introsPECtives


Category Archive

The following is a list of all entries from the Uncategorized category.

Beat the Heat

We are in the middle of a heat wave, here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I know most people believe we are the rainiest place on earth but in reality we have beautiful weather here. Yes, there is rain, lots of it at times and there can be a perpetual overcast that gives off a kind of dreary feeling but for those who call this region home, we know to get out and make full use of the beautiful days when we have them.
The thing is, not everyone is prepared for these hot days and nights. You can generally tell because there will be a run on fans and air conditioners. However, there are other ways to beat the heat in the hotness of summer. Here are a few tricks we’ve unearthed to help keep you cool:
• Hang a damp sheet in front of an open window. The incoming breezes will be cooled by the evaporating water. (Unfortunately – this may have to be repeated often depending on how fast the sheet dries in the sun)
• Purchase curtains that have sun blocking white backs. Believe me – they work!
• Place a bowl of ice in front of a sweeping fan. As the ice melts the fan will blow the cooler air into the room.
• Keep windows and doors shut, even though it is tempting to create a breeze, its deceiving, the open windows and doors only let the hot air in to make the inside warmer.
• Keep a spray bottle of water in the refrigerator and mist yourself when you need to cool down.
• Turn electronics off during the heat. On they are an extra source of heat you don’t need.
• Wear thin, light weight, light colored, loose clothing
• If you like it spicy – now is the time to eat up! Hot spices used in ethnic foods make you sweat which in turns cools the body down.
• Drink lots of WATER, and fruit smoothies. Avoid drinks like alcohol and caffeine because they actually dehydrate you and that is a big no-no in the heat.
• Keep your meals light too – avoid those fatty, heavy rich foods because it is harder for your body to digest in the heat.
• Avoid using your stove- no one needs the extra heat generated from a cooking stove or stove top. It’s all about grilling this time of year.
• Take advantage of air conditioned businesses. Go see a movie in the evening or enjoy a meal at a restaurant.
• Find a swimming hole or at the very least take advantage of the local community swimming pools.
• Place or tie an icepack behind your head.
• Run cold water over your wrists for 10 seconds on each hand. This will reduce your temperature for roughly an hour.
• Soak your feet in a bucket of cold water.
• Stock your freezer with flavored ice treats.
Regardless of what you options you take to stay cool we hope you find a way to enjoy the sunshine without being miserable due to the heat.


New Year, New Resolutions

As we enter the new year, we all begin our resolutions. Gyms fill up, the health food stores are selling like crazy, people are trying to drink less alcohol and more water. Most resolutions in the States revolve around losing weight (at least from our personal experiences) but I’m sure plenty of people want to step out of their shell, explore more, try new things and maybe even travel to new places! Resolutions are great because they give you a goal, but so often they fall to the wayside as January ends. Since we noticed this, we thought we would make a handy list to help people keep their resolutions all the way through to 2017.
• Keep it realistic. Striving for unrealistic goals will do nothing but upset you.
• Have a buddy help you. Gym buddy, travel buddy, eat new food buddy, everything is better with a friend!
• Take time to focus on what you really want and need. Don’t confuse your wants and needs for your family’s or friend group’s or society’s
• Have fun with it! Make 2016 (and 2017, 2018, etc) YOUR year. Go to Italy on that second honeymoon, go skydiving, eat that sea urchin. There is no time to live besides the present so get out there!

This year, develop your tastes, broaden your horizons, and definitely visualize and achieve your goals. This is the year to spend more time with your friends and family, be grateful for what you have, and work harder for what you want. With this in mind, we here at PremierEC hope everyone has a fantastic 2016 and you all accomplish everything you desire.


Spook-taclur Tips for a fun and safe Halloween!

Spook-tacular Halloween Fun!

Okay, we know that you either love Halloween or you hate it. It seems to be one of those holidays that don’t have a middle ground. In case you were wondering, we are on the side of “LOVE” it. What brings out your internal kid better than an opportunity to play dress up, have a party, drink some cocktails, and laugh (or be scared) with your friends and family?

We think it is important to keep safety in mind as you go about your Halloween fun. If you are looking for some good old fashioned Halloween inspiration, let us give you some ghoulish things to think about such as:
Dress for Success – Show some creativity and find a costume that lets your inner child come out to play. We know you used to want to grow up to be something….It’s time to live the dream, even if it is only for one night.

