your leaving but would love to connect with a fellow Badger Fan (there are many others of us out there already!). Best Wishes to you and Happy bird watching to you! Kadie

  35. Congratulations on your upcoming move, Mary! I’ve been an AZ girl for, oh, ’bout 35 years and love it! But NOT the heat ~ we’re in the mountains of northern AZ. Tucson is one of my favorite places in AZ, with loads of interesting features. Looking forward to hearing more from you about your move. Glad to hear you’re taking that wonderful Pretty Stamping Zone with you. Your blog on this was instrumental in getting me moving on redoing my art studio, which was badly in need of a make-over. Thanks for all your inspiration! Hugs, Vickie

  36. Wow I so wish I was moving with you. I just love AZ but until my Girls move I guess I will be here in the midwest. You give me hope that I will be able to move there some day as both my girls love AZ also.
    I look forward to seeing your new stamping area because I just loved the old one. Best of luck.

  37. Hey Mary!!

    This is fantastic news!! Welcome to Arizona! I have lived in the Phoenix area all my life. I love to travel, I love the midwest, it is so green . ( have relative in the Chicago area) But I am always happy to come home. I love the mountains, and sounds and smells of the desert. The cities are like all cities, traffic, smog ( a little) etc. but the open desert and the mountains are beautiful!

    Tucson is a bit cooler than Phoenix. There is alot of history there and things to do and see. If you like nature , hiking and bird watching , as I do, Be sure to check out Sabino Canyon (just outside of Tucson) Gorgeous! it has a little train to take you around to different trails, great for hikes and picnics. It has a stream and some trees as well as all the desert plants and cacti. There are caves around the area,(Kartchner Carverns is a MUST SEE!), museums and Kit Peak observatory. Very Cool!! it is up on Mt Lemmon, on Indian land, they offer great tours, & night viewing through telescopes . We did it on our anniversary last October.

    Good luck!! Hope everything goes smoothly. Look forward to seeing you at a regional or convention or something. You will love Arizona!! I hope Isabel , your pug likes it too. don’t leave her outside in the afternoons, or EVER in the car! it is brutal in the sun.

    Hugs- Heidi Kilgore

  38. Mary, I visit your blog daily – I confess I don’t comment often BUT I love every card/project you post. Best wishes for a stress-free move! Establishing residency early is an excellent strategy – you’ll save quite a few tens of thousands of $$ – enjoying wonderful weather year around to boot! Best of luck!

  39. Sounds like a win-win situation! Welcome to the West Coast. Tucson is gorgeous. I am also happy for zone 2. Can’t wait to see the pictures!

  40. so is the gal in the cowboy hat something you aspire to someday? bwahahahaha. very exicted for your move to warmer climes. we live in DE and would love to move south someday except that … the winters here are not brutal (esp with global warming, whatever THAT is) and we love living in a college town. plus this is where our two boys were raised and they love coming home to DE. but maybe someday … anyway, blessings to you in your move and all that it will entail and look forward to hearing some tidbits about your new adventure in the weeks to come!!
    cyber hugs, jo ann. (and blessings too!!!)

  41. so is the gal in the cowboy hat something you aspire to someday? bwahahahaha. very exicted for your move to warmer climes. we live in DE and would love to move south someday except that … the winters here are not brutal (esp with global warming, whatever THAT is) and we love living in a college town. plus this is where our two boys were raised and they love coming home to DE. but maybe someday … anyway, blessings to you in your move and all that it will entail and look forward to hearing some tidbits about your new adventure in the weeks to come!!
    cyber hugs, jo ann. (and blessings too!!!)

  42. Well…Welcome to the West!!! Very exciting!!! Sorry, if you think we care more about your blog than you 🙁 Not true!!!

  43. my BIL lives in madison and loves the easy access to the lakes. he snowboards, so he’s loved the last two winters. we moved from IL to GA 3 years and do not miss the winters ONE BIT! it’s nice to go home for Christmas and visit the chill and see snow, but living without having to wear winter coats is FANTASTIC! enjoy the move…

  44. I’m envious of your move to a warmer climate. We live in Northeast Ohio and my husband would LOVE to move south (and say goodbye to the snowblower as well) but family keeps us here. CONGRATULATIONS…I can’t wait to see what inspires you in a warmer climate!


  45. Elizabeth Glass

    Very best of luck to you Mary! Hugs,Elizabeth

  46. Mary – good luck on your move. My husband would be jealous. Like yours, he’s been wanting to leave cold IL winters behind for quite a while. Unfortunately, our kids are rooted here.

