Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Motivational Fitness Quotes

Five Years

Nicholas and I recently celebrated our fifth anniversary by buying a real Christmas tree for our apartment. It was the first time in over 5 years that we have been in the US in our own place and could get a tree. It's the little things.

The cutest delivery guy around
Stockings were hung, train assembled, tree decorated. Consider the halls decked. 

Whirlwind Fall

At the end of the summer, I took over a new account and have been working like crazy ever since. I suppose that is not so much news, but not splitting accounts as I had been doing, has been such an improvement and my work satisfaction has increased exponentially.

Starting at the end of August, I did my first red carpet event with Joan Jett, Maria Bello and Olympia Dukakis. Despite small hiccups, it turned out great and we had a huge amount of press show up for the show.

I took a quick detour back to the alma mater for an old client and had the privilege of going on the field with our VIP guests and I may or may not have cried and cheered and loved every second of being on the sidelines for the pre-game activities, the band playing Carmen Ohio and the start of the game.

I then took on the internet meme/sensation turned movie star, Grumpy Cat. We created partnerships with Macy's and Jetblue to promote the holiday movie. So many pieces to this project, and so many hysterical stories about working with the star, but those will be shared in person :)

Now, we are putting the final touches on a new partnership for a new show that premieres in January. Another day of intensity before I get to relax for the New Year holiday.

Finally, I got to meet the boss. He swung by the office a couple of weeks ago to say hello. All in all, a pretty interesting, intense and cool Fall '14.

You can see him on New Year's Eve doing his countdown :) 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Fall Trip BOOKED!!

Yahoo! Never have I been so excited about a trip!

Barcelona travel poster - haha a smug matador!
Ok, that is a lie. My first trip abroad I was probably more excited. And my first study abroad, more excited. Our first move abroad. Our second move abroad. Everything in between. Ok ok ok... however, I just SO need some time away and am really looking forward to a trip back "home" to Spain and Switzerland.
Madrid Map, Spain, illustrated map, travel guide madrid, tour guide spain
We will go to Barcelona first for the wedding of a good friend and then hit up Madrid to see the family and new additions!! From there, we head back to the gorgeous land of Switzerland for some long overdue catch up with all our Swiss friends!

new Swiss national motto.  swiss chocolate is the way to go :)

Nicholas and I both have not been to Barcelona in something like 10+ years ago, so we are excited to rediscover the beautiful beach town and see so many friends and family.

Always great to have something to look forward to!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Ubers NYC

So, to say that this job is a time-killer is no joke. I work around the clock, majority of my weekends and all I have to show for it, at the moment, are 20 Mini Cooper Countryman wrapped as each team of Barclays Premier League.

This latest project has taken me through the normal C way - accept the impossible mission, quickly learn how to do the unknown, and make lots of friends along the way who are at least half as committed as you to seeing the project through.

I worked with a lot of great people on this, but it was a solo C project. The team was split on other client activity, so I ran with it. And, again, in true C fashion, it came down to the wire with several sleepless nights concerned about insurance and all the little details.

Today, the campaign wrapped and all those adorable Minis are getting out of the their team uniforms and returning to their normal life.

That's a wrap 

Thursday, June 5, 2014


Where do I even begin?

This new life is too much. I want to write about all the interesting things that I am doing, but it turns out that I am doing too many of those things to make time to write. #goodproblem #wouldrathersleep ;)

Long story long, I have been doing more work travel - Chicago, Chicago, Concord/Charlotte, North Carolina for NBC, NBC, and History Channel.

Nicholas is back for good and I cannot remember being this happy. He is on a sabbatical. He cooks, cleans, grocery shops and is an all around amazing SAH husband :) Role reversal and I am loving it!

I missed a great visit from one of my favorite people, Corinne, as I was pulled to Chicago for one of my projects but I did get a great visit in with my family and favorite niece and nephew. Then I had a last minute visit from my bestie Megan this past weekend. Friday, we head to the Poconos to see our friends and have a weekend away, fingers crossed.

Hope to write and share more. Until, follow me on insta @nicki_s_chacon.

