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Monday, May 31, 2010

#CBC10, day 1

This past weekend was the first Casual Blogger Conference.

Waaaaaaaait a minute. Stop right there.

If you're a Casual Blogger, WHY are you going to a conference, right?

I'm gonna go with: 'Casual' refers to the dress code. Yes, I wore the same pants all three days.

Moving on, I was thrilled to be asked, a few months ago, to speak at this conference, being assigned to The Depression Panel. (More on this later.) Also thrilling for me is the fact that this conference was held in a southern suburb of Salt Lake City, so within driving distance for me, making my attendance absolutely do-able.

Wednesday night I got m'hair did, and following Thursday afternoon's pedicure I drove to Sandy to attend the dinner for the presenters and speakers. What a great time, really a fantastic kick-off to what turned out to be a very cool weekend. Dinner was provided by Shirley J, with desserts from The Chocolate, delightful on both accounts. Company was second to none. I was thrilled to get to know some girls from my panel as well as others I had only admired from afar. Even so, upon meeting face-to-face, we simply validated our already-existent (if only online) friendship.

Feeling this way, experiencing these meetings solidified what I've been thinking for quite some time, and not because I feel that I need to justify it to myself (I don't), but because it's so misunderstood for many:

Blogging is community. It is the beginning, continuation, and growth of friendships, of relationships, and it establishes a forum that combines our need to connect with the speed at which the digital is taking place in our lives. It is not The New Scrapbooking. Well, for some it might be, but not for me, and not for the crowd with whom I was hanging out this weekend.

After the dinner I checked into my room at the Hilton and took a peek into my SwagBag (Swag: a word I detest, yet its definition/content is something I mainly adore.) to find some awesome treats and surprises, not the least of which is a necklace from lisa leonard designs with an E on the charm. I need to say that this meant a lot to me -- not only that this fine sponsor would go to the trouble to personalize what was in the gift bags, but it also served as a reminder of all the work that Elisa, Caroline, and Julie (and many others) went to in preparation for our enjoyable weekend, ensuring that each guest received the correct bag with their own personalized necklace inside. Awesome.

The Girls Night Out party was held in the hotel, and I'm going to lay it out for you: I don't like the idea of anything called GNO. I enjoy getting together with friends of the female variety, but I just reject it being called GNO. Can we do away with GNO? That being said, I walked in the doors and was handed a gift of a travel pillow (a nice one, I might add), and saw that women were lined up to get manicures, hand massages, facial waxings (I know!), and massages. Others were in line to create a fabric rosette or a scrapbook page, or sitting at a table to blend their own custom lip gloss. I mainly mingled, met women from all over the country, and just tried to relax. I left after an hour or so to head back up to my room, unpack and get my room set up (I must do this when staying in a hotel, I just must) and order room service. I know I already ate dinner, but I was still hungry (no lunch? I don't know, who ever knows), and I blame my Not Sleeping Very Well on the AWESOME and TOTALLY WORTH IT bonus dinner I had. And the creme brulee with fresh berries.


Holly said...

I totally MISSED out Thursday night due to a migraine... Friday, I mistakenly didn't BRING my camera thinking I didn't want to lug it around all day, this isn't a job, I don't KNOW anybody... which translates into... I was the loner wall flower everywhere I went because I am a totally DIFFERENT person WITH my camera... *sigh* Saturday I BROUGHT my camera and actually connected with some pretty AWESOME people!! =D Sunday I was MANIC... crashed at 7pm... woke to take out the DOG at 11:30pm... couldn't go BACK to sleep.... such IS my life...
My CBC10 DISAPPOINTMENT was the last session rearrangements that I was CLUELESS OF so I TOTALLY missed the DEPRESSION PANEL which was the MAIN ONE I felt I NEEDED to get a connection and not feel like the odd duck that I AM.... *sigh* I was CLUELESS that it was moved to the 10:whatever session and other building until I was GOING THERE at the regularly scheduled time and it was TOO LATE!!! :`( Needless to say, I was BUMMED... I'm sure it was GREAT!! I recently had some MAJOR downers and could have used the info from this on how to NOT LET IT ALL OUT... or whatever... in some moods so as NOT to SCARE AWAY "normal" people from when I CAN be funny, inspirational, or even insightful... OK, it COULD HAPPEN! ;p *sigh* (((HUGS)))

cw said...

It sounds wonderful. I'm glad you had a great time.

lisa said...

I wish I could have gone! I'm sure you were TERRIFIC!

(And my word verification is "unsin"...meaning...something really great? I don't know, it just makes me laugh this fine morning! :)

cw said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
{natalie} said...

i've been hoping you were going to blog about this.

