Get to Know Our Speakers: Tara & Wendy from The Dating Divas


Hey Everyone!! It's Tara & Wendy from the website, The Dating Divas.
The Dating Divas - SNAP2
On The Dating Divas website, we are all about creative ideas that will help strengthen our relationships. We started out as a group of friends who were determined NOT to become "boring old couples" who sat around and watched TV all day. We wanted to continue the honeymoon... so we decided to take turns coming up with SUPER creative, inexpensive, and fun date ideas that we could all try! Word soon spread, and more and more people started visiting our site. Saying it "snowballed from there" is an understatement! Anything to do with having a "happily ever after" is right up our alley and we began to share even MORE ideas on how to do JUST that to our rapidly growing audience! We currently blog about amazing & creative date ideas, fun gift ideas for our spouses, quick & easy romance ideas, CRAFTY tutorials, and MUCH, much more!! We even decided to share tips on how to look good for your man AND ideas on how to keep things HOT in a certain room… but you are gonna have to visit our website for THAT! {WINK!}
 
 
We are extremely thrilled to be speakers at this fabulous "Build Your Blog" Conference.
The Six Sisters' Stuff gals are some of our dearest friends in Blog Land - if you have met them in person, you can't HELP but fall in love with those bubbly ladies! You'll soon find out {if you haven't already} that making amazing friends in Blog Land is a must! We've sure lucked out in that department!
Let's chat about our presentation, shall we!?!
What if we were to tell you that it IS possible to have your cake and eat it, too?!? Ah... we see that we caught your attention, huh! Most bloggers initially start their blogs & websites because they are extremely passionate about something. Not too long after, they start to think, "How on EARTH do bloggers manage it all?" Family time, cleaning, quality SPOUSE time, church activities, work, helping children with homework, laundry, cleaning, meals, chauffeuring for children’s activities, did we mention CLEANING, … oh, and you want to fit BLOGGING in there somewhere? Eeks! The “age-old” {ok, ok... so not THAT old...} question of HOW do I manage it all? How does one balance everything in order to make sure FAMILY comes first but still run a successful website that actually contributes to the family income? We have a whole TEAM of women that help keep our site running, and you better believe we’ve come up with a system to manage everything. We’re still going strong three years later... without a DROP of drama! Crazy, right? You’d think if you had that many women together in one room, there would eventually be tears or hurt feelings, but we haven’t experienced any of that due to the system we have set up and the way we run things. We have SO many amazing tools, tricks, free online sources, and partnerships that we utilize to keep things running smoothly that both the team AND the solo blogger can use!
We’ve put together a JAM-PACKED and FUN presentation that will leave you feeling empowered and have you walking out the door ARMED with the knowledge of what it takes to balance it all. You'll be able to put together & immediately implement an "Action Plan" tailored to fit your schedule with the tools we give you. Like we said before, "You CAN have your cake & eat it too" and we’ll show you how!
We’ve attended collaboration and productivity classes at different Blogger Conventions to see if there was anything out there we were missing. We definitely learned new things, but we always walked away feeling a little dissatisfied. We liked a few of the things the speaker(s) had to say, but nothing truly rang a bell with us. We started on our “trial & error” stage which brings us to where we are today. Testing different strategies, throwing out the ones that didn’t work, and moving forward with those that DID. Our current system is SUPER smooth, eliminates drama, and is tailored to fit all of the women’s different schedules & personal lives in a way that works for them. In order to make sure our presentation covers the needs both team bloggers AND solo bloggers have, we reached out to some of our top-notch SOLO blogger friends who are making a living blogging. We asked THEM what system they have in place. Their responses were wonderful & surprisingly, a lot were similar to our methods. With their permission, we’re excited to share them in our presentation! Too many bloggers start blogging about their passion but then get burnt out too easily when they get overwhelmed with how much there is to do. We don't want YOU to become a statistic! We've got the tools to help you become successful! We’d like those who attend our class to walk away with these three KEY points:
#1) How to Set Up A Management System that WILL Be Successful #2) How to Become Organized & Tools to Help You STAY That Way #3) How to FUEL Your Blog’s Fire WithOUT Getting Burnt Out
