FYI: Here are my thoughts on Slut Shaming

I’m not sure how this post is going to go. I’m sitting down to my laptop with a little time and not a whole lot of comprehensible thoughts. I’m sure by now you’ve read the letter written by Mrs. Hall about her teenage boys. If you haven’t, go ahead and search for it, because I don’t feel like linking it. When I read it, I tried to keep an open mind. As a mother of (non-teenage) boys myself, I thought maybe this was a glimpse into my future. While reading the letter, I started to feel very, very uncomfortable, and now 2 days later I still have that discomfort in my gut. Something didn’t sit right with me, and I am not the only one who felt that way.

Mrs. Hall’s letter to teenage girls, basically outlined how she doesn’t approve of the “sexy” pictures that she saw on her sons’ Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook feeds while they were all, as a family, checking out their social media accounts one night. That, because of these pictures, she had to block the girls from her sons’ feeds. That, because her boys have seen these pictures, they can’t unsee them, and now will only think of these girls in a sexual way. That there are no second chances when it comes to pictures like these. Right, that’s great, that’s her opinion and she’s entitled to it.

Once upon a time, I was that girl. Believe it or not! As a teenager, I was a camgirl. I got really into the scene and was really motivated by, let’s face it, money, gifts, and praises. I liked being told that I looked good. Who doesn’t? The problem was, I was young and dumb, and didn’t think about the repercussions it could cause on my future, and didn’t realize that even back in the early 2000s, everything that goes on the internet is permanent in some way or another. Those pictures are still out there. I know how to search for them and I know how to find them. Thankfully, not many people know how to find them and my lips are sealed on how to get to them. Also, I’m not planning on running for president anytime soon so I’m not too worried about them resurfacing and ruining my political career.

The thing I want you to know, about those pictures, is that they by no means meant anything other than that I was young, had a nice body, felt good, and wanted to show it off. I wasn’t a slut. I didn’t have promiscuous sex. I didn’t walk around with my tits hanging out and the pockets of my cut off shorts hanging out at the bottom. I held a steady job and worked hard from the age of 15, eventually went to college, had a couple of long term boyfriends, lots of great friends, and lots of opportunity at my hands. I also threw kick ass parties and I had a hot 18 year old body, that I liked to show off. Now I’m a 30 year old woman with two sons of her own and an awesome, intelligent and successful husband, trying to navigate life, and somehow not ruined by those pictures that I posted as a teen.

Now I’d like to talk about the slut shaming. I have just explained all of my “slutty” actions, and defended myself. You may still think I was a slut, but I certainly do not and did not feel that way about myself. I never cheated on my boyfriends. I always practiced safe sex. One night, at the age of 19, I was invited over to a guy’s house whom I knew from work. He was 29, and kinda cute, and pretty nice. It was a Friday night, and we decided we’d just hang out and watch a couple of movies, movies that I brought with me. American Pie. Halfway through the movie, he started kissing me. I tried to push him away, he insisted that it was what I wanted. He called me a dick tease. Told me I shouldn’t have come over if I didn’t want it. One thing rolled into the next and despite the fact that I said no, no, no, and No is supposed to mean No, he had his way, then had the balls to ask me if I was on birth control. I wasn’t. I had to go to Planned Parenthood the next day and take the morning after pill because some jerk decided that because I was at his house and had showed the slightest interest in him, he got to have sex with me. Here’s the thing: I was wearing jeans and a freaking t-shirt. I wasn’t wearing sexy clothes, but even if I had been, NO MEANS NO, and it wasn’t my fault. He also had never known my online persona so please, don’t blame it on the pictures.

Maybe now you understand why I am so frustrated and so tired of this “Women must dress modestly so that men can control their sexual urges around them” crap. That is slut shaming. Blaming a man’s inability to control himself on how a woman is dressed, is absolutely ridiculous.

Mrs. Hall, I hope that you tell your boys that they should respect a woman no matter what she is wearing. That “No” always means “No” even if she’s not wearing a bra. That thinking about females sexually is OK, but acting upon it without consent is not. I also hope that you realize, that the girls that your boys see don’t have to be in a “state of undress” for them to be thinking about them sexually. It is in their nature; we can be wearing a t-shirt and jeans and men will still think about us sexually. You should know that! I am sure your husband has grazed your ass in an attempt to get laid while you were wearing the most dumpy house clothes you could find. Right?

And to the teenage girls posting these pictures, this is all I have to say to you. Do you want to run for political office someday? If so, I’d stop posting those types of pictures right away. If not, and you truly are not worried about the repercussions of posting them (like, they never go away, ok?) then by all means, go for it. Modesty is great, if that’s what you want, but dressing modestly and dressing in a sexy way, usually have nothing to do with the person underneath the clothes. At least, that’s my biased, humble opinion. Rock it.

Les Mills BODYFLOW Instructor Training

So, late this past Friday night I received a notification of a comment on this post from back in January. You can go read the comment or I’ll explain here. It was from a man named Gregg, concerned partner of a woman about to begin her journey through BODYFLOW instructor training the next day. I’m assuming that she called him in a nervous frenzy, and he started researching to look for information on what to expect. I am sorry that I failed them! I never wrote part 2 of that post that outlined my training weekend. So I’m going to do it now! Gregg and your lady: I hope that her weekend was a success! I know for me it was one of the most amazing things I have ever experienced! See, I too had major nerves before I left for training. For weeks before training, I told anyone who would listen to me how intimidated I was and questioned myself up until the minute I left. But once I was on the road, listening to the music from the release I was about to be trained on, I knew that where I was headed exactly where I was supposed to be going!

The thing is, when you go to a Les Mills training, you are going to learn how to teach. You aren’t expected to be amazing the minute you walk in front of the class. What is expected? The passion for the program, an open heart, and an open mind. If you’re anything like me, you have probably been inspired by these beautiful, strong, powerful instructors who have helped lead you through your fitness journey. You have probably questioned your ability to ever be at their level. Well, let me tell you this…and not only does this apply here, but it also applies in so many other areas of life:

The only person you should compare yourself to is you.

Training is a humbling experience. It probably sounds strange, but I am going to have to say that it is among the top moments in my life. I went to training because I loved BODYFLOW, I wanted to teach it because I wanted to share that love with others. Even now when I see new members in our class I get so excited, because I know (or assume, rather) that they are going to love it just as much as I do.

So what happened? What was it like? Did I pass?

