Friday, August 03, 2012

{Friendship Friday} When blog friends become IRL friends - part 1


Well, I wanted to meet 5 of my blog friends on my USA trip and I'm happy to say I did just that. Plus a new blog I follow.

I've had varying degrees of success in the "from blog to real life" meet-ups. Understandably, the more open bloggers are on their blog or behind the scenes in email with me, the less anxiety I feel about the meet-up.

Like Suzanne who I met up with in Scotland. That was still the craziest meet-up - both of us flying half way around the world to a place we both wanted to visit.

People said to me, "isn't it going to be weird?" but I knew Suzanne would be just the same in real life as on her blog (now deleted).

And it was a FABULOUS three days in Scotland.

But enough about that - I've had enough personal emails from a lot of you wanting to know how I enjoyed the bloggers I met!

I get it - you want to hear the nitty-gritty..

Charlotte

1. Beth

Hyatt House, Charlotte - breakfast area


Beth and I have been friends for 6 years and is also my accountability partner. She is the exact opposite of me (INFP) so always complements me beautifully as INFPs are some of my favourite people. She centres my thinking and really challenges me in the way I think.

I remember her saying to me once 4 years ago (smack-bang in the throes of infertility) when I was telling her about all these things I was doing with my business, "what's really going on? why do you feel the need to be so busy?" (if you think I'm busy now, I was about 10 times busier then - ask Beth)

And I said, "I think I'm trying to avoid the pain"

Profound! Big wake-up call for me.

We chat every week so I was very keen to take it up a notch or 10 and meet her in person.

I was very touched that she travelled all the way from Michigan to see me.

It was great to chat and feel her stillness and calmness in person for a change.


2. MandyE

Well, I think Mandy and I talk more behind the scenes than in our comments on each other's blogs and while I like to pretend that she's only this way with me, I know she's as encouraging, genuine and caring with many others.

Except... don't burst my bubble.

Hyatt House, Charlotte - breakfast area (yes, we all stayed in the same hotel)
I wrote about our meeting before but Mandy was just as I expected. The only thing that surprised me is just how much she and J love wet wipes :) and how much more of a photographer she is than she lets on with her blog posts.

Her girls are darling, have such good manners and gave me lots of hugs (which I LOVE!) and I had some substitute kids for the first day (who wanted to hold my hand!) before their "friends" (the other Mandy's kids) arrived who clearly outdid me in the cool department.
our feet - by the way, those sandals are so worn from all the walking I need to throw them out


I loved their Southernness and I'm a sucker for the manners and the "ma'am" and "Miss Marcia". Oh, I melted MANY times over. Mandy, your girls are SO well-behaved. For those who think I have well behaved kids (I do), Mandy's are about 10 times better. I suspect it's her calm, firm parenting style.

It was just SO special to finally experience real time with their family. Also J was much more hands-on than typical South African twin dads (not my D, of course :)) and knew probably more about South Africa than I did!

3. MandyH

Oh Mandy!

Mandy and I met while pregnant (I think I found her at the same time I found StrongBlonde but we actually became friends then while my comments disappeared on SB's blog and I gave up - note to self, don't give up! April, I'm so glad you and I eventually got it all sorted)

And then I had mine 8 weeks early, Mandy freaked out (I have the proof in a comment) and her babies came early 13 days later.


Of course, Mandy and I did Superhero Photo and Elevate the Ordinary together and now we also talk photo as well as babies and all the other stuff :) I LOVE that I have a partner in photo crime.

Good that we have that because she is the new version of Martha - cooking, baking, sewing (oh, the sewing!), and in her spare time, does her basement flooring and builds beds. I mean really! Isn't that just showing off?!

It was fantastic to meet Mandy, hubby and darling Claire and Emma.

She is so funny in a not trying to be funny way.

Hubby texts her "where are you?" because we were out late.

She texts back "in Charlotte"

Full of sass and I love it!

When I left Charlotte, I purposefully blocked out thinking about how nice it was to be with my (now) real life friends because I didn't want to get all introspective and sad... but now I have the space to be.

I actually intended to blog about all the bloggers in one post BUT clearly I have a problem talking too much.

Next week, same place? The Heather section is going to be long - we had a fabulous couple date!

Did you enjoy reading these updates? How many bloggers have you met in real life?

PS met 8 bloggers this year alone!

10 comments:

  1. Wow! So amazing. I loved reading what you though of us all. Even if it is a bit inflated ;)

    I had such an amazing time. I need to finish up my post. But seriously, same time next year??

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  2. Oh wow, fantastic time you all had! Well I have only met SA ones and gosh, will take me a while to count .

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  3. Sounds like a fantastic time in Charlotte and no you don't talk too much. This was a very interesting post. Can't wait to read more next week.

    The word meeting can be interpreted in various ways and considering the one 'not so nice' event (this is me being very very very polite), I'm a bit weary about such meetings!!!

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  4. Pics are beautiful. And yes, I LOVE reading your updates.
    xx

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  5. Most of my friends now are bloggers I met through my blog and then in real life :)

    I have never travelled outside SA to meet any but then I have never really been that close to anyone over seas :)

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  6. I love peeking into your very gracious notes, Miss Marcia! ;)

    I'm laughing about the wet wipes and J being "hands on". I think the two are actually very related...he's a wee bit protective, ya know? HA!

    I hope you know big of a blessing it was for me to meet you and Mandy. I have felt for a long time now how important blogging is in my life...it's definitely an awesome "world" for me to have found, ultimately through my girls being born. I so loved connecting with both of you, and underscoring how valuable these relationships really are. :)

    And I'm definitely up for doing it again next year. ;)

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  7. I enjoy reading these update, yip. :-)

    How many bloggers have I met in real life: Heather, Andre', Allan, Alta, Angel, Anja, Anton, Barbara, Briget, Bergen, Benny, Brandon, Brett, Chris, Christopher, Wenchy, Riply, Craig, Da Mario, Denis, Don't Believe, Elna, Erno, ExMi, Florence, Freddy, Gaby, Glugster, Hans, Hermie, Hugo, Jeanette, Julia, Kerri, Laura-Kim, Lauren, Louelle, Marcia (uhum), Marietjie, MeeA, Melanie, Natalie, Nicola, Phillipa, Pieter, Pierre, Rebecca, Rina, Ruby, Sally, Sandy, Gina, Tamiya, Sheena, Sonja, Stef, Tamara, Tana, Tara, Tiaan, Wendy, Yvette, Marleen...so quite a few actually 66 if I counted right! Some of these aren't blogging anymore, some I started on blogging or knew before they started, and some have turned to good real life friends.

    I love meeting people from my computer! ;-)

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  8. LOVED our Scotland meet up!! And the surprise of you guys staying at the same B&B was FAB!!!! xoxoxxoxox

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  9. Fantastic post! I love all the attention to detail you gave them all. It really sounds like you had a great trip here in the US, meeting lots of great people!

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  10. I am so so sad that the timing was off and I didn't get to meet up with you :(

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