Nerd Camp 2018

Photo courtesy of the Nerd Camp Facebook page

There were so many moments during Nerd Camp this year that I felt so touched and overcome with emotion. I started keeping track of these moments in a note on my phone. Here’s what I wrote down.

Thank you Colby and Alaina for all the work you do to organize this event. You both handle everything with such grace and poise. I’m in awe of you both on so many levels.

Thank you Donalyn and Colby for starting Nerdy Book Club.

Thank you to the stranger I was sitting next to in the Being the Change session with Sara Ahmed and Chad Everett. You offered me a piece of gum and it was so nice. We chatted a bit and you said that your daughter has been in Nepal the past two years and you were going to see her that day. I hope you enjoy the rest of the summer with your daughter.

Thank you speaking of daughters so many of you that follow me on Instagram said that you love seeing my videos and pictures of my daughter on Insta-stories. It warmed my heart each time and I’m honestly tearing up right now thinking about it. This year I decided to make my Instagram account focused on books and teaching (but mostly books, if we are being honest) and not a hodgepodge of everything in my life. I often worry that I should be more focused with my social media outlets, that maybe I annoy those people that are only here for the books... but, I’m so glad that my book-loving friends also like seeing my daughter. She’s the light of our lives and I was missing her so much this week. Next month we take an adults-only vacation and I don’t know how I’m going to leave her 6 days (trying not to cry right now!)

Thank you to all the authors that gave up time to attend Nerd Camp and let us teachers fan all over you. In the past, I know many authors have funded this trip out of pocket. I’m not sure that is still true because it has grown over the years (and really, you should be paid for attending), but it is something that I think about a lot because I also fund my own trip out of pocket.

Thank you to all the teachers that gave up time (and money!) to attend Nerd Camp. I don’t know anyone that is paid to attend or given funding for it. I know you attend because you truly love it.

Thank you to Laura Komos, who used one of her TWO book tickets to get me a copy of Resistance by Jennifer Nielsen because she knew I was looking forward to reading it so much. (Here I go again with the tears). It was so thoughtful and it just reminded me how giving our community is. Thank you. You’re the best and so, so, so kind.

Thank you to Melissa Biehl for letting me borrow her coveted copy of Hey Kiddo to read on Tuesday. I had no idea that ARC was so hard to find, but I'm glad there is a lot of excitement for it! I read it in between sessions as fast as I could so I could get back to her that day and This memoir tore my heart in two. It is a graphic novel memoir but intended for an older audience. I would say 8th grade and up. Maybe 9th grade and up. However, I might still buy it because I want to support Jarrett Krosoczka’s work.

Thank you Kirsten Biehl (Melissa’s daughter!) for inviting us out to the brewery with her big group on Monday night! We had such a good time chatting with everyone and people watching. Kirsten is such a sweetheart and has recently started a fitness coaching journey - she is super inspiring!! 

Thank you to my friend Kris for driving EIGHT hours to Parma and EIGHT hours back. Yes, she drove EVERY SINGLE MILE and I am so grateful because I’m not a fan of driving. Luckily, she likes to drive. We also love having her comic relief. She had us laughing the entire time!

Thank you to my other friend, Julie for introducing me to this community. I don’t think I would know what Nerdy Book Club was if it wasn’t for her. If you’re not following Julie, you should be. She has YEARS and YEARS of experience in education spanning from early childhood to 8th grade and is a wealth of knowledge. I keep telling her she cannot retire. I just won’t allow it.

Thank you Holiday Inn Express for the daily hot breakfast. We switched hotels this year and I think it was a very good decision.

Thank you Book Bug for enabling me to buy all the books. This year I bought two shirts (for my toddler!) and SEVERAL books. Shhh don’t tell my husband. ;)

It was an amazing Nerd Camp full of incredible experiences. If you have ever thought about going, DO IT. You won’t regret it. 

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