Friday, November 29, 2013

New Year's Eve with Hpnotiq! Snap & SparkleLouder to Win!

Want to add some sparkle to your New Years Eve plans?? Head over to Hpnotiq now! 

All you have to do is go HERE, upload an image from NYE or any other time you look fab, add some sparkle and watch it shine! Oh, and while you're having so much fun, you're also entering the contest! No brainer, I know!

Share your image for your chance to randomly win one of the weekly EFFY Diamond & Blue Topaz Ring Prizes AND compete for the Grand Prize: A New Year's Eve trip for you and three girlfriends to New York City for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the ball drop in Times Square!

Here's the Deets:

  • Hpnotiq’s SparkleLouder contest runs from November 4 through December 8, 2013!
  • Hpnotiq challenges you to upload a pic showing how you plan to Sparkle Louder on New Year’s Eve - whether it’s a glam outfit, you with your girlfriends or a selfie. Then use Hpnotiq’s “SparkleLouder” app to make your photo shine! 
  • Every entry gives you more weekly chances to win one of 20 EFFY Diamond & Blue Topaz Rings Sweepstakes Prizes (four each week)!
  • The entry that Sparkles the Loudest will win the Grand Prize: A New Year’ s Eve trip for you and three girlfriends to New York City for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the ball drop in Times Square!
  • When you share your posts on social media be sure to use the official hashtag: #SparkleLouder

My ideal New Years Eve plans would be to have a GLAM night out on the town with my girlfriends! I feel like the men always bring down the sparkle factor, so let's leave them at home! I would head to the nearest big city, and party hop around to some fancy hot-spots! All while drinking Hpnotiq of course!

Here's a tip for those of you wanting to hit the town. Search the internet for the NYE specials going on in your city. Most bars/clubs will have special cover prices that night to include champagne, appetizers and more! But they can fill up fast, so get your RSVPs in ahead of time!

While you're at it, check out the Hpnotiq recipes designed just for NYE! My favorite is the DAZZLER! It's so chic and includes champagne! So, that's a win-win!

 - 2 oz. Hpnotiq Harmonie
 - 2 oz. Champagne

Pour Chilled Harmonie & Champagne into flute!

So simple and delicious! And they definitely make a statement. I can't wait to sip on these on NYE!

What are your NYE plans? Are you hitting up the town or hosting a chic bash?? Share with us how you're watching the ball drop and don't forget to #SparkleLouder!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Little Bear

This past weekend I went up to my parents house on Saturday to get my hair done. (I still go to the same woman who has cut my hair since I was a kid.) My sister was with me and on our way home I saw this woman walking behind a Rottweiler puppy. I smiled at her because it reminded me of our Rotty, Bear.

When she caught my eye she flagged us down and told us it wasn't her dog and she couldn't find the owners. He didn't have a collar or leash. She was a bit frantic and said she had to leave but didn't know what to do with the dog, so I told her we would take it and handle it. So we drove him back to our house which was only about a mile up the road.

I knew my parents would freak so my sister and I told them calmly the situation and put the pup on the leash outside (which he proceeded to chew through) until we could figure out a plan.

Well, the humane society in their town is closed on the weekends. So, we didn't have a way to scan him to see if he was microchipped. My mom went to about 8 different neighbors asking if they knew anyone with a Rotty pup, but no one did. So we quickly bought a collar and a leash (my parents dog is about 10 pounds so her equipment wasn't working), and decided I would take him back home with me (about an hour away).

My one year old niece lives at my parents house and she's not crazy about dogs. So, I knew my parents didn't want to keep him overnight. I also knew that our Humane Society at home was open on Sunday's so I could bring him in to get scanned.

So I called Tim (who was hunting) and told him I was bringing home a Rotty puppy. HAH!

As soon as Tim got back he started calling him "Little Bear", since he was like a mini-me to our adult Rotty, Bear. So for Sat night and Sunday morning, he was Little Bear. And Piper and Bear loved him (of course). Pipe was so excited to have someone more her size and with energy for days! And Bear was just confused why this little thing looked like him but then approved and played with him.

Sunday morning we were waiting until 1pm to go to the Humane Society when it opened. And we had gone over ever possible outcome.