Friday, April 11, 2014

On the Secret of Genius

"If everyone had the luxury to pursue a life of exactly what they love, we would all be ranked as visionary and brilliant...If you got to spend every day of your life doing what you love, you can't help but be the best in the world at that. And you get to smile every day for doing so. And you'll be working at it almost to the exclusion of personal hygiene, and your friends are knocking on your door, saying, "Don't you need a vacation?!" and you don't even know what the word "vacation" means because what you are doing is what you want to do and a vacation from that is anything but a vacation - that's the state of mind of somebody who's doing what others might call visionary and brilliant."

Neil deGrasse Tyson and Neil Gaiman on the Secret of Genius

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Trivia Night

You know those times in life, when you really don't want to do something but know that you should? Last night was one of those nights. 

I am on the culture committee at my office, fondly referred to as Cult Comm. This committee is responsible for making the office more fun and inviting. Helping newbies feel welcome, creating more camaraderie among the staff, etc. We have a small quarterly budget to do things like trivia night, or have beer brainstorms in the office, or throw monthly birthday parties. As part of the committee, I very well could not show up to one of our events that I was so adamant about setting up. 

So, while I would have rather gone home, gone for a run, picked up that baby gift for this weekend; instead, I met my colleagues out at the bar for trivia night. My office buddies did not go, so I was on my own to be friendly with a lot of people I don't know all too well. Which is the point after all, isn't it. 

And, as with all those times in life when you really don't want to do something but know that you should, it turned out more fun than I had expected. I got to know a handful of my colleagues better and learned fun, random facts. Looking forward to Nicholas, also known as a human wikipedia, being in the city to join for one of these nights, as he will kill it. 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Long Way Home

Nicholas is taking the long way home  instead of a direct flight to NYC. After 19 years of work and an MBA, Nicholas is taking a little break. I am really happy that he gets to take some time and do more of what he loves. Travel. Of course, we both wish I could join him on the open road, but roles have been reversed and I am happy to be working, earning a paycheck and be the bread winner :)

This week, Nicholas is earning his diving license, something he has been wanting to do for many years now. I am thrilled that he finally gets to achieve one of his goals and, this one, I am happy to miss out on. After a terrifying experience in Indonesia, I am over the idea of diving. He is with one of his very good friends from GSG and I know they will have a great time.

From there the adventure continues as he makes his way slowly home :) Check out his instagram and twitter accounts for the hashtag long way home aka #lwh to follow his adventure. It's sure to be a good one.

And when he finally does make his way back to home*, I'll be waiting with open arms ❤️

*our motto: Home is wherever I am with you.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Get Lost

Guide to Getting Lost 

I just stumbled on this little gem and to say this is pretty much how I live my life is an understatement. I am not a huge planner in terms of travel. I so prefer to *discover* a city on foot and get lost in its streets. I cannot tell you how much this can irk people who are real planners and have to-do lists for traveling. The one thing I ALWAYS plan for is food. I am obsessed with eating the best a city has to offer, whether that is the best street tacos or a table with a white cloth, it makes no difference, as long as the food is satisfying and it gives me a glimpse of the culture. What easier, quicker and more satisfying way to discover a new place than to enjoy the food? 

I try to do this whole "getting lost" thing in my own cities. I take different routes to get to ordinary places. My commute to work is 6 blocks, but I try to take every permutation of those 6 blocks I can to see new things each day. I make mental notes of cute cafes I want to try, happy hours that I long to be able to make, and new threading salons to keep my eyebrows in perfect shape. 

Nowadays, it takes a lot to get off track with gps, google maps and check-ins. I say to heck with all of that and get lost! 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Where did March go??

The blog has clearly been put on hold for a while with the craziness of joining the workforce and trying to keep up with my old life of endless travel. March was a beautiful blur that included my first major project coming to fruition in Austin at SXSW. From there, I had a lovely visit from my dear Yann and we celebrated my birthday in epic gastronomical style at JungSik. Holy Michelin Stars!! Then in the middle of the glory of that visit, I hopped a plane and took off to see my love and my beautiful Seoul apartment one last time before we packed it up and went away to the Philipinnes for a week. And... here I am. Back in the city that never sleeps. About to start another work week and another project. The beginning of some unknowns. Who knows where this spring will take me, but I am ready for wherever it leads.

