BlogHer12: The Venue

The Venue? It was New York City. What could I possibly show you of NYC that you haven’t already seen online, on postcards, or in person?

I can show you my New York City. And my BlogHer. Because I’m always amazed at the sites my little iPhone can capture.

Here’s my adventure in roughly chronological order.

It starts with a tunnel. The Lincoln Tunnel, to be exact.

Lincoln Tunnel

I still think it’s weird that you can be in regular old New York and then go through a tunnel and BAM! Right smack in the middle of Manhattan.

Although I’ll admit, this wasn’t my view as I drove through the tunnel. It was, however, one of the best views I had (thanks to the Mondrian Hotel in SOHO and the Clever Girls Collective).

Instead, I found myself look more at oddities like this…

Spongebob dancing in the streets. Along with Minnie Mouse and Hello Kitty, among others.

And everywhere I went, I found myself snapping pictures of what felt like quintessential NYC to me.

Radio City Music Hall

Times Square (I think that’s Times Square). Hey P. Diddy! Puffy! Or whatever…

Or maybe it’s Broadway. I definitely was in the theater district. At least, I think I was. I don’t know how you know if you’re there but I kept seeing signs like this

And I actually saw the old Studio 54. But it doesn’t look like the epicenter of 70s sin anmore. It looks much like any other theatre. Oh, if those walls could talk.

And I couldn’t resist taking a picture of the Majestic Delicatessen.

Wait – you’ve never heard of it?

Me either. I just thought it looked very New York-y.

You’ve probably heard of this one though.

It’s the Hello Deli! You know, from David Letterman. Probably would have been more interesting without the scaffolding there.

And this one you HAVE to know or I don’t think we can be friends. Two words: Soup. Nazi.

Speaking of soup, let’s talk about the best part of New York. THE FOOD.

One of the first real meals I had was a brunch sponsored by Time to Play at Serabeth’s. Known for their brunch, I went with a classic: Eggs Benedict.

How good was it? Well, I ate half my salad and one of my muffins before I even thought to take a picture. THAT’S how good it was.

And then one night, I took a casual stroll to Hell’s Kitchen. Apparently, when a native New Yorker says something is “just a few blocks away” you should immediately hail a cab. Especially if you’re wearing heels.

But it was worth it to have a quiet little evening away from the craziness of midtown. We had a sip of wine, some local cheeses, and these amazing homemade pretzels served with cheese and mustard.

And then there was this place. My friend and NYC foodie, Stella (@stellaaa) has been telling me to try this place and when I randomly passed it on a stroll through Rockefeller Plaza, it was like a sign from God. Or my stomach. I obliged with a ham and cheese baguette chased by a raspberry filled almond croissant. I didn’t photograph them because I really wanted you to thing about them and savor them in your mind.

Okay, so food and sightseeing. There has to be more to a blogging conference than that, right? Absolutely. There are parties and sessions and stuff.

And now we head inside the BlogHer venue.

LOOK! I attended a session!

This was the Bloganthropy Awards where I got to hear some of my friends talk but really felt inspired by the amazing things these women are doing.

I hung out with celebrities, like Malaak Compton-Rock, Christy Turlington, and Soledad O’Brien during the keynote. And by “hang out” I mean that I sat in the audience and used the zoom feature on my iPhone to take a good shot.

But the real joy of BlogHer? It comes from the socializing. Onsite, offsite… the sites were amazing, the drinks were flowing, and the company was the best.

Friday night, I was invited by to spend the evening on a rooftop lounge at the Dream Hotel. The lobby was dreamy and the only thing that could have made the evening better was if they could figure out a way to air condition the rooftops of NYC. I’m sweating just thinking about it.

I left the rooftops of New York only to return to the infamous Sparklecorn party. Unfortunately, 40 minutes after the party start time the line to get in was still winding its way through the Hilton.

And when I did finally get it, most of my interactions looked kind of like this…

I’m only sorry I didn’t stick around to see the infamous unicorn cake get punched in the kisser.

So after a rough night of sweating, waiting, and glowing, I decided I needed some help from the Getting Gorgeous event.

Don’t I look great?

Okay. That’s not really me. That’s a model showing us the latest, ahem, fashion from Underbrellas. (it’s underwear… shhh)

I ended up looking more like this (which is probably more like what you were expecting)

But there WAS glamour. See I got my hair did! This is called a fishtail braid. And then it promptly fell out. (Thanks, mom, for the thin, fine hair that will never hold a decent hairstyle.)

