BlogHer 2012: Bucket List Item #23 Complete

Going to BlogHerBlogHer 2012 was a blast. Insane, crazy, fun, inspiring and exhausting and simply a blast. Every moment I was there was better than the next  . . .  until it was time to pack and then I sighed, consolidated, called the Hilton bell man and loaded up.

But let’s go back to the beginning.

When I started blogging about 4 years ago, I heard so much about the full, bustling and somewhat overwhelming BlogHer conferences stretching across the country and wouldn’t you know it, when I finally thought I could go, they started scheduling them right during the one week of the year our family heads to a campground for an annual event that has been going on for over 130 years. How could I miss that for yet another conference even if it was BLOGHER, the conference to end all conferences?

But, this year was my year.. . . Several factors kept us from the campground this year and I thought, I am going to do it. I am going to go! Bite the bullet, buy the ticket, secure the roommate and go for it. And, I did. And, it was great.

I even wrote a guest post on making the best of it. In some cases, I took my own advice and some cases I didn’t. Pre-conference, I did pack a smartphone, business cards (which I blew through in no time) and dresses that made me happy and feel good about myself despite recent weight gain. I didn’t do a lot of research because I didn’t really know what to expect. I decided to simply go and see what happened, (after getting on the BlogHer Facebook page and signing up for every party available just to see if I would get invited and to some, I did despite the late registration). I scheduled all the extracurricular events on my calendar and printed passes, tickets and directions and headed out the door.

Next stop on the way, pick up my dear friend and colleague, Debbie Bookstaber of Mamanista & Bloganthropy. We headed up early Wednesday for business meetings with the forever classy Stephanie Azzarone of Child’s Play Communications and later checked into our hotel, secured by the one and only talented  Jessica Cohen of Found the Marbles. I love that both of my roommates spend time writing about good causes and things they passionately believe in. Jessica writes a good bit about social good and Debbie highlights blogs using their influence to do good and also hosted a session at the conference giving recognition to more than one deserving blogger and social influencer.

After the first evening there enjoying friends we found in the lounge, the conference began. Well, actually the pre-conference began with the track I signed up for (HealthMinder) and I lost track of any and everyone I knew. I saw them passing in hallways and occasionally said a few more than two words but when you are pursuing your own goals, it’s not time to keep track of where friends are headed all over the place in such a crazy insane weekend. It’s time to meet new ones and use your time wisely. You are lucky if you do happen to catch up with someone and actually sit down to a meal together. Unless you completely coordinate schedules, you may find yourself lonely in a jam-packed place but that’s when you look up, look out and say “Hello, world!” {Helps that I was born with the ability to talk to a fly on the wall or a super star without much of a blink when passing between.}

I found the outside parties to be chaotic but fun. It was hard swallowing that I had bought a pass but needed to be other places, often missing sessions. But of course, going to the Zarbees party was totally awesome and you will see a whole post on it as soon as I can get it written. MomSelect hosted another incredible swag expo where you felt like you could really talk to the vendors since some were the very inventors of the products.

One of my favorite parts were the upstairs suites where I met the crowd from Taste of Home and The Diet Digest, not to mention the Rosacea Facts people where I interviewed Dr. Day on video which you will see here when I get the embed code. Meeting the editor at Taste of Home was particularly special since I entered a video in their Ms. Holiday Contest which you can see on the contest page.

(Go vote! – for me, please! ;) Love my Christmas holidays! More on this later too.

Hershey’s was fun for a quick s’more on your way through too! {Look, honey, I was camping too. Bwahaha! And, to think my husband took the girls on a REAL camping trip while I was living it up. But, hey, they enjoyed themselves so that is what counts, right?!}

BlogHer Hershey's

Camping at home just got a whole lot easier!

And of course, there was one party I didn’t dare miss: Getting Gorgeous with Audrey McClelland and Vera Sweeney, two of the most awesome ladies in the blogosphere. I love that they included things like Hanes who had partnered with Box Tops for Kids to give away box tops to schools. They also included handcrafts for justice which is great. It was all so real and personal. Loved it.

Getting Gorgeous BlogHer

Getting Gorgeous with Audrey, (me), and Vera.

There is sooo much to process and to write about. One by one, I will get done what I can to thank all the wonderful brands and organizers who made it happen. I know there were parties I missed so I could actually use my BlogHer pass and listen to passionate speakers and to watch a delightful fashion show with real women and to hear real voices speak their lives from the front but that was okay too. It’s hard not to feel a twinge of jealousy when you see the pictures of the fancy parties but you know what, I had just enough of each and it was great. Balance . . .  meeting life goals . . . balance.

And, now, next item on my bucket list, to actually get all the posts written about this big event and to take time to enjoy my daughter’s 14th birthday this coming week. My girls are growing up so fast. My time at BlogHer was more about how to make their life more special and I want to write more about the silly times of growing teen girls but time is getting thinner and thinner for what MOM wants to do these days!

Good night all.

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. So great to see you at the conference this year!!! Glad you were able to make it. Agree, Getting Gorgeous was great, I just finished a post about it a few minutes ago.

    Good luck getting all the posts done that you want – it is so hard because there is just so much stuff to write about. My overall post felt like a mini novel!

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