Thursday, August 31, 2006

In the spirit of BlogDay

The spirit of BlogDay is to find new blogs totally different from our normal spot of blogging.

While I was looking for blogs, I thought about Koan's blog.. No, it's not new... but recently I find many of her posts have a much wider application than simply examining her rather interesting life. So, though she's not listed in my BlogDay post, I am writing about her here and suggesting you go check her out.

Koan Brenner
is as she describes it: 42 years-old, English, female, Buddist, music-loving, motorcyle-riding, insomniac, podcasting videblogging technologist.

Sounds interesting enough at that, right? Her blog is whole lot more.. as she blogs her life, including adjusting to a new body. It's an interesting read. Especially to see the ways that our lives are similar. Just before her recent breast augmentation surgery, Koan wrote:

Something I've been thinking about, a lot, is the consequences of a conclusion I came to, maybe six years ago. Back then, I convinced myself that I would never be passable - by which I mean, I convinced myself that there was always going to be the likelihood that when I met someone, they would (sooner or later, but eventually) work out my past. Six years ago, that conclusion was enough to stop me from beginning to transition. Three years ago, I still believed it - but, knowing that I had to transition or die, it shaped my transition. I realised that it really didn't matter to me if someone worked out my past, or not - I would still be alive, long after I would otherwise have been.

Choosing change (perfect or not) and life over staying the same but dying. How many of us have had to do the same thing!

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where I'm celebrating BlogDay!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Smudgy Seams

Another photo in my "smudged clouds" set. I promise tomorrow will be something different.

Bet Carol and others were about to send out the blogging huskies again to find me. Sorry. I have been working...

One of my Pickle friends is a rep. for a fabric wholesaler. So frequently she opens a huge suitcase of samples and asks us to please get them out of her house. The fabrics have been discontinued, so she doesn't need them anymore.

A week ago Monday I took 6 identical packets of flannel squares of a Halloween print (cute pumpkin things). The plan is to sew them together in a raw edge way... and have a really fast small quilt top. (84 squares to work with each about 4" square).


I have to pay attention to what I'm doing, or I automatically put the fabrics together the usual way.. which in this case, it wrong. I should have finished piecing this part in just over 2 hours, but I'm not done yet and I worked on it for about 2 hours. I've lost count on how many times I've had to unsew a seam.

When the center is put together, I will have to decide on a border. It's going to be too small without one (9x9 I think). With any luck, I have the center part pieced by noon.

I'm still playing the pieces I painted last week. It's just about set to start some stitching.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions. Where I'm writing my ToDo list...

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Hah.. Celebrity Reality...

Steve heard the ads for the new "talent competition" show.. Celebrity Duets.

"Humph. Celebrities dancing and singing.. how trite. You will let me know when they have celebrity mud wrestling, won' t you?"

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where I'm fighting a cold.

Part of the Plan Shared

After the first coat of paint was applied in the family room (9:30 am) the spouser cleaned up and suggested that we head down to IKEA to look at a couple pieces of furniture for this room. I hope to have this room more-or-less decorated by the end of October. (probably less.. but we'll see.) It would be the end of September, but... ooops those 3 weeks in the Midwest...

This photo shows a fairly empty room. See that ugly bookcase thingy at the left? That is leaving this room. I wish it would leave our house, but getting someone to pick it up? Almost as hard as getting the spouser to part with it. It is the first piece of new furniture he ever purchased (back in 1978).

Anyway the family room will be oriented to face the wall with the fireplace on it (ok in this shot? the rectangle of newspaper). I may cut a piece of foam to cover that stupid porthole window, and hang a picture over it. (the window is no good for anything but shining the morning sun in my eyes, but people find it a "charming touch".). Underneath there we will put this TV Stand that we picked up today. Between the fireplace and the windows, we will put this bookcase or one quite similar to it. That will hold the audio stuff, some books and nicknacks.

I want to find a small couch.. maybe one with a chaise kind of end to it to place in front of the fireplace. Microfiber would be good with the dogs. Steve's chair will go where the ugly bookcase is, and mine near the windows for the good light.

We are still talking about getting a rear-projection or other fancy new TV set in here. The major requirement is a screen that can deal with glare. Because there is a lot of glare along the back of our house. Even with the blinds installed.
See we have these windows to deal with in the family room. There are 2 not quite showing around the corner there on the left.

