Tag Archives: magazines

feeling appreciative

28 Jun

if you read my “bio” or whatever you call it in the upper right hand corner, you will see that i’m the appreciator because i wasn’t sure what to focus my blog on.  i started writing this for background info as part of my job – so that i would actually know how to do it.

how i came up with that idea of “the appreciator” is:

ROF and i were taking a walk through our neighborhood.  it was about a year ago now.  and as we’re walking i’m asking him what could my focus could be…because you know, you have to have a focus.  the conversation went a little bit like this:

“so i’m thinking of writing a blog” (me)

“really?  that’s cool.  about what?” (him)

“that’s the thing, i don’t know” (me)

“why do you want to do it?” (him)

“well, my CEO wants some information on writing a blog and i want to be able to say i know how…from my perspective” (me)

“ok.  well you are a good at a lot of things” (him)

“awe.  that’s sweet.  go on.  like what”  (digging for more…me)

“well, social media for one.  you love it, believe in it and know it.  (him)

“yeah.  but that’s work.  there’s more to me.  here’s the deal.  i appreciate nice music but i don’t write it.  i appreciate great design but i’m not a designer” (me)

“go on” (him)

“and i love DIY stuff but i don’t actually DIY” (me)

“and….” (him)

“and… i love photography but i don’t do it professionally.  love good food but don’t cook professionally – but i appreciate it all!” (me)

“i know” (me)

“i’m the appreciator” (me)

“there you have it” (him)

and there i had it.  so going back to the basics, here is the short list of things i appreciate.  

my relationship with God.  my Father and hard core foundation.  thank Him that i don’t struggle with “the meaning of life”.  i have it.

husband, ROF.  Sappy and all – he is whom i appreciate the most

mom & sister.  not a “given” they are built-in friends for life and beyond. soul-mates

awesome extended family.  susan, mike, mike, bill & sarah.  wonderful people whom i love being connected to (6 more days, susan!)

wonderful aunts & uncles & cousins – seriously fun people i wish we were all a lot closer

career and all the people who have supported me and taught me and pushed me to the limits (you know who you are)

career and all the people who believe in what we do and work hard to support “the cause”! (you know who you are A & S)

friends – you know who you are too

house, i never stop appreciating you

max and wrigley.  my babies.  i love you to death

flying all over the country

flying in first class

flying in first class on vacation with a bottle of red wine

playing gin with #1

cooking dinner with #1

clean cut grass

white sheets 

being organized

our new MAC computer suite (kiss kiss kiss)

massive storms when i’m with people i love or like a lot

massive storms when there is red wine involved to calm me down

colorado – feeling little teeny tiny in a land of big mountains and low valleys and knowing that man had nothing to do with the beauty


poached eggs

the food network

mad men, damages, restaurant impossible, anthony bourdain

chevy dealers all over the country

the geigers in madison wisconsin

the dallas cowboys (ROF, stop laughing, i mean it)

the night before you go on vacation

the night before holidays

friends who surprise you on your anniversary by toilet papering your house at midnight and then ringing your doorbell while you’re watching ghost adventurers (EEKK!) and showing up with a bottle of good, no great, champagne.

knowing that your prayers are answered

central market and whole foods when no one else is in the store

church when you sing that hymn and it hits you in a way that you have to cry but no one knows your crying

remembering the feel of your dad’s hands and smiling at the thought of his “funny tooth”

a big Christmas dinner over at a big families’s house with lots of food, drinks, a bonfire and love

the east coast -hills and chills and history

woody allen

the movies: network, manhattan, annie hall, guess who came to dinner, manchurian candidate and more

good wine

bad wine

great music – house, electronic, rock, mix tapes, playlists, hip and cool

going out to eat

louie and louie’s


costa rica

the joule

making ROF coffee in the morning

are you still reading?

magazines and all the nuggets of information they contain

ideas and the execution of ideas

smart clients

smart people

passionate thinkers


ok, i’m tired now and i’m going to go.  this was not an exhaustive list by any means.

