Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Party like you're a Bandita

Note: Sorry for the late post today. After returning to the hotel last night, I discovered the Internet was not working. Thankfully, it seems to be behaving itself this morning.

Back when I was in elementary school, I had a couple of pen pals to whom I wrote actual letters and then waited anxiously for the replies. It seemed exciting to have friends far away – one in Oregon and one in Spain. Now, I talk to friends around the world on a daily basis – people in many different states and countries. But it’s still fantastic to see them in person. That’s what made a Romance Bandits dinner at Bandita Jeanne’s house Tuesday night extra special. Here are a few scenes from the festivities.

Hostess with the Mostest Jeanne Adams, the lovely Anna “Fo” Campbell, and the always-entertaining Caren “Posh” Crane.

Donna MacMeans and Loucinda “Aunty Cindy” McGary do some catching up.

Suzanne Welsh and Christie Kelley look like they’re having a good time, don’t they? There’s another version of this shot where they look like they’re having even more fun, but I was afraid they might stuff me in a potted plant if I put it up here. :)

Beth Andrews manages to chat with Anna Sugden before Anna’s jetlag really sat in. Hey, it was five hours later than D.C. time for our British pal.

Joan Kayse is tempting the Golden Rooster with one of her delectable chocolate chip cookies. I’m not sure how many he snagged, but I consumed three.

As if the cookies weren’t enough, the GR started eyeing the other tasty treats that were available.

Those treats also included Beth’s “kibbles and bits”, a popular confection with the crowd.

Hmm, Suz managed to get in another shot. Here she is Nancy Northcott, who I’m sure was regaling her with stories of her daylong tour with the Kiss of Death chapter of RWA.

After eating, chatting, laughing until we cried and even conducting a bit of business, we wrapped up the night by putting together the gift basket we’re giving away at tomorrow night’s Literacy Signing. Here, Christie, Donna and Beth figure out how to arrange all the goodies! If you're at the Literacy Signing tonight, be sure to buy some raffle tickets for a chance to win our basket or one of the many other fabulous donated baskets.

Do you have any stories of people you first met as pen pals or online whom it's extra special to get to see in person?


Christie Kelley said...

Wait a minute, he's mine!

Christie Kelley said...

Yes!! I really got him! Good old GR has taken pity on the local girl.

I do like how almost every picture show a Bandita with a wine glass. Hmm, considering I opened all the wine bottles and did a lot of the pouring, I really shouldn't be surprised.

The party was great fun. And a special thanks to Jeanne for having us over at her house.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Be careful with him, Christie. I think he might have overdone it on the desserts last night and be feeling the effects this morning.

Yes, Jeanne and her husband were fabulous hosts! You rock, Jeanne! But, of course, you've set the bar high. Now I have to live up to it next year.

Anonymous said...

Wow, you all look like you're having so much fun. I'm just going to PRETEND I was there with you!

Pace yourselves, ladies -- it's only Wed morning, remember. You've got to make it until Sunday. ;-)

jo robertson said...

Whoooooot, Trish, great pix! I'm so bummed I couldn't make the Bandita AGM and Party.

Looks like lots of the Banditas are growing their hair out! Everyone looks great, happy, and healthy. And, more important, having a smashing good time.

Hey, Christie, no fair. You must've stayed up all night to get the rooster. Wait, you were WITH him all night, naughty girl!

jo robertson said...

Banditas and Bandita Buddies, be sure to take lots of notes during the great workshops I'm SURE you're all attending! This year's RWA agenda sounds super, with lots of big-name authors and activities.

Jeanne, you're giving a workshop again, right? Good luck.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

We missed you, Kirsten. And Jo, and Tawny and Cassondra.

Yes, Jo, I noticed Nancy's hair in particular was longer.

flchen1 said...

Fantastic photos, Banditas! Makes me feel like part of the fun! ;) Glad you snagged that pesky rooster, Christie! ;)

limecello said...

Ahhh I am SO SO JEALOUS of everyone at RWA! :) I love DC so much too!
As for meeting people... um, I've never met someone in real life that I've met online - well, not really. A friend's roommate that started commenting on my blog first. That was interesting :)

Otherwise, there are some kids I grew up with, we've literally known each other all our lives, our parents were friends before we were born, etc. I met up with one friend I hadn't seen in 8 year a while back, and that was really nice.
I'm pretty shy, but it's always nice to have a circle of friends.

Cheri2628 said...