After a long drive through parts of the state I had never been to (and a stop at Starbucks in Madison along the way!) I arrived in River Falls, Wisconsin around 9:00PM. I checked in to my hotel and immediately got down to business: relaxing. Just kidding! I set up my laptop, inserted the BODYFLOW Masterclass DVD, and watched and practiced the tracks I had been assigned which I had already been trying to smash into my head for the past two weeks. I was to report to training at 11:00AM the following day so I figured I had plenty of time for last minute cramming. Honestly, I knew my stuff…I could turn on the music and my body knew where to go…but my brain, my body and my mouth were having difficulty working together. I really needed to learn how to teach.

The next morning I got up early, showered, got dressed, ate (don’t forget to eat!) and drove to the fitness studio to check myself into training. This is where I met (or rather said hi to) my wonderful trainer, Barb (whom I already knew! She is an instructor at my gym) and her trainee, Michelle. It was the two trainers, me, and three other ladies. Very small group, not very typical of a Les Mills training. But I am so thankful that it wasn’t cancelled. After we filled out paperwork and introduced ourselves, Barb and Michelle led us through a Masterclass. Basically the same thing that you would be taking at your local gym, except I believe they were also watching us and taking their first mental notes on our form and flow. The masterclass was open to the public, so two members of the fitness studio joined us and tried BODYFLOW for the first time. They loved it! After class was over, we said goodbye to the participants and got down to business. It was time to learn! We spent the next several hours learning about the essence of the program, the goal of Les Mills, and so much more. I can’t remember it in exact detail, but I don’t want to ruin any surprises for you anyway so you’ll have to find out on your own by going to training!

Toward the end of the first day it was time to present our assigned tracks for the first time. I was shaking like a leaf. I had Sun Salutations, which is track two in BODYFLOW. As I made my way to the front I cracked a little joke to lighten the mood “Take it easy on me, I am a virgin!” Everyone laughed, and it kind of worked. I was 1% less nervous than I had been a minute ago! Everyone presented their tracks and shadowed our second assigned track. I actually ended up presenting a second track, Twists, because there were so few of us and Barb had challenged me a few days before training to learn it. I think I did ok! But I was given feedback mostly on Sun Salutations, since it was the one I was expected to know the best.

My feedback mostly consisted of “try to relax” and “keep your butt from drooping in plank”. I was given instructions on what to work on that evening and we all said goodnight and went back to our hotels (or homes, for the local ladies). I was SO thankful that that first presentation was over with. I went back to my hotel, poured myself a glass of wine and got down to business. We were also given “homework” to script out our track, which basically means write down what you intend to say as you teach. I did all that, practiced some more, and then collapsed in exhaustion in my big comfy king sized hotel bed.

Day 2. We woke up extra early so we could get done earlier; several of us had a long drive home and wanted to get on the road before it got too late. The first thing we did on day two? Present our tracks again! I was told that I had made a night and day difference and did a great job, even adding in the third layer of coaching (which we weren’t “graded” on). I guess that’s all it took, was a night! I was much more relaxed, and I think that was mostly because I had gotten the first time nerves over with the day before. By the time I finished presenting the second time, I basically had already “passed” so the third and final time of the day ended up being to help secure my confidence in teaching. After we presented, we had more learning, and then….dun dun dun, the BODYFLOW Challenge! I am not going to tell you what it was, but I will tell you that it took two hours and it was a very emotional experience. After that, we were all initiated into the “tribe”, learning the secret handshake and maori greeting. Well, everyone else was already certified in other Les Mills programs, so really it was just me learning it! Lots of technique assistance, and then some self guided practice before our third presentation. After our third presentations, the trainers sat together and filled out our assessment sheets and when we were done, we were each brought back one at a time to find out whether we had passed or gotten a pass withheld.

Well? I passed! I jumped for joy and haven’t stopped jumping since. The drive home that afternoon was surreal. My life was forever changed! I was headed home with a plan to team teach 4 times and then record my video to send in to become certified. I think I could write a whole blog post about the team teaching and video recording process, so maybe I will. Let me just say that once I got the chance to see an bunch of happy people laid out in front of me, relaxing at the end of a successful class, I knew I was exactly where I needed to be.

I love BODYFLOW and am so excited to find out where my journey is going to take me next!

 

So in summary, if I were to give you 3 pieces advice for your own training, here they are:

  1. Don’t be afraid; after all, you are going to training to learn.
  2. Have an open mind. You will be given constructive criticism and expected to utilize it. It is to help you! Take it and use it.
  3. Don’t forget to pack lots of healthy food. You will have time to eat and you should!

50 Pounds

Last week I celebrated an AMAZING accomplishment. I stepped on the scale and finally crossed 50 pounds off of my to-lose list. I posted earlier this year about being “done” but I but I’m truly not, not done, because it’s actually a lifestyle change and my lifestyle has changed…this is going to stick. I did it, I accomplished what I set out to do and then some.

I initially lost weight from breastfeeding and eating healthier, but only 20 pounds. In January of 2012 I weighed 175 at 3 months post-partum (I was 212 on the day I delivered my son, in case you’re curious) In September of 2012 I weighed 155. That is when my fitness journey began. You’ve heard about it before, but I condensed it to post on Les Mills’ Facebook page so here it is again, the shortened version for ya:

I am a Les Mills Success Story! Last year I lost 20 pounds through making healthier food choices, but knew something was missing. In September 2012 I started taking BODYPUMP at my gym, Gold’s Gym Waukesha. When I met the instructor, Becky, after class, I told her that I wanted to look like her, and that I was going to start taking every single one of her classes. I wasn’t joking! I started attending every class that I could work into my schedule. Halfway through September, I left my position at the dental office I was working at in order to stay home with my kids. Using Kid Care at the gym, I started taking more and more Les Mills classes. Combat, Pump, Attack, CXWorx and my personal favorite, BODYFLOW. In fact, I fell in love with Flow so much that I decided to go to training to become an instructor! That was back in December. I passed and am now a Les Mills instructor too! Today is March 15th 2013 and roughly 6 months after I began taking Les Mills classes. Since that day, I have lost 30 more pounds, bringing my grand total to 50. Les Mills has changed my life in more ways than one. “Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”
Kia kaha!
 175 to 155 to 135 to 125. Check. And all of the little numbers in between. Check.
What are you waiting for? SERIOUSLY! GET OFF YOUR BUTT AND MOVE! I still enjoy the foods I love (moderation!), I don’t starve myself AT ALL…no liquid energy drink breakfasts for me. I even eat cupcakes in bed sometimes. Okay, at least once every other week. Twice. Thrice. No, twice. But you know what? I MOVE. A LOT.
Exercise is actually fun. I kid you not. Try it, you’ll like it! You don’t need a gym or fancy equipment. All you need is a body that can move. Move it. Move it AND lose it.

