And once again, The Internet will be playing the role of Family

“Are all of your friends bloggers?” Susan was looking around my house at the birthday party guests that had arrived. It was hard to miss the fact that nearly all of the adults were faces she recognized from twitter or some other Internet portal.

“Well, a lot of them are,” I explained.

“Man, none of my friends even get blogging,” she said. I realized that she was confusing the chicken for the egg in my friends to bloggers ratio.

“My friends don’t blog,” I tried to explain. “Most of these people are my friends because of blogging. I mean, I met almost everyone I know down here through the Internet.”

And the conversation wandered down some other path as Emma’s birthday party continued around us.

Emma’s birthday party was a raging success.

And once again, I have the Internet to thank.

I took a lot of the ideas that you guys gave me last week about what to do for a kid’s birthday. I scratched the traditional cake and took you up on letting the kids decorate their own cupcakes. I found a super cheap pinata and bubble machine (which doubled as one of Emma’s birthday presents!) at Wal-Mart. And mostly, I just let the kids run around while the adults talked over chips and cracks and pop and wine.

So truly, thank you for your inspiration. It’s nice to have a community like you all to turn to when my own fried brain is coming up empty.

Of course, even more than the planning ideas, I was reminded once again of the power of this blogging community as I explained my guest list to Susan. And later, as Jared and I marveled together over what Emma had experienced, I took stock over how much my family has benefited from this little blog.

Most of you already know this story, but it bears repeating. For me.

We moved here (where here is central Florida) about 18 months ago. We knew nobody, except my boss. Who I’d met on the Internet.

But it didn’t take long for the local bloggers here to reach out to me. They volunteered to be our family when the holidays came around. They invited me to movies and lunches and insisted we get to know one another. They even offered to by a girlfriend when I needed one the most.

It’s freaking hard to make friends as an adult in a new place. It’s even harder if you work in a tiny company and/or you find yourself getting kicked out of the local mom groups. I can’t imagine what I would have done if I hadn’t had the benefit of the Internet to provide common interests and an outgoing community.

This post is really late and rambly and devoid of pictures because of TWO dead camera batteries, but my point is –

thank you.

And don’t ever let anyone tell you the Internet is weird. Or bad.

Or that these people aren’t real people.

Because my kids can tell you, the families who show up at their door over and over again to celebrate with them – they are as real as it gets.

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