1. The dog is microchipped. We contact the owners and reunite them.
2. The dog is not microchipped, so officially an orphan. We then find him a good home or turn him over to the humane society.
3. The dog is not microchipped, so officially an orphan and we keep him.

I knew if I said the words, Tim would keep him. If I said, let's just adopt him, Tim would be all for it. But at the same time, we both knew that we didn't want a third dog, or a puppy (no matter how soft and floppy he was)! We talked to some friends who we thought might be interested but no one was ready to commit. So we called Tim's Dad who fell in love with Bear when he met him and really got him interested in the Rotty breed. His Dad said if we couldn't find Little Bear a home, then to just bring him to West Virginia for Thanksgiving and he would take him.

I was so excited because then we would get to see Little Bear grow up! But... we had to wait and see what the outcome would be.

Around noon on Sunday my mom called and said there were fliers all over her church for a missing 4 month old Rotty puppy. It was definitely him. And... get this.. the flier said his name is BEAR!

I can't make this shit up people!!

So I called the family and explained the situation. They were SO relieved that he was safe and got in the car and headed to Lex right away. When they got to our house the woman was overjoyed to see her little pup. We told them how we'd been calling him Little Bear and he seemed to respond to it. Little did we know, we were spot on!

Apparently they were cutting trees outside with no fence and assumed the puppy would stay with them. Well he took off. And he's not microchipped, and they don't leave a collar on him. about irresponsible???

So, I'm happy to report Little Bear is back home with his family! (I just really hope they start using a collar or get him chipped!) He will be missed!


Friday, November 22, 2013

Roto Rants & Movember

Remember when I wrote this post? Just a few short months ago? Well I'm back for an update on the in-house blog competition. Except, it's really not a competition anymore. Because Tim went from having a fantasy sports blog, to having a fantasy sports website. With a full staff of 14+ writers, a domain name, and new articles published daily, if not more.

A blog named Roto Agent has turned into the Fantasy Sports Website, Roto Rants.

They write about Fantasy Sports (football, baseball, basketball, etc.), everything from injury reports and power rankings, to draft strategies and (my personal favorite) Brains, Looks, Wildcard. They are active on Twitter every weekend to answer start/sit questions before people finalize their lineups. They've even been invited as guests to a couple fantasy podcasts.

And guess who designed his logo and headers?? The ever talented, Sarah, from VTIM!

How are they different? Besides the awesome content, they have started a Player of the Year Competition in which players compete in all of their sports, and the co-founder, @RotoMailboy, has developed a trade value chart using a unique algorithm that compares players' performances. And you know how I know this trade formula is legit? Because he's a rocket scientist by day. Like, for real. {And single, ladies. ;)}

So now we are on the same team, the boy and I. Because while Tim is managing staff and editing content, I'm throwing in my two cents when it comes to promoting, advertising, etc. We are still negotiating my percentage ;)

But the reason I'm telling you all of this today, is because the RotoRants staff is taking part in Movember, aka No-Shave November. The cause that helps raise money and awareness to combat prostate and testicular cancer and mental health challenges. Which is great and all, don't get me wrong. But, allow me to show you what I'm dealing with...

RotoRants Co-Founder @RotoMailboy 
(The single rocket scientist, for those ladies who like some scruff...;)

And you all know Tim. I've been having to look at THAT for 22 days now. I should win an F-ing award.
 And yes, that is the only place his facial hair grows. No beard, sideburns, or goatee action going on here. 
Just this disgusting grit-stash that doesn't connect in the middle

SO, I've decided that if I'm forced to look at that everyday for a month, then they better raise some freakin money for their cause!! So, click the image below to donate to support Men's Health. Any amount helps! 

Also, I've snagged 2 RotoRants koozies that I will send to one reader who either donates to the cause or helps spread the word! I realize camo and sports isn't really the target audience for Kaliwood, but c'mon! You all have husbands, boyfriends, dads, uncles, sons! Help spread the word to help THEM. And win them a koozie - a great stocking stuffer! Enter below!

Men support us in October to save the ta-tas, so let's support them this month in saving their .. well.. you know.

So enter above to help the Movember cause. And then go tell your husband, "YOU'RE WELCOME for helping to save your genitals. Because I care."



Thursday, November 21, 2013

Heart Update

I just wanted to bop in today to share the news I got from the cardiologist. Before I do, thank you SO much to everyone who sent me a little note wishing me well. It was very appreciated! And it's all mostly good news, so thank you!

