For those of us who blog we've all said the following (or very similar) sentiment, "Honey, you know 'Jane,' my internet friend who writes that blog...Well she said..." on many an occasion.
Personally, I can count on two hands and a foot the number of times I've said something similar just this week alone.
Isn't it funny how we have to preface that friendship with the word "internet?" Granted, yes, we've rarely met these individuals face-to-face but can't we agree that in many cases they know us better, inside and out, than some of our "real-life" friends?
Real life. I love how that phrase implies that what we do here on the internet is anything and everything but Real Life? To quote one of my favorite Coming-of-Age artists, "Isn't it ironic?"
Up until last year, I had never met any of my Internet Friends in real life. This girl popped my Internet-Friend-Meeting-Cherry over beers on the beach and shortly before Christmas, I met this girl for coffee. And? I lived to tell about it.
One of the many reasons I was so excited to attend Blissdom this year was because I would finally get the chance to meet some of the incredible, awesome and hilarious ladies whose blogs I had been reading over the course of these last three years. Three years.
After getting over a case of The Major Freakouts (ie: will they still like me? will they still read me? am I just as funny in real life as I am on my blog?) I couldn't wait to spend the weekend with so many of my favorites.
Let it be known that these women are so much more than their blogs. So much more than what they decide to put out there on the Internets for all of us to see. Only we bloggers could understand forging such strong relationships with other women whom we've never met before.
Some of my favorite emails and wise words of Life Advice have come from these women.
And I was finally getting a chance to meet them. Holy crap. Forgive me for the shoddy iPhone photos, would you?
First up, my roommates. I roomed with the lovely Jen from Life in the Green House and the adorable Whitney from Pretty Whitty. We had such a blast together- so much, in fact, that we had to practically force ourselves to sleep each night or else we could have stayed up all night chatting.
Then, more of my favorites. Starting with this girl. You may know her as the Blue-Eyed-Bride. In fact, I do believe that her blog was one of the first that I ever started reading and now? We bond over our love for all things boy-mom on an almost daily basis.
And these girls:
Needless to say, they are just as sweet and darling and funny as they are on their blogs. It was so hard to say goodbye to them at the end of our weekend together.
There is something to be said when you're able to spend a weekend with women you've just met face-to-face but upon meeting them it's as if you've known them for years- which, in a way, I believe is true.
It goes without saying that plans are already in the works for a variety of summer meet-ups!
And there's this girl who I practically tackled during an evening cocktail reception. I wasn't the only excited one to meet as she kind of spilled her glass of wine down my back. I have to thank her though because since I cannot imbibe on my favorite beverage of choice due to the whole Growing A Human thing, at least I could get buzzed off the fumes emanating from my dress.
I also spent an evening with this gorgeous girl, with sadly no pictures to prove it, bonding over our inappropriate love of Joe Jonas. I had my first-ever "omgod that's HER" moment as I literally bumped into this girl upon first arriving at the hotel and can honestly say that's the only time I've ever felt "blog-struck." I lunched with this beautiful Mama and loved that I could finally congratulate her on her "we're expecting twins!" news in person and I loved, loved, loved meeting this hilarious Mom of four and fabulous blog designer.
Isn't it a bit surreal seeing all of us together in pictures? Even now I have to stop ask myself, "Did that really happen?" Talk about worlds colliding.
Another reason I was so excited to get my tush down to Nashville was so that I could see some of my favorite, favorite "Loyals." You see, these girls did not attend Blissdom but the ones who weren't local to Nashville coordinated plans and planes and weekends so that they could be there for a delicious brunch that was planned for Sunday morning.
Many of these girls have been reading ILYMTC for ever and in turn, I've been reading them for just as long. We've shared your typical highs and lows of life, our pregnancies and the births of our first born babies and for a few us of, we're sharing our second pregnancies too. These ladies are some of my all-time favorite "mom bloggers," mostly because it's the emails and text messages we've exchanged over the years that are my favorite.
From the minute we were together to the minute we all piled into our cars to head our separate ways, I don't think a single breath was taken. It hurt my heart a little to say goodbye to these ladies having no idea of when we'll be together again.
Every single "internet friend" mentioned in this post has been linked to her blog. I cannot encourage you enough to check out each and every one of their blogs, if you aren't already readers. Occasionally people will ask me, "who do YOU read every day?" And the answer? Is these women.
I'm so thankful to have had the opportunity to squeeze these girls in real life. And I'm so thankful to refer to them as real friends. No longer do I have to say, "My internet friend.. who writes this blog.. well.."
Happy Monday, Loyals!