In the last few years I have become totally enwrapped in my family, while most of the old-days' friends and acquaintances drifted away, either removing themselves from the stress of our lives, misunderstanding what it takes to have a child with autism, or being fed up with my unsocial ways as I am forever finding excuses not to go out. Either way, our circle of friends has become very limited indeed, with just a few true companions who stayed loyal. Most of my interacting now goes online: Facebook, Twitter etc, it has its advantages, as it is on your own terms, you talk when you have a chance. I don't do the meetings and try to avoid any big gatherings of people as they make me uncomfortable. So, going to meet the BritMums' bloggers in Oxford last Wednesday was a very big deal for me. I knew it was going to be on a small scale (in comparison to the grand events organised by BritMums), it was easily reachable (just half an hour by bus to Oxford) and it was in a book shop environment (temptations galore!).
The meeting took place in the Barefoot Books Studio in Summertown, Oxford. A total Aladdin's cave of treasures for the book lovers. I absolutely loved it, a bright shop, full of colours, with a cafe inside (and the latte was very good indeed), plus there's a corner for a Story time for children and parents.
My husband kindly offered to come along and entertain Eddie while I was socializing.
This is Susanna Scott, the founder of BritMums, and me. She's as friendly in person as she's online. And looking poised next to my shining face.
It was a lovely event, and I was thrilled to meet new people and discover new (to me) blogs: Mary P from Over 40 and a Mum to one blog, Anne-Marie from Child-led Chaos blog, enthusiastic Chris from Two Ten who wants to create the safe Internet for children and the others.
Eddie was happy to browse and do some colouring, as well as enjoy a nice wobbly jelly.
We were given the goodie bags including the latest releases - A Farmer's Life for Me and The Girl with a Brave Heart (watch this space for the coming book reviews).
All attending bloggers were also given a generous offer of choosing any book from the bookshop plus a discount voucher for any purchase. I have wisely used my voucher to buy this gorgeous edition of The Genius of Leonardo, and have picked the superb collection of the legends "Arthur of Albion", illustrated by the famous Belorussian artist Pavel Tatarnikov.
Hope we'll be able to meet up again and talk blogging over a cup of latte.