When I entered the waiting room I was the youngest person by about 50 years. The first thing the doc said to me when we walked into the exam room was, "You are way too young to be in here." (Tell me about it, bro.)

The first symptom was the chest pain, which I was experiencing at the time. So the doc found the exact spot of discomfort and diagnosed it as Costochondritis. Basically, inflammation/bruising where my sternum connects to my ribs. After further thought, I'm thinking it may be from Bear jumping on me (working on that!). His paws hit right about there and he's not a lightweight. Unfortunately, you can't stabilize that part of the body like you would if this were in the knee/foot/etc because you have to breathe! So, just a regular routine of anti-inflammatory meds to help the pain and it will heal very slowly.

The second symptom was the skipping heart, or the flip-flopping as he called it. It is due to my irregular heart beat. And I can't remember the specific name he called it. He said it's going to happen but I need to just put it out of my mind. He assured me I wouldn't drop dead, have a heart attack, stroke, etc. So, he wants me to take that comforting knowledge, and let myself ignore the skips. He said usually patients will stop noticing once their worries go away. He said if it's gets too distracting he can put me on a heart pill for the rest of my life, but we both agreed that wasn't the best option at my age.

The only thing he is concerned about is the racing heart feeling. You know the feeling when you're driving and someone cuts you off and you have to slam on your breaks? Your heart starts pounding and adrenaline kicks in? Well I've been getting that randomly. Sometimes just sitting at my desk. So, tomorrow I'm getting an ultra-sound of my heart so he can take a look at it. Not too crazy about this. I've had one done before. Something about actually seeing your heart on a screen beating, freaks me out. I find myself willing the little muscle to keep on going!! Maybe I'll just close my eyes this time.

And then after I return from my event in Florida for work, I have to wear an Event Monitor. It's like an ancient cell phone with wires connected to it. (Talk about fashion statement.) I have to wear it constantly for a month and push a button any time I'm having a heart "episode"! But, I can return it early if I experience racing heart and properly record it on the device. (Here's hoping for a racing heart on day 2?)

((And yes, I made them wait to give it to me until after our Annual Meeting next month. I'm going to be running around in front of members for a week with a radio strapped to me already. I don't need to look like a science fair project for my first event with my new company!))

And maybe the best news of the day.. he said I can start running again! YAY!! He said that if I experience pain while running, then stop, but as long as I'm feeling OK I can get back out there! :)

So.. that's the update. Mostly good news and I'm trying to put my mind at ease! Just a few more hoops to jump through and hopefully we'll get some answers and be done with this!

This piece was in the lobby of the cardiologist. A glittering UK Wildcat? That could brighten anyone's day!

Thanks again to those who kept me in your thoughts yesterday! You all rock.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Steps for Pets 5K Recap

A couple weekends ago my friend, Kate, and I participated in the Steps for Pets 5K. It was in the small nearby town Georgetown and support their local humane society. It was my third 5K and Kate's first! So I was really excited to be there with her to experience it. We had been training together for a few weeks prior to it and it was really fun to watch her progress.

During training, I would always run in front and keep track of our pace and distance with my Map My Run app. (If you are a runner, you need this!) She would run behind me and I would give her mile signals as we went. 

If you're wondering why we didn't run together and talk the entire time, it's because, well, we both think people who can talk and run are freaks of nature. I was in Kate's shoes just over a year ago, so we are both beginners. Talking while running is not an option. Plus, we both love to listen to music instead of our own panting breath. And a huge reason I love to run is to kind of "check out" for those 30 minutes or so and just let my thoughts roam. It's my "me" time. 

So, we had been training for a few weeks and I got to see Kate go from 1.5 miles to 2.5 to over 3. She got stronger each time and we even had one run in the pouring rain. She was killing it. And since it was exactly what I went through last year, I could totally relate! 

Race day came and it was a dreary one! Pretty chilly and dark clouds everywhere. When we got there I realized that this was going to be a small race. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. My first race was a smaller one at the local horse track, Keeneland. But as the starting time neared, we realized this was a TINY race. Like... 30 people max. It definitely wasn't want we expected, and I felt bad. I didn't want this to hinder her first experience. But she was a trooper and we were ready to give it our all! 

