I had quite a bit of time to ponder what I wanted to share from my blogherfood trip.

More on that soon.

A few main points:

I learned that I am completely socially awkward.

Even though I like to think I am somewhat level-headed, I got completely star stuck and dumbfounded.

I do not travel alone well.

I am a complete homebody.  I like to be home.  Near my home.  In my home.  Looking at my home.  In the vicinity of my home.  You get the idea.


The session that I was speaking on was the very first in the blogherfood weekend, which just happened to be wonderful.  I really enjoyed speaking with Marla, Carrie, and Natanya.  They are super smart and driven women who have very clear, tenacious, and capable voices.

(below: Marla and I)


Me…not so much.  I believe in the midst of a panel discussion about how you can optimize your vision and succeed in creating a successful and well received blog in a condensed time period I uttered the words (into the microphone mind you) "Hi, my name is Amanda and I like to eat."

Riveting stuff I tell you.

After that enthralling and hypnotic insight from me I decided it might be wise to speak less and listen more.  And honestly, I really thought the audience (as well as those amazing fellow panelists) had some great questions and observations!  I know I left there having learned more then when I arrived.

The remainder of that day was spent eating and listening and eating some more. 

I was able to drift off to sleep with a smile because of the amazing invention that is Skype.  I got to talk with the kids and hubby!!  Seeing their faces and hearing their excitement and watching them interact with each other rejuvenated me, and I knew I could face tomorrow (Saturday) with a renewed sense of energy.

Um, yeah.

By noon Saturday I had hit a wall.  A really big,solid concrete, mile long wall. 

It just kinda struck me that I was alone (without family and close friends) in an unfamiliar place.  And by 4:00 pm, as I was standing in the lobby trying to check out, it was all weighing pretty heavy on me.

That's when sweet Alice walked by.

Bless her heart, she had no idea what she was talking into… but she looked at me, asked how I was, and I burst into tears. 

I couldnt stop crying.  The pain of feeling alone and having been dealing with morning sickness and fatigue and having cramping and discomfort had all culminated into me completely losing it.

Do you know what Alice did?

She dropped everything and hugged me.  In the middle of a gorgeous internationally acclaimed bustling lobby… she sensed a need and offered me her shoulder to cry on.

I did.

And then, as if compelled by the Voice that I had been desperate to hear, she prayed over me.

I cannot tell you the significance of that moment… of that prayer… of those words on my lonesome heart. 

I have never felt such an instant connection to someone as I did Alice. It was a heart connection. 

A couple hours later I had managed to gather myself together (completely supernatural strength I might add) and make it to the fabulous party hosted by Pioneer Woman, Steamy Kitchen, and Simply Recipes.

After two days of catching glimpses and fighting extreme shyness and dreading that stalker moment, I finally was able to talk to Ree and Jaden!

Seriously.  Jaden is stunning.  Gorgeous.  Funny.  Sweet.

And Ree?  Well, Ree is… (this is going to sound so stupid) kinda equivalent to your favorite pair of jeans. 

She was comfortable and made you look good and gave you a sense of inner confidence that you dont normally have.

Although, you would never have known that by my actions.  I mostly wheezed out, "Oh my… you're amazing… is this happening?… I am going to pass out…"


You can see it in my expression.  *freaky* I think my left eye was actually twitching.

I was two seconds away from throwing up on her inconceivably gorgeous shoes. 

Well, that and I had just tried bacon nicoise, which does not go well with a nauseous preggers girl.

But now I must stop reminiscing and go play with my children whom I missed more then they will ever know.  What a blessing to be home and get to hug and cuddle them whenever I want!

More on the rest of my trip soon.  I hope.  If I can get the courage to share with you the experiences of my last few hours in SF.  

They. Were. Interesting



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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. Amanda, you made the conference for me, I LOVED meeting you and having the time to chat. I feel terrible that you had a mini-freak out, although I certainly understand. I personally needed lots of breaks from the conference and kept my cool because my husband was there – without him I likely would have had the same reaction. Honestly, you were a superstar, running around and chatting with everyone, presenting, all on little sleep while pregnant – I was blown away by your energy! Knowing that you collapsed a little makes you seem more human. If you were feeling awkward, it didn’t show for even 1 second. You were fantastic on your panel, so funny and real and charming, spot on. I can’t wait to get together and rehash the whole shebang because you live in MY town, woo hoo! Glad you got home safely, bet it felt great to sleep in your own bed, ahhhh. Take care & talk soon!

  2. Loved this post. You’re “voice” comes through loud and clear in your writing…you’ve got the touch. Keep up the good work. Such a cool story about Alice, I immediately looked up her blog, started following her on twitter and found her on FB. You’ve inspired me to go to this conference next year 🙂

  3. Amanda you are one of a kind and I absolutely adore you! You made me smile this weekend and talking to you I felt comfortable! Like you, I love my kids and being home and just blogging to blog and nothing more. Being BHF was a bit overwhelming so you weren’t alone in that boat at all. And this story, well once again you made me smile but my heart also ached. I’m so thankful you had that moment with Alice and she was there for you. I think the moment happen for a reason too. Because at that moment you needed that hug despite the place and where you were.
    I loved reading this and again it was so nice to meet you. Sorry I didn’t get to say goodbye but you were in a deep conversation as I was running out the door to catch the bus back to the hotel. I’m sure you, like me, are happy to be home with the things that mean the most. 🙂

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