Let’s Catch Up



Hope you all are having a marvelous Independence Day with your family and friends. I will be spending the next 2 weeks relaxing in the sun and spending time with those that mean the most to me. In light of this, my blog will not be the center of my focus. I will do my best to keep up with it, but it’s been a little difficult with travel and such. It’s also a little hard to have that lake 20 feet away and be sitting here typing on my laptop.

I thought I’d take a minute to circle back around on a few of the challenges I have had and how they have taken shape since I completed them.

Let’s recap!

I started off this little adventure by reading The Four Agreements.

For those that don’t remember, The Four Agreements are: 

1. Be impeccable with your word – Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

2. Don’t take anything personally – Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.

3. Don’t make assumptions – Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

4. Always do your best – Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.

I was asked to post them somewhere that they’d be visible and try commit to living them every day. While I have not fully lived these Four Agreements every day, I would say that they have made me more self-aware and aware of those around me.

The biggest difference it has made is in realizing how powerless I am over other people’s actions. I have taken into consideration the fact that when someone does something out of character it is not always a reaction to something that I have done. I am trying not to make assumptions as frequently as I used to.  I don’t jump conclusions nearly as often as I used to.

I am a firm believer in “Always do your best” because that is how I was raised. As long as you gave it your all you can be proud of your results. This has come in quite handy with job interviews and relationships lately. All you can say is that you tried. Sometimes things don’t work out.

I haven’t noticed too many lasting changes in perspective since reading this book, but I do catch myself from time to time and say things like “This has nothing to do with you” or “you have no idea why they did what they did so don’t try to figure it out.” It’s rather refreshing, actually.

Katie Goes to Hoxworth….

I apparently have the most popular blood on the planet, because Hoxworth is stalking me. No seriously. I have O neg blood and they need a ton of it. I have not yet gone back to donate more of the goods. But I will. I promise.

Letters to My Teachers

I received a very nice note back from both recipients of my letters. This is a screenshot of my letter to google:

Dear Google Response

Dear Google Response

For those that didn’t get a chance to see it before, here it is again:

The Challenge that has had the greatest effect on me thus far is the one from Adhrucia.  Remember how I always told you she knows what I need before I know I need it? Once again, the chick is spot on. Not only has the book profoundly affected the way I think, the woman she introduced me to, Shari Goldsmith, is indeed helping me find my inner sass.


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For starters, I was clearly skeptical of The Secret when I read it. If you’ll remember, in my post I stated that these people were essentially crazy to think that things would happen to them if they simply willed them to happen. Well, I stand corrected.



I began by testing the theory with smaller things. I would concentrate on wanting someone to call or text me, thinking only positive things and then, suddenly, it would happen! Then I began thinking about certain songs I wanted to hear and they’d play next!

I started drafting the perfect job description in my head and considering everything that it might entail and then it, almost word for word, it appeared! Better yet, they called to ask me if I was interested in discussing it before I had even applied! (This is the Special Events Development Officer at Children’s.)

That whole money in my purse thing is still happening. Just the other day I had to go pick up some desserts I had my friend Blair, of Brown Bear Bakery, put together for my dad’s birthday. I totally forgot to pick them up and ran down quickly, without time to stop at the ATM. 4 dozen salter caramel crispy bars cost $48. The whole way I kept thinking “Please let there be $48 in my purse. Please let there be $48 in my purse.” I pulled into the parking lot and dug to the bottom of my purse, unfolding every last dollar bill I had in there. I sh*t you not. I had EXACTLY $48 in my purse. This keeps happening to me and has happened to me for quite awhile. I hope it never goes away…haha

Now I believe this is all about the power of positivity, but I won’t say I’m totally ruling out the Law of Attraction thing just yet. But the Scientist in me says it’s crazy…

Shari Goldsmith is a women’s life coach. She is helping me figure out what I wanna be when I grow up. I think the root of the problem is a matter of confidence. When one loses their job it is easy to be knocked down a few pegs. I remember walking into our very first meeting, horrible posture, intimidated, shy, not sure what to expect. I now walk out of every meeting feeling rejuvenated, motivated and empowered. There are ideas of starting my own business, but I think that’s a little ways off. Need to get some real experience first! Adhrucia was spot on in saying that she thought  Shari and I would be Soul Sisters. We’re practically the same person.  Maybe that’s why I like her so much!

On the job note, I have been called in for second interviews with the Art Museum and Children’s. I am also still volunteering with digital engagement at Cincinnati Museum Center and I absolutely love being there. I’m trying to decide which would be more worthwhile. Walking in every morning and staring at that GORGEOUS Chihuli every morning at the CAM or gazing up at the Rotunda at CMC everyday.  These brief moments and experiences continue to remind me that deep down inside, I’m still just a child staring at the world with incredible wonder, curiosity and amazement.

The most exciting challenge was attending the Passion Pit concert solo from Tara Noland. I owe you many thanks for this because I never would have considered doing it without the nudge. Because you had me do that, and because of my little note, my blog was read in 16 countries that day.