Cluttered Brain said...

i am pretty sure i grabbed your card Fri night while waiting in line waiting for our nails to be done.

it was NICE to meet you!

motherboard and mombabe AND julie did an EXCELLENT job!!
I am definitely going NEXT year!

Becca said...

So gret to meet you and I was especially blown away by your base and singing skills with Mindy!!! Great job! I was that freak dancing by myself that same concert night! Yeah!!! Every party has "that" girl!

Kristina P. said...

I am so sad that I missed you singing with Mindy. However, I am thrilled that you and I got to educate Jessica on Mormon culture and chastity belts.

Heather of the EO said...

There's just something about you. I knew that already and then it was confirmed with this in-person stuff. But that's how it goes-blogging really is much more than blogging. And if blogging were, I'd totally get an email saying that you're a match for me!
OK, this is really weird and I AM SO FREAKING TIRED.
See you soonly-

Heather of the EO said...

There's a chance i forgot to log in. If that's the case, when you moderate comments, that last one is from me-Heather of the Extraordinary Ordinary variety.

Vanessa said...

Oh my how funny I did not know you hated the GNO word. You did fabulous with Mindy, I have pictures! Although can I say this, how was I the only person not invited to karaoke? Whoever was in charge is fired. I wanted to hear you educate someone on chastity belts! I'll get it over it ;) I want to hear you perform more, I do I do.

Monica said...

Right there with you. Blogging for me is a little bit about journaling, a little bit about processing, a little bit about scrapbooking and an awful lot about reaching out for and offering support and friendship.

Carina said...

GNO: nope.

Kim said...

GNO, too close to EMU and I think of some weird animal and while I guess we are weird animals, you know, we clean up poop and stuff, but yeah I don't love GNO either. *whew* glad to get that off my chest ;)

Um, I love you. I love Creme Brulee and I wish I could have had it with you. YUM.

And...the necklace was from Lisa Leonard. It is SO cute, I love mine. When you said yours had an E on it I was confused...and then I remembered your last name isn't formerly phread ;)


p.s. my word verification is chickjo, I thought that was fun.

~j. said...

Holly - Oh no! I'm so sorry you missed the depression panel. I know that was the case for many, but we *had* to change it to the morning session. If you ever have anything you'd like to talk about, please email me, I'm happy to discuss.

cw - wish you were there!

lisa - unsin. I think I shall try to fit this word into conversations.

nat - of course! It was such a fun time.

OCB - Nice to meet you, too! Glad to hear you had a nice time.

rebecca - thank you! It was fun playing & singing with Mindy, and it was great seeing you dance!

Kristina - that conversation we had with Jessica was, hands down, one of my favorite parts of the entire conference.

Heather - Yes, you and I are meant to be, and I'm so glad we finally have met. You are lovely, inside and out, and I can't wait to see you again.

Vanessa - I'm so sorry about the karaoke thing. I left early -- didn't realize singing at a bar in Holladay would be such a popular activity! Kristina and I would be more than happy to teach you about chastity belts...tee hee! Thank you for your kind words about the performance with Mindy. I hope to perform again sooner than later.

Monica - and isn't it great that it can be ALL those things?

Azu'car - si. Nope.

Melissa LeVesque said...

I also must unpack in a hotel room. I must feel as if I live there.

Would "unsin" be the opposite of sinning? Like you did something bad and want to take it back?

My word is "rermeter", which I plan to use in conversation when I figure out the meaning of it.

~j. said...

Kim - yes, like Gnu (which is actually a wildebeast, I think)? Thank you for the correction -- I actually saw the wrapping last night & realized it was lisa leonard, so I changed it. I was just touched by that whole thing. You're awesome. Creme brulee date, let's add that to the agenda.

Melissa - I'm glad I'm not the only one who sets up their hotel room. I always wonder what the cleaning ladies think when they enter the bathroom and see my 900 items lined up just so on the counter. And...I think Unsin is like the backpedalling after sinning. Not sure. Still have to think on this one for awhile.

Cole Franke said...

Sounds like you had a great time. lovely blog. :)
nicole visiting from

Jill K said...

I sure missed out on pretty much all the fun things.

But it was nice to finally meet you.

Jessica the Jacked LDS said...

i met you and it was quite nice :)

unfortunately, ur blog post brought back the memory that my lovely travel pillow (which i rested my head on all three nights) was STOLEN from me at the airport on my way home. YES, STOLEN. arrgh...

i hate dummies.

but you? i loved!

alexis said...

you were awesome at the depression panel--totally rocked it. and i was happy to meet a fellow former new yorker now living HERE.

Goodnight moon said...

Loved loved loved you! I'm so glad that we got to sit and chat!

When I saw you holding Ever..I thought she was yours for a minute...wasn't she so yummy!!!!!

~Goodnight moon

Whatever Dee-Dee wants said...

I don't like the GNO word either :)