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This past weekend popped down to Charleston, SC for the Edel Gathering– with one Heidi in tow. When I bought my ticket back in November I wasn’t aware of anyone I knew that was planning to go, but after hearing about last year’s event I knew I wanted to go even if none of my friends could make it (buy now, worry later, thought I). I was eager to partake of a weekend with delicious food, cocktails, uninterrupted conversation(!), and a slice of time to recharge.

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During the days leading up to the gathering anxious thoughts started to creep into my head since I was going by myself, hence I started praying that God would take care of the social aspect of everything. So, on a wing and a prayer I headed off to Charleston. (Many thanks to Tim for holding down the fort at home!)
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I’ll admit the social aspect of the weekend was challenging for me at times. I’m not a generally bubbly or talkative person around people I don’t know, and it was a little intimidating seeing so many women attending Edel with their friends, sisters, and moms by their sides. I felt the same way attending the CWBN Mid-Atlantic blogging conference in May (even though I at least e-knew some ladies there). I just wish I could learn to BE without feeling small or big, you know? Thankfully God sent me some buddies (is there a better word than that? There has to be for the over 10 crowd) during the weekend and I was able to hang out with Stephanie, whom I’d met before but didn’t know was going! While it’s uncomfortable stretching myself in those areas, I know it only yields positive growth- even if it doesn’t feel that way in the moment.
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Charleston was beautiful. I wish so much that I could have stayed longer to explore the city- chock full of history, quirky shops, preppy dressers, and charming restaurants, and I’d be all over any kind of house tour. I even spotted a man at mass wearing a bow tie and white suit. I love the South.

For most of the day Saturday the hotel had no water pressure = showers and toilets out of commission(!), which as you can imagine was a *little* inconvenient but at least most of the attendees were in the same boat!
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Heidi was a trooper during our southern excursion- she slept for most of both flights and handled the unscheduled naps/ late nights well. If I’m able to go again, though, I’d love to go completely sans kiddos…to be able to do things like sleep late, shower when I want, or NOT accessorize every outfit with a brown Ergo strapped to my person… IMG_20150711_094304

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I know there will be a plethora of in-depth recaps that will do justice to Edel ’15, so I won’t even try, but I will list some of my favorite parts of the weekend:

  • Shrimp and grits (so much yum)
  • Rachel Balducci’s talk (although all of the talks were so very good!)
  • Coffee available any time food was served
  • Seeing Hallie & Jen in real life- maybe that’s a nerdy thing to say but I don’t care!
  • Being surrounded by like-minded women- talk of NFP, and shoes, and no one batting an eyelash over the close ages of your kids.
  • Spanish moss
  • Mass at the beautiful cathedral
  • Seeing bloggers irl whose blogs I’ve become familiar with

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And my favorite line from the weekend was from another hotel patron- in the elevator a couple asked me, “Is there some baby convention going on or something? I’ve seen more babies in those sling things…”

And later, as I was leaving the Friday night event, another patron said, “It sounded like you all were having a lot of fun. What kind of group is it?”. After I told him what the gathering was about he said, “Fellowship- that’s a very good thing.” Indeed.IMAG1788

Linking up with Kelly for 7 Quick Takes

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