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Goodbye, BlogHer

posted by Momo Fali on August 31, 2015

Hoo boy. This is going to hurt.

I honestly don’t know where to begin, because I never thought I’d be saying it. I guess I’ll just start at the beginning.

Six years ago, my family was struggling financially. I had been blogging for a few years, I was working part-time, but a failed business and medical bills were eating us alive. A series of events, however, was about to change my life:

  1. Even though we didn’t have enough funds for me to attend, I was chosen as a volunteer for the BlogHer ’09 conference, which covered the cost of my pass. That was the same year a partnership with GM paid for my my transportation to Chicago and a roommate who won a sweepstakes paid for my room. It was all very fortuitous.
  2. In April of 2010, a childhood friend of mine invited me to a conference for pet bloggers she had co-founded here in Columbus. The keynote speaker was Elisa Camahort Page, COO of BlogHer. I met Elisa for lunch and soaked up all the knowledge I could.
  3. I attended the BlogHer ’10 conference in NYC and Elisa spoke on a panel about resume writing for bloggers. That session gave me ideas about how to be creative, to own accomplishments outside of an office, and how to present myself as an asset to employers despite a gap in my employment history.
  4. That fall, I tweeted that I was looking for an additional part-time job and Elisa reached out to me. I pulled out my notes from her session at BlogHer ’10 and crafted myself a resume based off of her tips. I got the job.

Within six months of my hiring, Elisa and her marketing team had molded me into a full-time, support-staff employee with a lot of responsibilities. After working through BlogHer ’11, Elisa made me the Social Media Manager – of a major social media organization and the largest community of women who blog. Since 2010, Elisa has been my mentor and I have her to thank for a whole new career. She absolutely changed my life.

Since 2010, I have loved my job and co-workers, but Friday, September 4th will be my last day as a BlogHer employee.bloggers6

It’s one thing to be given what BlogHer gave me, but sometimes excellent things happen twice in a lifetime. I was recently approached about a new opportunity and in two weeks I will start a position with Nationwide Children’s Hospital as a Senior Account Manager for one of the best pediatric hospitals in the country. I have been associated with them for 13 years, since my son was whisked away by ambulance to their facility on the day he was born.

I am leaving one great community for another, I’m going back to school, and I’m taking the lessons I’ve learned in the past year to take more chances when I feel like the timing is right. I’m excited to be affiliated with this life-changing, life-saving, organization and to see what we can do together to make their online community as unparalleled as BlogHer’s.

What I will take with me from BlogHer are not only analytical skills and techniques that built upon my past managerial experience – thank you Elisa, Jory and Lisa – but, also unprecedented education from the most wonderful community online.

And, THERE are the tears.


You, who taught me about love and diversity. You, who taught me about inclusion and generosity. You, who taught me how to talk, listen, engage, ask questions, and share, I will miss you.


I will miss you, social media experts, photographers, humorists, cooks and poets. I will even miss you, political blogger – just not as much as the rest.



The community is the reason BlogHer was created and they are the inspiration, motivation, love, connection and education that have been part of my workday for the past five years. They are more than a community; they are family. Thankfully, that means they can’t just get rid of me.


I’ll still be around. I’ll still be at the conferences. I’ll still be reading your blogs and streams and posts. And, I will always be a BlogHer.

So, this really isn’t goodbye. It’s just me heading in a new direction, yet never out of sight.

Follow along on my journey here and here and thank you for everything YOU have given me. It has been a gift to be part of your life.

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posted by Momo Fali on December 2, 2013

How did my National Blog Posting Month challenge end up? Well, I wouldn’t dare commit to another month of posting every day – at least not until November, 2014. I missed two days this year, and one time I posted fifteen minutes late, but this was still a personal record for me; the longest NaBloPoMo run I’ve ever had.

It seems inconceivable that I would skip the last day and again yesterday, but twice in the past couple of months I’ve had pieces of paper shoved in my general direction with pretty pie charts which discuss life balance. I have taken that as a hint that I need to pay closer attention to how my time is divided.

My Pie

My husband gets almost the same amount of time as prayer, so he has that going for him.

Granted, some of these sections overlap. My kids really cover the whole pie, because my life revolves around their existence. Period. Also, I would say that my immensely satisfying work is part social, part self-care and part financial, and because my husband and I work out together my time with him trickles into the section of exercise. Sweat is totally romantic.

But, this weekend when the opportunity arose for me to spend time with family instead of working or otherwise sitting in front of a computer screen – I took the chance and ran with it. Sure, there were projects to work on, laundry to do, and my kids would probably appreciate it if I’d go buy some milk and cereal, but those things can wait. At least until we run out of underwear and bagels.

So, yeah, I didn’t post on the last day of November and I skipped right over the first day of December, but that’s okay. I’m trying to even out my pie.

