I got to San Francisco at noonish on Thursday. On the drive to the hotel, I was surprised to see the ocean on one side and hills on the other. It's so nice to see such scenic landscapes. I told my friend Julie, "There are hills! It's so cool to see hills!" She answered with, "You mean the whole world isn't just a giant cornfield?" Seriously, I think the greatest change in elevation in the entire midwest is like 5 feet.
As I was checking into the hotel, I ran into Liz from This Full House. I'd met her at Johnson & Johnson's Camp Baby back in April. She's such a sweetheart! She always has this great smile on her face! I ran up to my room, dropped off my luggage and ran down to where Janice and Susan from 5 Minutes For Mom were doing interviews.
There I was treated to a make-over by a professional make-up artist. When I walked into the room, the make-up artist scrutinized my face and said something along the lines of, "Oh my gosh! How much time do I have until your interview?! I don't think there's enough foundation in the world to cover up those bags under your eyes!" OK, so maybe she didn't really say that, but I'm sure she thought it. The interview went pretty well, I think. Janice and Susan are both so outgoing and friendly that they put you at ease instantly.
After that, I went to the speaker training where I met a few fellow bloggers, another speaker on my panel, and Elisa, Jory, and Lisa. Following the training, I went to a cocktail reception hosted by Johnson & Johnson. I met up with Lori and Edwige there.
Then I went to a reception for the speakers. That was fun - open bar, appetizers and a Wii boxing tournament. The prize for the winner of the tournament was a Wii, so I signed up. I figured my kids wouldn't be around to make fun of me if I accidentally hit myself in the face while Wii boxing. I was eliminated in the first round. Oh my gosh am I incompetent! And here I was thinking of getting a Wii Fitness so I could get a fun workout at home. With my complete and utter lack of coordination, I may have to rethink that. I think, if I remember correctly, that Jenny from Three Kid Circus won.
From there, I went to the Newbie Party where I met some more bloggers: Kellan from On The Upside (she looks and sounds like a pretty, young Suzanne Pleshette), JCK from Motherscribe, and VDog from VDogBlog (She took a picture of me with a fly swatter named Henry, Phil, Charlie, Bob, something, I don't remember. Yeah, I have no idea what that's about.) to name a few. And then it was on to the People's Party where I picked up a tote bag o'swag and a couple more drinks. About 10 minutes after I got there, the lack of sleep, travel, and rum caught up to me and I decided to call it a night.
The next day, as my phone rang with my wake-up call, I realized I couldn't move my arms. I tried to grab the phone, but no dice. I kept thinking, why can't I move my arms? What the heck? They worked last night! Then I realized it was from the Wii boxing. I have GOT to make more time for exercise!
Friday, I met a whole slew of people like Shannon from Rocks in my Dryer (actually, I met her on Thursday) and Crystal from Boobs, Injuries & Dr. Pepper.
I went to panels on Privacy, Video Blogging (NEED TO GET ME A VIDEO CAMERA AND DO SOME OF THIS!), and Taking Care of Business.
Friday night, there was a party at a local nightclub, Ruby Skye. Oh. My. Gosh. I am so old. There were 1000 bloggers crammed into a hot, LOUD nightclub with really LOUD music and so many people you couldn't even move and really LOUD music. Did I mention it was loud? I kinda shut down and hid out in a quietish corner. I met some more bloggers there like Biggie at Lunch in a Box (check out her cool bento lunch ideas!) I was so thankful when Susan from 5MinutesForMom.com joined me in my isolation. We had a nice conversation until we decided we couldn't take the loudness anymore so we left so she could nurse her baby and I could
The next day, I spoke on a panel, The Commercial Momosphere: Policies, Ethics and Outreach with Lotta from Mom-O-Matic,
Devra from Parentopia and Kristin from Motherhood Uncensored. I don't feel like I had too much of value to add to the conversation because I'm still figuring things out myself. There I also met Liz from Mom 101 (which just happens to be the first blog I ever read.)
Saturday night ended with the Macy's Extravaganza. Macy's closed off the handbag section for a private BlogHer party where we enjoyed champagne and Hors d'Oeuvres. (Do you have any idea how long it took me to spell that?!) A woman from the San Francisco Chronicle interviewed me there. Then the party moved on to the shoe department where we had wine, and some really delicious food. After the shoe department, we went up a few floors to lingerie where they handed out KY samples, cookies that tasted like perfume and the nastiest shots I've ever had. Who ever thought that chipotle vodka and white chocolate would be a good mix? It sounds like a combination my kids would come up with! Finally, we ended up on the top floor in the furniture department where snacks, sandwiches, icecream and drinks were served as we lounged on living room sets. Handbags were raffled off, authors signed copies of Sleep is for the Weak, and people danced to music from a live DJ. "A live DJ"? Does that even make sense? Of course he was live. A dead DJ probably wouldn't play very good music.
Once again I was the life of the party and left early to go back to my hotel room. I know, I'm just a barrel of fun. In small groups I'm never at a loss for words and I enjoy myself immensely. There's just something about being in such a large crowd, especially when you only know a couple people, that's a little intimidating.
nasty shots in lingerie department
"Does my hand smell weird to you?"
And of course, you know all about my day of sightseeing on Sunday.
I'm sure I forgot some stuff and some great bloggers that I met and for that I'm sorry. I just can't remember everything that happened there. But here are a list of blogs from people I met... (Thank God for business cards!)
Jessica from It's my life...roses life her nimble fingers did some serious live blogging this weekend! You can check out live blogs of the sessions HERE.
Jean from Stimeyland
Vivien from Cool Moms Rule
Jenifer from notcalmdotcom
Debra from messylife
Mary from Refresh Moments - I had a nice talk with her right outside the elevators where we continuously directed people to the parties.
Alex from Flexible Parenting - she has a nice, clean blog
Jenny from Jenny on the Spot - so funny
Violet from Verbosity Abounds
Elizabeth from Table4Five
Andrea from Sweet Life Site
Fran from Merlot Mom
Nicole from Not Just a Working Mom
Glennia from Momocrats
Vanessa from On Teens Today
Melanie from Blogging Basics 101
Arianne from To Think is to Create
Stephanie from Adventures in Babywearing
Jennifer from Preteens, Toddlers and Newborns Oh My!
Nancy from Marie Millard
Jennifer from Free and Flawed
MJ from Sugar my Bowl
Tarrant from Retro Food
Jessica from Everyday Adventures in the City
Jamie from Oh How Lovely
Carrie from OpMom