Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Power of the Tweet!

So after years on MySpace and Facebook, I have a new love (read: addiction): TWITTER.

I thought the idea was ridiculous at first. Who in the hell would want to read my random thoughts in 140 characters or less? And if they did want to, did I really WANT them to? But then I heard some case studies from other
MarCom peeps in Spokane and I thought it might be worth a second look. Organizations were using it successfully to build their brands. Maybe it would work for VisitSpokane.

I started with a personal account (
@Bethany_Kate) and used it rarely, but then I got a wild hair to search for other CVBs. There were tons of them! They were using Twitter for contests, to promote events and local establishments, to draw people to their destination's websites. So I embarked on a Twitter journey with @VisitSpokane.

As I built our Twitter brand, I also started using my personal account more. I started following a bunch of different celebrities, including
@DrDrew (Dr. Drew Pinskey of Loveline & VH1's Celebrity Rehab fame, who I happen to have a massive crush on) and @firstladyoflove (Dr. Drew's wife Susan Pinskey) who are both figure skating fans (their 16-year-old daughter is a skater) and avid Tweeters/bloggers.

Susan Pinskey tweeted a couple times about the fact that she was at Worlds in L.A. Just so happens that my boss and a co-worker were working the Spokane 2010 booth on thr concourse selling tickets and booking hotel rooms for the
2010 US Figure Skating Championships in Spokane. So using our @VisitSpokane account on Twitter, I invited Susan to visit the Spokane booth, which started a series of @replies (Twitter's version of publicly replying to people) between Susan and @VisitSpokane.

The result? Susan and Dr. Drew visited the Spokane booth on the last day of Worlds and spent some time talking with my boss and co-worker. Both Susan and Drew had been to Spokane before, for the 2007 US Figure Skating Championships and a speaking engagement at Gonzaga University respectively. Now we know they plan to come back in January 2010. And they want to be shown around town - I hope I get to be the one to give the tour!

Additionally, Susan started to follow @VisitSpokane. Since she @replied us and started to follow our account on Friday we've had about 30 new followers. It's now Sunday.

Ah yes, don't ever doubt the power of a single tweet. : )

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Family Ties that Bind

So, my family is crazy. Not in a bad way though (mostly). In a good, hilarious, keep-you-on-your-toes, thank-God-they're-around-to-keep-me-grounded kind of way.

We had a belated wake for my Grandpa Bill last weekend in Davenport, WA, on my aunt and uncle's farm. Grandpa grew up in Davenport and raised his family there, for the most part. He would have been 90 years old on March 15th of this year. He passed away May 23, 2005, at the ripe ol' age of 86. I wish he was still here. Have LOTS of questions for him... But I digress a bit (there will have to be a whole separate post about him later).

The man loved Black Russians, so I thought it would be fitting to bring the ingredients so we could properly toast him. At the liquor store I contemplated the size of the vodka and coffee liqueur bottles before settling on the medium size. In retrospect, should have gotten the large bottles (we polished off the medium ones).

We spent the day eating (everything from white chili to pizza to green olive dip to chocolate cake), drinking, looking at old family photos and playing Chinese Ping Pong - which I highly recommend if you have never played. We even called my new Uncle Pat (who also will get a blog post of his own) in Minnesota - my Aunt Joy, dad and Uncle Lenny got to talk to him for the very first time. Aunt Sherry has had a couple conversations with him already.

There was, of course, all kinds of silliness and harassment and revelry. And we all agreed that next time we'd have to do it on a Saturday and make it a slumber party. Whose house it will be at remains to be seen...

I almost always come away from family get-togethers on a high. Such gatherings are a great reminder of how much we all have in common and how much fun we have when we're together. Don't get me wrong - we have a lot of differences, and each of us in each generation have chosen quite different paths for our lives. But the fact remains - we are definitely family. We have similar senses of humor. We're all smart. We all have artistic streaks (some certainly have more talent than others), though we choose all different media to express those streaks. Most of us have a little OCD. We're fiercely loyal.

So out of that loyalty, I felt compelled to vocalize my unconditional love for my family. I have their backs and I know they have mine. It's nice to know that no matter what twists and turns my life takes, I will have them all there to support me in the end. Just as I will support each and every one of them, regardless of what path they choose and decisions they make.

To have a tight-knit (moderately crazy) family is definitely a gift from God.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Thoughts about Octomom

Wow. This woman pisses me off. 14 kids all under the age of 8, some with disabilities. Single parent. No job. My heart breaks for each and every one of those kids. There will never be enough of ANYTHING to go around - love, money, etc. Even with extended family around to help, I just don't see how those kids can grow up with any semblance of a normal life.

Beyond that I don't see how she (Nadya) will ever have a normal adult relationship. How could anyone enter in to that kind of crazy life? How could there even be time for any kind of romantic relationship with 14 kids to take care of? Plus I highly doubt that there's any way that she is at all prepared for the work that needs to go into a marriage.

And where in the hell did this fancy new house come from? I'm beginning to wonder if it didn't come from a producer who is hoping to set up a "Jon & Kate Plus 8" type of a show with her. Bet she'd jump on the chance.

She actually has a web site set up so you can make donations to her and the kids. Are you kidding me? Yes, those kids are obviously in need of financial assistance. But would you trust this woman to use your donation to benefit them in some way? I sure as hell wouldn't.

The other thing that really bothers me about this situation is the doctor that performed the in vitro. I don't understand how he could possibly think that implanting 6 embryos would be a good idea. Especially given the number of children that she had already. I understand that ultimately the number implanted was her decision, but did he even try to counsel her out of implanting so many? Doesn't sound like it.

Last thing before I shut up my pointless ramblings about this situation... does she really think that ANYONE believes that she isn't making a serious attempt to look like Angelina Jolie? Click here to see the link to side by side photos of the two women. Click here to see the before and after photos of her.

In conclusion, she is absolutely nuts.

Friday, March 13, 2009

The time has come...

Not sure why I feel compelled to start blogging personally. I mean I've had one for the Hutson family for a while and we've been blogging about all things Spokane at work, but suddenly I want my own. Considering I really don't have any extra time on my hands, this will certainly be a sporadic attempt at blogging at best, but here it begins nonetheless.

It's not like I plan to use this blog as a tell-all diary or anything like that (can you password-protect these things?), but I suppose it'll be nice to have a place where I can vent my random musings about life, love, motherhood, friendship, work, etc. In fact, I have a lot of stupid stuff to say about a lot of stupid stuff.

And I can use punctuation, especially hyphens, at will without having to worry about who's going to cross them out during the proofing process. I really am a fan for AP-style punctuating. It plays into my obsessive-compulsiveness, I suppose, which could and perhaps will be a blog post all of its own.

So... away we go!