I Heart Faces Challenge: Pink Skulls

The “I Heart Faces Challenge” this week is head, shoulders, knees, and toes…anything besides a face.  I like to use somewhat recent pictures, so I thought I would use this one that I took yesterday, a picture of my feet, well shoes…

Pink Skully Vans

I usually wear my black Chucks, but I decided to dig through my boxes of shoes in our garage. We have a small house so I keep my shoes in the garage cabinet in the boxes.  I forgot that I had these pink skull Vans, and I instantly put them on.  I have been wearing them the past two days.

Who says you can’t wear pink skulls at age 35?

Be sure to check out the rest of the participants over at I Heart Faces.

Find Your Bliss, Part Dos: Firework

I promised to be back in a few days when I wrote my first Blissdom 2011 post, but umm yea, I got a little distracted with life.  I wish I could travel from conference to conference, but I have that family to think about, and well, the full-time job that pays the bills.

Day 2 of Blissdom for me, was the main conference.  It started off with a quick breakfast and a meeting for me. I was the Newbie Tribe Leader and I met with the other Tribe Leaders before the Opening Keynote started.

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Since I was also an official photographer, I captured this great photo of Lisa, Tsh, and Arianne before our tribe leader meeting. We were each given table numbers, and guided to where our groups would be.  We had a quick meeting and then it was time to get seated for the keynote. I was already obsessed with the song “Firework” from Katy Perry but after the beginning of the Opening Keynote at Blissdom, and this video, well I’m hooked.

@BreneBrownI was amazed and awed at the Opening Keynote from Brene Brown. She is an amazing woman and spoke on shame, and also on vulnerability.  I constantly find myself clenched up, because I don’t want to be vulnerable.  I’ve had too many people take advantage of my vulnerability.

Listening to Brene speak was amazing, and she helped understand some of the thoughts that I have been having lately.  I have a ton of self doubt, and sometimes I’m afraid to make that step forward.  I really need to take more chances, and focus on goals.

My most favorite part of her keynote was talking about “finding people who will be there to move a body.”  She talked about trust and the relationships in your life.  It makes me think about “who would I call, to move a body if I needed to?”  Ironically, a few days later, I had a situation in real life, where I had to think about this.  The situation wasn’t really part of my life, but I did giggle a little and think of Brene.

After the keynote, we broke into our tribes and groups.  I was the newbie leader, and I helped place my “newbies” into other groups mostly.  I asked some of the women, what they blog about, or what they want to blog about more.  I was able to find them the right person to connect with for more mentoring.  I know many bloggers in many different niches, so if anyone is ever looking for networking, I’m pretty good about finding them the right people to work with.  I really need to mentor myself better…

After tribe break-outs, and lunch, the sessions began.  I started off with So You Say You Want a Revolution?: Peek Behind the Curtain of PR-Blogger Relations, and moved into Innovative Writing Techniques: How To Keep Your Audience Breathless. I appreciated the great speakers from both sessions.  The PR-Blogger Relations sessions was soo needed.  I wish more PR people would speak like they did.  I’m constantly getting hit with awful PR pitches that make my eyes roll.  And the Innovative Writing Techniques, well, bacon and ninjas plus video, what more could you ask for?

Birthday Cake flavored cone from Blue Bunny.

In between the sessions and taking photographs, I took an ice cream break.  I fell in love with Blue Bunny Ice Cream at last year’s Blissdom.  I had to spread the news about Blue Bunny at this year’s event too.  It is simply amazing and everyone must try it. I may have had at least five of these birthday party cones during the conference, because they were THAT good. I wish we had Blue Bunny in Southern California. Do you here that Blue Bunny? We WANT YOU in Southern California, Orange County if you want to narrow it down a little.

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We then had another break, and it was time to head to more sessions. My time was focuses on the “Ignorance is Not Bliss: Decoding Legal and Tax Implications of Your Success” panel, which was also called the “LAWsome” panel. I’m in that in-between place right now with my blog, whether it is a hobby or a business.  I am also a photo blogger so it was great to hear about using photos in blogs, and copyright issues.  Last week, I talked to my accountant, about my blog and photography as a business.  I gave him my receipts and he was shocked.  He didn’t realize that you could make MONEY doing things like blogging.  I told him a few stories of how much money so of my friends were making.  We set a plan for 2011 and my blog, so now I’m paying more attention to the accounting and finances portion of blogging.

