Life Well Said: BlogHer Part I

by Jenn (eating bender) on August 7, 2010

We made it to NYC!

It has been an absolute whirlwind since Thursday morning at 3:30 am, when we woke up to catch our flights at O’Hare. Six hours later, we touched down at LaGuardia and haven’t looked back since.

When we arrived at the hotel where BlogHer is being held, we were amazed at how crowded it was already. After checking in, we went up to the room and crashed for an hour in order to re-energize for the night ahead! The plan? A night on the town with my business partner and my Maid of Honor!

I can’t describe in words how excited I was to finally have the chance to see Sam again. She and I have known each other since we were freshman year roommates at Northwestern – and we survived to tell the tale and still love each other. 😉 Sam works in the city and came to meet us after work. We walked around for a while looking for somewhere delicious to eat, eventually settling on a small, eclectic looking restaurant called the Hummus Kitchen.

Any place that has “hummus” in the name is a winner in my book, but we were even more excited when the menu said, “hummus is our passion.” Can’t get more convincing then that! We started with a pitcher of sangria, which had a very apple-cinnamon taste and was quite delicious.

We also split the signature platter appropriately called, “The Hummus Kitchen,” which was divided by four types of Hummus: Chickpea, Mushroom, Tahini & Egyptian [the last one was topped with fava beans, tahini, paprika and extra virgin olive oil].

It came with whole wheat pita bread that was so doughy it made me swoon.

I was a big fan of all four varieties, but I think my two favorites were the chickpea and mushroom. Then came the entree course, a Mediterranean falafel wrap in combination with hummus, chopped salad and pickles topped with tahini.

The falafel were amazing and I ended up picking them out and leaving behind some of the wrap and pickles. It was somewhat odd to have pickles in the wrap, as much as I love them! But overall, this restaurant was amazing and I am hoping they have plans to expand to Chicago. :)

After dinner, we said goodbye to Sam and met up for drinks with the founders of Under 30 CEO at a downtown pub called Tom & Jerry’s. It was great to chat with two entrepreneurial spirits and learn more about their story and what their philosophy is toward running a business.

When we got back to the hotel, we were exhausted! We went to bed early because we knew the morning would bring the BlogHer 5K! We woke up bright and early at 5:45 am to make it to the lobby for our 6:30 am start time. The race was set to benefit Tutus for Tanner, to raise awareness for Duchenne’s Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). Jill and I showed up in full costume and were so excited when we ran into two very special ladies!

From left to right, we have Ashley, Jill, me and Jess! It was so great to finally meet them both. Another blogger, Jes, met up with us soon afterward and truly set the pace throughout the entire run – she rocked it! We ran around the city, ending in Times Square and snapping a fun photo (courtesy of Jes).

It was so much fun to chat with these ladies – and afterward we were treated to a delicious breakfast that included a sausage and egg sandwich and fresh fruit.

We were also given some fun swag that I forgot to snag a picture of, but I was thrilled when I was one of the winners of an Omron GOsmart pedometer!

After breakfast, Jill and I went back upstairs to get ready for our SPEAKING PANEL!! We were both very nervous but also really looking forward to connecting with amazing women. When we got downstairs we snapped a photo in front of our sign.

Although we were nervous, I really did think the panel went well. It helped a lot to see some smiling faces in the audience, including Kath, Tina, Ashley, Jess, Jes, Sabrina, Shannon, Kelly and Kinsey. I was honestly overwhelmed afterward by the amazing response we got on Twitter and ended up starting to cry in the bathroom. :) True story. They were happy tears.

Jill and I applied for this panel with a dream and a hope that by the time BlogHer arrived, we would be running a (somewhat) successful business. It really drove home what we have done over the past year and filled me with a sense of pride that I had never truly accepted or embraced until that moment.

Above is a picture of us at this year’s conference. Below is our picture from the 2009 event.

BlogHer 2009

What a difference a year makes. I can’t thank my blog and Twitter friends enough for the outpouring of support you showed us yesterday. Truly, there are no words for how grateful I am to have you.

