Posts Tagged ‘blog conferences’

I Blog For Fun, But It Sometimes Includes Responsibilities: My Response

I just read one of the best posts that has ever crossed my Google reader from Lisa.


Aka my home-girl, internet soul-mate, long-lost “sister”, and one of my very best friends.

In her post, she shared her deepest thoughts on the Healthy Living Summit. She put it all out there and opened up some great discussion on blogging as a whole and the way bloggers approach their lives and blogging habits.

I read through the comments and nodded along to the wide variety of perspectives people shared. I started to type my own response in a comment there, but then realized I would overtake the comment section quickly and instead opted to post about it here.

Lisa discussed a few main things in her post:

  • feeling too caught up in blogging over experiencing the city, conference, and friends
  • the pressure of fitting into a blogger box
  • no “right” or “wrong” way to blog
  • caring about the people

Reading her post was an interesting experience for me. Why? Well, I find myself affected by all aspects of her post and the comments.

I am one of those bloggers that blog often and regularly. I did manage to blog a few times while at the Healthy Living Summit. I pull out the camera frequently and put my fair share of time into blogging. I do these things with a smile on my face. And, for the record, I never once felt bashed by Lisa. I know she knows me well.

I know myself well too. I know that I:

Live First.


Sure, I blog often. But over the past almost two years I have gotten it down to a science. I have figured out the tools that help me blog quickly. I know the ways I can organize my posts so that I can write more effectively. I allow blogging to fit my life and my schedule…not the other way around.

The only reason I have things to blog about is because I go out, make connections, learn lessons, and share life. I simply choose to turn around and use my time to share it here with all of you as well. I appreciate that Lisa emphasized that those she knew kept up blogging (including myself) still had a blast and experienced the conference, including the fun sight-seeing her and I shared!

No “Right” or “Wrong” Way to Blog.

I blog frequently. I post 2-3 times a day. Do you know why? It’s not to fit in a box or because I think I “should”. Oh, heck no! That would send me running in the opposite direction faster than you can say “asparagus”. It’s because I love capturing life and having a place to lay out the things that inhabit my mind. Or my bra. Winking smile


My writing style prefers the shorter posts. I get overwhelmed trying to put everything I want to share into one post. I hate bypassing moments of life because I don’t feel I have the space to include them in my blog. With Makenzie in school, I decided to take Braedon’s morning naps to blog more.

Some might disagree with that but it’s an outlet for me. It gives me the chance to talk more about things I may have otherwise put off discussing – like my mom’s MS relapse or silly moments with the kids. I will never become a blogger that shares every meal or all the tiny details of my day…and that’s okay.

And it’s also okay if I want to blog more to have more variety on FFF for people to choose what they feel like reading – a motivational, personal post or a goofy, daily life post. It’s what works for me and what I enjoy. I don’t expect readers to catch every post…but I like the idea that you all (my wonderful friends) can have options and I can write what I want. Every blogger has to find that balance for himself or herself.

Sometimes blogging carries responsibilities.


Heather brought this up in the comments. Part of why she attended the conference was to help develop her blog and also the Healthy Living Blogs website. She needed to spend time keeping up with responsibilities related to the work of those two things. I did too.

I attended the conference first and foremost to have fun with my friends. And you bet I did!!! I don’t think anyone can argue me having a good time when you look at all I did:

However, I also attended the conference to speak, represent Love Grown and their fabulous company, and to broaden the reach of FFF. Why?

My family is number one to me. Peter & I agreed that me staying at home with our kids was very important to us. I stayed home. I fell in love with blogging. Then, only through God’s will, the blog began to grow little by little and allow me the opportunity to do something I love, while still being at home with my children, and also help support my family financially even the smallest bit. I can’t avoid what I feel called to do and know is right for my family & I. So, yes – blogging involves some responsibility and work on my part…but I wouldn’t change that for the world with what it offers me in living out a passion and supporting my family all in one.

I’m going to stop here for now. I actually already had a post in mind for next week that related to the importance and value I put on relationships with blogging. If you attended our panel discussion, it relates to my response to the question from Ashley about the numbers side of blogging. You’ll want to stay tuned for that one!

  • Share ANY thoughts you have on this discussion! I’m looking forward to reading them!

