Precious Life

21 Aug

Today’s post is a little somber… my grandma passed away last night. This was my dad’s mom, a woman who had seven children, lost her husband to a heart attack when my dad was in his teen years and continued to be strong until yesterday. At 90 years old she lived a good, yet rough, life.

Gram lived six hours away in New York. When I was younger and she was too she would come visit every year for a week in her mobile home. I remember she would park on the side of the house and I loved going into her “home” to visit her. She had a love of foxes and that was clear when you walked into her home.

Over the past 10 – 15 years she settled into an apartment in her hometown of Batavia, NY as traveling was not her friend anymore. This meant I didn’t see her often but she never missed a birthday card… which I was one of the only grandkids to get one. Not sure why, maybe because dad’s birthday was three days before mine… easy to remember?! Over the past two years my dad has traveled to visit when she wasn’t doing well and most recently my parents and sister went up for her 90th birthday, a birthday I had to miss because I couldn’t get out of an obligation. I wasn’t angry at anyone, it was ultimately my choice but I still felt bad… I honestly hoped she would hang in until my aunt married this October. It was more even heart-wrenching to know she kept asking for me.

Gram passed last night and the last time I talked to her was a few months ago, the last time I saw her… four years ago at my sister’s wedding. We were never a family to visit often but still, at a time like this you can’t help but think about it. I have one grandparent left, my mom’s mom, my nana. She lives within three miles from my house and I see her weekly at church but gram’s death makes me realize near or far, I need to be a better granddaughter. Life is too precious to “take it for granted.”

Grandma, I love you forever and always.

~ xoxo KLC

My Inner Diva

7 Aug

It is no surprise to those who know me… I am not a size zero or two or four, or even six. Frankly it has been a while since I was a size 8 or even 10. That said, I dress for my size while trying to look cute, professional, and 30. I admit, I tend to be a bit conservative because I am not a size zero or two and don’t always think I can wear something a little short, fun, and flirty.

Well, I was wrong. My good friend Erin took me shopping yesterday…well we met at her new fav boutique which happens to be inexpensive, something else I needed. I often joked as I picked out some of the clothes, they were cute but I did not think they would work on me. Erin made me try them on and you know what, while some definitely were a no, some were a YES. I ended up with a plum strapless dress with silver accents hitting just above the knee. Not a dress to bend over in and something I would have never bought myself; I would have said I am “too big” to wear it. But with the heels and the hair down… I looked divalicous for a night on the town, which we did go out last night too.

Erin is slowly (because I move slow on this end) helping me realize I can dress for my size and cute and in style with some of the latest trends and still pull it all off. Apparently I need to embrace my curves or something like that… 😉 Embracing my curves or not, I admit I felt myself sit a little straighter, walk a little taller, and feel a little cuter last night. 

Here’s to embracing my inner diva (thanks Erin) and knowing I still need to hit the gym!

~xoxo KLC

Looking Good versus “Looking Good”

20 Jul

So these past two weeks while being intense having been really exciting. My dear friend, Alfonso Santaniello, and I launched a new business this week – The Businews Channel. By going to www.thebusinewschannel.com you will see how business meets entertainment.

Not only did we launch this channel but I also started my own show on the channel, Chapell’s Corner. This web show is a weekly show about business, life, and everything in-between. Yes the tagline is broad and it is meant to be – I have a lot of varied experience and regardless of what it is somehow business always plays a role! What I have learned though after my first taping… don’t wear a dress!!! Or have the person behind the camera pay close attention to the angle!!

Alfonso, who was the camera guy, called me this week to say “we need to re tape your show.” After more explanation apparently you could see up my dress. Low and behold, you couldn’t see “up” my dress but because my legs were crossed and I was wearing a dress… my thigh was not looking attractive!!! So while I didn’t need a black bar hiding any private areas it still wasn’t pretty.

What I am learning about being on camera when you aren’t on an actual TV Studio set with multiple cameras and different angles, sorry Alfonso but we aren’t there yet, is DO NOT wear a short dress, or above knee-length and cross your legs! There really is such a thing as looking good to appear nice versus actually looking good on camera. Lesson learned – pants or longer dresses when taping. You may be reading this and say “don’t cross your legs then” but I have a tendency to cross my legs so can’t promise not to.

