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Posted on Aug 20, 2012 in Dear Diary, Food | 21 comments

HLS 2012: Part 1

Hey girl hey.

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So, I’m back from Boston and the 2012 Healthy Living Summit, and it (of course) a total blast. Because I was a speaker at this year’s summit, I was admittedly more nervous than excited about it, but now I don’t really know why that was the case. It was just as much fun as I expected it to be!

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Heather, Elizabeth, and Meghann – three of the wunderbar organizers of HLS!

I met a ton of new (and new-ish, since I kind of already knew them from their blogs) people, got to speak on a topic that I am supremely passionate about, and FINALLY had a reason to wear my peacock dress. Win-win-win.

I flew into Boston around noon, and quickly made my way over from the US Airways terminal to the Jet Blue terminal to meet Anne, who was landing about 40 minutes after me. We cabbed to the hotel – the Hyatt Regency Cambrige – together!

Sidenote: Boston Logan is a fairly confusing airport! I had to take a legit bus to get from one terminal to the other. Inter-airport shuttles: they are the future. Embrace the future, Boston. I mean, c’mon, what is this, DCA? Hehe.

Anne and I got to the hotel, said our hellos to a few people that we knew, then grabbed our flippin’ sweet swag bags and went up to our room. As was to be expected, the haul was pretty epic this year:

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Also as was to be expected, I definitely could NOT fit all that jank in my carry-on for the flight back. So I ended up having to sadly ditch and give away a few of my bigger and liquidier totally free items. I know, my life is so hard.

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I can’t lie, the thing I’m most excited about (other than the multiple coupons I snagged for Almond Breeze and Laughing Cow cheese) are the Reebok sneakers that we all got. They’re the minimized, super-light style which I’ve never gotten to try out before. I think they’re actually specifically targeted for CrossFit use, but we all know how much CrossFit I’ve done (er, bagel). But who knows? Maybe this will inspire me to take the plunge and see what CF is really all about (since I sadly had to miss out on the CF session at the summit Saturday AM!)

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One of our sponsors was Happy Family, which is a natural baby food company that’s looking to expand their product line. If you think that the fact that it’s baby food stopped me from taste-testing my “Happy Tot” pouch that I got, however, you would be sadly mistaken. It tasted like… sweet potato applesauce. Yep.

Anne and I hung around in our room for a little bit, while we waited for our other roomies (Ashley and Theodora) to arrive. Tina also joined us for a little while, since she wasn’t attending the summit but was going to the cocktail party with us that night.

Before I could get to say too long of a hello to my friends, however, I had to gear up for the photowalk that I was heading up with Holly!

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We went on (what was supposed to be) a 2.5 mile walk from the hotel to Fenway park. We passed by Boston University directly on the path there, too. Of course, because it’s me, the part of the group that had (much to their chagrin) stuck with me ended up taking a little longer to get back. Some people might call it getting lost, I like to say it was extending the adventure, hahaha. I think we must have walked at least 4 miles in total that afternoon. Oops?

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Oh well, at least I got some banging pictures out of it! Plus, I can say that I’ve been to Fenway now! Not that I care especially about baseball either way, but I just feel like Fenway Park is kind of a big deal.

Photo overload starting in 3… 2… 1…

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Boston is a really beautiful city, I’m actually kind of sad that both times that I’ve been there this year (for Reach the Beach and then for this) I haven’t gotten to see much of the city. Oh well, guess this just means I’ll have to come back and tour it for real. What a shame. πŸ˜›

The rest of the first day of HLS included dinner with my roomies at the surprisingly delicious and well-valued hotel restaurant as well as the traditional Friday night cocktail party! I won’t get too far into either today since A) I took like 5 pictures the entire second day of the conference so I need to stretch them out (good thing I was giving a presentation on photography, huh? Ahaha), and B) this post has already been a little too picturetastic. Here’s a group shot of us from dinner that I pilfered from Tina, though, so you can see our pretty dresses. Kekeke.

We got to have a bit of a mini-RTB reunion at the cocktail party (since both Elizabeth and Bridget were there too!) and thus pretty much commandeered the photobooth for a large part of the night, just to sum it up. But fear not, I’ll be back tomorrow with the rest of the conference, including a link to the slides from my presentation in case you were interested in viewing them.

Things are definitely getting back to normal QUICKLY around here. I got sick with all the traveling and whatnot for the conference, not that that’s particularly surprising, and I think Daxter may have been just a little miffed that I left for the weekend: he left me a whole boatload of “presents” on my bathroom floor in the middle of the night last night.

Ah well, c’est la vie. At least I get to relive the weekend through these posts, eh?

Have a great Monday!

21 Comments

    • I’d say it was mostly people I didn’t already know, which was great because it meant meeting a lot of new people! But obviously I did have a few familiar faces there, too. A good mix!

  1. Here’s an idea: Come back. I will show you the city in all its glory. xoxo

    P.S. Me + paper cutter = Hide your children.

  2. is it weird that I’m stalking all the HLS recaps because I just plain love Boston?? I wish I could have gone. :/

  3. I died laughing at Crossfit/er, bagel. Amazing. I wish I could have gone this year since it’s thisclose for me, but alas. Maybe next year!

  4. Looks like a fantastic weekend. I totally would’ve tried the baby food too ;). Oh and I love that white polka dot top you’re wearing in the picture of you leaning off the street light!

  5. I wish I had gotten there early enough to enjoy the photo tour! I don’t think you’re the only one who got sick. Boooo πŸ™

  6. You left out the part where you chugged ALL THE THINGS you could not carry πŸ˜‰

    • Bahahaha, and pretty much simultaneously, too! πŸ˜›

  7. Are you going to post a recap of your talk? Umm I clearly missed it being in the other room and all πŸ™‚ I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to do that, so if you could get on it I’ll just steal your idea.

    Great getting to meet you and I look forward to lots more bloggie friend moments

    • It was great meeting you too! I was mostly figuring on just posting a link to the slides, but maybe I’ll do a post on the actual content of my presentation if people seem interested in hearing about it. Great idea! πŸ™‚

  8. Boston is the best! I probably (or definitely) know it better than I know DC- which is kind of crazy. Greg and I go there all the time, since his dad lives there, and will be back in October.
    And uh YES Fenway is a BIG DEAL!!!! Glad you got to see it.
    Jealous that you hung out with Holly- love her!
    And shame on you for not bringing a bag to check- you know you get all kindsa good sh*t at blog conferences. πŸ™‚

  9. Great pics!!! Looks like a crazy good time-hoping I can start doing things like that, too! You looked great-love that dress! : )

  10. I love your dress from Friday’s night cocktail party! Totally awesome peacock pattern!

  11. I had soo much fun on the photo walk, Gretchen! Although I spent more time moving my lips then taking pictures..oops. I did manage to get maybe 1 good picture hehe. I’m actually kinda glad that we got lost ;).

  12. So glad we got to meet this weekend! Glad you had as much fun as I did (those sneakers are the best)

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