Healthy Living Summit Recap

Healthy Living Summit Recap

August 17, 2009

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Friday evening, we headed over to the cocktail party at Rustic Kitchen for the start of the Healthy Living Summit. While the layout of the space made the gathering a bit awkward (it was basically a narrow aisle), the food was amazing. We sampled the arancini, various pizzas, and goat cheese and mushroom bruschetta. Also? The sangria was pretty perfect. We will definitely be heading over to Rustic Kitchen for an entire meal very soon.

Sangria from Rustic Kitchen

(our Sangria, pardon the napkin!)

friends

(Us with Tarryn and Melanie!)

We are not Martha Rustic Kitchen

We’re taking a cue from Joe and Betsy and giving our honest opinions of the Healthy Living Summit, since we like to keep things real around here. We think that’s the best way to do it since it was the girls’ first time putting on an event like this and we’re sure they want to hear the good and bad. Considering none of them have planned a blogging event like this before, holy wow, they did an amazing job. I don’t even know how they began to put this together and how they managed to pull it all together so well.

The speakers weren’t all amazing, but we understand it’s hard to find speakers who are able to talk to a large audience about something everyone is going to be interested in. That’s why BlogHer conferences are so successful; they are so huge and have such a variety of sessions, so you’re able to select sessions that best fits your blog or lifestyle.

We loved the idea of having a dietitian speak, but we felt like everything she talked about we learned in high school. Or Shape magazine. We were also super excited to learn about beauty products from Martha Stewart’s Body + Soul magazine, but the girls were not excellent public speakers and couldn’t pronounce a lot of the words, could have been nerves though! We loved loved loved meeting Zesty of ZestyCook, but definitely didn’t get much out of the blogging for beginners talk. It would have been much more awesome to hear him talk all about his blog since it’s so successful (but that’s just us, we’re sure lots of people did like learning about blogging for beginngers!).

We loved the Stonyfield Keynote Speaker, Regina Beidler (an organic dairy farmer), and definitely learned the most from her. It was great how her talk was part life story – she showed lots of photos of her family and farm!, part educational, and all-around enjoyable to listen to. We also loved that Stonyfield was a sponsor. I wish I snagged a bunch more coupons for Oikos because I think everyone should try it! I gave mine to my mom because she loves Greek yogurt but hasn’t tried Oikos yet.

There were times we felt totally out of place at the event. Maybe it’s because our blog isn’t focused on healthy living and we don’t photograph every single thing we eat or talk too much about food portions or running marathons. Or it could have been because we live right in Boston so we didn’t get the whole hotel bonding experience. But it also could have been because we’re not used to the total lack in blog diversity. All of our friends we’ve met through blogging write about totallyyy different things and we think that’s why we all love hanging out with each other. So, it was a bit strange to be around lots of bloggers with super similar blogs.

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We loved the swag bags and, out of all the blogging events we’ve been to, we both agreed this was by far the best. There are so many awesome products in it that we cannot wait to try!

It was also great to meet Andrea of POM! We have been meaning to write about POM for a longgg time now and we’re thinking a fun post will be coming up in the very near future. We loved the POM juice bar at the Summit!

We’re definitely glad we attended the Summit and are excited to see how it grows throughout the years. The first is always the hardest and we’re sure the girls have tons of good ideas for next year already. It was a blast meeting some other bloggers (some who are We are not Martha readers! hello!) and we love that we’ve added so many interesting and unique people to our Google readers.

We are not Martha and Healthy Chow

(us with the lovely Nicole of Healthy Chow)

And I’m sure we’ll be writing a lot more about the products as we make our ways through the amazing swag bags. In a market where so many questionable “healthy” products exist, it’s great to have a bunch of “pre-approved” ones to try out. We’ll obviously keep you posted on our favorites!

Barney Butter is one of the products that I’m most excited to sample. People seem to be obsessed with it and since Im a HUGE peanut butter lover, I’m hoping i feel the same about almond butter (sadly, Chels is allergic to nuts, so she won’t get to indulge in the BB).

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Now that we’re all into the green, healthy drink trend, it will be great to try out the Amazing Grass products!  Anyone have any experience with them and/or favorites?

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We also got a selection of bars that are always good for when we’re on the go. There are SO many bars on the market these days and lots of them taste gross and chalky or are packed with calories, so hopefully we will fall in love with some of these.

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We’ll obviously keep you posted on our favorites as we try them out. If you went to the Healthy Living Summit, what was your favorite thing about it?

[Sues and Chels]

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17 Responses to "Healthy Living Summit Recap"

  1. Sara says:

    Love you girls kept it real on this post! I’m most excited to hear your feedback on the Barney Butter and Glo Bar. The gift bags looked fabulous!

