Learning is a part of our differentiating Value of Discovery as a couple, so when an opportunity arose to go to my very first blogging conference, I was exhilaratedWe quickly decided to grab the opportunity – but I must tell you, it was a feat of teamwork to get us on the road within 2 hours!

Exhilaration = Fun + Fear

Robert and I drove to Atlanta for the Blog Life University 2016 Conference — Atlanta, the capital city of Georgia, is a city of  almost 500,000 people. Here’s a tweet from one of the speakers – Carissa Rogers – to show you a gorgeous view of the city…

Learning from the Speakers

The line up of speakers and their topics was diversified. I didn’t know any of them, so it was an adventure with no clue what to expect. I got value from them all – and three of them gave me “ah-hah!” moments. I’ll be shifting and experimenting here on EncourageYourSpouse using the different ideas…

If you’re a blogger – or want to start a blog – I’d recommend attending next year’s conference. It was small enough to meet and speak with many other bloggers, yet had valuable content from the speakers. Mellissa Llado is the organizer – and she announced at the end of the conference that planning for #BLU 2017 is in the works! There’s lots of learning to be done!

Learning from the Sponsors

Liquid Romance – Chateau Elan – a winery and resort.

What a treat to taste a few samples of their Muscadine wines. Keri from ButterandBeats captured our experience so well! 😉

Muscadine Wine – (information from Elan’s website) “Often called “America’s First Grape,” muscadine grapes in hot climates of the southeastern United States. Many nutritionists have found muscadine grapes are loaded with more healthy compounds than other much-touted foods such as blueberries, goji berries, green tea, redwine, and dark chocolate. Muscadine grapes and their seeds are one of nature’s best sources of antioxidants and possess anti-inflammatory properties. Compared to other grapes, muscadine grapes have 40 times more resveratrol — the polyphenol found in redwine that is proven to benefit cardiovascular health, blood sugar levels and the aging process.” Click to learn more.

This resort and winery would make a great get-away experience for an anniversary! (Hmmm… maybe Rob and I need to do a little on-site research and write a post? 🙂  )

 Dixie Crystals – A SWEET sponsor

Theo 6 monthsI can completely see myself doing their “Kids in the Kitchen” recipes and art/science projects with our grandboy as he grows! (Ah, Theo – just you wait… We’ll be doing so much discovering and learning and you’ll love it!)

Hey Grandparents! Take a look at their Kids’ Cookbook in the picture below – it’s a binder, and every month you’re mailed a new recipe! What a way to be the “fun” grandparent, huh? 😉

On Friday evening Dixie Crystals sponsored a party where the attendees could make sugar scrubs – and the winners of their Sweet and Southern Dessert Contest were announced.

 Learning from the Attendees

This was really my first time being in a room filled with people who do what I do – write and publish online. Some are food bloggers, and some are lifestyle bloggers. A few have specific niches such as creating courses. I know that at least one other person at the conference writes about husbands and wives, although I missed the opportunity to introduce myself. 🙁  Learning from these women was invigorating.

It wasn’t until the second day that I thought about all these women and their relationships. Most were married… How did their spouses support and encourage their work? At least three of the speakers work fulltime with their husbands in the online business they began. (Their husbands have given up their profession, because it made more sense to work in their wife’s online endeavors. Now that’s putting encouragement into action!)

So, I asked a few of the women I was sitting with, “How does your husband make it easier for you to do what you do online?” 

Melissa from Serendipity and SpiceThe organizer of this blog conference, Mellisa Llado of Serendipity and Spice answered, “He keeps me laughing when I’m stressed.”

The event was a great success (at least it seemed to be to a newby like me 😉  )  I can only imagine the stress involved in planning this kind of endeavor.

Heather from Totally Tailgates made me smile when she quoted her hubby, telling me he says, “Write it, shoot it, do it!” — Now that’s encouraging, right?

Robin and Michael SmithAnother husband and wife team who attended were Robin and Michael Smith – Robin writes for a few blogs, in addition to working fulltime. She brought her hubby along to learn about blogging. He also makes her writing easier by helping along.


If (when) I find myself at another conference, I’ll definitely up-my-game, and arrange to interview many more men and women! I’m guessing every husband and wife story will be fun to hear and I’ll be learning a lot more.

What was Robert doing?

So what was Robert doing while I was at this conference? He drove us to Atlanta, and while I attended the conference, our roles were reversed – he spent a quiet two days working on his computer, and leading a conference call in the evening from the hotel!  When each day was finishing, he’d pick me up, and ask me about my day, and what I learned and who I met…  Usually he’s the one out-and-about and I’m the quiet, introverted soul.

Yes.  Roles were reversed, for sure!  I guess I can do it once a year or so. 🙂

What do you like most about conferences you’ve attended?

Are you usually the extroverted spouse – attending events, and socializing? And if you’re not, how do you cope with the role reversal?


Opt In Image
Encouragement Notes
... be encouraged and become an encourager!

Receive notes of encouragement - ideas to strengthen your marriage and enrich your life.