It lightly rained/misted for most of the race. You couldn't really tell when you were running but once I finished I realized I was pretty soaked. The course was a huge loop that you went around once and then back out the other way and finished where you started. We also noticed on the drive in that this course was HILLY.

We had mostly trained on level ground so the hills and the rain? This was going to be a challenge! Mile 1 I was feeling pretty good. Kate and I decided to stick together for the first mile and then go at our own speeds. I pulled ahead of her pretty quickly, though. I'm thinking it was because there was a long slow incline and she was pacing herself. The first loop wasn't too bad as one you got up the long slow incline, the rest was downhill for the most part. 

There was the typical "freaks up front" as I call them. The 4 guys and 1 girl who are ripped and clearly run these as training for bigger, badder races. I'm pretty sure they ran the entire thing twice and were about halfway done with the SECOND 5K wheen the rest of us were finishing. Behind them were me, Kate, and some other 9-10 minute milers. Then behind us were a handful of slower runners. 

Mile 2 this older woman who had been running behind me past me. I didn't see it coming and was all WHAT THE?? Well that was all the motivation I needed. I kicked it into high gear and passed her back. I didn't see her in front of me again. Sometimes I'm a little too competitive. 

As I was making the final loop back around I remembered how during mile 1 there was a lot of downhill, which meant now, it was all uphill. Crap. The last thing you want on the final mile is all incline. So I was powering through the gradual hill and looked ahead to see where it ended. It flattened out not far ahead but before it did, there was a good 10 yards of, I swear, 80 degrees UPHILL. 

By the time I reached the short, but steep little devil of a hill, I was dead from the 1/2 mile of incline. Any slower up that hill and I would have been going backwards. Finally, it flattened out. I was mentally rejoicing but physically exhausted. I slowed way down and tried to give my legs a rest for a few seconds. 

At that point, the finish line was not far off, so I pushed through and powered to the finish line. My last two 5Ks were 30:03 and 30:11. With the rain and the hills I told myself I just wanted to get under 32:00. I finished at 30:32 so I was pumped! Kate was not long behind me! And her parents were there cheering us on and snapping pictures. 

It turns out I was the 2nd overall female (behind the female freak who is probably still out there running) and Kate was the 3rd overall female! And we both won our age divisions. (Told you it was a a small race!) It was a fun race despite the weather and just got us motivated to do more in the future! Still seeing that 10K goal in the future! Maybe 2014??


/  /  /  / 

Since training for that race, I've had some chest pain, heart palpitations, and racing heart. I've had these episodes sporadically and haven't found a cause or pattern. I've been to my regular doctor, who has referred me to a cardiologist. My appointment with him is tomorrow morning. 

I haven't run since the issue started as I am waiting to see what the cardiologist says. It's been hard not running as I've really been getting the itch. But I'm trying to be smart and safe about it. And, to be honest, I'm a little anxious about the whole thing. They discovered I have an irregular heart beat when I had these pains in high school and went to the ER. But plenty of people have them and live normal lives without noticing it. 

It just so happens that where I could really never feel it in the past 10 years, now lately I have been feeling it. I can tell when it's skipping. It's a very bizarre feeling and is kinda freaking me out.

I haven't told a lot of people because I wanted to wait and see what happens at my appointment tomorrow. But, I like to be open and honest on my blog so I wanted to fill you in on what's going on. I'm sure it's nothing serious (and hoping it's not) so I fully plan to be back on the pavement in a few days. But we will see what they say! 

I would love it if you could send some warm thoughts my way tomorrow! I'll keep you all updated.  

/  /  /  /

And since I can't physically run at the moment (and it sucks) I've decided to run a Sponsor Sale. 50% off this week only (until Fri at 5pm). Use code: RUNFORESTRUN. Ads for as low as $3 and social media sponsorship at only $6! Cray. Click here.

Have a great day!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Snap & SparkleLouder with Hpnotiq to Win an NYC Trip!

How fun is this sparkle app from Hpnotiq?? I'm obsessed.

All you have to do is go HERE, upload an image from NYE or any other time you look fab, add some sparkle and watch it shine! Oh, and while you're having so much fun, you're also entering the contest to win a trip to NYC for NYE, or some EFFY Diamond & Blue Topaz Rings! No brainer, I know! 