As with all my NYC Mondays, I bought myself a huge bouquet of roses to scatter around my apartment and office. I believe that you should always have something to look forward to. I hear so many people complaining about Sunday nights and the anxiety of going back to work the next day. I thought I would try to subconsciously alter that feeling to one of peace and eagerness. Something to look forward to. It's just some flowers, but it really brightens my day.

I also got a nice, relaxing run in and this. A short post. But hey, it's the little things, am I right?

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Best Picture Showcase

This is the most amazing thing I never knew about. In NYC amongst some other cities nationwide, there is a Best Picture Showcase at AMC! This is where they have a marathon viewing of all the oscar nominated best picture films of the year on one day. This upcoming Saturday, March 1, is the day. You get a ticket for $60 for 9 films. The 24-hr marathon starts at 10am on Saturday and goes til the next morning with small breaks between the films and a dinner break at night.

This is the second year for some of my friends and I would love to go. Unfortunately, it looks more like I will be working than soaking up all the cinematic goodness. I already invited Nicholas to join me next year!

If you can do it and it is in your city, GO! Only a handful do the marathon, but many do the 2-day viewing. Where they split it up over two weekends, 4 movies and then 5 the next. I think the first viewing is already over, but you may be able to catch the last 5!

This happened

Yesterday, in the midst of chaotic planning of events for my client, I reached for my phone to call one of my vendors to change a contract. I scanned the invoice and statement of work for a contact number and in my haste, dialed the first one I saw.

The phone rang a few times. The office phone rang. It always rings. It probably averages two calls a minute, so there is constant ringing in the office. It can be annoying, but for the most part you can zone it out. Funny how that works. When I create my own business and run my own office, I would make it beautiful and create ways to have peace.

So, the phone keeps ringing and I shout something to my colleague and friend, about who knows what, but something urgent, no doubt. Finally, someone answers the phone, "Civic Enter... " I am confused and slowly turn around in my seat to see half of my office laughing. I had dialed my office's main line, which all the coordinators are responsible for answering. Which means they all could see my desk number come up and just let it ring for several rings until one of them decided to pick it up :)

I could feel the burning red creep to my face, before I laughed and shouted out, "Oh, crap. That's embarrassing."

I felt like the most appropriate thing to do at that point would have been to stand and take a bow, but decided to re-dial with a more careful eye.

Just another day in the life...

Sunday, February 23, 2014


If you can't tell by the name of my blog (which I originally started when a group of my friends and I were all going to run the Chicago Marathon in 2009- I didn't make it since I decided to get married and move abroad instead), I love to run. I have had a love affair with stretching out my legs and going for long miles for 18 years now. Sure, we have had our moments of separation and frustration but I always come back to it.

This whole winter, since I got back from Asia on Jan 1, I have been dying to go for a run outdoors. I got one in a few weeks ago when we had a break in the weather and then TWO outdoor runs just this weekend!
Saturday Run- Look at that sky!
While on my run today, I was listening to upbeat pop music and soaking it all in. I had the biggest smile on my face, while I blurted out lyrics randomly, and ran through all the aches and pains of a body under-used.
Sunday Run
While I was thinking about how goddamn lucky I am to be outside running in warm weather, in my favorite city on earth, I realized that my calves were aching, my toes felt funny, I had a side stitch and I wasn't going my normal pace. In all honesty, this would normally have gone down as a bad running day. But this was no normal run. This was a freaking gift. I was given the chance to run outdoors, on the east side path where the snow was melting and there was no ice and no chance for me to slip, at the end of February.

During my run, I passed a lot of other runners who, like me, were clearly out breaking in their legs again. I have a competitive streak and when I am on a path, I cannot help myself but to pick off runners. At one point, I could hear someone creeping up on me, I turned my head just slightly to enter the main path but also to see who was approaching. A man much taller than me. I didn't let myself see much more, but I could tell he was trying to pass, so I did what I always do in that situation. I picked up the pace.  And, for good measure, decided to start singing out loud to try to intimidate him. (You know, like I am in such good shape, I can run faster than you AND sing out loud.) I held him off for probably 500 more feet before he overtook me. When I got a good look at him, I laughed out loud. Who do I think I am? That man was in incredible shape, his calves carved out, his shoulders broad and strong. He moved gracefully on while I felt physically beat but emotionally alive.

