AOL Newfront 2015

AOL NewfrontThe Newfronts were last week in NY.  The number of companies participating has exploded over the past two years.  AOL hosted our Newfront on the 54th floor of 4 World Trade Center, which was a pretty spectacular view.  This year AOL announced we would be upping the stakes on our competition by shifting to a year-round content strategy where advertisers can buy the shows they want, in the formats they want, at the times of year that suit them best.  You can view our full slate here. We had various celebrities on hand to introduce their shows, like Making a Scene with James Franco and the Emmy Nominated, Park Bench with Steve Buscemi. The biggest announcement was that AOL will now partner with NBCUniversal to produce and distribute content together.  Looks like my job just got a bit more fun!

AOL Newfront 2015AOL Newfront 2015{Live streamed the event from our NY office}

Stanton Social

Stanton SocialThe Stanton Social, on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, is basically my go-to restaurant for NY dinners because it has great food coupled with great ambiance.  The menu is perfect for large parties because the dishes are shareable. My favorite thing on the menu is the “Chicken & Waffles”, with the “French Onion Soup Dumplings” running a close second.

Stanton SocialStanton Social{My view outside the restaurant}

Stanton Social{The view inside}

Stanton Social{Cozy booths}

Beauty and Essex{Beauty & Essex, its sister restaurant, is just 3 blocks away and a fun place to go after dinner.  You enter through a pawn shop in true speak-easy fashion. No password required}

Sixty LES

Sixty LESI had never stayed in the Lower East Side before and last week my meetings took place downtown so I decided to stay at the Sixty LES, sister hotel to the Sixty Soho. I had such a wonderful experience! First of all, my room was larger than your average NY hotel room, which is a huge plus for someone claustrophobic like me. It also came complete with a wrap-around balcony and views of both the Empire State Building and Freedom Tower alike. Walking distance to great restaurants and the Subway,  it was the perfect location for me to get to all of my meetings and dinners on time.  I loved it.

Sixty LESSixty LESSixty LESSixty LES RoomSixty LES{dark wood floors felt like bedroom at home}

Sixty LES Views{View of the Empire State Building}

Sixty LES Views{View of the Freedom Tower}

Sixty LESBlue Ribbon Room Service{Room Service from Blue Ribbon Sushi, the best Sushi Restaurant in NY.  I had the cooked Black Cod, Miso soup and brown rice. Absolutely perfect}

Sixty LES{My little sister stopped by to see me}

Sunset Sixty LES{Enjoyed this sunset}

AOL SF

AOL SFI am constantly amazed at God’s grace in my life, especially when it comes to my job.  I get to work in such a creative environment with such supremely talented people and I really do feel overwhelmed with gratitude most days.  Last week I worked out of the AOL San Francisco office for a couple of days, since I had client events up there. It’s such a nice space I thought I’d share some of my favorite things about it with you!

AOL SF{The artwork. This piece is my absolute favorite of all the AOL offices}

Architecture{The architecture. This is the view from my workspace}

Sitting area{The reception sitting area}

conference room view{The views.  This one is from the main conference room}

SF Restaurants{The restaurants.  This is the cool floor at Per Diem}

Nordstrom Beauty Trend Show

Beauty Trend ShowOn Saturday I attended the Beauty Trend Show at Nordstrom Topanga, in Canoga Park, CA. They have this event annually, but this was the first time I was able to actually attend. It was the perfect mini-personal-day because it started early (8am) and ended by 9:30. Then you were able to enjoy the beauty counters at your own pace. I was finished by 11:30. The way it works is you pre-purchase a Nordstrom gift card for $20. You bring that card with you on the day of the event and it serves as your ticket in. Then after the show, you use it to shop for some beauty goodies. I’m only mid-way through my month long travel schedule so it was really helpful to find some new products to take care of my travel-worn skin.  Below is a re-cap of my favorites from the day.

