Rainbows and Unicorns and Allume

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My heart took flight throughout my time at the Allume conference, last week. In addition to chasing rainbows across the hotel lobby, I cemented friendships with some women who I knew my heart was connected to long before meeting in person.

I learned that I have a place within the legion of writers out there in the blogosphere. My need to stay up until midnight pouring my heart out until it finally feels right? I learned that’s totally normal.  Sitting on suitcases and praying for them to suddenly zip? Also? Totally normal. 

That Five Minute Friday community of writers that bravely hit the timer each week? I met many of them in person.  They. Are. Gorgeous.

That (in)courage group of women that I am so deeply encouraged by?  They are real flesh-and-blood women, with a desire to make each heart feel like they have a home in community.  They. Radiate. Love.

I found My People, y’all.

They are brave and smart and funny and kind.  They care and connect and crave community.

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I heard a similar message, meant just for me, throughout each Keynote Speech, Session, and Sitting.

And a couple of very distinct words were emblazoned on my heart.

Confirmation.  Carrying a message wrapped in funny is my gifting.

Creativity. We are art because we were made by An Artist.

Doors. Walking through the ones that are open will bring you one step closer.

Salt. Be it. Make sure you bring it to the table every time.

Second. Playing Second Fiddle can be a thing of beauty.

Unicorns. They are more beautiful in person.

Validation. We are ALL stars – and each one of us in the blogosphere is needed to make the others shine that much more brightly.

This conference provided more encouragement for my heart than I could possibly have hoped for.  I was loved on, prayed over, and pushed ahead by some incredible women.

And I can’t wait to do it all again in 2014!

Yes indeedy.

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With Chips and Salsa

Dear Katie,

In less than 7 weeks, I’m heading to South Carolina for the Allume Conference. With you.

And, in keeping with God’s deep and abiding love for me, He is allowing me to room with you. We may not have met face-to-face yet, but we know each other’s hearts.  And you get me. I’m deeply indebted to Dayspring’s (in)courage group for special needs mammas for making us fast friends. Time zones ain’t got nothin’ on us, girlfriend!

At Logan’s prompting, Katie, you graciously shared with me some things you thought I might oughta know before we take our relationship to the next level.  Thank you.  Bless you.  We share numbers 1, 2, 5, and 7 in common; so, it’s gonna be okay.

And… we’ll have chips and salsa.

With that said…

Sweetman insists that anyone who doesn’t live with me on a daily basis might be traumatized by All Of Me, all at once. In the spirit of good will (and knowing it’s too late for you to try to get out of rooming with me) I shall tell you some things, Sweet Katie. These things might just make our days together, in our cozy hotel room, slightly less harrowing.

I hope.

But, it’s gonna be okay.  Because, we’ll have chips and salsa.

Your #1 – the snoring thing? My Sweetman insists my snore is “delightful” and “cute”.  My children, on the other hand, insist it’s more on the order of The Bear Snores On. You, dear roommate, get to be the deciding vote! (And I come bearing brand new earplugs. For you. In case.)

You should probably say a quick prayer of thanks that we do not need to share a bed.  I am rarely still through the night. Sweetman likes to joke that the King sized bed in our bedroom is mainly mine.  He gets a 2 foot wide strip and a bungee cord.  Thank you Lord. And Amen.

Also, you should note that if you are looking for food items (above and beyond our beloved chips and salsa) that are of any nutritional value what-so-ever, you will not find them on my person.  You may, however, find a Twinkie. Or a Swiss Cake Roll.  Or both. Times three. I know you are trying to be good and gluten-free and such.  I will hide them if you wish. Or share.

Packing thrills me.  I wish I could lie and say what a nightmare it will be deciding what clothes to wear and shoes to bring and necklaces to lay out.  Sorry. The plotting and the planning? It’s in my blood. I will have my outfits paired up well ahead of time, with their chosen accessories.  I will hang them, with ever so much care, in our hotel closet as soon as I arrive. And then… I WILL FREAK OUT LIKE A MANIAC that I have brought ALL THE WRONG THINGS!

It’ll be okay.  We’ll have some chips and salsa.

