Friends Who Blog and an Enchanted Light-Catcher

Washington DC and Virginia

The Gathering of the Bloggers, Washington DC and Virginia, Spring, 2015

A year ago last spring, I spent an extraordinary week gathering with bloggers from around the world. It was an experience I’ll never forget. We traveled from Canada, parts of the US and as far away as New Zealand, gathering in Washington, D.C. and Virginia.

Laurie of Life on the Bike, and Julia of Defeat Despair, invited us to stay in their homes. They were excellent tour guides, showing us the sites and sharing stories about their community. Shelley, of Peak Perspective hosted several of us for an engaging afternoon atop a hill in Virginia. We enjoyed laughter and an amazing spread of food under the watchful, curious eyes of Haggis the dog.

Lisa of Arlingwoman provided local perspective as she guided us through the enormous Washington Mall. Her knowledge increased my enjoyment of the incredible history that resides there. We toured Lisa’s community garden and learned about her Plot Against Hunger.

We shared a meal with Lisa as well as Stacy ofย  Visual Venturing and Patti of Displaced Beachbums.

Rounding out this amazing journey: Kelly who blogs at Boomdeeadda and Kelly’s Kornerย  and Pauline of The Contented Crafter.

What started as “blogging friends” became “friends who blog.”

One of the visual reminders of our time together is my beautiful light-catcher. Pauline made one for each of us, selecting charms to reflect our interests and our lives.

You can see the amazing details in the short video below.

Five years and 940 posts later the most amazing statistic is this: there are nearly 16,000 comments on this blog. Comments become conversations, conversations lead to friendships and in this great big world of ours,ย  interesting, like-minded, bright, clever, talented, and wonderful people from around the world, log on and add sparkle to my day. I can’t thank you enough.

31 thoughts on “Friends Who Blog and an Enchanted Light-Catcher

    • It felt like we had always known each other. I never dreamed of these special friendships when I first started my blog, but boy am I glad I did.

      That evening at Laurie’s was magical. It was great meeting you and some of Laurie’s other friends, and how nice to hear we all inspired you to start your own blog. I hope you get the same pleasure that we do. It’s nice to follow your hiking adventures.


  1. Congratulations! Wow, five years! Doesn’t time fly when you’re having fun. It will be my fifth anniversary in the autumn too. Can’t believe it though. I am so glad I found your blog Alys – it is always like meeting and chatting with a friend over a cup of coffee or with a favourite neighbour over the garden fence! I hope you are going to celebrate today. ๐Ÿ˜€


  2. I’m constantly astonished by the friendships that develop as a result of blogging and social media. In the past few weeks I’ve visited a blogging friend for real for the first time (a couple of hundred miles away), attended a tea party with lots of people from around the country who I met on Twitter, written with pen and ink to my new pen pal (gained through a blog project) and chatted via Skype to another blog friend who I’ve never met in person.
    However, I was truly inspired and in awe of your get-together last year… the logistics must have been a work of art in themselves!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s an impressive list of get-togethers. Congratulations for making it happen. We too have had Skype sessions and they’re a wonderful second-best when you can’t get together in person. The logistics came together amazing well. We were all so motivated to make it happen.


  3. Has it been a year already since you all met up?! Wow–you need to start planning the next reunion. I totally agree with your point about the friends we are able to make here–I never expected this from blogging and have been so, so happy to find it!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I never expected this either, Kerry. It’s been such an amazing experience finding kindred spirits across the globe. Like you it makes me very happy. Perhaps you could join in on our next east-coast gathering. I think you might be close enough to make it work. I would love that.


  4. Alys, this is such a heartwarming post, and the video is lovely, especially with those birds singing in the background.
    So very thankful that you are my friend who blogs ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, Laurie. The birds fit right in with the video, didn’t they. I was appreciative of the extra backup vocals. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I’m thankful that you are my friend who blogs. How lucky are we?



  5. I LOVED the video of Pauline’s light catcher. One could never capture the magic of these creations, but your video hints at it. Pauline, I am still cheered by multiple rainbows daily!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Alys thank you so much for creating that beautiful video showing your light catcher – they are so hard to capture by any medium, but you manage to do it! You must have worked quite hard to get these few moments of film – and then you added music ๐Ÿ™‚ So clever! I shall happily include this lovely advertisement in my little shop – thank you so very much xoxo

    I am so loving your phrase ‘friends who blog’ – they are all wonderful friends and one day soon I might even put up a new post just to prove I do still blog ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Pauline, they are hard to capture, yet so incredibly beautiful and personal. I took many shots over several days, Mike tried a few and then I shot the video to intersperse with the pics. It was fortuitous that the birds were singing and I think added to the whimsy and charm. I’m happy to know that you can share it on your blog and in your shop.

