BlogPaws 2017: There and Back

After 825 miles, four state lines, and a night in Atlanta, we finally reached our destination: BlogPaws 2017 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. I was so ready for four nights and three days of nonstop learning and networking . . . unlike my little sister, who was one big yawn.

The Bee managed to perk up, however, when we got into our hotel room and she realized that we had another floor-to-ceiling window. That girl loves a floor-to-ceiling window. (Check out my last post to see how much she loved the window at the W Atlanta – Midtown.)

It’s hard for me to describe to you just how wonderful a BlogPaws conference is. There are dinners and lunches with keynote speakers. Yep, that’s my little sister, Tallulah, on the big screen as everyone is arriving for lunch. And by everyone, I mean everyone: humans, dogs (on leashes and in strollers), cats (mostly in strollers), at least one bearded lizard, a ferret, and a therapy rat.

Animals even attended the fancy awards ceremony dinner . . . after walking the red carpet, of course. That’s a photo of my little family.

There were educational sessions all day long, and pets were welcome to attend. I got to assist Dr. Julie Buzby at her session, “All Hands on Dog: Ten Touches that Could Save Your Dog’s Life.” (That’s Dr. Buzby on the left and my human daddy on the right. I’ll be doing a blog post on the ten touches later this week so you humans can keep my dog friends healthy.) I look pretty alert in this photo, but mostly Tallulah and I just slept through the sessions while my humans did a lot of note-taking. We definitely perked up for our visits to the exhibit hall, where more than 50 exhibitors shared information about pet products, pet health, pet food, pet toys, pet training, and pet treats. More importantly–to Tallulah and me, at least–they also handed out samples. We’re pretty sure that heaven will be a lot like that exhibit hall. I’ll share some of my favorite products in the next couple of weeks . . . just as soon as my human mommy finishes unpacking the two huge duffle bags of goodies that we brought back home.

BlogPaws 2017 was a whole lot of activity . . . maybe just a bit too much activity for my little sister.

Alright, I’ll admit it. Between the meals and the educational sessions and the happy hours and the visits to the exhibit hall and meeting new friends, even I needed a little nap or two.

What? A girl can’t sneak away from a conference for a little beach time? It’s been almost three years since the first and only other time that I felt the sand between my toes. But when I set foot on Myrtle Beach, the pure joy came rushing back. It was Tallulah’s first trip to the beach. To say that she’s a beach girl, too, would be perhaps the biggest understatement ever. Tallulah loved, loved, loved the beach. Be assured that I will be sharing more pictures and stories from our beach afternoon in the next few weeks.

And just like that, BlogPaws 2017 was over and we were back in Atlanta and checking into another W Hotel.

Unfortunately for Tallulah, the W Atlanta – Buckhead does not have floor-to-ceiling windows . . .

. . . but it does have floor-to-ceiling mirrors, which she enjoyed almost as much. Really, little sisters can be so silly.

After dinner at pet-friendly Seven Lamps restaurant and a restful evening, we reloaded the chariot and started the long drive home to the Big Easy. Our excellent adventure had come to an end, but our wonderful memories will last forever. We saw so many sites, met so many nice people and their pets, learned so many new things, and had so much fun. Thank you, BlogPaws, for making it all possible. My humans are already talking about the next road trip the four of us will take. Stay tuned!

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Where in the World Was Harper Lee?

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Things were a little odd around my house a couple of weeks ago. I couldn’t quite put my paw on it, but something was up. Mommy was spending a lot of time in the kitchen. At first she was making human food . . . not that interesting. And then she started making dog treats, which really got my attention.

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She carefully packed all that human food and those yummy-smelling dog treats into this big red box. Wherever that big box was going, I wanted to go with it.

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Then my travel crate appeared. I was definitely going somewhere . . . hopefully with that red box filled with dog treats.

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My humans spent a lot of time studying this book. (Just for the record, my humans also looked at maps on the computer and on their phones. They’re not that old.) Hmmmm . . . why would my humans need to look at maps? Were we going somewhere new?

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And then Mommy pulled out this little accessory. Could it really be true? Were we really going to the beach? Was I about to check an item off of my Golden Bucket List? I didn’t dare get my hopes up, but I must tell you that I was starting to get more than a little excited.

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I was slightly less excited when, exactly one week before Thanksgiving, my humans gently nudged me prior to the break of dawn and whispered, “Miss Harper Lee, it’s time to wake up so we can start our excellent adventure.” It was still dark when we loaded my chariot. The chickens across the street weren’t even awake yet. That didn’t seem to bother my humans. We were off, and I was pretty happy that I have chauffeurs and I could get a little more sleep.

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It seemed as if we had just pulled out of the driveway when my chariot stopped. My humans were oddly excited about something. “Wake up, Miss Harper Lee. We’re in Mississippi. You’ve never been to Mississippi before. Wake up so we can take a picture of you in front of the Welcome to Mississippi sign.” Naturally, I obliged. I knew from looking over my humans’ shoulders as they perused the road maps that Mississippi has beaches. Was this our destination? Apparently not, because after a few quick clicks of the camera and then several minutes of walking around while my humans said, over and over again, “Go potty, Miss Harper Lee. Go potty,” we were back in the chariot and back on the road.

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Next stop: Alabama. Fortunately for me, the state welcome center was closed, so I got to sleep a few more miles before we reached the temporary welcome center. The nice welcome center lady invited me in, despite the fact that my daddy was wearing an LSU sweatshirt. Alabama and LSU are huge football rivals. I guess the welcome center lady was feeling charitable because Alabama beat LSU this year. Anyway, Mommy spotted this big mural and said, “Miss Harper Lee, sit here and practice your beach pose.” Yes! I knew I was going to the beach! I couldn’t help but smile as mommy snapped my picture. And then we got back into my chariot and continued to drive.

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At our next stop, I saw this sign. I was in Florida . . . land of sun and sand. Miles and miles of beaches. When would I feel the sand between my toes? When would I frolic in the waves? Who else would be there? And just exactly where were we headed? Stay tuned . . .