How Many Bloggers Does It Take to Screw in a Lightbulb?

None!

They light up a room all by themselves:)

Sharon, Cammy, Michele and me

My blogger meet-up weekend in Little Rock was fabulous.  Filled with fabulous women who happen to be fabulous bloggers and are, not surprisingly, fabulous conversationalists while also fabulously fun and funny and now fabulous friends.

We talked about blogging.  We talked about technology, blogging and not.  We talked about subscriptions and how often we post and why we read the blogs we read and why we stop reading certain blogs.  We talked about which bloggers we’d first discovered or who had first discovered us, and which bloggers have seemingly vanished. We talked about social media:  the good, the bad, the ugly, and the confusing.  And at one point we sat in a room with four laptops on four laps and shared photos and blog analytics and I was amazed at the wonder of it all.

We talked about the names of our current blogs.  And our “other” blogs and non-blog writing projects that we we were working on in the past, present or future.  And we talked about sharing our real names in the blog world and the pros and cons of anonymity.  We talked about blog readership and blog monetizing and blog comments.

We talked about weight loss and regain and maintaining and what worked for each of us and what didn’t work.  What we’d tried in the past.  What we might try in the future.  We talked weight loss plans and “non-plans” and about calories and protein and fiber.  We talked about exercise and what we did and how long we did it and what we wanted to try and what we didn’t want to try and what we would love to do “someday” when we got together again and had bikes and beautiful weather.

We talked about cupcakes.  And we laughed uproariously at our common technique for eating candy corn.

We talked about “womanly things” that would make men cringe.  We talked about men readers.  And men bloggers.  And just plain men.

And yes, we did talk about the weather.  And the city.  And and where we each call home.  And one of us even talked about baseball.

We talked about our careers – past, present and future.  We talked about our ages.  We laughed about our ages.  We lamented and commiserated about aging.  And all the while, I, for one, felt young at heart.

We talked about our struggles and our successes. And then we talked about our struggles some more.  And the “whys” and what to do about it all.  How to change things.  We talked about our emotions and emotional eating.  We talked about our challenges.  And wondered why some things came so easy to some of us but not to others.  And wondered why some foods trigger so many of us but not others.

We talked about ourselves and each other and other people, some in our lives and some in the media and some in cyberspace and some in our imaginations and some in our dreams.

We talked about serious stuff and inconsequential stuff; meaningful stuff and meaningless fluff.  And then we talked some more.  We talked “on topic” and we bounced all over the place.  We talked fast and loud and all at one time; we talked quietly, seriously with rapt attention.  We talked in the car and next to the car and waiting for a car.  We talked non-stop except when we didn’t… and we were comfortable not talking too.

We talked about animal encounters: real and to be avoided.  We talked about people encounters:  real and to be avoided.  We talked about the amazing talent of riding a bike while videotaping.  We talked about finding a bathroom.  And peeing in the woods.  And talking on the phone in public restrooms.  And texting.  And not texting.  And frugality and our wardrobes (or lack thereof) and country music and Broadway shows and restaurants we’d visited on the road.  We talked about Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods and Panera.  We talked about fro-yo.  We talked about fro-yo some more.

We talked about health insurance and healthy eating and “healthy living” as a blog theme and we talked about healthy life/blog balance.

We talked about what we eat for breakfast.  We talked about what we eat for lunch.  We talked about how we snack or don’t snack; what we do and don’t eat.  We talked about social eating and how, for most of us, our associations with food and family or food and celebration started at a very young age.

We talked about things familiar to us and thing unfamiliar to us.  We talked about things we’d never tried and things we wanted to try.  We had light bulb moments.  We had great ideas for future blog posts.

We laughed.  A lot.  Sometimes at the craziest of things.

We talked about road trips.  And our cars.  And meeting other cyber-friends.

We talked about our pasts, our presents, and our futures.

There were hugs.  And laughter.  And even a few tears.

And above all, there was an amazing familiarity with each other and that great sense or comfort that comes from being oneself in the company of others who seemingly know everything about you and still like you:)  There was admiration.  And empathy.  And understanding despite differences in lives and beliefs.  And tolerance and acceptance.  And a great balance of planning versus spontaneity.

We discovered ways we are very much the same and ways we are very different.  We confirmed that our impressions of each other from the written world held true in real life.  Authenticity shined through.

We talked and talked and talked some more.

It was wonderful.

This post is dedicated to my blog friends, those I’ve met and those I have yet to meet.  Read more about the weekend and get to know my blog friends at their respective blogs:

Cammy@ The Tippy Toe Diet

Michele @ Healthy Cultivations

Sharon @ Gains and Losses: Life through Sharon’s Eyes

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48 Comments

Filed under blogging, influence of others, vacation

48 responses to “How Many Bloggers Does It Take to Screw in a Lightbulb?

  1. Miz

    LOVE IT.
    Ive met Cammy before and adore her.

