While I Was Gone
So, it’s my first day back since leaving you all for two weeks to spend time with my family, and attend a Blogging conference in New York which ended up being an experience of a lifetime. The past two weeks have been absolutely wonderful (minus some frazzling moments), and I wanted to share some memories before getting back to the “on the fence” topics.
It all started with a road trip (after a week with the boys by the lake). Hershey Park, Pennsylvania was the destination. We usually head to Maine, the same spot each summer, but decided to try something different this year. We heard Hershey Park was all chocolate, all the time, great kids rides, water park, and in the words of my son, “The coolest lazy river ever.” So, besides having a hard time leaving the outlets in Woodbury Commons, NY, the drive was a cinch. The boys watched DVD after DVD in the back seat, and I drank coffee after coffee in the front seat. I left my good eating habits back in Montreal, and pulled up to Hershey Town, which actually SMELLED LIKE CHOCOLATE, and decided I was gonna enjoy.
Over the course of our stay there, we had a ball no doubt. We swam, made smores by the bonfire at night, and hung with live-sized Kit Kat and Reese’s Pieces Bars. But the funny thing was, despite wanting to take the kids to see “cultural” things (museum, chocolate factory, etc…), my kids were only interested in two things: THE FREE MINI GOLF, and THE FREE WII ROOM. It went something like this: eat a meal, play mini golf. Eat a meal, play Wii. Play mini golf at 10PM at night, Play Wii at 8Am in the morning. And my hubby and I were real sports too. We really surrendered to EVERYTHING. We let them do whatever made them happy, whenever it made them happy. I drank wine pretty much every night, ate pasta and pizza daily, and didn’t see a gym once. My hubby got to really enjoy the company of his boys, which like many dads, don’t have enough hours to do. It was an amazing bonding time for our family.
But what was cool, were the many random and funny things that happened along the way: While ordering burgers at a kiosk in Hershey Park, BOOM, there was my husband’s kitchen equipment behind the ordering desk! We were so excited! That same day, I was given a nice little honor in our Blogging community, the press release for my upcoming book was released, and a man joined Twitter with the name “@MenOnTheFence,” because he said I inspired him to get off the fence in his life and also start a Blog.
We finished our trip off in Philadelphia, and the Hotel pool where we stayed, The Rittenhouse, was closed that week for renovation. So, instead, they chauffeured me and the boys over to The Four Seasons pool (their sister hotel) while my hubby worked that day. The highlight was en-route, my 3 year old out-of-the-blue shouted, “I farted!!!” I.WANTED.TO.DIE. But instead, the cool limo driver just looked at my son and said, “Hey buddy, we all fart, it’s cool. You can fart in my car any time.”
So after 2 weeks of family bonding, I awoke Friday morning at 3:30AM to catch a 6:30AM flight to New York for a blogging conference called BlogHer with 2,500 other female Bloggers. The weekend was beyond my wildest expectations. I met women I have only conversed with in emails, or read their Blogs, and had dinner with some dynamic and incredible ladies. I did a few interviews, one for Yahoo about how I reinvented myself, and one for Lifetime Network’s daily morning show, The Balancing Act. I learned a ton, and can honestly say I am living my dream, and doing what I love. The weekend was a great success.
But what I took away from these two weeks off, was two things. Firstly, it’s that time is just flying. Too fast. It feels just yesterday that I was married. My husband and I are celebrating 10 years of marriage this Friday, and I still remember the day I got engaged 11 years ago, when I walked up to the 18th hole on the golf course, putted my ball, and saw a little velvet box waiting in the cup. The days have turned into weeks, into months, and then years. My big son is going into grade 2 in two weeks, and my baby is starting a new preschool. I feel like Ferris Bueller, but he had a point: “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” So I made an effort (it was VERY hard though) to shut off from my Blackberry, and get down and dirty with my family. It was heaven. And the second thing I took away is, I am glad as a woman, I have something just for me. I think every woman should have something just for her… whether it’s her career, a hobby, volunteer work, ANYTHING. I am happy I have my own voice, my own opinions, and my own passions. And I realized that when you venture outside your back door, there’s a whole world waiting to be discovered. If you’re just open, non-judgemental and thirsty for knowledge, you can learn a lot. I know I have.
Enjoy some pictures from the past two weeks. I can’t wait to get back to all the issues you ladies care about. Until next time,