The Art of Smelling Good


Dear Avery,

One of my favorite compliments I ever receive is “you smell so nice”. I feel naked without perfume. To me, it’s an essential part of your wardrobe. Without it, I’m only half dressed.

Around middle school was the time where I spent so much of my shopping trips at perfume and lotion shops. I should have bought stock in Bath and Body Works. I was never good (still not) at makeup or hair — but smelling nice was something easily attainable.

My taste in perfume over the years has gone from:

GAP >>  Abercrombie and Fitch >> Victoria Secret >> to now switching between Salvatore Ferragamo and Tommy Bahama.

My tips for always staying fresh:

  1. Immediately out of the shower, I spray my chest and neck — and then wrap the towel back up. I feel like the scent soaks into your skin. I could be crazy. Probably.
  2. In the morning, I spritz the insArt of Smelling Goodide of my wrists and rub them together. Spray my neck once and then the top of my hair.
  3. Lotion is always key. I’m a fan of scented lotions, my favorites being Tommy Bahama and an assortment of Victoria Secret.  Also, I hate dry skin.
  4. As stated above, I ALWAYS have at least two different bottles of perfume at all times. I will switch these scents on and off throughout the weeks. When you stay with the same scent for too long, you’ll stop noticing it.
  5. Deodorant — all day every day. Do not forget it, ever.
  6. Keep lotion and a mini bottle of perfume in your purse. And apply throughout the day. If you for the slightest second think you smell bad — apply. Do not run the risk!
  7. Don’t over do it. The best appeal is the sweet and light scent of a woman. Keep it light.

Here’s to smelling lovely and always staying classy.

With love,

Aunt Megs

Women in SEO : So many more now than 3 years ago!


Dear Avery,
I’ve been a “SEO” analyst for 3 years now. My first conference around Search Marketing was attending MozCon in Seattle 3 year ago. I was late on Day 1 due to a cancelled flight, and was trying to meet up with my boss and coworker (both males under 40). My boss texted me “Come to the lunch hall, we are both in flannel shirts.”Hipster SEO

I remember walking into a room of hundreds of people. Scratch that. Hundreds of MEN. And it just so happened, hundreds of men wearing either flannel or checkered shirt and Chuck Taylor shoes. It took me a good 10 minutes to find my boss!

{What in the world} Is this a joke? Why are there only 10 women in this room?

And why did they all look like this?!? >>>>>>>>>>>>

Full disclosure.. I’m wasn’t mad at it. :)

This was my first true experience walking into a room full of industry colleagues. And boy, was I outnumbered. It was a tad overwhelming, but then, I also realized how cool it was to be a young woman in a profession made up of mostly men. Bring something different to space — I thought to myself. Speak up and push the envelope.

Fast forward to my 3rd conference — 3 years later (which was today at SearchLove). The conference had already begun, and I only saw two young women (roughly my age, and also similar fashion sense) walk into the room. My first thought, “this must not be the right place!” Ha!

                                And to my surprise, I walked into the room that was about 50/50 women and men!

I think it’s so rad to experience this relatively young profession evolve in such a short time period. Young blood. New perspective. Incredibly smart and passionate people who genuinely support each other. They’ve shared their successes, their failures, their learnings, and given up their secrets on how they help people find useful content on the internet.

Aves, I hope that whatever you end up doing for your profession — that you surround yourself with smart and passionate people. Learn from them. Teach them what you know. Glean skills from them. Network with people outside you own company. And if you are the only girl in the room — OWN IT. And show them what you are made of!

If you wanted to know how I got into marketing, check out my post from 2012: “Career Woman: Part 2“. I will always love this story of how it came to be! :)

With love,

Aunt Megs

Welcome to the World, Buster!


Dear Buster,

As I sit down to welcome you to this world, suddenly, Simon and Garfunkel’s “The only living boy in New York” came on my playlist. And wouldn’t you know it…YOU were born today – a little boy – in New York City. As you grow up to get to know me, you’ll learn that I love symbolic coincidences. Gives life little pleasures to always look out for.

Back to you, I’m so happy you have joined our family. Your Dad, my oldest brother, has been waiting for you since I could remember. A little boy to bring to baseball games and introduce him to Nirvana.

You’ll be immersed in a fast paced culture, but your Mom will teach the ways of the city in no time. She is intelligent, chic, and can hold her own. She loves your Dad more than any other woman I’ve seen love another person, so her love for you is going to be out of this world.

