about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

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    A Look Back.



BlogHer Food 2012.

This past weekend I attended my first BlogHer conference – BlogHer Food 2012, right here in downtown Seattle!  Even though the conference was right here in my home city, I hadn’t originally planned to go because of the steep ticket price.  I knew I’d likely have to take Cullen to some of the events, and since he can be unpredictable, I wasn’t sure it was worth the hefty price tag.

As luck would have it, a generous friend who ended up being unable to go offered her ticket to me!  I was thrilled to be able to go without the pressure of feeling like I needed to get my money’s worth.  Thank you again, Danica!  And as predicted, I did end up having to take Cullen with me for part of the Friday afternoon events.  I shared Cullen’s conference experience over on Babble this morning…

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But the short version here is that he did really well!  He and I sat in the back of sessions so that he could crawl around and play while I did my best to listen and focus on the speakers.  We discovered that he loves really ugly, patterned carpet.

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I spent most of Friday afternoon wrangling Cullen, and hanging out with my good friend Lacey.  She and I met during my first visit out to Seattle last year, and we’ve been walking buddies ever since.  She was a huge help with Cullen and I can’t thank her enough!

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When I initially looked at the agenda for the conference, I was most excited about the Friday afternoon keynote session.  I knew this was something really important to me, and I wanted to make sure I could just focus and enjoy the experience.  The conference ended up being held in a hotel directly across the street from Casey’s building – so convenient!  So about an hour before the keynote, I walked over and dropped C off to hang with dad for a bit.

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Back at BlogHer, I was finally ready to focus and really soak in the experience.  I have written about (and given away) Terry Walters’ cookbooks several times on my blog, even though I rarely do giveaways or promotions here.  Terry is not the most famous or televised chef, but she is my personal food idol.  Something about both her food and her charisma makes me want to give her a giant hug.  Lucky for her, I resisted.

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But I did sit and listen, and I soaked up every word of an amazing keynote presentation.  Because it was later in the afternoon, I think a lot of conference attendees skipped it in favor of resting or exploring the city.  It’s too bad, because I think this session alone was worth the entire price of the conference. 

Terry spoke along with Bryant Terry about The Intersection of Great Food, Good Health, and Social Justice.  They were both amazing and compelling speakers, and I sat there feeling motivated, inspired, and ready to go home and take action. 

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I wasn’t familiar with Bryant’s story prior to the conference, but I’m so glad I learned about his journey and his mission.  He and Terry both talked about using food as tools to nourish and feed their families – healthy, vegan food that isn’t labeled as such.  The food can stand for itself. 

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Since I am a huge fan of Terry’s I knew I would love this session, but I was thrilled to find the discussion covering topics such as cooking for a family, finding work balance with a new baby (Bryant has a 13 month old baby girl!), and making healthy choices that can inspire other families and cooks. 

Terry spoke quite a bit about starting her own family, and how that affected both her health and her career. 

Sometimes there’s no balance at all and that’s a choice. You’re pulled in both directions. Projects are a way to connect me to a community and nourish myself.

My personal professional goals have been on my mind a lot these days.  When Cullen was born, I never assumed things would go back to the way they were before.  I knew as my life changed, other things would be naturally affected.  Here in this space, I wrote about him a lot at the very beginning, because his daily needs and developments were pretty all-encompassing.

As he has started to get older, I’ve found myself pulling back a bit on some of the parenting talk.  Part of that is me feeling a bit more protective and guarded these days.  The other part of that is finally feeling like I’m being pulled back to focusing on food and health.  Finding a work/life/health/parenting balance is an ongoing project here in our house.  It has taken me a good chunk of time, but I’m finally able to see that getting energized and motivated by my work is good for both me and Cullen.  He doesn’t need me 100% of the time. 

Sometimes there’s just no difference between work and family and sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes it’s not. In my house we decided there would be no such thing as should and shouldn’t, just choices.

My sister is here to spend the summer with us, and she’s going to be watching Cullen part-time (also interning part-time at a PR firm) so that I can finally get the mental and physical break that I need to focus and have time for myself and my work.  Meanwhile, we’ll spend the summer looking for a more permanent solution for the time that follows. 

