Bramell, Party of Five: My Creative Awakening

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Creative Awakening

Many of my blog readers and Facebook friends know that I headed off to the Ozark Folk Center for the Arkansas Women Bloggers Unplugged conference (#AWBU) over the weekend.  Ladies from all over the state (and one brave dude) came together to share ideas, inspire each other, and most importantly for me, encourage each other. There may have also been massive amounts of bacon consumed, along with a few adult beverages that required some tricky maneuvering in a dry county. And by that I mean that I had no idea you had to go turn the truck around every time you needed a drink!

So, now that a few days have passed, I'm really taking the cheater's way out since I've already read many of the other bloggers' reviews from the event.  You can read those at Arkansas Women Bloggers, if you are interested in seeing what kind of riff-raff I've been hanging out with.  In all seriousness, I've enjoyed seeing the personal impact that the conference had on everyone else.  For me, I can honestly say that the questions I had going into the weekend were answered, and then some:

1) Will I be out of my league? Will I feel like a loner in this group?

2) Does anyone really care about my "family blog" besides my family?

3) What will I wear with my fantastic new cowboy boots from Country Outfitter? (more on that later)

Was I out of my league? Yes and no.  Yes, because I still don't understand a lot of the technical aspects of managing a blog. But I'm way closer to figuring it out now than I was a week ago.  Also, I have about 75 ladies I can ask for help, which gives me great comfort.  Did I feel out of place and invisible?  HELL NO! Shocking, right? I put on my big girl panties and found so many ladies willing to chat with me, give me advice and some great ideas to make my blog better.  At least we were all willing to embrace our inner nerds together, and it was awesome!

Another cool revelation I had was this--yes, people do care about my little blog. And they should! I have a story to tell (or lots of stories) and I am going to tell them. We spent a lot of time talking about why we blog and what it does for us. There were food bloggers, craft bloggers, tech bloggers and mommy bloggers....but everyone had something valuable to contribute. That many smart women in one room was infectious.

And the boots?  Oh, the boots.  There were some happy girls in Mountain View with new boots! I took some photos, but wouldn't you know, I'm having some kind of technical snafu and they won't load correctly. But I won't sweat it; I'll just figure it out later.

It's hard to say what was my favorite part of the weekend. There were some fantastic presenters with great information, there was plenty of fun conversation and idea sharing and sweet swag to bring home from the great sponsors of the event. But I really think my favorite part was the conversation and idea sharing gathered around the table during meals. I was able to talk out my worries and my plans for my blog, and get some great ideas and feedback in return. I feel like the creative part of my brain got a big nudge over the weekend to wake up and get busy. Stay tuned for more changes and probably a few more posts about the conference (with photos).


  1. It was so nice to meet you and share in some of your thinking at AWBU! Can't wait to see how those ideas manifest in your blog.

  2. It was so good seeing you! Sorry we didn't have more time to chat :)Thanks for coming to the quiz session. What was your "score"?

  3. There were So many people to talk to-I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to talk with you.

    I, too, thought it was cool when one or two people said that they read my blog.

  4. So glad your writing more. And listening to your sister. ;0

  5. Get your technical issues resolved! I want to see the boots!

  6. Get your technical issues! I want to see the boots!

  7. Sorry I didn't get to meet you at the conference. It was great though!

  8. I just found Arkansas Bloggers Facebook page today and found your blog. I am also a blogger from Conway, Arkansas. I blog about my family's favorite recipes, restaurants, cookbook & gadget reviews, and fun places we visit. I look forward to getting to know other Arkansas bloggers.
    Blessings Always, Diane Roark


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