Ananda’s Blogalicious 2010 Day #3 Re-Cap – Meeting Marc Morial, President & CEO


Me and Marc Morial at Blogalicious 2010
Marc Morial, President/CEO of National Urban League speaking @ Blogalicious


Blogalicious 2010 was filled with many special moments. One of my special moments was meeting Marc Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League on October 10 after his keynote address.  I had a chance to thank him for all of the work he is doing. I also told him about how much my father supports his work.  That made him smile!  My dad got a kick out of hearing that story too!

To learn more about Morial’s keynote address at Blogalicious, watch the video (17 minutes) below. It is powerful!

PS: I had a chance to live blog President Obama’s education reform speech with the Blogalicious B-Link members in the DC area at the National Urban League’s Centennial Conference in July! Now that was another Blogalicious special moment!  Check out the blog about the experience:

Get ready for digital sisterhood moments in the Be Blogalicious film! It’s coming later this fall!

Today, Tyler New Media released the trailer for the Be Blogalicious film. Check out the trailer video below.  I am so happy Rosa Alonso, founder of My Latino Voice, discussed digital sisterhood.  What a powerful film! Click on the link to pre-order the film (only $15 – I ordered mine today):

PS: Tyler New Media interviewed me for the film. So I may be in it! Stay tuned!

Ananda & Xina Eiland’s Digital Sisterhood & Moderator Roles During Blogalicious 2010’s Open Mic Lunch on October 8, 2010

Me and Xina Eiland moderating open-mic luncheon session @Blogalicious 2010 - Photo Credit: NYCityMama Carol Cain
Xina, Justice Ny, Justice Fergie, Justice Jonesie (Justices are co-founders of Blogalicious), and me @Blogalicious 2010 - Photo Credit: NYCityMama Carol Cain


Last year Xina Eiland and I met during the Blogalicious 2009 opening night reception in Atlanta. While sipping cocktails and recording video interviews, we learned we were both born in Michigan and currently reside in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.  Throughout the conference, we reconnected with each other and other women like“WhimsiGal,” founder of Whimsicard, LLC from the DC area.  When we returned home, we used social media tools like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in touch. We also discussed our Blogalicious experiences on my program called Sisterhood the Blog Radio.

And then it happened. We reached out by telephone and agreed to meet in person. Our first meeting occurred on a Sunday afternoon at the U Street Café in DC.  Xina, “WhimsiGal,” and I sat at a table for a few hours discussing our lives, 2010 goals, ways we could support each other,  and ideas for a local Blogalicious meet up.  That one conversation paved the way for our Blogalicious DC community building efforts.

Together, we were able to help Blogalicious founders Stacey Ferguson, Nadia Jones, and Nyasha Smith organize two meet ups in February and April for DC area women.  Xina played a major role in securing space and media coverage, promoting the events on Facebook and Twitter, identifying speakers and sponsors, developing the agenda, and obtaining in-kind donations for both events.  I served as panel moderator for the April meet up.

In addition to supporting the Blogalicious DC community, we also made a professional commitment to support each other and our 2010 business goals.  We launched our commitment with a face-to-face breakfast meeting at Busboys and Poets, a popular DC hangout,  on January 2.  Seated on comfy chairs with herbal tea and delicious breakfast items to keep us company, we shared our expertise.  Xina became my public relations coach and convinced me to follow her instructions on how to better package myself, books, art, yoga practice, and coaching services.  I became her creativity coach and helped her develop a social media plan to support her intention to blog and learn more about social media tools. Since then, we have met monthly to assess our progress and seek feedback.  We also attended several DC social media meet ups, participated in the Blogging While Brown’s White House Visit and weekend conference, hung out at the Red Pump Project and Blogalicious’ Say RED: Cocktails and Conversations event, and live blogged with the Blogalicious DC B-Link members during President Obama’s education reform speech at the National Urban League’s Centennial Conference.

What a year we are having! And it’s not even over yet!  I think the greatest blessing has come from the way we constantly encourage each other to step up our game and pursue new opportunities.  We also share information, insights, and introductions to people in our network that can support our efforts.  We laugh, learn, and listen to each other when we achieve and struggle.  Our Blogalicious bond has created a digital sisterhood that exists in real time!

