taking new york city by storm soloSo not only did I finally attend BlogHer12ย (with the likes of Barack Obama (via webcast), Katie Couric, and Martha Stewart in attendance) but I also got to visit New York City, one of the places on my “to do by age 40” bucket list!

Nope, I had never been to New York City.

Yep, I tackled New York City solo (the first half of my trip prior to BlogHer). *cos I’m hard like that!* ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s been about a week and I’m finally winding down enough to show you some of the lovely people, gorgeous places, fabulous things, and lessons I learned from my trip to NYC and BlogHer12.

Enjoy!

The People

Times Square has it all – food, theatres, fun, and….well, wanna be Indians rocking Calvin Klein drawls, street hustlers earning money for penis reductions, and I swear that’s a man wearing a bikini with a Statue of Liberty foam hat on top of a doo rag (who was also riding his bike looking like that too)!

NYC strange people time square Collage
You never know what you’ll find down in Times Square!

 

Mmmm, the Milkman…me and him together – now THAT’S a lot of chocolate milk! LOL

Stopped by the Rickland Orchards booth to take a pic with the Greek god, Mr. Nice Arms.

And chillin’ with my girls Nicole Morgan (@bywordsmusings), Jenn (@dazeofadventure), Crystal (@crystalecollins), Andrea (@SavingLifestyle), and one of my roomies,ย Nicole Bullock (@cuteculturechic) – nice mustache boo!

blogher12 people Collage

The BlogHer parties were insane! Danyelle (@thecubiclechick), Natasha (@hfofnicholes), Toni (@happyhousewife), Robin (@robinplemmons), Noni (@MissVersatile), and Anthony Leem (@anthonyleem) all know how to party!

blogher12 people Collage 2

Hands down, the CheeseburgHer party was the best! Here are me and the girls in the photo booth including Antoinette (@sistersavealot) and Rai (@swaraiblog)!

cheeseburgher photo booth blogher12

CheeseburgHer photos courtesy of Total Photo Boothsย 

 

me and nicole bullock
Nicole Bullock and I at the SocialLuxe Soiree

ย 

Rene Syler (@GoodEnufMother), Danyelle, and I at the McDonald’s breakfast

 

blogher-fuzzy-uteri
I couldn’t resist taking a picture with the Fuzzy Uteri! Don’t ask LOL

 

The Places

Now you know as a tourist, I did almost every attraction I could especially since I had a New York Pass (which offered entrance to over 70 attractions with discounts and even fast track access at some places so I could skip the long lines!).

If you hadn’t seen it yet, I also posted about my Airbnb experienceย of the lovely apartment I stayed in for the first part of my trip.ย 

NYC trip places Collage

I like wax museums so when I saw that Madame Tussauds Wax Museum was on the list, I had to visit. But I must say, I wasn’t very impressed with the figures. They were too greasy looking for my taste but I took a few shots anyway.ย 

I had to learn the art of self-portraiting with my iPhone too. Ha! ๐Ÿ™‚

madame tussauds wax museum Collage

The Things

At BlogHer, there were some awesome items to explore! I loved the entire home office setup at the Martha Stewart booth and wanted to take the whole thing home as is!

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I learned that the prom outfits seen below were madeย completely out of duct tape! Ghetto, tacky,ย or ingenious? What do you think?

Then there were hand massages at the Quilted Northern booth (didn’t want to leave this booth!).ย 

I won an Apple TV at the SocialLuxe Party. Yah me! Can’t wait to play around with it.

I was coveting Elana’s HAWT braids. I gotta show this to my stylist so I can do this!

And it was great to see Wells Fargo giving out Gratitude Journals! Now, ya’ll know how I feel about gratitude journals!! ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

blogher12 items Collage

NYC and BlogHer Tips

NYC

  1. Negotiate with the service car drivers (not the taxis). I got a good deal from Harlem to Midtown by just negotiating with the driver. Plus, I didn’t have a lot of cash on me then!
  2. Plan your attraction visits by location so you get the most out of your day.
  3. Eat light during the day so you won’t have ITIS while walking around the city!
  4. Act and look like you know what you’re doing and where you’re going even if you don’t so you won’t look like a tourist, especially at night!
  5. Bring comfortable walking shoes.

BlogHer

  1. Bring PLENTY of business cards (and don’t get them designed last minute)!
  2. Create a list of people you’d like to meet and write down their names and twitter handles prior to arriving so you can contact them when you get there to meet up.
  3. Don’t be afraid to veer off on your own and walk up to a group of people and introduce yourself. I met a lot of people this way!
  4. Smile, be friendly, and tell people what you do clearly. Mix it up and have several “10 second” phrases ready to go.
  5. Sign up for classes early because they get full quick! Some were standing room only…
  6. Reserve your room as soon as tickets go on sale so that you can at least have a spot in the host hotel. Hotels usually have a good cancellation policy so if you decide you can’t go, you can usually cancel close to the date of arrival.
  7. Networking tip: DON’T pass out your business card to everybody in a session without even speaking to them. Really? This chick was passing out her card to everybody in a session. I don’t know you! You gave me no reason to look at your card. This is a networking NO NO!
  8. Bring comfortable walking shoes – yep, there’ll be a lot of walking here too!

