Weekend link love, one day early :: Blissdom, a great giveaway, & a debt-free business that ROCKS

by Tsh Oxenreider

Tsh is the founder of this blog and just finished traveling around the world with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

Blissdom 09
Unless noted, all photos are by the wonderful Emily.

I usually save my link love posts for the weekends, but since I didn’t get a chance to do one last weekend because of Blissdom, I thought I’d just jump the gun a little.

My Thoughts About Blissdom

If you have any interest in learning how to make money from your blog, if you really want to network in person with the many bloggers you “meet” online, or if you simply want to take your blog to the next level – whatever that may mean for you – I encourage you to go to a blog conference.  And if you can only afford one blog conference, I really think your choice should be Blissdom.

One of the two cocktail parties at Blissdom.

You learn so much information in such a concentrated amount of time, you can easily get overwhelmed.  But hearing real-life stories about actual blog success can be hard to find online – you just can’t beat hearing it from another person, right in front of you.

Nester, Melissa, and myself prepping for our panel, while Jen of Balancing Beauty and Bedlam works nearby.

I was privileged to speak alongside some amazing women. I shared the panel floor with Amy of Mom Advice, Meredith of Like Merchant Ships, Tanis of Attack of the Redneck Mommy, Nester of Nesting Place, and Melissa of The Inspired Room – and that was enough to make my weekend complete.

My roommates Megan and Alli, chatting about branding with Arianne of To Think Is To Create.

But I also got to room once more with Alli of Fussypants and Blissfully Domestic and Megan of Velveteen Mind and Blog Nosh Magazine, and that was a ball.  Such a humbled powerhouse of women.

It was wonderful to finally spend time with Shannon of Rocks In My Dryer, Melanie of Blogging Basics 101, Marie of Make and Takes, Stephanie of Adventures in Babywearing, Mandi of Organizing Your Way, and countless others (truly – it would be impossible to list them all).

And the last night, I went out to dinner and sat opposite Christine of From Dates To Diapers, Lori of A Cowboy’s Wife and My Wooden Spoon, and Tara of Deal Seeking Mom, and it was so fun to laugh and share the stories you’d never read online.

unconventional originsgidget goes home
Photos by Lucie (left) and Nicole (right).

Finally, it was wonderful to meet some of Simple Mom’s most loyal readers, some of who’ve been around since the get-go – Lucie of Unconventional Origins, Nicole of Gidget Goes Home, and Michelle of White Trash Mom.  And shockingly, I sat next to Rachel of A Southern Fairy Tale, and it turns out we graduated a year apart from the same high school.  I would have never known.  Such a small world.

I really had a great time.  I was encouraged, inspired, and motivated to keep going on.

Currently Around the Blogosphere

Joan of Simple Kids has a great giveaway going on, and it ends this Sunday.  Please don’t miss out on entering to win three beautiful, open-ended toys from Hearth Song – a total value of $150.

Organizing Your Way is a great new site from Mandi, and she’s got some great tips for organizing your taxes.  With tax season on the horizon, I love that she’s encouraging people to plan now – check out her series on Preparing Your Taxes: Make a Plan, Make a List, and Planning For Next Year.

Leo at Zen Habits wrote a great piece recently called Conquer the Fears Lurking in the Dark Corners of Your Mind.  It’s all about facing those things you don’t want to face, owning up to those things you wish you could forget.  Well written, Leo.

Rachel at Small Notebook has such a penchant for writing only what needs to be said in a beautifully succinct way.  I love her thoughts about monitoring the sounds in your home.

Lisa Leonard.  Ah, Lisa Leonard…  She was one of the women I was ecstatic to meet at Blissdom, and she’s every bit as wonderful as I expected.  But I learned something else about her business that my simple-living heart absolutely swoonher business is completely debt-free.  It started debt-free, and she plans to keep it debt-free for its entire course.  How great is that!  I love that she’s proof it can be done.  And it makes me want to support her all the more.  Not that I wasn’t already – her work is amazing, and I’d love one of everything she makes.

And as always, you can browse the rest of my finds in my Tumblr, also found up top in the nav bar.

For those of you at Blissdom – what were your highlights?

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  1. It WAS such a wonderful conference and such a privilege to meet you. I think Lisa Leonard is pretty amazing myself, but I’m a little biased.

    chrissie´s last blog post…Valentine Brownies with Pink Icing

  2. I love this post! I think you said it so perfectly. I will have to link to this one myself!


    Adventures In Babywearing´s last blog post…Rearview Mirror

  3. great post – sounds like you guys had a blast…it was a little too much to tackle this year with a 2 week old baby, but maybe next! thanks for sharing with those of us who couldn’t make it!

    jodi´s last blog post…Walker & the Bobcat

  4. I took away a few things from the conference and I’m grateful for that but I have to say, meeting you & Liz Strauss were at the top of my list. I was honored to meet and chat with you and can’t wait until next time!

