So Much Gratitude for Our ‘Tilt the Attic’ Rock Stars

I’ve been really busy lately. Between the house full of kids and the travel and the fact that, well, the snow is gone, I have not really made the time to post much. There’s a lot to write about and I do have some posts started but I thought that, since there are only 19 days left in our crowd funding campaign, I’d take a few minutes to thank those of you who have contributed. I’m going to do it individually, but all at the same time (if that makes sense). Because we appreciate each and every donation, no matter how big or small (we know that you gave or did what you could and that is, as they say, AMAZE-BALLS), I’m going to thank you all in order of the contributions but not list the contribution. Truly, every single penny (or dollar) helps!

SIDE NOTE: You’ll notice that a majority of these people are from the WordPress World. These are all incredible people to know and fantastic people to follow via Twitter. So, having said that, when and where available, I am including their twitter handle. I guarantee your lives will improve simply by following them!

So, with that said, here we go:

Andy Christian (@_andywashere): You’ve helped in so many ways. Not only by being THE first contribution, before anyone even knew there was a campaign to begin with, but you have always been a great help professionally as well. If ever there was a guy who will do WHATEVER he can to help out in any way, it’s Andy. I am so glad you are living your dream right now of traveling abroad and working for a pretty cool company at the same time. Look forward to seeing you at a WordCamp again, one of these days.

Mike Zielonka (@mikezielonka): You’ve already been a great help in other ways, as well. You bailed us out when we had an issue with our dogs and now you’re contribution is pretty darn awesome. I also believe you’ve treated me to lunch once or twice. Plus, on top of it all, you’re pretty cool to hang out with. Thanks for everything. I hope to one day repay the favors!

Brad Parbs (@bradparbs): Brad, Brad, Brad. What can I say? Despite the fact that you’re trying to put us out of business with your latest project (just kidding – he’s really not because he needs to get his inspiration somewhere), you’re a ton of fun to be around. And the fact that you are so generous with your desire to teach people and help others really helps me to realize that the world is not quite as screwed up as we “old” people would like to think from time to time. You do, still, however, need to come watch that Ricky Jay video I got one of these days when WebDev isn’t keeping you so busy.

Carrie Dils (@cdils): People, Carrie just plain rocks. Besides being one of my favorite people in the WordPress Community, she’s the one that really got this campaign going. Within minutes after she tweeted about it, people started paying attention. She’s a LOT of fun to be around and you just never know what’s going to come out of her mouth or mind but nine times out of ten, it’ll be entertaining, I can assure you of that. Thanks for being so uniquely you, Carrie! It’s awesome!

Chris Lema (@chrislema): Ok folks, I gotta say something right here and now. CHRIS LEMA IS FULL OF CRAP! That’s right. I said it (someone had to). This is a man who claims to say “no” more than anyone on the planet (he claims that if you Google it, you’ll find he speaks truth). He’s made a personal brand of himself and wrapped it around this “factoid.” The truth is, I’ve personally seen him say yes more than anyone I know. When people have needed help financially and have a good cause, I’ve personally witnessed him not only contributing financially, but leading the charge to get more involved. And this campaign has been no exception. When Chris lends his name to a campaign, the credibility it creates within the WordPress Community is pretty phenomenal. So, while he may be full of crap, it’s in a good way and it means a lot that he lent his name to this campaign.

Becky Davis (@beckyddesign): Becky, you’re pretty darn cool. We’ve only had a few interactions despite living in pretty close proximity. And yet, you felt strongly enough to help out. That speaks volumes about the kind of person you are and I am really glad to know you! Hopefully you’ll be at WordCamp Milwaukee and I can buy you a drink or something to properly thank you!

Rebecca Gill (@rebeccagill): Rebecca, I’m so glad I got to meet you last year in Ann Arbor. You’re a blast to talk to and you always bring a perspective to things that I had not considered. It means a lot to us that, knowing that you’re dealing with many of the same headaches of owning an older home, you decided to contribute to our cause. I do hope that your projects are going better than ours (at the moment)! And my offer still stands that if ever you need “old home addicts anonymous” therapy, I’m only a phone call away. Or did I just out you? Sorry.

Jennifer Bourn (@jenniferbourn): What can I say about you Jennifer? I’m so glad I met you on a number of levels. You’ve always been so helpful with our company and then went out of your way to help us out here. That’s pretty awesome! I always look forward to seeing you at WordCamps and having a conversation or two with you. Thanks to both you and Brian (@brianbourn) for being the awesome people that you are!

