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Three Babes Walked Into a Bar

by Desiree Miller on April 25, 2015

three babes

Three babes walked into a bar.

All on their own.

And not to meet men.

They were there to meet women.  Oh, hold on to your excitement guys.  This is not that kind of story.

We were invited guests for an ‘on the road with Blogher/SheKnows’ event.  Blogher was the mac-daddy (or mac-mama would be the better name here being we’re mostly women who are part of this gang) of all blogging conferences for many years… they really invented the notion of all of us in the blogging world, people who bond online through our stories, actually getting together face to face at least once a year to get real hugs instead of virtual ones, to share our knowledge and learn from each other’s experiences—in life and the blog.

This was the must-not-miss event for many of us for many years.  There were sessions and parties and good old fashioned connecting.  And, oh the swag.  You needed an extra suitcase for all the stuff you’d bring home.

But that swag and those parties kind of spiraled out of control for some…other conferences were created and eventually, those of us who in previous years wouldn’t skip a Blogher conference ended up missing the annual event, for a variety of reasons.

But now, Blogher, which recently merged with SheKnows (another awesome site full of fun and a gazillion followers) is taking its party on the road, and that’s renewing interest in the event again, and doing what I think made it so great to begin with—bringing bloggers together, making it easier for some of us to see each other,  even in our own cities.

They set it up in a bar and bought the drinks (food, too).  They didn’t charge a thing for us to come…and the swag at the end of the night was a chocolate bar (a fancy chocolate bar, but still, not a suitcase of stuff).  And I loved that.  I loved that it was really just about getting together again…not lots of extra swag.

I got to see some of my favorite people, including the two gals who I was talking about at the beginning of this little article.

They’re SurvivingMommy and SassyPiehole.

Technically, those are their blogs.  And their Twitter names.  And in this universe, I know people by their Twitter names, not their first names, in many, many cases.  It’s how we know each other.  And come to love each other.  And I have to say, I love these two people.  Adore them.

SurvivingMommy is a sweety…the kind of friend who will do anything for you at the drop of a hat.  She has a good heart and a killer knowledge of all things celebrity (other than The Walking Dead…she’s too sweet to get into that yet, but I’m working on contaminating her).  SassyPiehole is wicked funny.  The kind of funny that gets me into trouble for laughing at very bad times because we tend to fall into our own private conversations while a speaker is talking about something incredibly heavy. Sorry about that speakers.  I told you, this woman is funny.  I can’t help it.

My pals call me Spunky.  That’s not my blog…the blog is Stress-free, baby! (duh, you’re reading it, right?) It’s meant to be sarcastic, but few people get that.  My life is anything but stress-free.

But I digress.  Back to the story.

So, in this bar, the three of us find each other….just like a romance movie, right?  Here’s Sweet, Sassy and Spunky, in our own corner being what outsiders would call silly (or stupid… dang…enough with the s’s, right)?

We should have been working the room, talking to more people… you know…what you do at these kinds of events.  But we were having too much fun yapping.  Laughing. Connecting.

Don’t get me wrong.  We did visit with other people, but I bonded with these babes (again, not that kind of story boys!) and plan to see these gals again. And again. And hopefully, we’ll help each other through the hiccups that our real lives are serving up right now, while guiding each other through the online stuff, too.

And THAT is what it’s all about.  I think Blogher has it’s groove back, because THIS is what it’s all about for me.  Finding my tribe and loving them.

And it’s ok if it keeps happening in a bar where someone else is buying the drinks.

Expect to hear more about Sweet, Sassy and Spunky soon.

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Diaper Derby in Atlanta: This weekend

by Desiree Miller on April 15, 2015

crawling_2

Atlanta parents…here’s a fun event that will have you cheering and laughing your way through a wild few minutes of fun with your little one—the Diaper Derby.

Nothing will remind you just how little control you have over your baby than begging them to crawl and having them sit instead…or watching them scoot the wrong direction!

There are two Diaper Derbies happening this weekend around Atlanta…one at Town Center at Cobb and another at the Mall of Georgia.

The events are both set for Saturday, April 18th.  Babies must not be walking, and cannot turn 12 months on or before April 18; registrations are limited to the first 72 babies.