    A Cowboy’s Wife´s last blog post…Friday’s Frugal Ideas

  5. Meeting you and being astonished by our connection (small world indeed) was a definite highlight for me!
    Meeting so many amazing bloggers and realizing that they are each and every one just a person, just like I am, that was fabulous.
    Being inspired by the amazing power and voices that attended there, total highlight.

    The insane Bliss Buzz (YAY!) still coming down from it.

  6. The conference looked great. Thanks for letting us know what happened. It looks like everyone had a lot of fun. Makes me think maybe I might want to come to one too!

    Taylor at Household Management 101´s last blog post…Feb 12, Weekly House Cleaning Schedules Benefit Your Home And Sanity

  7. Ahhhh Blissdom! Why didn’t I go? I feel like the only girl in high school that wasn’t invited to the prom!

  8. It sounds like so much fun!

  9. I hate to admit this, but before BlissDom I didn’t know who you were or your site. I am happy to say that I got to unofficially meet you at BlissDom and listen to your great advice.

    I was hiding in the corner of The Nester’s room and listening to y’all brainstorm and talk about being successful. It was great information! Plus, on one of your other panels you said that your content happens offline — and that’s something I need to take to heart. Thanks for sharing and maybe at the next conference I’ll actually introduce myself to you :)

    Lisa Boyd´s last blog post…Mister Linky needs some competition

  10. I’m so glad I decided to go for a lot of the same reasons as you! And Tsh, meeting you and hearing your wisdom was definitely a highlight for me, so thanks!

    Nicole aka Gidget´s last blog post…Blissful Friends

  11. Quick Question:

    Are you going to announce the winners from your week of giveaways?

    Shannon Angelos´s last blog post…Valentine’s Day

  12. I am currently hosting a giveaway on my blog http://tncakes.blogspot.com/ . It is completely no strings attached. Go there for details.

    Natasha´s last blog post…Introducing Photo Jewelry and a GIVEAWAY!!!!

  13. Wow, sounds like an amazing experience! Thanks for sharing…I’m disappointed that I’ll have to wait for next year to attend!

    Moltomom´s last blog post…Mom: The Official Buzz Kill….

  14. Blissdom sounds like it was a blast!

    Thanks for the heads-up on the Simple Kids/Hearth Song giveaway!

    Kacey´s last blog post…Wordless Wednesday

  15. I will be there next year for sure. Just downloaded the transcripts from this year. So glad you all enjoyed it and it does look like it was a lot of fun.

    Thanks for the fun report!


    Trish´s last blog post…Reading Round-Up for February 13, 2009

  16. Blissdom sounds just fabulous! Thanks for all the great links… :)

    Angie @ The Creative Mama´s last blog post…printing images of your kids

  17. Highlights? Definitely one of MY highlights was meeting you in person! You are amazing, sweet, and so encouraging! It was an honor just to sit next to you on our panel!! Even more fun (as if anything could be more fun than being NERVOUS sitting on a stage staring out into a room full of people) though was talking with you and Nestie before the session, you were so patient and calm….and always inspiring!


    melissa @ the inspired room´s last blog post…When Life & Blog Collide: Your Life Purpose & Measuring Success

  18. My idea of heaven would be the chance to sit and brainstorm with you. Can’t get enough of your awesomeness, woman!

    To Think Is To Create´s last blog post…See You At The Beach

  19. Lisa Leonard is the most awesome of all awesome business women. I mean, she brought tiny little key ring thingys for people and I WAS ONE OF THEM ! She has sponsored giveaways on my blog and omg, she is beautiful to boot.

    My roommate didn’t get to come, she had a sick baby. My husband ended up coming to Nashville on Friday night and it was great. We slept in separate beds (ha, my mom kept the kids, we had a big ol’ nice room to ourselves and we chose separate beds – Happy Valentine’s Sweetie – remember, I have this big ugly cast/boot on my broken foot that makes sleeping me a bit dangerous anyway)….but I said all that to say….if I had been fortunate enough to room with some of the awesome women that made it or even my roommate that didn’t make it, I bet I would have lost a ton of weight laughing because holy cow, when we started home my stomach muscles were sore from laughing and that came just from visiting with all the great bloggers there.

    I can’t wait to “do” another conference. I don’t even care what it is, as long as the great blogging ladies you listed plus some are there……

    Jerri Ann´s last blog post…TV Boyfriends

  20. So cool to meet you and talk to you at Blissdom! I can’t wait to brainstorm some more and meeting you was one of the biggest highlights of my trip. You rock!

    Michelle Lamar´s last blog post…The Redneck Mommy Shower: A Virtual Jello Salad

  21. What a great post about Blissdom! It was such a wonderful confernece, and it was so great meeting you and so many of the other people I am used to seeing pop up in the comments around here!

    Lucie @ Unconventional Origins´s last blog post…7 things I learned at my first blogging conference

  22. It was great to see you again, Tsh!!

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