Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Calling All Haven Mavens

Last week I had the pleasure of attending one of the most anticipated blogger conferences of the year…Haven! For those of you who don’t know what the Haven Conference is, it’s the first of its kind specifically targeted at DIY/home bloggers/enthusiasts.  Imagine that, having one location housing people who share the same level {if not more} enthusiasm for everything HOMES! We’re talking home décor, design, renovations, DIY projects, crafts and more. I was in PIG HEAVEN!

I happened to be traveling for work {I know right, lucky me} and we sponsored the event. I knew I was in for a treat, but I had no clue what kind of treat. Immediately after getting off the Marta, I had one of the craziest experiences. I literally, no joke, got caught in the gate exiting the train station. Walking half way through the gate with two luggage totes and a backpack on my back, the gate closed on me! NO LIE. Half of my body was through the door and the other half was not. My arms were stuck and I couldn’t get the backpack off. I don’t think I can stress how crazy I looked mid-way through this gate. It took two guys to free me from its grasp and about 5 minutes of people looking me like I was insane.  Crazy right? I can’t even say I was humiliated because through the entire time of the gentleman were helping, I was laughing. ONLY ME! 
Any who, immediately after getting off the Marta I met two of the cutest people. Jamie from Creating Really Awesome Things for Free and Beth from Free Stylin.  Of course I was not wearing any make-up so I looked super awesome {sarcasm} but they were so friendly and I loved talking to them throughout the conference!
Right, adorable, like I said. :)

After arriving at the hotel I got to meet all sorts of wonderful people that I have been following online for awhile, including Kim from Sand & Sisal, Pamela from PB&J Stories, Kerry from House Talk N, and so many more wonderful ladies! Two buddies I’ve spoken to via email quite a bit and FINALLY got to meet them in person is Tauni from the SNAP conference and Stacy from Not Just a Housewife. These ladies are pretty fantastic. I LOVED meeting them in person and they are all that encompasses #popsizzle. ;)

Jamielyn from I Heart Naptime, Heather from WhipperBerry & Linda from Craftaholics Anonymous

Kerry and me...this girl is HILARIOUS! :)

Our #popsizzle buds Stacy & Tauni. <3 you gals!!

Wednesday night at the networking party I got to meet the cutest couple {who I stalk lovingly online}, John, Sherry & Clara from Young House Love.  Take a look at our photo!

Such a beautiful family, inside & out!
The entire conference was so much fun working at the Homes.com booth. All of the bloggers kept coming up and chit chatting with us about working with our company. I consider myself lucky to have been able to not only attend this event but met such a wonderful group of women. I thoroughly enjoyed all of the education sessions, including Mr. Goodwill Hunting, Chris from Just a Girl and Marian from Mrs. Mustard Seed. They were informative and tons of fun with good doses of humor! The planning committee did a fantastic job, HUGE thanks to them for a wonderful event. :)

Beth from Home Stories A to Z helped plan such a fantastic event!
The last night I happened to go to dinner with an old friend of mine. She moved to Atlanta a few years ago and I was able to get together with her while traveling for work. {Here’s a picture of us girls hanging out}

Talk about dinner. While traveling I had a LOT of delicious food. Isn’t that always the case? You do so well while you’re at home, eating right and exercising. Then you travel and bam! All ambition goes out the window. LOL. Even though I still did work out while I was there, delicious meals at Ray’s on the River, a delicious Mexican restaurant and so much treats did not do so well for the figure! URGH! HA HA 
Even though I had a wonderful time at the Haven Conference in Atlanta, I was very happy to go home and see my hubby & puppy. I will take the memories and friendships I made at the Haven Conference with a smile and look forward to working with these amazing bloggers! Till next year…..Haven Maven & proud. ;)

Linked up to Southern Hospitality 


  1. Gillian!!! I am so happy I got to meet you! You are so much fun...I loved chatting with you, and I'm so glad we got to often! Also, you look great without makeup. :)

    Love the Homes Girls!!

    1. BETH!! I'm so glad we got to meet as well. You are so much fun & I look forward to continuing our online relationship. :)

  2. You are the cutest darn thing I ever did meet! Is it too soon to start packing for Haven2013?
    I got to party on the Marta with Jamie and Beth on the way back to the airport- although, no one was assaulted by the gates.
    See you next year!
    Kerry at HouseTalkN

    1. Me cute? Nah... ;) You, however, are awesome!! I just love following you & listening to your sense of humor. :) Haven 2013 we are coming for you!

  3. I feel pretty special that we made it in the first pic :) We need to do MORE blog conferences so we can all hang out again!

    1. Agreed Jamie. It was a blast hanging out with you! I'm going to the Bloggy Conference in Cincinnati, OH in September. Would love to see you! http://www.bloggyconference.com/

  4. OMGOSH! I got stuck in that gate too!!! It closed on my bag and we couldn't get it out! Fortunately, someone came along and swiped their MARTA card to free me. You aren't the only one. :) It was great to meet you.

    1. Vivienne-you got stuck also? I bet there is a person controlling those gates just watching what others do as they get stuck. It's kind of a mean game, but a hilarious one at that! ;)

  5. Gillian-
    You didn't tell me the Marta tried to kill you!!! LOL! I can totally see you laughing hysterically and the 2 guys panicking. Thank goodness they jumped to action!! It was so nice seeing you in real life! Everyone was very impressed with your team too!

    Kim ~Sand & Sisal

    1. Yeah, the Marta story is priceless! ;) I'm so happy we met in person also; I really hope we can grab some sushi together soon. Crazy we had to meet in Atlanta when we're in the same area, but looking forward to getting together more often than at a blogger conference!!