An open letter of love and apologies to my youngest son

Gavin,

I want you to know you are so, so loved by your daddy and I. Even though your big brother might push you and beat up on you a little bit from time to time, I know he loves you too. I’m writing you this letter because I know there’s going to come a time in your life, maybe when you are a teenager or a young adult, when you might feel like you have always gotten the short end of the stick (and that’s not just because you are short, my dear, you got that from daddy). You might even someday sadly think, “maybe they don’t love me as much as they love my brother.” I know you will eventually feel that way, because I too was the younger sibling and I have felt that way. I now know, as an adult, that it’s not true. It was never true and it will never be true.

Gavin, you are the apple of my eye. I look forward to seeing your grinning face every morning and I love kissing your chubby little cheeks. I love the little babbling sounds you make when you’re trying to express yourself and can’t find the words yet. But I have failed. I documented many things with Quinn, I knew exactly how many months old he was at any given date (much like a cheese’s age is told). I knew when he got which tooth and what day he took his first steps. I wrote those things down because I am forgetful and I knew someday he’d want to know. But I failed you. I didn’t write as much down. I have spent the last 16 months (yes, you are 16 months old! like a young cheddar) living in the moment so fully that I forgot to write down the details. I haven’t taken as many pictures and I don’t know the exact date your first tooth popped through…you were 7 months old, though. I know some day you might look at your baby book and wonder why there are so many blanks…so I hope that by some miracle I remember to fill them all in someday. So that you don’t wonder why I didn’t write them down…but in case you ever do, this is why:

Because I am here, beside you, kissing your face, holding you close, cuddling you as much as I possibly can, because babies grow up so fast and suddenly they are toddlers on the move, or little boys doing simple math and singing songs. And what’s next? So much. There’s still so much we are going to go through together and I can’t wait, but at the same time, I can…I don’t want you to grow up. You are still my baby, even though you are not quite a baby anymore…but that doesn’t matter, you will ALWAYS be my baby. I don’t write things down on paper. I write them down on my heart, in my soul, etched in my memory. I am here for all of it.

I promise that there will never be favoritism between you and your brother. It just doesn’t work that way. There might be times where I am mad at one of you, or maybe even both of you, but it has no affect on my love for you. Don’t ever feel like you are not loved. You are and always will be. I will always try to be fair, to be even, with both of you…so I hope that you will both grant me that same fairness. Be good to me, to your father, your friends, your family…and someday your wife. Be good and kind and gentle and happy. Greet each day with a smile and fill your heart with love.

I love you,

Mommy

I Won a Wilsonart HD Kitchen Makeover!

Back in August when I went to BlogHer12 in New York City, I attended the most fabulous of parties… the Slow Churned Social Luxe Lounge. I am serious, this was the coolest and most well thought out party! They had all different booths set up with different vendors and awesome swag, and to top it off they were giving away fabulous prizes. I really wish I had taken some pictures!

Right as I was saying goodbye to my friends, I heard my name being called over the microphone. I wasn’t sure why but I raised my hand and they had me come up on stage to tell me that I won! What did I win? I had no idea! But I was jumping for joy because I never win anything. Come to find out, I won a Wilsonart HD kitchen countertop makeover. Insane and so cool! I gave them my details and was told I’d receive an email in a couple of weeks to confirm everything. I left the party in a slight state of shock.

A few weeks after BlogHer the email came through from Wilsonart. The kitchen countertop makeover included an entire new countertop of my choice, choice of edge on said countertop, plus brand new sink. I was so excited! Except for one thing…we had just renovated our entire house, including our kitchen, 2 years ago. I wasn’t quite ready to rip it all out so I asked if I could give it away as a gift, and much to my surprise, they said yes! After a few phone calls I decided that my father needed it more than anyone I knew. His current countertops had taken quite the beating over the years and I know I am partly to blame for that. Those blue countertops hosted countless parties, both drunken bashes and family gatherings. They were peeling and falling apart and glued back together…he really needed them replaced.

A typical scene from the aforementioned drunken parties the countertops took part in. See them back there?

I called my dad and told him about the wonderful gift he was going to receive and had to convince him that there was no catch, he didn’t have to pay anything, all he had to do was pick out his new counterop and sink. I hooked him up with the installation coordinator and they came and measured right away. He had his installation completed in October. Here’s what the kitchen looked like before:

His kitchen has a very similar layout to ours…in fact when I was designing my kitchen I based our layout off of his because it’s what I grew up with. Before I show you the grand reveal of the new countertops, I want to tell you a little bit about Wilsonart HD.

Wilsonart HD, one of the most well known brands of countertops available in the USA, create a wide range of styles of high pressure laminate countertops. Best of all, they are a green company…meeting GREENGUARD® Indoor Air Quality standards for low emitting products, and they use a minimum of 20% post-consumer recycled wood fiber content. The counter tops hold up well to spills and splashes, bumps, and can host many many parties without losing their lustre. The materials used help keep cost down so the beautiful granite-looking countertops don’t come with “sticker shock” – they are very moderately priced. With the endless designs available, there’s a look for everyone.

They just released two new designs, Summer and Winter Carnival. Take a look at Winter Carnival!

 

the beauty is in the details…

There are going to be four new HD designs announced and showcased at the Kitchen & Bath Industry show in New Orleans in April. You can take a look at the many designs WilsonartHD offers right here.

I am just so excited that I was able to give this gift to my dad. I’m sad though that I haven’t been to Pennsylvania to visit since July! So I haven’t seen the kitchen in person yet, only in pictures. Are you ready for the big reveal??

After!

IT LOOKS SO GOOD!

I can’t wait to see it in person! I’m hoping to go back home to visit in March or April sometime, so I’ll update this post with my own pictures once I have them.

I know my dad is very happy with the final product. How could he not be? They are gorgeous, and really made the whole kitchen look entirely different. Now I just need to convince him to update that oven! Ha ha!

Thank you so much WilsonartHD for this AMAZING gift that I was able to pass on.

New Year: New Me

I pretty much spent the last 4 months of 2012 in the gym, literally. Ok, maybe not every single day, but it has definitely become a huge part of my life. I became a gym rat, an exercise addict, recognized faces became known names, acquaintances became great friends, “hello”s and “goodbye”s are now 15 minute conversations, at least… and I love it. Not only that, but a love and a passion has now become part of my title in life. Mom. Wife. Sister. Daughter. Photographer. Blogger. Group fitness instructor.