At Town Center, (400 Barrett Pkwy, Kennesaw, GA 30144) it’ll be happening in the Sears Court from 1-4 p.m. Parents are encouraged to register in advance to guarantee a heat time and lane number. Registration is available at Guest Services, located on the Upper Level of Center Court, or by emailing DiaperDerbyTCC@gmail.com.  All the families that take part will receive a goody bag at the event, and prizes and trophies will be awarded to the top three babies.

Another Diaper Derby will be taking place at the Mall of Georgia (3333 Buford Drive, Buford, GA, 30519), too.  You can register at Guest Services on the Lower Center Court.  There will be up to 12 heats of six babies each.  Then, there will be two semi-final heats which will bring the to the final round of six babies.  The top three will win a trophy.

Good luck…and please, send me photos if you go!

 

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Happy Birthday Pediped–Next Best Thing to Bare Feet

by Desiree Miller on April 6, 2015

krystyn1

It’s hard as a parent to know what’s best for your little ones, but every now and then, a company or product comes along that makes the choices easier, and that’s the case with Pediped shoes.

Pediped is celebrating its 10th birthday this month and I have to say, this brand’s tag line ‘the next best thing to bare feet’ sums up my beliefs perfectly.

I adore pudgy little toes on a baby, so, if I’m going to cover them up with anything, I want that anything to be as cute as possible, and to offer as much support as possible when those babies start trying to walk.

The company now fits all kinds of feet in all kinds of sizes, but they’ll always be my favorite for babies.

They’ll be part of the Atlanta Baby and Child Expo again this year, and we can’t wait to share their fabulous footwear with all the new parents who will be attending!

Happy birthday Pediped!  We’ll save you a cupcake at the show!

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Finn’s Fighters: Spring for SIDS

by Desiree Miller on March 19, 2015

Sometimes everything can change with the blink of an eye.  Forever. 
My sister-in-law knows that better than anyone.
Her son died.  He was just two months and four days old.
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, SIDS, took him from her forever.
Her life changed drastically that day, and the ripple effect took its toll, too.
That was eight years ago now.  And she’s done a good job of putting her life back together.
But she wants to be sure other parents don’t have to go through what she did, so she’s taking part in an annual fundraiser called Spring for SIDS.  
Honestly, this is her story, so I’m going to let her take it from here. Word for word.  I hope you can find a way to help.
From Kelly-Marie Miller, dated 3/19/15:
I am trying to once again raise money for Spring for SIDS.
This year I would like to get $1000.00! That seems like a lot but if I have calculated this correctly (and it is me so more than likely not :) ) that is $7.40 per person in my address book. I know some can give more, some less and some not at all. So as always please pray, think, meditate or happy dance about your donation and then please click the link below.
To lose a child is to lose part of yourself that you can never get back. If I can help prevent that for another family….
Please remember SIDS can not be cured, but with enough research and studies it can be eliminated so no other family needs to go through what mine did.
It has been 8 years now since I held sweet Finn in my arms, but every day I hold him in my heart and every step I take I dance with him on my feet.
It took me 8 years to be able to write this…and I share it with you now and pray it will be enough for you to say I can skip my coffee today and donate to Finn’s Fighters.
God Bless and thank you for your love and support (regardless if you donate I appreciate you in my life)

I sat and wrote everything I remembered from January 18th 8yrs ago and was going to share it…as my New Year’s resolution to “leaning in” but I think I lean in more when I share what I do not remember. I dedicate this to all the parents who are living this hell right now and truly think it will never end. My friends it does not end, it changes and take the good with the bad and you change with it.

I don’t remember….

I don’t remember the first time I laughed, truly laughed, but I have

I don’t remember the first time I did not wear my pain like a badge, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time I stopped being so angry, but I’m not

I don’t remember the first time “I’m sorry” no longer sounded like a curse word, but it doesn’t

I don’t remember the first time I said “it’s ok, thank you” and meant it, but I do

I don’t remember the first time I said I have 3 kids without feeling the need to explain, but I don’t.

I don’t remember the first time I said I have 2 girls without also saying and a boy, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time I said I have 2 kids to a perfect stranger without feeling guilty for not mentioning Finn, but I don’t.

