Don’t Miss the Joy in Life

A smiling little boy sitting near pumpkins

“What kind of blog will you have if you don’t have a life.”

That is something that struck me to the core this weekend.

Do you ever feel like there is a purpose or reason for you to meet someone or go somewhere? Almost like it was fate or that God was watching out for you?

I felt like that this weekend!

When I first decided to go to the Chopped Conference I had no idea what was in store for me when I arrived.

A little boy standing among a display of pumpkins

I had the chance to hang out with some super sweet ladies who have since become near and dear to my heart, Liz (The Lemon Bowl), Lauren (Climbing Grier Mountain), Meg (The Housewife in Training Files), and Kristin (Iowa Girl Eats).

On top of that I got to meet some of my favorite “on-my-gosh-is-that-who-I-think-it-is” bloggers? Lindsay and Bjork Ostrom from Pinch of Yum were incredible, not only are they filled with so much knowledge but they are so down to earth and really care about helping people be as successful as they have been.

When I was talking to them Friday night Lindsay said something that just stuck with me. I have been trying to figure out the balance of mommy/family life and work life/blog life. She told me to pick a part of the blog that I want to focus on or improve on and forget about everything else till that one piece is awesome. She said for her that was photography, did you know that they didn’t even have a Pinterest page until like 6 months ago? Crazy!

As soon as she said that I felt like she was giving me permission to put aside the part of blogging I didn’t like or that stresses me out. It was like lifting a huge weight off my shoulders.

I was excited to hear Lindsay and Bjork speak again. They had some great advice on how to advertise on your site and optimize it, how to start working with affiliate programs as another revenue stream, and then becoming an inventor and creating a product to sell. {i.e. a cookbook, book, etc.}

A dad looking through a pumpkin-themed display at his dad

They finished their presentation with a slide that said: “1% ∞”

Which means 1% for infinity. Lindsay said there is no way you can be all things to all people at all times. Just pick 1% of the great big giant list that you have, make it awesome, do it for infinity and then move on to the next 1%. Immediately I started to tear up!

I’ve felt like I have been trying to do everything!

I’m a mom, a wife, a wife who works for her husband 2 days a week, a chef, a photographer, an editor, a writer, and a social media strategist. It is exhausting and I think this weekend I finally just let it all out.

Right after the Ostrom’s spoke, Kristen from Dine & Dish came up and she started her presentation with the quote I shared earlier.  “What kind of blog will you have if you don’t have a life.”

She told this story of an almost near death experience she had. Immediately what flashed in her head was, what kind of legacy was she leaving behind? What will her kids remember her doing? What will her husband remember her doing?

A little boy picking up a pumpkin by the stem

Again, I started crying. I know probably looked like a hot mess at this conference crying all day but whatever!

I think what hit me most about Kristen’s session was yes I am passionate about photography, food, and sharing my heart with you guys. But it is not my soul focus.

It seems like all the things I once loved to do have gone by the wayside and I have gotten consumed in the “vortex” that operating a blog can be. I love to read, to go outside and take walks, to sit out in the sun and enjoy its warmth on my skin, I’m obsessed with coffee, I want to start meeting with friends more and not be so much of a hermit because of the “things I need to get done.”

Life is awesome and I don’t want to miss it because of my “task list.”

There will always be something to do, something to tweak, something to fix, or something to share.

But I only have one chance to be with my son when he is two. One chance to go to a pumpkin patch, or go berry picking, when he is at the age he is at. I don’t ever want him to see me on my phone looking at facebook and feel like my phone is more important than him. Nor do I want my husband to feel like my computer is more important than him.  I want to sit and cuddle with him, play games, go for walks, or cook dinner together.

There is so much life going on all around us I don’t want to miss a second of it.

A boy and his mom next to several pumpkins

One of the things Kristen had us do during the session was write 5 things that make us happy that we are not doing. When we got home she challenged us to continue that list until we get to 52 things that make us happy.

She picked 52 because there are 52 weeks in a year, so the goal is that every week we do one of those things that makes us happy and then continue to do it. She has actually done this and says that it has given her a more balanced life!

So my challenge to you is.. what are 5 things that make you happy?

List them below and then when you have time write out the rest to equal a total of 52. I am going to be doing this and I would love to go through the journey with you!

Ok, something else you need to do {on a fun note} is register for this incredible giveaway below. Another blog friend of my Julianne, who blogs at Beyond Frosting is celebrating her two year anniversary and to celebrate we are helping her giveaway a gift of your choice. The lucky winner gets to choose between an amazon gift card, KitchenAid Artisan Mixer, or an Ipad Mini 2!!