After a quick dinner, I got dressed and headed out for the Total Bliss at the District, Red Carpet Event with Michelle Branch and Mat Kearney singing. I walked the Red Carpet with Kelly before we made our grand entrance.

DSC_0388 2Photo by Hannah Braboy

When we arrived, Michelle Branch was already singing.  Everyone had their cameras, video cameras, and cellphones out recording the event.  It was pretty funny, because you had to watch out where you walk, so that you wouldn’t get in the way. After Michelle Branch was done with her set, Mat Kearney came on stage and performed. The concert was excellent and perfect for this smaller venue.

Total Bliss at The District, Blissdom Concert

After the concert was over, the DJ starting playing some music and the dancing began. My best memories from Blissdom 10′ were from dancing.
Dancing at BlissdomI had to include a great big photo of me in the collage, right?  I handed off the camera to someone else to take some pictures for a bit.  That is the problem when you are a photographer, you are never in photos! Plus, I love to dance!

Angie Arthur is one of my most favorite photographers, and she always gets the best pictures of people dancing.  I love to look at all of her photos.  She got some great ones, but this is one of my favorites. Kelly is quite the dancer, and she was showing off her moves!

Blissdom_The_Arthur_Clan_43Photo by Angie Arthur

After all of this dancing, and conferencing, you would think we would be tired? Nope, Kelly and I headed over to the (in)courage Suite to take a break and say “Hi” to everyone. It was nice and relaxing, plus they had cupcakes! Janice dropped to one knee while we were there, and somewhat proposed to Kelly.  I can’t even remember the entire conversation, but it was late, and we laughed a lot.

Janice proposes to Kelly

But of course, we didn’t go to bed after this. Kelly and I made our way back to the dance floor for a bit, and danced some more.  We were on the hunt for our roommate, Laurie, and got lost along the way. We finally became exhausted and headed back towards our hotel room.  And we should have known, Laurie was already in the room, waiting for us.

My last Blissdom11′ recap post will be sometime next week! Stay tuned for Find Your Bliss, Part Tres!

Wordless Wednesday: Chris Mann aka @IamChrisMann

Meet Chris Mann. In the first picture, he is the guy with drinks in his hand, not the dude in the back. Chris Mann is a singer and sometimes Warbler when not on tour. He is also pretty cool too! I got to meet him at Blissdom.  Chris made all the ladies giggle at Blissom.  He posed in many photos over the few days that he was there.
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Chris Mann Tweet

This made me laugh when I saw it later that night.

Chris Mann Collage

and my most favorite Blissdom photo of all time!
@MrsFlinger @Iamchrismann and @vdog

oh, and he can sing too! Find his music on iTunes!

Welcome to  “Angry Julie Monday’s Wordless Wednesday Linky”!

If this your first time here, HELLO! I do a link-up every Wednesday! Post a picture(s) that you took in the past week and link back to it here. Wordless Wednesday is a great day to post an awesome picture that “speaks” for itself, no words needed.  I may be a little wordy today….

Be sure to check out Wordless Wednesday Link-Ups at these other sites also:

A Beautiful MessBetter in BulkFive Minutes For MomLive and Love…Out Loud,Parenting By DummiesSeven Clown CircusSupermom

Project 365: Week 5

I arrived home from Blissdom, the first day of Week 5.  I ended up editing photos most of the week, in between working.  It was chaotic and busy.  I’m still taking photos for Project 365, but I’m quite the slacker with tagging them in my Flickr account.  I’m going to try and be more organized with my photos.

Project 365 29/365: Of course, @According2kelly got some beautiful boots in Nashville!Day 29/365: Of course, @According2kelly got some beautiful boots in Nashville! Kelly and April wandered off for a bit before we boarded our plane home to Los Angeles.  Kelly returned with these awesome boots.

Yes, we have other kinds of trees other than palms in Orange County.Day 30/365: Yes, we have other kinds of trees other than palms in Orange County. I was standing underneath this tree.  I think the colors on the tree are pretty.

Morning routine. The kid on the iPad and me on Twitter.Day 31/365: Morning routine. The kid on the iPad and me on Twitter. My son actually got up early for school and we had some extra time in the morning.