We’ll also share tips, tricks, and “what we wish we would’ve known” advice from not only US - but top bloggers in Blog Land. Our hope is to inspire, motivate, empower, and educate those bloggers attending our presentation so that they are able to become successful bloggers without sacrificing precious family time!
We can't WAIT to meet all of you!
We'll see you soon at our "Fueling Your Blog’s Fire WithOUT Getting Burnt Out! {Tips, Tricks, & Ideas to Manage It All!}" Presentation!
* * * * * * * *
We asked Tara & Wendy some questions so you could get to know them better. Here's what they said:
1) Why do you start a blog? TARA - I am a hopeless romantic! I met my Mr. Right, we fell head-over-heels in love, and had a beautiful wedding! I quickly realized I didn’t want our honeymoon phase to end. I wanted to keep that passion alive and continue being that fun & adventurous couple we were while dating. I needed an endless supply of creative ideas to do just that… so I contacted my amazing friends & we started the website, The Dating Divas. Pretty much anything and everything you’d need to keep the spice alive in a marriage! We’ve recently added even MORE amazing “divas” to our Rockstar Team and are having the time of our lives courting our spouses & sharing our ideas with all of you! WENDY - I didn't start it, I just wanted to be a part of something incredible!! 2) How long have you been blogging? TARA - Three exciting, eventful, fun, trial-and-error, life-changing years! WENDY - Ahem*** 4 years with my personal. Hahaha, not so much that one anymore! 3) Who is your inspiration? TARA - I am blessed to have so many inspirational people in my life that actually choosing one is a hard task for me! Building a website & working so hard to reach as many marriages as possible, there are a lot of ups and downs. Learning HTML coding, figuring out Social Networking, spending hours on posts, taking beautiful photos – it’s a LOT of work & things don’t always go as planned. My husband, Jamie, has been my support and my rock through it all. He dries my tears, listens to my stressful rants, comes up with solutions, and is the reason I started this website in the first place. If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be able to have accomplished what we have in the past 3 years. WENDY - All the cute little old people who hold hands and kiss all cutesy STILL after 50 years of marriage. Plus hearing about all the sad relationships too, makes me want to make mine that much better! 4) Hobbies other than blogging? TARA - I LOVE learning new things! {Not sure if that’s a hobby! LOL} How about what do ELSE do I enjoy besides blogging? I love photography, reading, creating new things, hanging with my girlfriends, laughing, dating my sweetheart, chocolate {I’m a total addict!!}, fashion, shopping, making others happy, cuddling with our Yorkie, and dreaming of ALL the fun adventures ahead of me!! WENDY - Being a mommy and wife. Love my family! They are my rock! I also love sports and being healthy. 5) What is one thing you wish you had known when you started your blog?TARA - Oh my HEAVENS! I don’t think you can pick just one! We have learned SO much over the years. I do wish that we would have monetized our website MUCH sooner! {Er.. or maybe I should say I wish we would have known HOW to make money a lot sooner!} It’s wonderful to be able to share your passion with the world, but what many people don’t realize is that there are expenses that go along with owning & running a website. We struggled the first year and a half until we actually started making money! We are starting to finally reap the rewards from all of our hard work and we are SO excited to see what comes next! WENDY - That it is hard, but so worth it. Changing people’s lives are a HUGE payment... just knowing we are helping someone in need. 6) Who is your celebrity crush? TARA -I truly don’t have one! {Scout’s Honor!} To me, they are just regular people who are hounded by the Paparazzi! My husband is the only one who can make my heart skip a beat. WENDY - Probably Matthew Mcconaughey. But my celebrity hubba-hubby is HOTT too!!! Last name being Jackman, he tells everyone he is Hugh Jackman's twin!

Make sure you to register to come to the Build Your Blog Conference, it's going to be so much fun.  We're looking forward to getting out of the house and mingling with all of you lovely people out there!

Also, we're hosting a giveaway for a ticket to this conference!  Make sure you enter because we would love to see you there!




Launch Party for My Recipe Magic



We had so much fun at the official launch party for our new website My Recipe Magic last week. The best part was meeting you mingling with everyone who came and of course, you cannot forget the delicious crepe bar!  Thank you to all of you who came, it was so successful!  There wasn't an empty seat in the place.  If you couldn't attend because you live far away, don't worry you were there in spirit.  Keep reading and you will feel like you were there.  


