Hi everyone! I hope you all had a great week. I had a blast at FinCon, and this edition of being grateful definitely revolves around that. I’m going to do a quick list format, otherwise I’m sure I’ll run the risk of rambling on and on! I’m being grateful for…

  • Meeting my “internet friends,” as Melanie put it. I think everyone I met was equally excited about this. There’s just something about being able to put a face and voice to someone you’ve been conversing with in comments and emails!
  • How nice everyone in the community is. I met other bloggers that I hadn’t interacted with before, and everyone was awesome. They also expressed the same thoughts. We truly are a bunch of caring money nerds. =)

    Being Grateful - Forty-Forth Edition
    Grateful for freebies!
  • One of the highlights was meeting with the Careful Cents team! All of these ladies have been a tremendous inspiration to me, and I am seriously honored to be a part of the site. It’s always great to meet up with other freelancers/solopreneurs to share your struggles and ideas with. (Sidenote: if you haven’t checked Careful Cents out, and you’re working on becoming a freelancer, you should. There’s a lot of invaluable information and advice there!)
  • Jeff Goins’ keynote Friday morning. Simply amazing. I was really looking forward to hearing him speak, and he didn’t disappoint! If you don’t know who Jeff is, you should check him out, especially if you’re struggling to consider yourself a legitimate writer versus a “blogger.”
  • Can I just repeat, I’m really grateful for how nice everyone is. I was super excited to meet Kassandra (who is hilarious, by the way), but she ended up being my saving grace Thursday night. I was an idiot and hadn’t had much to eat all day, being that we left at 5:20am and were on the road for 12 hours. I rushed to get ready for the reception, and didn’t have time to grab a bite to eat. Unfortunately, it got the better of me, and I nearly passed out at the Ignite event. That was extremely embarrassing for me, but everyone was really supportive and caring; especially Kassandra and Dee. I can’t thank them enough for being there and checking in with me the following day.
  • R, of course, because he drove the whole way down with little complaint. The drive was surprisingly not bad, and time flew by! R commented that conversational podcasts were less sleep-inducing than music ones, so we listened to some informative pieces along the way.
  • Being surrounded by everyone who loves to talk about money. Everyone I’ve spoken with said the same thing. No one else in my life cares about personal finance as much as I do, and it’s nice to be able to chat with everyone about how important it is. Everyone here gets it.
  • Driving here has, in a weird way, been a cool experience. While driving on the interstate is kind of boring, it’s neat to say I’ve now been in and seen four additional states. I had never made it off the east coast until now!
  • One of the sessions having J.D. Roth, Jim Wang, Jeff Rose, and Luke Landes on the panel. Enough said.
  • Chris Ducker’s keynote, which was also amazing and humorous. Even though it was early in the morning, he got us laughing and talking with each other.
  • Melanie and I actually taking the opportunity to talk to Jeff Goins yesterday. I was freaking out a little inside, but both of us wanted to get out of our comfort zones. He is super nice and very insightful, which wasn’t a surprise. He gave me a lot to think about!
  • Lastly, I have to say I’m very grateful for PT and everyone who had a part in helping to organize the event. It wouldn’t have been possible without them, and I am already looking forward to next year. 2 full days was not enough!
Being Grateful - Forty-Forth Edition
View from the hotel

It was really awesome to meet everyone, but I am so sad that I didn’t get to see some of you! I think we all had a bit of a hard time trying to find everyone. The Marriott was huge, and there were 600 attendees there! I saw some of you that I wanted to say hi to, but didn’t get the chance. So Hi! if you’re reading this.

I really missed everyone that couldn’t make it, too. When they showed the Frugalwoods blog at the Plutus Awards, I did a little squeal. Just know I was thinking of all of you, and I hope we can all get together next year! It looks like the Frugal FinCon Fiesta was a hit, though. I have so much catching up to do!

I am very much hoping that our drive back will be as uneventful as our drive to NOLA. We made it to Mobile, AL, and stopped over for the night. If it’s one thing we’ve learned, it’s that driving during the day is better than driving at night, especially when you’re a little tired.

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend! I’ll likely post a more in-depth recap once I have a chance to.

What are you being grateful for this week? If you were at FinCon, have you been grateful for the chance to connect more personally with other bloggers?

