Bethany Kehdy

A Champion of Middle Eastern Food & Recipes

Food Blogger Connect 2009- Back To Reality!

FBC Group at mind 2

Photo courtesy of MowieMeeta, Hilda, Mowie, Me, Jamie, Alessio, Sarka, Chris (Hubby) & Pam

Surreal. It’s about the only word I can come up with to describe all the feelings that came over me from Friday evening till now. In fact, come Monday after we had all said our goodbyes, I wandered around my house like a zombie- overwhelmed by the feeling of void as I was missing everyone and not really knowing what to do with myself. That weekend changed my life.


Photo courtesy of Oz– Mowie & me…

It’s hard to believe that it was only two months ago when I first met the wonderful Mowie . I had him over for dinner and although I’d only stumbled across his beautiful blog several weeks prior, it felt like we had known each other forever. We spoke a lot about blogging, naturally, and I confided in him about how solitary I had come to find food blogging since deciding to pursue it professionally and especially after being in “people friendly” sort of jobs, previously. I was also very disappointed about not being able to make it out to Blogher Food this year, after putting my name on the waiting list but to no avail. So, I shared with him an idea I had for creating a similar community here in the U.K. and asked for his help.


Photo courtesy of Kang Paul and others begining lunch…


Photo courtesy of Kang

I had no idea how serious this boy was. The following morning he was already reaching out to people and asking if they would be interested in attending. Jamie booked her flight immediately and along with Hilda got busy helping us organize. Within five days we had a venue booked, goodie bag sponsors and nearly 40 people on the RSVP list. The response was way beyond anything I had ever imagined, many coming from all over Europe and as far as India! The word kept spreading, the attendee numbers growing, the conference became a reality, a void stuffed in all senses of the word and here we are now… planning again… for a bigger and better Food Blogger Connect 2010!

The FBC09 response has been monumental, mind-boggling and even emotional.


Photo courtesy of Kang– Michelle, Jeanne, Solange and Jamie.

I cannot find the words to describe how much it meant to me personally to find like-minded people with an honest ambition and desire to meet with fellow peers and discuss their passion and how to make it a success. It’s a really satisfying feeling inside to know that I’m not the only person that suffers from doubts and even the solitude that can be inherent to the blogoshpere.

Levant Pam Davina B

Photo courtesy of MowiePam & Davina

One thing this conference has taught me is that we all deserve to be part of a tightly knit community, home to good-hearted, genuine and passionate food bloggers that are profoundly interested in supporting each other.

I also learnt that you cannot make a conference like this happen without a kick-ass, outer planetarium team! I have really had the pleasure of working with some very fabulous people and although they might regard me as the main engine behind FBC09- I’ll let you know that I regard them as the main reason I could have ever played such a role in making this event a reality.


Photo courtesy of Kang

I want to thank Hilda, Mowie, Jamie and Meeta for all their organizing efforts.

I want to thank Kang, Meeta, Jeanne, and Jamie for agreeing to speak at the event and for doing such a professional job! Of course, we never had our doubts and that’s why we picked you!


Photo courtesy of Kang

I want to thank every single one of you for making it out. Watching those video interviews solidified my opinion of food bloggers being mad hatters, honest, genuine and each with a stunning and unique sense of humour! I’m so proud to belong to such a community.

I want to thank Levant Restaurant and their very accomodating team, Unearthed for their olives with manchego and chillies and  chocolate chip mini-pannetoneLinwoods for their hemp seedsKeen’s organic extra mature cheddar;  Maldon sea salt, for their boxes of smoked salt , sea salt & whole black peppercorns & Mr. Popples Chocolate and LOLA’s cupcakes.


Photo courtesy of Kang

And lastly, I want to thank my husband for agreeing to be my skivvy all weekend. As some of you may already know, it didn’t all come for free!


Photo courtesy of Mowie

Food Blogger Connect 2010 is in the planning and the tentative dates are currently for June 5th & 6th. If you’re interested in joining us, leave me a comment or better yet tweet this: “Yes, I Can’t Wait for #FBC10!”  And don’t forget to visit Food Blogger Connect website for all the upcoming updates.

See you there 😉 x

35 thoughts on “Food Blogger Connect 2009- Back To Reality!

  1. i absolutely enjoyed meeting you, all the other foodies I’d been dying to meet and FBC09 was wicked! 😀
    so glad you organized it as i think us UK bloggers (and more) have been wanting to meet up and talk about our passion, learning from each other, etc. it was such a wonderful weekend and like you i found myself sitting about refusing to do any uni work becaues i wanted to savour the nostalgia and memories that I’d gotten during that weekend.
    Thank you Beth for having me at FBC09 too! I can’t wait for the next one which I know will totally explode this year’s conference.

    1. Davina- You are even more of a diva in real life! I loved meeting you and can’t wait for all the future meetups! Bx

  2. Beth my love, I’m so, so, so glad you emailed me that day after you saw my blog for the first time. If you hadn’t, we would have never met – what a tragedy that would have been!

    What a great show you put on for FBC’09. We all had such a blast not only planning it but being there and enjoying it – such fun!

    FBC ’10 is going to be AMAZING! xxx

  3. Arrr I have a tear in my eye reading about how this weekend was life changing for you, it was phenomenal wasn’t it.

    You guys did an astounding job pulling it all together and I’m so happy you decided to do it as I had felt very left out of the whole BlogHer conference – though truth be told I was late hearing about it even if travelling to SF had been an option (which it sooo wasn’t with a 2 year old).

    So I promptly snapped up the opportunity to come to Food Blogger Connect within five minutes of reading about it on Twitter. Within the hour I had Jamie tweeting me (for first time I think though I’d been following her for a little while via a Mowie Follow Friday recommendation) asking if I was going and I just knew it was going to make loads of friends and have a great time.

