Last week, I went to SNAP Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. Its a conference for creative bloggers of all kinds & I can’t describe it any better than a 3 day long Christmas celebration. I was incredibly nervous for several reasons.
First, I’ve only flown like 4 times in my life & only one of those times was by myself. It was only from Houston—>Dallas. So that barely counts. I was so scared I wouldn’t end up in the right place, but it all worked out… eventually. This fear was actually confirmed, but I’ll get to that in a minute.
I was also super nervous because I did not know a single person going to the conference. I felt like everyone else already had their blogging friends & I would be the only one who was all alone. I was so wrong about this one & was blown away by how welcoming every single person I came into contact with was. Y’all, bloggers really are the sweetest, nicest people! That probably ended up being my favorite part of the conference.
Let’s talk about my flight there…I show up at the airport a little less than 2 hours early. My mom legitimately walked me inside to check in my bags because I was so nervous! I was supposed to fly Houston—>Dallas—>Salt Lake City & arrive at 12:30. Well the flight to Dallas was delayed too many times & I wouldn’t make my next flight to SLC. So they transferred me to a flight to Phoenix, where I would have a short layover & then get on a plane to SLC. This gave made my flight over 2 hours later. The flight to Phoenix was also delayed, of course & I barely made the plane to SLC! Everyone else had already boarded. But I got on & finally made it SLC around 4:30. Once I got there I had no clue where to go & had to ask someone how to get their light rail system. I finally made it over & ended up with a group of bloggers, who made me feel so welcome & helped me make it to the hotel for check-in.
That night we got to go on a taco tour in SLC with a new social media app, Goze. We go to do beta testing during the tour & it’s pretty neat, go check it out! Tacos are not really the same as they are here. I would describe them as gourmet tacos, not really Mexican tacos. The al pastoor & pineapple taco (right) was on point though! A bus took us around to 3 different places & 100 of us spent the evening talking about all the fun stuff we’d encounter over the next 3 days & got to know each other. It was a great ice-breaker for the early birds.
The next 3 days were full of classes, crafting, talking to sponsors, picking up swag, eating & talking blogging to everyone. I learned so much I’m still on overload & trying to actually apply it to my life/blog seems daunting. But, it will happen!
I think the secret theme of SNAP was “treat yourself” because everyone wants to give you awesome stuff. Like, really awesome. I had an entire suitcase full of amazing swag that overflowed into my other checked bag & carry-on.
I was so impressed by some of the booths & how they used their products. Other than sponsor rooms, there were a few “lounges” downstairs where we had our classes/meals. There was a Lindt lounge where you could hang out & eat all the chocolate you wanted! They even had a vending machine where you could redeem your ticket for a fancy bag & delicious chocolate bars! The best part about that booth would have to be the chair massages you could sign up for throughout the conference. It was so thoughtful of them! Thanks Lindt!
Laughing Cow also had a lovely lounge set up with delicious bites & snacks. They had all their cheeses out & plenty to pair them with. So yummy! The actual laughing cow mascot even made an appearance!
The last lounge was the Rustoleum lounge. They had an area for you to unwind & charge your phones. But the absolute best part was Swig booth in the Rustoleum lounge. Rustoleum gave everyone adorable cups (in photo below) to use throughout the conference & Swig was their to fill them up for you all day everyday as as many as you needed! Thank you Swig! They are a drink stop in the Utah area, not sure if they are anywhere else? They also serve the BEST cookies & we got to try those too!
Also, the bathrooms are decorated pretty great…I hope your day is as nice as your butt! I seriously am going to make this for our guest bathroom y’all!
We had amazing meals from wonderful sponsors like Chinet, Michaels, Oriental Trading & more. I love how they each did something different & fun on the tables. They always left us treats on our seats & on the tables. I loved the room drops from Chinet & Michaels while we were out & about during the day. Such a fun way to let us know they were thinking about us the entire conference! They didn’t miss a beat.
I made lots of new friends & took lots of selfies. Most of the sponsors have some sort of selfie contest or other for extra swag & giveaways. Yes, that is Heidi Swapp & I in the middle! She is the sweetest & her class was so much fun. Not to mention her incredible party with Fujifilm Instax!
