Okay, so it’s already March. It’s a good time to check in on the resolutions I created for myself in 2014, which I redefined this year. Resolutions should be fun according to Elizabeth Weaver Engel who inspired me through her Ignite session at ASAE Great Ideas last year to stop making boring resolutions (lose weight, blog more, play guitar more, etc.) and to start resolving to learn something new. According to Elizabeth Engel, she’s never broken a fun resolution (learning to play poker, belly dancing, riding a motorcycle) since she started making them years ago. She also stressed that those typical resolutions (blog more, lose weight, be a better mom, etc.) are actions you should be taking now if you truly desire them.

Inspired, I decided this year to embrace the cocktail. Hey, I couldn’t drink for 9 months while carrying Sadie and also got tired of having dinner parties where despite my best efforts at having a full bar, a key ingredient always seemed to be missing. The pros of learning a new cocktail recipe a month? We could slowly enhance our bar stock, learn a new cocktail recipe, keep the ole blog alive, and sip in splendor after the little one is fast asleep for the night. I also was realistic with myself that as a working new mom it was an easily achievable resolution.

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The resolution has stuck so far and my husband has happily gotten on board. In fact, I would say he’s really driving the resolution at this point with purchasing proper martini glasses, jiggers, shakers and stirrers, as well as the best alcohol each month for the mission.

January we started with the classic – The Martini. Since February is my husband’s birthday month and a wintery month, we chose one of our favorite cocktails The Manhattan. Upcoming blog posts on the two drinks to come!

What are you resolving to learn this year?

Do you have a good cocktail recipe you’d like me to feature?

 

 

It’s been two months and three weeks since she bolted into my life, my little darling Sadie Pearl. I’ve spent the last couple of months soaking in every moment of time with her before inevitably having to return to work a few weeks ago. The love I have for this little girl is beyond words, as any mother will tell you. Without further ado, the photo I took this morning of her:

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Much love,
Kylee

Tomorrow I will be officially 38 weeks pregnant, two weeks away from my due date. I’m not sure if any of you moms out there have experienced anything like this, but time could not be dragging any slower at the moment. With most of my projects at work wrapping up or wrapped up, I’ve been sadly having to turn down upcoming speaking gigs, missing cool conferences, but am keeping busy by writing blog posts on user experience, mobile, and content management systems and hosting my web show. Check out the DelCor blog soon for those more spiffy blog posts.  But that’s only work-related stuff. As a person who is constantly busy, I’ve been finding the much coveted down time mildly unnerving, so I’ve decided to include my own list of items pregnant ladies can do while waiting for baby.

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Here are the other things one can do while waiting for a child to emerge:

-Wash baby clothes up to 6 months old. Resist the urge to keep washing clothes even older.

-Assemble the nursery. Hang the mobile. Stare for long periods of time around the room.

-Watch every movie at the theatre since everyone tells you you’ll never be able to do this again. Eat popcorn because you can. You’re pregnant and this gives you caloric freedom for a short window of time still.

-Hang out with old friends.

-Get your nails done while hanging out with old friends.

-Clean your house.

-Attend weddings (not as fun sans alcohol and uber pregnant).

-Research potential preschools for two years from now because yes, it’s that competitive and yes, you’re slightly crazy.

-Find your pediatrician.

-Attend hypno birthing classes. Debate with people you meet on the pros/cons of birthing choices these days. Useful cocktail conversation or annoying? You be the judge.

-Debate if you should have a birth plan or if the hospital staff will hate you. Decide to do one anyway and call it “Birth Preferences”.

-Visit all of your friends who have already delivered their babies and be jealous that their waiting is over.

-Tour the hospital or birthing center.

-Watch every single TV show known to man. Be thankful for Netflix originals.

-Pack your hospital bag.

-Read every baby and pregnancy book in English until you can’t wait to read something about not being pregnant.

-Read Lean In. Consider picking up a book of fiction and then decide that’s too much of a commitment. If the baby comes tomorrow, will you ever know what happens?

-Assemble all car seats. Same goes for the stroller. Monitors. Diaper station. You get the drill..

-Buy everything left off of your registry that you still need.

-Wonder how much longer you will have to wait. Decide it’s an eternity.

-Make check lists on your blog of things you’ve already done while endlessly waiting for baby to arrive.

What did you do while waiting for baby?

 

Hello, my friends! It’s been a long time since my last post and with good reason. My husband and I are expecting our first child!! I’m currently 28 weeks pregnant and if you’re curious what the gender is, you can probably guess based on the random craving I’m having today:

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Yep, it’s a girl!

