This past weekend, I had two of my closest friends come to visit. Both happen to be bloggers, which is how we met. One of the girls is Eden from Eden's Eats who I see very regularly. The other is Janetha from Meals and Moves, who I email a lot but had only spent 3 face-to-face hours with prior to this weekend.
As I love to look at life in terms of what can be learned, that will be the topic of today's post. So without further ado, here is what I learned on this girls weekend...
1. People who 'poo-poo' the internet for meeting people are only considering the bad side of society.
- I did not start blogging to meet people. I blogged to help & inspire people who were trying to lose weight. In fact it took many months of blogging before I realized that I should ever reply to comments left on my posts! So for me, meeting friends through blogging was a happy surprise.
- Sure, there are bad eggs out there, but there are also millions of good ones. Hopefully, you only encounter the good ones.
- If you 'connect' via email, text, twitter, facebook, there's a pretty good likelihood that you'll connect in person too. I'm sure that there are exceptions, but hopefully they are infrequent.
|Weird internet trawler|
- I can't tell you how easy it was to make decisions with these girls. It doesn't hurt that they are flexible and un-selfish. Sometimes on trips with many people, trying to decide what to do or where to go can be exhausting. Not so here!
|Market Mecca: Trader Joe's|
- This is why so many 'real life' friendships form from people in blogging communities. We have a lot in common.
- I'll admit that I am the least ageist person I know. I hang out with people in their 70s and people in their 20s. A person is not just a number- it is the sum total of their personality and their soul. We had 3 decades spanning our little group this weekend and it was never a concern.
- I have marveled at 1, 2 and 3-post per day bloggers since forever. I am impressed at 3x/ week bloggers! I've never, ever blogged more than that, and these days, I'm thrilled to post every 1-2 weeks. This is due to many factors, including snafus with Blogger/Picasa, but also extends to my writing style and my lifestyle. I could apologize for this, but I won't. I'm happy with this schedule and hopefully other people are too.
- People like Janetha and Eden are ultra-genius bloggers/readers. They bang out posts while reading dozens of other blogs all while gabbing and cooking and cuddling kitties. It's amazing! As I sit here writing, there is absolute silence and frighteningly, this post will have taken me the better part of an entire day. I'm in awe of bloggers who are so consistent, creative and gifted, like these two.
- I believe that blogging is a skill like any other. Some people are naturally gifted and others can do it, but they really need to work at it. Think of those kids who were naturally talented ballerinas or soccer players. Or others were science geniuses. Same thing.
- I know that many, many people frown upon sharing their dishes. It's definitely not for everyone. Quite frankly when I'm in the UK (from where my husband hails), I practically have to wrestle my dining partners to the ground just to get a bite of their Shepherd's Pie. I'll just start off by dropping hints like "WOW! That looks amazing! Is it as good as it LOOKS?!" Then when they say it is, in fact life-changing and still don't offer me any, I take them down. Don't even get me started on the Spotted Dick.
- Janetha & Eden are all about the sharing, which was glorious. We ordered our own meals based on the knowledge that we would be able to sample everyone's dish and not plunge into deep 'entree envy.' This way, we could order our mostly healthy eats (for our bodies) but make sure to wash them down with some extra well-done french fries (for our souls).
- Tech-stuff: When three bloggers get together, there are bound to be things that some girls know and others do not. For example: Eden looked at my cell phone and saw that her blog is on my main screen. Her response..."An app? How am I an app?" Janetha showed us some of the virtues of clicking and dragging photos directly from a photocard into Windows Live Writer. Who knew?! Eden was going to show me how to use my ipod but there simply wasn't enough time (embarrassing fact: I have never uploaded a song from itunes and therefore, I've trained for 3 yrs without music- someone kill me)
- Kitchen techniques: It was interesting to hear different takes on modifying recipes..."if we did such-and-such, it could get more crunchy, do something else and it gets more MOIST." Eden showed us how to make home-made ice cream with much more unsweetened almond milk than I had been using and I loved the result! And she turned me on to the Silk brand unsweetened almond milk that only has 35 calories per cup and to the Low Carb yogurts from Kroger/Ralphs that are delicious and creamy!
- Products. This particular trip, I got to share the joys that are the (50 calorie, made from yogurt) Brummel & Brown spread with mind-blowingly delicious Akmak crackers. And the girls got to see just how easy it is to whip up the microwave protein muffin and some smoothies.
- Shopping Wisdom: We also had a ball at the markets, pointing out our favorite and least favorite products. I did buy some crack-like Mojo Bars and higher-protein Kind bars. But let's just say that I won't be buying the 600+ calorie so-called Kobe burger patty from Trader Joe's and it has as much to do with the fact that it tastes like cardboard as much as the ridiculously high calorie count.
|Best cracker on earth|
|Don't let this innocent face fool you...|
|She's capable of mass destruction and destroying Auntie Eden's shoelace|
|Only your true friends eat the food your cat canoodled|
|The plastic wrap ensures safe step|
- Both girls are currently living a healthy balance in my opinion. While Eden emerged beautifully from an eating disorder, Janetha stays fit with a non-obsessive healthy diet and hard-core-but-not-excessive exercise. Having been a life-long yo-yo dieter who dabbles with excessive exercise, I'm currently striving for more normal-eating without obsessing. Only a week or two into my calorie un-counting experiment, I think that things are going well and I'm not going insane like I thought I might. Eden and Janetha shed light for me on what 'normal' looks like.
- To each her own workout: over the 3 days, Eden & I hiked; Eden & Janetha Insanity: Janetha did Body Rock & I went to step class. And on the 7th day, we rested.
|Janetha is insane for Insanity|
|Eden was insanely loving the floor after insanity|
|Eden & I hiked our tushies off|
|Celebrating Janetha's birthday a little early|
|In the weight-lifting section of Clarks, the best health food store on the planet.|
|What anyone does with pastel pink 1-pound weights, I'm not sure|
To see Janetha's take on dining out at Elmer's, Fisherman's Market and Manhattan in the desert, click here. For her summary of our home-eats, click here. For her take on all the rest of our shenanigans, click here.
I can't thank these girls enough for such a wonderful weekend and for teaching me so much!
Q: What do you learn from girls' weekends? Or just girls? Any techie wisdom? Sharer? Any guesses on the last photo?