Lisa Sabin-Wilson (@LisaSabinWilson) : So, here’s the thing that’s cool about Lisa Sabin-Wilson. She and I have overlapped at several WordCamps, and other than a couple nods of acknowledgement, we had never really spoken to each other. It was never for lack of desire to do so (on my part, at least), as much as the fact that sometimes, WordCamps get a little nuts and we’re wrapped up in what we’re doing at the moment. Anyway, how cool is it that she pitched in? Pretty bloody amazing, I say!

Having said that, I am glad, Lisa, that we got to talk a bit this weekend and I look forward to seeing you around! And, oh ya. . . GO PACK, GO!

Natalie MacLees (@nataliemac): Possibly one of the busiest people in the WordPress world. Beyond blogging, writing books, teaching, organizing meetups and WordCamps, all to benefit the WordPress Community at large, you are one of the nicest, friendliest people anyone would be lucky enough to know. Always, as in every time that I see you, you brighten my day. And I know you do the same for anyone with whom you come in contact.

Gregg Franklin (@greggfranklin): One of my oldest friends who also happens to be one of my business partners. I could write a book about how much I appreciate the fact that you, Heidi and Alisha are in our lives, but I’d like to get this post out sometime before the next decade. It’s not often we get to say how much we appreciate each other in life, but I hope you know how much your friendship has meant to us throughout both the good and the bad years.

Lucy Beer (@webtw): Another just plain cool person in the WordPress Community. When I met Lucy she had long hair but today you’ll find her sporting a bald head? Why? Because she shaved it all off to raise money for kids with Cancer at the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. And, as I recall, she raised a LOT of money for that. Incidentally, I’d just put a plug in here that if you don’t feel our Tilt the Attic Campaign is where you’d like to contribute, I would HIGHLY recommend that you put your money to a cause such as St. Baldrick’s or St. Judes. These charities are fantastic ways and the work they do with kids is frickin’ amazing. But I digress. . . Lucy. You may be THE coolest person I know in the WordPress Community.

Mendel Kurland (@ifyouwillit): What’s not to like about Mendel? Pretty much nothing. Ya, he works for GoDaddy but no one holds that against him because he’s such a decent human being. Now, this may be the ONLY time I ever write those words about Mendel because we can’t let it go to his head. I always look forward to seeing him at WordCamps and our conversations are rarely, if ever dull. Thanks Mendel for the friendship and fun on those trips. I’m always happy for those times when we get to hang out. And I’m not just saying because 1/2 the time GoDaddy foots the bill. 😉

Kurt Gillen: I’ve known Kurt since before I could talk. Literally. Kurt is one of the funniest, most genuine people you’ll ever meet. He was my best friend when we’d summer in Wisconsin, and every day was an adventure. He could spin a yarn unlike anyone I ever know or have ever known. And that’s saying something! Thanks so much for being a friend and I am so glad we got to hang out a bit a few months ago. Hopefully it won’t be so far between visits! And yes, I’ll be sure to make sure the kids put on a production of “The Sound of Music” just for you.

Shelley Radtke: Thanks so much! I cannot remember for certain the last time I saw you, but I am pretty sure it was when your kids were pretty small. In fact, I think Jake was still in a little car carrier/car seat. That’s been a while. Pretty dumb when you consider we live in the same town. Maybe we should do something about that one day soon. Wadda ya say?

Bradley Nelson: Wow! Thanks! It’s so weird how you guys came into our lives and somehow we’ve managed to follow each other around. It’s been years since we’ve seen each other. Why is that? We definitely need to get together soon!

Carmen Wisdom: Carmen, your work is challenging enough as it is. The fact that you have done it for so long, teaching all those young minds, is pretty amazing. What we’re doing, in comparison, pales on so many levels. You work tirelessly and, likely, thanklessly most of the time. As a parent, I can tell you that I SO appreciate the fact that people like you exist. Thanks so much for everything!

Chris Dohman (@dohman): Another great guy in the WordPress Community. Chris, I just got back from Minneapolis where you put together a really great WordCamp. I really enjoyed chatting with you throughout the weekend and look forward to seeing you again next year. Thanks SO much for your support on this campaign!

Heather Acton (@HeatherActon): Every time I add another name here, I’m reminded of how cool the WordPress Community is. You’re no exception. Whether it’s inviting me to come hang out in San Francisco, or offering to make the drive up from Chicago to watch the five kids while Jessica and I go and have some fun, it’s so cool to know you’ve got my back. It means even more that I know that you MEAN it! Thanks for being out there and thanks for the great conversations we’ve had. One day, I might take you up on that babysitting offer!