On December 15th I went to training in a tiny town on the other side of Wisconsin to become a certified Les Mills BodyFlow instructor. It was a weekend that changed my life in a more positive and uplifting way. Here’s how it all happened: I took my first Les Mills BodyFlow class one Monday night back in August. I immediately loved the program. I remember my friend, who had convinced me to come, telling me that she felt “taller” after taking the class. I felt that way too. I also felt more calm, centered, and relaxed. I remember that during the last track, which is meditation, I couldn’t calm down and shut my mind off. I kept thinking about the boys at home, the chili that was in the crock pot, the million and one things to do, and every other thing under the sun that seemed like it’s main purpose was to prevent me from relaxing. I spoke with the instructor about it at the end of class and she said that being able to relax and meditate is a learned thing, and that it takes time, and to come back again. So I did. A couple weeks later I decided to give it another go, and I was hooked from that moment. I started taking the class 3 times a week, and that eventually became 4. Monday nights, Tuesday mornings, Wednesday nights, and Saturday mornings, it was almost a guarantee, save for illnesses, that I was in the Mind/Body studio at my gym. I bought my own mat, I bought an official Les Mills Body Flow shirt, and I Flowed. I Flowed and I Flowed and I Flowed. I never gave any consideration to teaching it until one day, during the launch of the newest release (BodyFlow 58) I met another instructor who was also a BodyFlow trainer. She asked me if I was a group fitness instructor. I laughed. Me? No way. I’m just a girl who is on a mission to wear a bikini in December. But it got the wheels turning in my head. Could I do this? How cool would that be? No way, there’s no way I could ever be as graceful and beautiful as these 3 instructors in front of me. So I pushed the thought aside, and continued attending every class, diligently, just enjoying the workout and the experience.

One Saturday morning, a couple of weeks later, I was chatting with the instructor after class. I casually mentioned how amazing I think it would be to be a BodyFlow instructor. Just intending to be a passing idea, she practically grabbed my arm to pull me to a computer to look up upcoming training dates. I laughed… No, it’s okay, I’m not in a rush. I’ll check it out at home. Besides, I did look before, there’s nothing coming up anytime soon and definitely not nearby. A few more weeks went by and her and I were becoming friends. We talked about it a bit here and there, and I imagined what it would be like to go to training and do what she does. Eventually I brought the idea up to the group fitness manager, who was also becoming a friend, and she was fully supportive of the idea, which was great because I needed her to sponsor me to even be qualified to go. Still, the problem of no nearby training anytime soon prevented anything from developing.

One Sunday in late November, it finally happened. A new date for Body Flow training popped up on the Les Mills training events calendar. The training was to be held in River Falls, Wisconsin, which is about 4-5 hours from where I live right now in the Milwaukee area. Quite a drive, but the closest one that had come up in a while. I decided this was it. It was now or never…well, now, or at some unforeseeable date in the future…and I wanted this, I wanted it so, so bad. I called the GFM and told her. She told me to go ahead and register and she’d approve when the email came through. Monday rolled around, and still nothing had come through. So she called and they looked into it. Early on Tuesday morning, while I was still coming out of my slumber, I got a phone call. I woke right up to some great news. She said everything should be approved and I can go ahead and register. So I did! I logged in, chose the correct training, paid the fees, and just like that, my life was about to change.

It was happening fast! Training was only 4 weeks away, and the third week of those weeks I was going to be on my vacation (my bikini vacation!) in Tortola, BVI. The program DVD, music, and track assignments were to be sent to me roughly 10 days before training.  The problem was, I was going to be in another country! I spoke with the company and asked if they’d be willing to send me the DVD early. They said unfortunately more than likely not. So, it was much to my surprise when they day before I left for Tortola, a box arrived in the mail containing my training info and DVD! I loaded it onto my iPad, packed it in my carry-on, and took it everywhere with me while I was in Tortola. A few days into the vacation I received an email telling me which tracks I had. Time to start learning! I practiced whenever I could while I was there. On the beach, on a sailboat, in the bedroom at the villa, and the most beautiful placce of all, on the balcony overlooking the ocean.

I came home from vacation exactly 5 days before I was to leave for training. I felt fairly confident in my presentation tracks and I practiced as much as I could during the week before I left. On Friday morning, the day I was leaving, I tried them out on a real live person. It was at that moment that I started getting nervous. My mind and body felt like they were going into panic mode and I felt like I wasn’t ready for this, at all. With only 6 hours before my estimated departure time, I was a nervous wreck. Already having paid for training, I knew it was too late to turn back. Besides, that’s what training is for, right? To train you, and that’s exactly what all of the other instructors kept telling me. I went home, kissed my boys before I put them down for their nap, packed my car, and waited for my mother-in-law to arrive so that I could leave.

“…and I’m off!”

 

How did it go? Stay tuned for part 2 to find out!

On Turning Thirty

I am not even sure where to begin.

How about with Happy New Year! It’s Tuesday, January 1st, 2013. 2012 was a big year. We survived the Mayan Apocalypse…and I turned 30 on December 29th. Do you want to know what those two things have in common? On December 20th I had the slightest worry that tomorrow might be our last day…don’t deny it, the thought crossed your mind too, right? I’m not a doomsayer in the least bit, but sometimes I think – to myself usually – “what if they are right?” I was just a little bit stressed out that if tomorrow never came, I’d never get the chance to turn 30…and turning 30 was a big deal for me in many ways. First of all, as a rebellious teenager who liked to drive fast and push my limits, I never thought I’d even make it to age 20. I did, I celebrated my 20th birthday in Pennsylvania surrounded by my best friends, and then bam, 10 years went by and I find myself living in a different state with a husband, two children, and even a house. What? How did that happen? I’m so lucky. I have accomplished so much…and 10 years later I got to spend my 30th birthday surrounded by great friends again. Different friends, Wisconsin friends, but great friends nonetheless.

What a great feeling it is to laugh like this!

If I had celebrated my birthday in Pennsylvania, where I grew up, I know there would be a similar picture as the one above, but with different faces. Rachel, Kristen, Erika…you were there with me in spirit, and via text messages. I love you all just as much as I did 10 years ago!

But this party? It was fantastic. I don’t think I could have had a better time. My husband did a phenomenal job planning it, getting the word out and making sure people remembered to come. The party was at the Wisconsin Cheese Mart in Milwaukee in their bar, Uber Tap Room. We had a scheduled cheese and beer tasting and I got to pick the cheeses; they paired the beers with them. I chose Havarti, Parmesan, Blue, and Cheddar.

cheddar.

