I don't know if I mentioned it here, but we were traveling with my husband's family, and the trip was to celebrate his parents' 50th wedding anniversary. We were essentially making the whole trip (flight, hotels, etc) in tandem with his parents, so they inquired about our plans for our day in Seattle. Joe had mentioned that we were going to visit with friends of mine, but around day 6 of the cruise it came out that these were internet friends...people I had never actually met in person.
Crickets, people. And stares that indicated that I had obviously lost contact with my senses.
I remained unconcerned, of course. I know these people. Yes, you can get on the internet and create a persona for yourself that is entirely false and lead people to believe stuff that isn't true. But mommybloggers aren't like that. I think we all know this. We lay bare the details of daily joys and frustrations in our lives that we would not make up, even if we could. Our blogs exist to give us an outlet and to link us with others who are experiencing the exact same things, even though we didn't know it was possible for other people's children to be as truly adorable/exhausting/infuriating/lovable as our own kids are. I don't know how I would have survived Olivia's challenging infanthood/toddlerhood/preschool days (still working on surviving that) without the support and solidarity of these not-so-annonymous ladies in my computer.
My actual experience of my visit with Liz and family lived up to my expectations. Liz was just as wonderful as she is in the internet. She and Maggie are real-life friends as well as internet friends, so she also delivered a gift and wishes from Maggie. That, however, is for the second half of this post.
Liz and her family met us at the Seattle Center. We all had lunch and chatted and then walked around the grounds toward the Space Needle. It was unremarkable, as visits go, but the fact that it was so comfortable for our family to just hang out with her family was, I suppose, rather remarkable. But we kind of already knew each other, in many ways better than we know some of our real-life friends.
This visit bolstered my confidence in my internet friends, but there's more. Oh yes! The next day was our travel day to get home, which was a LONG day. We finally pulled into our garage after midnight. Traveling with a 4-year-old and then getting her so off-schedule that she's going to bed at 1:00 a.m. is not a fun thing. But then! We came into the house and found this box by the front door...
Rachel, whom I've never actually met face-to-face, but who knew about our vacation and about other things not previously mentioned here because of the wonders of our Twitter friendship. And she sent this lovely box full of little crappy day presents to me, a real-life stranger (although a virtual friend).
Since I was still in a post-vacation fog on Tuesday, I decided to open the first one...one of the small ones wrapped in blue. And I found these...