On This Morning’s Run … a Chat With a Friend

Good News Showcase Tuesday, August 18, 2015

As many of you know, I run nearly every morning. And for the last few years, I’ve listened to podcasts while out on those runs. Everything from “This American Life” and “Fresh Air” to “Hollywood Prospectus” and “The Treatment.” I usually come back from the run and post a link to the podcast, or some article that bubbled up out of listening to it, on my writer Facebook page.

I start with, “On this morning’s run, I listened to…

But on Monday, there was a little fun twist. It went:

On this morning’s run, I listened to… ME! haha! Pardon the weird meta moment (and braggin-telling™), but I had the honor of being a guest on the fab Lucrecer Braxton’s fun podcast, “Hello Friend.” She sent me the link this AM just as I was lacing up. Had a blast on the pod. We talked about writing, parenting, using your voice, dream vacations, and, of course, we laughed a lot! Here’s the link. It runs about an hour. Give it a listen. Thanks!

NicoleBlades_HelloFriend

So, here’s the link to that podcast. Hope you check it out! And be sure to click on through the other episodes of Lu’s weekly pod.

Another Week Like This, Please? (Or, Good News Alert!)

Good News Showcase Thursday, August 13, 2015

So very excited to share a bit of news! I’ve been invited to join Twigtale’s inaugural Parent Advisory Council. The company is about creating personalized parenting tools and children’s books to help our little ones process the bigger transitions happening in their young lives.

 

Twigtale-announcement-Twitter

 

As the announcement blog post says, Twigtale aims to connect children and parents through storytelling.

“You see, we believe that everyone has a story. There are plot twists and obstacles, but the magic will always remain in how we make meaning of the journey.” 

And, if you know how I move through this life, they kind of had me at “storytelling.” Actually, it was one of my earlier blog posts here on MMM — about talking the tiny human about big things — that really sold them on me! Always makes you feel good to know that something your wrote resonated.

I’m honored to be working with Twigtale, and look forward to the journey with this fine group of writers, creatives, thinkers, and parents.

More goodness to share …

My wise litter sister Nailah and I put together a global good panel that we’ve pitched for SXSW next year. And we’re so fortunate to have the superb Chrysula Winegar and Heather Barmore join us as speakers on the panel.

The pitch looks at how to use social media to turn compassion into ACTION. This feels timely and important — urgent, even — especially in this current climate in the U.S. and other parts of the globe. Hashtags can only go so far. It’s time to move beyond words and DO something.

TAKEACTION | Compassion to Action | SXSW 2016

But we need your VOTE. If you go to our panel link here, you’ll first be asked to sign in. Don’t let that be a turn-away thing. It’s easy; you can even sign in using your Facebook account. Once you do, you can vote (thumbs-up) for our panel.

Thank you for your support, friends!

One last piece of news … but this has to remain under the cloak for now. But I’ve been invited to speak at a major conference later this year, and I. am. hyped! Can’t wait to share this fun update with you soon.

That’s it, folks. Feeling pretty good. Although I’m still shaking my head about the fact that we’re already mid-August. *insert angry cat profile emoji*

Until soon, you can catch me on Twitter and Facebook (and here on FB too).

On Speaking and Storytelling and Relishing It All

Good News Showcase Monday, May 18, 2015

So, two fun things to share about me — Nicole, not Ms. Mary Mack — that aren’t really about parenting:

1) I’m going to be a speaker at the BlogHer 15: Experts Among Us conference in NYC this summer. My panel is essentially about, one of my favorite things: storytelling. More specific, it looks to answer the question, Where Does Personal Storytelling Fit In Today’s Social Mediasphere. It’s on July 17, 2015, at 11:30 a.m. Hope to see you there. And do make sure you say hello.

 

BlogHer 15 "I'm a Speaker"

And, oh, yeah… Ava DuVernay will be the keynote speaker! Of course this means I will meet her. Of course! I mean, I already brushed shoulders with her many moons ago when I was an editor at ESPN.com and worked with her then eponymous PR company a couple of times. I always remembered her. But then, you never really forget a name like Ava DuVernay, right?  And she has clearly proven with her vision and filmmaking that you simply will not forget about her. Can’t wait!

