Monday, October 27, 2008

We're Keen on Keene, NH!

Carrie, Laura and I drove four hours north on Saturday to take in the beautiful changing colors, arriving in New Hampshire for their annual Pumpkin Festival. The Keene Pumpkin Festival is the largest of its kind in New England and proved to be quite the event! Attendees to the festival are invited to bring their own carved jack o' lantern, to register it, and have it become part of the ever growing annual festival record. On this day each year, the population in this ordinarily small town doubles with the arrival of folks and pumpkins alike!

The festival was complete with food vendors waving you over for a mug of hot apple cider, fresh corn chowder, fried dough, homemade apple turnovers, hot chili, or sausage subs as well as all day entertainment, pumpkin carving stations (in case you couldn't bring your own), a costume parade, a seed spitting contest, pie eating contest, and an amusement park. The culmination of the evening came with fireworks lit over the inferno towers of burning Jack o' Lanterns. So much fall time fun!

There were pumpkins of all sizes . . . this one weighed in at 250 pounds.

This was just one of the two towering infernos of Jack o' Lanterns!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

My First Cyber-Stalker

Today I received the strangest call at my desk from a woman (stalker) inside the company. The dialogue went a little something like this:

"Hi, Jessica?"


"My name is Heather Z. You don't know me, but I work in the Integrated Marketing team . . ."


"And, you just moved to the International team, right?"


"But, you previously worked at The N with Ray D. during the last six months, correct?"

"Yes, " I said feeling a little uncomfortable at the details emerging from this stranger.

I asked if she had learned these details from a friend or associate that she knows in the department. She replied "No," and went on to explain that she had wanted to apply for the Sr. Marketing Manager position at The N back in March immediately before she found out that I had been offered the job. And, last week she received an email from Ray asking to meet with her regarding an Integrated Marketing project. When she noticed that I wasn't copied on the email (but instead another member of the team was copied) she took the initiative to look up my profile on LinkedIn and saw that I had moved to the International team. Apparently this chick has been watching me for a while now! (And, I am that cool now that I have a stalker following my every move!)

She asked if I could offer any insight on the position and also whether she should ask Ray about the position in the hopes of stepping into it herself. I told her my point of view and wished her well. . .

Monday, October 20, 2008

The View From My New Office

The Famous Chrysler Building

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Yes, My Job is That Cool!

I got the chance to sit down with my new boss today to discuss what my first week will be like on the job. My calendar is already being filled with hob-nobbing and networking appointments next week and I'm going to need to hit the ground running perfecting our PowerPoint presentations for Dora The Explorer, SpongeBob Squarepants, and Ni Hao Kai Lan . . . I'm just salivating at the thought of perfectly aligning all those cute little Nick characters along those gridlines and making them run across the screen in flashy animation!

And, my first business trip? I'll be planning a networking event and presentation for all our International partners at Hong Kong Toy Fair during the first week of January. And, when I told my boss that I would be taking the week of Christmas off to be in Cali, she said, "Well, you might want to go ahead and stay the next week, too. I mean, it would be a lot easier for you to fly to Hong Kong from LA."

Take two weeks of paid time off to work and play in Cali in December? I can perfect my PowerPoint presentations (at the beach) by day and spoil the nieces and nephews by night! I think I'm gonna like this new job . . .

Friday, October 10, 2008

Finding the Perfect Coat

So, when I announced that I would be moving to The City, all my family and friends became enthralled with this vision of me becoming a jet-setting fashionista that would be living high 24/7 and flying off to Europe at a whim. . .

Well, it seems that I am one step closer to living that vision with the new position I got at Nick International. And, with colder weather knocking on my door, I am forced to purchase a new coat for winter. This can't be any ordinary coat, either. It must be THE COAT, if I am going to become a full-blooded New Yorker and the jet-setting fashionista that everyone sees. I've seen a few that have caught my eye, but I'm still undecided.

I really liked this one, until I found out it only came in pink . . .

I really like the lines of this one . . .

Or, the Peter Pan collar on this one is so adorable . . .

But, this is a classic wine color that I adore . . . I can't decide!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Saving The Change . . .

Today, I booked my holiday airfare for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. I am going to spend Thanksgiving in Colorado with Mom and Mimi. And, I promised the kids I would be at home on Christmas day to see them open their gifts. OK, I know I'm supposed to be excited to see all my family for the upcoming holidays, but instead I'm just thinking about how much money I've spent this week!

After tallying up the facial cleanser, moisturizer, deoderant, sweaters, long sleeve blouses, bright red rain jacket (it was totally adorable and surprisingly on sale--so I had to have it, of course), a ticket to CA, and a ticket to CO, I've managed to rack up more than $1200! Ouch!

So, this week I've been repenting for my misdeeds by taking every chance I can to find extra cash lying around the house. I've come home every night this week to eat whatever's in my fridge (absolutely no eating out this week); I've listed my Disneyland annual pass on Craigslist (although I doubt anyone will actually buy it); I've taken a babysitting assignment for Sunday; I've dug through all my medical receipts for the year and submitted them for my healthcare reimbursement account; and, I've been scouring the want ads for a weekend job. Anything to get me through the holidays!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Brrr! It's Cold . . .

Well, the temperature finally dropped this week . . . it's been cold; it's been windy. And, it's been rainy! I had to force myself to go buy some warmer clothing this weekend. I definitely spent more money than I wanted to; and, I still have yet to buy a winter coat! How am I going to survive this cold weather? But, more importantly, how am I going to be able to afford this cold weather?

Friday, October 3, 2008

A Woman of Fall Sees a Man For All Seasons

Carrie invited me to join her to see A Man For All Seasons starring Frank Langella; it just started a limited run revival on Broadway. I had heard amazing things about his performance, although I had never seen the play itself. In fact, I didn't even know the premise of the play (yes, despite the fact that the name of the play is an iconic part of the American vernacular)!

And, we weren't disappointed! Langella's portrayal of Sir Thomas More was likable, comedic, and eventually heartwrenching, as we watched him morph from a kind-hearted family man to a slain prisoner who would not betray the church at any cost.

And, on our way to finding a good restaurant for dinner, we happened upon Don Giovanni's, a great little pasta joint. Apparently, it used to be a famous comedy club that once showcased relatively unknown comedians like John Belushi, Billy Crystal, Joan Rivers, and Nathan Lane. . . (to name a few).