They were all delicious. After each tasting they had some trivia and the winner got a wedge of the cheese that we tasted. The most interesting, and grossest question was ”Which cheese is made using a bacteria that is found between human feet?”

Any Guesses?

I fail at being in candid shots

Limburger. YUM!

Also totally cool was my cake! It was made by the very talented cake designer at Miss Julia’s Bakeshop in Brookfield, Wisconsin. Miss Julia’s makes THE BEST cupcakes in the state, and that’s not a biased opinion…they actually recently won a big cupcake contest. Their red velvet is to die for…and that just so happens to be what my cake was made out of!

Red Velvet “Cheese” Cake

Everything, including the “board” it is sitting on, was edible. Amazing! And so delicious…

I like cheese, and I like cake…confusing!

I think everyone had a really great time. At least I hope so! I know I did! I’m still coming down from my “birthday high” and am exhausted. I actually had a rough day today…combined with the exhaustion of my birthday, not to mention Christmas and New Years Eve, plus the fact that I haven’t been to the gym since FRIDAY (shame on me), I’ve been pretty down in the dumps all day today. I knew blogging about my party would cheer me up though, and it did!

The first glass of wine of many…

Thank you so much Nick for planning and of course paying for the party…thank you to everyone who was able to join me to celebrate and thank you ALL for making 29 the best year of my life thus far…I can’t wait to see what the dirty thirty has in store for me!

Fit Friday: An Update on Me!

Oh Fit Friday, how ironic are those very words? Fridays have truly become *my* day. I get up early, drop the kids off at the babysitter, and head to the gym for the morning. I usually take two very intense classes, Les Mills Body Attack and Body Pump. Both classes burn over 1000 calories combined, and I am usually totally spent afterwards. Last week I took the Woodway Curve challenge with a friend and we got to 6.23 miles in 45 minutes, putting us in 2nd place. We even got free t-shirts! Today I stayed for another class, SH’BAM. I don’t always have the time to do it but today I did and I’m so glad I stayed. It’s so much fun! I am seriously in love with Les Mills’ programs.

So much has changed in the past 3 months.

My Body: The number one reason why people begin a fitness program is probably to lose weight. For me, it was because I had a vacation in 13 weeks and the thought of wearing a swimsuit was a bit daunting. 11 weeks have passed. In those 11 weeks I have gone from a size 12 to a size 6 pants. I lost a total of 18 pounds, bringing me down to 138 at the moment. My arms are defined, my strong legs impress me. When I go into downward dog, my thighs don’t touch anymore. Do you have any idea how amazing that is? But what’s most amazing his how I feel inside. I have more energy. My heart is stronger. I don’t feel like I’m going to die when I am doing cardio. I don’t get tired when I go up and down stairs. I haven’t been sick even though many illnesses have been passed back and forth between my boys. I am actually healthy. Truly healthy. For the first time in my life. I feel better at almost thirty years old than I have in my entire life!

My Life: In July I got in an argument with a friend that ultimately led to the demise of our friendship. I fought for it, but to her it wasn’t worth fighting for. I lost a friend, one that I had considered a great friend, but unfortunately that must not have been the case. I have moved on, and this is all in my past, but I still hear about some of the things she is still saying about me from time to time. Why would someone spend so much time dwelling on someone else, saying awful things about them, stalking their Facebook page through other people?  Does she miss me? I don’t know. I am glad the toxicity is out of my life, and it has been replaced with something amazing. My gym addiction led me to create a private group on Facebook where all of us can chit chat about classes and get to know each other. The result? Friends! I have had some amazing people step into my life. For the first time in 8 years of living in Wisconsin, I feel like I am home. I have my family, a hobby, and now amazing friends to spend time with.

My Career: This one is really interesting. I admit, that when I quit my job in September, it was under the promise to myself that I’d spend my free time working out. So in a way, I quit my job to exercise. There are a myriad of other reasons why I left, but that was definitely a big one. My photography business will always be my main focus, but now that I have made exercise my “job”, it’s only natural that it segue into something bigger. On December 15th and 16th, I’m going to Les Mills Body Flow Instructor Training! Isn’t that amazing? I fell in love with the program right away, but never would have imagined in a million years that I’d be up on stage teaching it… that’s about to change! I can’t wait to help influence and inspire others the way that I have been inspired by my amazing instructors and friends.

I am a very lucky girl. 

Would anyone be interested in blog posts about the different programs that I take, what their intended goal is and how the classes are done? I think I may write some up since I have so many amazing pictures from our last launch day.  I hope they are benefit to someone!

I need to blog!

I’m pretty sure I will be doing a NaBloPoMo in October because I really need to breathe some life back into this thing. I have been BUSY! Like SERIOUSLY BUSY! So busy that I have to tell you in ALL CAPS! What was my last post, was it my Fit Friday post? I bet you think I failed, right? and that I didn’t keep working out? Wrong! I have been at the gym anywhere from 3-6 days a week for 1-2 hours per day for the past month. Crazy, right? I feel fantastic, I’m officially addicted to working out, and I’ve met some really amazing friends. I’ve become involved in a way that I never thought I’d ever be, and I’m loving it.

And I am starting to look good.

Hot mama?

Les Mills is like, my life. Forever. Other than photography. Oh! Photography! Remember how I quit my job? Because photography was keeping me busy? Well, it still is! I had one big family session a few days ago and I have 3 more this this weekend… a senior session, a 1st birthday smash cake session, and a 6 month old family session. This is, for me, a busy week…because from the beginning I have always said I didn’t want to do more than 1-2 per week. I just feel like I need to keep it slow like that to be able to deliver what I want to to my clients. But I will take the busy times and roll with them anyway.

I promise I am coming back. Soon! Like, this weekend I will set aside some time to pop out some posts for you. I have an awesome Ella’s Organic review and giveaway coming up and I’m looking forward to getting a Zippo firestarting kit in the mail soon so I can tell you how you can survive the zombie apocalypse with the help of FIRE. Plus, the awesome Zippo rep gave me a great idea for my Halloween costume this year. Buffy the Zombie Slayer. Yes.