Here's the Campaign Deets:

  • Hpnotiq’s SparkleLouder contest runs from November 4 through December 8, 2013!
  • Hpnotiq challenges you to upload a pic showing how you plan to Sparkle Louder on New Year’s Eve - whether it’s a glam outfit, you with your girlfriends or a selfie. Then use Hpnotiq’s “SparkleLouder” app to make your photo shine! 
  • Every entry gives you more weekly chances to win one of 20 EFFY Diamond & Blue Topaz Rings Sweepstakes Prizes (four each week)!
  • The entry that Sparkles the Loudest will win the Grand Prize: A New Year’ s Eve trip for you and three girlfriends to New York City for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the ball drop in Times Square!
  • When you share your posts on social media be sure to use the official hashtag: #SparkleLouder

To me, everything about New Years Eve says sparkle, glamour, and shine! The reason I love this holiday so much is that everyone can channel their inner "Carrie Bradshaw" and really go all out! The more glitter, the better! Hence why my NYE outfits usually resemble a disco ball! The louder your sparkle, the better!

Another way to glam up your NYE? Serve Hpnotiq at your bash or drink it out on the town! No drink says classy and hip like this blue baby! Add some pizzazz to any night with Hpnotiq.

Now if I was one of you lucky ladies who won this fab trip to NYC, I would spend some seriously time planning the outfit! I mean, Times Square to see the ball drop? That's not an everyday opportunity! Here's some inspiration! 

March Wedding Look

If you aren't one to wear a disco ball dress, then at least add the bling with the accessories!! So how about it ladies? What would you wear to SparkleLouder in NYC for NYE???

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Careers in the Hospitality Industry

Last week I talked about Site Visits, which are one exciting part of my job as a Meeting Planner. Today, I wanted to share the different sides of the hospitality world and the event roles within each. For any of you interested in this industry, this may help you decide which career path fits your lifestyle!

1. Corporation

In the hospitality industry, the corporation is the company/association/non-profit/group who is the one hosting the event/meeting/convention/conference. This group is planning the event for their members/staff/clients/customers/etc. This is the group paying for the event. Some companies outsource their event planning to a vendor. There are event planning companies all over the country who will do everything from site selection, to contract negotiation, to execution.

Many companies, however, have a Meeting Planner and/or an event team to execute the meetings. This is what I do. I am a Meeting Planner for a trade association that hosts 3 events annually for their members. I handle everything from event budget, city selection, venue selection, contract negotiation, meeting space assignments, food & beverage, audio visual, entertainment, registration, signage, transportation... and the list goes on. (You can see why many places have event teams.) The specific details that go into an event and comprise the planner's job depends on the company. Each company is different and therefore, each event has different needs. This is one of the many reasons the corporate meeting industry is so robust.

The beauty of being a Corporate Meeting Planner is that once you know how to plan a meeting, you can work for ANYONE and ANY industry. The meeting language is always the same. I went from planning events for volleyball coaches to asphalt professionals. But I do the same thing. Because so many industries host events, the possibilities are endless! Don't turn down an opportunity because you aren't an expert in the field for which you are planning events. Trust me, you don't have to know anything about asphalt. You just have to know how to plan an event.

Corporate planners have a pretty ideal schedule (in my opinion). Travel typically consists of each event plus a few site visits. We have 3 events a year, so I plan to travel about 5 times a year. Some events are during the week, but many are nights and weekends, so during that time, we do work long hours. For the rest of the year, though, I'm in an office with regular 9-5 / M-F schedule.

For those who like to excel at something each year and continue to build on it, this job is great. The events always have the same foundations, so I can spend time getting creative and focus on how to make the next event bigger and badder than the last.

2. Hotel

The hotel sales team's main goal is to book events at the hotel. Some groups just need sleeping rooms, some need rooms and meeting space, etc. The sales team is concerned with making money and meeting their goals. They want the group that is going to sell the most rooms and spend the most money on food, drinks, AV, etc. The sales team conducts the site tour when a planner visits a hotel to see the property. It's their job to "sell" the venue and negotiate contract terms with the planner to convince them to host their event in the hotel.

The sales teams in the hotel (and 3&4 below) have a bit more flexibility with schedule than the event services people. They can schedule client meetings and sites during work hours for the most part, and while I have had some stop by an event to say hello, they are not obligated to be there all hours.

