Cottonelle Puppy’s TBEX 2012 Adventure in Photos

Getting Fresh!opens IMAGE file

Getting Fresh!

It’s been a month, yet the feeling of Colorado’s cool hug and fresh mountain air is still vivid from my trip to attend the opens in a new windowTBEX Conference in Keystone. (Travel Blog Exchange) If you followed by opens in a new windowTwitter stream during the conference, you know I didn’t travel alone (nor lonely).

Up, Up and Away on Southwest from Tampa to Denveropens IMAGE file

Up, Up and Away on Southwest Airlines from Tampa to Denver

A Cottonelle Puppy joined me! No, not a living puppy but an adorable little pocket-sized toy that fits perfectly in my new opens in a new windowScotteVest travel vest, is something my cats enjoyed tossing around, and a great way to document my TBEX experience.

Hertz is Good, Real Good. They Knew the Driver is Navigationally Challenged.opens IMAGE file

Hertz is Good, Real Good. They Knew the Driver is Navigationally Challenged.

Where Do I Turn?

Guess you could say the Cottonelle Puppy was my sidekick during my Colorado adventure. Although I had to wait an insanely long time at Denver International Airport’s Hertz counter, they took care of me with opens in a new windowNeverLost. Guess they received the memo I’m navigationally challenged.

View from the Room at Keystone Resort - Lakeside Accommodationsopens IMAGE file

View from the Room at Keystone Resort - Lakeside Accommodations

What a View from Keystone Resort!

Coming from Florida, the fireplace in my opens in a new window Lakeside Village Condo at Keystone Resort added coziness but I really loved the view! Lets get real, I live in flat Florida and the only mountains we have are either speed bumps, ant hills or my favorite, our white billowing clouds. Looking out my Keystone Resort window – better yet, sitting on the patio – and looking out over the lake and mountains was refreshing for the mind and lungs.

Whee! Up the Gondola to 11,000+ Feetopens IMAGE file

Whee! Up the Gondola to 11,000+ Feet

It Was the Altitude!

I previously blogged about opens in a new windowthe so fab TBEX opening reception hosted by Vail Resorts at 11,444 feet above sea level. I do believe it’s the first time I had to ride a gondola for a function and it was worth every second.

"Let's Play!" Cottonelle Puppy Meets Flash the Rescue Dogopens IMAGE file

"Let's Play!" Cottonelle Puppy Meets Flash the Rescue Dog

Woof!

Cottonelle Puppy wasn’t the only working canine that night. We met Flash, an avalanche rescue dog who was just finishing up training. Flash’s trainer agreed for the joint photo but Flash wanted to play rather than say “cheese” for the camera.

Expedia Knows How to Throw a Party!opens IMAGE file

Expedia Knows How to Throw a Party!

Yee-haw!

opens in a new windowExpedia knows how to throw a party, which was evident with the Expedia Summer Shindig – How the West Was Fun function on Saturday night. Held at the Soda Ridge Stables, complete with hay bales, pulled barbecue pork and mechanical bull riding, participants were encouraged to wear their best Western wear.

Cottonelle Puppy found the stash of cowboy hats Expedia gave away to those who wanted to add a little bit of country to their attire, in case they didn’t have their own.

Giddy Up! Meeting a Friend at the Expedia Partyopens IMAGE file

Giddy Up! Meeting a Friend at the Expedia Party

Stable staff were out and about welcoming TBEX attendees including horses who greeted us upon arrival.

Cottonelle Was a Bathroom Sponsor During TBEX. Did You Try the Cottonelle Care Routine?opens IMAGE file

Cottonelle Was a Bathroom Sponsor During TBEX. Did You Try the Cottonelle Care Routine?

Cottonelle’s Name Generator

Cottonelle sponsored the restrooms during TBEX to encourage attendees to try the opens in a new windowCottonelle Care Routine then give the routine a travel-related name through a Twitter contest. I’d say the sponsorship was successful as the opening keynote speaker, opens in a new windowC.C. Chapman, mentioned it in his presentation in relation to bloggers creating an emotional connection with their readers. In this case, Cottonelle made a connection with bloggers.

