Monday 24 February 2014

The first ever #midsblogmeet - read all about it here!

So, after months of planning, some of the best (and loveliest) mummy and lifestyle bloggers came from across the Midlands to The Malt Cross, Nottingham, for a day filled with chatting, treating and eating! 

Back in November 2013, Emma and I were talking with a few other people on Twitter about how nice it would be to meet and soon after, we decided to put the idea into action and organise a blogger meet up of our very own. We're both very much 'do-ers', not wanting to wait around until someone else arranges something, and working in PR myself, I relished the chance to co-organise a great event.

And - I hope that everyone who attended will agree with me here - it was a great, great day. It was so nice to put faces to names and to find out more about some of the lovely ladies I tweet daily and who's blogs I read every week. You feel you get to know people pretty well through their blogs so meeting for the first time face-to-face was quite strange really - we know quite a lot about each other without ever officially 'meeting'!

Emma and I had worked hard to put together a fun, relaxed and inspiring event and hopefully we did just that. We kept a lot of surprises under our hats and hopefully this added to the excitement of the event.

We first welcomed everyone, gave 'hello my name is stickers' and asked each person to introduce themselves briefly so we all knew who was who, before we started nattering away at ten to the dozen.

Emma had baked some yummy cupcakes for everyone and we enjoyed a delicious bespoke lunch prepared by the extremely helpful team at The Malt Cross.

We were then treated to a guest visit from Sophie and Autumn from The Body Shop Nottingham team, who came armed with lots of new products to tell us all about, and we got to try some of them too. The hair chalks went down REALLY well, and even the children got involved and had their hair coloured. We were also given a fantastic voucher and while Emma and I were tidying up at the end of the day, everyone headed over to The Body Shop for more beauty trials and purchases.

We also ran a few prize draws on the day, having received some fantastic products to giveaway from some great brands to some of our lucky attendees. Poddle Pod gave Lauren and Kelly a product to review, plus Ellie received the chance to run a competition on her blog for someone else to win a pod (so watch this space!). Tommee Tippee kindly gave Lauren a weaning prize package worth £30 worth, including new feeding spoons, bibs and a serving plate, and lucky Cate scooped up a rather lovely pamper prize from MamaBabyBliss – a gift set containing relaxing bath soak, mummy baby balm and a bliss stick. 

At the end of the day, the remaining people put their names in the hat to be in with a chance to win the big prize bundle we had put together from most of the brands who supported the event. Sarah was the lucky lady who walked away with a gift set from The Body Shop, some great goodies from Weleda including their renowned Skin Food cream, a 'make your own cookies' jar gift from Baked By Me and other bits and pieces including a signed copy of the book What To Expect When You're Expecting and the film too (donated by myself).

The lucky ladies

Congratulations to everyone who won something on the day. 

However, no-one left #midsblogmeet empty handed, oh no! We had prepared a special goody bag for every blogger, containing samples, special offers and information from Weleda UK (who also provided us with the bags themselves), Swizzels Matlow, Baked By Me, Bake It Yourself by Neff and The Body Shop. We're hoping that these treats and all our chats on the day provided everyone with some great blog inspiration - our heads are just buzzing with ideas right now!

Thank you's

Emma and I would like to say a BIG thank you to everyone who came along to the first ever Midlands Blogger Meet Up event – it was wonderful to meet you in person and we hope you had a fun day. It just wouldn’t have been possible without you so thank you so much.

We hope you have made some great friends and that you will tell all your own lovely readers about the meet up.

Here are the names, blogs and Twitter ID's of the lovely ladies who enjoyed the day with us - be sure to follow them, tweet them, like their posts... they're all amazing people and fab bloggers too:

Emma Berry (Host)
Samantha Schofield
Sue Barsby
Laura Candlin
Amanda Wright
Laura Strong
Cate Elder
Emma Tustian
Iris Choo
Ellie Aindow
Sarah Athow-Frost
Bel Smith

We would also like to say a HUGE thank you to all the lovely brands that have supported us – without them, we wouldn’t have been able to give you so may goody bag treats, prizes and opportunities.

Here’s a list of all the brands that have supported us:

Weleda - @WeledaUK
Experts in natural skincare for almost 100 years, Weleda gave some great samples to everyone to try, including their Calendula Face Cream (great for baby AND you!), Wild Rose Creamy Body Wash, Oat Replenishing Shampoo and Conditioner and their new Wheat Balancing Shampoo.
The Body Shop - @TheBodyShopUK
The team from the Nottingham Bridlesmith Gate branch came along to show everyone the very latest products and we all got to try something new. Inside the goody bag there was also a very special voucher so we could all treat ourselves on the way home. 