Day 18 – Gift Ideas for Special Needs Kids

posted by Momo Fali on November 18, 2013

Every year my family asks me what my kids want for Christmas. My teen daughter’s requests have morphed over the years; as she’s grown, so have her tastes. We’ve gone from Barney, to Hannah Montana, to jewelry, to sports equipment, to nice shoes and gift cards. Those last two things are on my list too.

Not only is my 11 year old son, who is on the Autism spectrum, a super-slow grower (we just moved into a size 7 slim!), his taste in toys hasn’t expanded much either. He doesn’t play sports, other than an occasional game of golf, and his interest in trains, planes, roller coasters, music, bike riding and video games is about the same as it was when he was a toddler.

Since we are running out of storage bins for train parts, recently I’ve felt the need to step outside of the gift box, so to speak. These are some of my favorite things (his, too) for special needs kids.

1. Gorilla Gym Indoor Swing


The Gorilla Gym is a great gift for the whole family, actually. My daughter loves to box, my husband and I do Crossfit (and the Gorilla Gym AirStraps would give you a great workout), and my son uses all of his earned free time at school to play on the indoor swing. Whenever he needs a break, he can take five or ten minutes to swing and calm himself. This activity has long been part of his sensory therapy and now, even during the cold winter months, he has a place to exercise and refocus.

2. Bosu Ball

Bosu BallThis is another item that the whole family can use, if you can manage to get it away from your child. Not only does my son have an affinity for anything round, he has also sat on a “hippity hop” ball for years while writing, eating, or playing games. The bouncing and squirming helps him concentrate on the task at hand. It’s also been a great benefit to his balance, stability and core strength. Now that he’s getting a little bigger (7 slim!), we’re moving away from the hippity hop ball with Tigger on it, to a more grown-up, Bosu version.

3. Wii Fit U

You may sense a theme here. That’s because left to his own devices, my son would come home from school and play video games. All day, every day. Because he doesn’t play traditional sports, it’s hard to keep him active. The Wii Fit U has been perfect at incorporating fun and movement. Just look at those squats!

4. Weighted Blanket


image courtesy of

Not unlike the concept of swaddling newborns or the Thundershirt for dogs, weighted blankets help kids with anxiety and restlessness. We don’t own one of these yet, so I can’t recommend a particular brand, but I can tell you that the more blankets I lay on my son at night, the more restful his sleep. I’ve taken to placing a hefty, crocheted blanket on him so he doesn’t get too hot, but still gets the sensory benefit. I’m sure he would enjoy a kid’s version and not the one I’ve been putting on him that looks like it belongs on a grandma’s lap.

5. Blokus

blokusThis strategic game is a family favorite in our house; even when we aren’t playing it I’ll often find my son arranging the tiles into colorful patterns. Not only does it help develop his social skills, this (along with chess) shows him that his actions must be planned. Thinking ahead and good decision making don’t always come naturally to him. In fact, they rarely do. A board game that teaches him this fundamental concept and is actually fun to play? Bonus

When buying for a special needs child, remember to take their individual compulsions and weaknesses into account. You wouldn’t want to buy a noisy toy for a kid who is agitated by sounds nor would you get a rock collection for the child who puts everything in his mouth. Try to find something that lends value in multiple ways, and when in doubt, ask mom or dad for ideas.


Disclosure: I was provided with a Gorilla Gym Indoor Swing and a Wii Fit U for review.

Zoom to BOOM!

posted by Momo Fali on July 2, 2013

When I was a little girl, my dad and stepmom took me and my stepsister to the downtown Columbus fireworks, called Red, White, and Boom! I remember sitting on the riverbank, eating fried food, people-watching, listening to music, and anxiously waiting for the sky to light up.


It was family time. It was awesome.

Ever since my kids were little, we have watched the same fireworks, though usually it’s been from afar. We ventured close, but not too close because driving downtown and trying to find a parking spot is a nightmare. Unfortunately, the experience just wasn’t the same; there weren’t people, fried foods, music, or excitement. Then, one year, we got smart.

We live on the bus line and we decided to ride downtown without having to worry about parking. We got off the bus, walked to a spot, enjoyed the fireworks, then took the bus home. Easy peasy!

The Central Ohio Transit Authority even makes it easy if you don’t live on the bus line. COTA will provided Express service to downtown between 5:30p and 8:30p on July 3rd from seven Park and Ride locations including: Crosswoods, Dublin, Gahanna, Grove City, Olentangy/Bethel Rd., Reynoldsburg and Westerville.

AND, anyone wearing a COTA Park and Ride wristband can get into Huntington Park for FREE, where there will be music, kid’s activities, and concessions!

Give yourself a break and Zoom to BOOM!

zoom to the boom