Sunday, August 12, 2012

BlogHer 2012, Part IV: Time to say goodbye

In which I deliver cupcakes ...
(thanks @cookiesandclogs for the pic)
On Sunday, my roommates and I all had tickets to the Blogalicious brunch. I wasn't sure what to expect but the food was great and the speaker, Demetria Lucas (@abelleinbk), was as well. I was thinking of hitting up a local Crumbs Bake Shop that day too but one of my roommates was still packing up all her swag (we started calling her Swag Mommy - I'm still surprised she was able to fit it all into 3 bags!), so I decided to go to a cupcake meetup at a farther-away Crumbs that Hanan (Lilac City Momma) had put together. Because the event had been moved at the last minute and wasn't within walking distance (and because it was the last day and people tend to forget/be too tired to come to these types of things then), it was a bit of a washout, BUT the nice people at Crumbs gave me some gift bags to take back to the Hilton, not to mention a RIDE back as well! I met a few bloggers in the lobby who were overjoyed to get some free cupcakes, and made some new friends in the process, too.

Lies.
(before it was delayed and subsequently canceled ...)
My car was scheduled to pick me and Tricia up at the hotel at 3:15, and I got back around 3pm from Crumbs and scrambled to retrieve my bags from the bellhop, grab lunch from the (delicious) Halal cart on the corner, and rush to meet the car. Though it turned out I really shouldn't have ... storms rolled in to the area and my 6:30pm flight from Newark to Detroit was CANCELED. I've never had a flight canceled on me before and I was freaking out just a tiny bit - the 4:30pm flight had been moved back to 8:30 too, and all the passengers on board had to deplane. It was raining and lightning outside but after standing in line at the Delta desk for 90 minutes, trying to talk with Delta on the phone, and frantically tweeting/Facebooking to try and secure a place to stay for the night, I was finally put on board the 8:30 flight, along with a few others who I had been talking/ranting/sympathizing with. After all of that, though, I got home to DTW at 9:45pm, only an hour later than scheduled ... even though my checked bag had to sleep at EWR (Newark) for the night.

So. I went to BlogHer '12 and lived to tell the tale. I had a lot of fun and networked with many people, most of whom I probably would not have met had I not gone to the conference. Was it worth it to spend money for hotel, incidentals, etcetera?

30 Rock!
Like I said in another post, I do wish I went to more of the sessions. I felt like I could have learned more than I did. BlogHer '13 is in Chicago, a quick 3.5-hour drive, and I am hoping to attend; I think I will change up my game plan a bit and go to more sessions / "official" events rather to run around to all of the unofficial parties. That being said, I actually declined some parties that I felt weren't relevant to this blog or my book blog, so perhaps next year I will just be even more choosy about which I attend, in order to fit in some actual learning and sessions.

Overall I was satisfied with the conference, though I did hear some attendees complain that the Hilton was not big enough for the 5000+ bloggers that attended, with which I agree - there shouldn't have been rows of us sitting on the floor or standing in the Google Analytics session, and if I had not arrived at the Martha Stewart keynote lunch early I might have been sitting outside the ballroom eating as I saw others doing when I left. Hopefully the Sheraton and the conference center (McCormick Place) in Chicago will be able to accommodate more, though, and this won't be a problem next year.

If you went to BlogHer this year or in previous years - what were your favorite events and sessions? And were there any things you wish you had done differently?


Me and the Lorax! Universal Pictures was a
BlogHer sponsor this year




Shannon and I at the red carpet premiere



Me and one of my roommates, Kailee, at the Disney afterparty
(Yotel terrace)
The Statue of Liberty, as seen from the boat ride

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