Bloggers in Sin City

A few months ago, I signed up to attend Bloggers in Sin City, and it finally happened this past weekend in Las Vegas. It was the best. And to illustrate just how great it was, this is going to be a photo-heavy post!

Honestly, the impetus for attending was not to meet or hang out with the bloggers, though I was certainly anticipating that to be an awesome side perk. I’ve been to Vegas twice before. I thought once was enough for a lifetime, and I had already doubled that quota. But, seeing Shania Twain perform live has been a big life dream for me ever since discovering her music as a teenager, and she hasn’t been performing for years – over a decade, I believe. I’ve said for ages that I would spend my last penny to attend her concert, and then she got a show in Vegas. I knew I *had* to get there to see it, but who to go with? Enter BiSC.

I had so many fun experiences! Stayed at the Flamingo in a baller room, and would stay with them again in a heartbeat. I went on a rollercoaster. I played Cards Against Humanity to break the ice.

Best Cards Against Humanity haiku: "A defective condom; Leaving an awkward voicemail; A disappointing birthday party."

Best Cards Against Humanity haiku: “A defective condom; Leaving an awkward voicemail; A disappointing birthday party.”

Cocktail mixers and brunch buffets.

Welcome mixer at Serendipity3. Source: Karlyn Williams

Welcome mixer at Serendipity3. Source: Karlyn Williams

Cheated and wore grey to the white party!

Cheated and wore grey to the white party!

Reading in the VIP section at the pool. Day drinking Bloody Marys. BLOWN AWAY by Cirque du Soleil’s aquatic show “O”.

No photos allowed during the show, but this was the opening montage before the curtain rose at Cirque du Soleil's "O"

No photos allowed during the show, but this was the opening montage before the curtain rose at Cirque du Soleil’s “O”

Danced half the night away with my fellow BiSC-uits. Partied on the rooftop of PURE nightclub at Caesar’s. Did a tasting of nine whiskies at the Whisky Attic.

The knight in shining armour, guarding the largest collection of whisky in North America!

The knight in shining armor, guarding the largest collection of whisky in North America!

Flight of 9 whisky taster shots

Flight of 9 whisky taster shots

All of us also enjoyed a great swag bag. Check out the table full of them waiting for us at registration, with bonus snacks!

Gift Bags

Gift Bags

My favourite two sponsored items in the gift bags were the Stackwines and the Firmoo sunglasses. Stackwines have a brilliant concept: A stack of four disposable wine glasses, pre-filled with wine, stacked together in a package. You can have a glass of wine (to go! All the better, as this is allowed in Vegas!) and leave the rest unopened & fresh. Karlyn and I enjoyed a glass each evening while getting ready for festivities. I hope they sell it in Canada. And we were able to select our own sunglasses ahead of time from Firmoo and received them in our gift bags. I am in love with mine and highly recommend ordering from them if you’re in need of some shades.

We were all sporting our Firmoo sunnies at the pool. Source: Karlyn Williams

We were all sporting our Firmoo sunnies at the pool. Source: Karlyn Williams

It was all incredibly well-organized and great value created for all of us by the inimitable Nicole and Doniree. But in the end, the sponsors and the events added up to something greater than the sum of their parts. BiSC became more to me than some fun stuff to do and fun people to do them with.

I’m a fairly low-key, introverted person. I can be a lot of fun, but primarily in one-on-one or small group settings. I do not shine at group events of this nature; others usually form stronger bonds than I do. For the most part, this was no different. I haven’t spent a lot of time in conversation with a lot of the BiSCuits reading this. In some cases, I was too intimidated by their big Internet presence to approach them and say much. I listened to everyone cry at our farewell brunch and talk about having all the feelings; there were genuine crushed hearts at the thought of saying goodbye to each other. I had a hard time with this, and wondered if I missed out. The truth is, I just can’t connect with 65 people in one weekend well enough to feel crushed at seeing them go. But I did make a few great new friends. My roommate Karlyn was the best roomie and Shania accomplice I could have possibly asked for. I felt genuine kinship with the lovely bloggers and excellent humans with whom I did share deeper conversations.

But I’m not one to dwell on goodbyes and I couldn’t deal with the sadness, because I just know that we’ll continue the friendships and if we really connected, we’ll see each other again. I cannot wait to road trip down to Portland with Dominique and Simone to visit Larissa. I am ecstatic that Megan is coming to Vancouver soon and I’ll be able to see her again. I was delighted to make a new friend in Chicago because I want to travel there, and to hear stories of climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro! And my fellow Canadians, you have my heart. All my BiSCuits, you’ve been special to me.