7-11 is selling a "Classic Beer Pong" kit. Apparently it does not include beer. So it just plastic cups & balls?Day 32/365: 7-11 is selling a “Classic Beer Pong” kit. Apparently it does not include beer. So it just plastic cups & balls? I have no words for this.

Things I can't survive without: Liquid Paper Dryline Grip, Pilot G-2 gel pens, and SD cards.Day 33/365: Things I can’t survive without: Liquid Paper Dryline Grip, Pilot G-2 gel pens, and SD cards. All this picture is missing is a Sharpie and I’m set.

Angry Kid likes the #Freschetta pizza that I got free via @Blissdom. So good cooked on baking stone.Day 34/365: Angry Kid likes the #Freschetta pizza that I got free via @Blissdom. So good cooked on baking stone. I had a coupon and I used it. Pizza was tasty!

My son has a new pet. He found him on the way home from school.Day 35/365: My son has a new pet. He found him on the way home from school. Just seeing this picture makes me want to wash my hands with soap, a lot.

Find Your Bliss, Part Uno: Wisdom

I attended the Blissdom Conference in Nashville, Tennessee last week. You may have or may not have met me if you attended. But really even though you don’t remember meeting me, you did. Because I looked like this, most of the conference. I’m going to break my post conference recaps up into three parts.  I will have three posts up within the next week. I’m not sure what dates they will go live, but you know, it takes a lot of thought to write something around my pictures, or  other people’s pictures.  The people who were awesome and actually took photos of ME!

Blissdom11 - Mishelle Lane -7343Photo by Mishelle Lane

Do I look familiar now?

Four Days + Eleven Hundred DSLR Photos + Fifty iPhone Photos + Cropping/Editing Photos for Forty Plus Hours = Three Hundred Eighty Seven Photos + Uploaded to Flickr = No Sleep, No Blog Posts, and No Responding to E-mails, but Job Done!

After all was said and done, I have 387 photos edited and posted in Flickr from the Conference.  I started at the beginning and worked my way to the end, chronologically.  Some people may have wanted me to put up the best photos first.  I slowly worked my way day by day, event by event.  This is how I roll, or post edit.  After looking through the Official Blissdom Flickr group, I have realized once again, that my photos are “meh” but I got the job done.  I always tell people that photographing a conference is much different than just being an awesome photographer.  Usually the lighting is horrific and you have to use a flash.  I appreciated all of the help that Dawn gave me figuring out white balance.  And don’t tell my husband, but I really want a Nikon D700 now because of Dawn.  I was lusting after the D7000, but swoon, the D700 is so pretty. Be sure to check out Dawn’s post about the white balance lens cap she uses. All I can say is amazing!

My Blissdom Roommates, @TipJunkie and @According2kelly

Did you get to meet my roommates? I have photos of them all over, but this photo really captures their “rockstar personalities”.  Really, how can you not love Laurie and Kelly.  They are both great business women, have three kids each, and can rock the dance floor like no one else. And they are nice, like really nice!

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I arrived in Nashville on Tuesday night with my party plane girls.  We all went to dinner, and stayed up late chatting.  It was great to have some quality time.  On Friday morning, we were up early, well 7-ish, to report for our first day of the pre-conference which was the Wisdom Workshops. I saw many of my blogging friends right away when I walked upstairs to the registration area.  I was able to hug Rachel right away because she was working the registration table.  We were thinking alike, because we both had our Tervis Tumblers in hand.

Blissdom Wisdom workshops

I am somewhat of a wanderer and I roamed through the Wisdom Workshops on Wednesday.  But I can tell you what I really listened to an extended period of time.  I went to vlogging, photography, and SEO/Analytics.  I enjoyed Jenny and Esther talking about vlogging and preparation before you actually blog.  I was able to hang with Amy, Mishelle, and Dawn through the photography workshop.  They helped me with my camera “issues” (typical), and we also discussed iPhone photos.  I walked into the SEO/Analytics session late, but my head hurt while I was in there. The information that Angela, Melanie, and Shelly gave out was super informative.  I need another tutorial or explanation of it all.

