This time last year as the early bird tickets for the biggest blogging event of the year were put on sale, I plucked up the courage (from somewhere) and purchased one. It really wasn't something I would normally do but I clicked the confirm purchase button before I had time to change my mind! I felt this would not only be a great learning experience but a great way to meet new people, speak with brand representatives and to also build my confidence. I don't really 'do' trains or London but I was now.
BritMums Live 2014 has now been and gone in a whirlwind weekend of cake and wine. There were plenty of laughs and even a few tears (the blogger keynote speaks were so moving with their words) but most of all it was better than I anticipated, I met some fantastic people that I'd now class as friends and I really enjoyed a break from the norm. The Mr seemed to enjoy himself too in my absence - he proudly informed me on the phone he was able to leave the toilet seat up for the first time ever!
I shared a room at the Thistle City Barbican hotel with Jade from Late For Reality. We had only met a few days previous for the first time, despite chatting online for quite a while, and as she is a lovely and friendly individual it really made the weekend enjoyable. Saturday night we stayed up until 2am watching Family Guy, chatting and eating in our beds; something I never pictured myself doing the year previous! We took plenty of selfies and stuck together like glue. It was quite daunting to begin but nowhere near as scary as I expected, especially with such a caring companion.
Friday night all of the Koo-di and Purflo ambassadors gathered to have a meal at Pizza Express. It was really nice to meet others sponsored by the same brand and relax a little after the first day. The food was delicious and I was introduced to some lovely women before we headed back for a reasonably early night. We were shattered
drunk from the free wine.
Saturday began with a large English breakfast and a taxi to the Brewery. We had been through the agenda and selected the sessions we wanted to go to, beginning with 'The Dos and Don'ts of Blog Giveaways', and it was quite a relaxed day of learning between eating and eating and eating. I found Di Coke's talk really informative and I took home quite a few useful notes to use with my future prize promotions. I also picked up some good tips on lighting from Julia Boggio, creating YouTube videos with Greg Brand and design tips with Lucy Heath.
Heinz and Morrisons, the event sponsors, had a great variety of food available for grown ups and little peeps. I also tucked into couscous and chicken for lunch, some Butlins chocolate and a personalised bottle of Coca-Cola throughout the day in The Hub. The evening was spent at Pizza Express again but with different faces. Faces of even more amazing mums.
For those going in 2015 for the first time:
- The majority of bloggers there are really friendly and approachable so you don't need to worry that you will be standing alone. The butterflies also ensure you have someone to chat with if necessary.
- Reserve a table for the evening. The days are long and you will feel tired and hungry so having somewhere booked to eat is a good idea. We thankfully had done this.
- Don't wear new shoes. I wore comfy flats and even they turned out to be not-so-comfy and gave me blisters. Plasters are a must for your suitcase. Paracetamol too for any headaches or hangovers.
- Plan your route. It is far better to be there early than to be making a dash last minute and missing half a day due to missed trains or getting lost. We traveled from Northampton to Euston then Euston to Old Street (leaving at exit 7) to walk a few minutes to our accommodation.
- Take a big suitcase. I didn't realise just how many goodies I would pick up so I ended up carrying back 4 separate bags home which was a little bit difficult!
- Take a phone charger with a USB cable or a wireless charger. All those Instagram pics and texts to loved ones back home will drain your battery.
Will you be going to BritMums 2015?