Plus these in the kitchen. My new computer spot until the painting is done.

And even sometimes glare from these in the dining room!! Though are usually covered with nice light sagey curtains (also from IKEA) hung from the wire system at the top of the shot.

Can you tell? I love IKEA!!

Oh, and for of you thinking: if I had that view out my windows I'd never cover them!! I thought that, too, when we first moved into this house. Until the day in February when it was 75 and sunny outside and my family room went up to 95.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions

Friday, August 25, 2006

Spouses! Can't live without and can't shoot them.


When Katy was recovering from her surgery, I noticed the damage her pen was doing to the wall behind her and mentioned that "we'll have to paint this room when she recovers." When it comes to painting, "we" means "Steve" (ya got to let them think they are needed for something practical, and I do the electrical and plumbing repairs.)

Also, for the past year Steve has been talking about cleaning all the windows in the house. Inside and out. Have I mentioned that we rooms 2 stories tall with windows going all the way up? Anyway, last month someone he works with put him onto a window cleaning guy who is coming this Saturday to do the job.

Yesterday we removed all the window coverings on the first floor. I'm washing the curtains and rehemming one set, then cleaning the wooden blinds. That my job this weekend.

He will begin painting the family room


Ceiling this weekend, walls next. The way he's going, he'll be done by 10 am. and could get the walls done today, but a plan is a plan.

Monday night he started clearing the room, taking down the mantle I don't want up anymore, the quilt that covers a window I hate.

I got up at 6:30 this morning, and the chair I sit in and watch the morning news? NOT THERE. My laptop that sits next to my chair? NOT THERE. His chair? THERE. That was 6:30.

It's 7 friggin' AM and he's moved everything out of the family room except the one big piece of furniture that won't be moved. The floor and said bookcase are covered with plastic. He's controlling the tv.


Ok this is one example of living with this guy. In September, we're back to Illinois for 3 weeks to pack up his mother's house and get rid of most of her stuff. She's demented (probably from a series of TIAs), and will remain in a nursing home the rest of her life. Now imagine the fun I will have with Mr. Spouser while we're there.

Oh, BTW, we'll be staying at the house. No Cable. A 16" TV from the 1970s. No phone. The only internet at Panera Bread. Please don't leave me when I'm gone!! (I will try to blog during those trips to PB to keep my sanity).

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions... like I'm not distracted enough here!!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Inspiration sources

Photo: An element from a sculpture.

Every once in a while we all just need some visual inspiration. Looking at patterns or colors and distilling what you see into your own work. Melody has written that she uses photographs of rugs and home dec items when she needs something...

Print and Pattern blog is a place to find some of this. Scroll down through the retro post-modern work, to the animals and bright graphic work of yamauchi kazuaki....there is inspiration a plenty here.

Another great place to look was pointed out by Sharon B. when she wrote about

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where I wrote about the weather...

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Yes, this photo is a little "improved". The clouds really looked like scratchy brush strokes, but that didn't come out in the photo. Saturating the colors made it unreal, but quite dramatic. I love this. This is facing east from my back deck.

Today I've already taken the dogs to the dog park, and did some picking up around the house. We're going out to supper with a friend early this evening, so I've got about 3 hours this afternoon to work. I've painted up fabric and batting, carved myself out a stamp (and have another drawn). This afternoon I'm going to fuse up some of the fabrics, cut the shapes and start playing.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

I haven't posted since Friday??

I haven't posted since Friday?? Really? Wait a minute.. I have photos of my friend Janice's new studio. I must go find those and post them.

Janice and her hubby have moved into what was a rental unit of thiers for the next 2 years (changes the tax situation when they sell). As this home has a very small efficiency unit on the lowest level (like an inlaw suite), she is using that as her studio.

This is right-hand side of the efficiency unit. Think of it as the sitting/sleeping area. Those two steps lead you up a platform (on the right... covered with fabric) that is the bed. There is a closet area behind that wall on the left.

Most of the supplies you see here are some of Janice's paper art supplies. the colored organizers (red, blue, green) hold stamps. I think the other organizers may hold stamps, too.

There is a nice "desk area" to organize papers and do small work, and a large work table.

This a shot from the kitchen side looking at the front part of the suite. That's Janice at the door. And see the nice large window in the sitting space? That's the work area.

In the foreground here is the kitchen counter space. In living situation this would be the eat-in area, but now it's a paper storage area.

