I’m sitting on the plane on the first leg of my flight home and am unable to sleep. I find this absolutely fascinating based on the fact that I only slept for four to five hours per night. FOR FOUR NIGHTS IN A ROW.
Lest you think that I’m a (complete) wild child, those of you who know me at all are not at surprised about the fact that I like to spend time with my friends. When you try to cram in visiting with hundreds (OK, dozens) of them in FOUR DAYS, something has to give. Sleep was the chosen victim. It’s not as though I purposely stayed up until the wee hours of the night. There were a few factors that contributed to my lack o’ shut eye:
1. I was running on Pacific Standard Time which meant that to this west coast girl’s body, it was two hours earlier. Wheee!
2. Once I get into conversation with someone I lose all track of time and before you know it, it’s TWO AM.
3. I am physically unable to sleep in; I wake up between five and six a.m. every day, regardless of what time I go to bed. Yeah. That’s when I discovered that being on PST in the evenings WASN’T SO GREAT.
4. I came to Chicago to see my friends. I needed to squeeze out every possible second with them because for the most part, I won’t see any of them until next year (sad trombone).
So. Now I sit here with my laptop open and am trying to find a way to write about the last four days of sparkly awesometastic and give it even a fraction of the credit it deserves. My words are going to fail me miserably, this I know. There are too many stories to tell. Too. Many. Stories. I kept up with posting Flickr photos all weekend and have tried to write blurbs about what’s going on, so that’s a start.
As I’ve been sitting here editing photos and replaying the events in my head I have been smiling and snickering to myself. If the dude next to me on the plane thought I was a nut case when my tiara (see below) fell out of my carry-on luggage, the fact that he’s been flashed a never ending stream of photos of me with many different women and subjected to my chortling has most definitely confirmed his suspicions.
The only way that I’m actually going to, you know, ACTUALLY TALK ABOUT MY WEEKEND is to stick with the photo/blurb combo. Why mess with a good thing? Click on the photos to read what I blathered on about on Flickr.
When the conference was in San Francisco last year, I volunteered and was the “Official Staff Photographer.” This meant that I had to pop into every session and attend every BlogHer-related event. I have absolutely no complaints about that, other than I didn’t get to see as much of the city as I would have liked. I didn’t even go to the Golden Gate Bridge. I KNOW.
So, this year I attended a whopping three panels. I missed a couple of ones that friends were on, but there really only are so many hours in a day. Besides, I spent a lot of time with them outside of the session (See above reference to the fact that it is a true miracle that I am not sleeping right now with drool dripping off of my chin.)
My partner in crime for these excursions was the ever-wonderful Linda (aka Sundry).
Do you know her? If not, you seriously need to remedy that. She’s wicked. I MISS HER.
Kristin came with us when she could but she’s on staff. She couldn’t wander the city as much as we did but we got her for most meals and all of the evenings. Not complaining. I’ll take any time with Kristin that I can get. She’s fantastically superb. Somehow we neglected to get a photo of the two of us, but here’s one that I need to share:
The one “quick” shopping excursion we did resulted in us getting lost and not being able to find our way back to the hotel despite having two iPhones and a Blackberry between us. Technology FAIL. Or, more accurately, USER FAIL. The three of us also spent the bulk of that day riding up and down the escalators in the hotel trying to find lunch and the sessions we wanted to see. We are awesome.
One other big excursion resulted in Linda and I walking down to the Navy Pier to check it out. While walking into the park and eyeballing the Ferris wheel suspiciously (I wonder where Riley gets that from?), Linda mentioned that we should probably should go for a ride.
I agreed. We snapped photos all the way around and when we got to the very top I took this one:
I Twittered “Code Brown! Code Brown!” Then laughed at both my status and the fact that the two of us were Twittering from the top of the Ferris wheel. Seriously. WHO DOES THAT? Oh, right. We do.
There are too many stories to tell about our adventures, so before this post turns into an Ode to Linda I should move the story along. I will, however, direct you to a photo of a dude named Bruce who glommed onto her and tell you to watch the video she took of him.
The other three people I spent a good chunk of my days with were Simon, Leah and Wombat. Love, love, LOVE them.
