October In Photos
Good food. (Psst — that’s my pumpkin pie on a Hallmark card available in stores now!)
Yep, that pretty much sums up my month of October. Actually, that pretty much sums up my favorite things in life. :)
I’m a few days late getting this post up this month. But for anyone interested, here is a little snapshot of my October in Photos. Be sure to also stay tuned today for our November in Movies post, as well as a brand new “monthly” post I want to try out — a monthly playlist! Stay tuned.
Without a doubt, the main theme of October for anyone around here was KANSAS CITY!
Oh man. I have lived in the city for nearly a decade now, and have never seen the entire city as excited, proud, and flat-out happy as they were while our Royals played their hearts out in the world series. It was such a fun month.
Granted, there was a game nearly every Tuesday night, which kept conflicting a bit with our #NeighborNights. But we had a few watch parties as a neighborhood…
…and my other friends and I hopped around from dive bar to dive bar and house to house to catch each of the games too. And we had a blast. Who knew watching sports 5 nights a week could be so fun?!?!?
Also fun? Getting to have an impromptu family reunion on a random Sunday morning at a local gym (for all of the kiddos). Believe it or not, this is not even all of my family on my dad’s side. And as you can tell by the front row, our family is being added to year by year. Good people, these guys.
Speaking of family, my mom and dad came up to Kansas City twice this month — once for the family reunion, and once to come hang out at my place — which was awesome. I won the parent lottery with these two. :)
Probably the biggest event for me work-wise this month was the launch of our new web design! I had been working on it with Lindsay from Purr Design for months and months, and have been so pleased with it. I hope you are too!
The other exciting thing “work-wise” this month was getting to attend three blogging events back to back to back. Good things like this tend to come in waves with blogging. And even though it made for a busy month — my goodness — I would not trade time with these great blogging friends for the world.
First up was the Better Blog Retreat in Park City, Utah. I had the privilege of also going on this retreat last year, and it was (by far) my favorite event of 2013. So I was thrilled to have the chance to go back and spend a long, relaxing weekend with these blogging friends again this year. I have long said that it is the smaller events and conversations where I learn the most about this career, and how to improve my blog, and how to deal with the roller coasters of ups and downs emotionally that come with blogging. And once again, that proved true this weekend. I learned so much from these amazing, talented, hard-working women. And their kindness and encouragement always blow me away.
Oh, and we also have a lot of fun together. Basically, our weekend consisted of sitting around and talking for hours upon hours upon hours. (Made all the more lovely in our beautiful home at Deer Valley and the picturesque mountains in the background.) It was an unbelievably relaxing weekend, especially when we got to spend half of a day at the Deer Valley Spa. (How do I get to live this life again?!)
We also got to do some random fun things, like design our own necklaces (with Katie Waltman Jewelry), and taste-test new ice cream flavors from Tillamook, and spend hours upon hours doing each others’ hair in the evenings. (Someone playing with my hair = one of my favorite things on earth!)
(And then I came home and bought my first FitBit, thanks to a recommendation from my friend Liz.) ;)
Seriously, it was a weekend that I really needed, and I’m so grateful to that crew for the gift they are in my life. Huge thanks to Maria and Heidi for being such incredible organizers and gracious hosts again!
Speaking of amazing bloggers, the next event of the month was the first ever food blogging conference in KC — Chopped! Even better, the event was held in my neighborhood, literally just a few blocks away. After traveling the country for years to attend various blogging events, it was such a treat to have people in the place I call home.
I’m so unbelievably proud of my friend Marly (also a talented vegan food blogger) who pretty much singlehandedly organized this event. She was amazing, and poured so much hard work and so much of her heart into this event. And it paid off — people connected, people learned, people were encouraged, and I think people left loving KC even that much more. ;)
Definitely a great “first” for Kansas City. Well done, Marly!
Finally, the last event of the month came as a total last-minute decision — Storyline Conference. Well, I had actually planned on attending the conference, but then the month got so busy that I decided to back out. But then at Chopped, my friend Lindsay texted and said she was thinking about going. So we both bought tickets at the last minute and hopped on planes to Chicago.
More to come on this conference, but I will say that it turned out to be incredible. Basically, it was two straight days of sitting around and thinking and talking and listening to great speakers and discussing and planning the “story” of your life. We got to hear from some of my all-time favorite writers — Shauna Niequest (finally got to meet her!), Donald Miller (such a gifted speaker), Glennon Doyle Melton of Momastery (inspiring as always), Scott Hamilton (knocked everyone’s socks off), and many more — who gave us lots of think about. And think about it, we did. It’s tempting to go to conference and kind of have one foot in, one foot out, especially in the midst of a busy work week when emails are flying all throughout the day. But I was so thankful that Lindsay and I were able to check out and just be really present during those two days and make the most of our time there. It was intense, but so, so good.
Anyway, that’s my October. Hope that you had a meaningful month, and that your November is off to a stellar start. :)