Over the last few years of writing, I have received so many emails and notes from you guys telling me you’ve felt inspired and motivated by my journey.  I think about them each time I sit down at the keyboard.  I know that recently my focus has shifted and seemed a bit confused.  Probably because my blog is a direct reflection of my life, which has recently felt – well, a bit confusing and often very overwhelming. 

And as much as I love knowing I have inspired some of you, the people I want to reach the most is my own family.  I want my children to be proud of what I’ve done – turning a passion into a career.  And I want them to see that our family’s health is something that can inspire and motivate others to join us in our journey. 

My work became something that my children could look at and see Mommy make a career out of what’s in her heart. That’s the greatest gift of what I do, empowering my children. I bring my children with me to the farm to see the work that I do. They don’t have a stay at home mom but they have a phenomenal childhood.

Terry’s words were the final stamp on something I was already feeling pretty deeply.  I found her approach to both parenting and work to be incredibly motivating and inspiring.  I left on Friday feeling ready to really dive back into my kitchen – creating recipes, breaking down ingredients, sharing cooking tips, and all the other things I love to bring to this space. 

Like I said before, I knew my writing and focus would shift a bit once we had a new little person filling up our hearts (and time!).  It would feel unnatural for me to not talk about that, and him here with you guys.  But I’d like to shift to mostly talking about parenting here from a health perspective.  (The rest will still be shared over on Babble!)

On Saturday, I was able to attend the conference alone (while Cullen stayed home with Dad).  I decided to go to the session called Food Bloggers as Storytellers: Telling Your Own Stories, and the Stories of Those at the Table – mostly because I wanted to hear stories from the great Molly Wizenberg.

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Molly’s writing is very personal, and I like to think that, at times, mine is too.  Often my posts here are recipes or day to day things, but here and there I feel compelled to share deeper and more personal stories. 

I think it comes down to what it is you want to read. I like reading personal writing. I’m not going to blog about my sex life. But, I do write a lot about my family. My dad was 50 when I was born. I had to decide that those stories belonged to me. I like reading personal writing and try to keep in touch with my gut.

I’ve toyed around with the idea of sharing more of my family’s story here, but I’m still sort of sitting on that one.  It’s hard for me to decide to share things that aren’t just mine, and I’m fiercely protective of the people that I keep close to me.  I appreciated Molly’s advice to write in your most natural voice – by speaking.

Don’t be afraid to write the way you speak. Your ear will catch moments that you’re writing something that you would never actually say. Reading aloud is a tremendous tool.

She also talked a lot about growth as a writer, which made me – and the rest of the room – laugh, mostly in agreement.

I hate pretty much everything I’ve done at a certain point afterwards. I think it’s not a bad thing to hate what you’ve written. It’s a sign of growth. It’s yucky that it’s sitting out there, but I think it’s never too soon to get comfortable you’re probably not going to like stuff you’ve done before.

It’s hard to believe that I’ve been writing here for four years.  What started out as a personal journal for friends and has morphed into something I never imagined.  I read a lot of my old posts and cringe, usually at my own naivety and inexperience at the time.  But it’s nice to reflect and see how I’ve grown and changed, hopefully for the better. 

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This was my first time attending a BlogHer conference, and it was a wonderful experience I hope to have again.  A good mix of both social and professional, it introduced me to many new people and blogs, as well as new ideas for my own cooking and writing.  I feel lucky to work in a community of such amazing and inspiring professionals.  Perhaps someday I will sit on a panel myself!  Until then, I’ll just keep on keeping on – one post at a time. 

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95 Comments so far
Leave a comment

deva by definition     at 10:07 am

I love this post – especially where you write about blogging how you would speak. I struggle wtih that sometimes, as I have difficulty remembering that sarcasm doesn’t always translate well across the internet. I am working on it – when I write lightheartedly, sarcastic posts, I enjoy them more than when I try to be someone I am not.

