Sunday, August 29, 2010
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
I’m always taking book reading recommendations and if you ever review books on your own blog, please comment me and let me know so I can read them. I’m fascinated by literature and though I have a unique and sometimes odd opinion – I do like to know what other people are reading. I feel a special bond with other readers.
It’s amazing how getting your house organized can be motivating! Since finishing my organization projects with my Mom over the weekend I have kept my house immaculate, stayed on top of my laundry AND dishes, finished a book, packed for my trip 3 days in advance, etc. And can I just share the smartest idea I’ve had in a while (don’t laugh) – a trash can in the garage! This is the first week in ages that no trash has accumulated in my car because …ta da in a flash of brilliance I asked my mom to buy me a large kitchen sized trash can for my garage. Not only have I quit collecting dryer lent all over the top of the dryer but my car doesn’t have one single half-drunk water bottle or Sonic cup (diet cherry limeades are my crack). Perhaps it is the simple things that make the most profound differences.
Ok last note for the morning… anyone have an interest in doing a guest blog post? I haven’t ever had one but I’d like to someday. : ] Food for thought. If you’re a reader who doesn’t blog yourself, that’s ok too. E-mail me with ideas if you’ve got something you’d like to say you think my readers would benefit from.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
Friday, August 20, 2010
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Last night after I got off work we hit the Bayshore for a walk by the water. It's nice having a workout buddy so that A. I'll go even while I have company and B. for someone to talk to and distract myself from the blistering heat. After Bayshore we ate frozen yogurt (for dinner) and finally decided to get to work.
Mom had spent all day while I was working (it's event season - the show must go on) buying the supplies for all our house projects (see previous entry). We got to work immediately after our return from walk/yogurt - planning to tackle only a project or two before bed. We ended up fixing the garage door (really just the opener was broken, but we had to buy a new one and reprogram it). She fixed the exhaust fan in my guest bathroom. Together we changed out the blinds in the dining room (the biggest, most complicated blinds in the house). We FINALLY took down the ugly hanging blind-wanna-bes over my huge sliding doors to my balcony and hung a rod for the curtains (which we also picked out and purchased yesterday). Oh and we changed out the shower head in the master bath.
A productive night if I do say so myself.
When I have to drive myself to work and it doesn't involve being treated to a daily cafe mocha with soy milk from Starbucks, I will be sad. The last 2 mornings have been much more pleasant as I'm chauffeured to work with my mocha in hand.
We still have Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to finish our projects, take walks, drink starbucks, and eat frozen yogurt. So I'll be happy as a lark until then. But come Sunday night ladies and gents, I will need your full support. :]
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
So this week we are going to attempt to tackle all of the baseboards/trim in my condo. That’s right all three stories. Heaven help us! Mom picked up the supplies this morning while I was at work and we’re going to get started tonight. They desperately need it and as Nance says, it’ll change the whole look of the place! So that was high up on the priority list and were going to get after it this week.
Feel free to wear black this week as the mourn the death of my cheap and mostly destroyed blinds which will be replaced this week by new, non-cheapy blinds! Yay! The former owners of my pad apparently had a bird they frequently forgot to feed who felt the need to eat away at the blinds. So, I’ve been itching to ditch those and as of today, can!
My small group girls will be happy to know there will finally be a rug coming to casa de Becca! No sitting on the hardwoods in the living room for group or football watching when I run out of seats. Thanks to the home depot you can sit on my plush new rug in the weeks to come. : ]
Also on the upcoming home improvement lists:
- My garage and front door are getting a fresh coat of paint
- My master bedroom shower head is getting changed out – woot woot.
- Ceiling fan WITH a light is going up in the guest bedroom
- Ugly handy blind things over the balcony doors are getting replaced – by what, we aren’t quite sure (stay tuned)
My little dream home is really coming along. I’ll try’n post pictures along the way.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
I mentioned before that the title of this book grabbed my attention from the beginning. After discovering it on Oprah’s summer reading list I was intrigued by the concept that we do essentially want everything, though ‘everything’ is defined a bit differently per individual. I put myself on the waiting list for it at the library and picked it up a week later.
A dark look into the inner workings of the demise of a family structure. Slightly overdone with drama this novel deals with infidelity, divorce, post-nuptual agreements, teen pregnancy, credit card debt, and drug abuse. All of that in one book, within one family. Perhaps overdone but somehow still gripping. I found myself sympathize with each family member as they battled their own demons and wanting each to come out on top.