I don’t remember the first time I held a baby without crying afterwards, but I can

I don’t remember the first time I heard someone tell me they were pregnant and not feel jealous, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time I saw twins without thinking that’s not fair, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time holding a baby boy and not thinking what if, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time I walked with my girls and their boy cousin thinking this is how it should be or there is one missing, but I don’t

I don’t remember the first time I was able to buy a “boy toy” without thinking I should have a room full of these, but I can

I don’t remember the first time I stopped being offended when someone asked me what SIDS is, but I’m not

I don’t remember the first time I thought its ok, but it is

I don’t remember the first time I said I am stronger now, but I am

Powerful stuff, right?  I hope you decide this is a cause worth supporting.  And thank you, Kelly, for allowing me to share this with the world. 

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The Coolest Job Ever: The Hugger of Aruba, Audrey Gage

by Desiree Miller on March 17, 2015

The Professional Hugger Audrey Gage

Audrey Gage came to Aruba to buy a white one-piece jumpsuit. 

That was nearly 50 years ago, when she was in her 30’s…

She’s now 78 and calls Aruba her home base.

She’s smart.

She measures her own water and electricity use and produces more than she uses of both.

And she’s kind.  Incredibly kind.

In fact, she says her ‘job’ is handing out hugs.

No. Really.

She’s such a great representative for this place known as ‘one happy island’ that they named her an Ambassador of Goodwill back in 1989.

She still earns the title each and every day.

Just listen to how.

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#MakeitZero: Ending Child Sex Trafficking in Atlanta and the US

March 12, 2015

  When someone mentions sex trafficking, there’s very little part of me that thinks it’s a problem America needs to think about, especially not Atlanta, Georgia, where I live, but I’m wrong.  Very wrong. In fact, Atlanta’s underground commercial sex problem is a very big one, with a large market for street prostitution, according to studies on sex trafficking and sex work in U.S. cities. According to The Urban Institute, Atlanta far outshadows most other cities around the country when it comes to the illegal sex trade.  Some say the popularity […]

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Fresh Food Fast–RaceTrac Offers Sandwich Options and $25 Giveaway

March 6, 2015

(Note to readers: This post was written by me on behalf of RaceTrac. I was compensated for the review, however all views and opinions are 100% my own. #ad) When you think of places to pick up fresh food fast, odds are a gas station one-stop shop isn’t the first thing that comes to mind, but it’s a real option at Race Trac stores now.  Yes, you read that right.  Race Trac now has Value Meal Deals that include sandwiches, wraps or salads made with fresh ingredients—ready for you fast—plus […]

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Escaping the Cold with the 2015 Toyota Avalon-Review

March 1, 2015

Want to be your family’s hero?  Get them out of the cold, to some place warm–preferably some place warm and fun, too. We got to do that recently with a trip down to see my family in Florida.  A flight wasn’t an option because we wanted to  deliver a pile of old toys, games and goodies to younger cousins, so we opted to take the 2015 Toyota Avalon that we were reviewing for the week. You can read all about the car in the review I wrote for She Buys […]

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2015 Atlanta Baby and Child Expo is Set for May 2nd at Fox Theatre

February 24, 2015

The 2015 Atlanta Baby and Child Expo is back with plans to be better than ever on Saturday, May 2nd from 11am until 2:30pm. This annual event has built a reputation as  THE event of the year for anyone expecting a baby or couples with little ones. The Atlanta Baby and Child Expo is held at the Fox Theatre ballrooms and is well-known for its fun, party atmosphere. There’s a fashion show, Cravings Corner, thousands of dollars in prizes and one-of-a-kind vendors with products and services that you will really love discovering […]

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pediped Spring/Summer Collection Offers Next Step in Baby/Toddler Shoes

February 20, 2015

There are lots of children’s footwear lines that are super cute, and plenty of others specifically designed for healthy foot development, but pediped®’s new Spring/Summer 2015 Collection provides both. The Spring Collection includes 20 new styles with Memory Foam Technology™ including the Sidra sandal and Angie ballet flat. Several styles are machine washable, including 20 new ultra-light athletics.  There are even six fully lace-up styles in sizes 29-36, the first lace-up styles ever offered by the brand. Best-selling Sahara is back with new color options and the Canyon offers a […]

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