checking in/NOLA

I’m disgusted with my blogging self. While I didn’t set out for this to be any particular genre of blog, it has evolved into what the folks over at the Black Weblog Awards might call a “personal blog”. It’s most definitely not a beauty blog, celebrity blog or music blog, although I occasionally do post on those things. As of late, however, it’s looking a lot like a reality tv blog. While the reality posts have always generated a lot of site hits, I don’t want to get away from what I’ve been doing all along: which is bringing you stories, ideas and links that I feel are funny/important/newsworthy. Can’t forget about the personal rants and updates either. That being said, I’m trying. It’s just that I got tired of doing those woe is me posts and to be honest, I’m still feeling that way 90% of the time. When something post-worthy comes along, I’ll get on top of it.

Now, as for the other 10% of stuff going on in life, I just got back from New Orleans a couple of days ago. I was down there to be part of the Domestic Violence Awareness Project’s [DVAP] Advisory Group. Joining advocates from anti-violence orgs (i.e. NCADV, NRCDV), activists (i.e. Kevin Powell, NCAVP), and PR/communications folk (NNEDV, FVPF), I spent two days discussing strategy and messaging for DVAP and Domestic Violence Awareness Month (traditionally observed in October). While I won’t go into the details of what was discussed (issues are still being considered), I will say that I felt good about the group’s progress. I also felt good about getting away for a little bit and remembering what it felt like to be busy, to have your opinion heard and thoughtfully considered, and to be around other smart and professional people caring about anti-violence work. As a bonus, I think I may have come up with an idea that may develop into something (or at least contribute to the development of something) big for DVAP. :)

While there, I did a presentation on using social media/new media/web 2.o as part of an organizational communications strategy. It was cool because I was able to speak about something I’m completely into to a room of people who are not as familiar or comfortable with the new technology. There were way more questions than I had expected but the discussion that flowed from the presentation was useful to the group. I’m definitely inspired to continue staying on top of new media trends and technology so that I can continue to consult with advocates, nonprofits and others to help spread positive messages.

As for NOLA itself, I hadn’t been to the city since pre-Katrina, around 2002. My college roomie and I had taken a trip to see a friend who lived there. Fortunately, I was able to see him this trip after 7 years! Good times. I need to give a shout to the beautiful bed & breakfast that served as both our lodging and meeting space for the trip, Maison Perrier. The owner, Tom, was super nice and accomodating, as was the rest of his staff. I would suggest that anyone visiting New Orleans check it out. It’s uptown and on the St. Charles trolley line so there’s easy access to the French Quarter and downtown without all the fuss when you need some quiet.

In the “It’s a Small World Afterall” Chronicles, I ran into a high school classmate while walking down Magazine St in search of dinner (which ended up being at Ignatius and was delish). Totes random!

Oh! While kicking it with my boy down there, we ran into an old high school buddy of his who is into the soap-making business now. Yeah, soap. He shot me a couple of samples and I wanted to give him a shout out as well. The soaps combine natural ingredients (goats milk, shea butter, vitamin E, jojoba oil, etc) and while I can’t speak for all of the scents, the two I have (‘sweet cream of the crop’ and ‘fruity pebbles’) smell great! Going by the name “Fleur de Sudz”, this is a family business run by Randy and Rachelle Smith. The couple makes the soaps in their own N’awlins kitchen. Check them out if you are so inclined.

So yeah, I’m going to get back to the groove soon. FYI, blog topic ideas are always appreciated! Hit me on Twitter, Facebook or via email (see Contacts)!

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