Posts Tagged ‘BlogHer’

Inspired by Martha

I wish I was a better cook. I probably could be better if I wasn’t so lazy. I don’t mean lazy as in lying around the house doing nothing or spending all my free time online. By lazy I mean researching meals that interest me, going shopping for the ingredients, preparing everything and actually cooking. That’s a lot of work. And usually my attempts aren’t successful which can be discouraging, making it harder to keep motivated about trying again.

I think that’s why I like baking. Not that I’m any better at baking than cooking but I find it easier and the results are usually more successful, like those homemade buttermilk blueberry pancakes. Yum! I can’t go back to boxed pancakes after tasting these. And they’re so easy to make.

So when I was at BlogHer not too long ago I had the chance to attend the Martha Stewart cocktail party. It was fun (it was loud). They gave us a bag of goodies at the end with craft items and all sorts of Martha Stewart magazines. Flipping through the magazines how can you not be inspired.

I decided to try the whole ‘make it from scratch’ adventure again, this time with brownies. I had bought this wonderful brownie pan from William Sonoma. I can’t seem to leave that store without buying something, like that pineapple corer. I wanted to try it out but I wanted a good brownie recipe.

That’s where Martha came in. Well not the real Martha but certainly her recipe. I found this recipe for Fudgy Chocolate Brownies. I think what I love best about baking (besides eating the results) is that I feel like I am actually a cook. As I melted chocolate and butter in  my makeshift double-boiler I imagined being on one of those cooking shows, adding a dash of this and a pinch of that. I can’t help it; it happens all the time. And now my 8-year old daughter does the same thing, even when she’s getting breakfast together.

So I melted and whisked and folded and poured my brownie batter into the pan and 40-minute later I had Fudge Chocolate Brownie Chocolate Squares (yes I put the two chocolates in there on purpose).

They didn’t make it until the end of the day, which I guess is a good sign. It’s also a reminder to me that although I’m not as domesticated as I (and my husband and children) wish, I am capable of some edible creations.

Thanks Martha.

Celebrities I Met at BlogHer

So it turns out there were a number of celebrities heading out to BlogHer too. Now I’m not really a star seeker but there were some visiting BlogHer that I made an extra effort to meet:

If you’re a gaming family like us then you probably recognize Raving Rabbids. My kids did, though my son asked where his plunger was. Ubisoft had a booth in the exhibit hall and Raving Rabbids was there promoting his new game Raving Rabbids Travel in Time. Now I know my kids are going to start bugging about this.

Earth’s Best also had a booth in the exhibit hall and Elmo was there to promote the Sesame Street line of food. How could I not resist getting a photo with him. That night, while still in NYC, I skyped my three-year-old daughter and held up my camera. She screamed with excitement when she saw it was mom and Elmo together.

Who doesn’t love The Magic School Bus. I received an invitation to attend the Scholastic BlogHer breakfast and Ms. Frizzle was our guide on The Magic School Bus. Okay, maybe it was just a yellow school bus but I’m still young enough to pretend.

After the Scholastic breakfast we were invited to visit the Scholastic’s store, which was amazing. I wish they would open one of these up here; my kids would never want to leave. While at the store, WordGirl showed up (love her). Clifford was also there but I didn’t get close enough to snap a picture with him.

My real excitement was when I heard Elisha Cooper was in the store. I’ve reviewed both Beach and Farm so I was thrilled to meet him. Of course being a real person versus a character I couldn’t bring myself to get a picture with him but he did do two small sketches for me.

The other celebrity attending BlogHer I wanted to meet was Mrs. Potato Head but we just couldn’t connect. My three-year old enjoyed getting mail from her though.

Okay, so they’re not movie stars. Maybe it’s the kid in me but I was still thrilled to meet these guys. And my kids have a new sense of awe about me. That’s got to count for something right?

You’ve Got Mail, From Mrs. Potato Head

There was a lot I wanted to accomplish at my first BlogHer conference this year, I even made a list to help me focus. But I’ll admit there were a few things I wanted to do that weren’t on my list. Actually it was more like a few people I wanted to meet. One such person was Mrs. Potato Head.