Finger Foods – Nibble your way through the night with some great finger foods. Quick snacks are better than a heavy meal. They also leave guests free to visit more.

Sounds of the season – Okay, what is a Halloween party without some creepy, and fun background music? The internet is a vast resource for all kinds of music, so look for a pre-made playlist. Just make sure to include some all-time favorites like Michael Jackson’s- Thriller, Bobby Prickett’s- Monster Mash, DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince- Nightmare on my Street, and last but not least, Sheb Wooley’s- Purple People Eater!

Photography & Social Media – One of the best parts of Halloween fun is capturing it all in pictures, but be careful before posting those pictures on social media sites. Not everyone wants their escapades shared with the world.

Atmosphere is everything – You can create a whimsical Halloween or a downright creepy and scary environment all depending on what you choose for décor and lighting. Decide what you want your guests to experience and then fill the space with items to give them that experience. Party stores generally have an abundance of perfect items for the scary and creepy. You may want to check out Halloween specific stores, and check for deals online. Just remember, you want your guests to enjoy themselves, and not everyone enjoys scary.

Safety – For those of you who are taking children trick-or-treating, safety is very important. Here are some good safety tips to keep in mind. Stick to well-lit streets, provide glow sticks or flashlights for your kids to carry around with them, always check their candy before allowing them to eat it and throw away anything that seems questionable. It’s better to safe than sorry. If you are staying in, make your home a comfortable place for parents to bring their children to your door. Make sure the path to your door is un-obstructed and that the outside light is bright and turned on.

Last but not least – have a great time!


Boom, Flare & Sparkle

It’s the 4th of July in a couple days and almost everyone you talk to is discussing their plans for the long weekend and the celebration of our nation’s independence. Most people LOVE fireworks. There is something about seeing them light up the sky in glorious color and sparkling array that speaks to the heart of every American.

At PEC we know that what makes an event are those little, sometimes, unexpected details that bring joy to the attendee. So let’s take an example from our 4th of July celebrations and remember that what makes the 4th special can be recreated year-round.

What items can we take from the 4th and use in other events?

  • Good Eats – from BBQ to fine dining food is usually the heart of every event.
  • Plentiful Beverages – themed cocktails to over the top non-alcoholic choices are important.
  • Color branding – any color can brand an event if the color is important to you.
  • Themed décor – the more themed details you provide the easier it is to get into the theme.
  • Boom: Musical Soundtracks (don’t the best fireworks shows play to music?)
  • Attendees (family, friends, co-workers – you get the idea)
  • Flare: Lighting, lighting, lighting!
  • Sparkle: Who doesn’t love a little bit of glitz and glam? Even when you are doing rustic, a touch a sparkle goes a long way.
  • Fireworks – yes, fireworks. You can get special permits to light off fireworks year-round and they definitely make a statement your guests won’t forget.

PEC hopes everyone has a safe and wonderful holiday and we look forward to celebrating every important event with you year-round!


Make plans for the Summer!

Plan a Playful Summer!

Summer is simply fantastic in the Northwest. The skies are blue, the sun is warm, and the landscape is covered in emerald greens and colorful arrays of flowers. The mountain tops still have snow glistening in the sunlight. The water calls to everyone to come and play. It’s as I said, “a glorious place to live when its summer season.” Everywhere you look you can see people outside taking advantage of the weather, and soaking up as much vitamin D as they can.  

I’ve discovered that I have an un-written list of things I always want to do in the summer. For the first time I wrote it down and thought I would share it in the hopes to get some ideas generating in your mind for fun things to do during the summer too. Such as:

  • Walks along Birch Bay, or Deception Pass
  • At least one evening around a campfire 
  • Relaxing in a hot tub 
  • A BBQ with family and friends 
  • Set out fresh cut flowers in my house every week 
  • To go swimming somewhere besides a pool 
  • An afternoon boat ride
  • Exploring a state park I haven’t been to  
  • A winery tour in Eastern Washington
  • A food tour through Seattle 
  • A day at Pike’s Place Market 
  • A bicycle ride in the sunshine 
  • Attend a Fair 
  • Attend an outdoor concert 
  • Attend a street fair  
  • Eat some fresh roasted corn on the cob 
  • Read a book in the park 

I am sure you can come up with a list of things way more exciting than me….We’d love to hear your thoughts. Maybe it’s something we will want to add to our to-do list too!