    It was wonderful and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading all the posts about it afterwards. Hope to see you soon!


    1. Thanks Sarah! It was absolutely fantastic meeting you and so lovely that we had the time to chat on Sunday. We should all have a meetup soon. xx

  4. It was a privilege working with you Beth and I wished I’d known you before BlogHer Food, I could have given you my ticket! instead of giving it to this blogger in the US who barely even thanked me for giving it and not selling it to her. I don’t think I expected it all to be so much fun and so overwhelming, bring on FBC10! and um, it might be worth thinking what the price tag is next time, LOL 😉

  5. This was amazing and meeting you all was in deed SURREAL! I want to thank you (& your skivvy Chris) for getting this thing going.

    Look forward to FBC o-10!!

  6. Hi B, was absolutely amazing to finally meet you and am super happy that FBC09 was a resounding success. Onward to FBC2010 now !

    BTW, I really like Chris’ choice of comfort footwear (in pic 1) 😀

  7. Aloha DKS…

    I had so much more fun than i could ever imagined!!
    I am pleased with the video footage and wish to thank Monkey and Claire for their assistance with the filming of you mad foodheads. It’s hopefully going to be edited this weekend
    by a vastly more talented video editor the one and only Hilda

  8. Yes, I can’t wait for #FBC10! And you said it perfectly: the magic, the emotions, the connection and now the void! The void because I so wish we could all live right next door to each other and share our passion and our energy every single day! But thrilled and energized as well: it did indeed change my life! And the friendships we formed – as you said it’s like we’ve been best friends forever! – breathtaking! It was a thrill and honor to be part of the best, most dynamic and passionate team of food bloggers ever and help to make this community feel like a family!

  9. OK, what I want to know is what the heck did they pump through the aircon at Levant to make absolutely EVERYBODY who was there wax so lyrical aout the warm, fuzzy feelings that this magical weekend generated?? I think if my husband has to hear me start one more sentence with “and another thing about Saturday…” we may be headed for counsellling 😉

    I have been to other gatherings of bloggers and I think that one of the things that made this one unique was the fact that the more experienced bloggers were definitely there to share their experience, and to help to build up the talent of the newbies. That and the fact that nobody was trying to act cool, calm and collected – just noisy, giggly, whooping, hugging enthusiasm!! I felt like a teenager again 🙂 I told Meeta this morning that I thought the organising committee was a bit like Ghostbusters – somebody was the heart, somebody was the head, somebody was the lungs etc etc – and the whole was definitely more than the sum of the parts!

    As for FBC10, hell yeah!! I’ll be there. My proposal for a slogan is “FBC10 – sexier than cannoli and beter than botox!” 😀

  10. My Bourne ….FOOTIE, you rock!!!!!!!!You need to start a DKS for Chris group! I told my husband you footie-foodie analogy. He smiled.

    Now Beth….WOW. You inspire(d) me. How? You sought, you asked and you made it happen! Impressive. At the airport, I wanted to get ‘Olive’ but there was none on the shelves and you know what I did, I asked!!!! Inspired by FBC, yes I did.

    You never know till you question, till you seek,….you just might find…warmth, friendship, confidence, knowledge, hope…and more. With loveXXX

  11. Count me in for FBC 2010 – I’m so pleased it’s in June and we don’t have to wait a whole year! It was a great event, really well organised – the only problem was there wasn’t enough time to talk to everyone! And I can’t wait for another goodie bag – that one was so great! 😀

  12. Beth, what a fantastic event you pulled together! Thanks for everything. Not only did you spearhead the organising but you made everyone feel welcome with your broad smile and excitement. I really felt welcomed and as though the more experienced bloggers were willing to take me under their wings. All the advice and tips I received have been excellent. I’d love to meet up again and I’m very much looking forward to FBC10!

  13. Loving your slogan Jeanne!
    Thanks Pam- You’re so bubbly and funny in real life too xx
    Oz- You were one of the many I met that had a huge impact on me- I’m so looking forward to my new friendship with you! You’re such an amazing girl and I love your spirit!
    Nora- Yes that was really the only downfall- but we are factoring in tons and tons of time for the next one!
    Sarah- Thank you so much and I’m glad you felt welcome.
    Paul- I should’a known 🙂
    Anne- Look foward to you attending the next one 🙂

    Kisses to all xx

  14. I think you already know that I am well interested in attending FBC10 – with Jeanne’s slogan, how could I not! So glad that I made it over on Saturday and lovely to meet you (if only briefly).

  15. Yes, I can only agree, it was all surreal and absolutely amazing! I’m so happy I met you and everybody from FBC team, you did a wonderful job and you rock!! 🙂 I don’t want to imagine what would it be like if I didn’t come to FBC 09! Thank you!

  16. Beth, let me thank you again for organising this. It was simply wonderful to meet everyone; all those familiar amd not so familiar faces, but ones that I will remember forever! Bring on FBC’10!!

  17. Beth, sounds like a fabulous event. I would love to find out if there is something going on next year because we may be in Europe in November or so 2010. 🙂

  18. Loved meeting you Beth….& your sporty & wonderful other half. Thanks for having us over. Thanks for organising such a FABULOUS meet. cannot believe time flew by so soon. Made French fougasse this morning with stuff out of your gooduie bag & thought of you. Hurry up & ‘do it’…I wanna hold your ha-a-a-a-a–a-nd!! HUGSSSSSSSS!

  19. Such an amazing concept, Food Blogger Connect will rule the food world! I’ve got June on my calendar…not to blog myself, but to enjoy eating with the world’s best food bloggers!

  20. I was searching through Google doing research for a blog when i came across this article and I found it very informative and interesting even though it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for! Really entertaining blog, thanks for the read.! Suzanne xx

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