The Coolest

November 8, 2008

This is the coolest thing I have ever done!!! We are being treated like real celebrities here by Quaker – the Hard Rock Hotel is simply fabulous and we were greeted with a bag of goodies, including a FLIP video camcorder to record the weekend!!! OMG OMG!!!!!

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My flight was quite painful because this big man basically yelled in my ear the whole time, but I did get a little of my nutrition project done and am reading The Choice by Nicholas Sparks. I opened my book to find a romantic love poem that the husband snuck in it for me to read! We have always done a good job with sneaking little things into luggage when we’re apart. I teared up on the plane :)

I got pretty hungry around 5:00 EST and had my first Chocolate Chip Z-bar . It was good, but not as good as the S’mores.

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Then I ran into JENNA !! Well, actually I had to take a train to get to her terminal, but it was still really fun to come into the city together. We took the lonnnnnnng train ride in and made it safely to the hotel.

Here are more of Quaker’s fabulous goodies !

Books!! Heart healthy pins and a blood pressure monitor!! And snacks!!!

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We met the other bloggers down at the bar for some delicious appetizers and drinks.

I started with a few olives and lime cashews –

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Followed by a PUMPKIN Old Fashioned!!

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Crackers, pita, hummus, veg, pizza

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Cracker + smoked salmon/tuna tartar

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More pizza! (They were smallish slices)

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1/3 of this bitter local beer :) (Shared it with Jenna)

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Bloggers! SO COOL to meet them in person. I’ve been reading some of the blogs for a long time!

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Split a glass of Viognier with Jenna (I never "felt" the alcohol but started to feel dehydrated here)

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Then Jenna and I walked about 15 minutes in the Big City to meet about 15 or so of our blog readers!!

I have to say for the third time: MY READERS ARE SO COOL!!! Seriously. In the comments you are words, but in person, you guys are so cool!! I can’t believe you all stop in to see what I’m up to each day :)

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A few of them brought me gifts!! Pumpkin bars, coconut butter (!), pumpkin bark, soup mixes, a cool tea. Thanks you guys!!

At the bar I had a 2.5 oz glass of red (I knew anything more would put me in the danger zone of feeling bad in the AM, although Madison had the most delicious glass I’ve had in ages – the 2006 D&S blend. Mmmm!!! I had 2 sips of hers :) She let me pick out her wines for her, and now she’s going to go to more tastings and try more wines, right Madison!?)

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Tomorrow’s a full day of all-things-Quaker !! I can’t tell you in words how excited I am to crawl into this king sized bed and sleep. Only wish my husband was here to keep me warm!

G’night all.

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{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jenn (eating bender) November 8, 2008 at 12:37 am

You’re HERE!!!! I saw the O’Hare baggage terminal in your ZBar picture and literally started giggling. I am so excited that you’re in my city (although bummed I can’t meet you, of course)!!

Wow, Quaker knows how to treat its bloggers!! I am pumped to hear all about your weekend – and too bad you didn’t like the Goose Island beer, haha! That’s a staple around these parts ;) Have a GREAT WEEKEND, Kath!!

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2 Miss Tiffie November 8, 2008 at 12:38 am

Sounds like sooo much fun :D Have a great time and I can’t wait to read all about it!!!

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3 Ashley C November 8, 2008 at 12:46 am

Aw man, are you trying to make us all jealous with those awesome giveaways?! lol That is pretty awesome though and I’m so excited for you! I’m glad you blog it all so we can all live vicariously through you lol.
That is so cute that your hubby left you a poem- so romantic. Wish he could be there with you too.

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4 seelee live (for the love of peanut butter) November 8, 2008 at 12:48 am

that looks so much fun-thanks for keeping us posted! ahhhrrrg i want to meet one!

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5 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) November 8, 2008 at 12:55 am

Oh my gosh, those free goodies are awesome!

Looks like you are having a great time!

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6 Oh She Glows November 8, 2008 at 1:00 am

WOW!!

Oh my gosh I am so excited just reading this post, I can only imagine how you, Jenna, the other bloggers, and readers must feel! I would love to go to something like this some day!

I am looking forward to seeing the rest of the fun packed weekend. And how nice of Quaker to give you all those awesome goodies.

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7 Oh She Glows November 8, 2008 at 1:01 am

By the way Kath- you and all your readers/bloggers are all so beautiful!

