I was recently featured on the Fitness Blitz Radio podcast, and the host, Eric Malzone, asked me what I thought it takes to be successful in the fitness industry. I talked about celebrating the small wins. Looking for the good in each week or month and focusing on the positives to keep going forward. Otherwise it could all just consume you.
It’s easy to fall prey to feeling like whatever you’re doing is not enough, but if you can take a second to feel proud for any progress you make, in business or personal life, it can really go a long way.
But this relates to so much more than just what I do in my business. I think most people can agree that there is so much negativity in the world we live in. Every time you check the news, there is something upsetting happening. It’s so important to our mental health, to find little silver linings in our daily lives and routines.
I make the best to try to squeeze the juice out of the lemons life may throw my way.
So many things in our lives deserve celebrating. Perhaps…
Your whole family sat and had a meal together and got to enjoy a treat together. Or…
Your mom came over so you could go get that much needed pedicure. Or…
You and your hubby had a date night at a cool new local restaurant. Or…
You worked out first thing in the morning before going to work which put you in a great mood for the rest of the day. Or…
Your kid slept through the night after several rough nights.
If only relish in the bigger things, whatever you may consider those to be, you miss out on so much.
You miss out on the gratitude-filled joy you can feel and enjoy to carry you through those darker days.
So next time you tell yourself you will wait until “xyz” to celebrate, go ahead and celebrate and make the experience of treating yourself a celebration in itself.
The next few weeks until the end of the year are sure to be filled with a lot festivities. Health-conscious people everywhere are also bracing themselves to not derail all their hard work. There is no reason to not enjoy this Most Wonderful Time of the Year…It’s a time meant for celebrating and being thankful after all; with some simple habits you can keep yourself accountable and stay fit through the Holiday Season.
6 Tips to Avoid Derailing your Fitness Progress through the Holidays
1) Schedule your workouts. I prefer to use an agenda (not an app) and pencil in the workouts and runs I plan on doing for that week. This also goes for anything else I need/want to get done like creating a healthy eating plan, going to the grocery store or the post office. If I accomplish 90% of what’s on my list, I consider that to be a very successful week. I write it in my agenda and check it off when I’m done.
2) Avoid sitting for too long. Sitting for prolonged periods of time has been proven to be hazardous to our health. Remember this not just for when you’re at the office but also when watching Disney shows or Christmas movies with your family. Make it a habit to get up and move frequently.
3) Drink up! Many people track their food intake but I also find that it’s very important to track your water intake because most people simply don’t drink enough water. I have an oversized water bottle that I refill several times a day and end up drinking about 1 gallon of per day. When it comes to Holiday libations, avoid anything with fruit juices as they are full of sugar. Stick to clear liquor mixed with club soda or wine.
4) A little bit is better than nothing when it comes to exercise. This is so true now that I’m a mom, especially one who is mostly at home. My “me” time is pretty much non-existent, so I rely on naps to get stuff done around the house or for my businesses. Sometimes after all my to-dos are done, I only have a few minutes to get my sweat on.
If you feel like 10 minutes is not enough, remember that it is better than a 0 minute workout.
5) Indulge a few times, but not the whole Season. I truly love the Christmas season and the family bonding and get-togethers with friends. It helps us all be thankful for all that we have and the important people that make up our circles. If you are at a party and you really want to try the desserts, go for it. Just snack on the lower calorie appetizers and limit your alcoholic drinking to avoid consuming too many calories.
6 Tips to Avoid Derailing your Fitness Progress through the Holidays
6) Don’t make a New Year’s resolution to stay in shape. Make it a year-long resolution, not just a temporary one. Remember that it’s not about perfection, but about making continuous progress week after week.
If you simply can’t get yourself to do all of the above, then it’s time to consider investing in yourself. Find a trainer or coach who can help you stay motivated and accountable through the busy Holiday Season. I work with a lot of busy moms who simply do not have the time for a one hour workout, but with the right workouts and a fun group of other like-minded ladies, they are able to make improvements in their physiques, energy levels, and most importantly, their mindsets.
