I’m overflowing with so much excitement and happiness that I really don’t even know where to begin here.
Tuesday. We’ll start with Tuesday.
On Tuesday, I got an email from Ashten inviting me to the very first Happy Hour Hangout ever. They had an extra opening at the last minute and she wanted me to join. Color me honored. Seriously.
Actually…maybe we should back up to a few weeks ago, to when I first learned about the Happy Hour Hangout idea. From the moment I read about it, I thought it was such a great idea. Then why weren’t you already a part of it??, you ask. Because I’m socially stunted, that’s why. I can be very awkward and shy. Basically, I lack the ability (confidence?) to put myself out there. I’m working on it.
So I knew that Ashten and Amber were doing something super cool, and naturally, I counted myself out before the game even started. That was oh-so-stupid of me, and I’m beyond thrilled that fate – and Ashten and Amber – intervened. Because when I got the email, I already knew about the awesomeness and I already wanted to be a part of it – and this time I couldn’t say no.
I mean, what was I going to do? Admit to them that I have an irrational fear of putting myself out there? Obviously not. I can only admit to the whole internet that I’m silly and awkward, not the one or two people who email me. So I said “hell yeah I’m in”, and I don’t regret it for one single moment.
Can I please tell you how awesome it was? It. Was. Awesome.
Happy Hour Hangout is the brainchild of Ashten and Amber and it is quite possibly the best idea ever. It’s a sponsorship program unlike any other. How many sponsorship options give you a chance to sit down with 9 other bloggers and actually discuss blogging? It was a great group – in addition to our beautiful hosts we had Megan from Yammering Yankee, Kate (and eventually Adam too!) from The Florkens, Erin from Hooley with a Z, Laura Beth from Mrs. Laura Beth, Margaret from Life After Athens, Brit from Wine, Cheese, and Workout Capris, and Alexis from Lovely Lexe. Seriously, if you don’t already read these blogs, you need to go get yourself acquainted with each and every one of them right away.
The first hour I had technical difficulties that kept me from contributing much, but luckily I was able to see/hear enough to follow along. (So sorry to everyone who had to listen to the stupid dinging every time I got kicked out and had to re-join!!) Eventually, I switched from my laptop to my phone and had more of a chance to interact with everyone- but even if I’d been limited to observing the whole time, it would have still been an amazing experience. Can I just tell you how fabulous these bloggers are?! I was thrilled to find that everyone was exactly who I’d imagined them to be after reading their blogs. They are all beautiful, hilarious, and so smart! We had a few drinks, exchanged ideas, confided in each other, and laughed a lot.
We talked about everything – building your brand, deciding what to write about, managing social media and sponsorships, deciding if/when to tell family and friends about your blog, and so much more. It was a thoughtful, honest, and respectful conversation about something we love doing – blogging. I’m so grateful that I had the chance to be a part of something so inspiring and fun!
It was such an incredible experience that I signed up immediately for the next one. I can’t believe I almost missed out on something so fabulous! If you want in on it (obviously you do), go visit Always Ashten or Mr. Thomas and Me. Right now. Do it.
[Sadly, the technical difficulties also prevented me from getting any photos/screenshots of the chat, but trust me – this was the prettiest group of ladies, like, ever.]