So here is my Vegas 2014, Baby, recap :)
I got this party started off right because my friend Jen from Out of This World Literacy, whom I had never met in person, drove to my house the night before we flew out for Vegas. Can we say pre-Vegas slumber party?! I was so excited to finally meet her in person! And it's always more fun to fly with a friend than solo. And, we even met Christina from Sugar and Spice on our flight! We were like, "Come sit next to us!" Even though we had just met, it was an instant friendship.
I don't even know where to start once we got to Vegas. It was so overwhelming, and exciting, and crazy, and unforgettable! I met so many new friends, and we had such a blast! From Paul-on-a-Stick to photo bombing, I haven't laughed that much in a LONG time!
I loved meeting Jessica from Second Grade Nest (she's a Chalkie!) and Sarah from Sarah's First Grade Snippets, and along with Christina and Jen, we kept tally on who had the most photo bomb points. Silly, I know, but oh so fun!
Another unforgettable moment will be finally meeting my fellow Chalkies from Primary Chalkboard!
I knew I was lucky to be asked to be a member of this amazing collab blog, but I didn't realize HOW lucky until I finally met them all! Sweet, caring, smart, genuine are just a few of the adjectives I can use to describe each and every one of them. Many of us roomed together, and our evenings (and days) were filled with laughter. If you haven't met them yet, head over to Primary Chalkboard and meet 'em! We are planning some HUGE things real soon!
Not only did I finally get to meet my Chalkies, I also got to meet so many of my bloggy friends FINALLY! Terry from Terry's Teaching Tidbits, Greg from Kindergarten Smorgasboard (a Chalkie, whoop whoop!), and I had a little reunion since we met at the Georgia Blogger's Meet Up last July. Not only did I finally get to meet John from Created by Mr. Hughes (An Educator's Life is his blog), I got to listen to his amazing presentation on how to effectively use Pinterest. He will be receiving lots of emails from me in the future :) Anna from Simply Skilled in Second (another Chalkie. Whoop whoop!) was every bit as funny and fab as I thought she would be, and Blair from One Lesson at a Time was an absolute sweetie pie, too! I am thrilled that Corinna from Surfin' Through Second (and another Chalkie! Whoop whoop!) made the trip our from Hawaii (I almost hid in her suitcase for her return trip), and she brought this amazing coconut/mango chapstick with her! How thoughtful is she?! So glad she did because I forgot mine and the desert heat is unforgiving on your lips and skin! Vicky from Teaching and Much Moore (un, another Chalkie? Why, yes!) is a doll and totally saved me when my printer ran out of ink and I couldn't print my name tag (yeah, I know #teacherproblems). And Michelle from Well Michelle? and Cyndie from Chalk One Up for the Teacher were so kind in picking Jen, Christina, and me up from the airport. Actually, Jen and I totally invited ourselves, but they agreed! :) And they were the two who helped our idea of Paul-on-a-Stick and Amy-on-a-Stick come true. #imwithpaul #imwithamy
Yeah, I have no idea how we came up with the heads on a stick idea, but once it got in our minds, there was no stopping us! Cyndie and Michelle printed out the heads and brought us supplies to construct them :) Michelle was in charge of Amy, and Jen and I took Paul. Cyndie actually made multiple Paul heads, so we were able to pass him out to broaden his adventures. Who are Paul and Amy, you ask? Well, Amy is one of the amazing members of the TpT team, and I was so happy I finally got to meet her! She helps keep all of us on track and inspired. And Paul is the founder of TpT. He has changed so many of our lives for the better, and I was so overwhelmed to finally get to meet him. I was glad he thought our Paul-on-a-Stick was funny. Whew! But, seriously, because Paul didn't give up on his dream and vision, so many of us are blessed beyond belief. I could never repay this man for his belief in himself and all of us. He is one of the most humble, down to earth, genuine people you will EVER meet. And I can't wait to give him his gift from Jen and me with all the #imwithpaul photos. Oh yeah, it's coming soon! :)
Another highlight was getting to meet Holly and Taylor from GoNoodle. Back in March us Chalkies promoted GoNoodle as an amazing brain break on-line resource, and boy, has it taken off! If you haven't heard of GoNoodle or signed up for a free account yet, do it before school starts back. You'll be happy you did when those kiddos walk through that door! Two more fun gals I got to meet were Lisa from Growing Firsties and Laura from Peace Love and First Grade (both Chalkies. Whoop whoop!). While we were visiting all the booths, Corinna went missing, so Lisa, Laura, Christina, Jessica, and I went on a search and recover mission. We were successful!
There are so many more pics, but I can't share them all. And so many more people I met whom I adore. Next year it's supposed to be a 2 day conference, so there will be more fun and adventures! If you want to see more of Paul's adventures, just search #imwithpaul, or Amy's adventures search #imwithamy. If you want to see even more fun from Vegas, search #tptvegas2014.
Oh, and one thing I WISH I had taken pictures of was the New Kids on the Block show I went to. Yeah, I did. And it was awesome. And I totally felt like I was back in middle school. Yeah, they are still Hangin' Tough, and they put on an awesome show. All their old dance moves. Oh my goodness. I can't say it enough. Awesome! :) I just wish I had worn my puffy paint t-shirt proclaiming Jordan and Joey to be the best.
I could have talked about the amazing sessions I sat in, but to me, this trip was more about relationships with people. People are what makes TpT absolutely amazing and special to be a part of. And I can't wait until Vegas 2015, Baby! I just hope I can see all these beautiful women and men again before then! My heart was so full, and I was so sad to be leaving them. I was super excited to see my family again, don't get me wrong, but I also felt like these women and men are now family, too, and I will miss them dearly!
I linked up my Vegas post with Deirdre from A Burst of First, so head on over to her blog to read about her Vegas adventures and many more!
**Please excuse any typos as I don't have the super power of being perfect :)