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BlogHer 07 – Fun, Food and Fangirl-ing

I have a BlogHer hangover. Not alcohol induced, though the pina colada at the cocktail party was delicious and had a cute half-cherry on the end of the toothpick, just a mental hangover from too much awesomeness. Must take nap. Brain tired.

I was not sold into slavery by the MegaBus corporation, though the CTA bus I was riding Friday night sideswiped a taxi and confirmed all the justifications I had for not driving in Chicago traffic. But basically, yes, it was as fun and cool as you think it would be, which was refreshing because I always have a secret fear that I will go to fun places and not have as much fun as other people. As if “having fun” is a competition and the drunkest person who sings an off-key Kelly Clarkson song while wearing a glow-in-the-dark martini glass on their head wins. There was no drunken karaoke (at least in my room), but there was amazing food, even more amazing people, and yes, lots of fun. It’s also something that would have been physically impossible for me to handle three years and 196 pounds ago. Though it’s probably closer to 190 pounds ago if the cheesecake and cannoli have anything to say about it.

To tide you over until I can download my pictures, here is a picture of the weight-loss/body/people-who-talk-about-the-size-of-their-ass bloggers that I shamelessly stole from Shauna’s site:

Weight-loss bloggers

From left to right:

Corinna from A Celebration of Curves who is a nice Greek girl with hair curlier than mine.

Jen from Angry Fat Girlz and Yet Another Weight Watchers Blog. So easy to talk to and exudes kindness and thoughtfulness. Plus she tipped me off to the MegaBus!

Shauna, the DietGirl (although she’s not on a diet) who is bubbly and exuberant and so full of life that some of it spills over the top and gets all over you making you full of life and happy too.

Me! Wow, check out my collarbones. And look, I’m smiling with my teeth, so you know I’m not faking it.

Wendy from Pound! Who has written books (like, plural) and who I would easily consider way cooler than me, but was so gracious with her time and knowledge and such a real, witty person to hang out with.

I also met Weetabix and Sarah from Elastic Waist. It is my duty to warn you to never to get in front of Weetabix’s SUV because she will run you down like a dog and then laugh about it with Sarah as they snack on gourmet food.

ETA: Oh! And I met Tanya from I Ate a Pie who is so poised and friendly that I would eat a pie with her any time. I also very briefly met Kate Harding, but barely got to chat before running off to another session.

I also made friends with some fellow refugees from the hostel, which was a much better sleeping experience than I expected. Of course, I expected to see cockroaches organizing 5K runs along the baseboards and rats scurrying across the ceiling pipes as part of the rodent circus. Instead, it was like staying at a college dorm, complete with possibly drunken strangers knocking over bunk bed ladders at 1:00 in the morning. I was impressed with the huge lockers that held my luggage, backpack, shoes and all the swag I accumulated from vendors. I’d definitely recommend it to a traveler on a budget who doesn’t mind showering with flip-flops.

I had a delicious dinner at Giordanos with my new hostel buddies, Adrienne from Baby Toolkit (who doesn’t live too far away and I think is going to become my eating buddy since she knows all the good places to chow down in Indy. She also kept mentioning my book to people since I was too shy to do it myself.) and Jennifer from The Imperfect Mom (who taught me a lot about Malaysian politics and culture and sells a cool t-shirt that says “Fabulously flawed and loving it.”). There’s a saying, “Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.” Whoever said that needs to go to Giordanos and break out the strike-through tags for their HTML, because I think I’d actually kill a small, furry creature for a slice of their pizza. I also met Shonnie and Cassie at the hostel, though I didn’t get to hang with them as much.

I also met Pamela and My Momtra and about a zillion other people who’s blogs I now have to read and thus will never have free time ever again. The great tragedy was that I didn’t run into Kalyn of Kalyn’s Kitchen who helped me get a book deal and taught me to roast radishes. Kalyn, where were you?! I guess I’ll just have to go to BlogHer next year to meet up.

Now I’m at a point where I’m looking back at the conference and hoping I didn’t say anything stupid to anyone and hoping no one was disappointed by meeting me in person. I hope I was witty and smart and didn’t ramble on too much or annoy anyone with my lack of eye contact. Sometimes I think I come across best in blog format. I’m also wondering why I didn’t ask people more questions about their non-blogging lives, but honestly, going to a conference and chatting with people and making new friends like I did was something that was completely unthinkable for me several years ago when I would have preferred to hide under the tables. I feel a lot more willing to be part of the world these days. Part of that is the weight that I’ve lost, but part of it’s something else, maybe just growing up? I have lost a lot of weight, but not all of it was measured in fat.

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Daisy • July 30, 2007 at 12:25 pm


i found your blog a couple of months ago and just wanted to say how much I like it, very witty and entertaining and is helping me keep motivated to lose my last 30 pounds.

also you look great in that picture.



Kate Harding • July 30, 2007 at 12:46 pm

I felt bad that we didn’t get to chat more, because I was already in the middle of pontificating when you showed up, and I just don’t shut up easily. :) It was nice to shake your hand, though!


