Friday morning I packed up and left for St Louis to meet with a few parents who have special needs children and are fellow bloggers on Exceptional Family TV. Jimmy stayed home with Dani to keep her on schedule, so I was footloose and fancy free.
Prior to leaving I had the best time wrapping presents for the children and their parents because, even though we'd never met, we are linked by a special bond that requires no introduction. I was eager to take the trip and arrived to no disappointment. We were all welcomed into the Oswald's home with open arms, given our own part of the house to spend time together and get acquainted, and fed some scrumcious food.
Driving in from Tennessee came Susan, Exceptional Family's CEO and Executive Producer. She and I had spoken many times over phone, on Skype, and through emails, but nothing takes the place of a personal meeting and it was a pleasure to see this talented lady. What cracks me up is how different Susan and I are. She's a global thinker who dreams BIG dreams, while my brain resides comfortably in a box, struggling to accomplish even the smallest of tasks. Her big ideas used to intimidate me but I've learned to respect the talent God has granted her. After all, if she were me, Exceptional Family TV would not be the success it is today.
I also met for the first time Tara Ecklund, eFamily TV Sales Representative and mother to sweet little Lilly. Tara and I hit it off from the get go, even though I'm not sure how anyone could not get along with her. She's simply beautiful inside and out, and what a terrific mother. I don't know how many times I watched her care for Lilly and prayed I'd done half as well when Dani was that age. Tara has a great sense of humor and was a great air mattress filler upper. She worked hard to adjust my bed to fit my needs and we were like two silly girls as she filled up my mattress a second time and took advantage of the moment by blowing me in the face with the blower. I like cheap fun and that was a hoot. Once settle in for the night, Tara and I talked in the dark about all sorts of things, just like roommates in college.
Then there's the Oswald's who opened their home to our tribe. They have five children in all, one of which is Katy who has special needs. Their home is a true home filled with love, discipline, and respect. Their generosity made our weekend a success and for that we say thank you!
Here are a few pictures of the journey.
Heading out at dawn.
If you look real close you can smell the coffee.