Once a year I make a pilgrimage to Atlanta! I go to the Mecca for design and diy bloggers called HAVEN. Have you heard of it? I wouldn’t miss this fabulous, friendly and oh, so informative blog conference. This year Haven is August 5-7. Put it on your calendars! I go to HAVEN for the friendships I make and grow there, the amazing blog sessions I attend, all the tons of things I learn, networking with companies, the fun after hour soirees, the bags of amazing swag, the talks that last till the wee hours with other bloggers, the hugs, the laughter, the squeals when you see a friend you have not seen in a year and the F-U-N! Not only is Haven one of the best things I have done for my blog… it’s one of the best things I’ve done period!  And this year I’ll be participating in Haven in a special way…

 This year will be my 4th Haven and they are truly one of the biggest highlight of my year! This year I’m not only attending Haven but I’m a Haven Maven Mentor! 

Just look at this great group of mentors! I’m in very lofty blogging company! These ladies make up a group of seasoned bloggers and have much to pass on and offer other bloggers, especially newer blogger. Wow, I wish we had mentors when I was a new blogger. Come to think of it, I am sure I will learn lots and lots from these ladies as I mentor with them this year!

The Haven Maven Mentors are all coming to Haven with specific goals in mind! We want to spread around blogging wisdom  and help(as well as hugs), we want to meet YOU and we want to have a great time with our blogging friends… old and new!

Let’s get to know our Mentors a little better. You can visit any of these blog and see how they answered these questions…



I began blogging in September of 2009. I took two blogging breaks so with that in mind I have been blogging a little over 7 years. My blog started off as a way to connect and share bits of home with my newly married daughter but quickly took on a life of its own! I had no idea that others would find StoneGable and be interested in the things I was sharing with my daughter. But I’m so glad they did!


About 3 years ago I went from a “hobby” blog to a business. Hobby blogging was becoming a big financial stain! 

Once StoneGable became a business and brand, I really kicked it up a notch and tried to make StoneGable a go-to site for all things home with an emphasis on home decor and diy.

I have THE BEST job in the entire world. I love love love what I do and the people I meet!


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Wow, I feel as thought our whole house is one big diy project!

I think my favorite diy to date is our dining room. We literally gutted it and started from the floor up! We laid hardwood, painted the walls, I painted a buffet and my 18th century mahogany chairs and reupholstered them. We refitted some old shutters to hang on either side of the mirror, I painted the bench, made the curtains and the curtain rods, and  made over the bar cart.

I don’t think we are ever really finished decorating or updating a room! So, I’m still tweaking it! 

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There are so many things I’ve learned from blog conferences.

I have learned how to make my blog a successful business. Who knew that a more-than-middle age woman from a country town could create a web presence that other’s would be willing visit and and enjoy. AND that woman could make a living from doing something she loves to do every minute!

Learning this changed the way I think about my blog and made me a businesswoman. Haven, especially over the last couple years, has inspired me to think in new ways about StoneGable. I learned about branding, what is is, and how it relates to my blog. I learned to think as a businesswoman as well as a blogger and lover of my home.

Becoming a business has made a huge difference in how I blog. I’m a much better blogger and have a good sense of my blog identity, my niche and my wonderful readers.

My readers and the relationship we have developed are so important to me. I discovered that I did not have to give up those important relationships to be a professional blogger. Actually, just the opposite, my business make my readers the center of this amazing venture!


DO EVERYTHING! Start early in the morning and don’t quit until you have to drag yourself to bed! Soak it all in. You are with hundreds of like minded souls! We get one another! Haven is like a sorority of nice girls! And how many of your other friends really get what you do?

Eat, talk until you lose your voice, network, laugh, learn, party, learn more,  dance, cry, hold hands, hug, participate, learn even more, go to every session, meet every sponsor, go to every booth, hug everyone, hand out business cards, smile, take notes, take pictures… lots of selfies, be outgoing, connect, try every make-n- take, make new friends, breathe, keep learning, find new friends (this is sooooo easy at Haven), stretch yourself and have F-U-N!!!!