The bright spot in an otherwise dark novel was the way tragity and heartache brings a family together. Eventual honesty lead to the members eventually finding the love and support they needed to move forward with their lives. Who doesn’t love a happy-ish ending?
I found it a worthwhile read that kept been intrigued. Better than the average first novel frorm a new author. If she wrote another, I wouldn’t hesitate to read her writing again.
Monday, August 16, 2010
Thursday, August 12, 2010
In my current role I frequently have the moments I’m describing. As I interact with vendors, fathers, mothers, registerants, teams relations, spokesmen, etc. Some are as breif as a phone call one or twice per years. Some require many more interactions for longer periods of time. Each is a small window of opportunity to influence.
An example of what I mean is that as we all know, navigating the internet is harder for some than others. I know, because my precious Mom called me everytime she had to attach a file to an e-mail for 2 years before she could do it on her own without my step-by-step instructions. So, when I receive a phone call from a parent that wants to register for our events but can’t for the life of figure out the online system I get the opportunity to make their day a little easier. I can do for them in 5 minutes or less what for some of them would be a long and frustration process. It’s a chance to remind them that they are why we do what we do. Making someone feel important and valued doesn’t require any huge effort, it’s found in the small things.
I supposed this blog is brought on my some recent customer service experiences I have had. Some that were surprisingly pleasant and some that were not. I don’t know about you all, but I feel this fierce since of loyalty to a company when I’ve been treated well by them in a time of ‘crisis’ or ‘dilema’. A great example of this done right is Southwest Airlines. If remotely possible they are THE only airline I will fly. Why? Because whenever I have an issues with a flight they trip over themselves to help me get it right. I book a LOT of travel for myself, personally, and for work. So I’m constantly navigating the airline websites and customer service for both and a good experience means a tremedous amount to me. They have made a fan of me and that’s not something I take lightly. I give them as much of my and my company’s business as possible.
That is the effect I wish to have on people I interact with. However big or small that impact – I wish to be the type of person who builds fierce loyalty in those the interact with by making them feel valued.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Friday, August 6, 2010
By popular request, a book review!
I came across this book a list of great summer reads. It's been years since I read Louisa May Alcott's Little Women but it has a special place in my heart as I associate it with some of the greatest years of my childhood. Exploring life with sisters, a fit theme for a girl who grew up in a house of girls.
McNees does an extraordinary job of telling an intimate story of Louisa herself, in her formidable years. One of the most believable 'historical fiction' novels I've come across. An intricate weave of love, tragedy, curiosity, headstrong youth, and failure. You can't help but think of your first time feeling 'in love', your first efforts at striking out on your own, and even the moments in your childhood where you realized your parents weren't perfect (sorry Mom & Dad).
Most famous fictionial stories such as Little Women make you wonder about their authors lives and Lousia May Alcott is no exception. It's no stretch to believe that Alcott spend a summer similar to the one McNees writes for us here, especially if Little Women was somewhat autobiographical - which it may in fact have been.
A cutesy summer read I'd recommend for a day at the beach.
Here’s what I’ve been trying to think through during this month off from travels – how to best keep up my diet and exercise routine when I have to take it on the road! I love what I do but it’s also exhausting flying into a city, setting up, and then waking at 4am to work all day and fly back. To keep up my the healthy pace I’ve been in the past few months I have to be able to find a balance and keep up my exercise on my whirlwind work trips.
Lucky for me, I have a Kacy Dule workout book on the way! I’m hoping she’s going to be the answer to my workout in my hotel room blues! She might be just the kick in the pants I’ll need to workout after set up and still crawl into bed early before the big event day.
So that leaves the eating…
I know several of my readers are also travelers so I’m open to any and all suggestions of good things to bring in case the team dinner is a little out of league (or caloric allowance). So I’m taking all suggestions!
So my Diane Von Furstenberg luggage is about to bite the dust after only a few shorts years. It’s time to invest in some new luggage. I’m leaning towards trying the hardcase suitcases this time to see if I can make them last a little longer. I honestly don’t understand what they do to my bags while they’re transporting them that causes them to come back each trip a little more battered. Help! Anyone bought the hardcase suitcases recently and want to give me some insight?
Also time to start thinking of some cute airport outfits (since I keep meeting the nicest people when I travel) and I did a bit of googling. This photo-montag done found here features 4 outfits, all of which I would wear.
