First Gathering of the AZ Real Estate Blogging Network! Yes, I have photos!

Real Estate Agent with Realty Executives

Well here it is.  My first official "Post and Toast."

The very first gathering for the "AZ Real Estate Blogging Network," brainchild of Candace Robinson, was a rousing success.

Thanks to Candace and her crack team of sponsors (notably Shelli Bates with LandAmerica Lawyer's Title in Mesa - Thanks, Shelli!), the whole thing went off without a hitch.

There are several posts already floating around to recap the events, so I'll just write a brief summary from my perspective and get to the pictures (which is all anybody is ever interested in anyway).

Our first speaker was ActiveRain's own Teri Ellis.  The Lady in Red projects supreme competence and know-how, and was the perfect selection to speak to fledgling bloggers about how to properly set up a blog.  She was a terrific ambassador for the ActiveRain network as well, relating what a nurturing environment it is for newbies and veterans alike.  Great job, Teri!

After I finished my dissertation on "Blogging and the Time/Space Continuum," or whatever the heck I was talking about, Shailesh Ghimire was left to pick up the pieces.  Talk about a guy with energy and passion!  Dubbed as the "AZ Mortgage Guru," he could just as easily roll with the moniker of "AZ Blogging Guru."  The man has it wired, and is enthusiastic about sharing his considerable acumen.  Do yourself a favor and visit his outside blog to review his tutorial on Blogging 101. 

Mike from Tucson is one big dude.  It didn't take long to realize that he has the heart to match.  Mike spoke at length about the importance of utilizing photos and images in your blog, but that was merely a launching point for delving into his overriding philosophy about utilizing a blog to attract business.  Sharing a few success stories, it became readily apparent why Mike is the name you think of for Tucson mortgage lending.  Go ahead, Google most any combination of "home" "loan" and "Tucson," and you can't help but find Mike.

An added bonus was a summary from perhaps the most recognized name in Phoenix Real Estate blogging.  Jay Thompson, The Phoenix Real Estate Guy, shared the importance of blogging to his business.  With examples of the success and media attention that his erstwhile efforts have created, everyone in the room was ready to charge out into the world ... or cubicle for that matter, to get blogging.

In addition to the great lineup, it was wonderful to meet many of the online personalities I have grown to consider friends.

  • Nick Bastian with his guerrilla interview tactics and friendly demeanor.
  • Doreen McPherson, who came late and missed my stirring rendition of "Easy Like a Sunday Morning" by Lionel Richie.
  • Anne McKechnie, who made the drive up from Tucson with Mike.
  • A Calie Waterhouse sighting, though I was not able to speak with her at this event.  Next one, Calie!
  • Steve Belt, my Scottsdale Realty Executive cohort and terrific blogger in his own right.
  • Shoot, we even had a special guest appearance by Alex Trebek himself!  Okay, so it was my father, Ray, but same difference.

It was a great morning, and all involved are looking forward to an even bigger event for the next go-round (May 22nd). 

Now, without further ado ...

AZ Real Estate Blogging Network Gang

From Left: Jay, Shelli, Nick, Teri, Mike, Candace, Shailesh, Home Inspection sponsor dude without sufficient credit supplied here by me, Me.


Shailesh  Shailesh getting it done ...


Paul Slaybaugh  Teri Ellis lamenting her seating choice ...


Anyone for a game of Rocks, Paper Scissors?  Demonstrating my vaunted "Hand Slap Game" techniques ...


Jay Thompson  The Phoenix Real Estate Guy, Jay Thompson


Nick Bastian

Nick Bastian feigning rapt attention as he attempts to shake off the cobwebs from last night's NyQuil binge.


Candace Robinson

Candace Robinson:  Realtor, Blogger, Event Organizer, Director, Singer, Dancer and Queen of Gilbert, Arizona!



The backs of our heads ... just in case anyone was curious.


Sorry, but no shots of Alex Trebek.  His publicist was quick to confiscate all footage.


See everyone at the next one!




Comments (73)

Doreen McPherson
Homesmart ~ Scottsdale ~ Tempe - Tempe, AZ
Phoenix Arizona Real Estate ~


It fits even a small to medium sized head. 



Paul's small to medium head


Apr 26, 2008 05:34 PM
Jesse & Kathy Clifton
Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS® - Fairbanks, AK

Dude - What gives with the new picture?  I thought for a second Mr. Potato Head had taken over. 

Oh, and you left some drivel on the rug yesterday.  No worries though, I'm still trying to get Cameron to clean up those ^$*#@ skidmarks he left in the corner.