    Can’t wait to see pictures of Zone #2!

  47. Mary, I am very excited for you. The view sounds wonderful. Enjoy this exciting adventure!

  48. Cheryl McAskill

    WOW, I do wish you and yours the best! My DH wants to move to NC from the Northeast, for the same reason, weather. Our summer is right now non-existent.We are rainy and cool. I am so tempted to leave now….but I need to continue for my retirement from the Company I work. Then when I retire, Stampin Up will be my Full-time Job! and the move to warmer weather!!!

  49. Wow! You are adventuresome…WI to AZ is a huge move! I’m hoping your move is ideal and you enjoy your new space. I love your blog and am sure you will get organized in a timely fashion. Best wishes. Mary Jo

  50. Right after I retired, I moved myself into a 5th wheel [everything else in storage] and off I went to see the world by myself. From California, my first stop was Mesa, AZ; I LOVED it, heat & all! I traveled for several months and came back to CA because of my grandchildren but, as soon as they’re old enough & my son doesn’t need my help, off I go to AZ again! Tucson is a bit cooler than Mesa but anyplace in AZ is better than any place else! Good for you! I look forward to seeing how you re-organize your craft zone. Enjoy!

  51. Cheryl Hellem

    GOOD FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!! I’m orginally from New Jersey and i couldn’t believe people actually lived here! I think the state should pay us to stay, lol I’m attending my nieces wedding in Phoenix in December, so i’ll get to see what Arizona winters are like! Congrats again, and i hope you have safe travels. Can’t wait to see your new craft space, but seriously, a fire place??? lol Hugs, cheryl, north of you!

  52. I have been enjoying your e mails/blog for a long time now. Love it. So excited for your move. We have lived in the Phoenix area for over 30 yrs and have a sister in Tucson. You will love it. Hot summers but worth every bit of sweat for the rest of the year. You are in for a wonderful new experience moving to Arizona. We welcome you and will see you at the conventions or just around the state. Congrats on your move.

  53. I’m so happy that you get to do this! I’ve lived in Tuscon for many years and loved it! The heat there is dry heat not humid heat like we have here in Central Texas right now. The dry heat is much more tolerable, I think. Go up to Mt. Lemmon in the summer and you’ll cool off. So many neat things to do there. Good luck on your move and endeavors!

  54. Mary, I certainly am concerned about you ahead of your business as I am sure all your internet friends and customers are! I have been in my house 25 years and if I had to move? I shudder to think of it. I hope you have been more organized than I and that the move goes smoothly. Good luck. I’m sure we can all be patient while you settle in.

  55. I hope it all goes smoothly. Cant wait to see your new space.


  56. Best Wishes with your move. The warmer weather in the winter will be wonderful! Take time for you and I’m sure you’ll have that loft ready for stamping!! Heartfelt wishes for everyone and I hope Isabel adjusts to her new home and the warmer weather too!

  57. I am soooo jealous!! I am with you on the winter issue, this year up here in Calgary was brutal, hell, we finally got rid of the last bit of snow!! I so say to my hubby too ‘maybe it is time to relocate’ but here in Canada, there isn’t anywhere that doesn’t get snow! LOL I am so pumped for you and can’t wait to see the shots of the new place and especially your craft area! You go girl!

  58. Good luck with the move! It sounds like the whole family is excited about the decision, that is wonderful! Can’t wait to see pics of Zone #2. Happy packing!

  59. Your loft sounds fun. It will be even better because you found it with a Stampin’ eye this time instead of crafting it out of existing space! Here’s to a smooth move and no lost boxes! As a transplant to California from illinois, I can certainly agree that the weather was THE number one reason at age 15 I voted with our family to move!

  60. Welcome to the west! I’m in Boise, ID and I love having sun and moderate seasons, just enough winter too!

  61. I wish you much happiness in your new home. I know you will love it. I would love to move to a warmer place, but I can’t leave the kids. I know you will get right to work and fix up that loft and all of the rest of us can share your space as well when you post your pictures. I look forward to many, many years of doing business with you, no matter where you move to. Good luck.

  62. Congratulations on your decision and your move. I hope that everything will go smoothly for you. I can’t say how the western US is, being from the Southeast, but WI winters must be brutal. Right now, with our heat and humidity, I am a bit envious of dry heat.