Digital sisterhood is one of the many gifts you will receive when you attend a Blogalicious conference or event.  It’s contagious. Some say it’s magical.  And it happens without you even knowing it.  That’s the beauty of Blogalicious.  Through the celebration of Blogalicious’ diversity, women own who they are through the content, connections, communities, and commerce they create as they share experiences, insights, opinions, humor, creativity, expertise, and information.  Our Blogalicious digital sisterhood lays the foundation for building local digital sisterhood communities.

Xina and I were initially scheduled to host a community dinner discussion on digital sisterhood at Blogalicious 2010.  There was a change of events that opened the door to an even greater blessing.  I love how the universe works. It always gets better. So here’s what happened! The Blogalicious founders Justices Ny, Fergie, and Jonesie offered us an opportunity to moderate the open-mic luncheon sponsored by McDonalds on October 8.  What an honor!

Xina and I had an amazing time moderating the soulful discussion.  We witnessed the power of digital sisterhood in the stories told by women who were Blogalicious newbies and alumni.  They opened their hearts and spoke with such passion, clarity, candor, and humor.  It was a beautiful experience filled with wisdom, laughter, lessons learned, and a plethora of blogging experiences that revealed how women discovered their authentic selves online and offline.  Check out the photos taken by NYCityMama Carol Cain below.  FYI – Carol is the official Blogalicious photographer. She did an amazing job documenting Blogalicious 2009 and 2010! Thanks Carol for your gift of digital sisterhood photography and love!

Xina and Ananda moderating the open-mic luncheon @Blogalicious 2010 - Photo Credit: Carol Cain
Open mic luncheon buffet - Photo Credit: Carol Cain
Blogalicious attendees at open-mic luncheon - Photo Credit: Carol Cain
Miss Lori sharing her blogging story @ open-mic luncheon - Photo Credit: Carol Cain
Professor Diva sharing her blogging story at open-mic luncheon - Photo Credit: Carol Cain

Luvvie sharing her blogging story @open-mic luncheon - Photo Credit: Carol Cain

Takeyah Young sharing her blogging story @ open-mic luncheon – Photo Credit: Carol Cain

Ananda’s Blogalicious 2010 Recap of Day #2 & Digital Sisterhood Audio Interviews with Women Bloggers – October 9, 2010

It’s hard to believe that Blogalicious 2010 was last week. I am still on my Blogalicious and digital sisterhood high! So I thought I would share a recap of what happened during Day #2. See below.

Me and Xina Eiland before yoga on the beach at Blogalicious

I started Day#2 of Blogalicious with yoga on the beach. My sistalove Takeyah Young, founder of Core Connection Lifestyle,  taught a juicy class on Miami Beach.  Xina and I had a great time. Check out the photos from the class below.

Me before yoga class at Blogalicious
Blogalicious ladies practicing yoga.
Takeya Young, founder of Core Connection Lifestyle, teaching yoga at Blogalicious
Shannon Nash and Xina Eiland

Before the morning sessions began, I chatted with Shannon Nash, a Blogalicious 2010 speaker, and Xina.  I met Shannon last year at Blogalicious 2009. She is an amazing woman and speaker! The morning sessions included a great six-word memoir networking exercise. I love love love six-word memoirs.  I created two.

  • personal six-word memoir to describe myself – Michigan. DC. Esq. Author. Artist. Yogini.
  • Blogalicious six-word memoir – digital sisterhood. community. connection. collaboration. commerce. (will blog about this one later this weekend)

FYI – My six-word memoir was published in Smith Magazine’s It All Changed in an Instant: More Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous & Obscure: Go Green BoHo BAP. Urban Debutante. I also used six-word memoirs as chapter titles in my new book That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetic Memoir of Self-Discovery. Click here to watch my creativity coaching video on  six-word memoirs.  My coaching and yoga clients will also testify to my use of six-word memoirs with them.  Can you tell I am a six-word memoir fan?

