I'm still here.
Been quiet lately...on the blog, not in my life, which, is pretty much cause and effect explained right there. Time to blog has been a bit hard to come by lately.
Makenna has joined the swim team, which has me at the Y with her two nights/week.
I joined a fitness bootcamp, which has me getting up at 5:30am - by choice - 5 days/week to get my butt kicked. But it's working. I love it. I hate it...but I love it.
My brother and his wife are about to have a baby. Any day now. I am its only aunt. Eeeeeeeee!
I was in NYC (!!) for a few days at the end of September with a few close girlfriends (Fantastic time)
And on and on and on.
I ran a little contest on this blog's facebook page last week, collecting donations for the food bank at St Vincent de Paul in Goderich. That was fun and brought it 21 donations...you guys are awesome. I was going to blog all about that, and about our family's experience of dropping off the donations, but I haven't done that yet. Maybe just as well...turns out people seem to find fault with every effort I make at trying to help others, with no motive other than because I think it's the right thing to do. But what else is new, right?
So, things have been quiet on the blog.
But you know what I'm doing this weekend? I'm going to a conference in Toronto.
No, not a work conference. One for me. For my own personal development.
The third annual Blissdom Canada conference for bloggers.
I know, right?
Oh, it's not some little thing. It is sponsored by Chevrolet, Microsoft, Kraft, Dove, Sleep Country, Coca Cola and more.
It opens with a chauffered Road Rally competition around Toronto and closes with more excursions around the city, including a tour of Canadian Family Magazine, of the Marilyn Dennis Show, of Niagara Wine Country, the CN Tower Edgewalk experience and test driving yet to be released Chevy vehicles... just to name a few. (I got the Marilyn Dennis Show). In between that, there are networking microsessions about blogging; everything from blogging 101 to business blogging to writing a book. There are also speakers lined up one right after another...big name speakers.
There's a costume party. With Karoke.
So, how did this come about?
Last year at this time, my friend Jen was going and thought I should too. My blog was getting a lot of attention but my head was still spinning from the tornado and it seemed impossible for me to do something like that.
Not this year though. This year I am jumping in with both feet. Jen and I are going together, and a couple of other (fantastic) local girls are going too.
I am excited.
Because it's for me. Because it's one of my passions. Because I know I am going to learn so much and come back inspired. This world is big, and full of possibilities. There are always doors to be opened, you just have to be willing.
I am ready. And so willing.
Its going to be awesome.
Also this weekend, also in Toronto, is the funeral of a highschool friend of mine who died this week, just a couple weeks shy of his 32nd birthday. He was married in the last few years, and his wife is expecting baby number 1.
A lesion on his brain was discovered less than 2 months ago. 3 months ago he was fine. Most of us just found out he was sick last week when his family asked for prayers.
Today he is no longer here.
31 years old. Father to be.
Adam Lachance was such a good man. Truly.
Life just doesn't make sense sometimes.
Life is unpredictable my friends. You just never know why, or how, or when.
Another one of those "What is the REASON for this?" situations I struggle with.
Seize the day. Seize the opporunities. Look for those doors.
Make the most of it. All of it.
I had to come here tonight to say that. To write it out of my head.
My heart is heavy for the loss of an old friend and a life cut short much too soon.
But at the same time, I am looking forward to this conference and what I am going to learn. Hopefully it helps me bring more to you, in new and fun ways.