Monday, June 10, 2013

#DisneyontheRoad #DisneySMMoms #DC #Amaze

Okay, so I don't normally start off with a lot of hashtags, but in honor of the amazing event I was fortunate to be apart of last Friday, I thought I would do something different.

In case you hadn't figured out, last Friday, I spent the morning through lunch time at Disney's Social Media Moms traveling event: Disney On the Road.  I think that may be the first time I've seen it without a hash tag.  

I was super excited to be apart of this event - my first ever social media/blog event of any time.  And, after 3 years of blogging, it's about darn time!

The event was hosted by Maria Bailey (@MomTalkRadio) who may be one of the most inspiring women I've ever met.  Her bio is amazing and listening to her speak for a morning was incredible.  

As a Disney Blogger, the experience was different for me than for most of the others.  Though I was excited to finally meet fellow Magical Blogorail writer, Jackie from Delightyfully Disney, but we were separated in the throngs of bloggers and I was lucky enough to sit with a table of amazing moms while we listened to the event.

The day starts off early - registration began at 7:30 a.m. (about 45 minutes from my house, so I left early - but lucky for me, it wasn't much different than a normal work day).  With my first contact with various bloggers, I realized I was not in my normal blog-comfort zone, but I enjoyed listening to and learning about other bloggers.

@Gary_Jerry, who works in PR and Social Media for the Disney Parks was running around with a Monsters U plush around his shoulders and eating a Mickey rice-krispie treat.  I immediately knew that I was in the right place!
This delicacy was waiting for me at my seat!
Gary gave us an overview on the happenings in the Disney Parks - nothing groundbreaking for me, but always fun to start off the day talking Disney!  
Can you feel his energy?

Our main guest speaker was Jennifer Labit, founder and creator of a prominent brand of cloth diapers, Cotton Babies.  Her story was amazing - living paycheck to paycheck, using government support to help afford food, started cloth diapering because it was more affordable.  Makes sense.  Honestly, I've been a fan of pampers (and lately, seventh generation diapers), but I appreciate her side of the story.  Had I been able to stay at home, maybe.... yeah, probably not, but having only 8 weeks of maternity leave and cloth diapering not an option in daycare, it never really crossed my mind.  But still- all those thoughts of "mom or business" not there anymore.  She was there with her adorable 3 month old and allows her company to work with babies in tow - I LOVE THAT.  Okay, not so practical as a musician, but still, definitely motivates me be better at multitasking work/mommyhood/blog!
Jennifer Labit
After Jennifer, Maria invited a panel of local "momtrepreneurs" to discuss their experiences.  One was even pregnant!   They discussed how they manage their time, their fears and successes, and truly inspired a room of ladies (and there was one man, but I didn't get to meet him!).  They mostly talked about businesses and managing time and family.

For me, I've never truly considered this blog a "business."  I might in the near future (the life of a travel agent has been calling me for quite some time) turn this outlet into a business, but me?  An entrepreneur?  Never truly thought about it.

Okay, lots of talking...

This short half day conference was as motivating as any morning could be - I started thinking about my future more than I had in a while.  I've thought about "what will I do when I retire" for years, but now the question is more present in my life.  What will I do?  I'm not sure, but I'll be working on myself, my interests, and goals for... well, forever.
Michelle Stepney
Michelle Stepney, another media person from Disney, finished the seminar with a fantastic presentation on how to deal with the press - how to be heard, what to say, what not to say, and so much more.  While I didn't find her presentation relatable for my personal blog, this one will help me more than anything for my day job, where I've also picked up a few more social media challenge (hey, twitter and facebook can be fun, right?)

If you get a chance to do a social media conference, especially one in which Maria Bailey speaks, go.  I know all of us Disney bloggers are always hopefully for the big #DSMMoms conference - and me more so than ever, being hosted at Disneyland, which I've never been to, but Maria pointed out - these are conferences to familiarize new audiences with the product.  When it comes to Walt Disney World, I'm not a new audience.  
With Maria Bailey, @MomTalkRadio

Great quotes/ideas from the event:

  • Look your children into the whites of their eyes when they talk to you.  Actually turn around and see their eyes.
  • Do a time audit on yourself.  You may be doing someone else a favor and like helping out, but if you consider each second in the day as $1, would you be willing to give your neighbor $3,600?  Consider that when you're giving up an hour of your time.
  • Know what you want to do, but know how you want to do it - use your principles to guide your life, your business, and the way you run everything.  But know, if you give your business to someone else, it won't be your business and run the same way.

For everyone going in the future, you are definitely in for a treat.  And, on a take of a Passover phrase, "Next year in Anaheim!"

If you've been to any of the #DisneySMMoms events, I would love to hear about your experiences!!  To learn more, visit Disney Social Media Moms Conference and follow #DisneySMMoms, @DisneySMMoms, and #DisneyontheRoad on twitter!

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