PastaQueen • July 30, 2007 at 12:51 pm

Kate – Yeah, I wanted to chat more too but I didn’t see you around after that. Oh well! If you are ever in Indy, e-mail me.


Mia • July 30, 2007 at 1:16 pm

It might be a writer thing! I think most writers express themselves better with the written word than with verbal communication. I do understand what you mean about feeling more confident for having accomplished your goal, though. I also feel more social when I feel good about myself.

BTW- you’re lookin’ supper skinny! Way to go!


Eve • July 30, 2007 at 1:17 pm

Wow, sounds like you had a great time. I’m incredibly jealous, haha.


spacedcowgirl • July 30, 2007 at 1:41 pm

That is a gorgeous picture of you! And all of you look so happy.


MaryK • July 30, 2007 at 2:53 pm

You go, girl! You look stunning in the photo!

And thanks a million for the roasted radishes recipe.


JEM • July 30, 2007 at 3:47 pm

Glad you are back safe and sound and have a wonderful time! Love the picture! You look amazing!


Kate • July 30, 2007 at 4:57 pm

You look like a supermodel in that photo. What an inspiration!


Jen • July 30, 2007 at 5:38 pm

I loved meeting you. You did look much skinnier in person, which is totally unfair. I noticed that you seemed a little shy, but I know I felt sometimes like my batteries were running out after all the talking and eating and hand-shaking… And I’m glad that I’m not the only one who thinks everyone else is cooler and having more fun. I still had a blast, so if everyone was having MORE fun, well, than it was some amazing conference. And it was.


Jenny • July 30, 2007 at 6:31 pm

Yay! Fun was had. Congrats and welcome back.

“just a mental hangover from too much awesomeness.” I love this.


Katharine • July 30, 2007 at 6:36 pm

Delurking to say how gorgeous and happy you look in that photo! I’ve just begun on the journey of losing almost half (44%) of myself, and you are such an inspiration.


Sunny • July 30, 2007 at 7:20 pm

Wow- you’re gorgeous! I saw this pic earlier on Shauna’s site, and the first thing I noticed about you was the great smile, and then the collarbones! WTG!


Jessica • July 30, 2007 at 7:27 pm

You look BEAUTIFUL! You should smile all the time.


Kalyn • July 30, 2007 at 8:03 pm

I was so sad I didn’t find you too, and I was looking and looking for you. I wanted to come and find you at the end of the Blog to Book session, but I was too mobbed with people asking me questions from the Food Blogger session. Next year we will have to make sure we set up a meeting spot somewhere and have lunch together! I’m so glad you had a good time. Isn’t it just awesome to be surrounded by so many smart women!


Rah • July 30, 2007 at 9:29 pm

You look just beautiful–the smile, the gorgeous eyes that had been hidden all those years, the collarbones. And yes, you do look happy and deservedly so! Ongoing congratulations!


Patty • July 30, 2007 at 11:46 pm

Great photos of all of you! You look so cute! I’ve also visited diet girl and angry fat girlz site and they have great blogs like yours. Looks like a really fun conference.


Jenn • July 30, 2007 at 11:56 pm

Glad you got home safe, girl. If you ever get on Oprah, I will get a tv into our room LOL.


Pamela • July 31, 2007 at 12:14 am

Let me just chime in and say, yes, you are not delusional, nor are any of the bazillion other commenters. You look great in the pic and very happy! It was wonderful to meet you and thx for the link. I will be following your adventures via the magic of RSS and hope our paths cross again sometime soon!


Isabelle • July 31, 2007 at 5:50 am

Lovely picture. You look wonderful and so happy and relaxed. Congratulations on all your achievements.

When is this book coming out?

The book will be out in April 2008! – PQ


tanya • July 31, 2007 at 8:17 am

Hey Jenette – it was great meeting you too. What a wonderful conference! It was especially good seeing how nice all the people who I admire is.


Mymsie • July 31, 2007 at 10:43 am

I’m so glad you got to go – it sounds wonderful! I’ve read so many great things and seen so many fun pics. And how exciting to see how much you’ve grown – you must be ecstatic!


firewings • July 31, 2007 at 11:57 pm

It is a bummer that we didn’t get to hang out more, but then, I ran around most of the weekend with only a vague understanding of what was going on around me – at some point ending up on a Japanese Video Blog…

These are the stories you just can’t make up. Or, at least not me.

And also, like the chorus repeated among the hostel crew, congrats on the loss of weight! [Those Flash pictures of yourself? Neato!]


BrightAngel • August 2, 2007 at 10:17 am

I am so Happy for you.


Deb • June 6, 2008 at 5:53 pm

You have kick-ass collarbones!


Comments are now closed on all PastaQueen entries. The blog is an archive only so I don't have to deal with spammers. For fresh discussions please visit my new blog at JennetteFulda.com.

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JennetteFulda.com now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for keyboards ruined by coffee spit-takes or forehead wrinkles caused by deep thought.

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