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Devon Mills     at 10:19 am

I love your reflections on the conference intertwined with quotes from the speakers! Sounds like you really got a lot out of it. So happy you were able to have that time for yourself to soak it in. : )

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Tamicka     at 10:29 am

First off let me say thank you for these last four years. I have only been a reader for about 2.5 of them but I have loved every minute of it. Even though you cringe at past posts I frequently re read them for information about a balanced meal or just because I’m bored an reading your blog cheers me up. It’s been great to see you grow and morph into the writer/blogger that you are today. I look forward to you hopefully sharing more years an many more stories with us. It’s not that you just inspire me to do certain things, you let me know that they can be done. So thank you Emily :-) sorry this was a long comment

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks so much for reading for so long!

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Sarah     at 10:31 am

Fantastic post! As a scientist, I’ve attended many conferences over the years, and they do have an amazing way of connecting us with our peers and allowing for deeper inspiration from those we look up to.

You will figure it out – I know you don’t tell all on the blog, but the bits you do share with us manage to be inspiring, positive, fun and healthy. Even when your posts cover difficult subjects, you’ve obviously taken the time to come to terms with those issues in your own head before sharing them with the universe.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Sarah!

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Sana     at 10:33 am

I am sooo glad you blogged about the speakers! Most people just showed pictures of all the food! Not that it’s bad, but I wanted to know what all went down!

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Kristie Reply:

I definitely agree with this – I thought this post was the best recap of Blogher Food that I’ve read, and I’ve read a lot of them.

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Laine Reply:

I think so too! This was a great post, with so much insight and actual content. I can’t wait to see how you use what you learned there.

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Amanda     at 10:37 am

Thanks for sharing and keeping us up on your thought process! I value your experience and instruction from the kitchen, but I love seeing your sweet little one grow too! I’m in for whatever you bring us! :)

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Ingunn     at 10:37 am

I think you already strike a really good balance between the ‘life’ and the ‘food’ posts. I tend to lose interest when blogs become mono-focused recipe blogs, I guess I need the personal stories to stay interested…and I’m also at a stage in my life where photos of wickedly cute babies keep me coming back too, but I can understand that not everyone feels that way. Anyhoo, I don’t know quite where I’m going with this, but you’re definitely the HLB I most look forward to reading!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks! I definitely won’t become a recipe-only blog. And I’m sure there will still be plenty of pictures of Cullen – I can’t help myself! Nothing is really changing – more just my own work style and level of focus!

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Jessica Reply:

I have to agree. I read several healthy living blogs, many whom have children. Emily’s is my favorite that balances awesome recipes and family stories.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks guys!

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Rachel C     at 10:46 am

Well said….one post at a time. I like the mix of food and Cullen/family life. Whatever it is that you are doing is great and I think you should keep the personal private family “your story” for you and you alone. Those things are special and in my opinion, should be kept close to you.

I do not have a blog, so I am not really one to speak, but again, keep doing what you are doing, if it is something you enjoy. Your readers will be here as long as you want to keep blogging,etc.

Thanks.

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Mary-Heather     at 10:59 am

I don’t think I’ve ever commented here, but I’ve been reading your blog for a really long time. I just wanted to say that all the things you have articulated here as goals for this site and your life and career are reasons that I read this blog. (Well, plus your recipes, ha.) Thanks for staying true to your voice – even during the confusing times.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks so much!

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Grace (Graceful Eats)     at 11:04 am

Well this girl loves your blog the way it is – personal stories + pics of Cullen included!! I started reading back when you lived in Charlotte (through Kath’s blog) and have loved, loved watching you grow as a writer and tackle life’s adventures, Emily. :) My personality is similar to yours, so you’re very inspiring. Thanks for sharing all the joys AND struggles with us. You’re real, and I love it!

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Amelia     at 11:09 am

Love your post, and loved meeting you! Hope we get another chance to hang out sometime :)
p.s. Half my time at BHF was also spent ‘baby wrangling’ – sure makes for a different type of conference!

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Emily Malone Reply:

So great to meet you too!!

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Emily J     at 11:10 am

Thanks for all the reflections & insights. I really enjoy your writing, as I feel you strike a good balance between candid sharing and maintaining personal boundaries. I will admit, at first when you were pregnant I thought “oh no, this is going to be a baby blog” but ultimately, I’ve really enjoyed your journey into parenthood – much more than I predicted. I agree that a bit of both makes for interesting reading. Thanks for making parenthood seem accessible, realistic and manageable all while providing interesting and beautiful food & Seattle posts. Keep evolving!