James Andrews, co-founder of Everywhere

I was inspired by James Andrews’ keynote presentation on the relationship between social media and television. Check out the video of his presentation below (33 min – worth it!). James’ presentation convinced me to launch #STB10 #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays on Twitter this week.  Click here to read the blog post and watch video.

I also used Cinchcast to interview James later in the afternoon. Click here to listen to the interview.  He is a very powerful brothalove who loves the same kind of music as me – Eric Roberson and Omar Sosa!

I spent the rest of the morning and afternoon interviewing women in social media about digital sisterhood on Cinchcast (see the audio blog interview links below)! Doing the interviews helped me connect with so many dynamic women in social media. See photos below.

Danica Kombol. co-founder of Everywhere

Listen to interview with Danica Kombol.




Me and Lashanda Henry


Listen to interview with LaShanda Henry




Toni Staton-Harris and Deidre Mason


Listen to interview with Toni Staton-Harris and Deidre Mason




Ellen Seidman


Listen to interview with Ellen Seidman.




Jennifer James


Listen to interview with Jennifer James.




Jonnice Slaughter


Listen to interview with Jonnice Slaughter.




Me and Boni Candelario


Listen to interview with Boni Candelario.




Mary Ann Vangrin of the Wine Sisterhood and her fellow Wine Sisterhood colleague


Listen to the interview with Mary Ann Vangrin.





Me and Natalie McNeal


Listen to the interview with Natalie McNeal.




Me and Maura Hernandez


Listen to interview with Maura Hernandez.




Lauren Thomas


Listen to interview with Lauren Thomas.


My afternoon also included a visit to the Wine Sisterhood‘s Sassy Suite. What a place to visit! Why? They had a fabulous wine tasting for their Middle Sister wines. FYI – The Wine Sisterhood is one of my favorite social networking sites for women. They have such great information about women and wine! I hung out in the suite with my friends Boni, Rosemarie, Luvvie, Adria, Danica, Toni, and Deidre.  I also did a video interview for the Wine Sisterhood. See some of the photos below.


Me and Deidre Mason

Me and Boni Candelario



Rosemarie, Boni and Luvvie


Rosemarie and Boni


My hermana de alma Julie Diaz-Asper took me and our other hermana de alma Kety Esquivel to dinner with her family at Yuca, an amazing Cuban restaurant on Lincoln Road.  After dinner, we walked back to the Ritz with Julie and her daughters to attend the Blogalicious Beauty Bash.  We had so much with So In Style Barbie and dancing to the music of DJ James Andrews (yes he is a DJ too!).


Me with my Afro-Cuban Barbie - Kara Magdalena (I named her Magdalena and gave her an Afro-Cuban identity)


As you can see Day #2 of Blogalicious was blog-tastic! Stop by later this weekend for Day#3 recap and other Blogalicious blogs.

Calling All Women in Social Media! Join Ananda’s 10/13 Twitter Launch of #STB10 #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays.

@AnandaLeeke launched her Twitter #STB10 #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays @ #Blogalicious10 on Vimeo by anandaleeke, originally uploaded by anandaleeke.

On the last day of Blogalicious 2010, I recorded a video about my 10/13 Twitter launch of #STB10 #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays. Click on the link to watch the video:
#STB10 #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays will give women in social media a weekly opportunity to build and strengthen their communities. Each week women will be encouraged to celebrate and promote their digital sisters by using the #FF (Friday Follow) format to list their digital sisters’ Twitter IDs. Women will also be encouraged to tweet about their digital sisters’ businesses, wisdom, creativity, blogs, Facebook pages, causes, videos, web sites, etc.

#STB10 is a hashtag that refers to Sisterhood the Blog 2010. I developed it to track my Twitter conversations, DC-based focus groups, and online radio shows about her Sisterhood the Blog book project. Sisterhood the Blog is a memoir about my Internet experiences from 1986 to 2011. I include how women on the Internet have influenced and inspired my life. I am using the information collected on Twitter as research for my book project. Click here to learn about the book project and Kickstarter fundraiser:

Remember to use the #STB10 and #DigitalSisterhood hashtags on October 13 and every Wednesday thereafter.

Follow me on Twitter to track all of the great #STB10 #DigitalSisterhood sharing on Wednesdays:

Thank you for your support!