Right now I’m running my first ever 6-Week Holiday Hustle program online and the ladies are loving it so far! I know that with the combination of workouts, meal plans and the accountability that they will share, it will be a successful season for all of them.
How are you staying accountable through the last 2 months of the year?
Halloween is a fun time of year for both kids and grownups. But with fun comes temptation, looming all around us in cute candy wrappings, beckoning us to have just.one.more.treat…You can certainly still enjoy the holiday without sabotaging your fitness and health goals. By allowing yourself a couple of small treats or finding healthier alternatives, you can lower your chances of a binge session later on.
Here are some of my best Halloween hacks:
1) Check the nutrition information before you indulge. Most nutritional information is based on more than one mini-sized bag. Read the label, know how much you are consuming, and if needed, divide your bags into serving sizes to help with portion control.
2) Choose dark chocolate over white. Dark is your healthiest option when it comes to candy and believe it or not, white chocolate is the unhealthiest option. Why? First, it does basically nothing for cravings. Secondly, white chocolate is packed with extra sugar and added fat from the extra milk products used to give it its white coloring.
3) Need a healthy party treat idea? How about Spiders On A Log! Spread any type of nut butter on some celery sticks and then press in 2 dark chocolate chips. The spider “legs” can be created with melted dark chocolate in a piping bag or you can use dark brown sprinkles.
4) Are you carving a few pumpkins this year? Don’t waste the seeds! They can be roasted in the oven with a little sprinkle of salt and pepper and make a tasty and nutritious snack. You can also save some to throw into your morning smoothie for a little dose of healthy fat to keep you full longer.
Another thing to keep in mind if you’re having a party or trick or treaters is that the growing epidemic of potentially deadly food allergies is becoming more and more common in both children and adults. You can offer your trick or treaters stickers, stamps, bouncy balls or other small toys or crafts instead of candy.
You may notice teal pumpkins on some doorsteps in the area this year and that means that the household is participating in The Teal Pumpkin Project. This project is aimed at raising awareness of food allergies and making the Halloween season inclusive for all. Participating houses pledge to have non-food treats available for trick-or-treaters so that food allergy kids can still participate in the trick-or-treat tradition.
However it is you may be celebrating, I hope you have a happy and healthy Halloween! Feel free to share your own tips and hacks below.
After the laid-back demeanor of summer, most of us are ready to get back into a end-of-year routine. Kids have been back at school for a month or two and Summer Fridays are long over. The weather in our area is still a little wishy-washy, but we know Halloween is around the corner, making the grand entrance for the other fall and winter holidays that follow suit.
Photo by Alisha Mishra on Pexels.com
For many of us, fall relates to detoxing. It’s almost like we want to do a quick cleanse before we start the overindulging once again in a few weeks. Cleansing can be a great way to jumpstart a healthy lifestyle, but they’re not healthy for more than a week or two and people are left wondering what else to do. My advise is that if you choose to do a short program like a juice cleanse, have a plan for what you will do once it’s over.
Find some healthy crock pot recipes, experiment with new in-season veggies, or find some healthy local take-out options for the inevitable busy days. These are much better alternatives than trying to constantly restrict yourself and risk falling short on your health and fitness goals.
I just sent an email out to my newsletter subscribers talking about some of the things I would like to focus on this fall. Some are simple, like investing in a few new pieces for my wardrobe, others are a bit more complicated (for me), like updating my home décor (I’m so indecisive with that stuff!) and working on my online services.
The truth is that it’s a great time of year to reestablish your goals and look at your progress. There’s no need to wait until the New Year to start doing this. Take a look at what you accomplished up until now, see where you’re falling short, and work towards what you can still improve.
A few other tips I’d love to share with you are:
Walk more! Explore your neighborhood or local park.
Try a new workout class.
Meal prep for healthier lunches.