I’m told from this Ted Talk by Ina May Gaskin that Amish women normally make loaves of bread after going into birth. While I don’t plan on suddenly becoming Martha Stewart, I have been experiencing an odd cooking interest over the past week, so I’ll let you know if my cupcake recipes pan out.

Other than that, I just returned from ASAE Annual 2013 (#ASAE13) in Atlanta, Georgia where I was able to catch up with many of the association pals that I love, attend fantastic sessions, and present my session with David DeLorenzo, CIO, National League of Cities on Future Proofing Your Association’s Technology. A marvelous write up on our session by Ernie Smith is in Associations Now). I also contributed a few takeaways from my visit to the DelCor blog.

Here’s a fun photo from the Memberclicks Small Staff ShinDig at #ASAE13

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What are you celebrating this summer?

What were your favorite moments from #ASAE13?

 

We couldn’t decide on a color for the sitting room. Finally my husband and I, after much debate, 8 paint samples, and many trips to the local hardware store (shout out to Annie’s Ace for their help!) – we discovered the perfect shade called Blue Toile. Then more debate ensued: to high gloss or not to high gloss? After contacting friends and family with design and interior decorating backgrounds, we were still confused. Questions like “Can our 83 year old walls ever be perfect enough for high gloss?” to “What if we want to repaint it after and all millions of unknown paints that existed prior to us purchasing this house peel off?” Nevermind the fact that every single hardware store employee looked at me like I was crazy when I mentioned painting our living room in high gloss, a paint which seems reserved only for trim, bathrooms, and the great outdoors.

We turned to our friends on Facebook and Instagram and 97% of our friends warned us not to do it. Still, the glamour and dramatic appeal of high gloss called to me. So, after my husband sanded much of the wall, we went with a flat paint because all the research told us to  and at the end of the day, I wanted the room painted.

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All of this made me feel better about not going into a creative route for my full-time career and made me feel an extra appreciation for my friends and family who are designers, contractors, and architects. Oh, to deal with clients like me… 

There’s a certain amount of uncertainty with everything and differing opinions. For a room, it’s what you and your family like, ultimately – that’s the color that should win.

Not so for a website redesign.

For a website redesign, it’s what your members and users want and so much more. If only it were as simple as choosing a color or “look.” I was reminded of this again when perusing some of the recent responsive web designs within the association community. While designers seem to be moving in the right direction with designing for many devices, there’s one large area they’re missing: touch features. I was surprised to see homepages with photos and headers that were both lacking hyperlinks, instead forcing the visitor to move a mouse to a tiny hyperlink at the bottom of a block of text (which translates to mobile users having to pinch and zoom in with a fat finger to click a link). Here we have desktop computers now able to support touch screen and some designers & their clients are still out there designing for soon-to-be old school desktops, even while going responsive.

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Are we truly designing for the user experience? Do we put as much thought and precision into designing “the experience” of our website as we do for areas of our houses and homes – each room serving a different experience and function?

There is so much to be grateful for all around me.

My husband and I bought a house in Petworth, a neighborhood in Washington, DC and moved from our little condo in Columbia Heights about a month ago. The 83-year old row house we purchased has two dogwood trees (one white, one pink) in the front yard and the kindest neighbors we could ask for. After a month of renovations we moved in one month ago and have been making it our home, one day at a time.

Just today my mom returns home to Missouri after spending ten days with us here. With all the busy schedules and everyone married and traveling, it’s been harder and harder for all of us to find times to get together as a group, and I’m embarrassed to admit it was almost 1.5 years since I’d seen her. Happily, we found some much needed family time over the last two weekends between my entire family here in the DC area.

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my nieces Margaux and Rachel

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Elvis dance party!

 

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Mom and Me

 

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burlesque brunch at SAX

I just couldn’t be more appreciative for the time we shared. Here’s to making more great memories with those you cherish.

What are you grateful for this week?

 

Responsive Design has been the buzz word along with “Big Data” in the association community for the past year and there’s a good reason why. With 2013 deemed “The Year of Responsive Design” by Mashable.com, as well as forecasted by many to be the year that mobile browsing surpasses desktop browsing, associations need to have a solid mobile solution.

As all of us have now become comfortable with carrying and relying on multiple devices (tablets, smartphones, laptops, desktops) to tackle our work and manage our communications, we will no doubt embrace even more as new and evolved products continue to infiltrate the market. Just consider the tabtop and phablet.

If associations want their content to be consumed, then they must think beyond traditional mobile sites and native apps as there one and only mobile solution, and really look at their website.

In a recent interview with ResultsDirect’s Cecilia Satovich on DelCor Sweet Spot Live, I asked her the big questions surrounding responsive design, the triumphs, challenges, and reasons why she considers it a solid solution.

Is your association considering moving to a responsive web design? What are the questions you still have?

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