The rest of the kitchen area. Xerox machine, space for wet work, and cupboards for more storage.

Look how cute the fabric looks in the glass-fronted cabinets of the kitchen.

Janice says this will all be sorted out, UFOs finished, and ready to move back into their main house when the 2 years are up. We'll see!!

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions
where I'll be writing about walking the dogs.

Friday, August 18, 2006

I must have it nearly perfect this time...

I just added a couple new songs to the ever-growing playlist of music for my MP3 player.

Every couple weeks Ipick and chose about 40 songs to download. Yes, I have more than this, but 12 songs or so are usually a walk-length listen.. so this gives about 1/2 a week before I need to repeat. And knowing I like every song and they are all "walk tempo tested" is a benefit.


This week I start listening while I walk.. and don't take the earphones off until I've run through everything! The mix of heavy and less heavy rock is great. I find myself smiling and happy and incredibly energized... then pulled back to calmer but still happy energy level.

I added some Simple Minds, Boston and (as I said) Smashmouth to my normal mix of Santana, Los Lonely Boys, Jethro Tull, Meatloaf and (ofcourse) Dire Straits. Quite Happy Happy, and I shuffled the arrangements so no person performs 2 songs in a row. I'm constantly surprised!

I also just today realized that often when I'm spending time a group, I seem a bit "dull" because the music that's being played is softer or (to my senses) duller than I prefer (think Celine Dion or that blind guy who sings Italian). So the background music saps my energy. I have a feeling many friends would be surprised to see me with my earphones on, head bobbing and dancing around the house singing.

So how many out there are calmed by rock music?

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

My notes say this piece is Paul Klee's Tunisian Garden.

I am constantly intrigued by the way his paintings look like quilts. Simple shapes, repeated in differing scale, and a variety of colors. Sometimes sharp lines, sometimes blending from one to the next.

This piece has been in my photo inspiration file for ages, so I'm dragging it out to use. Yeah, I could collage together a piece with similar shapes just to get myself back to work, but I'm going to try and limit myself to only using the color pallete. Then construct a collage using some of the graphic sketches I've been working on to both paint on top and use as appliques.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where I've blogged about Cute Shoes, Lemon Chicken and Katy's full recovery.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Clara Cried.

I often mention my Pickle friend; the shows we attend, the trips we take, the way we get together each week and support our lives. One tradition is to have a party when we hit a "Big Zero" birthday. Monday night, was Clara's 50th Pickle Party.

When these began eight years ago, the idea was that each person would receive 50 fat quarters and a collection of buttons, beads, threads, and other good stuff. Several months ago, Clara mentioned to another Pickle (HI, Del!) that she didn't NEED any more fabric. We put our heads together behind her back, and came up with a plan. Clara has wanted to do a crazy quilt for a while. She's talked about it, and talked about.

Now she can stop talking. We gave her a Crazy Quilt in a Bag.

We each made her a couple crazy pieced blocks, in pastely and light colored fabrics, added some of the trims and threads to finish each block. The party hostess (Jeanne) then found this great case (in the scrapbooking section at JoAnne's) to put it all in.

Clara has 25 blocks and all these threads, trims, beads and buttons to work with.

Some examples. This is one of the blocks I made. The color is bad because the flash was off, (sorry). The center is hand-painted silk.

This is a different block, but a better example of the colors of most of them. Sorry, I'm not sure who made it. (Debbie?) Silks, satins, ribbons and cottons were combined to make some the blocks. Others are all cotton. And although each person made their blocks independantly, they all go.

Another Block Sans Flash. Sorry. This one has several pieces of kimono silk in it and a gorgeous piece of lace lightly tacked in place. Made by Karen. The blocks were all oversized, so Clara can trim them all up to the same size.

Several years ago, one of our more senior members died. For her funeral, we all quickly stitched up little squares with embroidery (thank goodness for machines with fancy stitches) which were used as a casket cover. One of the Jeanne's blocks used an extra square of this embroidery as it's center. Many of the threads given had belonged to my friend Linda (a fabulous crazy quilter) before she died. So almost all the Pickles and then some are represented in the quilt.

When Clara opened the present, she cried. Heck, as she heard the story of our plans, and the stories of the blocks, she cried again. She's probably crying today as she explains it to her coworkers.

Our next party is in November.... but you can't wait to see what we come up with for that occasion!!