While your life in NYC will be a fun adventure, your other extended family will be on the west coast waiting for every chance we get to be with you. You’ve got Mimi and Papa Today is your day(your grandparents who are socialites – much like your parents – who will teach you about old movies, classic music, and all things sports). Your Aunt Court and I will try and spoil you every way we know how, even if we are far away. We’ll also try and give you as much advice as possible – and tell you stories about how your Dad used to torture us as kids. Your Uncle Andrew will show you at the cool kids are up to, and tell you when to move from Facebook to Snapchat. Your cousin Avery will teach you the lay of the land – and how to wrap this family up around your finger – because she’s got that one on lock down.

I’m excited to see the places you go, the things you learn, the adventures you experience, and love that you’ll feel.

You are one lucky boy, Buster, or whatever your name will soon be.

But for now, you are Buster to me, and probably always will be.

Until we meet.

With Love,

Aunt Megs

Infertility: the Not-So-Funny, the Bad, and the Ugly


Dear Avery,

Infertility is something you never think you will go through. My Mom had 4 kids. I’m surrounded by large number of children on both sides of our families, surely that means it will be easy for me? Right? Yeah, not so much.infertility

Infertility is like watching a bus full of your best friends go away to summer camp to experience this incredible adventure, while you are left in the dust because you didn’t get your parents to sign your permission slip in time. Stupid timing! You watch them wave to you, tell you they’ll miss you, and good luck with the lonely summer you’ll have. Basically, it’s life’s biggest pity party.

This blog is 3 years in the making. It’s 3 years deep in experience. It’s 3 years full of ups and downs.

When we decided to that we were ready to start a family, I was 25 and we’d been married for 2 years. OK, 2 years of fun, sleep, vacations, wine, and time spent together — that’s good enough, right? OK — it’s time for babies!

Ready… set… not going.

This is a really hard road. Much harder than I ever expected. Rounds of testing, pill taking, watching your fertile calendar like a fiend, and this really odd yearning for something more to add to your life. I wanted to hear that there was something wrong with me so I could fix it. And nothing. “Everything looks great. In fact, especially since you are young, it should happen anytime now.” Hearing this after every positive test, was great but insanely frustrating. If everything is right, why is nothing working? It’s like when I got tested recently for allergies because I’ve had a tough year of awful sinus infections back to back to back to back, and then WANTING to see that I had developed an allergy because I wanted to be proactive and avoid whatever I needed to avoid to not get these anymore! And surprise “You are literally not allergic to anything. Just up your intake of Clartin.” Note: I’m not asking for an allergy here, but I’m asking for explanations. That’s all I really want.

As an open book personality, this was my greatest secret for a long time. Something was clearly wrong with me, why would I want to tell anyone about it? Then over time and after the 15 millionth question about when I was going to have kids, I started telling my family and close friends. And over time, it got easier and harder. Talking about it goes both ways. It makes it easier to manage your thoughts and feel supported (thankfully, I am surrounded by WONDERFUL people), but then it gets harder because you don’t want to people to feel sorry for you and show up to parties with an “I” on your chest. Ugh. It’s the strangest thing.

So, in some psychological way, writing about it and sharing is very refreshing. And I’m hoping that it reaches other women who are in the struggle with me. Like group therapy, there is a strength in knowing that you aren’t alone. And that I hope you get the result you are yearning for.

In light of the 3 years, I’ve got 3 things to highlight for the infertile army of tough women out there:

  • The Not-So-Funny: You go through times where you will look at your calendar and think… “I’m going to Vegas in a month… good thing I’m not pregnant! I enjoy the occasional cocktail, and it’s one less thing to worry about.” While it’s not funny to think that way, it kind of is. You plan to not be pregnant for upcoming events. Thankfully, these events take your mind off of it…so they are always welcomed.
  • The Bad: Infertility sucks. Even the word sucks. You feel defeated. You feel defected. You feel powerless.
  •  The Ugly: You will never ugly cry harder. You will be angry, sad, envious, and heartbroken in times where you should be happy. You’ll feel all those things when other people tell you they are pregnant. That school bus image comes to mind first, she’s on the bus and you aren’t. That’s the ugly part of infertility. But, 10 seconds later, you’ll join in her happiness, as you should. It’s about them, not you.

(And to my personal friends — important note — please do not feel bad telling me you are pregnant — that will only make me feel worse! I need you to know, deep down, I’m extremely happy for another beautiful life to join our group of friends. That feeling will never go away, because I already LOVE that baby of yours. And hell, let’s be real, you are all on your second kid by now anyway!)

