Five Things I Learned at Blissdom 2013


I am a fifth year veteran to Blissdom. I have pretty much been there from the beginning (except for the first small gathering). If forced to chose favorites, I would have to say it is my favorite conference. And even though I am a veteran I still learn a lot every year. Not always in the sessions either. Here are five things I learned at Blissdom 2013.

  1. After five years there are just some people who make Blissdom Blissdom. And many of them weren’t there this year. And it was super weird. So Robin, JoLynne, Jenny and Emily, Ari, Melanie, Emily, Rachel, Lisa and all the missing Sisterchicks (my band of bloggy BFFs- Amanda, Mandi, Staci, Becky Jessie and Christine) YOU WERE MISSED. I hate making lists like this because inevitably I left someone out. So whoever I forgot, you were missed too (I’m pretty sure that makes no sense).
  2. That being said Blissdom was almost 50% newbies this year. Which allowed me to connect with some awesome people I had either never met before or just met on the internet. Highlights include meeting Allison (who ran a marathon early this morning while pregnant- WHAT??), Abby Leigh, Laura, Nicole, Connie and Dana. Again I am sure I left out people (why am I doing this to myself?), but I really loved meeting so many new people. And of course rooming with Mary and getting so much great time with Jen was the ultimate highlight. Friends who live in your computer can in fact become your closest friends on the planet.
  3. Jon Acuff and Scott Stratten should speak at Blissdom every year in some form or fashion. Actually Jon Acuff pretty much said he would be hiding in the parking lot next year with a fake mustache. Which isn’t creepy at all……. I apparently was the only person on the planet who didn’t know who Susan Cain was, but she really gave me some incredible parenting nuggets and I seriously think I need to buy her book Quiet. So the keynotes killed it and I will be chewing on their nuggets for awhile.
  4. I need to buy a lottery ticket. I won a $100 gift card to Famous Footwear (SHOES!!!), a $50 Donors.org gift card from Strong Moms Empower and a set of room darkening curtains for our bedroom from Sound Asleep. Our current curtains are cheapo from Target and are so sun faded it is borderline embarrassing so major score. I also was quite popular with the kiddos today when I brought home a lot of Go-Go Squeeze and with the hubby for bringing home lots of Seattle’s Best Coffee. Plus I got a killer set of fake eyelashes at the Bissell Booth (Grand Rapids companies FTW!!) and a pretty mint mani from the National Sleep Foundation. I was also thrilled that Shot at Life and Child Hunger Ends Here, both of whom I am currently so proud to be working with, had a strong presence letting attendees know about the important work they are doing. Such a great lineup of sponsors and we were treated gooooood.
  5. I don’t travel much with this blog. There are times I wish I had more opportunities to if I am being completely honest. But then when I am gone for too long I remember why it is okay I don’t. These little people I leave behind are my world. And the fact that I have a husband who, from day one, has been this blog’s biggest cheerleader is the biggest blessing. I really want to commit as a family to being unplugged more. Hold me to it will you? (yes, even you mom and dad)

I am so very grateful to the Blissdom team for choosing me to be a community leader this year. To the conference sponsors for keeping costs down. And most importantly to my fabulous sponsor Land’s End. I can’t wait to show you all the outfits I wore!!


  1. Excellent wrap-up. Of course I agree on Scott Stratten and Jon Acuff. And my roommate-ness being the best part. ;)
    Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect recently posted…Weekend Links, 3.23.13My Profile

  2. Lisa @studiojewel says:

    It was so weird not to be there!! :( thanks for missing me. Next year? It’s on!,

  3. You looked AMAZING in all your outfits, had I been there this year.. I”d probably have stolen some of your clothes.

    Oh friend. I can’t even type it. 5 years… since the beginning and this year I wasn’t there. The reasons were valid, but still.. Blissdom is home. Y’all are my heart and soul.

    I’m dying to hear it all. <3 you
    Rachel – A Southern Fairytale recently posted…The Ultimate Chocolate Lovers Chocolate Chip CookiesMy Profile

  4. Even though you forgot I was a Sisterchick … ahem … I’d be willing to lend you Quiet on the Kindle if you want to read it.

    • Ugh. This is why I shouldn’t EVER do lists!! My brain was so dead last night when I wrote this that I knew it would happen. List rectified :)

  5. It was so fun to see you. I wish I could have hung out with you more, but that blasted stomach bug had me miss all of Friday. You are a doll though and I am so glad I was able to meet you this year! :)
    Kim recently posted…Time to Get AwayMy Profile

    • I know. I really would have enjoyed some more time with you as well. It sucks that you got sick :( Next year :)

  6. Yes to everything! I missed so many people this year. I wished I’d had more time to chat with you and Mary – boo to being sick and going home early.
    Deanna recently posted…Off to Blissdom!My Profile