 

2) I was so honored to have an essay included in the fabulous book, Tales from Another Mother Runner: Triumphs, Trials, Tips, and Tricks from the Road that came out in March. Then, even more sweetness. The book’s editors, Dimity McDowell Davis and Sarah Bowen Shea — the talented duo that brought you the popular Run Like a Mother — asked me to join them for the Connecticut leg of their book tour. I happily able to read an excerpt from my essay (the same section I read on Dimity and Sarah’s podcast) and felt the swell of support from a room full of wonderful mother runners at my local running shop in West Hartford. It was pretty great.

One of those women in the audience, the lovely M.A.C. Lynch, contacted me this month asking if I would be down for interview with my husband about how he and I met and became a we.

Me + He | Ms. Mary Mack

(Me + He beaming at The Youngster’s pre-K “graduation.”)

The result was published in the Hartford Courant on Sunday, and the man and I are definitely tickled by it all. It’s nice telling Your Story again, you know? Remembering, reliving, and relishing it. And I hope you enjoy something from reading it now, too.

 

This Giveaway’s So Good, Might Just Marry It.

Good News Showcase Monday, April 20, 2015

These first four months of 2015 have been a glorious ride. Kicked it all off in January with some truly fantastic news: I landed a two-book deal with Kensington. Two novels! The first of which will be published in Fall 2016.

RoundnRound | Ms. Mary Mack

(Photos by me; @nbee3 on Instagram.)

Then we followed up with some wonderful birthdays — my son’s, mine, my mother’s, and my younger sister wrapped up the cake-day celebrations at the end of March. And let’s not forget that MMM turned five last month, too!

There have also been some firsts and fist-bumps for me professionally, starting with publishing my first essay for the Washington Post‘s On Parenting column. I have two(!) more essays filed with them, to be published soon. And then over the weekend, my first BuzzFeed post went live, and the reaction to it has been really good. I keep getting notices about it “blowing up” on different social media sites. Like McConaughey would say, alrigh’, alrigh’, alrigh’.

Plus, spring has finally decided to join us, here on the Northeast. And over the weekend, The Youngster showed us that he knows how to ride a Big Boy bike. From balance bike to real-deal two wheels …  my heart, my heart!

Talcott Reservoir | Ms. Mary Mack

(Photos by me; @nbee3 on Instagram.)

So, yeah. I think it’s time to spread some love up in here with a giveaway. And this one is so, so good — in every sense of the word.

I’m so pleased and honored to be able to offer up two outstanding products from fashionABLE, the company dedicated to creating sustainable business in Africa by working with local women there to help them start small business cooperatives. (Definitely read more about fashionABLE’s worthy commitment to create lasting change.)

Each product is named after one the African women with whom fashionABLE works, and there’s also a note attached to the item about what the woman was able to do through this partnership. (Special shouts to Liz and my Cool Mom Picks fam for introducing me to fashionABLE and all the good that is coming out of this group.)

The Mamuye Tote from FashionABLE | Ms. Mary Mack

This very special giveaway will see one lucky reader walking away with a Mamuye Tote, which is handcrafted in Ethiopia and made from 100 percent Ethiopian distressed leather. Listen. I have this tote, and I’m here to tell you all — dopeness! You will look fly with this slung over your shoulder. Trust.

Salam Scarf by FashionABLE | Ms. Mary Mack

That same lucky loo will also receive one Selam Scarf, which is 100 percent super-soft cotton and hand-woven in Ethiopia. Again, flyness is guaranteed with one of these medium weight numbers.

And all you have to do is leave a comment below, sharing some good news — could be yours or your neighbor’s. DASSIT! 

Honestly, how fab is this? Pretty damn fab, I’d say.

Good luck, good people. The winner will be announced at the end of this month.

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