If you follow me on Twitter, you may already know that I spent a good chunk of last week in Manhattan.
God knows, I love New York. I do. I especially love the Midtown/Hell’s Kitchen/Park areas of town, where the streets are always alive and the lights? Yes, they are always on. Heck, I even love Times Square, and I feel that I am not even a tourist anymore as I have spent so much time lolling about town.
So, any reason to head back to the Big Apple is reason enough for me, but, this time, I was returning once again as an ambassador for the Blogger Bash conference, hosted by The Toy Insider. Blogger Bash is an action packed two-day event, with bloggers and media from all walks of the internet, as well as hundreds of brands set up to introduce us to their products. Brands like Lego, Playstation, Masterlock, Soul Kix. There are coffee brands, clothing brands, more toys that you can imagine. There are contacts to be made, and every blogger should use this conference as a tool to better their sites. It is exactly that: a tool. I was honored to be chosen as an ambassador, and the other ambassadors were truly great to meet and work alongside. (especially my “blind-date roommate, Michelle! What a great lady to share a hotel with!)
Not only were we lucky to be chosen for obvious reasons (we had the inside scoop on everything Blogger Bash, of course), but we were also lucky because the folks at Jude Connally dressed us for the conference. In case you haven’t checked out Jude before, you should, especially if you travel. Think fun print, vibrant colors, and great feeling fabrics. Pair that with being wrinkle resistant (seriously, no wrinkles even after I wadded it up for a 1500 mile journey in an overstuffed suitcase), wash and wear (no dry clean!) and VERY flattering cuts, and you’ve got a winner of a brand in my opinion. Jude and her team chose a bright pink sundress for my Wednesday outfit, and a periwinkle dress for Thursday. I love them both, and both work great with my staple jean jacket. Anything I can pair with that denim jacket makes the ultimate cut for me! So, thank you to Jude and her team for the clothes, and the kindness you showed all of us by taking the time to personally hand pick what you thought would look great on us. I am so honored!
Now…on to the actual conference.
We kicked off Day One with a brunch hosted by Care Bears. Over some delicious food, we learned about some upcoming Care Bears news (can you say live action MOVIE?) as well as the Share Your Care initiative. There are some great folks out there doing some inspirational things, and it’s kind of a relief to see those people be honored, especially in times when there seems to be so much negativity in the world. Care Bears seem to just make everyone happy, don’t they? I know the Funshine Bear I won from Build-A-Bear during the brunch certainly made my son Seven happy when I showed up with it at the airport for our long journey home!
After brunch we were taken aboard the popular NYC attraction The Ride, for an interactive tour of Manhattan. It was my first time taking The Ride, and I cannot recommend it enough to those who have never seen the city (or even those who have!) It is quite the entertaining journey aboard this comedic charter, and a surprise is waiting around every corner. We had a blast!
After our tour, we boarded the Majesty Yacht, where we would spend the rest of our afternoon at Sweet Suite, hosted by the Toy Insider. Games, toys, fun from every angle. This is one stop shopping for those bloggers who write about their children and the creative things they can get into, or, bloggers who like to feature family friendly round ups in time for the holidays. So many toys in one place!
The next morning we headed back to the Majesty for breakfast with Kate and MimmMimm. Have you seen this darling little cartoon? An imaginative little girl and her stuffed rabbit off on adventures that correlate to real world problems most children encounter. It’s clever and charming, and one of those shows any parent should feel good about letting their child watch. If only it had been around when Seven was smaller!
After breakfast we stayed onboard to check out Babypalooza (a hall full of great baby products, from Zazzle to cribs to strollers and more) and of course, the Expo Hall.
Ahh, the Expo. Two floors full of vendors, handing out gelato, bourbon, coffee, toys, shoes, clothing, locks, and so much more. It is a lifestyle bloggers paradise, and there is something for everyone to take away, from a business card with the proposal to work together, to maybe just a cup of great coffee to enjoy. We spent hours here mixing and mingling! I am thrilled with how many contacts I made (over 50!) and I am looking very forward to working with many of these brands.
About midway through the day we all reconvened on the lower deck for a luncheon hosted by Peanuts. The kids that voice the characters, as well as Ginger Zee from GMA joined us for a fun-filled meal! It is so cute to see these young people come together and share their stories with us.
After more time at the Expo, and a brief (but wow – vicious!) rainstorm, the Majesty set sail to the Statue of Liberty for our closing party. Dancing and singing, smiles and laughter were had for two hours while we cruised the city, which offered a nice vantage point far from the bustle of the streets we were used to. So nice!
If you’ve been on the fence about attending a conference like this one, I cannot recommend Blogger Bash enough. The friends I made, the contacts I was able to make with brands, and the overall value are top notch. If you have any questions about it – please, just ask!
Disclaimer: I was an ambassador for Blogger Bash. All thoughts and opinions are my own.