  2. Betsy says:

    Love this post – thank you for being honest, I didn’t want to be the only one! 🙂

  3. Meghann says:

    I have to apologize because I never properly introduced myself during the summit. Playing hostess is a very difficult job and I am so sad I never had a chance to chat with everyone. Thank you for this post. I loved your honesty and that you were still very respectful. We’re hoping once we grow that we can expand on the topics. We had no clue where to start with this one so its great to have feedback!

    Also, thank you for attending our little event and enjoy all your swag! We did try hard to provide a bag full of healthy, yummy snacks!

  4. Karen says:

    Ooo so jealous you guys got to go – if I hadn’t been on vacation last week I definately would have tried to go.

    Sounds like an overall fun time, those SWAG bags do look great! I am curious how Angela’s Glo Bars are; she is in the process of being able to ship to the US (she’s from Canada) and those bars look sooooooo amazing and delicious!

  5. Kelly says:

    Ever since I saw your blog name in the blog roll I knew I wanted to check out your site. I wish I could have met both of you but the event was hectic and I’m actually pretty shy! I loved reading your honest review of the Summit. I think most reviewers of the conference part of the summit agree with your comments. I will definitely be checking back. It looks like both of you have put together a great site. I love your logo. 🙂

  6. Tina says:

    Thanks for being honest about your review of the Summit. I feel like quite a few other people had similar constructive criticism, so we’ll definitely keep it in mind for next year. Thanks for coming to the event!

    Rumor has it, I’ll be seeing you guys at the Yelp Gala tonight. We should definitely try to chat!

  7. tea says:

    Amen, sistahfriends! I agree with your constructive review of the Summit. My fav speaker was also the dairy farmer — she made me wanna sell all my possessions and move back to the land. And that swag bag was effing amazing! All in all — it was an interesting day and gave me some new stuff to ponder regarding my own eating / blogging life.

  8. Hangry Pants says:

    Honetsly, thank you for your take on the summit – good and bad. We originally wanted to do smaller break out sessions, but with the layout of the room being the way it was, we didn’t think it would be possible. Definitely something we aim to do next year.

    As for the Amazing Grass, I think my fav. is the plain wheat grass in water. Don’t expect a wonderful taste sensation, it is grass after all.

  9. greenbean says:

    love this post and comment on diversity. this blogging community lacks diversity in more ways than one. for months, i’ve been toying with the idea to start a blog and i might need to make it happen. i think i have something unique to add. xoxo

  10. bananabreadoatmeal says:

    I did not attend the summit, and was thrilled that it was broadcast live. I spent almost my entire Saturday “there” with you guys who were. Someone commented in the chat room there that it seemed the face of healthy food bloggers was identical – one race, one gender. Hopefully next year there will be a bit more diversity.
    I loved the live camera at the conference, and I wish we couldve sent in for swag bags, so we could try some of these fabulous goodies I’ve been seeing. Mail order swag! Just pay S+H! Im sure here are all kinds of rules against that, but it would be a cute idea. Hoping that I can attend next year!

  11. Rose says:

    Awesome review. I saw you ladies – but we didn’t meet. That makes me pretty sad right now.

  12. Nicole says:

    Hi Sues and Chels,
    I liked your recap. You did a good job of giving your constructive criticism without being negative. You have such class, ladies. It’s always nice to hear different perspectives and I’m sure the Big 6 appreciated it as well. BTW, thanks for mentioning me in your post! That was so sweet. I’m so glad I had the chance to meet you. I’ll admit, I was psyched to see you two sitting right behind me. I hope to see you soon!
    -Nicole

  13. Kath says:

    So wishing I had spent more time with you guys! Thanks for this nice review – I agree with all of your points. We had no idea how each of the talks would go or the whole day, really, so we share some of the same opinion ourselves.

    Love your blog (and the design!)

  14. Julie Q says:

    This looked like a successful event! And big props to you ladies for giving your full critique, its nice to hear constructive criticism sometimes (as long as its not about me) tehehehehe xoxo

  15. Quisha says:

    wow, looks like that was definitely a HOT post. i love the “realness” of it and thats definitely something that drew me to both of you, the fact that you were real in your interaction with everyone and when I asked you about your blog you really just spoke about what you love. you blog about what works for you and that’s what works 🙂

    i’m looking forward to keeping up with this blog. i basically love everything i’ve seen so far. if you two ever host any events (cooking, etc.) i’m all over it!

  16. shannon says:

    ah, so you guys had seats fri night! i was standing all night (much to the dismay of my feet)… i agree with alot of your recap 😉 except i could still use some blogging advice!

  17. […] a little bland and pasty for my liking. But when I got a full-sized jar of Barney Butter at the Healthy Living Summit, I gave it a go. And I really love it! It’s totally flavorful and not dry at all. I also got […]

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