Thanksgiving is a special time of the year. We spend a day with the people that matter most to us in our lives. Friends, family, loved ones. I like every aspect of the holiday. The food, the people and the opportunity to take stock of everything in our lives for which we are thankful. Plus we get time off work!

All of us have individuals we look up to and for which we are thankful. In some cases, it’s people in our lives. In others, it’s people that we aspire to be like. Regardless of who it is, many seldom take the time to say thank you.

We wanted to say some thanks ourselves and give a few of our favorite bloggers the chance to do the same. That’s why our November series is called: “Thank You Notes: Mentor Matters.” It’s our chance to say thank you to those that have helped to get us where we are today.

I’ll probably be chiming in a few times throughout the series, in the weekly newsletter, on social media or elsewhere. I want to say thank you to lots of folks. The first is the person who pushed me into writing, who has been one of my best friends for a long while now and who I will serve as best man at his wedding next year.

Thank you, Zack Teibloom.

Is it weird to call someone your mentor, but they’re actually a couple months younger than you? Maybe, but I’m doing it. We were the same exact major and minor in school and I’m pretty sure you were the first one in both. You were the one that pushed me into doing album reviews for you at the Indiana Daily Student’s Weekend section. My first “professional” writing experience.

After college, you started at College News Magazine as an intern. By the end of the week, you were the editor of the magazine. Who does that? You … and it gave us the platform to begin Festival Crashers. A music blog that not only gave me the best stories I have to tell, but that let me find my voice as a writer, gave me a foundation for a career and gave me a thirst for adventure that probably made my decision to move half way across the country a whole lot easier.

Thanks for being the one pushing me (sometimes dragging) every step of the way. I’d never be where I am today without it. Thanks for inspiring me creatively and being a sounding board for me whether it be about writing or life. You’re the best.