Once the hotel sales team books a group, they pass the group onto a Convention Services Manager. This person is the one who works with the client from planning stages to execution of the event. They fulfill space requests, food & beverages orders, audio/visual needs, and much more. There is usually a team that supports this person. So they may be the main event contact, but there is typically a banquet contact, AV contact, and others to assist them.

The hotel side of events (along with 3 & 4 below) differ from the Meeting Planner in that they are constantly working with different groups on different events. Some groups go to the same city and hotel every year, but that is rate. So, for the most part, event staff in venues are always working with new contacts and facing new obstacles. This is perfect for people who don't like to do the same thing everyday and who are always up for a challenge!

An event manger at a hotel typically has a more time-consuming job. They can be responsible for several events a month, and need to be in house during those times. Nights and weekends are frequently worked in this role. And it's a lot of walking! No need to hit the gym after work!

Marriott Harbor Beach - Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Touring the KFC Yum! Center - Louisville, KY

3. Convention Center or Other Event Venues

This category is mainly made up of Convention Centers, but their roles are similar to those in Conference Centers and any event venue. They host events but do not have sleeping rooms (so not considered a hotel). Could be a country club, sports arena, restaurant, park, racetrack, etc.

Similar to hotels and CVBs, these venues have a Sales Team. This team researches events coming to the city, or local events that could potentially use their space. They then try to sell their venue to the customer. Convention Centers sales personnel may have an easier time, since there is typically only one per city. So, if a large group is already coming to a city, and uses Convention Centers for their events, they are guaranteed to get the sale. Specialty venues like the ones mentioned above can work with these large groups to book receptions, special functions, or work with local groups for weddings, business meetings, etc.

This role is very similar to the event staff at a hotel. They take on the client after the sales contract has been signed and assist with all details before, during, and after the event. This person doesn't have to deal with sleeping nights and other items that are unique to hotels. Convention Centers typically host expos in their large exhibit halls, so they tend to excel in that area. (There is another whole side of the industry that is unique to trade shows/expos and their vendors).

Also like hotels, these professionals have busy schedules that are set by the events to which they are assigned. So, if they have a group in one week that has functions until 10pm, they are most likely working that late. The same goes for weekends.

The Riverwalk in San Antonio, TX

Unique space at San Antonio Convention Center

Pauley Pavillion - UCLA

4. Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB)

The sales professionals for a city's CVB has a unique position. They are selling a location, a destination. They are trying to get groups to come to their city. They aren't as concerned with what hotel, venue, or restaurants you use (although they do promote partners), they just want to get you to commit to Los Angeles, or Vegas, or Nashville. Pretty much every city has some version of a CVB. Google your city and CVB. I bet you didn't even know there was an entire team dedicated to bring tourism to your town!

A salesperson at a CVB is going to wine and dine potential clients in hopes they fall in love with their city. These people know EVERYONE in town. I'm always surprised how well connected CVB people are. They know all the restaurant owners, the management of all the hotels, vendors, arena contacts, etc. Everyone wants to know them, because they have the power to recommend vendors to the clients who are bringing all the money into the city. For example, a new hip restaurant goes all out for a CVB staffer's dinner with a client... this makes the CVB look good, which in turn makes them more likely to recommend that restaurant to the client.

The event services role at a CVB is a bit different than those of a hotel or other venue. This event professional works with a group primarily in the planning stages. They help connect the client with vendors in the area, recommend restaurants and entertainment options, provide city maps, logos, and other materials to help promote the event. By the time the event is in full swing, this person has typically fulfilled all of their responsibilities. If the event has already confirmed the city and moved past the sales team, this person may assist the Meeting Planner during their site visits. They can transport them to different hotels to tour, take them to local city attractions, and other things to make site visits run smoothly.

The event staff is similar to the sales team in that they know everyone. I've never worked for a CVB but this role sounds like one of the most fun in the industry. They have so many connections around town and are always checking out new restaurants, venues, experiences, tours, etc. so that they can properly promote them! The schedule is also not as demanding in the off-hours, as their job mainly consists of pre-event work.