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Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction     at 11:17 am

Great post! Blog Her looks like it was fun and informative. I like when you incorporate your family life into your blog, as well as the healthy living/food perspective. It makes it more personal, which makes everything more believable in my eyes. I hate blogs that are fake. I can almost tell instantly when someone is not being honest through their writing, it totally shows and it’s a big pet peeve of mine. Just keep doing what you are doing, I know I enjoy it! :)

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Gina     at 11:22 am

Wow, I really love reading your perspective on the sessions you attended and how you plan to take some of it home, very cool! You are doing a fab job:)

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Leslie     at 11:22 am

Love your blog. I am so inspired by your recipes. Everything I’ve made has been wonderfully tasty. I often think of your style when meal planning with what I have on hand. Many times I’ve said “What would Emily make?”I look forward to seeing how your career will develop. I’ve been really impressed to see your recipes published. I would buy a cook book of yours…just saying.

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Emily Malone Reply:

I love that! Thanks Leslie. :)

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Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed     at 11:27 am

That’s so nice that your friend gifted you the ticket! I would love to attend a big blogging conference some time, they sound so inspirational.

I think a blog should have some aspect of “what the readers want” but at the same time, it’s YOUR blog, write whatever makes you happy. Obviously people enjoy reading what you write! Keep up the good work :)

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Liz @ The Sixth Letter     at 11:36 am

Hi Emily! I really love this post. I’ve missed more of this honest, emotional voice as of late since I’ve been enjoying adorable pictures of your adventures with Cullen instead. (Seriously, if my kids are 1/10th as cute as yours is, I’ll be thrilled.)

I love the way you integrated the speakers words in with your own. I can’t wait to see how you grow and change, and just know that you have a loyal following of readers here to support you!

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Natalcho @ Tomatoes Rock     at 11:39 am

Emily, I am also a long time reader and I am so so happy that you will be refocusing on health, fitness and recipes! Probably because I have no children the blog felt purely selfishly a bit less relevant to me in these past months. But I still re-read your old posts about running, health and good food regularly.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks for sticking around! :)

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Marci     at 11:46 am

You’re still one of my favorite blogs to read. I love that you’re once/day and I love how you integrate baby into cooking and general life. It’s what I’m trying to do too! Looks like it was a great conference!

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Emily Malone Reply:

I don’t see me every posting more than once a day, haha.

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Leah     at 11:50 am

Thank your for mentioning ‘The Intersection of Great Food, Good Health, and Social Justice’. I’m glad you took the time to attend the keynote speaker–it’s always too bad when attendees duck out early and miss a thoughtful panel discussion.

I would also buy your cookbook. There seems to be a trend of cookbook authors sharing images and stories from their own lives. This is a good trend and that would be a nice legacy you could leave Cullen and any other future children. Of course this blog does an excellent job at that! :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Leah! Now I just need to write a book… :)

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Leah Reply:

You’re welcome. Or you can write a Nook book to save on cost…that also would be awesome. :)

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Ally     at 11:51 am

I’m not sure that I have anything ground-breaking to say in this post, other than to reiterate my excitement to continue reading your blog each and every day. Although I LOVE your recipes and health posts, I have also really connected with your more personal posts over the last few months. I enjoy reading about the “mundane, every day” things that you, Casey, and Cullen experience. As someone who is trying to start a family with her husband, these posts seem to give me a little idea of what it will be like when our little bean decides to come along!

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Lee     at 12:01 pm

I think you already do a great job combining posts about food, health, parenthood and everyday life. I honestly enjoy each type of post that you do equally.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Lee!

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kristin     at 12:01 pm

Life is funny… I had never been one to read blogs AT ALL, and then, one day I was searching for a peanut-sauce recipe and stumbled on yours- I’ve been totally captivated since! :) I love your blog! And I really enjoy all aspects of your writing- you’re so honest & you do have serious focus on your subject(s), so much that I can feel your passion for health and food and love permeating throughout, as I’m sure the other readers do, too.

