Random Thoughts on Day 1 of our McDonalds Adventure

We've been up and since 5:30 AM, so what am I doing, 15 hours later, straddling a toilet, facing the bathroom wall, with my laptop perched on the toilet back? I'm in a (bath)room at the Hyatt Lodge at the McDonald's Campus in Oak Brook, IL and my kids are asleep (hence the need to sit on the toilet for such an extended period of time. Fortunately there's a shaving power outlet nearby). I'm at the McDonald's Family Time Getaway event, joining 9 other bloggers at McDonalds' and BlogHer's invitation, to see what goes on behind the Golden Arches, ask some questions, and get to know the company better.

I'm too exhausted to write out a nicely crafted, insightful, witty-in-all-the-right-places post (not that I can ever do that even in the best of situations), so for now I'll leave you with some mediocre photos (sorry, I decided to pass on our bulky, heavy DSLR and take our 8-year-old point-and-shoot camera whose lens cover doesn't even retract properly, but kickass McDonalds' photographers have been roaming around all day so I'll get to share much better photos after it's all over) and some random thoughts that passed through my mind throughout the day:

1) I think it's going to be a great trip. We hadn't even left Silicon Valley yet and the kids were already having a great time, reveling in their first-ever limo ride. To quote The Pea: Ooooooh, a limo!! It's so smoooooth.... and it doesn't even smell funny.

2) This flight should be called Twin Air... there are 3 sets of twins on it! And 2 sets happen to be headed to the same place -- mine, and a couple of adorable girls, Ro and Ree, whose mother M3 happens to blog at Do They Have Salsa in China. I think I've made a new bloggy friend!

3) McDonald's has a hotel on the grounds of their headquarters?!!!

4) Dang, I wish I had brought my swimsuit. I guess I'll just have to content myself with tweeting and checking email by the pool.

5) What did I do to deserve this?? I'm in the company of some majorly amazing bloggers: BooMama, LooneyTunes, Suburban Turmoil.... I'm nothing compared to them....

6) Get a hold of yourself, idiot, and stand up tall! You may own just a teensy corner of the blogosphere but you're doing what you love and that's what matters. Besides, you're a well-respected writer for the Silicon Valley Moms Blog.... oh, wait. SV Moms is closing at the end of this month. Sniff.... I'm nothing.......

7) Speaking of Suburban Turmoil, I'm bummed that I didn't register in time for the CheeseburgHer party at BlogHer 2010. I had so much fun at this party last year, but I procrastinated on registering this year, and now it's full, and I'm on the wait list. Since Lindsay is at this event too, I'm wondering, if I can ask reeeeelly nicely, maybe she could sneak me in? Or, since McDonald's is a CheeseburgHer sponsor, maybe they could sneak me in? Those McDonald's Snuggies at the Mom 2.0 CheeseburgHer were the best swag ever and I want in!

8) McDonald's headquarters is beautiful. It's lush and green, full of big, old trees, grass and flowers. There's a lake stocked with fish that you can go paddleboating on, and paths for walking and biking. The only thing I don't like about it are the mosquitoes. It's like being back in Manila!

9) I'm impressed with the planning and effort that went into the whole event, especially the kids' activities. They hired a kids' event company to oversee the kids' activities, and they seem to have one staff member for each child. When we checked in, we received a huge bag full of Last Airbender Happy Meal Toys, and at dinnertime there were more kiddie goodies, including an old-fashioned metal lunchbox for each kid, stickers and balloons.

10) Six years old is NOT too old to make friends with Ronald McDonald.

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