I’ve just returned from a fantastic weekend in DC where I attended the Blogalicious Weekend 2011 Conference. As this was my first blogging conference, I didn’t really know what to expect. I ended up having a blast. The breakout sessions were great to be sure but even better were all of the fantastic bloggers I met over the weekend. Here are some highlights:
Black and Married with Kids. I was a fan of this duo’s blog before the conference but after meeting Lamar Tyler (who along with his fab wife Ronnie run this site— with four kids!) I became an even bigger fan. Lamar encouraged bloggers to venture out beyond the written word to incorporate video into our blogs. His message of how to effectively get your voice heard in a crowded social media space was both refreshing and encouraging.
Rene Syler AKA Good Enough Mother. Keynote at the Saturday luncheon, Rene had us whooping, hollering and nodding our heads at the trials and travails of being a working mother. I had read her book Good Enough Mother years ago, but it was the first time I had heard her speak. She shared her personal story about surviving breast cancer, being fired from CBS morning news and her personal path of reinvention. Her message about letting go of perfection and being “good enough” resonated deeply with all of the mothers in the room.
I sat down for breakfast with the delightful Tara Pringle Jefferson, creator and founder of The Young Mommy Life . At twenty-five, Tara is wise beyond her years. She spoke the day before at a session on finding your voice and I found her to be authentic, humble and refreshingly honest.
Spanglish Baby. While checking out the Blogalicious Expo I had a chance to meet Roxana Soto, one of the founders of Spanglish Baby which focuses on raising bi-lingual and bi-cultural children. We bonded over stories of our two-year old sons and the importance of raising children who were globally minded. I shared that we are raising D2 bilingually thanks his wonderful nanny, who is from Oaxaca, Mexico. Over the weekend I cruised the site and it is packed with helpful information from the best methods for teaching children a second language to recommended books and music to ignite your child’s interest in other cultures. This will be a site that I return to over and over.
I was super thrilled to meet the star of Food Network’s “Big Daddy’s House” Chef Aaron Mccargo, who is also a brand ambassador for Aunt Jemima Frozen Foods. Aaron is promoting his new cookbook Simply Done. Well Done. and he demo’d a few recipes as well as shared cooking tips. As someone who loves to cook, chatting with Aaron was a highlight of my weekend. Look for future posts where I will try out some of his recipes as well as attempt to make “clean eating” versions of my favorites.
In addition to these terrific people, I met a whole host of bloggers whom I had gotten to know on Twitter but had never met in person. It was great finally to put a face with a name.
While October has been a very busy month for me professionally and personally, I am so glad I took the time out to attend Blogalicious Weekend. I came away from the weekend inspired and jazzed to take Boss Mom to the next level. And of course, I am already marking my calendar for Blogalicious Weekend 2012!