Blog Elevated, Passions, Pencils and other Random Thoughts

eric

This weekend I went to a the inaugural conference for Blog Elevated and let me tell you, it was amazing! Thursday morning I dropped the kids off at daycare and headed to Houston. On my own. Like I had to wear big girl panties and drive there by myself.  I was an adult though and booked my hotel the day before I left.  [Counts for something, right?]  I arrived to the hotel safely and immediately started helping the Blog Elevated girls with set up.  This was my third blog conference but my first time as a volunteer.  It was cool to see the behind the scenes this time around.  Bobbie and Lisa [the Blog Elevated founders] made sure that we were able to attends all the sessions as well.  I currently have 17 pages of notes that I need to short through and start a to do list. 

eric

Without looking at my notes though I can tell you that one topic that was carried through out all the sessions was passion.  You should be passionate about what you blog.  Or you should use your passions in life to start a blog.  You should be passionate about a brand you are promoting.  Passion is what keeps you going and sets you apart.  I heard all that and it completely bummed me out.  I don’t feel like I’m passionate about well, anything.  I love to do a lot of things but there is nothing that I jump out of bed and have to start doing.  [Taking care of my kids is a whole other ball game.]  I thought about past experiences and current hobbies but everything about me screams ‘normal’.  I feel like nothing sets me apart.  And thats kind of depressing.  Enter pencils.

angela

Bobbie is the founder of Blog Elevated and she knows a thing or two about a few things.  Ok a lot of things.  [And she loves pencils]  She told me maybe its not about jumping out of bed and wanting to do something, but maybe its something you want to share with other people.  That – I can work with.  I have tons I want to share.  From recipes, to crafts to giveaways to blogging tips.  I really want to just share it all.  I want other people to feel as normal as I do. 

guac

A second theme through out the conference was experiment.  Experiment with new things with your blog.  Start new blogs, be different.  I heard someone say once that you should never doubt a good idea.  Makes sense, right?  But how do you know if your idea is good?  You just have to run with it and find out.  There is no way to find the really really good ideas unless you take a chance on the meh ideas.  So I may have new blogs coming out soon, or I may think of something that I just have to share.  Either way, Im going to give my ideas a fighting chance.

Stacyteet

Now none of these pictures really go with my story.  I kinda of veered of track from telling yall about Blog Elevated a little.  The thing is – this conference has changed me more then the other two combined.  The sessions were amazing, the speakers were SO helpful, the food was delicious and the friends I made are innumerable.  I connected with people on a personal level.  Not just here’s my business card, can I have yours?  Blog Elevated fostered community.  They fostered sharing and they fostered questions.  I have 17 pages of notes to go back through and a community of friends to help along the way.  And for that I’m grateful. 

Honoring Sandy Hook + Financial Friday!

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My heart continues to hurt for those in Connecticut.  I wanted to do something that was more then a day of silence and I am beyond amazed at the generosity of my sweet friends.  It started out with myself donating a nickle for every link at my party and then a few friends jumped in.  A few more have joined me and we are up to a dollar a link!  So please join the party and invite your friends to link up for an amazing cause!


Donating to the Ronald McDonald House #GELightingCFK

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Last week my kiddos and I purchased GE energy saver light bulbs from our local Walmart for the Champion for Kids campaign.  Yesterday we donated the light bulbs to the Ronald McDonald House along with two huge bags for clothes and toys.

I went through the kids closets and made a pile of clothes that did not fit anymore.  Ryley had a few more things then her brother.  [Must be a girl thing!]  At one point she saw a shirt and said ‘Momma thats my Dora!’ and I explained to her that it didnt fit anymore and that it was going to someone who could use it.  She didnt argue just went back to playing while I pulled more outfits. 

Our bags and the box of light bulbs ready to go to the Ronald McDonald house.  I was so excited to take the kids with me and have them participate in donating. 

I knew where the Ronald McDonlad House was located because I had volunteered there in high school.  I love this organization and the home like feel that they provide for families with sick kids.   

When we pulled up to drop off our bags I was happy to see that people had left boxes of food for the organization.  I know they are always in need of basics like this. 

Sending off our two bags of clothes and toys. 
This right here.. makes me so proud of my little girl.  She wanted to carry the bag of light bulbs for me into the House.  I know she probably didnt understand what we were doing but her willingness to help always brings tears to my eyes. 
On our way to drop off our donation.  I didnt want to take pictures inside to respect the privacy of the people and volunteers there.  The lady at the front desk was so sweet and even though it was just a small donation she seemed very grateful.  Check out more of our trip here.  
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The donation may have been small in size but it will save the Ronald McDonald House energy and money.  This makes me double happy – for the donation and the money saving benefits included.  What a great way to start off the holiday season of giving with my kids! 

Do you give back during the holidays?

Dont forget about the GE energy smart challenge.  You can win a $100 Walmart gift card for entering!


“As part of my partnership with GE, I received coupons for my GE light bulbs.  All opinions posted about my GE Lighting experience are my own.” “I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias Champions for Kids and GE Lighting #CBias #SocialFabric”

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Giving Back With GE Lighting

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“As part of my partnership with GE, I received coupons for my GE light bulbs.  All opinions posted about my GE Lighting experience are my own.”  
There are a few characteristics that we are trying to instill in our two toddlers.  Patience, kindness, humility and generosity are just a few.  I believe that everyone has something to give to others whether its time, money, or food and I hope to pass that mind set on to my children. 

The holidays are the perfect time to give and Im excited to be part of the GE Lighting Champions for Kids event.  The idea is that if we replace incandescent bulbs with GE energy smart bulbs we will save money, energy and reduce greenhouse gases.  GE has a great Energy Savings Calculator that will estimate and reduce your energy usage.  Estimate the number of bulbs that your household or business can change and then enter your classroom or charity to win a $100 Walmart gift card every day in November.  [How cool is that?]

“If every U.S. household did the same, it would reduce the same amount of CO2 as planting 1,862,177 acres of trees!”   – GE Energy Savings Calculator

We headed to Walmart to purchase a package of GE energy smart light bulbs to donate to a charity here in town.  Every time we head to Walmart we have to use the huge double seat cart because the kids want to sit next to each other. 

We browsed around the store before making our way to the lighting section.  I grabbed a six pack of GE energy smart light bulbs and a few other things around the store.  Check out the rest of our shopping trip here

We plan on donating the light bulbs to our local Ronald McDonald house here in town.  I really love this organization and volunteered with them many times in high school.  Its comforting to know that if my kids every get sick and have to be away from home for treatment that there is an inviting place for us to stay.  I am excited to take the kids with me next week to drop of our donations and explain to them the importance of giving back.

Do you encourage your kids to give back? 

“I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias Champions for Kids and GE Lighting #CBias #SocialFabric” 
-[Lovely October Sponsor]-

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Kindness

I got a letter in the mail today from a woman that had found my drivers license at the gas station down there road.  I was so happy to have it but even more excited that someone would do something so kind.  After my wallet was stolen the anger built inside every time I left my house.  I wanted to get in the mind of whoever stole my things just to see what their motivation was, especially since they did nothing with any of it.  But this small act of kindness restored my faith (somewhat) in mankind.  I wrote the woman a nice letter telling her how much I appreciated her gesture and hope to one day return the favor.