September 12th, 2001

It’s really hard to believe that it has been 11 years since the twin towers fell. I was 18 years old yet I feel like it was yesterday. Today I want to share a blog post that I wrote on September 12th, 2001. Thank you to the Wayback Machine for archiving our old website posts. Forgive me because years ago when I first started blogging, I didn’t use proper capitalization and probably had atrocious grammar. You should get the general idea, though.

where i was when i heard…
Posted by nikki @ 12:31 AM EST on Wednesday, 12 September, 2001

they were saying all day today that you will remember where you were when you heard about the twin towers, the world trade centers, went down, for the rest of your life. i was in my car, it was 10:30am. i was listening to howard stern. i didnt believe what i was hearing, it was howard stern, how could i? so i switched stations.. same thing.. another station.. same thing being reported. i started crying, i was crying as i was pulling onto 30 west from 222 south. i was crying when i called my dad and asked him if it was true. i was crying when i called my brother who works in philadelphia at vector, one of the biggest defense companies in US. i couldnt get ahold of him, i was so scared. i called my friend kenny who lives in staten island but goes to school in charlston S.C. I frantically looked through my glovebox for the piece of paper i KNEW i had to call my friends who live there. my friend kristen.. i wanted to make sure she was okay. i couldnt find it. i was a mess as i walked up to my school and stood with my friends. they were really worried about me. ME. i wasnt the one to be worried about. i could barely sit through my psychology class, yea, psychology, that’s just what i need.. please lets talk about this.. no.. lets talk about the brain…. gahh. i was so sick from dread and worry i almost had to leave class. finally it was over.. i got in my car 12:15pm. howard stern was still on, he’s usually off by 11am. people were calling that were in the building, calling and crying. at this point i still had not seen the damage, i came home and it was all over the news.. everywhere, mtv, vh1, cbs, nbc, abc, tbs… so fucking inbelievable. it was surreal. at this point i was like “war is inevitable” that’s all i could say.. i watched for about 4 hours.. finally i couldnt take anymore.. and i fell asleep. it was still on when i woke up, it was still real. how could it still be real? it was so unbelievable.

i talked to my friend c who lives in staten island. her dad is a firefighter, he is in manhatten at the moment.. she hasnt heard from him.. my PRAYERS and LOVE go out to her right now.. 200 firemen have died at this point, i hope to god that it was not her dad, i wish it oculd be no ones dad, i wish this didnt happen.

C was one of the campers at which I was a counselor that previous summer. I had just went to Staten Island at the end of August to visit her and other camp friends. I visited C at her house, met her parents, and even went into the city that weekend.

Michael Fiore left for work in the evening on 9/10/2001 to start his 24 hour shift. He never came home that night. He got the call and went to the towers. He didn’t come home that day nor the next and he didn’t come home in the weeks following. He did not make it out. I simply can not imagine what C felt like in those days and weeks, waiting to hear something, waiting to hear anything, and how she and her family felt when they finally realized that he wasn’t coming home. Or how any of the other thousands of families felt. It’s unbelievable, even now, 11 years later.

Please, if you can, spare a moment of silence today for all of the lives lost that, and all of the lives lost in relation to that day since.

 

Flashback Friday – June 18th 2004

I went back and forth over posting this and ultimately decided to post it, but a heavily modified version with the excessive usage of the F-word removed. I decided that I don’t want my pottymouth of yesteryear to tarnish my reputation so you get the nice version. After all, the F-word is often just used as an expression of distaste so the post should still make perfect sense after it’s removed.

In the past few days, I have noticed several bloggers posting things about how their twitter followers are “real” and they never bought any. I had no idea what was going on until someone directed me to a blog post about it. So, today, for flashback Friday and in light of the recent drama surrounding bloggers buying Twitter and Facebook followers I have decided to share a post circa 2004. This post outlines the kind of drama that bloggers used to face but seems to have died out these days. Or maybe it’s still going on and I’m unaware of it. Either way. This was big stuff back in the day.

 

For real.. on the subject of ‘layout stealing’
written by Nikki – 06.18.2004 @ 05:22 AM EST

Okay. I’m about to go crazy. What is up with the internet world today? I mean really. Sit back, take a look at this website you are reading *right now*. It’s black. It’s white. It has like, a maximum of 5 graphics (I didn’t get the exact count, sorry). And yet to me, and to a lot of people, it’s enough.

I’m not even sure what this website is classified as, since it only just got started yesterdayish. But really, go to any another blog website. What do you see? Vectors. That’s the internet trend right now. I’m not even going to link other sites, becuase what’s the point? You know who they are. You probably see them on a regular basis. Do you, any of you, know what the other current trend is with the internet, TODAY? “Layout stealing”. I mean, really, what the heck. As tasteless as that is, it’s even more tasteless for the ORIGNAL layout MAKER to link to the person who “stole” their layout (whether they did or not) and proceed to spend a couple days dwelling on it.

So I’m here right now to give everyone some ideas on how to make a website that no one will “steal”.

1. Don’t spend 6+ hours of your life sitting there, making some masterpiece that means SO much to you, and then posting it on a public place which millions of people can access. Instead, go retro. Do something different. Forget about those vectors, just make some crappy frames and tables with odd colors and moving GIFs that will drive people bonkers. I mean really, you don’t see that kind of stuff anymore unless you stumble across an abandoned Geocities site.

2. Make your website ugly. Just so you know, none of you, people I respect and admire included, are artists. Keep in mind here that everyone has their own definition of art. Although many of you may be talented, even exceptionally talented, artists don’t get paid until they die. People will rip off your stuff forever until you make stuff that people won’t want to rip off. Mix red and green and yellow and vomit color. Make your art whacky so that everyone will be like “that’s some ugly stuff” but still enjoy your eccentric tastes. Don’t make every-single-layout the same basis consisting of a vector of a celebrity (lame, almost as lame as Ms. Lohan herself), next to a box where you blog, next to a teeny box that opens up your webcam.

I mean, look at Picasso. I bet people took one look at his paintings and were like “WTF is this guy smoking? That’s some messed up stuff” and didn’t give it a second thought. And now look at the guy, he is a zillionaire, way past dead. This is the kind of thing you sign up for by doing the internet thing… bitching about it won’t do anything, and really, the police don’t care either.

While on the subject of police, I’m really, really sick of seeing “I’ve already contacted the authorities and they are working on kicking your ass”. Do you know how pathetic that sounds? Sure… let me call my local police station and tell them about how some person who I don’t even know took my picture of Hilary Duff and changed the colors and claimed it as her own even though I took it from some public website or another photographer and claimed it was “mine”. Yes. They really care about that. They will get right on it; put that rapist on hold… let him roam a little bit, we have a website theif to take care of!

I’m sure I could sit here and think of more things to talk about, but until you actually take YOUR camera, go out, take a picture of the celebrity in question, come home, pixelate it up until it’s practically unrecognizible and butt-ugly, you have no right to bitch about stealing. Nothing is original anymore. Nothing.

This is Nikki, signing out, saying S T F U !!!!!!