There you have it. Laid out in the vulnerable open like that.

Don’t think for a second that I’m sitting at home in a corner crying all day. Absolutely not. I focus on kicking ass at work. Taking half day Fridays to get a jump on a fun weekend away from home. Working out at a fancy gym because I can spend my money on ME. Eat out at restaurants multiple times a week with my husband as we talk about life, work, and swap funny stories. Go to themed parties with my friends. Attend weddings like its a part time job. And enjoy all the sleep I’m currently getting. Life is still so sweet. It can be hard, but it’s oh so sweet.

{Here’s to a life we can enjoy in the moment we have it, and worry less about what we don’t have.}

With love,

Aunt Megs

The Soundtrack of My Life


Dear Avery,music

I love movies. I especially love movies with incredible soundtracks. I often feel like music can play a character of its own if it’s good enough. I’ve loved song lyrics for as long as I could remember — so when you pair that with a scene without words — and somehow they go together — it’s magical to me.

My favorite soundtrack of all-time is from the movie “Garden State”. It became a favorite movie of mine because of how perfect the music fit with the film.

Sometimes when I’m in the moment, I often wonder what song would be playing if it my life were a movie. This sparked an idea of this post — with the best part being — in 10 years this list might change. More songs will affect me differently, and new songs will be created. Oh, the fun that is to come!

{What would the soundtrack of my life be?}

If I were walking down the beach at sunset, the songs that would play:

  • “Snails” – The Format
  • “New Slang” – The Shins
  • “American Honey” – Lady Antebellum
  • “Three little birds” – Bob Marley
  • “Man on Fire” – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

If the boy I loved was thinking about me:

  • “Magic” – Coldplay
  • “She’s Got a Way” – Billy Joel
  • “Have I Told You Lately” – Van Morrison
  • “A Sky Full of Stars” – Coldplay
  • “Always Be” – Jimmy Eat World
  • “Angel Eyes” – Love and Theft

If I were thinking about the boy I loved:

  • “Bright” – Echosmith
  • “I Will Follow You Into The Dark” – Death Cab for Cutie
  • “Falling Slowly” – Glen Hansard
  • “Make You Feel My Love” – Adele
  • “Sparks Fly” – Taylor Swift

If I were kissed in the rain (the passionate – pouring down rain – under a streetlamp kiss!):

  • “Stolen” – Dashboard Confessional
  • “Till Kingdom Come” – Coldplay
  • “Into the mystic” – Van Morrison
  • “These are the Times” – Van Morrison — I’d slow dance in the rain to this one. :)
  • “Holocene” – Bon Iver

If I were driving down the pacific coast highway with the top down:

  • “Just a ride” – Jem
  • “Hero” – Family of the year
  • “Forever Young” – Bob Dylan
  • “Such great heights” – Postal Service
  • “Free” – Zac Brown Band

If I were going through a rocky stage of a relationship:

  • “Yet” – Switchfoot
  • “Let her go” – Passenger
  • “We are broken” – Paramore
  • “The Best Deceptions”‘ – Dashboard Confessional
  • “Ships in the Night” – Matt Kearney
  • “Mess is Mine” – Vance Joy

If I were on a party bus with my girlfriends:

  • “We R Who We R” – Kesha
  • “Single Ladies” – Beyonce
  • “Royals” – Lorde
  • “Wanna be” – Spice Girls — because this one is nostalgic!
  • “Hypnotize” – Notorious B.I.G

If we took a flashback to my adolescence:

  • “What I got” – Sublime
  • “Sweet Child O Mine” – Guns N Roses
  • “Hey Jude” – The Beatles
  • “Sweet Home Alabama” – Lynyrd Skynyrd


For more, have a look at my pinterest board of some of my song favorite lyrics. I spent lots of nights wandering through these words!

It would be my great pleasure for you to find these songs one day, and listen to them, like I hear them. And I’d love to hear the soundtrack of your life –

because all you need is that perfect song on that perfect drive to feel infinite.

With love,

Aunt Megs



Dear Avery,

I came across this fantastic idea for a blog series called “If I were 22”. The series was inspired by the well-respected and thought provoking President of The Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington.reflection

I love this idea of going back to an age that is quite possibly one of the scariest yet exciting times of your life. At 22, you are fresh out of college, the world is your oyster, and you have no idea what is to come. Will you succeed in your career? Will you fail? Will find a partner to share your life with right away? Will stay where you are, or will you move? You’ll have so many questions and so little answers. Take a minute to think back and reflect on what you’ve learned, who you’ve turned out to be thus far, and the dreaming of what’s to come… is something I find myself doing often.