Watch video of CNN Journalist Soledad O’Brien Skyping in at Blogalicious 2010 on 10/10/10


CNN Journalist Soledad O’Brien Skyping in at Blogalicious 2010 on 10/10/10 on Vimeo by anandaleeke, originally uploaded by anandaleeke.

One of my favorite Blogalicious 2010 moments was watching CNN journalist Soledad O’Brien use Skype to share her thoughts with conference attendees during the October 10th morning session. Very powerful and funny at times. Click on link to watch the video:

Ananda’s Blogalicious 2010 Recap of Day #1 – October 8, 2010

Blogalicious 2010 was AMAZING! 275 people registered to attend the three-day weekend conference held on October 8 to October 10 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Miami Beach.  Yes it was on the beach and the weather was YUMMY! Check me out chill-axing in the lobby of the Ritz (see photo below)! It was relaxing, spa-like, luxurious, and beautiful all day and night long!  The Ritz staff was great! I could actually live there! Does it show that I am a Ritz fan and aficionado?

I arrived in Miami on October 7. My flight was a late one. Mis hermanas de alma (soul sisters) Xina Eiland and Kety Esquivel picked me up from the Miami International Airport.  The first night Xina and I stayed in the Marriott. We had a free room due to her Marriott points.  It had an ocean view. So we slept with the terrace sliding door open to get the Miami Beach energy and ocean sounds all night long. It was juicy and relaxing.  The next morning Xina and I got up really early and checked into the Ritz before the first general session of Blogalicious began.


Me and Xina at Blogalicious PM reception on 10/8 - spent afternoon at pool chill-axing!



Mi hermana Kety Esquivel


While sitting in the lobby waiting for the registration desk to open, I used Cinchcast to give a pre-conference audio blog update. Click on link to listen:  After I finished my audio blog I met one of my favorite bloggers Onica, founder of Europhoria Luv.  We chatted for a few minutes before I asked her to do an interview about her blog, why she came to Blogalicious,  and her definition of digital sisterhood.  Click on link to listen:


Me and Onica


Before the general session began I met one of my favorite Twitter digital sisters Jewel of The Tiny Jewel Box.  We hit it off immediately and ended up sitting at the same table with Xina during breakfast.  During our breakfast conversation, I learned Jewel is a DC native with an amazing sense of humor and style!  Jewel  allowed me to interview her about her blog and digital sisterhood. Click on link to listen to Jewel’s interview:


Me and Jewel, founder of The Tiny Jewel Box


I thoroughly enjoyed the morning sessions on women of color in marketing, networking, and Latinas in social media. The open-mic lunch that Xina and I co-moderated was soulful and filled with digital sisterhood love. Click on link to listen to my audio blog update:

The first day of Blogalicious was really special because I connected with new friends and reconnected with old friends. See the photos below.


Me and Pam Perry



Me, Carrie, and Monica



Justice Fergie, co-founder of Blogalicious



Justice Ny, co-founder of Blogalicious



Me and Boni



Me and Kimberly, author of The Mocha Manual to a Fabulous Pregnancy and The Mocha Manual to Turning Your Passion into Profit


Xina and I headed to the pool after lunch and chilled out in the warm Miami sun for a few hours.  We made it to the evening reception at the Ritz’s beach club.  That was a lot of fun! During the reception, Ronnie and Lamar Tyler of interviewed me for their Be Blogalicious documentary.  I’m looking forward to seeing the film.

Xina loves Miami and has been many times. So she suggested we walk down the famous Lincoln Road for dinner at Sushi Siam.  Yummy yummy yummy! See the photo below.


Me and Xina at Sushi Siam


I ended the evening at Kindred Family Soul’s concert and the Parranda! party.  The first day of Blogalicious 2010 was a bloggy blast! Come back later this week for more posts on my Blogalicious 2010 adventures.

Ananda is speaking about digital sisterhood at Blogalicious on October 8!

Great news! I am co-hosting a discussion with PR guru Xina Eiland on the digital sisterhood experience at Blogalicious on October 8 in Miami, Florida. To learn more, read the blog post about our Blogalicious discussion: