December 9, 2015. Today is Christmas. Here at Charlie Chalk every day has been
Christmas for over a week now. It all started about 10 days ago when we received an order
for 50 of our Carli Design Christmas ornaments with a blank chalkboard. Most of our
designs are named for someone we love. This one is named for our youngest daughter
A few days later, I got a call from Darrell Brown, who had placed the order for LeAnn Rimes.
As soon as I heard that, I definitely stopped thinking clearly. What?!!?? Did you say LeAnn
Rimes? She noticed our little chalkboard business? Seriously? For realsies? No way! Yes
LeAnn is signing them for her fans and selling them on her website and on her Today is
Christmas tour. LeAnn LOVES chalkboards. She writes something inspirational on a
chalkboard every day and posts it on her instagram. We LOVE LeAnn. And chalkboards, of
So we shipped off our 50 chalkboard ornaments and didn’t think much more about it until
we got a call on Friday night from Darrell. Apparently the ornaments sold out before the
concert even began! And they wanted a lot more. The next concert stop was just a 2 hour
drive from our studio. So I offered to hand deliver the ornaments. Darrell asked if we’d like
to stay for the show and meet LeAnn. What? Seriously? For realsies? No way! Yes way! I
calmly said we’d LOVE TO!!!!! Not really. I’m sure I stumbled over my words and didn’t stop
talking. But Darrell was gracious and didn’t tell me what a blabbering idiot I had become.
I got it together enough to work all day Saturday with Jamie and Carli to put together the
ornaments for them. It was a crazy exciting busy exciting tiring exciting day. We finished
production about 9pm and slept well with visions of meeting LeAnn and seeing her in
concert dancing in our heads.
Yesterday Jim, Carli, and I packed the ornaments and left for Grand Ronde, OR to deliver
them to LeAnn’s assistant Kiki. Jamie, Lisa, and Billie met up with us and we waited for our
turn to meet LeAnn. None of us have met anyone famous before, so we didn’t know what to
expect. LeAnn didn’t disappoint.
She was beautiful! And so sweet. Each of us had our photo taken with her.
She was gracious and didn’t rush us at all. Billie bought 2 of the signed ornaments and
asked her to sign the back of each one, which she was glad to do. She told Carli that she
has beautiful hair. She told Lisa that she could tell that she is my daughter. She told me that
she loves our ornaments. And she gave me a hug. Oh, no. I’m not thinking clearly again.
But seriously, everyone we met that works with LeAnn was awesome. And you know it all
trickles down from the top. LeAnn is truly a sweet genuine gal. I loved her. And we’re thrilled
to be working with her and her team. It’s been amazing. But it gets better…..
We found out that Carli couldn’t attend the concert because they were serving alcohol and
the OLCC forbids anyone under 21 to attend an event like this where alcohol is served. So
Kiki went to bat for us. She asked if Carli could sit in the front row. Nope. Then she says are
they sure, because we’ve driven for hours to attend the concert. Nope. But…she could sit
on the stage. Oh no. Not again. Think clearly Pattie! Get it together! Are you telling us that
we can watch the concert from backstage? Yowsa! Jim and I decide to tag team and switch
places mid-way through the concert. I watched from the audience for the first half and sat
backstage for the second half. For those of you who have not been backstage at a concert,
it’s pretty awesome. But you don’t hear as well since the sound is geared for the audience.
When the bass guitar was playing, the sound was pretty loud since we sat right by the
speaker tied into it. But I have to say that being backstage was amazing. I felt like I was
pretty special. And Carli with the beautiful hair felt pretty special too.
Thank you Kiki and Darrell and LeAnn for blessing us an unforgettable night.
This star-struck Charlie team drove home floating on the clouds. And when we get home,
we see that LeAnn wrote her daily inspiration on one of our ornaments and posted it on
One more blessing from this awesome lady that blows us away with her thoughtfulness.
It all started with a sale. It continued with an amazing memory that will be cherished by this
family who owns a business that sells chalkboards and personalized keepsakes. Today is
Christmas. Yessiree. It sure is.