Blissdom Kick-Off Party

After attending the workshops, I headed to dinner in the hotel with some of my bloggy friends.  I had some delicious sliders, with a side of holy wow, time is flying, and must go take more photos.  So I went and changed, and then headed towards the Kick-Off party.  I was promptly greeted by all of the other fabulous bloggers.  It was crowded but I managed to sneak in and out of the crowd to chat, snap a photo, and maybe even get a few snacks in.

We were treated to a sneak preview of CMT’s “Working Class” with special guest, actress Melissa Peterman after the Kick-Off Party.  I had a cupcake and almost fell asleep during the viewing.  I knew that it was time to go to bed.  It had been a very long day.

IMG_2449Photo by Heather Durdil

Summary of Day 1 (Wisdom Workshops): It was a long and busy day. There were so many informative workshops, but they were all going on at the same time, or maybe I just have ADD.  I think it is the ADD. I know that people hate blog conferences being compared to sorority rush, but really, it felt like Day 1 of rush.  I went to all the events, met so many people, and could not process it all.  I may have asked if there was a scheduled “nap time” several times. Wouldn’t that be great, with blankies and everything! But I have to say, I looked pretty cute doing it all! Heather was able to capture me, “in action”.

Part 2 of this post will be posted in a few days…

Project 365: Week 4

I think Week 4 of Project 365 was my busiest so far. It started off with a kid’s birthday party at Chuck E Cheese and ended with me coming home from the Blissdom Conference.  I’ve been at Blissdom most of the week.  I’m in post edit hell right now, as I took over a 1000 photos at the Conference.

Project 365 22/365: I am in kid paradise and parent hell!Day 22/365: I am in kid paradise and parent hell! I took my son to a birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese’s.  It was fun for my son because he got to see some of his old preschool friends. It was chaos for me.

Project 365 23/365: I think I got the lucky number.Day 23/365: I think I got the lucky number. Just another lunch at The Corner Bakery.

Project 365 24/365: Volunteering at Kindergarten today. Time for worksheets.Day 24/365: Volunteering at Kindergarten today. Time for worksheets. I volunteer at my son’s school every Monday.

Project 365 25/365: Tennessee or Bust!Day  25/365: Tennessee or Bust! Getting ready to fly off to Blissdom.

Project 365 26/365: At the photo workshop listening to @secretagentmama talk cameras and ISO's. #BlissdomDay 26/365: At the photo workshop listening to @secretagentmama talk cameras and ISO’s. I was in the photography workshop at Blissdom.

My @epiphaniebags Belle wants to be BFF's with @sthrnfairytale's Clover. Belle is envious of Clover. #BlissdomDay 27/365: My @epiphaniebags Belle wants to be BFF’s with @sthrnfairytale’s Clover. Belle is envious of Clover. I love my camera bag. It is awesome.

How cute is @Jennyonthespot! And me, of course!Day 28/365: How cute is @Jennyonthespot! And me, of course! We had a great time at Blissdom. I heart this gal!

Project 365 29/365: Of course, @According2kelly got some beautiful boots in Nashville!Day 29/365: Of course, @According2kelly got some beautiful boots in Nashville! Kelly always has great shoes.

Blissdom 2011 Photos

Hey Y’All! I’m still in Nashville, TN at the Blissdom Conference.  As an Official Blissdom Photographer, I just wanted to give you a little shout out to know where to locate the Blissdom photos that I’ve taken along with the other Official Photographers.

Dinner with the Girls, Blissdom 2011Kelly, Mique, Jeannett, Jess, Lindsey, Kami, April, Me, Marie

You can find my main Flickr Account here, and my group of Blissdom 2011 photos here.

You can find the main Blissdom 2011 Flickr Group here, where all of the Official Photographers are posting their final photos.

Please link back to the photographers when you use their photos in your posts, etc.  We’ve worked really hard behind the scenes taking and editing the photos.

NashVegas or Bust!

#Blissdom or bust!!!! NashVegas here I come!

I’m packed, and I’m ready.  Only a few more errands and I will be heading to LAX to fly to Nashville, Tennessee today.  I will be photographing the Blissdom Conference and will also be leading the Newbie/Newcomer Tribe.  I hope to see you there! If not, stay tuned for awesome photos, and funny stories. I’m flying there with my crafty peeps! I can’t wait to hang with my roommates Laurie from the Tip Junkie, and Kelly from According to Kelly and Just Spotted.

Oh, and pray for me, I don’t fly well at all!