my day at blissdom!

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I didn’t even tell you I was going, did I? I remember when I wasn’t going last year and it would kill me to hear the pre-blissdom talk, so I tried to stay restrained about it, plus I was nervous as heck.
Blissdom is an annual blog conference held in Nashville at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel. The timing was not good for my family as my husband is in the middle of the semester (he’s a professor) and juggling it with 5 kids was a task. But I was able to arrange to fly down early Wednesday morning, attend the Wisdom Workshops, and then I headed right back Thursday morning so I ran with it. Crazy, whirlwind trip, but it was worth every penny.
Mostly because I got to spend the day with my sister, Kristin!! january 2011 091 1

She is 3 hours from Nashville, so she drove down to meet me. She is also starting a blog which you’ll love ~more on that later! She had a car in case we hated it and wanted to escape and go find Tim & Faith or Wynona or someone….but the getaway car wasn’t necessary because we had a great time.
The hotel blew me away. Huge and gorgeous and we got lost a lot.
january 2011 088 1
january 2011 087 1
The first workshop we went to was the photography one and it was excellent. This is Angie from I Heart Faces:1.27.2011 019 1
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They really focused on our questions and helped us figure out our cameras and had some excellent tips, which I’ll share later. Kristin, trying to figure her camera out with Deanna. ^
Traci made this cute, crafty notebook and it was my photography subject:1.27.2011 036 1
Adorable Katie from Cleared for Takeoff was at our table as well:1.27.2011 026 1
  Traci was an absolute doll. We loved spending time with her:1.27.2011 038 1
We were so thrilled to meet Susie Davis:1.27.2011 050 1
Melissa from the Inspired Room and Nester had a down to earth, heartfelt home blogger session where they gave some wonderful thoughts as well:1.27.2011 059 1
Traci from Beneath My Heart, Marian from Miss Mustard Seed, me, Richella from Imparting Grace, Kate from Centsational Girl:1.27.2011 066 1
I can’t tell you how much I love these girls. They are refreshingly normal and just delightful, just as I expected them to be. 1.27.2011 068 1 I was able to have dinner with Kristin, Traci, Marian, and Richella and it was so nice to talk and laugh and share and come to know their hearts better~they are all beautiful and I love that I can hear their voices when I read their blogs now.
  The rest of the night was a whirlwind of meeting people and it was loud and dark and kind of hard to talk, but I would have loved to sit and have a good long chat with all of these girls:
Kristin, me, Angie, and Cheryl (Tidymom!)1.27.2011 073 1
Laurie from Tip Junkie:1.27.2011 074 1
Jen from Tatertots and Jello and Beckie from Infarrantly Creative:
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L-R: Emily from Decorchick, Megan from Honey We’re Home, Kim from Sand & Sisal, Rhoda from Southern Hospitality, Kate from Centsational Girl, me, Kristin, Brooke (soon to be blogger), and Amy from Earnest Parenting.1.27.2011 078 1   
There are so many more I wanted to meet and just talk with! The wisdom workshops on Wednesday were $69 and from lunch, the party that night, and all the free stuff we got and all of the blogging info, I thought it was worth it. I was wishing for one more day to talk with everyone, explore the hotel, and relax and be dumb with my sister, but glad to squeeze in what I did. Everyone just made us feel so welcome~no one cared what you where wearing or what your business cards were in, or if you completely embarrassed yourself and spit your gum out on their shoe (sorry, Jen!)
I was so thankful to make my flights in between the storms the northeast has been having back to my family….I have some great tips and nuggets of wisdom I learned at Blissdom I’ll share on Monday.
I wish you all could have been there!
Have a great weekend~


  1. It looks like you were able to meet a lot of great bloggers. I can't wait to check out their blogs. Thanks for linking them up. I have to tell you how much I have enjoyed reading your blog. I'm not even sure how I found it but when I found it and saw a photo of you, I thought I knew you from church in Msla. Then you posted your post about all the wonderful things and places in Msla and it made me so homesick! But I loved it at the same time and even favorited it so that I could take a virtual walk whenever I was need a taste of home. Thanks again for sharing all of the wonderful things you do, think and create.

  2. so much fun! i would have love to go, but i can't go for that many days...if i lived closer, i would go for a day. so much fun for you!

  3. Awesome! I think you are the blogger who totally "scooped" all the other bloggers about what Blissdom was like....the first one with a Blissdom post. It's almost like you went on special assignment, and came back to give a special report to everyone who couldn't go. Fun!

  4. Looks like a fabulous time Melissa! I can't wait to read more about it on your blog! :)

  5. Looks like a fabulous time! Okay I did not even KNOW you could just go on Wednesday!! This is definitely something I am going to consider for next year!!

  6. Angie~I didn't either until someone suggested it. In my survey this year, I'm going to suggest that they have a one day option geared for home bloggers because how many moms can realistically take off 4 days or afford it??

  7. Wow! You sure got a lot accomplished in one day girlfriend. I so wanted to go this year, but it just didn't work out. There's always next year.

  8. How cool that you were able to meet to many other bloggers and go to a great workshop! Thanks for sharing :)

  9. So jealous! I would love to have the time to go, but I work full time and only have a week vacation (that I spend camping with my family)!

