It’s not working for you. You’re chewing and chewing and gnawing but the pleasure is amiss.

Stop.

Get it out.  Chuck that wedding registry and then … rebuild it.  Let’s do it together*.

Expect a mess.  We’re diving in without towels.  I repeat, no towels.  But in the end we’ll meet success with a revamped  registry that is the very best.  Sounds like a kindergarten song.

Regorge and share your valuable insights in a speedy survey.

Spread the spewage and send to a few opinionated soul sisters.  If you tweet, be sure to use the hashtag: #registryregurgitation.

Retch wretched registries,

Kira

*If you’re kind enough to spare 10 minutes for my survey.

Business savvy + badass

April 19, 2011

Photo Credit: Kelly Hoey

Is a girl crush the same as a role-model?  Insert shrug.  Doesn’t really matter.

Not only is my girl crush business savvy + badass, but she is also an entrepreneur from British Columbia that laughs loudly, thinks strategically, and advises wisely.  As most people often do when they are intrigued by a true role-model, they ask questions.  I naturally had many questions for the ultimate connector, Kelly Hoey, upon my meeting with her.

Where did you begin?

Kelly described her hometown, Victoria, BC, as a “wonderful place to be from. … I was pushed to see the possibilities in the world but I don’t think my parents realized what all the possibilities were themselves.”   After leaving home for law school in Vancouver, Kelly then practiced law at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in Toronto.

Had you always wanted to be a lawyer? 

“I didn’t have enough confidence in my math skills to go for a MBA,” Kelly commented.  Although Kelly did not necessarily know she’d pursue a law degree at a young age, she did know that she would pursue a professional degree.

Kelly recalled that there was a three-year period during her law career when she really enjoyed practicing law.  What aligned?    “All of my career needs were met and satisfied during that time,” Kelly commented.

All needs?  Please share.

1.) The firm supported a strong mentor program.

2.) The client management system was developed and accessible – it was a solid network.

3.) There were opportunities to get involved in the firm at every level, whether it was contributing to daily management or volunteer events.

What was the career takeaway from your experience at Osler?

“If I had known myself better then, I would have made better decisions.”  Kelly added, “Career ownership means being clear about what you want in a career and being able to ask an employer the right questions.  You may get answers you don’t like which is OK.  That means it isn’t going to work out. … While at Osler’s firm, I learned when to put my hand up and say, ‘I want to be considered for a job,’ and I learned when to fire myself … when my needs were no longer fulfilled.”

Tell me about New York.

“The people that really know me aren’t surprised I live in NYC.  I can’t imagine not being here.”

Kelly officially became a New Yorker on the day she walked across the street without looking up.  “I still pinch myself every once in a while because I look down Lexington Avenue and there’s the Chrysler Building.  And I live in the same city,” shared Kelly.

We’ll dive into Kelly’s entrepreneurial path in NYC in Part 2.  Patience.

Follow Kelly on Twitter!


friz4

frizshoes

The Fashion World has roared: “Prints are in.”

I was bold in junior high.  I wore various printed tops to class: bright beetles and satin comic-strips.  It got attention.

The chutzpah slipped away in high school, and ultimately disappeared in college.  The mantra on campus was look like everyone else.

Spring 2011 Fashion is not my motivating factor.   {Enter red-head and The Magic School Bus.}

Ms. Frizzle.  The teacher’s fancy frocks remind me of true glamour.

Where does Ms. Frizz shop?  Does she design her own clothing line?  Is she on Match.com?  Is her first name Fran? Lots. of. questions.

Despite my fictitious admiration for the scientist, I do realize she does not exist. But I do believe that many crafty women carry little pieces of Ms. Frizz’s splendor and philosophy as they roam the streets.

Let the Frizzle wild.  Rock the rhinos.

frizshoes2

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Get your buzz on.

February 6, 2011

NYC Beekeeper Ezra Hug

Urban beekeeping is in.

After serving as an “apprentice” to NYC beekeeper Ezra Hug last year, I am thrilled to manage my first hive this spring.  Interested?  Take a course with The NYC Beekeepers Association.

The NYCBA is offering a course in 2011 for the absolute beginner and novice beekeeper.  This course is 12 hours long, spread out over four Sundays, AND it offers an apiary visit in April.  The NYCBA volunteer instructors are professional beekeepers with a collective half century of buzz-worthy experience.  The fee is $150.00 for the entire course which includes the following:

* construction of a bee hive
* safe hive placement
* general maintenance
* troubleshooting in the hive
* processes and lifecycle within the colony
* diseases and treatments

Beyond the fact that beekeeping is a HUGE conversation-starter (great for first dates + business interviews), you will also learn how to invigorate your vegetables while contributing to the environment and ensuring yourself as much as 120 lbs of pure raw honey per year per hive.  Yum.

This course teaches everything you need to know to start or continue your fascinating love story with the bees.  Learn about this fulfilling and rewarding hobby.  Become a beekeeper.  It is easier than you may think, and more intriguing that you might imagine.

I’d love to hear from you if you take the course!

You get something, I get something.  I’ll buy your therapy.

Dish out your self-portrait. Be creative + crafty or dangerous + sharp.  Be you.  Exaggerate. Pour out some paint, throw in some mud, use your fingers, and make a mess!

Why should you waste time with chunks of crayon, erasers, and glue sticks?