So there you have it. If there’s one thing that I want you to take away from that post, it’s this right here: “ it’s even more tasteless for the ORIGNAL layout MAKER to link to the person who “stole” their layout (whether they did or not) and proceed to spend a couple days dwelling on it.” To explain that with the “problems” of today’s blogging world… Stop caring what other bloggers are doing or saying. Who cares if Sheeba bought her followers. Why would you call her out on it in a public forum? It’s tactless. It makes you look bad instead. Instead, spend the time working on yourself. Don’t try to bring others down. It won’t bring you any higher.

And since, what is a blog post without a picture, here is a picture of me dressed up for the midnight release of  Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban pretending to put a spell on my mom’s dog with a crochet hook.

Moral of this story? Don’t be an internet whiner or Nikki will put a Harry Potter spell on you.

Do you remember when blog sites used to have headers of vectorized celebrities? Did you have a website like this?

August 16th 2008

Four years ago today, I married my best friend. Well, one of them at least. Because marrying the rest of them would be illegal in most states.

First look. We met before the wedding started to have a moment alone. Did you do this at your wedding? I loved it. It didn’t ruin anything about the day for us.

Man, I looked awesome that day.

Wait, this isn’t supposed to be about me… it’s about us.

But I’m so funny!

We wedded:

I am not really sure why we got married in a church. It is sooooooo not our style.

We celebrated:

We partied:

It was tiring.

But oh, so much fun. Our wedding day was the best day of our lives, until we had kids, of course.

Nick, we have been through ups and downs in the years, most of them after the boys were born…which is understandable, having kids changes everything about a relationship. But we have made it. FOUR YEARS! And many more to come. I love you just as much as the day I married you, if not more…and although you drive me absolutely crazy sometimes, I know that feeling is often reciprocated so it’s okay. We are even. I love you. Happy anniversary!

 

All photos posted were taken by Scott and Cathy Erickson of Ambiance Studios LLC. A special thank you is reserved for them because if it wasn’t for Scott and Cathy I probably wouldn’t be where I am today in regards to my own photography journey. So thank you, for taking me under your wing and then letting me fly when the time came. 

 

A BlogHer12 Recap Post with unicorns and stuff

Another BlogHer12 recap. Why not? I had my own unique experience of it all, so I think it’s time for a real recap. The last one was sort of depressing, and since I wrote it I’ve been hanging on the sidelines just observing and I can see clearly now. Who freaking cares who likes me and who doesn’t? The important thing is, the people who DO associate me get to know how awesome I am.

And I am awesome, dammit… this post is not going to be full of self loathing, it’s going to be full of SELF LOVE. But not the Trojan vibrator kind of self love, that kind comes later. Oh yes, there were vibrators. Several. I gleefully took each one despite the fact that I have a basement filled with them. No, I’m not some weird sexhibitionist, I used to be a Pure Romance consultant and stopped before everything sold. So I know my dildos, and now I have more. But I digress. Aside from THOSE kinds of toys there were other kinds of toys, and lots of them.

Before I talk about the toys, the sex toys, and everything in between, let me start at the beginning. I’m going to try to write this up as condensed as possible save for the highlights, because you don’t need to know everything I did at every second.

We left for the airport early in the morning on Thursday, and said goodbye to our two boys. This was the last time that I talked to them literally, until Monday morning. Amazing, really, because I fretted and stressed for two weeks before we left and while we were gone barely thought about being so far away from them. I think the constant influx of wine helped that though. I also didn’t want to call them because I have heard about toddlers being very upset, begging for their parents to “come home” and I knew they were just fine and having fun with their aunt. Back to the airport…

Ah, airport travel without kids…amazing. I forgot what that was like. I am somewhat of an expert about travelling with kids by now, seeing as how we go back and forth to Pennsylvania several times a year. Navigating the airport with kids can be a challenge, but it’s what I’m used to. Navigating the airport without kids was simply a breeze. I was in awe. I was so amazed at the stresslessness (I think I just made that word up) of the process that as soon as beverage service started on the plane, I had a glass of wine. However, a simple glass of wine in a plastic airplane cup just wouldn’t do. Thankfully I had my Riedel O to Go glass packed for the occasion. Coffee and wine, a perfect 10:00am pairing.

 

We landed in New York City around 1:00, and no, I wasn’t drunk. Also easy that day was travelling out of the airport…within 15 minutes we had our luggage and were in a cab barreling down the streets of New York narrowly avoiding pedestrians with a crazy cab driver. Nick was nervous. I think that is the first time he’s ever been nervous in a car. Me? I figured that this guy does this every single day, he wouldn’t be driving like a maniac if he wasn’t a confident and competent driver. Regardless, I wore my seatbelt and clutched my camera bag lest we get in an accident, and still found time to let go of my white knuckled grip to snap this picture below:

Do I look like I’m afraid that I’m about to die? No, of course not. New York cabbies never get in car accidents, right?

We got to the hotel around 2:00 and were told our room wasn’t ready. They offered free luggage safekeeping to us so we dropped off our bags and then headed to the streets to get some good New York eats. This is the first time I passed the halal cart (they have falafel!) and didn’t buy anything. The first of many, dammit. Just down the street was a Chipotle so we ordered our ol’ reliable favorites (at NYC prices) and settled back into some random couches at the hotel to devour our food.

By the time we officially checked in, got into our room, unpacked and got settled, it was already time to get ready and head out our first arranged official BlogHer12 gathering…hearing President Obama address us. Little did we know it was just a campaign opportunity for him, but I still found it cool to watch.

“blah blah blah if you care about your vagina you won’t vote republican etc etc and so forth”

After that was over, I skipped out and headed straight to my first private party. My first BlogHer-timed private party, like, ever, because last year at BlogHer11 I didn’t even know they existed. The party, Social Luxe, was being held about 6 blocks down. I walked there and really enjoyed pretending that I belonged amongst New York’s finest. The Edy’s Social Luxe Slow-Churned Lounge was awesome, they really put a lot of effort into it. The venue was decorated, the music was bumping, the drink(!) was flowing…oh, big fail there. One drink per person. And if you wanted another one? $13.00. TIMES TWO. Because they wouldn’t let you buy just one drink, oh, no…there was a two drink minimum purchase. But that’s okay, because I got henna…

…and I had a really great time. Good job, guys! If this party happens every year, I want to be there every year. Oh, and the swag was great! As I was about to grab my swag bag and leave, I heard my name being called. I won something! What? I had no idea, but I went up on stage and thanked everyone anyway. I got off stage and asked what I had won. A new kitchen counter from Wilsonart HD! How cool is that? I’ll definitely have to blog about the process when we have that done. I can’t wait to change the look of my kitchen!