Replace one of your glasses of wine with seltzer.
Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com
So, what will you choose as the leaves and temperatures drop? Will you look for opportunities to take care of yourself, mind, body and spirit? Or will you sleep in every day and skip your workouts, eat all the foods and hibernate until January?
Comment and let me know if you use any of my tips!
Running for 26.2 miles is not for the faint of heart. It takes consistency, dedication and determination, and a small amount of crazy, to put in the work week after week, anywhere from 12 to sometimes 20 weeks. I’m counting down the days to my 5th marathon which had me thinking about a few things…
First of all, I have a runfession to make. I don’t love training for marathons. Whaaat?!!
I don’t. I really like running but I don’t love it all the time. Some runs are awesome, while other runs I need to really force myself to finish. It’s the sense of accomplishment I get from finishing a tough (physically or mentally) training run and the pride from getting my finisher’s medal after crossing the finish line that keep me going back for more.
Us marathoners know we can’t just show up and fake it. We have to put in the work to have the best performance possible. Setting a new personal record and feeling good throughout the entire run is an amazing feeling that makes all the hard work worth it.
Many people turn to long distance running because it makes them a better person, a better wife, a better mom, a better friend, by allowing them to clear their mind of stress and “head noise.”
It gives us mamas some “Me Time” to daydream. Some people may choose to binge watch Netflix; others, we choose to lace up our sneakers and run.
I don’t do it to be “skinny.” I have actually gained a few pounds training for this marathon. Sure, running helps keep me in shape, but if my goal was to just be fit I could simply do 20-minute workouts every day and be fine. Long distance running digs into other areas of my wellness I just can’t get from a lifting session.
Let’s discuss my training a bit.
Avoid injury and crosstrain.
My first goal is always to show up healthy to the start line of the marathon. I want to avoid injury as much as possible and it’s my main goal with any clients I train as well. I build up mileage progressively and cross-train by doing strength training about 2 days a week. It’s really important to not give up strength training, but to modify it so you are doing movements that are the most beneficial to running. Examples are single-leg squats and side planks. I’m such a strong believer in the philosophy that in order to be a better runner, you need to be a stronger and more mobile runner, that I have made it my duty to help runners, and any type of endurance athlete, get fitter to run better.
Run a short race to test your speed and to “practice” racing.
It doesn’t have to be a half marathon; even a 5K can help you gauge how fit you are and give you a better idea of what your goal time should be. It gives you a chance to practice controlling the nerves and also you can practice some of your nutrition.
Run twice a day.
I don’t mean multiple crazy longs run that you’re breaking up into two. Doing 2 runs a day is an option if you only have time for 4 miles in the morning and then maybe you can do 4 more on your lunch break. I wouldn’t break up a speed session, but if it’s a day that calls for 8 easy miles, I believe it’s fine to do this. If the long runs are also fatiguing you or you’re injury prone, I would recommend breaking those up too. Perhaps you do 10 miles in the morning and the rest of the long run in the afternoon. The most important factor of the long run is time spent on your feet, so the accumulated fatigue will still present itself if you do it this way.
Work on your mental fitness.
I have completed long runs in 90+ degree weather. I have completed long runs by myself. I have done many boring runs on the treadmill. I occasionally get comments such as, “I can’t believe you do that!” Well, my response is always, “I have to do what I have to do!”. The reality is that by doing things that are not so exciting, you build your mental toughness and it will pay off tremendously come race day.
Follow along on Instagram to see how I make out at the Steamtown Marathon this Sunday. I missed the Boston cut-off by a couple of minutes even though I broke my qualifying time of 3:35. I’m ready for a no-long distance winter and hope to work on half marathons (funny I don’t consider 13 miles long distance anymore!) until I decide to go for another 26.2 next year.
In the meantime, I’ll be participating in a virtual stroller race- so check that out on Instagram too.
What is the one thing that you struggle with most when training for a race?
