Thursday, December 20, 2012

Chi-Town Coca-Cola Blogger Event

I'm not paid to write this. I just want to because I have so many photos from our adventures. My what I learned post will be tomorrow, but currently, I'll just overshare a bunch of photos because I am convinced everyone wants to see them.

And if you don't want to see pictures of me, at least you'll be able to stare at photos of Harley Pasternak and swoon. You're welcome. I may not be Jessica Simpson or Megan Fox, but I did work out with him and it was awesome.

We had a jam packed schedule, as you can see below. I tried to put everything in the order in which we did things-- presentations by dietitians, socializing, one-on-one with dieticians & personal trainers, vision board creations, workout with Harley Pasternak, dinner, Jewel-Osco visit & cooking at The Chopping Block. More info to come tomorrow... but until then...

I'll throw in a few facts along the way... starting with:

Fact 1: This was my first blogger conference of any kind.
Fact 2: I probably drank 20 bottles of Smart Water during the 1.5 days.
Fact 3: I'm not a fan of microphones. Also, why does it look like I have a lazy eye in the below photo?
Fact 4: My mom was the one who initially got me drinking Diet Coke.
Fact 5: I didn't have fish (see sandwich below) until I was well into adulthood. Real fish, not fishsticks, people.
Fact 6: Garrett's Popcorn is legit. When in Chicago, you must eat Garrett's.
Fact 7: This was our first time staying in a hotel in downtown Chicago. The husband & B-man came along for the hotel room & downtown exploring. Also, breastfeeding is challenging if I'm not near B... so they had to come.
Fact 8: This hotel had the best bathroom ever. Large enough to fit 3 Pack 'n' Plays! 
Fact 9: Hotels with large bathrooms or separate rooms are crucial for B to have a separate area to sleep & nap. Otherwise you resort to ultra dark rooms with no ability to watch TV, use the phone, or speak. Sometimes naps can go 2+ hours! That's a long time to sit still in silence.
Fact 10: Harley Pasternak might be attractive. He's also the best-selling author of the 5-Factor Diet.
Fact 11: My husband is also very attractive. #husbandreadstheblog
Fact 12: Boka in Lincoln Park is delicious.
Fact 13: Mom-bloggers can be pretty fun to hang out with.
Fact 14: I had no idea all these bloggers would have business cards. I did not have business cards.
Fact 15: I love prosecco.
Fact 16: That peanut butter ice cream with flourless chocolate cake was crazy-good.
Fact 17: Peanut butter ice cream? Always delicious.
Fact 17: This was the nicest Jewel-Osco I'd ever been to. For those in California, that's Albertson's.
Fact 18: I love grocery shopping. Way more than shopping for clothes.
photo credit bottom left: Kari @ A Grace-Full Life
Fact 19: This was my first cooking school lesson.
Fact 20: While loads of fun, I already knew how to prepare all of what we made... stuffed chicken, haricot vert, fingerling potatoes, cheesecake bites, hummus. But, it was still loads of fun because I love to cook!
Fact 21: That cheese tray? Off the hook.
Fact 22: I hate side-profile shots. But who doesn't?
Fact 23: My friend Solange calls food that should taste amazing but doesn't, bad cheesecake. Like, dessert that isn't worth the calories because it just doesn't taste good enough? Bad cheesecake. We use her terminology now. :)
Fact 24: I was happily the first in line to get food. I learned long ago that as a vegetarian, you eat about half of what others do... so you have to get on the ball quick and load that plate up before it's gone.
Fact 25: We didn't run out of food. In fact, there was far too much of it all. Even with me going back for seconds.
Fact 26: I loved just about every minute of this amazing conference. I might go to the BlogHer blogging conference this year. Any other Chicagoans interested in meeting up there? I'll probably get the expo-only pass, as I would miss B and the husband way too much if I stayed nights as well.

Photo credit for almost all photos above: Coca-Cola & Bruce Powell Photography
Amazing, right? I still can't believe I was invited. It was an absolute blast. Thanks, Coca-Cola!


Kari at A Grace Full Life said... [Reply to comment]

Lol...thank you for the photo credit, but it wasn't necessary. :)

I love your style of writing; it made this post so much fun to read.

Fact- I only ended up getting 1 picture of me taken by the pro photog. Yeah Bruce, I am talkin' to you.

I hope we get to do something fun like this again!

Heather (Live.Love.Laugh.) said... [Reply to comment]

Cute pic of us. You WILL go to blogher next year ;-)!!!

Nicole said... [Reply to comment]

It looks like you had a blast!

I actually giggled about the business cards. I wouldn't have been prepared for that either! :)

Molly said... [Reply to comment]

Lmao at #11 ;)

Brooke said... [Reply to comment]

I'm in total awe. Looks like a great time. You've made it big!

Darcey said... [Reply to comment]

You know you have an infant/toddler when you describe room size based on how many pack and plays can fit into it!!!

Looks like you had a great time!

Amelia said... [Reply to comment]

It looks like fun! For naps in a hotel room; I bring our video moniter, (of course!) roll that one extra chair in the room out in the hall by my door and play on my phone. The women cleaning the rooms look at you funny, but from the second day on ours had our room and the one across the hall clean first so everything was ready when nap time rolled around, we were very appreciative.

Renel said... [Reply to comment]

you are so cool!

and funny!

even with your lazy eye!

Harley's got nothing on Elliot :)