Kona dog and the Blog Paws duckling - Back to back conferences

Back to Back Conferences

Back to Back Conferences

I’m asking advice today. I have back to back conferences this summer and am feeling a tad overwhelmed. It seemed like a good idea at the time. Here’s the story …

Battling Cancer Sucks

Last year, January, as many of you know (BECAUSE I WROTE ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME), I was diagnosed with stage three rectal cancer. I spent a solid year doing nothing but resting and recovering – from chemotherapy, radiation and major surgery. It was a long year. But built into that was no traveling. No conferences. I absolutely love traveling with Jones Natural Chews. But seriously, I spent the year in a recliner feeling very overwhelmed, but also quite blessed. Y’all are the best friends a girl could have in the support department.

Cancer treatment involves plush toys
Amy Tokic (Pet Guide) sent me this cute replacement rectum after my surgery to remove the one God gave me. I love my friends. And yes, I wound up losing most of my hair.

So while I was battling my dragon, the Big C, conferences were happening without me. I missed BlogPaws (my favorite pet blogging conference), and BarkWorld (the conference which frustrates the life out of me, but is good for networking). Oh, and I missed Westminster in NYC, which probably hurt most of all. So no back to back conferences for me last year. None at all. I was exhausted and tethered to the cancer clinic. At some point I could barely remember my name and birth date and was a crying mess all the time. Don’t get cancer. That’s the takeaway.

Mini Conference at Flea’s House!

Did I mention that y’all are the best friends ever? Before and after BlogPaws, several of you stopped by my house to visit. It was like a mini conference in Tulsa! Rachel and Kevin Sando, of My Dog Likes, stopped in with their GORGEOUS Golden Retrievers, who promptly jumped into the koi pond to cool off. Tulsa summers are a little warm.

Harley and Charley of MyDogLikes.com, on the way to BlogPaws
Harley and Charlie of My Dogs Like – therapy for my cancer weary soul

On their way home, Karen and Louie (The French Dog Boutique) stopped in, as well as Susan and Daniel Bewley (Budget Earth), with Ivi the Malamute, and Carol and Darlene Bryant (Fidose of Reality), with the handsome Dexter the Cocker Spaniel. It was the closest I’d get all year to seeing my bloggy doggy friends, and I was SO grateful.

Mini BlogPaws in Tulsa www.DogTreatWeb.com
Darlene, Carol, Dex, Me, Louie and Karen – a mini conference at my house!

I May Have Bitten Off More Than I Can Chew

I may have bitten off more than I can chew. Feeling like I missed out on so much last year, this year I’ve got back to back conferences scheduled. I’ve already attended BlogPaws in Myrtle Beach, SC (still going furiously through my notes). I’ll be attending BlogHer in Orlando, Fl, in a couple of weeks. Too much? I don’t think so. I say that now.

Here’s the deal – I’ve chosen to drive to each event. I live in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in the middle of the country. Both of these events are on the east coast. Each about a thousand miles from home. Insane, right? I haven’t fully recovered from last year. I’m no longer as tired as I was, but the first trip took a lot out of me. I’m resting and eating carefully to gain strength and energy. But I’m a little nervous. Both about another road trip, and about a conference which is new to me.

And I need a place to stay in Tallahassee the night of June 20th. Anyone I know live there?

Why These Conferences?

Good question. BlogPaws is an easy answer. It’s where all the cool dogs and their people go to hang out and learn more about social media and networking. I’m in. The classes are phenomenal. The down time is invigorating. The people are the best on the planet. I learn about all kinds of new dog products. Y’all will be hearing more about some of them next week. But the classes alone make the conference worthwhile, helping strengthen where I’m weak, mostly technically, and in the lightning fast growth of social media platforms, to keep up.

But BlogHer? Again, I’m hoping to learn more about the blogging and social media end. That’s not all, though. I’d like to make contacts with dog owning bloggers outside of the dog blogging community. Is that so wrong? Jones Natural Chews sells high quality, all natural, all US sourced and made dog treats. We’re in feed stores and pet boutiques. Our market is so much larger than just dog bloggers, though they’re our most loyal and loving peeps. I need to explore the dog world in a wider way. Yes? So I’ll be attending BlogHer in mid-June.

This means what? I don’t truly know. But I’ll let YOU know as soon as I know. M’kay? And I’ll let you know if I survive the back to back conferences.

Giveaway

Hopefully it’ll also mean more dog owners entering our giveaways. I love to spread the good chews with as many people as possible! And our current giveaway is certainly lovely! We’re giving some lucky dog a Bully Bone from Jones Natural Chews. It’s a two ingredient treat – a Bully Stick and a Natural Center Bone – that’s baked to perfection and makes dogs smile. To enter to win, simply click this sentence, leave a comment, click the box and click I Commented. Done! It helps to tweet the contest, follow our Twitter feed (@JonesChews), and visit the Facebook account. But who am I to tell you what to do, eh? I’ll let your dog boss you around. 😉

Jones knows what Kevin likes - the Bully Bone
Jones knows what Kevin likes – the Bully Bone, naturally

So help! Tell me how to conserve my strength and endure this next road trip! Thanks!

Spreading the good chews …

Flea

4 thoughts on “Back to Back Conferences

  1. I can not imagine having to do back to back conferences, especially long drives to both. I know you love driving and stopping along the way to visit with new and already know friends. You are a superwoman!

    Safe travels!

  2. wow, i cant imagine driving to fl twice from ok. long drive and i hate to drive. sorry live in nc. hoping to move to fl though. dont over do all of this, you still need to watch yourself and not become tired.

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