Happy Birthday To Us, Happy Birthday to Us

Posted by in Louise Behiel | 42 comments


In September of 2011, I was looking for a class to learn how to use about using social media effectively and I came across a course by Kristen Lamb, called We Are Not Alone.  I signed up for the October class but I have to say a couple of lectures in, I was pretty confused and wondering what  I had gotten myself into. You see, it became very clear, very quickly that she expected us to blog. Yes blog. Regularly and consistently.

Oh my.

But a month into the class, I got to thinking about blogging and I realized that I didn’t have to know how to do it, I just had to start. Eventually the fog would lift and I’d have some sense of what I was doing.

Who knew it was that simple?

More importantly than my journey into blogdom (blog world?) I took the course with about 100 other people who were in the same boat as I. We were all neophytes in the blogosphere, looking to find our way.

I stumbled into a community of like-minded people who were willing to support, share, inform and love each other as we found our way.

Can’t participate for awhile? That’s okay. Come back when you can.

Need to know something about Facebook or WordPress or a website? Somebody in our group will help.

Want to have a party to celebrate your release, birthday or child’s birth? We’re all ready to stand up to the bar for virtual margaritas.

Need support, a helping hand or a joke? Yep, you’ll find those here too.

The course was valuable and full of information. But for me, the people who participated in the course are extraordinary. they’ve enriched my life. Made me laugh and cry (sometimes at the same time). They’ve informed and educated me. They’ve supported and encouraged and held my hand when I needed it the most. And for that I’ll be eternally grateful.



From the course, Kristen has gone on to create a WANA community and a Wana common on Flickr. Those are valuable additions for my work and fun. But the best gift ever is the wonderful people who came into my life one year ago this month. To each and every one of you, I raise my glass in a toast:

Image from Wikipedia Commons, courtesy of
Quinn Dombrowski


“To the best of humankind. Anywhere. Anytime. Thanks for sharing the journey.”









  1. Happy Birthday! Isn’t it nice to start something scary and new with other people who are in the same situation? 🙂 Congrats on your terrific blog too!

    • thanks so much Kourtney. You’re absolutely right – it was scary but we’ve all come a long way.

  2. Woot woot…Happy BIRTHDAY!!!! It’s been an incredible journey…here’s to more ahhhmazingness in the coming year!

    • aint that the truth, my dear.

  3. Happy 1st WANA1011 Birthday, Louise! Thanks for a terrific post and for all the fantastic support over the past year. It has been an incredible ride. Here’s to many more years as a WANA family!

    • Right back at you Lynette. It’s been a lot of fun and i look forward to more of the same in the coming years.

  4. Wow, it’s been a year already. Time flies when you’re having fun! A beautiful post. I echo everything you said, Louise. Happy WANA Birthday! Here’s to another awesome year together. *toasts*

    • Raising my glass to you too Reetta. It’s hard to believe it’s been a whole year.

  5. I’ll have to wait until I have the money, but the WANA class is something I’ve wanted to take, because Kristen is a dynamite blogger and the whole idea behind it is what drew me in to blogging in the first place. I’ve followed some of the WANA groups on Twitter and it seems fantastic.

    • it is an amazing experience, John. and worth saving for. at least that’s the case with my group. LOL honestly I would never have gone this far without their support.

  6. So many people and such an awesome group. I count myself blessed to have stumbled into the WANA1011 crowd. Happy birthday, Louise!

    • thanks Sheila and right back at you – I too feel very blessed.

  7. Happy Birthday to all the WANA’s! Hope we have many more. 🙂

    • Yes, here’s to many more, Kristy

  8. Has it been a year already? My goodness, how far we’ve all come!

    Thanks for reminding us, Louise. I’m raising my virtual glass in a toast to you.

    Patricia Rickrode
    w/a Jansen Schmidt

    • Thanks, Pat. My champagne is fizzy and cold and raised to you. Cheers

  9. The WANA community is the best! 🙂

    • It is indeed Coleen.

  10. WANA rocks! Happy Birthday to us 1011’ers!

    • It has been an extraordinary year and the cloass of 1011 made it even more so, Serena

  11. Wow, has it been a year already? Yay for Team WANA!

    • A whole year – go figure. It’s been quite the journey, Denise. I’m delighted to be part of this group

  12. Hi Louise! What a great post, and I couldn’t agree with you more, what an amazing year it has been. I’ve so enjoyed getting to know you. Happy Birthday!

    • Right back at you, Rachel. It’s been a delight making friends all over the planet. Happy Birthday

  13. Woo hoo! Cheers to you, Louise, and all the WANAs. Love this post. It’s been quite a journey, hasn’t it? You’re an awesome blogger!

    • Lynn it’s been amazing. I keep finding new depths to these relationships and the people we’ve connected with.

  14. I’m so happy to be a part of this group! Everyone is so wonderful and supportive, even with people like me who seem to get sucked away from the internet and blogging on a regular basis. Everyone is always ready to welcome me back when I’m able to return. So glad I’ve gotten to know you!!

    • Kara, I totally agree. Even when I was away for the summer, I felt welcomed and missed when I returned. IT is wonderful

  15. Congratulations, Louise. I’ve been blogging for six years. I do miss days sometimes, or a couple of weeks if I go on a vacation but I love blogging.

    • 6 years??? that’s awesome Jill. I’m with you – I love it.

  16. I never would have know you were new to blogdom! I’m glad to be here with you, Louise. You do a wonderful job here and I am glad I found you. Happy, happy Birthday!

    • Heidi, thanks for stopping by. Yes, I’m new to blogging but I love it.

  17. WANA Rules! Until Kristen’s class I didn’t really understand the purpose–or have the tools to do it write–er, right. And the support and networking with all the WANA-ites is the frosting on the virtual cake!

    • Amy, I totally agree with everything you said. the WANA folks are definitely the icing on the cake.

  18. I’m so glad to have met you and all the other cool people in WANA1011! Happy birthday to us!

    • Totally agree Jenn. It’s the people in this class who made the biggest difference. It’s been a delight to get to know each of you.

  19. Great Birthday post to the FAB wanas! It’s be so much fun, I can’t believe it’s already been a year. Can’t wait to see what the next year will bring!

    • I know. When I saw the great graphic from Rachel I nearly fell off my chair – It can’t be a year. But it is. Where did it go?

  20. I don’t know what I would have done without this supportive group. I’ve never had more fun blogging, and knowing that I have a group where I can ask a question (and hopefully help someone else too) has been incredible. Happy birthday to us!

    • Happy Birthday to all of us. I totally agree Marcy – it’s the support and love that makes this group so special. and the willingness to answer questions without making me (or anyone asking the question) feel like a dummy.

  21. Happy Anniversary! I was a newb to blogging and social media back in January. That’s not to say I don’t still feel like a newbie, but Kristin and the Wana minions have been a huge help to me, too. Cheers to her, to you, and to all of our WANA buds!

    • It’s amazing what a strong support system around you can help you accomplish, isn’t it? thanks for stopping by

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