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Life Maintainence

First, THIS was a sunset this past week. I missed getting the sun actually setting, which occurred in the very center of the "V" of clouds. Just imagine it.

This weekend has been spent in Life Maintainence activities. I have done most of the repair work on our lawn sprinkler system, cleaned carpeting and vacuumed, and gotten much yard work done.

This is all good.

The coming week I have a birthday party to attend one night and a play date scheduled one day. The rest of the time can be dedicated to something creative. I'm trying to work out some details of the plan that is really only instinct at the moment.

I know that whatever I do, it will involve intricate stitching and layering of details. That's about as far as it's gotten so far. I'm sketching graphics.. and thinking about ways to use them. I'm touching fabrics, fingering threads and waiting for the connections to be made in my sub conscious. I am confident NOW that very soon everything will suddenly "click" and concept will vision.

As these things are stewing, the physical action of cleaning and gardening is distracting the left side of brain so the right side can work.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where I'm pointing out a fun add on for bloggers who use Performancing and reporting on a small gardening/cooking experiment.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

See how this bush in divided in parts? That's kind of the way my day has gone. Errands upon to-dos upon chores. sigh.

First thing this morning, I heard from Angela at Kel-Aire. Funny thing is, I was just about to call her. Matt was scheduled to show up this morning, but I was the second visit. My furnace is in our attic; and it could be hot today. I thought he should come first thing; Angela and Matt agreed.

So 8:30, he's here's. Finished everything up by 10 am. Even asked me if I had any questions about my systems. That's why I like this company. When was the last time a serviceman asked if you had questions?

Matt leaves. I shower, get dressed, take the dogs for a walk and a trip to PetSmart. Home for a quick lunch, getting a load of laundry done and out of the line. Check out the sprinkler head I broke mowing the lawn yesterday. Broke the piece I found for replacing it. (sigh..). Grocery shopping. Maybe Home Depot will help me with the sprinkler head. (probably not).

Interspersed was thread selection, some browsing through my stash. Tonight I hope to recover the knitting that's gone off.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I LOVE the Tuesday Farmer's Market

I'll admit it; I shop around for my dream Farmer's Market. I visit the Saturday morning one close to my house. It's very small and appeals to our strong Asian population. The stone fruit is hard-as-a-rock, the veggies common and there's not much else.

Sunday mornings I can drive over to Martinez; while slightly larger, the new vendors are soaps, candles, jewelry. Still not what I want. We checked out Marin's famous Sunday market last month: Everything there was double the price of the markets in our county. And it was too crowded.

But Tuesday mornings I can drive 12 miles south to El Cerrito and be in heaven. Today I found white nectarines that are only 1 day away from ripe. As close as I will get. I found a booth selling raspberries, the last of the season blackberries and Red Heart strawberries. I got a "three-fer"--a carton of each berry--for $5. It will complete tonight's supper.

There was a vendor selling only heirloom tomatoes ($2.50/pound). I picked one of about seven types. Tomorrow's supper will include sliced heirloom tomatoes with slices of buffalo mozzarella.

I can plan 3 days worth of menus while walking around the market. It would be perfect if I also remembered to return on Fridays. I could cover the whole week.

NOW THE BONUS: The farmer's market is located right by a Trader Joe's. TJ's is the only place I can varieties of sheep and goat milk cheeses. So a stop at one place means a stop at the other. Most of what I need to fill out those menu plans I pick up at TJs. Healthy, delicious stuff and not too expensive.

So the important stuff: What's For Dinner, Tonight? A mixed veggie quiche made with freshly grated Pecorino and Manchego cheeses (summer squash, onions, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes) with a fresh fruit salad.

What else did I do today? Do some my work for BlogHer and sketched some design elements. And so far: 8822 steps.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

On The Launch Pad

Nah, the photo doesn't have a thing to do with the text. But it's a nice photo. And it's part of my neighborhood.

Ok, I am done with my post-blogher ramblings. Back to the real life.

Friday night I picked up the yellow cotton tank top I've been knitting most of the summer. I put it down at some point, and don't remember where I left off in a pattern. So instead of knitting further Friday, I ripped back to an obvious point and I'm knitting it again. I'm doing the last of the armhole shaping-heading up to the straps. (oh yeah.. THAT'S where I left off.. where I had to add the second skein of yarn. Oh well, too late now).