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8 Stephanie November 8, 2008 at 1:13 am

So great meeting you tonight Kath! When I walked into Bin 36 tonight I was looking around for you or Jenna, and I thought I recognized you…but then confirmed it with the green purse :) At this point I’m still in for the Sunday morning run, I’ll email you just to confirm tomorrow. Enjoy your Saturday with some oats in the city!

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9 Stephanie November 8, 2008 at 1:15 am

Oh and thanks for the sneak peak of your photos at Bin 36…made me feel like I was getting an early screening of a movie! haha

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10 Angie November 8, 2008 at 1:17 am

Oh my gosh, it was so cool to meet ya’ll. I really enjoyed it and look forward to coming back down to the city on Sunday morning.

Let me tell you readers these ladies are so cool in person. Just love them!

Oh and I’m in the front row, far left, green shirt.

What a great time! Thank you Kath and Jenna for setting up this gathering and taking time out of your schedule to meet us.

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11 Marianne November 8, 2008 at 1:27 am

So jealous over the Top Chef cookbook. I *heart* cookbooks. Looks like you are having an excellent time!

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12 Moran November 8, 2008 at 2:07 am

I am SO jealous over the goodies! Glad you are having such a fab time!

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13 Madison (FollowMyWeigh) November 8, 2008 at 2:20 am

right ;D!

aww kath it was SERIOUSLY so AWESOME to meet you!!! i was a little hesitant at first (b/c you know you were basically a stranger) but i’m so glad i did b/c you’re super duper cool =D

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14 M November 8, 2008 at 5:53 am

I have a question but don’t want it to come out wrong. In terms of your spending challenge, I’m wondering whether you’re keeping track of the spending that doesn’t count (e.g., food paid for by others) and the “free” meals for comparison against what you spent. I just think it would be neat if you factored that into the end result — “We spent $126 on food, we ate $40 in the uncounted meals, we had three dinners at friends’ houses, Quaker foot the bill for X amount, etc.” I think what you’re doing is fantastic, so I was hesitant to ask a question that might come off as judgmental. Really, I’m just curious because I’d love to see the end result in the context of what *you* paid for, and what you were able to get through other resources.

Heck, the $1/day challenge couple mentioned they “stole” maple syrup packets from fast food restaurants.

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15 Jessica November 8, 2008 at 6:40 am

Glad you made it into the city safely and what an awesome evening! And I can’t wait to here about the rest of your trip. (Oh, and I really like Goose Island’s 312 wheat ale if you run into it.)

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16 HangryPants November 8, 2008 at 6:48 am

Wow! It looks like such fun. I wish I was there, too. :D

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17 coco November 8, 2008 at 7:01 am

so fun there, meeting all your blog followers and the cook people of Quaker! enjoy!

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18 Kath November 8, 2008 at 7:21 am

Thanks guys!!. Wonderful to meet you all as well :)

M,
I totally understand why you’d want me to include these (no offense taken!), but I think the number would be biased to overspend. If I were paying myself in this “trying to save money” state, would i have ordered as many drinks and eaten as much last night? Mostly likely not. I doubt I would have gone hungry, but I think the numbers will be inflated because of the fact that I am not tied to the cost. And when we go to friends’ houses, we have no idea if they will use super expensive French cheese or Costco bulk olives. So it’s not really a fair assessment. I also would have no idea how to estimate the cost of meals out, and certainly wouldn’t want the hosts to feel like I am putting a number on their generosity. It would be an interesting number in general, but it won’t be anywhere as low as it could be if one was really trying to keep ALL FOOD cost to a minimum. Does that make sense?

Kath

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19 Erica November 8, 2008 at 7:22 am

This is so cool! I love reading about it! Keep it coming!

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20 Megan November 8, 2008 at 7:22 am

That pumpkin drink looks fabulous. I am so excited for you…it already looks like a great experience!

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21 VeggieGirl November 8, 2008 at 7:34 am

LOVIN’ ALL THE GOODIES AND PHOTOS!!!! Have fun, Kath!! :-D

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22 polly November 8, 2008 at 7:44 am

Have a BLAST Kath. I love reading your blog and this post was so fun! xoxo

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23 hk November 8, 2008 at 7:46 am

too fun!! enjoy :)

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24 Shelby November 8, 2008 at 8:19 am

Coconut Butter?!?! I gotta see this =)

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25 LT November 8, 2008 at 8:49 am

I agree with not counting any extras–I just count that as resourcefulness and the kindness of, well, in the words of Tennessee Williams: “I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” So, you go, Kath! At first I thought that drink sounded gross, then I read the ingredients and thought, “MMmmmmm…drinking bourbon pumpkin pie!” :-)

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26 Sara November 8, 2008 at 8:54 am

Wow! That recorder and the other goodies look awesome! You’re going to have such a good time! :)

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27 Tina November 8, 2008 at 9:02 am

Looks so fun! Wish I was there!!! :)

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28 ashley (sweet & natural) November 8, 2008 at 9:42 am

SO FUN! I love that you’re in Chicago and look forward to reading about the rest of your weekend.