I loved seeing all these pictures. You ladies look like you are having so much fun! It is wonderful when you can get together with friends whom you haven't seen in a while.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Well, of COURSE he's your's Christie! Didn't he go home with you last night, chickiepoo?


Hey, it was SO lovely to have everyone here! Thanks for coming, Banditas!

Jo, I am teaching again this year - Body Disposal - on Friday night from 5:45-7:45. If you're reading this FROM DC, come visit and learn how to get rid of the evidence. Grins.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Trish, you have a nice camera, but it took a picture of did that happen? I try to avoid them...


LURVED all the great spread and yes, JT's cookies ARE as good as they look. (And they're MINE, all MINE, I tell you!)

Pissenlit said...

Looks like much fun was had by all! I've got to ask...what exactly are those "kibbles and bits"? :D

Back when those new Star Wars movies started to come out, after the first one, I tracked down the group of people in my city who were lining up for insane amounts of time for each of the movies. I chatted a bit with them on their message board and finally met up with them at a showing of The Fellowship of the Ring(no lining up for that one). Yes, I did join them(a bit) for the second and third Star Wars prequel lineups. Some of those friendships stuck. :)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Pissenlit, I don't know what's in the "kibbles and bits" (and bits, and bits!) but it's good. It's kinda like rice crispie can't stop eating them.

Verrrrra good!

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

Jeanne, how many cookies are left? :) Oh, and you'll notice that my camera got everyone, I think, but moi. :)

Pissenlit, Beth will have to pop on and tell everyone what's in her confection.

Helen said...

Congrats Christie have fun with him

Thank you so much for the pics Trish I love them. Looks like everyone is having so much fun.

I had a pen pal who lived in Malyasia when I was at school and we wrote to each for years and I loved getting mail from Jenny but alas we never met in person and lost touch a long time ago.

I first met Anna Campbell on line before CTC was released and have been lucky enough to meet her in person 3 time now and what a fantastic fun person Anna is as I am sure you all know. One day I am really hpoing to meet all of the Bandits in person you are all such great buddies what a fun time we would have.

Love the look of all those nice goodies to eat enjoy everyone.

Have Fun

Tawny said...

*sob* I'm sooooooo bummed that I didn't get to hug all of you. It looks like a great time was had by all and OMG those cookies!!! Delish looking!

Pat Cochran said...

It's so nice to see all of you
enjoying your get-together! Have
a grand time and we will enjoy the
conference vicariously through you!
Get lots of photos and include our
girl Trish in some!

Congratulations, Christie!

Pat Cochran

Helen said...

Yes Trish there should be some photos of you as well
I really am glad you are all having so much fun.

BTW Jeanne I am reading Dark and Deadly at the moment what a fantastic book I wish I didn't have to go to work today I would finish it hopefully tonight.

Have Fun

Carol said...

Wow...The GR looks to be having a great time!

Anna, the photo's are wonderful to see, the friendship shines through!
Congrats to all of you there at the Conference.
Best wishes to all nominated... my fingers crossed for you!

Cheers Carol

Joan said...

Hey all!

Just as quick add on to thanking Jeanne and her family for having us out (That wasn't the ONLY fun I had yesterday. Jeanne took me to Costco...they have 85 lb jars of peanut butter there!)

We miss our missing Banditas SO much! It wasn't the same without you guys...true.

The up side (or downside depending on your perspective) is we were so busy eating we didn't have time to drunk dial anybody!

But there's still lots of conference left :-)

jo robertson said...

Trish, we need to see some pix of you during this conference, so be sure to hand over the camera to someone!

Sadly, Jeanne, I'll miss your class this year. I'm stuck in hot, hot California where we've had 100-plus weather this week.

jo robertson said...

Yikes, Joanne! 85-pound jars of peanut butter!! That's just crazy. Uh, unless you're an elephant.

MJFredrick said...

But Trish, where are YOU??

Virginia said...

Congrats Christie, yes you really got him today! Have fun with that rooster!

Oh wow you all look like you are having so much fun! I would love to be there!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

The cookies? *brushing aside the crumbs on shirt* They're right here...yeah, yeah...a few left...


Trish, we WILL get you in the picture. In fact, I think we did, tonight!

I corroborate JT on the 85 lb jar of peanut butter. I think the 100 lb bags of rice are equally impressive, myself!

Wish you ALL were here!

Jo, hope you get a break in the heat and wish you could be in the class too. It would be fun to have at least one person in the audience...Snork.

Julia Smith said...

Thanks for the virtual party pass!

Becke Davis said...

Missed this while I was at National - great pictures! Thanks so much for the invitation!