There is so much to do and experience! JUST DO IT… ALL!

How about meeting another mentor. I met Jess at my first Haven! I hugged the stuffin’ out of her. She is the real deal sweetie! And is a rockstar blogger. Head over and say “HI” to my friend Jess from MOM 4 REAL!


Jess with Traci, one of Haven’s creators!

And here are all the Haven Maven Mentors. Check out who they are so when you go to Haven you can find us! What a great group!

Day 1: Southern Hospitality / Pretty Handy Girl / City Farmhouse / In My Own Style / Rooms FOR Rent

Day 2: All Things Thrifty / Perfectly Imperfect / Beneath My Heart / Sand and Sisal / French Country Cottage

Day 3: Liz Marie Blog / My Repurposed Life / Just A Girl Blog / Bower Power / Thrifty Decor Chick

Day 4: Unskinny Boppy / Craftberry Bush / Not Just A Housewife / Stone Gable / Mom 4 Real

Day 5: Miss Mustard Seed / Vintage Revivals / Home Stories A to Z / The House of Wood


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  1. I’m ready to sign up. Seriously it is a conference I really want to attend. I was thinking I should go next year since I’ve been blogging less than a year. I feel like I need to have a little more experience under my belt to get the most from it. Thanks for a great post.

    1. No, no, no! Debra!!!! Haven is where you learn so much. There are lots of girls who don’t even have a blog and want to find out more. Now is the best time to come! I wish Haven was around when I started blogging. You will find so many people to help you! Hope to see you there!

  2. First off… Yvonne… I read the title as “Are you going to hEaven! Heehee. I guess this is a home decor bloggers heaven isn’t it?
    I have wanted to go since the very first year… but it would take a miracle for me to attend. So… I will live vicariously through you and my other blogging friends. It looks and sounds like it will be the best year yet! Have a great time!!!!

    1. Well, I’m going to heaven too! Just hope it’s not for a long time. I wish you would come, Diane! Let’s start praying for a miracle! I know someone who deals those out all day long!

  3. I look forward to meeting you at Haven this year! Congratulations on being a mentor.

    Last year was my first year at Haven. I went by myself and didn’t know a soul. I remember being so nervous thinking I was the only newbie there. Literally, the first night there I made 5 new wonderful blogger friends that ‘got me’. It was such a blessing to connect. We started our own tribe and still meet live online at least once a month or more.

    Haven is a great way to launch, connect, learn and grow your business.

    1. Oh Diane! I’m so happy you are coming again. You can’t go to Haven, even alone, and not find lots of new friends! So glad you shared your experience! Thanks!

  4. What great post with lots great info. Havens sounds like a lot of fun! You will make a great mentor!
    You are so sweet,and you have such a sweet spirit.
    Be Blessed.

  5. Yvonne–Thanks so much for the kick in the hiney I’m needing! I just might go! My son actually moved to Atlanta so I could kill 2 birds with one stone. I’ve so been thinking of starting a blog, right now am on Instagram (@upyonderdesigns) and love it. I’ll let you know if I sign up to attend. 🙂

  6. Would you recommend this to a non-blogger? I am thinking of starting a blog, but don’t know where to begin. Love your blogs-find them so inspirational.

    1. Hi Phyllis, YES! If you are seriously thinking about starting a blog it’s perfect. There are many “beginner” sessions. You will learn a whole lot from other bloggers!

  7. I am so going to try and make it to Atlanta this year! I’m finding that I am not blogging every day the way I used to……I need some guidance! It’s on my “TO DO” this summer……I hope to meet you, your such an inspiration……


  8. How do I sign up please? I follow you and love your style . I live in Atlanta ,soooo I can come If I know all the details . Thanks for your wonderful Christian articles also.

  9. I can’t stress enough how much I love your home decor.I can no longer live alone but if I could i would have to copy your ideas i am trying to talk my granddaughter n law into letting me do some decorating, but she thinks everything is supposed to match and be minimal. Wish me luck!

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