I really want a pair of 'riding boots' this fall. Is that insane considering I live in Florida? I hate cold weather but I love fall/winter clothes and layering. Guess it's a good thing I have 7-10 trips up north to take this year. May even be able to justify a new coat! Ah.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
What this reminded me of is how many great benefits there are to social networking. Don't get me wrong, I understand that there are some drawbacks to social networking, including putting too much of yourself 'out there' in cyber space. BUT it's also a great (and easy) way to connect with people you share a common interest or bond with.
I found out from Cece at The Big Girl Blog via Twitter about the Awesome August challenge and quickly joined in. As most of you probably know I've been on a healthy kick this year, slimming down and making my health a priority before I turn (gasp) 25 later this year (read: next month).
I've lost 39 lbs competing with coworkers in 'biggest loser' competitions. But what I'm even more thrilled about than dropping 3 pant sizes, is that I'm really starting to love working out! I feel 100 times better. I'm almost never tired or run down (other than my legs after a good run). The truth is I more than likely would always have enjoyed these same activities if I'd ever take the time to get in a groove.
So if any of you want to have a healthy August with us, feel free to join the challenge. You can even tweet with us about it: Me - @thequeenbc Cece - @thebiggirlblog and @healthylosergal who's the intiator of the whole challenge.
Happy healthiness this month loves.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Congrats to Nicole at Casa De Nicole who just won a $100 giftcard for Lucy Sportswear, Dove deotorant, AND Kacy Duke's Show It Love Workout book! So exited for you friend! Please e-mail me your info @ firstname.lastname@example.org and the lovely ladies at Dove will get you your prizes asap!
Monday, August 2, 2010
I love summer time! I'm a bit of a self-diagnosed tanorexic. I love the beach, the pool, achieving a bronze glow, the whole shabang. So since I haven't indulged in a fashion related post in a while I'm going to allow myself to do so now. I keep seeing such cute outfits on blog posts and Shop It To Me is about to bring out my supressed shopoholic with all the cute pieces they've been sending me. So here goes my summer much haves....
We all know that I love nude heels with a slightly weird passion. I also love the budget babe blog and this look in particular. I don't have a navy blazer, but I did snag a really cute (and comfy) blazer at the J Crew outlet recently (in black) for all of 9.99 (a steal, I know). I was thinking I may have to put this outfit idea to good use soon. This made the list because for me nude heels AND white jeans make the must-have for summer list.
A great canvas bag. I, naturally, prefer designers but that's just because I'm a bit of a label snob. To let you in on my secret, you can usually find these at TJMaxx and Marshalls. My personal favorite is a red, white, and black Michael Kors tote I found for $30 bucks at a TJMaxx here in Tampa. You can also find them for reasonable on Ebay...I found about 50 under $50. A worthwhile investment for summer fun.
Ok this one's not for everyone but I love the clear bag trend! I actually have the Michael Kors bag pictured above and I love it! Obviously, you can't be self concious about what you're carrying - but after Chanel got this trend fired up I couldn't help but buy in. It's different and a little unexpected, which I love in a bag after being a fairly traditional designer, leather bag girl for so many years. Fun to branch out.
Aviators. Well, stunna shades in general. I collect sunglasses by all sorts of designers (when I find good deals, of course). But I recently invested in a pair of Marc Jacobs aviators that are to die for! I found mine at an 'Off 5th' the outlet for Saks. Which by the way have a great variety of designer shades including: Chloe, Chanel, Prada, Marc, Kors, etc. So if you have one near you hit that up. Most of them were around 50-75 bucks.
For the summer makeup blues - this has been the only product I've found to keep me from sweating off my makeup in this sweltering Florida heat! I swear by it, and use it everyday!
Sandals!! Need I say more? I bought these MK sandals on sale for ...are you ready? 17 bucks. I bought them in white and black. Love love. They're plastic so easy to keep clean. Not something you can normally say about white.
Good books. As you all know I'm avid reader, but honestly I think a few good books every summer should be a staple for everyone. I recently finished, 'The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott' and really enjoyed it. I found that on a list put out by the British Broadcasting Company. A good place to find book suggestions. I also reference Oprah's book club list occasionally (although Love in the Time of Cholera got chucked after 25 pages - zzzzz).
Most importantly for summer...a great group of friends. : ] That is my number one summer time must have!