The sewing room is a bit messy and needs a thorough straightening up. Hopefully today. I have seen so many impressive graphics places in the past couple days, and they are registering as interesting design stuff. I just know that I'm in the "final stewing" stage before my next creative spurt erupts. Some time early this evening with some sketch paper, and some images to play with.

Hhmm... maybe pencil in a morning of fabric dyeing this week to get prepared.

I feel energy and enthusiasm beginning to pulse!!

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions where today I'm writing about a pit stop.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Showing Off

This week I mentioned two things I would talk more about. One was FilmLoop and the second was the kit from ZoomAlbum. I'm combining them here.

Below is a photo loop created in FILMLOOP. It shows the parts of the ZoomAlbum kit I recieved, what they are and what the end product is.

The FilmLoop folks believed this would a cool way to share all the photos from a party or event (you can import stuff from Flickr, like everything with a certain tag.) So they believed all the pictures from a party or conference could be shared this way. There is a blogher film loop with about 250 pictures looping through it.

I realized that we could take step by step photos for a demo, upload them into the FilmLoop program and show them as a mini-flash program on our blogs. A running loop how-to.

Ofcourse to actually see the whole loop and read my comments, you need to download the FilmLoop program. Bummer. But it's free, small and fast.

1. Would you do that? (download the program?)
2. Would you do that to see more details in a demo?
3. Would you do it if it meant you could access the demo photo loop whenever on your desktop?
4. Would you do this yourself?

Or are you happy scrolling through a blogpost a few times to pick up what you wish?

I'm really curious here. I see this an an app with great potential!!
So anyway, about these ZoomAlbums. These are kits you can purchase to make your own 12 page 3"x3" photo books. Each kit comes with material to make 3 books; that's the yellow kit. Additionally, you can buy a photo cover kit which would let you print 3 photo covers for these books. The software sizes and organizes everything for printing. The printed sheet tells you how to fold to make the book.

I think these would fun for a really special occasion things (the examples they sent me were a wedding day and a young girl. Possibly her first year or two.) Very cute little projects. I may have to break this open after a 50th birthday party I'm attending this weekend. NOT that I'd use this often, but I don't think this is something to use often.

As I said, there is a party this weekend with many of my Pickle-girlfriends in attendance. Lots of fun will be had!

Kowabunga, Martha!! All last weekend, I whined that I was only 2 readers away from averaging 100 readers/day. Just checked my stats: average numbers: 115!! Hello all my new friends.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Five Bonuses From BlogHer

BlogHer was frequently described as an "un-conference." That is, the connections made outside the sessions are as important as the lessons learned in them. Given that plan, the bonuses:

1. Nancy White. Nancy is a dynamo I've admired from afar. We've connected and I hope will be talking about really doing something with the Culture of Love concept in the future.

2. I met Buzz Brugerman from ActiveWords who wrote the guys at ZoomAlbum and suggested they send me a couple of their kits for review. I know they are winging their way to me as I write. And when I have time, I'll be checking out ActiveWords, too. Next year, Buzz and I have to chat.

3. My room mates. Thursday night I roomed with Elizabeth Perry, Friday and Saturday it was Pam. Two bloggers I've admired are now friends. What the entire experience should be.

4. Meeting several of the other BlogHer CEs I admire. Leslie, Maria, Kaylee, Britt, Liz , Tricia. Only wish there'd been time to meet more.

5. Sue Richards. If you are a woman "of a certain age" Sue is well worth reading. She is warm and engaging and freaking gorgeous!!

6. OK, I need to add another. Average Jane. We shared a table Friday morning.. and again Sunday morning. A charming, intelligent woman (and heavy metal rocker!!)

Anyone else I missed??

Check out my other blog, Deb's Daily Distractions, where I'll be reacting to this week's Project Runway.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Five Things I Didn't Love About BlogHer

I'm not going as far as to say I Hated These Things.. They were simply the things that detracted from the experience.

1. Sponsors with a flawed marketing concept for the group. While several of the sponsors had spot-on concepts and presentations (Saturn, Film-Loop, Six Apart), others were woefully inappropriate. MSN marketing Live Spaces to already bloggers? Elexa by Trojan passing out t-shirts that would primarily fit a 8 year old? Contrex giving us "european mineral water" (not necessarily a bad idea) and telling us that drinking it would make us skinny?

None of these companies quite grasped the concept that this group of women was savvy. That many were highly educated. That they couldn't talk down to us.

