Wow! I can hardly believe that this will be my fourth make that FIFTH Haven Conference. How can that be? I went to the very first Haven Conference in 2012, and have been every year since. That in itself should tell you how I feel about this fabulous DIY gathering of like minded bloggers who “get” me.
Haven 2015 was my first year speaking at a conference. When I was asked to talk about Facebook, I was thrilled. I felt so honored that the Haven Team felt I was knowledgeable enough to lead a class. I’ll tell you a little secret, I was slightly nervous when I was giving my presentation and saw many of the team sitting in the back row! These are ladies I’ve admired for so many years.
They are doing something a little different this year—Maven Mentors, and I am included in that mix! Oh my! Somebody pinch me!
Seriously, look at this fabulous group of bloggers! There are a few I’ve yet to meet, and I’m beyond excited to hang out with them at Haven 2016. Not only I’m I excited about meeting some of these ladies, I’m also looking forward to making new friends through the Haven Maven Mentor program.
The team gave me a few questions to answer . . .
1. How many years have you been blogging?
I started blogging in July 2009, and I still remember it like it was yesterday. I had started following a few sites (at the time I didn’t even know they were called bloggers) Among those that I followed from the very beginning were Rhoda and Sarah, along with Traci, Mandi and Marian. Blogging has afforded me so many opportunities that I never would have imagined, and has helped me make lifelong friendships with people I’ve met and some I may never meet in real life, but feel so blessed to call them “friends”. (You know who you are)
2. What is your favorite DIY project you’ve completed? (Explain why and include pictures!)
This is like having to name your favorite child. My projects fall into several different categories. I’ll briefly share a few favs.
For sure, my favorite home reno DIY has to be my ugly brick fireplace makeover. I do all of my blogging from one little corner in the living room. So, I spend many hours looking right over at this fireplace. After all these years, it still makes me smile every time I look at it.
There’s a tie for my favorite DIY repurpose—that’s because I still use each of these items every single day in my home.
This kitchen island/craft station was made from my daughter’s teenage desk. I use this in the kitchen for crafting much more than I do for cooking or preparing food. Each of the drawers is filled with paint brushes, tape measures, painter’s tape etc.
This is the other project that ranks right up there with my favorites. This was my daughter’s first desk in her tween years. It was stored in the basement for years when I decided to remake it into a tall lingerie chest. The best part about this piece of furniture is how much storage it offers with a much smaller footprint.
3. What is something significant you learned from a conference? (Haven in particular if it applies!)
There isn’t one thing that stands out among all the blog conferences I’ve been to. Haven wasn’t my first conference, but it is by far my favorite. It’s within driving distance for me, and I always stop to visit my daughter Jamie and her husband Andy in Nashville along the way.
Sooo, back to the question, what have I learned? It’s not so much about what I’ve learned but the relationships I have formed and the friends I have made. Although all the classes are informative, it’s really the one on one time you spend with other bloggers that is the most valuable time you can spend at a conference. Whether you’re flying solo or attending with friends, do not be afraid to walk up to any other blogger and start a conversation. Some of us have been blogging longer than others, but we ALL started at square one. Only other bloggers can understand the day to day struggle of juggling it all, and wearing the many hats that make us moms, wives, business women and bloggers!
4. What is one piece of advice you would offer a blogger–new or otherwise–who is going to Haven?
Have fun, make friends, and don’t be shy or intimidated. Never let me hear you say the words “my blog is small” in an apologetic tone. You may be new to blogging, or raising a young blog, but never apologize for it. We all started with our only readers being family and friends. I’ve heard it said many times, and it’s worth repeating. “Never compare your beginning to someone else’s middle”.
I look forward to being part of the Haven Maven Mentor Program, but even if you’re not part of my group—please don’t hesitate to stop me and say hi, or ask me a question. ohhh, and if I don’t remember your name or your blog, please just chalk it up to a brain that is overworked and scattered!
See you at Haven!
But until then, let’s meet some of the other bloggers that make up the Haven Team and the Haven Maven Mentor Group.
I’m sure that Chris needs no introduction, but just in case you don’t know her—Just a Girl is THE place to get inspired to DIY. Speaking of wearing a lot of hats, Chris knows how to do that and does it so well. You should check out her post How to Paint Furniture.
Y’all… these are such awesome ladies, you’d be lucky to be in any group hosted by them.