Saturday, March 10, 2012

THIS story is AMAZING. AN Ode to my Imaginary Friends!!

Wait until you see where this story goes!  It truly is special.  I’m sorry it will take a lot of writing to get to the end, but DON’T skip ahead!  THIS IS FOR YOU Imaginary Friends, THIS IS FOR YOU! (For new people, Andrew calls my internet friends Imaginary)

My freshmen year of college (At a Big University in Boston) I was randomly assigned to my roommate. Her name was Erin.   We were roomies for years. Then we didn’t live together for a couple. (Our programs were 5 years, all year round though, so not a typical 4 year experience).  Then after college, we lived together again with 2 other girls.  Erin had studied abroad in Italy. I had studied abroad in New Zealand during college.  I met Andrew in NZ.  Erin met lots of people, but one became our roommate, Anne and we found another girl on CL named Sam so we could live in this HUGE awesome 4 bedroom place. (Anne and Sam dont really play a role in this story but they are both awesome). Erin also met Another girl in Italy, Ally, but I didnt meet her until much later.  I got engaged to Andrew in May, 2006 when he was visiting me from NZ for 3 months. He had to go back to NZ and I had just graduated college and accepted a job offer in the city.  I moved in with the girls in September, 2006.  Andrew was in NZ and I was in Boston- we were long distance for 9 months.  I went over to visit him once in those 9 months for 2 weeks.  Here in the States, I was working and planning our wedding (with LOTS of help from my mom). I lived in Boston, but the wedding would take place in NH where my parents live. 
  Andrew came back over to the US for good on a fiancé visa in March, 2007. We got married in May, 2007.  Erin was a bridesmaid.  Shortly after we got married, I left Boston and came to NH to live with Andrew. He did not like the city.  He loved where I grew up. I DID NOT WANT To come back, as you all know.
  
Erin, Anne and Sam replaced me with a new girl.  I still went down and visited them all the time.  We used to have some kick ass parties!

In September, 2008 Erin had a going away party.  Andrew and I went down of course.  She was moving to Austin. Her boyfriend of many years had already moved there for a job.  AT the going away party, one of her friends from Italy,
Ally, drove up from Princeton for the party.  Ally was a very energetic and out going person.  My first impression- she was smart and preppy!  She was Also very bubbly. She started to tell us about a blog she started! I had not even really heard of blogs!  I was intrigued.
After that party, I started reading
Ally’s blog.  This was back in fall of 2008 remember.
Actually, she had a different blog back then.  Through
Ally’s blog I found one called 3 Peanuts.  I read her ENTIRE blog  in 2 nights!  I stayed up reading.  I LOVED IT. Then through her I found more, and through a comment on Ally’s blog I found MCW .   Through MCW, I found DSS  and Dee . I was in NYC for a bachelorette party in December, 2009 and actually MET up with MCW!  And Summer  . (I was drunk though).  

I Decided to start my OWN blog in May, 2009 when we were about to rescue our first dog (Piri) and BUY our first house together! (I cant remember if I found MCW before or right after I started my own blog, but I know I was ONE of her first readers, after Ally).  I blogged over on my first blog until a little bit after I had Anika.  Ive explained why I had to move sites.

Before I go further I do want to mention another blogger, Ashley
 
http://livingandlovinginthemidwest.blogspot.com/
 I don’t know where she fits in and how we “Met” but she is SUPER kick ass because she made Anika THESE !! JUST Because. As A GIFT! The poor girl wanted to make them while I was pregant, but we didnt have a name until After Anika was born!
ANd, just so you can see how AWESOME the detail really is...THEY MATCH ANIKA's BEDDING AND DECAL!!

(we never did use those pretty bumpers)

COOL, huh??  THEN, Ashley and Jamie  both emailed me last week when they saw MODG (I wont link her because I think everyone already reads her anyway) posted something about a pill that people take for IC!  (The disease Andrew has).  They immediately thought of me and let me know!  I mean, come on people- HOW awesome is that? There are so many other AMAZING blogging friends too…but I cant link everyone.   Just know, I love you all.

This is funny-MCW is one of my favorite blog buds.  The other day I asked her a question about monograms and responded to her  “Thanks Prep” and she responded “You’re welcome Hippie”  HAHA.   All my long time readers KNOW I did not start out this way! 
Are you still following?? Because this GETS better! The connections I have made. Someone the other day said "A friend was once a stranger"  Um, Yes!
 So, I don’t know who found who but
Jenny and I found each other through MCW. Jenny and I bonded because we both rescued dogs. She has  2 now though.   MCW and Jenny were my closest blog buds for a long time.  Jenny DB sent Anika some darling leg warmers as a gift when I was pregnant.    When I planning my natural birth and talking about breast feeding class, etc.  on the blog (My old blog)  JENNY DB  emailed me and told me to check out THIS BLOG. Owned by Brittany Ann.  Brittany Ann was also pregnant and talked about natural birth, cloth diapers and such. 

