Tuesday, May 4, 2010

First Time Out

     Last night, I attended my first blogging event.  My inaugural real-life interaction with fellow bloggers was at a cocktail party at the Affinia 50 Hotel in Manhattan.  This party was hosted by two local blogging mothers who I follow on twitter and looked forward to meeting.  
Carol of www.NYCityMama.com and 
Corine of www.ComplicatedMama.com 
organized this fabulous event through Help A Mother Out, which organizes diaper drives across the country to help parents struggling to afford diapers.  Every person who attended last night's event brought a package of diapers with them, which was then donated to Baby Basics, a NYC-based organization that helps struggling working families. You can read more about them at www.babybasicsNYC.org.   
     
     I was intimidated when I first walked in, but the bloggers I met were even more welcoming to me than I could have imagined.  I really was unsure about attending since I have only "talked" to a handful of the attendees online, but I wanted to extend myself past my computer and was happily surprised by how open and warm everyone was.  Last night's cocktail party was a wonderful introduction to merging my online connections with the people behind those tweets and posts.  It was terrific to meet and talk with other local parents while helping families in need at the same time.
     
     In addition to the diaper donations, raffle tickets were sold to raise funds for Baby Basics to spend on diapers. These raffle tickets raised $400, which was major considering there were only approximately 30 people at the party.  I bought $30 worth of raffle tickets and won big!  The first raffle prize chosen was a $200 gift certificate for a photography session with super-talented photographer Alethea Cheng Fitzpatrick.  Alethea was at the party and we chatted before the raffle winners were chosen. Corine chose the first winner of the night, which happened to be ME!  I'm slightly embarrassed now by how I reacted, but I was very excited to win the photography certificate, and certainly looked it.  Alethea, who not only donated this prize but also took photos at the cocktail party, captured my reaction in her photos. Click below to see how I looked...


http://photos.aletheafitzpatrick.com/hamo_nyc/e2c272b62


http://photos.aletheafitzpatrick.com/hamo_nyc/e39676131


Yep. Pretty freakin' thrilled.


     Alethea is doing her own part to assist Baby Basics in their goal of providing diapers to those in need.  Check out her website, www.AletheaFitzpatrick.com, for details on how to enter her spring giveaway, which ends this Friday.  


     I guess it's true what they say about beginner's luck, because I was also chosen as the winner of another gift certificate.  YouCake is a company that provides personalized cake toppings.  The website is www.YouCake.com, and you should check it out to see what a unique concept this is.  Being a rookie at these types of events, I wasn't sure if I was even allowed to win twice...and although I was assured that I could win both, I decided it would be the fair thing to do to let someone else win the cake gift certificate.  I was still giddy over winning the photography gift!  However, there was one prize I would not have given up had I been called again - a two night stay at the Affinia 50 Hotel.  The Club Room we were in was wonderful, and the food and service presented was fantastic, so I can imagine how lovely it is to stay there...but will have to find out on my own dime, since I didn't win that prize.  Honestly, the excitement of winning the photography certificate drowned out any blues I may have had about missing out on the hotel stay.  I am extremely excited to have Alethea photograph Luke and will post those photos when they are done.  Wonder if he'll do the alligator pose for Alethea?

Chomp! Chomp!

      Overall, this cocktail party was a fun night out, and a terrific ice-breaker for me in terms of attending blogging events.  I'm now even more excited to attend BlogHer, a huge conference in August.  Thank you again to Carol, Corine, and everyone I met yesterday, who not only helped Baby Basics provide for their clients, but also helped ease my anxiety about attending more blogging events like this one in the future.


                                          xoxo,


                            Momma Lioness Michele
  

8 comments:

Culturemom said...

I enjoyed meeting you at your first blogger's event and hope to see you again soon. I had a bit of luck myself, winning a raffle prize that included incredible toys for my 5 year-old son. I never win anything!

Jennifer Rivera said...

I'm so glad you went and that you had a great time. I love the pictures that were taken (checked them all out once I got to the site) and so happy you won!! She is going get some great shots of Luke!!
xoxoxo

Carol @NYCityMama said...

Yay! I didn't realize that this was your first blogger event! So glad it was a great one! I loved meeting you, and so happy for your win!

I look forward to seeing you again soon! Thanks for coming out and please stay in touch, whether online or off : )

Fire Wife Katie said...

What a cool prize, I want to see the pictures when they're done! :D

Bridget said...

Awesome! I'm so glad you had a great night and I'm totally jealous of the picture prize!!!!!

Allison said...

congratulations! sounds like it was a great time!

Nicole Feliciano said...

Congrats and welcome to the world of blogging events. They can be intimidating, but we were all new at one time. Introduce yourself and ask a lot of questions, most bloggers are super generous!

Wendy said...

I am so sorry that I missed this event! We must meet up at the next one! And yay you for winning all that good stuff.