In my previous life, I orchestrated an annual event at the zoo in May. The sponsors and exhibitors would give up a Saturday to the event. I always felt like they deserved more thanks than they were given since without them, the event would have been hollow. Instead of anything close to adequate praise, they had to put up with crazy, like the year an exhibitor brought miniature beach balls. Someone went all over the zoo, tossing the inflatable balls into every open animal pen. The zoo employees had to scramble to rescue the animals from the choking hazard and the beach ball exhibitor got scolded over and over again for
not doing their TPS cover sheet bringing something dangerous to animals. I had to change the exhibitor contract from “no balloons” to “no inflatables” after that incident. The point of this long and winding explanation is that I always try to give some extra love to the under-appreciated people who contribute to events. So, I want to give a shout out to BlogHer sponsors:
Bill Me Later – This is exactly what it sounds like. Instead of having to enter your credit card information over and over again, you just enter it once at Bill Me Later and the charges from other online stores are all sent to one site. They were handing out nylon shopping bags that folded up into a teeny pouch. I stuck it into the glove box of the car for shopping at the drug store.
Commission Videos – Profit bloggers should take a peek at this site. I picked up a calculator for Noah and a notepad/pen/post-its combo for Doug.
Hooked on Phonics – I have never seen Hooked on Phonics anywhere but television commercials. They were giving away free workbooks at BlogHer and as someone who regularly buys workbooks, I have to agree that their books are really good quality. Bright colors, clear instructions and not a lot of pointless repetition. Amy and Evan got workbooks.
Leapfrog – Leapfrog was giving away stuffed animals, so I picked up one for Amy and one for Evan. They had a drawing to give away two of their new handheld games. The new didj is a step up from the Leapster and iQuest with its’ progress reports based on abilities mastered in the educational games. Sarah won a didj and gave it to Amy. Amy is absolutely in love with the didj. I just wish it came with an AC adapter.
LG – This popular booth was promoting their upcoming site for text illiterate parents. I suspect that most of the BlogHers have a pretty good handle on texting, but the site is a good idea for grandparents. “Sarah just sent me a text message and I don’t understand what it means.” LG was handing out laser pens with flash drives. I brought back one for Doug and one for Noah. After they both praised the size of the flash drive, I wished I had gotten one for myself.
PBS – The network which hosts Evan’s beloved Curious George was wisely promoting PBS Engage. Visit the site and collect some new blogs to follow, learn about upcoming live chats and watch videos. I found three new reads there to add to my daily feed. They were also handing out UT orange rubber ducks, so Evan, Amy and Noah got ducks.
Playtex – This incredibly brave crew did video interviews with the over-caffeinated BlogHers, except me, because I have Dr. Girlfriend’s voice. They had baby bottles at their table and I flabbergasted them when I said my five children skipped bottles. Then, I insulted them when I pointed out that they would have trouble convincing moms of product safety as long as it is stamped ‘Made in China’ on the bottom. I’m sorry Playtex. I’m sure your product is awesome. Maybe next year you’ll distribute something different.
Saturn – Who generously provided our transportation from Knoxville to DC and the hybrid VUE which I want to talk about this weekend. They had nylon bags, so Noah got a new bag for toting around airsoft pellets and other boy treasures.
Shine – Shine is a Yahoo site that is like an interactive women’s magazine. They should partner with salons and let women click the site instead of flipping through magazines. The only treasure I kept for myself from BlogHer was the soft, fuzzy Shine slippers. Sarah liked hers so much that she wore them the entire day of BlogHer. She tried to wear them out to dinner that night, but wasn’t stealth enough.
Springpad – A clever online notebook application that I recommend for its’ simplicity. I am trying it out as a holiday planner. So far, it is much better than the multiple lists and scribbles that I have relied on in the past.
If I have forgotten anyone, let me know and I will add them. Their swag made the children almost forgive me for leaving town without them for three days. Almost.