Nordstrom TopangaPurity of Elements{My favorite discovery was Purity of Elements skincare line.  Sheri Poe, founder pictured above, is 62 and 1/2 years old. I guessed 45, right? She is amazing. I had the chance to meet her and sample her products.  I asked her “what is the one product in her line that I should walk away with?” and she said “the Serum! It’s life-changing”}

SmashboxBeauty Trend ShowLuminage{ILuminage highlighted their “anti-aging pillowcase” infused with copper}

PillowcaseShoes{I’m not sure what this line was about because I was too focused on her shoes.  Faux fur sandals- yes please! They’re from Topshop. You can get them at Nordstrom Topanga Salon Shoes}

IMG_6535{Laila fragrance founder, Geir Ness.  His fragrance is named after his Mom.  It was the fragrance of the Grammy Awards gift bags}

Kiels{Directly after the show, I had a free facial at the Kiels counter. It was my first experience with their products.  I walked away with the the avocado eye cream and pore tightener}

Lancome{Lancome’s Visionnaire 1 Minute Blur is said to be used by Kate Middleton, Dutchess of Cambridge}

Trent Show{Beauty products can be overwhelming so the beauty trend show was a fun way for me to navigate all the products and walk away with a few winners.  My full list of favorites below}

Kiels Avocado Eye Cream

Kiels Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Cream

Kiels Pore Tightening Concentrate

Kiels Micro Blur Skin Perfector

Purity of Elements Daily Detox Exfoliating Cleanser

Purity of Elements Radiance Face Serum

Purity of Elements Pore Minimizing Clay Mask

Anastasia Brow Gel

Anastasia Brow Stencils

Miracle Skin Transformer 5-In-1 Tinted Skin Enhancer

Miracle Skin Transformer Triple Active Night Treatment

AOL Take Your Child To Work Day 2015

TYCTWDI am so lucky to work for a company that supports National Take Your Sons and Daughters to Work Day. It is Luke’s favorite day of the year (next to Christmas and his birthday of course). This year I planned the event for the AOL Beverly Hills office and I structured the activities around a few of AOL’s core values (We take fun seriously, We Hire And Empower Smart People Who Love What They Do & We Are In The Business of Helping People, Period).  It was a fantastic day that started out with teaching each child the very valuable sales skill of introducing oneself and giving a proper business handshake.  Children got to push around a donut cart and introduce themselves to their parents’ co-workers.  Special thanks to my fellow AOLers, Katinka Walker, Lauren Damron & Cathy Brough who helped me execute the event.

TYCTWD Agenda MAP{I designed a TYCTWD Agenda Map, Disneyland style, for each child}

Red Carpet{Our first activity was “On The Red Carpet” where AOL.com Curator, Jenny Depper taught the kids how she interviews celebrities on the Red Carpet.  One child’s interview question was “So, Beyonce- what song do you plan to release on iTunes next?” Awesome, right?}

Face painter{Keeping with our “fun” theme, we brought in a face painter}

Raging Fires{Luke created a new character for himself which he named “Raging Fires”}

CHLA{To align with our value of “Helping People”, the kids packed donation boxes for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ Literally Healing program which provides books to children in the hospital}

Huffpost Ice Cream Tasting{After lunch we had the editors of Huffpost Taste teach the kids how to write a tasting review.  We did an ice cream tasting which consisted of 6 different flavors of Vanilla ice cream.  The clear winner? Tillamook}

Huffpost TasteLifestyle Athletics{After the ice cream, my personal boxing instructor, owner of Lifestyle Athletics, came by to help the kids do some exercises to burn off the sugar.  Who can hold a plank the longest?}

IMG_6487{Coach Coronel provided each kid with a certificate of completion}

Create Your Own Monster{We wound the kids back down after the vigorous exercise with a “Create your own AOL Monster” activity, which was Luke’s idea.  That’s his monster on the left}

Huffpost Show{Next we took the kids backstage for a tour of where we film the Huffpost Show}