I was supposed to meet my husband at the Viacom building in Times Square at 6:30 to head to our timed entrance to The Big Toy Book’s Sweet Suite. For some reason he got lost on the way there but we finally found each other and headed in around 6:45. Can I say “cool”? This party was sweet! No wonder they call it Sweet Suite. There were toys galore, everywhere we looked. Toys to inspect, toys to play with, and even huge bags of toys to take home. Not only that, but the party venue itself had an outdoor terrace that looked over Times Square and afforded beautiful views such as this:

New York doesn’t seem so intimidating from way up here

Sweet Suite had an open bar where I had another glass of wine and they had Pinkberry there serving up free fresh frozen yogurt and all of the toppings imaginable. Delish!

my Awesome Husband eating pinkberry.

After we left Sweet Suite I didn’t have much time, but needed to stop back at our hotel room to drop off my insane swag before I headed to my third and final private event of the night… Social Soiree.

Here’s where I really let loose. Social Soiree did the bar thing right. Open bar meant all the wine I could drink in 1 hour (I arrived a little late) and that amounted to, well, only 2 glasses. I talked to many fabulous people, got my picture taken by Veronica Armstrong and I stayed until the very end, when the lights came on. By the time I got back to the hotel (about 9:30) it was already time for…

SPARKLECORN!

Sparklecorn is kinda like Vegas, meaning, “What happens at Sparklecorn, stays at Sparklecorn”. Except, much like Vegas, I can’t really remember what happened and I honestly don’t remember meeting some people in person that I later “met” on Twitter. Cough, Mae, cough. But we did meet and we even have pictures to prove it, although obviously the memories of our meeting are going to stay at Sparklecorn. Until next year…

Mae from lifescandy.com and Eileen from uncoveringbliss.com and me.

Oh! And there was a cake:

a non-racist (apparently it was last year) but excessively large unicorn cake that someone later smashed and caused all kinds of blogger drama until it was announced that the cake is actually smashed every year and that people should get their panties unwadded about it.

I sparkled up the night and then headed back to the hotel room with the husband where I poured myself into bed and slumbered peacefully through the night for the first time in over two years.

I’m sorry to say that despite my best efforts (really, I tried) this is going to have to be a “to be continued” type of post and I’ll write the rest on some future date unless I forget to in which case I hope you have enjoyed reading about 1 day of my trip. So…

To be Continued…

2012 Wisconsin State Fair

The Wisconsin State Fair, which we go to every year, is now over. We went on Wednesday, and had a blast. Instead of driving, we decided to take the bus. While we were waiting at the bus stop, a homeless man was there. He saw us pull up and get out of our car. He asked us why we were taking the bus when we have a car. I told him it was to thrill our 2 year old. I thought Quinn would really enjoy riding the “city bus” and I was right! His eyes were wide with awe the whole way there.

This year, ahead of time, I looked over the food offerings via the Wisconsin State Fair website. I made a list of things I wanted to try, rather than just going with old reliable. However, as soon as we passed the local food building and saw the sign for their baked potatoes, a yearly tradition for us, I dragged the whole family inside.

The boys loved them, of course…because who doesn’t love a baked potato slathered with chili, sour cream, cheese, and butter? By the way, I gave that poor kid on the right a haircut this weekend, and it actually looks pretty good. You’ll see it later this week.

After our potatoes I headed straight for the cheese curd building with my family in tow because I’m predictable like that, and I got the thing that I wait for all year long.

Glorious, delicious, golden hot fried cheese. Yum. To die for. After we devoured them I made Quinn pose for a picture in front of the building.

We then walked a little further before I finally got something I’ve never had before…

Behold: Fried Bacon. I’ve had it all now…from bacon jerky to fried bacon. It was glorious, but I felt extremely guilty eating it. And I gained 5 pounds this week. Which is crazy. But probably also from the bottle of wine I drank last night for my Wine and Cheese Wednesday post later this week. Oh well, I know it will come off just as easy as it went on.

The fair is over now, and it will be another year before we get to eat such amazing, disgusting, fatty, glorious food. In the meantime I’ll be making a new list.

My Sad #BlogHer12 Recap


I think this is going to be part #1 of at least 2 BlogHer12 related posts because I truly had a great time all things considered, I just have now come down from my BlogHer high and have a heavy heart about some things.

On Sunday, I was reading Twitter whilst stuck at the airport for 12 hours and saw Veronica (from www.VeronicaArmstrong.com) tweeting about the difference between being friends (with other bloggers) and being just a fan. At first I think I was in denial, like, “these people ARE my friends” so I made a lighthearted joke about how Jill (from www.babyrabies.com) commented on a post on my website once so we must be friends. However, she didn’t respond or react to the tweet which made me realize that perhaps Veronica was right and I am just a fan girl. Plus, the post that she commented on was about her and it was my response defending her for something she was getting a lot of crap about so maybe she just felt compelled to respond. I mean still, I think it’s great at all that she took the time to acknowledge that she read it. But it doesn’t matter. I know she has a group of close friends and I am not one of them. I am an acquaintance at best. I know who she is, because I read her site and she may or may not know who I am because I comment and engage occasionally.

BUT That’s not what this blog post is about. I’m not boo-hooing over how good of friends I am with her. Or even one certain person. It’s just… I know there was a lot of “squee-ing” (the term that us girls use when we are so excited about something that all we can do is make high pitched screeching noises) when people saw their friends, but nobody “squee-ed” when they saw me. Yes,  people were happy to see me, meet me, and I them, but I just don’t feel like I had that group of “besties” so many other people had there. I felt like the fifth wheel, a lot. I know I’m not alone in that “fifth-wheel” syndrome so I just want to say… don’t give up on the conference or the camaraderie. I’m still going to go to every BlogHer conference I conceivably can. I just think my “everyone I adore is going to be just as excited to see me as I am them” expectation was too high. I adore a lot of people. Some of them don’t even know I exist. So that’s it. There’s another year until the next BlogHer conference. If you feel like I do, say hi. Let’s get to know each other. Let’s “squee” when we see each other next year!

As I wrote this post a bunch of people have confessed their love to me via Twitter after some depressing things I said, so I just want to say that I don’t mean to say that the people I met meant nothing to me. You all mean SO much to me. I think many of you mean more to me than I do to you…and that is why I crashed so hard today…that realization. Maybe it’s because I’m not e-famous or e-popular or don’t blog enough. Maybe I’m annoying. Maybe I’m not pretty enough. Maybe I smell. But I love you, and I want you to love me too.

Some of my loves.

Thank you.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...