2nd blogiversary graphic
a Rafflecopter giveaway



Hey There

Hi! I'm the recipe developer and food photographer behind all these easy healthy recipes! I love food, Jesus, morning lattes, and am obsessed with fantasy football!

Related Posts

46 Responses
  1. Chris @ Shared Appetite

    Oooo so cool you got to go to this conference! I’m sure meeting Bjork and Lindsay was probably amazing! I’ve been hearing a lot about the 1% Infinity thing lately… such a great idea. It’s so easy for blogging to become overwhelming very fast. What a great idea to just focus on one thing!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      I did and it was a blast, definitely going back next year! You should so go too because I would love to meet you! Kinda jealous you got to meet Zainab, Allie, and Alice in NY last month! 🙁 But someday!

      Yeah the 1% infinity thing has definitely changed my outlook on everything and helped me focus on the things I enjoy focusing on and improving those things! 🙂

  2. Marly

    Thanks for sharing such a wonderful post about your time at ChoppedCon. I’m SO glad you liked it and that you left with new friends and inspiration too! Blogging is one of those things that looks easy from the outside in, but once you’re in the thick of it you realize how much is actually involved. It can be so very time consuming! I’m glad we can come together to help support each other and as Kristen said, to help us remember to keep time for the important people in our lives! You go girl!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Marly it truly was a blessing. I came because of the speaker lineup, but I left with so much more than I ever expected! Thank you so much for putting it together. I can’t wait till next year!

      You are so right blogging from the outside in looks so easy but as soon as you get in it its hard to choose what to work on first, second, third, etc. But after this weekend I feel like I have alot more focus!

  3. Meg @ The Housewife in Training Files

    First off, I am so lucky to have met and hung out with you this past weekend! Only if we lived in the same city! And secondly, so crazy we just literally wrote about the same thing! My mind has been going crazy with thoughts, and it feels so good to get it off my chest. I am glad we are both taking our happiness back. Cheers from afar, girlfriend! Until next time 🙂

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Oh.. you are so sweet! I really did have a blast with you and just hanging out in the hotel room chatting. Love getting to hear peoples stories and more about their life the good and the bad. Love you sweet girl, can’t wait till the next get together!

  4. Teresa

    Go, Krista! Very inspiring read. Thanks for sharing. It gives me a dose of reality about ordering my own priorities correctly. Enjoy your children while you can. They grow up SOOOO fast, and the next thing you know they aren’t making beautiful artwork for your refrigerator anymore – they’re driving the car and going off to college and starting families of their own! Thanks for being brave enough to share your heart.

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Thanks Teresa, I think we all need a good reminder ever once in a while. 🙂

      I can’t even think about my little guy driving a car or going to college, I want him to stay this way for a while. Still cuddles with mommy!

  5. Jaren (Diary of a Recipe Collector)

    Krista, you just don’t even know how much I needed this today! I’m so glad you shared these things from the conference. Life just goes so fast, and I don’t want my kids to remember all mommy did was work on the computer. I’ve got to find a balance, and I’ve been thinking about this so much here lately. Thank you for sharing!! Plus those are such cute pictures!!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      I know its so hard Jaren, you have all these aspirations for the blog but always want to love on those sweet kiddos. Just keep trying new things till you find a fit, but always do the things that make you happy! 🙂

      So glad you could be inspired today girl!

  6. Kristen

    It was so great to meet you and get to hang out some. Your baby is absolutely the cutest, ever! He’s worth putting some of this blog ambition aside, and grabbing onto and just having fun! My baby turns 13 in a couple months… it goes by so fast. Live with no regrets 🙂

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Thank you girl, I think he’s pretty cute myself. Just this week living by choosing things that make me happy has been awesome for me and little man. Going to the park, to the book store, crafts, runs/walks, but at all of those I am mentally there and the phone is down!! Thank you for the challenge and the inspiration!

      Your truly a gem and loved the times we did get to chat. 🙂

  7. Olivia - Primavera Kitchen

    I had so much fun looking at your pictures, my dear! Your kid is so cute!!
    Love this post, Krista. Sounds like you have an awesome conference. Thank you so much for all these advices. I really need them. I hope you have a great week 😉

  8. Beth @ The First Year

    I feel like I was partially there, being able to read your experience! I wish I would have gone! You inspire me Krista!
    Also, I entered the giveaway – I learned about Beyond Frosting from her BFF Life, Love & Sugar 🙂

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Yeah those two are awesome, we got to hang out at Blogher Food Miami this year and absolutely love them! 🙂

      So glad you loved this post friend and thank you for the encouraging words, means so much!