Instead of sadness, what I felt at the end were the stirrings of inspiration. This is an amazing group of people who have collectively achieved so much and revealed such raw honesty, and the result was a real lightbulb moment for me. So many seemed to have experienced – or are still experiencing! – very real struggles and obstacles along the way to their goals. These struggles are usually hidden from public view. I have run up against obstacle after obstacle over the last several years and have noticed myself shrinking my goals and settling for less, because I started to believe that’s all I was capable of… that successful people don’t repeatedly fail and struggle as I have, and that I’m simply not destined to fulfill my bigger dreams. What I learned – something that wasn’t an intellectual shock but I had never really internalized before – was that everyone wades through shit to get where they want to go, and that the only way to reach big dreams is to keep wading through. I’d started thinking that the continual struggle meant failure, but it just means I’m alive. And it made me realize all that I want is possible.

That was the real value of this weekend to me. It was exhilarating and invigorating not for the break from work or the drunken shenanigans or even Shania, but because my BiSCuit tribe gave me permission to dream big again. Thank you to you all for that incredible gift.

All images are my own unless otherwise indicated.

13 thoughts on “Bloggers in Sin City

  1. Casey E. Palmer

    Good summary, Laura — I think everyone had a VERY different experience with BiSC, and for me it’s good to read up on each and every one of them to appreciate the full scope of everything that happened during those four days. I remember all the times you’d tell me about how large groups weren’t really your thing, but I think you did just fine at shining on your own amidst all the chaos 🙂

    Though we didn’t share many of the same activities, I still enjoyed the time I DID share with you, and hopefully this is far from the end!

    Here’s to new friendships and obliterating those obstacles, one after another!

    1. A Little Coffee Post author

      Thank you Casey! I loved meeting you, chatting with you and dancing up a storm. You brought ALL THE ENERGY and made so many people happy with your infectious positive attitude.

      Hope to see you again, friend… I do end up in Toronto from time to time! (I mean, obviously, after all it is the centre of the universe.)

  2. Karlyn

    Here here to wading through shit to reach dreams!!!! LOVE CHU LADY MISS YOU MUCHOS. And please let me know when you have that bed set up in your spare room aye?

  3. nicopolitan

    We both cheated at the white party and wore gray. 😉 It was fun to meet you (albeit in short bursts), and you’re keeping up my streak of getting along with 100% of Canadians I’ve met in my life.

    One thing to remember about goals, though — *none* of us have our shit together. But there’s safety in numbers, and we root for our own. Go get what you want, and don’t let anyone tell you you deserve less.

    1. A Little Coffee Post author

      REBELS UNITE! We Canadians can’t help our awesomeness, just like we can’t help our chronic apologizing or our case of the Ehs.

      It’s funny, I KNOW intellectually that everyone just posts the good stuff and edits out the rest, and that’s why it looks like everyone else has it all together, but my emotional brain just didn’t get the memo. It’s been holding me back for years. This year seems to be the Year of Laura though, so here’s to making shit happen.

  4. Kate @ Suburban Sweetheart

    Laura, I feel like we met almost NOT AT ALL, which, now that I’m home, I’m realizing seems to be a theme with far too many people. But I really love your recap, especially the part about how BiSC helped you realize you’ve been settling for less & that you absolutely do not need to & should not continue to. I’m feeling much the same way, & I really hope I can keep the momentum going – & that you can, too!

  5. Pingback: || Being a #BiSC-uit: A Weekend That Changes EVERYTHING

  6. Caryn

    I love your honesty and am glad that BiSC encouraged/reminded you to Dream Big. If you ever need a reminder of how amazing and beautiful and lovely you are, I’ll be the first in line to tell you so. And I loved what you said about keeping wading through and how “the continual struggle meant failure, but it just means I’m alive”. No one is perfect, everyone has their own battles, but it is important to know that any dream you have is possible. and you have 67 other people who believe you. xoxo

  7. terra

    Lovely recap and it was great to meet you and even better to share whiskey with you because really, that was a pretty damn amazing experience.

  8. Mich

    awesome recap!
    it’s so great to read about everyone’s different experiences at BiSC and what they took from it. So glad i got to meet you! Vancouver isn’t too far from me so we will definitely cross paths again 🙂


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