Poddle Pod - @PoddlePodUK
The Poddle Pod is a baby snuggle nest that is designed so that you can quickly put your baby down safely when you need to get things done, whereas Toddle Pods are designed to be used from approximately 6 months to around 3 years.

Poddle Pod kindly offered two bloggers a product to review, one pod as a prize and another blogger the chance to run a competition in the near future (as well as myself - details to follow soon!). 

Tommee Tippee - @tommeetippee_UK
One of my favourite baby brands, Tommee Tippee, donated a great bundle of weaning products.
MamaBabyBliss - @MamaBabyBliss
MamaBabyBliss gave a lovely gift set of a relaxing bath soak, mummy baby balm and a bliss stick. Lucky lady!

Swizzels Matlow - @SwizzelsMatlow
The sweetie specialists are celebrating the 60th anniversary of Love Hearts this year and they gave everyone you some treats to enjoy on the journey home – that's if anyone could actually wait that long!

Baked By Me - @BakedByMe
If you’re a keen baker or just like to make cookies and cupcakes for fun with your children, THIS is the website for you! The baking and activity kits are a great idea and we love the cookie mix jars too – they make nice gifts, that is if you can bring yourself to give them away!

The lovely Iris provided a chocolate mould in all of the goody bags so we'll all be making our own shaped chocolate treats soon.

Bake It Yourself by Neff - @_BakeItYourself
Once just a PR campaign phrase dreamed up by moi (“let’s tell people to BIY rather than DIY!”), Bake It Yourself has grown over the past two years into the second largest baking community in Europe. With lots of recipe inspiration, competitions and a brilliant Facebook forum, Bake It Yourself by Neff gave a cookbook to each blogger to help us all cook up a range of tasty meals.

Keep an eye out for everyone else's blog posts and tweets about the event and the great products we got to see and try. Just follow #midsblogmeet on Twitter to keep up to date.

It was so much fun that I'm sure a second meet up may be on the cards for later in the year... although we may have to think about making it a ticketed event or asking people to pay for lunch in advance if necessary as Emma and I were left with quite a large bill on the day as around six people we were expecting didn't turn up and hadn't told us in advance.

But this aside, we're so pleased that everyone appreciated our efforts and I'm sure our arms can be twisted to do something again in the future! 

Thank you again everyone, we had a blast.

Kelly x

P.S. If anyone would like to use any of my photos from the event, please just drop me an email and I'll gladly provide them to you if you can include a link back. Thank you muchly!


  1. It really was a great day! :)
    I'm now over at my new domain too -

    1. Thanks Lauren - it really was so nice to meet you!

      I'll update the post now to include this address...

      Kelly x

  2. Wow that looks like a brilliant day. Been thinking of doing a PBloggers event some time this year... Do you have any advise at all?

    1. Thanks for your comment, we really did have a lovely day. Great to hear you're thinking of doing your own event, whereabouts are you based? I have lots of advice...! Plan the date well in advance so people can make arrangements (there will no doubt be a few people who can / can't make it nearer the time but this is the best way to get people signed up early), consider your location carefully based on location and space, check if there's any requirements for food and if so, consider asking people to pay for this in advance (helps to make sure you aren't left with any costs if numbers are lower than you anticipate), and be open and honest with brands if you want their involvement, many are happy to help so you just need to make the right contacts and share ideas.

      Hope that helps!

    2. Thank you. That is great advise - I will save it for later when I get around to it!!! I am based in Surrey so would be looking for a London based event I think.

  3. Thanks for organising it, twas a great day. I'm sure we'd all have chipped in with an extra couple of quid each to cover the missing bodies.

    1. Thank you!

      We didn't want to ask anything more of you because you had all been great and we didn't think it was fair. Emma and I organised the event so it was our responsibility to cover this.

      I'm so pleased you and your boys enjoyed it though, it really made us happy and all our efforts worthwhile! x

  4. Looks like a great day, well done for organising it all too. xx

    1. Thanks Polly - it was fun to organise and such a relief that everyone enjoyed it :)

  5. We had a great day. Many thanks to you both for organising it. I thought it ran really smoothly, and the numbers were just right, plus it's really great to be able to meet bloggers face to face rather than just chatting online!

    1. That's really good to know and we'll keep it in mind for other events. Thank you so much for coming :)

  6. Thank-you for organising the meet, you are such a pro - it went so smoothly! Both Little L and I loved the day and I am so excited about the Weleda PR event too which I am going to. I really adore the product line so I will be in heaven!
    Oh - and they will be another #ccblogger meet sometime soon if you fancy getting crafty too.

    Cheers for a super day,


    1. Ah that's exciting to hear Sam! Thank you for your kind comments, I'm just glad it went well and people enjoyed it. Fab about Weleda too - they're such a great brand x


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