I took my mom with me to the BlogHer conference again this year and we had a blast! The panels and presentations were wonderful, as usual, but I think we went to just as many parties as we did panels this year. For the first time, all of the official on-site BlogHer parties were open to everyone, not just those who were lucky enough to grab tickets early. In addition to those fabulous parties, we were invited to a number of private parties so we hit a total of eleven in three days! Wow!
We’ve been back for a week now but I feel like I’m still recovering. I’m also still very excited about everything I learned in addition to all the terrific bloggers I met and the wonderful friends that I got to see again. I’m thrilled that I got to meet Kristin from Couponing to Disney, Alli from Couponing For 4, Deidre from Cuckoo For Coupon Deals and Leila from Don’t Speak Whinese.
There was so much going on at any one given time that we couldn’t possibly be everywhere and unfortunately I think we missed some pretty awesome panels and at least one kickin’ party that I’m really sad about. It was wonderful to hear Indra Nooyi, CEO of Pepsico, talk about her childhood, raising her own children and how family affects the decisions made for the corporation. I enjoyed a beautiful yacht cruise on the My Chelle one evening and had a terrific chat with Michelle King Robson, the party host and founder of EmpowHER. I had every intention of taking lots of pictures from the cruise but I was so into my conversation with Michelle and my new friend Holly from Menopause Chit Chat that we were already back at the dock before I remembered my camera.
We had a nice meet and greet breakfast one morning with Holly from Ruckus Media Group and I was super excited to have a spot in the Hillshire Farm Food Photography and Styling Workshop. My two favorite panels were the “We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Recession: Frugal Blogging is Always in Fashion” ROYO with my friend Sara Hawkins from Saving For Someday, and the “Your Blog Can Make You a Social Media Marketer” panel with BlogHer co-founder Elisa Camahort Page, Jessica Kirkwood, Marcy Massura, and Melissa Lion.
The best party of the weekend has got to be the Clever Girls Collective I’m With the Brand Party and not just because they had the best swag – like the Smurfs that my kids have gone crazy for, the caricatures like the one below, a flip book with my friend Heather, and fingernail polish in the Clever Girls’ logo colors. Their party also rocked with lip syncing performances by “Madonna” and “Lady Gaga”.
I’m even okay with being publicly shamed at that party by my mother who beat me at Smurf’s Dance Party without ever having laid eyes on a Wii since she hooked up with fab friends Kay Lynn from Bucksome Boomer and Mel from Two Savvy Sisters for a team that I got to name the “Over the Hill Gang” and they made it all the way into the semi-finals. They didn’t win the limited edition blue Wii consoles but my mom later lucked out and won an awesome Epiphanie camera bag. Both the signature Smurfette cocktails and the Clever Girls party were a blast, and I felt much better about taking my mother once I knocked her down outside and took the Epiphanie bag from her Thanks for a great trip mom!