If you enjoyed this blog post and feel that it might help someone, I would appreciate if you shared it.
As an entrepreneur and a previous data analytics and marketing maven, I tend to pay close attention to social media posts from other small business owners I follow online.
This post is by no means meant to criticize. My intent is to share some of the lessons I’ve learned from my education and experience and hope that it helps someone else.
These are the 5 most common mistakes I see entrepreneurs make with their online marketing:
5 mistakes small business owners make on social media
You constantly post about your products and services. While this is definitely okay to do, it’s important to look back and see where you also added value or entertained your followers. For example, people usually go on Facebook to be entertained and don’t necessarily like being sold to. I know, I am in network marketing (even though I still am involved, I’m not as active in that business anymore because I chose to focus on other areas of my brand) and was taught to post several times a day about my business. Eek! I look back now and I cringe a little bit. Although I was successful for the first 6 months or so, that technique was draining and it eventually led to me feeling burned out. My advise is that even if you have a page or group that is exclusively for your business, it’s important to deliver value. Have a few posts where you educate or entertain and then have one with a call to action.
You are not on social media. Almost everyone can benefit from a social media account, whether you sell a product or you provide a service. Your potential customers will try to search for you online and it makes it harder to stay ahead of your competition if you are nowhere to be found. You need to be where your people hang out so make sure that you are on the pages that are most relevant to your business and niche.
You don’t engage with your followers. Perhaps you have a social media page but you never comment or like on your followers pages, or you never reply back to comments people leave on your posts. Not only is it important to interact with people who interact with you so that they can trust you and want to do business with you, but the more interaction your posts get, the better the Facebook algorithm will like what you share and it will show it to more people. And make sure you’re not just responding with one-word answers!
Your visual content is not very attractive. I’m not saying you need to use filters for everything, although depending on your type of business and what you share, that may help. On a platform such as Instagram where people go to see pretty pictures, it’s important to make sure you’re sharing good looking, high resolution images. You can also occasionally use stock photos from sites such as Unsplash or Ivory Mix.
You have no clear marketing plan and don’t understand the analytics. It’s important to have a content calendar, but that doesn’t mean that it needs to be perfect. Sometimes it’s about trying different things and figuring out what works and what doesn’t. It’s also important to understand your metrics and know who is following you on which platforms so that you can use that information to better target your advertising.
Which mistakes do you find yourself making with your business? Pick one and try to improve on it over the next month.
Understanding the analytics and metrics is time consuming, but it can be time well-spent or you can always delegate that work to someone else so that you can focus on running your business.
Feel free to reach out if you have any qestions on the items listed above!
Whether you are a busy mom or a college athlete who needs to train at home, having your own equipment can make getting your exercise in very convenient. With a little bit of creativity and planning, you can design an exercise area in your home that doesn’t get in the way of your life and that doesn’t cost a fortune.
The first thing is to decide where to set up your workout area, especially if you don’t have a specific room assigned for it or a large space in your basement or garage. Perhaps you’ll be dedicating a corner in your family room to your Sweat Space. If you are in the market for new couches for a room, think in favor of something that slides easily across the floor when you need to clear the area for exercise.
You can store your equipment in a trunk so that everything is out of sight and out of everyone’s way when not in use. You can also put up shelves on a wall to store light stuff on, like mats, light dumbbells or jump ropes.
If you have a garage or basement, you may have more options for what to get for your space. You may even want to invest in a couple of machines depending on what you prefer. Runners may want to get a treadmill and cyclists a stationary bike.
A yoga or Pilates mat is a must in your home workout area.
My top 4 simple, affordable, must -have exercise equipment/tools are:
Mat – yoga ones tend to be very thin so I’d recommend a Pilates one which will be more comfortable.
Weights – 2 pairs are ideal- one that you are able to do many reps with, one that is more of a struggle.
Resistance bands – they barely take up room and help give you a great workout.
Music – whether you have a TV nearby that you could turn on, or a portable speaker to play music, the atmosphere will help motivate you.
