I like to think of Cari as my gateway blogger. She started reading and commenting on California to Korea waaaaaaaay back in 2011, when the only other people reading were my mom and mother in law. Oh, and Cari’s friend Lisa, who is also my friend and former co-worker, and who “introduced” us. I remember wondering who this funny Cari-lady was, and then (again, thanks to Lisa) finding her blog, Clan Donaldson.
Through Cari I discovered a vast ocean of other bloggers. Bloggers like me in many ways, different from me in many others. Before Cari, I didn’t read a single blog regularly. Now I have… 2 dozen? maybe more? in my daily blog feed. And it’s all thanks to her.
Then Cari took our friendship one step further. She invited me to consider the Disciples of Jesus and Mary faith formation program, and that’s where she really made a difference in my life. I don’t think words can express how much it has changed me for the better.
Enough with the backstory:
Most people wouldn’t drive a couple hours to see a friend they’ve never actually met, but as it turns out, I would. Sunday I drove a couple hours to see Cari, Ken and their broods of children and chickens.
must have sensed how much I was missing my own kids, and he was perfectly content to snuggle in my lap for most of the afternoon.
must have sensed that my faith in chickens was in need of formation. I think she may have converted me. Just look at her adorable self toting around her favorite chick, Sunflower. Even I don’t have a hard enough heart to rebuff that.
A couple of my favorite quotes:
Lotus: Wow, you have beautiful hair! (That’s a well-brought up girl, Cari.)
John-Luke: (I had tied my hair up in a bun, and when he noticed he stopped a few feet away) Where’s your hairs?!
For the life of me I can’t remember which big kid said this, but it made me laugh so hard: Wow, Veronica doesn’t hate you nearly as much as she hates everyone else! Usually she only likes Mommy! (All this was said while Veronica stared stoically at me and allowed me to put on a wayward boot.)
Honestly, I could tell you some really wonderful things about meeting Cari in person, but the best thing about it was how normal it was. The Donaldsons are a family full of good graces, authentic friendliness, and genuine laughter. I can now corroborate with complete certainty that Cari’s online personality is perfectly consistent with her actual self.
And you know what? I’m not the least bit surprised.
To sum up a rambling post: don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and allow online friends to become real friends. The rewards can be very great.
Oh, and if you haven’t already, make sure to head over to Amazon and pre-order Cari’s book. Judging by its author’s personality, it’s sure to be an amusing and inspiring read.