The key takeaway from 2017 – NOTHING MAKES SENSE!
Everything I thought would happen didn’t, and the unexpected – good and bad – happened in full force!
The Different Moods of 2017
This is how I started the year feeling. I was all over the place.
By mid-year this mood kicked in…
And by the end, this is exactly where I’m at (thanks Suzy).
I landed what would be my favorite consulting gig at MKTG in Q1…creative and passionate people and a very fun project to work on. How many times do you see branded soda machines with adorable little super hero characters?
A Return to Moet Hennessy
I worked at Moet Hennessy, USA in my twenties. What a ride! I began on the Hennessy brand, worked on 10 Cane Rum, Glenmorangie Scotch, and Belvedere Vodka. I left to work at Serralles, USA and eventually opened my own consulting firm but had the amazing opportunity to return as the Hennessy V.S Brand Director. Going back to where it all started….
I got to join in the ranks of these extraordinary folks.
My first day was my birthday, March 27th, and I must say it was pretty amazing. The day started in Las Vegas with a helicopter ride through the Grand Canyon and VCP Champagne. A pretty incredible way to meet my team.
There was an amazing trip to Cognac to see the Hennessy distillery and experience the history first hand.
I even had the privilege to meet Roch Hennessy.
…and see the archives.
Back on US Soil, I organized a team building day at the DogPound where we boxed out our aggressions. Yes, I have a boot on…
I also had the honor of participating in the launch of Hennessy V.S Limited Edition with Jon One.
Had another fantastic trip to Champagne in June. I’m still in the boot!
And in the summer I enjoyed an educational market visit to Florida.
By the end of the summer, I moved into the role of Experiential Marketing Director for the Hennessy Portfolio.
In November, I was thrilled to have Hennessy participate in Hopeland’s annual gala. The organization finds loving homes for children, a cause very close to my heart.
Year end dinners were celebratory, although some were bittersweet as some people left the Moet Hennessy family.
And I had the great fortune of closing out the year with the Hennessy team at our delicious holiday lunch at my favorite Italian restaurant in NY, Carbone.
My Best Friend’s Wedding
My best friend, Linda, had her fabulous NY Bachelorette Party in March and we danced the night away! (Eddie the Eagle?)
She married Adam Ponsi in April and her wedding was epic on every level. Linda, thank you for making me your made of honor. It was my honor to be by your side! Love you.
The story of my life…
Keith and I experienced the chicken parm pizza at Quality Italian with Cristina + Ralph Racanelli. We loved it so much we went back with Linda and Adam.
Can’t say enough about the bagel at Nur. This was a delicious experience with Linda and John.
Who says you can’t have it all? Champagne, pizza and a pierogi!
4 Charles’ 40oz Prime Rib – MEAT, MEAT, MEAT!
Discovered the best duck in NY at Decoy (thanks Orit!)
Although I love Carbone, there is nothing like a home cooked Italian meal with homemade red sauce. Cristina, thank you for this amazing meal.
Ayurvedic Cuisine at Divya’s with Orit.
I had my 2 extraordinary moms – Karen + Diane – come together for a cook off where they made their famous recipes and I took a ton of notes! The output = 3 days worth of delicious meals my dad got to taste test.
The Grill – Keith and my 9 year wedding Anniversary meal.
Beyond proud of Simon Kim, my brother from another (Korean) mother. What a tremendous year. He closed Piora, opened Cote, won another Michelin star, had a baby girl and serves some of the best steak I’ve ever tasted.
Pu Pu Platters and Wonton Soup with sliced pork. The way it’s supposed to be.
The NoMad’s Chicken with Cooper.
Hillstone – Trish and John 🙂
Emmy’s: Burger, Detroit-style pizza and the rice krispy treat dessert.
Love useful food pairings!
I’d like the dover sole. He’ll have the branzino…
My Family: Keith and Rambo
Rambo and Paulie – Grumpy old men.
