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Thank You.


by Meg Keene, Editor-In-Chief

So it’s Thanksgiving week here in the states, and after last week’s amazingly successful subscription drive, I thought it was a good time to stop and share some gratitude with y’all.

When we decided to go forward with the donation/subscription drive, I looked at it as a huge experiment. And by huge experiment, I mean I didn’t really sleep last Sunday night, because I was terrified that the site would be overwhelmed by angry readers yelling at me. How dare we give people the totally optional choice of contributing $5, what the f*ck Meg? What. The. F*ck?

And instead we were overwhelmed by loveliness, and piles of $5 donations, and even more moving to me, piles of chai donations. It was like APW had a giant Bat Mitzvah. Some people even gave $100 (one person said it was part of the refund they’d gotten from their as*hole photographer, after APW helped them realize they didn’t have to hire as*holes). And some people gave $1, which made me think of the bible story of the old lady who gives a single coin because that’s everything she has, and that’s judged as the greatest donation of all (like how I just did some massive interfaith mixing of religious metaphors? I rule).

But mostly what overwhelmed me was how generous you guys were to each other. Emotionally, it turns out that I could care less about the money, but I was teary about watching you guys love and support each other. It was pretty amazing, going through the donations and seeing name after name that I recognized – journalists who’ve mentioned APW in stories, wedding graduates from years ago, long time blog-o-sphere friends that I now know in real life, and amazingly, sponsors. That was overwhelming to me, the APW sponsors who support this site every single month with their ads and their sponsored posts? A shocking number of them gave $5 or $18 to support the site (teary).

So, as of this post, we raised $5,101.92 after PayPal fees, which means we met Lauren’s goal! Every penny of that is going into APW staffing for 2011, starting with Lauren and Alyssa, because I believe in paying people a decent wage (or as much as we can afford, to start). And it seems fitting that community money goes right back into the part of the APW community that makes the posts happen every day.

And because you guys absolutely insisted that we allow you to give whenever you wanted, I’ve created a Team Practical page that you can find in the tippy-top navigation bar. There is no pressure to give any money beyond the (annual? I think we’ll make it annual… that feels right to me) subscription drive (or pressure to give during the subscription drive when we come down to it), but the PayPal buttons are tucked away there, for those of you that choose to give at random or regular times of the year.

But mostly, what I’m surprised by, is how much I just want to get back to ‘the work,’ as we called it (rather obnoxiously) in art school. Last week reaffirmed for me what we do here every single day, and I want to get back to doing it already. So without further ado, we’re bringing you wedding grads. Because I’ve missed those ladies.

Hugs and gratitude, and no I’m totally not teary, SHUT UP,

Meg

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. Her first book, A Practical Wedding: Creative Solutions for Planning a Beautiful, Affordable, and Meaningful Celebration, was published in January 2012, and has been a top three bestseller on the wedding bookshelf ever since. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and son. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit MegKeene.com.

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  • http://www.agirlandaboy.com/journal agirlandaboy

    Amazing. Amazing amazing amazing. Can you feel the love tonight? YES I CAN!

  • Sarah

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    That’s it for now. Once it settles in, I’m sure I’ll have something much more eloquent to say.

    So much love. =)

  • Katie

    Makin’ cranberry relish, feelin’ grateful for lots of things, APW foremost among them.

  • http://bride-sans-tulle.blogspot.com Sharon

    YES!!! Go, Team Practical! And Meg, thank you so much for letting us be part of growing APW into an even more kickass site.

    • http://www.twitter.com/kahlia kahlia

      Exactly! You guys are awesome, and I’m glad we all get to participate in helping make it great. <3

    • http://bunniesnbeagles.blogspot.com Ms. Bunny

      I’m so proud of Team Practical and what we have accomplished for this site and the women who run it!

  • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

    Yay yay yay yay! It is amazing to hear this…how wonderful a goal was set–and reached. Women are an unstoppable collective unit, huh?

  • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

    And by the way, Meg, thanks for being a role model: for reminding us that it’s okay–and necessary–to ask for what we need instead of wishing we had it. Isn’t this true of marriage, motherhood, work, the whole nine? How can we ever know just what others need, be it $5, $5,000 or a hug, if we keep quiet and simply wish others knew?

    Thanks for asking. Thanks for letting us help in just the way you needed.

    And now, because this is such a joyous occasion, I’m going to bake a cake called “Winning Hearts and Minds,” cause I really feel like that’s what happens here. (And it’s obscenely good. And I love it so much I just glob a bit of it into my mouth and then spray the whipping cream right in.)

    • Alyssa

      Um, you don’t think that you’re just going to talk about an amazing cake like that and not share the recipe, DO YOU, missy?!?

      I demand linkage. Or, email me. Cause I want some of that awesome in my life.

      • ddayporter

        yes yes recipe plz!!

      • http://bunniesnbeagles.blogspot.com Ms. Bunny

        Yes, cake recipe demanded!

      • Sarah

        Um, yes, I’m chiming in here, too. PLEASE?!

    • Harriet

      Okay, it’s ridiculous that I know this, but I’m fairly certain the cake Linsey is talking about is this:

      http://orangette.blogspot.com/2004/08/and-then-cake-came-forth.html

      I’m pumped to find an APW reader who also reads Orangette! No surprise, but this place gets cooler by the second.

      • http://kristythecoffeegirl.blogspot.com Kristy

        Um, I freaking love Molly. So that’s at least 3 of us. :) I didn’t start reading Orangette until last year (I think), so I hadn’t seen that recipe. But I *might* have to make it now.

        • meg

          I read Molly. Though I don’t cook very much, so I read it irregularly. But that girl can WRITE.

          • http://kristythecoffeegirl.blogspot.com Kristy

            You should print out the recipes you like and post them on the fridge for David to find. ;)

      • Alyssa

        Sweet baby Jesus.

        I think I just found what I’m making for Thanksgiving…

        • Chantelle

          I think me and this cake have a date tonight. In the middle of re-reading Chocolat (and hence craving it) so this will be perrrrfect!

      • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

        Thems thar the one.

        I’m just sayin’… I can’t be held responsible if you have visions of this thing. And, for the love of all things holy and already altered wedding dresses, be sure to have a partner in crime to eat the damn thing with. Cause really, you could eat the whole thing yourself.

        Have you read Molly’s book yet? Anyone in Seattle been to Delancy’s? I LOVE Molly and I want her to be my best friend, but I don’t think she knows this yet. Maybe we can have the next Seattle meet-up there? (And we can all bake her a WH&M cake and then she’ll be my best friend–squee!)

        • meg

          Oh my god. When we do an event in Seattle, can we book up Delancy’s?

          • http://linseykitchens.wordpress.com Linsey

            Event in Seattle: Activate!

  • Cat

    I, for one, am super stoked that you’re making it a permanent feature of the site. Finals plus an insane week at work meant that I just didn’t get to that item on my to-do list and I kicked myself a little when I realised. Payday this week I am going to be hitting me some ‘donate’ buttons!

    And congrats all round for making it to $5k… if we can manage to throw a wedding with that budget I cannot wait to see what its going to do for this little corner of the web :)

  • Kinzie Kangaroo

    YES YES YES YES YES.

  • Carbon Girl

    Oh no! I guess I missed the deadline, but I am donating now! I can be quite the procrastinator. The paypal window has been open on my browser for two days, I just never brought my wallet into my office. Going to get it now.

  • Tina

    Hey a post I’m awake for! Congrats for reaching 5K. So awesome. I sometimes impulsively buy magazines off the grocery store rack even when they’ve gotten so expensive. I get so much more out of this site. I just considered it was money much better spent here than doing that 5 times over the next year. :)

  • Rhiannon

    I really wanted to donate but wasn’t able to that week. Is there any way that I can do so at another time?

    • Alyssa

      Click the link at the top of the page that says, “Team Practical,” sweetie!

