One of my favorite parts of blogging is the wonderful people I've met while blogging. So, today I'm taking a moment to share about my recent meetup with long-time blogging friend Cryslyn, her husband Andy, and baby Emilia, my meetup with Kathleen and her husband Gordon, and an awesome giveaway I won from Carrie! I'm also going to answer a few questions from Paige.
Meetup with Kathleen and Gordon Franck
I met Kathleen indirectly through blogging, as she was at many of the same campaign events as I when I did my series on the presidential candidates. I later interviewed her here. She's also shared a recipe for Coffee Time Cake, which I posted on my blog.
We met again shortly before the election for lunch at the Asian Garden in Waverly, and then toured the Bremer County Historical Museum together with my sister afterward (more about that in a future post).
It was great to hear Kathleen and Gordon's thoughts on the upcoming election, and other than the fact my food got a bit cold because I was too busy talking, it was good. I had sweet and sour chicken with rice and crab rangoon. But I really liked the hot tea and sugar--which surprised me, as I rarely drink anything but water.
I've tried to talk Kathleen into starting a blog, but to no avail. She and Gordon have visited so many fascinating places, and she's always taking great pictures and meeting with more politicians. They're really nice people to spend time with. It was a wonderful afternoon--thanks Kathleen.
Meetup with Cryslyn, Andy, and Emilia
Cryslyn, who blogs over at Joyfully Inspired, is one of my very first blogging friends. I met her and her husband Andy in person for the first time last year at their wedding reception. This fall when I took a road trip to Northeast Iowa, I dropped her an email asking if she would be free to meetup again. I wanted to meet her sweet Emilia!
Emilia is a real model baby. She's a brand representative for five clothing shops. She's adorable, happy, and apparently doesn't cry (at least around strangers)! Cryslyn let me hold her for a moment, but--I confess--I didn't exactly know what to do with her. Andy told me I probably set a new record for passing back a baby.
I think I may have to take a refresher course on children from Martha's weekly advice column:
Anyway, we had dinner together at Huckleberry's Family Restaurant in Prairie du Chein, Wisconsin. I had a hot beef sandwich and raspberry cheesecake, and I thought it was quite good. That said, I had been on the road all day visiting various locations of interest, and this was my first "real" meal of the day. So, I think just about anything would have tasted good!
Cryslyn and Andy both seemed quite well, and though they don't post much anymore, it's quite understandable as they'be been busy with work and Emilia! They are a delightful family. Rumor has it, Andy may have a post in mind (after his 1+ year haitus from blogging), but in the meantime he's been staring on Cryslyn's brother Noah's Youtube channel. Be sure to visit Cryslyn's blog for her recent eShakti review and photoshoot with Emilia!
Blogger Recognition Award from Paige @ Sunday Best and All the Rest
Another long-time blogging friend, my favorite fashion blogger, Paige, nominated me for the blogger recognition award. The two questions asked were "How Did You Start Blogging?" (answered here) and "What two pieces of advice do you have for new bloggers?"
Tip #1: Don't be friendless and alone. Build your own blogging family.
Some people have the notion if they just write, people will come to read their thoughts, hear about their life, follow them, and leave lots of comments. Well, if you're Donald Trump, that might work. You could tweet anything and the whole world would talk about it. But if you're a normal person, few care what you think, except your friends.
So, make blogging friends! Care about others and what they think, and they will care about you. If they don't, keep looking; you'll find your group out there somewhere.
Tip #2: Use blogging to compliment and enhance your life.
Blogging has motivated me to visit so many places and learn so much history I otherwise may have missed. It compliments my hobbies of photography, writing, and travelling throughout the state beautifully, and, like a journal, helps me remember everything I've done.
It also has given me wonderful excuses for starting conversations with random strangers! To the journalistic blogger, everyone's opinion matters. I like to find out not only what people think, but why they think the way they do. And believe me, everyone is interesting--if you can figure out the right questions to ask.
Giveaway from Carrie of Northwoods Scrapbook
I was excited to win a giveaway for the second time ever! Carrie, who blogs at Northwoods Scrapbook, sent me a tin of candied pecans, frosted cranberry hand soap, an angel necklace, and an ornament.
Perhaps rather predictably, my favorite part is the candied pecans. They are (or shall I say, they were) delicious! I've been visiting Carrie's blog for quite a while and always marvel at the mouth-watering dishes she talks about preparing. So, it was quite a treat to finally get to taste some of her wonderful cooking. (Thanks Carrie!)
Thanks to these few of my favorite bloggers. And thanks to all my other wonderful family and friends who read.
"A friend is one of the nicest things you can have, and one of the best things you can be. "--Douglas Pagels
"Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever." --Psalm 107:1