BritMums Live 2013

On Friday and Saturday I had an amazing two days at BritMums Live.

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It was brilliant being in a roomful of so many inspiring women, I enjoyed the talks and panel sessions and learnt some useful things.  I also enjoyed meeting and chatting to some of the representatives of the various brands that were there.  I was particularly pleased to talk to the Butlins team (application form is in – yay!) and Parragon books (review to follow.)

Friday’s highlight for me was the panel session about New Feminism.  It was inspiring to hear all the women on the panel giving their perspectives about Feminism, and I was particularly impressed by Sonya who said (apologies for the paraphrase) “Feminism is about choice.  We need to work together and not fight amongst ourselves.  You can be a feminist and a SAHM.” It was good to hear that said aloud, to be honest.  It’s easy to keep quiet about being a feminist if you have chosen to stay at home with your children, in case you get shouted down, when really it’s obvious that if we replace one set of obligations (to stay at home entirely) with another (to work full-time and put children in childcare from a young age) then we are no closer to freedom or equality than we ever were.  I also loved the comment from Melaina (again it’s a paraphrase) that it’s okay to love pink and glitter as long as we don’t say girls should wear pink and boys must not.

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The BiB awards party on Friday evening was great fun.  I enjoyed the bubbly and the conversations, especially with Sonya and Jo.  Oh, and I took a picture of my Mia Tui bag just because I love it, and also because it was the BEST conference bag, with room for so much stuff, and enough separate compartments that I didn’t lose anything so it made me feel really organised!

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After the party, I went out for dinner at the Chiswell Street Dining Rooms – thank you Monika for getting the group together and booking it .  What a fantastic meal!

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Saturday morning passed in a bit of a blur because I was so tired.  I enjoyed chatting to Heather from Twinkl, Lauren and others about home education.  But after that, and despite a lot of tea and coffee, I was definitely flagging.  I reached a point, at a little after midday, when I was missing the children so much that I really wanted to go home.  Luckily at that point I ran into Jennie, and we found a comfortable place to sit and gather our strength to be ready for the rest of the day.  After a delicious lunch, and some more time to chat, I felt revived and able to enjoy the afternoon sessions which I was really looking forward to, and I was not disappointed.  I loved the session on blogging with heart, for support, and was in tears within the first minute.  That was pretty much how it carried on, and I got through a lot of tissues, but left the session feeling inspired and uplifted by the lovely bloggers who shared their stories, and showed how supportive the blogging community can be.  I then went to the Pinterest session, which I knew would be good as I’d heard Maggie talk about Google + at Cybher, and she made it all seem very clear.  Maggie, I am going to try and get better about using both of them, I promise!

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I met so many interesting and friendly people, and had such a wonderful time.   The final session, with bloggers reading keynote posts was an emotional end to the day.  The highlight for me was Merry’s post Remembering Matilda Mae.  Merry, I missed you and wished very much that you were there so I could give you a hug, but Susanne and Heather read your post so beautifully.  Three lovely people coming together to support Jennie; another example of the power of the blogging community.  I’m proud to be a part of it.  Thank you Brit Mums for organising such a brilliant event, and I can’t wait to do it all again next year.

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