Touring the Alamodome

Touring the interactive Ali Center in Louisville, KY

Denver Convention Center
Other Roles

Maybe you want to be involved in this industry but you don't want to be planning all the details or overseeing an entire event. And perhaps the word "sales" give you hives. Maybe you are a foodie or specialize in IT? Well, good news! Hotels and venues usually have catering managers who handle all food & beverage needs. They get creative with presentation and offer unique options to the client. These venues also have an audio visual staff! They work with the client to bring their vision to life whether it be a small session or a 1000 person dinner banquet!

As you can see, there are many different options in this industry. And this list just includes the ones I am familiar with. I assure you there are more! There are independent planners who work as a contractor for different corporations planning their events. There are wedding planners and people who work specifically with entertainment events. So, if you're interested in hospitality, do a little research and see which career best fits your passion and lifestyle.

Silent Auction in Exhibit Hall

NCAA Men's Final Four

Touring Keeneland racetrack in Lexington, KY

There's no denying jobs in this industry are fun. As a Meeting Planner, there are some nice perks. You get to travel and tour some amazing cities and venues. On the other hand, working for a venue allows you to interact with different groups and events on a daily basis.

But with the perks also comes stress...

Flying home after a 10 day event on an airplane with no AC. I was NOT happy.

This is a fast paced industry that comes with an increased stress level. You have to think on your feet, be able to make quick decisions, and be very flexible! There will be days you want to pull your hair out when it seems like nothing is going your way. And then there are the days when a member comes up to you and thanks you for putting on a fabulous show. It's not easy, but it's so worth it!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Total Style Awareness: Sophisticated Chic

I am by no means a fashion blogger. I'm one expensive camera and 10 hours of patience away from that bizz. But, you all know I love fashion and looking nice, so of course I'm going to share in Kaliwood from time to time. (just with some blurry selfies :) But today we talk about finding your own style...

I feel like it's taken me quite some time to find MY STYLE. You know how people always say they need to "find themselves"? Well, I was on a journey to discover my aesthetic. I kept trying to emulate my friends or current trends and I would struggle with what looked good on me and with feeling the way I wanted to feel in clothes. I think we all probably go through this at some point. I'm sure it's also common that we finally reach "total style awareness" in our mid-late 20s.

Here's what I've learned...

I would define my style as:

Sophisticated Chic

I like neutrals and saturated colors, clean/simple lines, edgy details, and a sleek silhouette. 

There are other styles that I can appreciate and really love, but I've come to realize that doesn't mean I can pull them off. For example: preppy. I adore all things in the J Crew store, but my wallet doesn't. And even when I try to rock that colorful, effortless look, it's just not me and I feel like a fraud. I still try to throw in some pieces here and there because no one wants to be one note all of the time. But I'm accepting the fact that just because I like the preppy style, doesn't mean I have to force it into my wardrobe, where it doesn't necessarily belong.

I've also finally accepted the fact that feminine silhouettes and details are not for me. I can rock these very conservatively, like an edgy peplum, but full A-line skirts, ruffled collars, and bows don't do me any justice. Whenever I try something like that on, I feel like a little girl. Which completely contradicts what I LIKE to feel like in clothes.

Now, I'm not saying any of these styles are wrong, or not fashionable. I know MANY people who rock the preppy look (trust me I envy how bright colors and mixed prints can look on some people). And those who can pull off the super feminine, all the power to them! I mean, I'm still a girl. I can still appreciate some polka dots and pink!

But I think I really started finding out what my personal style was when I got into the business world, and had to stock my closet with appropriate clothes. Many of my classmates groaned about having to purchase suits, while I was in pencil skirt and blazer heaven.

I think that's how it all started. I bough a bunch of business clothes to fit my workplace, and then as the years went on, I got creative with tweaking those looks to remain appropriate, yet reflect my personal style.

Once I truly discovered what I like to wear and what (I think) looks good on me, then my casual wardrobe followed suite. In my opinion, the casual wardrobe can be the hardest to develop. I went from plain jeans and a T-shirt/hoodie, to skinny jeans, flats, and a blouse or nice sweater. I still struggle with casual, because I fight fashion with comfort, but lately I've been finding a happy medium.

I really think once you hit "total style awareness", you can stop trying to keep up with your friends, and just mix and match pieces that suit you and make you happy.

What about you?? Have you hit total style awareness? How would you define your unique style??


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