Okay, so maybe you’re not that impressed but when I heard that Mrs. Potato Head was going to be hanging out at the Playskool booth at BlogHer I knew I had to meet her. I mean, when’s the next time I’ll get the chance. And imagine pedestal my kids would hold me on, their faces full of awe (okay, maybe only my three-year old). But even I was excited.

Sadly I guess it was never meant to be as we kept missing each other. But all wasn’t lost. The folks at Playskool had some great Potato Head postcards that you could colour and address and they would mail it back home. I didn’t colour mine because I knew my daughter would love to colour it herself.

When the card arrived the other day in the mail my three-year old was beyond ecstatic. She promptly spend the next hour colouring the picture and displaying her work of art (and the note on the back). There’s been a lot of talk about the great swag from BlogHer, the cool items being brought home for moms and their families. I think this postcard arriving from Mrs. Potato Head has been my three-year old’s favourite BlogHer surprise so far.

Girly Girl

As you probably know by now, I’m not a very girly-girl. That wasn’t a problem when my oldest daughter was little. Even as she grew older she exhibited a fashion sense that wasn’t typical girl style.

But kids grow-up and develop new interests; friends and outside influences start to play a part in our kids daily lives.

When my 8-year-old daughter returned from sleep away camp (which was an adjustment for me to deal with on its own) she kept talking about the make-up party they had one night in their cabin. My daughter doesn’t wear make-up so it didn’t occur to her to ask to wear it when she got home but nail polish is a different story.

This week my two youngest are at camp during the day, which gives me some one-on-one time with my oldest. She’s only 8 but already I’m starting to feel her pulling away, wanting to do things with friends instead of family so having time to just hangout was kind of fun.

So I booked a manicure at our local spa. My daughter would love the girl time (and nail polish that doesn’t end up all over her fingers) and I thought this might help my other problem.

My daughter loved her manicure. She picked out some nice bright pink and it looks wonderful on her. I of course, being so conservative, picked out a very pale colour. Sometimes I wish I was a little more adventurous. I decided before heading to New York City for BlogHer I’d make another appointment and grab something brighter. My daughter of course wants to come back with me. She says it’s to make sure I get a fun colour but I think secretly she wants to have another manicure. I might have created a spa monster, albeit a cute one.

Is BlogHer10 for me?

I know I’m new to the world of blogging, having just started in March of this year, but I’d have to be living in a bubble not to have heard about the BlogHer conference. By the time I had heard about BlogHer 09 in Chicago it was already sold out, but really, I wasn’t in any position to go had tickets come available.

With the Chicago show over, blogs and twitter are buzzing with posts like keynote presentations that made people laugh and cry or both and the thoughts of swag being given away at the conference. And now that BlogHer 10 has been announced (in New York August 6 – 7, 2010), people are already planning next years trip.

I can’t help but get caught up in the excitement, but at the same time I’m not sure if BlogHer is for me. When I read Jill’s post, from Scary Mommy, it only reinforced my fears. She compared BlogHer 09 to a trip back to high school: cliches and pranks, cool ladies and the nerds. High school was okay, but I’ll admit I’m glad it’s over. I don’t know if I want to relive it.

I’ve read blogs by some amazing women and think they’re kind of cool, but now I would be meeting them in person, they would be meeting me, assuming I could even bring myself out from behind the potted palm at the back of the room. What if these women slough me off, ignore me. The conference is for networking and sharing, but what can I offer with my limited experience. And what happens when I get the nerve to contribute and I say something stupid or irrelevant (well, it’s happened before). I’m not an extrovert personality. I mean I thought I was going to pass out when I just spoke with Erica of Yummy Mummy Club, imagine meeting people in person.

I like the idea of learning and connecting with women who have been making blogging work for them, with the women whose blogs I’ve read and admired. I just don’t know if I’m ready. Are you going?