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2020: Your Best Year Yet with Associated Vintners

I don’t know about you but my favorite holiday is the New Year! There’s something so special about it because it makes me feel like I get a re-set button to do better and be better. With that notion, as well as my passion for elevating women’s lives I knew I had to host a mastermind event for women with this new turn of a decade. If you missed our in-person event that’s okay, I want to give you the highlights from our event so it’s like you were basically there!

We hosted our first event of the year in partnership with our

Gold Sponsor Associated Vintners

Associated Vintners is an elite company of curated wines that provides one of the only tasting rooms here in Seattle, WA! If you’re in the area, definitely stop in for a look-see to one of the cutest tasting rooms I’ve seen yet! They provided mimosas, delicious bites from Ballard Market and some fun swag. We could not have done it without their help so a heartfelt thank you to Tom the Tasting Room Manager, Sabrina and everyone else at AV!

In addition, this event would not have been possible with our other sponsors as well so a huge thank you to:

Janelle and Aaron Photography

Heva Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

The Power of Gratitude

Our event started out by thanking 2019 and letting it go so that we can make room for more abundance and possibilities to come for 2020. Research shows that there are a lot of benefits to gratitude. According to Morin (2014) Gratitude can

  • Help you make friends. One study found that thanking a new acquaintance makes them more likely to seek a more lasting relationship with you.
  • Improve your physical health. People who exhibit gratitude report fewer aches and pains, a general feeling of health, more regular exercise, and more frequent checkups with their doctor than those who don’t.
  • Improve your psychological health. Grateful people enjoy higher well-being and happiness and suffer from reduced symptoms of depression.
  • Enhance empathy and reduces aggression. Those who show their gratitude are less likely to seek revenge against others and more likely to behave in a prosocial manner, with sensitivity and empathy.
  • Improve your sleep. Practicing gratitude regularly can help you sleep longer and better.
  • Enhance your self-esteem. People who are grateful have increased self-esteem, partly due to their ability to appreciate other peoples’ accomplishments.
  • Increase in mental strength. Grateful people have an advantage in overcoming trauma and enhanced resilience, helping them to bounce back from highly stressful situations.” (Morin, 2014).

Some practices that can help enhance your gratitude muscles can include a gratitude journal and writing down 3 bests from the day. I’ve done this practice, especially in times of difficulty and it has helped me to see the glass half full versus half empty. It has truly helped me to get out of mental ruts, so I would highly recommend this practice as it is definitely my biggest go-to!

Let’s talk about Meditation

In addition, to gratitude we spoke on the idea of meditation and discussed the differences as well as benefits. Many people believe that meditation is challenging because you must quiet the mind. For me personally though, I welcome that in my own meditations because I see value and power in the visualizations I get from them.

There are two types of meditations, the first is mindfulness meditation and the second is moving meditation.

Mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness meditation is what you think of when you think of meditation. Where you are sitting still, focusing on your breathing and being mindful of your body, noises and quieting your mind to nothingness so that you are fully present with what is happening right now.

Moving meditation

Moving meditation is exactly what you think it is, it’s being able to move your body rhythmically so that you can be in tune with your body and your thoughts. Activities such as yoga, Tai Chi or running can promote this type of meditation.

Regardless of what you end up trying out, do what feels best for you. Some people tell me that optimal meditation takes from 10-20 minutes. For me, I think that is a very long time. I have seen results from just 2-5 minutes of meditation! During my mindfulness meditation, visualizations came to me where I saw hosting this exact event in addition to teaching. Because of that meditation and visualization, it gave me the direction to host our first event and begin teaching as Adjunct Faculty at a local University in their Bachelor’s in Nursing Program! So I’m truly living the benefits of meditation and I know you can too. The one thing I do want to mention is even if you don’t do it on the regular, there are still benefits to be reaped.

Benefits

  • More Relaxed and at peace
  • More awake, alert and aware
  • Become more purposeful in action
  • Improves mental and physical health
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Decreases pain
  • Improves immune system to fight against illnesses
  • Improves mood and brain function (Watson, Fraser, Ballas, n.d.)

The last piece we touched on is goal setting which I had my amazing husband Hoan Do facilitate! He is an inspirational speak, author and was on NBC’s hit show American Ninja Warrior! I couldn’t think of anyone more perfect to facilitate this portion of our mastermind. He has an incredibly short and sweet, and might I add, super easy way of remembering how to goal set and he calls it GPS!

What does GPS Stand for?

G – Specific GOAL – your goal needs to be specific in nature. Does it have a deadline? Are there specific measurable parts to your goal?

P – Meaningful PURPOSE – you have to get super emotional about your goal. How would it make you feel if you achieved this goal? And think about that when you reference back to the goal.

S – Multiple STRATEGIES – There has to be multiple ways in which you can achieve your goal. If one way doesn’t work, don’t stop there, try something else.