And the best thing, I have found a few other blogs I enjoy following…writing and storytelling are such unique gifts to have, truly therapeutic for both the author and the reader- I never dreamed I would actually be excited to read someone’s blog unless I knew them personally, but it really is inspiring! It has made me realize that, one day, I’d like to work on something similar… and it’s amazing, but I actually feel more prepared for certain things life may bring (having a baby? what goes well with quinoa? haha)

Anyway, you are full of talent & thank you for all of the inspiration. I’m hooked! This post was great; I bet your feel so recharged after being around so many creative & positive people! Sending you best wishes in all that you do, Emily :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Love that you found the blog through peanut sauce! :) So glad you have followed. Thank you so much!

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Erin     at 12:04 pm

Wonderful Post! No matter what direction you decide to take regarding this blog, I will definitely be reading no matter what!

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Lauren @ Lettuce Eat Cake     at 12:07 pm

This post is so inspiring! I feel like I’ve struggled to stay consisent with blogging (just started writing again after a long hiatus), and I feel like I sabotage myself by wanting everything to be perfect. I think, “These pictures don’t look very good. I shouldn’t post.” Or, “I haven’t been losing weight very steadily. No one wants to hear about that.” Self-doubt is such a huge factor.

You are such a talented blogger, Emily–truly one of the best! I hope one day my blog grows enough to warrant attending a BlogHer conference, and you are there speaking on a panel!

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Amanda     at 12:12 pm

Great post, Emily! I hope your blog doesn’t change too much; there may be some outspoken critics, but there are far more people who relate to you and find your posts comforting. Sometimes it’s just nice to know that someone else feels the same way we do, but it can be hard to be the one to put it out there. Thank you for sharing your life with us; I do hope that you listed to those who love you than the trolls that criticize you. It’s your blog, you can be whomever you want to be. If someone doesn’t like it, they can find another blog to read. Bullys will always exist. You are loved by far more than those who speak badly.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Amanda! I don’t think the blog will noticeable change – really just more my working style and effort. Right now I do a lot of writing late into the night because it’s the only time I have! Going forward, I’d like to get a more structured day in place so my writing is better and more focused. Criticism is natural, but when it comes to having your parenting criticized, it can also be damaging and dangerous. I’m working to find the level of sharing that is best for me and my family! All the love from everyone else certainly makes it all worthwhile. :)

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Sarah G     at 12:15 pm

You are by far my favorite blog out there!! I really appreciate your writing style. I was just laughing at myself this morning as I was thinking how I needed to tell you something about one of your recipes (which I will post momentarily)…. You write in a way that makes me feel I’m having an ongoing conversation with you — that is very brave of you to share as much of your personal life as you do! It makes me want to share things about myself and my family with you. I have to remind myself that you probably have many many others like myself, so I try to restrain myself from blowing up your inbox :) Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Sarah! So nice to hear! :)

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Amanda     at 12:23 pm

Hi Emily,

I just wanted to say that I love reading your blog because you have such interesting things to say, but most importantly, because you are so honest and genuine. That really comes through in your writing and as a reader, I really appreciate it. You aren’t pretentious, you aren’t fake – you are very down to earth and I think as readers, we feel that we can relate to you whether you’re struggling to get Cullen to sleep or looking for fun new foods to try.

Thank you for creating such a nice space on the internet for me to visit every day :).

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thank you so much, Amanda!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Amanda!

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kc     at 12:25 pm

I never comment, but I had to say that I really appreciate your candor and thoughtfulness in this post. It’s why I continue to read your blog.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thank you so much! :)

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Sarah @ See Sarah Eat     at 12:32 pm

Bryant Terry recently spoke at an event here in my city and I loved his story and his food philosophy and hearing about the issues he’s passionate about and involved with. So glad you got to attend the keynote session and I love your blog, no matter what you are writing about :)

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Stacey     at 1:15 pm

When I became a vegetarian in September 2010 a friend turned me onto your blog and it really helped me stay hooked in those first few months. I started trying new foods and felt confident doing so because of your recipes, descriptions, and your overall excitement. Your tofu tutorial changed my life! I messed it up so. many. times. and once I read your post there was no more broken up tofu in the trash, but happy happy tofu in my belly. Thanks so much for all your posts. I look forward to them every day! Wish I had spotted you when I was running Flying Pig but maybe another time :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Stacey! :) So happy to hear you are loving tofu these days!