  9. DessertForTwo

    Aww, Krista! Now I’m totally crying over here! You are AWESOME! You are doing it all, but you’re right-you totally don’t have to. I love Lindsay’s advice. We can all do this together!

    Your little boy is SO dang cute!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Oh.. you are so sweet! Thanks Christina!

      I think the other big thing I learned/experienced this weekend was how awesome the support is in the blogging world, I mean seriously awesome! Case and point you coming here! 🙂

      And thanks, I think he’s pretty stinking cute to. I always tell my husband… we make a pretty good lookin kid! 🙂

  10. Aggie

    I can’t tell you how much I love this post. Every word you wrote has struck a cord with me. I am super bummed I missed this conference, but I am SO glad you shared what you learned…especially from Lindsay and Bjork and Kristen. Thank you!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Thank you so much aggie, seriously means the world to me!

      I so wish you could have been there too girl, it would have been awesome to meet and hang out! Next time for sure!

  11. Zainab

    Thank you for sharing Krista! I struggle with this everyday. The guilt of being on the computer each night when the husband is sitting next to me kills me. I try to unplug over the weekend and just do things I love but it’s not as often as I would like. What a great conference. Need to check it out!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      I can totally relate girl… in fact I think most people can in some capacity. If its not the computer these days then they are on their phone!

      Grace yourself grace and start setting tangible goals to move you towards a healthy balance. 🙂 Love ya girl! Yes, you totally need to go next year!

  12. Liz @ The Lemon Bowl

    I love this post – it’s all so true. One thing I love about traveling is that I’m always much more present and involved with my kids when I return home. It’s always good to have that reset button on our priorities. I’m so glad we got to hang out!!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Thanks Liz! That is so true, as soon as I got home and saw my little mans smile when he saw me my heart just melted and all I wanted to do was play legos, trains, and ball! 🙂

      SO blessed to be able to hang out with you sweet friend! Until next time. 🙂 Enjoy all those cute boys of yours!

  13. Julianne @ Beyond Frosting

    Ok, first of all you guys are so freaking adorable I can’t even help it. Second of all, I am SO thankful to have shared that awful flight from Houston. I hope I can see you again soon!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Awww.. thanks girl! 🙂

      I am so thankful to have shared a plane together that got us delayed together which led me to hanging out with you all weekend! Such a blessing! 🙂 Definitely can’t wait till our next meetup sweet friend!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Thanks Lisa! 🙂 It does go so quick, I feel like I blinked and I’ve been married for 8 years with a 2 year old. When did that happen? Want to live up every moment!

      So good to hang out with you and walk in circles trying to find wine! 🙂 hehe

  14. Lindsay @ Life, Love and Sugar

    You literally just wrote about all the feelings and things I’ve been thinking about lately – life passing me by while I blog. Just last week I decided to try to change my focus a bit and step away more. Working on some small steps in that direction. I’m so glad you had a good time and got to hear those talks at the conference! I loved following your instagram pics – wish I’d been able to go!

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Ohhhh yah! 🙂 I’m still trying to figure out what that looks like and how I still get stuff out on social media but not have it consume my time. So we need to get together and talk about the steps your doing! 🙂

      I so wish you were able to go too girl, would have been a blast to have you there! Next time for sure!

  15. Lisa @ Cooking with Curls

    I found Beyond Frosting through a previous giveaway…I think. 😉 What an awesome post Krista!! I honestly don’t know how any of you with small children manage to find time to blog. I have never even heard of Chopped…I feel so left out! lol

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      I found it on Pinch of Yums site because they did a post about the conferences they were going to be speaking at! You should totally go next year! 🙂

      So glad you enjoyed the post girl!

  16. Samantha @ Five Heart Home

    Love this, Krista. “Balancing it all” is by far the hardest part of blogging. Sounds like you got some great advice this weekend…what an awesome conference! Thanks for sharing these ideas with the rest of us who struggle with the same thing… 😉

    1. Krista Rollins Professional Photos-5

      Yes! I only have one I can’t believe how you do it all with the kiddos you have girl. Two words …Super mom!

      It was a great conference and loved that I can out feeling so inspired and then challenged. 🙂

Leave a Reply