Over to you…

If you are a blogger, BlogHer13 is coming to Chicago next year so join us and since Chicago is only a hop, skip, and a jump from St. Louis, I may as well go. If you’re in the Chicago area, I’d love to meet ya in real life!

What other tips do you have for BlogHer and/or touring New York City?

Wassuper, it’s yo girl, Kesha and I believe we should Be the Fruit Loop in a world full of Cheerios because life is more interesting when you dare to be different and challenge what’s “normal!” I am wildly passionate about helping highly driven women pursue fantabulous relationships, juicytastic careers/bizzes, and authentically inspired lives. Let’s work together to rethink, redo, and reinvent so you can live life YOUR way!
A Week of New York City Awesomeness including BlogHer12!
Tagged on:                     
  • DanielleJ

    Ilove this post and the pictures. Now I feel like I need to get out of bed and post my review. Mmm…well, maybe tomorrow. LOL

    I’m glad I got to meet you at the conference. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Great to meet you too boo! And yes, I was slacking on this one because work comes first you know ๐Ÿ™‚ Some people had their posts up before the conference was over! LOL

      Let me know when yours is up!

  • Robyn Wright

    Awesome recap of your trip! You always have so much fun wherever you go. I quit going to wax museums because they always look odd and they are always short it seems. Your pics of the wax figures and you are really good though! I missed out on the hand massages – dang! Congrats on the Apple TV win!

    • Fun is my middle name boo boo ๐Ÿ™‚

      Yeah, those wax figures were not cute! But now I know…

      And I can’t wait to play around with the Apple TV though I can’t see when I’d use it often (yet)…we’ll see.

      Thanks for poppin’ in deary!

  • Girl, I look good in that balloon dress! Woosah! Great recap!

    • Well if I say so myself, you surely do dah’ling ๐Ÿ™‚ Doing it again next year? Yes, we’re doing it again next year ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Oh yes, darling! Despite the naysayers about BlogHer being too big, having to walk too much, and blah blah, I will be in the house next year. I wouldn’t miss it! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Lakesha, I am homesick…I was born and raised there and must admit I sometimes do miss the flair of NYC. I went from eating in every restaurant with my parents as a kid, hanging out in the “village” as a teen, and when I got my first fake ID at 16 hit every club until I was 30. Then I guess I got all partied out lol. I moved 4 hours away, to a more quieter and spacious place, but it is Ithaca, and I still have the international flair from Cornell U. It’s in my blood. I need all kinds of people around me or else I get bored.

    Thanks for the pics…especially those crazy ones..Ya gotta love NY! Glad you had that experience and learned not to take taxis lol.

    As for the conference…looks like it was fun! Thank you for sharing your experience with us. I really appreciate the way you captured all the joy you were having.

    Donna

    • Hey Donna, the conference WAS flippin’ fun and thanks for your lovely comments ๐Ÿ™‚

      You sound like my type of girl and we would have hung out together if I were in NYC with you (from 16-30) ๐Ÿ™‚

      I’m basically a homebody now but when I travel, I like to go out (not necessarily a club these days) and see new folks, experience new places. It’s something about being in a new area that excites me which is why I love to travel.

      Maybe I’ll be in your neck of the woods one of these days and we can hang ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Hey Keesha looks like you had a blast ~ so wish I didn’t live on what seems like another planet (down under). Great pics. I enjoyed reading your post.

    • Hey Chris, one of these days you gotta get up from down under and head over to the “dark” side ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • So, are all of my pictures going to be of me dancing?! Great recap, and now I have to do mine. Thanks for making me look like an underachiever. LOL!

    Fantastic finally meeting you. Can’t wait to see you again!

    • Yes, all pics are of you dancing! You lucky I didn’t put up the video of you from Thursday night! LOL *puts it away for a rainy day* ๐Ÿ˜‰

      And since we’ll be in your neck of the woods next year, it’s on!! Chi-town, here we come!

      But I’m sure I’ll be in the Chi waaaay before then, so I’ll hit you up.

  • YOU ARE SO FUN. Let’s do it again. xo

  • Now that was fun times!!

    • So lovely to have met you in person and look forward to connecting further! Besides, I need to know where you shop so I can have some of those fabulous looks you be rockin’ (yes, I was already stalking visiting your blog prior to Blogher) LOL

  • Great post! When you come to Chicago, be sure to contact us! #BlogHer 13 is going to be very epic.

  • Krista

    Hey Kesha!!!! Soooo glad you finally made it to NYC! Sounds like you had a great time. Let me know next time you venture that way…I’m always game for a NYC trip! =0) I need to make it back there to do more of the mainline touristy stuff.

    Peace,
    Krista

    • Wazzup boo!! Thanks for stopping through darling! Yes girl I finally made it to the Big Apple. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Next time I wanna party so I’ll surely let you know…maybe next year as the rest of this year I have some trips already planned.