Personally, I had just graduated, was planning a wedding, and had no job. I’ve ALWAYS had a job. For 4 months, I searched and searched for a job to fulfill my psychology major dream… but learned that it was not that easy. Most jobs of that nature required so much more schooling and experience. What I’m trying to say, my career track didn’t go to plan… in fact, turned out better than I ever imagined.

But life at that time is more than your career, its personal too.

Here’s what’s to come at 22:

  • If you end up living in your college town, realize that not everyone will do that. Some friends will move, and some will stay. You will ultimately need to restart your networking efforts.
  • The real world gave you an out for being a naïve college student, but now you are an adult. You have bills to pay for yourself, now. Woohoo!
  • You’ll learn a lot about yourself: your limits, your expectations, your desires, etc
  • Drama and acne never really go away. You think these two things will go away after your schooling years. But no, they come back in all forms.
  • You’ll find that some people are completely happy with doing mundane work and tasks with no real desire to do more. You’ll find people who put in 110% every day to move up as quickly as they can. You’ll also find people who are somewhere in-between. You’ll learn to deal with everyone in their own ways.
  • Calling your mom will be more important now than ever. Keep doing that. It’s good for both of you.
  • Finding a life partner will be hard for some, and easy for others. Try your hardest to resist the urge to compare what others have and you don’t.
  • Loud bar scenes become less and less fun. Finding a quiet wine bar to sit and enjoy your company becomes well worth it. Wine bars? Say what?? Yeah, I wouldn’t have believed that at 22 either. ;)
  • If you are ever given the opportunity to travel, you’ll regret it if don’t take advantage. You aren’t too tied down to anything yet… so go.

My twenties (yes, I’m still in them) have been the best years of my life, and at 22, you are only just beginning the adventure. So enjoy!

With love,

Aunt Megs

Punny Valentine’s Day Puns


Dear Avery,

I’ve always loved Valentine’s day cards. Even as a kid, I loved the cheesy ones with a funny pun.  I automatically think of The Simpsons when Lisa Simpson gives Ralph a card that has a train on it and it read “I Choo Choo Choose you”.  Adorable.

I thought I’d share some adorable cards I found on this wondrous internet of ours:

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Valentine's day pun

Hope you enjoyed these punny cards from your punny Aunt Megs.

And I hope that you give and receive many of these throughout your life.

With Love,

Aunt Megs

I Promise You These 5 Things


Dear Avery,

Life will have more than 5 promises… But I came up with 5 while on a plane coming to see you. I wrote this entire thing on my phone for an hour flight. Technology always blows me away. So here are my free flowing words of wisdom.

1. You will have bad ordinary days.
You will experience in many occasions a day like this: woke up late, no time to fix terrible hair, the outfit you chose last minute has a stain, it’s foggy out so naturally people forget how to drive, a stalled car in the middle lane of a busy street makes traffic hell, when you do get to work 30 minutes later, every little thing becomes an issue. Naturally you become brattbad and good daysy all day because of the funk you started with.

Now this is MY bad ordinary day. Others may read this and roll their eyes because their bad days are worse. But to each is own. These types of days happen. Guaranteed.

^^ Quick remedy? See #3.
^^^another quick remedy? Close your eyes and take deep breathes. Works like a charm.

2. You will have good ordinary days.
Good days are when you wake up naturally and feel good. Like Sleeping Beauty wakes up everyday to singing birds and perfect hair. Everything will go right. You’ll find a $20 in your pocket, and notice your zit disappeared. And your hair has volume today?! Say what? You are on top of the world. At this point, you are probably listening to Beyoncé to give yourself that extra jolt of girl power.

^^See #4 to fully understand that context.

Rock these days. As soon as you know it’s good… Keep it going. Don’t let one thing piss you off that day. Ain’t no one got time for that. Your mantra: WHO RUNS THE WORLD, GIRLS! – Beyoncé.

3. Praying always works.
Whether you believe in God or not… The simple act of praying to something greater than yourself will make you feel smaller. Which is a good thing because the world does not revolve us and we need to feel smaller than we typically act. And at times, when you pray about a hardship in your life, the feeling of something bigger (I believe this to be God) magically makes your hardship feel smaller. Even for a second. And sometimes, you only need that second to realize: this too shall pass. And it will pass.
Praying about happy things and blessings will do the opposite. It will make those happy things seem bigger and will bring excitement to your heart. Bottom line: praying helps all situations and will always calm your mind.

