Sooooo….. I went camping. Well to be fair, I was in a cabin with showers, running water, and a place to charge my phone. But it was in the wilderness, the hot water was iffy, and there were 3 mirrors for 24 females. So it was most definitely my idea of ROUGHING IT. However, it was for a good reason! This year was the fifth and final installment of Texas Style Council. As it was started by my friend Indiana, it was only right that I attend the last one. Against my better judgement, I packed up my polka dot suitcase and headed out into the wild. Let’s break it down, shall we??
(Warning: I didn’t take that many pictures….. partly because I was having a good time, partly because my phone was constantly dying, and mostly because I was lazy.)
Are you sitting down? Okay good. I MET THE BLOGGESS. That’s right, I met The Bloggess herself, Jenny Lawson, as well as her BFF Laura Mayes. It was magical and amazing, and Jenny is just as kind and irreverent in person. I still have no words. She is a HUGE inspiration to me, and getting to hang with her was beyond cool. And I did get to actually hang with her, since I was the Keynote Assistant. I helped her with the book sale and signing. It was AMAZING.
Blogger Inspiration. I got to spend some real quality time with two of my favorite bloggers – Chastity from Garner Style, and Marisa from New Dress A Day. I had met Chastity back in the day at the first official Texas Style Council Conference, and I was shocked she remembered me. We hung out, and had some awesome chats about plus size fashion, the community, and our hopes for the future of plus size fashion. Marisa was super sweet, even after I fan-girled all over her. We had a few chances to chat, and she was just so kind and wonderful and has mad style, even in the wilderness!!
I made so many awesome new friends! The spirit of sisterhood was alive and well here. Sure, people had their friends that they hung with. But there were no cliques, there was no mean girling or side-eying. If you wanted to sit at a table of strangers, you can bet you’d be chatting in a minute or two. I met so many awesome and talented women, and I’m totally going to shout them out!
Nicole of Writes Like A Girl
Janet of An October Soiree
Julia of In the Afternoon
Chelsea of Chelsea Laine Francis
Stephanie of Interlaced Goods
Kasmira of What I Wore 2Day
Laurel Kinney, Personal Stylist (I am already friend with her but it was great to catch up!)
Indiana of Indiana Elsewhere (also long-time friends, but she moved and I rarely see her now.)
Mary the most amazing volunteer EVER
Regina (who is so pretty I almost hate her)
I got some serious recharging when it comes to my work. The last keynote I attended was with Jess Lively and Caroline Rector. The topics were very loose, and it was more like a campfire discussion than a big speech. Jess talked a lot about business, work/life balance, and creating time away from your job. Since she is also a business owner who works for herself, I got so much out of what she said. It’s really easy for me to get burned out, working from home and making my own schedule. Their session really helped me!
SWAG. I’m not gonna lie; I got some pretty cool stuff from this conference. Toms, Minnetonka, SW Basics, and many more really hooked us up. I’m super excited to try all of my new lip balms……. maybe all at once……
I felt sooooooo out of shape. There was lots of walking (while carrying my crazy heavy bag) and nothing was really close together. The campground was pretty spread out so it was a good walk no matter where you were heading. Since I was a volunteer, I was there a day early for set up. I definitely need to up my workout game!
So hangry. I’m such a picky eater that there were some food issues for me, which meant I ate a lot less than I needed to and was hungry a lot. This was no fault of anyone but me. I should have planned better because I know how picky I am. Always bring snacks!
Oh, the back pain! Again, this is no fault of anyone, but the beds were awful. Granted it was a Girl Scout camp, and I’m sure 8-10 year old girls have no problems with the beds. But I’m old and plumpy and that twin sized bunk was rough. The conference organizers did provide us an extra cute throw pillow, so at least it was a bit more homey.
The weather! It rained for the first 2 days, and the set up day was super humid and warm. So I felt grungy and gross the whole time. Luckily, my umbrella game was on point!
All in all, this conference was an amazing experience. I got to connect with some truly inspiring and wonderful people, met some awesome ladies that live in my neighborhood, and got some really great perspective on my work/life balance. Many thanks to Indiana for inviting me, and letting me be a part of this experience. I’m sad it’s the last one, but it sure went out with a BANG!