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TGIF: Taking Online Friendships Offline

plane-into-vancouver

Sometimes I feel awestruck about the fact that I’ve developed so many wonderful friendships and relationships with people whom I first met online. I have friends I met on Twitter, a few I met through Instagram and so many more because of this blog.

Three times this week, I’ve realized how strong the connections we make with people online can really be. First, after reading each other’s blogs for a good year or so now, Sara and I finally met and had dinner on my last night in Toronto. I was going to say “we talked like old friends,” but she took the words out of my mouth in her post about our meet-up. I am so glad we met, and hope we can do it again when she’s here this summer or whenever I’m out there next.

On Tuesday night, my friend Shannon messaged me and asked if we could chat. She and I also connected because of my blog and her company’s blog, but then met when I went to San Francisco (where she lives) last summer and were immediately attached at the hip. It’s not often you find someone you can say anything to and trust that you won’t be judged, but I feel fortunate I can say Shannon is one of those people for me. We Awesometalk‘d for 2+ hours, and only said goodnight because I was on a writing deadline.

Finally, I checked my mailbox earlier this week and found what might be the coolest thing I’ve ever received: an invitation to Clare’s wedding. Clare and I first connected because of our blogs and the topic of personal finance, but our friendship grew as we both stopped drinking and shared the discoveries of what life was like without booze. She’s been a virtual shoulder for me to cry on and a voice of encouragement when I needed an extra push. We have yet to meet in-person, but it looks like I’m going to Denver in October. <3

The low of my week was finally admitting to myself that my anemia has come back and is kicking my butt. I’ve been so exhausted/lethargic, out of breath at the gym, unable to focus on tasks and dizzy… I did the lower eyelid check: white as a ghost. So, after a couple years of being fine, I’m back on iron supplements.

The high of my week is going to sound strange: it was having the courage to write and send some important emails. I sent one to a blogger I’ve been following for months, another was about some writing I’ve been doing on the side, and then I wrote and submitted an application to join Financial Literacy Leader Jane Rooney’s National Steering Committee on Financial Literacy. Long shot? Meh! I’m happy I did it.

A blog post I loved was Bring It On 30 by my friend – and the birthday girl – Cassie. My favourite of the 30 things she’s learned in the last decade: Consider the source of your knowledge. It takes less effort to read something that is in line with your current beliefs, but it doesn’t help you develop intellectually as a person. Question assumptions. Especially your own.

The best money I spent was $30 on a 1-hour appointment with my massage therapist. My insurance will no longer cover it post-accident, but that’s not going to stop me from going once/month to get all the little kinks worked out. TG I have benefits now, though, or it would’ve been $100.

My plans this weekend include going to the Richmond Night Market with my friend Kasey tonight (weather permitting), having brunch with Krystal tomorrow, maybe trying to squeeze in a short hike and then packing for yet another trip home. I can’t believe Baby Bro graduates next week!

How was your week? What are you up to this weekend?

21 Comments Post a comment
  1. OMG! So cool that you’re going to Denver in October, emailing you now :)

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      :)

      June 20, 2014
  2. Bummer about your anemia coming back but better to find out as soon as possible and take care of it.

    Low of my week was wrecking last night’s salmon that was supposed to be dinner. I added baking soda instead of cornstarch to my marinade. YUCK.

    High of the week was payday! With that payment to my credit card I’m almost there to having the first one paid off! I’m so excited for next month to see that balance at 0!

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      Yea, it’s no biggie really. I’m no stranger to the supplements, etc. just takes a week or so for them to start kicking in!

      And congrats on being so close to paying off your first card!

      June 20, 2014
  3. I cannot, cannot wait! Obviously you’re welcome to bring a guest but even if you do, I want to introduce you to my friend Shelby beforehand. We met online in 1997 and have hung out several times in person over the years and she will be in attendance too! shellbcheri.com

    This blog post made my day. :)

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      97!? How cool is that! Can’t wait!

      June 20, 2014
  4. This just brought the biggest smile to my face :). It truly is amazing where some of the greatest friendships can start!

    PS Matt just did a happy dance when I told him you linked to Awesometalk ;).

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      Haha, had to! Gotta start building links. ;)

      June 20, 2014
  5. thats so awesome that you made these amazing friendships online… congratulations to Clare! i didnt know you can do that eyelid check for anemia – mine goes on and off… thanks for the tip!

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      You’re welcome! Basically, it should always be bright pink under there. If it’s white/light, it’s time to start ironing up ;)

      June 20, 2014
  6. kelly #

    crank up that spinach Cait!! are you still juicing? I believe kale also has ALOT of iron in it??
    I know about low iron…but for me it got worse thru high school when i got mono and screwed up my thyroid levels..(as an adult) “woke up” the cancer gene in my thyroid…had thyroid removed…and now 6 yrs later still trying to adjust thyroid pill…grrrrrr…
    fun FUN times…..
    BUT i am having fun this weekend with middle daughter..going to stamp camp make some cards…then to help oldest daughter learn to drive a stick shift…celebrate a neighbors birthday at a winery…bringing seasonal fruit to munch on..YUM… then hopefully relaxing sunday…before work again..

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      Yep, still juicing! The key is also lots of Vitamin C, so working on that too.

      Sorry to hear about your thyroid issues. I’m sad to say a couple of my girlfriends have dealt with that and we’re not even 30 yet. But it’s those good pills exist to help at all, right?

      Enjoy your weekend!

      June 20, 2014
  7. I hope you’re feeling better soon! I’ve never heard of the eyelid test before, I’m going to have to look that one up. I’m assuming you’ve been adding vitamin C rich foods to your juicer, so hopefully you’ll absorb your supplements quickly and be back up to speed in no time :)

    I’m glad you enjoyed the post. It was quite a whirlwind thinking back on all of the things that have changed in the last 10 years. I can only imagine what 40 will be like!

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      Yea, my friend who is an RN was the first person to share that tip with me. Just Google “anemia eyelid test” and you’ll find it everywhere, hehe. And I’m getting lots of Vitamin C, of course. I’ve been eating SO well too, so this is super frustrating… but oh well. Could be worse.

      And don’t think about 40 yet! I can’t even think about 29 (sorry, lol).

      June 20, 2014
  8. I am so jealous of all these bloggers who get to meet you! Soon lady, soon… xx

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      I swear, London in 2015. It has to happen.

      June 20, 2014
  9. Sorry to hear about your struggles with anemia! It’s great that you’re able to identify the problem and take steps to feel better, though. It’s encouraging to hear that you’ve made so many meaningful connections through your blog! Best of luck with the National Steering Committee on Financial Literacy!

    June 20, 2014
    • Cait Flanders #

      Thanks, Addison!

      June 20, 2014
  10. I also have anemia and it is frustrating! I have to take my iron everyday or else I start feeling like an old lady, and extremely weak and tired. I love all the friendships you have made online. I can’t wait to meet you at FinCon! I have met so wonderful bloggers and have had great opportunities because of the internet. It’s really a great place for connection and your blog is such a great example of that.

    June 20, 2014
  11. I hope that you are selected for the Committee that you applied for. It really is neat how with time as a blogger we can develop some stand-out relationships with others online!

    June 21, 2014
  12. I’m also super glad that we were finally able to meet and I’m definitely down to do it again – here or Van! :)

    June 26, 2014

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