Monday, February 8, 2010

Blissdom, Birthdays, Reality and Rain

Wow. I got home last night after an incredible weekend in Nashville where I attended Blissdom, a blogging conference. My head is still spinning! I learned so much, in the company of 500 absolutely incredible women who are doing the most amazing things with their lives. There are mommy bloggers, frugal bloggers, fashion bloggers, home decorating bloggers, etc........(we did have an entire session dedicated to niche blogging...). I'm not sure what kind of blogger I am. Middle-aged, overweight, hard-working, volunteering, dealing-with-it-all-the-best-I-can blogger, I suppose.

We heard an incredible motivational speaker named Kevin Carroll (I know, I've never heard of him either). He was a 51-year-old black man who I would have sworn up and down was easily in his early 30's. He happens to have a 30-year-old son. He's amazing. He has lived an inredible life, and he learned some valuable life lessons on his own that he now shares with audiences around the world.  Kevin is a katalyst (yes, with a "K") for change. He travels the globe speaking to businesses and to young people about the importance of sport and play in life. He is a dedicated advocate in the Sport for Social Change movement.I was honored to hear him speak and look forward to reading his book, "Rules of the Red Rubber Ball."
(FYI...this would make a wonderful graduation gift for either a high school or college graduate...)

In addition to all the great panelists and speakers, we had lots of time to meet and get to know the other bloggers in attendance. It was so funny to see someone meet a blogger they read regularly. I heard lots of "Oh my God! I read you every day! I LOVE you!!!!" I have never experienced anything like that at any other of the many, many conferences I've attended over the years.

Friday night was an unforgettable experience. We had a private concert by Harry Connick Jr. in one of the clubs inside Opryland. It was amazing. He was up close and personal and I could easily have listened to him croon all night. He said he felt comfortable in a room of 500 women because he had been married to his wife for 20 years, had three "strong women-in-the-making" daughters, three female dogs, a female manager, and his mom was a very strong woman in her own right. He talked about the Musician's Village that was built for displaced musicians in New Orleans after Katrina, and how that was made possible by massive efforts made on the internet...and he ended his show with, of course, "When the Saints Go Marching In." Heaven.
It rained buckets all the way from Madison to Nashville. I was glad to have my friend Nell riding with me. We stayed at my friend Carol's house, so we drove back and forth to Opryland every day. In the rain. That. Never. Seemed. To. Quit....Ever. Until it started snowing yesterday. I was happy to see blue sky and some sunshine about the time we crossed the Mississippi state line on the way home yesterday. My friend Susan Cushman is hosting a snowman contest on her blog, Pen and Pallette. Word has it we may get a little snow here by the weekend. If so, roll some up and take a photo to send to Susan.

Today is my #1 son's 21st birthday. He's my baby, so that means both of my children are legal, in their 20's and relatively responsible adults. But my work is far from done! Joe is heading to the casino tonight, a crisp new ten dollar bill in his pocket, ready to try his hand at gambling. We are so proud.(For the record, please note the sarcasm in my words). He'll either lose his $10 in the first five minutes (he HATES to lose money!), or he'll stretch it out and play for awhile before it's gone. But he could just be a big winner tonight, and that could be dangerous...  We enjoyed watching the Super Bowl last night with him and his precious girlfriend, Emily. We had too much chili, Ro-Tel dip, chips, guacamole, salsa, birthday cake....but we had lots of fun and it was great having them here to celebrate not only Joe's birthday, but the New Orlean's Saints victory!

I have been easing back into reality today...sometimes that's hard to do following such a wonderful trip. I had writing assignments to work on, and more tomorrow...then it's time to get busy on my Big Office Organizing Mission. I may have to refer to some of the organizing blogs I discovered while at Blissdom. I wish I had the funds right now to hire my beautiful friend, Stephanie Davis with Let's Get Organized! She'd be a tremendous help to me, but, alas, I have to do this on my own.

Blessings to all who read this!


  1. It sounds like you had a great time. It is 6:00am and Joseph has a snow day. I was the elected one to wake up at 5:00am to see if school / work was cancelled and yes to all of the above! Been talking to Keith, reading blogs and now I might go back to sleep for a bit. Good luck with your blogging!

  2. Enjoy the snow break! It's sunny and beautiful here today...word has it we may have snow this weekend. The plants are so confused!