4. Music will speak to those who listen.
For me, I use music as a way to validate my feelings of the moment… Kind of like a soundtrack of my life. Silly I know. But on a rainy day, listening to coffeehouse singers adds that extra connection to the world. And then an hour later, blaring Taylor Swift because I need a little pep talk to get me moving. I use all of it. I need to start working on my life’s soundtrack — perhaps in another post!

5. You will feel pretty, ugly, fat, and skinny.
Everyday is different, and every interaction with other people will help shape these ideas of yourself. Even when people compliment me, I only really half believe them, but it still matters to your self image. Your subconscious still hears the “your eyes look so pretty today” and sure enough your eyes will feel pretty. And same goes for negative comments.

^^Quick remedy for this? Compliment other people. Find something you like about how they look that day. It will help them, and ultimately make you feel prettier too. Funny how the mind works.

{Oh yeah, it’s all in your head. That is the secret to life.}

So go blare that Beyoncé song, kick those bad days in the face, pray like someone is listening, compliment the world and feel like a million bucks. All day. Everyday.

With love,
Aunt Megs

MLK Day – He marched, so others could fly.


Dear Avery,

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was one of my favorite people in history to read and learn about. Even as a 10 year old kid, his “I have a dream speech” gave me chills. I read it over and over, and loved listening to it. I wrote reports on him and found myself empathizing with a man that had died 20 years before I was even born. He was that influential. That crucial. That powerful. He was just what the world needed.

It seems as though we have a newcomer to our generation that is also making influential waves. A child of great joy and wonder. A child who uses YouTube as a way to spread goodness and love — much like Dr. King did in his day (minus the internet!). He goes by the name of “Kid President“, and a President (of anything he wants, really) he WILL be.

{I love him. I love him. I love him.}

Take a listen to what he says about Dr. King:

You know I love quotes, so here are some amazing quotes from Dr. King:




Moral of this great story, Aves?

You can be anything you want. You can do anything you want. If you have a dream, see it through. Be the change. Be the good in the world. And above all else, “Decide to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Show love. Show compassion. Show others that you care. Always.

With love,

Aunt Megs

Writing A Good Story For 2015


Dear Avery,

Today is the first blank page of a 365 page book…and I intend to write a meaningful one. New Year, New Book

It’s a new day, and a new year. It’s funny because the first day of a new year usually feels like any other day… except for this feeling of being renewed. I am a firm believer in looking back at the past, whether good memories or bad, so that we can march forward with perspective.

Avery, if you grow up to be anything like me (which I think we will share some similar traits), you will find yourself sitting a red light in 2014 and hear a song from your high school days, that will take you back to a winding car ride to Half Moon Bay with your then boyfriend, when you were a young sophomore. You’ll remember thinking then “oh, he is so adorable.” And then you flash back to 2014, you will either think…oh that sweet, or what was I thinking?! :)

A myriad of moments make up this interesting life we live. So, I hope that when you are old enough to read through all of these letters, that you will use each New Year Day as a way to sit back and reflect on the year’s past. You may smile, you may cry, you may laugh, you might even be angry…. but the important thing is to feel those emotions, remember, and move on to the next.

2014 was full of adventures as well as some heart ache. Luckily for me, there were many highs and only a few lows.

The Highs included celebrating a 5 year marriage anniversary, attending a Giants World Series, getting a promotion, spending time with the whole family (including Uncle Ryan and Aunt Ellen) in SF, growing in my true friendships, and being happy and confident in my own skin.

The Lows were there for a reason — teaching me patience and understanding that I can’t make my life move in every single direction I would like it to be in. This is where I would turn to God and pray “it’s all in Your time, help me trust in Your plans for me and not in the plans I have for myself.” << One of the hardest lessons to learn.

So there is my reflection on 2014.

In 2015 I hope to:

  • Smile more
  • Experience a new role
  • Volunteer
  • Share only funny or insightful or happy or uplifting social media posts. Ain’t no one got time for sadness! ;)
  • Become more involved with church activities
  • Go to Europe and experience a new country
  • Read more
  • Create an animated short that’s been in my imagination for a over year now. << FUN one!!

{What will your story look like?}Family in 2015

Currently in 2015… it looks like this! Off to a goofy start with your Mom and Dad. Ha! >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Here is to a brand new year with brand new start!

With love,

Aunt Megs