Three-Year Blogiversary

I attended the Writer’s Digest Conference three years ago, with hopes of successfully pitching a book that I had written to some of the top literary agents in the country. One of the biggest pieces of feedback I received was that I needed to create a bigger social media platform, and that one of the best ways to do that was to begin blogging. I tried to explain that I didn’t have much to talk about, and even when I did, I’ve always had better success getting a response from myself in the mirror than from other people. (That was a joke, in case you were concerned…)

I created my blog and tried to incorporate as many interesting aspects as I possible could. Between poetry, posts on achieving happiness, traveling experiences, and daily journeys, I had hoped that I could maintain the interest of just a few fellow bloggers, or at least my mother. Well, here we are three years, over 500 followers, and 101 posts later. I couldn’t have made it this far without each and every one of you, and I truly mean it.

A little inspiration goes a long way and I was hoping to help inspire any and all followers that would be joining me on my blogging experience. Little did I realize though, that within these few years, my fellow bloggers would be the ones inspiring me. You have all inspired me through your blog posts, comments on my posts, pushes to continue writing, and especially through your encouragement and motivation to not only make me a better person and writer, but a better blogger as well. And to be quite honest, that is more than anything I could have ever imagined or asked for, and for that, on this three-year blogiversary, I’d like to celebrate with all of you.

I ask that you help me celebrate my blogiversary by commenting with the link to your blogs so that others can follow you all as well. My fellow bloggers have opened so many doors for me, so I’d like to try to help open at least one for you. And with that, I’d like to make a toast to my fellow bloggers for helping me make it this far and for welcoming me with open arms into the world of blogging. If you want to treat yourself to some cake or champagne, by all means help yourself so that we can really get the celebration going! (The best part of an online party is that I don’t have to supply the food or drinks and you don’t have to supply the presents!) I hope that this experience continues for years to come, especially so that I don’t have to go back to talking to myself in the mirror. (Again, a joke.)

Completing My First Half Marathon

Yesterday I ran my first half marathon (13.1 miles) and it was such an incredible experience, to say the least. To have weeks of training pay off and to say that I was able to accomplish something I would have never thought possible, was extremely reassuring and motivating. We arrived at the American Airlines Arena, at 5:00 in the morning, along with 20,000 other runners from eighty countries and all fifty States. The race officially began at 6:15 but since my brother, sister, and I were assigned to the last corral, it must have been close to 6:50 by the time we finally started. We crossed the Miami Causeway, passing by the Port of Miami where all of the cruise ships were docked. As we made our way into South Beach, we ran along Ocean Drive, home to the Versace Mansion as well as the Miami Art Deco District. From there, we cut through a few streets which led us to the Venetian Causeway, before passing through Downtown Miami and finally arriving back to the Miami Airlines Arena.

The nonstop energy from the runners, and the support from local spectators are what truly made the half marathon so worthwhile. People held posters, passed out energy chews, and offered high-fives as we ran past them, but hearing their cheers and words of encouragement helped us make it to the end. Some of the more comical posters like “Chafe now, brag later,” “Why do all of the cute ones always run away,” and the ones pictured below showed how supportive the locals were, making the event that much more enjoyable. It was beyond rewarding to cross the finish line and know that hard work and determination really did pay off. Not to mention, with the help of family members, friends, and fellow bloggers, we were able to raise $1,200 and counting for Misioneros Del Camino, a home to abandoned, neglected, and abused children in Guatemala.

Setting a goal and working towards it, achieving the goal, and running for a cause has been an unforgettable experience and I am so glad that I was able to follow through with it. I can’t help but wish that running in a half marathon was on my bucket list so I could say I successfully completed it. However, it was still rewarding, nonetheless! While describing their running experience, I heard someone after the marathon exclaim that the only person who ever doubted her crossing the finish line was herself. But it just comes to show that when you have your mind set on something, all you need is persistence and a little support to help you reach your goal. In an attempt to make myself sound like a master runner, I won’t tell you what kind of pain my legs were in after the race and how difficult it was to get into and out of the car on the way home. I’ll instead mention that I’m considering signing up for another half marathon in the near future, so it’s looking like this will be the beginning of a great running experience!

The Hug Award

The HUG Award

Hope Unites Globally

I have been nominated by Jen from Step On A Crack…or Break Your Mother’s Back for the HUG Award.

Jen is one of the many people who brings joy and wisdom into the blogging community through her insightful comments and great pots. I would highly recommend checking out Jen’s blog because not only is it an awesome read, but if you haven’t already met Jen, then you’re missing out! Thanks again for this amazing award!

For more information on this award, please visit:http://ahopefortoday.com/2012/01/14/hope-unites-globally-hug-award-guidelines/

I would like to give the following blogs a very big HUG for their insight, encouragement, and wisdom. Each of these bloggers make the writing process beyond enjoyable, and they all provide us with the gift of their blog, and for that, I could not be more thankful.

http://poetryandpersistence.com/

http://lostupabove.wordpress.com/

http://braininjuryselfrehabilitation.com/

http://hodgepodge4thesoul.wordpress.com/

http://50yearproject.wordpress.com/

http://ginlemonade.wordpress.com/

http://mamasgottabake.wordpress.com/

http://somethingville.com/

http://findingmyworth.wordpress.com/

Thank you for all that you do.

Best, Dan