Wednesday, November 09, 2011

How Blogging and Social Media Have Changed My Life

NaBloPoMo 2011
I blog and keep up with the social media world in between teaching, family, farm, and home duties.
Through blogging, I have made connections with people I wouldn't have otherwise been able to speak with. When I felt isolated and alone during my high risk pregnancy, I turned to people who were going through similar experiences. Though am extremely thankful that I had the love and support of friends and family, it's sometimes hard for those to understand if they aren't experiencing what it feels like to have a premature baby, all the crazy roller coaster rides of emotions that go on when you have a baby in the NICU, and so on. I couldn't have survived everything without my family and friends, but I also couldn't survive without my online support network too.

People I had become friends with through blogging had become more than just online friends. They had become a part of my life. Some blog friends and I visit each other with our families, attend each other's birthdays (and birthdays of our children), send care packages for Christmas, etc.

The blogging world didn't only open up a new support network I likely wouldn't have received elsewhere, but it has opened up other connections.

Since the birth of my daughter and since blogging about high risk pregnancy, hospital bed rest, premature babies, and life in the NICU, I've been in contact with other bloggers, companies, PR firms, online communities, charitable organizations, and celebrities.

I've been given opportunities that I would have never expected in a million years. It actually still shocks me to think that I'd be invited to events like the ShesConnected Conference and be able to network with big brands like PurdysChocolate, Toshiba, Ford, etc.

It still amazes me that I've been fortunate to participate in so many fabulous blog tours with Mom Central Canada.

Even more amazing is that through all the interactions on social media (online communities, the blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc), I've been selected to be on various panels. The first one I was on was the BornFree Canada Mom Panel, where I wrote articles and spread the word about BornFree and their products. Since then, I've been selected for the Hallmark Canada Press Pause Panel, Life Choices Foods' LCMamas Ambassador program, and now I'm a Toshiba Brand Ambassador!

I've been able to work with brands, write reviews and host giveaways. I've even been given an amazing FoodNetworkCanada/Recipe to Riches blogging opportunity (thanks for the heads up, @Gingermommy!).

I was even a recipient of the Mom Central Canada Bloggers Grant Summer 2011.

I have to say that Twitter has also been instrumental in getting me in contact with amazing people. I never imagined being able to tweet on a regular basis with people like Dana McCauley, Melissa & Doug, Mabelhood, Julie Cole, and now Melissa from Recipe to Riches! The list of my favourite social media superstars to tweet with goes on and on.

A special thanks to my Twitter friends for your support and love. You've helped me cope with balancing work and family, dealing with toddler tantrums, and catching annoying fruit flies in my kitchen!

If you're on Twitter, you should follow my lovely friends: @Gingermommy, @AskMamaMOE, @SassyModernMom, @Listen2Lena, @AMotherhoodBlog, @MPMtweets, @BewilderedBug, @HabitueTO, @JustNikiV, @MomvstheBoys, @MapleLeafMommy, @nugglemama, @MyChaos, @TeacherMomofTwo, @SoberJulie, @MommyMomentBlog, @AllLocallyMade, @CouponMomCanada, @GGirlGGreen, @tjzmommy, @mabelhood, @WhispersInspire, @_littlemisskate...and the list goes on!

It still blows my mind to think how all of this happened. Seriously. Me? Little 'ol me and my little 'ol blog? It's all very exciting. I had no idea years ago that writing about how my preemie and I were coping in the hospital would end up becoming all of this!

This whole experience has been an exciting and enriching one for my family and for me. I am looking forward to even more fun!

*This post is part of my NaBloPoMo 2011 challenge here.*


Mom vs. the boys said...

You are so super sweet it's no wonder people gravitate towards you! twitter wouldn't be the same without you!

Dana McCauley said...

Such a sweet post - like you! I find social media very enriching, too. It's like a circle of friends in a small community, isn't it?

C said...

Mom vs. the boys:
Ohhh! You make me cry!!! Thanks so much! (hugs) Really, really <3 you!

C said...

Thank you so much for your kind words. You're absolutely right. It is enriching and it is like a circle of friends in a small community! It also REALLY helps when you live where I do! :)

Tammi @ My Organized Chaos said...

What a wonderful post!!

Whispered Inspirations said...

Ahhh Christine, you are awesome and I miss you! You are truly one of the most genuine and sweetest person that I've ever met. You deserve it m'dere! :) ((HUGS))


Julia M. C-G said...

I'm so happy I got to meet you IRL at SCCTO so we could discover our connections even more! You are an incredible mama and I am happy to call you my friend. Congratulations on all your success!

Stephanie said...

What a sweet post! I am honoured to be included in your post and like you am truly grateful for every thing and every one social media has brought into my life! When do we get to meet again> HUGS!

Gingermommy said...

You are one of my favourite bloggers and women :) Thank you for such a great post, awesome blog and true friendship. HUGS to you

Julie Cole said...

Big smootch! XX

Melissa Lam said...

Wow...your post brought a tear to my eye and definitely tugged at my heart. I feel truly lucky to have met you...I always think everything happens for a reason. You are so very sweet, sincere, and kind. You deserve all the good and success that has come your way and what will continue to come your way. xoxo

Frau Guten Tag said...

I have wondered how you got those opportunities, I am envious. :)

Julia Gabriel said...

You are 10 kinds of awesome and I could myself very lucky to have you as a friend online. Thank you for being you!

Reshma said...

What a beautiful post! I'm so glad we've connected online. You are truly a sincere, wonderful person. The world needs more people like you!

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City girl moves to the country, falls in love, and marries a farmer. She tries to incorporate her city ways with her new country lifestyle and blogs to keep in touch with friends, family & students who live far, far away :) Can this city girl go country? Watch as she learns all sorts of exciting things about life on the farm and in a small rural community. *UPDATE* We are now parents! Our baby girl was born on Nov. 11, 2008 (at 28 weeks gestation- 12 weeks premature, but she's quite the trooper)!!!
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