  7. Grand Rapids, MI? How did I miss you at Blissdom?! I’m also a western Michigander!

    Loved your recap. I agree that not all the learning happens in the sessions – although the sessions were fantastic! I could have listened to Jon Acuff and Scott Stratten all day long. (I’m sure I’ll read their books within the week just because I’m so excited about them!)
    Megan recently posted…What Happens at Blissdom…My Profile

  8. It was fun meeting you for the 5.8 seconds at the Glass Cactus. Next year I will monopolize your time, just sayin’.

  9. This was my third Blissdom and I had a great time! And we were at the same table the second day for breakfast and I totally did not realize who you were. I kept thinking I know her and could not figure out how because I did not recognize Just Jilly on the name tag. I figured we had met at one of the other Blissdoms but was not sure. After you left I asked Jen and she was like yes she is Diaper Diaries and I was like yes, that is why I know her. I could not believe I missed talking to you.

  10. You are adorable. I’m sorry we did not get to chat but I saw you win the curtains and that is SO great! And congrats on the shoes – so Awesome! Blissdom was really great this year, even if we did have to meet some good, sweet friends that could not make it this year…

  11. You got to hang with Connie and Dana?! Jealous. They are some of my favorite people ever. Hilarious, too!

    Sadly, I’ve only been to one Blissdom, but I remember you there! You had the baby boy with you and I was pregnantbutnottellingyet with our fourth. :)

    I wanted to go this year! Dallas is driving distance (7 hours. Close enough.) but gosh. 7 month old nursingevery2-3hoursandwheneverelseshefeelslikeit baby girl… well, it just wasn’t happening. Worked out b/c I DO get to take the family to Disney Social Media Moms in May, so I am SUPER excited about that! Glad I saved the cash. :)

    So anyway, make them do it in Dallas again next year. I wanna go back!
    Amy @ Finer Things recently posted…Download The Jesus Storybook Bible for $1.99My Profile

    • I totally remember meeting you. I feel like you were meeting with Amanda and I butted in. That sounds like me anyway…..

  12. Never been to Blissdom, though I do remember when Amy McG had the brainchild of “CyberBliss” back in 2009 and she, Crystal, and I burned up Twitter and got it trending. :) I met Mary and Amanda at Allume, so that’s like second degree meeting, right? Ha!
    JessieLeigh recently posted…“My Story… ” Monday: PeachMy Profile

  13. One of my favorite Blissdom moments was when I tweeted I needed one more glass of wine and you showed up at my door with one :)

    p.s. LOVED your clothes!
    Emily from Mommin’ It Up recently posted…Anniversaries {raging waters and wedding bells}My Profile

  14. What a fabulous post!! Thanks for linking up!! I agree- I need to disconnect more often too!
    Candy Olivares recently posted…Blissdom Recaps LinkyMy Profile

  15. I saw your cute little bun hopping around all weekend and I was too nervous to say hello. I mean, you’re Jilly! Even though it was my first Blissdom, I felt like something (or someone) was missing as well. After watching Blissdom from the sidelines for a few years, I remember seeing the same fun faces attending and it was interesting to not see those faces walking the halls. I still had a blast though. And next time, I hopefully won’t be too scared to say hello :)
    Amiyrah recently posted…6 Favorite Tweetable Tweets from Scott StrattenMy Profile

  16. I need to get to a conference! Hoping to make it to one this year!
    Sound like a blast…… Now go get that lottery ticket!

  17. Love seeing you and your gorgeous face but did miss all the other chickies. And Land’s End now has a new customer because of your gorgeous gear – SO in love!!!
    Kat recently posted…Mirror of PainMy Profile

  18. So glad we got to talk, even if it was just a minute. You looked adorable all weekend and I was so glad you and Kat knew all the words to the songs the Spazmatics sang too.
    Sherry Carr-Smith recently posted…Birthday Party Fun: Superhero EditionMy Profile

  19. So I just left you a long response ON YOUR OLD BLOG! You might want to add a new post that directs people here.

    You know.

    Other stupid people like me.

    But for real?

    I was directed to the Diaper Diaries from one of your recent links on a post!

    Um, let’s see. I’m the one who made you snort when I told Jon Acuff I was sleeping with my roommate.

    That blog.

    When I clicked on your name, it brought me to your old place.

    And this place is GORGEOUS!

    You might want to go over and see if anyone else has left you comments.

    Ir if I’m the only doojie-butt in the house!

    Nice to meet you, Jilly!
    Renee Schuls-Jacobson recently posted…5 Things I Learned at BlissDom 2013My Profile

    • That site isn’t even supposed to exist anymore, it is supposed to redirect. But I took the redirection down to do something and didn’t put it back up. THEN I commented on Mary’s post using old info. GEEZ!! I should get my blogger card taken away!!!Thanks for stopping by. And making me giggle ;)

  20. I totally missed being with you at Blissdom this year! I’m so glad you had a great time! But next year I want my roomie back :)
    Christine (iDreamofClean) recently posted…The Ultimate Spring Cleaning ChecklistMy Profile

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