  63. Good Luck Mary, I enjoy getting good ideas from your blog. My daughter was stationed at Ft.Huachuca (south of Tucson) for a while. We drove down there and really enjoyed it.
    Make sure you visit Bisby. Very unique little town in a crevice of the mountains.
    My sister lives in Cambridge, WI, moved from Kansas because she missed the snow. (her fault the last 2 winters were horrendous 😉
    thanks for all of your sharing.
    Irene in Racine, WI

  64. Good luck on your move.

  65. Mary–I spent 7 1/2 years in Phoenix, and the climate is near identical to Tuscon. You will definately love the sunshine and adjust. Tip #1, always always park IN the garage, otherwise you can barely touch the steerling wheel to drive. Tip #2, learn to love your electric bill….it will be rediculous, but truly AC will be your best friend. And #3, find the hiking trails and as soon as September rolls around, enjoy them all! I currently live in Prescott(four hours north) and the mountain climate is far more mild than The Valley (as it is called). We have snow, but not much compared to WI! Get in touch with Diana Gibbs (SU! new Artisan Award winner and publlished in the same Stampin Success Mag as you). She lives in Queen Creek, about an hour from Tuscon, and she can tell you about the goings on in The Valley. I know she is currently helping put together a regional or something in September for the area!


    Hugs and Happy Moving!~~Shelli

  66. Hope you enjoy AZ, sounds like a beautiful view from your loft.
    Have an Uncle thats lives there and he loves it. Hope you and you family will be happy there. Patm

  67. Colleen Moreland

    Hey Mary,
    Good luck with the move. Moves are hard at times, but you will do great. I also love the mountains and to enjoy the beautiful weather says a lot.y
    Enjoy, enjoy!!!Can’t wait to see you new room once you are settled.
    Good luck!!!

  68. Barbara Chatzkel

    Mary — Welcome to Arizona! I live in New River (north of Phoenix). I look forward to meeting you in person as you establish your Arizona stamping presence. Have an easy move!

    Barbara in New River

  69. Rosemary Olson

    What exciting big news Mary! And what a change. I think these Midwestern winters are getting longer every year. Dh wants to move to Colorado though, so I am not sure if I would be keen on switching one version of winter for another?! For the time being we’ll sit put and take vacations when we need to get away. I really wish you good luck. Can’t wait to see the photos as you set up room #2, and with a fireplace!! You sure know how to make a girl jealous.

  70. Best wishes on your move I live in Texas and summer is too HOT so thinking AZ will be the same.

  71. Wow, Mary! How exciting is that?! Being honored in Stampin’ Success, new SU! year, and now starting it in a wonderful new place! I was just reading something the other day about how beautiful Tuscon is – haven’t been there (been to Arizona, but not there). So happy for you and looking forward to your “return.”

  72. Lori Shackleton

    I moved to Peoria, AZ about 3 weeks ago. So far I love everything about AZ. It’s hot, no doubt, but the hot days make for beautiful nights–with no mosquitos! And, once September rolls around–we will have awesome sunshine while our friends and family will be looking out their windows at clouds and rain.

    I lasted just over a week without stamping something and then couldn’t take it any longer. Once I unpacked my stamps and ink pads I felt calmer! Is there such a thing as ‘stamping addiction’? Maybe I was having withdrawals?

    Good luck with your move. Perhaps we will meet someday now that we both live in AZ. Oh, and thank you for sharing your beautiful work.


  73. Good Luck with your move Mary!!! Wow, your new stamping zone sounds wonderful, view & all. I’m sure you will enjoy the warmer weather. I live in Alberta, Canada, so I know what snow blowers and cold winters are all about! 🙂 Looking foward to seeing some of your creations from the new IB&C.

  74. What an excited time! I can’t wait to see how you’re stampin’ goodies look in that loft with a view! I wish you and your family the BEST of luck!

  75. Congratulations on your big move. I too have lived in Wisconsin all my life and I agree the winters are brutal but I love the rest of the year. I hope your family is happy in your new home!!

  76. Enjoy your new place! It’s beautiful out there. So glad to hear you won’t be going away from the blogging world.


  77. Just recently found your blog from the Stampin Sucess and ahve to say you do wonderful stuff. Good luck on the move. I recently moved and am still unpacking… granted 75% of my stamping stuff is already put up… have to have priorities… now if I could just find the rest of my kitchen stuff.

    Thanks for sharing all your wonderful ideas.


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