Our trip to Aruba. We didn’t get to do a lot of personal travel this year but this vacation was so relaxing and a good mid-year reset.
Keith and I continue our broadway nights where we usually start with wine, then move to champagne, then scotch and if ambitious tequila. Over the course of 5 hours, we sing all our favorite show tunes, dance around our apartment with Rambo, or if warm, sing on our balcony. We usually end with an order from our local 24 hour diner.
Keith’s Bday with polish cuisine.
Rocking out at Linda and Adam’s wedding!
Date night for my 36th birthday.
Keith’s Christmas Decor – Disco lights in the apartment surrounded by ‘spirits’
My handsome 13 year old dog child.
Our annual holiday tradition of fancy cocktails in our favorite NY Hotels. He still fits in his tux from our wedding (9 years ago) and I rocked my mom’s dress (the one that as a daughter I use to think she was a princess in).
Rutgers Tailgating and Football
Yeah, we’re still tailgating with the greatest crew.
Things That Made Me Smile in 2017
Leaf cookies, walkman (felt like Star Lord), the baby boys, and this Christmas card.
Love you, mean it!
Being able to work and play in this extraordinary city.
The JC Crew.
Powered by Pizza!
The ability to leave freezing NY for sunny Miami.
Coffee & Wine.
The DogPound – best workout on the planet.
The Caruso’s – this was quite a Q4 for my family but it was a reminder that you will do anything for your loved ones. I truly have the craziest, but most amazing parents. And Nicole, we just need you to continue to watch over us.
The Witek’s – I am truly blessed to have such supportive and loving in-laws. Thank you for all your help this year.
What I Learned
Because I’m an obsessive, hyper-detailed type A personality, I had quite a wake up call this year. I questioned the way I was leading my life and what I was prioritizing. Was what I considered success a few years ago ‘success’ now? By conventional definitions, you could say I was successful but when you had a year filled with health mishaps – 4 broken ribs and a broken left foot forcing me to wear a very sexy (insert sarcastic face) boot for 4 months, 2 ER trips for my hypertension, and a surgery, I would say I didn’t feel that way.
I will admit, up to the age of thirty, I needed conventional successes to create structure. After thirty, everything I’ve learned has been from failure, rejection, humility, and vulnerability. I think that’s how your soul expands. Admittedly, I don’t always like it, but I realize the acceptance and perhaps surrendering to it makes me realize how strong I actually am.
There were a few key learnings I took away this year that I hope in my sharing helps you.
- Sometimes you need to simply listen.
- When people become multi sensory, they become more aware. That’s why I love traveling to new places because it forces me to engage all my senses and I actually feel more alive and alert, no longer operating on auto-pilot.
- It never hurts to see the good in someone. They often act better because of it. Make people feel valued, seen, heard, and treat them with reverence and respect. You will bring out the best in them.
- There is power in vulnerability and trust.
- We live in a scarcity culture – nothing is enough. We are not good enough. We are not thin enough. We are not safe enough. I challenge that now. I think we have enough if we allow ourselves to enjoy the moment
- It’s ok to surrender to the hurt, loss, resentment and disappointment. Accept it because it did happen, and now it’s done.
- The energy we put out is the energy we get back – the law of attraction.
- Get rid of the disease to please. Not worth it cause you’re never going to make everyone happy. You must make yourself happy.
- You are in control of 2 things: how to prepare for what might happen and how to respond to what just happened.
- Success is being healthy, living a life you admire and finding inner peace.
- When I have a comparison moment, I now ask: What am I trying to prove, to whom and for what?
- Nothing Makes Sense
My hopes for 2018
I have a lot of ambitions for 2018 and hope for a healthy, balanced year.
I don’t want to let a moment pass without my acknowledgement and full experience of it. I plan to stay mindful, grateful and hope to entertain, enlighten and uplift those around me. #3QT
Stay inspired and cheers to 2018.