  2. Michele T

    Amazing post, my friend. This was definitely one of the best weekends of my life, and I cannot stop smiling reading your post right now. You’ve captured so many of the indescribable aspects of this weekend. I’ve got to go finish mine… and looking forward to next time. 🙂

    • Karen

      It really says something that we are all talking about a next time! And I love how different our posts are, just like the women writing them. Hugs.

  3. I brought three pieces of the “rock” home with me and will treasure them forever. I call them Karen, Cammy and Michele!!

  4. Whew! I wasn’t on the trip and you just wore me out with your very chatty post….you guys must have slept well each night! It sounds like you all had way too much fun — I’m sure everyone else is envious.

    So you told us about all of your talking topics — c’mon now….what did you eat??

    Thanks for giving me my first big grin of the morning!!

    • Karen

      And I was trying not to be TOO long-winded! I’m telling you the conversation was so easy.

      So… what I ate…

      Friday night we had our own dinners. I brought leftovers from home: a delicious Mexican chicken crock-pot recipe. Later I had an apple. Amazing how much less I snacked with my blog friends to occupy me and my mind.

      Saturday we had breakfast on our own. I brought my beans from home that I eat every day. I think I also had the white from a hard boiled egg that Sharon brought up for me from the hotel. Mid-morning I ate cherry grapes. Oh, I had some very decadent food samples at the farmer’s market: sweet potato pasta and a sweet potato fritter! I also tried a muscadine and spit it into the trash:(

      Lunch was at a restaurant downtown. http://www.dizzysgypsybistro.net/Menu.html I knew I was going to get a salad for dinner so splurged with a sandwich which I don’t normally eat at home. I split two with Michele: a pesto chicken salad on pita and a grilled havarti and tomato on wheatberry bread. Both yummy. Very filling. Admittedly more than I needed to eat. I had a string cheese and apple late afternoon. For dinner we went to Panera, a favorite of all three of the other gals and a place I never go to. I had a turkey harvest salad. Tasty.

      Next morning, beans again.

      As for what I ate on the road, let’s not go there.

  5. Simply wonderful. I’ve already gone to the others websites and the vibe just keeps getting stronger from one to the next. It’s clear that you all had a fantastic time and I’m so happy for you! Gotta admit though, I would have loved to participated in many (all) of those conversations! Everything you wanted to know – and more – about your friends 🙂
    Thanks for the update, Karen. Hugs to you.

    • Karen

      Thank goodness we all felt the same amazing way! It really was just so much fun. And, I didn’t write yet that I learned a lot too. Hopefully I’ll put that in another post someday and won’t bore my readers:)

  6. I just read Cammy’s post cause her email notification was there when I opened up the mail. You know how good ole GoDaddy works! 😉

    What wonderful fun for you Karen! I wish there was a video camera so we could have heard all the chatter!!!!! 🙂 So glad you had this opportunity!

    • Karen

      Yes, even godaddy came up in conversation briefly! But just briefly:) And I thought of you! Sharon and I went to Whole Foods so while there I checked out their flavors and they had one I had seen: cookies and cream. I brought it back with me. I’m going to mention this stuff in my next thumbs post I think.

  7. I think that sharing our personal weight loss and fitness stories through the blogging community begets an amazing honesty that carries right over when that friendship becomes real. We open ourselves up in our blogs in ways that we may never do in real life except with a few. That open-ness and trust is what comes through in all you wrote. Wonderful opportunity for you all. Glad you did it. Your lives will all be richer. Have a great start to your week. michele

    • Karen

      Exactly! I was telling at least one of the gals that my blog friends no more about me in some ways than anyone in my real life. It really did feel very authentic and I should not have been surprised since that is the sense I always got from each of those women.

  8. What a wonderful weekend and wonderful post! I’ll check out their blogs. 🙂

  9. I would’ve loved to be a fly on the wall for many of these topics. I’ve been working (and working, and editing, and erasing) a blog about why I pick or don’t pick certain blogs to read, and what that says about me & where I am in this journey. Do you plan to elaborate on that topic? (That last sentence sounds like it comes from one of the spam-bots that his my site regularly – sorry about that.)

    • Karen

      I have intended for a very long time to write about why I read the blogs I read. It’s on a very long list. As is a post about my whole blogging process. It was interesting to see which blogs we had in common as we talked and which some of us liked while others didn’t.

      • I’ll keep working on it. I try to stay so positive – which seems to be key to helping me stay on track with this lifestyle change – so I’ve hesitated because I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or seem judgmental. I’d never say I don’t read Blog X because of 123, but I worry that someone will feel like I’m writing about him or her even if I’m not. THAT reminds me that trying to feel like I’m in control of everything, or that everyone is shaping their life around me, is part of what got me into this unhealthy, perfection-seeking place. You can see why I haven’t finished yet! 😉

        Thanks for your blog, and the links to the others, which I hadn’t seen ever. How was I missing them?

