Hello from Columbus! What a wild and crazy week this has been at the Thirty-One Conference! Some lows, some highs and some mediums going on here.
If you're the praying sort, please do me a favor. Pray for a colleague of mine and her family. Miss W takes care of her sister who has some functional disabilities. We heard word that sister had a seizure and is entirely non-responsive. They are thinking she will not make it. Please say a prayer for them if you are so inclined.
That has been a low. I didn't know the sister but I have worked with Miss W on and off for may years. She was at my school went I student taught there back in 2006 and she has been an important part of my life for the past four years as a colleague and friend.
I arrived here in Columbus on Tuesday and later that evening got some news I wasn't sure if I should believe....and yesterday we got it on very good (insider) authority that it's not just a rumor. I praise God because I have prayed about this for a long time and I will be forever grateful if the news is true. I can't share much yet until I know for sure but just know that things will be SO different this coming up school year. Different for the very better: for my students, myself, my colleagues, our parents and families. All around this will be an epically AMAZING thing to have happened to our school family.
Thirty-One is, as you likely know, part of my heart these days. I love being a part of this amazing company. I really do. Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending "Super Day" which is an extra half day of key speakers who provide inspiration and knowledge. The women we heard from were absolutely amazing. I missed part of the second speaker as I was standing in line to get dinner and the gal I befriended here who is staying at my hotel said to me as we were waiting, "If we were meant to hear what she's saying, we would." I kid you not, we got back into the arena and heard the rest of her speech and she told us that she was a survivor of abuse as well. I teared up and felt a shiver down my spine to realize that yes...I was meant to hear that part of what she was saying. She had us all stand up, turn to each other, hold hands or put our arms around each other and say, "You are brave. You are beautiful. You are intelligent. And you are worth it." It was so powerful. I'm so glad I signed up for that extra day of training!
Today we had our general sessions. We got to see lots of new fall products (holy purple!! I LOVE me some purple!) and Leigh Anne Tuohy from The Blind Side was our guest speaker. What an amazing woman she is. Truly. Sassy and feisty just like me and it was wonderful to hear her message. Yes you CAN make a difference, just do it.
After the general sessions, my new buddy and I hit the conference store and I spent a lot more money than I probably should have! :) I got lots of goodies, many of which are conference exclusives so no one, not even consultants will be able to buy them later. I also donated to Thirty-One Gives and earned yet another ribbon on my long chain of them on my name tag. We went through the "Product Playground" and got to see ALL of the new products and colors in person.
OH.MY.WORD. I am going to go broke buying everything in that catalog for myself! haha!
Tomorrow we have praise and worship first thing, then our last general session and finally, after a long lunch break, we have our classes. I'm excited for those. They are trainings being given by other consultants who are "higher up" if you will and I've heard they are the best part of the conference. I'm stoked because while my heart is always going to be in the classroom and I WILL teach for many, many MANY years to come...I know God brought Thirty-One into my life for a reason. I'm not exactly sure what that reason is yet...but I'm hopeful by keeping on with what I'm doing that I'll figure it out.
I know, without a doubt, that my life's work involves helping other people which I do every day. Being a part of Thirty-One just helps me do it a bit differently.