Chicago: Day Five {BlogHer Highlights}

As I finished packing up to go home today, I couldn’t help but realize how much swag I was given throughout the course of my time here in Chicago. While all of it was amazing, not even the video camera that I received can truly compare to the memories I made when I saw a good friend in person for the first time, when I met up with tried and true blogger buddies, or when my favorite PR gal and I squealed when we saw each other.

Oh, and the hugs are always one of the best parts for me… Hugs from old friends, new friends, and even some celebrities!

Even though most of these moments weren’t captured on film, they are memories that will last forever.

Mamas of many
Tara Kuczykowki, Julie Cole of Mabel’s Labels, and me ::
We have seventeen (yes, you read that right… 17!) children between the three of us!

Tim Gunn and girls
Tim Gunn and some of my bestest blogging buddies ~ Erika, Lori, Arianne, Audrey and Tara

Having a ball at BowlHer with Kristin, Tara, and Tonya

Brooke White, Me, and Chris Mann
Two of the most amazing and down to earth artists out there, Brooke White and Chris Mann.

Chicago: Day Four {BlogHer Interrupted}

I woke up with a migraine. The day so many of my friends were in one place, all of whom I was dying to see. The day I was to be photographed and recorded for a huge project that will soon be revealed. The day I was to take as many steps as I could in an effort to win a large sum of money for my favorite charity.

After a long, hot shower I made it to my shoot, but forced myself to skip out early for a much-needed massage (many thanks to my good friend, Audrey, for scheduling it for me). This, of course, was just what I needed to help insure that I made it through the day. And then another long, hot shower.

All day I pushed myself to enjoy the precious little time that I had to spend with wonderful people, in spite of how I felt. And all day I was truly grateful for good friends who helped me through my day with words of encouragement, bits of wisdom, and powerful prayers.

Although I missed the company of many great people today, I was truly blessed.

Perhaps this wouldn’t have happened so profoundly if BlogHer had not been interrupted.

Chicago: Day Three {BlogHer Begins}

Today was officially day one of BlogHer ’09 and my Overstep Your Bounds Challenge. While it seemed I walked all day long, I only clocked 6,332 steps, allowing my competition to get ahead.

The day began with a fun breakfast with the Walmart team and Food Networks’ Dave Lieberman. I didn’t know much about Dave, but discovered that his passion is showing others how easy it is to “eat, live and entertain like royalty, even on a commoner’s budget”. Dave also told us that he has a blog called Dave Cooks, where he writes about food and travel, and posts some amazing pictures.


The real steps occured after breakfast, when Tara and I roamed around the conference hotel, meeting up with people I was dying to see again, talking to people who stopped us to try to find out who we were and if they knew us, and wandering around the exhibit/sponsor booths.

I have to confess that I couldn’t help but be drawn towards all of the beautiful babies I saw as I walked around. Babies being held close in wraps and slings, as they slept. Babies being cuddled. Tiny babies being pushed along in strollers, oblivious to the world around them. Ah, babies. It was a welcomed distraction and I ate up every moment.

Colin Judah
Teagan Ivy

And, then more parties. Energizer, e.l.f. and Nikon all sponsored wonderful parties, with great food and FAB hostesses.

I missed most of the sessions (ok, I missed all of the sessions), but today was full of life. And a lot of steps.