Posted by on September 2nd, 2011 55 Comments

Top It Off With Champagne & Sushi

Soooo…Saturday at the Healthy Living Summit. I’m sure you have seen most of it on other blogs already so I will give you my personal spin on it all.

The day started with a simple breakfast of Attune Foods cereal and fruit.


We had to get some food in our bellies after the run and before starting the long day of conference sessions ahead. I had the Honey Almond Crunch cereal, which filled me up surprisingly well. Normally I can eat me some cereal. A huge pile of fruit always helps.

I also had the fun task to spread the love. Thank you so much again to Love Grown for sponsoring me at the conference. They truly were so awesome to work with and I loved getting to meet some friends and share the granola I believe in so much with all.

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Then, conference time commenced! I attended some fabulous sessions about action mantras from Dawn at Quaker Oats, recipe development from Stepfanie at Spark People, and negative commenting or feedback in blogging from my girls Brittany, Courtney, Heather, and Julie. Every session was so fabulous! Let me know if there are any that particularly interest you so I can maybe do a more detailed description later. 🙂


And then came the time…

My panel discussion on “The Numbers Game: Goal Motivation”!!


I actually didn’t feel nervous at all and felt like the discussion went really well. Janetha, Lisa, Beth, and I tried to have a variety of perspectives that hopefully everyone who attended could relate to on some level. I also really appreciated the participation from the audience and all the different insights. We touched on so many different things from the pros and cons of using specific numbers in tracking and motivating progress, how to have a healthy balance with our goals, and more. I plan on giving all the nitty gritty here later this week. Don’t want to overwhelm you with so much in this one post. Because a lot more happened to catch you all up on.

Like Katy Widrick’s super amazing, inspirational, informational talk on not selling out your blog and how to monetize it well. I love her! Her blog is a wealth of information, including much of what she touched on in the conference. If you don’t know Katy already – read her blog!


Then…it was done. I could hardly believe that our last full conference day had come to a close so quickly! Luckily, we still had a solid 8+ hours of fun ahead of us.

Gabriela, Julie, Courtney, Allison, Brittany, Gina, “the Pilot” (aka Tom – Gina’s husband), and I all visited a really cool restaurant called Pod for an Asian fusion dinner.

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We started off with a round of drinks – the “Green Martini” in particular for moi.


It had Midori Liqueur (a melon liqueur), Smirnoff vodka, Calpico (not a clue), and fresh lime. It tasted really bright with a slight tang and smooth finish. Mmmmm for an adult night out.

While waiting for our main meals to come out we all dug in to a large portion of salted edamame.


Thank goodness they had a ton since the kitchen forgot half of what I ordered for dinner. I had ordered a side of bok choy with a garlic sauce and a Spicy Crunchy Yellowtail sushi roll that had mango and jalapeno.


The roll tasted great and had a good melody of flavors and textures with the crunch and spice in the jalapenos mixed with the sweetness and juiciness of the mango. Nothing compared to what came next though…dessert!

We split three different choices – a mocha brownie…


a butterscotch caramel cake…


…and some fluffernutter spring rolls.


Oh my goodness. Everything disappeared in point two seconds flat I swear. I think dessert quite literally took the cake for the meal.

After dinner, we rounded out the night with a pit stop to a wine bar not too far from our hotel. Funnily enough though I ordered a beer at the wine bar. It was fabulous.


We only spent a short time there before heading back to the hotel lobby for our last round before heading up to bed. We knew we had to finish out with a celebration of time with great friends and did so with a bottle of champagne.

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Cheers to the best weekend with friends!!

With Gina and her gorgeous baby bump

With the ever gorgeous Courtney

Two of the best – Gabriela and Julie

We spent quite awhile hanging out and letting the Pilot entertain us with ghost stories while trying to soak up every last moment we could.

I’m so sad to leave them all! It’s so weird because we have no clue when we will get the chance to meet all together again. I just know it can’t come soon enough. It will feel odd not settling in for the night with lots of blog chat with these wonderful ladies every night.


We shall meet again, friends! This community is truly one of the best things that has happened in my life and I’m thankful for each and every one of you – whether we have met already in person or not. Thank goodness for the blogosphere so we don’t have to get out of the loop with each others’ lives. 😉

  • If you attended the conference what was your favorite part?
  • If you didn’t – what was the best part of your weekend?

Posted by on August 21st, 2011 40 Comments


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