This break in the weather gave me a chance to be grateful for things that I normally would have complained about or not considered extraordinary. But not today. Today, I soaked it all in. I embraced the aches and cramps and soreness. All the feelings I miss when I don't get to go for outdoor runs. Those feelings are the warming up of the body for the thing that makes me feel most natural. Running.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Lola's Cocina

Last weekend, I took a last minute flight out of NYC for a quick trip to sunny San Diego to surprise Lola and be there for the launch of her products at Williams-Sonoma artisans' market.

It was so great to surprise her and my friends, with the help of Corinne. We had a strong selling at WS, actually selling out of her top item, Salsa Negra! She was invited to come back and I know her future is bright. Her products will soon be available online! In the meantime, check out her site and try her recipes. When her products are available online, you have to order the Salsa Negra. It is so addicting!

But beyond her stellar business acumen, her ability not to listen to doubters and being a dream chaser, she is a new mom and incredible friend. I spent a lot of time just observing during the past weekend and I was so impressed how she seemed to so naturally find a balance between her worlds. She is a loving mom and Amado is already a momma's boy, but she did not coddle and fuss over him. She tended to him and cared for him in such beautiful ways, but she did not show the stress or worry that is evident on most first-time mommas. At the same time, she did not stress or overthink her product launch. I have to say, I was more jittery and focused on the tiny (unimportant) details than she was. She was the picture of calm and coolness. Her confidence was evident in all ways and I made her promise she would come teach me her ways whenever we decide to start a family and a business :)

My heart is still bursting with pride and awe. Love you, Lulu!!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

He's come and gone

Talk about a quick visit. Nicholas will travel more on the plane that he spent in NYC. What a crazy man, but so happy he made the trip!

Just a couple more months of this and then we will be together more permanently! I cannot wait for him to be a part of my every day moments :) We are looking forward to the next chapter, but in typical Chacon-fashion, we have a lot of unknowns in our future. As long as we are together, we know that we can do anything!

Now, he is off to Brazil via Korea for his last project; traveling for the next 51 hours!

Monday, January 27, 2014


I had the most blissful, quiet, busy weekend. I cleaned, organized, got my haircut, cooked lots of amazing things in my tiny, amazing kitchen, I read, I watched CBS Sunday Morning, I got coffee, I did laundry and I did not meet with another soul. I spoke on the phone a lot. Mostly, though, I just zoned out to myself. I allowed myself as much time as I needed to catch up on lost sleep from my crazy week and to recharge and prepare for my week ahead. This is the last weekend, in a long time, that I will have this kind of time. Both alone and completely empty. I am one that likes to keep a booked schedule, but every once in a while, we all need this. Just quiet time for yourself.

In just a few day, Nicholas arrives! I cannot wait to show him my new, tiny apartment in NYC :)

Sunday, January 26, 2014


I fly quite frequently. Nowadays, (as in this month) it is becoming more about domestic travel, but all the same. I board lots of planes and take flight.

Every time I fly, I take a moment before we take off to think of the extraordinary feat that is about to take place. As soon as the plane starts racing down the runway and the front wheels lift and the plane arches into the sky, I always think, "will it really work, again?" And sure enough, it does!

The last three flights I took, each time, when the plane was racing down the runway, my seatmates crossed themselves. (Do other religions do the sign of the cross?) I do not cross myself on the plane. I am not afraid to fly. I do not fear crashing. The simple fact of gravity allows me to accept logic. Instead, I am impressed with each and every time the plane lifts off and every. single. time. that the plane gets me to my exact destination. Really makes me ponder human ingenuity, innovation and spirit.

If you haven't seen this, do.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Definitely the second mouse

Coming up for air. Just barely...

This whole working-gig is not what it's cracked up to be! Geez people, when I said I wanted to jump back in with both feet, I meant with arm floaties and some pool pals. I have been doing a lot of flying solo, learning on the fly and more or less trying to keep my head above the water. As is with most who flounder, it ain't pretty, but in the end you at least learn how to tread water.

Here's to more days of treading water *and some day soon* of learning to swim.

(Side note, this reminds me of the line that Leonardo DiCaprio's dad says in the movie "Catch Me If You Can." He repeats it throughout the whole move:

"There are two mice who fall in a bowl of cream. The first mouse drowns. The other scrambles so quickly and tirelessly that he eventually he turns that cream into butter- and walks out.

I am that second mouse."