Story at Home

This past weekend I attended the Story@Home conference - and I tell you! I was so inspired I pretty much decided that I should tackle the world and become the next Empress of the Universe.

Has a nice ring, don'cha think?

This conference was unique in that it was three conferences tied into one: Blogging, Storytelling, and Family History. I enjoy how the three things relate to one another - but there was so much good stuff for each that on day 2 of the conference, I was loathed to have to choose a track and miss the other classes. I mean, how often do you get a chance to hear a legitimate Jewish storyteller do his thing?

Basically, I went in as a blogger, and came out consumed by the desire to explore every cranny of my family history and tell EVERYONE's story EVER! (pant, pant)

It was beautiful - my favorite thing about blogging - people from all aspects of life coming together with a common goal: to share of themselves.

I got to see CJane fake-fight with Chup as they set up for their presentation.

I got to hear Rustin Banks' impressive story about how he quit his Aerospace Engineering job at the beginning of the recession to create Blog Frog, which is now widely successful. Talk about living outside the box! He kept telling us, "Don't live anyone else's script for your life! YOU write YOUR story!" Hearing him was extra neat for me because I grew up next to the guy, and I had no idea he was a closet-genius.

(I also didn't know his name was Rustin 'cause I always called him Rusty. Shhh, don't tell!)

Rachel Herrscher had us all in tears with her incredible, inspiring story of how her family's life was turned upside down when her husband was in a head-on collision coming out of the canyon after a rock-climbing trip (don't worry, he lived!).


Kim Weitkamp had us laughing to tears with her stories of growing up in the South and being enveloped in her large aunts chesty hugs. Icing on that Southern cake: she had a singing voice like an angel. She also provided me with my favorite quote of the event:

"Often we don't know the value of a moment until it is a memory."

Tragically and beautifully true!

I finally got to hear DeNae Handy speak - and she graced us with a lesson on how story resolution relates to music resolution (and how we're hardwired to crave it) using the Baby Steinway in the chapel of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.


The whole venue was beautiful. I mean, how lucky am I? Day One, I walked outside to get some lunch and got to hang out here:

(Also, Lizzie, Looka what the Sister Missionaries are wearing nowadays!)

It was two-days saturated with talented, successful and generous people; and I think I'll be going again next year, thank you!

Also, thanks to Don Julio for providing a mid-day pick-me-up!

And thanks to William, who joined me in the city for the weekend - such a treat! - and said,

"Oh, your feet are sore and blistered from walking around all day in ill-fitting (though attractive) shoes?...

...please! Have a new pair on me!"

I wear these puppies every chance I get!

Thanks, babe!

It was also lovely to see Stephanie and Charms on Saturday, and lovely to meet a new friend, Anne.

The whole weekend long, I just kept thinking to myself: if I could attend these types of conferences professionally, that's what I'd do for a living.

Although, I was very happy to see everyone at my 'real job' Saturday afternoon.

Even though they told me they would rather still hang out with Grandma and Grandpa.


Theresa Small Sneed said...

Great post Stepper! Sounds like a fun conference!

Stephanie said...

I'm so glad you loved it.

Nae said...

Sounds fantastic! I sometimes wish I could just go around attending cool conferences, too. USTA has a great one every year for science-teaching nerds! That's one of the only conferences I've been to.