In September of 2014, this blog was nominated for Best Active Living Blog in the Petties. It’s a voter-based award and you all blew me away by voting me to the top even though I never really asked (that meant SO much by the way!).
Last month I found out that I was chosen from 1,000 nominations to be the finalist in two categories for the Nose-to-Nose Blogging and Social Media Awards (thanks again to you mystery people who nominated me) – Best Pet Blog Design and Best Dog Blog. The Nose-to-Nose Award winners are selected by a jury of peers and are THE biggest honor given to the top blogs and microblogs in the pet industry.
I spent this past weekend in Nashville and the annual BlogPaws conference. This conference is THE hottest social media conference in the pet industry and THE place to be if you blog about pets. It’s a full weekend of networking, learning, and meeting your online blogger friends face-to-face. It’s also when the winners of the Nose-to-Nose awards are announced.
Well Saturday night left me on cloud 9 because I won and walked onto the state to accept TWO awards for both Best Pet Blog Design and Best Dog Blog!
Even though I don’t look like it in this picture, I had no idea what I was doing and was very nervous. I look like a professional award accepter though, no? Ha, ha.
I have been blogging for 4 1/2 years, and sometimes putting in almost 30 hours a week in addition to a real job, and this was the first time that my blog has ever made it to the finals. It’s such a privilege to be recognized for my hard work by my peers.
Hard work alone is not what has made this blog a success though. Without some “special sauce” this blog would be just average. I would like to thank…..
- The rescue that brought Gretel into my life and changed my course forever – Motley Zoo Animal Rescue. Gretel has completely changed who I am as a person, who I am as a dog owner, and was the inspiration for this blog which led me to discover my true passion in life (seriously, I am tearing up here). Without Motley Zoo and their decision to break their own rules so that Gretel would end up with me, this award wouldn’t have even been possible. Each award came with a $500 donation to the animal-related charity of my choice and my entire $1,000 is going to Motley Zoo. I could never repay them for making me a better person and allowing me to find my true purpose but this is a start.
- Chester and Gretel for putting up with me making them sit for cumulative hours for photos, and adapting to whatever situation I put them in, all while looking cute. They have put up with countless hours of listening to me say “Sit here. You hoo, look over here. No…sit…wait. Lookit Mommy. Squee, suuee. You hoo. No….sit”. Ha, ha.
- My hubby for not once complaining about all of the times my intense focus prevented me from fully listening to him, for up and quitting my cushy government job to follow my rediscovered passion, for putting up with stressed-out and grumpy me through grad school, and following me on all of our crazy adventures.
- My fellow bloggers and peers who have given me advice and support, cheered me on, been an inspiration, and encouraged me through the rough times when I thought about throwing in the towel (some of those great bloggers also made it to the finals. You can check them out here).
- The technical folks that have helped me with my website code, design, graphics, newsletter, etc.
But you know who deserves the most thanks? YOU!
Like a tree in the woods, I believe that if a blog post is published and no one sees it, it doesn’t make a difference. Absolutely none of this would be possible if it weren’t for you, our loyal readers, fans, and supporters. You have inspired me to keep writing, sharing what I have learned over the years about being a pet parent, and adventuring to lead by example. I am grateful for you letting me into your life over the years and feel like some familiar faces have even become friends.
I love you man. *sniff*
So these awards are for you too…