P.S. Don’t the Hard Rock rooms have interesting decor? I stayed there once and had a laugh when I walked in – a giant, metallic David Bowie was staring back at me from over my bed!

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29 Fancy November 8, 2008 at 9:46 am

Welcome to Chi Town! I’ll see you tomorrow! 10:15 ish, right?

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30 Laura November 8, 2008 at 9:50 am

I hope you continue to have a great time! Quaker was very generous! That’s some goodie bag! Then again….I’m sure they owe you after all the oatmeal you help sell. :P

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31 Ryane November 8, 2008 at 9:52 am

Pumpkin Old Fashioned! That looks amazing!
Glad to see the weekend is off to a great start – sooo jealous of your swag so far!!

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32 Biz319 November 8, 2008 at 9:53 am

Yeah – glad you got in okay! Sorry the weather is so horrible!

Nice goodie packages too!

Have fun today!

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33 Kinder November 8, 2008 at 9:58 am

What an amazing experience! Enjoy!

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34 SmA033 November 8, 2008 at 10:16 am

ok kath– i have a question. (& i waited until your test was over b/c i think it might be pretty involved!) When i was in college, i tried to work out 5 days out of the week, but when i was bombarded w/test or papers or exams, working out was the first thing to go in my schedule in order to make more room for either sleep or more studying. I think a lot of it has to do w/picking such a hard major (premed & about to go to med school) but i’m wondering, how do you balance studying w/working out?? if i had a hard test, i would be freaking out if i went to the gym the morning before!

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35 SmA033 November 8, 2008 at 10:18 am

p.s. sounds like you guys are having a GREAT time in chicago!! i wish i could’ve been there for the dinner w/you & jenna! (i read her blog everyday too!)

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36 BethT November 8, 2008 at 10:30 am

is that guy on the far right a reader, or is he just crashing the photo? haha.

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37 Karen November 8, 2008 at 10:31 am

Hi Kath,
Just wanted to say it was so great meeting you last night, I had a great time! Enjoy the rest of your time in Chicago!!!

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38 ModelBehavior November 8, 2008 at 10:38 am

nice quaker swag, gotta love the free loot!!!

http://www.modbehav.com

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39 Justy2003 November 8, 2008 at 10:40 am

This conference looks pretty awesome already! And look at all those cool freebies! Can’t wait to see what the rest of the weekend brings!

PS: We think you’re pretty cool too, Kath ;)

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40 Christina November 8, 2008 at 10:54 am

The pumpkin old-fashioned reminded me of pumpkin juice from Harry Potter – theirs probably didn’t have bourbon though! (yes, I’m a nerd) :)

It looks delicious! Have a fab trip, I’m excited to read about all the cool happenings…

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41 bobbi November 8, 2008 at 11:05 am

Kath you look like your having a blast! I am so excited for you, I ma kinda living vicariously through you :) Hey when you get a chance check out my Pile on the miles challenge! I thingk you will like it ;)

http://nhershoes.blogspot.com/2008/11/pile-on-miles-challenge.html

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42 Mara November 8, 2008 at 11:07 am

Have a blast here!!! You brought some cold weather with ya ;)

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43 Kath November 8, 2008 at 11:44 am

SmA033 ,
I study at the gym!! You just have to make the time. Walk with flashcards, take study sheets to the elliptical.

BethT ,
He was a husband :)

bobbi ,
Sounds cool! I bet the marathon training group will win though :(

Kath

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44 M November 8, 2008 at 11:55 am

Ohh, good point, Kath! I wasn’t taking into consideration that, were you footing the bill yourself, you’d make different choices.

Ha, I can imagine interrogating the hosts at a dinner party and demanding to know whether it was fancy food or Costco brand! Good point.

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45 Mel November 8, 2008 at 12:06 pm

Looks like a lot of fun. That pumpkin old-fashioned sounds amazing!

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46 Betsy November 8, 2008 at 4:41 pm

Man, I am so jealous!

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47 Catherine November 9, 2008 at 10:57 am

OMG so awesome you guys all got to meet… so jealous I wasn’t there too!!!

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