      We’ll talk soon!

  • Kesha, this was fantastic. Your recap of New York, now makes me want to go there myself. I loved seeing what you experienced from your own eyes and the pictures did this post justice! In regards to Trade shows, I do these monthly for my day job and will be in Denver for a Retail show in a few weeks. Girl some things people do at these shows is a trip, but they are stupid fun too to attend!

    The tip about business card handouts was spot on. People that do that are hard-up and its not necessary because most times those cards end up in the trash anyway. People tend to always remember the card that came from that annoying person. I loved this girl!

    • Thanks darling! I had so many pics that it took me forever to choose these few I did show you guys. But I’m so glad I went and experienced the city. I would love to go back now that I have the tourist stuff out the way and just party! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Yes girl, I bet your trips are fun especially when people start to let their hair down in the evenings! LOL

      Yep, that lady’s business card was still sitting on the chair when I left…I didn’t even look at it. SMH!

  • Great pics! Funny how a couple of things sort of caught my attention…

    Congratulations on winning an Apple TV. That must be very cool!

    Wells Fargo giving out gratitude journals is effing hilarious. Yeah, I’m grateful that I never have to do business with them again. Worst. Bank. Ever.

    LOVE the balloon dresses!

    And that whole “pass out your business card to everything that breathes” thing is annoying at any networking event!

    Looks like you had a blast!

    • LOL at your comment about Wells Fargo!! I’ve never done business with them but I can only imagine what they may have done to earn your comment ๐Ÿ™‚

      That balloon dress was the hit of the night…it got passed around more than a sloppy drunk girl at a frat party!

      I did have a blast Carol and thank you for coming over and checking out the pics. Everytime I come back to this page, I relive the experience and have fun in my head all over again! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Kesha-as an East Coast (DC/MD) girl myself, I’m impressed by the amount of territory you covered in a short period of time. I love NYC, the place so nice, they named it twice! Thanks for sharing your adventure.

    • Oh Karen, yes, the only thing I was missing was a foot massage every night (even with the most comfortable shoes on)! I was out walking/touring NYC from about 9 in the morning til midnight almost every day the first half of the trip! And of course still didn’t get everything in.

      Now I need to get to DC as I haven’t been there long enough to play! I’ll let you know when I head that way too ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I just love you so very much … so glad we attended that first SheCon together. My life is richer for knowing you and I hope we will be friends forevah my love. You are a ray of sunshine on everyday and I heart you for your words, your kind heart and your very sweet soul xxx

    • Nicole, Nicole, Nicole…my boo…you know when you get mushy, I get all mushy! ๐Ÿ™‚

      I love you too darling and if I got nothing else out of SheCon, I too am so very glad I met you (happy teary eyed)!!!

      Now you know that one of my next trips has to be to your neck of the woods so I can meet my surrogate family! I would love to come down and kick it with you guys ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I had so much fun rooming with you and having the chance to get to know you better. This is an awesome recap! Hooray for NYC and #BlogHer12!

    • Likewise darling and I’m sure we’ll be seeing each other soon! ๐Ÿ™‚

      *hugs*

  • What a fun time Kesha and thanks for sharing all the pictures. I have to admit I’ve never been to NYC and it’s not on my list of places to visit. I don’t know why, there are just so many other places I’d rather see.

    I’ve heard of all the “different” kind of people who hang out on the streets for different reasons. You definitely shared some of these with us.

    Congrats in the Apple TV win. How cool is that. Have fun playing with that one.

    Glad you got to connect with all those lovely ladies and I know that will definitely be a time that you’ll remember.

    ~Adrienne

    • Yes, I will definitely remember that trip!! I have to go back though to get in on some of the “real” NYC experience – you know, the underground, non-touristy stuff ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Hi Lakesha

    Oh thank you so much for this awesome share! I am amazed at the number of your Americans that have (had in your case) not been there. I am Australian and it is defiantly on my list of places to visit. One of my highest. I have been to the West Coast many times but never made it all the way east.

    I just love the pictures you have shared, especially Times Square – that is hilarious.

    Great fun.

    Sue

    • Glad I could share my experience with you Sue and hope that you do make it there soon! It is simply a great experience. I wanted to go because I see so much of it on TV and it has a lot of cultural history that I wanted to see for myself. So glad I got the opportunity to do so. I’ll be back again one day to get in some stuff ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Anthony

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this post. and love the picture of us in the red balloon dress. that night was FUN ๐Ÿ™‚ hope all is well!!!

    • Yes, Anthony, that dress was the highlight of that first party wasn’t it! See ya in 2013 in Chicago?

  • Hello Kesha,

    I loved all pictures and it show how much fun you had. I would visit NYC one day because its in my list,but I think I’ve very long way to travel..

    BTW, Thanks for sharing your lovely experiences with us. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • No problem, glad that you could at least vicariously experience NYC with me ๐Ÿ™‚

      Hopefully one day you’ll get there too, even with the distance! ๐Ÿ™‚