  • http://webecomeus.wordpress.com Caitlin

    awww… what a way to wrap up the love fest!! in tears now…

  • http://www.jehara.blogspot.com jehara

    I am glad as well that the paypal buttons will be a permanent fixture. I didn’t get a chance to donate this past week and plan on doing so. I really enjoyed reading all the reader posts during the drive and look forward to it again next year.

    I really cannot put into words what this site means to me, but I as so grateful it is here and am stoked that Lauren’s goal was met. I look forward to seeing APW dreams come to fruition.

  • http://jolynn.wordpress.com jolynn

    I may or may not also be tearing up.

    Yay Team Practical!

  • ddayporter

    pew pew!!

  • Chantelle

    *hugs*
    So happy to support this site. It’s my daily dose of sanity and a connection to so many cool chickies :)

  • Benny

    Meg, did you know that the Bible reading you’re referring to is actually the reading for today in the Catholic tradition?? (I get it emailed to me daily from this website, and I just read it!) Isn’t that a great little coincidence?

    • meg

      Whoah. Crazy. Crazy AWESOME. Apparently we all need to think about that a little today.

  • merryf

    MAZEL TOV! You reached your goal! I’m totally not surprised. Yay Team Practical!

  • http://www.knitmetogether.net Christy A.

    YAY!!! You did it! You survived your first donation drive! And it was GOOD!

    Seriously, you guys deserved this. Thanks for letting us show you how much this community means to us.

  • Trisha

    I’m so happy to be part of this community, and to get a chance to support it.

  • Janey

    What great news for a Monday morning!!! It was a classy subscription drive, just like APW itself!!!

    And, just a thought, I was meaning to give all week and really didn’t make it happen until Friday’s post and Kitty Phone Bank picture. COINCIDENCE? Likely NOT!!! :)

    Congrats!!!

  • Joanna

    Hey Meg & all,

    I’ve been reading APW forever. Well, at least the past year. And not once have I ever commented. I’ve read almost all the comments, and gotten teary and happy, but I’ve never felt the need to chime in. I’m young, I’m not engaged (maybe pre-engaged?)… but I do get so much out of this forum. Sometimes a post makes me really excited, and I tell my boyfriend all about it. And he playfully teases me a bit for being so connected to these people, people I don’t know, and that I’ve never spoken with. But don’t worry, he gets it. You guys are amazing. Thank you. I donated because I don’t want any of this to stop. And please, keep the disagreements coming just as much as the agreements. Different views are so important, and there have been times I’ve noticed people apologizing a lot for their opinions… which is respectful and sweet. But please don’t censor yourselves too much, I immensely appreciate the different points of view we get to be exposed to here.

    • meg

      I too enjoy any disagreement in which someone isn’t called an as*hole. And we get better about that bit every day.

  • http://kristythecoffeegirl.blogspot.com Kristy

    Huzzah! So glad we hit the goal! That just makes me feel all warm & fuzzy inside. Also glad you decided to make it a permanent fixture. :)

  • Lydia

    I’m so glad you made a permanent donation button! I wanted to donate during the drive, but it was a tight week for me. I just got paid, so I just made a donation. =) Thanks for the daily dose of sanity and warm-fuzzies. I am a total addict at this point!

  • Lydia

    Just donated (I missed the drive, oops). Mostly because this place is great. It’s supportive and real without being all cheesey and “we are nice bc we have to be”. We are nice bc we are all figuring it out together. Love that.

    Keep it up APW ladies (and men?). I am still reading and I got married months ago and I would LOVE to see a Reclaiming Wife section because, well, that’s what I’m doing now.

  • http://love-vs.blogspot.com Vilija

    Oh yes! I plan to hit the donation button (especially now that my guilt of not donating in time has subsided). I love the community here and have to set aside time to read APW posts because I can never just glance through all of the comments. I am grateful to have this venue as an intellectual outlet and to read so many points of view, even after my wedding. This community is key and all of the hard work Meg has done to build such a respectful dialogue and to create a venue for sharing ideas is priceless. Every bride I know is always directed to check out this site.