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Samantha     at 1:20 pm

What an informative post! I loved looking up the speakers you mentioned. Sounds like you learned some great stuff. :)

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Melissa @ HerGreenLife     at 1:45 pm

The Friday afternoon keynote sounds interesting — I’m glad to see them addressing the important and serious issue of social justice. We can write and talk about making healthy food choices, but when people have limited access to the healthy foods, are surrounded by unhealthy foods, and don’t have the time to make the changes due to the various stresses of poverty, our epidemic of chronic disease and obesity will continue.

Side note: When I first moved to St. Louis in 2005/2006 Bryant Terry had a vegan soul food restaurant in town. When my now husband and I were first dating, we ate there with my parents. They were a bit skeptical of the concept, but the great food convinced them. Unfortunately, he moved on and the restaurant closed.

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Stephanie @ Food and Fitness 4 Real     at 1:53 pm

Hi Emily – first I wanted to say that I enjoyed meeting you in person at BlogHer this weekend and of course, Cullen is even cuter in person than he is on your blog. Thanks for writing such an insightful review of BlogHer food, now I am bummed that I missed out on the Friday keynote speaker. Hopefully I can watch it on the BlogHer site.
I had a similar experience to yours about blogging about family vs food, but mine was reversed. I started out as a “mommy blogger” when my daughter was 1 1/2, then decided to become a food and fitness blogger about a year ago. I still struggle to balance family stories with food, recipes, fitness and healthy living. Then I remind myself that I started my blog for ME, to keep me accountable with healthy habits and to be a better mom for my kids. Obviously they show up in posts from time to time but they are part of me as well, so that is expected.
You seem to be doing well with getting back to your focus on food, but of course Cullen has changed you forever. Thanks for sharing your feelings and allowing us to relate with your experiences.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Stephanie! It was so great to meet you! Best part of the conference is making new friends and connections.

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Carly     at 2:17 pm

Em –

Love this open and honest post. Life is in such a flux after having a baby – it throws everything you thought you knew out the window – but with that brings in insight and a deeper understanding of who you truly are.

So proud of your journey – your patience and candor of the road you are navigating. There are so many of us who are trying to make sense of our own path – and life as a new mom. But what I have gathered so far (in my wealth of 14 month knowledge…lol) is that its the hardest…BEST job we are blessed to have.

Keep on rollin’…you are doing an amazing job and are a wonderful mama.

On a side note – agreed with above comments on the review of BlogHer2012 – best I have read so far. :)

Much Love!
Carly

PS: I miss that sweet boy! Allie said she wants a play date soon.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Carly! :) Can we walk soon??

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Sarah     at 2:27 pm

Great conference recap Emily! I’m SO jealous you got to hear Molly speak in person. I adore her blog and book. She’s one of my favorite food writers. I mean…..I swoon at some of her sentences.

And so interesting to read about your own personal blogging journey. I also grapple with HOW much personal stories to share, but when I stop and think about it, those are my favorite ones to read. Thanks for sharing and excited to keep reading!

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Anna     at 2:47 pm

Hi Emily! I discovered your blog shortly after Cullen was born, and have been able to re-live those early months with a busy baby through your blog. My little guy will be 3 this year, and so much of what you write, I can relate to. I work FT outside the home, and go to university PT. I know all about trying to find balance in it all! I love your blog, it’s always so positive and inspiring. Keep doing what you do!

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Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)     at 3:13 pm

Thanks for providing this great feedback on the conference! I definitely agree with a bunch of other commenters that it was the most detailed/helpful, especially as someone who has considered (but hesitated due to price) going to blogging conferences before.

I’ve loved reading your blog over the past few years! I think you come across very down-to-earth and never sound preachy, which I respect a lot. And the way that you have turned your passion for food into a career (and one you love!) is SO inspiring and was definitely a push for ME to go to culinary school myself and try to accomplish the same thing.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks so much Laura! So happy to see you following your own dream! :)

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Ella     at 5:33 pm

Hahaha, “wrangling” Cullen. As a mom myself I know that is the PERFECT word!

