I’ve just returned from the Haven blogger’s conference in Atlanta where I had a fabulous time gathering with a few hundred of my newest blogger friends and learning all the ways to be an awesome blogger!  There was food and fun and crowds of people who love what I love and totally get this blogger thing!

There were gorgeous displays and decorations…

Haven Wooden Map Display


I looooved this donut door display for the breakfast we had with Schlage door locks… so fitting!

Donut Door Display


And this cute display by Kwikset with the keypad display…


Kwikset breakfast display at Haven


And many other great displays and vignettes…

Cute buffet table with Eat Sign


Popcorn Bar at Haven Conference


Sweet tea custom bottles at Haven



Haven Conference Entrance to


Cloche Table Centerpiece


Haven Conference Grand Ballroom


Loved the furniture displays from Home Decorators Collection, too!


Blue Print Accent Chairs from Home Decorators Collection


Small Riemann Sofa Home Decorators Collection


But the best part was being finally united with friends I’ve had for a while, but got to see in person!

Blogger friends


Blogger friends

Here I am with most of my Pretty Project Party friends-

 From left to right:Rachael from This is Our Bliss, Heather from Southern State of Mind, Amy and Christy from 11 Magnolia Lane (with me sandwiched between) and Sarah from Life on Virginia Street

And I also got to see this dear girl from Dimples and Tangles.  Jennifer and I are almost like twins except I’m lacking the height and the great hair and the bold color this girl is known for.  (Ha!) But, truly, she’s a sweet friend and I’m so glad I finally got to meet her in person.

blog friends


And then I met many other new friends as well–this is Denise from Frazzled Joy and she’s super sweet!

blogger friend


And did I mention the fabulous swag from the sponsors??

swag bag from haven conference


We even got to hear John and Sherry from Young House Love speak about their take on blogging now that they’ve changed gears.

John and Sherry Young House Love


There was soooo much information given to us over the course of 3 days!  We were given information on how to improve everything from photography to networking and all kinds of things in between.

So, from now on, this blog is going to be absolutely fabulous and totally top-notch!  And I guess I’ll have to change the name to Perfect Life of Bliss, since that will be more fitting.  {Are you reading between the lines here?!}

I am totally kidding, of course.  I did learn a ton of valuable info, met a ton of new friends, and also was treated to some great swag from some great sponsors.  But, I also learned a couple of very important things…

FirstI have no idea what I’m doing.  Ok, I may be exaggerating again, but really, I’m not the tech-savviest person around and apparently I have a tendency to make up words as well.  But the good news is, I met so many people in the same boat I’m in and they’re actually really great bloggers.  There is always something to learn from someone else’s experience.  My dad used to say, “Get experience as cheaply as you can.” And what he meant was, learn from your own mistakes so you don’t make the same ones again, but also pay attention to other people and learn from their mistakes so you don’t have to go through the tough times they’ve had to experience.  So many of the fabulous bloggers I met have had different paths and experiences with their blogs,  but they all have something to contribute that’s worth listening to.  It was so fun and informative to sit in the sessions and learn from some of them teaching…or to just sit around a lunch table and hear their stories.  Pretty much everyone I met was sweet and friendly and willing to share their experiences.  We’re all just real people sitting behind these screens with similar struggles and victories, after all.  In fact, when you stop and think about it, isn’t that just a great lesson for life as well?

Secondly, I totally know what I’m doing.  Sitting in the sessions and hearing so much about this crazy, unique, online world of blogging that didn’t even exist several years ago, I was reminded of what it’s really all about and why I’m doing this: Because of you.

When I sat down to write my first post almost 7 years ago (What?!), I just thought I’d give this a try because I loved crafting and decorating and thought it might connect me to a few other people who were like me.  And after a couple posts, I had a couple readers.  And then there were more, then a few more, and suddenly I was connecting with people about more than just paint and glue.  I did this to make a connection with people and that’s the reason I’m still doing it today.

Orange flower centerpiece

I think it’s mind-blowing how a little thing called a blog can be a way to connect hearts, not just across a few miles, but across the world.  It’s an opportunity that generations before us haven’t had.  And it’s an honor for me to have your time and your ear even for just a few minutes here and there.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–thanks for connecting with me here!  I love doing this and I’m still amazed that I have something to say that someone out there cares to hear.  And remember this–I’m here to hear you, too!

Now, let me get on with making this thing fabulous!