Jenny had watched her mom have her brother at home so she was cool with all this crazy natural shit. Brittany Ann was due with a girl a couple months behind me. SHE Also seemed to exercise through her pregnancy which is something I did too. If you all remember I was on my spin bike up until 42 weeks….ew, remember that picture I posted and my ass hid the seat? 

 Anyway, I got a comment on my blog one day from ANOTHER Brittany.  http://lessonsinlifeandlight.wordpress.com/
  She saw one of my comments on Brittany Ann’s blog. 
Brittany H WAS also pregnant with a baby girl due around the same time as the other Brittany! She was also doing hypnobirthing like me (actually, she did hypnobabies Which is like hynpnobirthing. They teach Hypnobirthing in New England because the founder is from New Hampshire).    It was kind of weird “meeting” these girls through blogging because I had no idea there was such a huge group of bloggers into all the same stuff I was!  Both girls definitely put a LOT more out there on their blogs for their readers and used lots of fancy terms I had no idea existed!  They were both VERY passionate!  Brittany H had a ton of links on her blog full of resources.  She wanted to teach others and I thought that was great.  
Fast forward....and We all had our baby girls. 

In November, 2011, Brittany H asked me and the other Brittany if we wanted to be part of an on line Mom Group where the moms were into natural parenting. Ive touched on that group here before. (Hippie moms).   I want to add here, I have never been a part of ANY other mom group. I have my "Blog friends" and twitter, but no on line mom groups until HM.
After being in the group for a while, one girl pulled on my heart strings.   I told you how I  had an idea to raise money for one member of the group because she wanted an Ergo carrier and had been to hell and back with her breast feeding struggles.   Well, with Natalie's help,  we raised  so much money in the first hour,  that we were able to KEEP giving to MORE moms!  There have been a ton of other gifts given. We call it the Hippie Fairy fund because the recipients are always surprised with their gifts. 

I have been helping SURPRISE other moms with one of the members, Natalie (mentioned before and above).   Natalie lives in CA and we have become close as well.  It started with texting but we even talk on the phone too.  When I heard her voice for the first time, It was exactly what I expected.  It is such a familiar voice as well, which is weird, huh?  Anyway…I AM GETTING TO THE EXCITING PART!!

THIS WEEK though, GUESS WHO WAS SURPRISED?
YES. ME!!  The Hippie Moms wanted to do something for MY FAMILY since we have been dealing with Andrew’s sickness.  I guess they have been thinking and thinking of what to do.   They even contacted my MOM through Facebook to ask what we may want or need.   (The moms in the group are all over the country). My mom knows about the group because I talk about it a lot.   My mom of course kept what she knew a secret from me. She had been asking me what I wanted for my birthday OVER and over, which I thought was weird. 
There is one thing I have been wanting to do.  GET Professional Photographs taken of Anika and us as a family!   LIKE- REAL professional photos!  There is one lady I have had my eye on for a while. ..since I was pregnant. I saw a segment on the NH Chronicle with her photographing babies and kids. I had stalked her website  a lot, but I assumed she was expensive.   We had ANika’s newborn photos taken by  someone recommended to me that was VERY cheap.   I won’t go into that more because I think you all remember what happened when I talked about that on my old blog (IF you are new here and want to know, please comment or email and I will email you what happened, but I don’t want it on here). 

Anyway, I told Andrew right after the newborn photos that I wanted to do REAL professional  photos for Anika’s 1st Birthday gift.   (And, I turn 29 in March too so it could be my gift too). I warned him it would be costly.  Well,  a few weeks ago I started contact with the photographer I wanted.   We made a few tentative appointments.  Then I got  some of her pricing and Andrew kind of freaked. I TOTALLY understood why with him being sick and out of work and all, but I was upset. REally upset.

