I pray about this blog. And in my prayers, I pray that this space might be one that is helpful to my family, my readers, and to me. I had no concrete reason for beginning this effort (no causes to push, no major life event or home remodel, no new adventure), but I did feel (forgive the slightly cheesy nature here) called to live a more creative, fuller life through this way of sharing with the world. And, I believe that God works often in the people that He places in our lives.
So, when this summer began, and I crafted my own list of summer experiences, I had a vague category pertaining to blogging and creativity. I knew that I wanted to grow more, learn more, and challenge myself more. I did not know that lovely women like Gabrielle, Jennifer, and Joy would all be so kind to invite me share a bit of their web space to talk about life, creativity, family, and fun. Nor did I realize amazing ladies like Paige and Janae would become real life friends through their writing and support.
Though I'm slightly more introverted than extroverted (just 1 point on the Myers-Briggs scale), I can surprise myself when it comes to meeting new people. Maybe it's my experience of many childhood moves or my desire to make the most of the time I've got on the planet, either way, I love the energy that comes with meeting people I admire. In this case, some great bloggers who so generously offered to sit down with me...in person.
This is the talented, enthusiastic Amy Allen Clark. She's kind of a big deal around here - making news appearances, getting her own book deal, and hosting a very informative blog called MomAdvice.com.
When I tweeted her about my status as a new blogger, she replied right back, insisting that we should meet for coffee. *Gulp.
Just to put it in perspective, I looked at her Twitter numbers. At the time she had a little over 11,000, and I had a little over...100.
Nevertheless, I said I would be honored to meet up (because I would be and was). Despite one reschedule for child illness, we made the date.
I learned a ton just hearing about her experiences as a writer, marketer, blogger, and mom. This lady has it all together and knows how to create beautiful projects, delicious food, and find opportunity to match her inspired spirit. I am so excited to read her new book (not yet published), and it feels great to know that I have someone I can call upon for advice and ideas.
This is the smart, creative Melanie. She's a writer, designer, blogger over at Inward Facing Girl. I first heard about her in a class I was taking where she was described as "a writer who can really talk about anything in an interesting way." So true, check her out.
She was so kind to meet up with on her vacation. Really, who's that sweet? My fam had a few hours at the beach as I stole away for smoothies and coffee. I've been a creative professional for 13 years now, and I have never been so happily overwhelmed by the creative generosity I've experienced from other bloggers. Melanie was so warm and had a ton of great (unsolicited) ideas for ways I could grow my blog and connect to other fabulous people.
I share these stories with you, reader friends, because 1. I think you should go hang out on these ladies' blogs and give them some comment love and 2. I know that you have people you admire/follow, people you'd love to learn from (or just hang out with), and I'm telling you to go for it. Stick your neck out there and meet them. Like, in real life. And try to not to sweat your outfit too much like I did. Both times.
I'm most grateful to God for placing these new friends into my life and for the gifts they've so freely shared. I'll continue to pray that my blogging brings goodness to those who inspire it and those who read it. And I'll be grateful for the companions along the journey, too.
Who are you hoping you'll meet?