So there you have it guys! Those were the highlights from our event. We are in the works to planning our second event so stay tuned for more details. It will be in the second quarter, probably around April or May! But until then, I hope that you continue to live out your best lives this year. 2020 is going to be so good, I can feel it in my bones baby!

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50 Things to Do when Cruising on Royal Caribbean – Harmony of the Seas

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I just went on my 3rd Royal Caribbean cruise on Harmony of the Seas to the Eastern Caribbean, which is currently one of the largest ships of their fleet built in 2016 and boy was it a treat! My family and I absolutely LOVE their cruises and would highly recommend it to anyone, and everyone! They have so many activities catered to the entire family, from little ones all the way to our seniors, I promise you’ll find an activity for everyone to do.

I wanted to cover some of the highlights of our cruise and hope you’ll find value for YOUR upcoming cruise!

Background info

First off, one of the reasons why I love cruising so much is because I feel it is pretty cost-effective. The price of the cruise provides room and board, in addition to activities throughout the ship such as rock climbing, mini golf, workout sessions, broadway type shows, etc. (depending on the cruise ship).

The reason why I love cruising on the Oasis class of Royal Caribbean ships is that you feel you’re apart of something big because you actually are! They continue to create the largest passenger cruise line ships in the entire world and offer some pretty renowned features such as zip lining, flow-riding, aqua theaters at sea just to name a few. Harmony of the Seas was debuted in 2016. Since then, Symphony of the Seas was released and they plan to be done with Wonder of the Seas in spring of 2021 that will provide bumper cars, sky diving and laser tag all at sea!

Review of Harmony of the Seas

Currently, there are four cruise ships in the Oasis class and I’ve only been on Allure of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas. As far as layout goes, I feel they are extremely similar with Royal Promenades, Central Parks, Boardwalks, etc. which I thought was both familiar and helpful. Because one, you have an idea of where everything is but yet on the flip side it was easy to find everything.

I thought food on Allure of the Seas was so much better than Harmony of the Seas but it could be that my appetite isn’t as great as it used to be. My favorite dinner night obviously was the lobster tail night! Our waiter was so kind and brought us extra. Thanks George!

Things to do on Board

There are sooo many things to do on board. And now that they came out with their nifty Royal Caribbean app. It’s easy to check and see what sort of activities are currently going on. Plus because you’re at sea, there’s unfortunately no data. However you can easily contact all your friends and family through their app in the messaging section which is awesome! Before they came out with it, we’d always think like, “oh man, we should have invested in some walkie talkies.” but now because of their app, no need for that anymore.

  1. Eat at Windjammer 
  2. Go Rock climbing
  3. Drink and hang out at the Bionic Bar
  4. Go to a broadway type show (Grease, etc.)
  5. Play BINGO
  6. Play at your chance at the slots
  7. Play basketball
  8. Play ping pong
  9. Work out or have a mini yoga session
  10. Play mini golf
  11. Make you own ice cream cone
  12. Go shopping on the promenade
  13. Hang out on the boardwalk 
  14. Slide down the Ultimate Abyss – tallest waterslide at sea
  15. Watch people on the Flowrider
  16. Go zip lining
  17. Watch a movie 
  18. Go to a pamper party hosted by the spa
  19. Participate in poolside activities
  20. Get late night pizza at Sorrento’s
  21. Learn how to play poker at Casino Royale
  22. Go ice skating
  23. Get room service 
  24. Attend a cupcake decorating class
  25. Escape the Rubicon which is an escape room 
  26. Learn how to salsa
  27. Do Karaoke
  28. Listen to live music in Central Park
  29. Watch kiddos on the Merry Go Round 
  30. Go for a ride and a drink on the Rising Tide Bar
  31. Participate in a game show
  32. Watch an aquatic show (my favorite!)
  33. Relax in the adults only solarium
  34. Go to a comedy show
  35. Play a game of trivia
  36. Watch an ice skating show
  37. Get dolled up for formal night at dinner 
  38. Relax by the pool 
  39. Get your feet and balance analyzed by specialists
  40. Get a massage at the spa 
  41. Get a tour of the ship 
  42. Attend a sushi making class
  43. Head to a champagne party
  44. Attend an art auction
  45. Go to a wine tasting
  46. Get your scuba certification
  47. Check out an art auction
  48. Be apart of a parade on the promenade
  49. Eat at one of their noteworthy restaurants
  50. And if you get exhausted, take a nap in your stateroom!                                                                              

The best part about Royal Caribbean is that you can have as busy of a cruise with fun-filled activities or as chill of a cruise with poolside wading. Regardless of what you end up doing on board I know you’ll have a blast! The easiest way to figure out what’s going on, onboard like I mentioned earlier is to download the Royal Caribbean app which allows you to message your friends and family to coordinate plans as well. My biggest tip though, is to just soak it all in because 7 days go by really fast! Regardless of what you end up doing on baord, I know Royal Caribbean will show you a good time. I hope you have a great cruise and let me know what your thoughts are and what activity you’d be excited for most on board in the comments below!

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