I wasn’t going to go to BlogHer this year but am glad I did. It certainly lived up to my expectations and provided nice face time with the bloggers that I read, Tweet with, and converse with via e-mail on a daily basis. I also learned about tons of new tech products that I can’t wait to share with you soon!
Having started my weekend at 3:45 am on Thursday morning and getting far too little sleep all weekend, I am only able to provide sound bites. I was constantly on Twitter throughout the weekend and if I could write my recap in Tweet form of 140 characters or less, I would!
Here’s my Best of BlogHer recap:
Celebrity Moment- Besides being a blogger, mom, and teacher, I am a total foodie! I was so happy to get to Rick Bayless’ Frontera Grill the night I arrived. While his food was heavenly, the real treat was meeting Rick face to face at a demo he did for the National Pork Board. I got to the demo early and was right in the front so I had a chance to talk to Rick as he set up. I admitted to him that I was not brave enough to try the beef tongue tacos he made on Top Chef Masters and instantly regretted not having ordered them when he told me that he had personally prepared the ingredients for the tacos! I can’t wait to make his pork tenderloin with mango salsa!
Ironic Moment- As I was taking pictures and video of Rick Bayless’ demo, I realized that the McDonald’s arches were in the background. Even though I do enjoy the occasional order of fries with my Filet ‘o Fish, it just seemed so wrong when he’s committed to using fresh organic and locally sourced ingredients at his restaurants and McDonalds had videos of their food processing running in the background.
Reason to Get Up Early- The BlogHer 5K that I ran/walked with fellow DC Metro Moms Amy from TeachMama and Justice Fergie of MamaLaw who is planning Blogalicious. The course took us to Navy Pier where we ran over the river and along the water, enjoying fantastic weather and the sights of Chicago at 6:30 am. After getting up at 3:45 am the day before and staying up until I-don’t-exactly- remember-when, I wasn’t sure that I wanted to get up for the 5K but am glad I did. The shirt I got is a nice souvenir and is good for subtle bragging rights!
After Party- When the parties ended, I could always count on DC Metro Mom & friends-in-real-life-roommates Stimey and WhyMommy to stay up a little longer for a nightly roundup. We reconvened after spending each day apart and sorted and recycled swag, shared moments from favorite sessions, and slept way too little! Our only wishes were that the beds at the Sheraton could have come home with us as swag and Jessica would have been with us rather than moving into a new home. Next year I think we need a suite!
Surprises– Going to the Hewlett Packard suite and getting derailed by the Wienermobile parked right outside. I tweeted from inside the Wienermobile for a great shirt! Best surprise moment #2- Walking out of the hotel to head to the Social Luxe Lounge all alone and seeing Whitney from Mommies with Style two steps in front of me. Whitney and I have been friends since college but haven’t seen each other in forever. It was great running into so soon after getting to Chicago and seeing her throughout the weekend. #3 was walking into the Hyatt for Social Luxe and seeing signs that President Obama was going to be speaking there that night!
Thought Provoking Session- I loved the session on marketing to bloggers of color because of the issues it make me think about as a Chinese American blogger of biracial children. The discussion on this very current topic made me wonder if there are marketing and PR professionals who seek me out just to meet their Asian demographic or because they like my writing and site content. I would hope that I’m contacted by people who are interested in forming a relationship and getting to know me- who I am, how I write, what I write about, and what I look for in products- rather than just because I meet some target demographic. I feel that I have a very specific niche with the site and you, as my readers, come here for my knowledge, expertise, and honesty. I hope that future product pitches will reflect my interests and the reviews I write are beneficial to my audience. While marketing to blogging women of color isn’t any different, the conversation that originally started at BlogHer 2 years ago is still continuing but positive progress is being made.
Meals– Dinner at Frontera Grill, the Mexican lunch that was served on Saturday (yummy cactus salsa!), and while our attempt at Chicago deep dish failed (2 hour wait at Gino’s), I enjoyed the walk and company as much as the food at the English pub we found last night. It was a great way to end the weekend.
Tomorrow: The Best of BlogHer Part II- The Swag Roundup
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Original post by Tech Savvy Mama