Thursday, August 2, 2012

And I'm Off! Doin' the Most at #BlogHer12

Last night was my first pre-conference event, and if it was any indication of what I'm in store for over the next few days then I'm even more excited than I thought I could ever be!

Sure, all the newbie advice has said, "Don't over-schedule" but being the over-achiever that I am, I will be doing the most (but I promise not to be ratchet).

Anyway, here's what I'm most looking forward to:

My first pre-BlogHer event last night
Connecting - I know I've said it before but making face-to-face connections are so important! I'm looking forward to not only connecting with fellow bloggers IRL at last, but with brands.

Parties - This Love Bird needs a serious break! Toddlerhood with Nia has been intense, and I'm looking forward to letting my hair down and relaxing a bit with like minded women.

Learning - From SEO to Wordpress, I'm excited to pick up new skills and resources. There are a ton of sessions to choose from, and it's great know the ones I miss will be recorded so I can watch later. Some of the sessions I'm looking forward to are:
  • Hearing from some awesome women including: Martha Stewart, Katie Couric, Christy Turlington, Malaak Compton-Rock and Soledad O'Brien
Manhattan - I really, really miss living in Manhattan. Jersey City just doesn't cut it. I'm excited to be staying with my BFF for the long weekend although he probably won't see me much since I'll be having late nights with all the parties and such! 

Products - I get excited over just getting a tube of lipgloss so I'm looking forward to sampling the fun stuff in the Expo Hall and gift bags. Mr. Love Bird has made me swear not to use the s-word (swag!) so I will not. As you've seen with my Squeaky Wheel posts I like sharing my opinion even about the most seemingly mundane things so you bet I'll be doing product reviews as part of my post-BlogHer recap.

From a technology perspective, these are the tools I'll have with me to capture the excitement:

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BlackBerry Bold - Yes, I know BlackBerries are nearly defunct, but my fingers can fly so fast on the keyboard vs. the touchscreen, and I love how small it is.

7" E-Reader - We got one for under $100 on Ecost, and I love how compact it is! It's the Android platform, and Mr. Love Bird hacked it quite nicely for me so I'll be ready to go for BlogHer'12! He also scored the case which came with a built in stand and keyboard under $10 on Amazon so I can take notes comfortably and the best part is that it fits compactly in my bag when I'm done. No lugging a laptop or huge screened tablet. (Shout out to my friend April's husband JJ for recommending it!)

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DSLR - Still in love with my Canon T2i (and it still knocks the socks off many other higher end cameras as seen on Snapsort).

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Man-Bag - A fancy DSLR/purse/tablet bag just wasn't in my budget or my luck (I entered a ton of contests pre-BlogHer), so I'm using my husband's murse which is androgynous enough and will hold everything comfortably. 

Now a word about my look . . .

This look is typical Mrs. Love Bird (I may throw on heels for parties though!)
This is my first BlogHer conference and while there's one faction that says "come as you are" I'm more along the lines of "dress to impress." Sorry folks, but first impressions are indeed everything and as sad as some think it is, with an attendance of over 4,000 having your look down is key. I simply shopped my closet (no BlogHer shopping sprees for me!) and came up with some fun looks to keep it fun yet professional.

So there you have it! I'll be back Monday with a quick down and dirty of BlogHer before a full recap (if I'm up for it), but you can follow me on Twitter @HarlemLoveBirds to catch up-to-the minute updates.

Finally, and most importantly, while some bloggers are chatting all about their sponsors, I'm thankful for my "sponsor" the handsome and super-supportive Mr. Love Bird. He'll be chillin' with Lil Love Bird over the weekend so I can make the most out of BlogHer'12 - we'll reconvene and close the conference altogether at a family picnic Sunday. I love my husband and my little family!

P.S. Don't forget to enter my thank you giveaway: $25 to DSW! Click here to enter.