*articles may contain affiliate links* No matter what line of work you’re in, professional development is key! That’s why I packed up two small bags (more to come on that) and hit the road for New York City last week. It was time for Blogger Bash NYC 2017, a conference for bloggers who focus on baby, kid, and parenting writing.
A Veteran’s View of Blogger Bash NYC
This was my third time embarking on the city for this conference, but my first time without Greg and the kids enjoying the sights while I worked. I road-tripped it from Pittsburgh with another ‘burgh blogger (I think there were five of us there in all) and we talked shop for the six hour ride.
(Pro tip – find yourself an accountability partner, no matter what you do for a living. It’s great to have someone to bounce ideas off of and to have someone hold you to goal setting and meeting!)
I knew going into the trip that the hotel we’d booked (The Jane) was tiny, hence the packing lightly. But one important thing came with me – my Converse. They were incredibly comfortable on my feet after I learned my lessons wearing dress shoes and sandals the last two years. (And they looked just fine with my dresses, don’t you think?)
Once we got registered at the two-day event, it was time to catch up with some of my favorite fellow attendees (and find coffee). But first…we stood in line out on the Chelsea Piers in the heat – good thing I didn’t sweat too bad!
Turn Your Passion Into Adventure
The breakfast was sponsored by Armitron and featured a panel of moms who inspired us to do what we love and make it an adventure.
After having the discussions on our ride to NYC, I was really inspired by Sara Roberts of Elle Magazine who told us “stay in your lane”. It’s very easy to get distracted by what people to the left and right of you are doing (in any business). You need to focus on YOU and what works for your business. That’s big stuff right there!
But we also want to work to “create a real community where people can connect” (Rebecca Dube of the TODAY Parenting Team). Since then, I’ve been really thinking about how to make this site more of that for parents (and maybe moving some of the more personal things to another space). I want to be a source for moms like me – and while I’m sure some of you get that from my thoughts, more of you might be interested in things to do in Pittsburgh with kids or you’re coming here for toy reviews. We’ll see if some changes I’ll be making prove this out! Feel free to take a moment and comment about what you’d like to see less and more of around here!
Everyone on the panel was inspiring – this was a great start to the event!
Even though I don’t have teeny tiny babies anymore (for those of you who were there in 2015, I am the mom who had twins strapped to me – they’re now two and done with being worn), I got a lot out of this event. There are some really awesome things coming for new moms and moms of babies/toddlers/early school aged kids!
As a sneak peek, my favorite things I’ll be using and sharing with my family/friends that new moms had a ‘lil something to do with these photos…
Yes, I’m baby wearing at a Babypalooza, AGAIN! This time the baby wasn’t real but was a prop to shw how Bridge the Bump can solve the common prego-problem of buying a new coat for the 3-4 months that the belly is present…then to turn it into a solution for baby wearing moms (and dads) once baby arrives! I’m really excited to tell you more about this in an upcoming post.
This Austlen stroller is a DOUBLE STROLLER. I know, right? It’s so compact and is like a swiss army knife with all the ways it can be configured. With one of these, our travel with a stroller in tow would be solved (as long as the girls stay under 35 pounds). Hopefully more to come about this beauty!
This was just a SAMPLE of all the amazingness that I saw at Babypalooza! And if you’re my friend on Facebook, you might have noticed that Zulily did a photo shoot and got me a fancy new headshot!
The conference included a private tour of CE Week, a tech show. There were WAY too many booths and too much cool stuff at that event to cover in just two short hours, so I made my way back over there on Thursday after the last official event wrapped up. While I didn’t take too many photos, I did get to see some super cool techie things like home security systems, at home vision screenings, carbon monoxide alarms, laser hair growth stimulation, smart pillows, and adaptive technology. Really cool stuff that will hopefully make it here for Tech Tuesday features!
I almost feel like The Biggest Night of Play needs its own dedicated post. During this four-hour event, I got a sneak peek at all the hottest toys coming this Christmas. I’m going to share my list of things you’ll want to get your hands on in a future post, but here’s an idea of what to be ready for:
- Slime, slime, slime!
- Squishy collectibles
- Science (STEM/STEAM) kits
- Throwbacks – Teddy Ruxpin and Cabbage Patch (I AM IN LOVE)
There’s no way I could sum this up with words, so a collage will have to do. Trust me.
And after four hours of play, these ‘lil piggies were exhausted!
Toy Association Breakfast
The last day of Blogger Bash started off with a trip to the Toy Association’s office to talk about toys and toy safety. Because I took three pages of notes and am a rule following mama, I want to give you some tips in another post; however, if you don’t make it back here to read that one – I ask you to – Have Fun and Play Safe!
Stuff for Moms and Dads Expo
The final event (tears!) was the CPE Stuff for Moms and Dads Expo. While there weren’t as many brands here as other events, I took full advantage of getting to know the items that were showcased. I spent three hours learning about things that were going to make my life as a mama better so I could be more for my kids. Interestingly enough, my favorites all had a good fitness/wellness spin to them:
Pea Protein Powder from Growing Naturals could easily become my newest post-workout fuel. (Truth be told, I might have been swayed by the vodka they mixed with it for our “coping cabana” theme; however, this wasn’t “textury” or tough to swallow, so it sat well with me.)
Laguna Blue – The Smarter Towel – would be a great addition to our summer routine. Greg is taking the kids swimming every weekday, so that’s five towels that maybe don’t get 100% dry before the next swim. Eco-friendly and bacteria resistant = piece of mind!
The one product I got to take home with me was a pillow from Snuggle-Pedic. I’ve been sleeping on this “Ultra-Luxury Kool-Flow® bamboo shredded memory foam pillow” since getting back to my own big bed (again, more on that later!) and have had some really great nights of sleep!
Do it again?
If I got selected to attend again next year, you’d better believe I’ll find a way to get there! Blogger Bash NYC is my favorite blogging event – and not just because we are super spoiled with things like the swag box that ships to our homes. The coordinators are awesome, the event space is incredible, and the brands are ready and willing to showcase the best of their best. It’s a win-win for everyone.
If you’re on the fence about a blogging conference in 2018, don’t think twice – add BBNYC to your list of musts!
Did you go to Blogger Bash NYC this year? I’ll be linking up, but feel free to share your thoughts with me here, too.