 

59 Comments

  1. Kassandra @ More Than Just Money September 21, 2014 at 10:19 AM

    As I am sitting here in Washington waiting for my connection to NYC, I wanted to tell you that I am so glad you decided to attend and that I got the opportunity to talk with with you. I am really glad that you’re feeling in good form and tell R thanks for being willing to drive so much in order for you to have attended FinCon14!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:32 PM

      Aw, thanks Kassandra! I feel the same way. If I visit NY, we will have to get together, even if that means braving the Belt Parkway (don’t miss that road at all!). I have definitely been thanking R and told him the trip wouldn’t have been possible without him.

      Reply
  2. Brooke @PFTwins September 21, 2014 at 10:31 AM

    I am so glad you had a wonderful time! And I hope it helps your business too : )

    Maybe during the holidays when I am in your Charlotte area we can meet up for coffee and meet in person as well.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:28 PM

      Thanks! And yes, if you have plans to visit during the holidays, definitely let me know. Hopefully we can work something out!

      Reply
  3. Shannon @ Financially Blonde September 21, 2014 at 11:14 AM

    I am so glad that you got to attend the conference as well and loved all of the interaction you had. I had so much fun meeting my internet friends and making new friends. It’s truly a unique experience that is well worth the time, energy and effort. Safe trip home!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:28 PM

      Yes! It was so nice to see you that first night. Unique experience is right. I might have to prepare myself a little better for all the partying and loudness next year, though. =)

      Reply
  4. Kirsten September 21, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    Such good things to be grateful for! I think Frigalwoods is quickly on the way to becoming legendary! And I’m so glad you met up with Kassandra. I hope you and I will both be there next year and can meet in person :-)

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:26 PM

      I think so, too! I love how quickly some blogs catch fire, as it’s a lesson in what works versus what doesn’t. Meeting up with Kassandra was great, but I do hope we’re able to meet next year, too!

      Reply
  5. Tonya@Budget and the Beach September 21, 2014 at 7:42 PM

    Glad you had a great time. Everyone gets nervous if they’ve never been and it is reassuring to know that we weren’t lying when we said everyone was really nice. I’m grateful the heat has broken in LA and we’ve had some overcast mornings. The closest we get to fall.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:25 PM

      Oh I was *so* nervous, but I’m thankful I met a few bloggers I “knew” before the welcome reception, so I wasn’t going in there alone. I really wish you had been there, though! Today was oddly cool out, so I second that sentiment.

      Reply
  6. debs @ debt debs September 21, 2014 at 10:14 PM

    Super summary there, Erin, and congratulations writing for the Careful Cents team! Sounds like there were some great speakers and interactions and that would be so motivating. Alas, we were sorry not to be able to go, but tried to make up for it with Frugal FinCon Fiesta. Kudos to R for taking you! Something tells me you will be well fed at all future FinCons‼

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:24 PM

      Thanks Debs! Yes, there were a ton of inspiring and motivational stories going around. It was a pleasure being surrounded by such awesome people. You better be able to go next year! =) I want to meet you!

      Reply
  7. Will September 22, 2014 at 8:48 AM

    I’m super jealous right now!!!

    I’ll be there next year. I’m now headed over to Twitter to jump on the fincon15 hashtag!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:23 PM

      Awesome Will! My blog was pretty “young” which is why I didn’t go last year, so I’m looking forward to meeting everyone I didn’t get to meet next year.

      Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:21 PM

      Woohoo! I’m sure you won’t regret going. It seemed like a lot to pay at first, but you can’t put a price on meeting people.

      Reply
  8. MMD September 22, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    Sounds like you really got a lot out of it. I would have loved to have been there.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:20 PM

      There were a lot of takeaways, and I can’t wait to be able to watch all the sessions from the virtual pass. There were a couple I was torn on!

      Reply
  9. Nicola September 22, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Sounds like you had a great time! I will get there one day :)

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:20 PM

      UK bloggers should totally get together and have their own version. I’m actually a little sad that I only know 2 other bloggers from my state. I wish there were more!