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Lauren L.     at 6:45 pm

you are a WONDERFUL writer and blogger and I am excited to see how everything works out!

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Christine H.     at 7:22 pm

Love Terry Walters. I am taking a cooking class with her tomorrow and I am so excited!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Gaaaaaah, SO jealous!! Hope it was wonderful!

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Gina @ Running to the Kitchen     at 8:22 pm

Thank you for this post, Emily. It’s nice to finally read a recap of some of the content and not another post-conference sponsor post or iphone pic reiteration. I’m going to the regular Blogher in NYC in August since it’s in my home town and while it won’t be food focused, I hope to take away some great points like you did. I’m also excited about your renewed focus. Not that I don’t like reading about Cullen (b/c who doesn’t?!) but I originally started reading your blog b/c of your stories, your focus on food, health and running. I’ll be happy to read more of it in the coming months :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Hope you have fun in NYC! If it wasn’t so far away, I’d consider going to that one too!

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Robyn @ Blueberries and Oats     at 9:59 pm

Seeing all these BlogHer Food posts all over the web had made me regret turning Danica down with her generous ticket (I thought I was too busy!), but seeing that you got to go and have a great time with Cullen makes me really glad I did. =)

Thanks for sharing a bit of the conference with us!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Haha, well I’m glad you did so that I could go! :)

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Elisabeth     at 12:19 am

Such a great post, Emily! Whatever your blog is & wherever it goes, I’ll definitely continue reading – yours is the one I look forward to the most! (I always read it last – saving the best!) Oh, and I agree with the other commenters – your recap was the best I read – none of the others included much info about the speakers, which is what I really wanted to read about most ;)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Elisabeth! There were so many great speakers – I tried to take advantage and see as many as I could.

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Erica { EricaDHouse.com }     at 3:25 am

I really appreciate you opening up in this post today – it is great to hear some more ‘personal’ talk but I also understand not wanting to be so open you feel exposed. I look forward to following your blog down whatever path you decide to take it!

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Chrissy (The New Me)     at 4:11 am

Great post! I love the part about hating your past writing, and that it’s a sign you’ve changed and grown. This gives me a lot of hope, considering I hate pretty much everything I wrote more than ten minutes ago. :)

I’m also glad to see you’ll be taking more time for yourself and pursuing your career-related passions again. You’re so talented and what you’ve built here is so impressive – I am sure you’ll find success no matter what you do. Best of luck!

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allpointswhole     at 7:09 am

Your blog has always been my favorite. I love your sweet spirit and authenticity….that’s inspiring!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Aww thank you so much!

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Mari     at 8:01 am

I just have to say how much I love reading your blog. I think you really conveyed what the conference had to offer (not just the parties and fancy food). Keep up the amazing work, you are a fantastic writer and even though I do not have children yet, I think some time to focus on yourself and your goals will only bring you fulfillment with every part of your life, including your family. cheers!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Mari!

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Julie (A Case of the Runs)     at 8:53 am

Great that you’ll be shifting your focus a bit… it’s definitely important (for everyone) that you be balanced.

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Lena     at 9:19 am

Thanks so much for sharing your conference experience. It sounds like you had a good time. I must say I have wondered how you have gotten through the last 7 months without any nanny/babysitting and still keeping up with your work/blog etc. You must be so mental drained. I’m glad you are having some babysitting help over the summer, you will find you will be a much happy person having those little breaks from looking after a baby 24/7. I never used a babysitter for my first child until my second was born because I thought I could do it all without anyone’s help. Now my husband and I have date nights every second week and I use a babysitter once every second week for a few hours during the day and it has made me a much happier person and most of all a more loving/happy mom. All the best!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Mentally drained is pretty accurate. :) I’m very ready for some help and a break!

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Amber K     at 12:02 pm

I really enjoy the way you wrote a detailed and interesting blog about this conference. And all in one post. I really appreciate how you take the time to write quality blogs!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Amber! :)

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Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 1:14 pm

As a mom and fitness blogger, I am still trying to find the balance between the two. Of course my kids are involved with the blog in some way but I don’t want my focus to be on them entirely. It’s more about running, yoga and being active.