      I will also look forward to your next blog update friend who blogs. ๐Ÿ™‚


  7. Wow! 5 years!!! Congratulations ! I didn’t order my own from Pauline but wanted the windows clean before photographing it. They are stunning . You have some cherished memories that few bloggers ever have . I’m struggling with replying to comments right now. Laptop and vacuum died today . Was a little nervous about moving in case these things are coming in three’s Giant congratulatory hugs. ๐Ÿ’“


    • Thank you, Marlene. You must be getting close to the five year mark yourself. Do you remember? It’s amazing how the time passes by. I’ve loved blogging and can hardly remember a time now without it.

      Oh no! Not the laptop *and* the vacuum. Drats. I hope they can both be repaired. Both our dishwasher and the washing machine have been giving us trouble. The clothes washer gives off a high-pitched squeel and needs to be stopped and started several times to make it stop. It’s also leaving soap scum on clothes and it doesn’t always smell right. We went looking for a replacement (this one is 12 years old, so I’m also hoping for a more efficient one) but so far no luck.

      Mike took the dishwasher apart and found a small burn mark on the thing that makes it go. Unfortunately he found massive amounts of rat droppings and shredded washer insulation. Good grief! There is no current rat in residence so who know how long it’s been like that. In a word: GROSS!

      No to the three’s. I hope you’re good to go, or that number three is a trifle. Quickly: throw an old cassette player off the deck and you are good to go. [snicker]

      I know how busy you are. Thank you for taking the time to comment. I always look forward to reading your words and to hearing what you have to say.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Laptop is running again, for now. Vacuum needs beater bar working again. Next week. Hope there is no three also. Sounds like you are having your share. I rarely use my dishwasher except as a drainboard. The washer, I gave away to a single mother in need and we are using T.S’s from his house. It’s efficient but I don’t like it as I can’t control much. Trying to find just the right one these days is tough as they have added so many features that are just not all that helpful. Good luck with it.


        • I’m glad your laptop is back in business. I would be lost without mine.

          You’re such a good soul. How nice of you to give your washer to someone in need. I agree about all the new features. Some are improvements, but many are just bells and whistles making things more complicated than they need to be.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. Dwaaaaa! Weep inducing (( Alys )). You’ve captured Pauline’s light catcher so perfectly. Is that it’s summer location? Outside? I thought your video was really well done. How did you make it? On IMovie?
    I read a bit of Marlene’s comment here, sounds like her computer was amuck. Mine too. Ever since I upgraded my operating system. GAH!
    Thank you for the links to my posts, you’re always so super generous and thoughtful of everything and everyone around you. Have you seen those stick people Meme’s that say things like, “Alys is super kind to all” then below “be more like Alys” ? That’s what comes to my mind. Sometimes it feels like forever since our trip and sometimes it’s like yesterday. I much prefer the latter and miss everyone. I don’t even like to think about maybe not seeing Pauline for a long time. So many sweet memories will have to carry us to that moment. All cherished beyond words. xox


    • (((Boomdee)) I used a subscription program called Animoto, the same one I use for my professional site (when I’m not neglecting it). They have a vast library of music and you can add text, video and stills. It’s pretty easy to use. As a result, I’ve not taught myself IMovie, but I definitely should.

      How frustrating to upgrade to a new OS, only to have your system stop working properly. Have you tried reinstalling the old system or is that not even possible?

      You’re so cute “be more like Alys” That makes me smile.

      I’m still hanging my hat on a trip to New Zealand. I know we’ll make it happen. We’re motivated and we’re planners. It’s a good combo.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh yah, Animoto. I’m always looking for free stuff. But less and less apps work on my MAC. I can’t seem to use Pixlr or Pizap with this awful OS X El Capitan upgrade. I don’t have time to go to the Genius bar and actually, they were the ones who recommended it so……they are on my bad side.
        I guess I should figure out my iPad but it’s easier to type on my laptop. Oh these first world problems are so lame…..sucking it up, LOL xo


  9. It was a delightful post, Alys. I haven’t been in the WordPress world for a little while, and this was the perfect one to greet my return! Your light catcher is stunning. What a wonderful gift, and to think that she made one for each of you. What a woman! Do I see a hint there that you may be heading to New Zealand? Would you consider a little jump across the ditch to Melbourne? Or maybe we could meet up in NZ……..?


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