Whether you come on my show or go on the news or a TV talk show remember not only is it important to look nice/professional/cute/put together/etc. but you should also look “camera” good, meaning if you sit down and/or cross your legs where does your dress/skirt ride up to?!

~xoxo KLC

Enough is Enough

6 Jul

Okay, this post is a total venting session… I hate car mechanics!!! I have been spending the past six months going back and forth to one. He fixed my transmission but every time I turn around something else is wrong… transmission related. Luckily it is free because I have a one year warranty but I am constantly out a car when I need to drop it off  for them to look at it.

I don’t feel like this guy is taking me for a ride because he is actually losing money as I keep coming back and I don’t pay but this is getting ridiculous. I am about ready to pay dealer service prices at this point… and we all know that isn’t good either!

So you know how bad it is… a thunderstorm just came through and I wish the tree in my yard was hit by lightning so it could fall on my car. That, and last month we hard a tornado so when the skies darkened I secretly wished it was another tornado so it could take my car with it! I know, I know… but enough is enough.

Welcome Back… okay welcoming me back!

27 Jun

I have been away for some time, not that I was actually away but I obviously did not write in a while. It wasn’t like I had not thought about it because I did, but the thoughts didn’t turn into action – until now. And as I am writing this a commercial for Disney’s Winnie the Pooh is on and the music playing in the background is from Grey’s Anatomy… just a weird mix if I say so myself. Winnie and McDreamy??? What a combo?!

Okay, so back to the topic at hand… not really sure what that is but let’s shoot for something… When I last left all was well, busy but that is typically my life. What you do not know is life was about to get a little crazier; on June 1, 2011 my city was hit with a tornado. Being in New England this was a strange one for us, but is happened. I was out-of-town when it hit and when all was said and done I could not get home right away.

I hate to admit… I was panicked. I was stuck in Boston, not able to get home because the weather was so bad and when I could make it out I couldn’t get back to my house for a few hours… too many trees and debris down. When I finally did make it home, I just wanted to stay there with my parents and my dog (moved back in with the ‘rents after a few years and a bad relationship later). All I wanted to do was be at home, in the neighborhood I knew and grew up in, and that is what I did. I took the rest of the week off and just let everything I went through sink in. Seeing your landscape forever change is truly unreal. What I learned after a few days, we were definitely not hit the hardest so then I started reliving everything over again… and still do when I go to new parts of town and see the destruction. It really is hard to see.

I also got a new coworker since I wrote last and an intern. Let me just say the intern I will keep, the coworker has to grow on me. I can only take her in small amounts… she is a bit annoying. And as I write that… I am sure I am annoying at times too but it’s not about me right now, it is about her! 🙂 The most annoying thing… instead of saying the word crap she says “poop.” She could say crap or stuff but no… poop. Drives me up a wall!!!

In other news I am working with a wonderful nine-year old. She has two pageants coming up this summer and her mom asked me to help her with her talent and interview portion. I have to say… working with a nine-year old on interview questions is interesting; realized focus only lasts for 25 minutes or so which means I have to get creative. All in all… she is adorable and I love working with her.

I typically work as a judge for pageants but because she is in a different age group and pageant then the ones I judge I can work with her. The funny thing is at her age I am not judging them on body parts jiggling. Yes, I said jiggle. I cannot tell you the amount of times I had to tell girls in order to move on they needed to run a little, do some more ab work, or even work on the triceps. Oh and butt glue… yes there is such a thing. It keeps your bathing suit in place when walking on stage… something nine-year olds don’t need to worry about… at least in these pageants.

So… how about that butt glue?! Okay, enough for now… more to come and promise to be more consistent this time; I am finding myself with more time on my hands now. Did anything interesting happen to you while I was away? Do share!!!

~xoxo KC

Weekend In Review

30 May

This weekend has been a whirlwind. Family drama started up yet again on Friday and this time… it all came to a head. Without going into detail of my family drama, it was a rough day/weekend for all of us. It’s hard to watch someone you love not want to help themselves and try to destroy you in the process.