Jeff Chandler (@jeffr0): When you think of WordPress and you think of taverns, there’s only one name that springs to mind. I’m really not sure why that is. Jeff, it’s been so cool getting to know you over the last year. Seeing you at WordCamps or talking to you in a late night Google Hangout is almost always entertaining. Despite the hard time I give you, I read every single thing you write for WPTavern and once in a while, I even learn something from it! 😉 Thanks for being a friend and thanks for pitching in. It’s great to know you!

Pippin Williamson (@pippinsplugins): It’s rare that I look at someone who is a little older than half my age as a mentor. Actually, it’s rare that I look at anyone as a mentor. It’s not that I have anything against mentors so much as I would rather learn the best things from the best people. BUT, if I were to refer to someone as a mentor, you’d definitely be in the running. I appreciate your kindness and generosity, yes. But above all else, I really appreciate your humility. You have done some REALLY amazing things in the WordPress World and while I suspect that you know this, your humility as a human being is super rare. You are a person I’m proud to call a friend and if I could give YOU a piece of advice it’s simply this: don’t ever change (although I doubt you would even if I didn’t say that).

Ryan Sullivan (@ryandonsullivan): I’ve only spoken to you once in San Diego and yet, here you are on this list. That speaks volumes about what kind of person you are and the character you possess. You are a perfect example of one of the things I love so much about the WordPress Community. Thanks again! And if there’s EVER anything I can do to return the favor, don’t hesitate to call upon me!

Dan Griffiths (@ghost1227): Dan, you’re a nut. And you know I mean that in the greatest possible way. Your willingness to help not only myself, but the Community in any way you can is a testament to the type of person you are. I know that you bend over backwards and sacrifice greatly to see to it that the people around you are taken care of. It doesn’t go unnoticed. You contributed when I know that you’ve got your own things to deal with. It’s that kind of loyalty that means so much. It’s an honor to know you and call you my friend.

Lana Barrett: I cannot think of a time when I didn’t know you. Wow. That’s a long time when you consider we’re pretty old (although you’ve aged so much better). Thanks so much for your help! I really did not mean to make you cry but I *am* glad that they were happy tears.

Wilson McAlpine (Uncle Buster): Thanks so much for the support! Not just financially but the emotional support means a lot to us. Maybe sometime this summer we’ll get to go sailing! I’ve still not been on the new boat.

Jason Crawford : Possibly the support that came from the greatest distance. It’s really been cool getting to know you a bit on the podcast. Hanging out with you (and the rest of the RoundTable Crew) is always a good time and we really appreciate the support that you’ve shown. Thanks for letting me hang out with you guys!

Mary Yap (@maryJYap): Mary, I don’t even know you but it is amazing to me that the Program Manager for has even gotten in involved with our campaign. It means a lot that our story speaks to you and you have been wonderfully supportive when it comes to us getting things going. Thank you so much!

Eric Lagunas (@EricLagunas): So good to see you this past weekend in Minneapolis. Thanks for taking the time out to listen to me go on a 10 minute diatribe on kids in the foster system and how devastating it is for kids to be split up from their siblings. I’m sure you had other important things to do with your day, but the fact that you opted to invest your time in listening to me talk about it says and means a lot.

Sandra Ingram: Sandy, knowing you practically my whole life, I can’t say I’m surprised to see you on this list. You’re a caring, compassionate person who genuinely wants the best for all around you, and my life is richer for knowing you. I always look forward to seeing you on our all too infrequent trips to California. Thanks for being such a great friend and hopefully we’ll catch up soon!

Many of the above mentioned people are people that I know or am very familiar with because of our activities within the WordPress Community. To say that the Community kicks some serious tail is an understatement. But there were also some people who contributed that I don’t know. Instead they may be acquaintances of people I *do* know and these people have also chosen to help us out. It blows my mind that you don’t know us and, yet, you have chosen to contribute some of your hard earned money to our cause. While I cannot write a small paragraph to each one of you, because I don’t know you, please understand that the contribution is no less valuable to us. These people are:

Linda Brannan: I believe you are Jennifer Bourn’s mother. THANK YOU!
Oli Pyke: I see we have a common friend on Facebook. THANK YOU for your comment and your contribution!
Tina Ramme: I don’t know you but your comment on the wall tells me all I need to know. You’re amazing! Thanks for the contribution and best wishes on the work you’re doing in Africa!
Beth Meyer: I know *I* have never met you but you hang around some pretty cool people. As if that wasn’t enough, you helped us out with a contribution. That makes you pretty awesome in our book!

Lastly, those of you who have been sharing our story and the link to our campaign, whether or not you’ve contributed financially, your sharing is a HUGE contribution. Letting other people know about our project is the only way that the word will get out. So, we appreciate each and every one of you tweeting, facebooking, talking, whatever’ing to let people know we’re here.


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