Beer and Wine in Paradise

15 03 2016

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If you’re a beer and wine fan AND headed to Maui anytime in the future…here are a couple MUST SEE spots for your visit! On my recent (work) trip to Maui we were able to visit and tour the island’s hottest spots for beer and wine…Maui Brewing Company and MauiWine. It was actually my second visit to MauiWine, I had went there previously with my sister and dad…but this time I got more of a “behind the scenes” look! And — I got to spin the footage for each place into feature segments for ABC7 Bay Area LIFE and you can watch them below!



My Super Bowl Week in the City

9 02 2016

The Bay Area Super Bowl has come and gone…and the reality is we probably won’t see it again here anytime soon. Locals are glad the traffic is gone and city life will return to “normal.” I’m glad that it came through the Bay and I was lucky enough to attend some of the events and fanfare leading up to it. No, I didn’t go to the game, lots of people kept asking me if I was going, but I’m more of the mindset that if my team’s not in it, I’m better off watching from the convenience of my couch. I did however attend some of the preceding week’s pre-game soirees around town. I’ve posted some of my favorite snaps from my Super Bowl week in the City below…

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KaBoom! I Helped Build a Playground

3 02 2016

There are so many events happening around the Bay Area this week related to Super Bowl 50, and while I will do my part to socialize and network at the various parties around town, I also took some time out to lend a hand in a KaBoom playground build in San Jose. I got involved, since ESPN invited some of the Disney (parent company) affiliates to pitch in, including ABC7 where I work part time. Also in the mix were other local community members and members of the Raiders and 49ers organizations too.

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What brought this experience even closer to home is that fact that it was happening in my hometown San Jose. To have the opportunity to construct a playground for kids that are growing up among the same streets I did, made it all the more special. Not to mention that these days as a Mom, I spend A LOT of time hanging out at neighborhood playgrounds with my kiddos. I can’t wait to bring them by this one to show off what I did! :)

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At any rate, I didn’t really know what to expect. I’m not particularly strong and while I was my Daddy’s little helper in construction projects growing up…my handy-ness is limited to the “basics.” Anyhow, this is how it went down, all the volunteers, showed up bright and early and we were divided into groups with a team leader. Each group was responsible for  a specific component of the playground.

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The group I was assigned to was in charge of 2 directional sign posts. We had to paint arrows and think of what we were going to write on them. We decided on one post carrying “location” tags and the other would have inspirational “directions.”

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I was fortunate not to be mixing and pouring concrete aka “getting dirty,” (although I did some, to secure our post in the ground), and other groups were assembling the play equipment, painting a mural, erecting gazebos and sitting areas, etc…

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And, I think my assignment was extra special because I got to work with some of the kids who live in the community and took the initiative to volunteer to help make it happen. I was impressed at the efforts by these young men.

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The whole playground was constructed in about 6 hours. I mean of course they will properly inspect it and make sure it is sound for youngsters to start using it, but I was truly in awe of how quickly it all came together. It was a great day of teamwork and community service.

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A Day on Set at the Beringer Winery

27 01 2016

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Late last year I was booked as a model for a lifestyle photo shoot at the Beringer Winery in St. Helena, California. I didn’t have to think very hard about accepting the gig…I knew it’d be a beautiful backdrop and I’d be surrounded by wine! And — I’d be “working”!! Recently I was lucky enough to have several of the final images shared with me and so in turn, I wanted to share some of my favorites on here.

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There were 5 other models selected and these images will be used in print ads and/or other mailers and visuals for the winery. Yes, I had a wine glass in my hand for virtually every shot, but no, I was not drinking on set!

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The set ups were gorgeous, table settings to envy… don’t you love my arm and bracelet above!?! Hint: Blue blazer and gold bracelet.

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The grounds of the winery and so beautiful and very relaxing for a day in wine country.

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I just love the way my hair looks in this one.

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Very picturesque!

Client shoot for Beringer Vineyards | Photos by Trinette+Chris | Talent by Blackwell Files

 



Get Outta Town MAUI

19 01 2016

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At the start of 2015, going to Maui wasn’t a prospect..in terms of work or pleasure, but as last year developed, many changes occurred in my life (and location), and I ended up living back on the West Coast working as a freelance TV Host. Fast forward, one of my freelance opportunities with ABC7 in San Francisco afforded me an assignment to the island of Maui in early December 2015! Who would’ve thought!?!?

So, now in 2016…last Sunday, the 30-minute “Get Outta Town MAUI” special aired with me as its host. I’m really proud of the work I did in helping put the show together from a writing and editing standpoint, so I want to share it with everyone. It was one of the best work trips and assignments I have ever had and it’s even better that through the magic of “TV,” I can share some of the highlights of the trip in this show.

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Hawaii is really a magical place and Maui has many gems that we barely scratched the surface in this half hour show. We did get to showcase the island’s farm to table movement, as well as how Hawaiian culture is weaved into every aspect of life there. WARNING, if you’re going to watch it, be prepared to crave the island life and put Maui on your travel to do list!

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To watch, just press play.

Special thanks to all our wonderful hosts while me and the crew were in the islands, from Virgina America to Grand Wailea Resort, Kumu Farms, Maui Tropical Planation, Hoaloha Farm, Hoaloha Group, Mama’s Fish House, Haleakala Ranch, Maui Gold Pineapple Company, Trilogy Excursions, Maui Fresh Streatery, Maui Brewing Co., MauiWine, Maui Ocean Center and all the awesome people we met on the trip…MAHALO!!!

And — here are a few behind the scenes photos from the trip.

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Adios to Arco…

10 11 2015

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This is the final season the NBA’s Sacramento Kings will be playing at Sleep Train Arena…formerly known as Arco. Arco Arena, as so many will affectionately  refer to it, is the place where my pro sports dance team career started, just a few months removed from my college graduation at San Jose State. The team is now moving to a brand new, state of the art arena in downtown Sacramento that is currently under construction. And — since “Arco” will be no more, the Kings invited us (all the team’s Alumni dancers), to perform one last halftime.

The amazing show happened just 10-days after I hit the NFL field for a pregame Arizona Cardinals Cheerleaders Alumni Reunion… I couldn’t be more pleased with myself (and how my body held up..lol), or the dedication and commitment all the ladies put into making the halftime come together. We all learned our choreography from a video, then whoever could make it would get together for non-mandatory weekend practices, before the day of, final fixes. I never expected to continue dancing after I hung up my “poms,” years ago, but it has been an amazing blessing to not only pick up where I left off and dance alongside so many talented dancers every so often, but really embellish in the unique sisterhood and bonds formed with every team I have had the pleasure of being on.

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Below are some of the photos from our “Adios to Arco” event…yet, I’ve joked – you never know they could have us back in March or April for a final, FINAL farewell dance…hehe

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Celebrating 25 Years of Arizona Cards Cheer

2 11 2015

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It’s been a week since I had the opportunity to perform on Monday Night Football at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Last Monday, I took the field for pregame with more than 150 Arizona Cardinals Cheerleaders Alumni to entertain the crowd before kickoff. The experience brought back the chills, some nerves and that anxious feeling you get before performing in front of tens of thousands of people! After being away from dancing on the NFL for several years now, I sort of had forgotten just how HUGE the field feels and how it feels to dance in the stadium. Plus, I had NEVER danced in a domed stadium before…during the one season I spent with the AZ Cardinals, they still played at ASU Sun Devil Stadium, so it did feel different to be in the air conditioned dome. Press play below to see video of the performance…

Anyhow, keep scrolling down to view some of the photos from my fun-filled weekend in the desert, celebrating the Arizona Cardinals Cheerleaders Anniversary.

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Frontier Flying

10 10 2015

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I flew Frontier for the first time last week on a trip with my family from San Francisco to Chicago and since it is one of those “discount” airlines that can sometimes be the “unknown,” I figured I’d share some of my takeaways from the round trip experience.

The two biggest factors that influenced why we chose to fly Frontier even though I am a proud miles collecting member on a handful of other airlines.

Pricing – The cost for my family of four to make the round trip cost us less than $1,000

Flight schedule – Even though we live much closer to Oakland, the times available for the nonstop flights worked well for us to leave out of San Francisco and land at O’Hare – even though we’d prefer Midway, and made the most sense.

Okay, so I booked our fares online and elected to forego selecting seats or paying for baggage when I initially booked the trip. Yes, this is an airline which only allows a “personal item” with you in the cabin of the plane and any carry-on bags that you’d put int he overhead bin will incur an additional cost. And, as I also alluded to in my previous statement, I didn’t pick (i.e. pay) to choose our seats. I felt a slight risk here of being separated from my family, but wasn’t too concerned…and it did work out in the end.

A couple nights before out departure date I decided to call in and ask about the random seating, since I didn’t pay “extra” to pick seats, yet with 2 and 3 year old tots in tow, it was pretty critical that a parent was seated next to each one. The four of us didn’t need to be all together, but 2 and 2 would be ideal. I mean can you image a toddler being forced to sit unattended!?!? At any rate, I was advised that since we were traveling with young children, it would be taken into consideration and I should inquire at the airport if the random seating didn’t already put us in an agreeable seating arrangement, and she noted my reservation. The other helpful tid bit she informed me of was that I would save money by selecting and paying for my baggage options online.

 

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So anyway, when I checked in..all was GOOD! We are all put in the same row 2 and 2 with the aisle between us and I paid for our 2 check-in bags online, saving $10, since it would have been $10 more if I waited to do that at the airport. I didn’t pay for any carry on bags, we each had a personal item…and the rule of thumb for your personal item is can it fit under the seat in front of you!?!?

Dropping off our bags at the airport was fine and their customer service was nice and friendly. I liked that they allowed us to pre-board since we have small kids. Every airline is different these days and many do not include people with small children in the “pre-board” category. The plane was clean and leg room was pretty good. The seats are comfy enough, but unless I just couldn’t find the button, they didn’t recline. They are also very slim seats, compared to the width of seats I’ve sat in on other planes, but it didn’t make a major difference. The tray table was also much smaller, a little silver tray that dropped down. I think water was complimentary, but anything else had a fee. By the way, I think if you are seated in the first few rows you are some kind of “VIP, special” …but I didn’t do all that! ;)

In hindsight, it was a very good experience. We had a non stop flight that was on time or early each way, we had great seat assignments (that we didn’t pay extra for), our bags made it to our destinations and it was minimal charges for our checked baggage…and let’s be honest, everyone charges for bags these days except Southwest. I can’t say I will always be flying Frontier, but if it makes sense for my future travel plans, I certainly won’t hesitate!

Photos courtesy: Frontier Airlines