To the left, Camille (the oldest of the Six Sisters') welcomes everyone to the launch party.  She did such a great job.   


Everybody loved the crepes!  They were the best crepes I've ever had.  Especially with all the butter the chef used to make it. Yum!  The line to the crepe bar was very long, but totally worth the wait.


Attendees were able to get a personal tutorial on how to sign up and upload recipes onto My Recipe Magic.    


The party was at The Gathering Place at Gardner Village in West Jordan, Utah.  If you live in Utah or the next time you're in town, you need to visit this place.  It's such a fun place to shop, dine, and party!  The village is made up of historical homes that were transplanted to Gardner Village from across the state of Utah.  In each of the historic homes is a shop or boutique.  Thanks Gardner Village for being so accommodating!




Blendtec hooked us up with one of their Designer Series Wildside blender to giveaway during the launch party.  The person who won that blender, you are one very lucky person!  Have you seen their awesome Blendtec videos where they blend an iphone and a Samsung Gallaxy SIII?  If a blender can do that, then you know it will be able to make your soups, dips, peanut butter, and other delicious concoctions.  You should check out their recipes on their website, they look so good!

      

We also want to thank our dear friends  from Northern Utah Photo Booth, for providing the adorable photo booth and props at the event!  They do a lot of weddings, parties, corporate events, family parties/reunions, and school dances!  They can also personalize the background of your photo strips to match the theme of your event.  The photo booth had options to chose from black and white or color pictures.  And it was so nice to get two copies of each strip!  They were so great to work with and recommend them for your next party, wedding, or get together!  

 Here are some of our favorites photo booth pictures from the party.    

  

Again, thanks everyone for spending your night with us.  To learn more about My Recipe Magic and how you can earn some extra "dough" with your recipes, go to this post!  

Get to Know Our Speaker: Laura from Real Mom Kitchen



Real Mom Kitchen


I knew absolutely knew nothing about blogging when I began my blog.  I learned a lot on my own but also learned a lot from other bloggers.  I can’t wait to be a part of the food blogging panel and share with you some of the things that I have learned along the way.  If I had to narrow down what I would want to share with you, these would be my top 5 pieces of advice.

1.      Continue learning new things – take a photography class, check out books about food styling, try a new cooking method. It’s always great to be constantly learning to help you come up with content and improve your site.

2.      Get ads on your sites – no matter how big or small you are, get ads up on your blog.  You can even just begin with Google ads.  Then as you get more traffic, get with an ad network.  There are many great ad networks out there for food sites.  Many of them offer other opportunities to earn money as well.

3.      Get an SLR camera – you can begin with a point and shoot.  Many point and shoot cameras can take great pictures and are a great starting point.  However, getting an SLR will help take your blog to the next level.  There is definitely a learning curve and some learn faster than others, but it is an investment that is well worth it.

4.      Ask – it never hurts to ask another blogger about something.  Most of us are willing to help.  You can also find other opportunities by just asking.  The worst thing anyone can say to you is no.

5.      Take a break – you can get burned out, even though it is something you are passionate about.  So take a break when you need to in order to recharge and get back into what you love.


We asked a couple questions about blogging and her.  Read by getting to know her!  

1. Why do you start a blog?

 I started mine as an outlet during a stressful time.  My husband lost his job and I needed something to take my mind off what we were going through. It was what helped keep me going.

2. How long have you been blogging? Since April 2008

3. Who is your inspiration?

 I get inspiration from a lot of places.  My main inspiration, the person who inspired me to begin my blog, was Mel from Mel’s Kitchen.  I also get inspiration from other bloggers like Pioneer Woman along with celebrities like Paula Deen, Trisha Yearwood, and Bobby Flay.

4. Hobbies other than blogging?

I love to read, travel, and dance.

5. What is one thing you wish you had know when you started your blog?

I wish I had known more about photography.  Then I could have began with better looking photographs.

6. Who is your celebrity crush? 

Matt Boomer would be may latest celebrity crush.  I love to watch him in White Collar.   