Huffpost Show Set{they got to sit on set}

Control Room{And go back into the producer’s control room}

Luke on Camera{Then we put the kids on camera with a teleprompter}

{This was Luke’s Video Debut as a News caster for AOL News}

IMG_6468{Luke and I ended our day by dropping off the boxes at CHLA}

Luke and Me

SOMA Soul Cycle

SOMA Soul CycleThis week I hosted a fun event for my clients at SOMA Soul Cycle in San Francisco.  It’s such a great team building exercise, no pun intended. The last time I went to Soul Cycle was in 2012 at the West Hollywood location, documented here.  Spin classes have never been my favorite thing. It’s usually the discomfort of the seat that bothers me but that’s not a problem at Soul Cycle mainly because you don’t spend that much time sitting. You spend most of your time hovering over the seat in a semi squat position or riding standing up.  Those who Soul Cycle really love it.  It’s a cool combination of movement to fun music on a stationary bike.  I liked it because I could go at my own pace.  They’ve got locations all over- NY, LA, SF- and it’s a great way to kickstart your workout motivation for Summer.  You can find a class here and you should always reserve a bike in advance. They fill up fast.

SF Ballet

Opera House CurtainI love ballet. It was one of those things that I always dreamed of doing as a kid.  I remember when my Mom told me we couldn’t afford ballet lessons anymore, I had only just started taking them, and I told myself that regardless of whether or not I got to be a dancer I’d watch a real ballet someday.  I have since seen a ballet in NY, Los Angeles and last night I got to add San Francisco to the list.  My client and I went to see Program 7, a triple bill that included Caprice, The Four Temperaments and The Swimmer.  My favorite was Caprice because of the beauty and elegance of the Yuan Yuan Tan, who is so graceful she seems lighter than air.  The Swimmer was a close second which used a scrim and projection to bring the ballet to life almost like a musical and I hadn’t seen that done before.  It didn’t hurt that the Principal dancer was amazing either.  I’m inspired to hunt down an adult ballet class in LA and see if I can finally learn to dance.

Opera House Ceiling

IMG_6396{Opera House Ceiling}

Opera House Ceiling

City Girl

NYGrowing up, we moved around more often than I’d care to remember. My childhood journey took me from Los Angeles,CA to Buffalo, NY, to Rockville, MD to Farmington, NH to Milton, NH.  Ultimately, I chose to go back to California when I graduated High School but up until then my longest stay was New Hampshire, where we lived in the country.  Our house had a pond in the backyard surrounded by a forest. There were no sidewalks, no street signs and my closest friend in Jr. High lived on a working farm in a house over 100 years old with secret passages in the walls that were once used in the Underground RailroadI have precious memories from that time in the country- water sports on the lake, my first job picking strawberries at McKenzie Farm and my small town experience overall, but nothing makes me happier than being in a big city and New York City is the best big city in the world.  The awesomeness of the buildings, the energy of the people and the creativity that abounds everywhere you look just makes me smile.  I can’t even explain it.  Simple things like the architecture of old churches and the wonder of parks in the midst of the concrete jungle just make me thankful for the experience of having visited.

NYNY

Sixty Soho

Sixty SohoOn my trip to NY last week I stayed at Sixty Soho. Formerly The Thompson, the hotel is located at 60 Thompson Street, just about a half-a-block from Broome in Soho.  It is walking distance from the infamous Canal Street, where tourists find all forms of counterfeit designer wares.  Sixty Soho boasts a beautiful aesthetic including a marble walled staircase to the lobby and quaint conversation nooks by the fireplace. The rooms are small but clean with a cozy design. The pipes to the air conditioning in the rooms can only run either hot or cold at one time however, which translates to no air conditioning in the rooms in the winter when heat is typically the preference. So if you like to sleep like an Eskimo, you may want to visit only in Summer.

Sixty Soho Lobby{The lobby has a beautiful wall of windowpanes}

Fireplace Sixty Soho{Fireplace sitting area}

Sixty Soho Bookshelf{Lobby Bookshelf}

Sixty Soho Room{My room}

Sixty Soho Room BookshelBathroom{No tub, but the shower was really lovely including a hand shower}