It sounds like the conference was very inspiring, just what it should be like!

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Sarah     at 4:11 pm

You are already a fantastic writer and one of the blogs I enjoy most because of your thoughtful, nuanced approach to …well, life in general! It was neat to hear more about your inner life in this post, your feelings about motherhood, and your business strategy. I also loved hearing from the panelists. Very interesting. Thanks for being so honest!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Sarah! :)

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Heidi - Apples Under My Bed     at 4:57 pm

Inspiring, that’s for sure :) Love this post, I really do.
Heidi xo

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Syndie     at 5:32 pm

So happy that you got time to focus on yourself and what is important to your blog career. I haven’t thought you were confusing since Cullen. I love hearing about your day to day events as a Mom, exerciser and chef. It inspires me in my own life. Our lives change every day…thank goodness else we would be boring ;). Keep up the reality!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks Syndie!

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Katie     at 7:40 am

Emily, let me just say that while I have only been following your blog since your journey into pregnancy, you have been a source of information, inspiration, motivation and all around just a wonderful place for me to bring my thoughts too when I’m having a down day. You were about 3 months ahead of me in pregnancy and it was always so amazing to see what my and my daughters growth would be like in my belly! Now that my daughter has been born and is already 5 months (yikes!) You remind me that with baby in tow, anything truly can be done. I had multiple post-partum complications that I have yet to discuss in my own blog and it was terrifiying for me to go through. I only just recently documented her birth story. I became so envious on how you transisitoned into motherhood and then back into the blogoshpere so effortlessly it seemed that you were part of the reason I snapped out of what I was going through and came back to the fact that I can let people know about my hardships as well, or I can sit and mull on them for awhile until I decide how to word them. You have inspired me to continue my journey in writing and find my true passion because I too want my daughter to know that her mama is doing something that she loves in life! In my dream world, I will be writing for a living, but until then, I just keep documenting my journey, one blog post at a time as you said it best! Thank you Emily! You’re one amazing mama, wife, sister, daughter and friend I am sure!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thank you so much, Katie! My transition may have seemed seemless here, but I’ve certainly had my bumps and falls too. Best of luck to you and your little lady!

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Bekah G     at 11:22 am

Never commented before, but I have been following your blog for a few months now, and love your mix of posts! I’m so glad you were able to get out and do something work-related. What a luxury! I’ve got a little guy (born Oct. 24th actually!), and Cullen’s shoes caught my eyes. Where did you get them? They’re absolutely adorable.

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Danica     at 2:02 pm

Yeah!!! I am so glad you enjoyed the conference and had the chance to meet the author you always wanted to. Thanks for sharing your experience and posting about it so I could live vicariously through you :)

Danica

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Chasity Grome     at 7:48 am

Hi Emily! I just found your blog last week and I completely fell in love with it! I found it through Dreena Burton’s page and was initially drawn to your posts about food and running, but then I discovered your pregnancy posts. I decided to read each post, one by one, starting with Cullen’s 8 week update and I’ve loved each one!

I have been a casual runner for the past 3 years or so, ran a few races but nothing too serious. I want to get serious! I also made the switch to a vegan diet last November and through that discovered that not only do I love to eat, but I also really love to cook! In January I registered the name My Healthy Chef and started my own personal chef business. It’s slow going since I still have a full-time office job. I have a lot of debt ($83,000) and just started a new job with great pay and benefits, so it just doesn’t make sense for me to quit and try to make my passion a full time job yet. I really want to go to culinary school and spend my days cooking, talking about food, writing about food, sharing my passion with others and showing them that healthy eating can be fun, easy, and enjoyable! Right now I’m trying to focus on paying off my debt and paying for my wedding, saving money to starting our family and hoping that one day I can make it all happen.

My question for you is how did you do it? How did you take your passion and make it a full-time reality? What was the process like, what inspired it, and how long did it take you? If you’ve already written a post about it please send the link my way. Thanks for your time and I’m looking forward to being all caught up on your blog!

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