Oct 212014

(This is very personal, and somewhat hard for me to put out there, but I don’t hold back on anything else, so the same should apply to this subject…)

A few days ago I was having a conversation with a fellow blogger about a conference she was headed to. I’m always in awe of all the traveling my friends get to do, and this was no exception. She was flying from Pennsylvania out to California for the Fresh Summit Expo, a definite destination spot for a food blogger. I wistfully watched her tweets during the amazing event. And then, I felt like a loser.

I have to say, I adore this friend for being a straight-shooter, but when she told me, “you’re never going to be successful if you don’t leave the house,”  well, that stung. The truth hurts sometimes. 
I don’t really have any grand excuses why I haven’t gone to any blog conferences in the last number of years. They look amazing. I would love to connect face to face with so many of the wonderful talented women (and ok, some men) that I’ve met online. I just… I can’t. The mere thought of walking into an event where I don’t know another soul is enough to make me reach for the Xanax bottle and start my deep breathing exercises. 
I’ve tried, well, kind of. Two years ago I unrelentingly pursued a specific niche company for a sponsorship to the Type A Parent conference in Atlanta, GA. I was confident in my communications with them, and they came back with a “sure, set it up” response. All I had wanted had come true – I was covered for an event I really wanted to attend. I was going to see a state I had never been to! I was going to fly! 
Insert record scratching sound here.
It didn’t happen. I couldn’t do it. The prospect of flying (I have never flown) was both exciting and terrifying, and ultimately the terror won out.
See? I’m such a dork.
Last year I was super excited because iRetreat was going to be held in Hershey, PA, which is only about an hour or so from me. I was STOKED. This was my home turf! No flying required.  I confidently purchased the early bird tickets and excitedly waited for the summer to arrive.
And then I stayed home.
Don’t get me wrong, I have a number of really great friends who truly GET me. They understand the way anxiety works, that it’s not made up, and that there are some occasions that I just can’t push through. Unfortunately that’s not the case with everyone. I often hear “anxiety? You don’t have anxiety! You’re one of the most outgoing people I know!” Yeah, I do have anxiety, and it messes up my life. Just because I’m generally a cheerful, optimistic person, doesn’t mean I don’t struggle with doing even the simplest things like calling the dentist.
So, I’ve set a goal for myself for the next season of blog conferences. I am going to attend one, for real. I am going to surround myself with a support system who understands that maybe it IS hard for me, but they love me anyway. I’m going to forge new friendships, and connect with brands, and fulfill my potential.
One baby step at a time.
Oct 102014
Zombie Lovers Gift Guide

Christmas is in 75 days, and frankly, I don’t want to think about that yet. So with the season of Halloween upon us (and the beginning of the new season of Walking Dead) I would much rather present you with a curated list of gifts for the zombie lover in your life. I want to hear some “Merry Halloween!” action happening, people. Stat. 1. Keep your tootsies toasty with these Mens Zombie 5-Pack Crew Socks ($15) from Journeys. Because it’s an odd number, you can mix and match which you [...]

Sep 092014

It’s September. The flip flops have been unceremoniously discarded in the corner, the bathing suits and beach towels safely stowed until next year, and the air is crackling with the excitement of a new school year. For us, it’s been extra special, as the kids are in their first year of public school after being cyber schooled for the last five years. Being the new kid isn’t the easiest, I get it. Thankfully, we timed our move during the transitional time between elementary and middle school for one of them, [...]

Aug 192014
The Punky Family Heads Back to Brick & Mortar

So many things have changed recently. When we decided to send the kids to cyber school, it was because we were quite possibly in the world’s worst school district. It wasn’t just academics, it was the whole “hey, don’t get stabbed while you’re there, huh?” vibe which permeates everything. I mean, our crime index put us at 12%. That’s you know… safer than 12% of cities in the US (which doesn’t sound too bad until you realize that also means 88% of the US is safer than Allentown – uhm, [...]

Jul 212014
27th Annual Philadelphia Irish Pub Tour de Shore

(You guys know I don’t usually push press releases, but this is a great cause and I wanted to share with you!)   RECORD-BREAKING 2000 BICYCLISTS WILL PEDAL FROM PHILADELPHIA TO ATLANTIC CITY FOR THE 27th ANNUAL IRISH PUB TOUR DE SHORE 65-mile ride to benefit the Irish Pub Children’s Foundation by raising money to local children charities and the families of fallen police officers and firefighters.   PHILADELPHIA – (July 21, 2014) – This Sunday, July 27th, while most of Philadelphia is still sleeping, 2,000 enthusiastic cyclists will take [...]

Jul 182014
We did it!

After much drama, much Xanax, many prayers, and a huge sigh of relief when the MIA movers finally showed up (5 hours late!) we are FINALLY in our new home. Thank you for your patience while I get things sorted out. I miss being here! (Also, I have a totally new and exciting project in the works, so I won’t be coming back empty handed!)

Jun 202014

I miss you all, I really do. I miss writing, I miss being snarky, I miss oversharing my life with you. However, I’ve entered the most soul-sucking era of my life that I have ever encountered. Moving. We sold our house (yay!) and we bought another one (yay!) and the in-between makes me think they will find me curled up in a corner somewhere with a pretty heavy drinking problem. We close in July, so hopefully I’ll be back soon. Pray for me those around me.

May 212014
Derma MD Skincare Review

I was lucky enough to be contacted by the lovely folks over at Derma MD, and sent a great product suite to review. You all know how I’m brutally honest about my skincare products, so how did Derma MD fare? Everyone’s skin type is different and so are their issues and needs. For a LINE to be effective, it must have several active ingredients to provide all the following: ingredients to deep pore cleanse, moisturizing and hydrating ingredients to maintain and increase moisture, antioxidants to protect from free radical damage, [...]

May 142014
Mini Spinach and Swiss Quiches with OvenArt Bakeware

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.     Recently I got the chance to check out some silicone baking cups ($19.95) from OvenArt Bakeware. I was excited, because I had never used silicone baking products before. They SEEMED like a great idea, but I wasn’t willing to give up my paper liners. Until now!  OvenArt Bakeware touts their silicone baking cups as “the fun, easy to use, and easy to clean replacement for paper muffin liners!”  They are BPA-free, premium silicone which allows you to bake, [...]

Apr 302014
Beauty Army Review

BeautyArmy is a San Francisco based personalized e-commerce company in the beauty and personal care space. Sifting through thousands of products online has become the norm in e-commerce but BeautyArmy has changed that. After completing a quick profile, BeautyArmy technology matches you to products that fit your specific needs. This narrows down the 1.3 million different beauty and personal care products available to a manageable set recommended just for you, based on your unique attributes. BeautyArmy works with over 200 beauty and personal care brands including Stila, NARS, Urban Decay, [...]

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