Are you an Artist?

 

 

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.”  –  Scott Adams 

 

One of the things that I love about the PEC team is that we get our inspiration from everywhere and we are willing to try new things. We create new things and yes, make a few mistakes along the way. I love the quote above because it’s a reminder that everyone is creative in their own way. The person who rightly discerns what is worth doing again or simply tweaking it to make it better is the person that becomes the “Master Artist.”  

It amazes me how we manifest creativity. For some, they are creative with crafts. For others they are creative with words, dance moves, and some with cooking. The list could go on forever. Every single person has something they excel at, and something that makes other people realize how creative they are.  

Artistry then, is not something that requires a degree or hours of study. Although those things do have their rightful place. Artistry is about recognizing our inherent creativity, and knowing how to accept what we do is good and that we can always get better at becoming a true “Artistic Master.”  

At PEC, we strive to embrace our creativity, to learn from our mistakes, and to acknowledge; even if with just a simple high-five, when we did something worthy of being called artistic mastery. We encourage everyone to do the same. We love it when we get the opportunity to recognize someone else’s creativity that has inspired others to see a master artist in their actions. Try finding ways to recognize this in others,  and watch your own creativity get ignited.


I don’t want to grow up!

I don’t want to grow up (adults at play)

We spend so much of our youth trying to grow up and become adults. Then we become adults and get bogged down in our responsibilities. What happened to playing? Having fun? Enjoying life?

Most people wait for vacations to really let go and have fun. A few actually incorporate an element of fun into their work week but it’s the people that have learned to play and have fun as a regular course of their day that are reaping the true benefits of play.

Play is a state of mind, it can also be a physical activity or something you watch and experience joy from seeing. Play stimulates our creativity and can transform our negative emotions to positive ones. Play allows us to think outside the box. If you are struggling with a problem, find a way to play to get rid of those mental blocks. 

Many of us have stressful jobs, or stressful lives, and giving yourself permission to play is a huge stress reliever. We think we don’t have time to play but just taking a fifteen or thirty minute break and engaging in some form of playful activity recharges you on both a physical and mental level. 

There was a popular television commercial for Toys-R-Us that goes, “I don’t want to grow up I’d rather be a Toys-R-Us kid.” I think we should all take that to heart. We should defy growing up and incorporate play into each and every day. What have you got to lose and look at all the amazing things you have to gain from it. 


It’s all about color…

Color is Your Friend 

 

Okay, so we all have met “those” people, you know the ones I am talking about, the beige people. Now, don’t get me wrong Beige has its place in the world but there are so many other color options out there how can anyone look at beige and think, “That’s THE color for me”? Alright, so some of you may think you are color-challenged but, there are sites on the World Wide Web that can help anyone from a novice to an expert find just the right color combination for what they need from decorating to painting.  

As event planners color is very much a part of our world. We pay attention to subtle shadings, monochromatic themes, vivid take my breath away colors and everything in-between. The right combination of color can make an event pop and provide that WOW experience for guests. Selecting the right color can enhance things or minimize other things depending on what the needs are of the moment.  

Color can range from lighting to linens to gifts, signage and branding and yes even food and beverage. Where and how you include color can be important and a good event planner can help you use color to your advantage. They can also help you know when you might have gone a little too overboard with fuchsia. Sometimes the color you actually need is white or beige or black to give the eye a break from the explosion of color around you and we know it has its place and when to use it. Do you?  

Be adventurous, look at your options, play with color wheels or check out sites like http://www.design-seeds.com/ where they do all the work for you by combining colors into palettes. There is no way you can make a mistake with one of their color palettes! Don’t be afraid to get outside your comfort zone and explore and play with color. We guarantee you will be glad you did. 


Holiday Festivities….

Are you in charge of one or more of the holiday gatherings this year? Have no fear, with a combination of Pinterest and, creative planning, you might just survive. It’s easy to get caught up in the details, swallowed up by the stress and lose focus about what’s it’s all about! I am constantly reminded that it’s not about being perfect. Those cupcakes you spent an hour meticulously frosting may get dropped or barely noticed. Let go of the little things and focus on what’s important.