The whole story is on the Flickr page, but these are the same four people who were my Home Base last year. By “Home Base”, I mean, “friends who I would call furiously when I found myself alone and shriek, “Where heck are you? I’M SCARED AND ALONE.”" Or maybe that’s only what I said in my head.
My other besties, both online and off, and whom I pestered with DM’s and phone calls are up next. They rank just as high in my heart as the above four (Cue gagging sound).
Kerrianne and Sizzle are the coolest girls EVER. I just loved having them as my roommates, friends and confidantes. MWAH!
You all know Ali, I am sure. She and I are twins.
Not physically (OBVIOUSLY) but she’s that one person with whom you scream, “Me too!” about every. single. thing. On Friday night we found out that we had each won one of two Wii Fits being given away by Brand About Town. See? TWINS.
(As for the hats, I’ll leave the explaining of The Cheeseburgher Party up to others. There were cheeseburgers. And fries. And hundreds of women packed into a suite. So basically? Awesome.)
I finally met Metalia! We’ve been friends for years now. She didn’t come last year and I spent many a night crying in my room. Or at least, pining for her.
If you think that she’s funny online, spending time with her in real life will make you start to wonder how you’re going to STOP LAUGHING ALREADY. She’s also so stinking adorable that I wanted to put her in my pocket and bring her home with me. Ali too, for that matter. They are both so wee.
Miss Slynnro is another sprinkle of awesomeness.
We didn’t get a photo of just the two of us, but this one of her, Ali and Metalia is a favorite. Those three were my late night cronies on Saturday night. The four of us hung out in a bedroom of the Cheeseburgher suite after the party was broken up. The contents of our conversation do not need to be repeated here, but let’s just say that there was a whole lot of laughing going on. Both at and with me.
Kristabella!!!!! She and Ali stayed with me on the Wednesday night and while we waited for Ali’s train to get in we went out for dinner.
I have to say that it was the perfect way to start the weekend. We got to sit and chat and get caught up before all of the “Hey! HEY! HEEEEYYYYYY!!!!!” started. I didn’t get a chance to say an official goodbye before we left. BOO.
Sarah didn’t actually come to the conference. She and her family stayed at the hotel and had a mini vacation, but she was able to sneak away for one night out with us girls.
It is no secret how much I love her. How could I not? She’s one of the Desperate Bloggers. Plus, she has great hair.
On Friday night I had a party at Estee Lauder due to the review that I did (Party details to follow soon). Lindsay from Suburban Turmoil was part of that deelio as well, and we spent the next hour wondering why we don’t know each other better.
We remedied that by dancing up a storm on Friday night at the MamaPop party. And by batting our eyelashes at Isabel and Laura so that they would give us their tiaras. Lindsay is a bucket of sunshine. She also sounds a little like Bob or Doug MacKenzie when she imitates my “accent” which only made me love her more.
I can’t leave out Kelly (aka Mocha). She can yell my name like none other.
I also ended up with her dress in my room and brought it home with me. I told her that I’d mail it to her, but maybe I’ll keep it and pretend to be half as spectacular as she is.
Amy (aka Amalah) has that twinkle in her eye for a reason. She’s a whole lot of funny with heaping helpings of sweetness and a little bit of mischief.
I talked her out of a late night search for a bank machine. Friends don’t let friends wander the streets of Chicago at 1a.m.
Kate from Sweet|Salty is that rare breed of person who can not only make you gasp with the beauty of her written words, but speaks so eloquently and graciously that you wonder if maybe somebody needs to teach you the English language.
She has wicked sense of humor and can do a mean shimmy on the dance floor. She will take twenty or pictures with you in the bathroom (More on Flickr). She is also wee, and should have come home in my back pocket.
I want to tell every single story and post every single photo but I am pretty sure this is the longest recap EVER. I thought of attempting to link to everyone else but then I’d miss someone (or five) and then they’d think I was a Giant Douchebag of (fill in the blank) and then I would be all nauseous and traumatized and…GAH! Besides, my flight home is about to board and I need to go home before my heart breaks any further from missing my kids.
Thanks to every single one of you who I even waved at this weekend. You made it all sorts of awesome with a dollop of mind-blowing. See you next year.
*I started this on the plane and then finished it while waiting for over two hours for my second flight which finally TOOK ME HOME. It seemed like the longest day ever, but I’m home. With my most favorite people in the Universe.