Amid the Parties, There was Actual Learning Happening #blogher09 (Part II)

by Melanie Edwards on July 31, 2009 · 13 comments

in Blogging

After the madness the night before, my second day at BlogHer began with a newbie breakfast. I’ve been to other conferences that also have breakfasts for newcomers and they give you a brief presentation on the highlights of the conference and even tips for getting the most out of the conference. This one, however, was just a networking opportunity for you to connect with other BlogHer first-timers. I think this is something the BlogHer organizers should consider doing in the future. It might be helpful for newcomers.

Once the opening keynote by the BlogHer founders was over, it was time for the speed-dating session. I have to admit I was a little hesitant to do this, but it really turned out to be a great way to get the blood flowing and amp myself up for the day. Here’s how it goes. The entire room lines up shoulder to shoulder in two lines facing each other. You have about a minute to chat with the person in front of you before one line moves to the left and you start all over with the next person. Shook many hands in just a manner of minutes! Then… it was off to actually attend some sessions.

Friday Sessions I Attended:

In between sessions 1 & 2, was one of the highlights of the day. I signed myself up for the Women of Color Birds of a Feather lunch table. Basically, they have different topics assigned to tables and you just join up and have lunch with a group of ladies interested in the same topic. There was a great group of ladies at this table and some came and went, so I’m sure I’ll forget some that were there. But, I’m gonna give it a shot. Apologies in advance if I forget to mention you or get your name wrong – just drop me a line in the comments to jog my memory.

After the last session, I rushed to the MomSelect Swag Suite for the Disney Moms reunion. I love all my Disney #magicalmoms! Got to reunite with my Florida group (most of them anyway) and met some new ones I didn’t even know were involved with Disney. Unfortunately, I couldn’t stay the whole time because I had to get ready for more parties that were happening that night.

Modern Mami, Shash, Renee Ross
Photo credit: crazedmommy

Party Like a Rockstar

First up was the official BlogHer Cocktail party. Did you know that they’ll make drinks out of just about anything? Yup, Sobe Life Water alcoholic drinks to be exact. The vendors give out drinks too.

Modern Mami and Miss Britt - BlogHer09
Photo credit: avitable

Then it was off to the Nikon Night Out event, where we were treated to limo rides, more drinks, and a lovely view of Chicago from the Flatwater restaurant. Oh, and did I mention we met Carson Kressley and got tips on how to take good pictures? Except all he told me to do was pull my hair back from my shoulder.

Modern Mami and Carson Kressley - Nikon Night Out - BlogHer09
Photo credit: crazedmommy

Back at the hotel, I made a quick run to the Type-A MOMfluence Party sponsored by HP and then headed to the big MamaPop party, which was GASP! an actual party! There was a DJ, dance floor, and PEOPLE DANCING! Just when I had lost all hope. And what is one of the first things I do? Shake my ass up on Yvonne‘s on the dance floor. Because that’s how I normally introduce myself to people. (I later shook her hand and properly introduced myself.)

The party was great. Lots of dancing and laughing. Apparently, I also managed to escape from the million cameras that were there, as I cannot find a picture. But, I promise…I was there.

Only One More Day

Somehow after all that, I managed to drag myself out of bed in time for Saturday’s breakfast. I skipped out on the keynote that morning to go talk with some vendors in the expo hall and hang out with Angel. Here is where I lovingly told the Quaker folks that the smoothie was in fact “not good!” as the guy had claimed it was. In my defense, I took a few more sips and then decided that it just needed a little more sugar. It wasn’t really all that bad.

There were many vendors and lots of goodies from companies like Playskool, PepsiCo, PBS Parents, Suave, and many many others. It’s hard not to pile up on stuff and then you remember you have to fly back home with all of it.

And then once again it was time for another round of sessions.

Saturday Sessions I Attended:

Once again, for lunch I signed up for one of the Birds of a Feather tables. But, apparently Work Ouside the Home moms (WOTH) aren’t as fun as the Women of Color ladies. There was nothing wrong with the group. We just didn’t have as lively a conversation is all.

Bowling and Cheeseburgers

Man. BlogHers sure do love to party! Which is just fine by me. Saturday night was full of another BlogHer Cocktail party, BowlHer, and the CheeseburgHer party. It was that night that I chatted with Miss Lori from PBS Kids after a mistaken identity crisis the night before. She had chatted with Carol of NYCity Mama at the Blogalicious party and was told she had talked with me. So, I’m definitely glad we actually got to meet after all that.

BowlHer was lots of fun. Bowling, music, lots of people, and great food. After that it was off to the infamous CheeseburgHer party for some…wait for it…cheeseburgers. There’s a picture of me with a bag on my head out there somewhere, and as soon as MommyMusings sends it to me, I’ll be sure to add here. And to finish the night off? We all got kicked out of the Presidential Suite by hotel security.

Saying Goodbye

After an extremely busy three days, I was definitely ready to come home and see my bebes. Both the tall guy and the short missus.

Even though it had a shaky start, BlogHer was very much full of excitement and fun. I love that I got to meet so many bloggers and that I took a step outside my comfort zone to meet others. I definitely wanted to make the most of it after working so hard to get there. I learned, networked, and had some great conversations. It was well worth it.

And, finally, a big thank you to Little Pim who provided me with some of their DVD demos to share with my fellow bloggers and moms interested in a Bilingual education for their children. If you got one of the DVDs from me while at BlogHer, be sure to let them know! And if you write about Little Pim on your blog, please do share the link. They’re looking for feedback.

Little Pim

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Miss Britt July 31, 2009 at 4:28 pm

DANG IT! I have SEEN tons of pictures of you at the MamaPop party – dancing up a storm – but now I can’t find any of them!!

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2 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 2, 2009 at 11:55 am

@Miss Britt, Obviously, it was not meant to be that I show the world I indeed did dance.

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3 Fourth Breakfast July 31, 2009 at 10:04 pm

I had a lot of fun at the WOC lunch too! Wow, you have so much stamina. I didn’t make it to half as many events as you did!

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4 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 2, 2009 at 11:55 am

@Fourth Breakfast, I just kept going! I had to. I did not pay all that money to sit in my hotel room. ;)

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5 Jenny, Bloggess August 1, 2009 at 11:11 am

You = awesome.

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6 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 2, 2009 at 11:56 am

@Jenny, Bloggess, Why thank you Ms. Jenny! :D

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7 Sandy August 1, 2009 at 3:52 pm

Loved reading your post about BlogHer. It was great wasn’t it? It was great meeting you.

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8 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 2, 2009 at 11:56 am

@Sandy, Very good to meet you Sandy! I really did have a good time.

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9 Angel Smith @ CheekySweetie August 3, 2009 at 2:08 am

I am so glad we got some time to hang out, and OMG it was so funny how shocked the Quaker people were at your reaction, lmao. When I saw the recipe tweet go out on Twitter I thought of you, and I probably will every time I see Quaker now!

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10 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 3, 2009 at 7:43 am

@Angel Smith @ CheekySweetie, I still can’t believe I said that! I’m such an idiot. I told the Quaker PR girl that worked with us for the volunteer event and tried to explain myself. LOL So good to hang out with you!!!

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11 Megan Smith August 11, 2009 at 11:27 pm

It was such a pleasure to meet you at BlogHer! I had a wonderful time at lunch and I’m so glad you got to get to so many great sessions.

Be sure to stay in touch!

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12 Melanie (Modern Mami) August 12, 2009 at 6:03 am

@Megan Smith, Lunch was probably the highlight of that day Megan! Good to meet you too!

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