I’m a total extrovert (I think you were already aware).  But, you may not know that I am an extrovert who needs naps to escape all the extroverting.  Don’t you worry, though, my sweet sidekick. I’ll send out the bat signal so that you can either join me or commit social crimes solo for a while.

I’m a Note Taking Nerdette; and I’m pretty proud of it.  I may not remember a dad-gum thing anyone said the entire day – but by George! I’ll have written it down. Somewhere…

We can go over all of those notes while we nosh on the never-ending chips and salsa. While in our jammies.  At bedtime.  That’s 8:00 p.m. sharp! And, while the jammies are indeed required, the flossing is entirely optional (because I don’t floss either).

Now, get on those tickets, kid.  I am NOT writing another one of these open letters.  I barely made it through this one. But I know it’ll all be better than okay.  I’m gonna hang with you. And I couldn’t be more excited!

With Chips and Salsa,

Missy

I Came, I Saw, I Got Some Things

I’m back. BlogHer 2012 was this past weekend. I went.  I saw. I was completely overwhelmed.  That’s the short version.  Some of my ideas about how the conference would shake down were right on.  Some were way off.  NYC was a fantastic place be in for the conference because, hello? Hotel food?  No thank you!  NYC food, on the other hand?  Yes please!  In no particular order, (other than the fact that I’m choosing the ones that my brain can actually remember most accurately) here are my top 10 highlights from this past weekend’s blogging extravaganza:

  1. Having a great roommate is uber-helpful.
  2. A smile really is the best accessory.  Although, comfy shoes are imperative for All The Walking.
  3. It‘s a good idea to know what kind of blog you really intend to write before choosing which sessions to attend.
  4. Sleep is for sissies.  Hi. I’m Missindeedy and I am a sissy.
  5. The Halal Food Carts really are just as tasty as you’ve heard.
  6. Apparently, there really is some good spaghetti in Nevada.
  7. Katie Couric is on Weight Watchers!! It’s true! She said that each day she starts off on WW and by night she’s off.
  8. Bowling at 11:00 at night, in a dress, after a glass or two of wine?  That’s tricky.
  9. The Swag Exchange Suite was a brilliant idea. I got some things.  I left some other things.
  10. And, I have cemented in my mind how incredible a Mickey D’s cheeseburger can taste at midnight.  It’s even better when shared amidst blogging friends, new and old, who are just as loopy as you are.

Riveting information, I know.  I’m just hoping that I can get my act together and take it on the road in a couple of years when I’ll be brave enough to try this again! For now, though, I feel as though it was a huge learning experience.  And it’s going to take another couple of months days to process it all.  Cuz’ I’m fast like that.  Oh, yes indeedy!

All Aboard the BlogHer 12′ Train

I almost can’t contain my excitement as I start preparing for the trip to New York City for the BlogHer 12′ Conference in a few days, (thanks, Picante` Sauce commercial, I just can’t get the sound of that cowboy saying “New York City?” out of my head.).  I’m not really sure if I’m more thrilled to be child-free for 4 whole days or to have the opportunity to rub shoulders (but not literally of course, that would just be weird!) with some of the “giants”, in my eyes, of the blogging/writing world.

After reading thirty a couple of posts on what to wear (comfy shoes, anyone?)  and what not to wear, and what to focus on and what not to worry about, I think I’ve got a good list of goals nailed down.

  1. Actually get out of the house and into the car alone    That’s a good start, yes?
  2. Remember to pick up partner-in-crime    MTM, I wouldn’t really forget you.  I don’t think.  Call me if I’m not there by 10!
  3. Not get lost in the city   If I don’t call Sweetman and have to ask him to navigate me in some way, he’ll consider the trip a success.
  4. Ask a bazillion questions
  5. Soak up every stinkin’ minute of my time with all the peeps who so get what I love about blogging

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I’ve got more than a few things I hope to accomplish once there, (finally decide which bird these feathers belong to after all, for one. Or, is it, which feathers this bird belongs to?)  And questions galore.  (What IS a “sparklecorn”, anyway? I’m assuming it’s fun to find out?)  But mostly, I just want to accomplish number 1.  That’s right.  Because at the rate things are going around here, Thursday morning is zooming toward me at warp speed; and I’m still laying on the tracks!