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I was not going to put in my two cents about the Hunger Diaries article “written” by Katie Drummond in this month’s edition of Marie Claire. I was going to leave it all to the eloquent reponses of Kath, Tina, Caitlin, Meghann, and Heather. Really, I was.

But then I got to thinking. And the more I thought about the out of context words and images that Drummond painted the more I got angry. Mostly, I’m angry because I was lucky enough to attend the Healthy Living Summit in August. I was able to meet awesomely amazing bloggers and blog readers who shared my common passion in living a healthy…and HAPPY life, with the word “happy” being emphasized. And if Katie Drummond did not walk herself right into the Healthy Living Summit with an agenda, then I’d like a better explanation of her words, because the positivity in those rooms could not be ignored.

I’m not saying that the issues that Drummond speaks about in the article don’t exist. ED’s are alive and real within this blogging community and I’m sure they have been triggered by blogs. Maybe we should be thankful to Drummond for drudging all of this to the forefront—it should NEVER be ignored. But I believe the we are all so outraged about this because Drummond’s article takes advantage of those extremely serious, life-threatening issues and uses them in a sensationalist manner, to gain readers. The hypocrisy cannot be ignored…flip the pages in Marie Claire and see airbrushed models, emaciated and pushing these images into the minds of our youth…something that we as bloggers work tirelessly to break.

So please, look at some of my favorite pictures from this year. I hope that you will see a HAPPY, healthy woman who gains strength and power from fitness and healthy foods. Since I started seesinglive in April, I have made new friends. I have had new experiences. And I have pushed myself to achieve things I never thought were possible. If that is wrong, Katie Drummond, then I don’t want to be right.  

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The details are plentiful.

Amazing discussions…

Evan and Lin on Ethical Eating

Healthy Entertaining with Sabrina

Pressing Publish Panel on the Realities of the Blog World with Anne P. as moderator

and

Stop Staring Over Your Shoulder: How to Avoid the Self-Comparison Trap with Gena and Caitlin

Fabulous Food…

Beautiful People…(inside and out)

picture from Arnold, yes, I’m in there somewhere.

But what did I value the most? What will I cherish more than anything else about this amazingly awesome and enlightening weekend?

I was apart of something again… Something that everyone around me understood without even having to say a word (even though PLENTY of words were said). I honestly haven’t felt this way since I graduated from college, which is part of the reason I go on and on about how much I miss it all of the time. Don’t get me wrong, I love my family, my boyfriend, and my friends more than words can convey, but my passion for having a healthy body, mind, and soul isn’t something that many people understand the way this blog world does.

The short of it is that I felt very whole in Chicago this weekend, and for that I am thankful.

I’ll leave you with the most touching part of the discussions for me –hearing Katie tell her story.

(picture from Arnold)

She said, “These blogs that we all write show real women eating real food and exercising for pleasure rather than punishment, and having a really damn good time doing it. This is a message we don’t always see in mass media, but thanks to blogs, we all have a voice, and our voices are important.”

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Last night I attended my first HLS event–the Open Sky Cocktail Party at the LaSalle Power Co in Downtown Chicago. I was SUPER nervous all day. I didn’t know a single person going into this event, and I was worried that it would be cliquey and I would be standing alone like a fool! Fortunately that didn’t happen!

I bought this new dress at The Limited, and even though it was more money than I wanted to spend, I really like it and justified it by deciding to wear it to a few different occasions. I think I can through on some tights and a sweater with some pumps and wear it in the winter.

Anyway, I took a taxi downtown and was pretty much shaking walking into the event. My blog is still new and still a work in progress, and I felt like everyone else either knows each other or has established enough blogs that I wouldn’t be able to work my way into any conversations. But I was wrong, of course.

Everyone was VERY nice! There were plenty of ladies there who felt the same I way I did, and I quickly made friends–“blends” if you will–blog friends!

Tina, Heather, Kath, Meghann, and Caitlin introducing themselves and welcoming everyone to the event. These girls were so friendly and willing to chat with anyone!

Andrea, Kari, myself, and Courtney –a blogger from TROY! I’m so excited about this–I actually met a GROUP from the Capital District who do meet ups at least once a month. I cannot wait to get in on that!

Bloggers, Bloggers everywhere!

The food spread was fresh, healthy, and delicious appetizers. I choose two mozz and tomato skewers with balsamic, some chips with hummus, a chicken skewer, and vegetarian quesadilla. I had three (eek!) drinks over the course of the night, so when I woke up this morning I had a bit of a headache, but I was having a great time and enjoying everyones company.

I’m in between sessions at the Summit, sucking up Starbucks internet—more to come on today later!

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