it felt good to capture some of this.  wish you would share with me some of the things you appreciate so i can too!


magazines, advertising & loving your job

14 Sep

i can credit magazines for heavily influencing the direction of my life.  

both for good and bad. but more for good.

i became obsessed with magazines when I was 15 and discovered “SEVENTEEN” magazine.    one of the best parts of the month was when it arrived in the mail.  it arrived in plastic wrap –which they don’t do too much anymore.  the excitement was so overwhelming (seriously) that I couldn’t open the magazine until everything was just right.

ok, so first it had arrived (squeal!) then I hoarded it from any possibility of it becoming damaged (i.e.sister reads it first with greasy fingers)  by carrying it to my room and placing it, ever so gently, on my dressing table or desk.  now I just let the anticipation well up inside me for a few hours.  i would wonder what was in those pages, what secrets, models, stories, ads.  only when I had a full hour or two to myself, would I lay on my bed, on my stomach and open up the magazine.  then I would start at the very first page and work my way to the back.  slowly.  the smell of the printed page enveloped me.  the crispy, pristine pages responsive to my touch.  sigh.  that was all on the outside.  on the inside, was my dream.  dream hair, dream outfit, dream boy, dream design, dream bedroom.  every page of articles and ads influenced me.

and not always for good.

i really wanted to be like the things i saw in the magazines.  you know… perfect.  even at 15.

pretty soon SEVENTEEN magazine turned into ELLE magazine (one of my teenage favorites!) because it was so…french!  ha.  and VOGUE and you’re starting to glimpse how completely odd I am, right?  my bedroom at our house in naperville, illinois outside chicago was collaged with things I ripped out from magazines.  we’re talking all four walls  top to bottom.  not the ceiling because that would have been too much work.  my mom will tell you the story of the realtor saying the house was in great shape but you’d “have to do something with that upstairs bedroom”  i ripped out cool ads, hip models in creative backdrops, I kept in mind color and design when i did my bedroom artwork.


i went away my first year of college and didn’t really know what I wanted to do with my life. i switched schools after that first year and really thought long and hard about what I liked.  i liked magazines.  i liked the ads in magazines.  mostly because they worked on me and they transported me to a different, perfect, place.  so i decided i wanted to do something with advertising.  an advanced english teacher of mine in high school insisted i go to columbia college in downtown chicago because it would be the perfect, creative school for me.

and it was.

i took all the marketing communication classes and minored in fiction writing BUT it was all the internships i did which shaped me.  the first internship was truly awesome.  i got a glimpse right there at the truly glamourous part of advertising and magazine ads.  i worked for a fashion photographer called john beckett.  i just found him and his studio which is now in phoenix.

he had a studio in a warehouse on morgan street on the west side of chicago (which is really built up now) he had ad agencies like leo burnett as clients as well as sports illustrated.  i was the assistant studio manager to a really fun studio manager – mary kay.  i got to pick out the models for the ads from a ton of headshots, work with celebrities nadia comanche, all the stylists.  it was straight on cool.  picture big open space, clothes on big carts on wheels, SEAL playing on the surround sound and espresso bubbling in the kitchen.  I over-romantized the heck out of it.  i  even did an “on–location” shoot.  i was a junior in college and thought I was the shit in downtown chicago, taking the train and telling models “thank you but no thank you – just not a fit.”  i loved seeing the ads in the magazines!

then I did an internship below beckett & beckett at the compshop.  they built comps for magazine ads and so much more – movies too.  then I did an internship for his wife margaret carsello who did incredible graphic design work.  I learned so much and felt like I was really living out what i loved.  and i did get into advertising!  been doing in for about 19 years now and have even have done some magazine ads.  

now I read every magazine under the sun. much to rof’s dismay.  I’m not talking people and us.  I’m talking food & wine, house beautiful and about 15 other monthly ones.

still loving

looking at the perfect. 

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