Therapy.  It feels really good.  And who isn’t a tad narcissistic these days?  Check out my mermaid waves. Also, I’ll include a link to your website if you want some attention.

Other than a free therapy session (unleash your inner tarantula or unicorn), I buy you a drink. Since I can’t and won’t take you out for a drink, I’ll send you a drink via snail mail.  (Spend it on cotton swabs or jelly beans if you don’t drink alcohol.)

I get the doodle, and you get the drink.  Win-win-WIN.  There are stipulations, of course.  And I don’t just give drinks away.  Effort is necessary.

Here’s what you get when you give:

Share a self-portrait with your story, and you’ll be savoring a delicious PBR in no time. $3

→Bacon beer in your belly.  Submit a diorama with the story, and you will taste the meat in no time.  Cheers.  $5

→If you are eco-friendly and apply organic materials to the caricature (with story), then salt up the arm, a tequila shot is on the way.  Tequila! $7

→Ambitious and dangerous?  Two drawings with two stories = One delicious dirty martini.  Encourage a friend to play! $9

→Delight your friends.  Collect 5 self-portraits + stories.  Send.  Celebrate with a round of shots.  $21

It’s easy to submit.  Fill out the form.

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Learn more about our featured presenters: Elizabeth Méndez Berry + Holly Kearl

Email kira.zmuda@gmail.com to register.

Collecting neighborhoods 2.0

October 18, 2010

People collect knives, trolls, horrific dating adventures, and other intriguing jewels. Regardless of the collector’s particular fancy, the item often represents a sentimental accessory – an ongoing story dangling in time. Not every collection can be stored easily in a cellar, shelf or album. Nabewise, an online platform that explores and showcases neighborhoods in New York City, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, and Chicago, has revolutionized the way we now collect.

Photo Credit: Ann Baldinucci

Ann Baldinucci, the Founder and CEO of Nabewise and a dynamic woman that has moved 35 times in her life, shared, “I really feel like I’m made up of all the places I’ve lived in throughout my life, and I love finding new ones. I’m a collector of places.” While many transient people store multitudes of memories and experiences in their cerebral cortex, they can now also share places, more specifically neighborhoods, on Nabewise.

Diana Sonis, the Director of Business Development at Nabewise, is known for her avid global travels; she’s explored neighborhoods throughout 4 continents, 21 countries, and 66 cities. Diana noted, “Ann is the mover, and I’m the traveler.” Diana, however, is currently on the prowl for her next apartment with her husband. She shared her neighborhood desires, “I want the most people, no green spaces, cafes, outdoor tables, and cobblestone streets in my neighborhood.” Diana’s search keywords on Nabewise: safety, trendy, and beautiful people. Tribeca it is.*

Photo Credit: Diana Sonis

A unique and endearing aspect of Nabewise is the company’s focus on not only bringing neighborhoods to life, but also on creating stronger communities. “We highlight art projects, community gardens, and farmer’s markets. Those are the things that are shown to strengthen neighborhood ties. Nabewise wants to be a part of strengthening communities. I’ve moved so many times in my life (35!) and in many of my neighborhoods I didn’t know how to get involved so I never did. … We will show you where people are organizing,” Ann added. Nabewise also allows community members to share their personal gems with other local and global wanderers.

Ann found her own neighborhood secret near the Nabewise office in Flatiron District, “I am obsessed with finding local secrets – there’s an antique shop on 20th by Spoon and the owner has a massive bird cage with a variety of birds, and I found two baby doves there. I stop by there all of the time and watch the birds during lunch.”

Ann’s a self-starter. “I don’t have a tech background, but I taught it to myself. I’m continually learning every day. … I have an unconventional background. I’m a big believer in people reinventing themselves. No one will ever tell me that there’s a job I can’t do if I want to do it. I really embrace people with unconventional backgrounds,” Ann commented.

“While we are generating new content on Nabewise, we are also aggregating the content that is out there – we are pulling local data from Four Square and other sources in a smart way that actually captures a neighborhood,” Ann noted. The Nabewise tech team is clearly killer, and Ann stressed their importance, “Everyone at Nabewise is smarter than I am.”

Diana shared, “I’m amazed at what someone can do with a non-tech background and no money in the short time that Ann has conceived and then launched Nabewise. … I would describe Ann as a hustler. I think it is the number one quality you need in a start-up. Ann is incredibly persuasive. She is also amazing with the team. The team loves her. She is very conscious of how people are working and what people need. And Ann gives it to them. She’s built this loyalty in the team which is so important for execution – that’s why I think Nabewise will be a success.”

Every leader needs a fire starter. Ann shared, “In a start-up you need people that can roll up their sleeves and get sh*t done. I can’t direct people all day long.  I can give it to Diana and she will get it done … Diana can do anything she decides to do. Everything she’s done, she’s nailed which is rare. She had a full ride scholarship to NYU. She worked in finance with a journalism background. She nailed it in finance and got her CFA. She started her own business with her husband.”

Impressed yet?  Then get involved.

Love your ‘hood? Write about it. Gloat, critique, adore, etc. Most importantly, share your neighborhoods with Ann, Diana, and the Nabewise community.

*Although Diana did not move to Tribeca, she is still in search of her new home.  Suggestions?  Reach out to Diana on Nabewise.

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