My fellow bloggers…….

I had a great opportunity to meet some fellow local bloggers at a recent event in Harrogate. Victoria and Chelsea of @HarrogateTribe very kindly invited me to the inaugural Harrogate Tribe Bloggers Breakfast. Being fairly new to the blogging scene, I thought what a great opportunity to meet and talk to other bloggers. It was held at the beautiful @WestParkHotel on the 22nd February. This is the first chance I have had to share with you my experiences of the day, so grab a coffee and a pew.

http://thewestparkhotel.com

As with going to any new event, meeting new people I prepare myself  mentally. I deep breathed my way along the walk down to the hotel. Not for anxiety purposes, but just to compose myself. I had a word with my mouth and brain, kindly requesting that they make a joint effort to work together for when I talk to new people. I like first impressions and people either walk away from me thinking “nice guy” or “oh my god, what did I just walk into”. I don’t mind though, it comes with the territory. So deep breath, focus and I enter the hotel. I have only been in a few times, but I love the set up there. The staff are always friendly, it has a nice and relaxed atmosphere and well worth a visit. As I was shown into the event room, there were a few familiar faces including the lovely Victoria Turner @theharrogategirl who was very encouraging as I started my blog. Zach Greaves who I had recently met of @Artusdigital . Zach is a very talented content writer and social media manager and worth checking out. I found my place at the table and was pleased to see a handwritten card welcoming me, some flowers and a West Park Hotel duck! My wonderful cousin had previously asked if everyone knew what I was getting into with me there. Well I was sat like a thorn between two roses with @theyorkshirepartridge and Amie of @fitnessforster Now these two made me very welcome as I sat down. I had previously seen their work on Instagram and have to say I’m really impressed with their content.

So, I had mentioned  my earlier chat with my ADHD mouth and brain. Mouth was engaging well, but brain stuttered a couple of times. Brain forgot what mouth was saying 3 times for just one sentence. We all got there in the end though without too much embarrassment. The event started off as we all introduced ourselves and what our blogs are about. There was a really diverse range of content and experience. There were some very kind words given to me on what I was sharing. I’m happy sharing my story and I just hope it encourages more people to do the same. Breakfast arrived – I had been torn between sourdough pancakes and eggs benedict. I opted for the eggs and wasn’t disappointed. All nicely cooked and presented. A successful meal is one you enjoy and don’t get all down yourself. With poached eggs, there was a certain danger element here, but my chin(s) and clothes remained unscathed as I finished and placed my knife and fork down.

I could just eat this again! (the food not the duck)

The conversations continued throughout the event and it was amazing to have some really positive interaction. It was clear there were some highly experienced bloggers and looking at their content, I was amongst some very talented people. One thing that has stood out was a willingness to be open, sharing ideas and successes. All in all, very encourging especially for yours truly. For a first event, it was really well put together by Harrogate Tribe and the West Park Hotel. It was good to capture the buzzing blog vibe going on locally again, with such a diverse range of topics. I’m really looking forward to the next one. I didn’t get chance to talk to everyone but hope to catch up with them again soon.

As an added bonus for the day, a local retailer – Cook – provided a voucher for a free ‘meal for 2’ from their frozen range. I’m not sure why I’d not been in before but headed down to check it out. All I can say is wow! What a choice of vibrant looking meals. I chose the fish pie which I had later that evening. I don’t normally eat a lot of fish but this was delicious. I also got a billionaires shortbread and a chocolate tart separately. The former didn’t last long and converted my wife who hadn’t been a caramel shortbread fan. I will have to find a better hiding place in future. The chocolate tart is still teasing me from the freezer every time I open it. A sample was available in the shop and was epic. It may be let out for a special occasion but at £8, it really is amazing value. One thing that really stood out though, were the team working in Cook. They are passionate and knowledgeable about their products. They are friendly and approachable which is often missing in today’s retail sector.

A very friendly welcome from Mike at Cook. http://www.cookfood.net

Safe to say, I enjoyed that day and ate well! It was good to be amongst like minded people. So a huuuuge thank you to all involved. The bloggers, Harrogate Tribe, Cook and the West Park Hotel. Hope to see you again soon.

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