Dear Ashley

Today’s letter comes from my friend Kristi of Creative Kristi.  She is also the designer of this blog!

I first met Kristi at Haven – and at the time my blog had just been “broken” – long story.  I asked Kristi if she thought she could help me out – and boy did she.  This lady is super smart and all self taught.  If she didn’t know the answer, she figured it out.  Not only did she “fix” my blog, but she set up me for a much better blog platform that has made a huge difference.  But it was more than that.  Kristi has given hours of her time to teach me so much.  Through each step she walks me through, I get more confident to try the next step.  And she is always there when I try to do it myself and I commit “blogacide”.   Kristi has shown me kindness and generosity that I never expected and I am so appreciative for.   Thank you Kristi – from the bottom of my heart.  But now, it all makes sense.  She was “paying it forward”.

Dear Ashley,

There are lots of people I could write this letter to. Relatives, best friends, teachers, etc. but immediately when I thought of writing about the “Greatest Gift” the Chinese proverb:

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

and just by knowing you, at the right time in my life, you taught me to ‘fish’ and are helping to change the course of my family’s financial history. I don’t even remember who recommended you to me when I asked on twitter 3 years ago who could do a blogger to wordpress transfer for me but somehow I got connected with you. You did the transfer beautifully and answered all my questions (no matter how tiny or stupid they were!) and we became skype friends.

Then when I mentioned that I would love to start using my photoshop and creating my own designs for my blog again (I had done it a bit on my blogger blog) but had no idea how to get it on my wordpress blog you were right there on skype. Day after day. Numerous, incessant questions from me. You answered them all. You pointed me to places to learn more, you even contacted me when you were doing something you thought I would like to learn.

Most of all? You were encouraging. You were one of the firsts to suggest that I do this as a business.

So I did. While I was always nervous you were always there for all my questions. You taught me CSS and HTML for what I needed, you even taught me to do the blogger to wordpress transfer that I had hired you to do a year prior!

You taught me everything I know. You taught me where to look to find the answers (probably to get me to stop asking you questions!) and also sent clients my way.

My business is booming with more work than I ever dreamed possible! All because of you.

Thank you Ashley for giving me The Greatest Gift, of knowledge.

Have a happy day,


An Open Letter to Fellow Bloggers


Today’s letter comes from Heather of At the Picket Fence

Heather is sweet, talented and full of life.  I can say that because I read her blog and her words reach through.  And I can also say that because I got to meet her in person at Haven.  She may not remember the interaction because she was just being “Heather”.  But I remember it so clearly.  We were in a break out session and I was feeling rather overwhelmed with all of the information I was hearing.  I asked a question, you know one of those ones that no one “really” answers.  As I gathered up my belongings, Heather sought me out, came up to me and told me exactly what I needed to hear, specific information and said it with so much confidence -  it was contagious.

I also share this with you now because it is so fitting with her letter today.  So, Heather, we bloggers thank you too!

An open letter to my Fellow Bloggers,

When I started this little “hobby” called Blogging in 2010 I had aspirations of sharing some recipes and projects. Keeping my family updated on our lives, maybe I’d get a little recognition along the way.

What I never anticipated is the lovely, life changing, supportive and sweet friendships I would make.

There is still this stigma attached to having “on line” friendships and relationships. Often we feel we have to differentiate between our “virtual” friends and our “in real life” friends. We might call them our “blogging friends” or our “online friends”, then we get that kind of weird blank stare from our family as we try to explain the relationship we have with these people we’ve never really “met.”

I’m not sure if I can remember the exact moment when it dawned on me that you all weren’t just my “online friends” or “blogging friends” but….my friends. My real true friends. Friends who encouraged me, supported me, patted me on the back for a job well done! The friends I turn to when I feel down, lonely, insecure or excited, proud and accomplished. No matter which side of the emotional spectrum I might fall on any given day, you all have been there for me.

Maybe that moment came when I met some of you face to face at my first Bloggers Conference.

And we laughed and talked and stayed up late in our pj’s and sweats like we were old sorority sisters or long lost friends reuniting.

Or maybe it was over countless live Google Hangouts with the most fabulous group of gals I have had the privilege to work with.

Maybe it was when you all were SO happy and excited for me when I finally saw my magazine feature. I mean REALLY excited…and you understood. You KNEW like no one else could what it meant to me.

Maybe it came after the hours and hours and hours I have spent talking photography, blogging, projects, husbands, children, hurts, joys and faith… with the most precious new friend in my life. The friend you can say “I love ya” to when you hang up and truly mean it from the bottom of your heart.

It was most certainly when I realized that even if I was moving to a new state and a new home, I already had a built in group of friends that lived in the area and were excited that I would be living close by!

So to you my dear, sweet fellow bloggers I want to say thank you! Thank you for the gift of your friendship, your support, your encouragement, your understanding. Thank you for bringing so much joy into my life. I have my first cup of coffee in the morning with you, and I close out my day reading through your own personal journeys, joys and disappointments, fears and triumphs!

Don’t let anyone tell you that the love and friendship we feel for other isn’t real. It is very, very real. You are a true GIFT to me! You inspire me every day with your creativity, your words, your passion and your strength! I am so thankful for the blessings you are in my life!

Much love to you my sweet fellow bloggers from my blogging home to yours,


Dear Papa

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