Monday, July 23, 2012

Friends Close By, Friends Across the Country!

Lake Sunapee, New Hampshire
May 27, 2012

It was a fun week that started with a much anticipated return to the mountains and ended with yet another blogger meetup.   Everyone blogs for their own reasons and some bloggers have no desire to ever take their writing beyond the words they write and the online friends they make.   I am so respectful of their choices and always honor that.  On the other hand, many bloggers are anxious to meet in person when circumstances work out for that to happen.   Every single real life encounter I've had with another blogger has been a joy I wouldn't trade for anything and this one was no different.  Becca and I realized fairly quickly after we found each other's blogs, that we lived VERY close to each other.   But as irony would have it, our SPOUSES met before we did!!  Turns out they teach at the same college!!  Becca'a husband normally teaches at one of the satellite campuses, but his summer class has been at the main campus and again, what are the chances that his class would meet in the classroom directly across from Bill's office?  Once the two of them met, Becca and I figured we'd messed around long enough and promptly set our own date to meet for coffee!  Becca blogs at and I can assure that once we sat down at Panera Bread, there was not one single lull in the conversation. When I got back in my car and realized 2 1/2 hours had passed, I was blown away.  I would've told you it was much less time that that. It FLEW by! Through this blog, I am confident I have gained yet another friend and I am so grateful.  Gaining real life friendships wasn't something I planned for or anticipated, but has proven to be one more delightful surprise brought to me courtesy of Gains and Losses!!  Oh and did I mention the fact that Becca is a AVID hiker!!   Ohhhh, the possibilities................   

Meeting Becca got me thinking again about my Friend In Every State Project.  This wasn't or isn't something I plan to focus on, but it is something that is important to me so I thought it time for an update.  If you aren't familiar with the project, please click on and read the above link!  In a nutshell, when I was a little girl, I always had the dream of knowing somebody in every state  (I've always been a travel geek!).  I had a huge map of the US on my wall and tried so hard to find pen pals whereever I could.   Not so easy back in the late 60's pre-internet!   I'd long forgotten about the dream until I started realizing how many states (provinces and countries) from which I was already corresponding with fellow bloggers.  And so the goal to find a blog friend in every state was born!

If you read Gain and Losses regularly and have not identified yourself, please let me know in which state you live!  As promised from the beginning, this is just something fun for me.  I will never do anything with the information other than enjoy your blog (if you have one), hope that you will continue to enjoy mine and from that, try to learn more about what life is like in your neck of the woods.  Yes, I love meeting other bloggers and yes, I love to travel.   But I promise I'll never appear in your state unless you invite me!!!

You can find specific information about ALL states by clicking on the link above,  The following list are the states in which I do NOT have a friend (or at least one who has identified themself).  I know people are reading from most of these states, but am most anxious for it to be a reciprocal relationship.  Truthfully, I want to be reading at least one BLOG from each state, Canadian province and as many countries as possible!




























If you see your state here, PLEASE leave me a comment and tell me if you are a regular reader and the state in which you live.   If you don't want to leave the info in a comment, send me an email at  Be sure that I have a link to your blog so I can follow along with your story.   If you already are a regular reader and you follow a blog in one of these states, do me a favor and put a bug in their ear.  Yes, I could go searching and eventually I'd find someone in every state.   But before doing that, I really want to see what happens by just patiently waiting!

I'd love to reach this goal by the end of the year.   Help me fulfill a little girl's dream!  (How's that for shameless begging?)

When this posts bright and early Monday morning, I'll be well on my way to a favorite hiking trail.   It's an oldie, but goodie that I haven't hiked in several years.   It's also at 5500', so hoping for cooler weather.   Look for a report in a few days along with the next installment of  "what sort of controversy can I stir up today?" 

What made you smile today?



  1. Sharon, it was so great meeting you as well! And YES, we absolutely will be spending some of our next conversations hiking!

    Enjoy those mountains for me this week :)

  2. I love meeting fellow bloggies! I have met 2 this year already, which I was not expecting. You are adding up quite the tally :D

  3. I'm glad you had another happy blogger meet-up! Love the coincidence (?) of the husbands meeting first!

  4. That is so neat that you and Becca met each other. Sounds like you have alot in common.

    At the spur of a moment, since we had to make a trip to Knoxville, we drove to Cosby today and did some hiking on the Hen Wallow trail... Only hiked about 2.5-3 miles today --because it was hot and humid, but we did get some great shots... There were quite a few people around --but it wasn't too crowded.. Other than being HOT, it was a nice day.

    We don't usually hike much in summer --but I wanted to get my Smokies-fill, so today was nice, although not too long. We drove back via River Road ---and I hated seeing all of the trees down along the way... SAD!!!!

    Hope you had a good day also.... One of these days, we'll catch up with each other.

  5. What made me smile: riding my bike on a perfect morning. Don't know what it is about biking, but it always makes me smile. I also smiled when I picked my first fresh tomatoes and green peppers for my lunch!

    Nice story about how the hubbys met before you two bloggers.

  6. Your beautiful picture at the top with pansies (my favorite) made me smile. :)

  7. What fun to find another blogger with whom you have so many ties.
    What made me smile today. Ella, at loose ends, allowed to choose 3 scarves from my scarf drawer, dressing up with my 3 biggest scarves wrapped around her in a beguiling middle eastern type costume.

  8. How wonderful that you and Becca made such a connection, Sharon! And to have a hiking buddy so near! I'd always hoped that blogging would be a good way to find friends when we moved to a new area, but oddly, almost all of my blogging connections are with people out of state. For whatever reason, North Carolina folks don't seem to read my blog.

    I look forward to reading about your hike!

    What made me smile this morning? Rain!

  9. Hello from Michigan! I'm not yet a regular reader as I've just discovered your blog, but I've really enjoyed reading the handful of posts I've seen and journeying through a part of the States that I've not seen in person yet. You are so lucky to live in such a beautiful area! Not that Michigan isn't beautiful, but it's rather flat around here.

    I do have my own blog, but I'm not a writer. The posts don't really make for interesting reading. I recently started my new journey to being a healthier/thinner person in addition to being a better role model for my two young daughters. The blog is about that journey, but I do hope to become a better blogger as well. I know they will both take time.

    What makes me smile? My daughters. I can't help but smile when they smile, laugh when they laugh (they are 8 months and 3 years old).