I'm back from the 2011 She Speaks conference where I spent most of last week. Thought I'd share some of my memories, lessons and experiences from the week.
1. Upon arrival at the hotel Tuesday, I ironed my white pants and managed to burn my left hand on the iron. I sat through dinner with Lysa TerKeurst, Holly Good, Marybeth Whalen and Ariel Lawhon with my fingers in a cup of ice. When all my ice melted, Holly gave me her ice water. That's a good friend.
2. Wednesday was my birthday. I spent all day in She Speaks meetings. My girlfriends, however, lavished me with gifts. Scented soy candles. A cute teal leather purse. Beautiful stationary gifts from Rose Lane Cottage. The coolest travel kit ever. Books, dinner and more. I turned 29 in case you were wondering. I turn 29 every year - it's tradition.
3. I picked up a copy of Logos Bible software. Now I just have to carve out the time to learn to use it. I may get my pastor to help me with that. I showed him around TweetDeck this year, so maybe he'll show me around Logos. Do you use a Bible software program?
4. Led an intermediate-level speakers evaluation group. I loved my group this year! I'm thinking I say that every year. PS. Between you and me, it's not exactly fun to have to critique someone's presentation skills when they've just poured out their heart in a message, or taught passionately from the Bible. I wanted to give them all A's.
5. I discovered it's possible to get by on 6 or less hours of sleep for several nights in a row, but it does nothing for your complexion.
6. I loved meeting women at the P31 authors book signing. Note to Self: It is hard to sign 50 books in a row while wearing a chunky bracelet on your writing arm. You can't get your arm on the table to hold the pen normal. And then your writing looks sloppy.
7. The prayer room. It's the best place in the whole conference center. I should have gone in there earlier than I did this year.
8. Met Ann Voscamp and heard her speak. If you've ever read Ann, 'nough said.
9. I want a breakfast buffet like that every morning. Today at home I had just a protein shake.
10. I came down to the conference center on Sunday morning all chirpy-happy. I was chatting with Zoe Elmore and Carol Davis. Life was good. AND, I was going home in just a few hours. Couldn't wait to see my husband and kids.
Then Wendy Pope came over and said she noticed in the parking lot that my back tire was flat. My mood went flat too. (Did I mention I'd already spent $1600 on car repairs this summer?). But the two bell hops took off their white button downs and went to work putting the spare tire on my car. Embassy Suites Concord has excellent customer service.
Which is good, because I'll be spending my birthday with them again next year at She Speaks 2012.
Maybe you can join me - bring a chocolate cake that says, "Happy 29th, Rachel." And some Downy Wrinkle Releaser, please.