I was blessed with the best roomies! None of us knew each other before the conference, but we we’re so lucky to have joined up with each other! They are wonderful ladies & I learned the most from chatting with them late at night after the conference.
I’ve probably told you lots of things were my favorite part of the conference by now, but really my most favoritest part of them all was make & takes at the sponsor booths/rooms. I loved being able to craft all day with limitless supplies. Also, I didn’t have to clean up the mess when it was all over! This is a card I made in the Michael’s room & some goodies I crafted in the Chinet room. I made the arrow in a fun class with Rustoleum & Ryobi. Some of the sponsors had a different craft each day, so I got to go back & make something new each day. I really loved that. It was a perfect way to relax a little amidst all the craziness of the conference.
Me & my roomies got out a couple of nights & explored Salt Lake City. It really is a beautiful place, especially for someone who doesn’t see mountains regularly! The flowers in temple square were absolutely astonishing too! I cannot believe how many flowers are there & how well-kept they are. I don’t even want to imagine how much money is spent on the upkeep! I felt like Alice in Wonderland with all the beautiful, bright colors. I have never seen a better flower site. Then again, I don’t think I’ve ever actually seen tulips in the ground before either. April is the perfect time to catch all the flowers.
Let’s talk about the parties- they had one Thursday night & Friday night. I started feeling funny during the party on Thursday night, so I did leave early & didn’t catch much of that party, unfortunately. Uber doors & Cents of Style did a great job on the Fire & Ice party, I just don’t have any photos…sorry y’all! They did everything in the dark & we had lots of glowing goodies- even glow in the dark makeup. How fun!
The next night, Heidi Swap teamed up with Fujifilm & all attendees got an instax camera! I’m in love with my light pink one. It was in a pretty little package with a camera strap, photo album, plenty of film & a few other fun things to go along with the camera. The theme was preppy palm springs poolside & there were cactuses everywhere! They turned out so cheerful & fun! They’d be a perfect Cinco de Mayo craft/decor item…I may have to make a smaller version for table centerpieces! The desserts were out of this world too! I was amazed with the variety & colors & flavors. Just look at how pretty everything looks! There was DIY Marquee bar set up too. They already had a large letter of our last name initial waiting for us & plenty of places with different supplies set up to decorate our letters. She also had a market set up where we could purchase other Heidi Swapp products. You got to redeem tickets for activities like posting to instagram, tagging them on facebook, showing the party on periscope, snapchatting & tweeting. I was so excited about it & really wanted to grab a light box. So I got all my tickets together & by the time I got up there the lady in front of me grabbed the last light box…so sad! But I was able to get some other great things & now I’ll have to go buy myself a light box! Overall, her party was incredible! Everyone had a great time!
SNAP organizes this super special thing called snap sisters, just like secret sisters, but with conference attendees. You can choose to participate or not. I highly encourage anyone going to play! It’s so much fun opening up even more sweet treats each day. It’s also exciting to “secretly stalk” your secret sister on her social media channels beforehand & get to know all her favorite things. I had an amazing secret sister! Juts look at the things she made me/gave me!
Unforuntately, I had just as much as trouble on my flight back home too. Never in my life do I want to travel alone again. My husband even made up a hashtag for my flight problems- #cathrynemealeycantfly. I got home 3 hours later than expected this time too. My flight from Salt Lake City—>Dallas was not so horrible, only a little late. I was stuck in Dallas for hours though, due to the awful weather! Luckily, I found some Whataburger. I couldn’t get on their wifi for the life of me though! So I succumbed to a stack of magazines. We were finally about to board, 2+ hours later when they had to switch planes & gates on us. We were tenth in line to fly out & had to wait on all the other planes to fly out, which took another half an hour or so of sitting. Once we landed, there was no on the ground to let us out. Apparently there had been bad lightning & everyone was ordered inside. So, we were stuck on the plane for yet another half hour or so. We all made it off long before out luggage & had to wait forever at the baggage claim. I was so happy to finally be out of there! I was scheduled to land at 5:30 & instead arrived after 8:30. What a day!
I’m so thankful I made it home when I did though. It was right before the horrible flooding & me & my husband were both off of work the next day due to high water. Which was something to be thankful for at that point!
Here’s some swag photos for your enjoyment.
Secret sister goodies!
Make & Takes!