Milestones and social media

Yes! Three and a half months after the first post here on Vital Chatter, we’ve hit 10,000 page views! I have no idea whether or not this is remotely impressive in the blogging world, but I’m very excited about it ūüôā

I figured I’d take this opportunity to tell you about a few ways you can follow Vital Chatter on social media.

1. Follow on Facebook by clicking here.

2. Follow me on Twitter by clicking here.

3. And find me on Bloglovin’ by clicking the icon on the right.

4. You’ll notice there are social media icons at the bottom of each post. You can click on those to share individual stories with your network.

Thank you so much to all the people who have been featured here on Vital Chatter and to everyone who has liked and shared these stories. It means so much to me. Also, please let me know if you know someone whose story I should share.

I can’t pick my favorite post so far (I’ve loved them all for different reasons), but tell me, what has been your favorite Vital Chatter story so far?


Photo: Shaun Fisher

I have a confession to make

I read this story this morning and cringed. Here’s the headline: “10 hour ‘Pay it forward’ line ends with customer No. 458 who refuses.” What??? The story is really about over 400 who paid for each other at a Starbucks drive through, but local media decided to lead with that headline instead.

So, why does this make me cringe (other than the obviously rude and irritating headline)? Because I was once THAT person. When I was in my early 20’s I went through a drive-thru and was told the person in front of me wanted to pay for my meal. I said, “Oh, wow, thanks!” and continued on my way. I had no idea I was supposed to pay it forward. Honestly, it didn’t even cross my mind.¬†For all I know, I was car number 531 in a long line of nice, generous people. *cringe*

So, yeah, I feel bad for car number 458. Maybe she had no idea what was going on. Maybe she only had the money to pay for whatever item she ordered. But, I’m sure she saw that headline today and is cringing, just like I do every time I hear about these “Pay it forward” stories.

Have you ever been in a “Pay it forward” line? Did you ever mess one up? I know I never will again!

Photo by: Perry McKenna

Gifts from my dog

Caitlin: This morning I had to remove a dead possum from my deck. By myself. It was hours ago and I’m not over it yet.
Hartley: Was it a present from June (Caitlin’s dog)?
Caitlin: Yup, of course. Last night she came into the house all muddy and worked up, but it was dark and I was alone so I just ignored it. This morning, I step outside to find a poor, dead possum sitting on my deck.
Hartley: I’ll bet it was heavy, too. Gross.
Caitlin: Well, it took me 20 minutes to work up the nerve to move it, but when I did it was surprisingly light. And I will say, the tail made a useful handle.
Hartley: Wait, you did it with your HANDS?
Caitlin: What the hell else was I supposed to use??
Hartley: A shovel?? A broom? Oh my god, I’m traumatized now, too.
Caitlin: A shovel is an interesting idea, actually. I was in a rush to get to work and dude, I was freaked out. And, of course, alone. I should note, I used a trash bag wrapped around my hands, so there was no skin on skin action.
Hartley: Oh, okay. I was imagining you hurling it over your shoulder?
Caitlin: (laughs) Like a Continental soldier?
Hartley: I was just going to say that!
Caitlin: (laughs) I’m not a lunatic, Hartley. I mean, it took a lot of courage just to pick it up with trash bags.
Hartley: Wait. What did you actually do with the possum? Just drop it in your garbage?
Caitlin: I put it in the outside trashcan, with a lid. Although, I’m not sure if that was the right thing to do now that I’m thinking about it. Hang on, I’m calling the township to find out…. Okay, yup, just put it in the trash. According to The Police.
Hartley: What a good citizen! Fixing the world, one dead possum at a time.

Happy Friday!

This is the 9th week of Vital Chatter and it’s been a lot of fun so far. I feel like I’ve learned a lot from my guests and I’m really honored that they’ve chosen to talk to me about some really interesting topics. A couple notes I wanted to make:

1. Over the past few weeks I’ve been working on making past stories more easily accessible and I also have a new blog design in the works. I hope to have it up and running next week and once that happens I’ll also be fleshing out some social media channels for Vital Chatter to make it easier to follow along.

2. To date, the only blog promotion I’ve been doing is on my personal Facebook page where I share the link to each new post. I get some really great comments there, and I appreciate that, but I’d request that you also leave comments in the comment section at the end of each post (it’s really easy, I promise). That way, those who don’t see my personal Facebook page can also join the discussion. The goal is to have blog post with great conversations and to continue those conversations in the comments section. Of course, I love the Facebook comments as well, so keep them coming!

3. I have asked a friend to interview me for my own post on Vital Chatter. Here’s the problem: I’m not sure what to talk about! Do you guys have any ideas? Anything you’d like to hear me talk about? Let me know!

I hope everyone has a great weekend. I’ve got some great posts lined up next week, so check back then!

Hug it out, man

My husband is a very private person. I am not. BUT, I try my best to respect his boundaries and not tell the world his business. I did, however, get the green light to share some of our conversations from time to time because he really makes me laugh sometimes.

Caitlin: I never know how to greet guys that I like, but don’t know all that well. A handshake seems weirdly formal, but a hug seems like a bit much.

Rob: I heard that younger men really like hugging.

Caitlin: You heard that? Where would you hear something like that?

Rob: On the radio.

After I stopped laughing I tried to find the radio story he was talking about, but couldn’t find it. I did find this story, though, and it does, indeed, describe the trend he heard about.¬†


Let’s talk!

When I was a kid, sometimes my mom would overhear me asking friends, family, (people I just met), very personal questions. She would tell me I was being nosey, and I would always say, “I’m not nosey, I’m just interested!”
That interest led to a career as a television reporter where it was my job to be interested (nosey). I relished the opportunity to ask the impolite questions you aren’t supposed to ask. The kind of questions that elicit real, thoughtful answers and lead to the conversations that really get us thinking about ourselves and the world around us.
I believe when we share our stories we begin to understand ourselves a little bit better and when we listen to the thoughts, hopes, and fears of others, we become more empathetic, and ultimately, better people.
Here on Vital Chatter, we’ll talk about love, death, celebrations, disappointments, parenting, and everything in between. And by doing so, I hope we’ll remind ourselves that we’re more alike than we’re different, and at the end of the day, we’re all in it together.
So, let’s talk!