      Reply
  10. anna September 22, 2014 at 2:49 PM

    Aww, so happy (and envious) for you that you had a blast at FinCon and got to meet a bunch of great peeps… and they in turn got to meet awesome you! It sounds like your freelancing career is also flourishing, and that is so awesome to hear. :) Very psyched for you for all that you’ve accomplished and continue to accomplish, Erin! :)

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:18 PM

      Thanks Anna! I wish you could have been there; I’d love to meet you some day! I miss your posts as it is, but I know you’re busy. =)

      Reply
  11. Melanie @ Dear Debt September 22, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    Meeting you was definitely a highlight! OMG I had such an amazing time. I just bought my ticket for next year! Meeting everyone felt like home for me, which was awesome. New Orleans is one of my new favorite cities and all the speakers did such a great job!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:16 PM

      Yes, I loved hanging out with you! It did feel like home in a way. This is our community! I was going back and forth on buying the ticket, but I might just do it, especially since there’s a refund if it doesn’t work out.

      Reply
  12. Michelle September 22, 2014 at 4:19 PM

    I wish we would have had more time to hang out. It was awesome meeting you!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:14 PM

      I know! Two and a half days just isn’t enough to fit all the hanging out in! I’d like to attend camp next year to try and remedy that a little.

      Reply
  13. Done by Forty September 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM

    So jealous! I’m glad you had a great time at FinCon Erin. I’ll have to make it next year, after I’ve had a chance to save up more time off.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:14 PM

      I hope you get to go next year! But you took some amazing and worthwhile vacations this year that I am jealous of. =)

      Reply
  14. Melissa @ Sunburnt Saver September 22, 2014 at 7:12 PM

    Free swag is the bessssssst! And so is meeting up with ‘internet friends’ :) I can’t wait to hear about Jeff’s speech and everything you learned!! Welcome back! :)

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:13 PM

      Oh yeah, I loved all the free stuff! You would have had fun at the Expo Hall. =) My recap will probably be trickled in here and there; I mainly wanted to soak things in, so I want to re-watch sessions once the footage is released.

      Reply
  15. Natalie @ Budget and the Bees September 22, 2014 at 8:12 PM

    It sounds like you had an incredible time! I’m glad you found everyone so supportive. Your recap really makes me want to meet everyone!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:11 PM

      You should go next year! By that time Budget and the Bees will have taken off big time. =)

      Reply
  16. Katelyn @ Diaries of a Wandering Lobster September 22, 2014 at 9:02 PM

    I’m so jealous! I followed along on Twitter all weekend. It sounds like a blast and I’m definitely putting it on my calendar for next year. Any idea where it will be?

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:10 PM

      Yay, that’s awesome! The location has yet to be announced, so I haven’t the slightest idea, although I think it’s in the works. Considering it has been held more toward the center of the US, I would venture a guess to say somewhere over there. Hopefully we’ll know soon.

      Reply
  17. DC @ Young Adult Money September 22, 2014 at 9:39 PM

    If the timing is right it’s pretty much a no-brainer that I will be at FinCon next year. I feel like I really missed out the past two years and would really love to meet everyone. I feel like I “know” a ton of people – including you – but haven’t met them in person. It would be awesome to be able to do that.

    Quick Question – Did R go to FinCon or just hang out at the hotel and around New Orleans? Victoria would like to go with if it works with her grad school schedule but I’m not sure whether I should get her a ticket too or if it makes more sense for her to just hang out and relax around the hotel? Anyway, thought you might have some insight with R going with you.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:08 PM

      You better go! Even though I’m pretty shy, it was so easy to open up to everyone since, well, that’s what I do on here anyway! I think it’s safe to say we all felt connected to each other.

      R did his own thing. He wouldn’t have gotten any value from FinCon as he’s the furthest thing from a blogger. He walked around most of the day and took in the sights. Truthfully, he only came with me as I wouldn’t have been able to do the drive by myself! So I would say it might be worth it if Victoria is interested in the sessions being offered. There’s a lot to take away even if you’re not in the personal finance niche.

      Reply
  18. Dee @ Color Me Frugal September 22, 2014 at 9:51 PM

    It was awesome to get to met you in person Erin! I loved every minute of FinCon- it was SUCH a good conference and it was so fun to meet so many of my internet friends! Hope to see you there again next year!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 22, 2014 at 10:05 PM

      It was fun meeting everyone! I was pleasantly surprised that you were there. =) I definitely plan on going next year, so long as the timing works out.

