February 04, 2010
It was a long WAY to Blissdom, and a long first DAY at Blissdom. It started out at 4AM in the dark. I woke up in Arkansas at a blogger friend's house. Far, far away from the comfort of home... with Tennessee calling.
We watched the pastel sunrise over the Mississippi and saw Memphis peeking out of the pink fog as we entered the state. Unfortunately my camera ran out of batteries or was unreachable for most of the drive. I was kicking myself internally for not being prepared for all the amazing scenery we saw on the trip.
A few miles after Memphis, we saw snow glistening on the hills. Texans love to SEE snow. Just not to shovel it.
Six long hours in the car and we all needed a shower. You'll notice that the baby is the only one that we photographed. There are good reasons for this. Trust me. It's also good that smell doesn't translate digitally. I'm just sayin'.
Checking in at the Opryland was intimidating to say the least. It looked like a big, shiny, glass city when we drove up. Fancier than I expected. With the baby napping and our immediate need for a shower, we decided to go across the street to McDonald's to regroup. Just the fact that I actually ate at McDonald's tells you I must have been out of sorts (since that was my resolution this year - no more fast food and frenchfries). There I sat, eating a nasty cheeseburger and greasy fries, breaking my new year resolution.
I was wearing an oversized men's lumberjack button up and my comfy Bass lace-ups that the cat shredded. No make up. Hair in a messy clip. I was hoping and praying the Opryland would let me check in early so I could 'freshen up'. I figured they might play the theme song to "Beverly Hillbillies" when I pulled in to unload the car and our five-person arsenal of luggage, snacks, and baby gear.
Amazingly, no one chuckled. They were very nice. No one seemed to notice how unkempt I was or how dorky I felt walking in to such a nice hotel looking like a redneck reject. We checked in early and I got ready for my Focus Group meeting.
Con Agra was delightful to talk with. So were all the amazing bloggers in the meeting. It's great to be in the room with other women who understand your social media and blogging addiction. Business cards, popcorn, and Pokens made their way around the room. I was too chicken to take busy-body boy to the focus group. I was glad to see there were other babies there.
I decided to risk taking the Viking (in the evening when he's the busiest and crankiest) to dinner.
Aside from spitting chocolate on my dress, stealing the next guest's silverware and banging it on the table, throwing his toy, slapping my chest, mouthing my necklace, trying to out-scream everyone's chatter, needing to be nursed in the restroom twice, and generally stressing me out, he was a charm. At least he got to flirt. Lots of pretty bloggers there. I hope that my little bugger wasn't the REAL reason that everyone wanted to 'head back to the hotel' for the night; although I can't tell you how relieved I was to be back!
But I still miss those chocolate desserts. Holy moly, they were sinfully yummy.
On the way back to our room we spotted a Godiva store. There are so many shops and restaurants inside the hotel that I could never visit them all - even with four or five days here. This place is huge. Morgan, still upset that she didn't get to go with us to dinner, drooled on the chocolates through the glass. Kaden made me promise to get him some chocolate covered strawberries. My kids are cheap babysitters. I figure they are worth a little chocolate for all the help they are providing on this trip - and for putting up with their blog-crazy social-media-addicted mama.
Kohen enjoyed his ride through the gardens of the hotel and out tonight in Mommy's new organic Ergobaby carrier that matched my black dress like a dream. The fabric was way softer than my sweater dress. It was so comfortable. I can't believe I waited so long to get one of these. My bad experience with the other carrier I was lent by a friend kept me for trying them for a long time, but I'm so glad I finally did. Evenly distributed baby-weight is so much easier on your back! THANKYOU Ergobaby for the new addition to my baby gear.
I can't wait to give one of these carriers away at the conference. I'm trying the Beco out tomorrow. I'll be wearing them both to different events/sessions for the rest of the time I'm here.
Tomorrow there are workshops to attend and I'm sure there's something going on in the evening as well. There are still so many things happening that I don't even know about. I love finding out on twitter that my invisible blog friends are arriving here at the hotel. Can't wait to bump in to them tomorrow and the rest of the week/weekend.
Before I mingle, I must get some sleep, though. 4AM to 12:30AM is no way to get your 'Bliss' on. Before I find any more bliss, this bee needs to catch up on her 'zzzz's.
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