2. Poor connectivity. You would think that telling a center you will have 700 people showing up who will all want free wifi all the time, would convince them to have the infrastructure to deal with that. Not true. Apparently the Hyatt thought our demand would be no greater than 700 businessmen checking email. That, and most people couldn't find our complimentary connection so they ended up signing up for the $25/3 days cost.

3. Sessions that somehow didn't/couldn't live up to their description. Heather Champ, who did the session on digital photography, admitted she expected to be talking to maybe 15-25 people NOT the 50-100 that attended each section of the session. And she did it well. Other presenters, promising a lot, left me thinking that I made poor choices. After talking to other attendees, I'm thinking instead that there was a gap between expectations and reality.

I'm not sure how this could be fixed. But next year I'll probably position myself where it will be easier to leave a session when I realize it's not panning out.

4. Some of the food options. Mainly having only 2-3 stations for serving food by the pool meant long lines. And for the $25/ticket price.. I think we deserved a bit more than cold cuts and melons (all I got on Saturday night) and one drink. However the lunches were yummy; with chicken, veggies and fruit offered, and delicious desserts.

5. The sense of us/them inclusion/exclusion. There is a huge discussion going on post-conference about the mommybloggers. Those of us outside that realm had experiences of feeling marginalized by the mommybloggers; they claim we're mistaken. All I know is there was frequently a "in crowd" and "everyone else" division that nobody really anticipated.

Fortunately, the organizers are already evaluating actions for next year to deal with this.

Tomorrow: some of the highlights you might find only at a primarily woman-oriented function.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Five Things I LOVED About BlogHer

I'm slowly processing my reactions to the weekend at BlogHer. I decided that I had to start writing some of this down before it slipped into the muddle of my menopausal mind. So I'll start with some of the high points.

1. I loved meeting people I read, even if only infrequently. I embarrassed myself constantly when meeting someone, to suddenly have their face and their photo click in my mind. So to the introduction: "Hello, I'm Betty Blogger". My mind would say.. Betty Blogger's photo.. look at this face in front of me, CLICK. And ALWAYS come out with: Yes!! You Are!!

Like they didn't know who they were!!I know it was my way of processing, or recognizing.. but I'm sure I sounded like a dingbat.

2. I loved meeting other people who blog and love it. Most of people I know IRL don't have the same passion. Most, let's admit it, either shrug at the word or more honestly say: I've read a few.. and what's the point? I could glaze their eyes over with techie speak: social networking. yada yada. Instead, I just keep this part of my life private. Another case of my feeling the need to segment myself. No segmenting at BlogHer.

3. I loved learning about a couple new applications. One vendor was thrilled when mid-talk I suddenly saw a way of using their product on my blog in a way that they hadn't considered. I'll be playing over the next few days and giving this a try within a week or so.

4. I loved being around strong, verbal intelligent women. I've said before that the reason I cherish my Pickle friends is the chance to experience intelligent women. Way too often in my life, I've felt the need to "dumb down" around women; at BlogHer I needed to smarten up. And when Nancy White told me she considers me a writer? Made the entire day.

5. I loved some of the schwag. We got really cools bags from Six Apart (typepad), and jump drives from Saturn. Got some cute "mommy" stuff that I'll pass along, and several books. But we also got sugar substitutes and condoms (?) which I could have done without. And all conference we were supplied with one brand of bottled water that didn't taste particularly good, and marketed itself as the water that will make you skinny!! (NOT). I get that these were people learning that it's important to market to women. But when will they learn that marketing to smart women means they have to market smartly?? I can only hope that the message gets through someday.

Not on the list, but a great experience: Friday night I sat at a table with a number of edu-bloggers (educational bloggers). In raving about the DOPA someone at the table decided that this law exhibits the current administration's culture of fear. And it was decided that the only way to fight it was with a CULTCHA OF LOVE. We started grabbing each person who passed by, trying to enlist them, we sang John Lennon, we got "that look" from the tables around us.Older savvy women on tear!! It was delicious.

Now BlogHer we know is atleast half about the social networking, so this is a good list to start with, but did you notice a lack of love for the sessions? Not that hated them all. But, I'll write more about the things I didn't love tomorrow.

Check out my other blog: Deb's Daily Distractions
later today where I'll catch you up my everyday life (the AC, my TV obsessions and this week I hope to hire a trainer).