      Reply
  19. Jayson @ Monster Piggy Bank September 23, 2014 at 4:28 AM

    I should have gone to the FinCon to meet all of you. Next Fincon, I am planning to attend to have a chance to personally thank you for your posts. Erin, I love the freebies.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:54 PM

      Awesome Jayson! It’s a great time. I loved the freebies, I only wish I had grabbed more!

      Reply
  20. Mrs. Frugalwoods September 23, 2014 at 6:24 AM

    Awww, thank you for squealing for us :)! Now I feel all warm and special! We were bummed to miss it, but I’m just all the more excited for next year. Sounds like it was an awesome time–I’m so glad you ended up being able to attend!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:54 PM

      Of course! It stinks to have to wait a whole year before the next conference, but I can’t wait to see how much Frugalwoods will grow. =)

      Reply
  21. Debt and the Girl September 23, 2014 at 6:59 AM

    It sounds like you had an amazing time. It sounds like there were some really good speakers. Wish I could have been there. Oh well, maybe next year!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:53 PM

      You should go next year! If this year was any indication, next year is sure to be amazing as well.

      Reply
  22. Holly@ClubThrifty September 23, 2014 at 7:40 AM

    Yep, FinCon was awesome. I’m definitely grateful for the experience- so much fun and I learned a lot! Cant wait for next year!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:52 PM

      Me neither! I wish there were more bloggers around to have little meetups with throughout the year.

      Reply
  23. Debt Busting Chick September 23, 2014 at 8:22 AM

    Glad you had a great time at FinCon. It must have been nice meeting bloggers in the flesh. You talk a lot online and get used to talking to a screen. It’s nice to see a face.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      Yes, exactly! It was a little crazy to see everyone and click so well with them after “talking” with them for over a year.

      Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      Thanks Stefanie, it was lovely meeting you, too!

      Reply
  24. Andrew@LivingRichCheaply September 23, 2014 at 10:21 AM

    So cool that you got to meet internet friends in person! Glad you were able to make it down there…what podcasts did you listen to? I’m not sure if I can find a conversational podcast that both my wife and I would be interested in. I’d love to go to FinCon…but I’m also a bit of a wallflower but I always hear that everyone is super nice and friendly. Another thing is that if my wife and son come along, I don’t know if they’ll enjoy it…we’ll see where they have it next year.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      R is definitely not into entrepreneurship, but I think there are great things to take away from podcasts that talk about doing what you love, so it’s worth a try. He didn’t seem to mind them!

      Smart Passive Income Podcast, The Portfolio Life, How Did You Get Into That?, The New Business Podcast were a few that we liked. You could also listen to some TED Talks.

      Trust me, my natural inclination is to be a wallflower, too. I think I met more bloggers who identified as introverts than not, but we all made it! Next time, I will definitely stay in the hotel where the conference is, because it makes stopping by the room easier. I did feel bad leaving R on his own, but he had fun walking around the city. If it’s in a spot where you can vacation out of it, you should go!

      Reply
  25. Brian @ Luke1428 September 24, 2014 at 8:56 AM

    I was incredibly impressed with the conference…it was much more than I anticipated. And I agree, the great value is in the one on one interaction with like minded people. In the normal world, many people don’t get “blogging.” Not so at this conference. Everyone has something in common. Loved getting to meet you and chat for a bit. I’m already looking forward to next year!

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 24, 2014 at 1:42 PM

      Same here, Brian! Part of me wishes we could have a conference every six months, but I think that might be too much craziness to deal with. =) I did meet a lot of bloggers from the Atlanta area, though – you guys should have a meetup of your own!

      Reply
  26. Syed September 25, 2014 at 12:26 PM

    Thanks for the great recap! Sounds like it was a lot of fun I will definitely try to make it next year.

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 25, 2014 at 3:38 PM

      You should! I have a feeling the number of people that will be attending are only going to grow.

      Reply
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  28. Lisa September 29, 2014 at 4:00 PM

    I absolutely loved finally meeting you at FinCon! Wish we got to spend more time together :)

    Reply
    1. Erin M. September 30, 2014 at 10:27 AM

      Me too! I feel like I barely saw anyone on Friday. Hopefully next year!

      Reply

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