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Haven Conference Mentor

Haven Conference is just around the corner.

Which is frankly a bit hard to believe- and is super exciting.
And this year- it is being held in Charleston- which is even more exciting.

 I am excited to be joining the conference as a mentor again this year- which is one of my favorite things at Haven. Last year, I joined forces with Thistlewood Farms and The Handmade Home and we had a big group of fun folks and
And, we are doing that again this year.


And today it is all about our Haven Maven Blog hop and sharing a bit more about each of us and blogging, etc. Each day the mentors are sharing a bit about themselves and about Haven- and don't forget to read all the way to the bottom to see who I am joining.

A bit about how I started blogging:

I am a wife and mom and accidental blogger.

I became a mom at a young age and was fortunate to be able to be at home raising my babies while they were little.
And as they grew, I became that mom.
The one who went to kindergarten with my daughter. Every. Day.
The one who went on every field trip.
Volunteered in the classroom and then decided maybe I should work at the school you know... so that I could be there every day and not look like that over involved over protective over everything mom.
I was also caring for my grandmother who had dementia and it felt like everything I knew about me and who I was -was changing and I was struggling to find my footing.
And I have this very wise little sister who was in college at the time and suggested I start a blog about the run down house we were renovating.
 I didn't know what a blog was. I had not even read one before.
But I started French Country Cottage one winter day and put a post up and instantly felt NAKED.
Like everyone on the WWW was reading what I wrote that very minute.
The reality of it was- my sister read my post.
And she was the only one who read my posts for 6 months.
She is an amazing sister.  And I was a TERRIBLE blogger. haha.
And then she told me something that changed everything...
 you can read the whole story here. 

Now, several years later- my kids are all grown up now and blogging is a full time job.
I have also just finished writing and photographing my first book
 (available for Pre Order right now.)

What is your best advice for a blogger?

 I would say BE YOU. Be authentic and always always be you. It is so easy to get caught up in copying someone else and their style, their business or blog model, etc. and emulate that thinking that you will find the same path and successes as well by doing so. 
But here is the thing. Everyone is different. Everyone has their own path with their own way of walking it. Just remember that you are the only YOU and the only one who can be authentically you. 
And also help one another grow and give advice. 
I am all about helping if I can - so if you have a question and see me at the conference- I am happy to help. Or just text me or email me. Seriously. I have been fortunate and have had some pretty amazing folks take the time to help me when I was first learning or introduce me to folks who could help or even simply explain to me how to set my camera. And their kindness has not been forgotten. 
And one of the best parts of being a blogger and doing this job is the ability to connect with so many people and be able to give back in many ways and that includes helping someone else along the way.

What is your best advice for a new Haven attendee?

Take all of your preconceived expectations- and nervousness 
and take them right out of your suitcase. 
Don't go with those expectations or ideals or what you think it will be like - 
go with just you- and get ready to have an amazing time.  
I have met some of my closest blog friends while at Haven-and everyone is a bit nervous or feeling uneasy the first time at a new conference. But I am telling you- you will meet some of the nicest bloggers out there at this conference. 
Haven is learning, growing, making connections and new friends and learning about how to build your blog and all while having FUN.
Ohh...and don't forget to pack your dancing shoes.

Who are YOU most excited to see/meet at Haven this year?

I am excited to meet blog friends I haven't met before and to see some of my blog friends I have known for years. I am pretty much just excited all around haha. And I do hope that if you are going to Haven- you will say hello!

Here are all of your Haven Mentors this year- among such amazing company!

And onto the other bloggers who are sharing today as well:

Traci Beneath My Heart
Erin Spain
Brooke All Things Thrifty

You can read all about HAVEN Conference here - hope to see you there!

Happy Wednesday everyone!! 


  1. Hunm " I don't know about THAT mom , I only have one son 17 " but I was always left out from THAT mom group
    I guess my son and I never got invited for any activity from that mom group, I was a very young mom and I was
    Was always left out , very lonely time in my life , thank GOD I never will see those (THAT mom again , as for my son his is on his away to UC Santa Barbara... and for my self I learn to look for a new set of friends that are Amezing moms too ,, I love all yours blogs

    1. I am so sorry you had to deal with that Elle. I didn't have many friends at the school either-and was not a part of any mom groups- most of the other parents were older than we were which makes it harder to connect for sure. Sounds like you raised a wonderful son- and UCSB is a fantastic school- congratulations. I hope you find a good place where you feel comfortable with good friends too.

  2. Hi! A request...Could you please add a 'view in browser' hyperlink to the top of your emails? I cannot open them with my tv's Amazon fire, and have to put off reading them until I can get to my tablet or desktop. Thanks!

  3. Have fun wonderful for the ones who will be your Mentees!...Was planning on going this year but now I will be in the midst of moving...which is both terrifying and exciting...going to build our "right sized" home and in the mean time will be renting a home nearby...

    1. Oh I will miss you seeing you Shirley!! So excited about your new home- it is going to be gorgeous!!

  4. Your story could be my story, Courtney. I left my teaching job when my babies were born, but did the class mom, book fair, PTA, volunteer thing until they entered high school. Then my mom was diagnosed with Parkinson's and I needed an outlet. My sister also suggested I blog, she actually followed you. I had never seen a blog before, but five years later, it's become my passion...creating, writing, making friends. Still waiting on that book deal though. ;) Thanks for sharing your story. Enjoy Haven!

    1. I am so glad you started your blog Kim!! Aren't sisters the best? :) Blogging is such an amazing thing- I am so grateful to have found it and it sounds like it is perfect for you too. And keep on walking towards your goals! :)

  5. Good morning Courtney,
    Love your blog, it's a daily go to with a cup of coffee in the morning or ice tea/water in the afternoon. Your blogging story hit home, it's time to move from behind the curtain. Enjoy your time at Haven.

  6. Hi Courtney , just order you book at Amazon, can't wait , you are a Amezing blogger