A few other great tools to have are a jump rope (which is great for travel), a kettlebell, core sliders and a balance board.
A motivational sign or two hanging on a wall that you can glance at when you’re feeling less than motivated doesn’t hurt either.
Don’t forget a motivational sign to keep you focused.
If you would like to take your training above and beyond, you can contact me for my 6-week Fastinista Fit Program to get leaner and stronger from the comfort of your home. Use the form below or email me at email@example.com.
Just a week ago, Frank and I headed to the Emerald City with Frankie. We were going to a cousin’s wedding but also had enough time to explore and enjoy a nice family vacation there.
We rented a condo on Airbnb in Capitol Hill, which ended up being the perfect location for getting around the city. If you haven’t used Airbnb yet to book a trip, use my code to get $40 off: www.airbnb.com/c/jhickman71.
These are the places we checked out.
It’s a very small beach and it was very quiet when we were there on a Friday morning. It reminded me a bit of California. Although it was a bit too chilly for me (and probably for most people), there were a few kids on floaters out on the water. Right across the street from the small boardwalk, you can find a few restaurants where you can grab a burger, smoothie or ice cream. A few fire spits are available, first come first serve, offering beautiful views of the city.
We didn’t actually get to hang out on the beach, although we had lunch right next to it and got to see a boat being put on the water right next to it. It’s the beachiest beach you can find in Seattle. The locals say it’s a great place to BBQ. You can see stunning views of the Olympic Mountains in the distance.
Boats use the locks to get lifted or lowered into either Lake Washington or Puget Sound. If you’re lucky enough you’ll actually get to see a boat pass through. Make sure you walk down to see the Fish Ladder where the salmon make their own journey from or to Lake and Sound.
Frankie was actually the first one to point out to me that if we walked up the street from our condo, we could see the “Space Noodle” in the distance. I had to swallow my fear of heights and ride up the 520-foot elevator (without looking down) where you’ll definitely want to take panoramic photos galore.
This lake is located in north central Seattle. Its 3 mile-long walking and cycling path is one of Seattle’s most popular outdoor recreation areas. It has baseball fields and a large playground, perfect for Daddy to play with the kid while Mommy gets a run in! Across the street from the baseball fields, you’ll see several little shops and cafes, making it easy to grab a quick snack.
Pike Place Market
Walk across the Waterfront and go up the stairs to find a busy, busy part of town with various vendors (and lots of homeless people). You get to see what you would see at other markets but it’s still a must see, in my opinion. We had a delicious lunch at Etta’s.
Pacific Science Center
Founded during the World’s Fair, this museum was the first science and technology museum in the country. Kids young and old are sure to find something that will fascinate them here. You can spend a few hours here, but don’t forget to check out the dinosaur exhibit and the Tropical Butterfly House.
Artists At Play Playground
Located between the Museum of Pop Culture and the Seattle Center Armory, you’ll find the big playground where you can stop for a quick jaunt. Although it’s recommended for kids ages 5 and up, our 2 1/2 year old had a blast exploring the climbing tower (with parental supervision) and running around the play area. It’s a fun and free activity to do!
This was one of our favorite activities. Located on Pier 59 on the Waterfront, this aquarium has a touch section where you can touch anemone, sea urchins and sea cucumbers (if you dare!). You can see all sorts of fish, as well as squids, sea lions, sea
The Great Wheel
Although we didn’t ride the Wheel, we did walk past it many times. I didn’t know that it’s actually not your typical carnival ride type of wheel, but more of a sightseeing option that lasts 15 minutes.
Woodland Park Zoo
This is another fun activity to do with kids, but of course grown-ups will appreciate the animals too. My son has been loving penguins lately so that exhibit was one of his favorites!
Frankie had fallen asleep in the car while we made a little detour to go see the troll. A bit of an unusual “sight”…I did not know what to expect when I was told we were going to visit the troll! Situated under the Aurora Bridge, a great place for a quick selfie, is a large statue of the creature clutching a Volkswagen. I probably would not recommend for young kids who frighten easily.