Laura is hosting a giveaway on her website for a ticket to the Build Your Blog Conference!  The giveaway ends January 24th.  Make sure you enter because we would love for you to come!


My Recipe Magic Launch Party!

UTAH READERS: The Sisters' are so excited about the success that they have seen with their new website  My Recipe Magic they want to celebrate! Join them at The Gathering Place at Gardner Village in South Jordan this Thursday from 7-9 pm for a fun night of giveaways (including a BlendTec blender!), a delicious crepe bar, a photo booth, and learn how to use their new site to make some money. Seating is limited and attend you need to RSVP!  Bring your friends, sisters, moms and be ready to party!

 RSVP to Courtney at BuildYourBlogConference@gmail.com.


Get to Know Our Speakers: Maria from Two Peas and Their Pod


Two Peas and Their Pod

Hi, it's Maria from Two Peas and Their Pod. My husband, Josh, and I have been blogging for almost 5 years. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. I have an obsession with cookies-we have almost 200 cookie recipes on our blog. We also have two cookie eBooks-Cookie Cravings and Holiday Cookie Cravings. I always save room for dessert when cookies are involved. We also blog about travel, our little pea, and our daily lives. Come visit us at Two Peas and Their Pod, our kitchen is always open! 


I am super excited for BYOB Conference! I will be speaking on the Food Blogging Panel and on How to Write, Publish, and Market an eBook. 

Our blog started by accident, so I have learned a lot about food blogging. I had no idea I had to create recipes AND be a writer, photographer, food stylist, SEO guru, CEO, etc. Blogging is a lot of work, but it is so rewarding. I quit my "day job" to become a full-time food blogger almost 3 years ago and have loved every second. I love the food blogging community, our readers, and working in my pj's:) 

At the conference, I will talk about finding your niche, making your site user friendly, SEO, food photography and styling, recipe development, working with brands, increasing blog traffic, writing an eBook, etc. Bring your questions, because I am ready to answer them! And if you want to talk about cookies, that is A-OK with me:) 

Can't wait to meet you at BYOB Conference! 

1. Why did you start a blog?

We started our food blog by accident. My husband and I catered our own wedding. After the wedding, our friends and family wanted some of the recipes. My husband had a blog where he posted about snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, etc. so I decided to post the recipes on his blog. Family and friends loved the recipes and asked us to post more, since we did a lot of cooking and baking together. Soon, strangers were visiting the blog, so we decided to make it an "official" food blog. 

2. How long have you been blogging?

4 1/2 years

3. Who is your inspiration?

My dad. He taught me how to bake and cook when I was young and has always been a great role model.

4. Hobbies other than blogging?

I enjoy baking and cooking (obviously), traveling, reading, and exercising. 

5. What is one thing you wish you had know when you started your blog?

I didn't really plan on blogging so everything was new to me. I've learned so much. I wish I would have started on WordPress.

6. Who is your celebrity crush?

Taylor Kitsch, also known as Tim Riggins, from Friday Night Lights. I am obsessed. 


Make sure to register for the
 Build Your Blog Conference
Saturday, February 16, 2013
 Salt Lake City, Utah

Build Your Blog 2013

Build Your Blog Giveaway on Today's Creative Blog

Our friend Kim from Today's Creative Blog is hosting a giveaway for a ticket to our conference!  Make sure you enter because it's going to be so much fun.  


Stay in touch with us through here, our FB page, and on Twitter because we have more ticket giveaways scheduled in the next few weeks!

Get to Know Our Speakers: Nat and Holly from My Sister's Suitcase

My Sister's Suitcase
Hey guys! We're Nat and Holly, from My Sister's Suitcase. We are super excited to be a part of the Build Your Blog Conference and can't wait to talk to you about what we have learned in our first year of blogging. We're not experts by any means, but we want to share what we've learned along the way in hopes that it will help other new bloggers out there.



As we have looked back on the past year, we've realized a few things... 1. We had no idea what we were getting ourselves into :) 2. It has been an AMAZING experience 3. It is a lot of WORK. Being a creative blogger is HARD. But it's worth it.  And despite all of the things we'd like to improve, we LOVE our blog! We feel like proud mamas....