When thinking about the holidays it is important to remember what they are really about. They are about taking time to be thankful for what and who you have in your life. The trick is to keep it simple. If you are planning a dinner, prepare the main dish and ask your guests if they wouldn’t mind bringing a side such as a beverage, dessert, or appetizer.

Try going through Pinterest, or other cooking websites to find a new and exciting recipe to try, that will not only be easy to make but will WOW your guests. It may seem intimidating but you would really be surprised at how many step by step recipes are available.

For entertainment, try setting up an interactive game system, i.e. the Wii or Xbox Kinnect. It is fun to get the whole party engaged in some form of competitive game. If competition is not your thing, then old fashion sit down board games can be very entertaining as well. Maybe your guests are more into the music as a form of entertainment, try setting up a Karaoke machine (online Karaoke is available as well!), or make a playlist for everyone to enjoy.

No matter what you decide to do, just remember that despite what Martha may have you believing your guests are coming to be with you, not gaze upon your spectacular hand crafted fresh pine garlands, or eat your homemade meticulously frosted organic cupcakes.  If they are, I recommend a destination holiday. Happy Holidays!

 

 

                                             


BE PREPARED!

When you think of the month of October, do you think of fall, pumpkins, and Halloween? I know one thing you’re probably not thinking about and that is preparedness. Being prepared can be applied to a wide range of scenarios from the impending zombie apocalypse to your large holiday gala, and everything in between.

I (Jamie) have never been accused of being under prepared. In fact it’s quite the opposite. I’m usually receiving eye rolls and shoulder shrugs in regards to my over preparedness. I have my details ready for that Monday morning meeting, my gym bag packed in advance, mace in my purse, an escape route for wherever I may be, a two week survival kit in my car, and my zombie hunting permit for when things get crazy!  While you may not be an OCD planner like myself there are definite tips that could come in handy. My hope is that you will never need the tips below but who knows, never hurts to be prepared!

Zombie Apocalypse & Natural Disasters: Better Safe than Sorry
So what do you need for the rise of the undead, or unforeseen natural disasters?

PREPARE YOUR HOME
First of all, you should have an emergency kit in your house. This includes things like, food, and other supplies to get you through the first couple of days before you can locate a zombie-free refugee camp (or in the event of a natural disaster, it will buy you some time until you are able to make your way to an evacuation shelter or utility lines are restored). Should include in your kit, for a full list visit the CDC Emergency page.

  • Water (1 gallon per person per day)
  • Food (stock up on non-perishable items that you eat regularly)
  • Medications (this includes prescription and non-prescription meds)
  • Tools and Supplies (utility knife, duct tape, battery powered radio, etc.)
  • Sanitation and Hygiene (household bleach, soap, towels, etc.)
  • Clothing and Bedding (a change of clothes for each family member and blankets)
  • Important documents (copies of your driver’s license, passport, and birth certificate to name a few)
  • First Aid      supplies (although you’re a goner if a zombie bites you, you can use these supplies to treat basic cuts and lacerations that you might get during a tornado or hurricane)

KEEP A KIT IN YOUR CAR
With the fast paced lives we all live the chances of being at home when a disaster hits is slim. You can purchase pre done kits but I found it much more affordable to piece together my own. Additionally the kit turned out to be a lot more thorough for about the same cost as the pre made kits.
                       

HAVE A PLAN
While most emergencies will have to be assessed at the time of it never hurts to be armed with the following:

  • Where would you go in your home town in the event of a catastrophic flood
  • Does your town have any disaster shelters near you
  • Designate an out of state emergency contact that others can check in with. Often times local phone lines will be down but you will still be able to call out to other states
  • Note the Red Cross Safe & Well site. You can list yourself as safe and check for loved ones
  • Know your zombies!
  • Emergency steps in the event of an earthquake
  • Emergency steps in the event of a flood
  • Emergency steps for other natural disasters  

RESOURCES
CDC: Zombie Apocalypse 101
Red Cross
Great resource for food, water, and supplies: Quake Kare
Hit up the dollar store for an abundance of the items you need:  Dollar Plus