Puget Sound Cruise
This 60- minute cruise around the Sound is a great way to take in the views of the city from the water. They have longer cruises but the hour-long option was perfect for us to do right before dinner.
I hope these ideas help you out on your own trip to The Emerald City! There are more things I hope to do and look forward to taking another trip out there with my family in the future.
Since today marks my 4th wedding anniversary, I thought I’d write about my experience planning my wedding.
Photo by my friend Rachel of Rachel Miranda Photography
Frank and I were on the same page from the start about having either an early summer or early fall wedding, to avoid extreme hot or cold temperatures while enjoying beautifully bloomed flowers. We luckily got a date for June 21, 2014- 9 days before my 30th birthday and on the longest day of the year, Summer Solstice.
One of the first things I did was buy my wedding dress and shoes. My shoes were gold Christian Louboutin sandals that I bought on sale online before I got engaged. After the engagement, I decided to save them for my big day.
I had been looking at wedding dresses (and engagement rings) pretty much ever since I met Frank 😆 I saved photos of dresses I loved on my laptop and knew I wanted either a Vera Wang or Monique Lhuiller trumpet style dress. When I decided to start shopping for my dress, I did a lot of research on where to go to try and find a sample sale, as I did not want to spend $6000 -$8000 (which is the price range of the dresses I loved). I considered going to Kleinfeld’s sale but I don’t like the large, crazy crowd that it would probably attract and I also knew that I would probably not find a small size.
That’s when I stumbled upon the website Preowned Wedding Dresses. I loved the fact that they sell brand new dresses as well. I searched for a few months and saved a few dresses on my account. Then one day I logged back in and noticed that one of the Monique dresses I loved was for sale in my exact size, brand new, and in Hoboken, where I was working at the time. I exchanged a few messages with the girl selling it and then decided to meet her to try it on. To my luck, the bride had had buyers remorse and found another dress (so it wasn’t an “unlucky” divorce dress or anything). I took my mom and my cousin Patricia to go try it on. No fancy salon could’ve topped all the feelings I had when I put it on. It was my dress. Even though my mom was paying for my dress and told me not to worry about price, I felt great saving her thousands of dollars!
My mom added a custom belt to the dress which gave it a little bit of bling.
Having a ceremony at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, the church my family attends, was a priority, so that helped us narrow down a possible reception location.
I wanted something glam but with some antique touches like big chandeliers and gold-lacquered mirrors. I also wanted a little rustic feel like big barn doors. I envisioned a tent decorated with lights where people could dress up as much as they wanted or keep it simple if they chose to.
After touring a few locations, we chose The Park Avenue Club in Florham Park. A former dairy barn built by the Saint Elizabeth School Sisters across the street, I was charmed by the history and the small details, like a private small silo in an upstairs part of the building, where I could have some privacy as the bride.
The cocktail hour was held in the main area which featured beautiful antique chandeliers, fireplaces and a brick walls. The reception was held in an attached tent which was more like a stunning, large glass room, offering views of the beautiful gardens and a little bridge over a small koi pond. I got the location I had always dreamed of.
Our reception package included a 12-month membership to their members-only dining club. They’re now just finishing up a big renovation, and from photos on their website, my wedding tent looks very different- more luxurious than the rustic-glam feel I went for. I’m sure weddings they host going forward will be as beautiful and special as mine was for me four years ago.
My wedding coordinator recommended a local florist who designed my bouquet, the wedding party flowers and other floral arrangements. I wanted peach colored flowers and ended up selecting Juliet roses and peonies among other flowers. I also wanted a lot of green leaves in the bouquet to go with the rustic feel.
For music, we chose The Bachelor Boys after hearing them play at another wedding. We also hired a Paraguayan harpist who played during the cocktail hour as well as during dinner. My cousin, Nicole, also played a few songs on her harp.
