Woo! what a whirlwind three days.
For the second year in a row, I headed off to New York City to go to Blogger Bash. Last year, Dave and the kids came with me, I was still nursing/pumping every few hours, and I was overwhelmed since it was my first *big* conference.
This year, Dave stayed home to work, the amazing aunts from Conneticut came to watch the kids, and I shacked up at the Yotel with Sarah from sweet lil you and Brianna from Mending the Piggy Bank. Sarah is from Rhode Island and has a little girl just a year younger than Emmalee and Brianna has two boys and lives in Pennsylvania. I met them last year at Blogger Bash and we've been internet friends since. It was so nice to see them again and spend some in real life friend time together!
The trip started off on a sad note when my FitBit got lost somewhere between my 7th and 27th bus stop and 10th and 42nd hotel room-- yes, I walked-- so I was nervous for the whole week but after a couple amazing calls to customer service, with a new FitBit on the way to my house, I was feeling much better!
Wednesday night kicked off our festivities with the Getting Gorgeous event hosted by Audrey and Vera. Seriously, those two women are gorgeous, strong business women. The event was amazing. From a photo booth to popcorn, to free bras from Bali and professional make up applications coupled with Not Your Father's Root Beer and a gorgeous Troll Bead leather bracelet, those ladies know how to throw a party!
Wednesday night we ventured into Times Square. Sarah has got to be the biggest fanatic I've ever met so the HUGE Disney Store in Times Square was a must see. I knew I wanted to grab Emma a souvenir there so it was a no-brainer. We walked to the M&M store, stopped into Carlo's Bakery so Brianna could grab a lobster tail, and had some pasta at a little cafe on 43rd st. After getting back to the room and putting on our pajamas, we realized it was the last night of FAO Schwartz so, me being me, threw on some clothes and headed off to 5th ave! Sadly, it was closed when we got there but a quick detour through Rockafeller Center was just as fun!
Thursday was the kick off to Blogger Bash with a brunch hosted by Disney Infinity 3.0. We got a sneak peek at the amazingness of 3.0. Disney Infinity will have Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars characters all in one game and the figures are forward compatible so there's no wasted investment in the pieces you already have!
After brunch, we were shuttled off to a Private Blue Man Group performance! I love those Blue Men and David and I see them in Boston, but the Astor Theater was so much more intimate, and I was only 3 rows from the stage (!), so it was a completely different experience. The Q and A session with Randall Jayce after the performance was amazing. You can tell the company is truly invested in their employees and the work they do!
After the show, I should have been shuttled back to Pier 60 for our next event but I snuck off! Dave and I are loving collecting Funko Pop figures and Toy Tokyo, a company that carries exclusive ones is only a block away from the theater so after checking in and letting them know that I wasn't going to be lost, I ran off down the block. Sadly, they had nothing that I
could afford wanted, because none of their exclusives were for sale for some reason.
I grabbed a cab and headed back to Pier 60 just in time for the main event of Blogger Bash, Sweet Suite. It is a Toy-palooza. Lots of toys and lots of holiday sneak peeks! I'm so excited to be reviewing so many of these toys in the coming months so for now you just get a quick peek...
Friday started bright and early with a Peanuts Movie breakfast, complete with the voice actors of Linus, Schroeder, Pig Pen and the Little Red Haired Girl. The food was delicious (my favorite meal of the whole conference!) and the kids were adorable. The Peanuts Movie will be coming out this November and I can't wait to bring Emmalee! Another exciting part of breakfast was that I was the raffle winner for a dancing Snoopy doll! Emmalee loves the dancing dolls so Snoopy will fit right in with our collection!
Up next was BabyPalooza with special guest Anne Geddes. While she is amazing, she was at Blogger Bash last year so I found myself more interested in talking to the sponsors this year. Once again, I'm excited to be working a with a lot of the sponsors in the coming months so for now, you get just a peek!
After BabyPalooza, I entertained myself in the Expo where I was able to meet with even more sponsors! Seriously, sponsors and companies out the wahzoo so get ready for some fun giveaways and reviews! One of my favorite parts of the Expo was the Rite Aid Recharge Lounge. Rite Aid offered complimentary massages, cucumber water, and a cnady bar! With views overlooking the Hudson, it was an amazing place to just sit and relax!
I had SO much stuff at that point so I knew I wanted to head back to the hotel room to drop it all off. Then I started thinking, I'm only 2 blocks from Times Square, I should go see if there are any show tickets available for after Blogger Bash ends, so of course, I walked over. I made my way to TKTS under the stairs in Times Square hoping to see either Aladdin or Finding Neverland but there were no Aladdin tickets and the least expensive seats for Finding Neverland were out of my price range. One of the employees asked if I was able to get tickets to a show I wanted as I was leaving, I replied no so he asked what I had been hoping for. He told me to run to the New Amsterdam Theater because Aladdin does a lottery for 20 $30 tickets for each show two hours before the show starts. I entered but suddenly there were 70 other people also entering. Imagine my excitement when my name was picked! I was able to purchase 2 $130 seats for only $30 each!
I hopped in an Uber and went back to Pier 60 to check out the closing carnival. Visually, it was stunning and the Canadian Lentils food was delicious, but the place had cleared out before 7 so I headed back uptown to meet up with Sarah so we could head to the show together.
I've never ever seen a show on Broadway. I've seen off Broadway shows, but never on Broadway so I was giddy. I have a whole huge post coming in the next few days because it was just that amazing but you need to know, you have to see Aladdin on Broadway. Even if it's only to see the Genie whip and nae nae!
During intermission we made friends with the usher and he told us where to go after the show so we could meet the cast! Sarah and I stayed long enough to meet the actors who played Aladdin, Jasmine, and the Genie! Ahh... I'm still over the moon about it!
Some late night packing, an early am walk to the Hudson -- and a Dunkin Donuts-- and then it was back home.
I miss the roommates already, I miss the amazing internet friends who became real friends, and I miss the room service, but I'm so excited to be home with my family and I'm already counting down to next year!