Did You Attend TBEX? Did You #NameIt?opens IMAGE file

Did You Attend TBEX? Did You #NameIt?

In addition, most everyone must have tried the routine because all of the product was gone before the end of the conference and attendees were Tweeting their suggestions with the #NameIt hashtag.

What Cupcakes? Learning How Bloggers are Doing Goodopens IMAGE file

What Cupcakes? Learning How Bloggers are Doing Good

Bloggers Doing Good

Travel bloggers write for various reasons including raising awareness and assisting a cause. During TBEX travel bloggers who founded and run opens in a new windowPassports with Purpose were on hand to educate fellow bloggers about the 2012 project. In partnership with opens in a new windowWater.org, the group will raise funds for five wells for two communities in Haiti which equates to about to raising $100,000. Past projects Passports with Purpose have funded include a school in Cambodia, homes in India and libraries in Zambia. Stay tuned for ways on how you can be involved.

Side Trip to the Continental Divide. Whew! It Was Chilly.opens IMAGE file

Side Trip to the Continental Divide. Whew! It Was Chilly.

Breathtaking Scenery

Colorado has some beautiful scenery, including in and around Keystone. During Sunday’s lunch I headed out to Loveland Pass and the Continental Divide to see snow and an incredibly gorgeous view. It was a bit chilly (OK, it was VERY chilly) and my ScotteVest Travel Vest kept me warm.

Field Trip to Amazing Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springsopens IMAGE file

Field Trip to Amazing Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs

After TBEX, I headed south to opens in a new windowColorado Springs and thanks to advice from opens in a new windowJason’s Travels, I made a quick visit to Garden of the Gods. O-M-G. This is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been and so grateful I made the trip. I just wish I had planned better to spend more time there. Just a reason for a return visit.

Goodbye TBEX and Denver. Thank You for an Amazing Experience!opens IMAGE file

Goodbye TBEX and Denver. Thank You for an Amazing Experience!

Adios!

This trip to Colorado and TBEX was too short but definitely packed with craft improvement, networking, sightseeing and companionship. I hope to return soon and often because there’s much more to explore. As for the trip back to Tampa, Cottonelle Puppy and I had an uneventful, non-stop flight with Southwest Airlines.

Upon arriving to my Southwest Florida home, I had my walk-through of my new home, followed by closing the next day and moving that weekend. While writing this post I’m still settling into my new digs but memories of Keystone, Colorado and the TBEX experience with Cottonelle Puppy are still fresh.

Disclosure: A sincere thank you to Cottonelle for paying for my trip to TBEX in Keystone, including airfare, transportation, accommodations, meals and registration.

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Author: Solo Travel Girl Admin

Jennifer A. Huber is an award-winning travel and outdoor blogger and writer in Southwest Florida. Originally from Buffalo, N.Y., a hiking trail led her to a career path in the tourism industry for more than 30 years. She spent a decade with a park management company in Yellowstone, Death Valley, and Everglades National Parks. She founded the travel blog, SoloTravelGirl.com with the goal of inspiring others to travel alone, not lonely. The unexpected death of her former husband in 2008 reminded her how short life is. His passing was a catalyst for sharing her experiences with the goal of inspiring and empowering others to travel solo. Jennifer holds a Travel Marketing Professional certification from the Southeast Tourism Society, is a certified food judge, member of the NASA Social community, and alum of the FBI Citizens Academy. When not traveling, she is either in the kitchen, practicing her photography skills, or road tripping with her dog, Radcliff.

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2 Comments

  1. Thanks for the link! I’m glad you had a fun time and enjoyed GotG. It’s a pretty dang amazing place with Pikes Peak dominating the landscape behind those red rocks. it’s hard to go wrong there.

  2. It was amazingly gorgeous! Wish I had more time to explore but it was well worth the drive 🙂

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