Since then, it has been read in 32 countries. HOLY. CRAP. I don’t know how these people come across it or why it interests them, but I’m beyond excited about it!!

Having spent the last 6 months working on this project, in terms of conception to present day, I can honestly say that I’m thrilled I decided to take it on. You have taken me in so many interesting directions and it’s only been 14 weeks. I cannot wait to see what lies in store for the rest of the year.

For those readers that live in the USA, I hope you all have a spectacular Independence Day. Let’s celebrate what those men, and the women behind them, fought for so many years ago. Consider the bravery, energy and determination the exuded to create this great nation we live in today. I hate to say it, but if met with the same concerns today, I cannot say that we would fight as strongly for the same liberties that they did back then and that makes me sad. I fear that we take them for granted and we might lose sight of just how hard it was to obtain them.  In light of the recent political events, striking down DOMA *yay!!*, the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg and with all of our American history in mind, please remember these words:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Happy 4th of July, everyone!



A very special shout out to Lil Zain, my most America-loving friend, happy favorite holiday, presh!

Let freedom ring. ‘Murica.

Will Work for Money! (this makes more sense if you know what I’ve spent the last year doing…)

You’re hired! Those two little words are something that I’ve been dying to hear for the past 8 months. (So have my parents…) After losing my job last August, I took some time to really think about what I want to do with the rest of my life, and while this blog has taken me in so many different directions and revealed so many of my talents, I think I’ve always known what I’m meant to do. Change the world! One event at a time!

I’m having an internal struggle with how I should approach writing about this on the off chance that the people interviewing me peruse my blog, but as this is a full-disclosure kind of thing, here goes nothing.

Challenge #12:

Apply for 5 different jobs that you see as possible careers.” – from my cousin Terri Hafertepen.


I have had a wide variety of experience throughout my career. I’ve been everything from a Cocktail Waitress at Montgomery Inn Boathouse to an Account Coordinator at Powers Agency. I’ve planned fabulous events for clients and driven all over the Tri-State area to create a preferred vendor list for a new marketing plan. I’ve served as a self-proclaimed concierge to our fabulous little city. I’ve networked my heart out. I’ve shot incredible promotional videos for well-deserving non-profits and escorted Big Boy around the Greater Cincinnati Area prepping him for his Founders Day Celebration. I have evaluated home inspections and built incredible relationships with general agents over the phone, having never once met them in person. I’ve written columns for company periodicals. I’ve designed promotional materials. I’ve scanned twitter feeds and unintentionally ended the serving career of a few less than stellar employees. (I still feel very bad about that, but you should know better than to bad mouth your company in a public forum.) I’ve pretended to be a potential customer to evaluate competitor programs in an effort to help improve our own products and services. (I’m not entirely sure that one was ethical, but it was fun!)

I’ve also had quite a lot of experience doing things people don’t pay me to do. I volunteer. A LOT. I’ve coordinated large, fabulous galas. I’ve put on cooking classes. I’ve helped provide hundreds of new moms with necessary lessons and supplies to ensure a healthy, productive start to their child’s life. I’ve mentored a sweet, bright little girl named Destiny, whose growth and development surprises me more and more every day. I have delivered rack cards to every single hotel in a 40 mile radius of Cincinnati. Just this morning I helped reveal a new Augmented Reality feature for the Ultimate Dinosaurs exhibit at Cincinnati Museum Center. It’s so awesome. I highly recommend you check it out.

des4 deskatie desi2 des3

This little lady seriously is my pride and joy.  She’s a straight shooter, tries so hard at everything, says what’s on her mind and makes me laugh so much. I hope I don’t screw her up… 🙂

The point is, I’ve done a lot of different things that have provided me with a set of skills that could really lend themselves to a variety of opportunities. I’ve also put a lot of miles on my car. I have a lot of interests, as well. Rather than applying to thousands of positions, like I have before, I decided to be more calculated about it.

My parents are both very intelligent and great at what they do. My mother, who inspires me to be just like her every single day, is an incredibly active community volunteer. My father is one of the brightest, most driven businessmen I’ve ever met. They try very hard to help me in this process, but I’m kind of a pill about it. I’m stubborn and want to do it on my own. I decided to reluctantly take my parents’ advice and read a little book called StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath. They gave it to me and my siblings for Christmas a few years ago and it continued to sit on my shelf and collect dust. Then I cracked it open and wondered why I’d never done it before…

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You read about 30 pages and take a brief (180 or so questions) online assessment and almost immediately, it evaluates your answers and provides you with your top 5 qualities or things that you do best. This book teaches you to focus on the things that you are inherently good at, rather than trying to improve the skills you don’t naturally possess.