Speaking of mamas, we're guessing every mom reading this post has heard of {or owns a copy} of this book:


It pretty much answers every question you'll have as a new parent. Don't you wish they had a guide like this for brand new bloggers?? Today we are going to give you a little sneak peek of our class and share a few things we wish we had known when we started out on this adventure.


1. The first year is HARD!  One of our favorite bloggers once told us that we would have to work really hard the first 1-2 years without much in return... but that if we just stick with it, it would be worth it. We have truly put our hearts and souls into our blog, and tried not to expect anything in return. We create because we love it, and we share what we create it because it makes us happy. That still doesn't mean it is easy!  Everyone has different goals for their own blog, but in order to achieve any goal, you have to WORK for it.


2. Just like new moms, as new bloggers we were SLEEP DEPRIVED!!  Haha, you know you can relate! {As full-time mamas during the day, we try to do most of our photo editing, posting, and social media at night.} At first we struggled to find a balance between our blog, our families, and taking care of ourselves, but we've learned a few things along the way that have really helped. {Come to our class to find out!}

3. Don't compare your "baby" to anyone else's.  It's hard not to look around at the other blogs we read and start comparing ourselves {and let's face it, it is really easy to feel inadequate!} But we can't get caught up in that! Celebrate what makes your blog unique. Do what works for YOU. Be grateful for each new experience as it comes, and try to be content with where you are TODAY. Trust the journey, and enjoy each step along the way.

4. Find your support group.  One of the most challenging things about being a new blogger is trying to go through it alone. So don't do it! Reach out to others in the blogging community and be supportive. Leave genuine comments, thank your party hostesses, promote other bloggers in social media, build meaningful relationships. We promise you will find some of your very best friends! And as you create these friendships, opportunities will come that will benefit your blog too.

5. Get outside your comfort zone! {And we're not talking about getting out of your PJs and slippers, but actually getting dressed.} You have to be willing to put yourself out there and get noticed! We will share some of the things we have done that have resulted in some awesome opportunities for us.

We hope you guys will join us as we share what has helped our blog to grow over the past year. We're keepin' it real! We'll tell you the good, the bad and the ugly of what we've gone through, in hopes that you can make your blog a little better, and enjoy it a little more :)

{Oh, and there may just be a freakin' hilarious video involved that you won't want to miss!}  See you next month!!

We asked Nat and Holly some question so we could get to know them:

1. Why did you start your blog?
Well, I pretty much talked Nat into it, haha! We followed several blogs that we loved, and kept talking to each other about all the projects we were working on and kept thinking... hey, we could do that! I had recently moved to Idaho and missed seeing My Sis all the time! This was a perfect way for us to have something we could do together, long distance. {And we love having an excuse to travel and meet up at blog events for some kid-free sister time!!}

2. How long have you been blogging?
Just over a year... our first blog post was in September of 2011, but we really didn't get things going until January of 2012.

3. Who is your inspiration?
Nat, my sis! I wish I had the design talent she has. Someday I'll hire her to decorate my space. (When I can afford her...

4. Hobbies other than blogging?
IS there anything else? Nat: I like to cook if someone else buys all the groceries and does all the cleanup :) I love reading children's books and want to write a preschool curriculum someday.  Holly: I love to design and bring an unexpected element to the spaces in our home. I'm pretty thrifty {though I'm sure my husband would disagree!} I get a thrill from finding something really cheap or old, and making it into something beautiful. One of my favorite things to do is sing with Nat.

5. What is one thing you wish you had know when you started your blog?  
That you don't HAVE to do it the way everyone else does. Posting once a week is not the end of the world and family comes first.

6. Who is your celebrity crush? 
Nat: None other than cutie-pa-tootie Zac Efron! Have you seen The Lucky One? Ahh!
Holly: I have to say Jon Hamm. I'm a sucker for an advertising executive in a suit :)

Pick Your Plum Giveaway


Thanks to our good friends over at Pick Your Plum, we're hosting a giveaway on our Facebook page!  The giveaway is for a box full of Pick Your Plum goodies and retails for $75!  The giveaway starts tonight at midnight and will end Monday January 7th at midnight.  To enter go to our Facebook page and click on the "Giveaway" tab.  If you're on a mobile, to enter to go this link.  Good luck!  

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