LONG story short (Because this is getting way longer than I intended) THIS WEEK, I got an email with the subject line “The Hippie Fairies Love you” I started to shake a bit…my heart rate was going up…OMG!  I opened up the email (it was through paypal) and…$200.00 was put into my paypal account. The message said “We have been trying to figure out what to do for you and your family for some time, & we even contacted your mom for help and suggestions! She is wonderful and was so excited to be our co-conspirator. It's not a lot, but we wanted to give you this money toward your family photo shoot. We Love You!”I mean- I have tingles again just thinking about it! Can you friggen believe it!!??   A lot of gifts go to families  that are in a lot more need than we are, so at first I felt guilty and bad that I got this gift to go towards such a luxury.  But, even my mom (Who thought the photographer was WAYY too excessive when I first told her about wanting to use her)  told me with everything I had going on with Andrew and taking care of it all, I deserved it!  And,  Brittany H who I mentioned above- she is a professional photographer and her site is here. http://brittanyhobbsphotography.com/ She told me that the prices were reasonable and explained why REAL artists charge that much. She even helped me look at a few others in my area,  but said to go with the one I've had my eye on. She said her work is good. 
Andrew has agreed to pay the rest as our birthday gifts!
SO…OUR big shoot is NEXT Saturday, the 17th! I CANT WAIT.  
I'M getting teary now.   Can you BELIEVE that ONE BLOG (Ally) lead to ALL OF THIS?? 
  Or, to get technical- A RANDOM roommate my college assigned to me,  that became one of my BEST FRIENDS started all of this. That roommate taught me A LOT about myself and about life in general. Before this blog world existed, I already KNEW she was put into my life for a reason! A BIG reason.

Sometimes I just want to pinch myself.  My mom even told Natalie that she is so proud that I have always had such great friends around me (She meant real life friends) but this is no different.  I might not KNOW most of you in real life, but WOW- the friendships are REAL!   As you know, Andrew calls you Imaginary Friends…always has. There is NO denying that THIS feeling and THESE gifts are NOT imaginary!  And, its not just the material gifts. It’s the SUPPORT  you guys have given me. Through the BIRTH OF MY DAUGHTER!  I mean, come on- MCW and My other real life Bestie, Carolyn, were the only friends who knew I was in labor for a LONG time. MCW announced it on here for me! You guys have been here Through Andrew’s sickness…The support is  amazing. I feel SO truly blessed.  And, I know some of my real life friends read, And I LOVE YOU too, but you already know that !!
AND, THANK YOU HIPPIE MOM FAIRIES FOR THIS GIFT!!!
You know what else is awesome. The same girl I wanted to help with the ergo, she started the idea of wanting to help me when Andrew was sick! Um, HOW COOL!? FULL CIRCLE!

And,  I want to give back. 
I am giving away a $20.00 Amazon Gift Card. I love amazon because you can buy BOOKS (Anika loves books), you can buy baby stuff, fun stuff, vitamins, etc. You can buy anything there.
SO,  ANY of my OLD readers, NEW readers, Hippie Mom Friends, REAL life friends- ANY OF YOU. And, if you are a blog friend and I didn’t link you up, its not because I don’t love you! I was just telling a story. Lol.   YOU CAN all Enter. Just leave a comment (if you cant figure out how to leave a comment, then just email me kiwisandcocktails AT gmail.com)
 

10 comments:

  1. WOW! How amazing!! I am moved and amazed all the time the power of blogging and blogger friends. I felt the same way when people donated to my SIL's Race for the Cure team when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.
    Crazy indeed! Can't wait to see the pictureS!! xoxo

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  2. I'm not leaving a comment to win your giveaway. I'm leaving a comment because I got a little teary eyed reading this! I knew those moms would do something for you. I'm so glad they did! I can't wait to see the pictures!

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  3. I am leaving a comment because I am SO happy my blog brought you to many people. Know you are not alone and we all love you!

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    1. OK. I am so ANNOYED that I cannot comment on your blog for some reason. Still.So just going to reply to Ally's comment.

      Anyway, I just started crying. It is so amazing. I am going to Brother's game today and 2 bloggers are coming to cheer him on too!

      Love you hippie mom!

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    2. You know... Miss Ally is the reason I have so many friends down here in Texas too! The connections in our lives really are incredible!

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  4. You go girl! You have such a big heart and are so caring- i think you definitely deserve t!! It makes me so happy to realize just how many amazing people there are out there! You enjoy those pics (if you need a bow or hat or anything gor her pics et me know! We would love to give it to her!)

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  5. The power of blogging is SO amazing! I have met and had so many amazing people/experiences because of it!

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  6. LOVE YOU ROOMIE!!! I love the power or all these connections!! I'm so happy you'll be getting your photographs and that there is a huge network of moms taking care of you out there!! :)

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  7. So sweet. I love how blogs and twitter have changed things. It's an amazing community on here.

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  8. Thanks for the shout out. I enjoy reading your blog and keeping up with your life. I know more about you than I do my real friends :) I can't wait to see the pics your photog takes!! Your mom is right, you do deserve it!

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