Fun at The SoCal Social

The SoCal Social

The SoCal Social

When I first started blogging in June of this year, I had NO idea that I would be able to meet such amazing fellow bloggers, to learn from them & grow from the things I read on their blogs. My friend Barbara, from Chase The Star, told me about this blogger meet up & asked if I wanted to go. Seeing how it was only about 1 1/2 hours away and sounded really fun, I said sure! However, as soon as I said yes, I started getting extremely nervous. I am not a social person & I suffer from anxiety, especially when it comes to meeting new people (add depression in the mix & I am a freakin’ catch, let me tell you!) I tried to put that all aside & just go and have fun!

The SoCal Social

The SoCal Social is a great get together for bloggers in Southern CA. It’s organized by Vivienne from The V Spot and Bev from Flamingo Toes.  We all met up in The Orange Circle, located in Historic Downtown Orange, CA.  it’s just a beautiful and fun place to go!  The area is known for their wonderful shops (everything from antiques to toys to vintage clothes) and their restaurants.  For the first 4 hours of the day, we got to walk around to all the amazing shops and see so many different crafts, antiques, beautiful furniture, artwork…you name it, we saw it.

After walking around so many fun places (we even got to see 3 wedding parties taking their pictures around us!), we met up with all the other bloggers at Avila’s El Ranchito Mexican Restaurant for dinner.  We were able to sit in our own room that was just beautiful!  I was incredibly impressed at how organized everything was there, how easy it was to walk out to get our food & then walk right back in, how nice everyone was there and let’s not forget how great the food was!  I had everything from a cheese enchilada to carnitas to rice & beans. Hey, if they offered it to me, you better believe I was going to try it!

There were so many great giveaways from some AMAZING sponsors!  There were craft kits, craft books, and my new friend, Monika from Life with Lovebugswon a tea for 4 at Paris In A Cupwhich is this amazing shop & tea salon.  They had served us some wonderful chicken salad sandwiches on croissants earlier in the day & one of their AMAZING macarons (By the way, I’ve seen these before and always thought they were a soft, dry cookie but man oh man these were so soft & yummy!)

The SoCal Social

Barbara, Monika & Me

After we ate, we got to hear from Author/TV Host/Fashion Designer Mark Montano.  Mark gave us all an advanced copy of his new book The Big-Ass Book of Bling (more on the book & him tomorrow!).  Then we got to choose dessert from this beautiful table of yumminess made for us by Meringue Bake Shop.  It was all so delicious and we even got one of their PushCakes in our swag bags!  I don’t know how they get a cupcake in a push up type of thing and honestly, I don’t really care because it was SO good (yeah, I ate that last night too, what?)

All in all, it was a fabulous day & I feel like I made some good friends & real connections. I will say though that I don’t think I will ever get used to someone saying “Oh!  I’ve been to your blog!” but I’ll also never get tired of hearing it either.  A HUGE, GIANT thank you to Tauni, from SNAP!  Tauni is the reason I was able to attend the SoCal Social. I won the SoCal Social ticket in a giveaway and I am SO glad I did! Thanks again, Tauni!



By: Tara Kramarsky

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Tara is a mom & wife who lives with her husband & 3 kids in San Diego, CA. A Spectacled Owl was started in June 2012 because Tara loved entering giveaways on other blogs & wanted to do the same thing for other people. It's quickly grown & turned into much more than she could ever have imagined.
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  1. Anne Kimball says:

    Hi Tara, I’m Anne from Life on the Funny Farm (, and I’m visiting from the Mom’s Monday Mingle.

    It is so nice to be able to meet “cyber friends” irl, isn’t it? Some of my best friends are women that I met through blogging before I ever saw them face to face. It’s very special getting to meet them.

    Anyway, it’s nice to “meet” you! Hope you can pop by my blog sometime to say hi…

    • aspectacledowl says:

      Anne, thank you so much for stopping by! If I really stop & think about it, so many people in my life have been from the internet :) I even met my husband online back in 1997!

