Last night was the second annual Ohio Blogging Association Cookie Swap. It was my 5th maybe 6th outing with the OBA including the state wide blog swaps, but my first ever Cookie Swap. True to pretty much every meet up that I have been too, I always feel a little nervous walking in to these things because attendance is always different. But the thought of sugar and sweets, oh, and wine, tends to make things a little bit easier.
Our fearless OBA leader, Alicia, picked a great venue for this years Cookie Swap at the Battery Park Wine Bar. Also known as Y.O.L.O. Which only until I had been there the week before, I had no idea that stood for “You Only Live Once.” Is that what they intended it to mean? I have to assume so, because if anyone is going to drink as much wine and eat as many cookies as we did, the Y.O.L.O. mentality is the only thing that will save you. Touché, Wine Bar.
The location was perfect for this month’s meet up. I really like the bar and the space, plus its really close to my house. The food at the Wine Bar is very good and I ordered a couple different things including my favorite, sweet potato french fries. Y.O.L.O. offered the group happy hour prices on cocktails and our server did an awesome job. I was never without a Riesling.
You did not have to bake cookies to come. Participating in the Cookie Swap was optional. Even if you didn’t want to bake anything you were still encouraged to come, though I think almost everyone in attendance made something. I decided to bake Vegan Chocolate Chip Peppermint Cookies. I was going to do a vegan batch and a non-vegan batch. I experimented with a vegan batch on Sunday and had no idea what to expect.
I couldn’t seem to get the recipe right, the dough was really sticky, and since vegan cookies don’t brown like regular cookies, I left them in the oven for to long thinking they weren’t done and then they were to hard. But tasted good. So I decided to play with the recipe a bit on Wednesday. Other than burning one cookie sheet because I put it on the lower rack in an attempt to make more batches more efficiently, they turned out really good. So good in fact, I sacked the idea of making a non-vegan dozen and made straight vegan friendly cookies only.
As always, the evening starts out with drinks and food and mingling. My girl’s Jen and Kimbery were in the mood for some cookies and it is always nice to catch up with the girls I don’t get to see that often. Julie of ROJ Running came out with her Strawberry Limeade cookies and we talked trail running. I am hoping to have a buddy for the Fools Run 25k in April.
There were a lot of familiar faces and some new faces as well. Along with some new bloggers in attendance, spouses and significant others came out as well to support the blogger in their life. I haven’t had the chance to meet a lot of my blogger buddies’ better halves before. Even Alicia’s mother came to help out and worked name tag duty for the group. She has way better handwriting than I do and some sweet creative skills.
After much food was eaten and drinks were drank, each cookie swap participant gave a little bit of info on what their cookie was. I made sure to express that though my cookies lacked all those good baking items like eggs and butter, they were still really good and to give them a chance. I have none left, so everyone at least humored me for the night.
Just as the swap began Julie and I started chatting out life, running, and getting into shape, and before I knew it the cookies were about gone. So I quickly loaded up on what was left and even talked a couple people in to donating a cookie or two from the boxes that had been picked over before I got there (thanks Sarah!). So even though I didn’t bring my Handsome Friend to the swap this time, I do have someone to share all the non-vegan-y cookies with. There is no way I can eat all these awesome baked goods myself.
I love these meet-ups and try not to miss any. It has definitely transitioned from me going to these events to meet bloggers and discuss running, fitness, and other blogging lifestyles; into an opportunity to catch up with people I now considered friends and see what they’ve got going on in their lives.
Bloggers in attendance this month:
- Alicia from Poise in Parma plus Hans and PIP Mom
- Amanda from Clue into Cleveland and husband Scott
- Brian from Run Swanson and Katie
- Crystal from Eat Drink Cleveland
- Jen from Why CLE? and husband Matt
- Julie from ROJ Running
- Kimberly from SMITTEN…in cleveland
- Kristian from man-gi-am-OH and Ohio Festivals & his son Max
- Lane from Lane Baldwin Photography and husband Nathan
- Nidhi from NIDHIZZLE
- Sarah from Cooker Girl
- Stuart from sosAssociates
The next OBA meet up will be held on January 18th (practically my birthday, this was meant to be, I just know it) and will involve drinks and karaoke at NoodleCat. I will in NO WAY be missing this event. However, I think that all video recordings should be prohibited. I’m just saying. For more information on the Ohio Blogging Association, you can check it out on facebook or follow the OBA on Twitter.