    I would love to hear some of the great tips you learned! Looking forward to reading more!

    I love that you got some pics of bloggers that I follow!

  10. Looks like it was a ton of FUN!!! I forgot all about it until last week, so I have put it on my calendar for next year...maybe I will see ya there:) I did a post about the hotel yesterday.


  11. Um, you are so cute!! This is the most pictures I think we've ever seen of you! You have the cutest hair ever! :)

  12. Thank you for giving us a little peak of blissdom. Is it always in Nashville and in January? What other kind of classes can you take there?

  13. Thanks lady! It was so fun meeting you! :)

  14. Yeah, figuring out childcare was a bit challenging, but I'm so glad I went. So happy to meet you, if only for a bit! I love your recap- great pics! I think I needed to be at the photography session.

  15. FINALLY able to comment on your blog. Yeah! LOVED it all - hope there's another opportunity to go back and be wild and crazy at Blissdom. I took 103 pictures today trying to figure my camera. Our relationship has gone to a whole new level. :)

  16. So glad to hear some details about Blissdom this year! First of all you are gorgeous, Melissa. Second, you are in photos with some of my favorite bloggers (in addition to you.) I guess it's a good thing I didn't go because I would be star-struck the whole time!

  17. Okay, so next year I'd totally like to do the workshops instead. I hope they take you up on your suggestion. :) So happy I finally got to meet you. You are a doll and next time we'll have to hang out more! xxoo

  18. Melissa, it was so wonderful to meet you even briefly Wednesday evening! I think you came on the best day of the conference in terms of content because the Wisdom Workshops were so jam packed with stuff! Of course the rest of the conference was just wonderful in terms of getting to meet so many amazing women. I hope we get a chance to meet again sometime, and thanks for including me in the picture and your post!

  19. I am determined to go next year - I can't believe I didn't go this year as my daughter and her family have just moved to that area. They are about 30 minutes from Nashville. I kept the #Blissdom hashtag up on Twitter the whole time and got to hear about all that was going on! I may do the one day thing like you did next year -

  20. Can you believe that the hotel was under water in May of last year. The entire first floor and a couple of feet of the second was. I have been wanting to see what changes they made in the renovations.

  21. Y'all look like you have money (at least to go to conventions at fancy hotels), have highlighted hair and hip clothes and fancy cameras. Must be nice.

  22. Katie: you would never know~I couldn't believe it when people told me that. They said a section was still closed though (?)

    Anonymous: It may appear that way, but most have just saved for the whole year to come to Blissdom. It's not cheap~that's one of the reasons I chose the one day workshop. I've actually never highlighted my hair (and certainly don't look down on those that do!), my clothes are from Old Navy & thrift stores, and you can read how I got my camera back in my blog archives. So yes, I can see how it appears that way, but all of the women I hung out with are on tight budgets just like everyone else and work their tails off to make money on their blogs so they can attend. I hope you have a good day and can come next year!

  23. How fun, Melissa! I'm glad you got to go, and that you got to spend time with your sister, too. Thanks for sharing all the nice photos. How nice to be able to hear the actual voices!


  24. Melissa, I noticed that you wore the pencil skirt that you added the navy polka fabric to in one of the photos! (unless it's a different one). It looks great! That shows your humility~ modifying a piece of yard sale fabric to make your clothing more modest, and not being afraid to wear it after you've shared your thrifty idea with all of us! I'm glad you had a chance to leave your cute family for a bit to have some fun with your sister and learn a few things! I remember when I babysat you and Kristin! (funny thing is~I was only a couple years older than you!) Kristin was the most beautiful baby then, and is just as gorgeous grown up! And you are just as beautiful and sweet as you've always been!

  25. Look! My head is not cut off anymore!!!

  26. Looks like so much fun - I love being surrounded by creative people, particularly in such a gorgeous setting!

  27. Oh, Melissa, I'm finally home, and I'm just about brain-dead, but how I loved reading this post! Meeting you was one of the very, very best parts of being at Blissdom. It's so nice to know that the girls with whom I share a heart-to-heart relationship are just exactly what I've always known they are. They're NOT imaginary friends! They're real!! And they're marvelous--especially you! Love you!

  28. This was so fun! That notebook was super cute, it was great to see your Blissdom through your eyes!

  29. Soooooo much fun meeting you IRL! Seriously missed u the next day!
    Your sister is such a doll as well.
    Dinner with you guys was a highlight of the week for me.
    Hope to see you again soon.

  30. So great having you at Blissdomm, you are awesome!!! YAY! Laughing about Nester and me at the workshop, I look kind of angry lol, but really, it was so awesome to be with all of you home blogger friends!!!

  31. I am so glad i got to meet you, Melissa! You are the sweetest! I love the idea of attending one day. I'll have to think of that for next year.

    ps. Anonymous made me giggle..."must be nice". ;)

  32. Oh I hope my mom and I can go together next year....
    my mom's blog~

  33. Loved seeing your photos--looks like you had a great time! Good for you. :-)

  34. you.are.darling.
    And I love your sister too! :)

  35. Thanks for the link to Centsational's tutorial... Very helpful!


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