I wanted to say a very special thank you to everyone who nominated me and voted for Fabulicious Food! in the Britmums Brilliance in Blogging Awards (BiBs) which took place last night at The Brewery in London. The competiton was extremely high and as each category was announced and the winners stepped forward, I felt more and more nervous in anticipation of being mentioned as a finalist in the Outstanding category. Ahead of me came so many brilliant bloggers writing about a whole host of hot topics. I didn’t win, but it was a great experience and a very enjoyable evening.
Katy Hill, a proud mum-of-two and a television presenter, did a sterling job of presenting the awards. She was funny, down-to-earth and somehow managed to keep order expertly in a room filled with over-excited, chatty mums and dads.
As a food blogger, I often feel very small and never more so than in a room full of parents blogging about much more serious and thought-provoking topics – than cakes and suppers. Raising children with special needs, promoting campaigns for starving children in third world nations, coping with bullying at school. Parent bloggers also constantly battle against the wider social and political issues that parents have to deal with, often in the face of comments from respected individuals, such as Cherie Blair who this week came down a bit harshly on stay-at-home mothers, or those who throw mud at mothers who chose to return to work instead. I genuinely think that you just can’t win, no matter what you do. In my case, ditching my legal career to ‘stay-at-home’ and raise my children as well as blogging about food (also criticized on Twitter this week by well-known food journalists) me feel tiny and pretty useless this week, so attending the BiBs Awards and being a finalist was a great boost.
I was especially happy for Sarah Trivuncic at Maison Cupcake who proudly flew the flag for food bloggers, winning the Britmums ‘Tasty’ Award. Sarah is also a ‘stay-at-home mum’ who has just had her first cookery book published (I’ll be writing about it very soon!) and as one of the very first blogs I read and commented on, has been a huge inspiration to me. I know that she inspires many, many others and the judges of her category were extremely complimentary of her achievements. Well done, Sarah! May your skills and achievements grow from strength to strength. I wonder whether Cherie Blair reads Sarah’s food blog? Oh no wait, she has a cook, and a nanny, doesn’t she? Silly me.
Though I didn’t win, I was nevertheless pretty proud that Fabulicious Food! made it into the Outstanding category, too. A fantastic writer called Ben Wakeling won the Outstanding accolade, with his extremely amusing and compelling blog called Goodbye Pert Breasts - check it out, he made me really chuckle as I read and became hooked on every post.
In other categories, my local St Albans blogging friend Lisa Pearson won the ‘Inspire’ category with her blog The Mummy Whisperer. There was practically a St Albans blogger in every category and I was so pleased that Lisa brought home the trophy for the town!
After the awards, I also went to dinner with four bloggers who completely blew me out of the water, Steph, Jenny, Renata and Hayley. They each blog about raising children with special needs or have particular health issues and reading any of their posts pretty much reduces me to tears every time. In particular, a post from Hayley at Downsside Up called Living Life to the Full, about her daughter Natty, really made me cry this morning. Thank you ladies for letting me join you for dinner and for sharing your stories.
So, after an inspiring and entertaining night, all that is left to say is again, is a huge thank you. To every single one of my readers who voted for me and supported me on the night via text, Facebook and Twitter. To Michelle at Britmums for her organisational emails leading up the event and to Susanna Scott and Jennifer Howze, the founders of Britmums, too. And of course, to my husband and my family and friends who continue to support my food-obsessions, ramblings about food, who find camera cards full of food photographs and who offer technical support and advice, but who are extremely well fed and watered!
The awards ceremony was part of an overall weekend conference called Britmums Live which you can find more about by reading the Britmums blog.
Oh, and parent bloggers made The Guardian this morning, too in an article called ‘Stop insulting, start listening to mums who blog.’ Perceptions are definitely moving and changing.
Did you attend Britmums Live or the Awards? What was your experience or overall impression?