My hair was done by my long-time hairstylist, Laura Gray of Bellizima Blowout Bar. She did a beautiful job of bringing my vision to life. I wanted a glamorous updo that could easily be brought down right before the reception to portray another look.
My makeup artist was Jenny from Illustrated Beauty in Somerville. She gave me a natural look with pale pink lips and some eyeliner and lashes. I put on a reddish-fuschia Chanel lip color right before the reception, again, to change up my look a bit.
My photographer was Andres Calle who captured beautiful moments of me getting ready at The Westin Governor Morris Hotel, the ceremony and the party.
I chose to also have a video of the ceremony and reception. Husband and wife, Of Ditty Photography. I wanted to be able to send my family in Paraguay a copy of the video so they could see my wedding.
My tips for brides currently planning their wedding is to give yourselves plenty of time. Don’t worry about the small stuff. Notice will notice it but you. If someone offers to help, accept it or give them a specific job (like doing the seating chart…that was one I disliked!).
At the end of the day, your wedding is going just a big party to celebrate the union of you and your new husband. Enjoy the whole process of getting there and enjoy the party even more!
This blog contains the word “fastinista” for a reason. I love love love fashion and brands and designers and even though this blog focuses a lot on running and working out, I want to make sure I still talk about my other passion. With recent events in the news, I feel called upon again to write more.
“Fastinista” is supposed to be a play on the words “fast” and “fashionista.” I may not always feel so fashionable in my “mom uniform” leggings and tank tops, but I still try to keep up with fashion as much as I can.
Let’s rewind back to my high school years when I would flip through magazines and learn about the latest fads. I collected magazine after magazine that I refused to throw away. Allure, Elle and Glamour were always at arm’s reach.
I first learned about Kate Spade bags from a good high school friend. It was a right of passage; it seemed like all the fashionable girls carried a Kate Spade bag to school. I borrowed my friend’s plain, black bag for a party to “test it out” and eventually saved up enough to purchase my own ivory and brown plaid “Sam” purse.
Shortly after, my mom gifted me the same black one that my friend had and I was beyond thrilled. Although they were certainly not cheap, at around $200 or just under, they were much more affordable than European brands that at the time I simply couldn’t afford.
Years later, while living in Atlanta, I began working as assistant manager at one of her stores. I remember telling the hiring manager the story of my first Kate Spade bag. It was a job I really, really enjoyed. Working in retail management in the South where customers were usually sweet and gracious was a far cry from my retail experience in north Jersey.
I unknowingly became a Kate loyalist. Always classic, with fun color combinations, her accessories have always been just girly enough to complete an outfit.
As my budget increased, my shoe and purse collection grew larger with other designers and brands. But a few things were still simply Kate: my agenda and my diaper bag, a summer clutch, shoes, and more handbags.
Kate built a brand that inspired so many. She was an amazing businesswoman. Such a tragedy that her life had to end the way it did. I truly hope her husband, daughter and the rest of her family and close friend find peace in their hearts to carry on.
Before I had the chance to publish this post, I found out about the tragic death of another icon: Anthony Bourdain.
With the outpouring of grief I saw on social media, I can tell I’m not alone in feeling like I knew him. When Frank and I traveled to San Francisco together for the first time in 2012, we followed some of his recommendations and visited some of the bars he had featured on one of his shows. He was an excellent writer and true adventurer. He even visited Paraguay where his great, great, great grandfather was rumored to have lived and been buried.
Anthony was mostly known for his food and travel, but his cool, laid-back style and silver fox appeal made him a very stylish guy in my opinion.
I leave you with a quote by him:
“If I’m an advocate for anything, it’s to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. The extent to which you can walk in someone else’s shoes or at least eat their food, it’s a plus for everybody. Open your mind, get up off the couch. Move.”
Kate and Anthony may have been different in a lot of ways, but I would say they both inspired their fans to have adventures and live life colorfully…May they Rest In Peace.