  2. Sounds like you had a great time!! :)
    Jessie recently posted..Fun With the HABA Farm Play SetMy Profile

  3. That sounds like so much fun! I am so glad you go to go and enjoy such a wonderful experience. You are very lucky to live somewhere where those events take place :)
    Bobbie recently posted..Able Planet- Providing Better Hearing TechnologyMy Profile

  4. Sounds like you had fun. It’s great to be able to meet fellow bloggers in real life!
    Diane @ Philzendia recently posted..Planning Our Dream Trip To Paris With GogobotMy Profile

  5. Sounds like you had a lot of fun! I really need to go to a blogging or SEO conference!
    Susan Bewley recently posted..Apples to Apples ReviewMy Profile

  6. What a lovely blog! I am your newest follower and would love it if you would stop on by my blog and return the favor!


  7. Loved, loved, loved finally meeting you at the Socal Social Tara! We had such a great time didn’t we? Great recap of the day’s events!! Oh how I wish my hair wasn’t a frizz-ball in these pictures! LOL Thanks for sharing this friend! XO

    Barbara at Chase the Star

    chasethestar dot net

    • aspectacledowl says:

      Seriously, I\’m gonna come up there & smack you for that frizzy hair talk! If you are what a bad picture looks like, I wanna look like you!

  8. Yay Tara!!! I’m so glad you were able to join us this year – it was great to meet you!
    And I’m with you on those Macaron’s from Paris in a Cup – they are the yummiest! :) Hopefully we’ll see you next year!
    Beverly {Flamingo Toes} recently posted..A Little Mummy DishtowelMy Profile

    • aspectacledowl says:

      Beverly! You guys did such an amazing job! I had a lot of fun & I will definitely be there next year. I will make sure to get a room in advance next time & stay the night :)

  9. Its always so much fun to meet people with whom you have things in common. Sounds like it was a great night.
    robyn recently posted..Easy Peasy Cheesy Broccoli SoupMy Profile

  10. That sounds like a great time.
    Debi@ The Spring Mount 6 Pack recently posted..I get distracted: Facebook FunnyMy Profile

  11. aspectacledowl says:

    Hi Maryann! I remember saying hi to you too :) I know we ran into each other in one of the shops. I\’m so glad we all had bags so I knew who to say hi to!

  12. That looks like so much fun. Blogging has let me meet so many wonderful peeps like yourself. I can’t until BlogHer next year. It’s 3 1/2 hours from my house, and I can’t wait to meet all the bloggers I have been chatting with over the last 1 1/2 years online.
    Ashley S recently posted..Comment on Monday Quiz About Me 2: All that is Crunchy by TaraMy Profile

  13. Sounds like a great time! I wish there were more blogging events near me!

  14. Hello Tara,

    What a lovely summary post about Saturday’s event. We met at the beginning of the event, still while standing around in the circle. I was with my daughter, Elysa, and we spoke for a little while before everyone went their way to shop and hop!

    I wish I had the chance to speak with more of the fabulous women there, but I guess there were just so many of us! Next year, we’ll have to reserve a larger room.

    I’m now your new follower and look forward to catching up on your posts. I hope you will come by altered-artworks for a visit sometime soon, and say hey!
    Doreen (Altered-Artworks) recently posted..Spooky Socks Make for Easier MidtermsMy Profile

    • aspectacledowl says:

      I remember you :) It was great talking to you & your daughter! I will definitely head over to your blog & say hi! Thank you so much for stopping by :)

  15. Oh I do so love the meeting in the real world… maybe Hawaii needs a little get together– maybe you should join us… =)

    Following ya now from Monday Mingle and lovin’ it. If you are up for a bit of a ride come join me as we ride the wave of life at– guaranteed to be filled with ups and downs and everything in between and I’d love to have you with us.


    • aspectacledowl says:

      Oh my gosh, I would LOVE to come to Hawaii some day! Thank you so much for following me! I will definitely return the follow :)

  16. Hi Tara, it was so great to meet you at SoCal Social! Hopefully you’ll come up to Orange again and we can have a reunion. Looking forward to keeping in touch,

  17. This looks like a lot of fun!
    Motherhood on the Rocks recently posted..GRACO SNUGRIDE CLICK CONNECT 40 REVIEW (PLUS A GIVEAWAY!)My Profile

  18. aspectacledowl says:

    Melanie, it was great meeting you too!

  19. Great wrap up post! It was an amazing fun-packed day! Great meeting you!
    Pop Art Minis – Joni recently posted..SoCal Social Wrap Up…2 Days Of Shopping, Swag, Socializing & So Much MORE!My Profile


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