Sunday, March 17, 2013

midwest bloggers meet-up

 About twenty-five of us Midwest (and a couple from KY, too!) bloggers met
 up yesterday at Room 363 in Naperville, IL.

The lovely and sweet Jen Rizzo (standing) organized the meet-up. We went
 around the room introducing ourselves, then milled around the store for a couple of
hours ~ shopping, talking, and enjoying a continental breakfast.

I have no problem introducing myself to others. But if it requires any more than 
that, especially in front of a group, I almost freeze with fear. I don't know what
to say and gibberish seems to tumble from my mouth. We were supposed to
tell a fun fact about ourselves; something that would be a surprise. I couldn't
think of a darn thing off the top of my head! Everyone else had such great and
interesting things: Teresa used to be a clown; Barb has a glamper; Peggy is a 
military wife and has lived all over the place, including Alaska. KariAnne even
chased a robber out of K-Mart! I think what came out of my mouth was something
ridiculous like, "I can't think of a surprising fact about myself. I'm pretty much 'what 
you see is what you get.' " Oy. On the way home and even while lying in bed last night,
I kept trying to think of something that I could've told them. Isn't that terrible? So
here's what I came up with:
  • I've been writing poetry since I was 12 years old.
  • I used to have rats as pets.
  • I like to play tricks on telemarketers when they call (disguising my voice as a foreigner; trying to order a pizza; playing music for them).
  • I wish I lived on lots of land so I could have a horse, a donkey, a couple of sheep and goats, and chickens.
  • And KariAnne has nothing on me....I once chased a drunk guy down the street in Mexico because he stole my 7-year old son's Happy Meal toy out of his hand!

Anyway, the store we met in - Room 363 - was filled with gorgeous displays.
A delight for the senses anywhere you turned.

This cabinet would be perfect in my bedroom. I didn't dare look at the price!

The one thing I did treat myself to from Room 363 was this Tru Blooms perfume.
I'm very picky about perfume, especially since I have allergies. It can't
be too heavy or overly sweet. This one is perfect for me - light notes of rose,
 lavender, white oriental lily, and violet.

There are some really talented and generous bloggers out there.
Jen passed out tote bags full of little gifts from each other...there was
nail polish, home baked treats, a painted Easter canvas, this gorgeous necklace...

a handmade shamrock...

and even the cutest little pot with wheat grass seed that we can plant!

After we got "kicked out" of Room 363 (Mark, the owner was gracious enough
to let all us women descend upon his store for a few hours), we all went
our separate ways for lunch and shopping. I went out to lunch with none other
than Penny from At Home in English Valley (it was SO wonderful to finally
meet Penny in person ~ if you remember, we were supposed to meet for
thrifting last week and I had to cancel because of my sister-in-law's passing),

 On the way home, I just had to quickly stop at Savers. I found this
great mama hen and chick butter dish (Otagiri, Japan). Think she's
happy up on the fridge with a couple of roosters?!


  1. Dear Melanie, You were fine...everyone is nervous when speaking in front of a group. I think you said it best, what you see is what you get...kindness, humor, intelligence ... that's what I get from you my friend. I am so glad we met! Love, Penny

    1. Thank you, Penny. You are so kind. The pleasure of meeting you was all mine!

  2. Sounds like a wonderful gathering! It's so fun meeting other bloggers!

    1. It sure was, Linda! I'd love to meet other blogger-friends in person. You never know what next year may bring!

  3. What a lovely day! I do the same thing...I always think of the perfect thing to say after the fact. Great spot for a get-together.

    1. Why is it that we second-guess ourselves like that? So frustrating!

  4. Melanie,
    Oh, what a interesting day and filled with such nourishing companionship, quality conversations, lunch and great finds!!
    Thank you for sharing this marvelous day! Loving' the Mama Chick butter dish!
    Sweet Hugs!

    1. I was glad I had the chance to go and then to share the day with everyone. I love the butter dish, too - I think it's so cute!

  5. I think you did a great job for being on the spot, Mel. When I was in my 20's I interviewed all over for a job as a flight attendant. One of the things you had to do was stand up (in a group interview) and talk about yourself for one minute. You were timed! After awhile I had my speech down pat. But I know this was different and I probably would have said the same thing you did.

    Oh, well, there is always next year. That perfume sounds great. I read Penny's post, too.

    Have a great week!


    1. One minute seems like "nothing" until you have to talk about yourself the entire time!

  6. Oh I love that store! I was going to come in for the get together but they planned it for the same day as my son's wedding reception. Dang! Glad you had a good time.

    1. Sorry you couldn't make it to the get-together, Karen - but there's always next year!

  7. Melanie, it looks like all of you had a really great time. About having to talk--there's something about being asked, unexpectedly, to say something that just brings on a total blank. I'm not usually at a loss for words, but there is just something dumb-founding and humbling about having to talk about yourself without a little preparation.

  8. I found you . . . thanks to Penny . . . I liked your surprising "meet up" thoughts . . . from the day after! Thanks for mentioning me . . . very nice post. Great photo in front of Room 363 . . .


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