What this not so fab family drama did do was give me moment to pause. It gave me time to spend with my parents, to relax, and to think about where I have been going and where I might be going. I haven’t had a weekend like this in years. Normally I hate to spend time “alone” and let my thoughts just sit inside of me but I relished it this weekend. I take great comfort in knowing I found solace over the weekend.

Over the weekend, my anger slowly faded. This may have had to do with the sermon in church yesterday but I know I am still mad and upset, but not angry. I also appreciate my parents in many more ways than I did, or at least I realize now how much I appreciate them. They have done so much for me and my siblings, but for me they have supported me through undergrad and then three graduate programs, the occasional money loan; never asking for too much in return.

I don’t sit well for long, but this weekend I enjoyed sleeping and just sitting. I think after everything I have been through with getting through two graduate programs, works, and family drama lately I needed sleeping and sitting. The difference this time was I allowed my mind to wander and think about everything. Today, I found contentment in just sitting on the patio, in the sun, doing nothing! I just let myself feel the warmth on my face and the breeze blow through my hair.

Looking back at the weekend now the saddest part might have just been catching up on my DVR… that means I need to get busy again so I have more shows to watch when I just need to veg out. I am all caught up on the Real Housewives… and it kills me to watch an episode I can’t fast forward through, a downfall of watching TV shows on DVR now!

What I can say about this weekend in a hope to impart wisdom on my dear friends who read this – when you have alone time, family drama, or not… sit with yourself and your thoughts. Don’t push the thoughts away; let them simmer in your head, feel them. I somehow came out of this weekend a much stronger, enlightened person all because I felt what I needed to feel.

This may not have been the Memorial Day Weekend I planned – the trip to Florida or the road trip to Sturbridge which was a last-minute thought – but it was a really great Memorial Day Weekend; one I will cherish for years to come.

Graduation Day

18 May

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2002 I graduated from Simmons College, Boston, MA, with a degree in Public Relations and Marketing Communications. I never dreamed of continuing my education because in this field I figured all I would need is professional development. Well, I left Boston for a job in my hometown of Springfield, MA and soon realized I was bored. I had no friends except friends from work and those relationships were just starting. So when a graduate school college fair was in our cafeteria one day I decided to look into a program.

Things happened quickly and in less than 9 months since graduating from undergrad I was in school working towards a Master’s of Communications. I started and finished in 12 months. I was happy but realized this degree didn’t do much for me and I figured some day an MBA might be in order.

As you may have read I was laid off in 2008 and after sis months of looking for a job and then a looming recession I decided it was time to go into debt and works towards my MBA. Because I had one master’s I didn’t have to take the electives; however, Financial Aid said I wasn’t a full-time student without extra courses. So I took a few from the nonprofit program and was then convinced to take two more to get a certificate in NonProfit Management. And when in my first class was convinced to look into three more classes and making it a double master’s.

That is what I ended up doing. I spent a total of two years working for my MBA and a M.S. and today I have them. I didn’t plan anything but realized if I wanted to be marketable during the recession school was my only option besides being a full-time volunteer. And everything paid off, I have a wonderful job now and this past Sunday, May 15th, I walked with 689 other graduates. I wore both of my master’s hoods and while I only walked across stage once, they made a big deal about me and announced both degrees.

I felt extremely proud. I took a negative situation and turned it into a positive one, even though I wasn’t sure at sometimes just what I was doing. I was even more proud on this day because I have also become an Adjunct Professor at the same school I just graduated from, Bay Path College, and I got to see the seniors I taught walk across the stage and graduate. I made sure to hug each one of my on-campus students as they walked off stage; it was important for me to do. I wanted to hugmyonline students too but being online I didn’t really know what they looked like and didn’t want to mistake anyone. They all accomplished something huge; many of them had their own personal struggles and to know I was a part of their college career made me feel so proud.

I walked out of the building that day walking taller than ever before. Not only was I proud of my accomplishments over the past two years, I was proud of all my students and their accomplishments. Many of my friends who know me know I kid about it “being all about me” and yes, Sunday was about me but it was about more than me… it was about 690 graduates, some whose lives I touched, who are entering the world and ready to make history and to know I am part of that group but was also instrumental in some of these lives, I will forever be a proud graduate and never forget this day.

Thank you to all my friends and family who took this journey of self-discovery and self-realization with me. I am honored to have you in my life. ~xoxo

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