There was much more fun to be had as the day went on – a second half recap to come!

Here’s a fun preview:

Are you at BlogHer this weekend? What have you enjoyed most?

If you’re not at BlogHer – let me know what you’ve been up to on this first weekend in August!


{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Erica August 7, 2010 at 2:39 pm

awwww! Congrats! So glad the talk went well. And the hummus restaurant- I would be all over that. You look fantastic and just so happy. Incredible <3!


2 Brandi August 7, 2010 at 3:40 pm

I WISH I could have been there to hear you two speak :) I’m sure you were fantastic, and it’s so exciting that things are lining up for you :)

Congrats on all the success so far! I’m sure there’s many more exciting things to come!


3 MarathonVal August 7, 2010 at 4:09 pm

Aww Jenn I’m so happy that the presentation went well – I knew it would! Can’t wait to hear more about it. Enjoy the rest of your time in NYC!!


4 Pure2raw twins August 7, 2010 at 4:48 pm

OH so much fun!! Wish we were there!! And love the name of the restaurant…anything with hummus I am in!


5 Melissa @ TryingToHeal August 7, 2010 at 5:41 pm

jealous! i wish i could be there!

but i’ll be seeing you next week for another conference! ahh!!!


6 BroccoliHut August 7, 2010 at 6:27 pm

First, can I say how incredibly excited I am to hear about Hummus Kitchen?! I am SO going there on my next trip to NYC.
Glad you’re having a good time at BlogHer! I’ve spent this weekend making a few last minute shopping runs in preparation for my move to Raleigh!


7 Fit Chick in the City August 7, 2010 at 9:36 pm

It was so great to hang out with you this weekend! You girls are super amazing and inspirational! Congrats on all your success at BlogHer!


8 Angela @ A Healthy Fit August 8, 2010 at 5:22 am

So awesome! How much difference a year makes!! I wish I was at BlogHer, maybe next year??? I am definitely going to that restaurant next time I’m in the city. I love hummus!!!


9 CaSaundra August 8, 2010 at 6:44 am

It’s always fun getting together with old friends to catch up! Oooh that pita bread does look delicious..I still want to try and make my own. Glad you had a good time at BlogHer :-)


10 Alisa August 8, 2010 at 10:17 am

What a fun event! I’ve never been to any kind of blogger meet-up or conference, but am going to BlogHer Food in the fall. Can’t wait!


11 Jess August 8, 2010 at 4:17 pm

You both did an awesome job at your panel! I’m so proud!!! Loved the recap and can’t wait for part two. (Man I so need to get on writing my recaps :)


12 averymeggirl August 8, 2010 at 7:53 pm

Looks like you had so much fun! There was so much that went on this weekend while I was away in NY.


13 LiveForTheRun August 9, 2010 at 11:44 am

HOW FUN! Wish I could have been there to cheer you on in the panel. Love the running skirts btw. ow ow!


14 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) August 9, 2010 at 2:23 pm

Wow, looks like a lot of fun! Glad your presentation went well!


15 Ally @ Sweet & Savory August 9, 2010 at 8:07 pm

Unfortunately not at BlogHer:( Maybe someday when money grows on trees – ha! So glad to her your speaking went well…congrats!


16 Jen August 9, 2010 at 9:13 pm

My favorite part of the conference was ROYO: Small blog in the big sea session. It felt great to know there were more bloggers like me. I also met some new friends that I never would have met otherwise.

I did find it really overwhelming though.


17 Jenna August 11, 2010 at 6:32 am

Yummy hummus!!


18 Danica August 11, 2010 at 12:57 pm

I wish I could’ve been there to listen to you all and cheer you on. From the sounds of you, you did AMAZING! Yeah for happy tears – you both have so much to be proud of – glad it’s getting recognized!



19 Christine August 12, 2010 at 10:08 am

Honestly, I’d be happy living off of pita bread, hummus, and sangria forever (as long as the sangria has apples in it… My favorite part is the apples), so I’d say you made an excellent choice.


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