Adulting Makes Me Wine

It’s often said in professional settings that it’s not often what you know, but rather who you know, which makes the difference, and that has certainly proven true for us. As we’ve navigated our professional and civic roles, it has become apparent that being intentional to cultivate a diverse and supportive network matters; these are the people who will not just provide wisdom, but also career advice and potential opportunities. Furthermore, we have learned the importance of thinking long-term; you may not be able to collaborate with everyone you meet right away, so it is imperative to sustain connections and ensure that every relationship you participate in is mutually beneficial.

Just recently, we were able to partner with the Urban League of Philadelphia’s young professional affinity group, NExT Philadelphia, for an event entitled The Art of Networking. The program featured award-winning journalist, Ernest Owens.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Ernest shared his 10 Commandments for Networking in order to advance both personally and professionally. Some of the major takeaways from his presentation are:

Be intentional with your brand and how you engage with others.

Be clear on your ask (if you have one).

Be patient.

Be authentic. Are you truly there to network, or to find love instead?

This Valentine’s Day (with a hint of sarcasm), we thought we’d share our most memorable networking experiences. If you’ve ever experienced anything similar, or have your own interesting networking stories, we want to hear about it!

  • When someone your friend was dating, tells your friend they are out of town on business, but you meet them at a networking event that same night, proving that they were lying…
    • You never know who other people know, so always be honest.
  • When your mentor (and former colleague) strategically blurs professional lines and suggests that you two would make excellent travel companions, and should take a vacation together, since everyone they know is married.
    • Choose your mentors/professional relationships wisely, and look for warning signs. On the flip side, don’t be a creep. It’s not a good look.
  • When someone you met at a networking event attempts to date you,  but they are actually in a relationship. After you address their deceptive ways, they intentionally try to avoid you, and attempt to befriend your friends at future networking events in your presence.
    • Be cognizant of how you conduct yourself with individuals you meet in professional spaces, you never know how your paths may cross again.
  • When a LinkedIn connection helps you with a simple work matter, then repeatedly messages you, visits your office unannounced and flirts, with a goal of making highly unreasonable professional requests. 
    • Set clear boundaries and expectations, and respect those that others set with you.

Our wine pairing for this month is Bursel Black’s Jender Blush wine, which was featured at Haute Restaurant & Lounge for the networking event. Tasting notes below!

“With Jender Blush you can taste the beauty of Bursel Black’s debut varietal, consisting of a Chardonnay, Cabernet, and a sweet Riesling blend. The wine pours a pretty light red, and its perfume lures with an invitation to a rich-bodied, fruity experience and a lingering finish.”

Bursel Black is a locally-owned black wine company, and you can find out more about the company here.


More Wine Please!

Last month, Lauren hosted a vision board party for her closest friends. The night provided plenty of fun and relaxation, as well as an opportunity to enjoy great food and wine! In preparation for the event, Lauren asked guests to bring a bottle of their favorite wine, so the group could try them as they made vision boards.

The conversation was full of laughter, and provided a huge release, after what had been a hectic time for most of the group. Throughout the evening, we were able to catch up regarding professional updates such as new jobs, personal endeavors such as upcoming weddings, and various civic engagement projects.

As we began to look through the magazines and stickers, we were able to reflect on where we all were individually, and what things we might aspire to do in the future. It was the perfect time to think about the goals that we repeatedly think about, but have yet to put in motion. Throughout the evening, guests made their way to the dining room for more wine as new bottles were opened, to taste the many red and white wine options available.  After we finished our vision boards, each person had an opportunity to discuss theirs, and say what we hope to accomplish in 2019. Some of the common goals were: to find happiness, save money, live healthier lifestyles, and be intentional about our respective goals.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Anytime women come together, something magical happens! The environment is infused with optimism, possibility, and encouragement, which is good for the soul. It is so easy to get caught up in life’s competing demands, that we often feel guilty for taking time to simply do nothing, or have fun. The old adage, “you cannot pour from an empty cup,” is so true. It is imperative to create and seek spaces that recharge you. Some key takeaways from the event were:

  • Make time to connect with friends
  • Take time to reflect, and be intentional when setting goals
  • Speak things to existence. Words manifest reality.
  • Create a supportive network to serve as accountability partners
  • Wine makes everything better!

Our wine pairing for this post is Apothic Rosé 2017, which is one of the bottles we tried that evening. Full tasting notes below!

Apothic Rosé contains layers of strawberry and watermelon, with a hint of raspberry, for a refreshing wine that is light in color, yet dark in nature.


You Had Me At Merlot

Love is scary. It means being vulnerable with someone else, and giving them the opportunity to hurt you. Like most, we both have had our share of interesting experiences when it comes to dating, and had the moments where we say “I’m never doing this again.” However, as time passes you realize that not only do those encounters make you stronger, they also occasionally provide you with moments of laughter– to be shared with good friends over equally great wine! Before we jump into those moments (and the wine), here are some of our lessons learned while dating:

At the top of our list, we realized the importance of remaining open to love, even when previous experiences have left us feeling pessimistic. Lesson two is that there is no formula for the perfect relationship, and each relationship will be vastly different than the last. Lesson three is to feel empowered and supported, in all relationships, both romantic and platonic. And of course, above all, we must remember to have FUN! Otherwise, what are we doing?

Below are some of our crazy, laughable, and real dating experiences. Feel free to guess which moment belongs to whom, and don’t forget to check out our wine pairing of the month! It might be your new Valentine’s Day favorite.

“I don’t think we will work, since you’re not open to visiting a nudist beach”

“Let’s be long-distance friends with benefits.”

“I could be the guy that you think about twenty years from now when you’re married with kids. I’ll be on a beach somewhere, doing whatever.”

“Will you have a threesome with me and my babymom?”

“I really thought when Obama was elected, racism was over.”

“Can I eat cereal out of your dimples in your cheeks?”

“I know it’s our second date, but it’s not too soon to say I love you. Can I put a baby in you?”

This month’s wine pairing is Duckhorn Vineyards’ Napa Valley Merlot. This Merlot is described as “a rich and cohesive expression of the entire Napa Valley, reflecting the varied microclimates and soils of this unique appellation”, with hints of cherry, plum and black fig. Full tasting notes below!

“Combining lovely structure and alluring appeal, this is a classic expression of Duckhorn Vineyards Merlot. Intense aromas of ripe cherry, plum and black fig rise from the glass, underscored by hints of leather and cedar. On the palate, it is lush and supple, with bright acidity and velvety tannins supporting layers of raspberry and black cherry, as well as hints of coffee and chocolate that carry through on the long finish.” Ideal food pairings include meatloaf, BBQ, brisket sliders, and grilled marinated quail.