If you wanted real glamour, you’d have to look for someone like Danielle Smith, who was sporting the sexy, messy look.

I was actually more comfortable talking to the PopCap people and battling it out with some zombies. And I didn’t even have any plants.

When I wasn’t battling zombies, I was staying up way past my bedtime in the city that never sleeps.

In fact, I got to walk the red carpet at the CheeseburgHer for this supermodel shot.

Truth: There was no carpet. No one would get out of my way. I held my own iPhone and played paparazzi for myself.

After an evening of McDonald’s indulgence, I decided to head back to the Sheraton. It was close to 2am and things were winding down.

Except outside. I’m not sure what it is about the Halal cart but even at 2am, the line was down the block.

The hotel lobby was desolate and starting to look like the conference was coming to a close.

And with that, I tucked myself in bed really to head home for a few days of recovery.


I love having a post-BlogHer event to ease my way out of the blogging world and I couldn’t have asked for a better end than the Ladies Who Tech brunch with the Clever Girls Collective.

I wondered why we were shuttled all the way to Soho for a little brunch at the Mondrian Hotel. And then I arrived.

The gorgeous setting could only be matched by the incredible view up on the rooftop and a brunch shared with some of my very favorite ladies. So I ended the conference in style and one more self-photo shoot to capture all that is beautiful about NYC.

And next year, I can’t wait to capture the sights, sounds, and goofiness that Chicago is sure to bring.

But I can’t close my BlogHer recaps without saving the best for last. Tomorrow, stop back for my final BlogHer12 post where it’s all about the people.

If you missed yesterday’s post, I gave you a full video review of all the swag that was BlogHer12.

  • Digital Sisterhood

    Hi lady! Sorry we missed each other at #BlogHer12. Loved your photos and recap. Blessings, Ananda

    • FadraN

      I didn’t even see you in passing!! But I’m sure our paths will cross again soon!

  • Redneck Mommy

    All of that but no asparagus. That right there is a crying shame.

    • FadraN

      This conference was strictly a fried food experience for me. Which has its own issues.

      Maybe next time we’ll do more than exchange eye glances across a crowded room.

  • CarenOsrinGittleman

    if I’m not mistaken the Majestic is the “restaurant front” where the Seinfeld restaurant scenes were filmed……..not 100% sure I am correct but I think so.

    • FadraN

      You know, I kind of thought that. Maybe that’s why I was inclined to take a picture. I was a big Seinfeld fan!

  • Carolina

    Looks like BlogHer12 was loads of fun!  By the way, the food at that cart is amazing.My friend and I shared a grilled chicken with salad and rice for $6!

    • FadraN

      I don’t doubt that it’s good. The line is a good indication of that!

  • Laura @Lookwhatmommade

    Love those clever girls- they know how to do it in style, escaping Midtown and heading to Soho for real the swank. Looks like a whole bunch of exhausting fun!

    • FadraN

      Oh, that was the perfect ending to the weekend. It almost felt like I was on vacation!

  • jessica

    I can’t believe you got that close to the zombie guy! So great to meet you Fadra.

    • FadraN

      Great to meet you too if only briefly! Your photo actually made it onto my blog today!

  • Colleen – amadisonmom

    I enjoyed waiting in front of you in the party line.  Still not sure what that lady thought she was going to accomplish by trying to run you over with her stroller.

    Looks like your BlogHer was fabulous!

    • FadraN

      I had a great BlogHer (mostly) and I hope you did too. My ankles are pretty well-conditioned for crazy stroller ladies 😉

  • SimplyGabriela

    Sounds great! Maybe I can save up for Chicago next year… 

    • FadraN

      I hope so. Chicago is a great city!!

  • April Dorris

    I love those pics of you outside. Very pretty.

    • FadraN

      Aw, thank you!

  • Army Wife 101

    Wow Fadra you are like the Iphone Photography expert. I swear half my pics from my Iphone came out so blurry. You had an amazing time there it looks like and I wish I could have seen you again. I admit I enjoyed coming back to the Sheraton because of the quiteness lol. Oh and yes what was up with that food cart, it was like no matter what time it was, it was packed???