  10. What a wonderful recap! I feel like I was there–oh wait… 🙂

    Even the ways we chose to tell of our experiences are testimony to the magi-beautiful combination of similarities and differences we share. I can’t wait for next time! Thank you for sharing, caring, and being there!

    • Karen

      I thought the same – and was eager to see what we’d each say about it. I could write many more posts just about those few days! Thank you… and not just for the weekend:)

  11. SO glad you had such a great time! You are a true blue blog friend, and I’m sorry I haven’t been around. :: hugs ::

  12. What a wonderful trip!!! I love seeing the photos of you all together. Even not being there it brings this blog world together and more into “reality”.
    I love it.
    Thanks for sharing.

  13. Roz@weightingfor50

    Hi Karen (and Michele and Cammy and Sharon!) What a wonderful recap of the meet up. So glad you were able to meet, spend time with and get to know these amazing women!! Have a great Monday Karen!!!!

  14. This sounds like a fabulous meet up!

    My way to eat candy corn is to eat the bottoms and save all the little white tips for last. 😀

  15. sounds like you had an amazing time with some wonderful women

  16. Some of each of your thoughts on that boat load of good (blog) topics (by the way) would be lovely… someday in the future.

    I think it is fun and interesting to meet up with fellow bloggers. I would worry that we would meet and I/they would think – love your blog, but you I can live without.

    There are a couple people I am SURE I would not feel that way about. OK maybe a few.

    It takes a lot of courage to go meet up I think. But I can understand why you four might. I read all the comments on this blog (where I see all 4 of you comment/post) and you all seem like lovely and thoughtful women – full of opinions and kindness. Yep, good reasons to take the leap and meet.

    • Karen

      There are many blogs I read and enjoy, but don’t think I would have much to say in person or connect with the blogger. For me, meeting with Sharon, my “first,” was a bit scary but such a great experience that I had no worries, only eagerness, about this adventure. But I felt I “knew” the women from their blogs; not sure I get that same sense from all I read. I have a short list in my mind of bloggers I’d still like to meet… some I think just coffee and a chat will be enough though, not a whole weekend.

  17. Jan

    What a grand time! I would be jealous if I were not so happy for the 4 of you having so much fun and genuinely connecting 😉

  18. What fun! The blogging community is so wonderful. I feel like some of my friends here in cyber world know me better than in the real flesh and blood world. People are so honest, kind and giving of themselves here. I feel so grateful to be a part of it! Thank you for sharing your trip. It sounds like you had a fabulous time!!!

    • Karen

      I said something similar to at least one of the gals. I am in some ways more “real” in the blog than in real life. You know more about me, in many ways.

  19. Oh how wonderful…I wish I could have met up with bloggers like that….how fantastic
    I would love to talk abut SO many things on your list.
    Dawn

  20. Wow that was an awesome recap and I almost feel like I was there! Those are all the things I love to talk about.

    It sounds like so much fun and I am so happy that you all got to spend the weekend together.

  21. So glad you gals made it happen! Good for you, as it take courage to come out of our nice anonymous lil’ bloggy worlds.

    • Karen

      But the interesting thing is that I feel I was not anonymous to each of those women, in a way. They knew more about me from my writing than many of my flesh and blood friends!

  22. It must have been so nice for all of you to get together like that. Maybe it will become an annual trip!

  23. It sounds like you had a truly amazing time!

  24. awww that sounds like so much fun!! I’m envious. I’ve been on vacation for a few weeks and have missed my bloggy friends. I’m happy to finally catch up with you again. I’m having surgery next week and will be off work for a few weeks so I have some reading to do!!

  25. Karen

    It sounds like you had a wonderful and VERY rich time with your virtual (now real-life) friends. I met some people on my weight loss program recently (who I’d been conversing with via Twitter, blogs etc) and they were like old friends when we got together… just magical.

    I’m glad you had a wonderful time and I’m sure it motivated you to continue: onward and upward. (Etcetera!)

    Deb

  26. Love it when women get together!

  27. As one who has in many ways “disappeared” – I am glad I clicked on you today to hear of this wonderful occasion! It sounds like a great weekend and way to deepen both your writing, but your friendships, as well.

  28. What an amazing experience. I often wonder what it would be like to meet my blogging buddies in person. Glad you had such a fantastic time!

  29. That sounds like you guys had an awesome time- thanks for sharing! 🙂

  30. That’s wonderful Karen! I’ve met up with several bloggers who follow my blog and vice versa – it’s a wonderful experience connecting with people who you have much in common with. Hope you get to do it again soon!
    Cheers, Liz )

  31. Ahhhhh…love this!! Meeting those we know “virtually” in real life is such a wonderful thing…at least that’s how it’s been for me.

  32. Sounds like a great weekend! 😀

    BTW: I’m slowly catching up on my blog reading, and I’ve read your previous posts, but for some reason couldn’t comment on them. 😦 So just wanted to say that I enjoyed them! 🙂

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