I mean, duh. That makes total sense. All our lives we are evaluated on our progress through school, through jobs and throughout our every day activities. Have you ever received less than satisfactory reviews on your performance? “Needs improvement” should now be read as “Not your strong suit, let’s try something else.” For example, I’m the first one to admit that I have flaws or things that I’m not particularly good at. This is why I’m not designing jet engines. It’s in everyone’s best interest. So I sat down and took my assessment.  These are my results:

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Now, for those that have not read the book, you have no idea what that means. Fortunately, it also provides a handy little description laying out exactly what each of those represents. Then it goes further to tell you what you should do with these strengths and 50 different aspects of an action plan for EACH THEME to help utilize it to the best of your abilities. Awesome.

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For those of you that know me, most of these probably come as no surprise. I’m a wear my heart on my sleeve, upbeat, life of the party kind of girl. I’m sensitive and intuitive. I’m also an ENFP, for those that are familiar with the Myers Briggs system of measurement.

For more information on what that means, visit: http://www.personalitypage.com/ENFP.html

So after looking at these two systems of evaluation, I narrowed down my skill set and starting scanning the job boards, as I generally do every morning. My first choice is ALWAYS The ArsWave Job board. ArtsWave features all kinds of career opportunities for local creative-based nonprofit organizations. I imagine that no matter what role I eventually end up with, it will have been posted on this page.

I have set some criteria for what I want to do.

1) I want to work for a non-profit. I am not a sit in a cubicle, filling our paper work for the man kind of girl. I want to make a difference and know that the hard work I put in every single day is for a greater cause.

2) I want a different day, every day.

3) I want to interact with others on a very regular basis. Solitude is not my friend.

4) I want to experience new things in an environment where there is opportunity for growth.

5) I want to be inspired by the place I work and the people that work alongside me.

6) I MUST love what I do.

I woke up Tuesday morning and, low and behold, right before my very eyes was the job I was born to do.

artmus eventsart chihuli cam

Job #1: Event Coordinator for the Cincinnati Art Museum.

Reasons why this is perfect for me: (though, if you have been reading any of these blog posts, or, I don’t know, talked to me…ever, I’m not sure that there is really a need for explanation)

1) I love to plan events. A lot.

2) I love art.

3) I love to talk to people. A whole lot.

4) I love to solve problems. Really tough ones like the caterer is stuck in traffic and the event starts in 4 minutes. WHAT DO WE DO!?

5) I looove Cincinnati.

6) I looove non-profits.

I realize there is a lot more to this position than those 6 things, but when it comes down to it, fundamentally, everything I’ve ever wanted from a job lies in this very position. I was so excited after reading over the job description that I immediately set into action. I drafted a new cover letter, created a relevant resume, put together some writing samples and sent it on its way. I also contacted anyone I knew that might be able to help connect me with the powers that be at CAM. Disclaimer: If any of you have any interest in applying for this job, don’t. It’s mine.

I just got word that I have an interview tomorrow. If any of you know anyone and should feel so inclined to call in and tell them how incredibly amazing I am, I’d genuinely appreciate it! For those that have already helped me, I genuinely appreciate your support and guidance! Fingers crossed!

Then I came across another incredible opportunity.

Job #2: Development Manager for JDRF.


Development is a bit like sales. Except, by giving money to the organization, you don’t actually get any product in return. You get exposure. You get a tax deduction. You get the feeling that you’ve done something good. But other than maybe a table at an event or your name on a building (if you give a whole, whole lot), there isn’t anything tangible you get in return. Imagine trying to sell someone something and then say thank you for your money, I don’t have anything to give you. It’s not an easy task. But for some reason, it seems to be something that comes naturally to me.

I like the challenge of getting to know your donors, building that rapport, finding common interests and eventually, going in for the ask. Making the ask is a very delicate situation and should be handled differently with each individual. Determining how each situation should be handled is part of the reason I love it so much.

I reached out to a family friend for some sort of connection to the powers that be, but received confirmation today that they have already filled the position. Thank you for your help, as well.

Job #3: Pretty much everything I qualify for at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Medical Center.


This is another job board I frequent. I love kids and would find working for CCHMC to be an incredibly fulfilling work environment. I reached out to one of their HR recruiters whom I’ve been working with over the past year and applied on their less then easy to use job site. This list of options includes:

Communications Specialist – Patient Services

Marketing Associate

Project Manager

Business Development Manager.

Job #4: PR Manager at Newport Aquarium


How cool would that be?! I know it’s not a non-profit, but I would definitely be excited to go to work every day and see all the incredibly cool animals. I bet I’d get to play with the penguins…though, last time I did that it was not as desirable as I’d imagined it’d be. Is it appropriate for a 29 year old to spend her lunch break like this every day:


‘Cuz I will.

Job #5: Accessories/Purse counter at Nordstrom


Just for kicks. If one of these other career opportunities doesn’t work out, there’s always time for a part-time gig slangin’ handbags to housewives!  Commission + discount = Happiness.

I think it’s pretty clear which one of these I want the most.  While I spend most of my mornings looking for potential opportunities, Terri’s encouragement came at just the right time. I was reinvigorated and I basically stumbled upon what I’m hoping is the perfect job. While I’m not positive this will end with those two little words, I’m incredibly hopeful. Fingers crossed!!!