A few weekends ago, I packed up my bags and headed down to Watercolor, Florida for a girls blogging vacation! My family vacations in Seaside every summer, thanks to my sweet Aunt and Uncle who have a beach house there. I’d never stayed in Watercolor though, and was so excited to meet all the other ladies! We had some really great discussions about blogging, ate tons of fantastic food, and stayed in some ridiculously gorgeous houses.
There were some treats waiting for us in our rooms when we got there, including these cute boxes of 30A goodies and some necklaces from StitchFix! I saved my 30A beer for the Alabama game the next weekend. 😉
The first night we enjoyed several dishes from Chef Alex of Signature Catering of 30-A. He made some ridiculous oysters, brisket egg rolls, seared tuna and black beans, shrimp and grits, duck and Brussles sprouts, and then the most amazing crème brûlée stuffed with cheesecake!
On the first morning, we met early for some yoga on the back patio. I have to admit…that was the first time I’ve ever done yoga. But it was really enjoyable, especially because it was cool and breezy that morning.
Then we enjoyed a fabulous berry smoothie bar, with as many Naturipe strawberries as we could have ever hoped for. Plus tons of toppings, fruits, and granola. Pretty fantastic start to the day! Special thanks to KitchedAid for the fabulous pink blenders!!
The first workshop session was all about working with brands. I honestly haven’t done much with brands here on bethcakes, so this was all extremely helpful information for me. I learned that I’ve totally been under selling myself, which I figured I was doing, I just didn’t know by how much! These are the kinds of things I always appreciate learning. I never really had anything to compare my rates to before, and it was awesome to hear everyone being so open and helpful about the business aspect of blogging.
For lunch we headed over to the Sandestin Resort and ate at Sunset Bay Cafe with Visit South Walton. We ordered some cocktails and appetizers: the Southern Fries and their massive cinnamon roll were pretty well received. I ordered a burger because I’m actually not really a seafood person (I know, it’s weird), and their sidewinder fries are just the best things!
After lunch we headed back to Watercolor for paddleboarding. It was pretty windy and chilly that afternoon, so a few of us opted out, but I kinda wish I would have tried it anyway. I always see people paddleboarding whenever my family vacations there and it always looks like a fun time. Next time, though. 😉
Seaside is one of my favorite places to visit. There are so many cute stores and restaurants, but because our family trips can have quit a few people, we usually stay in for meals. So, it was really fun to walk around and try a whole bunch of places for dinner. First we stopped at the Shrimp Shack, and then a new wine bar called 45 Central. I really loved this place. They had the bubbliest moscato! Luckily Lindsay and I have similar tastes in wines as we do in baked goods. 🙂
Then we hit up Barefoot BBQ for barbecue nachos, which are always a good idea when people are in the southern US and they’ve never been here before. And lastly, we stopped by Heavenly for gelato, ice cream, and key lime pie on a stick! The last time I went there, I got chocolate whiskey gelato and it was fantastic. This time a whole bunch of us got tiramisu gelato and it was even better.
After we were beyond full of delicious food, we all piled into a room in one of the houses that had beds all along the walls. We chatted about the things we struggle with the most when it comes to blogging, and offered up advice and suggestions.
The next morning, we had breakfast at a restaurant called The Perfect Pig, and oh my goodness will I be dragging my family back there the next time we visit. We filled up on coffee, brown sugar bacon, and biscuits, all before our actual breakfasts made it to the table. If you can believe it, the sandwich below was a Parmesan-crusted grilled cheese with eggs and brown sugar bacon. It was one of those things that I was sad I couldn’t finish eating because it was that good, but it’s definitely for the best that I only ate half. The coffee cups were a pretty big hit on Instagram!
We hit up the Seaside Farmers Market after breakfast, then headed back to our house for a workshop session on monetization. We had a light and refreshing lunch thanks to Organic Girl, which was perfect after our breakfast. We had fresh produce, lovely roasted carrots, beets, and mushrooms by Liz and Amanda, and I made my sparkling pomegranate margaritas! Our last workshop session was on the future of blogging, which is something that is always changing and evolving as new trends, social media platforms, and forms of monetization emerge.
On the last night we stayed in Watercolor, we had dinner at Fish Out of Water, a restaurant at the Watercolor resort. We ate in the Wine Room, which was literally a room with nothing but shelves and shelves of wine around the walls. We started out with champagne and hors d’oeuvres. Then we had three courses, each consisting of smaller samples of what was on the menu. They paired wine with every course, even dessert!
Overall, the weekend was more than I could have hoped for! I even got to meet up with some of my family, who were also visiting for the weekend, for breakfast before heading back home. I’m so glad I got to meet each of these ladies, and I’m very thankful that everyone was so open and honest about how they make their blogs work for them. Ashley did an outstanding job planning out the entire weekend! I wish I could go back already. 🙂
Image via Ashley