Apr 26, 2008 10:29 PM
Arizona Real Estate Associate Broker
MR Realty - Mesa, AZ

Paul- I am willing to cut back my offer to $50.00 this morning and downsize the logo to "AZ RE BN 2008" since your average sized cranium won't hold the entire logo! In support of your fantastic cranium capture, I have posted a new picture too!

Doreen - You are cracking me up! Great job, laughed so hard this morning!

Apr 27, 2008 03:10 AM
Doreen McPherson
Homesmart ~ Scottsdale ~ Tempe - Tempe, AZ
Phoenix Arizona Real Estate ~
$50. Paul.  I saw over there where you were double dog dared.  Are you gonna let that go???
Apr 27, 2008 08:21 AM
Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
Bob - Long time no see.  It was great to see a new post from you, buddy.  When are you coming to one of our Texas gatherings?
Apr 27, 2008 04:17 PM
Lisa Heindel
Crescent City Living LLC - New Orleans, LA
New Orleans Real Estate Broker
Nice picture.
Apr 27, 2008 04:19 PM
Elaine Hanson
Compass - Topanga, CA
REALTOR - Topanga, CA Real Estate Agent

Paul, stop looking at me with those Crazy Eyes!  How come I never noticed that before? 

Apr 27, 2008 04:30 PM
Paul Slaybaugh
Realty Executives - Scottsdale, AZ
Scottsdale, AZ Real Estate
Apr 27, 2008 04:33 PM
Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
Bob - Are you going to take that from these insubordinate members?
Apr 27, 2008 04:44 PM
Adam Waldman
Westcott Group Real Estate Company - Hauppauge, NY
Realtor - Long Island

PAUL - You do understand that to "post and toast" you should actually show photos of eating and drinking, right?  You're the one that coined the phrase.  You'd think that you would know the rules!!!!

Apr 28, 2008 03:28 AM
Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)

Paul - I am glad to see you are back to your old picture (and I mean old!).

Apr 28, 2008 07:14 AM
Sandra Carlisle (Ayers)
Berkshire Hathaway California Properties - Newport Beach, CA
Real Estate Marketing & Sales

Just because Crouch looks younger in his new photo doesn't mean you have to complete with him...

Apr 28, 2008 07:59 AM
Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
Sandra - Did you see my new new picture?
Apr 28, 2008 11:06 AM
Dale Baker
Baker Energy Audits and Commercial Properties Inspections - Claremont, NH
New Hampshire Relocation Real Estate Information

Howdy Paul

Ms. Liz said me and the Texas Rangers should saddle up

Saddle up and ride boy's

and ride over to pay ya a visit.

I see my friend Mike from Tucson was at Y'all's Gathering.

He is a real fine guy, for sure. As Ms. Liz said hope Y'all had a lot of fun. It looks like Y'all where and did.

Have a good one Dale

Apr 28, 2008 01:19 PM
Elaine Hanson
Compass - Topanga, CA
REALTOR - Topanga, CA Real Estate Agent
Apr 28, 2008 01:46 PM
Doreen McPherson
Homesmart ~ Scottsdale ~ Tempe - Tempe, AZ
Phoenix Arizona Real Estate ~
What a cute little boy.  What did he do with Paul? 
Apr 28, 2008 04:41 PM
William Johnson
Retired - La Jolla, CA
Retired Real Estate Professional

Hi Paul, This sounds like you all did yourselves proud and I was delighted to hear that Teri was there to talk as well. I haven't met here in person, but I have never had any doubt of what she could bring to a meeting like this. She is remarkably committed to excellence in everyone and goes out of her way to help people when they are getting started. I know because she was there for me when I started.

The event sounded very interesting and something that will continue to grow and become the recognized voice for professional bloggers in Arizona. I loved the photos and from your discussion, I could easily imagine being right there.

Well done as always Paul!

Apr 30, 2008 03:10 PM
Jolynne Photography, Creative Wedding Photography, Family Portraits, Bar Mitzvahs
Jolynne Photography - Hemet, CA
Bat Mitzvahs, Senior Pictures, Event Photography

Okay...not going through all the comments.

I laughed once when I saw the line Home Inspection sponsor dude without sufficient credit supplied here by me.

Then when I saw Jason Crouch's old photo as your avatar I snorted.

May 01, 2008 05:49 AM
Boston, MA
I could tell that that was Teri Ellis.... if you look at the picture... she's the Lady in Red!
May 01, 2008 08:10 AM
Christopher Pike, 803.727.7800
Keller Williams® Realty - Columbia, SC


Looks like everyone had a Great time, thanks for keeping us updated!


May 01, 2008 02:36 PM